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J.C. Ryle (1815-1900).  Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones was one of the first in modern times to rediscover the writings of Bishop J.C. Ryle, whose name had been all but forgotten by the 1930’s, but whose writings at one time were sold by the millions all around the world.  Lloyd-Jones said that he just happened to "stumble across" Ryle's Holiness in the 1930's in a second-hand bookshop. "I shall never forget the satisfaction – spiritual and mental – with which I read it."  His works have been characterized as “a distillation of true Puritan theology presented in a highly readable and modern form."  As a minister, he is considered one of the greatest of the Victorian evangelicals, and man whom  Charles Spurgeon described as "the best man in the Church of England."  He was converted at Oxford in 1837, so thoroughly that it was to have a profound effect on his later ministry, as he related nearly 40 years later:  “Nothing I can remember to this day appeared to me so clear and distinct as my own sinfulness, Christ's preciousness, the value of the Bible, the absolute necessity of coming out of the world, the need of being born again and the enormous folly of the whole doctrine of baptismal regeneration....People may account for such a change as they like; my own belief is that … it was what the Bible calls "conversion" or "regeneration" ... and nothing to my mind can account for it, but the free sovereign grace of God."  In his ministry, he relentlessly called for the reformation of the Church of England, both its clergy and laity, and especially focused on those whose lives did not match their professions.  It is said he "… aimed at four things: the evangelising of English people; the purging of the English national Church; the uniting of English Christians; and the holiness of English believers."

The World:
A Source of Great Danger to the Soul

Excerpt from Practical Christianity

by J.C. Ryle

"The World": A Biblical Definition

Let us hear what the Apostle Paul says:

"Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind." (Rom. 12:2)

"We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God." (1 Cor. 2:12)

"Christ gave Himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age [world]." (Gal. 1:4)

"You were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world." (Eph. 2:1-2)
"Demas, because he loved this world, has deserted me"
(2 Tim. 4:10)

Let us hear what James says:

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." (Jas. 1:27)

"Don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God." (Jas. 4:4)

Let us hear what John says:

"Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world-the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does-comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever." (1 John 2:15-17)


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