Some James Durham

I have been away fishing in the Highlands this past week so studies have taken a back seat and hence the blog is a fairly random selection quotes from Durham’s work Heaven Upon Earth (Edinburgh: Andrew Anderson, 1685) – some might argue this is business as usual!

On the balance between heart and mind

True religion and godliness consists not only in the illumination of the mind, and in the conception and contemplation of the Truths concerning God and the Gospel; but also and mainly in the practice of the known Duties thereof … we would … by all means take heed that we separate and divide not the power and practice of Religion from the Theory thereof; and that we prefer not the search after some more cryptic and dark things in Religion, to the serious practice of the more plain and obvious Truths thereof…
p286

On the ordinary way of Conversion

I speak not now of what gracious change may be wrought in some persons more early, and in their younger years, nor how secretly and little discernibly the work of Conversion may be wrought in some that are come to age; But I speak of God’s more ordinary way of dealing, and reclaiming and converting of sinners; When Paul speaks of himself, Rom 7. He tells us that … he was a clean man as he thought, and in his own eyes; before the Lord discovered Sin, and wakened a Challenge for it in his Conscience…
p332

So, for Durham, conversion in infancy and or an indiscernible quiet work of conversion is not the normative pattern, but the more sudden, distinct crisis experience of Paul.

On Preaching

And since I am preaching (or exhorting) tomorrow:

Preaching is a good work, yet there are many Preachers that has not a good Testimony from their Conscience, In that good work; but Paul had it; and that which made him have it, was his sincerity and singleness, that he spoke as before God, without a bias, or any allowed carnalness in his end: if we could preach and pray, and live and walk thus in all our Actions, O! What sweet peace should we have…
p183

…the right preaching of the Gospel (if we could win at it) will neither loose reigns to lawless and sinful liberty to carnal persons; nor make sad the hearts of those that are gracious and tender, nor put them on the rack, nor involve them in a labyrinth of inextricable intricacies, and perplexities.
p253

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One Response to “Some James Durham”

  1. An Erring Conscience? -- James Durham - The PuritanBoard Says:

    […] Some James Durham James Durham Thesis (June 14, 2008) […]

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