Monday, August 03, 2009

August is for American church history

Every August, for the last few years, I have read up on American church history. Last year it was George Marsden's Fundamentalism and American Culture, two years ago it was Bradley Longfield's The Presbyterian Controversy. Before that...who knows, I can't even remember what I did let alone what I read.

I'm forever perusing volumes by the Old Princetonians (I've even got an 1874 three volume edition of Charles Hodge's Systematic Theology) but August is for reading up on history. So this August I am getting back into a book that I have struggled with, George Marsden's Jonathan Edwards: A Life.


Gareth said...

In what way did you struggle with it Martin?
I need to read about Jonathan Edwards someday. I've heard so much about him and have read Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God so I should take some time to read about him. I've been reading Mike Reeves's book about the Reformation. I've really enjoyed it.

Martin Downes said...

For a few reasons.

Partly because the biographies that I have read offer quite different assessments of the young Edwards. Marsden tends toward wartyness.

I'm not sure what I make of the confident tone used in looking at the secondary causes that shaped him.

Partly too because it can be hard to get into a book sometimes, and yet you pick it up again and it is much easier it is now proving to be.