Thoughts on Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John
J. C. Ryle with S. Kczuk
J. C. Ryle (1816-1900) was the first Anglican bishop of Liverpool. Thoroughly evangelical in his doctrine and uncompromising in his principles, Ryle was a prolific writer, vigorous preacher, and faithful pastor. Charles Spurgeon considered him "the best man in the Church of England." Ryle was educated at Eton and Oxford and considered entering Parliament but upon his conversion in 1837 decided to go into the ministry instead. He was ordained a minister in the Church of England that same year and became a bishop in 1880. Bishop Ryle's Expository Thoughts on the Gospels were first issued in 1856 and immediately met with a warm welcome from evangelical Christians of all denominations. The author did not prepare the work for scholars, but instead that the volumes were for family and private use. Like all his writings, they were intended to help the ordinary man and woman. "I have a strong conviction," he wrote, "that we want more reverent deep-searching study of the scriptures in the present day. Most Christians see nothing beyond the surface of the Bible when they read it. We want more clear knowledge of Christ, as a living person, a living priest, a living physician, a living friend, a living Saviour soon about to come again. Most Christians know little of Christianity but the skeleton of doctrines - I desire never to forget those two things: if I can do anything to make Christ and the Bible more honourable in these latter days, I shall be truly thankful and content."
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