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This fifth volume begins the doctrinal treatises of Perkins with three contributions of catechetical theology. The first treatise is An Exposition of the Symbol or Apostles’ Creed. Examining the contours of Christian faith, Perkins handles each article of the Creed according to its basic meaning, the duties it calls us to, and the consolation it brings. He closes the entire work by explaining how the Creed is a “storehouse of remedies against all troubles and temptations whatsoever.” The second treatise is An Exposition of the Lord’s Prayer. Detailing the chief Christian desires, Perkins explains the meaning of the petitions of the Lord’s Prayer and the “manifold uses” for each. Perkins closes his exposition with the proper uses of the Lord’s Prayer in general, the circumstances related to the way we pray, and a word on God hearing our prayers. This treatise also includes a collection of prayers (with short expositions) from the Bible and a poetic song “gathered out of the Psalms, containing the sobs and sighs of all repentant sinners.” The third treatise is The Foundation of Christian Religion Gathered into Six Principles, which sets down the principle points of Christian religion in order to establish readers in true knowledge, unfeigned faith, and sound repentance. Providing a rudimentary understanding of the Ten Commandments, the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, and the two sacraments, Perkins’s Foundation sets a framework for people to profit more from sermons and to receive the Lord’s Supper with comfort.
“On the broad shoulders of William Perkins, epoch-making pioneer, stood the entire school of seventeenth-century Puritan pastors and divines, yet the Puritan reprint industry has steadily bypassed him. Now, however, he begins to reappear, admirably edited, and at last this yawning gap is being filled. Profound thanks to the publisher and heartfelt praise to God have become due.”
—J. I. Packer, Board of Governors’ Professor of Theology, Regent College, Vancouver, British Columbia
“Without a doubt, the Puritans were theological titans. The Puritan theological tradition did not emerge out of a vacuum. It was shaped by leaders and theologians who set the trajectory of the movement and shaped its commitments. William Perkins was one of those men. Perkins’s contribution to Puritan theology is inestimable, and this new reprint of his collected works is a much-awaited addition to all who are still shaped and influenced by the Puritans and their commitment to the centrality of the grace of God found only in Jesus Christ. Even now, every true gospel minister stands in debt to Perkins, and in his shadow.”
—R. Albert Mohler Jr., president, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
“The list of those influenced by the ministry of William Perkins reads like a veritable Who's Who of the Puritan Brotherhood and far beyond. This reprinting of his works, so long unobtainable except by a few, is therefore a publishing event of the first magnitude.”
—Sinclair B. Ferguson, professor of systematic theology, Redeemer Theological Seminary, Dallas
“The father of Elizabethan Puritanism, Perkins presided over a dynasty of faith. The scope of his work is wide, yet on every topic he treats one discovers erudition and deep reflection. He was the first in an amazing line of ministers at Cambridge University’s main church. A pastor to pastors, he wrote a bestseller on counseling, was a formative figure in the development of Reformed orthodoxy, and a judicious reformer within the Church of England. I am delighted to see Perkins’s works made available again for a wide audience.”
—Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Theology and Apologetics, Westminster Seminary California
“William Perkins was a most remarkable Christian. In his relatively short life he was a great preacher, pastor, and theologian. His prolific writings were foundational to the whole English Puritan enterprise and a profound influence beyond his own time and borders. His works have become rare, and their republication must be a source of real joy and blessing to all serious Christians. Perkins is the first Puritan we should read.”
—W. Robert Godfrey, president emeritus, Westminster Seminary
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