Carl Trueman spends about 15 minutes interviewing J. I. Packer, asking him questions about how he came to faith in Christ, how he was introduced to the Puritans, and the influence Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Packer’s favorite Puritan writers are John Owen, Richard Baxter, and John Bunyan. Trueman’s final question is to ask Packer what advice he would give young men who are beginning to set out for a life of ministry.
Packer makes one statement that is striking. He tells young men to dig deep, and to expect to find resistance within the church, because the church is generally superficial, and superficiality doesn’t always recognize itself, nor see it’s need to go deeper.
Excellent article on the Gospel Coalition website by Jen Wilken on how we should understand when Bible studies do not have a transforming effect on us.
“When all your favorite preachers are gone, and all their books forgotten, you will have your Bible. Master it. Master it.” — John Piper
There is no deficit in the ministry of the Word. If our exposure to it fails to result in transformation, particularly over the course of years, there are surely only two possible reasons why: either our Bible studies lack true converts, or our converts lack true Bible study.
I believe the second reason is more accurate than the first. Much of what passes for Bible study in Christian bookstores and church resource libraries just isn’t: while it may educate us on a doctrine or a topic, it does little to further our Bible literacy. And left to our own devices, we pursue a host of unsavory (and un-transformative) self-constructed approaches to “spending time in the Word.”
You can read it here.