Pilgrim’s Keyboard

December 19, 2018

2018 | Book Reading List

1. The Life of Martyn Lloyd-Jones: 1899-1981 – Iain H. Murray | Published by: The Banner of Truth Trust, 2013, ISBN: 978-1-84871-180-8.

This book is a re-cast, condensed and, in parts, rewritten version of the author’s two volumes D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones: The First Forty Years (1982) and The Fight of Faith (1990).  D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, the “Doctor of Medicine” whom God called to be “The Doctor of Preaching”.

Iain H. Murray is the supreme biographer when it comes to Christian Ministers.  His writing of this book is of no-exception and along with the fact that he was a personal friend of Lloyd-Jones one ends up with an intimate loving story of a great Christian man, preacher, and writer.  I enjoyed this book.  Reading about Lloyd-Jones was recommended to me by two friends: Gene McDuffie & Lacey Lounsbury. I gladly pass on the same recommendation to you. Buy it – read it – keep it on your bookshelf. You will not regret having this book to enjoy learning about a “man of Gods grace serving the God of Grace! | 01/16/2018


2. Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans: The Battle That Shaped America’s Destiny – Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger | Published by: Sentinel (an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC), 2017, ISBN 978-0-7352–1323-4.

 This is the third and latest book by Brian Kilmeade. He also wrote: George Washington’s Secret Six and Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates: The Forgotten War that Changed American History. I have enjoyed all of these books immensely. In this work the authors take you through the events that led to defense of New Orleans and the Western Territory of the Mississippi which was that was at stake of being lost to the British in the War of 1812. This book speaks of the courage and wisdom of General Jackson and his mixed bag of defenders resolve to save New Orleans and in effect become the second assurance of our nation’s independence. I highly recommend that you get this book and learn a little bit more history of the brave Americans who loved and served this great young nation of the United States of America. | 03/19/2018


3. From God To Us: How We Got Our Bible – Norman L. Geisler and William E. Nix | Published by: Moody Publishers, 2012, ISBN 978-0-8024-2882-0. (This is the second edition which has been revised and expanded from the 1974 edition.)

This book examines the journey of the Word of God – our Bibles. The major topics discussed are inspiration, canonicity of the OT, the Hebrew Masoretic Text (MT), the Greek Septuagint (LXX), and the discoveries of the Dead Sea Scrolls and The Documents in the Judean Desert. Also, the canonicity of the NT, the various Greek manuscripts such as the Textus Receptus (TR), Majority/Byzantine text (M), Alexandrian/Critical text (NU) used in the English translations of today. Personally, I found this book will be a useful resource concerning “How We Got Our Bible.” However, as in all books on this subject – one’s bias opinions usually determines whether they will like it or not! I think it is worth spending the $$. | 08/10/2018


4. God Has Preserved His Text! : The Divine Perservation of the New TestamentWilber N. Pickerting | 2017, ISBN 9-780997-468625.

This book had been one the most technical I have read since Seminary. Its focus is based on the title. Throughout Dr. Pickerting (Ph.D), is giving his defense for the Majority Text / Byzantine manuscripts family superiority over the Alexandria Text / Vaticanus & Sinaiticus manuscripts family. I have been an advocate for the Majority Texts for years as the preserver of the Koine autographs. So I enjoyed reading it even when it got bogged down in all of his stats. It is not a fast read. | 08/30/2018


5. Assured by God: Living in the Fullness of God’s Grace – Burk Parsons, editor | Published by: P & R Publishing Co., 2006, ISBN 978-1-59638-029-5.

This is a book on the doctrine of Assurance. Along with the editor there are several contributors, such as: Philip Ryken, Albert Mohler, Jr., Sinclair Ferguson, John MacArthur, and others. The Foreword and Epilogue was supplied by R. C. Sproul. The book abides by its title throughout. I also found it to be very informative and supplied with much Scripture. However, Ch. 8 gave me some reserve thoughts. As a Baptist I am always hesitant to tie the ordinances/elements (sacraments – author) of the Lord’s Supper and Baptism to anything other than memorial in use {cf. 144, 146} or of prayer {153} as being indicated as part of a means of grace. I will leave it up to the readers to determine if my hesitations are appropriate or not. Over all this is a good book for anyone who is often dealing with doubts and fears concerning their salvation. For it truly shows that salvation is of the LORD (Jonah 2:9). May we always remember concerning our assurance – “It is always about God and not us!” I recommend this book to be read and kept in your library. | 09/12/2018   /////   [Joanna – I urge you to read this book. It has been a great help to me. For I too have faced some of the same struggles. Bruce 🌷 SDG]


6. The Holy War – John Buyan | Whitaker House, 1985, ISBN 978-0-88368-706-2.

The jacket reads:  “From the author of The Pilgrim’s Progress comes a powerful allegory about the battle being fought for man’s heart, mind, and spirit.” I enjoyed the book as I do most of John Bunyan’s writing.  However, I do not think this meets up to the same standard as his Pilgrim’s  Progress. Bunyan does use a lot of metaphor names which reflects many of our “Mansoul’s” fleshly traits and of course those from the enemy “Diabolus”.

If you like reading John Bunyan may I also recommend to you his, “Grace Abounding: to Sinners” – it is an excellent testimony of his journey from the “most notorious rebel in his village to a great man of faith. | 09/22/2018


7. Authorized: The Use & Misuse of the King James Bible (KJV) – Mark Ward | Lexham Press, 2018, ISBN 978-1-68359-055-2.

This small book is written about the author’s experience of reading the KJV throughout his early years. It also speaks of his love for the KJV’s vulgar “Elizabethan English,” (which was “the man on the street” or Tyndale’s “plough boy” language). His book looks at the KJV translator’s common language then meanings then are compared to their meaning now. He also writes of some of the KJV Elizabethan words then are no longer used now and have become even obsolete today. Thus the author argues that as the KJV was a “book-of-the-common-man” then – so too there is the same necessity of having our English translation(s) more aligned with our common vulgar of today. The author’s argument is very plausible and should be examine closely. I think one would benefit from this little book. Therefore I recommend it to be purchased and read. | 09/25/2018


8. The Cross and The Covenants – R. B.C. Howell, D. D. | Sprinkle Publications, 1994 reprint of 1854 and 1855 respectfully by the author, ISBN N/A. This small book contains two separate writings by the author Howell.

In his first book, The Cross one finds a thorough and an enjoyable read concerning the aspects of the Cross of Christ. In its ten chapters Howell asks the question – “By the Cross of our Lord Jesus …” as a prefix of his subject matter.

In his second book, The Covenants one finds his discussion of the covenants from the OT and the New Covenant concerning Christ Jesus. I enjoyed this book less. As so often with many during his era when one wrote concerning the covenants involving Israel they conclude that God has fulfilled them all. Their reasoning then was that Israel was scattered and that God is done with them thus carrying out the New Covenant now in Christ with the Gentiles. The problem with that is that Scripture does not support such teaching. Also, in 1948 Israel was reestablished as a nation, Jerusalem in 2018 it was announced as Israel’s capitol and has been so recognized by several nations as legitimate claim.

If you can find the first book I highly recommend it to you. The second book, I would tell you not to waste your money. However, I realize that I am being bias in my opinion for I do not think the author’s intent is supported by Scripture. | 10/27/2018


9. The Story of Scripture: How We Got Our Bible and Why We Can Trust It – Robert L. Plummer | Kregel Publications, 2013, ISBN 978-0-8254-4315-2.

One would think that a small book containing only seven chapters could not be of much help in discerning the Bible as a reliable source. Yet, Dr. Plummer does just that. In 87 pages he looks at “The Nature and Purpose of the Bible,” its organization, authorship, authority and accuracy, textual history, and “The Canon {icity} of the Bible.” His book goes straight to the point concerning these aspects of the English Bible.  I would highly recommend this booklet for the believer who wants to read about the “ins and outs” of Scripture. It is an excellent starting point in one’s research as to why we trust our Bible. | 11/11/2018


10. Ray’s Baptist Succession – David Burcham (D.B.) Ray | Foley Railway Printing, 1912 – Twenty-Seventh Edition / Reprinted by Larry Harrison, Foreword 2001, St. Johns, IN.

I must start out and tell you that I love Christian History – especially Baptist History! This probably means I am being bias as I write that this is a great-book and a must-read of anyone who examines the history of Christianity and of the Lord Jesus’ local-visible-NT-Church. May I dare say – “Baptist” – i.e., one of the names given to us from history!  Or perhaps best stated by William Shakespeare from his infamous Romeo and Juliet:  “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” I will leave you with my recommendation  to read & enjoy. | 11/14/2018


Currently Reading

I am in the middle of two great books right now – I hope to finish them shortly after the first of the year. These are:

The Life of Moses: God’s First Deliver of Israel – James Montgomery Boice | P & R Publishing, 2018 by Linda M. Boice, Phillipsburg, NJ, ISBN 978-1-59638-753-9.


The Inerrant WORD: Biblical, Historical, Theological, and Pastoral Perspectives – John MacArthur, editor, W/Various Contributors | Crossway, Wheaton, IL, 2016, ISBN 978-1-4334-4861-1.







November 28, 2017

Obadiah Holmes

Filed under: Baptist Heritage ...,Bruce — pilgrimskeyboard @ 3:47 pm

Obadiah Holmes (1607?-1682) Baptist Pioneer Piety –
“In 1639 – the year after Dr. JOhn Clarke and others settles on Aquidneck Island in Narragnsett Bay – a sturdy Englishman in his early thirties arrived in Salem, Massachusetts with his wife and three year old son. This man was Obadiah Holmes, his wife Catherine, and their son Jonathan…. Upon arrival in Salem … Soon {1640} Holmes and his family united with the Puritan Church in Salem, and records indicate that he became identified with the prominent people of the community … In 1645 Holmes and his family moved to Rehobeth, a part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony outside the jurisdiction of the Massachusetts Bay authorities…. Here he and Catherine united with the local church, also of Puritan persuasion…. however, he became almost immediately embroiled in controversy with the pastor, Samuel Newman…. So intense was the conflict … he soon was excommunicated from this congregation.

Baptist activity in Newport, Rhode Island, was gaining strength, with the arrival of Mark Lucar, a member of John Spilsbury’s Baptist Church in England in 1648.Newport’s religious leaders began to reach out to Massachusetts and to Plymouth Colony, and in particular to the nearby Rehobeth settlement. While the Puritans saw the Baptists as a source of much disruption and conflict, the efforts of Lucar, Clarke, and others brought a long-sought sense of peace to Obadiah Holmes.  He wrote of the experience, ‘It pleased the Father of Light, after a long continuance of mine in death and darkness to cause life and immortality to be brought to light in my soul.’

Sometime during this period, Dr. John Clarke visited Rehobeth, and there found people hold essentially Baptist views, among them Obadiah Holmes. Clarke baptized Holmes and eight other men, and they formed a congregation in Rehobeth … although they were technically members of the Newport Church. Soon the group was prevented from conducting public services y the Grand Jury of Plymouth Colony. To escape this kind of religious persecution, Holmes and his growing family moved once again – this time to Newport, in the fall of 1650…. early in the summer of 1651 he found himself in the midst of the situation for which he is most remembered. In the month of July, Holmes, Clarke, and John Crandall, journeyed to Lynn, Massachusetts, to visit William Witter, an elderly man who was a ‘brother in the Church (in Newport), but by reason of his age could not undertake so great a journey as to visit the church.’

The three arrived at Witter’s home, about two miles from the center of the village, on Saturday … to spend the Lord’s Day there with their brother…. for it was determined that they should have religious services at Witter’s home. While Dr. Clark was preaching, ‘Two constables came into the house, who with their clamours [sic] for the arrest of Holmes, Clarke, and Crandall, carried them away to the alehouse …’ Later that day they compelled to attend the meeting of the local Puritan Church, although they indicated that they should be compelled to go, they would declare their dissent by word and by deed.’ The words were spoken by Clarke, who disrupted the congregation at worship, and the three persisted at the wearing their hats, even during the time the congregation was praying…. the next day they were sent to Boston.

After two weeks in prison, the courts imposed sentence: Crandall-5 pounds; Clarke-20 pounds, and Holmes-30 pounds, if they did not pay their fines, they would be publicly whipped. All three refused to pay the fines…. Clarke’s was paid by someone unknown to him. Crandall was released on his promise to pay … Holmes not only refused to pay the pay the fine himself, but he vigorously protested the efforts of his friends to pay for him.

He was led to the whipping post behind the Old State House in Boston, where he spoke to the crowd assembled, ‘Though my flesh should fail, and my spirit, should fail, yet my God will not fail.’ With this, the whipping began. The man wield a three-part whip, and with each blow he spat upon his hands three times. When finally the torment was ended and Holmes was released, he addressed the magistrate, ‘You have struck me as with roses.’ His body was bruised and bleeding, and for months afterward he ‘could take no rest except as he lay on his knees and elbows, not being able to suffer any part of his body to touch the bed where he lay.’

Holmes returned to Newport soon after his ordeal, and resume his work in the Baptist Church there, under the pastor and his close friend, John Clarke. …

Following Clarke’s death in 1676, Holmes became the second pastor of one of the oldest Baptist Churches in the New World {According to … J. R.Graves … this is the first and oldest Baptist Church in the New World}. … He died October 15, 1682.


[Gleaned from “A Pioneer of Religious Liberty: Obadiah Holmes – by L. Edgar Stone (“The Landmark Baptist” publication, Vol. 16, Number 3, May/June 2015), 1-5; Cf. “Baptist Piety: The Last Will and Testimony of Obadiah Holmes,” edited by – Edwin S. Gaustad (Christian University Press, Grand Rapids, MI, 1978).]

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