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The Purpose of “The Bruised Reed”

The Bruised Reed by Richard SibbesAs I continued reading through The Bruised Reed yesterday, I found a statement in chapter 10 that perfectly summarizes the purpose of Richard Sibbes’ book:

The comfort intended in this text is for those that would fain (<– means “gladly”) do better, but find their corruptions clog them; that are in such a mist, that often they cannot tell what to think of themselves; that fain would believe, and yet often fear that they do not believe; and that think that it cannot be that God should be so good to such sinful wretches as they are, and yet they do not permit these fears and doubts in themselves.

When I read this, I was immediately reminded of the title of a rather popular book written by Rabbi Harold Kushner, When Bad Things Happen to Good People. Not only does Sibbes’ book answer this question, but it also answers its reverse, asked by many a Christian who struggles with sin: “Why is God good to me, a sinner?”

I have a suggestion. Instead of buying Rabbi Kushner’s book, I beg each of you to put The Bruised Reed in the hands of all your friends and family members who are struggling with sin, personal crises, crises of faith, and any other struggle you could think of. This book will do them more good than Rabbi Kushner’s book ever could.

In the meantime, go over to Timmy Brister’s and take part in the discussion on The Bruised Reed in this post.

I plan to finish the book this weekend, take notes during the upcoming week, and post my review by the weekend. Stay tuned!

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