These two books contain daily devotions for one year. In the first book, Day By Day With Jonathan Edwards, Randall J. Pederson compiles 365 pithy, spiritually challenging topics from Jonathan Edwards, known as the energy and force behind the first New England Great Awakening, which began in 1740. Edwards was a great expositor of the Word, a philosopher, a pastor with great sensitivity to people, and as some biographers maintain, the last representative of Puritan theology and thought in the New World. His sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” preached in Enfield, Connecticut on July 8, 1741, is still found in many literature books. People who heard the sermon responded with great moaning and crying out, “what shall I do to be saved? Oh I am going to hell! Oh, what shall I do for Christ?” Today there stands a monument at the site of the Enfield meeting church. This volume contains daily devotional thoughts appropriate for a multitude of settings. It will give you the sense of Edwards’ spiritual sensitivity, theological brilliance and great intellect. It is a good way to introduce someone to Jonathan Edwards.
The second companion, Day By Day With The English Puritans is likewise a daily devotional containing thoughts from about 80 different Puritans. They range from people such as John Bunyan, Richard Baxter, Thomas Manton, to Thomas Watson, Richard Sibbes, William Gurnall and John Flavel.
J. I. Packer, noted for his love and appreciation for the Puritans, wrote, “These are wonderful in the way that all good devotionals are-that is, they enlarge your sense of God’s greatness, goodness, and closeness to you, and so make you praise and pray. I am sure the readers will be greatly energized by them in faith and hope and love.” Packer goes on to say that these men’s grasp of godliness remains unrivaled, and we today who lack it need to learn it from them.
As I have read through many of the daily offerings, I believe this would be a good way to acquaint someone, especially our covenant children, with some of these great men of the faith. Family devotions, Bible lessons, Sunday school classes, and individuals will appreciate having both these volumes to draw from in their thinking.