Friday, 13 August 2021

Forgotten Reformer: Myles Coverdale

 Myles (or Miles) Coverdale is a very significant, but largely overlooked, figure in the English Reformation. From a monastic background, he was among the group of scholars at Cambridge in the 1520s who became influenced by Martin Luther's teaching, most of whom were later burnt at the stake for their beliefs. Coverdale only escaped a martyr's death through the intervention of the King of Denmark with Queen Mary. He was exiled to Europe, ending up at Geneva where he joined John Knox' church and came under John Calvin's influence. Here he assisted in the translation of the Geneva Bible. However his greatest feat of Bible translation work had come twenty years before in an earlier exile, joining up with William Tyndale on the continent, and after his death going on to finish what was the first complete Bible in English after the invention of printing. His life was a series of ups and downs: in different phases he was  Bishop of Exeter, but then a penniless teacher in a school in Germany. Through it all he remained the quiet, peaceable character that he was, combined with steely resolve when it came to matters of conscience. His humble determination to serve God, despite not being the literary genius that Tyndale was, is beautifully stated in his Prologue to the 1535 Coverdale Bible, and concludes with a good motto for every Christian:-

It was neither my labour nor desire to have this work put in my hand: nevertheless it grieved me that other nations should be more plenteously provided for with the Scriptures in their mother tongue, than we: therefore when I was instantly required, though I could not do so well as I would, I thought it my duty to do my best, and that with good will.

This study of Coverdale's life and work gives a real insight into the power and providence of God, bringing about and sustaining the Reformation. It would complement the History GCSE topic on King Henry VIII perfectly, to help young people see the greater spiritual movement that took place alongside the political events of that period.

Forgotten Reformer: Myles Coverdale  by G F Main, privately published, 2021. £10.


Saturday, 17 July 2021

Particular Baptists and Abolition

For many the lock-downs that we have undergone over the past 18 months have provided an opportunity to do things that they may not otherwise have had time for. For one member of our household this meant a college research project extending far beyond its original remit and becoming a labour of love which has culminated in the publication of a book (perfect when you just happen to have a bookshop to sell it in 😉)...

When we think of the campaign to abolish the slave trade, the tireless work of Wilberforce and his friends is uppermost in our minds. But Particular Baptists played an important role in the campaign, speaking out against the abhorrent trade in sermons, petitions and letters.

This book brings back into print some of these historic sermons, each with a biographical sketch of the preacher, and discusses the role of non-comformists in garnering the support of the wider religious public.

"The slave trade and slavery may have been abolished centuries ago, yet modern slavery still exists along with many other forms of injustice. These sermons challenge us to continue in the Christian duty of benevolence and to affirm Christian attitudes to equality when faced with increasingly disturbing scenes of oppression across the world" (quoted from the preface).

Preaching Deliverance to the Captives: Particular Baptist Sermons on the Abolition of the Slave Trade, compiled and edited by Matthew Roe, £8.99


Saturday, 3 July 2021

Did you sponsor a 2021 AV Calendar?

Thank you to everyone who sponsored an AV block Calendar to be sent overseas this year. We were able to send over 50 calendars out to the Philippines and have received a lovely letter from Pastor Ballonado in Bocaue to say they have been safely received. May they richly bless all who receive them.



Monday, 7 June 2021

It's that time of year again!


It's summer, and that can only mean the launch of our Summer Reading Club! This year you get to choose your discount by becoming a Prime member or a PrimePLUS member (if you can't beat 'em, join 'em 😉).

So...

Spend just £15 with us between now and the end of August and you will have qualified for a Prime membership discount of 15% on all your summer book orders.

Or go big and spend £25 with us between now and the end of August and you will have qualified for a PrimePLUS membership discount of 25% on all your summer book orders.


All we ask is that you make sure you are on our emailing list. If you don't think you are then you can easily subscribe on our website homepage.

Please have a read of our Terms and Conditions and then head over to our website to start browsing.





Wednesday, 12 May 2021

Thomas Clarkson - The Giant with One Idea

12th May 1789 was the day that William Wilberforce made his first speech in parliament against the slave trade. He spoke for three and a half hours! Today therefore seems a fitting day to post a review of the latest Trailblazer book about Thomas Clarkson the abolitionist who worked closely with Wilberforce.

Latest Trailblazer on Thomas Clarkson

Thomas Clarkson: The Giant with One Idea 

The campaign to abolish the slave trade was motivated by Christian ideals, its arguments presented in Christian language, and, above all, with committed Christians as its leaders. Of these, William Wilberforce, the great abolitionist MP and the campaign’s leader in Parliament, is the most well known. Yet just as important, though sadly overlooked (especially in Christian writing on abolition), was Thomas Clarkson. As this book details for a younger audience, he drove the campaign and turned it into a pioneering popular movement, gathering evidence, witnesses, supporters and petitions. The reader gains a vivid sense of the difficulties this involved, the many dangers and disappointments along the way, Clarkson’s illness and partial retirement, and the crowning triumph when abolition was finally achieved in 1807. His work continued after this, pressuring the government to force other countries to abolish their slave trades. Clarkson also took part in the campaign against slavery itself, although less focus is afforded to it here, which was successful in 1833. Despite this, what is presented is the picture of a dedicated man, committed to helping the downtrodden and oppressed and motivated in this by his Christian faith. It is written in a slightly fictionalised style to engage children, but will be of benefit to parents and young ones alike for discovering the life and oft forgotten efforts of Thomas Clarkson. It is only to be lamented that there is no full length, modern biography of Clarkson for adult readers.

There are some, though no major, historical inaccuracies in this book, primary among them the attribution of the pamphlet encouraging the boycott of sugar mentioned on p. 97 to the Whig MP Charles James Fox (erroneously referred to as Lord Fox at points). This pamphlet, entitled An Address to the people of Great Britain, was in fact authored by William Fox, a printer who attended James Dore’s Particular Baptist chapel in Maze Pond, London (itself a hotbed of abolitionism, with Dore preaching against the trade in 1788). The date of abolition is also given as the 24th February 1807, the date of the second reading of the Bill in the House of Commons, rather than the 25th March, when the Bill was given Royal Assent. However, these minor errors should not detract from the enjoyment that will be found reading this book. The small section on modern slavery at the end reminds the reader of the continued existence of this most inhuman of institutions, and it is to be hoped that the life and efforts of this most important of figures will inspire us both to look back to the valuable lessons of the original anti-slavery campaign, and apply these to the similar issues faced today.

Matthew Roe

Thomas Clarkson: The Giant with One Idea, by Emily Maurits, published by Christian Focus Publications, £5.99

Saturday, 1 May 2021

The great smell of books!

We are pleased to report that the shop is open after recent restrictions on retail were lifted, and so our customers will once again be able to enjoy the smell and feel of fantastic books like this one!


Our secondhand book section has recently had a healthy influx, and some of these books are often sought after and difficult to find. These include full sets such as John Gill's commentary, William Huntington's works, John Owen's seven volumes on Hebrews and many more. To check out our full secondhand listing, click here.

Newly published books are also being added to our shelves regularly including some new titles in the Puritan Paperback series, a new biography of Charles Spurgeon and a comprehensive look at how Christianity transformed the world from Sharon James. This link will take you to all our latest books in stock.


Wednesday, 31 March 2021

Reading Together

Reading Together, our ladies reading club has had an extended hiatus since we finished our last book back in July 2020. But with the arrival of Spring has come renewed enthusiasm for starting a new book! 

The main idea behind the reading club is to encourage ladies of all ages to pick up a book they would not normally get through and enjoy some online encouragement and discussion as we slowly read through it together. It is run as an online blog that can only be viewed by members who have subscribed (which is free), and those who are members also get a bonus discount on the current book. If you like the look of the books you see in the image, (these are the ones we have read so far) then how about joining us for our next one? Just contact us to find out how.