A Sweet Flame introduces readers to the piety of Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758). Dr. Haykin’s biographical sketch of Edwards captures the importance the New England minister placed on Scripture, family piety, and the church’s reliance upon God. The remainder of the book presents 26 selections from various letters written by Edwards, two written by family members at his death, and an appendix drawing upon Edwards’s last will and the inventor of his estate.
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Appendix: Jonathan Edwards’ Last Will, and the Inventory of His Estate
Seeking, then, both to honor the past and yet not idolize it, we are issuing these books in the series Profiles in Reformed Spirituality. The design is to introduce the spirituality and piety of the Reformed Profiles in Reformed Spirituality tradition by presenting descriptions of the lives of notable Christians with select passages from their works. This combination of biographical sketches and collected portions from primary sources gives a taste of the subjects’ contributions to our spiritual heritage and some direction as to how the reader can find further edification through their works. It is the hope of the publishers that this series will provide riches for those areas where we are poor and light of day where we are stumbling in the deepening twilight.
Michael A. G. Haykin is professor of church history and biblical spirituality at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.
"In this collection of letters Michael Haykin offers you a behind-the-scenes look into the life of Jonathan Edwards. As you look, you will see him dealing with sick children, trying to make sense out of the conflict with his Northampton congregation, and reveling in the serendipitous of friendship. Read these letters and you will find Edwards becoming your own ‘most obliging and affectionate friend in the labors of the gospel." - Stephen J. Nichols
"Jonathan Edwards was not only a brilliant theologian, but also a devoted husband, father, pastor, and friend. Underneath it all, he was a man passionate about living in joyful obedience to God. In this highly recommended collection of letters, skillfully edited and annotated by historian Michael Haykin, Edwards’s warm-hearted piety shines through on every page, giving us a glimpse into the heart and mind of this servant of God." - Justin Taylor
"A rare privilege awaits you. In these pages, you are about to meet one of the great Christians of all time: Jonathan Edwards! Your guide is reliable. Dr. Haykin has gathered some of the choicest letters of Edwards. In them, you will discover the insights of this noble leader on “Piety,” up close and personal. Piety? That is the way we tap the resources God provides, to live for His glory and help others find them, too. Before going on to the high ridges of thought, your escort will sketch the chief events of Edwards’ life. Then, in the letters, you will find Edwards’ views on piety, in his own words. Treasures for all ages are here. Edwards tells how he found heaven within, God’s mighty presence, enabling him to meet every challenge and be more than conqueror. Best of all, he had the radiant hope of being at home with the Lord in the life beyond. Bringing the eternal into practical situations is no mean feat. Edwards, however, accomplishes just that. We see his role as a child, husband, parent, pastor, mentor, and educator—with pungent thoughts on conversion, prayer, the Bible, revival, evangelism, and other vital topics. Each fruit of the Spirit is to be found here, expressed in Edwards’ own words, demonstrated in his life. The selections were chosen wisely. We are all indebted to Dr. Haykin for his outstanding service in making these classics available in such an attractive format. Now, to savor them!" - George S. Claghorn