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Ernest Kevan: Leader in Twentieth Century British Evangelicalism (Brown)

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What makes an effective leader? Ernest Kevan certainly fitted into that category, but he did not have the charismatic personality that is so often associated with success in this sphere. What he did have was the ability to influence. His enthusiasm for Puritan and Reformed theology moulded the thinking of many young pastors beginning work in British churches in the post-war years. In many ways he was a pioneer, and in some ways an anomaly – that a Baptist pastor who entered the ministry with no formal training should become the first principal of a new and innovative Bible college is testimony to his intellectual skill and generous attitude to evangelicals of all denominations.

First as a pastor, and then as Principal of London Bible College, he steadfastly devoted himself to the work that God had called him to do. This biography serves as a worthy memorial to a man who, though now largely forgotten, contributed enormously to the life and thought of English-speaking Evangelicalism in the mid-twentieth century.

Table of Contents: 

1 A Godly Family 1
2 Called by Grace 15
3 An Unexpected Turn of Events 23
4 Church Hill Baptist Church, Walthamstow 33
5 Enlarging the Work 43
6 A Notable Anniversary 57
7 ‘Zion’, New Cross 73
8 Doctrine and Development 91
9 The Second World War 101
10 Two Invitations 113
11 Trinity Road Chapel 125
12 The Beginning of London Bible College 135
13 The College Principal 147
14 ‘Uncle Ernie’ 167
15 Prepared for Service 179
16 BD or not BD 187
17 An Interdenominational College 199
18 The Wider Ministry: 1949-1953 209
19 The Wider Ministry: 1954-1960 221
20 Glory 229
21 Strength and Gentleness 239
22 In Retrospect 249
1 The Grace of Law 257
2 Selection of Writings 267
3 Documents 277




Paul Brown studied under Ernest Kevan at London Bible College between 1957 and 1960. He served in the pastoral ministry for 42 years, first as an assistant in Southampton and then at Stoke-on-Trent and Dunstable. Now retired from full-time ministry, he and his wife Mary live near Lancaster in the north of England.



"We need to live our lives, as Ernest Kevan lived his life, in the presence of God and in anticipation of the coming of Christ. Then by God’s grace we shall grow in strong biblical convictions…and in the gentle courtesy of Christ as we defend and proclaim our convictions." — JOHN R.W. STOTT

"‘Of whom the world was not worthy’ (Heb. 11:38) is also an apt description of Ernest Kevan, who as pastor, theologian and leader had a profound impact on post-War evangelicalism. I am therefore grateful for this extraordinarily detailed and careful biography that preserves these accomplishments for the church’s memory." — DAVID E. WELLS


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