Richard Baxter's The Saints' Everlasting Rest (1650) has long been recognized as one of the great classics of Christian devotion, and it is by this book that he is best known. The original work consists of some eight hundred thousand words-a clear example of Baxter's prolific pen-yet in Baxter's own life-time it reached twelve editions! First abridged in 1754 by John Wesley, in the Christian Library, five years later another abridgement was made by Benjamin Fawcett, and innumerable reprints of this have since been issued.
The book has also been translated into Welsh, Gaelic, German and French. The purpose of this abridgement, first published in 1962, was to present the work in a form suitable to the modern reader. No change has been made in the text of the passages selected from the original work, and the spirit and language of Baxter have been so preserved that the movement of his thought and style not only remains unimpaired but stands out even more clearly.
Richard Baxter (1615–1691) was one of the preeminent Puritan leaders of his day, the most successful Puritan pastor, and the most productive Puritan writer. Ordained at 23, he spent 17 fruitful years as curate at Kidderminster, England. He was ejected from the Church of England by the Act of Uniformity in 1662 and was imprisoned at least three times for his preaching. The author of more than 150 published treatises.