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Biblical Church Government (Free Books and More!)

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"The works on the Puritan Hard Drive have been invaluable to me in sermon preparation and in improving personal and familial piety. If these had been the only blessings attached to the reading of these documents, the expense (even if it had been much greater) would have been justified; but there is more here."
 
- Dr. Steven Dilday, on the Puritan Hard Drive 
 

New User Comment on the Puritan Hard Drive

Dr. Steven Dilday Reviews & Recommends the Puritan Hard Drive
"For a number of years now, I have followed, and benefited from, the work of Still Waters Revival Books, particularly the Reformation and Puritan Bookshelf CD sets... and now the Puritan Hard Drive
 
The Puritan Hard Drive is a remarkable accomplishment!

The common Christian can now have a world-class Presbyterian and Reformed library at his fingertips, for only pennies per volume.

I do not think that it is an exaggeration to say that the Puritan Hard Drive presents an historic and singular opportunity.

The works on the Puritan Hard Drive have been invaluable to me in sermon preparation and in improving personal and familial piety. If these had been the only blessings attached to the reading of these documents, the expense (even if it had been much greater) would have been justified; but there is more here.

In this present time, a great many Presbyterians (particularly in North America) have forgotten and implicitly (perhaps unwittingly) rejected their Presbyterian heritage. Strangely, Westminster confessing churches have rejected the theological distinctives of the Westminster Standards.

Although the Westminster Assembly produced a beautiful statement of soteriological Calvinism, the histories clearly demonstrate that soteriology was not the principle focus, nor chief interest, of the Assembly. The Westminster Assembly was primarily concerned with uniformity in worship (in accordance with the Regulative Principle), the form of church government (Presbyterianism jus divinum), and Church-State relations (the Establishment Principle). It is a sad irony that the great and distinctive attainments of the Westminster Assembly have been ignored and rejected by so many Westminster confessing churches.

However, we may yet entertain the hope that these great attainments are rejected largely because of ignorance. The best books on these subjects have not been readily available; but (thanks be to God) they are available again on the Puritan Hard Drive.

For anyone interested in recovering our Presbyterian and Reformed past, the Puritan Hard Drive is a must.

It is my hope and prayer that the Puritan Hard Drive will be used by God to bring to light the things that were hidden, to call to remembrance the things that were forgotten."

- Dr. Steven Dilday, Pastor of Liberty and Grace Reformed Church in Northern Virginia and http://www.sermonaudio.com/PRCNOVA, President of The Matthew Poole Project, Professor of Hebrew and director of the Ph.D. program in Puritan History and Literature at Whitefield Theological Seminary, also directs the Master of Theology degree in "Ecclesiastical Latin." Dr. Dilday is currently translating the "Synopsis" written by the Puritan Divine, Matthew Poole. This project when completed will consist of approximately 82 volumes.

 

Dr. C. Matthew McMahon Graphic 60 pct."In the history of the church's sanctification
 (mortification and vivification - ed.)
I don't believe there has been a more valuable extra-biblical resource and tool than the Puritan Hard Drive." - Dr. C. Matthew McMahon, A Puritan's Mind

  

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If funds are tight, remember that you can purchase the Puritan Hard Drive using interest free deferred monthly payments as low a $50.00 per month. We also ship your Puritan Hard Drive as soon as your deferred monthly payments have reached $100.00. You may also pay $100.00 down, for faster shipping, then $50.00 per month thereafter. Call us at 780-450-3730 for more details about our interest free deferred monthly payments offer, or to get started today. You may also place a
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Biblical Church Government, Free Books & More


Apostolic Presbyterianism by William Cunningham and Dr. Reg Barrow (Free)
Shows from Scripture how the Apostles practiced the divine right of Presbyterianism.

From Apostolic Presbyterianism: Scriptural uniformity can easily be seen in the "apostolic" Presbyterian general assembly at Jerusalem (cf. Acts 15). In fact, this general assembly "delivered decrees" that were binding on all the individual churches that were part of the one visible church which adhered to apostolic doctrine. The Greek word used in Acts 16:4 for "decrees" is "dogmata." Compare this with the word "decree" used in Luke 2:1. This same word as used in Luke 2:1 is referring to the decree of Caesar Augustus regarding his call for an empire wide census. This was not a suggestion given by Caesar, nor was it just advice that could be ignored without penalty -- it was law! In the same way the decree sent down by the general assembly that took place in Acts 15 was to be held as law for the church. Furthermore, these pronouncements (because in keeping with the mind of the Spirit) held sway over all the churches. These decrees were carried out from Jerusalem to the churches in the cities of Asia Minor, as well as Antioch, indicating that the scope of the synod's authority extended not only over the church at Antioch which made the initial request, but over ALL THE CHURCHES! (Adapted from "Presbyterianism and Independency" in British Reformed Journal, No. 11, July-Aug. 1995, p. 10n).

It is also interesting to note the comments found in this same Journal comparing the Presbyterian's Westminster Confession
(1647) with the Independent's Savoy Declaration (1658). The British Reformed Journal points out: "A perusal of the twin columns on the page opposite will yield a direct contrast, highlighted at apposite critical points by the words in heavy type. One sees Westminster's decree (31:3), which corresponds to the Greek dogmata of the Textus Receptus in Acts 16:4, juxtaposed with advice given in the Savoy article XXVI, which latter corresponds with nothing anywhere in the Textus Receptus with respect to the matters of Synodical Church Government" (p. 17). Later this Journal asks: "Does this Scriptural Synod issue decrees or advice? Scripture says decree, Westminster says decree, Savoy says adviceWhich Confessional standard is therefore Scriptural?"

"And as they went through the cities, they delivered them the decrees for to keep, that were ordained of the apostles and elders which were at Jerusalem. And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily" (Acts 16:4-5).

Related Books

Historical Theology: A Review of the Principal Doctrinal Discussions in the Christian Church Since the Apostolic Age (2 Volume Set) by William Cunningham


Church of Christ: A Treatise on the Nature, Powers, Ordinances, Discipline, and Government of the Christian Church (2 Volume Set, 1869) by James Bannerman


More Books on Church (or Ecclesiastical) Government

Biblical Church Government by Kevin Reed (Free)
"This is the best short statement [of Presbyterian principles of church government] we have ever seen," noted the Banner of Truth magazine.


Covers the basic principles of Presbyterian church government: (1.) scriptural church officers, (2.) church courts, (3.) confessional standards, and (4.) church membership. Second (expanded) edition

Summary of this section from the table of contents:

- Why Luther declined a general synod for unity in ceremonies.

- There is a great difference between the prelatical conformity and the presbyterial uniformity.

- This is branched out in seven particulars.

- Both nature and Scripture give precedents for uniformity.

- The church in the Old Testament was very uniform both in the substantials and rituals of their worship.

- It was also prophesied to be under the New Testament, and commended and commanded in it.

- The church in the ancient times had a great uniformity.

Related Resources by George Gillespie

George Gillespie (at PuritanDownloads.com)
 

 

Click here for more free Reformation resources on biblical church government.

Books On Biblical Church Government
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The Apostolic Church, Which Is It? by Thomas Witherow

Shows, based on six Scriptural and Apostolic principles, which system of governing the church [Independent, Prelatical or Presbyterian] is pleasing to God. Concludes that Presbyterianism is set forth in Scripture as of divine right. 

Presbyterianism: The Truly Primitive and Apostolic Constitution of the Church of Christ (1835) by Samuel Miller

Samuel Miller was Professor of Ecclesiastical History and Church Government at Princeton Seminary for 35 years. He was born in 1769 and died in 1850.  A mild, inoffensive treatment of these volatile subjects. A much-sought-after title.


The Divine Right of Church Government (Jus Divinum Regiminis Ecclesiastici), Wherein it is Proved that the Presbyterian Government, By Preaching and Ruling Elders, in Sessional, Presbyterial, and Synodical Assemblies, May Lay the Only Lawful Claim to a Divine Right, According to the Holy Scriptures, c. 1646, 1844 ed. 
This is one of the all time classic defenses of the divine right of Presbyterianism. It also gives us a clear picture of the original intent of the English Presbyterians working at the Westminster Assembly (and is therefore very useful in determining the original intent of the Westminster Confession itself). It can be seen here that it was the strong conviction of the majority of English divines at Westminster that Presbyterianism is the only form of church government that is instituted by God in His Word.

David Hall, (the editor of the Nap. Press edition), states, the book "was not written as a polemical tract, as if to prop up some moribund tradition; rather it is an exemplar of gentle and reasoned discourse."

Thomas Henderson recommends this volume as "one of the best defences of presbytery which he has ever seen." 
  
 
   

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Amazing Puritan Hard Drive Fact and Hint: A search, using the master index on the Puritan Hard Drive and the "Open Full Reader Search" (in Acrobat reader), for the word "prayer", returns 97,170 results (in 1,378 documents) - all in context, arranged by book, and clickable (i.e., when you click on your individual search result the book opens to the page with your result highlighted)! How helpful is that for learning more about prayer, or any other subject you can think of, through the Puritan Hard Drive? Download the free PDF, How to Find Specific Words and Phrases in Searchable Books.pdf, to learn more.
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FREE PURITAN HARD DRIVE SOFTWARE

For a limited time, we are making available to the public a free download of a fully-functional copy of the Puritan Hard Drive KnowledgeBase application software, bundled with more than 300 Adobe PDF books/articles and MP3 audio sermons from the Puritan Hard Drive collection. (Click here to download a PDF listing of all bundled Puritan books/articles and Reformation MP3s.) This is the same critically-acclaimed knowledgebase and powerful search engine to be found on the Puritan Hard Drive, with the following limitations:

  • You can only access the Resources that are bundled with the demo.
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This demonstration version contains all the content and search functionality of the unrestricted version available only on the Puritan Hard Drive. This unrestricted version of the KnowledgeBase Application provides the user with immediate access to the more than 12,500 PDF (books and other text resources), MP3 (audio) and WMV (video) Resources contained in the full Puritan Hard Drive collection.  In that version, you can create thousands of Saved Search Results Sets and Saved Search Results Sets Lists, limited only by the available free space on the internal drive or external USB drive where the application resides. This also applies to the Favorites List. Click here for more information or to download your free Puritan Hard Drive demo software now!.

 

The Puritan Hard Drive is an exquisite piece of work.  

 

The purchaser of this fine product will have at his fingertips more of the best Reformed literature than he can probably ever get around to reading.  

 

Truly, if a Christian wants to invest wisely in his own growth, this is the best investment he can make at this time.  

 

More than highly recommended!

 

- Justin Rawson

Gospel Covenant Publications

 

     
 
       
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Would you like to volunteer some of your time to read classic Puritan and Reformed books and sermons to MP3, to make permanent digital audio versions of the best Puritan and Reformed books for our generation and for posterity? If so, we then list the Puritan and Reformed MP3s you have read on the Web, to give them away for free to people in every nation of the world - and, by God's grace, we reach between 45,000 to over 100,000 people each month with these free Puritan and Reformation MP3s! You may listen to other readings, by people just like yourself (who love the Lord and want to reach others with the love of the Lord Jesus Christ and the truth of His holy Word, the Bible) at FREE PURITAN & REFORMATION MP3 AUDIO SERMONS/BOOKS and from our "Audio Book" section on SWRB's sermonaudio site. You may also use the FREE SWRB iPHONE, iPAD, iPOD (Touch) APP to listen. It is very easy to get started with your new international Reformation reading ministry, just email us at swrb@swrb.com requesting our "PURITAN and REFORMED BOOK READER INSTRUCTIONS." Thank you!

 

It may also be of interest to you to know that at SWRB we strive to use as much of the proceeds from sales, as is possible, to produce more free and discounted Puritan books, Reformation MP3s and Calvinistic videos. This is how, by God's grace, we have published so many books, MP3s and videos over the years (with a relatively small staff and the help of volunteers) and why we are able to distribute so much material for free and at such low prices - may our Lord get all the glory! With your continued prayers, support and purchases we will be able to reach even more people, in the future, all around the world with the truth of the Scriptures - using the latest and best technologies available, in the service of the Lord, to greatly multiply all the good that can be done, and aiming to fill the world with the best Christian (Puritan and Reformation) resources available (Acts 17:6). 

 

 

Your Servant in Christ (for the Third Reformation),

Dr. Reg Barrow

President

Still Waters Revival Books 

Serving Christians Worldwide (In Over 100 Countries) For 27+ Years

 

"In the history of the church's sanctification I don't believe there has been a more valuable extra-biblical resource and tool than the Puritan Hard Drive... It holds some of the most priceless Reformed works of God-centered and Christ-glorifying truth that were ever penned." - Dr. Matthew McMahon, A Puritan's Mind 

 

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"The Puritan Hard Drive has been such a superb blessing to me personally and for my ministry, that I lack words to adequately praise the Lord!" - Richard Bennett (former Roman Catholic priest who is now a preacher of monergistic Reformation truth), Berean Beacon 

 

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