Henry Scougal – The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by…

This weekend the suggestion was made to me that I start a book club. In this club the members would read and blog on a single work. Though I have never attempted such an enterprise I can see the spiritual value in this. I still have a bit more thought to invest before commencing such a thing but I believe a good book to consider as part of such a club is The Life and Writings of Henry Scougal.

Scougal was an puritan (1650-1678), a professor of philosophy and divinity as well as a Pastor. He is described as a “careful Calvinist. And though Scougal was an Episcopalian in a Presbyterian land, the Scottish church has claimed him as one of its most radiant lights.”

If you would be interested in participating in this “book club” please drop me an email or respond to the this post. I have only shared this blog with those who are in full time service or those who believe God is directing them there. I am not looking for a large readership, I am looking for the opportunity to encourage and be encouraged by a godly man’s gaze on the glory of God and godly men’s response to that gaze.

Here is a brief excerpt from the overview of Scougal’s works:

Scougal conteds that true religion is a “union of the soul with God,” where the Christian actively participates in the divine life. Thus the life of God in man’s soul is permanent and lasting. Those who believe the gospel in their minds, but do not practice it from their hearts, are deceived. . . [The Christian should be driven] because he shares in Christ’s life, he is motivated by new desire. His ultimate happiness rests in contemplating the perfections of God, and in resignation to His will. . . Paramount to the excellence of religion is love’s object “Love is that powerful and  prevalent passion by which all the faculties and inclinations of the soul are determined, and on which both its perfections and happiness depends.” Thus Scougal could add, “The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love.

Whatever attracts one’s affections ultimately conforms him (at least in some sense) to the object attracted to. . . It is of chief importance where one’s desires lay, and Scougal would contend it has eternal consequences.

In the review of such passages I would expect the group to evaluate the theology the propositional statements as well as the historic and contemporary applications. If you would be interested in this “club” and/or you have some words of wisdom on such an endeavor please let me know. I will correspond personally with all those that express an interest.

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