Helpful Truth in Past Places: The Puritan Practice of Biblical Counseling
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Number of Pages: 192
Publication Date: 2010
Availability: Expected to ship on or about 09/30/15.
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Helpful Truth in Past Places examines the teachings of leading Puritan writers-theologians who were masters at understanding the nature of human beings and applying Scripture in practical ways to help people with their struggles and problems. Looking to Scripture as the final authority, the Puritans grounded their own counselling practices in a proper view of the sovereignty of God and the underlying heart issues of people. By understanding why people struggle and the provision God makes for our struggles, counsellors today will be better equipped to guide those they counsel toward God-appointed solutions.
"Despite our modern prejudices," Deckard explains, the problems of the Puritans' time "were not all that different than our own." These men and women, like us, fought issues of fear, depression and sense of purpose. Their world was, like ours, clouded by poverty, loss of children, abuse and alcoholism. Guided by a biblical view of God and self, they found their answers in unchanging doctrinal truth. Each chapter in Helpful Truth in Past Places guides readers through a particular issue and points to the applicable teachings of a Puritan writer on that topic. Jonathan Edwards explores our emotional frailties. Jeremiah Burroughs deals with anxiety and dissatisfaction. And John Flavel takes on the age-old question of "why?" A welcome infusion of sound biblical understanding.
"...it combines the timeless truth of historical theology with solid application for life and ministry today."
""Much is to be learned from them and Mark Deckard guides us in a most helpful fashion by drawing on seven of these 'physicians of the soul'. He directs us to the relevance of the subject by choosing chapter titles that remind us how up-to-date these pastoral concerns are...It should certainly encourage us to read the Puritans more extensively in these practical areas of Christian living."
"He does not offer ready-made schemes that counsellors can apply without first absorbing the biblical insights themselves, but thoughtful consideration of the material presented here will enrich Christian living and counselling practice."
"Before there was a discipline called psychology, many Puritan authors were outstanding biblical psychologists possessed of clear insight to the human frame. Mark Deckard ably distills the essence of 17th century wisdom for 21st century counselors in areas such as God's providence, personal contentment, repentance and depression. I already wonder about a sequel volume, lending this kind of accessibility to more of the existing Puritan treasure trove of practical guidance for Christian living."
"It was J I Packer who likened the Puritans to the Giant Redwoods, now Mark Deckard shows us why. With the skillful hands of a gifted counselor and the inquisitive mind of a pilgrim, Deckard brings us into conversation with these Puritan greats and artfully displays for us their insights into life and relationships. Every Christian counselor, professional or otherwise, ought to pull up a chair and listen in and learn from this conversation."
kimlizabethflorioDenver, PAAge: 45-54Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5This book is deep, relevant and practical.February 6, 2013kimlizabethflorioDenver, PAAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5If a Christian helper thoughtfully reads this book, she will better realize the assurances and character of God to share with others. Mark Deckard summarizes the scholarly studies of the Puritans and gives us themes for compassionate, understanding and very intelligent counseling. It is a reference book for Christian counseling. It demonstrates how our personal God knows our hurting hearts.
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