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Archive for May 12th, 2015

prpbooks-images-covers-Piety

Joel Beeke. Piety: The Heartbeat of Reformed Theology.  Piety Phillipsburg, NJ:
Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing, April 17th, 2015. 40 pp.

I have benefited greatly from the works of the author Joel Beeke who has been a great example of how one can be doctrinally strong, historically rooted while also embracing sound “experiential religion” with holy sanctification.  That was what compelled me to read this booklet since I wanted to be edified by Beeke’s summary of what biblical piety is.  I think he manages to do that in forty pages and surprisingly eighty two footnotes!

At the outset Beeke indicate his awareness that tday the term “piety” often has the connotation of a self-righteous “holier-than-thou” attitude.  This however is not consistent with what the Bible teaches nor faithful to Reformed theology.  Instead as Beeke tells us in the booklet “Reformed theologians viewed piety as the heartbeat of their theology of godly living” (Kindle Location 18).   Beeke surveys the work of John Calvin, William Ames and Gisbertus Voetius as exemplars of the Reformed faith who also advocated a form of pietism.  Reformed piety must not be confused with “Pietism” that is often associated with later German origins which stresses the importance of right action but has a low regard for doctrines and theology.  Instead Beeke’s thesis is that the historical Reformed and Biblical understanding of piety is one in which sound theology is the source for Christian living.  For instance, we live as our supreme goal for the glory of God and this also mean our piety ought to be for the glory of God.

I don’t want to give the whole book away but I also want to add that Beeke end with some practical pointers and biblical instruction to develop true piety.  I think this booklet is helpful and the cost of it is reasonable.

NOTE: This book was provided to me free by P&R Publishing and Net Galley without any obligation for a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.

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