Scottish Puritanism, 1590-1638

By David George Mullan | Go to book overview

1 A Puritan Brotherhood

During the period in which I first began to teach in the town of my birth, I had found a very dear friend, who was pursuing similar studies. He was about my own age, and was now coming, as I was, to the very flowering-time of young manhood. He had indeed grown up with me as a child and we had gone to school together and played together. Neither in those earlier days nor indeed in the later time of which I now speak was he a friend in the truest meaning of friendship: for there is no true friendship unless You weld it between souls that cleave together through that charity which is shed in our hearts by the Holy Ghost who is given to us.

Augustine, Confessions, bk. iv/4. 1

I perceive more and more what great difference there is between evil grounded fitts of civil friendship and that other whilk is in the Lord which cannot be interrupted either by space of time or distance of place.

Robert Blair to Robert Boyd, 27 May 1622. 2

The fraternity of Scottish divinity embraced a group of men bound by numerous ties of blood, doctrine, and emotion. They were often related to others of the circle, and married women from within it; they studied together; they influenced each other's thinking and fashioned themselves after shining lights in their midst; 3 they suffered together; they wrote letters to one another, describing their joys and especially their sorrows, and generally tended to each other's emotional and spiritual needs, not least of all on their deathbeds. Laymen and women were not excluded from this select group, but the clerical aspect warrants a special view since its members were those who defined the religious community and its terms of membership.

-13-

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Scottish Puritanism, 1590-1638
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Scottish Puritanism 1590-1638 iii
  • Preface vii
  • Contents xi
  • List of Abbreviations xii
  • Prologue 1
  • 1: A Puritan Brotherhood 13
  • 2: A Ministry of the Word 45
  • 3: Conversion and Assurance 85
  • 4: The Pilgrim's Progress 111
  • 5: The Ambiguity of the Feminine 140
  • 6: Covenants and Covenant Theology 171
  • 7: A Schism Defined 208
  • 8: Political and National Divinity 244
  • 9: The Damnable Covenant 285
  • Epilogue 318
  • Bibliography 323
  • Index 361
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