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The Power of the Puritans, In Prayer & In Practice

Posted by truthtalklive on May 1, 2008

What lessons can we learn today? Today’s guest is Scott Brown. For more information on him visit www.scottbrownonline.com.

Also while you’re there, check out information on the Puritan Conference May 9-10.

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40 Responses to “The Power of the Puritans, In Prayer & In Practice”

  1. F. L. A. said

    Definition of a Puritan:A religious fanatic who’s afraid, worried, jealous, or angry that someone somewhere, somehow, is having a good time.

  2. jAsOn said


    That’s your definition which has obviously been influenced by the a-historical account of Puritanism promoted by American media. Like every “group” in every era, the Puritans were not perfect and individuals of the group have done heinous things.

    John Owen, English puritan who brewed his own beer.

  3. ADB said

    Enjoyed the show, but thought the guest’s discussion of the “witchcraft craze” was a little off the mark if my reading of history is correct. Mr. Brown was correct that it was Cotton and Increase Mather, two of the most prominent Puritan ministers who helped put a stop to it. They had the respect and authority to speak outspokenly against it without themselves being questioned. In speaking of this, one should also consider the broader context and the Puritan mind. The 17th century had seen witchcraft crazes in Europe earlier in the century. Additionally, by the latter part of the 17th century Puritan New England had seen several calamities- including Indian wars and a devastating fire. On top of this was a great concern that the children of the original settlers who had come in huge numbers in the 1630s were failing to come to their own faith in Christ, which led to large doctrinal debates within Puritanism. All this, when considered in light of the Puritan view that spiritual forces- either from God or Satan lie behind nearlhy all earthly events, leads to a culture/society that can engage in the excesses of the Salen witch trials. The Puritan “worldview” (to use a current buzzword) and circumstances of the time made such a crisis possible in Plymouth, just as the prestige and authority of divines like the Mathers enabled them to speak boldly against it.

    Best wishes

  4. jAsOn said

    Thanks ADB!

  5. Mike S. said

    John Owen… My man!! I had a great Gospel discussion in a bar the other night over a few beers with a professed Catholic who did not have a clue about what the Gospel really is. It was a wonderful conversation and I could not help but think of CS Lewis and Martin Luther discussing the gospel in a pub (not together of course). The reason I went to the bar, I was attending a construction social being held there. What a great opportunity to share the love of Christ! This guy was genuinely interested in what I was sharing. Hey F.L.A., why don’t we meet for a beer?

  6. jAsOn said

    Mike…are you in Winston?

  7. F. L. A. said

    I appreaciate the offer Mr.Sears, but we will never meet.Sorry.It’s nothing personal, I like your character.But it can never be.

  8. strong drink said

    One beer for a Christian? I guess.

    A few beers for a Christian? Seems contrary to Scripture.

    Lets meet over a few mixed drinks?
    Lets meet over a few shots of vodka?
    Lets meet over a few tokes of “mary jane”?
    Lets meet over a few lines of cocaine?

    Seems we’re taking the verse “whatever your hands find to do, do as unto the Lord” and “I became all things to all men so as to save some” just alittle too far.

    Mike S. has just become a stumbling block to weaker brethren. Good thing the puritans aren’t around any more, or else he might be burned at the stake. And with all that alcohol in his system, that would be a blaze πŸ™‚

  9. F. L. A. said

    A few beers is rather differint than a few lines of cocaine though, Strong Drink.This sounds like saying that a man who runs a stop sign sometimes will run the risk of turning into a serial hit and run murderer.

  10. strong drink said

    Only a Christian would understand what I mean.

    Both beer and cocaine are addictive drugs. Christains live by a standard set forth by our Savior in His word, the Bible. One is to abstain from all appearance of evil.

    Witnessing to a Roman Catholic while sipping on a “few” beers isn’t Biblical. A “few” implies more than 2.

  11. jAsOn said

    First of all Strong Drink, How do you know how many beers it would take for Mike to have drunk too much…or over how long a period of time he will drink them?

    The “appearance of evil” is so many times miss applied. would you say to someone that two guys shouldn’t have lunch alone and together because they might “appear” to be homosexuals? That is where that line of thinking logically ends. Scripture does not prohibit drinking alcohol, but it does prohibit breaking civil laws and that is one reason the comparison of alcohol to cake, or other illicit drugs is a weak analogy.

    You may have missed the point of the comment I made in #2, that the charge of prudism against Puritanism in general is misinformed. As far as becoming a stumbling block, we would do well to recognize the immense complexities that a forum such as a blog feed adds to the challenge of Christian conversation and the application of the commands of God. It is vastly different than a regular, public forum.

  12. strong drink said

    since when did “cake” become an illicit drug? Well lock me up and throw away the key! I had cake last night!

    Civil law is also determined by which nation you are in. In some nations what is considered illicit drugs in America is considered legalized stimulants. So if I go to say Denmark, then I can legally smoke marijuana. Judging by your application of Scripture, I can toke it out as long as I am evangelizing my fellow pot-head πŸ˜‰

    Mike could have went into the bar and communicated with the Roman Catholic just as freely while sipping on a few diet pepsi’s, a cup of water or warm milk.

    But who am I to judge. I’ve broken civil law by eating cake 😦

  13. jAsOn said

    Notice SG that I said “ONE of the reasons” to abstain is the civil law.

  14. F. L. A. said

    I will hazard the guess Strong Drink that JAsOn meant to type “coke”
    instead of “cake”.

  15. jAsOn said

    yep πŸ™‚

  16. ADB said

    This isn’t directly related, but the Puritans who are so often portrayed as prudish also made lots of money distilling molasses into rum as part of the old triangular trade. Sugar cane in the Caribbean was processed into molasses and sent to Massachusetts to be distilled in the 1600s. I suppose that Jesus himself sinned by turning water into wine and by serving wine at the last supper. I also suppose that the vast, vast majority of Christians in the last 2,000 years who have celebrated the Lord’s Supper with wine also sinned in the process. (A historical side note is that Welch’s Grape Juice is named for a man named Welch, a complete tee-totaller who developed unfermented grape juice in the late 1800s for the Methodist Church to use in communion.)

    Though there is no scriptural prohibition on alcohol in general, it is true that scripture is clear about drunkenness, and it is also true that historically alcoholism has ruined many families.

    Best wishes

  17. F. L. A. said

    All of life’s pleasures in responsible moderation?

  18. Mike S. said

    Jason, Yes, I am in WS. Strong Drink. I am not going to get into a debate with you about a few beers. Have you ever had a fat friend over and had a bowl of Doritoes out?? Then you have helped that individual fall to their temptation to gluttony. The Gospel calls us to live responsibly but not in bondage. I’m not talking about antinomianism.

    If I am living in the spirit of 1 Corinthians 10:31 and Ephesians 5:18. I’m not going to worry about what I eat or drink!!

  19. Jeff42 said

    Don’t forget Romans 14:21. We do have a responsibility not to cause our brother to stumble. Sometimes we do defer to keep from offending a weaker brother. I am not saying that you can never have a beer, but as we exercise our freedom we must consider others also.

  20. Mike S. said

    Yes, Absolutely

  21. jAsOn said

    I agree Jeff.

  22. ADB said

    Exactly right.

  23. strongdrink said

    sorry it took me so long to get back to you. I was evangelizing at the local pub and just now found my way to the door…..a few too many beers πŸ™‚

    but all is well as long as done to spread the gospel πŸ˜‰

    Name one good thing that beer does for a community. What has beer done for the family?

    Wine is a separate issue. Jesus didn’t turn the water into Bud light.

    Now, I have to go. I need to smoke a cigarette to get rid of this headache I got from too much evangelizing at the bar 😦

  24. Fred said

    Archaeology shows us that the folks would built the pyramids of Egypt drank beer mainly. So, there is one good thing beer has done.

    I like English beer. Beer is good for you, like wine, in moderation.

    Too much religion, like too much beer or wine, makes one behave badly.

  25. watered down said

    Archaeology also shows that the Egytians used slavery to build the pyramids. Maybe they were too drunk on beer to see what God had in store for them?

    Maybe in different cultures, done in moderation, drinking beer is acceptable. Yet, in America not one thing good has come from drinking beer. If it’s the taste, then why isn’t nonalcoholic beer purchased more?

    You’re right, too much religion is bad as well. Especially a religion that denies the truthfulness of the very book they say they follow.

    Where is Billy Sunday when you need him? 😦

  26. Mike S. said

    Mark this down… we agree!! BTW, Christianity is NOT a Religion.

    Contrary to popular belief, Christianity is NOT a set of rules to live by. Christianity in its true form is NOT a Religion, nor is it restrictive. Christianity is a relationship with the Almighty Perfect God, secured by His sacrificed Son whereby we are forgiven for our sins and made whole; enabling us to live in freedom and it’s because of this, through His Spirit, that we have the desire and the ability to live for Him in obedience to His Word.

    It is for freedom that Christ set us free!!

  27. F. L. A. said

    Hey Fred, did you know how the Pilgrims chose were to finally stop and land their ships at what was called Plymouth Rock?
    The only reason[or at least the main motivating factor]was…. that that was were they ran out of beer!So they went ashore and another great chapter in American history was created.

  28. F. L. A. said

    “He was a wise man who invented beer.”-Plato

    “Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.”-Benjamin Franklin

    “Never spare the Parson’s wine, nor the Baker’s pudding.”-Benjamin Franklin.

  29. John said

    I think alcoholic drinks taste terrible.I can’t even make it through a wine cooler.

  30. Anonymous said

    John’s obviously never had a margarita.

  31. John said

    Yes I have![smile]
    With and without the salty chunks.I have tried a number of alcoholic drinks actually. There’s something about the taste of the alcohol itself that is unappealing.And I have this thing about always maintaining a certain level of mental control and alertness.I could never understand the appeal of “drinking”. Besides, being sober I get to fully enjoy watching everyone else get drunk and act foolish.It’s like…”dinner theater”[grin].

    “I fear the man who drinks water, and so remembers this morning what we said last night.”-Greek proverb

  32. Mike S. said

    Smart move John. I used to be a real drunkard and was susceptible to over indulgence, from the addiction. The thing I hated the most about that was losing control of my thinking and reasoning along with my ability to keep good conversation going. Thankfully, when I accepted Christ, He changed me from the inside out and one of the first things He did was take away my addiction. Now, after two or three beers (or glasses of wine), I completely lose the taste and desire and change over to water. I have not been “drunk” one time since receiving Christ 8 years ago. Prior to that, it was a regular occurrence, 2 or 3 times a week.

    Praise God that I am no longer under the bondage to alcohol… or the law.

  33. F. L. A. said

    Congratulations on overcoming your personal “demons” through the grace of God, Mr.Sears.I can respect any theology that can be used to empower people in a positive way and help them become stronger, better, happier people.Good for you.
    The law….it is an annoying pain for those of us who have to follow it, at times.

  34. zerxil said

    John, is it like Mike S. after 1 or 2 you just don’t have a taste for it, or do you actually think after the first drink “hey I don’t want to lose control” and that makes you stop and turns your tongue.

    I can’t drink wine coolers & I never could (didn’t taste bad but actually made me ill). I don’t like the taste of beer. Ale was alright. White wine tastes good with fish, red wine but only if you have beef with it. After 1 3/4 margaritas I don’t have the taste for any alcohol. Which is good *grin* since I have trouble controlling myself sober…Come to think of it I always ate something with the margaritas. So maybe if you ate something with it alcohol won’t taste bad. Well it might be very dangerous for John, with all those spirits & things hanging around (and no I am not referring to the FLA).

    27. And they didn’t have anything else to drink.

  35. jAsOn said

    “the” FLA??? What’s up with the impersonal definite article?

  36. John said

    Yes, it would be dangerous, what with all these spirits and things hanging around.I also decorate my home with weaponry[blades, spiked war clubs[some are poisoned], axes, etc.].Wouldn’t want to fall onto or knock down anything.I think you made F. L. A. feel rather put out[smile].
    Both, I don’t have a taste for it[Bleaaaahh!!!]AND I don’t like the idea of “losing control”.I can also relax,have fun,embarrass myself, or forget things just fine while sober.
    And they did have other choices, I’m sure.Water or wine, perhaps.Water for sure.[?]

  37. F. L. A. said

    And WHYYYYYY are you not referring to me?
    What is it you think you know[huge sharp-toothed grin]?

  38. zerxil said

    FLA, are you DANGEROUS to John? I thought John let you use his internet access. If you OFF him, no more internet (unless you pay for it).

  39. F. L. A. said

    No, not really[HA.HA.].
    Once upon a time we were actually as enemies.It turned into a game, the most dangerous game, seeing how we could try and destroy each other in various ways.But that was a very long time ago….[Siiiigh]
    I would never kill him, save for under a certain circumstance that we’ve already agreed on. It’s not even his computer to use, we have to crash in on his parents place over 2 miles away.

  40. John said


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