Being released in the 400th anniversary of his birth, Enamoured with Piety by Dr. Yarran Johnston, offers an insight into the life and ministry of the Puritan, Thomas Watson. Johnston traces the pervading theme of godliness in Watson’s thoughts and writings, making the case that Watson represents English Puritanism in its mature phase, specifically in its understanding of godliness as a proper regard for God.
- “Thomas Watson deserves far more attention than he has received in the past. Thankfully, Yarran Johnston has provided us a fresh and practical way into this Puritan and his work. Drawing particularly on Augustine, Bernard, and Calvin to historically anchor Watson’s approach, Johnston helps us understand how this minster distinctly understood and encouraged true godliness. In this, Watson is well worth our attention.”
- Dr. Kelly M. Kapic | Professor of Theological Studies, Covenant College
- “A concern for Godliness stood at the heart of the English Puritan movement. Yet, strangely, few scholars have analyzed what godliness meant in this context. Yarran Johnston helps to fill this gap in the literature by expanding our understanding of godliness through the eyes of Thomas Watson, who was one of its ablest and thorough defenders during mid to late seventeenth century. His study is sensitive to the times in which Watson lived and gives readers a window into a key characteristic of Puritanism through an analysis of Watson’s extensive writings.”
- Dr. Ryan M. McGraw | Academic Dean and Morton H. Smith Professor of Systematic Theology, Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary
- “A huge hole has been filled! Finally we have an extensive and careful work on the significant Puritan, Thomas Watson. Yarran Johnston has done a superb job unpacking Thomas Watson’s understanding of godliness and doing so in his historical context and the broader Christian tradition. What we discover is a rich and profound theology of Christian living that will be of great benefit for both pastors and people in our contemporary context. Johnston’s work will help anyone who wants a stable Christian walk in an unstable world.”
- Dr. Martin Foord | Lecturer in Systematic Theology, Evangelical Theological College Asia
- “Thomas Watson represents the very best of Puritanism. He is affectionately regarded for his lucid expositions of key theological themes, with an almost unmatched ability for his turn of phrase. As Yarran Johnston shows in this book, Watson’s picture of godliness represents a sort of “body of divinity.” What we get in this volume is not only an in depth look at Watson’s theology but also a historical look at the Puritan movement. Not all works of historical theology can warm the soul, but this one certainly does.”
- Dr. Mark Jones | Senior Minister at Faith Presbyterian Church (PCA) in Vancouver, Canada.
- “Yarran Johnston’s sympathetic although not uncritical account of the life and teaching of one of the best known Puritans, Thomas Watson, is well informed and fills a significant gap in scholarly literature. He sets Watson’s numerous writings, of which A Body of Divinity is the best-known, in their context and analyses his theologically grounded affectional piety most helpfully. The very clarity of Johnson’s exposition makes this also a dangerous book since it challenges a reader’s own piety. Take up and read!”
- Rev. Dr. Rowland S. Ward | Research Lecturer, Presbyterian Theological College, Melbourne