A Godly Man’s Picture. By Thomas Watson. Carlisle: Banner of Truth. 4th Reprint, 2007.
In reviewing this book, I find it an impossible task. So this review is going to sound much more like an endorsement rather than a review. The reason being is that it has been such a refreshment for me. If I had to describe Godly Man’s Picture in one word, it would be “nourishment.” Outside of Scripture, I have never been more nourished than I was reading this book.
Watson, a great Puritan author who first published this work in 1666, sets forth 24 characteristics of a man of God. When one puts all these traits together, it is then that the picture of a godly man appears.
Reading through these traits were strangely not convicting, but encouraging. I did not find myself downhearted that I lacked these things, but motivated to pursue them! Watson had a beautiful gift to enlighten one as to what he is missing while not beating him over the head but lifting his desires to have the things of God!
In wonderful puritan fashion, Watson thoroughly explains each of these 24 characteristics (the book is 252 pages)! He defines each trait, gives examples from Old and New Testaments, provides everyday illustrations, details what these traits do not mean, how godly men apply them, and why these traits define the godly and not the ungodly. During his descriptions, he pens some of the most stirring one-liners I have ever read! And TONS of them. I don’t know how you approach reading, but when I come across something particularly helpful or encouraging, I will underline or mark that statement. It wasn’t long into this book until I had to set down my pen! I was marking just about EVERY paragraph! That is how incredibly satisfying and enriching this book was to me.
This is why I cannot do much a review - I would have to rewrite the book! I gleaned so much from every point. Let me just list the 24 traits of the godly man.
A man of knowledge.
A man moved by faith.
A man fired with love.
A man like God.
A man careful about the worship of God.
A man who serves God and not men.
A man who prizes Christ.
A man who weeps.
A man who loves the Word.
A man who has the Spirit of God residing in him.
A man of humility.
A man of prayer.
A man of sincerity.
A heavenly man.
A zealous man.
A patient man.
A thankful man.
A man who loves the saints.
A man who does not indulge himself in any sin.
A man who is good in his relationships.
A man who does spiritual things in a spiritual manner.
A man thoroughly trained in religion.
A man who walks with God.
A man who strives to be an instrument for making others godly.
So what do you think? Are you a godly man?
I strongly commend this work for personal study/devotion and for any men’s group/study.