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Influential Christian Leader, Author Jerry Bridges Dies at 86
Jerry Bridges, the author who challenged more than a million readers to take seriously God‚Äôs command for holiness, died Sunday at 86.
The Bible teacher and speaker served with The Navigators discipleship ministry for nearly 60 years, and wrote the popular book The Pursuit of Holiness among many others.
‚ÄúThere was nothing flashy about Jerry Bridges. He was a humble and unassuming man‚ÄĒstrong in spirit, if not in voice or frame,‚ÄĚ wrote Crossway‚Äôs Justin Taylor soon after Bridges was taken off life support following cardiac arrest this past weekend. ‚ÄúNow we can rejoice with him in his full and final healing as he beholds his beloved Savior face to face.‚ÄĚ...
Jerry's Transforming Grace and The Discipliine of Grace keep reminding me to preach the Gospel to myself daily to avoid falling into the trap of legalism or antinomianism; that my bad days are not so bad that they are beyond the reach of God's grace, and my good days are not so good that they are beyond the need of God's grace, as he put it.
Mr. Bridges stated in one of his books that the little known biblical character of Enoch is an illustration of a godly man. The Bible says little about Enoch, but what it does say helps us understand what godliness is. "He walked with God" Gen. 5:22 "He pleased God" Hebrews 11:5 and in Jude 14-15 he is depicted as deeply concerned about the ungodly society in which he lived. He was, as far as the biblical record shows,an ordinary man. Not a leader like Moses,nor a warrior like David, nor an outstanding goverment official like Daniel, but he was a godly man, who walked with God and pleased God. May God give His children the grace every day to walk with their God and be pleasing in His sight.
Listening to a interview with Jerry Bridges I was struck with a phrase of his, "intentional holiness ". Yes, in a sense holiness is positional, but it also must be pursued with deliberate intention with the moment by moment choices we make each day. No one wants to see us succeed in this more than our Lord and so he sent the Comforter help us.
This quote is from Jerry Bridges' book 'respectable sins'... "Even though our hearts have been renewed, even though we have been freed from the absolute dominion of sin, even though God's Holy Spirit dwells within our bodies, this principle of sin still lurks within us and wages war against our souls. It is the failure to recognize the awful reality of this truth that provides the fertile soil in which our 'respectable' or 'acceptable' sins grow and flourish'. Ralph Venning, the author of 'the sinfulness of sin', uses especially colorful, in the negative sense, words to describe sin: vile, ugly, odious, malignant, pestilent, pernicious, hideous, spiteful, poisonous, virulent, villainous, abominable, and deadly. Take a few moments to ponder those words so as to get the full impact of them. Those words describe not just the scandalous sins of society but also the respectable sins we tolerate in our own lives. Whether sin is large or small in our eyes, it is heinous in the sight of God."
I read this book as well as his 'pursuit of holiness' and was blessed. Praise God he is now with His Lord.
You can pile up every book made by whatever pastor or theologian in waiting the past 20 years , and they simply will not stack up to any book written by the humble Jerry Bridges. His writings so brought me to my knees to my gratitude that puritans still could moved men's souls towards the King. . Thank you , Mr. Bridges.
What a friend we have in Jesus for our hope & praise is to be absent from the body, in God's presence amen.
Jesus said, "Any of you who does not give up everything he has cannot be my disciple" (Luke 14:33). We must honestly face the question, "Am I willing to give up a certain practice or habit that is keeping me from holiness?" It is at this point of commitment that most of us fail. We prefer to dally with sin, to try to play with it a little without getting too deeply involved." - Jerry Bridges
I met him several times. He was a meek and humble man. Whenever I heard him speak as visiting preacher, he used the Word of God to convict us of our sinfulness and the assurance of a merciful God. Jerry will be missed by us who remain in this sinful and corrupted world.