Martyn Lloyd Jones

Martyn Lloyd Jones

His Life and Relevance for the 21st Century

Christopher Catherwood
from 2 reviews

Christopher Catherwood examines the remarkable legacy of his grandfather, tracing his relevance to the 21st century.

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Few who heard Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones preach will ever forget the experience, not because of his presence as a minister, but on account of the sense of wonder at the gospel that he conveyed.

Those, like the author, who had the privilege of knowing him up close, are uniquely placed to comment on his life and passion. Christopher Catherwood examines the remarkable legacy of his Welsh grandfather, tracing his relevance to the twenty-first century.

Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones was adamant that all doctrine and practice should originate in Scripture. This volume focuses on key principles, showing how these were arrived at using a biblical framework. The author looks at the controversies, but sets them in context. This is not a conventional biography, but one that sheds light on a hugely interesting era of UK evangelicalism, which we do well to remember.

Product details


Author Christopher Catherwood
ISBN 9781783593835
Format Paperback
First published October 2015
Dimensions 135mm x 215mm x 13mm
Language English
Pages 176
Publisher IVP

Lindsay Brown

International Director, the Lausanne Movement and former General Secretary of IFES (International Fellowship of Evangelical Students)

For many people who heard him, Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones was perhaps the greatest preacher in the English language in the twentieth century. He possessed a rare gift of communicating the truth, wonder and power of the gospel. His grandson, Christopher Catherwood, had the privilege of seeing the inner man. In this absorbing book he therefore brings a fresh perspective on the Doctor's life, and the convictions which shaped his long and fruitful ministry. Those who read it and heard him preach will be reminded of the ministry of this prince of preachers. One also hopes that many who never heard him will be encouraged to read his books and listen to his sermons. Those who do so will not be disappointed.

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“A Disappointing Read”

This is a book suffering from an identity crisis. Martyn Lloyd-Jones: His Life and Relevance for the 21st Century (MLJ) is part-biographical introduction to the great British preacher, part-attempt at analysing some of the controversies of the Doctors' ministry, and part-opportunity to share the authors opinions on contemporary Evangelicalism. A book on any one of these topics would be highly welcome but such an amalgamation into a single slim volume fails.

Moreover, MLJ's difficulties are compounded by Catherwood's insistence that he can maintain objectivity when assessing the impact of the life of his Grandfather. For completely understandable and human reasons, he fails to do so.

Within the book you'll read:

• An exhortation to only use Biblical language rather than systems or labels. Which seems to run a cropper, when one discusses the Trinity!

• A discussion of Lloyd-Jones' views on the Holy Spirit that result in him being neither Pentecostal nor Conservative, nor really definable.

• Commenting on the 1960s liberalisation of society, Catherwood says, "In Britain the laws on issues such as divorce and homosexuality were altered in a humanistic direction." Leading one to believe that criminalising homosexuality, was a more godly mark of society!

• There are constant references to 9Marks/John MacArthur/The Gospel Coalition that feel artificially inserted.

And so forth.

There are encouraging sections in here, such as the details about Lloyd-Jones' involvement with IFES but sadly they are drowned out by the rest. If this had been a personal, family, memoir of the man then it would have been a much more forgivable book. Owing to the authors insistence that he can be objective about his much-loved grandfather, it must be held to a different standard.

There is a great need for a slim biography of the Doctor that draws lessons for today's society and church from his life. This is not that book.

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