Puritan Sundays: Thomas Brooks

Not much is known about Thomas Brooks. He lived from 1608-1680 and was a minister in London. The Puritans had a way with book titles. No punchy alliteration for them. Nope. They liked really long titles and sometimes alternative titles. The book I want to introduce you to today is called An Ark for All God’s Noahs in a Gloomy Stormy Day. Great title, huh? I love the imagery. But Brooks gave us some alternative titles: The Best Wine Reserved till Last or The Transcendent Excellency of a Believer’s Portion Above All Earthly Portions Whatsoever, etc.

I’ll stick with the original title because I love the imagery that connects with Brooks’ chosen text. Brooks does what a lot of Puritan authors do – he takes one verse and wrings all the gospel sweetness out of it. So what is this Scriptural “ark” Brooks has chosen? It’s Lamentations 3:24.

“The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.”

A portion is the part that belongs to someone. Noah was told to build the ark to save him from the impending flood and destruction. We also were facing impending judgment if not for God’s grace to us in Christ. As a result, we have all of God’s promises secured for us, and this one in Lamentations is loaded with gracious treasure. Let me share a quote with you from the first part of the book where Brooks describes the all-sufficient nature of God being our portion:

O Christians! God is an all-sufficient portion: his power is all-sufficient to protect you; his wisdom is all-sufficient to direct you; his mercy is all-sufficient to pardon you; his goodness is all-sufficient to provide for you; his word is all-sufficient to support you and strengthen you; and his grace is all-sufficient to adorn you and enrich you; and his Spirit is all-sufficient to lead you and comfort you; and what can you desire more?

Amen. What can we desire more?

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