D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, God’s Way Not Ours, Sermons on Isaiah 1.1-18, Banner of Truth, Edinburgh, 2003.

LET’S play a word association game. What words come to mind when you hear the name of Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones? Incisive? Thorough? Deep? Wide? Diagnostician? Doctor of the Soul? All of the above? I hope so, because ‘the Doctor’ has meant so much to me on my own spiritual journey, and I commend to you the reading of his books and listening to his sermons for the building up of your faith.

     Typically, Dr Lloyd-Jones delivered a series of eight sermons on Isaiah 1.1-18. This is fortunate for us his readers, who benefit greatly from his clinical, incisive and thorough exposition and application of the Scriptures to man’s sorry state – lost and dead in trespasses and sin, and totally unable to save himself. The book demonstrates Dr Lloyd-Jones’ own definition of preaching as being ‘logic on fire’. He regularly asks a question his hearers or readers could well be asking and answers it simply but profoundly.

     For example: ‘Have you ever thought of the wonder of the fact that there is a gospel to preach at all? “Why do you say that it is a wonderful thing?” asks someone. I will tell you. God was under no obligation whatsoever to save us, as I have already demonstrated to you. But He has done it! The God whom we have scorned and offended, the God we have blasphemed, the God we have disobeyed and criticised, is the very One who Himself delivers us. The One who has the power to consign us to perdition, this Lord of Hosts, uses that self-same power in our salvation and for our deliverance. Oh what a wonderful thing it is!’

     As is evident from the title, the Doctor’s approach is God-centred and God-glorifying, pointing up man’s inability to save himself and his complete dependence on the God of all wisdom, power and grace to bring about salvation through the finished work of Christ on the cross at Calvary. Throughout the book, he digs deep into the human condition, putting his finger on our sinful state, challenging us to seek God’s grace and saving faith before, at the end of the book, putting before us the free offer of the Gospel:

     ‘Have you heard God’s invitation: “Come now, let us reason together.” You have heard His demands, you have heard the terms of judgment. Where do you stand? Can you justify yourself? Have you any excuse? Have you anything to say? Listen to what God says to you, and say to Him: “Just as I am, without one plea, but that Thy blood was shed for me, and that Thou bidd’st me come to Thee, O Lamb of God, I come.”

     ‘If you have never come before, come now. Then you will know that one day you will     stand with a shining bright crowd from all nations and kindreds and tongues …’

     ‘God’s Way Not Ours’ challenges the unsaved, edifies the believer and glorifies God. It cannot be commended too highly.  

– Bob Thomas