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The Soul of Prayer
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"Here is a no-nonsense theologian who goes for the jugular. In Forsyth's company we are aware of both the glory and the gravity of what we are doing when we go to our knees in prayer." -Eugene H. Peterson P. T. Forsyth is sometimes described as an English pre-cursor to Karl Barth. He was born in 1848 to a Scottish family of humble origins and later in life attended Aberdeen University, where he graduated with first-class honours in classical literature in 1869. In 1876 he was ordained and called to minister in Shipley, Yorkshire. In his early ministry in the Congregational Church, Forsyth fought orthodoxy and sought for the right to rethink Christian theology and pursue liberal thought. In 1878, however, Forsyth experienced a conversion from, in his own words, "being a Christian to being a believer, from a lover of love to an object of grace." A profound awareness of pastoral responsibility was awakened which radically altered the the course of his ministry. His conversion thrust him from the leadership of liberalism to a recovery of the theology of grace. Quickly, he became one of the better-known figures in British Nonconformity.In 1894, he received a call to Emmanuel College in Cambridge, where he preached his famous sermon, "Holy Father" in 1896. In 1901, he accepted a position as principal of Hackney Theological College, London where he remained until he died in 1921. Over his lifetime Forsyth published 25 books and more than 260 articles. He is often credited with recovering for his generation the reality and true dimensions of the grace of God.
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