book review: a history of the work of redemption [jonathan edwards]

Jonathan Edwards, Great Awakening, Revival, A History of the Work of Redemption

Written by Dave Moser

Dave Moser blogs about Christ-centered Bible study at

September 7, 2011

Jonathan Edwards, Great Awakening, Revival, A History of the Work of Redemption

Why did God decide to create the world? Why did He allow the Fall? What is the point of… everything?

Wouldn’t this be an excellent piece of information to know? A History of the Work of Redemption is Edwards’ attempt to answer that question. In it, he tells the story of God’s eternal plan to redeem the world in order to display His glory.

How does Edwards tell God’s Story?

Edwards breaks the history of creation into three primary periods centered on Christ’s life:

  • Period 1 – from the fall of man to the incarnation of the Messiah
  • Period 2 – from Messiah’s incarnation to His resurrection
  • Period 3 – from Messiah’s resurrection to the end of the world

In each period Edwards explains how the biblical and historical events fit into God’s plan to reveal Himself through the cross. He begins at the creation, traces God’s work through history, examines the glory of the cross, recognizes how the early Church pointed to the cross and marches straight towards the everlasting Kingdom where God is glorified on the basis of of the cross:

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”
Rev 5:12

Who was Jonathan Edwards?

You have probably heard the name “Jonathan Edwards” but might not know much about him. Edwards was a preacher in Connecticut and Massachusetts before the American Revolution. He eventually became the president of what would later become Princeton Seminary. Edwards is widely known as the greatest theologian ever produced on American soil.

Professor Martin Marty of the University of Chicago began an address to a crowd of about 4,000 scholars saying:

“Never in the history of Christianity has more brain power been assembled in one room — than when Jonathan Edwards sat alone in his study in North Hampton!”

What Will This Book Do For You?

God has used this book and other resources like it to completely reshape my view of Scripture. No longer is the Bible primarily a text for moral practice, doctrine or personal growth. Those things are important, but secondary. For me, the Bible is a celebration. It is the joyful description of the greatest good in all the world:

There is a God who needed to die on behalf of his enemies in order to display the depths of his love.

Edwards’ works are all in the public domain which means you can find this book digitally for free.

In addition, I’d encourage you to check out Reformed Audio’s campaign to make this book available as a free audio book as well. Your support can make this amazing resource freely available for yourself and Christians everywhere to commute, work out or relax with and share Edwards’ God-entranced vision in your own life!


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book review: a history of the work of redemption [jonathan edwards]

by Dave Moser time to read: 2 min