The Life of God in the Soul of Man
This timeless classic was originally written to encourage a friend and stimulate his spiritual life. It was so appreciated that it was later published as a book for a wider readership. A hundred years later a copy of The Life of God in the Soul of Man was sent to George Whitefield by his friend, Charles Wesley. The book became instrumental in Whitefield’s conversion.
The Life of God in the Soul of Man was at the heart of the Methodist Revival of Britain and the Great Awakening in America.
In his book, Scougal explains the four essential characteristics of divine life, their excellence, their advantages and the practical steps that you can take in realizing them as your personal experience.
“I never knew what true religion was till God sent me this excellent treatise.” — George Whitefield, 18th Century Evangelist
“I appeal to all, whatever age, to read this book and cry to God for true heart-felt religion and so to begin to LIVE! What an impact this may have under God’s blessing. Let us all pray to this end.”
— Joseph Hewitt, Pastor Emeritus, College Park Baptist Church, Lewisham
“Henry’s Scougal’s exposition of ‘true religion’, his phrase echoed by Whitefield, meaning genuine Christianity was from one standpoint the seed out of which the English side of the revival first sprouted. For, the book was favorite reading in Oxford’s Holy club, where the Wesleys and Whitefield first came together.”
— J. I. Packer, Well known author of Knowing God and Board of Governors’ Professor of Theology, Regent College, Vancouver, Canada
“There are some books whose vision is so deep and clear that truth rings from the page like a large bell, perfectly obvious but rare and precious. They unfold the heart of man and God with such forceful illumination that the truth is not shown to my mind but created in my heart. So it went as I grazed in the green pasture of this remarkable book.”
— John Piper, Founder of Desiring God Ministries, Chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary, Minneapolis, Minnesota
The full table of contents consists of 56 chapters! Just to sum up some of the main heads covered, they include:
- What true religion consists of
- Common mistakes
- What Divine life is
- Charity (love)
- Despondent thoughts
- Unreasonable fears
- Shun all manner of sin
- Ceasing all Love of the World
- Carrying God’s image
- Meditating often on the joys of heaven
- and much more …
About the Author
At the age of fourteen, Henry Scougal entered King’s College Aberdeen and graduated four years later with an arts degree. As a student he proved to have qualities of leadership as well as academic ability. He served as president of the student society and gained a reputation for deep spiritual seriousness combined with a keen sense of humor. His book of meditations — Private Reflections and Occasional Maxims – was authored at the age of eighteen.
Scougal’s most celebrated publication was The Life of God in the Soul of Man. Originally a pastoral letter to a friend, its evident merits as a work of devotion led to its being copied until it reached the hands of Gilbert Burnett, Professor of Divinity at Glasgow from 1669-74. A future Bishop of Salisbury and a close ally of Archbishop Tillotson, whose writings provided Hume with the opening for his essay on miracles, Burnett arranged for Scougal’s book to be published in 1677. Although Scougal died eighteen months after publication, his book went through nine major editions between 1677 and 1830.