In our ongoing celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, our eyes naturally turn to Martin Luther and his German reform. But we should not forget that Luther’s writings were smuggled into England and became influential, moving countless reformers to a Protestant position on justification. While there are many who deserve mention, Thomas Cranmer must be at the top of the list; his articles, prayer book, and homilies proved to be the theological backbone of future reform in England.
This new critical edition, called The Books of Homilies, published by James Clarke & Co in one volume, is a great place to start if you are unfamiliar with the English Reformation and Thomas Cranmer. Gerald Bray (PhD, Paris-Sorbonne), who was the Professor of Anglican Studies at Beeson Divinity School and is now a research professor there, has provided us with an up-to-date edition that is not only attractive but very accessible in its presentation. Gerald Bray is the right man to edit these Homilies. The Director of Research of the Latimer Trust, he has also edited Documents of the English Reformation (James Clarke & Co, 1994, second edition 2004).
Praise for the Homilies
“The Homilies are of major significance for understanding Church of England doctrine and discipline at the Reformation. We are in Gerald Bray’s debt for this new critical edition for a modern readership, which at last moves us beyond the familiar Victorian reprints. It is a perfect combination of careful scholarship and accessibility, and essential reading for every serious student of Anglicanism.”-Andrew Atherstone, Latimer Research Fellow, Wycliffe Hall, Oxford
Matthew Barrett is Tutor of Systematic Theology and Church History at Oak Hill Theological College in London, as well as the founder and executive editor of Credo Magazine. He is the author of several books, including Salvation by Grace, Owen on the Christian Life, God’s Word Alone: The Authority of Scripture, and Reformation Theology. Currently he is the series editor of The 5 Solas Series with Zondervan. You can read more about Barrett at matthewmbarrett.com.