The Mortification of Sin by John Owen

This book by John Owen is one which I will have to read continually during my Christian life. After reading through it once, I suddenly realised that I had forgotten most of what I had just read. Although this happens to me with almost every book I read, this book in particular warranted a better response.

The whole topic is very close to my heart as it probably is to every true believer. We all struggle with the problem of sin – how do we get rid of it? Is it entirely our responsibility as Christians or is it God’s? Where is the balance between God’s sovereignty in our Christian lives and our free agency? I believe that John Owen develops direct answers to these questions that we seem to struggle with throughout our lives.

The chapter titles in themselves excited me – “Finally! Here is someone who’s written about what I desperately need to hear!” Chapter titles such as “How Life and Comfort Depend on Mortification”, “Seeing Sin for What It Is” and “The Work of Christ and the Power of the Spirit” – subjects that I’ve struggled with so much.

I’ve got to admit that I read the “abridged and made easy to read” version by Richard Rushing – but thinking about it, there’s no shame in that. The blurb really emphasises the importance of this book in today’s society:

This work will be particularly using in a day not unlike Owen’s…when believers are frequently at peace in the world, but divided among themselves.

If you’re a young Christian (or any age) you need a book like this. At 130 pages, it may be deep but it’s not the longest book to read. If you struggle with sin then this is the book for you. And at £5 (or $9) you can’t go wrong (which you 100% won’t).

Go out and buy it! If you want me to make it easier, here’s a link.


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