Friday, 31 August 2012

Trueman on why Owen is not better known

The name of John Owen (1616-1683) is little known today even in theological circles outside of very conservative evangelical churches and the narrow and highly specialized field of early modern intellectual history. This is This is unfortunate, for Owen was without doubt the most significant theological intellect in England in the third quarter of the seventeenth century and one of the two or three most impressive Protestant theologians in Europe at the time. It was his misfortune, however, to be on the losing side: for Owen was a Puritan and allied to the Indepenedent party in the struggles which tore England apart in the 1640s and 1650s; as such, as such he was one of history's losers; and, as history is generally written by those who win, Owen was swiftly and decisively written out of the intellectual history of England in the aftermath of the Great Ejection of 1662 when non-conformists were not simply expelled from the Church of England, but excluded from the establishment, political, cultural, and intellectual, with all of the later impotence with regard to influence and the writing of history which that implies. ...
(From the intro to his John Owen: reformed Catholic, Renaissance man)

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