Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

Lunchtime lecture at the Evangelical Library

I have been rather slow to report on an excellent lecture last Monday from Norman Hopkins of Strood in Kent. We were all pretty ignorant of Bishop Ashton Oxenden but Norman, in the skilful way he has, was able to introduce us to a man who was clearly a man of God and one we ought to know and remember. To an audience somewhere in the teens our speaker explained how he had been looking for something on old age and had come across Oxenden's work, republished some years ago by Joel Beeke - The Home beyond; or, Happy Old Age. This sparked an interest and the acquiring of is various other books. One wondered, of course, what made him tick. It is only in his book on the ministry (The pastoral office: its duties, difficulties, privileges, and prospects) that he reveals his sources and hey are all pretty kosher.

In his lifetime his more than twenty works sold well and he is certainly someone whose works look worth reading. What did for him then? Unlike Ryle he was no controversialist. in fact he kept right out of it and never identified with any party within or without the Church of England. Perhaps Spurgeon is responsible. In his Commenting and commentaries he quite sniffily dismisses Oxenden's contributions.
On Ruth - A very tiny affair, of no great moment to the expositor.
On Psalms - For reading at family prayers. Alas, poor families! Ye have need of patience.
To listen to these sermons must have afforded a suitable Lenten penance to those who went to church to hear them. There their use began and.ended.
The Gospels - Why Oxenden's books sell we do not know. We would not care to have them for a gift. "Milk for babes" watered beyond measure.
Our speaker begged to differ.
If you want to form an opinion you can find many of his works online here.

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