Shop now Shop now Shop now Up to 50% off Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Learn More Shop now Fireworks GNO Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Bundle for Kids Listen in Prime Shop Now Shop now
Pillars of Grace (A Long Line of Godly Men, Volume Two) and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more
FREE Delivery in the UK.
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.
Gift-wrap available.
Pillars of Grace: A.D. 10... has been added to your Basket
+ £2.80 UK delivery
Used: Good | Details
Condition: Used: Good
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Pillars of Grace: A.D. 100-1564 (Long Line of Godly Men) Hardcover – 28 Apr 2011

1 customer review

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
£14.95 £14.95
£21.98 FREE Delivery in the UK. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • Save £20 on with the aqua Classic card. Get an initial credit line of £250-£1,200 and build your credit rating. Representative 32.9% APR (variable). Subject to term and conditions. Learn more.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Pillars of Grace: A.D. 100-1564 (Long Line of Godly Men)
  • +
  • FOUNDATIONS OF GRACE (Long Line of Godly Men Profiles)
Total price: £38.96
Buy the selected items together

No Kindle device required. Download one of the Free Kindle apps to start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet and computer.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 563 pages
  • Publisher: Ligonier Ministries (28 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1567692117
  • ISBN-13: 978-1567692112
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.3 x 4.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,247,550 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Inside This Book

(Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See the customer review
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Brand on 20 Nov. 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is the second in the excellent series written by Dr Steven Lawson: A Long Line of Godly Men. In volume 1, Foundations of Grace, Lawson did a sweep through the pages of Scripture, showing how all the biblical authors delighted in the doctrines of grace and God's sovereignty in salvation. This second of five planned volumes is no less a tour de force as you would expect from someone of the authority of Lawson and picks up from the end of the Apostolic period and takes us right through to the Reformers of the mid-16th century. History told through biography always makes more impact I believe and this book helps proves the case as far as I am concerned.

Lawson's longing as he writes is that "As we trace this long line of godly men from the first century to the sixteenth century, may the Lord use these pages to raise up new messengers who will sound the trumpet of His distinguishing grace. In this hour, may He prepare a new generation of renewed minds and passionate hearts to proclaim these glorious truths of Scripture."

Lawson begins with a masterful overview and summary of the biblical doctrines he is so keen to see reaffirmed, and follows that with as good a summary of 1500 years of church history as I have ever read. It's almost a cliche to say it but, quite genuinely, this substantial 530 page book is worth it just for this chapter.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 30 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By Dr. David Steele - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Pillars of Grace by Steven J. Lawson is the second installment in his series, A Long Line of Godly Men. In volume one, Lawson walked readers through every book of the Bible and demonstrated how the doctrines of grace emerge on every page of Scripture.

Volume two also alerts readers to the precious doctrines of grace. However, this volume shows how these God-centered doctrines emerge in the writings of the early apologists, church fathers, medieval theologians, and the Protestant Reformers.

The author quickly reveals his purpose for writing at the outset: "As we trace this long line of godly men from the first century to the sixteenth century, may the Lord use these pages to raise up new messengers who will sound the trumpet of His distinguishing grace. In this hour, may He prepare a new generation of renewed minds and passionate hearts to proclaim these glorious truths of Scripture." Lawson accomplishes his goal in this weighty book, which spans over 530 pages.

From the beginning, the book has a sort of predictable cadence. The author presents a brief historical overview that helps set the stage for introducing a given historical figure. Next, the author includes helpful biographical data that concerns the historical figure under investigation. Specific writings are introduced and briefly evaluated. The most helpful section includes a discussion how the historical figure under consideration interacts with the doctrines of grace. Issues include the sovereignty of God, radical depravity, unconditional election, irresistible grace, particular redemption, perseverance of the saints, and the doctrine of reprobation. Finally, Lawson concludes each chapter with a challenge that is directed to the reader, and is specifically directed to pastors and professors. Each challenge beckons readers to hold forth the doctrines of grace, to courageously proclaim the truth of God's Word, and contend earnestly for the faith.

Three specific things mark Dr. Lawson's work:

Pillars of Grace promotes the doctrines of grace

I applaud Dr. Lawson for courageously proclaiming and promoting the truth of God's Word. Some of the truths contained in this book are very unpopular. But truth is never dictated on the basis of consensus, relevance or popularity.

Pillars of Grace introduces readers to the great heroes of the faith

Dr. Lawson introduces readers to heroes that one might expect - heroes like Augustine, Wycliffe, Luther, Tyndale, and Calvin. But he also focuses his attention on the lesser knows - men like Isidore of Seville, Gottschalk of Orbais, and Bernard of Clairvaux. These lesser known figures are a tremendous encouragement for anyone who is investigating the development of the doctrines of grace.

Pillars of Grace is a Filled With Encouragement for Pastors

While Lawson's work is theological and historical in nature, it reads like an in-depth, theologically charged devotional. It is filled with God-centered citations and motivating examples of godly living and courageous Christian conduct.

Pillars of Grace is a theological tour de force. It is essential reading for pastors who seek to integrate historical theology into the regular preaching menu. It is essential reading for students who are investigating the roots, depth, and breadth of the doctrines of grace. Pillars of Grace is a crucial antidote, especially in a culture that has caved in to the musings of Pelagianism. Pillars of Grace upholds the truth of sovereign grace in a winsome, biblical, and God-centered way!

Soli Deo Gloria

5 stars
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
A Must Read for any Student of History 28 April 2011
By Jacob Sweeney - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a freshman in high school I was required to take a course in Western History. I had a great teacher and discovered that I loved history. The only criticism of the course I have today is that it left me with a view of history that can best be described as disconnected.

Fast forward two years and I'm sitting in AP U.S. History. The teacher begins the course by explaining the difference between AP History and regular U.S. History. This was the first time I had ever discovered that all history was connected. I had been introduced to a revolutionary idea: that ideas have consequences.

Later, as a second year student at the Moody Bible Institute I encountered the first thoroughly Christian perspective on history. My professor, Dr. Bryan Litfin, did an excellent job educating us students on the events of world history with an eye always on God's providence. He helped me to understand that history was not an accident. Dr. Litfin gave me great confidence that our Lord has remained active in this world despite ages of great darkness.

Dr. Steve Lawson's second volume of the series A Long Line of Godly Men published by Reformation Trust follows in the tradition of godly historians. Pillars of Grace picks up where the first volume Foundations of Grace left off. He spends twenty four chapters exploring the life and thought of significant pastors and theologians from Clement of Rome to Calvin of Geneva. His commitment to the doctrines of grace and the sovereignty of God direct his discussion.

He references 1 Timothy 3:15 where Paul uses the metaphor of a building to explain the nature and purpose of the church ("the pillar and buttress of the truth"). Dr. Lawson makes clear from the outset that "the central thrust of this book - Pillars of Grace - is to show that key leaders of the early church and beyond acted as pillars, standing firm on the foundation of Scripture and upholding the truth" (10). His commitment to God's sovereignty and providence is clear when, in the same paragraph, he writes: "Each pillar was strategically placed by the sovereign Architect and Builder of the church for his appointed time". God appointed these leaders and theologians to serve his purposes in each specific age.

There are several things I loved about this book and found extremely helpful. At the conclusion of each chapter Dr. Lawson supplied a number of study questions. I found these questions to be thoughtful and enlightening. They help to solidify the content of the chapter. Secondly, He makes great effort to call readers to follow the examples of these godly men. There is always need in the church for men like Ignatius, Justin Martyr, Ambrose of Milan, John Wycliffe and John Calvin. I appreciate his call to follow their example.

My third point is both a praise and (personal) critique. Each chapter was accessible. You do not have to be a historian to understand these pages. He makes history and historical theology enjoyable and available to lay people. My only critique is that I would have liked to see a little more detailed explanation of each person's theology and their contributions. I maintain that as a personal critique because I would like to have more detail but I also understand that such detail would turn an accessible text for readers of every level into something more appropriate as an upper-level textbook.

I would highly recommend this book for anyone who is interested in an introductory text on significant theologians from church history. I found this to be a very enjoyable read that engaged both my head and led my heart to thank God for his sovereignty.

NOTE: To comply with regulations of the Federal Trade Commission I would like to state that I will receive a complementary copy of the aforementioned text as compensation for my review.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Pillars of Grace 15 Oct. 2011
By Matthew Everhard - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Book Review:
Steven Lawson, "Pillars of Grace: AD 100-1564. A Long Line of Godly Men. Volume II."
(Reformation Trust: Orlando Florida, 2011).

Review by Matthew Everhard. Senior Pastor,
Faith Evangelical Presbyterian Church, Brooksville Florida.

I recently had the saddening experience of watching two dear members leave our congregation. After two hour-long phone calls, I was able to get to the root of the issue: my recent sermons on the doctrine of election from Acts 9. Though I tried my best to dissuade them from leaving the fellowship, they were resolute. "We cannot, in good conscience, stay in a church that preaches predestination," they said. Although they had seen it in our written Confessions, heard of it in our new member's class, and been made aware of our doctrine in Sunday School, this was the last straw.

It is because of this event that reading Steven Lawson's second volume of his "Long Line" series was such a healing salve to my bruised Calvinistic soul. Lawson takes great pains to trace the history of the preaching of the doctrines of grace, all the way from the Early Church Fathers (Clement, Ignatius, Justin Martyr), through the venerable pens of men like Augustine and Anselm, and ultimately to the Magisterial Reformers (Zwingli, Luther, and Calvin). Lawson adequately demonstrates that the preaching of the Sovereignty of God is by no means an aberrant teaching, confined to the peripheries and fringes of extremists, but rather is in fact the heartbeat of generations of orthodox evangelicals.

All told, Lawson provides 23 biographical sketches outlining the circumstances that shaped some of history's most critical figures. Among them, Lawson's treatment of the life of William Tyndale stands out. Like a fast-paced novel, he chronicles the Reformer, who risked life and limb to translate the Bible into his beloved English vernacular. Often the reader will be awed at the providence of God and the incredible dangers His servants endured to give witness to His saving power. Lawson then surveys the influential writings of each man, often recommending their more persuasive books, letters, and tractates to the reader.

Following these biographical sketches, Lawson proceeds to give ample evidence of the doctrines of grace in each man's teaching and writing. He follows a predictable format, rarely deviating, by showing how these men consistently taught: divine sovereignty, radical depravity, sovereign election, definite atonement, irresistible call, preserving grace, and divine reprobation.

It is in these "sampling" sections that the reader will discover just how pervasive the doctrines of grace have been. Pastors, in particular will find deep resource material for doctrinal sermons, as Lawson has done a lifetime of research on our behalf. Often, Lawson provides upwards of 100 citations of a particular man's life and writing per chapter.

Although Lawson's theological sections (essentially the last third of every chapter) grow repetitive at times, often stringing together quotation after quotation, his point comes across loud and clear: preaching the sovereignty of God is hardly a fringe "minority report" held by Calvin and a few of his more zealous followers. On the contrary, election, predestination, and the total depravity of man is at the very center of historic gospel preaching.

Ultimately, Lawson's work provided this pastor with much fodder for reflection and preaching material. Even more importantly, Lawson restored my confidence that my pulpit orations on the radical nature of God's electing grace are not so "radical" after all.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Preaching to the choir 6 April 2014
By Skylark - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
First, the Kindle version has footnotes, but the in-text numbers aren't linked to the footnotes, making them useless. There is no skip feature where you would normally be able to skip to the next chapter with the 4-way button.

On the positive side, this is a great instruction to the early church fathers, running from the Apostolic Fathers, Middle Ages, and through to the Reformation.

The author approaches the early church fathers pre-supposing they were Calvinistic in their theology. Admitting that the Apostolic Fathers touched little on theology beyond paraphrasing the New Testament, he nevertheless describes them as "hinting" or "alluding" to one of the five points of Calvinism. For the first two fathers, Ignatius and Clement, their support of election amounts to the use of the inclusive term "Elect" in the opening salutation of their epistles. They may have supported election, but this does not prove it, only that this was a common greeting between Christians.

He skips over one of the most popular works of the early church, the Didache. Even though this appears to be THE shorter catechism for new converts for centuries, possibly the teaching of the Apostles themselves, it is completely devoid of any Calvinism.

With Irenaeus, the phrase "the elect though foreknowledge" becomes predestination. Nearly everything he cites for supporting pre-destination sounds an awful lot like Molonism. But again, if you assume they were all Calvinist, it becomes easy to interpret that way.

He commonly leaps to conclusions. Dr Lawson quotes one of the early fathers, then says, "By this so-and-so supported this point of Calvinism." The writer may have, but Dr Lawson skipped the proof part and simply stated his conclusion. Again, it is only obvious if you assume the author supported Calvinism.

As for Augustine, I think too many people take his writings as literal Gospel. He could be wrong on some points. Note than when he wrote against Pelagius, one of the major heresies Augustine accused him of was not supporting infant baptism. In regards to election, I'm wary of his writings since he came to Christianity directly out of Manichaeism, where fatalism is a central doctrine. I find it interesting that the first theologian to come down hard on predestination was steeped in the secular version of it. Perhaps that is why he had no problem advocating it.

Instead of assuming the early church fathers had a primitive, undeveloped, or unsophisticated theology, emphasizing both free will and election, perhaps they knew that was as far as they needed to go, since as evident today, there is no adequate answer to the apparent dilemma. While there is sufficient Scripture to support predestination and election, there is this elephant throughout the Bible that we need to make a choice--freewill. Certainly, the Apostles didn't clearly settle the question. Rather than coming up with conclusive theology, maybe all Calvin did was come down hard on determinism. No matter what your theology, except Open Theism, Calvinists and Arminianists both must grapple with the question of why God would create people knowing they were going to spend eternity in Hell. As Dr Lawson points out, if you support Election, you must support both sides of it---God elected some for Eternal life with Him, the rest he predestined for eternal torment in Hell, through no choice of their own.

Although Dr Lawson is not trying to prove Calvinism, he does little to prove the proposition that the pre-Nicene fathers supported the five points.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Pillars of Grace -- Absolutely essential reading. 30 July 2011
By Micromanuals, Inc. - Published on
Format: Hardcover
A few months back, I reviewed the first of five projected volumes in Dr. Steven J. Lawson's series, A Long Line of Godly Men. That first volume, Foundations of Grace, masterfully traces the Doctrines of Grace from Genesis to Revelation. "The teaching of sovereign grace," Lawson writes, "literally stretches from cover to cover in the Bible" (p. 36). Beginning with Moses, moving on to the historical writers and prophets, and then marching on to the Apostles, early Church Fathers and their descen-dents throughout Church History, and finally up to modern defenders of the faith, the doctrines of sovereign grace are shown to be biblical and historical beyond the slightest shadow of a doubt. As I also recently wrote in my own monthly publication, this is on my "Top Ten" list and is an absolute must.

Well, the long-awaited Volume 2, Pillars of Grace (Reformation Trust), was released back in March. Here Lawson does what he did in the first volume, this time covering the 2nd- through 16th-centuries, noting such "pillars" as: Clement of Rome, Irenaeus, Jerome, Augustine, Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin.

As does the first book, this one demonstrates that any notion that "sovereign grace" was the novel creation of John Calvin ("in an ivory tower in Western Europe," p. 19) is ludicrous. It is rather rooted in Scripture and historic theology. In fact, "concerning the doctrines of grace," Lawson contends, "virtually nothing new was taught during the Reformation era. No teaching of divine sovereignty was proclaimed during the sixteenth century that had not already been developed and taught in previous centuries, to some degree, by the Church Fathers, Monastics, Scholastics, and Pre-Reformers. The renowned Scottish church historian William Cunningham notes, `There was nothing new in substance in the Calvinism of Calvin.'" (p. 20). As Calvin believed (and I am convinced correctly so), the medieval Roman Catholic Church had abandoned the true Gospel. To him the Reformation was simply a return to biblical theology, which included the Doctrines of Grace as the core of the faith.

Chapter 1, "Pillars of Sovereign Grace," is in itself a gem. It is a complete nine-page (plus endnotes) overview from the Church Fathers (AD 100-500), through the Medieval Leaders (500-1500), and finally the Protestant Re-formers (1483-1575), encapsulating the faithful men who embraced the biblical truth of the sovereign grace of God in salvation. Chapters 2 through 24 then detail each of these: Clement of Rome, Ignatius of Antioch, Justin Mar-tyr, Irenaeus of Lyons, Tertullian of Carthage, Cyprian of Carthage, Athanasius of Alexandria, Basil of Caeserea, Gregory of Nazianzus, Ambrose of Milan, Augustine of Hippo, Isidore of Seville, Gottschalk of Orbais, Anselm of Canterbury, Bernard of Clairvaux, Thomas Bradwardine, John Wycliffe, John Hus, Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, William Tyndale, Heinrich Bullinger, and finally John Calvin. Each modest length chapter also provides study questions, and there are Scripture and Subject indices.

"From Clement of Rome in the first century to Calvin of Geneva in the sixteenth," Lawson writes, "there is a progression in the church's understanding of the doctrines of grace, a gradual maturation in the comprehension of these glorious truths. What began as mere restatements of Scripture grew into fuller descriptions of God's sovereign grace in salvation." While Lawson makes clear that "these stalwarts had feet of clay" and "were capable of holding views that contradicted their own teachings"--such as baptismal regeneration that was held by several of the Church Fathers--they nonetheless "helped bring great clarity to the church regarding many essential truths" (p. 37).

Some readers might feel a little repetition at times, while others will simply view this as consistency. There is the occasional omission, such as Bernard of Clairvaux's devotion to the Virgin Mary, but as noted above, Lawson admits the "clay feet" problem upfront. For my taste, there could have been a little more detail of each person's theology and overall contribution--then again, the book is already 530 pages.

In short, as with Volume 1, I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It is absolutely essential reading for students in training for ministry and pastors who are already there. In a day when we are running away from history and biblical doctrine, these volumes remind us that we are giving up the ship.

(To comply with Federal Trade Commission rules, I would note that I will receive a free copy of this book as compensation for my review. Such, however, in no way effects my honest review.)

Dr. J. D. Watson
Pastor and Author
Were these reviews helpful? Let us know

Look for similar items by category