Wake Up & Live (Great Christian Classics) Paperback – 1 Jun 2004
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'Wake Up And Live'is an abridged version of Joseph Alleine's 'An Alarm To The Unconverted'.The unabridged edition remains in print(published by The Banner Of Truth)under the title 'A Sure Guide To Heaven'.While the book has a powerful evangelistic emphasis(and has been greatly used in the conversion of many)its usefulness at present could be in several different areas.The author states his purpose for writing the book in the introduction:"I have written this book for people who are not yet Christians.My hope and prayer is that through reading it you will turn to God."A great example of the evangelistic thrust of this treatise is on p.78"Imagine you saw someone condemned to die,hanging over a fiery furnace,suspended by nothing more than a thin thread,ready to break at any moment.Wouldn't your heart go out to him?Yet if you are not trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ,that is precisely the situation in which you find yourself.Where would you be if the thread of your life were to break-and it could happen at any moment.Where would you drop?If you remain as you are,you would fall into the lake of fire where you must suffer for as long as God is God?"
I think this books usefulness in our generation could also be for a believer to gage their spiritual health.I think this is true of many of the works of the Puritans,but especially this one.Its searching aspect is above the norm(even by Puritan standards).Many examples could be given to support this assertion but I hope one will suffice:p.19 "From now on,you will be more afraid of sinning than of suffering.Perhaps you used to worry about losing your property or your reputation and you shuddered at the thought of pain,poverty or disgrace.But now all these concerns fade into insignificance compared with your fear of dishonouring God." I think this is one of many ways of saying that ,someone who truly loves Christ and is seeking to live for Him ,desires that everything they do is for the glory of God.
The way the book is sectioned off makes it more acsessible and easier to digest(almost like a study guide).This is important in the time we are living in because it seems like people don't read as much as they did in the past, because there are so many other distractions.The acessibilty makes it a more useful tool for Sunday schools(and also an easier read for relatively young Christians).In chapter 2 'Becoming a Christian'(the chapter is partially broken down like this:1.The Holy Spirit must change You. 2.You need God's grace.3.Jesus Christ has done it all.4.God uses the Bible to bring you to Himself.5.Every part of you will be affected.
In the final chapter entitled 'Wake Up And Live' Mr.Alleine is pleading with the reader to turn from sin and turn to God.It is an example of how much Pastor Alleine coveted the souls of his fellow man(that hey would be reconcilled to their maker and ultimately their judge.).
This Puritan Christian classic was first published in 1998(by Grace Publications,the 18th abridgement in the series).Mount Zion publications in Pensacola Florida has begun printing these abriged classics (and makes them available to prisons,Churches and individuals worldwide).I believe both the unabridged 'A Sure Guide To Heaven' and the abridged version 'Wake Up And Live' will have continued usefulness(and rightly so)for decades,hopefully centuries to come,if our Lord should tarry.