Book: The Writings of Isaac Penington, Volume 1
Isaac Penington (1616-1679) was the son of a prominent English politician, and the father-in-law of William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania. Though born into a family of wealth and reputation, Penington's heart was set upon things above from his earliest days. Even as a child, he recognized that the religion of his day stood in the will and understanding of man, in outward practices, duties, and scriptural truths that were professed but not truly possessed. Isaac Penington longed for more. Motivated by an insatiable hunger for truth, he sought the Lord with all his heart and discovered a Christianity that stood in, and flowed out from, the light and life of Jesus Christ reigning in the inner man. (415 pages)
Book: The Writings of Isaac Penington, Volume 2
Isaac Penington (1616-1679) was the son of a prominent English politician, and the father-in-law of William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania. Though born into a family of wealth and reputation, Penington's heart was set upon things above from his earliest days. Even as a child, he recognized that the religion of his day stood in the will and understanding of man, in outward practices, duties, and scriptural truths that were professed but not truly possessed. Isaac Penington longed for more. Motivated by an insatiable hunger for truth, he sought the Lord with all his heart and discovered a Christianity that stood in, and flowed out from, the light and life of Jesus Christ reigning in the inner man. (432 pages)
The books below are available in digital formats only.
Book: The Original and Present State of Man
In 1767, a book was published advancing many sentiments critical of the Society of Friends, and more particularly attacking the principles propounded in Robert Barclay's Apology for the True Christian Divinity. In response to this publication, Joseph Phipps took up the pen in 1772 to clear the Society from many unjust and untrue charges, and to defend the truths of the gospel as set forth by early Friends. His refutation was thorough and convincing, clarifying many of the leading principles of the Quakers, and exposing and countering the various errors of his opponent. The full title given to this work was—"THE ORIGINAL AND PRESENT STATE OF MAN - Briefly Considered - Wherein are shown: The Nature of His Fall, and the Necessity, Means, and Manner of His Restoration, Through the Sacrifice of Christ, and the Sensible Operation of that Divine Spirit of Grace and Truth, Held Forth to the World by the People Called Quakers."
Book: Saved to the Uttermost - Propositions Four through Eight From The Apology for the True Christian Divinity
Robert Barclay (1648–1690) was a Scottish Quaker, and one of the most eminent writers among the early Society of Friends. His Apology for the True Christian Divinity (from which this book is taken) was first published in 1675, and came to be considered the definitive exposition and defense of Quaker principles for the next 200 years. Saved to the Uttermost contains five of the original fifteen propositions from Barclay's Apology, treating upon the fall, redemption, justification, and perfection of man.
Book: Meditations and Experiences
William Shewen (1631-1695) was a very serviceable man on truth's account in several ways, and an elder in the church, being of a sound judgment and understanding in the truth. He had very clear openings in relation to the work of truth, and also of Satan's wiles to hurt and hinder the progress of it (having had long experience of both), and therefore could advise and direct the Christian traveler how to keep in the one, and be preserved out of the snares of the other.
Book: Primitive Christianity Revived
This book is a combination of two separate publications by William Penn, one being his book Primitive Christianity Revived (first published in 1696), and the other, A Brief Account of the Rise and Progress of the People Called Quakers, which originally served as the introduction to the Journal of George Fox (published in 1694) but was later printed separately. The two publications overlapped in their scope, both dealing (in various degrees) with the rise of the Society of Friends, and the distinct principles and practices of this people, and it was thought that these short books could be combined and interwoven in such a way as to present the reader with a more thorough presentation of these subjects than either publication could do individually. Penn begins with an overview of the various dispensations of God in the world, and then recounts the extraordinary work of the Lord in restoring and reestablishing the true light, life, power, and purity of the primitive church through the outpouring of His Spirit in the early Society of Friends.
Book: No Cross, No Crown
The classic treatise “No Cross, No Crown” was first written while William Penn was imprisoned for his faith in the Tower of London in 1668, when only twenty-four years of age. Later in life, Penn greatly enlarged upon the original publication, treating exhaustively upon the particular sins of pride, avarice, and luxury, and adding two lengthy collections of testimonies from other authors in order to further substantiate his position. This edition is unique in that it offers the reader a careful modernization of Penn's beautiful but somewhat archaic English, and has been abridged to contain only the principal and indispensable chapters of the treatise, wherein Penn clearly presents the nature, power, and experience of the daily cross of Christ, explaining what it is, where and how it is to be taken up, and the manner of its working in the true disciples of Christ.
Book: Waiting Upon the Lord
Robert Barclay writes, “All true and acceptable worship to God is offered in the inward and immediate moving and drawing of His own Spirit.” It is not hard to agree with such a statement, but who has indeed stood still to see the salvation of the Lord, and known the dawning of His inward Day? Have we waited upon our God to separate the precious from the vile within, to differentiate between the pure operation of His Spirit and the wild rovings of our own soul? Have we truly known and obeyed His inward stirrings and teachings, or does the Seed of God lay buried in Christian hearts beneath a mass of superstition, assumption, and fleshy, religious activity?
Book: The Work of Vital Religion in the Soul
“Do you believe in Christ, in reference to His spiritual appearance in your own soul? Have you, in the metaphorical language of Scripture, opened the door of your heart unto Him, when, by the secret convictions of His holy Light or Spirit, He has knocked there for admission? Have you in this way received Christ to be your leader, your baptizer, your high-priest and your king? Has it become your daily concern to obey Him in all things, avoiding in every part of your conduct and conversation that which the light manifests to be evil, denying yourself and taking up the cross in respect to every pursuit and gratification which this divine Monitor does not allow, however earnestly pleaded for by your natural inclination and desires? And finally, do you witness, through submission to the baptizing operation of His Holy Spirit, the work of regeneration begun, and gradually progressing in your soul?”
Book: There is a Spirit Which I Feel - Selected Writings of James Nayler
James Nayler was a prominent leader and gifted minister in the early Society of Friends in England. Though a farmer by trade, and a man of limited education, his deep spiritual understanding, piercing discernment, and powerful communication of the gospel caused multitudes to acknowledge that he preached in the demonstration of the Spirit and power, as one having authority, and not as the scribes. Sadly, he is best known for a single (and much regretted) act of folly committed in a time of weakness and temptation, when, “because of the abundance of revelation” and the unchecked flattery of a few imprudent admirers, he accepted greater praise than is due to any man. This modernized edition was prepared from a strong desire that the writings of this pious and experienced Christian not be lost in history.
Book: Some of the Mysteries of God's Kingdom Declared
Francis Howgill (1618–1668) was a powerful minister of the gospel in England who suffered great persecution and eventually died in prison for "the Word of God and for the testimony of Jesus." This short book contains a remarkable explanation of the Day of the Lord, and a powerful description of the Holy Spirit's work in the heart of man.
Book: The Centrality and Universality of the Cross
"...The Cross of Christ brings us into living union and oneness with God, and if we will but live in the full meaning and value of that union we shall be living epistles of Christ in terms of life, light, and love." —T. Austin-Sparks
Book: Spiritual Sight
"...Spiritual sight is a miracle from heaven every time, and that means that the one who really sees spiritually has a miracle right at the foundation of his life. His whole spiritual life springs out of a miracle, and it is the miracle of having sight given to eyes which never have seen. That is just where the spiritual life begins, just where the Christian life has its commencement: it is in seeing." —T. Austin-Sparks
Book: The Stewardship of the Mystery, Volume 1 - All Things in Christ
"...We shall see that here is a land which is locked up, into which we cannot enter, and for which we have no equipment. There is nothing in us of faculty to enter into the secrets of that realm of Christ. Then following the discovery of that somewhat startling fact of man's utter incapacity to know by nature, the next fact that confronts us is this: '...it was the good pleasure of God... to reveal his Son in me.' —T. Austin-Sparks
Book: The Great Transition from One Humanity to Another
"...What is God doing?—He is devastating one kind of humanity... Yes, that is what He is doing. He is working on this very ground of the two humanities—one being that which we are by nature; and the Other, that which we are in Christ." —T. Austin-Sparks
Book: Truth in the Inward Parts - The Work of God in the Souls of Ten Early Quakers
"Behold, You desire truth in the inward parts, and in the hidden part You will make me to know wisdom." —Psalm 51:6
This book contains the stories of ten men and women who knew the transforming work of Truth in the inner parts. Amidst a sea of Christian practice and profession, these believers would settle for nothing less than the light, power, and righteousness of Christ reigning in their purified vessels. They not only found the Pearl of great price by His own inward appearing, but they then sold all to buy this treasure, counting all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus their Lord.
Book: Walk in the Spirit
The primitive Christians built on a sure rock, a living foundation, on Christ as He was in all ages, and still is—on His spiritual appearance as the light of the world, and the life of righteousness. Taking His eternal Spirit in themselves for their guide, they turned away from whatever they were thereby convicted of and reproved for. Thus Esau (or the first nature) came to be supplanted, and He whose right it is to reign came to have the rule in them and the government over them. The work of sanctification is inward, and is to be effected by inward means. Nothing but inward light can expel inward darkness; nothing less than eternal life can deliver our souls from the power of death. But this way of God’s salvation has been so long rejected, that few in our present age know what this Spirit is, where they may become acquaintance with it, or how they may walk in it.