The Mighty Weakness of John Knox
John Knox, the great Reformer of Scotland, is often remembered as something akin to a biblical prophet born out of time—strong and brash, thundering in righteous might. In truth, he was “low in stature, and of a weakly constitution,” a small man who was often sickly and afflicted with doubts and fears. In The Mighty Weakness of John Knox, a new Long Line Profile from Reformation Trust Publishing, author Douglas Bond shows that Knox did indeed accomplish herculean tasks, but not because he was strong and resolute in himself. Rather, he was greatly used because he was submissive to God; therefore, God strengthened him. That strength was displayed as Knox endured persecution and exile, faced down the wrath of mighty monarchs, and prayed, preached, and wrote with no fear of man, but only a desire to manifest the glory of God and to please Him. For those who see themselves as too weak, too small, too timid, or simply too ordinary for service in God’s kingdom, Knox’s life offers a powerful message of hope—the biblical truth that God often delights to work most powerfully through people who are most weak in themselves but most strong in Him.
About the Author
Douglas Bond, author of nearly twenty books for young people and adults, lives with his wife and six children in Washington State. He is a ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA), teaches English and history at Covenant High School, and was awarded the regional Teacher Award for teaching young people how to write.
Publisher: Ligonier Ministries
Publication Date: May 2011
ISBN 13: 9781567692556
"In the compass of this small volume, Douglas Bond somehow manages to corral all the mysterious paradoxes of John Knox: the thunderous pulpit and the closet intercessions, the soaring intellect and the humble home life, the boldness and the meekness, the might and the weakness. In other words, Bond has captured the very essence of this remarkable model for reformational ministry."
— Dr. George Grant, Pastor, East Parish Presbyterian Church, TN
"I am delighted to recommend Douglas Bond’s latest book, The Mighty Weakness of John Knox. Bond has written many, mainly children’s, books on sixteenth- and seventeenth-century Scottish church history. He writes with the passion of a man who believes that the church today needs, for its spiritual good and sanity, to learn about the church of yesterday. In choosing to write a book on John Knox, Bond has done the church today a great service. Knox was the towering figure of the Scottish Reformation. In many ways, he was a reluctant hero, conscious as he was of his own weaknesses. However, as the title of the book makes plain, Knox’s sense of weakness was overwhelmed by his sense of God’s greatness. Indeed, as Bond shows us throughout his book, it was Knox’s constant sense of his own weakness that enabled the Lord to use him so mightily in His service. When Knox was asked to account for the wonderful success of the Scottish Reforma- tion, he replied, ‘God gave his Holy Spirit in great abundance to simple men.’ Read this book. Learn from this book. Thank God for men like John Knox. Above all, pray that God would raise up like-minded and like-hearted men in our own day, and once again give His Holy Spirit in great abundance to men who are deeply conscious of their own weakness."
— Rev. Ian Hamilton, Pastor, Cambridge Presbyterian Church, Cambridge, England
"Though I love John Knox, I rarely enjoy reading about John Knox. Most biographers leave me feeling like a pathetic worm beside this mighty lion of Scotland. But to my great surprise, this book lifted my spirits and even inspired me. Why? Because Douglas Bond has captured and communicated the secret of John Knox’s power—a genuinely felt and openly confessed weakness that depended daily and completely on the grace and mercy of Jesus Christ. Mighty weakness—what an encouraging message for all worms who want to be lions."
— Dr. David P. Murray, Professor of Old Testament and practical theology, Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, MI
"Another volume appears in the Long Line of Godly Men Profiles series, this time a profile of John Knox by Douglas Bond. To this very interesting book about a very interesting man, Bond brings his compelling narrative style, honed in his previously written novels. The preface (‘John Knox: A Weak Man Made Mighty’) sets the tone for the volume, as Bond demonstrates in a variety of ways how God took Knox’s several weaknesses to make him one of the Reformation’s strongest figures. Citing Knox’s greatest strength in his submission to Christ, Bond then traces ‘power’ in Knox’s life, whether it be power of prayer, pen, or predestination, or power in Knox’s preaching. For those wondering whether the Pauline mystery of strength in weakness can become true for them, Bond’s portrait of Knox will prove as edifying as it is instructive."
— Dr. T. David Gordon, Professor of religion and Greek, Grove City College, PA