The Excellency of a Gracious Spirit by Jeremiah Burroughs

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SDG. - 2023.  lfpb.  248pp.

The first book published by Jeremiah Burroughs, The Excellency of a Gracious Spirit presents a practical exposition of Numbers 14:24: “Caleb…had another spirit with him, and hath followed me fully.” With theological precision, Burroughs discerns the significance of having an outstanding spirit and what it means to follow God fully. He goes on to describe the superiority of this gracious spirit and evangelical devotion and to apply it with pastoral care. The result is a spiritual classic that will challenge you to fear the Lord and find your greatest possession to be a spirit activated and motivated by His grace.


The Epistle Dedicatory

To the Christian Reader

Part 1

A Gracious Spirit Is a Choice and Precious Spirit

  1. What That Other Spirit Is That a Godly Man Has That Makes Him Different from the World
  2. Wherein the Excellency of This Gracious Spirit Appears
  3. A Discovery to the Men of the World, Whereby They May See That Their Spirits Are Not Like the Spirits of Godly Men
  4. The Reason Why the Men of the World and the Godly Can Never Agree
  5. Learn to Have a Right Esteem of Such Precious-Spirited Men
  6. A Rebuke to Those Who Have Vile Conceits of This Spirit, and Abuse Men of Such Excellent Spirits
  7. It Is No Dishonor to Be Singular. Seven Notes to Discover That Godly Men’s Differing from Other Men Proceeds Not from Proud, Humorous Singularity, but from the Choiceness and Excellency of Their Spirits
  8. Bless God for Making This Difference between Your Spirits and the Vile Spirits of the Men of the World
  9. Communion and Conversation with Men of Such Excellent Spirits Is a Most Blessed Thing
  10. All Those Whose Spirits God Has Thus Distinguished Should Improve This Mercy by Not Walking as Other Men
  11. An Exhortation to Labor to Get This Excellent Spirit

Part 2

A Gracious Spirit Follows God Fully

  1. What It Is for a Man to Follow God Fully
  2. The Excellency of This Frame of Spirit in Four Things
  3. Rebuke to Divers Sorts Whose Spirits Are Not Full in Following After the Lord
  4. Comfort and Encouragement to Those Who Follow the Lord Fully
  5. An Exhortation to Follow the Lord Fully
  6. It Is the Choiceness of a Man’s Spirit That Causes Him to Follow God Fully


“Reader, swallow this book as Ezekiel did his roll, and you shall be enabled to do as much. Fill your spirit with the precious truths contained in this little treatise, and you shall find your drooping spirit to receive a heavenly warmth to come upon you, and a holy boldness thrusting you forward for God

and godliness. Wickedness is too bold and godliness too shamefaced. It has lost and suffered much through men’s cowardliness. Read, meditate, and feast your spirit with what you herein find, and you may walk bold as a lion through the midst of a crooked and perverse generation. You shall daunt wickedness itself and make religion truly beautiful and honorable.”

—William Greenhill, from the foreword

About the Author

Jeremiah Burroughs (1599–1646) was a member of the Westminster Assembly and represented the Independent churchmen. He was full of deep insights into the Word of God and extremely pastoral in his exposition.

During his life, Burroughs was loved for his preaching and gentle spirit and was persecuted for his nonconformity to the Church of England. Forced to flee to Holland and Rotterdam for a time, he eventually returned to England and preached to congregations in Stepney and Cripplegate in London, two of the largest congregations in England.


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