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Peter Lillback on George Washington

Today is the 4th of July. And for those of you who live in the United States of America, here is a book by Peter A. Lillback, president of Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA., that you may find appropriate reading on a day like today.

Lillback, Peter A. George Washington’s Sacred Fire. Providence Forum Press, 2006.

Publisher Description: George Washington, the uniquely venerated Founding Father of our nation, valiant warrior of the American Revolution and devoted family man has been the subject of countless writings by scholars and storytellers alike.What sets George Washington’s Sacred Fire apart from all previous literary works on this man for the ages, is the exhaustive fifteen years of Dr. Peter Lillback’s research, revealing a world icon driven by the highest of ideals, not the least of which was his genuine Christian faith.

A vast number of books on George Washington are characterized by anecdotal recountings and factually unsubstantiated conclusions that,up to now,few have strived to correct by painting an accurate, meticulously detailed portrait. American history bookshelves are replete with volumes on George Washington, penned by living men forcing dead men to perform tricks of the writers” choosing. Only do George Washington’s own writings, journals, letters, manuscripts, and those of his closest family and confidants reveal the truth of this awe-inspiring role model for all generations.

Growing up in a single parent household, George was faced with similar circumstances and challenges as many throughout history and indeed today. Yet, Dr. Lillback draws on primary source research to paint a picture of a man, who, faced with these challenges and circumstances, ultimately drew upon his persistent qualities of character” honesty, justice, equity, perseverance, piety, forgiveness, humility, and servant leadership, to become one of the most revered figures in world history. Major General Nathanael Greene, writing of his commander in chief, declared, “I hope we shall be taught to copy his example, and to prefer the love of liberty, in this time of public danger, to all the soft pleasures of domestic life.” These are values and determination that are widely absent in today’s society.

Where a nation begins distinctly determines the course it treads. George Washington set the cornerstone for what would become one of the most prosperous, free nations in the history of civilization.—Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports,—he said in his farewell address. Through this book, Dr. Lillback, assisted by Jerry Newcombe, will reveal to the reader a newly inspirational image of General and President George Washington.

And here are a couple of audios that might interest you as well:

Listen to an episode of Christ the Center featuring Dr. Carl Trueman and Dr. Peter A. Lillback entitled Christianity and Politics. (Reformed Forum)

Listen to an interview with Peter Lillback by Al Mohler entitled Will the Real George Washington Please Stand Up. (Southern Baptist Theological Seminary)

Listen to a lecture by Peter Lillback entitled God & George Washington. (Canon Wired)



Matthew Barrett (Ph.D., The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is Assistant Professor of Christian Studies at California Baptist University. He is also the founder and executive editor of Credo Magazine. Barrett has contributed book reviews and articles to various academic journals, and he is the author of several forthcoming books. He is married to Elizabeth and they have two daughters, Cassandra and Georgia.

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