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The Two Books of Homilies Appointed to Be Read in Churches


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One of the greatest challenges a church faces in establishing a collective understanding of Scripture is the diversity of teaching. The Two Books of Homilies Appointed to Be Read in Churches was written to tackle this challenge head-on. This text served the purpose of unifying the church through one fundamental understanding of Scripture. Queen Elizabeth appointed sermons from The Two Books of Homilies to be read aloud by all parsons, vicars, and curates every Sunday and holy day. The intent was to increase the wisdom of the body of the Church by ensuring that everyone was literally on the same page about sin, prayer, the resurrection, fasting, idolatry, and other various topics that were subject to misunderstanding after the Reformation. This text includes two books of these diverse and widely taught sermons.

With the Logos edition, all references to Scripture appear in your favorite translation on mouseover. Add The Two Books of Homilies to your Logos library to conduct powerful topical searches across 600 pages of sermons. Read it on your mobile device to keep this fundamental teaching tool with you wherever you go.

Resource Experts
  • 33 sermons on a wide range of topics
  • Detailed index of all references to Scripture
  • Index of names and terms used in the text, with citations of each work discussed in the sermons

Top Highlights

“BECAUSE all men be sinners and offenders against God, and breakers of his law and commandments, therefore can no man by his own acts, works, and deeds, seem they never so good, be justified and made righteous before God; but every man of necessity is constrained to seek for another righteousness or justification, to be received at God’s own hands, that is to say, the remission, pardon, andb forgiveness of his sins and trespasses in such things as he hath offended. And this justification or righteousness, which we so receive byc God’s mercy and Christ’s merits, embraced by faith, is taken, accepted, and allowed of God for our perfect and full justification.” (Page 24)

“Read it humbly with a meek and a lowlyc heart, to the intent you may glorify God, and not yourself, with the knowledge of it; and read it not without daily praying to God, that he would direct your reading to good effect; and take upon you to expound it no further than you can plainly understand it. For, as St. Augustine saith6, the knowledge of holy Scripture is a great, large, and a high palaced, but the door is very low; so that the high and arrogant man cannot run in, but he must stoop low and humble himself that shall enter into it.” (Page 12)

“In these foresaid places the Apostle toucheth specially three things,* which must got together in our justification: upon God’s part, his great mercy and grace; upon Christ’s part, justice, that is, the satisfaction of God’s justice, or the price of our redemption by the offering of his body and shedding of his blood with fulfilling of the law perfectly and throughly; and upon our part, true and lively faith in the merits of Jesuu Christ; which yet is not ours but by God’s working in us.” (Page 26)

A dithering ecclesiastical Hamlet, an heretical schismatic, and an heroic defender of reformed Christianity, Thomas Cranmer has been vilified and praised with such words by his own and every succeeding generation.

—David Garrett, rector, parish of Seaforth

[Jewell is the] worthiest divine that Christendom hath bred for some hundreds of years . . .

Richard Hooker, priest and theologian

  • Title: The Two Books of Homilies Appointed to Be Read in Churches
  • Authors: Thomas Cranmer and John Jewell
  • Editor: John Griffiths
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication Date: 1859
  • Pages: 628

Thomas Cranmer (1489–1556) was the archbishop of Canterbury during the reigns of English kings Henry VIII and Edward VI. Cranmer attended Jesus College of Cambridge, where he earned his doctorate in divinity in 1526. He was appointed archbishop of Canterbury in 1532.

During his time as archbishop, Cranmer, along with Thomas Cromwell, championed the translation of the Bible into English. In 1548, plans for a complete liturgy for the English Church began. Cranmer compiled The Book of Common Prayer, which was published in 1549. After Mary I took the throne, the archbishop was tried for treason and heresy. He was imprisoned for two years and martyred in 1556 in Oxford.

Cranmer wrote many important articles and letters, which–along with a few biographies on the life and influence of Cranmer–can be found in the Thomas Cranmer Collection.

John Jewell (1522–1571) was a bishop who sought to ground the Church of England in its beliefs after the divisions caused by Henry VIII, Edward VI, and Mary I. In his sermons, he challenged the Catholic Church to defend its beliefs out of Scripture or the words of the Church Fathers. The ensuing debates led him to publish Apology of the Church of England, which presented a precise explanation of the stance of the Church of England against Catholicism and established him as the literary apologist of his time.


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Digital list price: $16.49
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