The Texts That Made History series is a series of biographical sermons by F. W. Boreham. Each sermon deals with the impact of a single Scripture text in the life of a famous person. We are not surprised to see the impact of the Bible in the lives of reformers, preachers, and pioneer missionaries. However, Boreham broadens his vision to take on explorers, authors, statesmen, and even a few fictional characters.
In the introduction to the fifth volume, the author explains that several years ago he was musing on what to announce for his next teaching series. He had been studying the impact of a single Scripture on the life of Martin Luther—guiding towards the Protestant Reformation—and wondered if he should teach on the Bible’s impact in biographies. Then Boreham tells us he “astonished himself” by announcing that he was commencing a series entitled The Texts That Made History:
At the close of the service, one of my most trusted officers came to me in great delight. ‘That’s a noble idea,’ he explained enthusiastically; ‘it will be the best series that you ever preached!’
It has certainly been the longest, and the most evangelistic, and the most effective. And it has been the series in which I myself have found the most delight.
Boreham wrote over 1500 biographical articles over the course of his life, making him for many decades the most prolific author in Australian history. He read one book every week over the course of most of his long life. It is no wonder, then, that he is well qualified to handle his theme.
Four out of the five books in this series are already available as ebooks, and we hope to put all four of them back into print in the coming months.
Apostle of Islam: A Biography of Samuel M. Zwemer (J. Christy Wilson, missionary to Iran)(paperback) D. M. Thornton: A Study in Missionary Principles & Ideals (W. H. T. Gairdner, missionary to Egypt) (ebook) The Drums of Dawn (F. W. Boreham, pastor in New Zealand) (ebook) The Harvest of the Sea (Wilfred Grenfell, missionary to Labrador) (ebook) Ludwig Krapf: The Explorer-Missionary of East Africa (Paul E. Kretzmann) (paperback) Men of Might in India Missions (Helen H. Holcomb) (ebook) The Story of Justin Martyr & Other Poems (Richard Trench, archbishop of Dublin) (paperback) The Wisps of Wildfire (F. W. Boreham) (paperback)
We’ve uploaded several new missionary biographies, including three about the founder of the CMA’s Bedouin Mission in present-day Jordan.
Jacob Chamberlain wrote The Cobra’s Den, an account of his experiences among the Telugu people of southern India. Chamberlain lived for thirty-seven years there. When he arrived, he was not only the first missionary, but the first white person to visit the area.
Amid Greenland Snows by Jesse Page tells the early history of missions in Greenland, focusing on the work of Danish missionary Hans Egede, who not only preceded William Carey, but preceded the Moravian Brethren as a Protestant missionary. He studied the Eskimo language and spent more than a decade among those people.
Johann Ludwig Krapf spent a number of years in preparation in the Basel Mission Institute. He studied European languages and labored as a linguist and missionary in diverse areas of East Africa, including the present-day nations of Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania.
A. C. Forder worked among the bedouin Arabs of southern Jordan and Palestine, what he knew as “Moab and Edom.” I recommend starting with his book, With Arabs in Tent and Town.
Can’t decide? Our best-selling biography is Apostle to Islam: A Biography of Samuel M. Zwemer. Samuel Zwemer had an untold impact in inciting Christians to consider missions in the Islamic world. If you’re interested in missions to Muslims, this book is the place to start.
The latest from Pioneer Library is Joseph Parker’sStudies in Texts, a collection of 76 sermons, originally published in six volumes, now available in one edition. Parker treats some theological topics that were outside of the scope of The People’s Bible series, which is his magnum opus. In Studies in Texts, Dr. Parker includes advice for preachers and a biographical introduction in which he comments on his calling as a preacher.
From the front matter:
A new work in six volumes, containing new sermons, outlines, and a great variety of suggestions, etc. This work will be of the greatest value to active preachers, Bible students, and teachers. The contents will also be exceedingly useful for home and family readings. The work is acknowledged to be the most brilliant and useful of all that Dr. Parker has ever written. A deeply interesting account of how the author preached his first sermon fifty years ago, and also many valuable hints on pulpit preparation and methods of preaching are contained in the preface.
“They are varied in subject and length of treatment; they are such as to stir the reader’s soul; they abound in points which are strong in the author.”
Local Preachers’ Magazine
“They are strenuous and stimulating, marked by all the vigor, eloquence, and formidable candor characteristic of Dr. Parker.”
Here’s what we’ve got in the oven, here in November 2016:
Drums of Dawn by F. W. Boreham Fifty-three Years in Syria: The Autobiography of Henry H. Jessup (2 parts) The Glory of the Manger by Samuel M. Zwemer The Ivory Spires by F. W. Boreham Mountains & Valleys in the Ministry of Jesus by G. Campbell Morgan The Prescience Papers by Samuel Fancourt (7 works in one) Wisps of Wildfire by F. W. Boreham
Which one do you want to see first? Is there anything you think we should be working on? Do you have any missional stories or devotions that you’d like to see back in print or digital form? You’re welcome to make suggestions in the comments below:
(Keep in mind that almost all books published after 1963 are under copyright and can’t be republished without permission.)
The Arab World Pioneers series seeks to draw together the best available histories and biographies of the early modern missionaries to the Arab world. Among these pioneers, the most well known are Ion Keith-Falconer (Yemen), Henry Jessup (Syria), and Samuel Zwemer (Bahrain, Iraq, and Egypt). However, even these men didn’t come the earliest, or stay the longest. They must be taken as only a sampling of the host of both men and women who sacrificed and plodded in a place that has remained, even to this day, one of the driest and most difficult mission fields on the globe.