Unspoken Sermons by George MacDonald

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Calvin Habig | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, Mar 27 2012 10:34 AM

This is also adapted from the Christian Classics zip file.  (Added more appropriate title page, headings, etc.)  I don't see any George MacDonald available from Logos and I remember enjoying these sermons many years ago.  There are three files (Series, One, Two, Three). They were originally published as three separate collections.  Personally, I combined them into one resource, but you (of course) could make 3 different resources out of them. 

0118.Unspoken Sermons 1.docx

1680.Unspoken Sermons 2.docx

2744.Unspoken Series 3.docx

Errata are always welcomed.

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NB.Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 1:13 PM

Wow, thank you!

I must admit that I rather forgot about MacDonald as a theologian (although we as a family enjoy his fictional writings a lot) even though I knew about his profound influence on CS Lewis and have the German edition of the "Anthology" on my bookshelf (its German title translates to "CS Lewis: The Wisdom of my Master"). Seems it's time to read up again.  

No errata, just the remark that Logos threw a warning for the "Epea Aptera" as it is formatted in unknown font Greek-WSI.

My Kindle edition (part of "The Complete Works") has a series dedication, which I also find in the Robert Browning edition of unspoken Sermons:

These Ears of Corn, gathered and rubbed in my hands upon broken Sabbaths, I offer first to my Wife, and then to my other Friends.

Rather than tinkering with your docx, I choose to put this into the resource description/information field along with the massive introduction I found at  http://www.online-literature.com/george-macdonald/unspoken-sermons/

George MacDonald (1824 - 1905) was a Scottish author, poet, and Christian minister. In his day he was considered one of the great Victorian authors on par with Dickens, Thackeray, Kipling and the like. His reputation as an author, however, has not fared as well largely because of the ubiquitous and fervent presence of religion throughout his works.

MacDonald's theology, though sprinkled liberally throughout his fairly substantial number of books, is perhaps nowhere more palpable than in Unspoken Sermons. These sermons, though by no means amongst the most popular of MacDonald's work, have had theological impact from their first appearance. Taking a brief survey of the critical history of Unspoken Sermons reveals this impact:

Shortly after the first series of sermons was published in 1867, the Journal of Sacred Literature published a review insightful not only of the book itself, but also of its author.

"It is a very difficult task to write a short notice of a book like this. It is a kind of book to be spoken of rather with affection as a dear friend, than to be coolly criticized. Like all true words worth uttering, whether by mouth or pen, these of Mr. Mac Donald's are "living, having hands and feet." To those who know him they recall a thousand times over the tones of his voice, the expression of his face, and his whole manner. And nobody can read them at all without feeling that they are the utterance of his very soul, the manifestations of what is thoroughly real and genuine in his truest self. The Unspoken Sermons, indeed, will by no means be accepted as orthodox, either in form or substance; but if they were wholly mistaken in their conclusions— which we are very far indeed from thinking that they are—it is still most difficult to understand how the narrowest-minded critic could consider them "unsafe." They bring everyone who reads them into the very presence of the Living God, and reminds him that not only what he says and does, but what he genuinely believes and really is will be tested by God's consuming fire. If, therefore, these Unspoken Sermons should lead anyone into dogmatic error, they will at any rate lead him into spiritual truth, and teach him to cry out for that light by which all the darkness, both of the intellect and of the spirit, will one day be scattered."

Of those whom MacDonald influence there is none more revered (and scrutinized) in the public eye than C.S. Lewis. In his introduction to George MacDonald: An Anthology (1947), Lewis states the following.

"This collection, as I have said, was designed not to revive MacDonald's literary reputation but to spread his religious teaching. Hence most of my extracts are taken from the three volumes of Unspoken Sermons. My own debt to this book is almost as great as one man can owe to another: and nearly all serious inquirers to whom I have introduced it acknowledge that it has given them great help-sometimes indispensable help toward the very acceptance of the Christian faith. … I know hardly any other writer who seems to be closer, or more continually close, to the Spirit of Christ Himself. Hence his Christ-like union of tenderness and severity. Nowhere else outside the New Testament have I found terror and comfort so intertwined. … In making this collection I was discharging a debt of justice. I have never concealed the fact that I regarded him as my master; indeed I fancy I have never written a book in which I did not quote from him. But it has not seemed to me that those who have received my books kindly take even now sufficient notice of the affiliation. Honesty drives me to emphasize it."

Since the 1970s Dr. Rolland Hein has spent a good portion of his scholarly life presenting MacDonald to modern readers. In his preface to his edited and abridged version of Unspoken Sermons he states:

"The purpose of Unspoken Sermons is to arouse the reader’s will so to choose, by imparting a clearer understanding of what God’s Will is. It is not to argue doctrines intellectually. It is not to formulate a systematic theology. MacDonald’s insights are not for the mind alone, but for the heart. They afford the reader glimpses of truths which to the child-heart of the true Christian are undeniable. MacDonald avows: “I believe that no teacher should strive to make men think as he thinks, but to lead them to the living Truth , to the Master Himself, of whom alone they can learn anything, who will make them in themselves know what is true by the very seeing of it.” The careful reader (and this material may not be read otherwise) will certainly have such a confrontation with Truth in the pages ahead. More than once reading here has brought sudden tears to my eyes and an involuntary thrill to my ***, and I have seldom had a stronger feeling of certainty that I was standing in the presence of valid insights into the Eternal Mystery than during the reading of these Unspoken Sermons."

In 2005 Michael Phillips published an edited edition of some of MacDonald's more influential sermons and essays (including selections from Unspoken Sermons) entitled, "Your Life in Christ". In this collection Phillips states:

"MacDonald saw things differently. Doctrinal formula was nothing to him. His unique perspective takes some getting used to. I find that many passages require two or three readings. But I also find spiritual gold awaiting me, sometimes buried deep but always ready to shine out brilliantly from the page when suddenly I see it. Theologically, too, as imaginatively, I have discovered many doors of delight opening before me into new worlds of wonder about God and his work."

What shall be the impact of Unspoken Sermons in the future? If the past 140 years is any indication, this work will continue to influence religious thinkers of both the literary and theological bent. Though a speculative statement, perhaps MacDonald’s work in general and Unspoken Sermons specifically, will continue to be a catalyst for producing imaginative fiction and theology less concerned about dogma and more focused, as MacDonald unfailingly was, on the heart of God to his creation. -- Submitted by David Baldwin


Running Logos 8 latest beta version on Win 10

Posts 392
Calvin Habig | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 4:14 PM

Wow!  Now THAT'S a description!  I didn't get that alert since that Greek font is on my computer. I have several. Which one does Logos use?  I can switch it to that one.

Posts 1680
Jerry M | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 4:34 PM

Calvin, I found a mistake in the first series under the sermon It Shall Not Be Forgiven.  The Scripture reference should be Luke 12:10 and not Luke 11:18.  I corrected the reference and then combined all three series into one .docx file and added milestones for the sermon text reference if anyone would rather have this .docx.  Thanks for providing these3666.Unspoken Sermons (MacDonald).docx.


"For the kingdom of God does not consist in words but in power"      Wiki Table of Contents

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BillS | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 5:02 PM

Thank you!

Grace & Peace,

MSI GF63 8RD, I-7 8850H, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, 2TB HDD, NVIDIA GTX 1050Max
Samsung S9+, 64GB
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BillS | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 5:36 PM

No errata, just the remark that Logos threw a warning for the "Epea Aptera" as it is formatted in unknown font Greek-WSI.

Thanks! It turns out Greek-WSI is a free download... just google it.

Grace & Peace,

MSI GF63 8RD, I-7 8850H, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, 2TB HDD, NVIDIA GTX 1050Max
Samsung S9+, 64GB
Fire 10HD 64GB 7th Gen

Posts 277
Ben | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 5:59 PM

Great, Good works.

2 Peter 3:18  But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

Posts 18867
Rosie Perera | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Mar 27 2012 9:10 PM

Thanks, Calvin! This is awesome! Have these in hardcover and have been meaning to get around to reading them one of these days but never have.

I'm impressed with Logos's PB compiler that it was able to recognize verse references like this: "St. Matthew xix 21" and convert them properly to links. However it did miss the second verse in this case: "St. Mark x. 10 and 17" and it missed cases like this "Isaiah (vi. 9, 10)" and "(verse 27)." So I've put in manual links in those places. I also added the series dedication that NB.Mick pointed out.

Here's a new version of the file: 3513.Unspoken Sermons (MacDonald).docx

Posts 4625
Milford Charles Murray | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 28 2012 6:14 AM

Peace and Joy to all you Loverly People!          *smile*

                               Am very grateful for this book.  Hadn't known of it and am eager to tackle it!

               Just noticed that it is also available as a free ebook at Kobo...

                                           Psalm 19:7-14

Philippians 4:  4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand..........

Posts 1875
Paul-C | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Mar 28 2012 6:26 AM

Thank you for making this resource available!

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