Art of Divine Contentment: An Exposition of Philippians 4:11

Author: Watson, Thomas (ca. 1620-1686)

The Apostle Paul, in Phil. 4:11, says "I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances." Thomas Watson, an English Puritan preacher, wants to teach readers how to gain the same contentment as Paul. Living in the 16th century, Watson believed that discontentment was a sin, and so wrote the book The Art of Divine Contentment: An Exposition of Philippians 4:11. Watson spends the entire book on this one verse, and in doing so, presents Christians with a comprehensive method for becoming content. Centered on the idea that "A gracious spirit is a contented spirit," Watson believes that Christians can be and should be content because of God's wonderful promises to his people. "The way for a man to be contented," Watson says, "is not by raising his estate higher, but by bringing his heart lower." In our contemporary society where discontent is the norm, disillusioned readers will benefit from The Art of Divine Contentment. Watson's content is God-centered rather than focused on material possessions as so many Christians are today, so it is sure to bring comfort to those who strive to be happy in Christ.

Abby Zwart
CCEL Staff Writer





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