Out of the Depths

I dived into this one with great enthusiasm, but the water was cold!

Yup, I nearly bailed out at the beginning.

The intro was tedious to the extreme.

Once into the main text (a series of letters) written by John Newton things took a turn for the better.

Newton obviously had a Godly mother, but she died when he was only seven.

His father was a prosperous seafarer, and had his son’s career mapped out from an early age.

Although he hadn’t reckoned on his son’s self will.

Before he’d completely lost his way John chanced upon Mary Catlett.

This was providential, as at times during his next 7 years on the high seas that he often though of taking his own life.

Intriguingly the godless seaman often pondered scripture, but bad company and poor life choices sent him on a downward spiral.

Perhaps the lowest point was being caged on deck with hardly any food, or clothes and being exposed to the elements.

Who’d have guessed that a series of “chance meetings” would be the catalyst towards salvation?

Time and again John was singled out for survival when at the last moment others were given his duties.

Enough of the man, how about how it was written.

John ranks himself alongside the Apostle Paul as a “wretched man” and the “worst of sinners”.

Although he gives scant mention to the poor souls he shipped as a slaving captain.

After getting his life in order, and gaining his own captaincy a few more years on the high seas preceded his latter years as a minister.

Book Rating – 5 out of 5.

Best bit – Newton’s dream about a ring lost off the coast of Italy.  I wondered if it may have inspired Tolkein to write Lord of the Rings.


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