Why Packer Mattered

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17 Responses

  1. Duane Arnold says:


    I think Packer will be remembered as one of those singular theologians who transcend the time in which they lived. Such are few and far between…

  2. Michael says:


    Agreed…I hope his spirit endures as long as his work…

  3. bob1 says:

    He was ecumenical…though utterly convinced of the truth of Reformed theology, he treated other expressions of the faith with dignity and respect.

    This is an aspect of Packer that I really, really respected. I remember when he and Chuck Colson did the “ECT” document. Of course, the Reformed rigid righties seem to have hated him for it…that just means they were doing something right!

  4. Jim says:

    “Packer was humble and kind, probably to a fault, if such can be.”

    Humble enough to write in a manner that I could understand. I’m forever grateful for this man.

  5. CM says:


    Well done on this article. Sums up Packer perfectly.

  6. Tim says:

    When I read of JI Packer’s passing today, I thought immediately of you, remembering the influence Packer has had on your life. I was also greatly blessed from the book “Knowing God,” although it did not impact me to the same extent as you. When our heroes age, it may be inevitable that we eventually mourn them, but it doesn’t make it easy to do so. God bless you as you grieve, and praise God for the reward Jim Packer is receiving from our Lord Jesus.

  7. Michael says:

    Thanks, Tim, thanks all for the kind words.

  8. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    Carl Trueman’s piece at TGC describing how in key ways Packer was too good for evangelicalism was the only thing at TGC I’ve read in years. Not linking to it because I’m not a fan of TGC but Trueman’s comment seemed pertinent enough to share this weekend. As someone who’s benefited from works by Packer, Stott and Martyn-Lloyd Jones I was glad to read Trueman say that decades on Packer’s humility and character proved he was the better man than many official evangelicals who did not run the race as faitfully despite looking like they had better dogmatics on paper.

    I read Packer during a phase when people close to me were diving into Quietest theology on the one hand and rabid New World Order red-state stumping at the same time so Packer felt like a very badly needed antidote to that dual impulse I was getting exposed to in a key youthful phase of my life. I was turning into an ex-Pentecostal Reformed type but was immensely grateful that Packer’s Keep in Step with the Spirit graciously highlighted what he thought was good about Pentecostalism and charismatic theology without going MacArthur Charismatic Chaos in criticism. I thank God that I ended up reading Packer from the Reformed wing rather than … I won’t name any of the others because many of us already know who those other guys are. 😉

  9. Michael says:


    Thank you for that.
    From the article:
    “He never became a powerbroker. He seems to have lacked all personal ambition. He didn’t bother to build his brand. He didn’t trumpet his own greatness from Twitter. He simply wrote good, helpful books, gave solid lectures, and steadily preached the Bible.”

  10. BrianD says:

    Michael, I am so very sorry for your loss. I know Dr. Packer meant the world to you. His ideas still live on here on Earth, in you and others like you who have been forever changed by his life and his teachings, and inspired to follow Jesus by him.

  11. CM says:


    One little blurb about Packer’s final project which I think you would be interested in:

    “The final work he was able to complete in this lifetime was to make final verbal edits as his wife read aloud to him in their home the final draft of his manuscript for The Heritage of Anglican Theology, built on his years of classroom teaching, to be published by Crossway in May of 2021.”

  12. Michael says:


    Thank you, my friend…always good to see you here.

  13. Michael says:


    I’m hoping he speaks to more than the Reformed wing of Anglicanism…I already know that stuff… 🙂

  14. CM says:


    I guess we will find out when it is published. 🙂 Though the title suggests it is more expansive than the Reformed wing and perhaps a more forest for the tress sort of approach…

    Still he was working and contributing to the body of Christ until the very end of his life.

  15. Michael says:


    He was an amazing man…I tend to have delayed reactions to things like this, but it’s catching up now.

  16. Reuben says:

    No better sense of the systematic, no better sense of the patristic, no better sense of the hermeneutic, no better sense of the exegetic, no better sense of the sacrament, no better sense of the liturgy, no better sense of the God than any man I have ever read, or likely ever will.

  17. CM says:


    Well said.

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