We are often introduced to the Puritans through the lens of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. However, if your view of the Puritans is centered on a group of religious people who were hunting down witches—you don’t know the Puritans at all.
In the documentary PURITAN: All of Life to the Glory of God you will walk through the hallways of history to discover this group of people who sought to purify the Church of England and would eventually flee for religious freedom. You will learn names like John Bunyan, Thomas Goodwin, Richard Sibbes, John Owen, Richard Baxter, William Perkins, John Flavel, Jonathan Edwards, and D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones.
What you will come to appreciate about the Puritans is there unflinching and bold resolve in the face of persecution. They had an immense love for God’s Word, not just because they perceived it to be a special book—but because they understood that through the pages of sacred Scripture they would come to know God intimately. It was their firm commitment to the Word of God that distinguishes them from other groups throughout church history.
The Puritans were willing to risk it all—including the suffering of imprisonment and martyrdom for the sake of the gospel. While we may remember many things about them such as their strict adherence to the text of Scripture—such commitment to the Word resulted in a rich devotion and biblically grounded worship of God. In the documentary, Sinclair Ferguson observes:
The principle of the Puritans, how does God want to be worshiped?—would be like a cold shower in the middle of the night to many churches in our day. It has just simply never crossed their minds.
The Puritans were not only shaped by the Word of God, but they labored to make sure the whole world had access to the Scriptures. Among the Puritans you will find bold preachers like John Bunyan and towering intellectuals like John Owen. The Puritans were both highly educated and uneducated common folk—but in all cases they were deeply devoted to their God and believed that their lives should orient around God and his Word.
You will learn about how the Puritans lived, suffered, worshiped, and what they believed about the doctrines of grace, the church, and other important theological truths. You will trace their commitment to reaching their culture with the good news of Jesus as well. We are commanded to do everything to the glory of God, and that includes the production of documentaries like this one which exemplifies that Christian commitment. The flow of the documentary is easy to follow and doesn’t require a degree in church history to grasp the big picture of the storyline of the Puritans. Furthermore, the graphics and illustrations that are used in the film are of the highest caliber and result in an appealing story that you will want to see more than once.
I do think the film would be great for a family to have in their library, but it’s a necessity for every church to have it in their library as well. Beyond the documentary, there are workbooks and other resources if you want to go deeper into knowing the Puritans.
You can learn more about this engaging documentary at Media Gratiae
- Individual purchase
- Church license (show as a local church event)
- Church library