John Newton: From Disgrace to Amazing Grace
Most Christians know John Newton as a man who once captained a slave ship, was dramatically converted to Christ on the high seas, and later penned one of the greatest hymns of the faith, “Amazing Grace.” But he also had a huge impact on his times as an icon of the evangelical movement, as a great preacher and theologian, and as a seminal influence on abolitionist William W...more
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A Servant of Slaves in Africa,
Was by the rich mercy of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ,
Preserved, restored, pardoned,
And appointed to preach,
The Faith he had long laboured to destroy."
The story of the infamous John Newton, writer of the hymn Amazing Grace, and converted during his work as a notorious trader in African slaves.
This biography is well researched and written. I enjoyed the first part, about his life before conversion and the moment he became a ...more
This book is extremely important today as often people are no longer given the chance to turn their lives around. The court of public opinion is quick to condemn people and can be completely unforgiving.
Following a spiritual conversion after many voyages as captain of a slave ship, Newton completely transformed his life. He recognised ...more
Salvation memoirs are fairly similar, the author lives a life of debauchery/sin, eventually finds Jesus/Mohammed/whomever, and lives their remaining days REALLY overselling their previous level of sinfulness ("I once was lost but now am found..."). Now, that's not to say Newton doesn't come ac ...more
John Newton's early life was terrible. His mother died when he was still a boy, his father remarried and had three more children with his second wife, but they t ...more
Aitken has a very readable style with short chapters that kept the attention on the subject not pot-holes of biographical details. Newton refers to himself toward the end of his life as ‘old African blasphemer.’ He never forgot the depths from which he was saved. He was both a tortured slave himself at one point and a torturing rapist slave trader at another. His conversion comes on gradually as he connects the dot of many providential t ...more
The first half of this book reads much like an adventure novel. Newton's early life is filled with debauchery, blasphemy, and all manner of self-destructive behavior. As he is constantly taken away from the love of his life, Newton struggles to make his way back ...more
The author of this book is a former Member of Parliament. After he pleaded guilty to perjury he went to prison where he was converted to the Christian faith. In some ways you could say the author has also led a life of disgrace to amazing grace. ...more
Well, that and the speculation and theological liberties (like how the author can't imagine why Newton would worry about making an idol of his wife). I got the sense that the author couldn't quite grasp the faith/convictions of his subject. The author references other writers who felt much differently ab ...more
Newton also had a huge impact through his books, hymns, pastoring, and mentoring. He was a great friend. From his wife Polly to Cowper to Wilberfor ...more
As to the subject himself, every Christian should read of this great servant of the Lord. His conversion story is fascinating. His commitment to the Lord and His kingdom is exemplary. His practices for holy living are edifying.
An additional value of Mr. Aitken' ...more
I would warn the squeamish reader, since this book talks about Newton's involvement in the slave trade and his involvement in abolishing it later, there is some very graphic description of the cruelty that slaves were shown. Some of it is very h ...more
A slave trader turned Christian. Although this tells the story of Newton, versus showing it, I still got into the life of Newton. Although, I would have preferred the latter style. I give the style four stars, the life of John Newton five.
The story follows his struggle to do God's will, his thoughts, loves and hates.
The description of the slave ships was horrible. It's a time in American history that's darkened. The conversion of John New ...more
Instructive and inspirational look at a long-tenured pastor's life. He was more active as a sinner and more determined as a saint than I previously was aware. I was particularly impressed with the influence he held among the many young ministers who looked to Newton as a mentor and father.
Of intrigue to me and to those who knew Newton was his deep, life-time love for his wife who Aitken describes as "without beauty and without brains." She was, ...more
Didn’t know what I was in for or why I even had this book downloaded. I’m not the type that would pick up a biography of a notable Christian, per se. However, that being said, it was a well written, interesting read, that wasn’t overly dogmatic.
I found the narrator very good.