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Francis Roberts (1609-1675)

A Reformed Calvinistic Puritan with a pastoral heart and scholarly skills.
Today, many Christians are turning back to the puritans to, “walk in the old paths,” of God’s word, and to continue to proclaim old truth that glorifies Jesus Christ. There is no new theology. In our electronic age, more and more people are looking to add electronic books (ePubs, mobi and PDF formats) to their library – books from the Reformers and Puritans – in order to become a “digital puritan” themselves. Take a moment to visit Puritan Publications (click the banner below) to find the biggest selection of rare puritan works updated in modern English in both print form and in multiple electronic forms. There are new books published every month. All proceeds go to support A Puritan’s Mind.

“God’s Covenant of Grace, for the salvation of lapsed sinners by Jesus Christ, is the principal subject of the Holy Scriptures. In all your joys, Christ is the highest exultation; in all your sorrows, Christ is the sweetest consolation.”

Biography of Francis Roberts (1609-1675):

Francis Roberts (1609-1675), a Calvinistic Puritan, was born in Yorkshire in 1609. He was the son of Henry Roberts of Aslake, in Yorkshire. He took his degrees in arts at Trinity College, Oxford in 1625.  In 1632 he completed his degrees and was ordained. In 1649 he was presented to the rectory of Wrington in Somersetshire by his patron Arthur lord Capel, son of the beheaded lord Capel. Later, he became minister of St. Augustine, Watling-street.  While on this living he was appointed one of the commissioners for the “ejectment of those” who were called “ignorant and insufficient ministers and schoolmasters.” He went to Ireland with the Earl of Essex; and while there was made doctor of divinity. At the restoration, however, he conformed, tired out, as many others were, by the distractions of the contending parties, and disappointed in every hope which the encouragers of rebellion had held forth.

It does not appear whether he had any additional preferment, except that of chaplain to his patron when Capel became earl of Essex; (and when that nobleman was lord-lieutenant of Ireland in 1672, it is supposed he procured him the degree of B.D. at the university of Dublin.) He died at Wrington about the end of 1675.

His principal work is entitled “Clavis Bibliorum, the Key of the Bible,” 2 vols. 8vo, 1649; and again in folio, 1675. He also published, besides some single sermons, “The Believer’s Evidence for Eternal Life,” “The Communicant Instructed,” “Clavis Bibliorum, the Key of the Bible, including the order, names, times, penmen, occasion, scope, and principal matter of the Old and New Testament;” “Mysterium et Medulla Bibliorum, or the Mystery and Marrow of the Bible;” and, “The True Way to the Tree of Life.” His most popular work was not a book, but a chart called “A Synopsis of Theology or Divinity.” It was specifically written to aid the people of his congregation to understand the basics of the Christian faith more precisely and easily by way of a visual aid.

His Works:

The Works of Francis Roberts available in old English (Puritan Publications is working to publish all of Roberts’ works):

  1. Clavis Bibliorum, the Key of the Bible, 2 vols. 8vo, 1649
  2. The Believer’s Evidence for Eternal Life
  3. The Communicant Instructed (1648)
  4. Mysterium et Medulla Bibliorum, or the Mystery and Marrow of the Bible (1657)
  5. The True Way to the Tree of Life
  6. His most popular work was not a book, but a chart called A Synopsis of Theology or Divinity. (See the picture).
  7. Believers evidences for eternall life collected out of the first epistle of John which is catholique : explained and confirmed by very many subservient signes, or undernotes grounded upon Scriptures and illustrated by testimonies both of ancient fathers and modern writers whereby persons truly regenerate may divers wayes discover their present state of grace and title unto glory / by Francis Roberts.
  8. A broken spirit, God’s sacrifices. Or, The gratefulnesse of a broken spirit unto God. Represented in a sermon, before the right Honourable House of Peeres, in K. Henry the Seventh’s chappell in the Abbey Westminster, upon Wednesday Decemb. 9. 1646. Being a day of publike humiliation for removing of the great judgment of rain and waters then upon the kingdome, &c. / By Fran. Roberts M. A. Minister of Christ, at Austins, London.
  9. The checqver-work of God’s providences, towards His own people, made up of blacks and whites, viz., of their abasements, and advancements, their distresses, and deliverances, their sullying tribulations, and beautifying relaxations represented in a sermon preached at the funeral of that faithful servant of the Lord, Mary the late wife of Joseph Jackson esq, alderman of the city of Bristol, on the 5 day of May, Anno Dom. 1657 / by Francis Roberts …
  10. The Christians advantage both by life and death discovered in a sermon preached at the funeral of that faithful and eminent servant of the Lord, Joseph Jackson, late Esq. and alderman of the city of Bristol, on the 17th day of January, an. Dom. 1661, by Fran. Roberts …

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