Mark Dever’s Schedule for Reading Old Books

Mark Dever chronologically schedules old books into his reading. Genius. Insofar as this is a new year, I’m going to seek to follow his schedule, reading a book from each time period in its given month. Athanaisus’ On the Incarnation will be the book for January.

“Dever’s annual reading schedule is structured chronologically, and it looks something like this:

  • January: early church patristic writings (first through third centuries)
  • February: Augustine (354-430)
  • March: Martin Luther (1483-1546)
  • April: John Calvin (1509-1564)
  • May: Richard Sibbes (1577-1635)
  • June: John Owen (1616-1683) and John Bunyan (1628-1688)
  • July: Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)
  • August: C. H. Spurgeon (1834-1892)
  • September: B. B. Warfield (1851-1921)
  • October: Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981)
  • November: C. S. Lewis (1898-1963) and Carl F. H. Henry (1913-2003)
  • December: Contemporary authors”

– Tony Reinke, Lit!, 180-181.

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“Wash thee in Christ’s blood”

Oh my black soul! now art thou summoned
By sickness, death’s herald, and champion;
Thou art like a pilgrim, which abroad hath done
Treason, and durst not turn to whence he is fled;
Or like a thief, which till death’s doom be read,
Wisheth himself delivered from prison,
But damned and haled to execution,
Wisheth that still he might be imprisoned.
Yet grace, if thou repent, thou canst not lack;
But who shall give thee that grace to begin?
Oh make thy self with holy mourning black,
And red with blushing, as thou art with sin;
Or wash thee in Christ’s blood, which hath this might
That being red, it dyes red souls to white.

– John Donne, Holy Sonnets IV