By constitution the Church of England is a Reformed, Protestant, and Evangelical denomination. In its original foundation it was never intended to be merely the religious expression of changing English culture; nor was it designed as a pluralistic melting pot of various contradictory persuasions. As John Stott rightly asserted in 1970, ‘according to its own formularies, this church is reformed and evangelical’ (in Christ the Controversialist).
In recent years such firm confidence has been lost, as alternative versions of Anglican identity and history have gained sway. Evangelicals have too often been content to think, act, and be seen as marginal rather than as mainstream Anglicans. Part of the reason for this has been a neglect of the doctrinal deposit and pastoral piety of our rich heritage of heroes amongst Anglican reformers, revivers and writers from years gone by.
It is hoped that this Reformed Evangelical Anglican Library (REAL) will contribute towards a recovery of their more robust vision of Anglican theology and identity. To that end it is hoped, by God’s grace, that this collection will contain a variety of theological, homiletical, and pastoral works from previous generations to both edify and inspire us as we seek to reform the church and reach the lost in our day.
May God be pleased graciously to continue using us and the Church of England for his greater glory, in every corner of our land and throughout his world, as we uphold what the Coronation Oath calls ‘the true profession of the Gospel... the Protestant Reformed Religion.’