J.I. Packer’s Advice to Christian Writers

A few years ago Tony Reinke and I visited J. I. Packer to talk about writing and theology. We came away with several short videos on a range of questions, but it’s this piece on Christian writing that I think about most often. Every time I get a chance to sit back and stare at my keyboard, I come back here, to this paragraph. 

There are enough people around already who can verbalize orthodoxy on paper. What we haven’t got is writers who can join truth and wisdom about God from the Scriptures with personal communication that hits the heart, that makes you realize that this writer is a person talking to other persons. That this writer is trying to search me in order to help me and I must let him do it. There is a certain art and craft in writing in such a way that it gets to the reader’s heart . . . and I would say to my budding writer, ‘now this is a craft you must learn.’
— J. I. Packer