John Cynddylan Jones

1840-1930. Welsh expositor and theologian. Born at Capel Dewi, Cardiganshire, he was educated as a candidate for the Welsh Calvinistic ministry at Bala and Trevecca colleges. After serving as minister at the English Calvinistic Methodist church at Pontypool (1867-69), he became a Congregational minister in London, and in 1875 returned to the Methodist fold as minister of Frederick Street, Cardiff. His eagerness to introduce an element of Anglican ceremonial into the services ended in his resignation in 1888. He then joined the staff of the British and Foreign Bible Society in South Wales.

He was an assiduous writer. His books, Studies in Matthew, Luke, John, Acts and The Epistles of Peter, became popular, not least among American readers. He published similar expositions in Welsh on the gospel of John and the epistle to the Philippians. He was a vigorous opponent of liberal trends in biblical scholarship; some of his views on this topic can be seen in his Primeval Revelation. His systematic theology in four volumes, Cysondeb y Ffydd, expounds a moderate Calvinism much influenced by such American theologians as W.G.T. Shedd.* At his best he was a very good writer, and there was a rare power and unction in his preaching. He was passionately concerned to maintain the evangelical position in theology and biblical exegesis, but lacked the scholarly equipment to do full justice to his intentions.