In the past month I have felt led of God to get up all of Charles Finney's Lectures on the Revivals of Religion: "Revivals of Religion" Lectures by Charles G. Finney. But at the same time I have felt an urgency over the doctrine of salvation ([b]New Birth[/b] in Christ Jesus). I think by going through some selected George Whitefield sermons it will be tremendous blessing in our sharing the salvation of God with others. And even possible rouse some professors of religion to true birth in God, as a true child of God. Test yourself to see if you are in the faith, not to be sure that you know Jesus but that He knows you. And on that day you won't hear 'I never knew you' but 'Well done good and faithful servant'.
[i]Other sermons will be posted as they are completed, feel free to read and comment on the ones done already.[/i]
Whitefield's Birth-place and Parentage - Educated at Gloucester Grammar School - Enters Pembroke College, Oxford - Season of Spiritual Conflict - Books which were made useful to him - Ordained by Bishop Benson - First Sermon - Preaches in London - Curate of Dummer, Hants - Goes to America - Returns in a Year - Preaches in the open air - Is excluded from most London Pulpits - Extent of his Labours for thirty-one years - Dies at Newbury Port, America, in 1770 - Interesting circumstances of his Death
"The Church was [b]too much asleep[/b] to understand him, and was vexed at a man who would not keep still and let the devil alone." - J.C. Ryle (speaking about George Whitefield in his biography).
On the morning of Saturday, September 28th, the day before he died, Whitefield set out on horseback from Portsmouth in New Hampshire, in order to fulfil an engagement to preach at Newbury Port on Sunday. On the way, unfortunately, he was earnestly importuned to preach at a place called Exeter, and though feeling very ill, he had not the heart to refuse. A friend remarked before he preached that he looked more uneasy than usual, and said to him, "Sir, you are more fit to go to bed than to preach." To this Whitefield replied: "True, sir"; and then turning aside, he clasped his hands together, and looking up, said: "Lord Jesus, I am weary in thy work, but not of thy work. If I have not yet finished my course, let me go and speak for thee once more in the fields, seal thy truth, and come home and die." He then went and preached to a very great multitude in the fields from the text 2 Corinthians 13:5, for the space of nearly two hours. It was his last sermon, and a fitting conclusion to his whole career.
What was the secret of Whitefield's success? I think three things: He preached a pure gospel; he preached a powerful gospel; he preached a passionate gospel.
John Wesley comments about him: "Have we read or heard of any person who called so many thousands, so many myriads of sinners to repentance? Above all, have we read or heard of anyone who has been God's blessed instrument to bring so many sinners from darkness to light and from the power of Satan unto God as Whitefield?"
Franklin of America, a cold-blooded, calculating philosopher, said of the revivalist Whitefield, "It was wonderful to see the change made by his preaching in the manners of the inhabitants of Philadelphia. From being thoughtless or indifferent about religion, it seemed as if the whole world were growing religious."
Cornelius Winter, who often travelled, ate, and slept in the same room with Whitefield said, "He seldom if ever got through a sermon without tears." On the other hand, a lady of position in New York said, "Mr. Whitefield was so cheerful that it tempted me to become a Christian."
God of Whitefield, give us today men like Whitefield who can stand as giants in the pulpit, men with burdened hearts, burning lips, and brimming eyes. And, Lord, please do it soon!
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon