A Wonderful Work of God: Puritanism and the Great Awakening

Synopsis

"A Wonderful Work of God: Puritanism and the Great Awakening is a survey of the American phase of the Evangelical Revival which swept Britain and her American colonies during the first half of the eighteenth century. Preceded by local revivals, such as the one stirred by Jonathan Edwards in Northampton, Massachusetts in 1734, the Great Awakening exploded into a mass movement because of the itinerant preaching of a young Anglican priest, George Whitefield, and a number of Congregational and Presbyterian ministers who joined him in the evangelical work. However, because of the bizarre behavior of some of the radical evangelicals, such as James Davenport, the movement soon became highly controversial and split colonial ministers and congregations into "Friends of Revival" and "Opposers." As the revival excitement abated, schisms beset congregations in New England and eastern Long Island, resulting in the appearance of separate churches, and the Philadelphia Presbyterian synod was fractured as well. Drawing on both original sources and a review of the relevant literature, the author places the Great Awakening in the context of the Puritanism of the times, both in Europe and the colonies, and discusses its roots in German Pietism and the Methodist revivals in England. The significant figures of the Awakening and their interactions are brought to life, particularly James Davenport, the Awakening's most bizarre exponent and the preacher who, more than any other, was responsible for bringing it into disrepute." Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Additional information

Contributors:
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Bethlehem, PA
Publication year:
  • 2003