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While Edwards wrote significant theological and philosophical treatises that continue to influence Christian thought, his primary medium for communicating his ideas was the sermon.

Jonathan Edwards and the Ministry of the Word: A Model of Faith and Thought

Among the writings of Jonathan Edwards, both published and unpublished, his sermons are by far the most numerous. Indeed, sermons alone make up well over half his literary corpus…. Edwards was first and foremost a preacher and pastor leading souls to the truth as he saw it and interpreting the religious experiences of his listeners.

Religious Affections - Puritan Jonathan Edwards (Christian audio book)

His primary tool in achieving these goals was the sermon, the spoken word of God, which in the Reformed tradition that shaped him was the centerpiece of worship and religious edification pp. Volumes 10 , 14 , 17 , 19 , 22 , and 25 of the Yale Edition of The Works of Jonathan Edwards are devoted to his sermons.

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Jonathan Edwards and the Ministry of the Word: A Model of Faith and Thought

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  6. Jonathan Edwards.
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  8. Edwards was born in East Windsor, Connecticut, and he received his master's degree from Yale in He apprenticed for his grandfather, Solomon Stoddard, for two years before he became, in , the sole preacher of the Northampton, Massachusetts, parish. In the meantime, when he was 20, he had met Sarah Pierrepont. Their wedding followed four years of often agonizing courtship for the gawky and intense Edwards, but in the end, their marriage proved deeply satisfying to both.

    Edwards described it as an "uncommon union," and in a sermon on Genesis —25, he said, "When Adam rose from his deep sleep, God brought woman to him from near his heart.

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    Jonathan Edwards (theologian)

    In Edwards's preaching on justification by faith sparked a different sort of devotion: a spiritual revival broke out in his parish. In December there were six sudden conversions. By spring there were about thirty a week.

    Discussion

    It was not due to theatrics. One observer wrote, "He scarcely gestured or even moved, and he made no attempt by the elegance of his style or the beauty of his pictures to gratify the taste and fascinate the imagination.

    Edwards Syllabus RTS Pages 1 - 8 - Text Version | FlipHTML5

    Edwards kept a careful written account of his observations and noted them in A Faithful Narrative of the Surprising Work of God , and his most effective sermons were published as Justification by Faith , which were widely read in America and England. These works helped fuel the Great Awakening a few years later — , during which thousands were moved by the preaching of Britain's George Whitefield. Whitefield had read Edwards's book and made it a point to visit him when he came to America. Edwards invited Whitefield to preach at his church and reported, "The congregation was extraordinarily melted In spite of his dispassionate style, Edwards insisted that true religion is rooted in the affections, not in reason.

    He defended the emotional outbursts of the Great Awakening, especially in Treatise on Religious Affections , a masterpiece of psychological and spiritual discernment, and in Some Thoughts Concerning the Present Revival of Religion in New England in which he included an account of his wife's spiritual awakening. And in a day when psalm-singing was almost the only music to be heard in congregational churches, Edwards encouraged the singing of new Christian hymns, notably those of Isaac Watts.

    Edwards regarded personal conversion as critical, so he insisted that only persons who had made a profession of faith, which included a description of their conversion experience, could receive Communion.