In October of 1740, George Whitefield at the request of Jonathan Edwards arrived in Northampton Massachusetts. Through personal correspondence Edwards had discovered how God was using Whitefield and was longing for another revival to catch fire as it had in the mid 1730’s. There was abundant talk in town regarding the preacher from across the Atlantic and people were anxious to hear his powerful message as it echoed from a man who could be clearly heard by thousands in an outdoor setting. Whitefield was so intent on revival and preaching that he would stand in a field outdoors and preach even if he was not welcomed into the Church building.
As Whitefield preached, he later wrote in his diary that pastor Edwards sat close to the front weeping as he heard the extemporaneous gospel message. On that fall October day, when Whitefield arrived, God once again stirred the hearts of the Congregational Church in Northampton. Edwards knew God had moved at various times during his grandfather Stoddard’s fifty-year ministry in the same Church. His hopes were strengthened even after Whitfield's departure when God continued to move among the people. These and other similar events signaled the beginning of the Great Awakening and history tells us much more regarding the expansion of the Christian gospel throughout the American Colonies. In future Blogs I will discuss many of the “Great Christian Lives” that God used in the eighteenth century revival.~TKE~