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George Whitefield: God's Anointed Servant in the Great Revival of the…

by Arnold A. Dallimore

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George Whitefield's life was absolutely amazing. He is a man remarkably used by God in the 18th century. He's the kind of guy that makes your jaw drop.

From his early twenties to his death at age 55, he preached 30,000 sermons! That's an average of 20 sermons a week for his entire adult life! There were times when he would be speaking 40-60 hours a week--that's speaking time, not including any personal study or travel time.

We must also remember the sizes of the crowds he would speak to. Benjamin Franklin estimated he could be heard audibly by a crowd of 30,000 people. He is reported to have spoken to crowds of at least that much, crowds filling 3 acres.

Here was a man of unique eloquence in speaking, unique passion and zeal for the Lord, unique energy for sacrificial, and unique effectiveness in preaching. God used him for the revival of religion not only in England but also in America. Read this book to get excited about what God did during that time, and excited about what God might do again at any time he may so please!

This is a wonderful biography of this man's life. The author (Dallimore) has also written a two-volume biography of Whitefield, each volume running about 600 pages! He has condensed this full work into this short 200-page abridged version. It is the life of Whitefield in high gear indeed! It is fast paced, and keeps you on the edge of your seat from the get-go.

Read this for a great introduction to the life of George Whitefield. Though, I must admit, after reading this, I definitely want to get into the more in-depth two volume work!

[http://matthauck.typepad.com/blog/2010/09/george-whitefield-in-high-gear.html] ( )
  matthauck | Sep 2, 2010 |
"Justice has at last been done to the greatest preacher that England every produced." This was the judgment of Martyn Lloyd-Jones concerning the first volume of Arnold Dallimore's biography of George Whitefield. This is perhaps the most authoritative work to date on the life of Whitefield, surpassing the older work of Luke Tyreman in both breadth (since Dallimore had access to far more material than Tyreman) and objectivity (Tyreman was a Wesleyan who was somewhat unsympathetic with Whitefield's theology).

The two volumes together are divided into eight parts, which help give some navigation to understanding Whitefield's life. The sections are: (Volume 1): I. The Years of Preparation; II. The Youthful Ministry; III. The Period of Transition; (Volume 2): IV. The Controversy; V. The Calvinist Evangelist of Two Continents; VI. The Helper of all the Revival; VII. The Years of Failing Strength; and VIII. Death and Commemoration.

Volume 1 traces Whitefield's life from birth to conversion through the early years of the Great Awakening which came under his preaching in England, Wales, and the Colonies of North America. It is full of details about his travels, excerpts from sermons and journals, and is exceptionally well documented. Special attention is rightfully given to Whitefield's relationship with John Wesley, and several mistaken notions concerning the two men are corrected with careful research supporting the conclusions.

The second volume begins with an introduction that gives more attention to the mistaken conceptions about Whitefield's relationship with the Wesleys. Chapter one then steers the reader back into the narrative, picking up where volume 1 left off with Whitefield's return to England from America in 1739. Several chapters are then devoted to the controversy between the Whitefield and Wesley. A broad-brush coverage is given to Whitefield's work in both Great Britain and America, with occasional detours detailing events such as the Cambuslang Revival and the contributions of other prominent figures in the revival such Howell Harris and John Cennick.

Dallimore writes with an obvious admiration and appreciation for Whitefield, yet he does not whitewash his faults. Whitefield's respectable, though less than ideal marriage to the widow, Elizabeth James (who had also been courted by Howell Harris - an interesting love-triangle there!) is discussed, as well has the enormous load of debt he carried for the Orphan House founded in Georgia. While there was nothing in Whitefield's life to tarnish his integrity, his humanity is clearly evident in more than one instance.

The interest and usefulness of this excellent biography is enhanced by the thorough index (at the end of volume 2), thirteen appendices (six in volume 1, seven in volume 2), thorough documentation (with hundreds - maybe thousands - of footnotes), nine-page bibliography (volume 2) and over sixty illustrations.

But the true value of the two volumes lies in their soul-stirring account of the great work of God in and through Whitefield's life. A Christian could hardly ask for more delightful reading. To quote Lloyd-Jones again, "To read the wonderful story of his life is to be reminded again of what is possible to a truly consecrated Christian, and how even in the darkest and most sinful ages God in His sovereign power is able to revive His work and shower blessings upon His people." ( )
  brianghedges | Oct 23, 2009 |
"Justice has at last been done to the greatest preacher that England every produced." This was the judgment of Martyn Lloyd-Jones concerning the first volume of Arnold Dallimore's biography of George Whitefield. This is perhaps the most authoritative work to date on the life of Whitefield, surpassing the older work of Luke Tyreman in both breadth (since Dallimore had access to far more material than Tyreman) and objectivity (Tyreman was a Wesleyan who was somewhat unsympathetic with Whitefield's theology).

The two volumes together are divided into eight parts, which help give some navigation to understanding Whitefield's life. The sections are: (Volume 1): I. The Years of Preparation; II. The Youthful Ministry; III. The Period of Transition; (Volume 2): IV. The Controversy; V. The Calvinist Evangelist of Two Continents; VI. The Helper of all the Revival; VII. The Years of Failing Strength; and VIII. Death and Commemoration.

Volume 1 traces Whitefield's life from birth to conversion through the early years of the Great Awakening which came under his preaching in England, Wales, and the Colonies of North America. It is full of details about his travels, excerpts from sermons and journals, and is exceptionally well documented. Special attention is rightfully given to Whitefield's relationship with John Wesley, and several mistaken notions concerning the two men are corrected with careful research supporting the conclusions.

The second volume begins with an introduction that gives more attention to the mistaken conceptions about Whitefield's relationship with the Wesleys. Chapter one then steers the reader back into the narrative, picking up where volume 1 left off with Whitefield's return to England from America in 1739. Several chapters are then devoted to the controversy between the Whitefield and Wesley. A broad-brush coverage is given to Whitefield's work in both Great Britain and America, with occasional detours detailing events such as the Cambuslang Revival and the contributions of other prominent figures in the revival such Howell Harris and John Cennick.

Dallimore writes with an obvious admiration and appreciation for Whitefield, yet he does not whitewash his faults. Whitefield's respectable, though less than ideal marriage to the widow, Elizabeth James (who had also been courted by Howell Harris - an interesting love-triangle there!) is discussed, as well has the enormous load of debt he carried for the Orphan House founded in Georgia. While there was nothing in Whitefield's life to tarnish his integrity, his humanity is clearly evident in more than one instance.

The interest and usefulness of this excellent biography is enhanced by the thorough index (at the end of volume 2), thirteen appendices (six in volume 1, seven in volume 2), thorough documentation (with hundreds - maybe thousands - of footnotes), nine-page bibliography (volume 2) and over sixty illustrations.

But the true value of the two volumes lies in their soul-stirring account of the great work of God in and through Whitefield's life. A Christian could hardly ask for more delightful reading. To quote Lloyd-Jones again, "To read the wonderful story of his life is to be reminded again of what is possible to a truly consecrated Christian, and how even in the darkest and most sinful ages God in His sovereign power is able to revive His work and shower blessings upon His people." ( )
  brianghedges | Oct 23, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0891075534, Paperback)

God's accomplishments through George Whitefield are to this day virtually unparalleled. Even during his lifetime Whitefield was considered "the most brilliant and popular preacher the modern world has ever known." In the wake of his fearless preaching, revival swept across the British Isles, and the Great Awakening transformed the American colonies.

When Whitefield died at age 55, he had preached 30,000 sermons. His hearers included not only the poor and the uneducated, but prominent English aristocrats and American statesmen such as David Hume and Benjamin Franklin.

Christians today continue to take courage from Whitefield's humility and deep spirituality. A founder of Methodism, he yielded his leadership to John Wesley rather than risk splitting the movement, thus revealing his fervent commitment to the gospel of Christ rather than to personal plans or hopes.

The previous two-volume work, receiving critical praise and popular acceptance, is here condensed into one magnificent volume. A great inspiration to the followers of Jesus Christ in today's pressured world.

"Perhaps the single most inspiring biography published in English in the 20th century. A masterful work." --Sherwood Eliot Wirt, founding editor, Decision magazine

"I feel a permanent debt of gratitude to Dr. Dallimore. His wonderful two-volume study of Whitefield is one of the great biographies of the Christian Church. I share his hope that many more Christians will find this shorter version as enjoyable and stimulating!" --Sinclair B. Ferguson, Westminster Theological Seminary

"This condensation of the author's classic two-volume edition contains 23 fast-moving chapters of highly interesting material. A powerful rendering of a life wholly consecrated to God." --G.A. Adams, Principal, Toronto Baptist Seminary

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:49:45 -0400)

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