THE MOST FAMOUS SERMON… INTRODUCTION

This is an effort to bring forth what I view as a great and startling sermon. It was delivered on July 8th, 1741 in Enfield Connecticut at the Congregational Church of North Hampton, Massachusetts by Jonathan Edwards (He was invited to preach at the request of the Enfield minister because the people at Enfield were particularly stubborn to the message of the gospel. The congregation’s attitude was further revealed by pastor Wheelock, minister of the Second Church of Lebanon at that time, who characterized them as “thoughtless and vain.” This study comes directly from the pamphlet “SINNERS in the HANDS of an ANGRY GOD, by Jonathan Edwards … Foreward by John D. Currid. 1992 … Note: I noticed no restrictions in this copyright … I believe Mr. Edwards would be very well pleased to see his work reproduced and commented on.

The response of the Enfield congregation to the sermon was absolutely “amazing”. Before the sermon was finished, people were moaning, groaning, and crying out such things as “What shall I do to be saved?” An eyewitness account by another minister reported that “there was such a breathing of distress, and weeping, that the preacher (i.e. Edwards) was obliged to speak to the people and desire silence that he might be heard.” There are other eyewitness accounts that offer more details as to the “crying out” of the congregation … Excerpt from pg.4.

The principal consequence of the sermon was that the hardened hearts of many people were so changed because the people were “bowed down with an awful conviction of their sin and danger.” The power of the Holy Spirit caused that softening, not the persuasive speaking powers of Jonathan Edwards. The truth is that Edwards was not a flamboyant preacher in his delivery at Enfield. An observer noted, “Edwards set his eyes on the bellrope at the rear, and spoke the words in a level tone and with no high pomp of rhetoric or oratory.” Tradition reports that Edwards used little or no gesture as he read the sermon very closely from a manuscript on the pulpit before him. This sermon took place during American history known as the Great Awakening. (Don’t miss Part 1, coming soon) … I’m sharing this sermon to show how lukewarm and watered down the gospel in our modern-day has become … Unfortunately most would not get around to this type of study, so I feel a burden to share it. (Quote from pg.5)

“What must I do to be saved?”

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