George Whitefield spelled Whitfield, was an English Anglican cleric and evangelist, one of the founders of Methodism and the evangelical movement. Born in Gloucester, he matriculated at Pembroke College at the University of Oxford in 1732. There he joined the "Holy Club" and was introduced to the Wesley brothers and Charles, with whom he would work in his ministry. Whitefield was ordained after receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree, he began preaching, but he did not settle as the minister of any parish. Rather he became an itinerant evangelist. In 1740, Whitefield traveled to North America, where he preached a series of revivals that became part of the "Great Awakening", his methods were controversial and he engaged in numerous debates and disputes with other clergymen. Whitefield received widespread recognition during his ministry. Whitefield could enthrall large audiences through a potent combination of drama, religious rhetoric, imperial pride. Whitefield was born on 27 December 1714 at the Southgate Street, Gloucester in England.
Whitefield was the fifth son of Thomas Whitefield and Elizabeth Edwards who kept an inn at Gloucester. At an early age, he found that he had a passion and talent for acting in the theatre, a passion that he would carry on with the theatrical re-enactments of Bible stories he told during his sermons, he was educated at the Crypt School and Pembroke College, Oxford. Because business at the inn had diminished, Whitefield did not have the means to pay for his tuition, he therefore came up to Oxford as the lowest rank of undergraduates. He was a part of the "Holy Club" at the University with the Wesley brothers and Charles. An illness, as well as Henry Scougal's The Life of God in the Soul of Man, influenced him to turn to the Church. Following a religious conversion, he became passionate for preaching his new-found faith; the Bishop of Gloucester ordained him a deacon. Whitefield preached his first sermon at St Mary de Crypt Church in his home town of Gloucester, a week after his ordination, he had earlier become the leader of the Holy Club at Oxford when the Wesley brothers departed for Georgia.
In 1738 he went to Savannah, Georgia, as parish priest. While there he decided that one of the great needs of the area was an orphan house, he decided. He returned to England to raise funds, as well as to receive priest's orders. While preparing for his return, he preached to large congregations. At the suggestion of friends he preached to the miners of Kingswood, outside Bristol, in the open air; because he was returning to Georgia he invited John Wesley to take over his Bristol congregations, to preach in the open air for the first time at Kingswood and at Blackheath, London. Whitefield accepted the Church of England's doctrine of predestination and disagreed with the Wesley brothers' views on the doctrine of the atonement, Arminianism; as a result, Whitefield did what his friends hoped he would not do—hand over the entire ministry to John Wesley. Whitefield formed and was the president of the first Methodist conference but he soon relinquished the position to concentrate on evangelical work.
Three churches were established in England in his name—one in Penn Street and two in London, in Moorfields and in Tottenham Court Road—all three of which became known by the name of "Whitefield's Tabernacle". The society meeting at the second Kingswood School at Kingswood, a town on the eastern edge of Bristol, was also named Whitefield's Tabernacle. Whitefield acted as chaplain to Selina, Countess of Huntingdon, some of his followers joined the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion, whose chapels were built by Selina, where a form of Calvinistic Methodism similar to Whitefield's was taught. Many of Selina's chapels were built in the Welsh counties. One was erected in London—Spa Fields Chapel. In 1739, Whitefield returned to England to raise funds to establish the Bethesda Orphanage, now the Bethesda Academy, it is the oldest extant charity in North America. Whitefield's endeavor to build an orphanage in Georgia was central to his preaching; the orphanage and preaching comprised the "two-fold task".
On 25 March 1740, construction began. Whitefield wanted the orphanage to be a place of strong Gospel influence, with a wholesome atmosphere and strong discipline. Having raised the money by his preaching, Whitefield "insisted on sole control of the orphanage", he refused to give the Trustees a financial accounting. The Trustees objected to Whitefield's using "a wrong Method" to control the children, who "are kept praying and crying all the Night". On returning to North America in 1740, he preached a series of revivals that came to be known as the Great Awakening of 1740. In 1740 he engaged Moravian Brethren from Georgia to build an orphanage for Negro children on land he had bought in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania. Following a theological disagreement, he dismissed them but was unable to complete the building, which the Moravians subsequently bought and completed; this now is the Whitefield House in the center of the Moravian settlement of Nazareth. The Whitefield House is owned by the Moravian Historical Society, operates as the Society's museum and administrative offices.
He preached nearly every day for month
Methodist Church of Great Britain
The Methodist Church of Great Britain is a Protestant Christian denomination in Britain and the mother church to Methodists worldwide. It participates in the World Methodist Council, the World Council of Churches and other ecumenical associations. Methodism began through the work of John Wesley, who led an evangelical revival in 18th century Britain. An Anglican priest, Wesley adopted unconventional and controversial practices, such as open-air preaching, to reach factory labourers and newly urbanised masses uprooted from their traditional village culture at the start of the Industrial Revolution, his preaching centred upon the universality of God's grace for all, the effect of faith on character and the possibility of perfection in love during this life. He organised the new converts locally and in a "Connexion" across Britain. Following Wesley's death, the Methodist revival became a separate church and ordained its own ministers. In the 19th century, the Wesleyan Methodist Church experienced many secessions, with the largest of the offshoots being the Primitive Methodists.
The main streams of Methodism were reunited in 1932. Methodist circuits, containing several local churches, are gathered into thirty-one districts; the supreme governing body of the church is the annual Methodist Conference. The 2009 British Social Attitudes Survey found that around 800,000 people, or 1.29 per cent of the British population, identified as Methodist. In October 2016, active membership stood at 188,000, representing a 7.45 per cent decline from the 2014 figure. Methodism is the fourth-largest Christian group in Britain. Around 202,000 people attend a Methodist church service each week, while 490,000 to 500,000 take part in some other form of Methodist activity, such as youth work and community events organised by local churches; the movement which would become the Methodist Church began in the mid-18th century within the Church of England. A small group of students, including John Wesley, Charles Wesley and George Whitefield, met at Oxford University, they living a holy life. Other students mocked them, saying they were the "Holy Club" and "the Methodists", being methodical and exceptionally detailed in their Bible study and disciplined lifestyle.
The first Methodist movement outside the Church of England was associated with Howell Harris, who led the Welsh Methodist revival. This was to become the Calvinistic Methodist Church. Another branch of the Methodist revival was under the ministry of George Whitefield, resulting in the Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion; the largest branch of Methodism in England was organised by John Wesley. He formed small classes in which his followers would receive religious guidance and intensive accountability in their personal lives. Wesley appointed itinerant evangelists to travel and preach as he did and to care for these groups of people, it is a tribute to Wesley's powers of oratory and organisational skills that the term Methodism is today assumed to mean Wesleyan Methodism unless otherwise specified. Theologically, Wesley held to the "Arminian" view that salvation is available to all people, in contrast to the "Calvinist" ideas of election and predestination that were accepted by the Calvinistic Methodists.
Methodist preachers were famous for their enthusiastic sermons and accused of fanaticism. During Wesley's lifetime, many members of England's established church feared that new doctrines promulgated by the Methodists, such as the necessity of a new birth for salvation, of justification by faith and of the constant and sustained action of the Holy Spirit upon the believer's soul, would produce ill effects upon weak minds. Theophilus Evans, an early critic of the movement wrote that it was "the natural Tendency of their Behaviour, in Voice and Gesture and horrid Expressions, to make People mad". In one of his prints, William Hogarth attacked Methodists as "enthusiasts" full of "Credulity and Fanaticism". Other attacks against the Methodists were physically violent—Wesley was nearly murdered by a mob at Wednesbury in 1743; the Methodists thrived despite the attacks against them. As Wesley and his colleagues preached around the country they formed local societies and organised through Wesley's leadership and conferences of preachers.
Wesley insisted that Methodists attend their local parish church as well as Methodist meetings. In 1784, Wesley made provision for the continuance as a corporate body after his death of the'Yearly Conference of the People called Methodists', he nominated 100 people and declared them to be its members and laid down the method by which their successors were to be appointed. The Conference has remained the governing body of Methodism since; as his societies multiplied, elements of an ecclesiastical system were successively adopted, the breach between Wesley and the Church of England widened. In 1784, Wesley responded to the shortage of priests in the American colonies due to the American Revolutionary War by ordaining preachers for America with power to administer the sacraments. Wesley's actions precipitated the Church of England. British Methodism separated from the Church of England soon after the dea
Howell Harris was one of the main leaders of the Welsh Methodist revival in the 18th century, along with Daniel Rowland and William Williams Pantycelyn. Harris was born at Trefeca, near Talgarth in Brecknockshire on 23 January 1714, he was the youngest of five children of Howel ap Howel alias Harris, a carpenter, his wife, daughter of Thomas Powell. He underwent a religious conversion in May 1735 after listening to a sermon by the Rev. Pryce Davies, the Sunday before Easter, in the parish church on the necessity of partaking of Holy Communion; this led to several weeks of self-examination. This reached a climax at Communion on Whit Sunday, May 1735, following the sermon. After what is described as answering the devil's accusations, he received Communion, came to the conviction that he had received mercy through the blood of Christ; this resulted in a sense of great joy. He began to tell others about this and to hold meetings in his own home encouraging others to seek the same assurance that he had of Christ's forgiveness.
Having failed to be accepted for ordination in the Church of England because of his "Methodist" views, he became a travelling preacher and was tireless in his determination to spread the word throughout Wales. His preaching led him into personal danger, he endured considerable persecution and hardship before gaining a following. From 1738 he was supported by Marmaduke Gwynne, a local squire and early convert. In 1750, having fallen out with Daniel Rowland, having been the subject of a public scandal as a result of his close friendship with "Madam" Sidney Griffith, he retreated to his home at Trefeca, near Brecon. In 1752, inspired by the example of the Moravians, he founded a religious community there, known as Teulu Trefeca with himself as "Father". However, Harris had not given up preaching, resumed his former activities in 1763, after a reconciliation with Daniel Rowland; when he died, ten years and was buried close to his birthplace at Talgarth, 20,000 people are said to have attended his funeral.
There is a memorial to Harris near Pwllheli, where he preached. He was the founder of the Presbyterian Church of Wales known as the Calvinistic Methodist church. Harris kept a detailed diary, in addition to a careful filing of letters he sent and received during his ministry, his papers afford access to a first eye witness of the Welsh Methodist revival. After his death, they were left to gather dust for over a century until O. M. Edwards, in the 1880s, noted their importance and suggested they ought to be cared for. By this time, the once-home of Harris at Trefeca had been turned into a college; the deputy head of the College, Edwin Williams, took on the task of putting the papers in order. They were kept at Trefeca until 1910 when the Presbyterian church of Wales decided to set up a committee whose responsibility it would be to take care of the papers and to study them. By 1913 the scale of the work needing to be done on the papers became apparent; as many of the papers were in Latin, it was estimated that it would take much of a decade and a vast sum of money to ready the papers for publication.
In 1913, it was decided that a better use of resources would be to set up a Historical Society of the Presbyterian church of Wales that would be responsible for publishing a regular journal to include, amongst other articles, some of Howell Harris’s papers. It is believed that around 1932, the papers were moved from Trefeca to the denomination's theological College in Aberystwyth; those papers, along with others from Coleg y Bala, were taken in 1934 to be stored safely at the National Library of Wales. The papers are in the vaults to this day. Revd Dr Geraint Tudur Lecturer in Church History at University of Wales, now General Secretary of the General Union of Welsh Independents, published a biography of Harris: Howell Harris: From conversion to separation, 1735–1750, Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2000. Davies, Gwyn, A light in the land: Christianity in Wales, 200–2000, Bridgend: Bryntirion Press. ISBN 1-85049-181-X Tudur, Geraint, "Papurau Howell Harris" in Cof Cenedl XVI, Gwasg Gomer.
Harris, Howel 1714–1773 at Welsh Biography Online, National Library of Wales Lloyd-Jones, Howell Harris and revival. Reproduction of article first published in 1973. Powys Digital History Project, Howell Harris 1714–1773 Howell Harris at 100 Welsh Heroes
Sanctification is the act or process of acquiring sanctity, of being made or becoming holy. In the various branches of Christianity sanctification refers to a person becoming holy, with the details differing in different branches; the Catholic Church upholds the doctrine of sanctification, teaching that: Sanctifying grace is that grace which confers on our souls a new life, that is, sharing in the life of God. Our reconciliation with God, which the redemption of Christ has merited for us, finds its accomplishments in sanctifying grace. Through this most precious gift we participate in the divine life; this grace is the source of all our supernatural merits and bestows upon us the right of eternal glory. According to the Catholic Encyclopedia "sanctity" differs for God and corporate body. For God, it is God's unique absolute moral perfection. For the individual, it is a close union with the resulting moral perfection, it is of God, by a divine gift. For a society, it is the ability to produce and secure holiness in its members, who display a real, not nominal, holiness.
The Church's holiness is beyond natural power. Sanctity is regulated by established conventional standards. Orthodox Christianity teaches the doctrine of theosis. A key scripture supporting this is 2 Peter 1:4. In the 4th century, Athanasius taught. Man does not become divine, but in Christ can partake of divine nature; this Church's version of salvation restores God's image in man. One such theme is release from mortality caused by desires of the world. A 2002 Anglican publishing house book states that “there is no explicit teaching on sanctification in the Anglican formularies”. A glossary of the Episcopal Church gives some teaching: “Anglican formularies have tended to speak of sanctification as the process of God's work within us by means of which we grow into the fullness of the redeemed life.” Outside official formularies sanctification has been an issue in the Anglican Communion since its inception. The 16th century Anglican Theologian Richard Hooker distinguished between the “righteousness of justification”, imputed by God and the “righteousness of sanctification” that comprises the works one does as an “inevitable” result of being justified.
Jeremy Taylor argued that sanctification can not be separated. A 19th century Church of England work agreed with Jeremy Taylor that justification and sanctification are “inseparable”. However, they are not the same thing. Justification is “found in Christ’s work alone”. “Sanctification is the work of the Holy Spirit in us, is a progressive work.” Martin Luther, taught in his Large Catechism that Sanctification is only caused by the Holy Spirit through the powerful Word of God. The Holy Spirit uses churches to gather Christians together for the teaching and preaching of the Word of God. Sanctification is the Holy Spirit's work of making us holy; when the Holy Spirit creates faith in us, he renews in us the image of God so that through his power we produce good works. These good works show the faith in our hearts. Sanctification flows from justification, it is an on-going process which will not reach perfection in this life. Luther viewed the Ten Commandments as means by which the Holy Spirit sanctifies.
"Thus we have the Ten Commandments, a commend of divine doctrine, as to what we are to do in order that our whole life may be pleasing to God, the true fountain and channel from and in which everything must arise and flow, to be a good work, so that outside of the Ten Commandments no work or thing can be good or pleasing to God, however great or precious it be in the eyes of the world...whoever does attain to them is a heavenly, angelic man, far above all holiness of the world. Only occupy yourself with them, try your best, apply all power and ability, you will find so much to do that you will neither seek nor esteem any other work or holiness." Pietistic Lutheranism emphasizes the "biblical divine commands of believers to live a holy life and to strive for holy living, or sanctification." Calvinist theologians interpret sanctification as the process of being made holy only through the merits and justification of Jesus Christ through the work of the Holy Spirit that are reflected in man. Sanctification cannot be attained by any works-based process, but only through the works and power of the divine.
When a man is unregenerate, it is his essence that does evil. But when a man is justified through Christ, it is no longer the man that sins, but the man is acting outside of his character. In other words, the man is not being himself, he is not being true to. In Wesleyan-Arminian theology, upheld by the Methodist Church as well as by Holiness Churches, "sanctification, the beginning of holiness, begins at the new birth". With the Grace of God, Methodists "do works of piety and mercy, these works reflect the power of sanctification". Examples of these means of grace that aid with sanctification include frequent reception of the sacrament of Holy Communion, visiting the sick and those in prison. Wesleyan covenant theology emphasizes that an important aspect of sanctification is the keeping of the moral law contained in the Ten Commandments; as such, in "sanctification one grows to be more like Christ." This process of sanctification that begins at the new birth has its goal as Christian perfection known as entire sanct
Pentecostalism or Classical Pentecostalism is a renewal movement within Protestant Christianity that places special emphasis on a direct personal experience of God through baptism with the Holy Spirit. The term Pentecostal is derived from the Greek name for the Jewish Feast of Weeks. For Christians, this event commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the followers of Jesus Christ, as described in the second chapter of the Acts of the Apostles. Like other forms of evangelical Protestantism, Pentecostalism adheres to the inerrancy of the Bible and the necessity of accepting Jesus Christ as personal Lord and Savior, it is distinguished by belief in the baptism in the Holy Spirit that enables a Christian to live a Spirit-filled and empowered life. This empowerment includes the use of spiritual gifts such as speaking in tongues and divine healing—two other defining characteristics of Pentecostalism; because of their commitment to biblical authority, spiritual gifts, the miraculous, Pentecostals tend to see their movement as reflecting the same kind of spiritual power and teachings that were found in the Apostolic Age of the early church.
For this reason, some Pentecostals use the term Apostolic or Full Gospel to describe their movement. Pentecostalism emerged in the early 20th century among radical adherents of the Holiness movement who were energized by revivalism and expectation for the imminent Second Coming of Christ. Believing that they were living in the end times, they expected God to spiritually renew the Christian Church thereby bringing to pass the restoration of spiritual gifts and the evangelization of the world. In 1900, Charles Parham, an American evangelist and faith healer, began teaching that speaking in tongues was the Bible evidence of Spirit baptism and along with William J. Seymour, a Wesleyan-Holiness preacher, he taught that this was the third work of grace; the three-year-long Azusa Street Revival and led by Seymour in Los Angeles, resulted in the spread of Pentecostalism throughout the United States and the rest of the world as visitors carried the Pentecostal experience back to their home churches or felt called to the mission field.
While all Pentecostal denominations trace their origins to Azusa Street, the movement has experienced a variety of divisions and controversies. An early dispute centered on challenges to the doctrine of the Trinity; as a result, the Pentecostal movement is divided between trinitarian and non-trinitarian branches, resulting in the emergence of Oneness Pentecostals. Comprising over 700 denominations and a large number of independent churches, there is no central authority governing Pentecostalism. There are over 279 million Pentecostals worldwide, the movement is growing in many parts of the world the global South. Since the 1960s, Pentecostalism has gained acceptance from other Christian traditions, Pentecostal beliefs concerning Spirit baptism and spiritual gifts have been embraced by non-Pentecostal Christians in Protestant and Catholic churches through the Charismatic Movement. Together and Charismatic Christianity numbers over 500 million adherents. While the movement attracted lower classes in the global South, there is an increasing appeal to middle classes.
Middle class congregations tend to be more adapted to society and withdraw strong spiritual practices such as divine healing. Pentecostalism is an evangelical faith, emphasizing the reliability of the Bible and the need for the transformation of an individual's life through faith in Jesus. Like other evangelicals, Pentecostals adhere to the Bible's divine inspiration and inerrancy—the belief that the Bible, in the original manuscripts in which it was written, is without error. Pentecostals emphasize the teaching of the "full gospel" or "foursquare gospel"; the term foursquare refers to the four fundamental beliefs of Pentecostalism: Jesus saves according to John 3:16. The central belief of classical Pentecostalism is that through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, sins can be forgiven and humanity reconciled with God; this is the Gospel or "good news". The fundamental requirement of Pentecostalism is; the new birth is received by the grace of God through faith in Christ as Savior. In being born again, the believer is regenerated, adopted into the family of God, the Holy Spirit's work of sanctification is initiated.
Classical Pentecostal soteriology is Arminian rather than Calvinist. The security of the believer is a doctrine held within Pentecostalism. Pentecostals believe in both a literal heaven and hell, the former for those who have accepted God's gift of salvation and the latter for those who have rejected it. For most Pentecostals there is no other requirement to receive salvation. Baptism with the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues are not required, though Pentecostal converts are encouraged to seek these experiences. A notable exception is Jesus' Name Pentecostalism, most adherents of which believe both water baptism and Spirit baptism are integral components of salvation. Pentecostals identify three distinct uses of the word "baptism" in the New Testament: Baptism into the body of Christ: This refers to salvation; every believer in Christ is made a part of the Church, through baptism. The Holy Spirit is the agent, the body of Christ is the medium. Water baptism: Symbolic of dying to the world and liv