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John Wesley
1703-1791

      John Wesley was the founder of the Methodist movement which grew from the 'Holy Club' of his Oxford friends into a great religious revival. An indefatigable traveller, preacher and writer, Wesley averaged 8,000 miles a year on horseback and gave 15 sermons a week. The reluctance of the Anglican clergy to lend him their pulpits led him to give some of his sermons in the open air, a decision which enabled him to reach those among the poorer sections of society who were not accustomed to going to church.

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A Call to Backsliders
      'Will the Lord absent himself for ever? And will he be no more entreated? Is his mercy clean gone for ever? And is his promise come utterly to an end for evermore?' Ps. 77:7, 8. 1. Presumption is one grand snare of the devil, in which many of the children of men are taken. They so presume upon the mercy of God as utterly to forget his justice. ...read

A Call to Backsliders
      "Will the Lord absent himself for ever? And will he be no more entreated? Is his mercy clean gone for ever? And is his promise come utterly to an end for evermore?" Ps. 77:7, 8. 1. Presumption is one grand snare of the devil, in which many of the children of men are taken. They so presume upon the mercy of God as utterly to forget his justice. ...read

A Caution against Bigotry
      "And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in Thy name: and he followeth not us: and we forbad him, because he followeth not us. But Jesus said, Forbid him not." Mark 9:38, 39. 1. In the preceding verses we read, that after the Twelve had been disputing "which of them should be the greatest," Jesus took a little chi ...read

An Israelite Indeed
      "Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile." John 1:47. 1. Some years ago a very ingenious man, Professor Hutcheson of Glasgow, published two treatises, The Original of our Ideas of Beauty and Virtue. In the latter of these he maintains that the very essence of virtue is, the love of our fellow-creatures. He endeavours to prove, that virt ...read

Awake, Thou That Sleepest
      'Awake, thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.' Eph. 5:14. IN discoursing on these words, I shall, with the help of God, - First. Describe the sleepers, to whom they are spoken: Secondly. Enforce the exhortation, 'Awake, thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead:' And, Thirdly. Explain the prom ...read

Awake, Thou That Sleepest
      Preached on Sunday April 4, 1742, before the University of Oxford, by the Rev. Charles Wesley, M.A. Student of Christ-Church. "Awake, thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light." Eph. 5:14. In discoursing on these words, I shall, with the help of God, -- First. Describe the sleepers, to whom they are spok ...read

Case of Reason Impartially Considered
      "Brethren, be not children in understanding: Howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men." 1 Cor. 14:20. 1. It is the true remark of an eminent man, who had made many observations on human nature, "If reason be against a man, a man will always be against reason." This has been confirmed by the experience of all ages. Very ma ...read

Catholic Spirit
      'And when he was departed thence, he lighted on Jehonadab the son of Rechab coming to meet him, and he saluted him, and said to him, Is thine heart right, as my heart is with thy heart? And Jehonadab answered: It is. If it be, give me thine hand.' 2 Kings 10:15. 1. It is allowed even by those who do not pay this great debt, that love is due to ...read

Catholic Spirit
      "And when he was departed thence, he lighted on Jehonadab the son of Rechab coming to meet him, and he saluted him, and said to him, Is thine heart right, as my heart is with thy heart? And Jehonadab answered: It is. If it be, give me thine hand." 2 Kings 10:15. 1. It is allowed even by those who do not pay this great debt, that love is due to ...read

Causes of the Inefficiency of Christianity
      "~Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there? Why then is not the health of the daugh~ter of my people recovered?" Jer. 8:22~~. 1. This question, as here proposed by the Prophet, relates only to a particular people, -- the children of Israel. But I would here consider it in a general sense, with relation to all m~ankind. I would se ...read

Christian Perfection
      'Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect.' Phil. 3:12. 1. There is scarce any expression in Holy Writ which has given more offence than this. The word perfect is what many cannot bear. The very sound of it is an abomination to them. And whosoever preaches perfection (as the phrase is,) that is, asserts that it is attai ...read

Christian Perfection
      "Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect." Phil. 3:12. 1. There is scarce any expression in Holy Writ which has given more offence than this. The word perfect is what many cannot bear. The very sound of it is an abomination to them. And whosoever preaches perfection (as the phrase is,) that is, asserts that it is attai ...read

Duty of Constant Communion
      The following discourse was written above five-and-fifty years ago, for the use of my pupils at Oxford. I have added very little, but retrenched much; as I then used more words than I do now. But, I thank God, I have not yet seen cause to alter my sentiments in any point which is therein delivered. 1788 J.W. "Do this in remembrance of me." Luke 2 ...read

Free Grace
      To The Reader: Nothing but the strongest conviction, not only that what is here advanced is 'the truth as it is in Jesus,' but also that I am indispensably obliged to declare this truth to all the world, could have induced me openly to oppose the sentiments of those whom I esteem for their work's sake: At whose feet may I be found in the day of ...read

Free Grace
      Preached at Bristol, in the year 1740 TO THE READER Nothing but the strongest conviction, not only that what is here advanced is "the truth as it is in Jesus," but also that I am indispensably obliged to declare this truth to all the world, could have induced me openly to oppose the sentiments of those whom I esteem for their work's sake: At w ...read

God's Approbation of his Works
      "And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good." Gen. 1:31. 1. When God created the heavens and the earth, and all that is therein, at the conclusion of each day's work it is said, "And God saw that it was good." Whatever was created was good in its kind; suited to the end for which it was designed; adapted to promo ...read

God's Love to Fallen Man
      "Not as the offence, so also is the free gift." Rom. 5:15. 1. How exceeding common, and how bitter, is the outcry against our first parent for the mischief which he not only brought upon himself, but entailed upon his latest posterity! It was by his wilful rebellion against God that "sin entered into the world." "By one man's disobedience,\ ...read

Great Privilege of Those that are Born of God
      "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin." 1 John 3:9. 1. It has been frequently supposed, that the being born of God was all one with the being justified; that the new birth and justification were only different expressions, denoting the same thing: It being certain, on the one hand, that whoever is justified is also born of God; and, on ...read

Heaviness through Manifold Temptations
      "Now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations." 1 Pet. 1:6. 1. In the preceding discourse I have particularly spoken of that darkness of mind into which those are often observed to fall who once walked in the light of God's countenance. Nearly related to this is the heaviness of soul which is still more common ...read

Human Life a Dream
      "Even like as a dream when one awaketh; so shalt thou make their image to vanish out of the city." Ps. 73:20. 1. Anyone that considers the foregoing verses will easily observe that the Psalmist is speaking directly of the wicked, that prosper in their wickedness. It is very common for these utterly to forget that they are creatures of a day; to ...read

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