Jonathan Edwards was one of the greatest and most influential preachers and theologians in American history. He was the colonial New England minister and missionary. He was born on October 5, 1703 in East Windsor, Connecticut and was one of the 11 children of Timothy Edwards and Esther Stoddard.
Jonathan’s father was a minister of the church at Connecticut who also tutored boys for college. His works covered various aspects of the Christian religion though he was primarily regarded as a pioneer in the Reformed faith or Calvinism. He was deeply influenced by the philosopher John Locke and scientist Isaac Newton.
Quick Facts: –
- In 1722 Jonathan Edwards was appointed a clergyman in a small Presbyterian Church in New York City. He worked there for 8 months before quitting in 1723.
- He recorded the development of his religious beliefs and philosophies in his diary which he maintained from 1720 to 1726.
- Edwards was a key figure in the First Great Awakening of the mid-1700s.
- In 1738, he published ‘Discourses on Various Important Subjects’, a collection of the five most important sermons that contributed most significantly to the revival.
- He was voted out of his pastorate on June 22, 1750. This church was the one which he served the longest.
- Edwards also served as a missionary to the Indians and President of Princeton. His most important works also came out during this time.
- In 1758, he was made the President of the College of New Jersey but he died within one month of assuming office.
- The Jonathan Edwards College, the first residential college at Yale University was established in his honour in 1933.
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