Embracing a Puritan View of
Justification and Sanctification,
and a Wesleyan Arminian View of
God’s Grace and Free Will,
For the Promotion of Great Awakenings,
By Means of Evangelical Preaching
The leading Calvinist preachers of the Evangelical Revival consciously revived the doctrine and piety of the Puritans. The New Englander Jonathan Edwards was ‘first and last a Puritan theologian.’ The Presbyterian Samuel Davies noted that before the revival awakening had come ‘on reading some Authors of the last Century, particularly Bolton, Baxter, Flavel, Bunyan.’ During the early years during his fame as a revivalist, the Anglican George Whitefield was reading Bunyan, Matthew Henry, Isaac Watts’ hymns, and Daniel Neal’s History of the Puritans. By 1741, he hoped to see ‘the spirit of scriptural Puritanism universally prevail,’ and confessed (admittedly to a New Englander) ‘I am more and more in love with the good old Puritans.’ John Wesley, who held on to the Arminianism of his High Church father, had more eclectic spiritual tastes, but he too drew on Puritan influences, editing and republishing many Puritan works in his Christian Library (while carefully excising dubious predestinarian doctrine). [The Cambridge Companion to Puritanism, p. 335].
Dr. Gerstner wrote this introduction to the theology of the great New England Puritan. There are eleven chapters on such topics as “Reason and Revelation”, “The Trinity”, “Man and His Fall”, “Sin”, “The Atonement”, “Justification”, “Sanctification”, and several others. If you simply want an introduction and overview of Edwards’ theology, this is what you’ve been looking for.
This is the most clearest and most thorough book I know on the soteriology of John Wesley.
– Cherry’s The Theology of Jonathan Edwards
– The Cambridge Companion to Jonathan Edwards
– Foster’s New England Theology
Jonathan Edwards’ Soteriology Influences: John Owen?; Thomas Shepard’s The Sincere Convert; Wollebius Christian Divinitie; William Williams Great Salvation; William Ames Marrow of Theology; Robert Bolton’s Works; Richard Baxter’s Call to the Unconverted; John Flavel’s Works; John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress and Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners; John Norton’s The Orthodox Evangelist