This wide-ranging volume covers the final fifteen of the thirty-three years that Jonathan Edwards preached and includes some of his greatest sermons—including his “Farewell Sermons” to his Northampton congregation. The period is defined by Edwards’ inventive strategies to improvise during the delivery of his sermons. Considering dependence on the written text in the pulpit to be a serious failing, he devised a double-columned, outlined format for his sermon manuscripts and continued to use it for the rest of his life. Sermons from this period also include those preached to Mohican and Mohawk Indians at the mission post of Stockbridge, Massachusetts. Edwards’ various writings of 1743–58 map the complex terrain of his spiritual, intellectual, and professional life after the Great Awakening. He deals with topics ranging from the spiritual role of youth in the community to the struggles over communion in his Northampton congregation to the war with the French and their Indian allies.
“It has such a tendency as it implies a discovery and relish of a suitable and sufficient good: it brings a person into a view of divine beauty, and to a relish of that good which is a man’s proper happiness, and so brings the soul to its true center.” (Page 543)
“[I shall] conclude by exhorting all to hearken to the joyful sound as exhibited in the sweet invitations of the gospel.” (Page 710)
“And thither it was that the soul of the penitent thief on the cross ascended. Christ said to him, ‘To day, shall thou be with me in paradise.’ Paradise is the same with the third heaven, as appears by 2 Cor. 12:2–4. There that which is called the ‘third heaven’ in the second verse, in the fourth verse is called ‘paradise.’” (Pages 228–229)
“This the gospel does, as it above all other things whatsoever exhibits to our view God’s glorious beauty and love, in the contemplation of which our most perfect happiness of the soul consists.” (Page 705)
“This peace which Christ has left as a legacy to his true followers is his peace:” (Page 544)