I found the biography I had written on Jonathan Edwards for a class last semester. I thought it might be nice to post it here. Jonathan Edwards was a Man after God’s Own Heart.

Jonathan Edwards was a “philosopher, theologian, preacher, historian, and scientist” (Stickel.) during the 1700s in America. The World Book Encyclopedia even calls him a “revivalist” (Noll.) He was born in East Windsor, Connecticut, on 5 October 1703, as the only son to his parents Timothy Edwards and Esther Stoddard Edwards (Stickel.) Yet he had ten other sisters.
Edwards was taught by his father for his younger years of education. He lived in East Windsor until he left, at age 13, for a college education at Connecticut’s Collegiate School which changed its name to Yale College while he is there and is now known as Yale University. He graduated at 17 (Noll.) in 1720 from Yale College. And stayed at Yale for two years between 1724 and 1726 and “was a tutor” (Jonathan Edwards).

He came to know Christ at 17. Even though he grew up in a pastors home he had not become a Born-again Christian by the work of the Holy Spirit. He had not been regenerated by God until after he graduated from college. A year later after his conversion, he decided to live for the Glory of God. At age 18 and 19 he wrote out 70 revolutions that he was going to live by for the rest of his life. Lawson states that “they were like a spiritual compass for his soul. They would point him to Christ. He would read these resolutions once a week …, at the end of each month …, [and] at the end of each year for the rest of his life” (Lawson).

He became an associate pastor at the church in Northampton, Massachusetts, under his grandfather. When his grandfather “died in 1792, Edwards became chief pastor” (Noll) or senior pastor of the church. After getting the chief pastorate at the church, the Great Awakening began. In the 1730s He preached multiple sermons and started causing revivals (Stickel). All the revivals in the 1730s and 1740s became known as the Great Awakening. One of His most famous sermons was “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.”

In 1750 Jonathan Edwards was kicked from the church in Nothampton. As Chris Armstrong put it, the “ejection of Jonathan Edwards by his Northampton congregation was [messy because] … it involved the greatest theologian in American history–the central figure of the Great Awakening” (Armstrong). He opposed the view of his grandfather about the Lords Supper be taken by anyone. He view was not that and he said that “only those who publicly professed their conversion experience would be admitted to the Lord’s Supper” (Rosenmeier). And for that he was dismissed. He then became a missionary to the local Indian tribe. “Two months [before] he died of fever resulting from a smallpox inoculation,” he was made president of the College of New Jersey, which is now Princeton and that is where he is buried (Rosenmeier).

He was a great man that worked for other people. He cared about people and did not worry about what people thought about him. He was a godly, pious man who was devoted to Christ (Lawson). This man is one of my heros.


Works Cited

Armstrong, Chris. “Preacher in the hands of an angry church: Jonathan Edwards’s church kicked him out after 23 years of ministry, but the crisis proved his greatness was not merely intellectual. (Integrity and Ethics).” Leadership (Carol Stream, IL) 24.1 (Wntr 2003): 52(3). General Reference Center Gold. Gale. SAN JOSE PUBLIC LIBRARY SYSTEM. 1 Nov. 2007 <http://0-find.galegroup.com.mill1.sjlibrary.org:80/itx/start.do?prodId=GRGM&gt;.

Lawson, Steve. “Session 1” “Resolved Conference 2005.” 2005. 1 Nov. 2007

<http://www.gracechurch.org/Resolved/AudioChoice.asp&gt; (Past Audio. Must have a log in and pay $2.00 for it.)

“Jonathan Edwards.” Fire and Ice: Puritan and Reformed Writings. 1 Nov. 2007

<http://www.puritansermons.com/bio/bioedwar.htm&gt;.

Noll, Mark A. “Edwards, Jonathan.” World Book Online Reference Center. 2007. San Jose Public Library System. 1 Nov. 2007 <http://0-www.worldbookonline.com.mill1.sjlibrary.org:80/wb/Article?id=ar174620&gt;.

Rosenmeier, Jesper. “Edwards, Jonathan (1703-1758).” Encyclopedia of World Biography. Ed. Suzanne M. Bourgoin. 2nd ed. Detroit: Gale Research, 1998. 17 vols.Student Resource Center – Gold. Thomson Gale. SAN JOSE PUBLIC LIBRARY SYSTEM. 1 Nov. 2007 <http://0-find.galegroup.com.mill1.sjlibrary.org:80/srcx/infomark.do?&contentSet=GBRC&type=retrieve&tabID=T001&prodId=SRC-1&docId=EK1631001992&source=gale&srcprod=SRCG&userGroupName=sjpllib&version=1.0&gt;.

Stickel, George W. Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 270: American Philosophers Before 1950. A Bruccoli Clark Layman Book. Edited by Philip B. Dematteis, Saint Leo University, and Leemon B. McHenry, California State University, Northridge. Gale Group, 2002. pp. 89-102. San Jose Public Library System. 1 Nov. 2007 < http://0-galenet.galegroup.com.mill1.sjlibrary.org/servlet/LitRC?YBE=A.D.&locID=sjpllib&srchtp=advathr&c=1&NR=Edwards+Jonathan&ai=U13702038&docNum=H1200011065&bConts=15023&vrsn=3&OP=contains&YDE=A.D.&DYQ=is&ca=1&ste=6&BYQ=is&tab=1&tbst=arp&n=10&GD=any&gt;.