Wesley and Whitefield? Wesley versus Whitefield?

By: Ian Maddock
Format: Soft cover

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John Wesley and George Whitefield were in many ways larger-than-life figures during their own lifetimes and continue to be so today. Yet our ability to appreciate their abiding influence on contemporary Evangelical theology and practice is lacking if we consider them in isolation from one another. Our understanding of Wesley and the legacy of his public ministry is impoverished apart from considering Whitefield (and vice versa).

This collection of essays explores the complex dynamics at work in the Wesley-Whitefield relationship, spanning a variety of theological, historical, and pastoral facets of their full-orbed public ministries. They serve as an invitation to grow in our awareness of their undoubted affinities and significant differences, all the while resisting the potential allure of either uncritically ecumenical “Wesley and” or uncharitably partisan “Whitefield versus” narratives.


“Empowered by the publication of an earlier successful work on two of the eighteenth century’s most important evangelical leaders, Ian Maddock has assembled a number of leading scholars, representing distinct traditions, to explore the engaging topic of Wesley and Whitefield as well as Wesley versus Whitefield . . . I highly recommend this book.”  
- KENNETH J. COLLINS, Director, The Wesleyan Studies Summer Seminar, Asbury Theological Seminary

“This is a creative and unique book that tracks the biographies of two well-known figures whose ministries were deeply intertwined. The book compares Wesley and Whitefield on a whole range of topics (conversion, their views on Christian formation, mentoring, and slavery) as well as theology (Christian perfection, covenant theology, and the atonement). It is a feast for those interested in the nexus between theology, ministry, and history.”
- ROBERT CALDWELL, Associate Professor of Church History

“This remarkable collection of comparative essays exemplifies the finest scholarship from a variety of disciplines and perspectives, offering the reader a balanced and innovative reexamination of Wesley and Whitefield that sheds new light on their legendary differences while underscoring their shared commitments—this volume represents a significant advance in the study of Methodist evangelicalism.” 
- KEITH EDWARD BEEBE, Whitworth University

“To this day, worldwide evangelical Christianity has two wings, one might say – Calvinist and Arminian. This can be traced back to two remarkable men who were passionate evangelists in the eighteenth century, cooperating in preaching the gospel, but espousing the two sides of this theological debate. Despite their disagreement, John Wesley and George Whitefield were notable examples of ‘evangelical ecumenicity.’ This collection of essays follows their example. Calvinists and Arminians cooperate here to paint a vivid portrait of two men who were at the forefront of the revival of evangelical life and theology, leading to the great nineteenth-century missionary movement and today’s notable demographic shift in world Christianity.”
- THOMAS A. NOBLE, Senior Research Fellow, Nazarene Theological College, Manchester 

Table of Contents:

Introduction - Ian J.Maddock

1. “Beginning a Society of Their Own”: John Wesley, George Whitefield, and the Bristol Division - Joel Houston

2. The Vector of Salvation: The New Birth as (only) the Beginning of Conversion for Wesley and Whitefield - Sean McGever

3. “The Whole World is Now My Parish”: The Ecclesiological Conversions of Wesley and Whitefield - Ian J.Maddock

4. Wesley, Whitefield, and the Church of England - Edward Loane

5. “I Am Yet Persuaded, You Do Greatly Err”: Whitefield, Wesley, and Christian Perfection - David McEwan

6. Federalist Brothers: The Shared Covenantal Substructure of Whitefield and Wesley’s Theology - Jared Hood

7. Whitefield and Wesley on Sin and Atonement - Peter Adam

8. “Plain Truth for Plain People”: Wesley, Whitefield, and Homiletics - Martin Wellings

9. Freedom in the Atlantic World: John Wesley and George Whitefield on Slavery - Glen O’Brien

10. Cultivating True Religion: The Nature and Dynamics of the Means of Grace - Tom Schwanda

11. “Companions in the Way”: Mentoring in the Ministry of Wesley and Whitefield - Rhy S. Bezzant

12. The Hymnody of John Wesley and George Whitefield - Robert S. Smith