An important new biography of America's founding religious father.
Jonathan Edwards was America's most influential evangelical, whose revivals of the 1730s became those against which all subsequent ones have been judged.
The marvelous accomplishment of Philip Gura's Jonathan Edwards is to place the rich intellectual landscape of America's most formidable evangelical within the upheaval of his times. Gura not only captures Edwards’ brilliance but respectfully explains the enduring appeal of his theology: in a world of profound uncertainty, it held out hope of an authentic conversion---the quickening of the indwelling spirit of God in one’s heart and the consequent certitude of Godly behavior and everlasting grace.
Tracing Jonathan Edwards’ life from his birth in 1703 to his untimely death in 1758, Gura magnificently reasserts Edwards rightful claim as the father of America's evangelical tradition.
Philip F. Gura is Professor of English and Adjunct Professor of American Studies and Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the author of The Wisdom of Words: Language, Theology, and Literature in the American Renaissance and A Glimpse of Sion's Glory: Puritan Radicalism in New England, 1620-1660, and editor, with Joel Myerson, of Critical Essays on American Transcendentalism.