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John Wesley Wesley traveled constantly, generally on horseback, preaching twice or thrice a day. He formed societies, opened chapels, superintended schools and orphanages, wrote commentaries and other religious literature, replied to attacks on Methodism, conducted controversies, and carried on a prodigious correspondence. He is believed to have traveled more than 250,000 miles in the course of his ministry, and to have preached more than 40,000 times.
In 1750 Wesley published a monolithic fifty-volume set of books called A Christian Library: “Extracts from and Abridgments of the Choicest Pieces of Practical Divinity Which Have Been Published in the English Tongue.” In this collection of writings,he mostly ignores the church fathers (represented only by the apostolic fathers and Macarius), the great medieval scholastics, and the reformers. Instead, Wesley focuses on recent centuries (from as far back as the sixteenth up to his contemporaries like Jonathan Edwards in the eighteenth), English works (including both Puritans and Established churchmen who took turns persecuting each other), and above all, “Practical Divinity.”
Here is a list of contents of John Wesley’s Christian Library:
Volume 1: The Apostolic Fathers, Macarius of Egypt, Johann Arndt’s True Christianity.
Volume 2: Foxe’s Book of Martyrs.
Volume 3: Additional Foxe’s Martyrs, with supplements
Volume 4: Additional Foxe supplements, Bishop Hall’s Meditations, extracts from Robert Bolton.
Volume 5: Additional Robert Bolton, John Preston.
Volume 6: Additional John Preston, Richard Sibs, Thomas Goodwin.
Volume 7: Additional Thomas Goodwin, William Dell, Thomas Manton, Isaac Ambrose.
Volume 8: Additional Isaac Ambrose (Looking Unto Jesus).
Volume 9: Additional Ambrose, Jeremy Taylor, Francis Rouse’s Academia Celestis, Ralph Cudworth, Nathanael Culverwell.
Volume 10: Additional Nathanael Culverwell, John Owen (Mortification of Sin, Christologia, Communion with God).
Volume 11: Additional John Owen, John Smith.
Volume 12: Herbert Palmer, extracts from The Whole Duty of Man, William Whateley, sermons of Bishop Robert Sanderson.
Volume 13: James Garden’s Comparative Religion,
Volume 14: Pascal’s Pensees, John Worthington’s Self-Resignation, Bishop Ken’s Exposition of the Catechism.
Volume 15: Lives of Eminent Christians, chiefly extracted from Clark.
Volume 16: Life of Bishop Bedell, Life of Archbishop Butler, Letters of Samuel Rutherford, Anthony Horneck’s Happy Ascetic & Lives of Primitive Christians.
Volume 17: Works by Hugh Binning, Matthew Hale, and Simon Patrick’s Christian Sacrifice.
Volume 18: Richard Allen (Vindication of Godliness, Rebuke to Backsliders, Necessity of Godly Fear)
Volume 19: Dr. Cave’s Primitive Christianity, Bunyan’s Holy War, Stuckley’s Gospel-Glass.
Volume 20: Cowley’s Essays, Goodman’s Evening Conference, works by Robert Leighton, Bishop Beveridge.
Volume 21: Isaac Barrow, John Brown, Antoinette Bourignon’s Solid Virtue, sermons by Mr. Kitchen and Mr. Pool.
Volume 22: Richard Baxter’s Saint’s Everlasting Rest, Edward Crane’s Prospect of Divine Providence.
Volume 23: Fenelon, Molinos, Henry More, Stephen Charnock, Dr. Calamy, Henry Scougal.
Volume 24: Sermons by Dr. Annesley, Richard Lucas’ Inquiry after Happiness.
Volume 25: Sermons by Bishop Reynolds, devotions.
Volume 26: Sermons by Dr. South, Young, Howe’s Thoughts, Juan d’Avila, the anonymous Parson’s Advice.
Volume 27: Archbishop Tillotson, John Flavel’s Husbandry Spiritualized, Lives of Sundry Eminent Persons.
Volume 28: Life of John Howe, The Living Temple, Philip Henry, George Trosse, John Eliot.
Volume 29: Additional Eminent Persons, Alleine’s Letters, Francke’s Nicodemus.
Volume 30: Norris on Christian Prudence; Edwards on Revivals of Religion; Religious Affections.