George Whitefield And The Rhetoric Of The Awakening

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George Whitefield was an Anglican minster that came to the British colonies in the 1740s to spread Christianity on several evangelical tours. Whitefield had what is described as an enthusiastic approach to sharing Christianity that added a dramatic role to his sermons by focusing on an emotional connection to God in order to stir the hearts of those that were listening, Franklin gives an account of this in his autobiography. Whitefield was a well-known preacher in the colonies and at the time the Stono Rebellion happened in 1739, Whitefield was coming back to the British colonies to start another tour to spread Christianity. Although Whitefield was generally popular by the colonists, the higher officials in the church did not like him as much because of the new way he presented Christianity, through the use of enthusiasm. With a dislike for Whitefield, clergy members would shut their church’s doors to the influence of Whitefield’s enthusiasm and instead of preaching in the pulpits, he resulted to preaching in the streets and in fields, where ever a crowd would gather. Despite those not liking his way of presenting Christianity, there was another aspect that people in the South began criticizing Whitefield for, his stance on slavery.
Whitefield has an interesting relationship with slavery because although he admonishes slave owners for the way they were treating their slaves, his messages did not have a tone of abolition in them, as he would later advocate for slavery to be incorporated
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Whitefield was already being shut out of the churches with his messages of enthusiasm and encouraging Christians to break the law would start to raise suspicions from the governments in the colonies, along with violating Romans
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