By: Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)
Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758) was a pre-revolutionary American pastor and academic in Massachusetts, and is also widely considered to be both the last of the great Puritans, and a founder of modern evangelicalism. In 1732, his church and many churches in the surrounding region experienced “The Great Awakening”, a massive religious revival. The Great Awakening saw many people having heightened “affections”, or emotions, in response to their increased spirituality – this included excessive weeping, joyous outbursts, and many other manifestations that concerned more conservative people around them. Edwards wrote Religious Affections in order to show that affections could be a legitimate part of Christian spirituality, but only when conjoined with sound theology and godly practice. The book now stands as a classic in the field of Christian spirituality.