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Birmingham,” Kidderminster,t and Broomsgrove. Nor did he feel his health much impaired, though it was so late in the season. He observes, indeed, that he had got a cold; but adds, “The Lord warms my heart.” February, 1741, he lost his only child, an event which tended to keep him humble. Before its birth, his mind was so impressed, that he publicly declared that the child would be a boy, and hoped he would live to preach the gospel. But his fond expectations were speedily blasted, the infant dying when but four months old. This was no doubt very humbling to the father; but he was helped to make the wisest and best improvement of it. “Though I am disappointed,” says he, writing to a friend, “of a living preacher by the death of my son; yet I hope what happened before his birth, and since at his death, has taught me such lessons as, if duly improved, may render his mistaken parent more cautious, more sober-minded, more experienced in Satan's devices, and consequently more useful in his future labors to the church of God.”f March 3, he was obliged to attend the assizes at Gloucester. The occasion was this: in the summer of 1734, the Methodists had been severely persecuted by the mob, especially at Hampton, where many were hurt, and the lives of the preachers threatened. Other means having been tried in vain, Mr. Whitefield, with the advice and assistance of his friends, resolved to seek the protection of the law, and, lodged an information against the Hampton rioters, in the court of King's Bench. Facts being proved, and the defendants making no reply, the rule was made absolute, and an information filed against them. They pleading not guilty, the cause was referred to the assizes in Gloucester. After a full hearing, a verdict was given for the plaintifs, and all the defendants were brought in guilty. This prosecution had a very good effect; the rioters were greatly alarmed. But the intention of the Methodists was only to show them what they could do, and then forgive them. About this time, several anonymous papers, entitled, “Observations upon the conduct and behavior of a certain sect, usually distinguished by the name of Methodists,” were printed and handed about in the religious societies of London and Westminster, and given to many private persons, with strict injunctions not to part with them. Mr. Whitefield having accidentally had the hasty perusal of them; and finding many queries concerning him and his conduct contained therein; and having applied for a copy which was refused him, thought it his duty to publish an advertisement desiring (as he knew not how soon he might embark for Georgia) a speedy, open publication of the said papers, that he might make a candid and impartial answer. He had reason to believe the bishop of London was concerned in composing or revising them: but that he might not be mistaken, after the publication of the advertisement, he wrote the bishop a letter, wherein he desired to know, whether his lordship was the author or not; and also desired a copy. The bishop sent word, “he should hear from him.” Some time after, a Mr. Owen, printer to the bishop, left a letter for Mr. Whitesield, informing him that he had orders from several of the bishops, to print the Observations, with some few additions, for their use : and when the impression was finished, Mr. Whitefield should have a copy. For these reasons Mr. Whitefield thought it proper to direct his Answer to the Observations, to the bishop of London, and the other bishops concerned in the publication of them. This answer occasioned the Rev. Mr. Church's expostulatory letter to Mr. Whitefield; to which he soon replied, with thanks to the author for prefixing his name. Being invited by Mr. Smith, a merchant, then in England, (in the name of thousands) to make another visit to America, he took a passage with that gentleman, in a vessel going from Portsmouth ; but the captain refusing to take him, as he said, for fear of spoiling the sailors, he was obliged to go to Plymouth, where he was in imminent danger of being assassinated. “In my way,” says he, “I preached at Wellington, where a Mr. Darracott had been a blessed instrument of doing much ood. Exeter also, I re-visited, where many souls were awaened to the divine life. At Biddeford, where good Mr. Hervey had been curate, we had much of the power of God; and also at Kingsbridge. But the chief scene was at Plymouth and the Dock, where I expected least success.”

* “It is near eleven at night, and nature calls for rest. I have preached five times this day, and, weak as I am, through Christ strengthening me, I could preach five times more.”

t I was kindly received by Mr. Williams. Many friends were at his house. I was greatly refreshed to find what a sweet savor of good Baxter's doctrine, works, and discipline remained to this day.”

# In speaking to a friend of this child he said, he would not part with him for the whole world; but if God should demand him, he should have him at a moment's warning. , God he added, took him at his word, and deprived him of his child by a sudden indisposition.

• MS. Upon mentioning Biddeford, he adds [here a character of Mr. Hervey:] it is pity he did not write it down. However, we have a sketch of it. “ o sentiments concerning Mr. Hervey's book are very just. The author of it is my old friend; a most heavenly minded creature, one of the first of the Methodists, who is contented with a small cure, and gives all that he has to the poor. He is very weak, and daily waits for his dissolution.”

Among the many whom Mr. Whitefield was honored to be the means of converting to the knowledge of the truth, who shall be a crown of joy to him in the day of the Lord, it is perhaps not generally known that the celebrated

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While at Plymouth, four gentlemen came to the house of one of his particular friends, and with much seeming kindness, inquired after him, desiring to know where he lodged. Soon afterwards, Mr. Whitefield received a letter informing him, that the writer was a nephew of Mr. S-, an attorney at New York; that he had the pleasure of supping with Mr. Whitefield at his uncle's house; and desired his company to sup with him and a few more friends, at a tavern. Mr. Whitefield sent him word, “that it was not customary for him to sup abroad at a tavern, but should be glad of the gentleman's company to eat a morsel with him at his lodgings.” . He accordingly came and supped; but was observed frequently to look around him, and to be very absent. At last he took his leave, and returned to his companions in the tavern; and being by them interrogated, what he had done, answered, that he had been used so civilly, he had not the heart to touch him.” Upon which, another of the company, a lieutenant of the navy, laid a wager of ten

ineas, that he would do his business for him. His companions, however, took away his sword. It was midnight: and Mr. Whitefield, having preached to a large congregation, and visited the French prisoners, had gone to bed; when the landlady came and told him, that a well dressed gentleman desired to see him. Mr. Whitefield imagining it was somebody under conviction, desired him to be brought up. He came and sat down by the bed side, congratulated him on the success of his ministry, and expressed much concern at being detained from hearing him. Soon after he broke out into the most abusive . language; and in a cruel and cowardly manner beat him in bed. The landlady and her daughter hearing the noise, rushed into the room, and seized upon him; but he soon disengaged himself from them, and repeated his blows on Mr. Whitefield; who, being apprehensive that he intended to shoot or stab him, underwent all the surprise of a sudden and violent death. Afterwards, a second came into the house, and cried out from the bottom of the stairs, “take courage, I am ready to help you.” But by the repeated cry of murder 1 the alarm was now so great, that they both made off. “The next morning,” said Mr. Whitefield, “I was to expound at a private house, and then to set out for Biddeford. Some urged me to stay and prosecute; but being better employed, I went on my intended journey, was greatly blessed in preaching the everlasting gospel, and upon my return was well paid for what I had

Mr. Hervey is to be numbered. In a letter to Mr. Whitefield, Mr. Hervey thus expresses himself...Your journals, dear sir, and sermons, and especially the sweet sermon on “What think ye of Christ o' were a means of bringing me to the knowledge of the truth.”

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suffered: curiosity having led perhaps two thousand more than ordinary, to see and hear a man that had narrowly escaped being murdered in his bed. And I trust in the five weeks time, while I waited for the convoy, hundreds were awakened and turned unto the Lord. At the Dock also, near Plymouth, a glorious work was begun. Could the fields, between Plymouth and the Dock, speak, they could tell what blessed seasons were enjoyed there. The following narrative shows the power and influence of his preaching there. The late Rev. Henry Tanner, of Exeter, in the year 1743, removed to Plymouth, to obtain employment as a ship builder. Here it pleased God to call him by his grace, under the ministry of Mr. Whitefield. Being at work, he heard from a considerable distance, the voice of that zealous man of God, who was preaching in the street, or fields, probably between Plymouth town and Dock: he immediately concluded that the preacher was a madman; and determined, with five or six more of his companions, to go and knock him off from the place on which he stood; and, for the purpose of more effectually injuring the mad parson, they loaded their pockets with stones. When, however, Mr. Tanner drew near, and perceived Mr. Whitefield extending his arms, and in the most pathetic language inviting poor lost sinners to Christ, he was struck with amazement. His resolution failed him : he listened with astonishment, and was soon convinced that the preacher was not mad; but was indeed speaking the “words of truth and soberness.” Mr. Whitefield was then preaching from Acts xvii. 19, 20. “May we know what this new doctrine whereof thou speaketh is 7–for thou bringest certain strange things to our ears.” He went home much impressed, and determined to hear him again the next evening. He attended. Mr. Whitefield was wonderfully fervent in prayer. His text was Luke xxiv. 47. “And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” After speaking of the heinous sin of the Jews, and of the Roman soldiers, who were the instruments of perpetrating the cruel murder of the Lord of life, Mr. Whitefield, turnin from the spot where Mr. Tanner then stood, near his side, said, “You are reflecting now on the cruelty of those inhuman butchers, who imbued their hands in his innocent blood,” when, suddenly turning round, and looking intently at Mr. Tanner, he exclaimed, “Thou art the man " These words, sharper than any two edged sword, pierced him to the heart; he felt himself the sinner, who, by his iniquities, had crucified the Son of God. His sins stared him in the face; he knew not how to

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