This volume presents the complete texts of twenty-three sermons preached by Jonathan Edwards during the first years of his career. The sermons, which have never been printed before, document one of the least explored periods of this eminent theologian's life and thought. Fully annotated, they are accompanied by an editor's preface that combines new information with fresh readings of related texts, such as the "Diary" and "Personal Narrative."
The volume includes a general introduction that puts Edwards's thirty-five years of writing and preaching into a broad literary and historical context. Based on the study of his entire sermon corpus-including over seventy printed sermons and twelve hundred sermon manuscripts-as well as related notebooks, letters, and treatises, the introduction enables readers to understand the elaborate network of working papers through which Edwards evolved his thought, as well as the critical function of the sermon in testing and developing expression of that thought. The introduction also explores the literary context of Edwards's writing, especially relating to the theory and practice of homiletics.
Wilson H. Kimnach is Presidential Professor in the Humanities at the University of Bridgeport. He has been associated with the Editorial Committee of The Works of Jonathan Edwards, based at Yale University, for more than twenty years. Presidential Professor in the Humanities at the University of Bridgeport.