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John Wesley: A Brand From The Burning: The Life of John Wesley Paperback – 4 Nov 2004
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A Brand from the Burning weaves together the personal, theological, political and spiritual elements in the life of John Wesley to reflect the spirit of his age and the impact he had upon it. Roy Hattersley approaches writing with the same verve and commitment that marked his political career. Always one for plain talking and a brisk sense of humour, he also has a sense of proportion both about himself and the wider world. Having authored Blood and Fire, the biography of William and Catherine Booth, the Christian social reformers who founded the Salvation Army, Hattersley turns an observant and affectionate eye on John Wesley. As a Labour politician, he is naturally interested in the impact of the Methodist movement on the social and political scene of Britain. He traces Wesley's fascinating life to show how an itinerant preacher became "one of the architects of the modern world".
John Wesley's beginning in the Anglican rectory and his enthusiasm for the Christian faith at Oxford led to his becoming a missionary to the nascent colony of Georgia. There he found God in a new way and came back to preach a revivalist message across Britain. Out of this fiery movement the Methodist Church was established and it has been claimed that because of Wesley's work Britain experienced a spiritual revival rather than a bloody revolution. Roy Hattersley writes clear, straightforward prose and tells the story of Wesley with a spark of the same zeal and charisma that Wesley himself must have had. --Dwight Longenecker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This is a first-class biography, lucid and always interesting... Hattersley asks all the right questions and seems incapable of writing a dull page. (INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY)
Roy Hattersley has written a full and fair biography. (NEW STATESMAN)
He can fashion an anecdote out of even the dreariest theological dispute. Indeed, a gossipy politician is the right man for the job. (MAIL ON SUNDAY)
An intellectually and theologically compelling portrait (SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY)
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From humble beginnings in a holy club at Oxford, John Wesley went on to spread his interpretation of the word across the country. Covering incredible distances in a short time, Wesley brought the gospel to the poorer urban classes who were perhaps most in need of spiritual salvation – a Church more tailored to their needs. His true inspiration came not from Oxford but from his mother, whose domestic prayer meetings, held when John was a boy, had elicited such large audiences that they became considered a threat to those in power. Roy Hattersley’s utterly absorbing characterisation of the strong-willed Susanna Wesley reminded me of his similar ability in “Blood and Fire”, the biography of William and Catherine Booth. Here Hattersley takes a perhaps more difficult subject, but excels beyond his previous achievement.He binds all his facts together with a direct and engrossing style, combined with careful (but unobtrusive) documentation of his sources.
Hattersley shows us a flawed man, who nevertheless commands great respect. Anyone wishing to thoroughly understand the rise of Methodism and the context within which it emerged is likely to find great pleasure in Hattersley’s account. In fact, any reader seeking an enjoyable foray into this period could do no better than to start with this excellent biography.
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Not much about John Wesley the man
Not an enjoyable read