And now we see it in our own backyards.
On March 22, 1758, Princeton University President Jonathan Edwards died from a smallpox inoculation. He had been the valedictorian of his class at Yale. He was ordained in 1727 as a minister in Northampton, Massachusetts, serving as assistant to his grandfather Solomon Stoddard.
That same year, Rev. Jonathan Edwards married Sarah Pierpont, whose father, Rev. James Pierpont, was a founder of Yale University. Sarah’s great-grandfather was Rev. Thomas Hooker, the founder of Connecticut. Rev. George Whitefield preached in Jonathan Edwards’ church during a revival tour in 1739-1740.
In 1741, Jonathan Edwards preached a sermon, “Sinners in the hands of an angry God” which began the Great Awakening, a revival so widespread history credits it with uniting the colonies prior to the Revolution.
Of the revival, Jonathan Edwards wrote: “God made it, I suppose, the greatest occasion of awakening to others, of anything that ever came to pass in the town…
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