The Father of Modern Revivalism: Charles Finney

Charles Finney

It is difficult to get an accurate view of Charles Finney’s evangelistic work. Various sources give wildly divergent numbers for conversions under Finney’s influence, one saying that between 1857 and 1858 Finney was directly or indirectly responsible for leading over 100,000 people to Christ. Regardless of the specific numbers, there is no question that Charles Grandison Finney was an influential figure in the Second Great Awakening.

Charles Finney was born, the youngest of fifteen children, on August 29, 1792 in Litchfield, Connecticut. He studied law, but his plans were altered when he underwent a dramatic conversion experience at the age of 29.

Finney became pastor of the Free Presbyterian Chatham Street Chapel and later the Broadway Tabernacle. He spoke as a refined and expert orator and became a widely popular evangelist, organizing and preaching at numerous revivals and meetings throughout New England. He also traveled to England. As many as one million people heard Finney preach throughout his career, and many of them underwent conversion experiences. Finney also spoke at length about social issues, and became an ardent abolitionist. In 1835, Finney was appointed as a professor of theology at Oberlin College, and became its president in 1851, where he remained until 1866. Charles Finney died on August 17, 1875.

Logos is now offering the Charles Finney Collection (6 Vols.). This collection includes his lectures on revival, systematic theology, addresses to professing Christians, a collection of his sermons, as well as his autobiography. That’s almost 3,000 pages by one of the 19th century’s most recognizable—and at times controversial—evangelists.

Other great offerings from important revivalists include The Works of Jonathan Edwards (2 Vols.), and Selected Sermons of George Whitefield both from the Great Awakening of the 18th century. Second Great Awakening period offerings include the Lyman Beecher Collection (4 Vols.), and the Welwyn Biography Series (8 Vols.) which features a 240 page biography of Pastor Asahel Nettleton, another luminary from the Second Great Awakening.

Remember, to keep your eye on the Pre-Pub page. If you are looking to add some books to your Logos resources, the prices you find on the Pre-Pub page are the lowest Logos will offer on these items!