Whitfield's Long Ordeal

 •  2 min. read  •  grade level: 7
George Whitfield, the great preacher, during his early years had serious thoughts as to his eternal salvation. But according to his own account they were not sufficiently disturbing to restrain the evil tendencies of his nature.
At the age of sixteen Whitfield again and more seriously contemplated the sad results of a life of religious observance without personal knowledge of Christ Himself. How could he become a member of the family of God? He says: "I began to fast twice in the week for nearly sixty-six hours together, prayed many times a day, received the sacrament every Lord's Day, fasting myself almost to death all the forty days of Lent, during which I did not go less than three times a day to public worship, besides seven times to private prayers. Yet I knew no more that I needed to be born again, born a new creature in Christ Jesus, than if I had never been born at all. Charles Wesley, the evangelist, gave me a book whereby God showed me that I must be `born again' or be damned. Praise His name! Even after all that search and striving I, simply as a child, received Christ as my Savior, and became a child of God."
A preacher sat in his study one night after returning from hearing Whitfield. He began to question himself: "I have preached to others, but have I been converted myself? If so, where was I converted? When was I converted? How was I converted?"
Reader, put these questions to yourself, and if you are honest you will soon discover the true state of your own soul. The reason why we must be born again is plainly stated in Scripture. In the sight of God we are dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:11And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; (Ephesians 2:1)), and therefore unfit for His presence. But Christ died that we might have life. And now he that believeth on Christ, God's Son, HATH EVERLASTING LIFE (John 3:1616For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)).
Take it to heart, dear reader. Have you really been born again?
"Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again." John 3:77Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. (John 3:7).