Comparison of the Two Great Awakenings

Topics: First Great Awakening, Methodism, Charles Grandison Finney Pages: 2 (629 words) Published: March 2, 2011
Comparison of the two Great Awakenings

The Great Awakening and the Second Awakening were less of a rebellion and more of a mind shift for Christians. These two events caused people to rely on their faith. In previous centuries people relied on their religion. The two Awakenings were similar in their goals but very different in the way they came about and the individual tasks that were accomplished.

The first movement, the Great Awakening, was focused on people. In the past preachers would read a sermon to the crowd of believers which often took hours. In the Great Awakening a preacher named George Whitefield got down from his pulpit and into the crowd. He preached from court steps, street corners and tree stumps. He brought the message down to the people. It was often said that he could be heard from a great distance due to his incredible blast of a voice. Benjamin Franklin even tested this. (Franklin) He talked to the people rather than at the people, an act unheard of and not always well accepted. George was determined to help bring God down out of the rafters and into the hands of the believers.

Another change in the way we worship came about with Jonathan Edwards. He changed the way the Lord’s Supper was taken. Rather than waiting an entire year to partake of the Lord’s blood and body, he offered it on a regulatory basis. He also offered it to non church members. This was a great coop in a time when religion and regimen were synonymous.

The Second Awakening was most responsible for the idea of personal salvation rather than public proclamation. The Second Awakening was most concerned about revival for America and the world. The movement encouraged individuals to learn from each other and share their triumphs and sorrows.

The second movement was also more organized. Most likely this was because many had watched and learn from the trials and triumphs of the first movement. There was a rise in...
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