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From Here to Forever

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    Wesley's Heart “Strangely Warmed”

    On his return to England, Wesley arrived at a clearer understanding of Bible faith under the instruction of a Moravian. At a meeting of the Moravian society in London a statement was read from Luther. As Wesley listened, faith was kindled in his soul. “I felt my heart strangely warmed,” he says. “I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation: and an assurance was given me, that He had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death.”10Ibid., p. 52.HF 160.2

    Now he had found that the grace he had toiled to win by prayers and fasts and self-abnegation was a gift, “without money and without price.” His whole soul burned with the desire to spread everywhere the glorious gospel of God's free grace. “I look upon all the world as my parish,” he said; “in whatever part of it I am, I judge it meet, right, and my bounden duty, to declare unto all that are willing to hear, the glad tidings of salvation.”11Ibid., p. 74.HF 160.3

    He continued his strict and self-denying life, not now as the ground, but the result of faith; not the root, but the fruit of holiness. The grace of God in Christ will be manifest in obedience. Wesley's life was devoted to preaching the great truths he had received—justification through faith in the atoning blood of Christ, and the renewing power of the Holy Spirit upon the heart, bringing forth fruit in a life conformed to the example of Christ.HF 161.1

    Whitefield and the Wesleys were contemptuously called “Methodists” by their ungodly fellow students—a name which is at the present time regarded as honorable. The Holy Spirit urged them to preach Christ and Him crucified. Thousands were truly converted. It was necessary that these sheep be protected from ravening wolves. Wesley had no thought of forming a new denomination, but he organized them under what was called the Methodist Connection.HF 161.2

    Mysterious and trying was the opposition which these preachers encountered from the established church—yet the truth had entrance where doors would otherwise remain closed. Some of the clergy were roused from their moral stupor and became zealous preachers in their own parishes.HF 161.3

    In Wesley's time, men of different gifts did not harmonize upon every point of doctrine. The differences between Whitefield and the Wesleys threatened at one time to create alienation, but as they learned meekness in the school of Christ, mutual forbearance and charity reconciled them. They had no time to dispute, while error and iniquity were teeming everywhere.HF 161.4

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