Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Life and Work of Dwight L. Moody by A. W. Williams

book cover

The Life and Work of Dwight L. Moody
by A. W. Williams

Hardback: 416 pages
Publisher: unknown
Released: 1900

This book was reprinted in 2006 by Cosimo Classics (ISBN-13: 978-1596050327)

Source: Inherited from my grandmother's library.

Book Description from Goodreads:
Dwight Lyman Moody was the great evangelist of the 19th century--a child of a large working-class family who went on to preach to an entire nation. Both Abraham Lincoln and Ulysses S. Grant attended his revivals during their presidencies. Here, in a work that is part biography and part tribute, is the story of Moody's life-from his stolid New England childhood to his adult conversion to fundamentalist Christianity to his late ministries, including:
  • his Chicago ministry
  • his missionary work during the Civil War
  • the story of his faith that inspired his fiery defense of the Bible
  • his massive evangelical meetings during the 1870s and 80s in England, Scotland, and the United States

Published in 1900, just a year after Moody's death, the book also includes essays and reflections on his life by those he worked with and motivated, and other accolades.

My Review:
The Life and Work of Dwight L. Moody is a biography about D.L. Moody (February 5, 1837 - December 22, 1899) written within a year of his death by someone who had occasionally worked with him. Though it started with some information about his family and upbringing as a child (since this influenced his preaching style), most of the book covered events from 1871 to 1899. After Moody's conversion to Christianity, the book focused mainly on his various ministries. We weren't told much about his wife, children, and family life beyond the fact that he had them.

The book included excerpts of some of Moody's sermons and other documents, descriptions of his evangelical meetings by those who were with him, interviews with and tributes by those who knew him, and descriptions of the various schools he helped found (Northfield Seminary, Mount Herman School for Boys, and the Chicago Bible Institute). Some sections near the end read a bit like a fundraiser campaign (to raise funds for "Moody's dearest projects to keep them running") and some parts contained more detail than most people care about. However, it was an interesting book and I learned a lot about Moody that I didn't previously know. The book contained a number of black and white photographs showing Moody, those he worked with, and the places he preached.

The chapters covered: Moody's boyhood and early life; his early career in Chicago; his conversion; his ministry during the Civil War and the Young Men's Christian Association; Moody's first church; Farwell Hall; preaching beyond Chicago; the Great Chicago Fire; Moody and Sankey in England and Scotland; the Great Revival in Philadelphia; The Northfield Seminary; The Northfield Conference; Mount Hermon School for Boys; The World's Fair Campaign (in 1892); Chicago Bible Institute; Moody's Last Campaign (in Kansas City); Moody's funeral at Northfield and memorial service in Philadelphia; and various tributes by different people who knew him.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Read an excerpt using Google Previews.

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