Tolerance Sermon Illustrations

Tolerance Sermon Illustrations

Forbear to judge, for we are sinners all.
Close up his eyes and draw the curtain close;
And let us all to meditation. —Shakespeare (King Henry VI)


Whitefield, the great preacher, belonged to the Calvinistic wing of the Methodists, and the early and ardent friendship between him and Wesley cooled perceptibly toward the end of their ministry. But when Whitefield died in New England and the news came back to England, at the close of a memorial sermon on the life of his eloquent colleague, a little bigoted woman who thought none but Calvinists could enter the Kingdom of Heaven, and imagined that Wesley thought none but Arminians could enter, came forward and asked him if he expected to see "dear Dr. Whitefield in heaven."

Wesley answered, "No!"

"Ah!" said the woman, "I was afraid you would say that."

Then Wesley rejoined, "Do not misunderstand me. George Whitefield will be so near the throne that men like me will never get a glimpse of him." Would that all Christians could at least wish that for their brethren with whom they differ in points of doctrine and practice!

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