Friday, May 28, 2010

David Hume goes to hear George Whitefield

Do you really believe God's Word-The Bible with all your heart, soul, and mind?
How strong are your convictions? Does your life give evidence? Do others, even unbelievers, know without a doubt that you truly believe what you profess?

I've heard it asked by preachers in our day,
"If you (and I) were accused of being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict us?"

Consider the following historical account:

David Hume, a well known Scottish philosopher and historian in the 18th Century, who was also a Deist, didn't believe in any inspiration or revelation or the Son of God or in the Bible, but reportedly thought it worthwhile to travel 20 miles to hear Whitefield preach. About five o'clock one morning, he was going down the street in London. He came around the corner and went straight into the hands of another man who said,
"Why aren't you David Hume?"
"Where are you going at this early hour ?"
"I'm going to hear George Whitefield preach," replied Hume.
"You don't believe a word Whitefield preaches," said the man.
"No," Hume answered, "but he does!"

Even the Deists knew when a man was not just "talking theology".


  1. AnonymousMay 16, 2015

    I've heard this quote a number of times, but have never seen it ascribed to a source document. I'm also somewhat confused because I've heard the quote cited as "I don't, but he does and I can't stay away." Finally, I've see the same quote used with respect to Hume attending a John Wesley meeting. Can anyone enlighten me on this? It's a wonderful quote but I'd love to know that it is also authentic.

    1. Haykin, ed., Revived Puritan, pp. 35–37.

    2. Haykin, ed., Revived Puritan, pp. 35–37.