Aside from the scriptures, An Humble, Earnest, And Affectionate Address To The Clergy of William Law is indisputably among the most spiritually influential of all literary compositions.Men like Charles Wesley, George Whitefield, William Wilberforce, Henry Venn, Thomas Scott, Andrew Murray, and Watchman Nee, were a few of the untold thousands who were directly or indirectly influenced by it. That impact is still felt today.
Regarding Law's Affectionate Address to the Clergy, Andrew Murray said . . . "I do not know where to find anywhere else the same clear and powerful statement of the truth which the Church needs at the present day. I have tried to read or consult every book I knew of, that treats of the work of the Holy Spirit, and nowhere have I met with anything that brings the truth of our dependence on the continual leading of the Spirit, and the assurance that that leading can be enjoyed without interruption, so home to the heart as this teaching ...which I believe to be entirely scriptural, and to supply what many are looking for . . ."
The last few pages of Law's "Appeal" were finished not many days before his death. Therefore Law's appeal to the clergy may be considered his last appeal, and a man's last words should be weighed very heavily.
Of all William law's writings, we consider his "Affectionate Appeal to the Clergy" to be the most important. It contains his finial appeal to Christendom. In it he sets forth what he considered to be the most urgent need of the 18th century Church. And if you take the time to read it I am sure you will conclude, as we have, that this address yet speaks to our most pressing need.
We changed the title with this revision from An Humble, Earnest, And Affectionate Address To The Clergy to An Affectionate Appeal To Christendom because we believe that its message is not just for an elite priesthood but for the priesthood of all believers.to top