Revs. George Whitefield and John Wesley commenced their zealous and successful
labors, there was a very prevalent disposition to oppose and misrepresent
them. Many of the public-houses became places where their doctrines and zeal
were talked of and ridiculed. Mr. Thorpe, and several other young men in Yorkshire, England, undertook
at one of these parties to mimic the preaching of these good men. The
proposition met with applause; one after another stood on a table to perform
his part, and it devolved on Mr. Thorpe to close this very irreverent scene.
Much elated, and confident of success, he exclaimed, as he ascended the
table, "I shall beat you all." Who would have supposed that the
mercy of God was now about to be extended to this transgressor of His law!
The Bible was handed him, and, by the guidance of unerring Providence, it
opened at Luke 13:3, "Except ye repent, ye shall all likewise
perish." The moment he read the text, his mind was impressed in a most
extraordinary manner; he saw clearly the nature and importance of the
subject; and, as he afterwards said, if ever he preached with the assistance
of the Holy Spirit, it was at that time. His address produced a feeling; of
 depression in his auditors; and when he had finished, he instantly
retired, he says, to weep over his sins. He now associated with the people of
God, and became a useful minister of the New Testament, and died at
Marsborough, in 1776. God applies every possible means to bring sinners to
repentance; and here we see how he made even the scoffer to tremble in the
midst of his career of blasphemy, and caused the sword of the Spirit, which
he was using to destroy the work of God, to slay him.