Biography of D.L. Moody
DL Moody. The name may be familiar. There is a Moody Publishers, a Moody Bible Institute, Moody Radio. His name is all over evangelicalism. His remarkable life story is something worth noting. Though Moody was not a fundamentalist, some of the tactics he used to build his ministry would be employed by some of his lieutenants when they built the foundation of the movement.
So we’re going to spend this episode talking about this remarkable man. Born in poverty, educated to only about a 4th-grade level, he would rise to become one of the most important American evangelists. His folksy style and booming voice were winsome to the millions of people to whom he preached. In this difficult series about controversial ideas, why not take some time to discuss something that went right in the late 1800s? The ministry of Moody.
I’m joined in this episode by Kevin Belmonte. He’s the author of several history books including D.L. Moody: A Life. Check out his books and let me know what you think!
Helpful Links and Sources
- Kevin Belmonte’s book D.L. Moody: A Life
- The Evangelicals by Frances Fitzgerald
- A nice bio on Harry Moorhouse
- See the plaque where Moody was converted
- Have you ever shared the gospel with someone like Mr. Kimball did in the shoe store? Why or why not?
- Is there someone you could pray for that they would be saved?
- Why do you think Moody was so popular in his day?
- Have you ever encountered Moody Radio, Publishers, or Bible Institute?
- The “Christian bubble” really started to take shape in the era of Moody. How has the “bubble” impacted your life?
- What are your views on poverty? How do people become poor and how can it be fixed? Do you think that all poor people are lazy? Why?
Christians helped to end the British Slave Trade. But we forgot one of it’s greatest heroes: Thomas Clarkson
The British slave trade had several well-known enemies: William Wilberforce and John Newton (who wrote “Amazing Grace”) to name a few. But historian Adam Hochschild (“King Leopold’s Ghost”, “To End All Wars”) argues that history has largely forgotten the most valuable member of the abolition movement: Thomas Clarkson. Clarkson was in charge of gathering and disseminating information across the British Isles. He fought for years to end the slave trade and then slavery itself.
This movement is important for many reasons. It was the first to use logos, a coordinated marketing campaign, and it established a high bar for investigative journalism. It was also an ecumenical movement.
In this episode we explore slavery, the importance of slave rebellions, the power of ecumenical efforts, and the book “Bury the Chains“.
Helpful discussion questions:
- Had you heard of Thomas Clarkson before this episode?
- Do you participate in any cross-denominational movements? Where do you draw the line?
- Has your church ever participated in anti-racism movements?
- Was there any wisdom in ending the slave trade first?
- Why do you think John Newton didn’t give up the slave trade as soon as he became a Christian?
- Was it possible to be a Christian and own slaves?
- Do you think humanity will ever go back to slavery?
- Do modern payday loans keep people in bondage in the way that debt kept people in bondage in the 1700s?
- Link to slave ship diagram (very interesting)
- Episode Photo from the Library of Congress. FYI – it is not from the correct era or place.
What ended the British slave trade?
- Slave revolts in places like Haiti
- The high cost of ending slave revolts
- Freedom was in the air after the American Revolution and the French Revolution
- Public opinion
- Women in the 1800s boycotted sugar to protest slavery