A critical presentation of the writings of John Wesley has long been needed, especially in view of the quickened interest in him and his ecumenical churchmanship. This edition is planned to consist of thirty-four volumes including all of Wesley's original or mainly original prose works--his letters, sermons, journals and diaries as well as his specifically doctrinal writings. The final volumes will contain a bibliography of the works of John and Charles Wesley and a General Index. The text for this edition represents Wesley's thought in its fullest and most deliberate expression. All substantive variant readings are noted in appendixes, and introductions and footnotes elucidate the text.
This volume, containing The Appeals to Men of Reason and Religion, is the first to be published. The aim of Wesley's Appeals was to correct current misconceptions of his movement. In the course of refuting attacks upon himself, Wesley also presented a positive statement of his theological and ecclesiastical position. Yet the attacks continued. This volume contains also his open letters replying to Edmund Gibson, Bishop of Exeter, and to William Warburton, Bishop of Gloucester.