We had to day a Doctor Haven,1 from Portsmouth to preach; to day: he took his text from Psalm XXIII. 1. The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want: in the forenoon, and in the afternoon, from I Corinthians. I: 18. For the preaching of the Cross is to them that perish; foolishness: but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. I did not by any means like him so well, as I did Mr. Thatcher last Week. He is neither an extraordinary writer, nor speaker. ’Tis said he is an humble imitator of the famous Whitfield;2 which does not by any means raise my opinion of him. He talk’d a good deal about shepherds; and the Cross, and those that perish &c. but I heard nothing very edifying to me, in the whole day.
1. Samuel Haven, minister of the South Congregational Church of Portsmouth, N.H., 1752–1806 (Sibley-Shipton, Harvard Graduates, description begins John Langdon Sibley and Clifford K. Shipton, Biographical Sketches of Graduates of Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Cambridge and Boston, 1873- . description ends 12:382–390).
2. George Whitefield, the English evangelical missionary and New Light apostle, who made several trips to America between 1738 and 1769 during the Great Awakening. JQA shared the views of Whitefield that his father had expressed as an undergraduate. Compare JA, Earliest Diary, description begins The Earliest Diary of John Adams, ed. L. H. Butterfield and others, Cambridge, 1966. description ends p. 33.