“Methodism was born in song”: John and Charles Wesley’s Hymns are recognised to have been among the most powerful media of Methodist influence, and one may wonder whether without them the Methodist revival would have enjoyed quite the same impact. The Wesley brothers set great store by the fact that their people should sing the same doctrine in their hymns as they heard and read in their sermons; but Charles’s poetic medium of discourse prevailed over John’s serious prose: far more of his hymns were sung by Christians than any of the sermons was ever heard or read. Even though published sermons sold very widely and reached large numbers of literate people, the hymns “gave wings to the doctrines of the evangelical revival�…
van Noppen, Jean-Pierre. "Wesleyan Hymns". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 December 2005; last revised 30 November -1.
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/stopics.php?rec=true&UID=1644, accessed 28 April 2015.]