Daniel Defoe was born into a English Christian home in 1661. As a young man he fell in love with the word of God, and during a period when there were few copies of the Bible, he was one of many to copy it in short hand for future use. Being a good writer, he began to write anti-government articles and political satire. On this day (January 10) in 1702 the government put an ad in the London Gazette offering a £50 reward for the person who would help in his apprehension. Subsequently, he was discovered and after being pilloried, Defoe spent time in jail. At some point God blessed the man with saving grace and eventually Daniel Defoe became a Baptist.
Yes, this is the same Daniel Defoe who wrote the classic novel “Robinson Crusoe.” Sadly the “Robinson Crusoe” which is published and given to children today is not the version Defoe originally wrote. His was filled throughout with the gospel of Jesus Christ. For example, in his 1888 edition the following paragraph can be found:
“I took the Bible; and beginning at the New Testament, began seriously to read it…. I found my heart more deeply and sincerely affected with the wickedness of my past life…. I was earnestly begging of God to give me repentance, when it happened providentially, the very day, that, reading the Scripture, came to these words: ‘He is exalted a Prince and a Saviour, to give repentance and give remission.’ I threw down the book; and with my heart as well as my hands lifted up to heaven, in a kind of ecstasy of joy, cried out aloud, ‘Jesus, thou Son of David! Jesus, thou exalted Prince and Saviour! give me repentance!’ This was the first time I could say, in the true sense of the word, that I prayed in all my life; for now I prayed with a sense of condition, and with a true Scripture view of hope, founded on the encouragement of the word of God; and from this time, I may say, that I began to have hope that God would hear me.”