The son of a Nottinghamshire farmer, Booth became a stocking weaver in his teens. He had no formal schooling and was compelled to teach himself to read and to write. His early Christian experience was spent among the General, i.e. Arminian, Baptists, but by 1768 he had undergone a complete revolution in his soteriology and had become a Calvinist. Not long after this embrace of Calvinism he wrote The Reign of Grace, from Its Rise to Its Consummation (1768), which the 20th-century Scottish theologian John Murray regarded as ‘one of the most eloquent and moving expositions of the subject of divine grace in the English language’.