Akil Hodge 9-17-10 2nd / U.S. Lit. Analysis: Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God The Great Awakening was a religious movement that shocked the world and brought unbelieving people into the life of a Christian. Jonathan Edwards was a powerful, influential figure in this movement and was known for his visual sermons. His method of preaching was using fear to frighten people to convert. One of his most powerful sermons, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God”, used many rhetorical strategies to persuade his unsaved audience to become saved to avoid the torment of hell.
Edwards negated the fact that salvation could be attained through good works, emphasizing that the only way to salvation was depending on God’s grace. In his sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” he vividly describes the tortures of hell. While describing hell, he said, “It is a great furnace of wrath, a wide and bottomless pit, full of the fire of wrath that you are held over in the hand of that God whose wrath is provoked and incensed as much against you as against many of the damned in hell”(handout). Edwards had a very strict preaching style, but it was his vivid imagery of hell that inspired many people to work their hardest to reach salvation. Several years after Edwards began preaching, George Whitefield started a different style of evangelical preaching.
Edwards uses a stricter and more straight up approach at speaking to his audience. He uses the word “You” a lot to show that it affects each and every one of them individually. This sermon in detail explains what happens to you with your sins and God. For example, using figurative language he says, “Your Wickedness makes you as it were heavy as Lead, ...”. This sentence shows how sins affect you in life.
All people are born sinners. Natural men must be reborn to be saved; “…hell is waiting for them…” (Edwards 46). These views are that of Jonathan Edwards in Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God. Edwards belonged to a religion that was lingering and was close to disappearing due to the growing numbers of Christians, so he used figurative language and imagery in order to scare people back into the Puritan way of life. “Your wickedness makes you as it were heavy as lead, and to tend downward with great weight and pressure toward hell.” (Edwards 47).
Edward’s diction and tone gives his listeners and readers an eerie feeling, a fear for sin, and an awakening for the wrath of God about to come. On the other hand, there is Equiano, who persuades the horrors of slavery in attempt to abolish the slave trade. He appeals to our senses with phrases such as “galling of the chains”, “shrieks of the women” and “groans of the dying” (73), giving his audience a feeling of sympathy. With these statements he makes people question the morality of the situation, in order to get his point across, that slavery brutalizes everyone; the slaves, their overseers, plantation wives, and the whole of
In both Divine Things and Sinners of An Angry God was Edwards passionate and adoring of the almighty God in his writing. The malicious personality of Jonathan Edwards in Sinners of An Angry God was the complete contrary of his persona in Divine Things. In Sinners of An Angry God, I witnessed a burning passion about the fierce wrath of God. For example, Edwards said “His wrath towards you burns like fire”. Jonathan Edwards’s purpose for writing this sermon was to terrify the general public into coming to church and that would help hold his dominant position in the conjugation.
The Screwtape Letters is a book that uses Christian morals and values and takes the opposite side of them to try and condemn a young man to an afterlife in Hell. In the second chapter of the book the “patient” becomes saved and turns to God. He is not really sure what being saved is yet though. One thing that Screwtape tells Wormwood to use against the patient is the church. He would look at all the funny looking people in church and concentrate on them instead of what he was supposed to hear.
Jesus chose to begin his ministry by being baptized by John the Baptist. John and Jesus alike called for repentance. The main theme of Jesus’ teaching was the kingdom of God. He performed many miracles of healing but asked that they be kept quiet for fear that they would be misinterpreted. But soon the news got out and large crowds followed him.
Garrett Hall Ms. Roberts English 3 Honors February 1, 2013 Imagery in Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God Jonathan Edwards uses fear as his motivation in his sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” by using gruesome imagery to elicit his audience to be born again. Edwards gives his audience two choices, God and to be reborn again or death and hell to follow. This feeling of hopelessness makes his audience scared of their choices, if they in fact do choose the wrong thing. In the excerpt, Edwards states “Your wickedness makes you as it were heavy as lead, and to tend downward with great weight and pressure toward hell; and if god should let you go, you would immediately sink and swiftly descend and plunge into the bottomless gulf, and your healthy constitution, and your own care and prudence, and best contrivance, and all your righteousness, would have no more influence to uphold you and keep you out of hell, than a spider’s web would have to stop a fallen rock (Edwards 47)”. This is a metaphor to vividly depict the overall weakness and meagerness of humans.
They believed that god was punishing humans for their sins and that god uses plagues, miserable famines, conflicts, wars and others to make people suffer who have done any harm(Answers). During the late 1340’s, this reason shows that civilians were extremely religious which made them believe that this was true since they thought god was involved in everything.Also, it shows the lack of knowledge in medicine in the world because they were going clueless on what caused the disease. This made the belief more common which encouraged churches and others to believe that the most ideal and practical answer was that they were being tested on for their cruelty. Those who thought God was disciplining them thought that the cure was to pray and punish themselves until they got back on God’s good side which reapplies to the idea of people being super religious during the 1300’s. Religiously Committed Catholics would whip themselves and would cry for God’s forgiveness showing that they believed this belief by a lot.