Essay On Sinners In The Hands Of An Angry God

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In one of his most renowned sermons of all time entitled Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, Jonathan Edwards states “Nothing keeps wicked men out of hell, but the mere pleasure of God” (156). Throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, God was a prominent figure in many works of American literature. He was thought to hold a tremendous amount of power over humans, as well as every aspect of their daily lives. Edwards’s statement allows readers to take a glimpse at God’s destructive power by mentioning his capability to take men down to hell whenever he chooses to. In fact, all throughout his speech Edwards works to inform his congregation of God’s ability to destroy unbelievers by using many types of figurative language and diction, as well as…show more content…
In the beginning of the speech he reads a bible verse, which says “their foot shall slide in due time” (155). He uses a foot sliding on a slippery surface to represent how people are sent to eternal corruption. Edwards explains that destruction of the human soul is sudden and certainly unexpected. Likewise, when people walk on slippery surfaces there is always a chance that they can fall without warning. The author also tells the audience that humans sin all by themselves and can’t blame anyone else for their mistakes. Similarly, people who walk on slippery surfaces fall by themselves and “need nothing but their own weight to throw them down” (156). All in all, Edwards uses symbolism as a way to create clarity and meaning for his listeners. To conclude, in Jonathan Edwards’s sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, he informs his congregation of God’s immense power by using forms of figurative language and diction, as well as symbolism. It became very evident that God was to be the most cherished thing in the lives of people in early America. Edwards wanted to encourage faith in others and ultimately reinforce the religion of early
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