Essay A Narrative Of The Captivity And Restauration Of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson

Essay A Narrative Of The Captivity And Restauration Of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson

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Because of their Puritanical beliefs, it is no surprise that the major theme that runs throughout Mary Rowlandson and Jonathan Edwards’s writings is religion. This aspect of religion is apparent in not only the constant mentions about God himself, but also in the heavy use of biblical scriptures. In their respective writings, Rowlandson and Edwards utilize scripture, but for different purposes; one uses it to convey that good and bad events happen solely because of God’s will, and the other uses it, in one instance, to illustrate how it brought him closer to God, and, in another instance, to justify his harsh claims about God’s powerful wrath.
In her account, A Narrative of the Captivity and Restauration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson, Rowlandson uses scripture to show that all the things happening to her throughout her captivity are happening because God destines it to be so. For instance, when she is the only survivor out of the thirty seven that lived in one house, she quotes Job 1:15, “And I only am escaped alone to tell the News.” (218). By quoting this verse, she is asserting that God decided to let her survive so that she could then tell others about her story. Another example takes place during the second remove, where she states “Then I took oaken leaves and laid to my side, and with the blessing of God it cured me also . . . as it is in Psal. 38. 5, 6. My wounds stink and are corrupt, I am troubled, I am bowed down greatly, and I go mourning all the day long.” (221). Rowlandson attributes God alone with curing her rather than the medicinal properties of the leaves, which further emphasizes her belief that God is responsible for all things. Moreover, after she is freed from captivity and returns home, she quotes Hebrews 12:6...


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...han any earthly king. He goes on to expand on God’s powerful wrath and asserts that “Nothing shall be withheld, because it is so hard for you to bear.” (329); he follows this up by quoting Ezekiel 8:18. Through once again following up his claims with a reference, Edwards proves that his argument of a non-pitying, wrathful God is biblically valid.
In summation, both Mary Rowlandson and Jonathan Edwards use direct quotes from the Bible in their writings, but they use it for differing purposes. Rowlandson utilizes scripture to reaffirm the Puritanical belief that all of her sufferings and triumphs are solely due to God’s will. Meanwhile, Edwards, in his respective writings, employs scripture to exemplify how it provides him the means with which to build a stronger bond with God and to provide biblical evidence that supports his views concerning God’s merciless wrath.

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