The Great Awakening By Jonathan Edwards Essay

The Great Awakening By Jonathan Edwards Essay

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1) Jonathan Edwards delivered this sermon during the first Great Awakening, a time of religious revival in Europe and America. During the Great Awakening, christianity shifted its focus from ceremonies and rituals, and began to realign itself with introspection to encourage fostering a deep sense of morality and redemption. Edwards was a key preacher and minister that delivered many sermons preaching about revival and reformed theology.
2) Edwards sermon was directed towards non believers and those have turned away from the light of god, and in his words “sinners.” And while describing the fiery wrath of the “Angry God,” Edwards states, “The use of this awful subject may be for awakening unconverted persons in this congregation.” By focusing on this group of people, Edwards instills a sense of fear within the audience of “sinners.”
3) Edwards purpose in delivering this sermon was to inform “sinners” of the inevitable doom that god can create on a whim. He thus creates a sense of helplessness in his audience, and encourages them to submit to god and renew their faith in christianity.
4) Edwards holds a consistent tone throughout this sermon by stating “inconceivable fury”, “dreadful”, and “abhors”. The tone Edwards creates is aggressive and makes the audience feel helpless and fearful of god. In doing so, he hopes to convert non believers, because he believes
that the unconverted people will do all they can in order to ensure they won’t be doomed to the “dreadful pit of the glowing flames of the wrath of god.”
5) Edwards employs three different extended metaphors: sins as lead, wrath of god like great waters, and the bow and arrow. Edwards first metaphor compared “wickedness” to lead that is as heavy as lead. He then continues...


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... this piece. His uses of parallelism allows Edwards to exponentially build a sense of fear and it is maintained throughout this sermon. The audience also begins to feel a sense of fear and helplessness in Edward 's first paragraph, which he will also maintain throughout this piece. Additionally, Edward engages repetition in his speech in order to continuously build fear and suspense in his audience. Edward begins to use the noun “you” after the second paragraph in order to make his argument more personal and more emotional. By saying the words “you” and “your” Edwards is speaking directly to his audience, in doing so he makes the audience envision themselves in the positions that Edwards describes and will make them subconsciously feel the need to convert to christianity because they are now fearful of god, and the only way to abate this fear is to repent and convert.

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