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Posted on April 17th, 2014, by

The sermon Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God is considered to be one of the most famous, but also infamous sermons delivered by Jonathan Edwards. Thus, we are going to talk about the sermon with more details, and to discuss its connection to Calvinist theology.

Analyzing the main ideas presented in the sermon Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, we see that it fits into Calvinist theology in many aspects. For instance, both the main Calvinistic principles and Edwards’ sermon present God as an almighty ruler of everything on the Earth (the universe ruler), explaining this statement by the fact that everything good or bad that happen in human life has its place only according to the divine permission of God. Moreover, Edwards used sacred texts in his sermon to be more argumentative in his words, and it also is a component of Calvinist influence on human minds. But the main difference is in the attitude to predestination because Calvinists were sure that predestination not depends on human thoughts and activities, while Edwards stressed that sinful acts and thoughts lead people to the hell, while sinless life gives a possibility to find a salvation and forgiveness in God’s face.

Observing the sermon and its language, we see that it is rather frightening and full of bright examples to convince people to change their attitude to life, to become more kind and open their hearts to God. Of course, Edwards as a preacher knew all the sacred texts better than ordinary people, and each time, when he expressed some thought, he always supported it by passages from the Scriptures. As a result, every Edwards’ thought and word were aimed to change people’s minds and led to the awakening of emotional experiences among the sermon’s listeners.

Thus, the sermon Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God helped people to realize the right way of development in the frames of spiritual education, and greatly impacted on the human acts in the period of the First Great Awakening in colonial America.

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