Compare And Contrast Jonathan Edwards And Sinners In The Hands Of An Angry God

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In every aspect of their lives, the goal of the Puritans was to make a society that would be in every way, connected to God. In “Sinner in the Hands of an Angry God” by Jonathan Edwards and “The Minister’s Black Veil” by Nathaniel Hawthorne, the two authors convey Puritan beliefs in two very different ways. Edwards projects these ideas by putting fear into his people, while Hawthorne takes a less critical approach to express his Puritan beliefs. While Hawthorne’s style is gloomy and strange, Jonathan Edwards challenges the reader’s understanding of Puritan ideals of religion by using symbolism, imagery, and details to steer his congregation away from sin and toward God. “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” and “The Minister’s Black Veil” both use symbolism to contribute to the impact of Puritanical values on their congregations; however, Edwards utilizes symbolism more effectively. He uses symbolism to create fear when he says, “The bow of God’s wrath is bent, and the arrow made ready on the string, and justice bends the arrow at your heart, and strains the bow…” (paragraph 8). He uses the bow to symbolize God’s anger with the people of Edwards’s congregation by being straightforward with them, while Hawthorne’s use of symbolism is more difficult to comprehend. In contrast, Hawthorne uses symbolism to give the black veil a greater purpose than it actually has when he explains, “It shook with his measured breath, as he gave out the psalm; it threw its obscurity between him
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