Comparison and Contrast of Two Sermons, "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" and "A Message from Hell"
The major components of an impressive and inspiring exhortation are found in sermons written by both the famous preacher Jonathan Edwards and a local pastor Ed Andrews. These factors assist the audience in deciding their destiny, whether to repent their sins and reform their previous habits or to change or to continue living a purposeless life. Between "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" and "A Message from Hell," similarities prevail in the direction and emphasis of the sermon and its primary ideas; however, inconsistencies and diversities exist in the syntactical style and the strength of tone.
Both "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" and "A Message from Hell" display congruities in theme, expressing the importance of salvation and the terror of hell. Jonathan Edwards delivers his sermon to awaken the audience and to increase the awareness of hell and how to avoid damnation. Also in "A Message from Hell," Ed Andrews' message warns the audience of the horror of hell and persuades them to acquire salvation. Both authors deliver their sermons to foment the emotions of the audience to take advantage of the situation and express the urgency of repentance.
Edwards and Andrews both preach of the darkness and terror in hell and want to spread the word of Jesus Christ to ensure that those unsaved can escape this trepidation of hell. Trying to inform the audience of the same message, these two authors use different means of persuasion. While Andrews expresses God's love and want for those to repent, Edwards uses grisly details and preaches that God is angry and wants to castigate the heinous sinners. Edwards intimidates the congregation and shows the harsh side of God, while Andrews consoles the lost telling the audience of God's desire to see everyone in Heaven with him. Although the two pastors use different methods of conveying their themes, the ideas are similar. Wishing that the whole audience would accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, both authors want to elicit a response from them immediately.
Contrasting in word choice, syntax, and formality, the styles of "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" and "A Message from Hell" differ exceedingly. Edwards uses formal language, metaphorical comparisons, complex syntax, and lurid vocabulary to add meaning and emphasis to the message of his sermon. Because of the time period in which this sermon was written, in 1741, Edward's vocabulary differs greatly from the Modern English. He uses standard King's English to make the sermon formal and to leave a more drastic impression on the audience. The use of metaphor is predominant throughout "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" while Edwards compares hell and God's wrath to many different things to paint a colorful picture of his ideas and perceptions. By using graphic and intense imagery, he helps the audience grasp the reality of his descriptions. Utilizing pathos, such as, "the flames gather and flash about them, and would fain lay hold on them and swallow them up," (Edwards 37) the sharp and harsh examples stir the emotions of the congregation. Edwards' word choice and style contributes radically to the final remarkable effect left on the audience.
Andrews, on the other hand, utilizes basic methods of style to appeal to the audience, including informal language, simple syntax, clear imagery, occasional anaphora, and an abundance of examples. The difference in time accounts for some of the diversities in the two sermons because the language and sentence structure had changed in the 250 years between these religious teachings. Andrews' jaded and hackneyed elementary sentence structure shows that his message will be simple and succinct, displaying the consequences of not accepting Christ and then explaining how to go about accepting Christ. The vast amount of imagery applied in "A Message from Hell" describes to the audience the reality of hell; he does not hide the terror and grieving that belongs there. Andrews uses a modicum of anaphora in his sermon to emphasize and add focus to his points by repetition of the same words. For example, by the reiteration of the simple statement, "Hell is real" (Andrews 2), he impacts the idea into the minds of the