When Edwards Described
You Felt The Flames
I’m not sure what you would call it but the congregation’s response to Jonathan Edward’s famous sermon, Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, was not a revival.
He wasn’t speaking to heretics, hecklers or blasphemers. In fact, his hearers weren’t even skeptical. They were regular congregants and they were anything but slack. They endured long, dry, complicated, and often irrelevant or condemning discussions on Bible topics every week.
Deadening, yes, but showing up every week was a sign of determined commitment. They weren’t indifferent.
The services were probably lifeless – the effect had to be numbing – but we can’t blame the attenders for that and there is no reason to accuse them of being spiritually casual.
Mr. Edwards was clearly a very intelligent man with a remarkable ability to articulate his thoughts. But in spite of these abilities those who heard him found his theology difficult to assimilate. [Read more…]