How does Jonathan Edwards maintain that God is good while speaking negatively about him at the same time?

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huntress eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Jonathan Edwards spends most of this classic sermon detailing exactly how powerful and incensed God is and how anxious he is to drop us human worms into the maw of hell to suffer the torment we've heard forever, but he only gets around to talking about the Grace of God at the end. Here, he reminds his congregation that "Christ has flung the Door of Mercy Wide open." He says that people from all directions are coming daily to Christ and when they repent of their sins and accept God's grace, they are in "a happy State, with their Hearts filled with Love to Him that has loved them and washed them for their Sins in his own Blood," and there they "rejoyce" in the "Hope of the Glory of God." 

On the day He calls everyone to him, you don't want to be in the masses of condemned, but among God's chosen, who will be "feasting," and "rejoycing and singing for Joy of Heart." 

In other words, God is wonderful, really, except for his temper problem--but you can avoid that if you just give yourself to Christ. 

Read the study guide:
Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God

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