In "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God," what does Jonathan Edwards say sinners must obtain, and what must sinners do to obtain it?

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rmhope eNotes educator| Certified Educator

At the conclusion of his sermon, Edwards says that those who are sinners, who have not yet been born again, must obtain salvation in order to escape God's wrath. As long as his listeners haven't died yet, they are "in the Land of the Living, and in the House of God, and have an Opportunity to obtain Salvation."

Edwards tells his listeners that this is a day of opportunity they should not let slip past them. Jesus is standing at the door and calling them, offering them mercy. Many are entering the Kingdom of God by coming to Jesus. People need to wake up and pay attention. They should join all the others who are "renouncing all youthful vanities, and flocking to Christ."

He emphasizes that a great awakening is happening: Many people, young and old, are turning to Christ. He urges his listeners not to miss out or they will regret it forever. They should join the ranks of those who are being converted. Finally, in the last paragraph of his sermon, he urges anyone who is not already "in Christ" to "awake and fly from the wrath to come." They should "escape to the Mountain," that is, Jesus Christ, so that they will obtain mercy and salvation.

scarletpimpernel eNotes educator| Certified Educator

According to Edwards, sinners must obtain grace.  The preachers talks of the "covenant of grace," under which many from all around world feast at Christ's table because they have fled to him, repented of their sins, and entered into his fellowship.  They are no longer "loathsome insects" being dangled over a fiery pit.

In order to obtain the grace of God, sinners must believe in his power, wrath, and authority, and above all--listen.  Edwards explains that

"now you have an extraordinary opportunity, a day wherein Christ has thrown the door of mercy wide open, and stands in calling and crying with a loud voice to poor sinners; a day wherein many are flocking to him, and pressing into the kingdom of God."

If "sinners" simply "hearken" or listen to Christ's call, He will remove them from their precarious position.

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

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