Readings can be compared and contrasted using different elements of literature. In this case Sinners In The Hands of An Angry God by Jonathan Edwards and Speech To The Virginia Convention by Patrick Henry will be compared and contrasted using language, persuasion, and audience.
Jonathan Edwards uses harsh and descriptive language throughout the whole selection such as "how dreadful is the state of those that are daily and hourly in the danger of this great wrath and infinite misery." There is also a constant repetition of words that pertain to hell and sometimes the word itself is also used. Edwards also uses several metaphors and similes such as "The bow of God's wrath is bent" and "The wrath of God is like great waters that are damned for the present." Patrick Henry also uses metaphors in his piece as well as rhetorical questions, repetitions, and allusions. He uses the phrase "to avert the storm which is now coming" as a metaphor for the war that is about to begin. The constant repetition of countless rhetorical questions and the use of exclamation points is obvious. One can easily tell the emotion he is putting into his speech. He also alludes to different books like The Odyssey and the Bible. Both of these authors used powerful and emotional language.
Both Jonathan Edwards and Patrick Henry were extremely persuasive in their own way. Edwards really has a way with words. After reading Sinners . it seemed like he was trying to frighten people into being holy, but the scary thing is that it seemed like he really believed everything he was saying. The reason he did is probably because he was born between Puritanism and the Age of Reason. Puritans saw God as actively involved in the workings of the universe, and rationalists saw God as a creator who left things to run on their own. All of this probably influenced his way of thinking about God and the universe. He expressed his opinion by using metaphors, similes, and harsh, descriptive language.