Edwards, Jonathan 
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Time Period
10/5/1703  - 3/22/1758
As a Congregational preacher in Northampton, MA, Edwards defended traditional Calvinist thought and upheld the sovereignty of God, which he believed was eroding as a result of Arminianism, belief that human activity could help earn salvation. His sermons denouncing Arminianism in 1734 led to the start of the First Great Awakening.

He also defended revivals in colonial America. Although Edwards’ preaching style was calm, ironically including his famous "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" (1741), he found that revivals produced religious fervor and concerns for new birth.

Edwards’ legacy is extensive. He was an early frontrunner for Protestant missionary work and wrote more than 1,200 sermons. His many theological books, like A Treatise Concerning Religious Affections (1746), had a long-lasting impact on religious thought. For these reasons, many consider Edwards the greatest American theologian.
Interactive Timeline(s)
Prominent Religious Events and People in American History
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Religious Groups
Timeline Entries for the same religious group Congregationalists (UCC)
Congregationalists (UCC): Other ARDA Links

Life of David Brainerd Published
Jonathan Edwards Preaches 'Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God'
The First Great Awakening
The First Great Awakening

Jonathan Edwards portrait- Internet Archive- from The History of Connecticut by G. H. Hollister

Sinners in the hands of an angry god, title page- Library of Congress, Rare Book and Special Collections Division
Book/Journal Source(s)
Queen, Edward, Stephen Prothero and Gardiner Shattuck, 1996. The Encyclopedia of American Religious History. New York: Facts on File.
Reid, Daniel, Robert Linder, Bruce Shelley, and Harry Stout, 1990. Dictionary of Christianity in America. Downers Grove, IL.
Web Source(s)
Jonathan Edwards' Encyclopedia Britannica Entry
Web Page Contributor
Benjamin T. Gurrentz
Affliated with: Pennsylvania State University, Ph.D. in Sociology

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