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Puritanism - Hawthorne's View


            What is Puritanism? Encarta Online describes it as the :.
             "movement arising within the Church of England in the latter part of the 16th century that sought to purify, or reform, that church and establish a middle course between Roman Catholicism and the ideas of the Protestant.".
             But Puritanism is more than just a religious movement. Puritanism is also described as strict religious morals and beliefs in the Almighty God. John Edward's Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God, shows you how much power the Puritans believed God has and how easily he it would be for him to seek retribution. They believed that God controlled their every moves and if he was unsatisfied with them, they would die and go to hell. .
             "That the reason why they are not fallen already, and do not fall now is only that God's appointment time is not come. For it is said, that when that due time or appointed times comes, their foot shall slide. Then they shall be left to fall, as they are inclined by their own weight. God will not hold them up in these slippery places any longer, but will let them go; and then, at that very instant, they shall fall into destruction; as he stands on such slippery declining ground, on the edge of a pit, he cannot stand alone, when he is let go he immediately falls and is lost." (Edwards 642) .
             Then he goes on to say, .
             "Men's hands cannot be strong when God rises up. The strongest have no power to resist Him, nor can any deliver out of his Hands." (Edwards 642).
             What he's saying is that if you live in a sinful way or reject God, you will fall when God wants you to fall. If you live a humble and pure life, you will not fall until your time is up. Edwards even goes into depth saying that God had never promised anyone Eternal Life or to keep anyone out of the eternal depths of hell. The puritans lived a pure and humble life out of fear, fear that God would send them all to hell for their sins. But at the same time, they also believed in Predestination, but predestination in a different sense.


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