Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Lincoln and LeadershipMilitary, Political, and Religious Decision Making$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Randall M. Miller

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780823243440

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823243440.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM FORDHAM SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Fordham University Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FSO for personal use (for details see http://www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 26 September 2017

Abraham Lincoln Moral Leader

Abraham Lincoln Moral Leader

The Second Inaugural as America's Sermon to the World

Chapter:
(p.78) 4 Abraham Lincoln Moral Leader
Source:
Lincoln and Leadership
Author(s):

Harry S. Stout

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823243440.003.0004

This chapter by Harry S. Stout addresses Lincoln’s place as a moral leader by emphasizing the significance of Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address as a reflection of his evolving understanding of Providential history and as a moral commentary on the war. It argues that the Address is best regarded as a sermon, which Lincoln and such contemporaries as Frederick Douglass understood it to be, and as such ranks with Jonathan Edwards’s “Sinners in the Hand of an Angry God” as America’s greatest sermon on divine punishment for the collective sins of the people, which Lincoln identified as slavery and for which Americans North and South were complicit. It analyzes the speech in the context of Lincoln’s growing Providentialism and as an example of the Puritan jeremiad in style and substance. It concludes that the Address calls America to account for the suffering of the slaves and what slavery wrought in a civil war that was but one measure of an angry God demanding that America, as a chosen nation like Israel of old, must confess its sins and pay for them. Only then might America have peace with itself and all nations and realize its promise.

Keywords:   Second Inaugural Address, Presidential inauguration of 1865, Providential history, Jeremiad sermon, Slavery as sin, Civil War

Fordham Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .