Posts Tagged Reformation

John Knox: Rescuing History from Mythology

Chapter One: The myth that Knox ushered in the Scottish Reformation False claims regarding Knox as the Pioneer of Scotland’s Reformation      John Knox, alias John Sinclair, is generally seen as the main pillar of the Scottish Reformation and his works are often regarded amongst evangelicals as the purest source of its history. Thus, James Edward McGoldrick, starts his Preface to his Luther’s Scottish Connections, with the words:      ‘There is no doubt whatever that the Protestant Reformation in Scotland received its principle direction from the indomitable John Knox, a rigorous and courageous adherent to the Reformed version of evangelical teaching as espoused in Geneva by John Calvin and his disciples.’     … Full Article

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Francis Lambert and the Pan-European Reformation

Francis Lambert and the Pan-European Reformation        The Reformation in Europe around 1510-1530 was built on that of the preceding two centuries. In England Grosseteste, Bradwardine, Wycliffe and the Lollards had done great reforming work as also the Hussites, the Bohemian Brethren and the Waldensians on the Continent. There never was a century without Reformation somewhere in Europe and her influence on other countries. Such early reforms were prior to the denominational counter-Reformation which broke up the inter-Protestant and pan-European international revivals of true religion in those times. The break-up resulted in much Reformed knowledge being lost and inter-church renewal was forgotten where denominations replaced… Full Article

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The Real Luther

The Real Luther A Friar at Erfurt and Wittenberg  Exploring Luther’s Life with Melanchthon as Guide By Franz Posset Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, 2011      Having read so many dissatisfactory commentaries and biographies on Martin Luther recently, I determined not to spend any more time on modern ‘revolutionary’ theories regarding him. Personally, I believe that though Luther lagged behind Reformers such as Tyndale, Jewel, Bucer and Bullinger, on such doctrines as Justification, the Work of God’s Word on the Soul, Repentance and Christology, he is preferable to Calvin. However, my decision to ignore unimaginative new perspectives on Luther did not last long. This December, I was introduced to Franz Posset’s… Full Article

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Reformation: Europe’s House Divided By Diarmaid MacCulloch

Reformation: Europe’s House Divided By Diarmaid MacCulloch Penguin Books, 2004      Penguin adorns the covers of their new 832 paged paper-back on the Reformation by Diarmaid MacCulloch with 22 eulogistic blurbs announcing it as wonderful, sardonic, monumental, dazzling, breathtaking, magisterial, eloquent, a triumph, astonishing, masterly, blockbusting, superb, a milestone, a masterpiece of learning, and ‘in its field it is the best book ever written’. Who could resist buying such a book to be on top of Reformation research? It has gained the Wolfson Prize for History, for apparently providing everything “from politics to witchcraft, from liturgy to sex”. It has won the British Academy Book Award because ‘Its… Full Article

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The Donatists and Their Relation to Church and State

The new search for historical roots      Nowadays, Christians are becoming increasingly interested in the history of their churches and in the search for giants of the faith in the past who might be used as models for their future. Perhaps never before has this longing to know more about the past so motivated the churches. Of course, there are great spiritual treasures to be found in church history and much to be learnt through past triumphs and failures. However, there is also a danger in this preoccupation with the past against which we must be warned. As our churches grow sadly less and less dependent on Scripture, we tend to look for historical roots for our support. So many once Bible-believing churches who scorned tradition… Full Article

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Men Not Gods

     This letter was sent to the English Churchman to balance off a number of letters and articles claiming that the English Church of the Reformation had become corrupt and the rebellion of Oliver Cromwell and the Enlightenment philosophy of Samuel Rutherford put England back on the Reformation path.   Men of Two Natures      Sir: Both Oliver Cromwell and Samuel Rutherford were not gods but men of two natures. Today, Protestants are re-discovering Cromwell ‘warts and all’ and are beginning to realise that Rutherford had a similar verrucosis. Indeed, the political and religious carbuncles that Cromwell had were partly due to the contagious state of Rutherford’s own. Of course, Rutherford said many fine things, so did… Full Article

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Anglicans and Presbyterians

Dear Sir,      Despite Mr. Wilson firm recommendation, my books do not contain the subject matter he associates with them. However, it is fashionable to denigrate the Tudors and Stuarts and, as Hanko and Gay, and pronounce Anglican Reformers guilty by association. This argument would weigh equally on the Continentals who were patronised by the like-questionable Prince Maurice. Dutch Presbyterianism was the seat of Arminianism and it cannot be doubted that in 1619 the English Reformation was in better shape.      The Dutch told Carleton re Episcopacy: “they did much honour and reverence the good order and discipline of the church of England; and, with all their hearts, would be glad to have it established among them; but… Full Article

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