Restoration History #2

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  1. Protestant Reformation

    16th century challenges to authority of the Pope in Western Europe

    “Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason - I do not accept the authority of the popes and councils ... my conscience is captive to the Word of God.” -- Martin Luther

    “We acknowledge and confess that we now ... have two sacraments only, instituted by the Lord Jesus ... baptism and the supper, or table of the Lord Jesus.” -- Scottish Confession of Faith (1560)

    Legacy of the Reformation

    1. Papal authority rejected
    2. Biblical authority emphasized
    3. Worship simplified
    4. Baptism and Communion essential sacraments

  2. The Enlightenment

    René Descartes (1596-1650)

    Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626)

    John Locke (1632-1704)

    Thomas Reid (1710-1796)

    Legacy of the Enlightenment

    1. Emphasis on Human Reason
    2. Truth is perceived through experience and human senses
    3. Common Sense - “We know things directly and do not infer them through ideas.”

  3. Religious Revival

    Legacy of the Revivals

    1. Church autonomy
    2. Evangelicalism - personal saving faith rather than routine membership in the national church
    3. Fractured fellowships - Presbyterians & Anglicans especially

  4. American Democracy

    Great Seal of the United States
    the Great Seal of the United States
    ANNUIT COEPTIS = He has smiled on our beginnings
    NOVUS ORDO SECLORUM = A New Order of the Ages
    “There’s an all-seeing eye ...”

    God’s Promised Land

    Freedom from Church Control

    The U.S. Constitution

    Primitive Religion

    Christians Only

    Religious Freedom

    Legacy of American Democracy

    1. Millennial expectations
    2. Independence from older state churches
    3. Primitive, simple religion
    4. Independent churches - religious freedom

Chris Benjamin

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Evening Sermon, 9 March 2008

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