Reformed Christianity is rooted in the sixteenth-century reforms begun byMartin Luther(1483–1546), yet developed on a separate path. Such major reformers as Ulrich Zwingli (1484–1531) and John Calvin (1509–64), as well as Martin Bucer (1491–1551), John Knox (c. 1513–72), and Heinrich Bullinger (1504–75), gave impetus to the movement.
What does it mean for a Christian to be reformed?
So, a Christian is reformed if they are able to affirm any one or more of their major confessions. We may diagram this as follows: When we define the reformed tradition in this way several important implications follow.
What are Reformed teachings?
Reformed teachings are shared by denominations other than the Christian Reformed Church. What’s different is the emphasis that we might place on them. Cornelius Plantinga writes: Christianity as a religion of the Kingdom. For example, the Reformed faith teaches the Lordship of Jesus Christ over all creation.
What do Reformed believers do?
As a result, Reformed believers have invested a lot of their energy and resources in Christian education (Christian day schools, colleges, and seminaries), Christ-centered political/social action, and parachurch ministries to those in need.
What is the origin of the Reformed Church?
The Birth of the Reformed Churches. The Reformed Churches formed one branch of the Protestant churches that broke from the Roman Catholic Church of that day. They began in the sixteenth century in Switzerland under the leadership of Ulrich Zwingli and John Calvin.
What did the Reformed Divines agree on?
The reformed divines all agreed that in some sense the atonement had an infinite sufficiency and in another sense an efficiency for only the elect. These two affirmations allowed for a variety of positions on the extent of the atonement but they excluded the Arminian (or Remonstrant) position.
What are the five points of Calvinism?
Many contend that the so-called five points of Calvinism are what defines a “reformed” Christian. The five points are supposedly a summary of the Synod of Dort (1618-1619) using the acronym TULIP: T otal depravity, U nconditional election, L imited atonement, I rresistible grace, and final P erseverance.
What is a reformed Christian?
But what really is a “reformed” Christian? Historically “reformed” refers to a tradition within Christianity that arose out of the sixteenth century Reformation.
Why do some Christians use the word "reformed"?
Some Christians wield “Reformed” to bully others. For example, some use it to exclude: “You’re not really reformed because you don’t believe in limited atonement”. Others use the label to claim superiority: “We Reformed affirm God’s grace in salvation unlike you Arminians”.
What book of Concord defines the boundaries of belief for the Lutheran tradition?
The boundaries of belief for the Lutheran tradition were officially defined in the Book of Concord (1580), a collection of important Lutheran confessions and affirmations.
What were the two traditions of the Reformation?
However, at the Reformation two traditions emerged within the Protestant camp: Lutheran and Reformed. What originally distinguished the two was not predestination but the Lord’s Supper. Luther and his followers held that Christ’s body and blood were physically present in the bread and wine (the real presence).
Why do we use labels like "reformed"?
A label like ‘reformed’ helps us identify the unique characteristics of one strand within the Christian tradition; and to evaluate whether its emphases and reading of Scripture support our love and service toward God. However, labels do have value. They help us classify information to better understand it.
WHAT IS SACRED?
Reformed Christians do not recognize any human elements as sacred. That which is sacred is God —known in the Trinity as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. As Jesus Christ has ascended into heaven, there are no sacred objects, persons, or places on earth to be worshiped. To worship thus, in the Reformed view, is to practice idolatry, which gives undue honor to that which is not God. In general, this is the theological view of other Protestant churches. The use of symbols in worship and in other liturgical practices, however, is more prominent in some other Protestant bodies than among the Reformed.
What is a reformed church?
This central governing unit is composed of ministers and elders (elected leaders of local congregations) from a specific geographical area. In a congregational polity each local church has complete jurisdiction over its own church life .
What is reformed Christianity?
"Reformed" refers to a number of church bodies worldwide. The World Alliance of Reformed Churches, a voluntary organization, represents approximately 70 percent of the world’s Reformed Christians. In 2003 it had 218 churches in 107 countries with more than 75 million members (who subscribed to more than 60 different confessions of faith). Most churches are called Congregational, Presbyterian, Reformed, and United, and most are minorities in their countries.
What is weekly worship?
Weekly worship services are a central part of the Christian experience. The Reformed emphasize that worship is for the people of God, who gather to honor and worship him, to pray, to listen to his Word, to celebrate the sacraments, and to be nurtured in their lives of faith to serve God in the world in all they do. Worship services feature hymns, prayers, a sermon, the sacraments, an offering, and, often, announcements related to the local congregation.
What does the empty cross mean in Christianity?
The cross stands at the center of Christianity. Reformed Christians, like other Protestants, honor the empty cross of the resurrected Christ as a sacred symbol of their faith. An empty cross topped by a crown is often a symbol in Reformed churches, while historically a rooster adorning their steeples is a reminder of Christ’s coming return in judgment.
What were the main points of Calvinism?
The Synod of Dort (1618–19), in the Netherlands, rejected Jacobus Arminiu’s views on predestination and promulgated the five points of Calvinism: total depravity, unconditional election, limited atonement, irresistible grace, and perseverance of the saints (TULIP). Later the Westminster Assembly (1643–48), in England, produced the Westminster Confession of Faith (1647), which articulated doctrinal understandings and a presbyterian form of church government by elders through presbyteries. Church bodies that held theological beliefs similar to those of Presbyterians but who advocated a local, independent form of church government became known as Congregationalists.
Where do most of the world’s reformed Christians live?
During this period Reformed Christianity grew strongly in the Southern Hemisphere, where a majority of the world’s Reformed Christians now live. A large number of Reformed Christians are also found in Asia, with Presbyterians the largest Protestant group in South Korea. In western Europe and North America, Reformed Christians are a declining percentage of the population.
What is the Disciples of Christ?
The Disciples of Christ, a Free Church that originated in the United States, makes the New Testament the sole authority of doctrine and practice in the church, requiring no creedal subscription at all; a distinctive feature of their worship is their weekly celebration of Communion.
What denominations have tended to reject some of the Roman Catholic remnants?
Just as the Reformed denominations go beyond both Anglicanism and Lutheranism in their independence of Roman Catholic traditions and usages, so the Free Church denominations have tended to reject some of the Roman Catholic remnants also present in classical Presbyterian worship and theology.
What is the reformed theology?
Reformed theology has tended to emphasize the sole authority of the Bible with more rigour than has characterized the practice of Anglican or Lutheran thought, and it has looked with deeper suspicion upon the symbolic and sacramental traditions of the Catholic centuries.
What are the Protestant churches called?
Presbyterian and Reformed churches. Protestant bodies that owe their origins to the reformatory work of John Calvin and his associates in various parts of Europe are often termed Reformed, particularly in Germany, France, and Switzerland. In Britain and in the United States they have usually taken their name from their distinctive polity …
Which church professes to return to the primitive church and subordinate liturgy to the direct experience of the?
Pentecostal and Charismatic churches, which profess to return to the primitive church and subordinate liturgy to the direct experience of the Holy Spirit, were among the fastest-growing forms of Christianity by the early 21st century.
Who founded the Unity School?
Unity grew out of the teachings promulgated by the Unity School of Christianity, founded by the spiritual healers Charles and Myrtle Fillmore, but it has been a nondenominational religious movement since the mid-20th century.
Who are the Lutherans?
If your Catholic friends think you’re a Baptist, and your Baptist friends think you’re a Cat…
Why did Luther want to sell indulgences?
Luther was angry that the church and its pope, Leo X, used the sale of indulgences to raise funds to rebuild St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. He felt there was no scriptural basis for such sales.
What is the tallest church in the peninsula?
With its towering steeple, St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church (bottom right) at 405 King St. is the tallest building on the peninsula. File/Leroy Burnell/Staff
What was the main Christian church in 1054?
A schism in 1054 had led to the division of the main Christian church into Eastern Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism. The Protestant Reformation begun in 1517 eventually led to the formation of many Protestant denominations, including Baptists, Pentecostals, Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Anglicans and Methodists.
Did Luther’s indulgences spread?
Regardless, its contents spread widely and quickly. Printers had it translated from Latin to German. The formal debate over the sale of indulgences never materialized, but Luther found himself at the forefront of a movement.
Was the Reformation influenced by the Renaissance?
The Reformation, Willsea said, was influenced by, and was an extension of, the Renaissance.
Who is Robert Behre?
Robert Behre works as an editorial writer with a focus on local government, transportation and the built environment.
Why did the Reformers follow the Roman Catholic Church?
The Roman Catholic Church could no longer silence or turf out these “Protestants.” A number of events came together to place the Bible into the hands of the people in the pew. By having personal access to the Bible, they were able to judge for themselves whether what the church leaders were teaching them was actually true. As a result, many believers followed the Reformers out of the Roman Catholic Church in order to return to the teachings of Scripture.
What is the Reformed faith?
For example, the Reformed faith teaches the Lordship of Jesus Christ over all creation. We can’t imagine a Christian church that doesn’t hold to that teaching. But Reformed believers place a lot more emphasis on this teaching than many other Christians do. As a result, Reformed believers have invested a lot of their energy and resources in Christian education (Christian day schools, colleges, and seminaries), Christ-centered political/social action, and parachurch ministries to those in need.
Why did Calvin flee France?
Because he was persecuted by the Roman Church, Calvin had to flee France. He was drafted by another Reformer, Guillaume Farel, to support the Protestant cause in Geneva, Switzerland. There Calvin became an active preacher, teacher, leader, and proponent of Reformation teachings.
Why was the Reformation good for the Roman Church?
In fact, that was also good for the Roman Church, because in response to the Reformation it did a great deal to clean up its own act.
How did Calvin differ from Luther?
Calvin differed with Luther on how Christ is present in the Lord’s Supper. Calvin taught that Jesus was not physically present but was spiritually present through the work of the Holy Spirit in believers’ hearts. Luther taught that Christ was in some sense still physically present in the bread and wine.
Where was John Calvin born?
John Calvin was born in Noyon, France, in 1509. Educated in the humanities, he earned his academic stripes summa cum laude at age 24. Inspired by the teachings of reformers like Martin Luther, Calvin took up serious study of the Bible.
What is Calvin’s summary of biblical teaching?
He also wrote a fabulous summary of biblical teaching entitled The Institutes of the Christian Religion. Calvin’s works still serve as excellent resources for studying God’s Word. In fact, the Institutes have just been translated and published in Russian and are enjoying an enthusiastic response.