A Brief History of the Presbyterians
James H. Smylie
A Brief History of the Presbyterians offers laity and clergy a succint and thorough introduction to the history of Presbyterianism. James Smylie chronicles the origins of the Reformed tradition and carries the sage through each subsequent era up to the eve of the twenty-first century, focusing on Presbyterianism in North America. All the major figures in the history of Presbyterianism, such as John Calvin, Francis Makemie, and John Witherspoon are included, as well as a host of others.
By apostolic blows and knocks. 36 A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE PRESBYTERIANS Cromwell made war on the Scots when they opposed developments in England, and even dispensed with the Presbyterian General Assembly, sending Scottish Presbyterians into decline for a time. While Cromwell governed England under the Protectorate, beginning in 1653, he continued political developments that moved England inadvertently toward constitutional monarchy. Many of the English, Scots, and Irish did not like Cromwell.
illustrates that some immigrants may have been devoted to "Christ's Kingdom" in America but not committed unanimously to the British kingdom and empire. Such contentiousness grew after the war with France. Reunited Presbyterians and others in the Reformed tradition faced the tensions of the Stamp Act crisis of 1765 and the era of the American Revolution. 6 Revolution and Constitutions: Civil and Ecclesiastical During the American Revolution, Horace Walpole said on the floor of the British
held that jesus would come in "due time." Meanwhile, Presbyterians who participated in the shaping of the new nation continued to do so by obeying what Presbyterian poet Sidney Lanier refers to as the "Onward ache" to the West. They sought ways of nurturing faith and life and ways to face the problems of the new and expanding nation. 7 Revivals, Voluntarism, and "Freedom's Ferment" With the deaths of John Witherspoon in 1794 and George Washington in 1799, a decisive era in American history
early years of the nineteenth century, Presbyterians helped shape a "benevolent empire" of voluntary societies, which existed alongside denominational structures. These societies drew together individuals who wanted to encourage educational, missionary, and reforming work 74 A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE PRESBYTERIANS among Christians. Presbyterians in pursuing this strategy cooperated with other Reformed communions and Christians across denominational lines. Many Presbyterians began to realize that
Assembly, many of which can be found in the Minutes of the General Assembly for various years. INDEX Adopting Act, 45, 48, 63, 114 African Americans, 87-88, 91, 103, 104-5, 129-30 agencies, denominational, 86, 87, 102, 112, 135, 142 Alison, Francis, 50, 61 American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (ABCFM), 76, 87, 103 American Revolution, 57-61 Anderson, Matthew, 105 Anne(queen),38,43 Asian Americans, 87, 103, 147 Associate Presbytery, 55, 62 Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church,