Sign in or signup

6,603 active users!!Bandwidth
OCT 23, 2016
Events & Blogs
New Audio & Video
Local Church Finder
Webcast LIVE NOW!
Sermons by Bible
Sermons by Topic
Sermons by Speaker
Sermons by Date
Staff Picks
CommentsALL -1 min
Top Sermons
Daily Log
PhotosNew Stuff!
Online Bible
Daily Reading
Our Services
Submit Sermon
Members Only

Mobile Apps | Info
Enjoy sermons from this broadcaster
on a variety of mobile devices.
MyChurch: denverprovidence
Church Apps | Info
Creating your own Church App is
as simple as turning ON the option.
Podcast + Codes
Sermon Browser Info | Demo
Newest Widget | Demo
Newest Player | Info
Our Picks | Info | Demo
Latest Blog | Info | Demo
Our Blog
Filter By

Reformation Impact 2: Church
Posted by: Providence Orthodox Presbyterian Church | more..
4,400+ views | 140+ clicks

Calvinism has been given a bad name in the modern and postmodern eras. As some of the students at the college ministry observed, in the classes that mentioned Calvinism, they always explained it as an obscure glad-its-gone doctrine of a bygone age. It is purportedly a “rigid” system of doctrine; it breeds “dour” people; and it had that “horrible” belief of predestination. As Voltaire spoke of Calvin himself, so many think of his doctrines: “He was acquainted with Latin and Greek, and the bad philosophy of his time. He wrote better than Luther, and spoke worse; both were laborious and austere, but hard and violent…” (Schaff, Vol. 8, 277).

In the following, the tremendous impact of Reformation theology will be presented. It was not the only source of influence, but it was of great significance in the economics, science and politics yesteryear and the roots of modern prosperity. Of course, history is not accomplished in a vacuum, the Reformers always insisted that they were only following doctrines already existing in the church but not fully understood or consistently carried out. What I hope to accomplish is a greater appreciation of the results of the Reformation; results, to be sure, that were not necessarily consciously pursued—a not uncommon activity among humans—but logically flowed from the biblical ideals of Luther, Calvin, Bullinger, and their fellow Reformers.


In the first installment, I summarized the core doctrinal effect of Luther’s 95 Theses, justification by faith alone. Human mediation was removed. Thus, the hierarchy of Rome was rejected. This lead to the doctrine of the priesthood of the believer: each Christian had immediate access to God through Christ alone by faith alone. No human instruments (sacraments, saints, or priest) came between the believer and Christ. This liberated the individual.

Luther also translated the Bible into German instead of following the tradition of Rome which only used the Latin Vulgate and that only by trained experts. Since Rome believed that salvation was found in the church (through her accumulated merit) and church tradition was on par with the bible, it followed that the church would control the bible. Again, the priesthood of the believer gave immediate access to the bible since it was there that Christ was found. Literacy abounded.

The priesthood of the believers also affected the church directly. Since the ministers were not priests in the strict sense of the word, but ministers (servants) for the church and for that salvation immediately obtainable to the individual, then hierarchicalism was greatly hampered. In the Reformed churches of Calvin & Zwingli, this top-down structure was abolished. Congregational songs, voting and discipline was revived accordingly.

The priesthood of the believer also gave rise to liberty of conscience. A man with a clear conscience is a man with liberty. The freedom to believe and worship God according to the Bible was a strong impetus in France, Holland and Scotland, leading to societal changes in those countries. Although, as with most revivals, there was not a perfect implementation of this idea, it still shook nations.

The priesthood of the believer arose directly from Luther’s view of salvation. Since justification (our right standing before God’s law court) was only through faith and only on account of Christ’s righteousness alone, then no mediating person or institution was needed. Society’s structures (home, school, guilds, etc) were no longer playing second fiddle to the Romish church. Monkery was rejected and a full marriage life was embraced. Holy days were abolished and time was freed. In other words, the Kingdom of God was no longer limited to the pope and his church. It was a broader kingdom, embracing all of life sanctified to God.

Christians are priest, so they are to dedicate all endeavors to God. Christians are prophets, so they are to declare the truth in all endeavors of life. Christians are princes, so they are to dominate all endeavors for God’s glory.

Justification by faith alone changed everything.


Naturally, many reading this series of articles may think it rather prideful, arrogant and self-serving. So, to prove my point I have attempted to cite secular, non-Christian if not non-Calvinist sources to prove my point. The rest of the proof is in the logic presented.

[Next: Economics]

Shawn Mathis Shawn Mathis

Pastor Shawn Mathis was raised by God-fearing parents, served in the Air Force, worked as an electrical engineer and then entered the ministry by God’s grace....

Category:  News and Politics

post new | clone this | rss feed | blog top »
Text feature this blog entry
Our Blog

E. A. Johnston
Silent Church In Sinful Nation

Jeremiah 5:21-31
Evangelism Awakening
Play! | MP3 | RSS

Store Item
The Reformed Worldview

Prof D. Engelsma
Product: Paperback

Ken Wimer
A Man Sent From God

Radio Broadcast
Shreveport Grace Church
Play! | MP3

E. A. Johnston
A Red Hot Coal For Christ

Evangelism Awakening
Special Meeting
Transcript!Play! | MP3

Dr. Andy Bloom
The Plan Of Salvation

The Home Series
Central Baptist Church
Transcript!Play! | MP3

Sermon: Making Crooked Places Straight
E. A. Johnston

SPONSOR | 6,400+


A man full of hope will be full of action. ... Thomas Brooks

Gospel of John
Cities | Local | Personal

iPhone + iPad
Church App
Android New!
Church App
Kindle + Nook
Chromecast TV
Apple TV New!
Amazon Fire TV
Apple Watch
Android Wear
Kindle Reader

Uploading Sermons
Uploading Videos
Tips & Tricks
YouTube Screencasts

Weekly Newsletter
Staff Picks Feed
Site Notices New!
RSS | Twitter | Facebook
Local Church Finder | Info
MP3 Play & Download
Mobile Apps
Video Support
Live Webcasting
Business Cards
SOLO | MINI | Domain
Favorites | QR Codes
Online Donations
24x7 Radio Stream
Sermon Browser
HTML Codes
Logos | e-Sword | BW

Transfer Agent
Protected Podcasts
Upload via Email
Auto-Upload Sermons
Auto-Blog Import
Picasa | FTP | Dropbox
The largest and most trusted library of audio sermons from conservative churches and ministries worldwide.

Our Services | Articles of Faith
Broadcast With Us
Advertising | Local Ads
Support Us | Feedback Fridays New!