EDER 521 Lecture Notes - Infant Baptism, Anabaptism, John Calvin

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9 Feb 2013
-it is a branch of Protestantism and a tradition within Christianity that consists of churches, historically
connecting to the Church of England
-it is called Anglicanism because the Church of England is formally known as “Ecclesia Anglicana”
-although there are differences in individual Anglican churches, they all have 4 beliefs in common:
1. The Bible as a basis of our faith;
2. The Nicene and Apostles’ Creeds, basic statements of Christian belief;
3. Recognition of the sacraments of Baptism and Holy Communion, and
4. The continuity of the line of bishops since the time of Christ.
-Anglicanism rests on 3 pillars, faith reason and tradition and there must be a balance between them.
-the Anglican Church was formed by Henry the 8th, but leaders of the Church of England took the
opportunity to make changes which the authorities of the Roman Catholic Church opposed.
-the main difference between Roman Catholic Church and Anglican Church is that the Anglicans give
individual churches more independence, so even though they have 4 beliefs in common, they still allow
other churches to practice them the way they want.
-Roman Catholics believe that the church determines how and what and individual should believe in
order to be in a right relationship with God, whereas, the Anglicans believe that the Church is there to
guide and teach but how and what a person believes is between God and the person.
Reformed Churches
-it is a branch of Protestantism and a tradition that accepts the principals of the Reformation.
-the leader of Reformation was John Calvin
-he believed that humans are created for communion with God and do not rest until they achieve it. The
approach humans use to reach God is both logical and spiritual, thus he used the word “knowledge” as a
synonym of the word “faith”
-God is absolutely supreme, initiating all actions and creating and redeeming the world.
-this teaching implied 2 things that Calvin and the Reformed churches could not defend
-the idea that humans are so sinful that they must depend on God’ grace for salvation, and
- The idea that the supreme God has predestined all humans to either heaven or hell
-the idea that Christ paid for human sin was a central idea to Calvin’s thought. His influence was so
strong that the Reformed Churches as referred to as Calvinists.
-Reformed Churches don’t have bishops; instead, regional representatives perform the tasks of a bishop
-they emphasized adult baptism rather than infant baptism; this reflected their voluntaristic conception
of Christianity.
-they believe that baptism should be a choice and not imposed. It should be an act of mature personal
-they also believe that the Church should stay apart from political institutions
-they rely on lay preachers and tended to pacifism in times of war
- They are an “anti-establishment” group and they emerged after the dissatisfaction they felt with the
pace of change during the Reformation.
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