Alister E. McGrath's Christianity's Dangerous Idea: The Protestant Revolution: A PDF

By Alister E. McGrath

ISBN-10: 0060822139

ISBN-13: 9780060822132

In July 1998, the bishops of the Anglican Communion met within the historical English cathedral urban of Canterbury for his or her conventional Lambeth convention, held each ten years. The purpose used to be to handle the various demanding situations and possibilities that Anglicanism confronted worldwide— resembling the burgeoning progress of the church in Africa and Asia, its sluggish decline within the West, and the recent debates on sexuality.

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Extra info for Christianity's Dangerous Idea: The Protestant Revolution: A History from the Sixteenth Century to the Twenty-First

Sample text

For Luther, the great question of life was simple and profound: how could he find a gracious God? As a younger man, terrified of hell and convinced of his own sinfulness, Luther gave an answer that was widespread in German theological circles, as it was in popular Christian culture: if he wanted to get in with God, he had to make himself into a good person. Like other Christians of the time, he believed that humanity has the capacity to make itself righteous, that when this happens God endorses this transformation and accepts the transformed person into a relationship with him, and that this only happens through the institution of the church, which provides the God-given structures that lead securely and inevitably to salvation.

The effects of The Gathering Storm  this program can be seen at an astonishing variety of levels. Classical architectural styles came to be preferred over the prevailing Gothic. Cicero’s elegant Latin style displaced the rather mechanical, barbarous form of Latin used by scholastic writers. Roman law and Greek philosophy were eagerly studied at universities. In every case, the same basic principle can be seen at work: the fountainhead of Western culture had the capacity to refresh and redirect it when it had become tired, spent, and directionless.

Yet there was little in the way of a religious motivation for laypeople to become actively involved in worldly affairs, business, or social action. 37 Yet Protestantism would offer a theological framework that radically altered the self-perception of such individuals. Luther’s cardinal doctrine of the “priesthood of all believers” marked a decisive break with the medieval idea of vocation as a calling to a monastic life; Christians were called to serve God actively in the world and its affairs.

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Christianity's Dangerous Idea: The Protestant Revolution: A History from the Sixteenth Century to the Twenty-First by Alister E. McGrath


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