Tag: Reformation

Book Review: Protestants, by Alec Ryrie

 

I have read and recommended many books to friends, acquaintances, and strangers over the years, but I have done so selectively, carefully choosing what I recommend and to whom I recommend it.  I have found few books, aside from dictionaries and Douglas Adams, that I would urge on others almost without condition.  I have added one to that list: Protestants: The Radicals Who Made The Modern World, by Alec Ryrie.  

The Protestant Reformation made and remade what we consider to be modern Western Civilization, and regardless of what your faith is (Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Atheist), Protestantism has affected it for good or ill, even if you live half a world away from the epicenters of its origins in Europe.  Regardless of whether you are even a Christian, you live in a world where Protestant Christianity has shaped, and even governed the way entire nations have thought and acted.  If the 20th Century was the American Century, and the 19th Century was the British, then both were also the Protestant Centuries, for the very identities of those nations were inextricably bound up with Protestantism, both in their greatest triumphs and darkest sins.  Alec Ryrie, a devout Anglican himself, presents the history of Protestant thought, denominations, and life in a single narrative volume that spans the past 500 years.  It is his love letter to his faith, but told fairly and written with honesty and humor, and as such, it is an invaluable window into seeing the state of the modern world, and the origins and workings out of much of what we assume to be true.

Protestants are fighters and lovers.  They will argue with anyone about almost anything.  Some of these arguments are abstruse, others brutally practical. If we look at the great ideological battles of the past half-millennium – for and against toleration, slavery, imperialism, fascism, or Communism – we will find Protestant Christians on both sides…. But Protestants are also lovers.  From the beginning, a love affair with God has been at the heart of their faith.  Like all long love affairs, it has gone through many phases, from early passion through companionable marriage and sometimes strained coexistence, to rekindled ardour.” (pages 1-2)

Member Post

 

My former church is having a Reformation celebration honoring the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s nailing of his arguments upon the bulletin board of his day.  I’m not quite sure what I feel about the celebration. My faith tradition is indeed on the Protestant side of the Reformation.  I do see the good things to […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

After a three-week delay, I am continuing my series on Christian prayer. Christians pray to G-d, and we learn how to pray from the Bible and from fellow Christians.  Sometimes we even borrow from non-Christian sources.  Our chief source is generally the Lord’s Prayer, because that is where Jesus taught His Disciples to pray.  Here […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

We are reviewing orthodox Christian teachings on how to pray by examining the Lord’s Prayer.  In this week’s lesson we consider what it means to pray for G-d’s Kingdom to come.      G-d’s kingdom is everything.  He made the universe and everything in it.  He made us and we belong to Him.  So, why […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

Christians pray. The Bible teaches us to pray, and prayer is discussed in many passages in the Bible. As a continuation of my exploration of the boundaries of Christian orthodoxy, I want to take a look at Christian teachings on prayer. My intent is to find how far we go together in agreement as Christian […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

This is to summarize my series of posts on the Ten Commandments.  The point of this exercise was to begin an exploration of the boundaries of orthodox Christianity.  So far we have established that all Christians who consider themselves “orthodox” are in agreement about teachings on the Ten Commandments.  That is a lot of agreement.  […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

The Dialogue THESIS: The deuterocanonical books of Tobit, Judith, Wisdom, 1 and 2 Maccabees, Ecclesiasticus, and the additions to Jeremiah, Esther, and Daniel were always known by Christians to be part of the Old Testament canon–until Luther came along and reopened the question of canonicity! ANTITHESIS: That isn’t true at all! Even the Catholics didn’t officially canonize […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

Here is a new exploration of the bounds of orthodoxy in Christianity. I have been progressing through the Ten Commandments, at the beginning of a program to delineate the boundaries of what can be called “orthodox” among Christians. So far we are mostly in agreement. This week we will look at another Commandment, this time […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

Today marks the 499th anniversary of the day when Martin Luther posted an invitation to debate on the parish bulletin board.  Tradition says that this was the church door, which was a common-enough practice, so we accept the “nailed to the church door” narrative.  The common title given to this invitation to debate is the […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

Here is a new exploration of the bounds of orthodoxy in Christianity.  I have been progressing through the Ten Commandments, at the beginning of a program to delineate the boundaries of what can be called “orthodox” among Christians.  So far we are mostly in agreement.  This week we will look at another Commandment, this time […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

It’s time for another lesson from Luther’s Small Catechism.  Today we consider the Commandment to honor our parents.  Lutherans number this as the Fourth Commandment.  Here is the Commandment, from Exodus Chapter 20: 12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

Member Post

 

In three previous posts I wrote about the Ten Commandments. The first Commandments apply to the relationship we all have with G-d. The second table of the Commandments applies to the relationships we have with each other. This is why you see the Ten Commandments illustrated with three Commandments on one tablet and seven Commandments […]

Join Ricochet!

This is a members-only post on Ricochet's Member Feed. Want to read it? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.