Relationship of the Church and State
During the 1500-1700’s many new Protestant religions formed due to the corruption and decline of the Catholic Church. Although there were several attempts to reform only one man, Martian Luther, spurred reformation of the church. Lutheranism was not the only religion that formed during the Reformation Period others included: Anabaptism, Anglicanism, Calvinism, Presbyterianism, and Zwinglianism. Most protestant beliefs were very similar but each religion interpreted the bible differently and had their own idea of how to run the church. The various protestant views of the relationship of the church and state from the 1500- 1700’s was: the state controls the church, church controls the state, and complete separation of the church and state. The church is subordinate to the church was a common view of two Protestant religions: Anglicanism and Lutheranism. To win the favor of his supporters Martin Luther, founder of Lutheranism, allowed himself to be more dependent on state authorities. Anglicanism, a settlement by Queen Elizabeth I, was a compromise to end Religious differences in England. Both Martin Luther and Queen Elizabeth I believed that the state should control the state due to political reasons. Only two Protestant groups, Calvinism and Presbyterianism, believed that the church should control the state. Presbyterianism and Calvinism were both founded by John Calvin who believed, “[T]hat the church was a divine institution….” John Knox ,also the founder of Presbyterianism, following Calvins lead agreed that the church should only have the ability to enforce proper behavior. John Calvin and John Knox believed in a government church where religion was more important than state affairs. Out of all the Protestant religions only one group was considered dangerous radicals they were also known as the Anabaptists. The Anabaptists were the only religion that believed in a complete separation of the church and states. Many of...
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