To What Extent and Why Did Religious Toleration Increase in the American Colonies During the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries? Answer with Reference to at Least Three Specific Individuals, Events, or Movements in

Topics: Christianity, Rhode Island, Massachusetts Pages: 2 (424 words) Published: May 11, 2011
There have been many disputes over religion and religious tolerance. In much of the world, many feuds have erupted over different religious beliefs. In Northern America, however, religious tolerance seemed to be a familiar concept to those living in the area. The tolerance did not so far as extend to freedom of religion, but there have been more acceptances due to Roger Williams, the Anglicans, and Jonathan Edwards.

Roger Williams was an English Protestant minister from the seventeenth century who urged people to break away from the Church of England. Upon receiving the offer to become the Teacher of the Boston church, Williams declined, saying that it was “an unseparated church”. He found himself outraged that the civil magistrates did not punish for any sort of breech of the first commandments. He came to understand that the Church was becoming very lenient, and this upset him. As a Separist, he claimed that the Church of England was corrupt, and he must establish a new church and place to worship God. Williams was exiled to Salem for disseminating “newe and dangerous opinions” He then fled to Rhode Island to escape his exile. In Rhode Island, he built the first Baptist church and established complete freedom of religion. In New England, the Anglicans seemed to have become more relax. The Church of England was most commonly referred to as Anglicans; it became the official language of Georgia, North and South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and a part of New York. The main purpose of the religion was so that the English Government could monitor those in the colonies. In the Americas though, the church failed to live up to expectations. The faith practiced in the Americas was worldlier than Puritan England. All sins seemed less subject to punishment.

Jonathan Edwards was a theologist as well who lived during the eighteenth century. Edwards is best known for igniting The Great Awakening. He made his views very aware and public, pointing out the flaws of...
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