The Protestant Reformation
Reformation is the restoration of anything of value and it started in 1517 in Europe to restore the truth in the word of God. In early 16th century, Reformation was the ever greatest Christian movement that was started by Martin Luther to restore biblical teachings that have been trampled down by the Roman Empire and papacy. One of the causes of this reformation was indulgences. Another cause of the protestant reformation was the killings of the earlier reformers like John Huss and Wycliffe by the Roman Catholic or papacy. “Men such as John Wycliffe and John Huss spoke out against the papacy, auricular confession, purgatory, pilgrimages, worship of saints, relics, etc. Huss and Savonarola were burned at the stake as heretics” (Donald 1988). Moreover, the cause of the reformation was because Roman Catholic was no longer using and standing by the Bible principles. They were corrupt and they even acquired wealth through bloody hands. Learned men had discovered the truth and they were agitated to reform the church. Prophetically this was the right time to start the reformation.
The most important cause of reformation was the opposition of to the Roman Catholic on grounds of the massacres they were conducting against those who opposed their conduct and papacy claims of pardoning sins of people. They claimed to be the intermediaries between God and mankind therefore the pope had powers to forgive sins. People killed others and they went to pope to be forgiven after giving him some money, this was open defiance to the Bible’s teachings which they confessed that it was their guide. They also believed in purgatory, in that if a person dies a sinner pope or priests will be given gifts to pray for him so that his soul goes to heaven and he will never go to hell. These were false teachings and beliefs which justified reformation to take place. The reformers referred every teaching to the Holy Bible.
This is another form of a movement that started roughly in the 14th century to the 17th century and the word renaissance originates from the French, meaning rebirth. This sort of movement intellectually got into people’s minds and they believed that they are on the way to modernity. They had a new push for development and change from the previous ways of doing things. This form of mind reformation originated from Italy and it spread rapidly to the rest of Europe. This urge had revived their studying habits and it is believed so as history confirms it that shortly after the start of this mind reformation or rebirth many discoveries were made especially in medicine and physics sciences. The people of Europe had emerged from the world of slumber and indulgences to new heights of discoveries. All the science innovations we are using and seeing today have their origin from this time of the renaissance; especially the French made many discoveries for instance penicillin, milk pasteurization process and many more.
All the sciences that are applied today in the world that is biological, chemical and physical scientific innovations were discovered and attempted for the first time during the renaissance period thus the statement ‘birth of modernity’. As the French were smart in sciences during the renaissance period, the Italians were good in visual arts and the English were good in drama. Up to date these countries retain their identities of what they discovered because they are still smart in these fields. This was the time when there was a new order of doing things and rediscovering of the truth after the protestant reformation. It was also the right time for the people of Europe to awake not only from the papacy but their hidden potential which they had not utilized. “The Renaissance is also said to mark the beginning of the individual’s effort to free himself from the rigidity of medieval feudal society and the Church” (Thornton 2002).
The Dark Ages
Dark ages has had many definitions but this is the time when the truth had been banished in Europe. It is not that dark denotes little or unknown, but during this period the state and the church were united and the Roman emperors were rulers in their various kingdoms. Kings who were under the Romans got decrees from the Roman emperors. Through these excessive powers the truth of the bible was subverted. The earlier reformers who wanted to reform the church and return the Bible teachings were butchered mercilessly. Those who wanted to hear the truth from the Bible were followed everywhere and killed. The dark ages got its definition from these atrocities that met the true preachers of the truth, those who were opposed to papacy. There were untold and horrible massacres of reformists everywhere in Europe. The papacy never wanted to be exposed to the light of the Bible that is why they were using all means and decrees to hide the truths. “Protestants had repudiated the ways of the papacy i.e. the Catholic Church with its self tailored doctrines and hierarchy which incorporated corrupt practices. Protestants had strove to recreate pure Christianity, void of the dark catholic ways. However, the Catholics did not see anything dark, but they believed that time was of religious productivity” (Greer ; Lewis 2001).
During this time many reformists who were able escaped persecution and took refuge in the United States. However, there was serious learning during that time because the truth from the Bible made everyone who was able to purchase this book to do it. Learning during this time concentrated in searching for the truth, students and professors alike took to the books to learn the truth.
Donald, G. S, (1988). The Ancient World, 4th Edition. New York: Wodsworth Publishing.
Greer, T. H. ; Lewis, G. (2001). A Brief History of the Western World, 8th Edition. New York: Brace College Publishers.
Thornton, B. (2002). Greek Ways: How the Greeks Created Western Civilization. San Francisco: Encounter Books.