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On 3rd September 1658, Oliver Cromwell died. A few months previously, Cromwell had announced that he wanted his son, Richard Cromwell, to replace him as Lord Protector of the Commonwealth. The English army was unhappy with this decision. While they respected Oliver as a skillful military commander, Richard was just a country farmer. In May 1659, the generals forced Richard to retire from government.

Parliament and the leaders of the army now began arguing amongst themselves about how England should be ruled. General George Monck, the officer in charge of the English army based in Scotland, decided to take action, and in 1660 he marched his army to London.

When Monck arrived he reinstated the House of Lords and the Parliament of 1640. Royalists were now in control of Parliament. Monk now contacted Charles II, who was living in Holland. Charles agreed that if he was made king he would pardon all members of the parliamentary army and would continue with the Commonwealth's policy of religious toleration. Charles also accepted that he would share power with Parliament and would not rule as an 'absolute' monarch as his father had tried to do in the 1630s.

This information was passed to Parliament and it was eventually agreed to abolish the Commonwealth and bring back the monarchy. Parliament raised nearly £1 million and with this money soldiers in the army were paid off and sent home. At the same time Charles was granted permission to form two permanent regiments for himself, the Royal Scots and the Coldstream Guards.

In August 1660, Charles II and Parliament agreed to pass the Act of Indemnity and Oblivion. This resulted in the granting of a free pardon to anyone who had supported the Commonwealth government. However, the king retained the right to punish those people who had participated in the trial and execution of Charles I. A special court was appointed and in October 1660 those Regicides who were still alive and living in Britain were brought to trial. Ten were found guilty and were sentenced to be hung, drawn and quartered. This included Thomas Harrison, John Jones and Hugh Peters.

General George Monck became one of the king's most important ministers. Many of the men who had fought as Cavaliers against the Roundheads also became ministers and advisers. Some of these men wanted revenge against those who had killed their king. A large number of the people responsible were now dead. However, many of those who were still alive were punished. Eleven members of the House of Commons who had signed Charles I's death warrant were hanged, drawn and quartered. Royalists even dug up the body of Oliver Cromwell and displayed it at Tyburn.

Charles II and his pro-Royalist Parliament now attempted to deal with the Puritans. A new Act of Uniformity was passed that made Puritan acts of worship illegal. Those that refused to obey this law became known as non-conformists or dissenters. Large numbers of nonconformists went to prison because they were unwilling to give up their religious beliefs.

Men who had been Anglicans before the Civil War were appointed to senior posts in the church. Bishops once again became members of the House of Lords.

Puritans also lost their power in politics. In future Puritans would no longer be allowed to become members of the House of Commons or local counsellors. They were also excluded from universities and from teaching in schools. Strict censorship was also imposed on books. All books dealing with history, science or philosophy had to be checked by the government and the leaders of the church before they were published.

Newspapers were also put under the control of the government. Coffee-houses, where people often discussed politics, were also closed down.

You cannot imagine how all people here are affected with joy at the hope of having a King again. His (Charles) picture is hung up in many places in the streets... there was a man yesterday who said that he had seen him lately and that he was not so handsome as that picture, at which the people were so angry that they fell upon the man and beat him soundly.

There were 20,000 soldiers... shouting with joy; the streets covered with flowers, the bells ringing, fountains running with wine.

I went out to Charing Cross, to see Major-General Harrison, hanged, drawn, and quartered... he looked as cheerful as any man could do in that condition. He was presently cut down, and his head and heart shown to the people, at which there were great shouts of joy... Harrison's head has been set up (on a pole) on the other side of Westminster Hall.

John Jones chose to marry Oliver Cromwell's sister... and had his hand in the murder of the king. This morning Thomas Scot, Gregory Clement, Adrian Scroop and John Jones were executed at Charing Cross.... Jones, the last to be executed... lifted up his hands as he was drawn upon the hurdle and at the place of execution... to gain the peoples' prayers.

The traitors executed were Scroop, Cook and Jones. I did not see their execution, but met their quarters mangled and cut and reeking as they were brought from the gallows in baskets.

I feel better now... It is better to have one king than five hundred.

Whatsoever casual good hath been wrought at any time by the assimilation of ambitious, factious, and disappointed members, to the little, but solid, and unbiased party, the more frequent ill effects, and consequences of so unequal a mixture, so long continued, are demonstrable and apparent. For while scarce any man comes thither with respect to the public service, but in design to make and raise his fortune, it is not to be expressed, the debauchery and lewdness, which, upon occasion of election to Parliaments, are now grown habitual throw the nation. So that the vice, and the expense, are risen to such a prodigious height, that few sober men can endure to stand to be chosen on such conditions. From whence also arise feuds, and perpetual animosities, over most of the counties and corporations, while gentlemen of worth, spirit and ancient estates and dependences, see themselves over-powered in their own neighbourhood by the drunkness and bribery of their competitors. But if nevertheless any worthy person chance to carry the election, some mercenary or corrupt sheriff makes a double return, and so the cause is handed to the Committee of elections, who ask no better, but are ready to adopt his adversary into the House if he be not legitimate. And if the gentleman aggrieved seek his remedy against the sheriff of Westminster Hall, and the proofs be so palpable, that the King's Bench cannot invent how to do him injustice, yet the major part of the twelve judges shall upon better consideration vacate the sheriff's fine, and reverse the judgement; but those of them that dare dissent from their brethren are in danger to be turned off the bench without any cause assigned. While men therefore care not thus how they get into the House of Commons, neither can it be expected that they should make any conscience of what they do there, but they are only intent how to reimburse themselves (if their elections were at their own charge) or how to bargain their votes for a place or a pension. They list themselves straightway s into some Court faction, and it is as well known among them, to what Lord each of them retain, as when formerly they wore coats and badges. By this long haunting so together they are grown too so familiar among themselves, that all reverence of their own Assembly is lost, that they live together not like Parliament men, but like so many good fellows met together in a public house to make merry. And which is yet worse, by being so thoroughly acquainted, they understand their number and party, so that the use of so public a counsel is frustrated, there is no place for deliberation, no persuading by reason, but they can see one another's votes through both throats and cravats before they hear them.

History of the Restoration Movement

Is it possible to read your Bible, and from your reading, see that in the New Testament there is a Church that Jesus established? Is it possible to see in the Bible, that God set forth His standard of acceptance in salvation, worship, church organization and daily living? Is it possible to follow the teachings of God, revealed in the New Testament, to direct our lives in the same way as He did first century Christians?

The answer to all the questions above is a resounding, Yes! For, since the writing of the New Testament, men and women of all walks of life have studied their Bibles, and seen how one, even to this day, can become a Christian the way those in New Testament times became Christians. They have seen how one can participate in the Church of the New Testament by emulating its structure, worship, and activity.

Faithfulness to the New Testament pattern does not begin with or is limited to the work of people in North America. People all around the world for centuries have been searching and following the Scriptures as their only standard of faith and practice. Historically, when they searched the Scriptures, obeyed the gospel, and worshipped as the Bible directs then they considered one another as brethren. Many who did this never were aware that others were doing the same things in other locations around the globe. Efforts continue to learn about these people and remember their efforts.

Someone has rightfully expressed that we should always remember to stop and show appreciation for the bridges we have crossed. For the Christian, this is especially true! Not only are we to be thankful for the work of the apostles and early church workers in the 1st century A.D., but we should also remember the value of all those since who have directed others to give up the shackles of religious error, only to take on the truth revealed in God's Word.

This website is dedicated to the many men and women who have struggled in the Restoration Of New Testament Christianity, to take us back to the Bible, and to let it be our only standard of faith and practice.

Permissions: The material on this site is free to be used by anyone wishing to enhance their own knowledge and for the teaching of others. If used, the information remains the intellectual property of Any changes or reproduction of this work in books or other websites should receive permission from the webmaster. References to this site when reporting sources in papers and publications would be greatly appreciated. In so doing, the usefulness of this site will increase, as it is made available to other interested students of the Restoration Movement.

Disclaimers: The information given on this site does not necessarily represent the position or beliefs of the webmaster. The purpose of this site is only to report historical events and people as they were presented in their historical setting. Any attempts to revise or change the facts have been painstakingly avoided. Questions and corrections are always appreciated. Feel free to email your webmaster. This site is officially owned and operated by Scott Harp, Russellville, Logan County, Kentucky, U.S.A. is a site dedicated to the history of the restoring of New Testament Christianity all around the globe over the last several hundred years. Many men and women have dedicated themselves to the preaching and teaching of the original gospel who have been all but forgotten.

Your webmaster is Scott Harp. I obeyed the gospel of Jesus Christ by way of repentance, confession of Christ as Lord, and of full immersion in water on June 5, 1968. History marks this date with the event in California when Robert Kennedy, a Democratic candidate for president of the United States, was mortally wounded at the hands of Sirhan Sirhan. Analagously, I realized I was dead in sin that day, and was made alive in Christ by the same power that raised Him from the dead through baptism, Romans 6:3,4.

I attended Greater Atlanta Christian School from 1970-1976. While in the 11th grade, my American History teacher was a young Harding College (now University) graduate named, David Fincher. This class was a turning point in my high school education. He made history come alive for me and my fellow students. During my senior year, I took Mr. Fincher's class on World History and Government. Every class was a joy. From that experience, I had decided that I would go to college and become a history teacher.

Upon entrance at Freed-Hardeman College (now University) in the fall of 1976 I eagerly took the first class I could get on history. Unfortunately, the class I had was at 7:30 am three days a week, and the teacher was monotone and boring. Sadly, this vanquished the desire I had to teach school. I ended up dropping out of college for a few years and working.

I began preaching while on a one-year tour of mission work with my parents in New Zealand beginning in late 1981. This is where I met my wife, Jenny Hubbard. One year turned into four years, a wife, and a set of twins. We returned to the U.S. at the end of 1985 to go back to college to finish my education, now with the focus on Bible. The appeal for the study of history was all but forgotten at that point.

In 1986 I attended Heritage Christian University (then, International Bible College) in Florence, Alabama. Some of the first people I met were Wayne and Brenda Kilpatrick. Later, I would come to see the Kilpatricks as some of the closest friends I would ever have. Charlie Wayne Kilpatrick, a North Alabamian by birth, and Christian gentleman, taught the history courses at HCU. My first class was World History II, the spring semester of 1986. I shall never forget this class. It was a course over the period from Martin Luther and the 16th century to the present. At semester's end Jenny and I accompanied Wayne on a Bible Campaign to Newport, Wales in the British Isles. We had never been to Great Britain before. However, from the time we walked off the plane in London to the time we left, we relived the class I had just completed. We saw many of the things we had only weeks before, learned and discussed thousands of miles away. An added blessing was that my teacher was along for the ride. It was like having your own travel guide. Wayne had been stationed in England in the Air Force back in the 1960s, and later he and Brenda did mission work there. So he knew the area. He literally made history come alive for me. For this experience I shall always be in his debt.

I will never forget a story I heard Charles Coil, then president of HCU, tell. He said that Wayne Kilpatrick knew so much information about history that he was sure that Wayne was making much of it up. Then, he had the opportunity to go to England with him, where Wayne was a travel guide for him, and he was absolutely amazed that the half had not been told concerning the knowledge this man had. After going to Great Britain with him myself, I fully concurred. He is one of the most humble, knowledgeable and sound men I have ever known. He is my friend, and my confidant. This site would never have been possible had it not been for his inspiration.

In the fall of 1986, I began taking every history course Wayne Kilpatrick taught. When the class on the Restoration Movement was taken, I was so seasoned with an appreciation for secular history, that being introduced to the history of the church was a natural progression. I was a sponge, soaking up every detail that proceeded from his mouth. Then, one day we took a class trip out to a little cemetery north of Florence on the Chisholm highway. It was located behind an old house, and had maybe a dozen graves in it. It held the gravesites of John and Esther Chisholm. Their daughter, Dorenda Chisholm Hall, the first wife of B.F. Hall, was also buried there. What an introduction! Yet again, Wayne made history come alive, by connecting the relating of history taught in the class room to seeing firsthand where these people lived, died and were buried.

Over the course of the next three years other trips to Tennessee, Kentucky and ultimately West Virginia made the Restoration Movement very much a part of what I lived and breathed. I had taken so many pictures of graves and meetinghouses that I didn't know what to do with them. I needed a way to tell people about them, and show them the pictures. I came very quickly to the realization, especially in the U.S., that anywhere a person is at any one time, they are within a short distance from where work in the restoring of New Testament Christianity had taken place.

In 2000, I was working with the church at Fayetteville, Georgia. One of the young men of the church, Charles Nash, went on a trip with me around the end of May. We went up to Kentucky and met up with Wayne. He had another group of students with him from HCU. We traveled around Lexington with the group for a few days. While in the area, we went out to Cane Ridge, a place I had visited a number of times, and one I always enjoy revisiting. While there, I was conversing with one of the curators, Robert Steffer, and showed him my photo album. I recall his visual response as he looked at page after page. Upon completion he said, "I have been privileged to see many things that people have brought to Cane Ridge and showed me. Of all the things I've seen, I've not coveted anything like I have this photo album. What a wonderful collection!"

After this visit and other sites in Kentucky, I began scheming as to how I might get the information I have collected over the years into the hands of others. Many have encouraged me to write books. This may be done someday, but the circle of people interested in the history of the RM is so small, that books would be too expensive to produce. In addition, the fact that this is such a growing project, any books that would be produced would be obsolete by the time it went to press. It was around that time that I was talking with my good friend, Tom L. Childers, who advised me of the potential power of the world wide web being used to get information to the masses. Taking his advice seemed to be a natural course for what took place very soon thereafter. Building a site also afforded me the opportunity to work at my leisure and my own pace to build something over a period of time that could be used for generations to come.

This is how this site was born. It began as a subweb of a church site of the congregation where I was the pulpit minister at the time. Very quickly the need to acquire our own domain name was seen. I tried numerous ways to get a brief domain name, but potential addresses were already taken. Finally, was decided upon. Now I edit this site solely on my own.

Some have questioned the nature of the article "The" at the first as being too arrogant and exclusive. However the nature of this site is to chronicle the work of anyone and everyone in the world who has seen the need to go back to the Bible and hold to its exclusive authority for all religious matters. Contrary to the beliefs of some, the Restoration Movement did not start in this country. Thomas Campbell did not invent the concept of "We will speak where the Scripture speaks, and remain silent where it is silent." It came from the Bible itself. People have read it in their Bibles, and chosen to follow it because the Bible teaches it, who never have heard of Thomas or Alexander Campbell. Many predate the lives of the Campbells and Barton W. Stone who also lived in other countries. Many of them have been chronicled on this site, and others will be as knowledge of them come to light.

Some have objected to the acknowledgement of the contributions of the Christian Churches and Disciples of Christ as a part of this site. I would imagine the objection comes because of my connection with many in churches of Christ. Though I personally believe that churches of Christ more closely resemble the church of the New Testament than the other two groups, we can not afford to forget that we, at one time, were together as one movement. Many who ultimately embraced the instrument and societies made contributions that must not be forgotten. The disclaimer is made on the homepage that the information related on this site does not necessarily reflect the beliefs of the webmaster. Facts of history should not be forgotten because they do not fit within one's own belief system. Many in our society are looking at history through "rose-colored glasses," seeing the history they want to see, and dismissing facts that do not fit with their own belief system. There are revisionists of church history among us. Just because an event is reported in a book, or on a website does not make it true. All the more reason for reporting the events as they were reported in history as sources. The closer the reporting of events are to the actual events themselves, presents the most reliable and valid sources for the student of history. This is why many of the biographical sketches on this site were taken from sources made available in or near the day of the life of the individual who is being chronicled.

This is a growing project. The Lord willing, as time goes on, others from around the globe will be added. This is done so we will never forget to be thankful for the "bridges we have crossed," and for those that built them. As Charlie Wayne Kilpatrick often said in his classes, "We are standing on the shoulders of giants!" This site is dedicated to those giants, male and female, who by their sacrificial lives, pointed us to the Man of the cross, and worked diligently in their lives not to be like the church of the New Testament, but simply to be that church, with nothing added or taken away.

Much effort has gone into the production of this site, not only to be enjoyable for the student of the Restoration Movement, but to be accurate. I welcome any corrections or additions that may help to make this site the very best it can be. If facts presented here are disputed, produce the facts that dispute them, and they will be considered and appropriately assimilated.

Restoration Period in English Literature History

The Restoration Period begins in 1660 A.D., the year in which King Charles-II was restored to the English Throne.

  • England, Scotland and Whales were united as Great Britain.
  • Commercial prosperity and global trade increased for Britain.
  • Literacy expanded to include the middle classes and even some of the poor.

The monarchical restoration was accompanied by the re-opening of English theatres (that were closed during Cromwell’s Puritan regime) and the restoration of the Church of England as the National Church.

Now sacraments by all civil and military offices were taken in the Anglicans Church and those who refused (Protestants and Roman Catholics) were not allowed to hold the public offices.

Charles had no legitimate heir. His brother James (a Catholic) was to ascend the throne after Charles. The Parliament tried to force Charles to exclude his brother from the line of succession.

Charles ended his “exclusion crisis” by dissolving the Parliament. Once crowned, James-II quickly suspended the Test Act (sacrament taken in Anglican Church) for he was a Catholic.

Restoration - History

"The program for the development of Bedford Stuyvesant will combine the best of community action with the best of the private enterprise system. Neither by itself is enough, but in their combination lies our hope for the future."

Senator Robert F. Kennedy
344 Monroe Street
Bedford Stuyvesant

In 1964, with the cooperation of Senator Jacob K. Javits and Mayor John W. Lindsay, Senator Robert F. Kennedy set into motion a round of legislative action that created the Special Impact Program, an amendment to the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964. He announced a seven point action plan that would serve as a national model for community development. The plan called for the formation of the Bedford Stuyvesant Renewal and Rehabilitation Corporation and the Development Services Corporation, involving assistance from some of the foremost leaders of the American business community.

Under the leadership of Judge Thomas R. Jones, in 1967 the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation (Restoration) was formally established to consolidate and carry forward these efforts. Deputy Police Commissioner Franklin A. Thomas, an original board member of the Bedford Stuyvesant Renewal and Rehabilitation Corporation and later to become President of the Ford Foundation, was elected as Restoration’s first president. Initial funding support came from the Taconic Foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation, the Edgar M. Stern Family Fund, the J.M. Kaplan Fund and the Ford Foundation.

One year later, Restoration purchased an abandoned milk bottling plant in the heart of Bedford Stuyvesant, Sheffield Farms, to serve as its new corporate headquarters. Renovations soon began to create what is now known as Restoration Plaza. Completed in 1972, today this 300,000 square feet commercial plaza is home to Restoration’s headquarters, the historic Billie Holiday Theatre, the Skylight Gallery and scores of local businesses, non-profits and government agencies, including a post office, local branches of JPMorgan Chase, Washington Mutual Bank and Citibank, Super Foodtown, a satellite campus of the College of New Rochelle and Assemblywoman Annette Robinson’s office.

Since 1967, Restoration has catalyzed enormous economic, cultural, and educational improvements in Central Brooklyn. Just a sampling of our accomplishments include:

Housing: Restoration has constructed or renovated 2,200 units of housing, including homeownership and rental. The corporation has also beautifully repaired the facades of 150 homes on 150 blocks and provided $60 million in mortgage financing to nearly 1500 homeowners. As the height of its activity, Restoration was the second largest real estate owner in Brooklyn after the City of New York and controlled over $12 million in fixed assets. Today, Restoration remains committed to creating a mixed income community where households of all income levels have access to quality housing.

Economic Development: Restoration's programs have attracted more than $500 million in investments to Central Brooklyn: placed over 20,000 youth and adults in jobs and catalyzed physical and economic improvements to Fulton Street.

Arts and Culture: Our Youth Arts Academy remains the only comprehensive arts education institution in Bedford Stuyvesant. Together with art resident the Noel Pointer Foundation, the Academy , offers instruction in dance, music, and theatre to over 400 students ages 3-18 each year. The Skylight Gallery continues to feature artwork across media, showcasing the work of some 100 artists each year and drawing an average of 2,000 visitors. The Billie Holiday Theatre is still the only resource of its kind in Central Brooklyn, serving 30,000 people annually over a 36-week season. Winner of numerous Obie and AUDELCO awards, the Theatre is fertile ground for aspiring theatre professionals and an incredible community resource for residents interested in enjoying quality theatrical performances by critically acclaimed playwrights.

History of the Restoration Movement

The best way to know what happened in the past is to read source material closest in time to the historical events. The facts as they happened are a writer's most difficult challenge. It is easy to interpret and re-interpret. The further the way one is in years from the events the bigger the challenge is for accuracy. The historian is often left with more questions than answers. This is especially true with the passing of years and of witnesses. When books are written, then not reprinted, those who have copies are fewer and fewer as the years go by. This page will make a slow but hopefully steady process in bringing back numerous books that have been all but forgotten. Good reading.

A Note About Copyright: According to the knowledge of the webmaster, all the books that appear on this site are out of print and the copyrights on the books are out of date. Feel free to use this material in any way. This material is not intended to be used for printing or sales, only for research. If any of this information is used in books or papers, and other forms of research that leads to any form of publication, the webmaster requests acknowledgement of the website location as reference in the finished production.

The Restoration Period (1660-1700) in English History

The period from 1660 to 1700 is named as the Restoration period. In 1660 King Charles II was brought to the throne. The people of England were suffering from tension due to the strict rule of Cromwell. Thus the nation welcomed the Restoration of Charles II. This Restoration brought about a revolutionary change in social life and literature. The following characteristics distinguish this period:


During this period gravity, spiritual zeal, moral earnestness, and decorum were thrown to winds. The king was a thorough debauch. He had several mistresses. He was surrounded by corrupt courtiers. Corruption was rampant in all walks of life.

[2] Religious and Political Quarrels :

In the Restoration period we see the rise of two political parties. They were the Whigs and the Tories. The Whigs were opposing and the Tories were supporting the king. The rise of these parties gave fresh importance to men of literary ability. Both parties supported them. The religious controversy was also going on. It was very bitter. The Protestants and the Catholics were face to face. The nation was predominately Protestant. The Catholics were being punished. Dryden’s ‘Absalom and Achitophel’ reflects these religious and political conflicts of the day.

[3] The Revolution :

Charles’ brother James II ascended the throne in 1685. He tried to establish Catholicism in the country. He became unpopular very soon. The entire nation rose against him. He lost his seat due to the bloodless revolution of 1688. The Restoration, the controversies, and the revolution of 1688 deeply influenced the literature of the age.

[4] Rise of Neo-Classicism :

During the Restoration period a new literary movement started. It is known as the Neo-Classical movement. This reflected the mood of the century. Reason occupied an important place. The writers of this period agreed upon the rules and principles. Rules and literary conventions became more important than the seriousness of the subject matter. The writers expressed superficial manners and customs of the aristocratic and urban society. They did not pry into mysteries of the human mind and heart. The new epoch is the antithesis of the previous Elizabethan age. It is called classical.

Restoration period

The authors of this period turned to the great classical writers. Thus grew the neo-classical school of poetry. The neoclassicists imitated the rules and ignored the importance of the subject matter. They could not delve deep into human emotions. These things can be noticed in the age of Dryden and Pope.

– The influence of France counted for much. Charles II and his companions demanded that poetry and drama should follow the French style. Now began the so-called period of French influence. Pascal, Racine, Boileau, and other French writers were imitated blindly. The French influence is seen in the Restoration comedy of manners of Dryden, Wycherly, and Congreve. This French influence is also responsible for the growth of opera.

Realism and Formalism :

The writers of the Restoration age reacted against the romanticism of Elizabethan age. They developed realism to a marked degree. The early Restoration writers presented the realistic picture of a corrupt court and society. They emphasized vices rather than virtues. They gave us coarse, low plays without moral significance. They saw only the externals of man, his body, and appetites. They did not see his soul and his ideals. The writers of the age followed formalism of style. They aimed at achieving directness and simplicity of expression.

Leading Authors :

Dryden was the representative poet of this age. His Absalom and Achitophel and Mac Flecknoe are very popular satires. Samuel Butler and John Oldham are also famous for their satires. John Dryden, John Bunyan, Hobbes, Locke, Temple, etc. were eminent prose writers of this age. Congreve, Etherege, and Whycherly were the eminent writers of the comedy of manners.

Thus the Restoration age has great importance in the literary history of England. This age offered leading authors like Dryden and Congreve whose contribution to the literature is memorable.


Because the Restoration Movement lacks any centralized structure, having originated in a variety of places with different leaders, there is no consistent nomenclature for the movement as a whole. [9] The term "Restoration Movement" became popular during the 19th century [10] this appears to be due to the influence of Alexander Campbell's essays on "A Restoration of the Ancient Order of Things" in the Christian Baptist. [10] The term "Stone-Campbell Movement" emerged towards the end of the 19th century as a way to avoid the difficulties associated with some of the other names that have been used, and to maintain a sense of the collective history of the movement. [10]

The Restoration Movement has been characterized by several key principles:

    should not be divided, Christ intended the creation of one church. [3] : 38 [11]
  • Creeds divide, but Christians should be able to find agreement by standing on the Bible itself (from which they believe all creeds are but human expansions or constrictions) [12]
  • Ecclesiastical traditions divide, but Christians should be able to find common ground by following the practice (as best as it can be determined) of the early church. [13] : 104–6
  • Names of human origin divide, but Christians should be able to find common ground by using biblical names for the church (i.e., "Christian Church", "Church of God" or "Church of Christ" as opposed to "Methodist" or "Lutheran", etc.). [4] : 27

Thus, the church 'should stress only what all Christians hold in common and should suppress all divisive doctrines and practices'. [14]

A number of slogans have been used in the Restoration Movement, which are intended to express some of the distinctive themes of the Movement. [15] These include:

  • "Where the Scriptures speak, we speak where the Scriptures are silent, we are silent." [16]
  • "The church of Jesus Christ on earth is essentially, intentionally, and constitutionally one." [16]
  • "We are Christians only, but not the only Christians." [16]
  • "In essentials, unity in opinions, liberty in all things love." [15] : 688
  • "No creed but Christ, no book but the Bible, no law but love, no name but the divine." [15] : 688
  • "Do Bible things in Bible ways." [15] : 688
  • "Call Bible things by Bible names." [15] : 688

During the late Middle Ages, dissenters such as John Wycliff and John Huss called for a restoration of a primitive form of Christianity, but they were driven underground. As a result, it is difficult to find any direct links between such early dissenters and the restoration movement. [13] : 13

Beginning with the Renaissance, intellectual roots become easier to discern. [17] At the heart of the Reformation was an emphasis on the principle of "Scripture alone" (sola scriptura). [18] This, along with the related insistence on the right of individuals to read and interpret the Bible for themselves and a movement to reduce ritual in worship, formed part of the intellectual background of early Restoration Movement leaders. [19] The branch of the Reformation movement represented by Huldrych Zwingli and John Calvin contributed an emphasis on "restoring biblical forms and patterns." [20]

The rationalism of John Locke provided another influence. [21] Reacting to the deism of Lord Herbert, Locke sought a way to address religious division and persecution without abandoning Scripture. [21] To do this, Locke argued against the right of government to enforce religious orthodoxy and turned to the Bible to supply a set of beliefs that all Christians could agree upon. [22] The core teachings which he viewed as essential were the messiahship of Jesus and Jesus' direct commands. [22] Christians could be devoutly committed to other Biblical teachings but, in Locke's view, these were non-essentials over which Christians should never fight or try to coerce each other. [23] Unlike the Puritans and the later Restoration Movement, Locke did not call for a systematic restoration of the early church. [23]

One of the basic goals of the English Puritans was to restore a pure, "primitive" church that would be a true apostolic community. [24] This conception was a critical influence in the development of the Puritans in Colonial America. [25]

It has been described as the "oldest ecumenical movement in America": [26]

Both the great founding documents of the movement are authentically ecumenical. In The Last Will and Testament of the Springfield Presbytery (1804), Barton Stone and his fellow revivalists dissolved their exclusive presbyterial relationship, desiring to "sink into union with the Body of Christ at large." Five years later Thomas Campbell wrote in The Declaration and Address of the Christian Association of Washington [PA] (1809) "The church of Christ on earth is essentially, intentionally and constitutionally one." [1]

During the First Great Awakening, a movement developed among those Baptists known as Separate Baptists. Two themes of this movement were the rejection of creeds and "freedom in the Spirit." [27] The Separate Baptists saw Scripture as the "perfect rule" for the church. [28] However, while they turned to the Bible for a structural pattern for the church, they did not insist on complete agreement on the details of that pattern. [29] This group originated in New England, but was especially strong in the South where the emphasis on a biblical pattern for the church grew stronger. [29] In the last half of the 18th century, Separate Baptists became more numerous on the western frontier of Kentucky and Tennessee, where the Stone and Campbell movements would later take root. [30] The development of the Separate Baptists in the southern frontier helped prepare the ground for the Restoration Movement. The membership of both the Stone and Campbell groups drew heavily from the ranks of the Separate Baptists. [29]

Separate Baptist restorationism also contributed to the development of the Landmark Baptists in the same region as the Stone-Campbell Restoration Movement and at about the same time. Under the leadership of James Robinson Graves, this group wanted to define a precise blueprint for the primitive church, believing that any deviation from that blueprint would prevent a person from being part of the true church. [30]

The ideal of restoring a "primitive" form of Christianity grew in popularity in the US after the American Revolution. [31] This desire to restore a purer form of Christianity played a role in the development of many groups during this period, known as the Second Great Awakening. [32] These included the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Baptists and Shakers. [32]

The Restoration Movement began during, and was greatly influenced by, this second Awakening. [33] While the Campbells resisted what they saw as the spiritual manipulation of the camp meetings, the Southern phase of the Awakening "was an important matrix of Barton Stone's reform movement" and shaped the evangelistic techniques used by both Stone and the Campbells. [34]

James O'Kelly was an early advocate of seeking unity through a return to New Testament Christianity. [35] : 216 In 1792, dissatisfied with the role of bishops in the Methodist Episcopal Church, he separated from that body. O'Kelly's movement, centering in Virginia and North Carolina, was originally called Republican Methodists. In 1794 they adopted the name Christian Church. [36]

During the same period, Elias Smith of Vermont and Abner Jones of New Hampshire led a movement espousing views similar to those of O'Kelly. [30] [37] They believed that members could, by looking to scripture alone, simply be Christians without being bound to human traditions and the denominations brought by immigrants from Europe. [30] [37] : 190

Barton W. Stone was born to John and Mary Warren Stone near Port Tobacco, Maryland on December 24, 1772. [38] : 702 His immediate family was upper middle class, with connections to Maryland's upper class. [38] : 702 Barton's father died in 1775, and his mother moved the family to Pittsylvania County, Virginia in 1779. [38] : 702 Mary Stone was a member of the Church of England and Barton was christened by a priest named Thomas Thornton after the move to Virginia she joined the Methodists. [39] : 52 Barton was not himself notably religious as a young man he found the competing claims of the Episcopalians, Baptists and Methodists confusing, and was much more interested in politics. [39] : 52–53 (After the American Revolution the Church of England was disestablished and the Episcopal Church was organized.)

Barton entered the Guilford Academy in North Carolina in 1790. [5] : 71 While there, Stone heard James McGready (a Presbyterian minister) speak. [5] : 72 A few years later, he was ordained as a Presbyterian minister. [5] : 72 But, as Stone looked more deeply into the beliefs of the Presbyterians, especially the Westminster Confession of Faith, he doubted that some of the church beliefs were truly Bible-based. [5] : 72–3 He was unable to accept the Calvinist doctrines of total depravity, unconditional election, and predestination. [5] : 72–3 He also believed that "Calvinism's alleged theological sophistication had. been bought at the price of fomenting division" and "blamed it. for producing ten different sects within the Presbyterian tradition alone." [40] : 110

Cane Ridge revival Edit

In 1801, the Cane Ridge Revival in Kentucky planted the seed for a movement in Kentucky and the Ohio River valley to disassociate from denominationalism. In 1803 Stone and others withdrew from the Kentucky Presbytery and formed the Springfield Presbytery. The defining event of the Stone wing of the movement was the publication of Last Will and Testament of The Springfield Presbytery, at Cane Ridge, Kentucky, in 1804. The Last Will is a brief document in which Stone and five others announced their withdrawal from Presbyterianism and their intention to be solely part of the body of Christ. [41] The writers appealed for the unity of all who follow Jesus, suggested the value of congregational self-governance, and lifted the Bible as the source for understanding the will of God. They denounced the 'divisive' use of the Westminster Confession of Faith, [4] : 79 and adopted the name "Christian" to identify their group. [4] : 80

Christian Connection Edit

By 1804 Elias Smith had heard of the Stone movement, and the O'Kelly movement by 1808. [37] : 190 The three groups merged by 1810. [37] : 190 At that time the combined movement had a membership of approximately 20,000. [37] : 190 This loose fellowship of churches was called by the names "Christian Connection/Connexion" or "Christian Church." [13] : 68 [37] : 190

Characteristics of the Stone movement Edit

The cornerstone for the Stone movement was Christian freedom. [13] : 104 This ideal of freedom led them to reject all the historical creeds, traditions and theological systems that had developed over time and to focus instead on a primitive Christianity based on the Bible. [13] : 104–5

While restoring primitive Christianity was central to the Stone movement, they believed that restoring the lifestyle of members of the early church is essential. During the early years, they "focused more. on holy and righteous living than on the forms and structures of the early church. [13] : 103 The group also worked to restore the primitive church. [13] : 104 Due to concern that emphasizing particular practices could undermine Christian freedom, this effort tended to take the form of rejecting tradition rather than an explicit program of reconstructing New Testament practices. [13] : 104 The emphasis on freedom was so strong that the movement avoided developing any ecclesiastical traditions it was "largely without dogma, form, or structure." [13] : 104–5 What held "the movement together was a commitment to primitive Christianity." [13] : 105

Another theme was that of hastening the millennium. [13] : 104 Many Americans of the period believed that the millennium was near and based their hopes for the millennium on their new nation, the United States. [13] : 104 Members of the Stone movement believed that only a unified Christianity based on the apostolic church, rather than a country or any of the existing denominations, could lead to the coming of the millennium. [13] : 104 Stone's millennialism has been described as more "apocalyptic" than that of Alexander Campbell, in that he believed people were too flawed to usher in a millennial age through human progress. [42] : 6,7 Rather, he believed that it depended on the power of God, and that while waiting for God to establish His kingdom, one should live as if the rule of God were already fully established. [42] : 6

For the Stone movement, this millennial emphasis had less to do with eschatological theories and more about a countercultural commitment to live as if the kingdom of God were already established on earth. [42] : 6,7 This apocalyptic perspective or world view led many in the Stone movement to adopt pacifism, avoid participating in civil government, and reject violence, militarism, greed, materialism and slavery. [42] : 6

The Campbell wing of the movement was launched when Thomas Campbell published the Declaration and Address of the Christian Association of Washington in 1809. [4] : 108–11 The Presbyterian Synod had suspended his ministerial credentials. In The Declaration and Address, he set forth some of his convictions about the church of Jesus Christ. He organized the Christian Association of Washington, in Washington County, Pennsylvania on the western frontier of the state, not as a church but as an association of persons seeking to grow in faith. [4] : 108–11 On May 4, 1811, the Christian Association reconstituted itself as a congregationally governed church. With the building it constructed at Brush Run, Pennsylvania, it became known as Brush Run Church. [4] : 117

When their study of the New Testament led the reformers to begin to practice baptism by immersion, the nearby Redstone Baptist Association invited Brush Run Church to join with them for the purpose of fellowship. The reformers agreed, provided that they would be "allowed to preach and to teach whatever they learned from the Scriptures." [43] : 86

Thomas' son Alexander came to the US to join him in 1809. [13] : 106 Before long, he assumed the leading role in the movement. [13] : 106

The Campbells worked within the Redstone Baptist Association during the period 1815 through 1824. While both the Campbells and the Baptists shared practices of baptism by immersion and congregational polity, it quickly became clear the Campbells and their associates were not traditional Baptists. Within the Redstone Association, some of the Baptist leaders considered the differences intolerable when Alexander Campbell began publishing a journal, The Christian Baptist, which promoted reform. Campbell anticipated the conflict and moved his membership to a congregation of the Mahoning Baptist Association in 1824. [4] : 131

Alexander used The Christian Baptist to address what he saw as the key issue of reconstructing the apostolic Christian community in a systematic and rational manner. [13] : 106 He wanted to clearly distinguish between essential and non-essential aspects of primitive Christianity. [13] : 106 Among what he identified as essential were "congregational autonomy, a plurality of elders in each congregation, weekly communion and immersion for the remission of sins." [13] : 106 Among practices he rejected as non-essential were "the holy kiss, deaconesses, communal living, footwashing and charismatic exercises." [13] : 106

In 1827, the Mahoning Association appointed Walter Scott as an evangelist. Through Scott's efforts, the Mahoning Association grew rapidly. In 1828, Thomas Campbell visited several of the congregations formed by Scott and heard him preach. Campbell believed that Scott was bringing an important new dimension to the movement with his approach to evangelism. [4] : 132–3

Several Baptist associations began disassociating congregations that refused to subscribe to the Philadelphia Confession. [44] The Mahoning Association came under attack. In 1830, The Mahoning Baptist Association disbanded. The younger Campbell ceased publication of the Christian Baptist. In January 1831, he began publication of the Millennial Harbinger. [4] : 144–5

Influence of the Enlightenment Edit

The Age of Enlightenment had a significant influence on the Campbell movement. [13] : 80–6 Thomas Campbell was a student of the Enlightenment philosopher John Locke. [13] : 82 While he did not explicitly use the term "essentials" in the Declaration and Address, Thomas proposed the same solution to religious division as had been advanced earlier by Herbert and Locke: "[R]educe religion to a set of essentials upon which all reasonable persons might agree." [13] : 80 The essentials he identified were those practices for which the Bible provided: "a 'Thus saith the Lord,' either in express terms or by approved precedent." [13] : 81 Unlike Locke, who considered the earlier efforts by Puritans to be inherently divisive, Thomas argued for "a complete restoration of apostolic Christianity." [13] : 82 Thomas believed that creeds served to divide Christians. He also believed that the Bible was clear enough that anyone could understand it and, thus, creeds were unnecessary. [45] : 114

Alexander Campbell was also deeply influenced by Enlightenment thinking, in particular the Scottish School of Common Sense of Thomas Reid and Dugald Stewart. [13] : 84 This group believed that the Bible related concrete facts rather than abstract truths, and advocated a scientific or "Baconian" approach to interpreting the Bible. It would begin with those facts, arrange the ones applicable to a given topic, and draw conclusions from them in a way that has been described as "nothing less than the scientific method applied to the Bible." [13] : 84 Alexander reflected this Baconian approach when he repeatedly argued that "the Bible is a book of facts, not of opinions, theories, abstract generalities, nor of verbal definitions." [13] : 84 Just as a reliance on facts provides the basis for agreement among scientists, Alexander believed that if Christians limited themselves to the facts found in the Bible they would necessarily come to agreement. [13] : 84 He believed that those facts, approached in a rational and scientific manner, provided a blueprint or constitution for the church. [13] : 85 Alexander was attracted to this scientific approach to the Bible because it offered a reliable basis for Christian unity. [13] : 84

Characteristics of the Campbell movement Edit

Thomas Campbell combined the Enlightenment approach to unity with the Reformed and Puritan traditions of restoration. [13] : 82,106 The Enlightenment affected the Campbell movement in two ways. First, it provided the idea that Christian unity could be achieved by finding a set of essentials that all reasonable people could agree on. Second, it also provided the concept of a rational faith that was formulated and defended based on facts derived from the Bible. [13] : 85,86 Campbell's solution to achieve Christian unity combined forsaking the creeds and traditions, which he believed had divided Christians, and recovering the primitive Christianity, found in scripture, that was common for all Christians. [13] : 106

Alexander Campbell's millennialism was more optimistic than Stone's. [42] : 6 He had more confidence in the potential for human progress and believed that Christians could unite to transform the world and initiate a millennial age. [42] : 6 Campbell's conceptions were postmillennial, as he anticipated that the progress of the church and society would lead to an age of peace and righteousness before the return of Christ. [42] : 6 This optimistic approach meant that, in addition to his commitment to primitivism, he had a progressive strand in his thinking. [42] : 7

The Campbell movement was characterized by a "systematic and rational reconstruction" of the early church, in contrast to the Stone movement, which was characterized by radical freedom and lack of dogma. [46] Despite their differences, the two movements agreed on several critical issues. [47] Both saw restoring apostolic Christianity as a means of hastening the millennium. [47] Both also saw restoring the early church as a route to Christian freedom. [47] And both believed that unity among Christians could be achieved by using apostolic Christianity as a model. [47] The commitment of both movements to restoring the early church and to uniting Christians was enough to motivate a union between many in the two movements. [42] : 8, 9

The Stone and Campbell movements merged in 1832. [3] : 28 [43] : 116–20 [48] : 212 [49] This was formalized at the Hill Street Meeting House in Lexington, Kentucky with a handshake between Barton W Stone and "Raccoon" John Smith. [43] : 116–20 Smith had been chosen by attendees as spokesman for the followers of the Campbells. [43] : 116 A preliminary meeting of the two groups had been held in late December 1831, culminating with the merger on January 1, 1832. [43] : 116–20 [50]

Two representatives of the assembly were appointed to carry the news of the union to all the churches: John Rogers, for the Christians and "Raccoon" John Smith for the reformers. Despite some challenges, the merger succeeded. [4] : 153–4 Many believed the union held great promise for the future success of the combined movement, and greeted the news enthusiastically. [42] : 9

When Stone and Alexander Campbell's Reformers (also known as Disciples and Christian Baptists) united in 1832, only a minority of Christians from the Smith/Jones and O'Kelly movements participated. [51] Those who did were from congregations west of the Appalachian Mountains that had come into contact with the Stone movement. [51] The eastern members had several key differences with the Stone and Campbell group: an emphasis on conversion experience, quarterly observance of communion, and nontrinitarianism. [51] Those who did not unite with Campbell merged with the Congregational Churches in 1931 to form the Congregational Christian Churches. [52] In 1957, the Congregational Christian Church merged with the Evangelical and Reformed Church to become the United Church of Christ. [52]

The merger raised the question of what to call the new movement. Finding a biblical, non-sectarian name was important. Stone wanted to continue to use the name "Christians," while Alexander Campbell insisted upon "Disciples of Christ". [4] : 27–8 [53] Stone advocated using the name "Christians" based on its use in Acts 11:26, while Campbell preferred the term "disciples" because he saw it as both a more humble and an older designation. [10] As a result, both names were used, and the confusion over names has continued ever since. [4] : 27–8

After 1832, use of the term "Reformation" became frequent among leaders of the movement. [10] The Campbells had designated themselves as "Reformers," and other early leaders also saw themselves as reformers seeking Christian unity and restoring apostolic Christianity. [10] The movement's language at the time included phrases such as "religious reformation," the "present reformation," the "current reformation" and "the cause of reformation." [10] The term "Restoration Movement" became popular as the 19th century progressed. [10] It appears to have been inspired by Alexander Campbell's essays on "A Restoration of the Ancient Order of Things" in the Christian Baptist. [10]

The combined movement grew rapidly over the period from 1832 to 1906. [54] : 92–93 [55] : 25 According to the 1906 US Religious Census the combined membership of the movement made it the 6th largest Christian group in the country at that time. [55] : 27

Estimated Membership
Year 1832 1860 1890 1900 1906
Membership 22,000 [54] : 92 192,000 [54] : 92 641,051 [55] : 25 1,120,000 [54] : 93 1,142,359 [55] : 25

Journals Edit

The Disciples do not have bishops they have editors

From the beginning of the movement, the free exchange of ideas among the people was fostered by the journals published by its leaders. Alexander Campbell published The Christian Baptist and The Millennial Harbinger. Stone published The Christian Messenger. [57] Both men routinely published the contributions of persons whose positions differed radically from their own.

Following Campbell's death in 1866, the journals were used to keep the discussions going. Between 1870 and 1900, two journals emerged as the most prominent. The Christian Standard was edited and published by Isaac Errett of Cincinnati, Ohio. The Christian Evangelist was edited and published by JH Garrison from St. Louis. The two men enjoyed a friendly rivalry, and kept the dialog going within the movement. [58]

The Gospel Advocate was founded by the Nashville-area preacher Tolbert Fanning in 1855. [59] Fanning's student, William Lipscomb, served as co-editor until the American Civil War forced them to suspend publication in 1861. [60] After the end of the Civil War, publication resumed in 1866 under the editorship of Fanning and William Lipscomb's younger brother David Lipscomb Fanning soon retired and David Lipscomb became the sole editor. [61] While David Lipscomb was the editor, the focus was on seeking unity by following scripture exactly, and the Advocate's editorial position was to reject anything that is not explicitly allowed by scripture. [62]

The Christian Oracle began publication in 1884. It was later known as The Christian Century and offered an interdenominational appeal. [48] : 364 In 1914, Garrison's Christian Publishing company was purchased by R.A. Long. He established a non-profit corporation, "The Christian Board of Publication" as the Brotherhood publishing house. [48] : 426

Anabaptism and materialism controversies Edit

The Christadelphians, Church of the Blessed Hope, and Church of God (General Conference) also have roots in the restoration movement, but took their own direction about this time.

In 1832 Walter Scott baptised John Thomas, an English doctor who had emigrated to the United States. Thomas was a strong supporter of Alexander Campbell and the principles of the Disciples movement, and he quickly became a well-known leader and teacher. In 1834, however, Thomas took a contrary position to Alexander Campbell on the significance of baptism which led to a sharp conflict between the two men. While Campbell believed baptism by immersion to be very important, he recognised as Christians all who believed Jesus of Nazareth to be Messiah and Lord, and recognised any prior baptism. For this reason, members of Baptist churches who joined the Disciples movement were not required to be baptised again. Thomas, on the other hand, insisted that a baptism based on a different understanding of the gospel to that held in the Disciples movement was not a valid baptism, and called for rebaptism in his periodical, the Apostolic Advocate. Campbell viewed this as sectarianism, which cut across the fundamental commitment of the Disciples movement to "the union of all Christians," and rejected "anabaptism." The two men became estranged.

Thomas began to refuse to share prayer, worship, or communion with those he considered not to be validly baptised Christians. His theological views also continued to develop. By 1837 he was teaching annihilationism, and debated a Presbyterian clergymen, Isaac Watts. Campbell interpreted this as materialism, and believed that it undermined the biblical doctrine of the resurrection, and reacted strongly. In the Millennial Harbinger he announced that he could no longer consider Thomas a brother. Many congregations of Disciples took this as an indication that they should withhold fellowship from Thomas, and he found himself on the margins of the movement.

Thomas continued to have supporters among the Disciples, but moved further and further from Christian orthodoxy. In 1846 he published a "Confession and Abjuration" of the faith he held at his baptism, and arranged to be baptised again. Despite this, when he toured the United Kingdom to give prophetic lectures in 1848-1850 he played down his separation from the Disciples movement, in an endeavour to access congregations in Britain. But his true position was discovered by James Wallis and David King, and the movement closed ranks against him.

In 1864 he coined the name "Christadelphian" for those who shared his views and sought to register as conscientious objectors to military service. The new name was adopted by Robert Roberts, the Scottish protege of Thomas, for the periodical which he had just begun to publish in Birmingham and the sect began to grow rapidly.

Benjamin Wilson left the Disciples about the same time as Thomas, but split with Thomas in 1863 over disagreements about eschatology, forming the Church of God of the Abrahamic Faith. During the American Civil War his followers also sought to register as conscientious objectors. Some congregations were unable to register this name due to local regulations, and chose an alternative name, Church of the Blessed Hope but the two names referred to the same sect. The sect divided in 1921, and the Church of God (General Conference) was formed by the larger grouping.

Missionary society controversy Edit

In 1849, the first National Convention was held at Cincinnati, Ohio. [48] : 245 Alexander Campbell had concerns that holding conventions would lead the movement into divisive denominationalism. He did not attend the gathering. [48] : 245 Among its actions, the convention elected Alexander Campbell its president and created the American Christian Missionary Society (ACMS). [48] : 247 By the end of the century, the Foreign Christian Missionary Society and the Christian Woman's Board of Missions were also engaged in missionary activities. Forming the ACMS did not reflect a consensus of the entire movement, and these para-church organizations became a divisive issue. While there was no disagreement over the need for evangelism, many believed that missionary societies were not authorized by scripture and would compromise the autonomy of local congregations. [63]

The ACMS was not as successful as proponents had hoped. [64] It was opposed by those who believed any extra-congregational organizations were inappropriate hostility grew when the ACMS took a stand in 1863 favoring the Union side during the American Civil War. [64] [65] A convention held in Louisville, Kentucky in 1869 adopted a plan intended to address "a perceived need to reorganize the American Christian Missionary Society (ACMS) in a way that would be acceptable to more members of the Movement." [64] The "Louisville Plan," as it came to be known, attempted to build on existing local and regional conventions and to "promote the harmonious cooperation of all the state and District Boards and Conventions." [64] [66] It established a General Christian Missionary Convention (GCMC). [66] Membership was congregational rather than individual. [64] [66] Local congregations elected delegates to district meetings, which in turn elected delegates to state meetings. [64] States were given two delegates, plus an additional delegate for every 5,000 members. [64] The plan proved divisive, and faced immediate opposition. [64] [66] Opponents continued to argue that any organizational structure above the local congregational level was not authorized by scripture, and there was a general concern that the Board had been given too much authority. [64] By 1872 the Louisville Plan had effectively failed. [64] [66] Direct contributions from individuals were sought again in 1873, individual membership was reinstated in 1881, and the name was changed back to the American Christian Missionary Society in 1895. [64] [66]

Use of musical instruments in worship Edit

The use of musical instruments in worship was discussed in journal articles as early as 1849, but initial reactions were generally unfavorable. [67] : 414 Some congregations, however, are documented as having used musical instruments in the 1850s and 1860s. [67] : 414 An example is the church in Midway, Kentucky, which was using an instrument by 1860. [67] : 414 A member of the congregation, L. L. Pinkerton, brought a melodeon into the church building. [67] : 414 [68] : 95,96 [69] : 597–598 The minister had been distressed to his "breaking point" by the poor quality of the congregation's singing. [68] : 96 At first, the instrument was used for singing practices held on Saturday night, but was soon used during the worship on Sunday. [68] : 96 One of the elders of that assembly removed the first melodeon, but it was soon replaced by another. [68] : 96

Both acceptance of instruments and discussion of the issue grew after the American Civil War. [67] : 414 Opponents argued that the New Testament provided no authorization for their use in worship, while supporters argued on the basis of expediency and Christian liberty. [67] : 414 Affluent, urban congregations were more likely to adopt musical instruments, while poorer and more rural congregations tended to see them as "an accommodation to the ways of the world." [67] : 414

The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement notes that Restoration Movement historians have tended to interpret the controversy over the use of musical instruments in worship in ways that "reflect their own attitudes on the issue." [67] : 414 Examples are given of historians from different branches of the movement interpreting it in relation to the statements of early Restoration Movement leaders, in terms of social and cultural factors, differing approaches to interpreting scripture, differing approaches to the authority of scripture, and "ecumenical progressivism" versus "sectarian primitivism." [67] : 414–5

Role of clergy Edit

The early 19th-century Restoration Movement encompassed very different views concerning the role of clergy: the Campbell branch was strongly anti-clergy, believing there was no justification for a clergy/lay distinction, while the Stone branch believed that only an ordained minister could officiate at communion. [54]

Biblical interpretation Edit

Early leaders of the movement had a high view of scripture, and believed that it was both inspired and infallible. [70] Dissenting views developed during the 19th century. [70] As early as 1849, LL Pinkerton denied the inerrancy of the Bible. [69] [70] According to the Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement Pinkerton is "sometimes labeled the first 'liberal' of the Stone-Campbell Movement." [69] In addition to rejecting the plenary inspiration of the Bible and supporting the use of instruments in worship, Pinkerton also supported "open membership" (recognizing as members individuals who have not been baptized by immersion) [71] and was a strong supporter of the temperance and abolition movements. [69] As the 19th century progressed, the denial of the inerrancy of the Bible slowly spread. [70] In 1883 the editor of the Christian Standard, Isaac Errett, said "Admitting the fact of inspiration, have we in the inspired Scriptures an infallible guide. I do not see how we can answer this question affirmatively." [70] Others, including JW McGarvey, fiercely opposed these new liberal views. [70]

Nothing in life has given me more pain in heart than the separation from those I have heretofore worked with and loved

Factors leading to the separation Edit

Disagreement over centralized organizations above the local congregational level, such as missionary societies and conventions, was one important factor leading to the separation of the Churches of Christ from the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). [63] After the American Civil War more congregations began using instruments, which led to growing controversy. [67] : 414 The greatest acceptance was among urban congregations in the Northern states very few congregations in the Southern United States used instruments in worship. [67] : 414–415

While music and the approach to missionary work were the most visible issues, there were also some deeper ones, such as basic differences in the underlying approach to Biblical interpretation. For the Churches of Christ, any practices not present in accounts of New Testament worship were not permissible in the church, and they could find no New Testament documentation of the use of instrumental music in worship. For the Christian Churches, any practices not expressly forbidden could be considered. [4] : 242–7 The American Civil War exacerbated the cultural tensions between the two groups. [73]

As the 19th century progressed, a division gradually developed between those whose primary commitment was to unity, and those whose primary commitment was to the restoration of the primitive church. [42] : 5,6 Those whose primary focus was unity gradually took on "an explicitly ecumenical agenda" and "sloughed off the restorationist vision." [42] : 6 This group increasingly used the terms "Disciples of Christ" and "Christian Churches" rather than "Churches of Christ." [42] : 6 At the same time, those whose primary focus was restoration of the primitive church increasingly used the term "Churches of Christ" rather than "Disciples of Christ." [42] : 6 Reports on the changes and increasing separation among the groups were published as early as 1883. [4] : 252

The rise of women leaders in the temperance [74] : 728–729 and missionary movements, primarily in the North, also contributed to the separation of the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations. In the Christian Churches, many women spoke in public on behalf of the new Christian Woman's Board of Missions (CWBM) and Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). In contrast, the Churches of Christ largely discouraged women from joining activist women's organizations such as the WCTU and speaking in public about any issue. [75] : 292–316 In 1889 the Erie Christian Church confirmed the leadership role of women by ordaining Clara Celestia Hale Babcock as the first known woman Disciple preacher. [76] : 47–60

Formal recognition in 1906 Edit

The United States Census Bureau began a religious census in 1906. [77] [78] Special Agents were used to collect information on those groups which had little or no formal organizational structure, such as the churches associated with the Restoration Movement. [77] [78] Officials working on the census noticed signs that the movement was no longer unified: the Gospel Advocate appeared at times to distance itself from the Disciples of Christ, and the Bureau had received at least one letter claiming that some "churches of Christ" were no longer affiliated with the "Disciples of Christ." [77] [78]

To resolve the question, the Census Director, Simon Newton Dexter North, wrote a letter to David Lipscomb, the editor of the Advocate. [77] [78] He asked:

I would like to know: 1. Whether there is a religious body called "Church of Christ," not identified with the Disciples of Christ, or any other Baptist body? 2. If there is such a body, has it any general organization, with headquarters, officers, district or general conventions, associations or conferences? 3. How did it originate, and what are its distinctive principles? 4. How best can there be secured a complete list of the churches? [78]

Lipscomb summarized the early history of the movement, described the "general organization of the churches under a missionary society with a moneyed membership" and the "adoption of instrumental music in the worship" as "a subversion of the fundamental principles on which the churches were based," and then continued: [78]

There is a distinct people taking the word of God as their only and sufficient rule of faith, calling their churches "churches of Christ" or "churches of God," distinct and separate in name, work, and rule of faith from all other bodies of people. [77] [78]

The 1906 U.S. Religious Census for the first time listed the "Churches of Christ" and the "Disciples of Christ" as separate and distinct groups. [4] : 251 This, however, was simply the recognition of a division that had been growing for years, with published reports as early as 1883. [4] : 252 The process that led to this separation had begun prior to the American Civil War. [79] : 17–8

For Lipscomb, an underlying theological concern was the adoption of German liberal theology by many among the Disciples wing of the Restoration Movement. [80] He saw them as taking a direction very different from the principles enunciated by Thomas and Alexander Campbell. [80] Lipscomb's response to the Census Bureau, and its official listing of the two groups in 1906, became another source of friction between the groups. [77] [78] James Harvey Garrison, editor of the "Disciples" journal, The Christian-Evangelist, accused Lipscomb of "sectarianism." Lipscomb said that he had "done nothing to bring about the present condition of affairs," the Census Bureau had started the discussion, and he had simply answered the question they brought to him. [77] [78]

Movement historian Douglas Foster has summarized the events this way:

The data reflected what had already happened (and what continued to happen for at least another decade). The Census Bureau itself had noticed a rift between Churches of Christ and Disciples of Christ, and in the interest of reliable data collection tried to ascertain if that was true. Lipscomb agreed that it was accurate to list the two separately Garrison did not. The division did not begin or happen in 1906 — it was nearing its end. The government did not declare the division the Census Bureau simply published data it received. [77]

Aftermath Edit

When the 1906 U.S. Religious Census was published in 1910 it reported combined totals for the "Disciples or Christians" for comparison to the 1890 statistics on the movement, as well as separate statistics for the "Disciples of Christ" and the "Churches of Christ." [55] The Disciples were by far the larger of the two groups at the time. [55] : 28, 514

Relative Size of Disciples of Christ and Churches of Christ in 1906
Congregations [55] : 514 Members [55] : 28
"Disciples of Christ" 8,293 (75.8%) 982,701 (86.0%)
"Churches of Christ" 2,649 (24.2%) 159,658 (14.0%)
Total "Disciples or Christians" 10,942 1,142,359

Generally speaking, the Disciples of Christ congregations tended to be predominantly urban and Northern, while the Churches of Christ were predominantly rural and Southern. The Disciples favored college-educated clergy, while the Churches of Christ discouraged formal theological education because they opposed the creation of a professional clergy. Disciples congregations tended to be wealthier and constructed larger, more expensive church buildings. Churches of Christ congregations built more modest structures, and criticized the wearing of expensive clothing at worship. [54] : 109 One commentator has described the Disciples "ideal" as reflecting the "businessman," and the Church of Christ "ideal" as reflecting "the simple and austere yeoman farmer." [54] : 109

Churches of Christ have maintained an ongoing commitment to purely congregational structure, rather than a denominational one, and have no central headquarters, councils, or other organizational structure above the local church level. [81] : 214 [5] : 449 [45] : 124 [82] : 238 [83] : 103 [84] The Disciples developed in a different direction. After a number of discussions throughout the 1950s, the 1960 International Convention of Christian Churches adopted a process to "restructure" the entire organization. [85] The Disciples restructured in a way that has been described as an "overt recognition of the body's denominational status," [86] : 268 resulting in what has been described as "a Reformed North American Mainstream Moderate Denomination." [87]

After the separation from the Churches of Christ, tensions remained among the Disciples of Christ over theological liberalism, the nascent ecumenical movement and "open membership." [88] : 185 While the process was lengthy, the more conservative unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations eventually emerged as a separately identifiable religious body from the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). [88] : 185

Some commentators believe divisions in the movement have resulted from the tension between the goals of restoration and ecumenism, and see the Churches of Christ and unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations resolving the tension by stressing restoration while the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) resolve the tension by stressing ecumenism. [81] : 210 [5] : 383

All of the three major U.S. branches of the Movement share the following characteristics:

  • A high view, compared to other Christian traditions, of the office of the elder and [89] : 532
  • A "commitment to the priesthood of all believers". [89] : 532

The term "restoration movement" has remained popular among the Churches of Christ and the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations. [9] : 551 Because of the emphasis it places on the theme of restoration, it has been a less comfortable fit for those whose primary focus has been on the theme of unity. [9] : 551 Historically, the term "Disciples of Christ" has also been used by some as a collective designation for the movement. [9] : 551 It has evolved, however, into a designation for a particular branch of the movement – the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) – as a result of the divisions of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. [9] : 551

The movement as a whole grew significantly over the course of the 20th century, and the relative size of the different groups associated with the movement shifted as well. [90]

Relative Size of Restoration Movement Groups in 2000 [90]
Congregations Members
Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) 3,625 785,776
Unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations 5,293 1,453,160
Churches of Christ 12,584 1,584,162
International Churches of Christ 450 120 000

Following the 1906 separation of the Churches of Christ, controversy still existed within the movement over whether the missionary efforts should be cooperative or independently sponsored by congregations. Questions on the role of the methods of Biblical Criticism to the study and interpretation of the Bible were also among the issues in conflict. [48] : 418–20 An awareness of historical criticism began developing in the 1880s, and by the 1920s many Disciples accepted the work of the higher critics. [91] : 178 By that time the question of "open membership," or "admission of the pious unimmersed to membership" had arisen as an additional source of tension. [91] : 182 [92] : 63

During the first half of the 20th century the opposing factions among the Christian Churches coexisted, but with discomfort. The three Missionary Societies were merged into the United Christian Missionary Society in 1920. [48] : 428,429 Human service ministries grew through the National Benevolent Association providing assistance to orphans, the elderly and the disabled. By mid century, the cooperative Christian Churches and the independent Christian Churches were following different paths.

By 1926 a split began to form within the Disciples over the future direction of the church. Conservatives within the group began to have problems with the perceived liberalism of the leadership, upon the same grounds described earlier in the accepting of instrumental music in worship. In 1927 they held the first North American Christian Convention, and the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations began to emerge as a distinct group from the Disciples, although the break was not totally formalized until the late 1960s. By this time the decennial religious census was a thing of the past and it is impossible to use it as a delineation as it was in 1906.

Following World War II, it was believed that the organizations that had been developed in previous decades no longer effectively met the needs of the postwar era. [4] : 419 After a number discussions throughout the 1950s, the 1960 International Convention of Christian Churches adopted a process to plan the "restructure" of the entire organization. [4] : 421 The Commission on Restructure, chaired by Granville T. Walker, held its first meeting October 30 & November 1, 1962. [4] : 436–37 In 1968, at the International Convention of Christian Churches (Disciples of Christ), those Christian Churches that favored cooperative mission work adopted a new "provisional design" for their work together, becoming the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). [5] : 495 Those congregations that chose not to be associated with the new denominational organization went their own way as the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations, completing a separation that had begun decades before. [5] : 407–9

The Disciples of Christ still have their own internal conservative-liberal tension. In 1985, a movement of conservative congregations and individuals among the Disciples formed the "Disciple Renewal." [93] : 272 They thought that others in the Disciples fellowship had increasingly liberal views on issues such as the lordship of Christ, the authority of the Bible, and tolerance of homosexuality. [93] : 272 In 1985 the Disciples General Assembly rejected a resolution on the inspiration of scripture afterward, the Disciple Renewal planned to encourage renewal from within the fellowship through founding a journal entitled Disciple Renewal. [93] : 272 Conservative members were concerned that the Disciples had abandoned the fundamental principles of the Restoration Movement. [93] : 272

In 1995 the Disciple Heritage Fellowship [94] was established. It is a fellowship of autonomous congregations, about half of which are formally associated with the Disciples of Christ. [93] : 272 As of 2002 [update] the Disciples Heritage Fellowship included 60 congregations and 100 "supporting" churches. [93] : 272

Restructuring and development of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Edit

In 1968, the International Convention of Christian Churches (Disciples of Christ) adopted the Commission's proposed "Provisional Design of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)." [4] : 442–43 The restructuring was implemented in 1969 by the first General Assembly, and the name officially changed to the "Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)". [95] : 645 This restructuring has been described as an "overt recognition of the body's denominational status," [86] : 268 and the modern Disciples have been described as "a Reformed North American Mainstream Moderate Denomination." [87]

Membership trends Edit

The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) has experienced a significant loss of membership since the middle of the 20th century. Membership peaked in 1958 at just under 2 million. [96] In 1993, membership dropped below 1 million. In 2009, the denomination reported 658,869 members in 3,691 congregations. [96] As of 2010, the five states with the highest adherence rates were Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Kentucky and Oklahoma. [97] The states with the largest absolute number of adherents were Missouri, Texas, Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio. [98]

Independent Christian churches and churches of Christ have both organizational and hermeneutic differences with the churches of Christ. [81] : 186 For example, they have a loosely organized convention, and they view scriptural silence on an issue more permissively. [81] : 186 Nonetheless, they are much more closely related to the churches of Christ in their theology and ecclesiology than they are with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). [81] : 186

The development of the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations as a separately identifiable religious body from the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) (DoC) was a lengthy process. [88] : 185 The roots of the separation can be found in the polarization resulting from three major controversies that arose during the early 20th century. [88] : 185 One, which was a source of division in other religious groups, was "the theological development of modernism and liberalism." [88] : 185 The early stages of the ecumenical movement, which led in 1908 to the Federal Council of Churches, provide a second source of controversy. [88] : 185 The third was the practice of open membership, in which individuals who had not been baptized by immersion were granted full membership in the church. [88] : 185 Those who supported one of these points of view tended to support the others as well. [88] : 185

The Disciples of Christ were, in 1910, a united, growing community with common goals. [99] Support by the United Christian Missionary Society of missionaries who advocated open membership became a source of contention in 1920. [88] : 185 Efforts to recall support for these missionaries failed in a 1925 convention in Oklahoma City and a 1926 convention in Memphis, Tennessee. [88] : 185 Many congregations withdrew from the missionary society as a result. [88] : 185

A new convention, the North American Christian Convention, was organized by the more conservative congregations in 1927. [88] : 185 An existing brotherhood journal, the Christian Standard, also served as a source of cohesion for these congregations. [88] : 185 From the 1960s on, newer unaffiliated missionary organizations like the Christian Missionary Fellowship (today, Christian Missionary Fellowship International) were working more on a national scale in the United States to rally Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations in international missions. [88] : 9 By this time the division between liberals and conservatives was well established. [99]

The official separation between the independent Christian churches and churches of Christ and the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) is difficult to date. [5] : 407 Suggestions range from 1926 to 1971 based on the events outlined below:

  • 1926: The first North American Christian Convention (NACC) in 1927 [5] : 407 was the result of disillusionment at the DoC Memphis Convention.
  • 1944: International Convention of Disciples elects as president a proponent of open membership [5] : 408
  • 1948: The Commission on Restudy, appointed to help avoid a split, disbands [5] : 409
  • 1955: The Directory of the Ministry was first published listing only the "Independents" on a voluntary basis. [5] : 408
  • 1968: Final redaction of the Disciples Year Book removing Independent churches [5] : 408
  • 1971: Independent churches listed separately in the Yearbook of American Churches. [5] : 408

Because of this separation, many independent Christian churches and churches of Christ are not only non-denominational, they can be anti-denominational, avoiding even the appearance or language associated with denominationalism holding true to their Restoration roots.

One of the issues leading to the 1906 separation was the question of organizational structures above the level of the local congregation. Since then, Churches of Christ have maintained an ongoing commitment to church governance that is congregational only, rather than denominational. Churches of Christ purposefully have no central headquarters, councils, or other organizational structure above the local church level. [81] : 214 [45] : 124 [82] : 238 [83] : 103 [100] Rather, the independent congregations are a network with each congregation participating at its own discretion in various means of service and fellowship with other congregations (see Sponsoring church (Churches of Christ)). [45] : 124 [101] [102] [103] Churches of Christ are linked by their shared commitment to restoration principles. [83] : 106 [101]

Since Churches of Christ are autonomous and purposefully do not maintain an ecclesiastical hierarchy or doctrinal council, it is not unusual to find variations from congregation to congregation. There are many notable consistencies, however for example, very few Church of Christ buildings display a cross, a practice common in other Christian churches. The approach taken to restoring the New Testament church has focused on "methods and procedures" such as church organization, the form of worship, and how the church should function. As a result, most divisions among Churches of Christ have been the result of "methodological" disputes. These are meaningful to members of this movement because of the seriousness with which they take the goal of "restoring the form and structure of the primitive church." [81] : 212

Three quarters of the congregations and 87% of the membership are described by The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement as "mainstream", sharing a consensus on practice and theology. [104] : 213 The remaining congregations may be grouped into four categories which generally differ from the mainstream consensus in specific practices, rather than in theological perspectives, and tend to have smaller congregations on average. [104] : 213

The largest of these four categories is the "non-institutional" churches of Christ. This group is notable for opposing congregational support of institutions such as orphans homes and Bible colleges. Approximately 2,055 congregations fall in this category. [104] : 213 [105]

The remaining three groups, whose congregations are generally considerably smaller than those of the mainstream or "non-institutional" groups, also oppose institutional support but differ from the "non-institutional" group by other beliefs and practices: [104] : 213 [105]

  • One group opposes separate "Sunday School" classes this group consists of approximately 1,100 congregations.
  • Another group opposes the use of multiple communion cups (the term "one-cupper" is often used, sometimes pejoratively, to describe this group) there approximately 550 congregations in this group and this group overlaps somewhat with those congregations that oppose separate Sunday School classes.
  • The last and smallest group "emphasize[s] mutual edification by various leaders in the churches and oppose[s] one person doing most of the preaching." This group includes roughly 130 congregations.

While there are no official membership statistics for the Churches of Christ, growth appears to have been relatively steady through the 20th century. [42] : 4 One source estimates total US membership at 433,714 in 1926, 558,000 in 1936, 682,000 in 1946, 835,000 in 1965 and 1,250,000 in 1994. [42] : 4

Separation of the International Churches of Christ Edit

The International Churches of Christ (ICOC) had their roots in a "discipling" movement that arose among the mainline Churches of Christ during the 1970s. [106] : 418 This discipling movement developed in the campus ministry of Chuck Lucas. [106] : 418

In 1967, Chuck Lucas was minister of the 14th Street Church of Christ in Gainesville, Florida (later renamed the Crossroads Church of Christ). That year he started a new project known as Campus Advance (based on principles borrowed from the Campus Crusade and the Shepherding Movement). Centered on the University of Florida, the program called for a strong evangelistic outreach and an intimate religious atmosphere in the form of soul talks and prayer partners. Soul talks were held in student residences and involved prayer and sharing overseen by a leader who delegated authority over group members. Prayer partners referred to the practice of pairing a new Christian with an older guide for personal assistance and direction. Both procedures led to "in-depth involvement of each member in one another's lives", and critics accused Lucas of fostering cultism. [107]

The Crossroads Movement later spread into some other Churches of Christ. One of Lucas' converts, Kip McKean, moved to the Boston area in 1979 and began working with the Lexington Church of Christ. [106] : 418 He asked them to "redefine their commitment to Christ," and introduced the use of discipling partners. The congregation grew rapidly, and was renamed the Boston Church of Christ. [106] : 418 In the early 1980s, the focus of the movement moved to Boston, Massachusetts where Kip McKean and the Boston Church of Christ became prominently associated with the trend. With the national leadership located in Boston, during the 1980s it commonly became known as the "Boston movement." [106] : 418

In 1990 the Crossroads Church of Christ broke with the Boston movement and, through a letter written to The Christian Chronicle, attempted to restore relations with the mainline Churches of Christ. [106] : 419 By the early 1990s some first-generation leaders had become disillusioned by the movement and left. [106] : 419 The movement was first recognized as an independent religious group in 1992 when John Vaughn, a church growth specialist at Fuller Theological Seminary, listed them as a separate entity. [108] TIME magazine ran a full-page story on the movement in 1992 calling them "one of the world’s fastest-growing and most innovative bands of Bible thumpers" that had grown into "a global empire of 103 congregations from California to Cairo with total Sunday attendance of 50,000". [109]

A formal break was made from the mainline Churches of Christ in 1993 when the movement organized under the name "International Churches of Christ." [106] : 418 This new designation formalized a division that was already in existence between those involved with the Crossroads/Boston Movement and "mainline" Churches of Christ. [5] [106] : 418 Other names that have been used for this movement include the "Crossroads movement," "Multiplying Ministries," and the "Discipling Movement". [107]

Efforts have been made to restore unity among the various branches of the Restoration Movement. In 1984 a "Restoration Summit" was held at the Ozark Christian College, with fifty representatives of both the Churches of Christ and the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations. [110] : 642 Later meetings were open to all, and were known as "Restoration Forums." [110] : 642 Beginning in 1986 they have been held annually, generally in October or November, with the hosting venue alternating between the Churches of Christ and the Christian churches and churches of Christ. [110] : 642 Topics discussed have included issues such as instrumental music, the nature of the church, and practical steps for promoting unity. [110] : 642 Efforts have been made in the early 21st century to include representatives of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). [110] : 642 These efforts followed the "Stone-Campbell Dialogue," which was a series of meetings beginning in 1999 that included representatives of all three major US branches of the Restoration Movement. [110] : 642 [111] : 720 The first full meeting in 1999 included six representatives from each of the three traditions. [111] : 720 Meetings were held twice annually, and in 2001 were expanded to include anyone associated with the Restoration Movement who was interested in attending. [111] : 720 Also, special efforts were made in 2006 to create more intentional fellowship between the various branches of the Movement. [112] [113] This was in conjunction with the one hundredth anniversary of the "official" recognition of the split between the Christian Church and the Churches of Christ by the U.S. Census in 1906. [112] [113] One example of this was the hosting by Abilene Christian University (ACU) of the annual Restoration Unity Forum for 2006 as part of the university's annual Bible Lectureship. [114] During the program Don Jeanes, president of Milligan College and Royce Money, president of ACU, jointly gave a presentation on the first chapter of the Gospel of John. [115]

Restoration Movement churches are found around the world and the World Convention of Churches of Christ provides many national profiles. [116]

Their genealogies are representative of developments in North America. Their theological orientation ranges from fundamentalist to liberal to ecumenical. In some places they have joined with churches of other traditions to form united churches at local, regional or national level. [ citation needed ]

Africa Edit

There are believed to be 1,000,000 or more members of the Churches of Christ in Africa. [104] : 212 The total number of congregations is approximately 14,000. [117] : 7 The most significant concentrations are in "Nigeria, Malawi, Ghana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, South Africa and Kenya". [117] : 7

Asia Edit

India has historically been a target for missionary efforts estimates are that there are 2,000 or more Restoration Movement congregations in India, [118] : 37,38 with a membership of approximately 1,000,000. [104] : 212 More than 100 congregations exist in the Philippines. [118] : 38 Growth in other Asian countries has been smaller but is still significant. [118] : 38

Australia and New Zealand Edit

Historically, Restoration Movement groups from Great Britain were more influential than those from the United States in the early development of the movement in Australia. [119] : 47 Churches of Christ grew up independently in several locations. [119] : 47

While early Churches of Christ in Australia saw creeds as divisive, towards the end of the 19th century they began viewing "summary statements of belief" as useful in tutoring second generation members and converts from other religious groups. [119] : 50 The period from 1875 through 1910 also saw debates over the use of musical instruments in worship, Christian Endeavor Societies and Sunday Schools. Ultimately, all three found general acceptance in the movement. [119] : 51

Currently, the Restoration Movement is not as divided in Australia as it is in the United States. [119] : 53 There have been strong ties with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), but many conservative ministers and congregations associate with the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations instead. [119] : 53 Others have sought support from non-instrumental Churches of Christ, particularly those who felt that "conference" congregations had "departed from the restoration ideal." [119] : 53

Great Britain Edit

A group in Nottingham withdrew from the Scotch Baptist church in 1836 to form a Church of Christ. [120] : 369 James Wallis, a member of that group, founded a magazine named The British Millennial Harbinger in 1837. [120] : 369 In 1842 the first Cooperative Meeting of Churches of Christ in Great Britain was held in Edinburgh. [120] : 369 Approximately 50 congregations were involved, representing a membership of 1,600. [120] : 369 The name "Churches of Christ" was formally adopted at an annual meeting in 1870. [120] : 369 Alexander Campbell influenced the British Restoration Movement indirectly through his writings he visited the Britain for several months in 1847, and "presided at the Second Cooperative Meeting of the British Churches at Chester." [120] : 369 At that time the movement had grown to encompass 80 congregations with a total membership of 2,300. [120] : 369 Annual meetings were held after 1847. [120] : 369

The use of instrumental music in worship was not a source of division among the Churches of Christ in Great Britain before World War I. More significant was the issue of pacifism a national conference was established in 1916 for congregations that opposed the war. [120] : 371 A conference for "Old Paths" congregations was first held in 1924. [120] : 371 The issues involved included concern that the Christian Association was compromising traditional principles in seeking ecumenical ties with other organizations and a sense that it had abandoned Scripture as "an all-sufficient rule of faith and practice." [120] : 371 Two "Old Paths" congregations withdrew from the Association in 1931 an additional two withdrew in 1934, and nineteen more withdrew between 1943 and 1947. [120] : 371

Membership declined rapidly during and after the First World War. [120] : 372 [120] : 372 [121] : 312 The Association of Churches of Christ in Britain disbanded in 1980. [120] : 372 [121] : 312 Most Association congregations (approximately 40) united with the United Reformed Church in 1981. [120] : 372 [121] : 312 In the same year, twenty-four other congregations formed a Fellowship of Churches of Christ. [120] : 372 The Fellowship developed ties with the unaffiliated Christian Church/Church of Christ congregations during the 1980s. [120] : 372 [121] : 312

The Fellowship of Churches of Christ and some Australian and New Zealand Churches advocate a "missional" emphasis with an ideal of "Five Fold Leadership." Many people in more traditional Churches of Christ see these groups as having more in common with Pentecostal churches. The main publishing organs of traditional Churches of Christ in Britain are The Christian Worker magazine and the Scripture Standard magazine. A history of the Association of Churches of Christ, Let Sects and Parties Fall, was written by David M Thompson. [122]

Although Barton W. Stone, Thomas and Alexander Campbell, and Walter Scott were to become the best-known and most influential early leaders of the movement, others preceded them and laid the foundation for their work.

15 Koch Road
Corte Madera, California 94925


Public Company
Incorporated: 1980
Employees: 2,200
Sales: $209.4 million (1998)
Stock Exchanges: NASDAQ
Ticker Symbol : RSTO
NAIC: 44413 Hardware Stores 44211 Furniture Stores 442299 All Other Home Furnishings Stores 454110 Mail-Order Houses

Company Perspectives:

In everything we do, our philosophy is simple. We want to surround ourselves with what we love. We want to inspire laughter as well as thought. We know how an egg beater can prompt a whole wave of emotional responses, and how a set of salt cellars brings back happy memories. This is more than our way of finding and selling products, it's a way of life we highly recommend.

Restoration Hardware, Inc. sells over 5,000 assorted items to restore old homes and provide its customers with replicas of traditional furniture, cabinets, lighting, bath items, tools, gardening equipment, books, clothing, amusements, and other miscellaneous merchandise. The company sells these pricey items in over 70 retail stores in its main California market and 24 other states, Washington, D.C., and Vancouver, Canada. Customers also can order from a colorful catalog. Unlike many firms, Restoration Hardware does not use market research but relies mainly on the judgment of founder Stephen Gordon to decide what to sell. If he likes it, the stores sell it. This fast-growing chain appeals to educated and successful baby boomers seeking to recreate a nostalgic home environment based on traditional family values.

Origins and Early History

Stephen Gordon, Restoration Hardware's founder, was born in 1951 in Plattsburgh, New York. Although raised in a middle-class family, he was inspired by successful families that vacationed in the nearby Adirondacks. During the Vietnam War, he attended Drew University and participated as a campus radical, while harboring ambivalent feelings about the establishment. "I had such conflict," recalled Gordon in the January 25, 1999 New Yorker . "Part of me had this incredibly ambitious side that I was afraid of expressing."

After graduating with a B.A. at Drew University and an M.A. in psychology from Humboldt State University, Gordon became a counselor in Eureka, California. In 1979 he left his psychology career to restore a rundown home in Eureka. To return the Victorian home to its former splendor and transform it into a bed and breakfast, Gordon searched diligently but in vain for good quality furnishings and accessories. "Nearly impossible to find," said Gordon in the March 12, 1999 Salt Lake Tribune . His frustration after looking through antique and hardware stores led him to start his own business. First, he worked out of his library to provide items to others hoping to fix up historic homes.

Then in 1980 Gordon opened in Eureka his first retail store specializing in hard-to-find items that tended to be rather expensive. He sought out not only hardware items but also any older products that he felt were interesting. David Brooks in the New Yorker said, "Gordon has ransacked his childhood tactile memories and turned them into nostalgic inventory." For example, he sold replicas of a chair his third-grade teacher had used.

"Early on, Stephen Gordon perceived that customers wanted more from him than an assortment of hardware," according to a company fact sheet. "They were looking for a way of life. Tradition that wasn't stodgy, a hip outlook without being trendy."

Making shopping fun was part of Gordon's plan from the beginning. Hence, he chose items such as Moon Pies, described in his catalog as a "sinfully delicious American treat for generations," the metal Slinky toy made in the 1940s, and glass marbles complete with a rule book on the traditional children's game.

Gordon organized his stores much differently than most retail outlets, where many varieties of a single product were located in one section. Instead, Gordon's stores had several rooms or areas centered on different themes: living room, garden area, library, bedroom, bath area, and foyer and hardware rooms.

After his Eureka store proved successful, Gordon in 1985 opened two stores in the San Francisco Bay area. "If we could make it in Eureka, where disposable income isn't king," said Gordon in a company chronology, "I knew there was opportunity." In 1989 he followed up with three more stores in the Bay area.

Major Growth in the 1990s

After running stores in California in the 1980s, Gordon with the help of outside investors opened new stores in southern California, Phoenix, and Portland by 1995. With only five stores in operation in 1994, Restoration Hardware's retail sales were $4.2 million. The same year, Gordon finally began delegating part of the firm's management by hiring Thomas Christopher, a former executive for Pier 1 Imports and Barnes and Noble, as executive vice-president, chief operating officer, and director. Thomas Low, formerly with Home Express, was hired as Restoration Hardware's senior vice-president and chief financial officer in 1995. Revenues jumped to $13.2 million in 1995.

In 1996 Restoration Hardware opened its first store east of Phoenix in the new Somerset North mall in Oakland County in metro Detroit. "We're tickled pink to get into the Somerset project--it's a special place to be," said Thomas Christopher in the May 19, 1996 Detroit News . "I've always had great success in the Detroit market [previously working for Pier 1 Imports and Barnes & Noble] . I've had my sights on getting a Restoration Hardware in Detroit since I joined the company. Our customer is a homeowner, over age 35, with a college degree and a fairly good household income. If you look at the demographics of (the Detroit) market, Oakland County most closely matches the profile."

The firm in 1996 also opened new stores in the Town Center Plaza near Kansas City Woodland Hills near Los Angeles the Old Orchard Shopping Center in Skokie, Illinois Virginia and Texas. When Restoration Hardware in 1996 opened its first Denver store in the Park Meadows mall, Mary Beth Jenkins, a Denver retail consultant, said in the July 3, 1996 Denver Post that the firm "is a new, cutting edge tenant, and the fact that Denver will add this to its list of retailers puts it on the map." Restoration Hardware in October 1996 opened its 15th store in the Galleria in St. Louis. The firm tripled its 1995 revenues to reach $39.7 million in 1996.

In 1997 Restoration Hardware opened 21 new stores, including several in the South and East. Most featured about 5,000 specific items displayed in 7,500 square feet of space. Revenues for 1997 were $97 million, with 41 stores in operation at the end of the year. Founder Steve Gordon in the February 1997 Home Improvement Market said, "If I was forced to describe Restoration Hardware as home fashion or interior design shops, I would say home fashions in a corny sort of way."

On June 19, 1998 Restoration Hardware began selling its common stock for $19 a share on the NASDAQ using the symbol RSTO. The firm's initial public offering raised almost $75 million.

The company in 1998 also began offering its products through catalog sales. Marta Benson, a 1984 philosophy graduate from Wesleyan College who headed Restoration Hardware's catalog division, said in the January 25, 1999 issue of the New Yorker that, "I'm proud of being a merchant." After seeing the movie The English Patient, Benson said she thought "it was so moving and so beautiful, and I thought, all I do is sell stuff. But I'm reconciled to it, because I'm selling stuff that has meaning."

According to the New Yorker author, that same message of Restoration Hardware's social meaning was captured in a 1998 video made for possible investors. Using images from the 1940s and 1950s, the video proclaimed, "Lurking in our collective unconscious, among images of Ike, Donna Reed, and George Bailey, is the very clear sense that things were once better made, that they mattered a little more." But with postwar prosperity, Americans became obsessed with consumption and big stores selling plastic merchandise. The video continued, "The retail environment came to reflect this mentality--more square footage, more, more, more. Then, one day, the generation used to having everything recoiled, and became the generation searching for something."

In 1998 Restoration Hardware acquired The Michaels Furniture Company of Sacramento, California, formerly an independent vendor. "For a number of years, we both admired and successfully sold the Michaels brand of Mission furniture in our stores," stated Restoration Hardware's 1998 annual report. Michael Vermillion had started his company over 25 years earlier by hand making furniture in his garage. The two firms planned to introduce a new line of jointly designed furniture in 1999.

In 1999 Restoration Hardware opened an East Coast distribution center/warehouse in the Marshfield Business Park in Essex, a Baltimore suburb. The firm leased 276,000 square feet from UPS Properties for seven years. The new facility started with 40 employees but planned to have 100 in six months.

As the 1990s ended, Gordon continued many of the hands-on tasks he had assumed from the company's beginnings. For example, he continued to write most of the descriptions found on cards by each store item and in the catalog. For his miniature Allagash River Canoe, priced $39 in the summer 1999 catalog, Gordon wrote, "There are few memories as dear to me as those associated with my first week-long canoe trip on the Allagash River in Maine. Our small-scale replica is beautifully executed and true to form. Ply the rivers of your mind."

Gordon sometimes featured historical details on his product descriptions. For example, he wrote how Willis Alfred in the early 1900s created the Winged Weeder tool to make gardening easier for his four daughters. Gordon told how The Hardy Boys series of mystery novels, popular when many baby boomers were growing up, had been started back in the 1920s.

Restoration Hardware's appeal in these and other items was not just usefulness and rugged quality, but also a strong sense of family togetherness and nostalgia. "Memory-provoking stocking stuffers," said a customer in the December 21, 1998 Business Week .

Restoration Hardware found success in selling to both men and women. Unlike most housewares stores, men accounted for about 30 percent of Restoration Hardware's sales. Analyst Dave Ricci at Chicago's William Blair & Company noted in Business Week that "other stores are focused on tabletop or kitchen. That's not as appealing to men. Restoration Hardware combines tabletop with nickel-plated hammers." In 1998 furniture and lighting brought in 43 percent of the firm's sales. Other categories were discovery items, books, and accessories (23 percent), hardware and housewares (17 percent), bath and bedroom (nine percent), and garden and other items (eight percent).

On January 30, 1999 Restoration Hardware operated 15 stores in California and 50 others in New York, Florida, Texas, Utah, Arizona, Oregon, Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington, the District of Columbia, and Vancouver, British Columbia.

In 1999 the firm's finances showed mixed results. After two quarters ending on July 31, 1999, Restoration Hardware recorded $114 million in net sales, up 57.7 percent from the same period in 1998. However, its stock price had declined--from over $36 a year earlier to about $8.50 on August 12, 1999. That caused several brokers to downgrade their assessment of Restoration Hardware, thus no longer recommending that investors buy the firm's stock.

However, Stephen Gordon, Restoration Hardware's CEO and chairman, intended to expand the chain to about 95 stores by the end of 1999. Thomas Christopher, who replaced Gordon as president of Restoration Hardware in 1998, predicted the chain would peak at 200 stores. "While we've evolved, we haven't strayed from our roots," said Gordon in a company chronology. "We're a home furnishings store with a hardware heart."

"Blame Boomers for Boom in Renovation," Salt Lake Tribune , March 12, 1999, p. B2.
Brooks, David, "Acquired Taste," New Yorker , January 25, 1999, pp. 36--41.
"The Business of Bliss, It's Hip! It's Hot! It's Hardware!," House & Garden , March 1997, pp. 32, 36.
Chaplin, Heather, "Past? Perfect!," American Demographics , May 1999, pp. 68--69.
Faust, Fred, "Fixture Mixture Hardware Store Puts Its Handle on the Galleria," St Louis Post-Dispatch , October 9, 1996, p. 8C.
Lambert, Cheryl Ann, "Witty & Whimsical Hardware," Home Improvement Market , February 1997, p. DPR18.
Marsh, Ann, "Not Your Dad's Hardware Store," Forbes , January 26, 1998.
Massingill, Teena, "Corte Madera, Calif.-Based Restoration Hardware Tries to Keep Up with Growth," Knight-Ridder/Tribune Business News , February 9, 1999.
Neuborne, Ellen, et al, "Welcome to Yuppie Hardware," Business Week , December 21, 1998, p. 94.
O'Brien, Dennis, "Calif. Retailer to Open Warehouse, Distribution Center . . .," Sun (Baltimore), July 9, 1999, p. 3C.
Parker, Penny, "New Mall's Opening Moved Up Park Meadows Set to Debut Aug. 30," Denver Post , July 3, 1996, p. A1.
Preddy, Melissa, "Shops at Somerset: Prestige, Demographics Are the Drawing Cards," Detroit News , May 19, 1996, p. C1.
Steinhauer, Jennifer, "New Stock Is Fueled by Nesting Boomers," New York Times , June 21, 1998.

Source: International Directory of Company Histories , Vol. 30. St. James Press, 2000.

And why so little power and resemblance to anything Jesus taught in His model of discipleship?

Trailing statements will offend some as many have been offended and repulsed by YHWH’s decrees and actions as recorded in the Bible (think worldwide flood and Israel’s conquests in the Levant).

YHWH was justified and gracious in His drowning of the world in the days of Noah. He was justified to command the children of Israel to utterly wipe out certain nations with no mercy. And…He will be justified in condemning anyone that takes the Beast’s mark, because it’s all related. History can’t help but to repeat itself, and you need to know what truly happened in the past, if you have any chance of making sense of what is happening now/soon.

The actual events of Genesis 6 for that matter represent the rosetta stone for interpreting all the strange prophecies of Scripture. The truth has been encrypted and is discernible for those with eyes to see. While Father God is undoubtedly in favor of order opposing confusion, He also reserves the right to hide the truth from the haughty and make it a treasure for those humble enough to seek it as the finest of jewels.

Special Note:

I have some serious reservations about WoodwardTV’s new age metaphysical stuff, but I can’t find a better narrating voice or story-teller, so for production and entertainment quality purposes, his content gets the nod. Further, he sticks to the ancient text in question (found in Qumran – 1947) which synchronizes with Enoch and Genesis. Also, his comment sections are usually full of thought-provoking insights. Careful discernment is a prerequisite for any inquiry into truth.

Restoration History

The Jacob Stalnaker Jr, cabin was built in 1795 originally located between Beverly and Dailey on U.S. 219/250 South in Randolph County, West Virginia across from the Bruce Hardwoods plant. The cabin was donated to the Stalnaker Family Association by Worth Armentrout after the land was purchased. However, eight-tenths of an acre of the land remains in the Stalnaker family where the Stalnaker cemetery is located on the corner of Scott Lake Road (County Road 37). The cabin was moved to its current location in the fall of 1996 to a lot behind the Randolph County Museum in Beverly owned by the Randolph County Historical Society.

The two-story log structure was disassembled and rebuilt, log by log, in its new location. Ed Brown of Twin Springs Company, Greenville, West Virginia was responsible for the moving project and Jim Costa of Talbott, West Virginia also helped as an advisor. Project manager Edgar Bert Stalnaker, then president of the Stalnaker Family Association, arranged for the moving and oversaw the additional restoration efforts until he left office in 2007. The cost of the relocation came from sales of the Stalnaker family history book, donations, and the Randolph County Historical Society.

The Jacob Stalnaker Jr. cabin is unusual in that it has an extended section beyond the two-story log structure that was completed with timber-frame construction. Long sills and beams that are a part of the log structure made up the framework for these additional rooms. The building was later added on to, possibly about 1850, making the framed rooms larger and adding a one-story lean-to on the back. These additions were removed due to their poor condition, and the cabin has been reassembled as close as possible to its original ca 1790-1800 configuration.

The Stalnaker families were among the first permanent settlers to the Tygart Valley in 1772, and owned land in the valley before that. This cabin was the home of Jacob Stalnaker, Jr., who came with his father in the original settlement.