TLW's Christian Sectscope™ (Christian Sect Historyscope)
By T.L. Winslow (TLW), the Historyscoper™
© Copyright by T.L. Winslow. All Rights Reserved.
Original Pub. Date: Mar. 8, 2017. Last Update: May 22, 2017.
Westerners are not only known as history ignoramuses, but double dumbass history ignoramuses when it comes to Christian sect (denomination) history. Since I'm the one-and-only Historyscoper (tm), let me quickly bring you up to speed before you dive into my Master Historyscope.
In 1611 C.E. English King (1603-25) James I (1566-1625) (ed.) pub. the King James (Authorized) Version of the Holy Bible (66 books), commissioned in 1604 (lucky that the 1605 Guy Fawkes Plot to replace the govt. with Roman Catholics didn't succeed), with the work divided between 47 translators (47 Anglicans, 0 Puritans, 0 Roman Catholics, 0 Separatists) in six committees with 15 rules to follow, using ancient mss. for reliability, and deliberately preserving ambiguities, e.g. Romans 5:12: "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned" (can mean that all men die because of sin, and/or that all men sin because they are under God's judgment of death); most of the language is William Tyndale's, but without the pesky marginal notes challenging the divine right of kings; James I's planned royal authorization of the final work never happens?; the intent is to make "of many good translations one principal good one", according to translator Miles Smith (1554-1624) in Preface to the Translation; it takes its place beside the Bishops' Bible (official vers. for use in Anglican churches, original ed. 1568, revised ed. 1602) (basic source for the King James Bible?), the Geneva Bible (1575) (known for Calvinist-slanted footnotes dissing the divine right of kings, always translating the word king as tyrant), and the 1582 Rheims trans. of the 5th cent. Roman Catholic Vulgate; too bad, the King James Bible is initially universally panned, and the Puritans continue to use the Geneva Bible, causing Charles I to ban it in 1644, leading to the Puritans taking over the govt. and beheading him in 1649, later realizing the superiority of the KJV; translator Lancelot Andrewes (1555-1626), master of Pembroke College, Cambridge U. is appointed bishop of Winchester in 1619, becoming the mentor of Reformed Roman Catholicism in the post-Reformation Anglican Church, and the translator of the 23rd Psalm; Thomas Bilson (1547-1616), bishop of Winchester oversees the final edit and printing; the notes on the trans. process are stored in Whitehall, and are destroyed in the 1598 Whitehall Fire; in modern times the Ruckmanists (Ruckmanites), founded by Am. Baptist pastor Peter Sturges Ruckman (1921-2016) claim special divine inspiration for the translators, even though they were govt. employees told what to do by the hardly saintly king, and explicitly deny special inspiration; a case of disguised Am. WASP racism?; Psalm 46 features word 46 from the beginning "shake" and word 46 from the end "spear", and of course William Shakespeare (b. 1564) is 46 the first part of this year; a tribute, or did he translate it? - it's a pajama people special?
On Feb. 15, 1805 George (Johann George) Rapp (1757-1847) and his Rappists (Rappites) (Harmonists) (Harmonites) of Iptingen, Germany found the Harmony Society in Butler County, Penn., which soon grows to a pop. of 800 and becomes highly profitable, causing them to sell it at a 10x profit in 1814 when they move to Indiana - lame white rapper jokes here?
In 1827 After falling from a horse in Oct., Plymouth Brethren (named after Matt. 23:8) Bible-only Christian denomination is founded in Dublin, Ireland by Westminster, London-born John Nelson Darby (1800-82), who popularizes Pre-Tribulation Rapture theology, Dispensationalism, and Futurism, later calling the invention of the telegraph an invention of Cain and a harbinger of Armageddon.
In 1827 Irish-born Alexander Campbell (1788-1866) of Bethany, Va. splits with the Baptists and founds the back-to-the-New-Testament Am. Restoration Movement (Campbellism)<, becoming the oldest ecumenical movement in the U.S., resulting in the creation of the Churches of Christ, which pub. the Millennial Harbinger (1823-63). The Separation of 1827 sees the Am. Quakers (Society of Friends) split into two hostile factions, the liberal Hicksite Party, led by crusty old abolitionist Elias Hicks (1748-1830), and the conservatives; guess which party liberal abolitionists James Mott and Lucretia Mott go with?
In 1830 Scottish Presbyterian minister Edward Irving (1792-1834), whose Chalcedonian Chapel in London (with 1st cent. Christian doctrines mixed with Roman Catholic rites) has 1K+ members begins preaching that Christ will return in two phases, the first one being a secret rapture before the Antichrist comes, getting accused of heresy in 1833 and forming his Irvingites sect (Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church) before dying prematurely in 1834; his ideas gain a following in the U.S. and England, incl. later the Jehovah's Witnesses.
When does a fashion statement make a bank statement? On Oct. 24, 1844 the Millerites, followers of Pittsfield, Mass.-born Baptist preacher William Miller (1782-1849) begin to face the Great Disappointment of 1844 when the 2,300 Year-Days of Daniel 8:14 don't jive like they thought, and the world doesn't end with the Second Coming of Christ; never fear, in Dec. Maine-born Ellen Gould White (1827-1915) begins having the first of 2K personal visions, causing the true believers to regroup and form the Seventh-Day Adventists, who claim that Christ didn't make his Second Coming because he entered the Holy of Holies in the Heavenly Sanctuary to begin the Investigative Judgment, and that they should worship on Saturday not pagan Sunday - Sunday didn't work so why not go back to the Jewish sabbath?
In 1847 London-born Am. Restorationist John Thomas (1805-71), friend of Restoration Movement founder Alexander Campbell founds the crypto-Anabaptist Unitarian (anti-trinitarian) Christadelphian (Gr. "brethren in Christ") sect in America, claiming to be a return to first cent. apostolic Christianity, going on to promote a nat. homeland for Jews in Israel, claiming that Britain would play a leading role; by modern times there are 50K members in 120 countries.
In 1847 John Humphrey Noyes (1811-86) of Brattleboro, Vt. founds the Oneida Community of Perfectionists at Putney, Vt.; after being expelled, it settles in Oneida, N.Y. (until 1880); its members believe that Christ has already returned, and that true believers should renounce private property and marriage, although they are permitted "complex marriage", i.e., sleeping around, with conception controlled by the leaders using eugenic principles; the group establishes several successful manufacturing enterprises, which raise their capital from $67K to $600K by 1880, when they are again expelled, and most members quit, marry, and form the joint-stock Oneida Community Ltd., while the remainder move to Canada.
In 1851 the Landmarkist Movement is founded in the Am. South by James Robinson Graves (1820-93) and Benjamin Marcus "Ben" Bogard (1868-1951), reacting to religious progressivism by claiming that the Baptist movement began in Apostolic times, and has continued in unbroken continuity to the present despite massive persecution by the Roman Catholic Church, Lutherans et al.; too bad, in 1859 the Southern Baptist Convention repudiates it, causing a schism by the Am. Baptist Assoc. (1924), Baptist Missionary Assoc. of Am., and the Interstate and Foreign Landmark Missionary Baptist Assoc.; in 1928 Bogard successfully lobbies for an Ark. state law banning the teaching of Darwin's Theory of Evolution in public schools, which is overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1968; in 1931 Ark.-born Tex. Baptist minister James Milton Carroll (1870-1931) pub. the booklet The Trail of Blood: Following the Christians Down through the Centuries; or, The History of Baptist Churches from the Time of Christ, Their Founder, to the Present Day, a bestseller promoting Landmarkism, which is used to modern times.
Stay tuned for scenes from one life to live? The year 1874 marks the year in which Christ's Second Presence (Second Advent) is due, according to Allegheny, Penn.-born Pastor Charles Taze Russell (1852-1916), author of the 7-vol. Studies in the Scriptures, 1879 founder of The Watchtower mag., and 1871 founder of the Internat. Bible Students, who in 1931 change their name to Jehovah's Witnesses, and go on to recruit millions of followers, incl. some celebs; when a Bible-based Armageddon prediction goes wrong, there is always a shakeup in the org., after which they regroup and make new predictions, because after all, the Bible is still telling them that there will be one; luckily by the 1980s they officially give up Big A predictions, claiming that only God knows the exact time. In 1884 Charles Taze Russell (1852-1916) et al. form the Bible-thumping Zion's Watch Tower Tract Society, and the Internat. Bible Students, later known as the Jehovah's Witnesses in Pittsburgh, Penn.; Russell, who believes that the Bible and its conflicting, er, moral code are absolute truth, marries beautiful virgin Bible-thumping babe Maria Frances Ackley (1850-1938) in 1879 after er, knowing her a few mo., and they live together in a chaste marriage, with zero sex, leaving them both all the time they want to read their you know whats and plan for eternal life together after Armageddon, when there is plenty of time to, ahem, you know what, and raise children; too bad, she gets ideas that he considers extra-Biblical about women having a role in running the org., and they separate in 1897, after which it gets dirty and she sues for divorce in 1906, using the trial to expose his dirty laundry. On Oct. 31, 1916 Charles Taze Russell (b. 1852) dies in Pampa, Tex., and his org. the Watch Tower Society is taken over by self-proclaimed Mo. "Judge" Joseph Franklin Rutherford (1869-1942), who goes on to mount his "millions living now will never die" campaign, claiming that Armageddon will come in 1925, causing his followers to sell their homes and live in their cars travelling around to spread the urgent message while trying to avoid either marrying or having children; meanwhile the few who only wanted to study the Bible and think for themselves and not be dictated what to believe splinter off into the Bible Students org., which by the end of the cent. only has 10K members vs. 6M for the Jehovah's Witnesses.
In 1890 the Calvinist "Particular" Baptist Church reuinites with the original "General" Baptist Church to create the Baptist Union.
In Apr. 1914 the Pentecostal (Holy Roller) Assemblies of God, founded by E.N. Bell, Howard Goss, D.C.O. Opperman et al. hold their first meeting in the opera house in Hot Springs, Ark. after sponsoring revival meetings in the same place last fall by New Lisbon, Ohio-born evangelist Maria Buelah Woodworth-Etter (1844-1924), who goes on to preach to large crowds throughout the U.S., causing the church to grow to 140 autonomous groups with 384K ministers and 67.5M members in 200+ countries by 2016, becoming the world's largest Pentecostal denomination; in 1988 a world fellowship is formed. In 1916 she pub. A Diary of Signs and Wonders.
In 1914 the Oneness (Apostolic) (Jesus' Name) Pentecostalism movement is founded in the U.S., preaching the nontrinitarian doctrine of Oneness, which claims that there is one God who manifests himself in three ways, AKA the ancient heresy of Sabellianism or Patripassianism, breaking with Trinitarianism, which claims that there are three distinct and eternal persons in the Godhead; they claim that to be saved one must repent, be baptized in Jesus' name, and receive the Holy Spirit and prove it by speaking in tongues, after which there is a strict "holiness standard" of dress code and personal conduct; by modern times there are 24M adherents.