Response / Thought Quotes
- “It was as dark a day as ever I saw. The injury done to the cause of Christ, as we then supposed, was irreparable. For several days I suffered what no tongue can tell for the best thing that ever happened to the State of Connecticut. It cut the churches loose from dependence on state support. It threw them wholly on their own resources and on God.”
- “The great aim of the Christian Church in its relation to the present life is not only to renew the individual man, but also to reform human society”
- “Christians loyal to the theology of the Reformation believed such an appeal left too little role for divine initiative. Some of them reproached Finney for excessive emotionalism, as other revivalists have been reproached before and since.”
- “Both sides wanted to encourage revivals. The Finneyites agreed not to call their colleagues “cold,”“unconverted,” or “dead”; the other side consented not to call the Finneyites “heretics,”“enthusiasts,” or “mad.””
- “A Methodist preacher in those days, when he felt that God had called him to preach, instead of hunting up a college or Biblical institute, hunted up a hard pony of a horse, and some traveling apparatus, and with his library always at hand, namely, Bible, Hymn Book, and [Methodist] Discipline, he started, and with a text that never wore out nor grew stale, he cried, “Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world.” In this way he went through storms of wind, hail, snow, and rain; climbed hills and mountains, traversed valleys, plunged through swamps, swam swollen streams, lay out all night, wet, weary, and hungry, held his horse by the bridle all night, or tied him to a limb, slept with his saddle blanket for a bed, his saddle or saddle-bags for his pillow, and his old big coat or blanket, if he had any, for a covering…. Under such circumstances, who among us would now say, “Here am I, Lord, send me?”
- “Our final conclusion regarding all of these social results— good, bad, and questionable —is that in one sense they are only side effects of efforts that were ineffable and beyond mundane measuring, for the missionaries and church founders came above all to minister the consolations of religion— to bring word of amazing grace to wretched souls. In what measure they succeeded in that primary task God only knows.”
- Who was Lyman Beecher and what influence did he and his family have on American political and religious life?
- Describe the development of the separation of church and state in the early Republic?
- Explain and Expand: “Any establishment of religion, even as democratic a religion as Yankee Congregationalism, violated the tenets of Jeffersonian Republicanism.”
- Why and in what ways did the religious divide in the Early Republic manifest in the Federalist Republican divide?
- Describe how Lyman Beecher symbolized the transition from New England Puritanism to Yankee Progressivism
- Describe the emergence of temperance as a social and political issue in the Early Republic
- Compare and Contrast Charles Finney and Jonathan Edwards
- What was the “born again” experience as understood by Evangelicals in the Early Republic? How did this “born again” experience differ from the conversion experience of the Puritans and the “Inner Light” experience of Anabaptists and Pietists?
- Compare and Contrast Evangelicals in the Early Republic with Anabaptists and Pietists. How did English and German backgrounds factor into their differences?
- What common social themes and issues were common in Beecher’s fundamentalists and Finney’s evangelicals?
- How did slavery impact American fundamentalists and evangelicals?
- How did slavery impact American Catholics generally and Irish immigrants particularly?
- How did slavery impact “high church” (Eastern Orthodox, Anglican) congregations in America?
- How did slavery impact “low church” (Primitive Baptists, Quakers, German Brethren, etc) in America?
- In what ways did fundamentalism and evangelicalism impact denominations?
- What were “Circuit Riders” and what impact did they have on American frontier communities? What services did they provide the frontier aside from their religious mission? What were “Camp Meetings” and “Brush Arbor Meetings”?
- Describe the development of American Methodism? How did the name “Methodist” come into use?
- Compare and Contrast the development, beliefs and practices of Baptists and Methodists in America
- What role did George Whitfield and John Wesley have in the development of American Christianity?
- Describe the rise of “free” black churches and denominations in America
- Describe the “Second Great Awakening”. How is the label misleading? How is the label meaningful?
- What circumstances gave rise to the Second Great Awakening?
- What role did race and slavery play in the Second Great Awakening?
- How did the Second Great Awakening highlight the differences between rural and urban America?
- What were the economic teachings associated with the Second Great Awakening?
- Compare and Contrast the “First” and “Second” Great Awakenings
- What were the lasting impacts of the Second Great Awakening?
- How did gender impact different denominations and sects in America?
- How did Quakers fit into the religious landscape of the Second Great Awakening?
- In what ways did American life and circumstances begin to create a distinct “American Catholicism” in the early republic?
- What role did Catholic Evangelicals play in the Second Great Awakening?
- How were Jews in America impacted by the Second Great Awakening?
Articles and References
Continue reading American Notes by Charles Dickens, Chapters 9 11