Erastian Religion

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The Erastian view of spiritual and secular authority called for the secular government to have some authority over the church. Seen in the theology of reformist Zwingli in Zurich as well as in England with the creation of the Church of England, dismantling the Catholic view of two swords of spiritual and temporal authority held by the pope, both regions broke with the papacy, giving both swords to the local government. While nationalism and anticlerical views helped pushed the government towards Erastian rule, it is the leaders of both Zurich’s small magistrate councils and England’s monarchy who eventually reformed the church, bringing in a new era of protestant theology.
Ulrich Zwingli, a major reformation leader in Switzerland, had a
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The caveat being that Zwingli saw no difference between the government and a Christian gathering. In his Sixty-Seven Theses, he states that “all the rights and protection that the so-called spiritual authority claims belong to secular governments provided they are Christian.” This means that as long as the government was considered Christian, they should have certain claims and authority over the church. This is in direct opposition in the way that the Anabaptists saw the government. Zwingli saw the Zurich Anabaptists as a dangerous group and used the magistrate as the tool to try and force these dissenters to recant or leave the city. Unfortunately, the persecution of the Anabaptists only further emboldened them and help spread the movement around Switzerland and Northern …show more content…
His precedent flipped the Catholic idea of the pope wielding both swords of temporal and spiritual rule, giving it to the English crown instead. In the 1534 Henry VIII’s Act of Supremacy, Henry is herald as “justly and rightfully is and oweth to be the supreme head of the Church of England.” This act of parliament cemented the Erastian rule promising that Henry’s heirs and successors would also “have full power and authority from time to time to visit, repress, redress, reform, order, correct, restrain, and amend all such errors, heresies, abuses, offenses, contempts, and enormities, whatsoever they be.” Failure to swear a loyalty oath to the king and sign this act meant death for many Catholics and Protestants alike, including Thomas

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