A Brief Historical Timeline Of The Genesis Of Change Agents In The Church Of Christ

A Brief Historical Timeline Of The Genesis Of Change Agents In The Church Of Christ


November 10th, 2010, 2:37 am #1

Central Figures In The Reform ("Change") Movement:
-James O'Kelly (1735-1826) in Virginia (Methodist)
-Elias Smith (1769-1846) in New England (Calvinist Baptist)
-Barton Stone (1772-1844) in Kentucky (Presbyterian)
-Thomas Campbell (1763-1854) in Ireland and Pennsylvania (Presbyterian)
-Alexander Campbell (1788-1866) in Pennsylvania (Presbyterian)

*I will be brief and only take the time mention a few dates and events on the last 3 men.

1801 - Barton W. Stone was a "change agent" at The Cane Ridge Revival, where crowds estimated from 10,000 to 30,000 to hear Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian ministers preach repentance. During their preaching many listeners experienced what Stone and others called "religious exercises." Some fell to the ground in a faint as if they were dead. Some jerked back and forth and made a sound like a bark. Others felt bodily agitation coming upon them and tried to run away. Some danced back and forth in place. A few laughed a hearty, solemn laugh. All of his life Barton Stone believed these experiences and spontaneous responses were evidence of the Spirit falling on those convicted of their sins at Cane Ridge. While he thought they were genuine experiences of the Spirit, he never thought they had to be the universal experience of all Christians. The C.R.R. had a profound impact on Stone and others. It convinced them of the importance of Christian unity. If the Spirit could come in response to Baptist, Methodist, and Presbyterian preaching, then the differences between these denominations must not be matters of the gospel. In Stone's words, "Let Christian unity be our polar star." A common motto was, "Christians only, but not the only Christians."

1807 - The question of baptism arose in the Stone Movement. Eventually the Stone churches practiced believer's immersion but did not make it an absolute test of fellowship (those only baptized as infants could still be members and commune). Stone feared that making believer's immersion a test of fellowship would exclude more Christians than any creed.

1809 - The Christian Association commissioned Thomas Campbell (another "change agent") to write a Declaration and Address, in which he writes that where the Bible is unclear or silent, no disagreement should divide Christians. He even states, "A simple confession of faith in Jesus, not agreement with an elaborate creed, is all that is necessary for admission to the church."

1815 - After much discussion, the Brush Run Church, led by Thomas and son Alexander Campbell (another "change agent") joined the Redstone Baptist Association. For the next 15 years, the Campbells were reformers among the Baptists.

1823 - Alexander Campbell began a monthly periodical, the Christian Baptist.

1824 - Alexander meets Stone for the first time at Stone's home. Two "change agents" coming together to start a "church" and "unity movement".

By 1830, Alexander Campbell's movement, the Disciples of Christ, came into union with Stone's Christian Church.


Joined: January 2nd, 2005, 6:45 am

November 10th, 2010, 6:15 am #2

[color=#0000FF" size="3" face="times]Sonny,

This is a great historical piece of the American Restoration Movement. However, either your narrative is proof of your great ability to memorize and twist facts or you simply forgot to identify your source(s) of information.

I would like to inform the readers [just in case] of your deceitful scheme to label the great men of the RM era as "change agents." That's unfair. It is a distortion of historical facts.

If you're interested, why not do an extensive research on the following "change agents" (just to name a few):

-- Rubel Shelly
-- Max Lucado
-- Leroy Garret
-- John Mark Hicks
-- Joe Beam
-- Rick Atchley
-- Al Maxey
-- John York
-- Mike Cope
-- Ronnie Norman
-- Jay Guin
-- et al[/color]