Until the 16th century Reformation, although there had been and still were many bodies of true believers in Jesus Christ, the dominant denomination was named Roman Catholic. Its HQ was the Vatican in Rome, it’s name meant ‘worldwide’ and its institution joined usually with the secular leaders of the nations. They dominated and governed all of Europe and thus were very powerful and corrupt. It was, and still is, a fact of history that “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. This led many leaders in Christianity to seek to reform the morals and lifestyles of much that was passing as Christian; and the Reformation began to clean up and brush up what was being accepted and promoted as the message (theology) of Jesus Christ. So groups of protest sprung up all over Europe opposing the status quo. Sadly violence was used instead of prayer to get things back to the earlier order. The well-known ‘Sir Thomas More’ (statue on the Thames Embankment) was an enthusiastic persecutor of the new churches who claimed the Bible was their authority, not the Pope living in Rome. No doubt Thomas More was sincere and thought that many churches instead of one (i.e. Roman Catholic) would weaken Christianity and so he particularly hunted down Bible translators such as Tyndale, calling them Evangelicals and putting them to death. So the word has stuck and until today those who claim to follow the Bible (called Protestants at the time because they protested against Rome) are still called Evangelicals.
Theology ReportKevin Howell2020-06-29T11:43:52+00:00