By Richard Connors
Neither the meliorist political tradition of the nascent American republic nor its later go with the flow towards apocalyptically tinged 'fundamentalist' Protestantism and dispensationalism could be defined open air the context of the shared Anglo-American traditions and practices of millennial expectation and apocalyptic angst--whether expressed by means of early colonists, Milton, Blake, Miller or the Continental Congress. during this chronologically direct and thematically different quantity, 5 students operating in 3 certain disciplines (Religion, English literature, and historical past) process millennialism and apocalypticism within the British and Anglo-American contexts, making impressive contributions either to the examine of non secular, literary and political tradition within the English-speaking ecumene, and, at the very least implicitly, to the critique of disciplinary exclusivity. purely in such combined corporation does the examine of the millennial nexus in English and American faith, tradition, literature and politics, from the time of Milton to the time of the Millerites, come into concentration.
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Additional resources for Anglo-American Millennialism, from Milton to the Millerites (Studies in the History of Christian Thought)
The seventeenth-century premillennialists are not more “optimistic” than their postmillennialist predecessors, for as often as not they express doubt that England will continue to merit the favor God has thus far bestowed on it—a characteristic of their writings that sometimes passes unnoticed by modern readers. Such doubt is not surprising, given that the millenarians frequently saw themselves as an embattled minority, oppressed by a Presbyterian majority in the 1640s and by a turncoat Cromwell in the 1650s.
27 Image of Both Churches in Select Works of John Bale (Cambridge: Parker Society, 1849), 253. 28 Revelation of the Apocalypse (Amsterdam, 1611), sig. A4r. 13 of Acts and Monuments published in his lifetime, as well as in his apocalyptic commentary written primarily in the 1580s, Eicasmi seu meditationes in sacram Apocalypsin. John’s prophecy allowed him to interpret the seeming absence of the true church in history as a continuity rather than as an interruption, a sustained struggle between Antichrist and the faithful.
E2v. 51 Syms, The Swords Apology (London 1644), sig. B4v. 26 precisely in this sense of communal potential. The contrast with Foxe helps to clarify this point. Although the martyrologist makes clear the godly necessity of resisting Antichrist, the Christian martyr’s final responsibility reaches only to his or her individual soul. Compare this sentiment to Marshall’s 1643 tract addressing the House of Commons: More than the salvation of your own souls depends upon you; the glory of Christ; the establishment of this Church and Kingdom; yea the welfare of all Christendom, in great measure, are all embarked in that vessel, the steering whereof is in great part committed unto you.
Anglo-American Millennialism, from Milton to the Millerites (Studies in the History of Christian Thought) by Richard Connors