Presbyterians of the Past

The lives, places, writings, and events of Reformed history



Those serving on presbytery committees examining candidates for licensure or ordination are required constitutionally to include in their list of questions a few inquiries regarding the individual’s Christian experience and practices. The intention is to discern his consistency of Christian living and growth in sanctification, and as Paul wrote to Timothy, whether he provides a […]

The Lord and the Heart, I Samuel

February 15th, 2018, at 1:00 pm

I have been reading the four-hundredth anniversary facsimile edition of the King James Bible, 1611, published by Oxford University Press. The original King James Bible included the Apocrypha, the Order of Psalms and Lessons to be said at Morning and Evening Prayers, diagrams, and other portions that have been removed from later printings. The 1611 […]

In the history of Presbyterianism in the United States the surname Rice is a common one. For example, influential in Kentucky were David Rice (1733-1816) known as “Father Rice” for founding the Presbyterian Church in the state, and there was also the polemicist, minister, and educator Nathan Lewis Rice (1807-1877). In Virginia, key figures included […]

Presbyterian polity is shepherding. It is care of the sheep of Christ’s flock using a connectional relationship with graduated levels of oversight. The fundamental unit for all aspects of shepherding is the elder. The Greek New Testament word presbuteros means elder, thus Presbyterians are those Christians who are shepherded by elders. Presbyterian polity is connectional […]

Michael Demetrius Kalopothakes was born in Aeropolis, Laconia, Greece, December 17, 1825. At the time of his birth the Greeks were involved in a revolution for independence from the Ottomans who had ruled them since the middle of the fifteenth century. The Greeks’ desire for freedom was encouraged by the successful revolutions in America and […]

At seven in the morning of the sixteenth of January one-hundred years ago today, J. Gresham Machen set sail from New York for the purpose of providing United States troops with spiritual counsel and gospel witness while working in support services with the Young Men’s Christian Association in France. The interdenominational YMCA was not his […]

John Wesley was born February 1, 1885 to Jacob and Elizabeth Roth Ischy in their home just across the Ohio River from West Virginia in Hannibal, Ohio. Both Jacob and Elizabeth were immigrants from German-speaking Bern, Switzerland. The selection of the name “John Wesley” may indicate the desire of his Swiss parents to ease his […]

One-hundred-fifty-two years ago on the occasion of the beginning of the year 1866, Rev. Henry A. Boardman, D.D., the minister of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, delivered his sermon for the New Year titled, This is Not Your Rest, which is an exposition of a portion of Micah 2:10. Included in his purpose for […]

One of the most important doctrinal changes made by Protestants involved reinterpretation of the Latin words hoc est corpus meum which are found in the institution of the Lord’s Supper in Matthew 26:26 of the Catholic Bible, the Vulgate. The English translation of what Jesus said to his disciples is “this is my body.” The […]