The thirst for power changed Puritan theology, often in ways that went unnoticed. The rise and decline of political puritanism afforded unique theological temptations. As victors or victims, many approached cultural confl ict with a deep sense their cause was righteous — and this often blinded them to the ways they victimised others. This lecture focuses on the darker moments of Puritan history and explains how some of their worst actions fl owed from good intentions and admirable qualities. I explore nine ways their theology staggered under the influence of politics. We must remember this history and learn from it if we are to avoid toxic and intoxicating mixtures of piety and patriotism.
Dr Matthew Rowley is an honorary visiting fellow at the University of Leicester and a Non-Stipendiary Fellow at the Woolf Institute, Cambridge. He is active as a Research Associate at the Cambridge Institute on Religion & International Studies (Clare College). He received his PhD in early modern religious and political history from the University of Leicester. His thesis was entitled ‘Godly Violence: Military Providentialism in the Puritan Atlantic World, 1636–1676’. Matthew holds an MDiv and ThM from Bethlehem College and Seminary in Minneapolis where he wrote his thesis on the imitation of biblical violence.
ISBN: 978 1 906327 56 9