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Stephen Charnock's doctrine of the knowledge of God : a case study of the balance of head and heart in restoration Puritanism

Siekawitch, Larry Daniel. (2007) Stephen Charnock's doctrine of the knowledge of God : a case study of the balance of head and heart in restoration Puritanism. PhD thesis, Prifysgol Bangor University.

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Abstract

Stephen Charnock was a beloved puritan pastor and writer in his day and is still known primarily owing to his Existence and Attributes of God which is even now in print. Though influential, very little has been written concerning him. His contributions include his Works but go further in his exemplary life and his method of doing theology. We shall seek to reveal that Charnock belonged to a group of pastor/theologians we will call latitude puritans, having been influenced by a number of sources including the Cambridge Platonists, latitudinarians, the French School of Saumur, the puritans and the original reformers. This small circle attempted to maintain a balance of mind and heart, where the use of reason and the Bible were combined with a deep experiential faith. We shall discuss Charnock's doctrine of the knowledge of God, comparing it with other religious groups in seventeenth century England, including the Quakers, the radical puritans, Independents, moderate puritans, Cambridge Platonists, latitudinarians, Laudian Anglicans, virtuosi and rationalists, to reveal certain tendencies that were manifested when either the mind or the heart was overemphasized to the neglect of the other. We shall also examine the use of the scholastic method as well as rationalism to see any affect they may have had on theology during this period. In considering the doctrine of the knowledge of God we will look at Charnock's holistic approach to knowing God, the use of general revelation and special revelation, and the implications of maintaining both truth and unity. In considering these aspects of Charnock's doctrine of the knowledge of God we shall discover the latitude puritan faithfulness to the original reformers as well as other groups' divergence. The details of this study will reveal the rich contribution of a particular group of puritans toward seventeenth century theology, a contribution that may even benefit the twenty-first century.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: Degree Thesis
Departments: College of Arts and Humanities > School of Philosophy and Religion
Degree Thesis
Date Deposited: 14 May 2015 05:07
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 08:48
URI: http://e.bangor.ac.uk/id/eprint/4410
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