Eighteenthcentury continental Protestantism between orthodoxy and nonconformity

Important as Pietism was within continental Protestantism in the first half of the eighteenth century, it would be misleading to create the impression that Pietists completely dominated Protestant church life during this period. Resistance to Pietism has been mentioned, and most of this resistance was formulated and pursued by other Protestants, orthodox Lutherans and traditional Calvinists alike. Protestant orthodoxy possessed and maintained three main spheres of influence well into the eighteenth century: first, theological faculties at leading universities; second, the large body of clergy including most church leaders; third, most members ofterritorial governments and local administrations. In other words, in most Protestant territories well into the eighteenth century the rule of territorial princes over the church (the 'Landesherrliche Kirchenregiment') was intact and functioning effectively. Just as they were expected to provide loyal legal experts for the government, universities had the obligation to educate pastors who would be loyal to the government. In all universities an impressive body of orthodox theological literature was available that could be put to use in the academic training of future pastors.

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