John Owen: Of Schism: The True Nature of it Discovered and Vindicated

(3104 words)

In 1657 John Owen published a book that defended the Independents from the accusation of schism. The work provoked a response from, among others, Daniel Cawdrey, a Presbyterian minister who had made a name for himself by attacking the Independents in print as early as 1645. Several rounds of fruitless fighting ensued. The exchange is revealing of Owen’s ecclesiology – a badly neglected aspect of his theology.

Round One: Of Schism (1657)

Rather like Melchizedek, Of Schism appeared without genealogy, without mother or father, in that it carried with it no preface, no introduction, and no specific context. William Orme, Owen’s biographer, thought he was prompted to write the book …

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Cooper, Tim. "Of Schism: The True Nature of it Discovered and Vindicated". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 15 September 2009
[, accessed 04 July 2015.]