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The Mind of GladstoneReligion, Homer, and Politics$
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David Bebbington

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780199267651

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199267651.001.0001

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The Emergence of Church Principles

The Emergence of Church Principles

(p.43) 3 The Emergence of Church Principles
The Mind of Gladstone

David Bebbington (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

Gladstone was brought up as an Evangelical, but soon diverged from his earlier position by adopting the doctrine of baptismal regeneration and accepting a high view of the visible church. Although he continued to value religious experience, during the 1830s he sided with Orthodox High Churchmen in abandoning claims about the possibility of firm assurance of salvation. He did not, however, follow Newman in seeing human merit as a ground of justification. In 1838 he published The State in its Relations with the Church in order to vindicate the principle of establishment, revealing in the revised edition of 1841 a remarkable affinity with contemporary German political philosophy. His Church Principles considered in their Results (1840) argued the claims of the Church of England on the basis of his communitarian social premises, but he acknowledged the authenticity of faith outside its bounds.

Keywords:   evangelical, baptismal regeneration, church, High Churchmen, Newman, establishment, Church of England

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