• Introduction to the Middle Ages Media Resource by

    Our word “medieval” comes from the Latin terms medium and aevum, which mean “middle age.” Neglected by some and romanticized by others, the period of the Middle Ages is important for understanding the triumphs and struggles of Christians in Europe and the Mediterranean world during the thousand-year period between the decline of the Roman Empire and the emergence of modern Europe. In this lecture, Dr. W. Robert Godfrey will offer insight into the historical complexities of the Middle Ages and will explain the approach that this series will take as we explore this important era in church history. View Resource

  • Introduction to the Reformation Media Resource by

    As the year 1500 arrived, Europe was in the midst of profound changes. The conditions, attitudes, and institutions that had characterized the Middle Ages were gradually giving way to new movements and developments. The discovery of unknown lands across the Atlantic accompanied an explosion of exploration and trade. The emergence of powerful monarchies in Germany, France, and Spain introduced complex new dynamics to European politics. In the aftermath of the Renaissance, interest in learning and the study of ancient texts ran high, and the recent invention of Gutenberg’s printing press facilitated the spread of ideas at an unprecedented rate. Amid … View Resource

  • Jesus as God Media Resource by

    The fourth century witnessed some of the most critical Christological controversies in the history of the church. Despite the solid, Biblical determination that originated from these debates, heresies continued to abound about the person and nature of Jesus Christ, and many of these heresies still exist today in different shapes and forms. This should not surprise Christ’s church, because He and His apostles warned us against this very situation and constantly called God’s people to seek His truth in His revelation. This lesson demonstrates the importance of this fact, but it also shows that Jesus persists with His church through … View Resource

  • Jesus as Man Media Resource by

    As members of the Reformed faith, it is easy to slip into a position of arrogance and superiority on account of our rich tradition of learning and study. Sadly, as today’s lesson demonstrates through the example of Cyril and his interaction with Nestorius, the presentation of right theology can cause serious harm when done in a disrespectful manner or with motives intent on personal gain and aggrandizement. Let us always remember the model of our Lord, Jesus. He, more than anyone else, possessed the right to reprimand and rebuke, but He persevered with His people in patience and grace, preferring … View Resource

  • J. Gresham Machen Media Resource by

    God has used men to passionately defend the historic Christian faith throughout the history of the church. In this lesson, Dr. Godfrey introduces J. Gresham Machen, a man used by God to fight the tides of twentieth-century liberalism. View Resource

  • John Calvin & Geneva Media Resource by

    God excels at overturning human expectations. When John Calvin left Geneva in 1538, he assumed that he would not be back. Content to study and minister in relative obscurity in Strasbourg, Calvin was unwittingly being equipped to return to Geneva and carry on the task of Reformation that he and William Farel had begun there. During the years ahead, John Calvin would leave a permanent mark upon both this city and the Reformed branch of Christianity. View Resource

  • Jonathan Edwards Media Resource by

    Jonathan Edwards has been called by some the most brilliant American who ever lived. He played an integral part in the Great Awakening, and his towering intellect was matched only by his religious devotion. In this lecture, join Dr. Godfrey as he explains the life and impact of one of the most influential individuals in American history. View Resource

  • Justinian & Gregory Media Resource by

    Emperor Justinian I and Pope Gregory I stand out as two of the most significant figures in the centuries of transition that marked the early Middle Ages. As the vestiges of Roman culture and institutions continued to fade or be reinvented, the inhabitants of the Mediterranean world looked for leaders who could offer them a sense of continuity with the past and direction for the future. In the midst of this uncertain climate, Justinian and Gregory contributed to the development of the state and the church in ways that would influence medieval life and culture for generations to come. View Resource

  • Martin Luther’s Early Life Media Resource by

    Extraordinary events often begin with seemingly ordinary people. A promising son of a typical middle-class family at the turn of the sixteenth century, Martin Luther had no other ambition than to know God’s Word. As Martin applied himself to that pursuit, God was equipping and preparing this young monk for an astonishing future. In this message, Dr. Godfrey explores the circumstances leading up to the events of 1517 that forever shaped the trajectories of Martin Luther’s life and of the Christian church. View Resource

  • Martin Luther & the Anabaptists Media Resource by

    Western Christianity changed forever during Martin Luther’s lifetime. Profoundly gifted and profoundly flawed, Luther had an enduring desire to proclaim “Jesus Christ and him crucified.” As a result of Luther’s untiring efforts, Christian leaders across Europe sought to bring all of life into accordance with God’s Word, often achieving very different results. Of the many expressions of Christianity that emerged during this time, the Anabaptists puzzled and distressed Catholics and Protestants alike. In this message, Dr. Godfrey discusses the enduring legacies of both Martin Luther and the Anabaptist movement. View Resource

  • Martin Luther & the German Reformation Media Resource by

    It is often through trial and adversity that God shapes His people the most. After publishing what he thought to be an unremarkable critique of corruption in the sale of indulgences, Martin Luther found himself at the forefront of a controversy that he neither expected nor desired. In the years that followed, Luther repeatedly returned to Scripture for guidance and instruction, and his exposition of God’s Word soon put him at odds with both the political and religious elites of his day. View Resource

  • Martin Luther & the Growing Protestant Movement Media Resource by

    In response to Martin Luther’s tireless ministry, more Christians came to recognize the need to reform the church, and reform movements began to spring up throughout Europe. As Luther continued to serve as a primary preacher and spokesman of the Reformation, he faced the question of how to interact with those whose visions of reform differed from his own. When the early Protestant leaders weighed the possibility of uniting their efforts, they grappled with challenges that still confront Christians today. View Resource

  • Monasticism & Scholasticism Media Resource by

    For nearly two millennia, many Christians have chosen to express their piety through ascetic living. Though the roots of monasticism existed long before, the sixth-century monk Benedict of Nursia is considered to be the founding father of the medieval monastic movements. Benedict’s charter, known as the Benedictine Rule, outlined key principles of holiness and self-denial for communities of monks and nuns who were committed to the values of poverty, chastity, and obedience to God. However, later generations did not always show the same degree of commitment and devotion as their predecessors. In response, certain influential leaders responded to corruption and … View Resource

  • Mysticism & the Renaissance Media Resource by

    As the Middle Ages continued to wind down in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, a diverse array of movements continued to exercise influence inside and outside the church. Amidst the backdrop of great Scholastic thinkers, other leaders appeared, advocating a vision of the Christian life that was driven more by the heart than by the head. Others responded to Scholasticism by looking to the ancient writings of Greece and Rome for inspiration. As Western scholars became increasingly proficient in classical languages and ancient texts, Christians inherited a variety of tools and resources to help them better understand the church, the … View Resource

  • The New Evangelicalism Media Resource by

    Fundamentalism began to take on negative connotations after the early twentieth century. In this lesson, Dr. Godfrey introduces the efforts of American Protestants to change popular perception by identifying once again as evangelicals. View Resource