1. Some historians of the Presbyerian tribe will be keen to know that the latest issue of The Historical Journal includes an article by Alasdair Raffe on ‘Presbyterianism, Secularization, and Scottish Politics after the Revolution of 1688–1690’ (Volume 53, Issue 02, June 2010, pp. 317–337). Here’s the abstract:
‘This article assesses the significance of Presbyterian ideas of church government in Scottish politics after the revolution of 1688 intrinsic right of the church: its claim to independent authority in spiritual matters and ecclesiastical administration. The religious settlement of 1690 gave control of the kirk to clergy who endorsed divine right Presbyterianism, believed in the binding force of the National Covenant (1638) and the Solemn League and Covenant (1643), and sought to uphold the intrinsic right. An ambiguous legal situation, the criticisms of episcopalian clergy and politicians, and the crown’s religious policies helped to make the Presbyterians’ ecclesiological claims a source of instability in Scottish politics. Meetings of the general assembly and, after 1707, the appointment of national fast and thanksgiving days were particularly likely to spark controversy. More broadly, the article questions two narratives of secularization assumed by many previous scholars. It argues that Scottish politics was not differentiated from religious controversy in this period, and that historians have exaggerated the pace of liberalization in Scottish Presbyterian thought’.
2. The other breaking story is that N.T. Wright has been appointed to a Chair in New Testament and Early Christianity at St Andrews.