The History of Scottish Worship

It was said of the Scottish reformers: “The ministers that were took not their pattern from any Kirk [Church] in the world… but, laying God’s Word before them, made reformation according thereunto…” (John Row, 1637)

It is no exaggeration to say that the worship of God from the Scottish Reformation is the most important in Church history, it being the most closely aligned according to Scripture.

Here is a treasure of resources on the history of Scottish worship that will provide a plethora of information on every aspect of it, in every era.

The History of Scottish Worship

The Benediction

In Biblical worship, why does the minister close the worship service with an inspired Benediction, standing with up-lifted hands facing God’s people?

Here is a page of Biblical and historic, reformed resources on the Benediction, a Biblical practice not so easy to find resources on.

The Benediction

Some have said that the Benediction is not a prayer..  While acknowledging the special features of the Benediction, this article demonstrates from Scripture and Westminster that the Benediction is a special prayer:

Fentiman, Travis – The Benediction is a Special Prayer per Scripture and Westminster

Should we Tithe to the Lord?

Should Christians give at least 10% of their income to the Lord by giving to his Church?

While the reformers and puritans largely argued that the Levitical statute of tithing 10% was not directly binding upon Christians (contra the Anglican bishops who argued hard for it), yet their answer was still, from principles of natural law and general equity that Christians for the most part ought to give at least 10% of their income to the Lord.

God twice owns Christians: being our Creator and our Redeemer.  May the Introduction on the page and the collection of resources from historic, reformed figures shed much light from Scripture on a knotty question for you, and may we be cheerful givers!

Tithes & Offerings

Bible Dictionaries & Church History Encyclopedias

Have a question about something in the Bible or in Church history?  The resources on this page will answer your question and provide a nearly, comprehensive system of theology and Biblical knowledge. 

They just don’t make encyclopedias like they used to..  The large and multi-volume dictionaries and encyclopedias at the end of the 1800’s and early-1900’s are some of the most scholarly and in-depth that have ever been printed, especially in the field of history, and cover topics too specific, detailed and lengthy for modern abridgments.

More and more contemporary works of scholarship are also becoming available on the internet through online loan..  We hope this page of resources will of great help to you:

Dictionaries & Encyclopedias: Biblical, Theological, Church History & Religious

Eternal Justification

The doctrine of Eternal Justification has been a luring trap for some, is the first stepping stone to Hyper-Calvinism and is contrary to the Westminster Confession of Faith.

Save yourself from doctrinal perversity, find out why this error still lurking around today is wrong and come to have a much more detailed and deeper understanding of the truth as it is in Jesus.

Eternal Justification

You won’t find more resources on this subject anywhere else.


How is Christ Worshipped as the Mediator?

We are to only worship God, and yet Jesus, a man, was worshipped in his earthly ministry.  How is this so?  The answer is that we worship Jesus, the God-man, not insofar as He is a creature, but insofar as his Person is God.

This precious jewel of theology is argued by the reformed theologians linked on the page below in a bit of detail that will be clear to the simplest, and make the most knowledgeable cry out:  “Oh! the depths and the riches!  (Rom. 11:33)

The Grounds of Christ the Mediator Receiving Divine Worship

Presumptive Regeneration

What is to be made of Presumptive Regeneration, which has become so popular in the modern, Reformed Church?

Jesus told Nicodemus, who was a teacher in Israel and externally in the Covenant in good standing, “You must be born again.” (Jn. 3:7)

It is largely not known that the classical era of Presbyterianism in the 1600’s largely argued against Presumptive Regeneration in their controversy with the Separatists, Independents and Congregationalists, who all advocated it.

Here is a dozen of the most detailed and extensive writings against Presumptive Regeneration in Church history (all from presbyterians: Rutherford, Dickson, Fergusson, Rathband, Apollonius, etc.), with an extensive and Scripturally detailed Introduction to the topic:

Presumptive Regeneration

There is a special section in the Introduction, at the end, on ‘Raising Children in the Covenant’.

The Establishment Principle in the American Westminster Standards

The view on the relation between Church and State during the Reformation and the Westminster Assembly was the Establishment Principle, that the State is to uphold all of the 10 Commandments and to profess, protect, promote and civilly establish the True Religion (circa sacra).

It is commonly thought that the American revisions of the Westminster documents removed the Establishment Principle from them.  This is not the case.

As is documented in detail in this article, the American Westminster Standards teach that the civil magistrate is to establish the Christian religion in the land, albeit a general, non-denominational Christianity.

See for yourself what your presbyterian church officers have vowed to teach and uphold.  And more than this, come into a greater acquaintance with what the Word of God teaches about Church-State relations.

The Establishment Principle in the American Westminster Standards and Early American States


A Church’s constitution, subordinate to the Word of God, defines its being and public testimony.

Officers’ vows define the officers’ relationship to the Church and obligates them to uphold the Church’s constitution, as opposed to undermining it.  The constitution serves as a legal security to minorities who seek to uphold the acknowledged principles of the Church.  A change in the constitution, apart from the lawful process thereto, effectively breaks the terms of union by which persons are bound to the Church.

Learn more about the principles of Constitutionalism here, with the most mature, balanced and developed resources on the topic from Church history.

Here is much needed health for the Church today.


The Marrow Controversy

The Marrow Controversy in early-1700’s Scotland hinged on the the warrant of the Free Offer of the Gospel displaying God’s grace and good-will to gospel-hearers.

Mature your understanding of the Christian faith in looking into this important and intriguing historical controversy.  Here are the most resources on the net about it.

As for us, we are Marrow men.  On this Lord’s Day, take up and read a sermon by one of the original Marrow Men, Thomas Boston, Ralph Erskine or Ebenezer Erskine, and delight your soul in these refreshing Gospel-waters,

The Marrow Controversy 

Scottish Church History

The Scottish Church for centuries held the standard for reformed Christianity.  Her history is the most important, the most exciting and the best to learn from.

For beginners and scholars alike, here is a massive collection of resources on Scottish Church history, organized by the time period. 

Apart from researching a dissertation, it will probably have everything you need to answer just about every question you may have about Scottish Church history.  Here is the treasure of the public domain (and more) on the topic.

Scottish Church History

We hope it is a blessing to you.

Changing Colors


We are glad to announce that the website’s colors are being overhauled.  Getting rid of the black background has done wonders for readability.  We hope to iron out some of the smaller things soon.  Stay tuned.

“In everything give thanks.”
1 Thess. 5:18

Theological Writings from Scottish Church History

We make no apology that Scottish Church history is more important than any other strand of Church history.

Consequently, we have collected many of the theological tracts from the Resolutioner-Protester controversy of the 1650’s so that you can read them first-hand.  The webpage contains an introduction to the era and issues, as well as valuable historical materials on it.

The Scottish Resolutioner-Protester Controversy, 1650’s

Likewise, there really has been no collection available of the defenses of covenanting and literature surrounding the indulgence controversy, during 1660-1688, until now.  The most fascinating aspect of this literature, besides that of defending civil resistance from Scripture and natural law, is the debate over Church unity and degrees of separation.

Defenses of Scottish Covenanting and the Indulgence Controversy, 1661-1688

May these resources be a blessing to you, and may God’s name be hallowed.

Rutherford’s Due Right of Presbyteries

What is the definitive work in Church history arguing and delineating classic presbyterianism?

Samuel Rutherford’s The Due Right of Presbyteries.  Rutherford answers every detailed point of ecclesiology (things about the Church) that you ever thought of, and many, many more.

The problem, though, is that this is one of the most dis-organized books there is.  So, we have made an outline, table of contents and subject index to it in contemporary format, with links to corresponding page numbers, so that you can easily find where he treats of interesting subjects.

For those more skilled in historical theology, see if you can find the two dozen points where modern presbyterianism departs from classically defined, historic, presbyterianism from the Church of Scotland during the Westminster era.

Please enjoy:

“Samuel Rutherford’s The Due Right of Presbyteries: Table of Contents and Subject Index”  1644  22 pp.  ed. Travis Fentiman

Gillespie on Christ’s Mediatorial Kingdom

Is Christ’s Kingdom as the Mediator the Church only, or does it include all things?

George Gillespie, the Westminster divine and Scottish covenanter has the most in-depth writings on the majority puritan view that Christ’s Mediatorial Kingdom is the Church only.

Gillespie’s material, the most in-depth on the topic, has often not been read due to its inaccessibility.  The Reformed Presbyterians, as a family of denominations, officially take the opposite viewpoint.  Often their view is put forward as a self-evidently correct interpretation of the relevant texts.

This collection of Gillespie’s writings in contemporary format, with explanatory notes, will shed a lot more light on the issues and the details of the relevant Scriptural texts.

As a bonus, these writings of Gillespie are also the classic delineation of the Establishment Principle, the Biblical relation between Church and State.

May this document be a rich and helpful resource to you in further searching out the things of God and Biblical doctrine.

George Gillespie – ‘All of Gillespie’s Writings on Christ’s Mediatorial Kingdom is the Church Only’  110 pp.  ed. Travis Fentiman


If you have ever been tempted by Charismatic theology, read the Introduction on this page in order to be solidified in Biblical teaching on the subject.

The concise Introduction demonstrates from Scripture the reformed teaching on the topic that Biblical prophecy is always 100% right (contrary to most of what goes for prophecy today) and that many clear passages of Scripture teach that it has ceased with the generation of the apostles.

If you have any doubt in your mind, read the clear, cogent and full Scriptural arguments.  May the Lord bless you in these things.

Prophecy: Infallible & Ceased

Extraordinary Offices and Tongues

Do the offices of apostles, prophets and evangelists that are mentioned in Eph. 4:11 continue today, or did they cease with the generation of the apostles?  Most of historic, reformed Christianity has taught that these offices ceased in the first century, though ministers and lay-persons are to continue in evangelism today.  Find out why:

The Offices of Apostles, Prophets & Evangelists

We have also collected a number of resources on speaking in tongues.  Read the short Intro on the page which demonstrates that tongues in Scripture were real human languages which were understood by the speaker, unlike nearly all of what goes for tongue-speaking today.

Speaking in Tongues

We hope that these resources are a blessing to you, and help you understand God’s Word better and in more detail.

Recommended Reading & Bibliographies

We have compiled a large collection of recommended reading lists, bibliographies and other reference materials which will be helpful to both beginner and scholar alike.

For one studying an issue, the first thing to do is to find the best available literature that is already available on the topic. These resources will help you to easily do that, and we will be using them to further build our site.

We have also compiled a large collection of recommendatory lists of Bible commentaries. See what popular figures and solid resources recommend.

Dance, Drama and Visual Imagery in Worship

Should dance, drama, plays, videos and man-made religious imagery be in worship?

As we are only to worship God in the way that He prescribes and as God has specifically regulated visual imagery in worship from the beginning, these things are an affront against the sole prerogative of the visual, dramatic signs that Christ has instituted in worship: Baptism and the Lord’s Supper.

Here is the most Biblically detailed argument available defending the historic, reformed practice against man-made religious imagery in God’s worship.  Please enjoy.

Visual Imagery, Drama & Dance in Worship