The Principle of Protestantism: Lancaster Series on the Mercersburg TheologyThe Principle of Protestantism: Lancaster Series on the Mercersburg Theology by Philip Schaff
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Solid description of a significant problem facing Protestantism, and a correct though loose and theoretical prescription as to how to proceed. Schaff is correct that Protestantism cannot continue to live in the past, or pretend like the issues of days gone by are still the issues today. He is also correct to affirm that honoring our fathers means not regressing, either, back to medieval Christianity or Catholicism. In affirming that the need of the hour is the recovery of the importance of ecclesiology, Schaff’s words still apply today. The principle of Protestantism drives us towards the restoration of the Church, but this will involve going beyond Catholicism and yes, even the Reformation.

The latter half of the book is oddly marred by Schaff’s downplaying of denominational identity in favor of national identity, and a giving of hurrahs for Germany that subsequent history revealed to be horribly in error, both culturally in the rise of Nazism, and theologically in the unbelieving cesspool that German scholarship would become. Becoming more German did not and could not have brought about the continued reformation that Schaff called for.

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