Richard Hooker’s Use of History in His “defense” of Public Worship: His Anglican Critique of Calvin, Barrow, and the Puritans

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This study examines how Hooker’s historical perspective developed in response to two theological opponents, Thomas Cartwright and Henry Barrow. Both the primitivism of Cartwright, the presbyterian puritan, and the apocalyptic primitivism of Barrow, the separatist, are contextualized and shown to be relevant to the overall argument presented in Hooker’s magnum opus, Of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity.


“Comparing Hooker with his contemporaries on specific issues of reform treated separately gives far more texture to the comparisons, and allows a subtler and more accurate picture to emerge.”-Prof. David Neelands, University of Toronto

“This book… is very well researched in primary and secondary sources, beautifully written, objective, and totally fair. It will make a notable contribution to Renaissance scholarship, the study of English history, and will raise Hooker scholarship to a higher level.”-Prof. Egil Grislis, The University of Manitoba

“The publication of this present work will leave [the author] clearly poised to move into his designated role among the new generation of scholars who are focused upon the Reformation in England with a special concentration upon the study of Richard Hooker and his place within that movement.”-Prof. Lee W. Gibbs, Cleveland State University

"... contributes to the ongoing debate of whether Polity reflects Protestant orthodoxy, whether the work is fundamentally coherent, and whether the notion of via media is particularly helpful in approaching Hooker's thought-and it is not, according to this scholar. ... Kindred-Barnes's contribution is the solid link he sees between and among several intellectual strands: Hooker's sense of what is politically and theologically convenient in the sixteenth century, his use of reason and law, his utilization of sacred history, his sense of the visible church and its embrace of episcopacy, and his historical approach to biblical and extrabiblical history." -Prof. Rudolph P. Almasy, West Virginia University

Table of Contents



Chapter 1
Hooker’s Historical Sense Variously Interpreted
Hooker’s Lawes: the History of texts and composition
Hooker’s Historical Sense
A Note on Procedure and Primary Sources

Chapter 2
Prolegomena to Conveniency and Primitivism
Scriptural Authority and the Church of England
Barrow and the Challenge of Separatism
Barrow’s Polemical Treatises
Hooker’s Four Levels of Certainty
Conveniency and Human Law
The Four Propositions and the Rule of Convenience

Chapter 3
Primitivism and the Politics of the Visible Church
Part One: Thomas Cartwright on the Church
Cartwright’s Critique of the Episcopacy
The Office of Elders or “Ancients”
Bishops and Archbishops
Interpreting John Calvin
Part Two: Barrow on the Nature of the Church
False Worship
Mixed Multitudes
Defining a “True Church” of Christ
Apostolic, Not “Antichristian” Ministry and Government
Church Officers and Discipline

Chapter 4
Conveniency and the Politics of the Visible Church
The origins of societies and the need for government
Hooker and Human Law
Puritan Bible Reading: The first principle
Puritan Bible Reading: The second principle
Bible-Reading and Church Polity

Chapter 5
Primitivism and Public Prayer
Part One: Cartwright and Public Worship and Prayer
A Preaching Ministry versus the Prayer Book
Vestments Continue to be Political
Practical Problems with the Prescribed Places in the Prayer Book
The Debate over the Prescript Forms of Prayer
Apostolic Patterns of Prayer
Repetition of Prayers
Part Two: Barrow on Public Worship and Prayer
Barrow’s critique of the Prayer Book
Barrow on the Places of Worship and Prayer
Barrow on the Lord’s Prayer

Chapter 6
Conveniency and Public Prayer
Conveniency and True Catholicity
Explicit References to Barrow in Book V
The Church of England’s Places of Worship
Table A
Hooker on Preaching
Hooker on Prayer
Hooker on the Lord’s Prayer

Chapter 7
Primitivism and the Sacraments
Cartwright on the Sacraments
The Return to Apostolic Purity and Simplicity
The Common Bread of the Lord’s Supper
Primitivism and the Critique of Prescribed Baptism
Adult Professions on behalf of Infants
Preaching Ministers Only
False Interpretations and a Faulty Theology of Baptism
Zipporah: A Model for Baptism Administered by Women?
Cartwright Rejects Whitgift’s Scriptural Proofs
Whitgift Mocks Cartwright’s Logic
Barrow on the Sacraments
Barrow’s Three Apostolic Rules
Primitivism and Private Sacraments
Barrow’s Controversy with Dr. Robert Some
The Question of Rebaptism

Chapter 8
Conveniency and the Sacraments
The Place of the Sacraments in the Church
Hooker on Baptism by Women: Chapter 62
Using History for Theological Clarity
Zipporah in Exodus 4
Hooker Defends the Place of Interrogatories in Baptism
The First “Fault” Refuted in Chapter 68

Chapter 9


Primary Sources

Manuscripts and Facsimiles

Printed Books or Edited Volumes


Secondary Sources


Other Religion-Protestant: Anglican & Episcopalian Books