Christian Cyclopedia

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Practical Theology.

Branches of theol.* that deal with the practical work of the ministry, e.g., catechetics,* homiletics,* liturgics,* pastoral* theol., casuistry,* ch. polity.*

Praeceptor Germaniae

(Lat. “teacher of Germany”). Title often given P. Melanchthon* because of his influence on educ. and humanism in Ger.

Praemunire, Statutes of.

Eng. statutes named after the Lat. word praemunire (“to warn”), prominent in the writ issued under the statutes, which were first passed 1353, 1365, and 1393, preventing encroachment of papal jurisdiction and upholding the indep. of royal courts; used by Henry* VIII (against T. Wolsey*), Elizabeth* I, and by courts under James* I.

Praetorius, Abdias

(Gottschalk Schulze; 1524–73). B. Salzwedel, Ger.; educ. Frankfurt an der Oder and Wittenberg; pupil of P. Melanchthon*; taught at Salzwedel 1544, Magdeburg 1553; taught Heb. at Frankfurt an der Oder 1558–63; engaged in controversy with A. Musculus* on the necessity of good works; joined the philos. faculty at Wittenberg 1563. Works include Loci. See also Altenburg Colloguy.

Praetorius, Benjamin

(1636–probably ca. 1674). B. near Weissenfels, Ger.; studied theol., probably at Leipzig; pastor Gross-Lissa, near Delitzsch, Saxony; hymnist. Hymns include “Sei getreu bis an das Ende.”

Praetorius, Hieronymus

(1560–1629). Luth. composer; father of J. Praetorius*; b. Hamburg, Ger.; cantor Erfurt 1580; organist Hamburg; follower of the Venetian* school of ch. music. Issued Melodeyen Gesangbuch (to which he contributed harmonizations of 21 chorales); most of his works pub. in a collection titled Opus Musicum.

Praetorius, Jacob

(1586–1651). Luth. composer; son of H. Praetorius*; b. Hamburg, Ger.; studied under J. P. Sweelinck*; organist Hamburg 1603–51. Works include motets, wedding songs, and contrapuntal settings of chorales.

Praetorius, Michael

(real surname Schultheiss, or Schulz [with variants]; ca. 1571/72–1621). Luth. composer; musicologist; b. Creuzburg, Thuringia, Ger.; studied at Frankfurt an der Oder; in service of duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel. Compositions include Musae Sioniae; Hymnodia Sionia; Terpsichore; Polhymnia; Puericinium; Urainia. Writings include Leiturgodia; Syntagma musicum.

Pragmatic Sanction

(Lat. pragmatica sanctio). In Roman law (Theodosian and Justinian codes), a govt. decision in a matter (Gk. pragma) involving community or pub. interest. Later, an expression of will by a sovereign defining the limits of his own power or regulating the succession. The Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges 1438 upheld the right of the Fr. Ch. to administer its temporal property and disallowed papal nominations to vacant benefices. See also Church and State, 8; Concordat, 4; France, 3; Gallicanism; Lateran Councils.


In philos., a logical process intended to help make ideas clear. It proposes that the meaning of an idea should be determined by the practical, or pragmatic, difference it would make if it were assumed to be true. As bet. 2 ideas, if there were no difference in effect, it would be concluded that either the difference was purely verbal or that the 2 ideas meant the same. First developed by C. S. S. Peirce* in the 1870s; revived and reformulated 1898 by W. James,* who proposed the pragmatic test for the nature of truth itself. Ideas were to be held true if they worked; i. e., if the practical consequences of acting on an idea brought to the individual concerned personal satisfaction, the idea was to be regarded as acceptable, or true, at least in a sense or up to a point. James wanted to confine the application of pragmatism to problems not otherwise verifiable; others felt that the test might be made in any instance. J. Dewey,* sometimes called a pragmatist, preferred his philos, to be called instrumentalism, later experimentalism. Pragmatism has stressed use of interest in learning, because the pragmatic test of truth is affected by the interest of the learner. Pragmatism has no proper application to the transcendental, where divine revelation is the deciding factor. See also Humanist Manifesto, A.

Pratensis, Felix

(a Prato; ca. 1460–1558). Jew; Augustinian hermit in Prato, It., 1506; to Rome 1514/15; active in miss. to Jews; M. Luther used his tr. of Psalms. Ed. the Heb. Bible printed 1516/17 by D. Bomberg.*


(fl. toward end of 2d and beginning of 3d c.). Exponent of patripassianism*; opposed by Tertullian.* Followers called Praxeans. See also Monarchianism, B 4.


(1st–2d c.). Martyr at Rome.


1. In the narrow sense, a request, or petition, for benefits or mercies; in the wide sense, any communion of a soul with God. May be divided into adoration, expressing a sense of God's goodness and greatness; confession, acknowledging unworthiness; supplication, asking pardon, grace, or any other blessing; intercession (praying for others); thanksgiving. Private prayer includes spontaneous ejaculations, wishes, or appeals and deliberate prayer (cf. Mt 6:6). Family prayer (as at mealtime and in family worship [“family altar”]) and social prayer in pub. worship are forms of corporate prayer.

2. Prayer is commanded by God (1 Ch 16:11; Ps 50:15; Mt 7:7; Ph 4:6), has His promises (Ps 91:15–16; Jn 16:23; Jn 5:16b), and hence is a vital part of Christian life. To be valid, prayer must be made to the true God (1 Sm 7:3; Is 42:8); Ap XXI 8–10 grants that saints and angels pray for us but adds: “it does not follow that they should be invoked”; cf. AC XXI 2, which quotes 1 Ti 2:5. It must proceed from faith (Mt 21:22; Ja 1:6–7), which is created by the Holy Spirit (1 Co 12:3), who assists and guides in prayer (Ro 8:26); faith excludes willful sin, which invalidates prayer (Ps 66:18; Pr 28:9; Is 1:15; 59:2; Jn 9:31). It must be conditioned by the will of God (1 Jn 5:14; cf. Ro 8:28) and be as broad as living mankind (1 Ti 2:1; Heb 9:27).

3. Prayer must be more than an emergency measure in time of trouble; it must constantly reach out for the more abundant life promised by God (Ro 12:12; Ph 4:6–7; 1 Th 5:17). Prayer must be an integral part of the home that is to function acc. to God's plan (Jos 24:15) and is essential to the ch. in its life and functions (Mt 18:19–20; Lk 11:13). A cong. prays the Lord to give its pastor “utterance” (Eph 6:19) and open doors to him (Cl 4:3). The pastor prays that God may strengthen his cong. “with might by His Spirit in the inner man” (Eph 3:16). Pastor and people present special needs of individual mems. and families to God.

4. Kinds and forms of prayer are indicated, e.g., in the OT by such words as tephillah (in heading of Ps 17, 86, 90, 102, 142 and in Hab 3:1; prayer, intercession, supplication), sheelah (e.g., 1 Sm 2:20; Est 5:6, 7; prayer in gen., request, petition), todah (e.g., Ps 26:7; 42:5; Is 51:3; thanksgiving, praise). For kinds and forms of prayer mentioned in the NT cf., e.g., 1 Ti 2:1.

5. Jesus was in constant prayer communication with His heavenly Father (e.g., Mt 14:19; 26:39, 42, 44; Mk 1:35; 6:46; Lk 23:46; Jn 17; cf. Mt 6:9–13).

Incentives to prayer: God's command and promise and our own and our neighbor's need (Ps 122:6; Jer 29:7; Mt 5:44; 6:6; 9:38; 24:20; 26:41; Lk 6:28; 18:1–7; Ro 8:26; 1 Th 5:17, 25; 1 Ti 2:1, 8; Ja 5:13).

6. Other examples include Abraham, Moses, David, Solomon, Hezekiah, Ezra, Daniel, Zacharias, Paul, John, Chrysostom, Augustine of Hippo, M. Luther, J. F. Starck, C. F. W. Walther.

See also Grace, Means of, I, 1; Invocation of Saints; Saints, Veneration of, 6–8; Worship.

Prayer, Liturgical.

The sacrificial part of pub. worship, including, e.g., hymns, collects, prayers, Preface, Sanctus, Agnus Dei, canticles; antiphonal chanting may be regarded sacrificial if it does not include proclamation of the Word. Set or fixed prayers reflect the life, work, and worship of the ch. through the ages. Specific postures are not essential to prayer; standing and kneeling are common, usually with head bowed and hands folded. See also Worship, Parts of.

Prayer Books.

Name given by some liturgical chs. to their service books, e.g., Book* of Common Prayer; Scottish Prayer Book (see Covenanters).

Prayer Meeting

(prayer service). Meeting or service, common in Ref. chs., usually held ca. the middle of the week, featuring extempore prayers by worshipers, hymns, and relation of religious experiences, with or without evangelistic or revivalistic preaching; prayer is regarded as a means of grace. But see Grace, Means of, I, 1.

Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

Brotherhood of artists including W. H. Hunt,* J. E. Millais,* D. G. Rossetti*; formed 1848 in Eng. to restore in painting and promote in criticism the principles and practices that marked It. art before Raphael.*

Preaching, History of.

1. Christian preaching has as its content the Word of God (2 Ti 4:2), esp. the Gospel (1 Co 2:2). Purposes of Christian preaching: to bring the sinner to a knowledge of his sins (Ro 3:20) and to repentance and faith (Mk 1:14–15; 16:15–16); to strengthen the Christian (2 Ptr 3:18; Ro 12; 15:4); to give glory to God (2 Ptr 3:18).

2. Great OT preachers include Isaiah, Amos, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, Jonah.

3. The great preacher was Jesus Christ (Mt 4:17; Mk 1:14–15; Lk 4:43–44).

4. Jesus ordained, or appointed, the 12 disciples to preach (Mk 3:14). The 70 were sent with the message: “The kingdom of God is come nigh” (Lk 10:1–16). The ch. was commissioned to preach (Mk 16:15; Lk 24:47).

5. Those who were scattered in the persecution by Saul “went everywhere preaching the Word” (Acts 8:4). In course of time, and largely spearheaded by Paul, Christian preaching spread throughout the Roman empire.

6. We know little of the preaching of the first 2 cents.; it was informal and by men who had no special training but whose heart was aflame with love of Christ. Origen* allegorized too much, as did many others after him. Theol. schools were est. Preaching expanded tremendously from Constantine* I to J. Chrysostom* and Augustine* of Hippo (whose De doctrina Christiana, Book IV, often called the 1st book on homiletics, influenced preaching at least till ca. 600).

7. Ceremonialism and the mass overshadowed preaching 600–1100. When sermons were preached they were in Lat., not the vernacular. Most lower clergy were ignorant and irreligious. Charlemagne* directed Paul* the Deacon to compile homilies; the collection, Homiliarium, was long in use.

8. Preaching improved from the 12th c. Peter* the Hermit was fanatic but eloquent; Bernard* of Clairvaux, regarded as the greatest preacher of his age, preached 86 sermons on the SS., but did not get beyond chap. 3, verse 1. The Dominicans* were founded to counteract defection from RCm in S France. Anthony* of Padua, who is said to have preached to 30,000 on at least 1 occasion, divided his sermons into several parts (an innovation), used illustrations, and went to the extreme in allegorizing. Thomas* Aquinas combined profound studies with practical preaching. Berthold von Regensburg, “The Chrysostom of the Middle Ages” (perhaps ca. 1210–72; perhaps b. Regensburg, Ger.), preached in German to audiences est. 60,000–200,000 against indulgences and dependence on intercessory prayers of Mary and other saints. Other Ger. preachers of the 13th and 14th c. include Albertus* Magnus, J. Eckhart,* H. Suso,* and J. Tauler.*

9. Preachers also called Prereformers include J. Hus,* G. Savonarola,* and J. Wycliffe.* J. Colet* was a well-known pre-Reformation preacher in Eng.

10. The Reformation reemphasized (1) the purpose of Christian preaching: to proclaim the Gospel; (2) the source of Christian preaching: the Bible; (3) the proper place of Christian preaching in pub. worship: 1st place, with sacrificial parts in 2d place. Preachers of the Reformation and post-Reformation period include in Germany: M. Luther,* J. Brenz,* J. Bugenhagen,* V. Herberger*; in England: J. Knox.* 17th-c. preachers include in Germany: C. Scriver,* H. Müller,* V. E. Löscher,* P. J. Spener,* A. H. Francke*; in England: J. Tillotson,* R. Baxter*; RCs in France: J. B. Bossuet,* J. B. Massilon*; Ref. in France: J. Claude.* 18th-c. preachers include in Germany: J. A. Bengel,* J. L. v. Mosheim,* N. L. v. Zinzendorf*; in Holland: J. Saurin*; in England: R. Hall,* T. Chalmers*; in England and Am.: J. Wesley,* G. Whitefield.*

11. The Enlightenment,* deism,* materialism,* and rationalism* affected preaching adversely. On the other hand, J. H. Jung-Stilling,* J. K. Lavater,* and F. C. Oetinger* exerted a good influence.

12. F. D. E. Schleiermacher,* who attacked rationalism, yet based his theol. on the inner consciousness of the individual, held that the purpose of preaching is to awaken religious feeling, not to instruct or incite to action; his preaching was topical; he did not write his sermons, but carefully prepared them. In contrast, L. Hofacker* said: “I have but I sermon: I preach the Lamb that was slain.” C. Harms* reacted against the rationalistic influences under which he grew up, adopted a positive Biblebased theol., and used the topical method in forceful preaching. R. E. Stier* said the sermon should be Scriptural and applied to the hearer. F. W. Krummacher (see Krummacher, 3) was one of the most popular preachers of his day. G. L. D. T. Harms* exerted great influence by his preaching. T. J. R. Kögel,* brilliant preacher, said the sermon must be a battle. Other Ger. preachers of the 19th c. include J. T. Beck,* K. F. v. Gerok,* C. E. Luthardt,* Julius Müller,* F. K. L. Steinmeyer,* and J. G. W. Uhlhorn.*

13. 19th and early 20th c. preachers in Eng. and Scot. include H. Alford,* J. Caird,* T. Guthrie,* J. H. Jowett,* J. Ker,* H. P. Liddon,* A. Maclaren,* F. W. Robertson,* C. H. Spurgeon.*

14. Luth. preachers of the past in Am. include C. F. W. Walther,* J. A. Seiss,* W. A. Maier.*

15. Non-Luth. Prot. preachers of the past in Am. include H. W. Beecher,* P. Brooks,* C. G. Finney,* H. E. Fosdick,* D. L. Moody.* JHCF

J. A. Broadus, Lectures on the History of Preaching (New York, 1876); E. C. Dargan, The Art of Preaching in the Light of Its History (New York, 1922); J. H. C. Fritz, The Preacher's Manual (St. Louis, 1941); H. C. Howard, Princes of the Christian Pulpit and Pastorate, 2 series (Nashville, Tennessee, 1927–28); E. R. Kiesow, Dialektisches Denken und Reden in der Predigt: an Beispielen aus der Predigtliteratur der Gegenwart untersucht (Berlin, 1957); C. H. Dodd, The Apostolic Preaching and Its Development: Three Lectures (New York, 1936); D. W. Lehmann, Das Wort der Propheten in der Predigt der evangelischen Kirchen von Luther bis zum Beginn des 20. Jahrhunderts (Frankfurt am Main, 1963); Y. T. Brilioth, Predikans historia (Lund, 1945), tr. K. E. Mattson, A Brief History of Preaching (Philadelphia, 1965); H. Davies, Varieties of English Preaching 1900–1960 (London, 1963); F. R. Webber, A History of Preaching in Britain and America, 3 vols. (Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1952–57).


1. Term referring to human beings conceived of as living before the Adam of Gn; assoc. esp. with Isaac de la Peyrère (Pererius; 1594–1676; Bordeaux Huguenot), who held that Ro 5:12–14 meant that human beings before Adam sinned, that they were the ancestors of the Gentiles, and that the Jews sprang from Adam; Peyrère later renounced the theory and became RC ca. 1657. 2. Followers of Peyrère.


In Eng., stipend from the estate of a cathedral or collegiate ch. for a canon or chapter member; land or tithe that provides the stipend. Holder of a prebend is called prebendary.


1. Step or platform on which an altar is placed. 2. Sculpture or painting along front of superaltar or at foot of altarpiece.

Predestinarian Controversy.

1. 847–ca. 868. Began when Gottschalk* of Orbais began spreading his views on predestination in It., ended with his death. Rediscussion of the stricter and laxer view of the Augustinian doctrine of predestination (see Pelagian Controversy). Gottschalk, who held an absolute predestination, was immediately opposed by Rabanus* Maurus and condemned by a syn. at Mainz 848. Hincmar* was instructed to take necessary measures against him. Gottschalk was condemned again 849 by a syn. at Crécy (Chiersy; Quierzy; other variants), Fr., and imprisoned for the rest of his life in the convent at Hautvilliers.

Gottschalk's view was defended by Ratramnus,* Lupus* Servatus, Remigius* of Lyons, Florus,* et al. and was confirmed by a syn. at Valence 855 and Langres 859. But a syn. at Crécy 853 adopted a different view. J. S. Erigena* set forth a 3d theory. A syn. at Savonnières, near Toul, postponed final decision to the 860 syn. at Toucy, near Toul, which expressed only the common ground among parties to the controversy. Finally, Gottschalk appealed to Nicholas I (see Popes, 5) 866, might have been successful, but was outmaneuvered by Hincmar, who refused him Communion and Christian burial unless he would recant. Gottschalk refused, died in his belief, and was buried in unconsecrated soil.

At the time of the Reformation the two main streams in the controversy stood revealed in RC semi-Pelagianism and Ref. predestinarianism. Lutheranism found the golden mean bet. them.

2. The name “Predestinarian Controversy” is also applied to a controversy over conversion and election bet. mems. of the Mo. Syn., the Ohio Syn., and other Luth. bodies in Am. in the 1880s. See also Evangelical Lutheran Church, The, 10; Intuitu fidei; Lange, Carl Heinrich Rudolf; Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, The, V 12, VI 1; Ohio and Other States, Evangelical Lutheran Joint Synod of, 5; Thirteen Theses.

See also Double Predestination; Preterition.


I. Acc. to the Bible, all that God does in time for our conversion, justification, and final glorification is based on, and flows from, an eternal decree of election or predestination, acc. to which God, before the foundation of the world, chose us in His Son Jesus Christ out of the mass of sinful mankind unto faith, the adoption of sons, and everlasting life; this election is not based on any good quality or act of the elect, nor is it intuitu* fidei, but is based solely on God's grace, the good pleasure of His will in Christ Jesus. The Bible does not teach reprobation, i. e., an election of wrath for those who are lost; God earnestly desires the salvation of all; the lost are lost by their own fault. The Bible does not solve the problem that exists for the human mind that tries to harmonize the doctrine of universal grace and the doctrines of election and salvation by grace alone. The doctrine of election by grace, properly used, will not foster carnal security, but will make the believer conscious of the matchless glory of the grace of God, serve as a constant incentive to sanctification, comfort him in the ills and tribulations of this life, and give him the blessed assurance of final salvation. Since the doctrine of election by grace is clearly taught in the Bible, it is written for all Christians to learn. FK

II. The decree of predestination is an eternal act of God (Eph 1:4; 3:11; 2 Th 2:13; 2 Ti 1:9), who, for His goodness' sake (Ro 9:11; 11:5; 2 Ti 1:9), and because of the merit of the foreordained Redeemer of all mankind (Eph 1:4; 3:11; 2 Ti 1:9), proposed to lead into everlasting life (Acts 13:48; Ro 8:28–29; 2 Ti 1:9; 2:10), by the way and means of salvation designated for all mankind (Ro 8:29–30; Eph 1:4–5; 1 Ptr 1:2), a certain number (Mt 20:16; 22:14; Acts 13:48) of certain persons (Jn 13:18; 2 Ti 2:19; 1 Ptr 1:2), and to procure, work, and promote what would pertain to their final salvation (Mk 13:20, 22; Ro 8:30; Eph 1:11; 3:10–11). Cf. A. L. Graebner, Outlines of Doctrinal Theology par. 51.

III. FC Ep XI 5–7: “Predestination or the eternal election of God … is concerned only with the pious children of God in whom He is well pleased. It is a cause of their salvation, for He alone brings it about and ordains everything that belongs to it. Our salvation is so firmly established upon it that the 'gates of Hades cannot prevail against' it (John 10:28; Matt. 16:18).

“We are not to investigate this predestination in the secret counsel of God, but it is to be looked for in His Word, where He has revealed it.

“The Word of God, however, leads us to Christ, who is 'the book of life' in which all who are to be eternally saved are inscribed and elected, as it is written, 'He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world' (Eph. 1:4).”

FC SD XI 14–23: “This means that we must always take as one unit the entire doctrine of God's purpose, counsel, will, and ordinance concerning our redemption, call, justification, and salvation, as Paul treats and explains this article (Rom. 8:28 ff.; Eph. 1:4 ff.) and as Christ likewise does in the parable (Matt. 20:2–14), namely, that in his purpose and counsel God has ordained the following:

“1. That through Christ the human race has truly been redeemed and reconciled with God and that by His innocent obedience, suffering, and death Christ has earned for us 'the righteousness which avails before God' and eternal life.

“2. That his merit and these benefits of Christ are to be offered, given, and distributed to us through His Word and sacraments.

“3. That He would be effective and active in us by His Holy Spirit through the Word when it is preached, heard, and meditated on, would convert hearts to true repentance, and would enlighten them in the true faith.

“4. That He would justify and graciously accept into the adoption of children and into the inheritance of eternal life all who in sincere repentance and true faith accept Christ.

“5. That He also would sanctify in love all who are thus justified, as St. Paul says (Eph. 1:4).

“6. That He also would protect them in their great weakness against the devil, the world, and the flesh, guide and lead them in His ways, raise them up when they stumble, and comfort and preserve them in tribulation and temptation.

“7. That He would also strengthen and increase in them the good work which He has begun, and preserve them unto the end, if they cling to God's Word, pray diligently, persevere in the grace of God, and use faithfully the gifts that they have received.

“8. That, finally, He would eternally save and glorify in eternal life those whom He has elected, called, and justified.

“In this His eternal counsel, purpose, and ordinance God has not only prepared salvation in general, but He has also graciously considered and elected to salvation each and every individual among the elect who are to be saved through Christ, and also ordained that in the manner just recounted He wills by His grace, gifts, and effective working to bring them to salvation and to help, further, strengthen, and preserve them to this end.”

See also Analogy of Faith; Double Predestination; Infralapsarianism; Supralapsarianism; Thirteen Theses.

A. Hunnius, Articulus de providentia Dei et aeterna praedestinatione seu electione filiorum Dei ad salutem (Frankfurt, 1603); W. Elert, “Versöhnung und Prädestination bei Luther in Disjunktion” and “ Versöhnung und Prädestination in den Bekenntnissen in Konjunktion,” Morphologie des Luthertums, I (Munich, 1931; improved print., 1952), 103–123, tr. W. A Hansen, “Reconciliation and Predestination in Luther in Disjunction” and “Reconciliation and Predestination in the Confessions in Conjunction,” The Structure of Lutheranism, I (St. Louis, 1962), 117–140; Verhandlungen der Allgemeinen Pastoralconferenz der Synode von Missouri, Ohio u. a. Staaten über die Lehre von der Gnadenwahl (St. Louis, 1880); Einundzwanzigster Synodal-Bericht des Westlichen Districts der deutschen ev.-luth. Synode von Missouri, Ohio und anderen Staaten (St. Louis, 1877), pp. 21–109 (C. F. W. Walther essayist); Zweiundzwanzigster Synodal-Bericht des Westlichen Districts der deutschen ev.-luth. Synode von Missouri, Ohio und anderen Staaten (St. Louis, 1879), pp. 22–120 (C. F. Walther essayist); Zeugniss wieder die neue, falsche Gnadenwahlslehre der Missouri Synode auf Grund der hl. Schrift und des lutherischen Bekenntnisses abgelegt von einigen ehemaligen Gliedern genannter Synode (Milwaukee, 1882); G. J. Fritschel, Die Schriftlehre von der Gnadenwahl (Chicago, 1906) and Zur Einigung der amerikanisch-lutherischen Kirche in der Lehre von der Bekehrung und Gnudenwahl, 2d ed. (Chicago, 1914); C. W. Schaeffer, W. J. Mann, A. Spaeth, and H. E. Jacobs, “Concerning the Dogma of Predestination,” The Lutheran Church Review, III (1884), 223–236; C. F. W. Walther, The Controversy Concerning Predestination, tr. A. Crull (St. Louis, 1881); F. Pieper, Zur Einigung der amerikanisch-lutherischen Kirche in der Lehre von der Bekehrung und Gnadenwahl, 2d ed., enl. (St. Louis, 1913), tr. Conversion and Election: A Plea for a United Lutheranism in America (St. Louis, 1913); L. S. Keyser, Election and Conversion: A Frank Discussion of Dr. Pieper's Book on “Conversion and Election,” with Suggestions for Lutheran Concord and Union on Another Basis (Burlington, Iowa, 1914); A. L. Graebner, “The Doctrine of Predestination as Taught in Ephesians 1, 3–6,” TQ, V (1901), 25–46; T. Engelder, “Let Us Get Together on the Doctrines of Conversion and Election,” CTM, VI (1935), 539–543; T. Graebner, “Predestination and Human Responsibility,” CTM, V (1934), 164–171; J. T. Mueller, “Die Gnadenwahl nach Ewigkeit und Zeit,” CTM, V (1934), 748–757; F. Kramer, “The Doctrine of Election, or Predestination,” The Abiding Word, I, ed. T. Laetsch (St. Louis, 1946), 522–543; 3 arts., each headed “Predestination,” 1 each by A. L. Graebner, S. Fritschel, and H. E. Jacobs in The Lutheran Cyclopedia. ed. H. E. Jacobs and J. A. W. Haas (New York, 1899), pp. 388–393; L. Poellot, “The Doctrine of Predestination in Romans 8:28–39,” CTM, XXIII (1952), 342–353.


In Christian worship, the beginning of the Communion service proper. Includes the Salutation (“The Lord be with you”) and response (“And with your spirit”), the Sursum Corda (“Lift up your hearts”) and response (“We lift them up to the Lord”), the Eucharistia (“Let us give thanks to the Lord our God”) and response (“It is good and right so to do”) and the Common Preface and Proper Preface. The Common Preface consists of the Thanksgiving (“It is truly good, right, and salutary, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto You O Lord, Holy Father, Almighty, Everlasting God”) and the Ascription of praise (“Therefore with angels and archangels, and with all the company of heaven, we laud and magnify Your glorious name, evermore praising you and saying:”); it is called “common” because it is always (i. e. commonly) used. The Proper Preface is inserted bet. the Thanksgiving and the Ascription; it is called “proper” because it varies with the seasons of the ch. year, with the one that is proper for the occasion used in a given service. In the Gallican liturgy, the preface is of the nature of an attestation and is called Contestation.

Prefect Apostolic.

In RCm, a prelate with ordinary jurisdiction over a miss. territory.

Preger, Johann Wilhelm

(1827–96). Luth. theol.; b. Schweinfurt, Bav., Ger.; educ. Erlangen and Berlin; active in various capacities in Munich. Issued an ed. of M. Luther's 1531–32 Table Talk. Other works include a life of M. Flacius Illyricus; a hist. of Ger. mysticism in the Middle Ages.


High ranking ch. official.


(Lat. praeludium; Ger. Vorspiel). Musical composition used in a worship service to introd. the service itself and/or hymn singing. Should be in the spirit of the occasion for which it is used. The chorale preludes of the Luth. masters of the 17th and 18th cents. are among the finest organ music extant.


(Norbertines; Canons Regular of Prémontré; in England also called White Canons). Order founded 1120 at Prémontré, near, Laon, Fr., by Norbert*; objects include personal holiness and preaching. Various factors, including secularization, plagues, the Reformation, and the Fr. Revolution, helped keep the order small, but it has grown measurably, esp. in Belg., and is represented in the US with a coll. at West De Pere, Wisconsin.


For distinction bet.Presb.” and “Ref.” see Reformed Churches, 1.

Presbyterian Churches.

Presbyterians helped perpetuate the doctrinal and governmental features that J. Calvin* emphasized. See also Polity, Ecclesiastical, 7.

1. Presbyterianism in Scotland. Calvin's doctrinal and ecclesiastical system was brought to Scot. by J. Knox.* The Reformation had found early root in Scot. See Hamilton, Patrick. The martyrdom of G. Wishart* was avenged by assassination of D. Beaton.* RCs sought help from France, Prots. from England. The assassins and others, including Knox, were captured and taken to Fr..

1560 saw the consolidation, nat. recognition, and est. of the Ref. Church. The Scotch Confession of Faith was ratified August. The 1st Gen. Assem. met December. The 1st Book of Discipline was drafted 1560, signed by some nobles 1561 (see Discipline, Books of, 1). The govt. of the ch. was vested in supts., ministers, doctors, elders, and deacons. Communion was to be celebrated 4 times a yr. In towns there were to be daily services. Marriages were to be performed “in open face and public audience of the Kirk.” The Book of Common Order (drawn up 1556 by Knox for the Eng. Prot. congs. in Geneva and also known as “The Order of Geneva” and “John Knox's Liturgy”) was appointed for use in Scot. by the Gen. Assem. 1562, rev. and enl. 1564 and was in gen., but not exclusive, use for ca. 80 yrs. The Reformation in Scot. was effected by presbyters, and the govt. of the ch. naturally became Presb. The ch. was est. by Parliament 1567. The Scotch Confession of Faith was superseded 1647 by the Westminster Confession (see Presbyterian Confessions, 3, 4).

The 1st formal division arose 1688, when the Cameronians,* dissatisfied with the compromising spirit of the ch., refused to concur in the Revolution settlement and remained an isolated body till 1876, when they joined the Free Ch. (see next par.). Next came 2 secessions that eventually coalesced in the United Presb. Church. E. Erskine* led a secession 1733. The seceders divided into Burghers and Antiburghers 1747 over the question of taking the Burgess oath: “I profess and allow with my heart the true religion presently professed within this realm and authorized by the Laws thereof; I shall abide thereat and defend the same to my life's end, renouncing the Roman religion called Papistry.” The Burghers were known as the Associate Syn. (later called Associate Presbytery), the Antiburghers as the Gen. Associate Syn. Both Burghers and Antiburghers threw off small minorities of Auld Lichts (see New Lichts). The Auld Licht Burghers returned to the Est. Ch. shortly before the 1843 Disruption, when they left it again; most Auld Licht Antiburghers joined the Free Ch. 1852, the rest remained separate. Burghers and Antiburghers reunited 1820 to form the United* Secession Ch. This ch. was known for for. miss. enthusiasm. The next secession was the Relief* Ch., which began with T. Gillespie* and was known for its liberal spirit. The Relief Ch. and the United Secession Ch. joined to form the United Presb. Ch. 1847.

The Free* Ch. of Scot., largest and most influential, came into being on a nat. scale 1843. Those who left (or “came out” of) the Est. Ch. in what is called The Disruption claimed to be the true Ch. of Scot. and made their organization indep. of the state, holding that the spiritual liberty and indep. of the ch. were at stake.

The Free Ch. of Scot. and the United Presb. Ch. united 1900 to form the United Free Ch. of Scot., which united with the Est. Ch. of Scot. 1929.

Other indep. chs. were organized: Free Presb. Ch. of Scot. (formed 1893 as Free Ch. Presbytery of Scot., in reaction against the 1892 Declaratory* Act; name changed later to avoid legal complications), Ref. Presb. Ch. (see also Macmillan, John), legitimate descendant and representative of the Covenanted Ch. of Scot. in its period of greatest purity 1638–49 (see also Covenanters), and United Original Secession Ch., dated from 1733 and Erskine (see above).

See also Associate Reformed Church; Scotland, Reformation in, 1–3.

2. Presbyterian Ch. of Eng.. Under oppression, a considerable number of persons left the Est. Ch. and held services acc. to the Presb. order. Others still in the ch., who were likeminded, held conferences or “ministers' meetings,” one of which in London 1572 deputed 2 mems. to visit nearby Wands-worth and organize a Particular Ch. in acc. with Presb. order, the 1st open formation in Eng. of a ch. different from the Est. Church. W. Laud* took severe measures against nonconformists.* Tension developed bet. the king, who held to the Est. Ch., and Parliament. Presbs. felt driven to join the parliamentarians. Subsequent alliance of Parliament with the Scot. army, and decisions of the 1647 Westminster Assem., resulted in replacement of the episc. form in the Est. Ch. by presbytery. The Westminster Assem. drew up a Directory for the Pub. Worship of God 1643 and the Westminster Confession. The Directory of Church Government, an Eng. tr. of a Lat. work by W. Travers,* was circulated in support of the presb. system.

The Establishment was now Presb., but Presb. polity was accepted largely only in London and Lancashire. O. Cromwell* replaced presbytery by independency. The 1662 Act of Uniformity required (1) every minister not episcopally ordained to be reordained: (2) adherence to everything in the Book* of Common Prayer; (3) obedience to the ordinary (bp.); (4) abjuration of the Solemn League* and Covenant; (5) an oath declaring it unlawful to take up arms against the king. Many clerics refused obedience and left their charge. The Conventicle Act (passed 1664, modified and reenacted 1670) made it practically impossible for them to preach to any sizeable group; the Five Mile Act of 1665 was designed to keep them away from centers of population. The Revolution of 1688 brought in its wake the “Happy Union” arrangement of 1691. acc. to which all branches of nonconformity acted as practically a single community with little authority or doctrinal clarity. See also Puritans; United Church of Christ, I A 1.

Many nonconformist groups had provided chapels. In course of time nearly all these groups joined Scotch Presb. congs. that formed in London and elsewhere, but had no official connection with the Scottish gen. assem. By 1772 the ministers of the 7 such congs. in London formed The Scots Presbytery of London. It claimed “communion” with the Ch. of Scot., but had no ecclesiastical connection with it and was little more than a “ministers' meeting.” In 1836 it changed name to The London Presbytery in Communion with the Ch. of Scot. In 1839 the Scottish Assem. counseled it to organize as The Presb. Syn. in Eng. The 1843 Disruption (see 1) divided also The Presb. Syn. in Eng. The majority sided with the Free Ch. of Scot. and kept the name Presb. Syn. in Eng.; the minority stayed with the Est. Ch. of Scot. and formed The Scottish Presbytery in London in Connection with the Ch. of Scot. In 1850 this presbytery and 2 others formed The Syn. of the Ch. of Scot. in Eng. In 1863 the United Presb. Ch. in Scot. (see 1) formed its congs. in Eng. into the Eng. Syn. In 1876 this syn. united with the Presb. Syn. in Eng. to form the Presb. Ch. of Eng.

3. Presb. Ch. in Ireland. When Ulster was extensively colonized by Scot. and Eng. Prot. settlers under James* I, beginning 1610, Presbs. gained a permanent footing in Ireland. Presb. ministers began to come from Scot. 1613 and for a time they were appointed without reordination to vacant charges in the Est. Ch. In 1641 there was a rebellion in lreland; perhaps ca. 30,000 Prots. were massacred. In 1642 a Scot. army was sent to quell the rebellion; each regiment had a chaplain and a regular kirk session selected from the officers; the 1st presbytery consisted of 5 chaplains and 4 elders. Ministers came from Scot.; new presbyteries were formed; at the time of O. Cromwell* there was a gen. syn. with 80 congs. and 70 ministers. In 1661, 64 ministers were dismissed for nonconforming; many Presbs. went to Am.

William III (1650–1702; king of Eng., Scot., Ireland 1689–1702) authorized a payment to the Presb. ministers of Ireland in recognition of the loyal support of Presbs. on his arrival in Ireland 1690. This was the beginning of the Irish regium donum (Lat. “royal gift”), later increased, and paid almost continuously till the disestablishment of the Irish Ch. 1869. Toward the end of the 1st half of the 18th c. some ministers were influenced by modernism. A cong. of seceders formed 1741; in time there came to be a Secession Syn. as well as a Syn. of Ulster. Ministers of secession congs. also received a regium donum. Arian views of some Syn. of Ulster ministers ca. 1825 led to reaction in which the Syn. of Ulster, by overwhelming majority, declared in favor of the doctrine of the Trin. In 1829 seventeen ministers withdrew from the syn. and later formed The Remonstrant Syn. of Ulster. In 1840 the Syn. of Ulster and most of the Secession Syn. united to form the Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. in Ireland.

There were Presbs. in S Ireland before 1610. Presbs. in S Ireland outside the Syn. of Ulster and the Secession Syn. belonged to the Southern Assoc. which became the Syn. of Munster 1809. In 1840 the orthodox mems. of this syn. withdrew and formed the Presbytery of Munster, which joined the Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. in Ireland 1854.

The Ref. Presb. or Covenanting Ch. of Ireland traces its origin to the Covenanters* of Scot. (“Society people”), who had fled persecution and settled in the NE part of the island. A presbytery was organized 1792, a syn. 1811. In 1840 a number of ministers and congs. withdrew as a result of controversy about the power of the civil ruler. Some of the congs. returned, others joined the Presb. Ch. of Ireland. Standards: the Westminster Confession and Catechisms, together with the Testimony, which sets forth the church's distinctive position.

Some seceders did not enter the Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. in Ireland 1840 but formed the Associate Syn. of Ireland or the Presb. Syn. of Ireland distinguished by the name Seceder.

4. Presbyterianism in Am.

a. The Presb. Ch. (U. S. (A.)) was formed 1983 by reunion of The United Presb. Ch. in the USA and the Presb. Ch. in the US

The United Presb. Ch. in the USA was formed 1958 by merger of The Presb. Ch. in the USA “Northern Presbs.”) and The United Presb. Ch. of N. Am.

The Presb. Ch. in the USA traces its hist. to colonial days. The 1st presbytery was organized 1706 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania In New Eng., Presbyterianism yielded to Congregationalism. The Great* Awakening deeply affected Presb. ch. life. G. Tennent* and W. Tennent,* leaders of the progressive or New Side party (Syn. of New York), endorsed the revival system of G. Whitefield* and held that only such should be admitted to the ministry as had “experienced” conversion. W. Tennent est. a “log coll.” 1736 in a log house on his estate at Neshaminy. Bucks Co., Pennsylvania, near Philadelphia, to train candidates whose chief requisite was a religious “experience”; the coll. was a predecessor of Princeton (New Jersey) U. The conservative or Old Side party (Syn. of Philadelphia) held that Calvinism was theol. opposed to revivalism and that only coll.-bred men should become ministers. The 2 parties reunited 1758.

In the 1st part of the 19th c. the Presb. Ch. and the Cong. assocs. of New Eng. operated under the Plan of Union (based on 1801–10 agreements bet. the gen. assem. and the assocs. of Connecticut and other states), which allowed Cong. ministers to serve Presb. congs. and vice versa. The Plan of Union was abandoned 1837 largely as a result of conservative or Old School party pressure against interdenom. miss. agencies. Progressive or New School party leaders included A. Barnes.*

The New School took a stand against slavery 1850. In 1857 some of its syns. and presbyteries (ca. 15,000 communicant mems.) in the south withdrew; in 1858 they organized the United Syn. of the Presb. Ch. In 1861 southern presbyteries withdrew from the Old School and formed the Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. in the Confederate States of Am. In the 1860s this Gen. Assem., the United Syn., and the Indep. Presb. Ch. of South Carolina united and adopted the name Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. in the US (later known as Presb. Ch. in the US; (see below); other bodies joined it 1867–74. This is the so-called Southern Presbyterian group.

The United Presb. Ch. of N. Am. was formed 1858 by union of the Assoc. Ref. Presb. Ch. and the Assoc. Presb. Ch. See also Associate Reformed Church.

Towards the end of the 19th c. liberalism began to affect Presbyterianism. The confessions were revised to bring the doctrine of God's decree into harmony with His universal grace. The Welsh Calvinistic Meth. Ch. (Presb. in polity) united with the Presb. Ch. in the USA 1920. See also Auburn Affirmation; Briggs, Charles Augustus; Coffin, Henry Sloane; Union Movements, 7.

The Presb. Ch. in the US (“Southern Presbs.”) traced its beginning to 1861 (see above); theologically more conservative than “Northern Presbs.” (see above), though in 1939 the Gen. Assem. deleted from the Westminster Confession the par. on the decree of election and the par. in which the pope is called the Antichrist.

b. Cumberland Presb. Ch. Organized 1810 Dickson Co., Tennessee, as a result of the Kentucky Revival at the close of the 18th c. led by James McGready (ca. 1758–1817) and in opposition to indifferentism, fatalism, and formalism. Its Confession of Faith and Discipline is a modified version of the Westminster Confession and Catechisms (see Presbyterian Confessions, 3, 4). Operates Memphis (Tennessee) Theol. Sem. and Bethel Coll., McKenzie, Tennessee

In 1869 the gen. assem. approved est. of a separate organization for Negro chs. called Colored Cumberland Presb. Ch. In 1940 the latter group received a Presbytery in Liberia, Afr., into membership and changed name to Cumberland Presb. Ch. in the US and Afr. In the mid-1960s the name was changed to 2d Cumberland Presb. Ch. in US and connection with the Liberia Presbytery severed.

c. Presb. Ch. in Am. Organized 1973 in Birmingham, Alabama, mostly by former mems. of the Presb. Ch. in the US (see a). Called Nat. Presb. Ch. in its 1st yr.

d. The Orthodox Presb. Ch. (called Presb. Ch. of Am. 1936–39). Founded 1936 by J. G. Machen* and followers, who opposed modernism in the Northern Presb. Ch. (see a), were suspended for insubordination, and withdrew.

e. Bible Presb. Ch.. Founded by men suspended with Machen (see d) but who were more rigid on abstinence and premillennialism. Name changed 1961 to Ev. Presb. Church. United 1965 with Ref. Presb. Ch. in N. Am. (Gen. Syn.) to form the Ref. Presb. Ch., Ev. Syn.

f. Scotch Presbs. are often called Covenanters.* Many regarded convenanting as both pol. and religious in function: a pub. testimony to one's belief that the Bible must be followed also in soc. relations. Covenanters observe Sunday and the NT Sabbath, practice close Communion, do not take part in affairs of a govt. that does not recognize the Triune God, and do not permit membership in secret socs. Some Covenanters oppose singing hymns not in the Bible. Scotch Presbs. are conservatively Calvinistic and champion the inerrancy of the Bible. Representatives in Am. include Ref. Presb. Ch. of N. Am. (also known as Ch. of the Covenanters); Assoc. Ref. Presb. Ch. (Gen. Syn.).

g. Ref. Presb. Ch., Ev. Syn. See e

h. Associate Ref. Presb. Ch. (Gen. Syn.). A syn. (Gen. Syn. from 1935) of the former Associate Ref. Presb. Ch. (the latter helped form The United Presb. Ch. of N. Am. 1858; see Associate Reformed Church); result of realignments among Covenanters.

i. 2d Cumberland Presb. Ch. in US See b

Presbyterian Church in the United States of America, The Board of Foreign Missions of the.

Committee of the Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. that traced its hist. to a “Bd. of Correspondents” est. 1741 in New York by the Soc. in Scot. for Propagating Christian Knowledge (see Bible Societies, 3) to work among Am. Indians. The work of the Bd. of Correspondents was largely abandoned ca. 1781 after the death of J. Brainerd.* The New York Miss. Soc. (indep.) was est. 1796 to resume the work. It was succeeded 1797–ca. 1800 by the Northern Miss. Soc. The Gen. Assem. of the Presb. Ch. carried on the work ca. 1800–18. The United For. Miss. Soc., active 1818–1826, transferred its work to the ABCFM The Western For. Miss. Soc., formed 1831, was replaced 1837 by a Bd. of For. Missions, which was in turn discontinued 1958, when the Commission on Ecumenical Mission and Relations, Inc., of the United* Presb. Ch. in the USA was est.

Presbyterian Confessions.

1. Early Prot. statements in Scot. took the form of “covenants.” In 1557 a number of Prot. nobles and gentlemen signed a covenant at Edinburgh to maintain, nourish, and defend to the death “the whole Congregation of Christ and every member thereof.” Early covenants opposed RCm (e.g., the Nat. Covenant, subscribed by James* I [James VI of Scot.] 1581; also called 2d Scotch Confession, King's Confession, and Negative Confession; endorsed the 1560 Scotch Confession of Faith [see 2]), later ones opposed episcopacy. The 1638 Nat. Covenant repeats the 1581 Nat. Covenant and adds statements against bps. and royal measures that “do sensibly tend to the re-establishment of the Popish religion and tyranny, and to the subversion and ruin of the true Reformed religion, and of our liberties, laws, and estates.” The 1643 Solemn League* and Covenant (see also Covenanters) was used by Puritans in an attempt to force Presbyterianism on the Est. Ch. of Eng. as a reward to Scots for help against Charles* I.

2. The 1560 Scotch Confession of Faith (Confession fidei Scoticana I), decidedly Calvinistic, was drawn up by J. Knox* and associates and ratified by the 3 estates. It holds that the ch. is one from the beginning to the end of the world and exists where the Gospel is preached, the sacraments administered, and discipline exercised.

3. Westminster Confession 1647. The Long Parliament (1640–60) in 1643 called for an assem. at Westminster beginning July 1, 1643, to draw up arts. for the Ch. of Eng. to bring it into more agreement with the Ch. of Scot. and the Ref. Chs. on the Continent. The 121 clerical mems. of the assem. included 9 Episcopalians, who seldom attended; a few Independents and Erastians (see Erastianism). who withdrew before final adoption of the Book of Discipline; Presbs. formed the great majority. There were also 30 lay assessors. And 5 clerical and 3 lay Scotch commissioners came in after adoption of the Solemn League* and Covenant.

Documents drawn up by the Assem. include “Propositions Concerning Church Government and Ordination of Ministers,” which led to adoption of the Presb. form of govt.; “Directory for the Public Worship of God”; “Larger Catechism”; “Shorter Catechism”; Westminster Confession of Faith.

The Apostles' Creed is omitted from the Larger Catechism and annexed to the Smaller Catechism with the note: “not as though it were composed by the Apostles, or ought to be esteemed Canonical Scripture”; at “He descended into hell” the footnote is added: “i. e., Continued in the state of the dead, and under the power of death, until the third day.” The Shorter Catechism begins: “Question. 1. What is the chief end of man? Answer. Man's chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever.”

The Westminster Confession presents mature Calvinism. It starts from God's sovereignty and justice and makes the predestinarian scheme control the historical and Christological scheme. Chap. IIl, iii–vii: “By the decree of God, for the manifestation of his glory, some men and angels are predestinated unto everlasting life, and others foreordained to everlasting death … to the praise of his glorious grace … [and] justice.” VII, ii–vi: “The first covenant made [by God] with man was a covenant of works, wherein life was promised to Adam, and in him to his posterity, upon condition of perfect and personal obedience. iii. Man by his fall having made himself incapable of life by that covenant, the Lord was pleased to make a second, commonly called the covenant of grace. … v. This covenant was differently administered in the time of the Law [OT] and in the time of the Gospel [NT].… There are not, therefore, two covenants of grace differing in substance, but one and the same under various dispensations.” See also Federal Theology. XVII, i: “They whom God hath accepted in His Beloved, effectually called and sanctified by His Spirit, can neither totally nor finally fall away from the state of grace; but shall certainly persevere therein to the end, and be eternally saved.” XXI, vii–viii: “… [God] hath particularly appointed one day in seven for a Sabbath, to be kept holy unto Him: which, from the beginning of the world to the resurrection of Christ, was the last day of the week; and, from the resurrection of Christ, was changed into the first day of the week … viii. This Sabbath is then kept holy unto the Lord, when men, after a due preparing of their hearts, and ordering of their common affairs beforehand, do not only observe an holy rest all the day from their own works, words, and thoughts, about their worldly employments and recreations; but also are taken up the whole time in the public and private exercises of His worship, and in the duties of necessity and mercy.” XXIII, iii: “The civil magistrate may not assume to himself the administration of the Word and Sacraments, or the power of the keys of the kingdom of heaven: yet he hath authority, and it is his duty to take order, that unity and peace be preserved in the Church, that the truth of God be kept pure and entire, that all blasphemies and heresies be suppressed, all corruptions and abuses in worship and discipline prevented or reformed, and all the ordinances of God duly settled, administered, and observed.” XXIX, vii–viii: “Worthy receivers, outwardly partaking of the visible elements in this sacrament, do then also inwardly by faith, really and indeed, yet not carnally and corporally, but spiritually, receive and feed upon Christ crucified, and all benefits of His death … viii. Although ignorant and wicked men receive the outward elements in this sacrament, yet they receive not the thing signified thereby.…”

4. In 1659 the Westminster Confession (except chaps. 30–31) was endorsed again by the Long Parliament but was set aside when episcopacy was restored 1660 with the 39 Arts. (see Anglican Confessions, 6) and the Book* of Common Prayer. In Scot. the Gen. Assem. ratified the Westminster Confession 1647 (see Presbyterian Churches, 1) and required all ministers and probationers of the Gospel with license to preach, and all ruling elders to subscribe to it without amendment 1690, 1699, 1700, 1704, etc. This remained law in the chs. of Scot. till the 1879 Declaratory* Act modified some of the extreme Calvinistic statements; the Free Ch. adopted a similar Declaratory Act 1892 (see also Presbyterian Churches, 1). In 1890 the Eng. Presb. Ch. adopted The Articles of the Faith, 24 in number, which emphasize the love of God. In 1892 the Eng. Presb. Ch. decided that acceptance of the Westminster standards by office-bearers should be modified by reference to these 24 arts. The Savoy Declaration 1658 included a revision of the Westminster Confession (see also Democratic Declarations of Faith, 2). The 2d London Confession of Eng. Baps. 1677 was based on the Westminster Confession (see also Democratic Declarations of Faith, 3).

5. Presbs. in Am. adhered in a gen. way to the Westminster Confession and Catechisms in accord with the 1729 Adopting Act. In 1967 The United Presb. Ch. in the USA (see Presbyterian Churches, 4 a) adopted a Book of Confessions that includes the Apostles' Creed, Nicene Creed, Westminster Confession, and Confession of 1967 (irenic). EL

See also Scotland, Reformation in, 1.

P. Schaff, The Creeds of Christendom, 3 vols., rev. and enl. (New York, c1919); Creeds of the Churches, ed. J. H. Leith (Chicago, 1963); The Faith of Christendom, ed. B. A. Gerrish (Cleveland, Ohio, 1963); Reformed Confessions of the 16th Century, ed. A. C. Cochrane (Philadelphia, 1966); J. A. Hardon, The Spirit and Origins of American Protestantism: A Source Book in Its Creeds (Dayton, Ohio, 1968).


Body of presbyters (see Elders; Polity, Ecclesiastical, 7). The word occurs 1 Ti 4:14. In Presb. polity: the ministers of a region and elders representing the chs., with authority over chs. and ministers, under the superior judicatories. See also Reformed Churches, 1.

Prescience, Divine.

An attribute of God; also called foreknowledge; beholds all things as if present; comprehends all events, however contingent on human activity or freedom (Is 48:8; Mt 24:36; Jn 21:17; 1 Jn 3:20). God knows the acts of men as acts of rational and responsible beings who have a will of their own and act acc. to the counsels of their hearts; thus the foreknowledge of God includes the agency of the human will and the causality of human counsels. “God's foreknowledge of His own acts, especially of the rulings of His providence … includes the prayers of His children, which He in His counsel has answered before they were uttered (Is 65:24), permitting them to enter as a powerful factor (Ja 5:16–18) into the government of the universe (Ps 33:10–22; 145:13–19)” (A. L. Graebner, in “Theology,” TQ, II [1898], 139).

Presiding Elder.

In the Meth. Ch., an elder appointed by a bp. as dist. supt.

Pressensé, Edmond Dehault de

(Dehaut; 1824–91). B. Paris, Fr.; educ. Lausanne, Halle, and Berlin; influenced esp. by A. R. Vinet*; pastor of an ev. free ch. cong. Paris. Founded and ed. Revue chretienne; other works include a life of Christ and a hist. of the Christian ch. in the 1st 3 cents.

Preston, John

(1587–1628). B. Upper Heyford, Northamptonshire, Eng.; educ. Cambridge; won for Puritanism by J. Cotton*; befriended by L. Andrewes*; court preacher to crown prince Charles (who became Charles I; see Presbyterian Confessions, 1) 1620.


(from Lat. for “pass by”). Doctrine of election held by Calvinists, acc. to which God “passed by” a portion of mankind and retained it to dishonor and wrath. 1647 Westminster Confession of Faith (see Presbyterian Confessions, 3, 4), III, vii: “The rest of mankind God was pleased, according to the unsearchable counsel of His will, whereby He extendeth or withholdeth mercy as He pleaseth, for the glory of His sovereign power over Hiscreatures, to pass by [Lat. praeterire], and to ordain them to dishonor and wrath for their sin, to the praise of His glorious justice.” See also Double Predestination; Predestinarian Controversy.


Existing outside of nature or beyond nature; unnatural.

Preus, Adolph Carl

(1814–78). B. Norw.; educ. Christiania (Oslo) U.; asst. pastor Gjerpen 1848; to Am. 1850. Pastor Koshkonong Prairie, Wisconsin, 1850–60: Chicago, Illinois, 1860–63; Coon Prairie, Wisconsin, 1863–72. Pres. The Norw. Ev. Luth. Ch. in Am. 1853–62 (see Evangelical Lutheran Church, The, 8); returned to Norw. 1872; pastor Holt and Tvedestrand; dean East Nedenäs.

Preus, Christian Keyser

(1852–1921). Son of H. A. Preus*; educ. Luther Coll., Decorah, Iowa, and Conc. Sem., St. Louis, Missouri; pastor; involved in predestination controversy (see Evangelical Lutheran Church, The, 10); prof. Luther Coll. (its pres. 1902–21). See also Madison Settlement.

Preus, Herman Amberg

(June 16, 1825–July 2, 1894). Father of C. K. Preus*; b. Kristiansand (Christiansand), Norw.; educ. Christiania (Oslo) U.; to Am. 1851; served Luths. in Wis.; helped organize The Norw. Ev. Luth. Ch. in Am. (see Evangelical Lutheran Church, The, 8) and was its pres. 1862–94; pres. Synodical* Conf. 1876–77; proposed Negro and Am. Indian miss. 1877. Coed. Maanedstidende 1859–68.

Preuschen, Erwin Friedrich Wilhelm Ferdinand

(1867–1920). B. Lissberg, near Frankfurt am Main, Ger.; educ. Giessen; held various pastorates in Hesse-Darmstadt; teacher in a Gymnasium at Darmstadt 1897–1907; prof. Darmstadt 1907; noted for work on NT canon and text in early Christianity. Founded and ed. Zeitschrift für die neutestamentliche Wissenschaft. Other works include Analekta: kürzere Texte zur Geschichte der alten Kirche und des Kanons; Vollständiges Griechisch-Deutsches Handwörterbuch zu den Schriften des Neuen Testaments und der übrigen urchristlichen Literatur. See also Lexicons, B.

Preuss, Friedrich Reinhold Eduard

(July 10, 1834–July 17, 1904). B. Königsberg, Prussia; educ. Königsberg; tutor Lichterfelde: prof. Berlin till 1868; prof. Conc. Sem., St. Louis, Missouri, 1869–71; RC (bap. January 22. 1872). Edited M. Chemnitz, Examen Concilii Tridentini: Amerika (RC). Other works include Die Römische Lehre von der unbefleckten Empfängniss, aus den Quellen dargestellt und aus Gottes Wort widerlegt; Die Rechtfertigung des Sünders vor Gott; Zum Lobe der unbefleckten Empfängniss der Allerseligsten Jungfrau (a recantation); Die Zeitrechnung der Septuaginta vor dem vierten Jahr Salomo's.

Preuss, Hans

(1876–1951). B. Leipzig; educ. Leipzig and Halle; prof. Erlangen. Works include Das Bild Christi im Wandel der Zeiten; Die Entwicklung des Schriftprinzips bei Luther bis zur Leipziger Disputation; Martin Luther: Der Künstler; Von den Katakomben bis zu den Zeichen der Zeit.


Inordinate self-esteem; considered one of the 7 deadly sins (see Sins, Venial and Mortal); represented in the Bible as a vice (Pr 16:18; 21:4; 29:23; 1 Ptr 5:5; 1 Jn 2:16); may manifest itself (1) with respect to God, as spiritual arrogance and self-assertion or self-righteousness (Mt 23:5–12; Lk 18:11–12; Rv 3:17), (2) with respect to other people, as haughtiness, feeling of superiority, boasting, vainglory (Jb 12:2; Ps 101:5; Pr 14:21; Jer 9:23). God will punish the proud (Dt 8:11–20; Pr 8:13; Jn 5:44; Ja 4:6).

Prierias, Silvester

(Sylvester; originally Maz[z]olini: de Prierio; ca. 1456–1523). B. Prierio, Asti province, 40 mi. W of Genoa, near Montferrat, SE Piedmont, N It.; Dominican; Thomist; taught at Bologna and Venice; vicar gen. Lombardy 1508–10; prior Cremona; prof. theol. Gymnasium Romanum 1514; magister sacri palatii 1515. Works include Dialogus (against M. Luther).


(derived ultimately from Gk. presbyteros, “elder”). Title of ordained or authorized religious functionary who performs mediatorial, interpretative, ministerial, sacrificial, and ritualistic functions. Sometimes used as a synonym for pastor. Designation for a mem. of the clergy in RC, Angl., Scand. Luth., E Orthodox, and some other chs. See also Hierarchy; Priesthood; Western Christianity 500–1500, 9.

Priest, Christ as.

The priestly office of Christ is the heart of the Christian faith. This topic takes us back to the climax of OT worship and the silence of the multitude in the moment of reconciliation with God through the hands of a mediator.

In Heb. conceptions the priest was the representative of the people (Heb 5:1). Christ was given by God to be man's representative (Heb 2:14–17).

The priestly work of Christ was foretold and foreshadowed in OT prophecy and types (Ps 110:1, 4: the whole OT priestly cult pointed forward to Christ). OT priests and sacrifices were imperfect, but Christ, His work, and His sacrifice were perfect (Heb 9:11–14; 1 Ptr 1:18–19).

The active obedience of Christ consists in His substitutionary work of freeing us from the demands of the Law and obtaining perfect righteousness for us by perfectly fulfilling, as our Substitute, the entire Law in all its demands, so that His righteousness may be made our own by faith (Mt 5:17; Ro 10:4: Gl 4:4–5). His passive obedience consists in His substitutionary work of freeing us from the penalties provided by the Law for all sinners; He did this by taking our sins on Himself and suffering our punishment in our stead (Is 53; Gl 3:13; Eph 5:2: Cl 1:14; 1 Ptr 2:21–24; 1 Jn 1:7).

Christ's priesthood continued after His ascension (Heb 7:24; 8); He continues to intercede for us as our High Priest (Ro 8:34; Heb 7:25; 1 Jn 2:1–2).

O. C. J. Hoffmann, in “Office, or Work, of Christ,” The Abiding Word, II, ed. T. Laetsch (St. Louis. 1947), 135–144.


There is no need of a NT priesthood to offer sacrifice for sin as did the OT priesthood (Heb 7:20–28; Heb 10:8–14). All believers constitute a universal spiritual priesthood (Eph 2:14, 18; Heb 10:19–22; 1 Ptr 2:9; Rv 1:6; 5:10), which is to offer itself to God (Ro 12:1; Heb 13:15) and into whose charge Christ has given all rights and powers of His kingdom (Mt 18:18–20; 1 Co 3:21–23). To all believers belongs the right to select and call ministers (Acts 1:15–26; 6:1–6), whom God has chosen and appointed (Acts 13:2–4; 1 Co 12:28; Eph 4:11–12), and to set them apart through ordination (Acts 14:23) to be servants of Christ and His ch. (2 Co 4:5) in preaching the Word and administering the sacraments (1 Co 4:1; 2 Ti 4:2; Tts 1:9). See also Keys, Office of the.

L. W. Spitz, “The Universal Priesthood of Believers,” The Abiding Word, I, ed. T. Laetsch (St. Louis, 1946), 321–341.

Priestley, Joseph

(1733–1804). Cleric; scientist; b. Fieldhead, near Leeds, Yorkshire, Eng.; studied for Presb. ministry at Daventry Academy; became a dissenting minister at 22; opposed positive Christian doctrines: Unitarian; to Am. 1794; organized several Unitarian congs. See also Unitarianism.


(d. ca. the middle of the 6th c.). Bp. Hadrumetum, N Afr. Works include a commentary on Rv.

MPL, 68, 407–936.


(from Lat. prima [hora], “1st hour”). 1. Religious office constituting the 1st of the daytime canonical hours.* 2. See Sunday Letter.

Primitive Religion.

Both words, “primitive” and “religion,” have been variously interpreted. “Primitive culture” was gen. regarded in the 19th c. as referring to 1st stages of an evolutionary development. Some used the term to include such advanced people as Chinese who were not in the Indo-Eur. development.

Many studies have been made of the mentality of primitive people; conclusions range from views that regard primitives mentally retarded and wholly superstitious to views that regard primitive ratiocinations as parallel to those of civilized peoples. Esp. after 1950 have scholars emphasized that values, ideas, judgments, and actions of “civilized peoples” are often as irrational as those of primitives.

Definitions and descriptions of religion vary. Edward Burnett Tylor (1832–1917; Eng. anthropologist) defined religion as “the belief in spiritual beings” (Primitive Culture, I, 383). Scholars soon pointed out that he excluded magic and religious actions. J. G. Frazer* described religion as a propitiation or conciliation of powers superior to man that are believed to direct and control the course of nature and human life. Some despair of precise definitions and describe magico-religious phenomena as the whole area of the sacred.

Attempts to explain the origin of religion may be classified as psychol, and sociological. Psychol. explanations include the theory of Charles de Brosses (1709–77; b. Dijon, Fr.; called le Président de Brosses because he was pres. of the parliament of Burgundy 1740–77; scholar; works include Du Culte des dieux fétiches), who held that religion originated in fetishism.* Adherents of the nature-myth school (e.g., F. M. Müller*) believe that gods are personified nat. phenomena. Psychol. explanations trace the origin of religion to such experiences as dreams, visions (e.g., of ghosts), diseases, death, and to magic, ideas of luck and of power, etc. Others find the origin of religion in such feelings as awe, amazement, mystery, fear.

Sociol. theories trace the origin of religion to institutions and practices of a community and hold that religion contributes to community cohesion. E. Durkheim* advanced the theory that primitive religion is a totemic clan cult. The totemic god of a clan is the clan itself divinized. Totemism,* he held, is the most elementary form of religion. The totem is symbol of the good and of society. In the totem the individual expresses his identity with the community.

L. Léevy-Bruhl* and other philosophers combined psychol. and sociol. aspects in studies of primitive mentality, holding that beings and objects are all involved in a network of mystical participations and exclusions.

Ca. the middle of the 20th c. interest in studies of primitive religion waned. Anthropologists pointed out that few writers on primitive religion had field experience; they were simply projecting rationalizations on cultures regarded as primitive; their theories could be neither proven nor disproven and were of little value to anthropologists working in the field.

Recent studies deal with phenomenological analyses and comparisons of psychol. and sociol. aspects of religion.

Terms used in the study of primitive religion include mana (Melanesian word designating mysterious power residing in persons because of birth, soc. status, or ability; animals such as tribal totems; inanimate things; see also Africa, A 3); taboo*; manitou (manitu; manito; used by Algonquian Indians for spirits or objects that arouse awe and reverence because of their power for good or evil); animism (used by E. B. Tylor, Primitive Culture, chaps. xi–xvii, to describe gen. belief in spirit; began with belief in soul; core of religion; in opposition to Tylor, Robert Ranulph Marett [1866–1943; Eng. anthropologist; works include The Threshold of Religion] held that belief in animation [animatism] of nonphysiological things precede soul ideas; see also Polytheism); animatism (term coined by Marett to describe a tendency of primitives to regard and treat inanimate things, when considered sacred, as having life, feeling, will); baraka (Berber term for holiness of people or things; prophets and sultans have baraka); wakan (wakanda; wakon; wakonda; Sioux Indian term for power similar to mana believed to pervade animate and inanimate objects); orenda (Iroquois Indian term for power believed present in animate and inanimate objects as a kind of spiritual energy; see also Indians, American. 1).

Some characteristics of the primitive sacred: forbidden, mysterious, secret, potent, animate, ancient. El, WJD

See also Africa, A 3; Amulets; Ancestor Worship; Dynamism.


Presiding bp. in Scot. Episc. Ch.


Monastic official next in rank to an abbot and acting either as asst. to an abbot or as superior of a monastic house without abbot.


(Lat.: old). Early Lat. tr. of canons of councils (or synods) of Nicaea,* Ancyra,* Neocaesarea,* Gangra,* Antioch,* Chalcedon,* and Constantinople.* Made in It., probably late 5th c. Title derived from words of Dionysius* Exiguus in the preface to his collection of canons, in which he speaks of a prisca translatio.


(Priscilla). See Montanism.


4th–6th c. sect with Gnostic-Manichaean tendencies in Sp. and Gaul; religious system involved dualism and emanationism; carnal pleasures and marriage forbidden. Founded by Priscillian (ca. 345–385; b. probably Mérida, Lusitania, of distinguished parents; layman; bp. Ávila ca. 380). Condemned ca. 380 by a syn. at Saragossa. Ca. 384 Priscillian was charged with heresy, sorcery, and immorality; beheaded with some followers at Trier. See also Orosius; Popes, 2; Toledo, Councils of.

Pritzlaff, Fred C.

(May 1, 1861–November 9, 1951). B. Milwaukee, Wisconsin; educ. at a business coll., Valparaiso, Indiana; cofounder Lutheran Laymen's League see Lutheran Laymen's League, International).

Private Judgment.

The right of an individual Christian to decide matters pertaining to faith and morals for himself on the basis of divine revelation, to search Scripture and judge doctrine for himself, is a right that God has given and that the Christian is required to exercise (Mt 7:15; Acts 17:11; 1 Co 10:15; 1 Th 5:21; 1 Jn 4:1. WA 10 II, 180–222, 227–262; 11, 408–416). This right does not place the individual in the seat of authority, since the norm remains the Word of God (Is 8:20; Acts 17:11; 1 Ti 6:3–5; 2 Ti 3:15–17. WA 7, 429–430, 640; 12, 360–361; 24, 565. St. L. ed. 15, 1565).

Those who remove the right of private judgment (e.g., RCs, who emphasize the voice of the ch. as though it were the final criterion) prevent Christians from performing a duty imposed on them by God and enslave conscience and faith.

The right of private judgment is abused when a departure from Scripture as norm occurs or when the human mind is made judge over Scripture (Dt 4:2; Ps 19:7; 2 Co 2:17; 10:5; Eph 2:20; 1 Th 2:13; 1 Ti 6:3–5; 2 Ti 3:16–17; 2 Ptr 1:20–21; Rv 22:18–19). RGL

T. Engelder, “The Right and Wrong of Private Judgment,” CTM, XV (1944), 217–236, 289–314, 385–402, 433–459.

Privilegium canonis

(Lat. “privilege of the canon”). In RCm, acc. to this privilege they are guilty of sacrilege who inflict a real injury on clerics and religious, including novices and mems. of socs. without vows. Cf. CIC 119.

Privilegium Paulinum

(privilegium fidei). See Pauline Privilege.


Hymn sung during a procession; also a collection of hymns for processions, or a procession itself, or the part of a service in which a procession occurs.

Procession of the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son (Jn 14:26; 15:26; 20:22; Gl 4:6). This doctrine of procession is emphasized in the Confessions of the W ch. The essential nature of this procession cannot be grasped by reason. See also Father, God the; Filioque Controversy.


Processions are prominent in RCm The clergy form a procession when they approach the altar for mass and other services, and when they return to the sacristy. Solemn pub. processions are held in certain places on Palm* Sunday, Corpus* Christi, and other festivals or as an expression of thanksgiving, penitence, or honor to a dignitary. They are also held in times of calamity, or to plead for rain or fair weather, etc. Music, candles, statues, and relics may be used. Those lowest in rank march first, those highest in dignity last. Greatest magnificence in processions was reached in the Middle Ages.

Process Philosophy.

Theistic philos, that emphasizes emergent evolution, regards being as primarily relational, and rejects or criticizes nonreligious naturalism. Exponents include H. Bergson* and A. N. Whitehead.* See also Process Theology

Process Theology.

Movement that erose in the US in the 1920s and spread in the 1930s, emphasizing evolution or process in the nature of man, the World, and God Formulated within the framework of process* philos. The term is derived from A. N. Whitehead,* Process and Reality. Also called neonaturalism.


(d. ca. 446/447). Abp. Cyzicus, Asia Minor, 426; patriarch Constantinople 434: noted preacher: opposed Nestorius.*

MPG, 65, 651–887.


(ca. 410–485). Gk. Neoplatonic philos.; b. Constantinople: taught at Athens, Greece, ca. 450; defended paganism; opposed Christianity. Works include The Nature of Evil; Providence and Fate; Doubts About Providence; a work on Platonic theol.

Procopius of Gaza

(ca. 465/475–ca. 528/538). Christian sophist and rhetorician; b. Gaza; compiled catena* on OT.


One authorized to manage the affairs of another. In RCm, a diocesan official who initiates criminal proceedings in ch. courts. As procurator of Judea, Pontius Pilate was a Roman official under the legate of Syria.

Profession of Monks and Nuns.

The ceremony by which a novice,* having completed the novitiate, enters a religious order or cong. Cf. CIC 572–586. See also Vows.

Progressive Orthodoxy.

Title of papers pub. ca. 1884–85 by the Andover (Massachusetts) Theol. Sem. faculty as a statement of Andover theol., which modified Calvinistic orthodoxy. Defended the view called “future probation,” acc. to which the heathen who died without hearing the Gospel would have a 2d chance to accept it. See also Andover Controversy.

Prohászka, Ottokár

(1858–1927). B. Neutra (Nitra; Nyitra), S Slovakia province, E cen. Czechoslovakia; educ. Gran (Esztergom) and Rome; prof. Gran 1882, Budapest 1904; bp. Stuhlweissenburg (Szekesfehérvár) 1905. His aesthetic sermons, Scriptural discussions, and other edifying works contributed to inner Christian renewal. See also Christian Socialism, 3.

Prohibited Degrees

(forbidden degrees). Degrees of relationship, of either consanguinity or affinity, within which marriage is forbidden by Scripture or by the state. Degrees prohibited Lv 18 and called Levitical degrees. See also Impediments.

Prokopovich, Feofan

(Theofan; Teofan; 1681–1736). B. Kiev; Russ. Orthodox theol.; bp. Pskov; abp. Novgorod; a leader in the Holy* Syn. Wrote the spiritual regulation for the reform of the Russ. ch.

Proles, Andreas

(1429–1503). B. Dresden; predecessor of J. v. Staupitz*; priest 1453; prof. theol. Magdeburg; vicar of monasteries at Himmelpfort(e), Magdeburg, Dresden, Waldheim, Königsberg; reformed monasteries; praised by M. Luther for sermons.


(from Gk. for “opening hymn”). In E Orthodox Ch., Ps 104 chanted as a gen. introd. to evensong.

Propaedeutic, Theological.

Title of a work by P. Schaff* in which he uses the term propaedeutic (from Gk. for “teach beforehand”) to designate an introduction to the whole field of theol. The pl. “propaedeutics” is construed as a singular.


Variable parts of the Communion service that are fixed as to content (hence not including sermon and hymns) but which change with the Sundays and seasons of the church* yr.: Introit,* Collect,* OT Lesson, Epistle, Gradual* (Tract,* Hallelujah,* Sequence*), and Gospel. In some rites the Offertory,* Communion, and Post-Communion are also variable. Though it does not change with every Sunday and Feast Day, the variable part of the Preface* which changes with the seasons, is called Proper Preface. Invariable parts of the service are called the Ordinary. EFP


Work, vocation, or utterance of a prophet. OT Heb. words: nabi' (probably from a root meaning “to announce”), ro'eh (seer), and chozeh (seer). NT Gk.: prophetes (forth-teller). In classical Gk. thought prophecy is related to divining, but in Scripture a prophet is a divinely inspired forth-teller (1 Sm 10:6; Jer 1:2; Eze 1:1; Hos 1:1; 1 Ptr 1:11; 2 Ptr 1:21) who rebukes sin (2 Sm 12; Is 58:1; Eze 3:17; Mi 3:8), shows God's mercy (Is 40; 53), and in gen., proclaims messages of God (Ex 4:14–15; 7:1–2: Eze 11; Heb 1:1–2). He does this in assoc. with events of the past, present, and future, with constant emphasis on God's acts; hence the Messiah has a prominent place in prophecy.

Moses was the great prophet of the OT (Dt 18:15–18; 34:10–12). Jesus Christ of the NT (Jn 1:1–18).

The Heb. canon speaks of former prophets (Jos, Ju, 1-2 Sam, 1-2 K) and latter prophets (Is to Malachi), not with reference to time, but to the place of the books in the canon. The latter prophets include the 4 major (Is, Jer, Eze, Dn; called major because of the great range they cover and the large size of their books; Is, Jer, and Eze are each larger than all 12 minor prophets together; Dn is ca. the size of the 2 largest minor prophets, Hos and Zech, together) and the 12 minor (Hos, Jl, Am, Ob, Jon, Mi, Nab, Hab, Zeph, Hg, Zch, Ml; called minor because of the comparatively small size of their books and their much smaller spheres of activity; cf. Ecclus 49:10 [12]).

The vague and possibly misleading phrase “schools of the prophets” (not used in Scripture) came into use in reference to prophetic assocs., companies, communities, or bands or prophets with which Samuel, Elijah, and Elisha were connected (1 Sm 19:18–20; 2 K 2:1–7; 4:38).

In the NT the proclamation of the Gospel is the chief function of prophets. In course of time “prophesy” came to be largely a synonym of “foretell.”

Prophet, Christ as.

Christ often mentioned His prophetic mission (e.g., Lk. 4:16–27; Jn 18:37). He was anointed to be a prophet (Acts 3:22; 10:38). Some recognized Him as a prophet (Mt 21:46; Lk 7:16; 24:19; Jn 4:19; 6:14; 7:40–41). Terms applied to Him reveal an awareness of His prophetic office (e.g., teacher Jn 3:2; apostle Heb 3:1; witness Rv 1:5).

Christ regularly pointed to the OT (e.g., Mt 22:29, 31; Lk 10:26; 24:27; Jn 5:39). He preached Law (e.g., Mt 5–7; 23) and Gospel (Jn 1:17). His miracles, signs, and wonders were intended to make it easier for people to believe (Mk 1:27; 9:24). The theme of His prophecy was the proclamation of Himself as the long-promised Messiah (Jn 4:25–26).

At His ascension Christ entrusted the preaching and teaching of His Word to the ch. (Mk 16:15; Acts 1:8).

See also Angel of the Lord.

O. C. J. Hoffmann, in “Office, or Work, of Christ,” The Abiding Word, II, ed. T. Laetsch (St. Louis, 1947), 127–135.


The Gk. word (hilasterion) tr. “propitiation” Ro 3:25 is tr. “mercy seat” Heb. 9:5; the Heb. equivalent (kapporeth) Ex 25:17 denotes the cover, or lid, of the ark of the covenant. Once a yr. the high priest sprinkled the blood of sacrifice on this lid to make propitiation for the sins of the people. This was a type of the propitiatory sacrifice of Christ. See also Atonement; Reconciliation.

Propst, Jakob

(Praepositus; 1486–1562). B. leper (Ypres), W Flanders, NW Belg.; prior Augustinian monastery Antwerp 1519; studied in Wittenberg 1521; preached against indulgences in Antwerp 1521; imprisoned; recanted 1522; resumed ev. preaching; arrested; escaped to Ger.; in Wittenberg 1523; pastor (1524) later supt. Bremen; friend of M. Luther; involved in A. Hardenberg* controversy on Lord's Supper; replaced by T. Hesshus* 1559.


(from Gk. proselytos, “alien resident”). Strangers, or foreigners, who live in the midst of a people and enjoy its hospitality; then, by extension, converts to Judaism (Mt 23:15; Acts 2:10[11]; 13:43). Now: converts from one religion to another.

Prosper of Aquitaine

(Prosper Tiro [or Tyro]; Lusentius? ca. 390–ca. 455/463). B. perhaps Limoges, Aquitaine; follower of Augustine* of Hippo; assoc. with Leo I (see Popes, 2). Wrote against semi-Pelagians, in defense of Augustine, and against the 13th collatio of J. Cassianus* (on free will); other works include a synthesis of the chronicles of Jerome* (to AD 378), Sulpicius* Severus, and Orosius* (to 433), with possible reflections of his own experience 433–455.

Protes'tant Conference, The, Inc.

Organized 1927 by perhaps ca. 30/40 pastors and teachers and some congs. suspended from membership in the Ev. Luth. Joint Syn. of Wisconsin* and Other States mainly because they supported the hist. and exegetical emphasis in Wauwatosa* theol. The conference is not organized as a syn. It suffered a rupture 1964. In 1972 it had 7 congs. Since 1928 it pub. the periodical Faith-Life to perpetuate the specific emphasis of Luth. theol. for which its mems. stood. WJH

Protestant Education in the United States.

Educ. in the colonial period of Am. was basically Christian. The major task of Christian educ. was assumed by the home, but schools were also agencies for religious educ. In New Eng., ch. and state combined to administer schools. Heterogeneous pop. in the middle colonies led to various kinds of schools, most of them under religious sponsorship. Angl. influence dominated educ. in S colonies. Religious influence continued till ca. 1750, when a more secular spirit reflected growing economic and pol. interests. Except for the Coll. and Academy of Philadelphia (1755; U. of Pennsylvania 1791), the 9 colleges and univs. founded before the Revolution were est. under ch. control: (1) Harvard coll. 1636; called U. at Cambridge in the 1780 Massachusetts const.; (2) Coll. of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia, 1693; (3) Yale coll., New Haven, Connecticut, 1701; Yale U. 1887; (4) Coll. of New Jersey 1746; Princeton U. 1896; (5) King's coll., NYC, 1754; Columbia coll. 1784: Columbia U. 1912; (6) Rhode Island coll., Providence, 1764; Brown U. 1804; (7) Queen's coll., New Brunswick, New Jersey, 1766 (see also Reformed Churches, 4 b); Rutgers coll. 1825: Rutgers U. 1924; the state univ. of New Jersey 1945; (8) Dartmouth coll., Hanover, New Hampshire, 1770. See also Higher Education, 10; Ministry, Education of, VI A; Protestant Episcopal Church.

In a number of places a form of catechetical instruction was given by pastors to children on Sunday morning in early colonial times. Sunday* schools appeared beginning ca. 1786, mainly in the middle states; they were more closely assoc. with the ch. than those in Eng., which were part of a lay movement. As the pub. school system grew, gen. educ. came to be eliminated from the S. S. Public schools were at first strongly influenced by religious thought, later less so. Chs. were forced to depend increasingly on Sunday schools for religious educ. outside the home.

The First Day, or S. S. Soc. was organized 1790 Philadelphia. The Am. S. S. Union was formed 1824. First nat. conventions: 1832 NYC; 1833 Philadelphia, 1859 Philadelphia, 1869 Newark, New Jersey, 1872 Indianapolis, Indiana A Gen. Conv. was held 1862 London, England. The 1872 conv. resolved to invite Can. to full participation and approved a system of internat. lessons. Internat. convs. were held beginning 1875.

In course of time the scope of the S. S. came to include preschool children, young people, and adults.

By 1905, conv. meetings had lost all but nominal control over policy to a bd. of officials called (1905) Internat. S. S. Association. Reaction led 1910 to formation of the S. S. Council of Ev. Denominations. The Assoc. and the Council united 1922 to form the Internat. S. S. Council of Religious Educ. (changed name 1924 to The International* Council of Religious Educ.), which in November 1950 became the Division of Christian Educ. of the National Counil of Chs. of Christ in the USA In 1905 G. U. Wenner* proposed a plan for teaching religion in cooperation with pub. schools under a released time plan, which was inaugurated with modifications at Gary, Indiana, ca. 1913 and spread to other states. In 1948 the US Supreme Court ruled in favor of Mrs. Vashti McCollum of Champaign, Illinois, self-styled “rationalist,” and held that use by religious groups of the state's compulsory pub. school machinery is not separation of ch. and state; but in 1952 the Supreme Court pronounced religion classes outside school bldgs. on school time constitutional.

Prot. chs. that conduct nonpublic schools include Assem. of God, Bap., Episc., Luth., Mennonite, Seventh-day Adv.

Thought has been given to the possibility of including in pub. educ. some form of instruction on religion that would satisfy Christians and non-Christians. ACR

See also Christian Education; Parish Education; Schools, Church-Related.

A. A. Brown, A History of Religious Education in Recent Times (New York, 1923); M. C. Brown, Sunday-School Movements in America (New York, 1901); E. M. Fergusson, Historic Chapters in Christian Education in America (New York, 1935); C. L. Hay, The Blind Spot in American Public Education (New York, 1950); J. M. Reu, Catechetics, 3d ed. (Chicago, 1931); E. H. Rian, Christianity and American Education (San Antonio, Texas, 1949); The Church and Christian Education, ed. P. H. Vieth (St. Louis, 1947).

Protestant Episcopal Church

(alternate name since 1967: The Episc. Ch.).

1. a. Began 1789 (see 3).

The 1st permanent Angl. ch. in Am. was built 1607 Jamestown, Virginia; see also Hunt, Robert. Unfortunate conditions, arising mainly out of distance from ch. authorities and out of a growing practice of hiring local ministers temporarily, were corrected by J. Blair.* The harsh tone of the Angl. Ch. was echoed also in Virginia in rigid laws regarding Puritans and Quakers.

b. In New Eng., Puritans applied to Angls. the same proscriptions from which they themselves had fled, hence only isolated attempts at ch. organization were made. In 1698 an Episc. ch. was est. Newport, Rhode Island, and Trin. Ch., NYC, was dedicated. In Maryland the ch. grew slowly till T. Bray* arrived 1700. The SPG, organized partly in response to a petition by Bray to the king of Eng., sent a delegation to visit the chs. in Am. 1702. Result: the no. of chs. greatly increased and a better grade of ministers was secured for them.

c. G. Berkeley,* who came to Newport, Rhode Island, 1729, gave large financial support to Yale coll.; after his return to Eng. 1731 he was instrumental in forming the charters and directing the course of King's coll. and of the Academy and Coll. of Philadelphia. See also Protestant Education in the United States.

2. The Revolutionary War left the Angl. chs. in Am. disorganized. First move toward effecting organization was made by W. White,* who wrote the pamphlet The Case of the Episcopal Churches in the United States Considered, pub. anonymously 1782; he urged that, without waiting for a bp., the chs. should unite in some form of assoc. and common govt., and he outlined a plan that embodied most of the essential characteristics of the diocesan and gen. convs. as adopted later.

Meantime the Maryland Legislature had (1779) passed an act committing to certain vestries as trustees the property of the parishes, but also prohibiting gen. assessments. In 1780 a conference was called and a petition sent to the legislature asking that the vestries be empowered to use money obtained by pew rents and other means of parish purposes; the name Prot. Episc. Ch., suggested for the organization, was formally approved by a conference at Annapolis 1783, definitely adopted by the 1789 Gen. Conv.

A movement to constitute an Episc. Ch. for the whole US was inaugurated, largely by White, May 1784 at a meeting at which New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania were represented. Delegates from 8 states attended a conv. October 1784. Seven of the 13 States (but not New Eng.) were represented at a 1785 conv., which, despite protests against the proposed plan of organization, adopted, with modifications, principles recommended 1784 and drew up a const. and liturgy.

3. Request for affiliation with the Ch. of Eng. was granted. In 1787 the abp. Canterbury consecrated White abp. Pennsylvania, S. Provoost* abp. New York; S. Seabury* had been consecrated abp. by nonjuring Scot. prelates 1784. Thus there were 3, the canonical no. required for consecrating other bps. Two houses (Bps. and Deputies; see also 8 c) were constituted in the 1789 Gen. Conv., which also adopted a const. and Book of Common Prayer. To obviate any possible objection to the Scot. consecration of Seabury, J. Madison* was elected bp. Virginia 1790 and consecrated in Eng.

For more than 20 yrs. the ch. had to combat various hostile influences, since it was widely distrusted, being regarded as an Eng. institution. Loss of Meths., who chose to form an indep. ch., deprived the Episc. Ch. of some strength, and growth was slow.

4. a. A change came in the 2d decade of the 19th c., with new bps. for newly settled areas, esp. in the W The Domestic and For. Missionary Soc. was organized 1820/21 (“For.” included Indians within the states). Effects of the Oxford* Movement were felt in Am.

b. Ca. 1845 W. A. Muhlenberg (see Mhühlenberg, Henry Melchior and Family, 11) came into prominence. He founded a system of ch. schools, organized the 1st free ch. of any importance in NYC, introd. the male choir, sisterhoods, and the fresh-air movement (providing rural and outdoor facilities for health and recreation for the poor and underprivileged). The Memorial Movement began 1853, when a memorial, drawn up mainly by Muhlenberg but signed also by other prominent clerics, was addessed to the House of Bps., asking “whether the Protestant Episcopal Church, with only her present canonical means and appliances, her fixed and invariable modes of public worship, and her traditional customs and usages, is competent to the work of preaching and dispensing the Gospel to all sorts and conditions of men, and so adequate to do the work of the Lord in this land and in this age.” In partial answer the memorial said: “… a wider door must be opened for admission to the Gospel ministry than that through which her candidates for holy orders are now obliged to enter. Besides such candidates among her own members, it is believed that men can be found among the other bodies of Christians around us, who would gladly receive ordination at your hands, could they obtain it, without that entire surrender which would now be required of them, of all the liberty in public worship to which they have been accustomed — men who could not bring themselves to conform in all particulars to our prescriptions and customs, but yet sound in the faith, and who, having the gifts of preachers and pastors, would be able ministers of the New Testament.” This memorial helped prepare the way for the Lambeth Quadrilateral 1888 (see England, C 11) and the movement for the rev. of the Am. prayer book, completed 1892 (but rev. again 1928).

c. Outbreak of the Civil War led to organization 1861 of the Prot. Episc. Ch. in the Confederate States, with close ties to the ch. in the N; the end of the war brought reunion.

Further effects of the Oxford Movement led to a serious rift. G. D. Cummins* organized the Reformed* Episc. Ch. 1873.

The Brotherhood* of St. Andrew was organized 1886. Parochial, diocesan, and provincial bds. and commissions were formed for soc. service throughout the country. The Prot. Episc. Ch. played a prominent part in interfaith movements.

5. As to doctrine, some events in the yrs. immediately preceding est. of the Prot. Episc. Ch. are enlightening. At the 1785 conv. the Nicene and Athanasian creeds were omitted from a proposed revision of the Book of Common Prayer and the reference to Christ's descent into hell deleted from the Apostles' Creed. The 1786 conv. included the Nicene Creed and restored the Apostles' Creed to integrity; the Athanasian Creed was again omitted, mainly because of its damnatory clauses.

The Athanasian Creed was again rejected 1789. In 1801 the Thirty-nine Articles (see Anglican Confessions, 6), except the 21st, relating to the authority of the Gen. Council, and with some modifications of the 8th, 35th, and 36th arts., were accepted as a gen. statement of doctrine and are appended to the Book of Common Prayer, but adherence to them as a creed is not gen. required.

6. The Prot. Episc. Ch. expects of its mems. loyalty to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the one holy catholic apostolic ch. in all essentials but allows great liberty in what it regards as nonessentials. Its proposed basis for the unity of Christendom is the Lambeth Quadrilateral. In baptizing children either immersion or pouring is allowed. Participation in Communion is technically limited to the confirmed, but is practically open to all baptized.

7. The High* Ch., Broad Ch., and Low Ch. tendencies of the Angl. Ch. are in evidence also in the Prot. Episc. Ch.

8. a. The system of ch. govt. includes the parish or cong., the diocese, the province, and the Gen. Convention. A cong. is “required, in its constitution or plan or articles of organization, to recognize and accede to the constitution, canons, doctrine, discipline, and worship of the church, and to agree to submit to and obey such directions as may be from time to time received from the bishop in charge, and council of advice.”

Officers of the parish are the rector, who must be a priest; wardens (usually 2), representing the body of the parish and usually having charge of records, collection of alms. and ch. repair; vestrymen: trustees who hold the property for the corporation.

b. Direction of spiritual affairs is exclusively in the hands of the rector. Govt. of the diocese is vested in the bp. and the diocesan conv., the latter consisting of all the clergy, and of at least I lay delegate from each parish or cong. This conv. meets annually; election of delegates to it is governed by the specific canons of each diocese. Sections of states and territories not organized into dioceses are est. by the House of Bps. and the Gen. Conv. as miss. districts. Dioceses and miss. dists. are grouped into 8 provinces, to procure unity and cooperation in dealing with regional interests, esp. in the fields of missions, religious educ., soc. service, and judicial proceedings.

c. The Gen. Conv., highest ecclesiastical authority in the ch., consists of 2 houses: House of Bps and House of Deputies (see also 3). The House of Bps. includes every bp. having jurisdiction, every bp. coadjutor, and every bp. who by reason of advanced age or bodily infirmity or disability has resigned his jurisdiction. The House of Deputies is composed of delegates elected from the dioceses, including for each diocese not more than 4 presbyters canonically resident in the diocese, and not more than 4 laymen, communicants of the ch., resident in the diocese. The 2 houses sit and deliberate separately. Ecclesiastical head of the ch. is the presiding bp., elected by the House of Bps. Three orders are recognized in the ministry: bps., priests, deacons. A bp. must be consecrated by at least 3 bps. He is the administrative head and spiritual leader of his diocese; duties include presiding over the diocesan conv., ordaining deacons and priests, instituting rectors. If a bp. is unable to perform all his duties, a bp. coadjutor or a suffragan bp. may be elected. Election of a rector is acc. to diocesan law; notice of election is sent to the ecclesiastical authority of the diocese. Lay readers and deaconesses are appointed by the bp. or ch. authority of a diocese or miss. dist. to assist in pub. services, in the care of the poor and sick, and in religious training. Support of the rector and gen. expenses of each local cong. (parish) are in the care of the vestry; the bishop's salary is fixed by the diocesan conv., with the amount apportioned among the chs. of his diocese.

9. The Prot. Episc. Ch. engages in miss. work at home and abroad, supports a number of institutions of higher educ., has many orders, and fosters “brotherhoods” for men and boys.

See also African Orthodox Church, The; Fellowship, B; Teachers, 32.

See Religious Bodies (US), Bibliography of.


Term derived from the protest submitted by the ev. party at the 1529 Diet of Speyer.* Issues involved (1) the authority of Scripture, to be explained by itself; (2) freedom of conscience. Protestantism stands for religious liberty based on obedience to God and His Word. RCm: where good works are, there are faith and justification; Protestantism: where faith is, there are justification and good works. See also Formal Principle; Material Principle.

Protestantism is favorable to civil and religious freedom, to the rights of the individual, and to development of those inventive capacities that have led to achievements called civilization. It favors universal education, since all should read the Bible and help do the work of the ch. intelligently. Freedom of thought, speech, and press are involved in the freedom and responsibility of the individual emphasized by Protestantism.

See also United States, Religious History of the.

Protestant Union, German.

The Deutscher Protestantenverein was organized 1863 Frankfurt am Main by representatives of Prot. chs. in Ger.; object: creation of a Ger. nat. Prot. Ch.; opposed divisions created by theol. differences and urged chs. to proclaim divine love and the fact that Christians are children of God as taught by Christ. See also Ewald, Georg Heinrich August; Rothe, Richard; Schenkel, Daniel; Schwarz, Karl; Sydow, Karl Leopold Adolf.


(from Gk. for “to place before”). In the E Orthodox Ch., a side table on which eucharistic elements are prepared. See also Divine Liturgy.


Term describing books accepted early into the Bible canon* without serious controversy. Distinguished from deuterocanonical, a term used esp. by RCs of books accepted into the canon later and with more controversy. See also Apocrypha, B 4.

Protonotarius apostolicus

(prothonotary apostolic). In RCm, a mem. of the Coll. of Prothonotaries Apostolic. There are 4 categories of prothonotaries apostolic, with varying functions. Prothonotaries apostolic are created by papal brief and are addressed as right reverend monsignor.


Divine providence is that activity of God whereby He uninterruptedly upholds (preserves), governs, and directs lifeless creation (Jb 9:5–6; 28:25–26; Ps 89:9; 148:8), plant life (Ps 104:13–14; 147:9), animal life (Ps 145:15; Jon 4:11), the world of men (Ps 139:13, 15–16; Jer. 1:5; Mt 4:4; 5:45; 6:26–28; 18:14; Acts 17:24–28) and all that concerns men (Ps 31:15; 91:1, 3; 121; Pr 20:24; 21:1; Lk 12:7), heaven, hell, everything (Lk 12:6–7; Cl 1:16–17; Heb 1:1–3).

Divine providence normally expresses itself in definite laws (Gn 8:22) that represent inner urges and drives implanted by God in His creatures. These laws proclaim the benignity of the Creator (Acts 14:17).

Divine providence is ordinarily exercised through secondary causes; but these are operative only so long as God works through them. Scripture teaches that both God and the means are operative (Ps 69:9–11; 127:1; Is 55:10; 1 Co 12:6); this cannot be completely explained by the human mind.

Divine providence deprives men neither of their liberty nor of their responsibility; it neither reduces men to automata nor makes God responsible for sin (Ro 1:18–32). God is operative in men and acts through men also when their deeds are evil (2 Sm 16:10; 24:1; Acts 17:28), but He is not the author of sin (Ps 50:16–21).

From the viewpoint of God all is predetermined and immutably fixed (Jb 14:5; Acts 4:27–28); from the human viewpoint things happen contingently, events can be modified and depend on circumstances and decisions that men make and for which they are responsible (Ps 55:23; Is 38:1–5).

Ultimate goals of divine providence: (1) the temporal and eternal welfare of man, esp. the salvation of the elect; (2) the spreading of the Gospel; (3) the promotion of the glory of God (Ro 11:36).

P. F. Bente, “The Providence of God,” The Abiding Word, II, ed. T. Laetsch (St. Louis, 1947), 78–111; E. W. Hinrichs, “God's Direction in Our Lives and the Element of Chance,” CTM, XVII (1946), 425–439.


In RCm, a religious superior, under the gen. of an order, over all religious houses in a province of the order.

Provoost, Samuel

(ca. 1742–1815). B. NYC; educ. King's coll. (now Columbia U.), NYC; ordained deacon by Prot. Episc. Ch. 1766, priest 1776; held various positions; elected bp. New York 1786, consecrated by abp. Canterbury 1787. See also Protestant Episcopal Church, 3.


(Ger.: Probst or Propst). Ecclesiastical dignitary in various positions, including: head of a cathedral or collegiate chap.; Prot. cleric in charge of the main ch. in a region of Ger.; ecclesiastic with duties similar to those of a dean or prior but sometimes second in authority. The head of some religious orders is called provost general. Supts. of Swed. chs. on the Delaware R. were called provosts and included I. Acrelius,* E. T. Björk,* A. Hesselius,* J. Lidman,* A. Rudman,* A. Sandel,* J. Sandin,* C. M. Wrangel.*

Prudentius Clemens, Aurelius

(Aurelius Clemens Prudentius; Aurelius Prudentius Clemens; 348-after 404/405, perhaps ca. 410/413). B. probably Calahorra, N Sp.; practiced law; abandoned secular work at age 56/57; entered a monastery and wrote hymns, which include Corde natus ex parentis (”Of the Father's Love Begotten”) and Salvete, flores martyrum (”Sweet flowerets of the martyr band”).

Prussian Union.

September 27, 1817, Frederick* William III announced the union of the Luths. and Ref. into 1 ev. Christian cong. at the court and among the military in Potsdam in celebration of the 300th anniversary of the Reformation and appealed for voluntary union of Luths. and Ref. in all of Prussia and elsewhere. Several smaller Ger. states followed suit. But Luths., led by C. Harms,* objected. In the resulting controversy the issues were muddied and compulsory measures adopted: in 1821 candidates were required at their examination to pledge loyalty to the union; the Kirchenagende für die Hofund Domkirche in Berlin (drawn up 1821, pub. 1822 on personal initiative of the king) gave rise to the Agenda* Controversy (F. D. E. Schleiermacher* was among those who challenged the right of the king to act with authority in the area of liturgics); in 1823 ministers were pledged to the confessional writings of the united ev. ch. insofar as these confessions were in harmony; in 1830 it was decreed that “Evangelical” be substituted for the distinctive names “Luth.” and “Ref.”; in 1832 the union was enforced in the army and the Bonn faculty; the new agenda was prescribed 1834.

Reaction against the union had found practical expression beginning 1830 in formation of the Ev. Luth (Old Luth.) Ch. (see Germany, Lutheran Free Churches in, 1), which led to an 1834 cabinet order recognizing both Luth. and Ref. confessions and to Frederick* William IV's “Generalkonzession” 1845; an 1852 cabinet order said the union was not doctrinal but administrative. But enactments 1853 and later reenforced the Prussian Union so as to make it practically also doctrinal.

See also Altar Fellowship; Germany, C 2.

Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
©Concordia Publishing House, 2000, All rights Reserved. Reproduced with Permission

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