Protestantism is a principle – it is anti-rebellion – it is a protest against tyranny – it is protagonist. Tyranny on the other hand is that principle which, by rebelllion against God, puts one man or confederation of men in the place of God over others – It is antagonist; It is anti-Christ.
James A Wylie wrote: “It is a creative power. Its plastic influence is all-embracing. It penetrates into the heart and renews the individual. It goes down to the depths and, by its omnipotent but noiseless energy, vivifies and regenerates society. It thus becomes the creator of all that is true, and lovely, and great: the founder of free kingdoms, and the mother of pure churches. The globe itself it claims as a stage not too wide for the manifestation of its beneficent action: and the whole domain of terrestrial affairs it deems a sphere not too vast to fill with its spirit, and rule by its law.” And I would say, The Scripture calls it “The Law of Liberty! Wylie continues. “Whence came this principle? The name Protestantism is very recent: the thing itself is very ancient. The term Protestantism is scarcely older than 350 years. It dates from the protest which the Lutheran princes gave into the Diet of Spires in 1529.”
“The men who handed in this protest did not wish to create a mere void. If they disowned the creed and threw off the yoke of Rome, it was that they might plant a purer faith and restore the government of [that] higher Law. They replaced the authority of [Papal] Infallibility with the authority of the Word of God.”
“Protestantism is a principle which has its origin outside human society: it is a Divine graft on the intellectual and moral nature of man, whereby new vitalities and forces are introduced into it, and the human stem yields henceforth a nobler fruit. It is the descent of a heaven-born influence which allies itself with all the instincts and powers of the individual, with all the laws and cravings of society, and which, quickening both the individual and the social being into a new life, and directing their efforts to nobler objects, permits the highest development of which humanity is capable, and the fullest possible accomplishment of all its grand ends. In a word, Protestantism is revived Christianity.”
We see the supreme example of this Protest by by our King Jesus Himself when He laid down His own life in Protest against the law of sin and death itself – A tyranny imposed by the very adversary of mankind himself. We see this protest carried on by the first martyr, Stephen. The early Christians protested, “Caesar is not lord!” and paid with their lives. Hundreds of millions have since protested, “I cannot recant” and paid with their lives by fagot, axe and sword.
When Jesus said, “I came not to bring peace,” the principle he introduced was Protestantism!