Before we explain Methodist vs Presbyterian, let’s peek into the history of Christianity.
Christianity is one of the major religions in the world followed by billions. Throughout its history which spans several centuries, Christianity underwent many transformations which resulted in Christianity dividing and branching off into many other big and small sects. Due to disagreements regarding doctrines, beliefs among both clergy and the followers of the religion, there was even violence between different sects.
Christianity is one of the major Abrahamic religions and was used by the state to wage wars, impose slavery, and spread colonialism all around the world.
There were many attempts at reformations that led to different sects such as Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox, and Protestantism. Protestantism, further, has many more denominations such as Presbyterian, Episcopal, Lutheran, Baptist, Methodist, Wesleyan, and many others. Therefore, Presbyterian and Methodist are two denominations within the Protestant faith. But all the reformations failed because none of them addressed the lacunae in the basic tenets of Christianity.
Presbyterians strongly believe in the notion of predestination as preached by the Calvinists. However, methodists denounce the Calvinist belief of predestination. Moreover, the leadership in a Methodist church and a Presbyterian church differ.
Presbyterians have “elders” as their leaders whereas Methodists have Bishops as their leaders. These are some fundamental differences between Methodist and Presbyterian.
Comparison Table: Methodist vs Presbyterian
|Origin||Methodism, on the other hand, was founded in England in 1739 by John Wesley. He was a former Anglican Christian.||The Presbyterian Church was founded before the Methodist Church. The Presbyterian Church was in 1560 by John Knox, who was formerly a Catholic Priest. He founded the Presbyterian faith in Scotland.|
|Meaning of the name||The word Methodist obviously comes from the English word method. The reasoning behind such a name is that Methodists follow a very strict way of worship.||The word Presbyterian originates from the Greek word “Presbyteros” which means elders. Therefore, Presbyterian means a church that is led by elders.|
|Salvation||Methodists believe in salvation “by grace through faith”.||Presbyterian faith believes that God has already chosen those who would be saved and nothing can change that.|
|Worship Guide||Methodism uses the “Book of Common Prayer”.||Presbyterian worship is influenced by the “Directory of Public Worship”.|
|Local structure||Methodist Church has a council too but under the supervision of a pastor who works under the supervision of a bishop.||One of the more pronounced differences between Presbyterian and Methodist Churches is their way of governing their church. Presbyterians have elders as their Church leaders. They call their government council of elders.|
Methodist is one of the major denominations of Protestantism. It was founded by John Wesley, George Whitefield, and Charles Wesley. Methodism was formed in the 18th Century AD. This denomination became separate after Jon Wesley’s death. John Wesley looked to change the Church of England from within.
After his death, however, the movement that he started, in any case, became separated from its parent body and formed into an independent church. The World Methodist Council (WMC), a relationship of temples in the Methodist practice, contains more than 40.5 million Methodists in 138 nations.
The faith system of Methodists is more or less similar to many denominations of Christianity. Certain doctrines may differ from the others but it’s more or less the same. Methodists strongly believe in God, the Bible as well as Jesus Christ. They even consider Jesus Christ as the savior of Humanity.
Methodism is set apart by an acknowledgment of the tenets of authentic Christianity; by an accentuation on precepts that demonstrate the force of the Holy Spirit to affirm the confidence of adherents and to change their own lives; by a demand that the core of religion lies in an individual relationship with God; by the straightforwardness of love; by the organization of appointed clergymen and common people in the love and organization of the congregation; by a worry for the oppressed and the improvement of social conditions; and (basically in its British structure) by the development of little gatherings for shared support and enlightenment.
Presbyterian religious philosophy commonly underscores the power of God, the power of the Scriptures, and the need for grace through faith in Christ. The Presbyterian movement, like the Lutheran faith, had its beginning in the Reformation movement of the 16th Century.
This faith in particular roots back to John Calvin and his reformed theology who had a connection and the church of Scotland. The term “presbyterian” comes from the Greek word “presbyteros” which means “having elders ruling”. The church priests ordained for service are often referred to as elders in the Presbyterian Church.
Presbyterians believe that the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus earned forgiveness for their sins to only a select few, which is contrary to Lutheran belief. They also hold contrary beliefs when it comes to predestination. They believe the lord has already decided our faith. Some of us will spend eternity with him while others are in damnation. They call it “double predestination”, which says the Lord has designated as a justified place in heaven or damnation regardless of our faith or belief. We, as humans, don’t get the chance to redeem our destiny.
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Difference Between Methodist and Presbyterian
The Presbyterian Church was founded before the Methodist Church. The Presbyterian Church was in 1560 by John Knox, who was formerly a Catholic Priest. He founded the Presbyterian faith in Scotland.
Methodism, on the other hand, was founded in England in 1739 by John Wesley. He was a former Anglican Christian.
Meaning of the name
The word Presbyterian originates from the Greek word “Presbyteros” which means elders. Therefore, Presbyterian means a church that is led by elders.
The word Methodist obviously comes from the English word method. The reasoning behind such a name is that Methodists follow a very strict way of worship.
Methodists believe in salvation “by grace through faith”. Presbyterian faith believes that God has already chosen those who would be saved and nothing can change that.
Presbyterian worship is influenced by the “Directory of Public Worship”. Methodism uses the “Book of Common Prayer”.
One of the more pronounced differences between Presbyterian and Methodist churches is their way of governing their church. Presbyterians have elders as their Church leaders. They call their government council of elders.
Methodist Church has a council too but under the supervision of a pastor who works under the supervision of a bishop.
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Naomi is an educator with 2 decades of experience working with children of all ages. She is a keen observer of the magic and importance of Maths in our daily lives. Follow me on Linkedin