The Plymouth Brethren Movement 1
"I am the light of the world;
In recent years, several well-known Christian authors (including Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, and David Wilkerson) referred to the so-called Plymouth Brethren movement in their writings, renewing interest in this non-denominational Christian movement that originated in Ireland and England during the 1820s and 1830s and spread around the world during the ensuing decades.
During the winter of 1827-28, four Christian men – John Nelson Darby, Edward Cronin, John Bellett, and Francis Hutchinson – who had been concerned for some time about the condition of the professing church, agreed, after much prayer and conference, to come together on the Lord's Day and remember the Lord Jesus in the breaking of bread, as the early Christians did, counting on the Lord to be with them. Their first meeting was held in Francis Hutchinson's house in Dublin, Ireland. For some time previously, they and others had been meeting to study the Scriptures; in comparing what they found in the Word of God with existing conditions at the time, they found no expression of the nature and character of the church of God, either in the National Established churches or in the various dissenting bodies. This led them to separate from these disparate ecclesiastical systems, and to come together in the name of the Lord Jesus (Matthew 18:20), owning the presence and sovereign action of the Holy Spirit in their midst (1 Corinthians 12:4-11), and seeking to keep the unity of the Spirit in the uniting bond of peace (Ephesians 4:3-4). As they continued to meet, others in Dublin and elsewhere were added to their number. Among the many gatherings that sprang up, one at Plymouth, England became the most well-known and people in the district began to call them "brethren from Plymouth". This naturally resulted in the designation "Plymouth Brethren".
John Nelson Darby (1800-1882) later wrote, "What gave rise to the existence of so-called Plymouth Brethren is the grand truth, the great fact, of the descent of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, to form the body of Christ into one; then the coming of the Saviour as the continual expectation of the Christian".*
I trust this website will be a resource and blessing for persons who love the Lord Jesus (John 14:23), call on Him out of a pure heart (2 Timothy 2:22), and hope for His coming (2 Thessalonians 2:1). Lord willing, I hope to publish additional articles and poems from time to time, on this website, on Showers of Blessing, and on Gospel Songs. Please visit us again from time to time.
* "What is the Unity of the Church?", Collected Writings of J. N. Darby, volume 20, page 305.
1 As with other Christian denominations and movements, divisions have occurred within the so-called "Plymouth Brethren" movement during the last two centuries or so. The publisher of this website is not linked with those commonly known as "Open Brethren" or "Plymouth Brethren Christian Church".
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Lighthouse Photo credit: Hugh Morton.