Swiss Reformer. Convinced of the primary importance of the Bible, he adopted Lutheranism and later Zwinglianism. In 1531 he succeeded U. Zwingli as the Chief Pastor at Zurich. Within Switzerland, he played a leading role in drawing up the first and second Helvetic Confessions (1536 and 1566) and the ‘Consensus Tigurinus’ (1549); these provided a national basis for the Reformation and prevented it from becoming merely a cantonal phenomenon. Abroad he combatted the Lutheran doctrine of the Eucharist and refuted Anabaptist theology. He saw no basic distinction between the Christian State and the Christian Church and considered that the norms for a Christian society had been established by God in the OT: from this covenant theology it followed that the jurisdiction of the civil authority extended to ecclesiastical matters, and, though predestination was still of prime importance, God's election was binding only so far as men and women kept the conditions of the covenant.
Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700) — Christianity.