July 28, 1540 – Thomas Cromwell

What price to you pay for being the advisor to the king? For Thomas Cromwell it was his head. Cromwell was a true leader in the Protestant reformation in England and was they chief advisor to King Henry VIII. While Henry didn’t really care about being Protestant as much as he cared about controlling the Church of England, Cromwell on …

July 27, 1099 – Pope Urban II dies

When Pope Urban II called for all of Christian Europe to “fight the infidel” Muslim Turks who had control of the Holy Land, he used the opportunity to heal a big fight between the Pope and the Holy Roman emperor (another story for another day). A common enemy does a lot for internal spats. Urban II died on July 27, …

July 26, 1603 – James I of England

King James VI of Scotland became King James I of England on this day on July 26, 1603 and wanted to get a new, official version of the Bible for the Church of England to use. He didn’t like the commentary notes in the Geneva Bible that many Protestants used after returning to England during the reign of his cousin …

July 25, 1899 – “How Great Thou Art”

One of the hymns that always makes the list of favorites is “How Great Thou Art” which was written by a British missionary to Russia named Stuart K. Hine. Hine, an inductee into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 1994, was born on July 25, 1899. The lyrics came from a Swedish poem and Hine (who is pictured here) …

July 24, 1874 – Oswald Chambers

One of my all-time favorite devotionals is the classic My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers. Oswald was born on July 24, 1874 in Aberdeen, Scotland and struggled for the first 29 years of his life trying to figure out what service God would have him do. He eventually was commissioned as a chaplain through the YMCA to Egypt …

July 23, 1945 – Youth for Christ

On July 23, 1945, at Winona Lake, Indiana forty-two delegates formed Youth for Christ International which is still active today. The delegates elected Torrey Johnson as president who in turn recruits a full-time evangelist by name of Billy Graham.

July 22, 1620 – Pilgrims Set Sail

Too few Americans talk about our Christian heritage but the truth is doctrinal issues drove the Pilgrims to the New World. They were refugees – running from oppression by the Church of England because they felt the Church had lost it’s focus on the supremacy of Scripture. Branded as “separatists” they boarded the ship Mayflower on July 22, 1620 and …

July 21, 1900 – Schweitzer licensed to ministry

Albert Schweitzer is best known for his work in establishing and running a hospital in Africa where he died. Born on the French-German border, he was licensed to the ministry on July 21, 1900 in the Lutheran church and even wrote a biography of Bach (he was an excellent organist). His views on Jesus were not in line with most …

July 20, 1969 – Buzz Aldrin and the Lord’s Supper

Many recall the first moon landing by Buzz Aldrin happened on July 20, 1969 but were you aware right before Aldrin took his walk he had the Lord’s Supper? As a Presbyterian elder in Houston, TX, Aldrin had his church help him with a small chalice, some wine and bread and said back to Mission Control: “This is the LM …

July 19, 64 AD – Rome’s Great Fire

The first time I learned of Emperor Nero fiddling while Rome burned was from a Bugs Bunny cartoon (which is also where I first heard classical music!). What I didn’t know was this was the very beginning of Roman persecution of Christians that would not end for almost 250 years until Constantine came to power. July 19, 64 is when …