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Covenanters in Scotland General Overview/Background
As soon as Charles II was restored as king of Scotland, England and Ireland in 1660, the Covenanters began to face persecution. The leaders of the Second Reformation were hunted down and killed. Ministers were put out of their churches, and strict laws were passed against preaching, or going to hear preaching, in the fields. However that didn’t stop thousands of people risking their lives to go and hear to hear men like Donald Cargill, Richard Cameron and James Renwick. Things got even worse after 1685 when Charles was replaced as king by his brother, James VII. Many people, young and old, male and female paid the ultimate price for their love of the Lord Jesus Christ. These included John Brown, The Two Margarets and George Wood.
The ‘Glorious’ Revolution brought an end to 28 years of persecution in which, according to one estimate, 18,000 people had either been killed or suffered the utmost hardship for their faith.

While thankful to God that the persecution was now over, the Covenanters were alarmed that although the church became Presbyterian once more, it ignored the Covenanters, accepted former persecutors as ministers and elders and still accepted some control by the government. They therefore refused to join what they saw as a new church, and continued meeting for fellowship as the United Societies without a minister until John Macmillan accepted their call in 1706. In 1743, he was joined by Thomas Nairn, and the Covenanters became known as the Reformed Presbyterian Church


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