How Much Do You Know About Religious Movements Throughout History?


By: Annette

5 Min Quiz

Image: YouTube

About This Quiz

Religion has played a pivotal role in our society since the beginning of time. Religious leaders not only preached to the congregation, but they also visited the communities, helping the sick and the poor, long before social services were invented. This, in turn, helped shape the norms and values of society as we know it today.

Many religious movements in history propelled social change in our communities. Among them was The Great Awakening, which was a revival movement in the Americas in the 1730s and 1740s. This created a division among religious denominations in the country. 

As a result, the United States was founded mostly by Protestants, rather than Roman Catholics. The revolutionary preacher, Jonathan Edwards initiated the movement. Other preachers such as George Whitefield, Charles, and John Wesley joined the movement and they, later on, formed the Methodist Church.

This division of Christianity empowered the people of America in some ways. It strengthened the people of the colonies, who soon realized that they could take charge of their country and free themselves of the reigns of the English monarch. 

This strengthened the people for America’s War of Independence in 1775 and also resulted in the formation of the hundreds of denominations that we recognize today. But do know what these denominations are? Can you name some of the most sacred rules of certain religions? Let's find out.

Changes in religious beliefs occur _______.

Most people don't realize that changes in religious beliefs occur quite slowly. Often, not even religious leaders and the pious realize that they're occurring.


Religious organizations are ______.

Keep in mind that religious organizations are quite dynamic. They are ever-changing phenomena.


Religious movements are similar to ______.

Religious movements fall into a subcategory of social movements. They are organized efforts to cause or prevent change.


What type of religious movement changes the internal character of the religion?

An endogenous religious movement is one that seeks to change the internal character of the religion. This is, essentially, changing the core of beliefs.


What type of religious movement seeks to change the environment in which the religion resides?

An exogenous religious movement changes the general environment, sometimes via the economy or ideology. Such movements are often connected with social causes.


What kind of religious movement seeks to introduce new religions into the environment?

Generative religious movements seek to introduce new religions into an environment or society. There have been several of these throughout history.


The Great Schism split ______.

The Great Schism split Christianity. In the eleventh century, Christianity became Western Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy.


Protestantism and Roman Catholicism split during the _______.

Protestantism and Roman Catholicism split during the Reformation. All of this took place during the 16th century.


True or False: Protestantism has been prone to schism.

It's true that Protestantism has been prone to schism. More than 750 Protestant groups have been identified in North America alone.


New religious groups that form due to schism are known as _______.

New religious groups that form due to schism are known as sects. There are many sects within the Christian religion.


Sectarian movements are usually led by ______.

Sectarian movements are most often led by laity and low-level clergy. These types of movements are common, but not always significant.


True or False: All religious movements result in schism.

It's false that all religious movements result in schism. Often, they merely result in reform.


The Roman Catholic Church has been ______ at reincorporating movements into the church.

The Roman Catholic Church has been particularly effective at incorporating movements back into the church. That is a testament to the strength of this particular religious order.


Who presided over the Second Vatican Council?

Pope John XXIII called the Second Vatican Council to respond to pressures to modernize the Catholic Church and improve relations with other faiths. This took place in the early 1960s.


The Protestant ecumenical movement saw the ______ of diverse Protestant traditions.

The Protestant ecumenical movement saw the union of diverse Protestant traditions. This took place in the latter half of the 20th century.


Today, liberal Protestantism has forged coalitions with _____ causes.

Today, liberal Protestantism has forged coalitions with a number of liberal social causes. Likewise, Evangelical or conservative Protestantism has aligned itself with economically and socially conservative causes.


What is the name for an Islamic holy war?

Often, religious leaders will tell their followers that a movement or certain actions are part of a divine plan. This is the case with jihad, or holy war, which was prevalent in Islam in the late 20th century.


Which of these could be viewed as a religious movement?

In essence, the Civil Rights movement in the United States can equally be viewed as a religious movement. It was led by black ministers, activities were organized in churches, and spirited black and white youth were motivated by their religious traditions.


In Eastern Europe, the movement for liberation from communism was affected by _________.

Religious traditions played a key role in Eastern Europe's liberation from communism. For instance, the Solidarity labor movement in Poland received legitimacy from the Catholic Church.


Who founded the Church of Scientology?

L. Ron Hubbard wrote the book "Dianetics" in 1950. After the book became a bestseller, Hubbard formed the Church of Scientology in 1954.


True or False: There were few religious movements in the U.S. from the late '60s to the early '70s.

It's false that there were few religious movements during this time. In fact, the U.S. saw a slew of religious movements, thanks to the youth subculture at the time.


When did Christian missionaries from the U.S. flock to Africa?

The late 19th and early 20th centuriess were a time when Christian missionaries flocked to Africa. The 20th century was also a time when many Eastern gurus came to the United States as missionaries of their faiths.


Which of these sectarian movements was formed in the 19th century?

All of the above are sectarian or cult movements that were formed in the 19th century. The list also includes Jehovah's Witnesses and Theosophy.


Fundamentalism spans the length of what century?

Fundamentalism is a religious movement that spans across most of the 20th century. It's actually considered one of the most important movements of the 20th century.


The teaching of fundamentalism believes that the scriptures are _______.

Fundamentalism teaches that the scriptures are inerrant, or literally true. This is in opposition to liberal scholars who believe the Bible should not be understood literally.


What does NRM stand for?

NRMs are New Religious Movements. These are sometimes pejoratively referred to as cults.


What is the largest religion in the world today?

Christianity is the largest religion in the world today. It has about 2.3 billion members.


What is the oldest religion still in practice today?

Hinduism is the oldest religion in practice today. It dates back to prehistoric times.


When was Judaism founded?

Judaism was founded approximately 3,500 years ago. It is the oldest of the monotheistic faiths.


Who was the founder of Christianity?

Jesus Christ is famously the founder of Christianity. The religion was founded in AD 30 in Jerusalem.


Who was called the Buddha?

Siddhartha Gautama was the founder of Buddhism and was known as the Buddha. The religion was formed in the 4th and 5th centuries BC in India.


Where was Islam founded?

Islam is a religion that was founded in modern Saudi Arabia. It was originated by Muhammad in the 7th century A.D.


When was Wicca introduced?

Although Wicca seems like an ancient religion, it actually wasn't founded until the 1950s. That being said, it has its roots in European fertility cults.


In Buddhism, Nirvana is reached _______.

In Buddhism, Nirvana is a state reached not through death, but rather through enlightenment. This can sometimes take multiple reincarnations to achieve.


True or False: In Catholicism, there are patron saints for nearly everything.

It's true that in Catholicism there are patron saints for nearly everything. For instance, Saint Drogo is the patron saint of coffee. Hallelujah!


Explore More Quizzes

About HowStuffWorks Play

How much do you know about dinosaurs? What is an octane rating? And how do you use a proper noun? Lucky for you, HowStuffWorks Play is here to help. Our award-winning website offers reliable, easy-to-understand explanations about how the world works. From fun quizzes that bring joy to your day, to compelling photography and fascinating lists, HowStuffWorks Play offers something for everyone. Sometimes we explain how stuff works, other times, we ask you, but we’re always exploring in the name of fun! Because learning is fun, so stick with us!