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Archive Book Reviews Philosophy Reformed Irenicism Steven Wedgeworth

Eros Rescued by Agape: Augustine, Denis De Rougemont, and the Sanctification of Passion

As we continue our thoughts on gay Christianity and “spiritual friendship,” we need to take an important detour. My original plan to was to move from concupiscence to the topic of effeminacy, but as I worked through Augustine’s writings on concupiscence, I was confronted with his peculiar theories about human desire as such. This made […]

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Archive Natural Law Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine Steven Wedgeworth

Is Concupiscence Sin?– Gay Christianity, Desire, and Orientation

Picking up from my previous post on the problem of gay-but-chaste Christianity, I want to talk about concupiscence. Jack Bates criticizes me for introducing concupiscence into the discussion in an over-generalized and therefore simplistic way. Bates writes: Wedgeworth’s treatment of concupiscence in relation to the queer Christian’s experience is the site of his most significant errors. […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Sacred Doctrine

The Eucharist and Spiritual Eating

John 6.22ff. is a text that has long been used in various ways and to various ends in debates about the Eucharist. Christ himself gives a clue to its proper interpretation in v. 63: “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is of no avail. The words that I have spoken to you […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene Philosophy

“Especially the Platonists”: Plato Owning Aristotle in Late Antiquity

The following passage is so over-quoted that I hesitate to quote it again (I discuss the general idea in an essay in this book), but I’m going to do it anyway to make just one tiny little point. That point is this: though Aristotle is enjoying something of a renaissance among “conservative” Christian theologians these […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine

The Analogy of Scripture: The Patristic Roots of the Reformation (9)

Let’s return again to the Westminster Confession of Faith on Scripture. In 1.9, the Divines say: IX. The infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture is the Scripture itself: and therefore, when there is a question about the true and full sense of any Scripture (which is not manifold, but one), it must be searched and […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Scripture Teaches All That Is Necessary for Salvation: The Patristic Roots of the Reformation (8)

I’d like to return to a point that I made in the previous post to emphasize it again, because, at the end of the day, it is extremely important. So, once more: the Westminster Divines say this: VII. All things in Scripture are not alike plain in themselves, nor alike clear unto all: yet those things […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine

Scripture as the Source of Dogma: The Patristic Roots of the Reformation (7)

In the first chapter of their confession of faith, on Holy Scripture, the Westminster Divines say (among other things): VI. The whole counsel of God concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man’s salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced from […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine

Sacraments in usu, Not in se: The Medieval Roots of the Reformation

A core principle of Reformational sacramentology was that the “presence” of the Lord was in the rites themselves as performed rather than (statically) in the elements themselves, and was to be accessed by faith. Or, to put it another way: that Christ was exhibited and offered objectively in the rites, but was appropriated subjectively by […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

The Real Absence and the Extra Calvinisticum: The Patristic Roots of the Reformation (5)

I’ve touched on the extra patristicum, er, extra calvinisticum before, here. The important idea in this connection is that the divine nature of Christ is omnipresent but his human body cannot be. This is a corollary of Chalcedonian Christology, viz. that the integrity of Christ’s two natures must be maintained in their hypostatic union in the person […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Early Church Fathers Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Sacraments as Visible Words: The Patristic Roots of the Reformation (4)

The Protestant Reformers regularly referred to the sacraments as visible words–that is, they communicate the same gospel and promises as the written word, but in a different form, one that could be handled, touched, tasted. And yet the sacramental elements are not self-explanatory. For that reason, they must be joined with the Word, such that […]