Archive Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine Steven Wedgeworth

Douglas Wilson and Justification

Douglas Wilson is the embodiment of “RIP my mentions.” His controversies range from politics to theology to literature. People laud him as a visionary leader, and people deride him as a cult leader. To some he is too conservative. To others, he has departed from the true Reformed tradition. Wilson has copycat followers, deranged former […]

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 […]

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

“Out of the Mouth of Infants”

Steven posted the other day on Ursinus on the capacity of infants to have faith in Christ. Because I had been thinking about that post, I was struck this morning by the following passage from Matthew 21. After Jesus has entered Jerusalem and cleansed the temple of the buyers, sellers, and money-changers, Matthew writes: And […]

Archive Philosophy Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine Simon Kennedy

Thomas Hobbes’s Reformed Soteriology

In Leviathan Thomas Hobbes writes that faith in Jesus Christ is not attainable, except by the sovereign gift of God. He says the following, in the context of a discussion about the role of the Christian person in a Christian commonwealth: It is the doctrine of St. Paul concerning Christian faith in general, “Faith cometh by hearing,” […]

Archive Authors Eric Parker Natural Law Nota Bene Sacred Doctrine

Bart Keckermann on the Nature of the Regenerate Soul

Christians often talk about the transforming power of the Gospel of Christ, but for many who do not completely grasp the basic principles of human nature, the nature of this transformation may seem a complete mystery. And, when the inner struggles of faith are met with the ignorance of these basic principles – or if […]

Authors Eric Parker Reformed Irenicism

What Is Calvin’s Take on Images of Jesus?

Unless I am missing something quite obvious, which is possible, the question of whether images of Jesus violate the second commandment does not receive a clear and definitive answer in Calvin’s major works. In his Institutes (I.11) he fails to explicitly mention images of Jesus. He only refers to images of “God” or the adoration of created […]

Archive Eric Parker Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine

Sacraments are Media of Cognition

Zacharius Ursinus, the famed theology professor at the University of Heidelberg and author of the Heidelberg Catechism, took part in a public disputation on the sacraments at the Academy of Rostock in the year 1581. It is not clear from the text whether he was present at the disputation, but he apparently made annotations on the topics that were […]

Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Ecclesiastical Polity Nota Bene Sacred Doctrine

The Spirit without Measure

Herewith comments from Calvin on John 3:33-4: “Whoever receives his testimony sets his seal to this, that God is true. For he whom God has sent utters the words of God, for he gives the Spirit without measure.” First, on v. 33: for there to be faith–that is, for there to be a “church” at […]

Africa Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

The Pitfalls of Private Faith

In Chapter 15 of My Bondage and My Freedom, Frederick Douglass describes the ultimate incoherency of the notion of a fully privatized faith, which can lead a man to act with love at one time and utter malice at another while seemingly feeling no cognitive dissonance from it. In this specific instance, he has just told […]

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

The Parts of Repentance

In chapter 12 of the first classis of doctrines in the Enchiridion  Theologicum (pp. 102ff.), Niels Hemmingsen identifies three parts (partes) of repentance (poenitentia): contrition, faith, and new obedience (contritio, fides, nova obediantia). This third might raise some eyebrows (especially given his title for the chapter, where there are only two parts: poenitentia cum suis partibus, contritione et […]