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

Melanchthon on the Church and the Word (5)

In today’s selection, Melanchthon affirms both that the church has never ceased to exist, from its establishment in the time of Genesis all the way up to the present, and that it nevertheless has often been quite small. This he proves from, for example, the case of Noah. Still, God does not let the church […]

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

Melanchthon on the Church and the Word (4)

In today’s post, Melanchthon cites one more patristic source (Origen) as an example of how the church’s authority is rightly deployed.  He then proceeds to sketch his understanding of the relation of the church to the Word and to give his definitions of what the church (1) is not, and (2) is. The church at […]

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

Melanchthon on the Church and the Word (3)

In today’s post, Melanchthon begins to marshal patristic support for his understanding of the relative weight of various authorities in theology. Melanchthon’s high view of both Scripture and patristic antiquity are clear in what follows from his use of Tertullian, Irenaeus, and Basil.   On the Church and the Authority of the Word of God (Continued) […]

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

Melanchthon on the Church and the Word (2)

This is just a short one for today. In this passage, Melanchthon sketches how one ought to affirm the supreme authority of Scripture without going overboard. His concern for antiquity echoes Zanchi’s wonderful statement that “I, certainly, do not depart from antiquity unless I have been compelled.” Of particular note in this regard is the […]

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

Melanchthon on the Church and the Word (1)

A new week; time for a new series. This one, which will last for a while, will be on Melanchthon’s treatise De ecclesia et autoritate verbi dei (“On the Church and the Authority of the Word of God”), first published in 1539. My translation, which will be the first into English (I think? I could […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Humanizing the Reformers (2): Luther to Jonas on the Death of Melanchthon’s Son

In a previous post, we looked at Melanchthon’s response to the birth of Joachim Camerarius’s daughter and to the death of his own son, Georg, in August of 1529. Two days after that event, Martin Luther wrote to his friend Justus Jonas about Georg’s death and Melanchthon’s grief. (The letter is mentioned here.) Luther notes […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Humanizing the Reformers: Melanchthon on Childbirth and Child Death

From the vantage-point of centuries, it can be difficult to remember that the magisterial Reformers–or, indeed, any other historical figures–were actual human beings, made of the same stuff as we are, subject to the same joys and sorrows we share. In Act 3 of The Merchant of Venice, Shylock says, of Jews and Christians:   […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Melanchthon on Poetry (1): “Great Is the Power of Music”

On August 1, 1537, Philip Melanchthon wrote a letter to the Lutheran poet Eobanus Hessus intended to serve as prefatory material for his versification of the Psalter, the Psalterium Davidis carmine redditum (David’s Psalter Rendered in Verse), in which Hessus put all 150 Psalms into Latin elegiac couplets. (Martin Luther wrote a letter to Hessus […]

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Archive Authors E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Calvin’s Sacraments

In a letter to Philip Melanchthon from August 1554, Calvin writes in part to show whether and how far he is in agreement with Luther’s sacramentology. Clamavit tota vita Lutherus, non alia de re se contendere, nisi ut suam sacramentis virtutem assereret. Luther cried out with his whole life that he was not contending about anything […]

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Archive Eric Parker Natural Law Nota Bene

Melanchthon’s Commentary on Romans & Proofs for the Existence of God

Many TCI readers will be pleased to know that the second edition of Philip Melanchthon’s Commentary on Romans published by Concordia Publishing House back in 2010 is now available on Amazon in ebook format for only $9.99. The second edition is a reprint of the first edition with Fred Kramer’s translation from 1992 which had gone […]