Archive for the 'Calvin' Category

Calvin on Justification

May 25, 2009

JCalvinBut we define justification as follows: the sinner, received into communion with Christ, is reconciled to God by his grace, while, cleansed by Christ’s blood, he obtains forgiveness of sins, and clothed with Christ’s righteousness as if were his own, he stands confident before the heavenly judgement seat.

Calvin, Institutes, 3.17.8


Wonderful Exchange

May 22, 2009

JCalvinCalvin on Union with Christ

This is the wonderful exchange which, out of his measureless benevolence, he has made with us: that, becoming Son of man with us, he has made us sons of God with him; that, by his descent to earth, he has prepared an ascent to heaven for us; that, by taking on our mortality, he has conferred his immortality upon us; that, accepting our weakness, he has strengthened us by his power; that, receiving our poverty unto himself, he has transferred his wealth to us; that, taking the weight of our iniquity upon himself (which oppressed us), he has clothed us with his righteousness.

Calvin, Institutes, 4.17.2

Calvin on Baptism

May 22, 2009

JCalvinBut we must realize that at whatever time we are baptized, we are once for all washed and purged for our whole life. Therefore, as often as we fall away, we ought to recall the memory of our baptism and fortify our mind with it, that we may always be sure and confident of the forgiveness of sins. For, though baptism, administered only once, seemed to have passed, it was still not destroyed by subsequent sins. For Christ’s purity has been offered us in it; his purity ever flourishes; it is defiled by no spots, but buries and cleanses away all our defilements.

Calvin, Institutes, 4.15.3

Calvin on Providence

February 19, 2009

JCalvinBut we must so cherish moderation that we do not try to make God render account to us, but so reverence his secret judgments as to consider his will the truly just cause of all things. When dense clouds darken the sky, and a violent tempest arises, because a gloomy mist is cast over our eyes, thunder strikes our ears and all our senses are benumbed with fright, everything seems to us to be confused and mixed up; but all the while a constant quiet and serenity ever remain in heaven. So must we infer that, while the disturbances in the world deprive us of judgment, God out of the pure light of his justice and wisdom tempers and directs these very movements in the best-conceived order to a right end. And surely on this point it is sheer folly that many dare with greater license to call God’s works to account, and to examine his secret plans, and to pass as rash a sentence on matters unknown as they would on the deeds of mortal men. For what is more absurd than to use this moderation toward our equals, that we prefer to suspend judgment rather than be charged with rashness; yet haughtily revile the hidden judgments of God, which we ought to hold in reverence?

Calvin, Institutes, 1.17.1

He Has Shown Himself So Generous Towards Us

January 30, 2009

Calvin on taking refuge in our baptism at Reformed Blogging.

This Peculiar Power

January 21, 2009

“Now this power which is peculiar to Scripture is clear from the fact that of human writings, however artfully polished, there is none capable of affecting us at all comparably. Read Demosthenes or Cicero; read Plato, Aristotle, and others of that tribe. They will, I admit, allure you, delight you, move you, enrapture you in wonderful measure. But betake yourself from them to this sacred reading. Then, in spite of yourself, so deeply will it affect you, so penetrate your heart, so fix itself in your very marrow, that, compared with its deep impression, such vigor as the orators and philosophers have will nearly vanish. Consequently, it is easy to see that the Sacred Scriptures, which so far surpass all gifts and graces of human endeavor, breathe something divine.”

Calvin, Institutes, 1.8.1


Real Religion

January 20, 2009

“Here indeed is pure and real religion: faith so joined with an earnest fear of God that this fear also embraces willing reverence, and carries with it such legitimate worship as is prescribed in the law. And we ought to note this fact even more diligently: all men have a vague general veneration for God, but very few really reverence him; and wherever there is great ostentation in ceremonies, sincerity of heart is rare indeed.”

Calvin, Institutes, 1.2.2

Calvin’s Institutes

January 1, 2009

john_calvinIn honor of Calvin’s 500th birthday anniversary a few organizations are reading through the Institutes in 2009. Princeton Theological Seminary has a page up on their website and they also will be providing audio clips from the Institutes. You can also subscribe to the audio clips as podcasts.  Of note is that  Princeton recommends the McNeill/Battles translation of 1960 published by Westminster John Knox Press.
Reformation 21 also provides a reading schedule to read through the Institutes in 2009 and they will be blogging through the Institutes throughout the year. Ref21 encourages readers to follow along.

Calvin the Liturgist: How ‘Calvinist’ is Your Church’s Liturgy?

December 2, 2008

Calvin’s service opened with the minister entering, positioning himself behind the communion table, and saying: “Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 124:8).

A call to confession of sins and an appropriate prayer followed. In Strassburg he used an absolution at this point in the service (“To all those who thus repent and seek Jesus Christ for their salvation, I pronounce absolution in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”); in Geneva he replaced the absolution with a statement of forgiveness. The singing of the first table of the Law, followed by a prayer and the singing of the second table, concluded the service of confession.

As the people sang the second table of the Law, the minister entered the pulpit (in later years Calvin conducted the entire service from the pulpit). The minister then led the congregation in a prayer for illumination, concluded with the Lord’s Prayer. The singing of a psalm, a Scripture reading, and the sermon followed.

Calvin’s service ended with collections for the poor, intercessions, singing the Apostles’ Creed, brief pastoral encouragements, singing another psalm, and the Aaronic benediction.

Read more at Reformed Worship.