Kick Off Calvin’s 500th Birthday Celebration with WSC!

Westminster Seminary California is very happy to begin the year-long birthday bash for our favorite Reformer, John Calvin (1509-1564). We’re doing so with a conference 16-17 January, on the WSC campus, Calvin’s Legacy: Reforming the Church Today.

Which Has Priority: Private Devotion or Public Worship?

This question arises on the PB. I reply: Well, as I argue in RRC, there’s a strong case to be made from Scripture and the confession (defined broadly and narrowly) that, in Reformed theology, the public “means of grace” (the “due use . . . Continue reading →

Published Today: Ames, A Sketch of the Christian's Catechism

It’s volume 1 in the Classic Reformed Theology series. Thanks to Todd, Jay, Joel, and to the editorial committee for their work toward getting this series off the ground. Stay tuned for more details about the next two volumes, which are already . . . Continue reading →

WCF vs NCT: Which is More "Spiritual"?

One of the most persistent caricatures of Reformed orthodoxy is that it was (and remains) a lifeless, dead orthodoxy. Apparently some enthusiastic supporters of the so-called (self-described) “New Covenant” theology have taken up this view as a way of contrasting the piety . . . Continue reading →

Is Reformed Confessionalism Impious?

One of the earliest and most rhetorically powerful charges made by the proponents of the eighteenth-century (colonial) revivals was that their critics were either unregenerate or impious. Religious experience is usually defined by proponents of revival as being composed of certain religious . . . Continue reading →

Helm Replies to Lucas on the Nature of “Affections” in Edwards

Paul Helm wrote a very interesting critique of Edwards, one with which the HB has some sympathy. Sean Lucas replied by arguing that Helm had read too much into the noun “affections.” Helm has replied to Lucas by arguing that, in Edwards . . . Continue reading →

Calvin As Theologian of Consolation (Pt 1)

Wikipedia, that ubiquitous source of unimpeachable scholarship, defines “consolation” as “something of value, when one fails to get something of higher value….” That is precisely the opposite of what John Calvin (1509–64) meant by “consolation.”For Calvin, the consolation that Christ gives to . . . Continue reading →

Calvin As Theologian of Consolation (Pt 3)

II. His Theology of Consolation (1559 Institutes) In the previous installment we looked at the way Calvin read Paul’s epistles and how he drew from them a doctrine of consolation, of God’s presence with his people in Christ, by the Spirit, in . . . Continue reading →

Calvin as Theologian of Consolation (Pt 4)

Part 3: His Theology of Consolation in The Institutes. III. Consolation and Pastoral Ministry For Calvin, christian consolation is not only a theological reality but it is also the result of good pastoral practice. Christians often fail to appropriate the consolation they . . . Continue reading →

Calvin as Theologian of Consolation (Pt 5)

Part 4: Consolation And Pastoral Ministry IV. Consolation Preached In part one of this series we considered Calvin’s interpretation of several biblical passages on consolation. In part two we looked at how he harvested a theology of consolation from his exegetical work. . . . Continue reading →

Calvin On Instruments: "Stupid Imitation"

The musical instruments he mentions pertained to the time of instruction.1 Nor should we stupidly imitate a practice which was proper only for God’s old [covenant] people…. They were for use under the legal cult.2 John Calvin, From his commentary on Ps . . . Continue reading →

Directory for the Publick Worship of God

The Directory FOR The Publick Worship of God CHARLES I. Parl. 3. Sess. 5. An ACT of the PARLIAMENT of the KINGDOM of SCOTLAND, approving and establishing the
DIRECTORY for Publick Worship. AT EDINBURGH, February 6, 1645. THE Estates of Parliament now convened, . . . Continue reading →

Calvin On Monasticism

14. Still there was nothing with the Fathers less intended than to establish that kind of perfection which was afterwards fabricated by cowled monks, in order to rear up a species of double Christianity. For as yet the sacreligious dogma was not . . . Continue reading →