Liturgy and worship is something that always draws controversy. Bring up the discussion of liturgy and worship with two people and you will have two opinions. Include in that discussion a congregation and the conversation just became unmanageable. Sometimes members of a Reformed church will simply claim “RPW”, as if that settles the discussion. The … Continue reading Calvin and the Church of Geneva
Ambrose (lived 340-397) was an archbishop. He was considered one of the doctors of the Church because of his wisdom in dealing with issues of the Church. Calvin, writes concerning Ambrose in his “A Treatise of the Eternal Predestination of God”. Ambrose summarizes why all men don’t come to Christ, because God does not effectually … Continue reading Why Don’t All Come to Repentance and Faith in Christ?
The season of Lent is coming upon us. I’m reminded of Lent annually when those who are enamored with perhaps a higher liturgy of worship because it connects them to a historical faith inquire about it. Calvin has a section in the 4th book 12th chapter of his Institutes labelled “The use and purpose of … Continue reading Lent. Wash Your Face
In discussions against Calvinism it appears that little is remembered about the reasons for a Reformed anthropology. Part of this can also be seen in the Reformed understanding of the person and work of Jesus. Christ’s work is directly related to who he is. This Christmas we focus often on the birth of Christ and … Continue reading Another Reformed Look at the Incarnation
The words of God are clear and distinct, "Obedience is better than sacrifice." "In vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men," (1 Sam. 15:22; Matt. 15:9). Every addition to his word, especially in this matter, is a lie. Mere "will worship" (ethelothreeskeia) is vanity. This is the decision, and when … Continue reading Obedience Over Sacrifice
During the Reformation, among many discussion was the essence and efficacy of the sacraments. Calvin's polemics against this would focus on the necessity of repeated infusion of grace - ex opere operato - in all sacraments. Calvin writing against confirmation: Have not we then been buried in baptism with Christ, made partakers in his death, that we … Continue reading The Council of Miletus, Baptism, and Confirmation
Wherefore, let no one be perplexed because ancient writers labor to distinguish the one from the other. Their views ought not to be in such esteem with us as to shake the certainty of Scripture. For who would listen to Chrysostom denying that remission of sins was included in the baptism of John (Hom. in … Continue reading Where Calvin Differs With the Fathers