But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

The Calvinist International - Apologetic Report
Friday, 22 September 2017 04:01

Are Good Works Sins? (1)

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All Reformed Protestants deny that sanctification will be perfect or complete in this life. Thus even “good works” are performed by those who still must combat abiding sin.

Believers, then, cannot be perfectly good. Nor can their works be perfectly good. But does this mean that they...

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Wednesday, 20 September 2017 02:13

Westminsterian Aristotelianism: Marriage (4)

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As I noted last time, Samuel Willard’s next order of business in his exposition of Westminster Shorter Catechism Q/A 64 is to discuss the mutual duties of husbands and wives–those to which they are equally obliged–before discussing their peculiar or proper duties–those...

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“Theosis” and “deification” are culpably ambiguous terms. On the other hand, using one of them in the title did get you to click on the link, did it not?

There are unobjectionable (as well as objectionable) ways of construing the concept behind the term, and there were senses...

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Before Emperor Charles V st the Diet of Worms in April 1521, Martin Luther famously said, “Here I stand.”

Or maybe he didn’t.

We do know, however, that he said the following:

Unless I am convicted by Scripture and plain reason–I do not accept the authority of popes and...

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Tuesday, 12 September 2017 05:08

Andreas Hyperius Defines the Summa Theologiae

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The Flemish theologian Andreas Hyperius (1511-64), 1 in the preface to his posthumous Methodus theologiae (Method of Theology) (1567), offers a brief compend of the sum and scope of Scripture (and, therefore, of theology, of which Scripture of the principium cognoscendi, or...

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Monday, 11 September 2017 07:11

Dat Old Debbel Tritheism?

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So I do want to point out the virtual impossibility of talking about these things without “sounding like” we might be drifting toward a problem. If the Son is the one who made the actual decision, where did the unified divine will (that which makes decisions) go? If Jesus made...

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Wednesday, 06 September 2017 05:22

Westminsterian Aristotelianism: Marriage (3)

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Previously, we remarked that Samuel Willard first subdivides “political” relation into “public” and “private” (=”oeconomical,” i.e., pertaining to the household), and then divides the latter into the relations of husband and wife and master and...

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Tuesday, 05 September 2017 06:02

Reformational Eclecticism

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Last week, I posted a couple of excerpts from Richard Muller’s discussion of method among the Protestant orthodox or “scholastics” and their Reformational predecessors.

Later in the same volume, he includes a useful summation of their basic philosophical stance. Though...

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Monday, 04 September 2017 11:22

A Prayer for Civil Society

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Once again, from A Book of Family Worship, this time a good example of how to pray for one’s society and political order. Herewith the intercession from the prayer for Monday evening of the third week in the cycle–a prayer that of course assumes that God is the Lord of both...

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Friday, 01 September 2017 06:27

A Prayer for Households

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In 1916, the Presbyterian Board of Publication and Sabbath School Work published A Book of Family Worship, which includes, among other things, a cycle of morning and evening prayers for five weeks, thus designed to cover one month.

The prayer for each morning or evening consists of an...

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Thursday, 31 August 2017 03:22

A Review of James Dolezal’s All That Is In God

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James Dolezal –All That is in God: Evangelical Theology and the Challenge of Classical Christian Theism(Grand Rapids: Reformation Heritage Books, 2017), 162 + xiv pages.

James Dolezal has written an important book, a passionate and pastoral defense of a doctrine (divine simplicity and its...

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Toward the beginning of the first volume of his Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics, Richard Muller makes an important qualification with respect to the use of “scholasticism” by the Reformed: it was not identical to medieval scholasticism(s), but was instead the offspring of...

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I’m excited to announce a miniseries of essays between Prof. Thomas Pink of King’s College London and myself. Earlier this year, I posted two essays on Roman Catholicism and religious liberty (here and here). These were brought to the attention of Prof. Pink, and he and I began an email...

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Wednesday, 23 August 2017 00:44

Wesminsterian Aristotelianism: Marriage (2)

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In the last post, we saw that Samuel Willard recognizes only one natural “order of superiority,” that of parents over children. All other relations of superior and inferior are what he calls “political.” We further saw that he divides the “political” into the two...

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In the first chapter of Homiletics and Pastoral Theology, “Relation of Sacred Eloquence to Biblical Exegesis,” W.G.T. Shedd discusses what “originality” might mean for the “sacred orator,” for he has just said that the study of sacred revelation does indeed...

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Thursday, 10 August 2017 04:25

John Calvin on the Use of Goods and Money

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Some of our friends are arguing about Capitalism and Marxism, so I thought we would do what we usually do– turn to the archives! What did the stuffy dead guys say about this? That’s a big task, though (and one that we have been doing piece by piece over time), and so, true to form,...

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Wednesday, 09 August 2017 03:49

Calvin’s Vergil, Calvin’s Lucretius

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Continuing an exercise begun the other day

Calvin refers to the Roman poets Vergil and Lucretius exactly once in the Institutes of the Christian Religion, in the same passage of 1.5.5, “The Knowledge of God Conspicuous in the Creation, and Continual Government of the World.”

T...

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Tuesday, 08 August 2017 04:54

Augustinian Descartes

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In Part 6 of the Discourse on Method, Descartes objects to the way in which the inquiry for truth was, in his experience, conducted in the schools. He writes:

But though I recognize my extreme liability to error, and scarce ever trust to the first thoughts which occur to me, yet-the experience I...

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Tuesday, 08 August 2017 01:40

What is Protestant Scholasticism? (A Primer)

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A Theological Swear Word

Few words in Christian circles conjure up as much misunderstanding as “scholasticism.” Rigid, rationalistic Aristotelian philosophizing, also known as “scholasticism,” entered the church at various point in church history (i.e., the Medievals and...

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Monday, 07 August 2017 12:43

Calvin’s Plato

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Mark Jones has a recent post on a subject long of interest on this site, viz. the use of Greek and Roman sources by Protestant theologians. As a case study that confirms Dr. Jones’ point, one might look at the way in which John Calvin makes use of Plato in his Institutes of the Christian...

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Monday, 07 August 2017 00:18

Reformed Theologians Using Pagan Sources

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For Reformed Catholics, appreciation extends well beyond our Reformed heritage. It has to. For our appreciation of the Christian tradition to cease to move beyond our Reformed borders is in fact to cease to be Reformed. 1 But just how far can appreciation extend? Even to pagan sources? Yes, indeed.

A...

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Friday, 04 August 2017 03:52

Westminsterian Aristotelianism: Marriage

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In Politics 1259a-b, Aristotle distinguishes between the type of authority fathers have over children and that possessed by husbands over wives as follows:

“Of household management we have seen that there are three parts—one is the rule of a master over slaves, which has...

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Wednesday, 02 August 2017 03:53

In Praise of Mayberry

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Stephen Wolfe has an excellent article up today at Mere Orthodoxy in defense of what is called (usually derisively) “cultural Christianity.” The article’s principles should be examined and thought through before unleashing a series of BUT WHAT ABOUTs. The piece has the...

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Monday, 31 July 2017 06:16

Calvin on Christ’s Cry of Abandon

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Pastor Tim Keller has posted a follow-up to the ideas and concepts that Mark Jones highlighted a few days ago concerning Christ’s cry of abandon from the cross. There’s a lot that could be said, but so far it’s simply worth nothing that it is a very good conversation that...

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Monday, 31 July 2017 03:36

Postscript on Mediation

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One more update on the topic Pastor Wedgeworthand I have recently posted on, the end of Christ’s priestly mediation between the Father and the faithful in the eschaton.

The annotator of Augustine’s On the Trinity, which I discussed in the first post, in the NPNF series was...

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