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Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649 (Studies in Christian History and Thought) [Paperback]

By R. T. Kendall (Author)
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Item description for Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649 (Studies in Christian History and Thought) by R. T. Kendall...

The author's thesis is that those who formed the Westminster Confession of Faith, which is regarded as Calvinism, in fact departed from John Calvin on two points (1) the extent of the Atonement and (2) the ground of assurance of salvation.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Paternoster
Pages   263
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 6" Height: 8.75"
Weight:   0.95 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 1997
Publisher   AUTHENTIC UK
Series  Studies In Christian History And  
ISBN  0853648271  
ISBN13  9780853648277  

Availability  0 units.

More About R. T. Kendall

R. T. Kendall Dr. R. T. Kendall, renowned pastor and author, spent 25 years as senior minister of the historic Westminster Chapel in London. He has authored numerous bestselling books, conducts conferences all over the world and is a columnist for "Ministry Today". He lives with his wife, Louise, near Nashville, Tennessee.

In RT's own words... Our premise is this. It seems to us that there has been a ‘silent divorce’ in the church, speaking generally, between the Word and the Spirit. When there is a divorce, some children stay with the mother, some stay with the father.

In this divorce, there are those on the ‘word’ side and those on the ‘Spirit’ side. What is the difference?

Take those of us who represent the Word. Our message is this: we must earnestly contend for the faith ‘once delivered unto the saints’ (Jude 3), we need get back to expository preaching, sound doctrine such as justification by faith, the sovereignty of God and the internal testimony of the Spirit as taught by men like Martin Luther, John Calvin and Jonathan Edwards. What is wrong with this emphasis? Nothing. It is exactly right.

Take those whose emphasis has been on the Holy Spirit. What is the message? We need to rediscover the power that was manifested in the Book of Acts, there needs to be a demonstration of signs, wonders and miracles; we need to see the gifts of the Spirit operating in the church – that the world will once again take notice of the church so that people are left without excuse. What is wrong with this emphasis? Nothing. It is exactly right.

We believe that the need of the hour is not one or the other – but both! It is our view that this simultaneous combination will result in spontaneous combustion! And then, but almost certainly only then, will the world be shaken once again by the message of the church.

This was the message I have preached over the years at Westminster Chapel in London. This is what we are endeavoring to preach in America and around the world. This is not all we preach but it is certainly one of the main things we preach alongside the need for total forgiveness and learning to be sensitive to the voice of the Holy Spirit. We need your prayers. God bless you.

R. T. Kendall currently resides in London.

R. T. Kendall has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Understanding Theology

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1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living > General
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Criticism & Interpretation > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Criticism & Interpretation
4Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Reference > Bible > General
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649 (Studies in Christian History and Thought)?

Interesting Reading On John Calvin's Theology  Jan 10, 2008
The topic of John Calvin's theology regarding the atonement has long been debated in the evangelical Church. Even during the time of Calvin until the present, his teachings on the atonement have been controversial to say the least. Calvin seems to have taught a limited atonement view (particular redemption; Christ died only for the elect and not for the sins of all of humanity) in his INSTITUTES OF THE CHRISTIAN RELIGION. However, many later claimed that it was not Calvin who first taught a limited atonement view but it was his student and sucessor in Geneva, Theodore Beza.

Dr. Kendall, long time preaching pastor of Westminister Chapel in London, England, wrote this for his doctrinal disertation in which he sought to show that it was not Calvin's teachings that led to modern Calvinism but it was instead the teachings of Beza. Kendall pulled from the various post-Institutes teachings, writings, and sermons of John Calvin to portray a picture of Calvin that seems to teach a universal atonement (or unlimited atonement). Indeed, Calvin many times departed from his Institutes when he later wrote his commentaries on the Bible. Kendall saw this as Calvin maturing and moving away from his earlier dogmatic doctrines. Kendall insists that it was Beza who took the Institutes of Calvin and made them the framework for future Calvinism.

While it is true that many Calvinist scholars have since come forth to deny Kendall's teachings, this work is still important in many ways. First, it shows that both Calvin and Calvinism doesn't have the congruency that many would like to believe it has. It shows that logically Calvinism may not always agree with the Scriptures. While Calvinist like to believe that Calvin always taught the "doctrines of grace", he seems to have been as most humans are and that is that he changed his mind from time to time on different issues. Secondly, it shows that Calvinism (unlike what Charles Spurgeon would love for us to believe) is not the gospel but a system of interpretation of the Scriptures. Thankfully, Calvin and Beza could disagree as would the Arminians later on dissagree with the Calvinist. We still need grace for one another despite our differences.

Overall, I would encourage people to read this book. Arminians naturally will love to see that Calvin often seemed to disagree with many of his earlier statements in his Institutes and seemed to teach an unlimited atonement. Calvinist will be glad to know that much of what Kendall writes here has been debated and written about by Calvinist theologians and it is safe to say that modern Calvinist do teach a limited atonement and can still find its basis in the works of Calvin.
Calvin and English Calvinism  Apr 3, 2006
Kendall does a masterful job of revealing Calvin's own thinking from his own writings. Today's followers of Beza and the English Puritans are reading back into the works of Calvin to make him say what he didn't say.

Buy the book. Read chapter one. Check out the footnotes for yourself. And you will be convinced that Calvin believed that Jesus paid the penalty for every person's sins.

I highly recommend this book.
Interesting, Controversial and Discredited  Nov 22, 2005
There are a number of interesting aspects to this book, but the main thesis of the book, which is that Calvin's successors in Geneva and England, including his handpicked successor Theodore Beza, moved away from Calvin and brought an series of emphases that were alien to Calvin, especially in regards to the partciluar redeption issue.
This theory has been entirely discredited by the exhaustive work of Richard Muller ("Post Reformation Reformed Dogmatics, in 4 volumes"), Paul Helm "Calvin and the Calvinsts", and the work of a number of scholars specializing in Theodore Beza (Jill Raitt et al.). Some of Kendall's errors are partially understandable, since this monograph was written well before the full works of the post-Calvin reformed theologians were commonly available as they became in the past 15 years, yet it is just poor scholarship to claim that Calvin himself was in favor of Universal Atonement. That shows a basic, and likely intentional disregard for clear facts and statements made repreatedly by Calvin.
Still, if you ignore the discredited polemic, there are some intersting things in this book. I's suggest reading the four books above, plus two or three on Beza first, then you won't be mislead by the wishful thinking of Kendall.

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