Blogging through the Institutes

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A friend of mine recently informed me that the guys over at the Reformation21 blog are undertaking the task of blogging through “The Institutes of the Christian Religion” by the great reformer John Calvin in 2009. If you have never heard of John Calvin, then please do look up more about him and the reformation period as you WILL be blessed by what you discover. I have thus decided, having recently purchased the newest edition of The Institutes released by Hendrickson Publishing Co, that I too would like to join them in this task. I’m excited with the prospect of digging deep into the Institutes , and having the knowledge and intellect of the guys at Ref21 to expound and explain them will certainly (hopefully!) help my simple mind achieve a decent level of comprehension of this literary and theological gem. I have two reasons for deciding to do this task;

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1) I want to know more about the mind of Calvin and the reformers, thus enhancing my understanding of reformed theology and how it can be applied to the 21st century. It is my hope that this will better equip me to preach the gospel (when I am afforded the opportunity), to evangelise, to increase my understanding of the Bible and to effectively communicate the reformed faith to others as I believe it to be the best representation of Biblical Christianity there is.

2) The biggy- My ultimate goal is that I will enter into a deeper relationship with Jesus, becoming more faithful to him in service and personal holiness, as I seek to daily deny myself, take up my cross, say no to the flesh and tempations of this world and yes to God alone. I hope that the reading of the Institutes will compliment my attempt to read through/study the whole Bible from cover-2-cover this year as well.

Every other week I’ll be posting a summary of what I’ve learnt FYA but, if I’m being honest, you would be better to check out the Ref21 blog as it will be a lot more trustworthy and detailed than my summary!! I’ll try and keep my summarys short and sweet as, according to Ligon Duncan, Calvin’s personal motto was “brevitas et claritas”….meaning ‘brief and clear!’ It would be rude not to attempt to do likewise, during what is the 500th anniversary of Calvin’s birth!

Check back next week for the first summary!

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3 comments on “Blogging through the Institutes

  1. A worthy goal indeed. I am always curious why Calvin must be held in such high esteem, since no matter how great the thinker, he was still but one man.

    • You are absolutley right pseudo…..we do not hold Calvin in high esteem as if he were greater than God himself or that his teaching is as close to Jesus as we get…Calvin himself if he were to be alive today would be quick to refute that and call himself an unworthy sinner. However, withouth doubt Calvin expounds scripture in a way that is very helpful and enlightening for the Christians soul….God raises up certain men and woman in each generation as a blessing for the church….be it their teaching or life example…..Calvin is one of the greatest theologians to have walked the earth, a gift from Jesus to His church, and as such that is why we pay attention to his teaching as we do…he was part of the reformation of the church away from Rome’s extrabiblical teachings and helped reground the church in the Bible. Of course Calvin was not without his faults though…of that we can be certain also!!

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