I call upon You, Lord, God of Abraham and God of Isaac and God of Jacob and Israel, You who are the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the God who, through the abundance of your mercy, was well-pleased towards us so that we may know You, who made heaven and earth, who rules over all, You who are the one and the true God, above whom there is no other God; You who, by our Lord Jesus Christ gave us the gift of the Holy Spirit, give to every one who reads this writing to know You, that You alone are God, to be strengthened in You, and to avoid every heretical and godless and impious teaching.

St Irenaeus of Lyons, Against the Heresies 3:6:4

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Promise of Catholic Calvinism, J. Tood Billings

In 1536, a 27 year old exile from France addressed Roman Catholic King Francis regarding a new religious movement that Francis opposed. This exile takes pains to deny that the teaching of the movement is, in fact "new" and "of recent birth." To the contrary, says the humanist scholar, the gospel preached in this movement is as "ancient" as Paul's gospel. Winchester Moreover, "if the contest were to be decided by patristic authority, the tide of victory would turn to our side."1 For the young Jean Calvin, the reform of the church entailed a rediscovery of the scriptures--and a rediscovery of the scriptural theology of the patristic writings from the church's first five centuries. Continue reading at Perspectives.

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