Category Archives: Reformational Ruminations

Answering Newman: A Primer for Protestants (I)

Last week, I had an illuminating talk about matters of Church history and Protestantism with a friend I haven’t seen for about 13 years. Like many Protestants, he’s run into what my Catholic friend Frank of Fides Quaerens Intellectum calls … Continue reading

Posted in Apologetics, On History, Reformational Ruminations | 1 Comment

“Barely Capable of Discussing the Discoveries of Their Forerunners”

This quote from Richard of Bury (1281-1385) is surely somewhat rhetorical, but I think it nevertheless strikes home as a critique of our own shallow world: Although the novelties of the moderns were never disagreeable to our desires, who have … Continue reading

Posted in 14th Century, Reformational Ruminations | 3 Comments

More on “Total” Depravity

Peter Leithart has this interesting short post on Bavinck and Total Depravity. I’m not sure where he’s quoting from, but it’s very interesting. Perhaps it’s because much of my early formation in Calvinism came from populist TULIP-thumpers and Van Tillian … Continue reading

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Folly of the Theologians

Erasmus’ Praise of Folly spares no one from the withering critique of personified Folly. Folly chastises Scholars who waste their lives writing Books full of the most abstruse and exquisitely refined intellectual wranglings just so they can receive the praises … Continue reading

Posted in Reformational Ruminations, Satire, The Renaissance | Leave a comment

“Jesus Isn’t Reformed”

I happened to see this very provocative statement on, of all places, a Reformed blog. I don’t know the confessional orientations of most people who read this blog, but I assume that some at least are Reformed types (as I … Continue reading

Posted in Apologetics, Reformational Ruminations | 9 Comments

Calvinists and Cartesians (Part III)

Walter E. Rex in his book Essays on Pierre Bayle and Religious Controversy (Martinus Nijhoff: The Hague, 1965) makes a sustained argument that throughout the 17th century Calvinist orthodoxy was fundamentally altered by currents of the developing “Age of Reason” … Continue reading

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No Intermediates

After a 15 or so page running battle about words with the Sophists Euthydemus and Dionysodorus, Socrates concludes that the problem with the Sophists is that “they cannot be made to understand intermediates.” For the Sophists, words could only mean … Continue reading

Posted in De Rhetorica, Reformational Ruminations | Leave a comment

Calvinists and Cartesians (Part II)

In the first part of this series, we looked at Ernestine van der Wall’s short article on the alliance between Cartesian philosophy and the 17th century school of Reformed theology known as Cocceianism. In this part, we will look at … Continue reading

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Calvinists and Cartesians (Part I)

I’ve been saying for several years now that among popular Calvinist writers and apologists the philosophy of Rene Descartes to no small extent determines how they present Reformed Theology, its relationship to what they call “the plain meaning of Scripture,” … Continue reading

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Iustitiam Carnis and “Total” Depravity

Philiip Melanchthon identifies the hotly-disputed issue of free will as being “about the deterioration of human strength through sin, man’s inability to free himself from sin and death, and about the works that man is able to do in such … Continue reading

Posted in 16th Century, Reformational Ruminations, Van Tillianism | Leave a comment