Rick Phillips
Let me conclude this week's blogs on the Institutes with a general plug for the value of thinking about God in a Trinitarian way. We rightly talk about having a personal relationship with God, so we need to realize that God is three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We relate personally with...
Justin Taylor
In these final sections of chapter 13 Calvin considers two arguments against the Trinity. Theologically, the anti-Trinitarians argued that Christ's subordination to the Father was counterevidence to the Trinity (section 26). Historically, they appealed to the Church Fathers against the Trinity (...
Justin Taylor
We now move into chapter 14, on creation of the world and man (sections 1-2), the role of angels (sections 3-12) and demons (sections 13-19), and the lessons we should learn (sections 20-22). Today we look at the first five sections. In the first and fourth especially, Calvin continues to hammer...
Justin Taylor
In section 6 Calvin shows that God often dispenses and administers his goodness to us through his angels. Do we each have a guardian angel (section 7)? Calvin doesn't know. He does know from Scripture that the protection of an individual is not the task of one angel only, but "all with one consent...
Justin Taylor
Section 12 concludes Calvin's discussion of angels with the plea--certainly relevant today!--that unless we see the angels as leading us to God, we are being misled in our understanding. In sections 13-19 Calvin will now look at what Scripture teaches about fallen angels. If we care about God's...
Justin Taylor
Calvin wraps up his discussion of the demons with section 19, showing that demons are real and not impulses or inspirations that God arouses in our minds (cf. section 9 on the reality of angels). Moving on to creation, Calvin encourages "pious delight" in the works of God's "most beautiful theatre...
Ligon Duncan
Calvin now turns to the creation of mankind (1.15.1), and he does so with a view to further elaborate his assertion that we cannot have a clear and complete knowledge God unless we have a corresponding knowledge of ourselves. Calvin does not have in view here some sort of an introspective,...
Ligon Duncan
Calvin, having introduced the subject of our creation in the image of God in 1.15.3, argues that we learn what the image of God entails not only by studying man as originally created (Genesis 1-2), but by studying what Scripture says about the image of God as it is renewed in Christ. Calvin says: "...
Ligon Duncan
1.15.8 is a "rock your world" important passage in the Institutes. In it, Calvin explains a fundamental source of confusion in the quest for "free will.""The Philosophers," says Calvin, by discussing the question of free will apart from understanding the consequences of the fall "were seeking in a...
Ligon Duncan
For Calvin, providence means God governing, not merely watching, his creation (1.16.4). Calvin is emphasizing that providence entails more than "bare foreknowledge." It involves God's will, and his acts. Nor is it merely a general control, but a specific direction. Indeed, Calvin asserts that God "...

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