Portal:Calvinism

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John Calvin

Calvinism (also called the Reformed tradition, the Reformed faith, or Reformed theology) is a theological system and an approach to the Christian life. The Reformed tradition was advanced by several theologians such as Martin Bucer, Heinrich Bullinger, Peter Martyr Vermigli, and Huldrych Zwingli, but this branch of Christianity bears the name of the French reformer John Calvin because of his prominent influence on it and because of his role in the confessional and ecclesiastical debates throughout the 16th century.

Today, this term also refers to the doctrines and practices of the Reformed churches of which Calvin was an early leader. Less commonly, it can refer to the individual teaching of Calvin himself. The particulars of Calvinist theology may be stated in a number of ways. Perhaps the best known summary is contained in the five points of Calvinism, though these points identify the Calvinist view on soteriology rather than summarizing the system as a whole. Broadly speaking, Calvinism stresses the sovereignty or rule of God in all things — in salvation but also in all of life. This concept is seen clearly in the doctrines of predestination and total depravity.

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James VI and I
James VI and I (19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scots as James VI, and King of England and King of Ireland as James I. He ruled in Scotland as James VI from 24 July 1567, when he was only one year old, succeeding his mother Mary, Queen of Scots, who had been forced to abdicate. Regents governed during his minority, which ended officially in 1578. On 24 March 1603, as James I, he succeeded the last Tudor monarch of England and Ireland, Elizabeth I, who died without issue. He then ruled England, Scotland and Ireland for 22 years, until his death at the age of 58. Towards the Puritan clergy, with whom he debated at the Hampton Court Conference of 1604, James was at first strict in enforcing conformity, inducing a sense of persecution amongst many Puritans; but ejections and suspensions from livings became fewer as the reign wore on. A notable success of the Hampton Court Conference was the commissioning of a new translation of the Bible, completed in 1611, which became known as the King James Bible, considered a masterpiece of Jacobean prose. In Scotland, James attempted to bring the Scottish kirk "so neir as can be" to the English church and reestablish the episcopacy, a policy which met with strong opposition. In 1618, James's bishops forced his Five Articles of Perth through a General Assembly; but the rulings were widely resisted. James was to leave the church in Scotland divided at his death, a source of future problems for his son.

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"There is not one little blade of grass, there is no color in this world that is not intended to make men rejoice."

-- John Calvin (Wikiquote), As quoted in The Value of Convenience: Genealogy of Technical Culture (1993) by Thomas F. Tierney, p. 128

"There is not a square inch in the whole domain of our human existence over which Christ, who is Sovereign over all, does not cry: 'Mine!'"

-- Abraham Kuyper (Wikiquote), As quoted in Abraham Kuyper, A Centennial Reader, (1998) James D. Bratt, editor, p. 488

"I thank Thee first because I was never robbed before; second, because although they took my purse they did not take my life; third, because although they took my all, it was not much; and fourth because it was I who was robbed, and not I who robbed."

-- Matthew Henry (Wikiquote), As quoted in Preaching Today, by John Yates, tape #110

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