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Five Misunderstandings About Calvinism

Category Articles
Date May 14, 2019

‘Everywhere spoken against’ — that is no overstatement of the persistency and determination with which Calvinism has been opposed. For this reason, the orientation of the following pages is apologetic. It is hoped that this rather negative framework will afford opportunity for some positive and constructive exposition.

So far as it is faithful to New Testament Christianity, Reformed theology is bound to give offence. But over and above this, it must contend with misunderstanding, and a brief examination of the various forms which this has assumed is our concern.

1. Controversy with Arminianism is Unnecessary

We begin at the lowest point — the widespread assumption that the controversy between Calvinism and Arminianism is unnecessary. To some the questions are meaningless. James Denney affirmed categorically, ‘The questions once so fiercely debated about the extent of the atonement have no meaning!1 For others the disagreement is one merely of emphasis. Calvinism affirms the sovereignty of God, Arminianism the responsibility of man, and these are both necessary. We must, it is claimed, be Calvinists on our knees and Arminians on our feet. In the oft-quoted words of Simeon of Cambridge, ‘Sometimes I am a high Calvinist, at other times a low Arminian, so that if extremes will please you, I am your man; only remember, it is not to one extreme that we are to go, but both extrernes.’2

But this is an over-simplification. Whether Christ died in the same sense for all men, whether election is unconditional, whether man can overcome the grace of God — these questions are not meaningless. They are perfectly intelligible. Nor is the disagreement simply one of emphasis. Calvinism attaches at least as much importance as Arminianism to the doctrine of human responsibility,3 while the latter lacks, almost totally, an emphasis on the divine initiative in the application of redemption. The two systems cannot be amalgamated. Nor is there a third option. ‘All who are able to understand the question, and who have formed any fixed opinion regarding it, must be either Calvinists or Arminians. . . there are just two alternatives, and no medium between them.’4 The initiative lies either with God or with man; depravity is either total or partial; election is either unconditional or conditional; the atonement is either limited or universal; grace is either irresistible or resistible; the saints persevere or they do not persevere. We may dislike labels. But, even in these days the answers given to these questions identify Christians as either Calvinists or Arminians.

2. The Five Points are the Whole of Calvinism

Secondly, its emphasis on the divine sovereignty is not the whole of Calvinism. There is more to Reformed theology than the so-called Five Points, which define only one front — and by no means the most important front — of Calvinist polemics. It may be, as Mill claims, that ‘doctrines which are the badge of a sect retain more of their vitality than those common to all recognized sects,’ and that ‘more pains are taken by teachers to keep their meaning alive.’5 But Calvinism has not sinned conspicuously in this connection. It has endeavoured to proclaim the whole counsel of God, convinced, with Dr Charles Hodge, that the doctrine of the sovereignty of God ‘is to all other doctrines what the granite formation is to the other strata of the earth. It underlies and sustains them, but it crops out only here and there. So this doctrine should underlie all our preaching, and should be definitely asserted only now and then.’6

Reformed theology has held conscientiously to this principle. The authority of Scripture, the deity of Christ, gratuitous justification, objective atonement, the person and work of the Holy Spirit — these have been asserted as frequently and as firmly as any of the peculiarities of Calvinism. To change the perspective, Reformed theology has assimilated not only the doctrines of Augustine, but, with equal readiness, and equally completely, those of Tertullian, Athanasius, Anselm, and Luther.

On the other hand, while Calvin did not break with Christian tradition — the Reformed theology is the true heir of the Patristic7 — and while his doctrine of the divine initiative is not original either in its substance or in the importance attached to it, there is in Calvin an originality which is too often overlooked. He is not a pygmy standing on the shoulders of Augustine. Even the venerable ‘Rabbi’ Duncan harboured this sentiment, declaring, ‘There’s no such thing as Calvinism. The teachings of Augustine, Remigius, Anselm and Luther were just pieced together by one remarkable man, and the result baptised with his name.’8 But this, again, is an oversimplification. Calvin’s synthesis is itself remarkable — the plan, the choice of materials, the sense of proportion. His indebtedness to his predecessors no more detracts from his originality than does the fact that most of the petitions of the Lord’s Prayer can be paralleled from Jewish sources detract from the reputation of our Lord. But even more must be claimed. Calvin’s genius was not simply for organization and systematisation, it was inventive and not merely repetitive. This is seen in his doctrine of the divine Sonship — his insistence that our Lord was autotheos [God underived] bringing upon him the charge of heresy. It appears again in his emphasis [setting the course for Reformed theology] on the humanity of the Redeemer.9 It appears in his apologetics, emphasizing the innate and ineradicable awareness of deity, and the inward witness of the Holy Spirit; in his elaboration of the Presbyterian polity; and in his enunciation of the Puritan principle, asserting that God is not to be worshipped in any way not authorized in his Word. And it is seen, perhaps above all, in the three-fold analysis of Mediatorship, portraying our Lord as Prophet, Priest and King. Attention to these points should have dispelled long ago the illusion that Calvin was simply Augustinus redivivus.

3. The Sovereignty of Mere Will

Thirdly, the sovereignty in creation, providence and grace which Calvinism ascribes to God, is not the sovereignty of mere will. It is not the sovereignty of the caricatures — arbitrary and capricious, Neronic and diabolical, creating men to be damned. The charge is not always so over-stated. Calvin, according to James Orr, ‘errs in placing his root-idea of God in sovereign will rather than in love. Love is subordinated to sovereignty instead of sovereignty to love.’10 Besides the fact that there is a confusion here (love is an attribute, sovereignty is not, so that comparison is illegitimate), it is doubtful whether the charge can be sustained. ‘We give no countenance to the fiction of absolute power,’ says Calvin explicitly.11 Furthermore, his system is not a series of deductions from the principle of the divine sovereignty (as, for example, Schleiermacher’s is a deduction from the conception of religion as the feeling of absolute dependence). It is a series of deductions from Holy Scripture, ‘an assertion of the Word of God in all its complex variety and hidden unity.’12 Schleiermacher begins his exposition by defining piety as the consciousness of being absolutely dependent. But Calvin does not introduce his so-called ‘root-idea’ until Book III, Chapter Twenty-eight; and the fact that even then it is discussed only in connection with the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit suggests that his concern is less with sovereignty as such than with the sovereignty of grace. He could not commit the error of so much contemporary theology — taking the love of God for granted. To Calvin, redeeming love was not axiomatic. It was miraculous; and its every movement was majestic.

Later Calvinism, forced, as Calvin was not, to answer this specific charge, has explicitly defined itself in terms that repudiate it. Much is made by non-Calvinists of the position occupied by the doctrine of the divine sovereignty at the head of the Westminster Confession. Encountering this charge for the first time, few would suspect that the chapter which treats of the Divine Decrees is actually the third in the Confession. It is preceded by statements of the doctrine of Scripture and the doctrine of God and the Holy Trinity. This is surely significant. The source of Reformed theology is the self-authenticating Word of God. And the primary interest — the priority — of Reformed theology is God.  ‘most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, forgiving iniquity, transgression and sin.’13 Here is the fundamental principle of Calvinism — ‘a profound apprehension of God in his majesty, with the inevitably accompanying poignant realization of the exact nature of the relation sustained to him by the creature as such, and particularly by the sinful creature.’14 Hence, in the Westminster Confession, the decree is not that of arbitrary will. It is the decree of the God whose character is unfolded and confessed in Chapter II, a decree, a sovereignty, rooted not only in the unlimited power but also in the boundless benevolence of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This is typical of the whole of Reformed theology. It contends, not for sovereignty simply, but for the sovereignty of God, of Jehovah, of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. ‘It is a holy will that rules the universe,’ said ‘Rabbi’ Duncan, ‘a will in which loving-kindness is locked up, to be in due time displayed. It is a solemn thing that we and all creatures are at the disposal of pure will; but it is not merely free will, it is the free will of the sovereign Lord Jehovah, and therein it is distinguished from the abstractness and apparent arbitrariness of mere will.’15 And time and again in his brilliant essay, ‘Predestination,’ Benjamin Warfield sounds the same note, declaring, ‘It is the very heart of our Lord’s teaching that the Father’s good pleasure is a good pleasure, ethically right, and the issue of infinite love. . . The subject of the Decree is uniformly conceived as God in the fullness of his moral personality. . . the Biblical writers find their comfort continually in the assurance that it is the righteous, holy, faithful, loving God in whose hands rests the determination of the sequence of events and all their issues. . . the roots of the divine election are planted in his unsearchable love, by which it appears as the supreme act of grace. . . it is ever therefore specifically to the love of God that the Scriptures ascribe his elective decree, and they are never weary of raising our eyes from the act itself to its source in the divine compassion.’16 This is the only defensible Calvinism — the Calvinism of Isaiah 9: 6, ‘the sovereignty shall be upon his shoulder — wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.’ And every consequence of that sovereignty will, like the Incarnation, be decorous (Heb. 2: 10), in complete harmony with the divine perfections. Here our minds and our spirits find peace — in the conviction that, behind every incident in the providence of man, there must lie the consent of the whole nature of the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The love placarded on Calvary has the whole world in its hands.

4. Later Calvinism is Harsher than the Earlier

We come, in the fourth place, to the assertion that the later Calvinism is more harsh, because more coldly logical, than the earlier. According to T. F. Torrance, classical Calvinism, as expounded by the Synod of Dort and the Westminster Assembly is ‘an amalgam of Aristotelian logic and the Reformed faith.’17 Writers of this school are accustomed to laud Calvin and the earlier Reformed Confessions, less from love of them than from antipathy to a more articulate theology. The butt of the critics is the Westminster Confession. Burleigh’s strictures are typica: it ‘set forth in the clearest terms a Calvinism more rigid than Calvin’s’; it was ‘a carefully balanced statement of Calvinism in its later, scholastic phase,’; it was ‘a strait-waistcoat for eager souls who believed that personal religion was of greater importance than the niceties of correct dogmatic definition.’18

It is difficult to see why accuracy of statement and clarity in arrangement should be regarded as vicious in a theological document, or why it is a virtue that an ecclesiastical symbol should be eclectic. But some concessions may readily be made to the views of Torrance and Burleigh. An unwise dogmatism did indeed creep into Calvinism, immediate as against mediate imputation of sin, creationism as against traducianism, an uncritical commitment to determinism. So too did an unwise intellectualism, for example the Federal Theology of ‘The Sum of Saving Knowledge,’ too intricate, too contractual and too commercial.’19 But it may be affirmed, quite categorically, that none of these excesses finds a place in the Westminster Confession.

On the other hand, is it in the least damaging to the reputation of the Westminster Confession that it does not exactly reproduce the theology of 1520 or 1560? It is not in ill-humour that we ask, How many in Edinburgh were preaching the theology of 1860 — the theology of William Cunningham — in 1946? The issue is not whether Reformed theology was static in the interval between Calvin and Westminster. It was not. But if the Word of God affords material for answering the questions which the later Calvinism enunciated, then the progress and development are simply evidence of the vitality of Re-formed theology in that age.

One thing gives plausibility to the charge, ‘more Calvinistic than Calvin’, that in the Westminster Confession the chapter on the decrees is placed at the beginning. In the sense in which this is commonly understood (that this is the first chapter) it is, of course, not true. The governing conception is not the sovereignty of God, but the character of God, as revealed in Scripture. And two features of the Westminster doctrine of God are particularly noteworthy. First, that due place is given to the divine compassion — ‘most loving, gracious, merciful, long-suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, for-giving iniquity, transgression and sin.’20 Secondly, that the whole presentation is anything but scholastic. There is no attempt at a scientific classification of the divine attributes – ‘a most pure spirit, invisible, without body, parts or passions, immutable, immense, eternal, incomprehensible, almighty, most wise, most holy, most free, most absolute;’21 and much of the enumeration consists of words and phrases carried over directly from Scripture — ‘working all things according to the counsel of his own immutable and most righteous will’, ‘the rewarder of them that diligently seek him,’ ‘of whom, through whom, and to whom, are all things.’22

Furthermore, if the Confession’s doctrine of the sovereignty of God is true at all, the position which it occupies is only appropriate. If Creation must be treated before the Fall, and the Fall before the Person and Work of the Mediator, the Decrees, as the source of all, must take precedence of all except the character of God, and the Rule of Faith. ‘Either this doctrine of predestination is not true, and if so, ought to have no place, prominent or obscure; or this doctrine is true, and if so, then from the very nature of it, the place which it takes must be conspicuous, and its presence must in large measure colour our statement of other doctrinal positions.’23

The suggestion that on the particular subject of predestination Westminster was more severe than Calvin is wholly inadmissible. On the contrary, it is the latter who is rigorous. ‘All are not created on equal terms, but some are pre-ordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation; and, accordingly, as each has been created for one or other of these ends, we say that he has been predestinated to life or to death’; ‘hardening is not less under the immediate hand of God than mercy’; ‘the hidden counsel of God is the cause of hardening’; ‘God not only foresaw the fall of the first man, and in him the ruin of his posterity; but also at his own pleasure arranged it.’24 Some of Luther’s statements are even more unguarded: ‘the highest degree of faith is to believe that he is just, though of his own will he makes us perforce proper subjects for damnation’; ‘Christians, however, are made to act, not by “free-will” but by the Spirit of God; and to be made to act is not to act, but to be impelled, as a saw or an axe is made to act by a carpenter.’25 Perhaps these are only occasional lapses, perhaps explanations and qualifications would remove all offence. However that may be, these sentiments are not more moderate, not less Calvinistic, not less predestinarian than the careful statement of Westminster. ‘By the decree of God, for the manifestation of His glory, some men and angels are predestinated unto everlasting life, and others foreordained to everlasting death,’ ‘to dishonour and wrath for their sin.’26

The Scots Confession has its own excellences — for example the famous words of its Preface ‘Protesting, that if any man will note in this our Confession any article or sentence repugning to God’s holy Word, that it would please him of his gentleness, and for Christian charity’s sake, to admonish us of the same in writ; and We of our honour and fidelity do promise unto Him satisfaction from the mouth of God [that is, from his holy Scriptures], or else reformation of that which he shall prove to be amiss.’ But only prejudice could blind the reader to the immeasurable superiority of the Westminster Confession. It appears in point of arrangement and order: the Scots Confession follows not the order of the Creeds and Systematic Theology, but the order of historical revelation. Election (Chapter VIII) is treated between the necessity of the Incarnation and the death of Christ, and under the heading ‘Election’ is treated the doctrine of the two natures in the Person of Christ. The paragraph ‘Of the Immortality of the Souls’ is placed between ‘Of the Kirk’ and ‘Of the Notes by which the True Kirk is Discerned.’ The same superiority is evident in the diction of the Westminster Confession. In the Scots, there is ‘an unrestrained indulgence in the language of denunciation and vituperation.’27 It speaks of ‘the cankered malice’ of opponents, of ‘the filthy synagogue,’ of ‘that horrible harlot, the Kirk malignant.’ A similar difference is evident in the matter of theological precision. In the Scots Confession there is no separate paragraph on Justification, which is treated under ‘The Perfection of the Law and the Imperfection of Man,” and is defined in these terms, ‘God the Father beholding us in the body of his Son Christ Jesus accepteth our imperfect obedience as it were perfect, and covereth our works, which are defiled with many spots, with the justice of his Son.’ The essentials, perhaps, are here, but not the clear emphasis on the instantaneousness of the act, on its origin in free grace, on its ground in the righteousness of Christ imputed, and received by faith, which we find in the Westminster definition: ‘Justification is an act of God’s free grace wherein he pardoneth all our sins and accepteth us as righteous in his sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us and received by faith alone.’28 And the ‘accepteth us’ of Westminster is surely superior to ‘accepteth our imperfect obedience.’ The language is imprecise again in dealing with Baptism. The words, ‘We assuredly believe that by baptism we are ingrafted in Christ Jesus to be made partakers of his justice, by the which our sins are covered and remitted,’ led Edward Irving to publish in 1850 an edition of the Scots Confession with a laudatory preface from his own pen, in the belief that it supported the doctrine of baptismal regeneration.29

The Scots Confession is readily excused these blemishes. It was drawn up in one week; it was intended to commend itself not to meticulous divines, but to rude politicians, who were not to read, but to hear it; and it was a manifesto of revolt. In the circumstances, bluntness and repetition were virtues, while order and precision were unimportant. But in view of these defects it would detract little from the case for Calvinism that it was not set forth in the Scots Confession. This, however, is by no means the case, and, considering the antecedents of the Scots Confession, and the circumstances in which the Westminster Confession was accepted by the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1649, this is not surprising. That Knox and the five colleagues who assisted him (Willock, Spottiswood, Winram, Douglas, and Row) were themselves fully committed to Predestinarianism is not open to question. Again, Knox acknowledged that the Second Helvetic Confession, one of the most exact and detailed of Reformation Creeds, drawn up by Bullinger in 1562, was identical in doctrinal standpoint with that of the Church of Scotland. Most significant of all, when the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland in 1649 adopted the Westminster Standards, it did so with the conviction that they were ‘in nothing contrary to the received doctrine of the Church.’ None protested that, in comparison with the earlier, the later Confession was ‘an amalgam of Aristotelian logic and the Reformed faith.’

The doctrine of election is explicitly set forth in the Scots Confession; God ‘of mere mercy elected us in Christ Jesus his Son.’ It is evidence of a deliberate intention to emphasize this doctrine that a separate heading was assigned to it (this privilege, as we have seen, was not accorded to justification). That it occupies less space than in the Westminster Confession is not necessarily a virtue, since much of the exposition in the later document is intended to prevent misunderstanding. Nor must too much be made of the fact that the Scots Confession does not contain an explicit doctrine of reprobation, since this is logically involved in any doctrine of election, no matter how mild. It may also astonish many that the Westminster Confession refrains from mentioning the word ‘reprobate,’ while the Scots Confession speaks twice of ‘the reprobate’ as a class. Finally the statement, ‘God of mere mercy elected us in Christ Jesus his Son,’ is paralleled in the Westminster Confession — God has chosen believers ‘in Christ, unto everlasting glory, out of his mere free grace and love.’ Since the two so-called mild emphases of the Scots Confession are here — election in Christ, and election grounded in mere free grace and love — it is illegitimate to contrast the doctrines of the divine sovereignty set out in the two Confessions as respectively, ‘a divine decree absolute,’ and ‘a merciful election in Christ.’ ‘He who does not scruple to receive the doctrinal contents of Knox’s Confession need have no scruples in adopting the doctrinal standards prepared by the Westminster divines.’30

5. Double Predestination

Our next process is against the unqualified assertion that Calvinism is committed to the dogma of a double predestination. Statements suggesting that Calvin held this view have already been quoted — for example, ‘All are not created on equal terms, but some are pre-ordained to eternal life, others to eternal damnation; and, accordingly, as each has been created for one or other of these ends, we say that he has been predestined to life or to death.’31 But subsequent Reformed theology spoke with much greater discrimination. The Westminster Confession — ‘Classical Calvinism’ — does not use the word ‘reprobation’ at all, and refrains from applying the word ‘predestinate’ to those who perish.

Three aspects of the Reformed doctrine at this point deserve careful emphasis. In the first place, Calvinism has distinguished, within reprobation, between preterition and condemnation. Only the former of these — the passing by — is sovereign. This leads to the second point. According to the Reformed doctrine the condemnation of sinners is never purely sovereign; it is judicial. No man is condemned on the ground that he is not elected, on the ground of his being predestined to perdition. Calvin himself saw this, and declared, ‘though their perdition depends on the predestination of God, the cause and matter of it is in themselves.’32 The same idea is brought out clearly in the Westminster Confession, which insists that men are foreordained ‘to dishonour and wrath’ — not because not elected, but ‘for their sin.’33 Later Reformed theologians have adhered to this position, insisting that God condemns to punishment, ‘not because of his sovereign good pleasure, but because this individual is a sinner. To say that God condemns to punishment because he pleases is erroneous.’34

In the third place, Calvinism insists that the decree of God is not the cause of the sinfulness of the lost as it is the cause of the holiness of believers. This is why the Westminster Confession varies its terminology in speaking of the bearing of the divine sovereignty on the elect and the reprobate respectively. ‘By the decree of God, for the manifestation of his glory, some men and angels are predestinated unto everlasting life, and others foreordained to everlasting death.’35; In view of the fact that the same distinction is maintained in the next paragraph (‘These angels and men, thus predestinated and foreordained, are particularly and unchangeably designed’) this substitution of foreordained for predestinated was clearly intentional. The reason for this is indicated by Cunningham. ‘It can scarcely be said that, either etymologically or according to the general usage of theologians there is any difference in meaning between the words ‘predestinated’ and ‘foreordained’ but Calvinists in general have held that there is an important difference between the way and manner in which the decree of election bears or operates upon the condition and fate of those who are saved, and that in which the decree of reprobation, as it is often called, bears or operates upon the condition of those who perish.’36 This difference is easily identified. Election is followed by an effectual calling, by an irresistible grace, and by a supernatural sanctification. But there is no such divine activity corresponding to preterition — no effectual calling to unbelief, no irresistible inducement to sin, no activity on the part of God mortifying the spirit and quickening the flesh. This is the view — the very explicit view — of all Reformed theologians. ‘The praise of salvation’ wrote Calvin, ‘is claimed for God, whereas the blame of perdition is thrown upon those who of their own accord bring it upon themselves.’37 Shedd speaks to the same effect: ‘In preterition, God’s action is permissive; inaction rather than action — on the side of reprobation, the efficient cause of perdition is the self-determination of the human will.’38 And, as a more recent witness, we may cite the words of A. W. Pink, ‘The Holy Spirit does something more in each of God’s elect than He does in the non-elect. He works in them “both to will and to do of God’s good pleasure.” ’ 39

Before leaving the subject of reprobation, two further points may be emphasised. Firstly, preterition is implicit in election. It is implicit in the very term itself: έχλegoμαι ‘always has and must of logical necessity have, a reference to others to whom the chosen would, without the έχλoγη, still belong.’40 This is inevitable in any process of selection, and it is admissible to lift up holy hands in horror when Calvinists push logic thus far. Secondly, man as contemplated by the divine purpose of redemption is sinful. Election and preterition are concerned with a ‘massa corrupta.’ Here there are two important negatives. The divine purpose, selecting or passing by, does not contemplate uncreated but created man. Reformed theology has given no hospitality to the idea that some men are created to be damned — implying that the divine purpose was first to damn and then to create in order to make this possible. Richardson’s protest that ‘the New Testament does not teach that any human beings whatsoever have been created for reprobation’41 is unnecessary. Finally, the Calvinist doctrine forbids the ascription of the sin of man to the divine reprobation. The divine purpose has respect not to man as innocent, but to man as sinful. As passed by in the election of God he is already fallen, depraved and guilty. Preterition does not make him sinful. He is already sinful by his own act.


This article was first published in the November – December 1967 edition of the Banner of Truth magazine under the title ‘Misconceptions About Calvinism’.

Notes

      1. The Christian Doctrine of Reconciliation, p.9.
      2. H. C. G. Moule, Charles Simeon, p.77.
      3. Cf. McNeill, ‘If we attempt to make his [Calvin’s] thought begin and end with predestination, we have to contend with a constant stress upon human responsibility and a recurring anomalous recognition of free-will.’ (The History and Character of Calvinism, p.202.)
      4. Cunningham, Historical Theology, II: 431.
      5. Utilitarianism, Liberty and Representative Government, p.102.
      6. Princeton Sermons, p.6.
      7. ‘Calvin’s massive theological and ecclesiological system is not a clean breach with historic Christendom, but a structure resting on Holy Scripture and ancient ecclesiastical usage.’ (J. S. Whale, Christian Doctrine, p.147.)
      8. Colloquia Peripatetica, p.9.
      9. A. B. Bruce, ‘While the Christology of the Lutheran Church emphasises the majesty of Christ’s humanity, that of the Reformed confession insists on its reality. The very titles of the treatises which emanated from the two schools reveal their respective tendencies. The Lutheran wrote, con amore, books treating of the divine majesty of Christ; the Reformed chose for his congenial theme, the verity of the human nature of Christ.’ (The Humiliation of Christ, p.149.)
      10. The Progress of Dogma, p.292.
      11. The Institutes (Beveridge’s Translation), Vol. II, p.227.
      12. McNeill, op. cit., p.202.
      13. Westminster Confession, II: 1.
      14. Warfield, Calvin & Augustine, p. 288.
      15. Colloquia Peripatetica, p.89.
      16. Biblical and Theological Studies, pp.301, 323, 324.
      17. Introduction to Robert Bruce: The Mystery of the Lord’s Supper, p.32.
      18. A Church History of Scotland, pp.226, 287, 328. Cf. John Baillie, ‘The members of that Assembly were too intellectualistic in their interpretation of Christian faith, too much in love with credal orthodoxy, too ready to understand revelation as consisting in communicated information.’ (Our Knowledge of God, p.72)
      19. For ‘The Sum of Saving Knowledge’ see the 1967 reprint of The Confession of Faith, pages 321-343.
      20. Westminster Confession, II: 1.
      21. Ibid.
      22. Ibid. II: 1, 2.
      23. Macpherson, The Confession of Faith, p.22.
      24. The Institutes, II: 206, 226, 227, 232.
      25. The Bondage of the Will, pp.101, 189.
      26. Westminster Confession, III: 3, 7.
      27. C. G. M’Crie, The Confessions of the Church of Scotland, p.19.
      28. The Shorter Catechism, Q.33.
      29. Cf. Macleod, Scottish Theology, p.25.
      30. Macpherson, op. cit., p.10.
      31. The Institutes, II, p.206.
      32. Op. cit., II, 232.
      33. Westminster Confession III: 7.
      34. W. G. T. Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, Vol II: p.433.
      35. Westminster Confession, III: 3.
      36. Historical Theology, Vol II: p.422.
      37. Op. cit., p.226.
      38. Op. cit., p.433.
      39. The Sovereignty of God, p.93.
      40. Meyer, ad Eph. 1:4, quoted by Warfield, Biblical & Theological Studies, p.327.
      41. An Introduction to the Theology of the New Testament, p.275.

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