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Review: The Gospel as Taught by Calvin

Author ,
Category Book Reviews
Date April 17, 2010

This is a reprint of a book first published around 100 years ago. Its aim is to help Christians come to a clearer understanding of the doctrines of grace as taught by the system of theology called Calvinism. After a brief biography of John Calvin, the author reviews issues at the heart of the Gospel.

He looks at 5 areas of doctrine and asks questions such as: What effect did Adam’s fall have upon human nature? Who makes the first choice in salvation – Christ or the sinner? Is it true that once in grace always in grace? In each chapter Dr. Reed contrasts Arminian theology with Calvinist theology and occasionally with other views. There is also an excellent chapter on the question: Does Calvinism square with God’s love? Dr. Reed concludes yes. He emphasises that in John 3:16 “the world” does mean everyone, quoting from Calvin’s own writing in support of this view. He concludes that God does love the whole world even though only the elect are saved.

Dr. Reed takes a great deal of care to faithfully represent what others teach. I like the way that he highlights the areas of agreement before focusing on the differences. He writes in an engaging and readable style, often summarising things in a memorable way. He remains courteous and respectful of the views of others. He constantly refers back to the scriptures to support his own position.

The publisher’s blurb calls this book “a gem” and I agree. Whatever your view on Calvinism I would strongly recommend that you read it. A classic.


This review was first published on GoodbookReviews.org.uk. The site has been closed as of March 2019.

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