Why Calvin Still Matters

Posted: May 25, 2009 in Church History, doctrine, General Discussion, Mentors, Theology
Tags: , ,

Excellent article by W. Robert Godfrey. I still don’t understand why people fear his name so much.

“Calvin exemplified in his life and work a determination to seek to bring every thought captive to Christ. That was his passion, such was his confidence in the Word of God. That is also what he wanted to teach others. To quote Calvin, “Whoever, therefore, would desire to persevere in uprightness and in integrity of life, let them learn to exercise themselves daily in the study of the word of God; for, whenever a man despises or neglects instruction, he easily falls into carelessness and stupidity, and all fear of God vanishes from his mind” (Commentary on the Psalms, on Ps. 18:22). Calvin was certain that many people tended very naturally to carelessness and stupidity. That is surely a lesson that does not need to be taught from Scripture; it is a lesson that pastors learn by experience! Calvin recognized, and we should recognize because it is even truer today, that we are surrounded by voices that are blaring lies. The only way to sort that out is to be sure that the Bible is constantly speaking to us, that the Bible is in our hearts and in our ears and in our mind so that that authority of the Word of God is a living and vital authority for us. The Bible must constantly challenge the way we look at the world, the way we look at our fellow men and women, the way we think about God and his world.

Calvin found that challenge and living authority in his study of the Bible. He was a man who certainly spent time with the Bible every day. Calvin preached probably around nine times every two weeks, lectured on the Bible to students, wrote commentaries on the Bible throughout his life—commentaries on all the books of the New Testament except Second and Third John and Revelation, and on most of the books of the Old Testament. Here is a man whose life is lived in the Bible and with the Bible, and the fruit of that was that the Bible became all the more precious to him.  There really is a building up, as Calvin put it, of “fresh additions” from the Scriptures in life and heart. The more time he spent with the Bible the more it impressed him as unavoidably true and utterly reliable.”

Read the whole article here

  1. Mystie says:

    Great article. Calvin was a true man of God! Don’t understand why people fear him and his name.

  2. Christie says:


    Next time, try not to sugar coat it. 🙂

    That’s probably the MOST I’ve ever heard about Calvin. Probably a guy worth studying about…but my first stop is Spurgeon… We DO have a couple of his books here… 🙂


  3. Angel says:

    GREAT article Bill. Thanks for sharing it.

  4. Bill says:

    I was hoping this would be an educational post, as it seems so many people have a distorted view of the man. Thanks for reading 🙂

  5. There is one quote of Calvin’s that best exemplifies his passion and determination which possessed his life. Now, I dare not compare myself to Calvin, but I can relate to the feelings Calvin expressed when he said, “Sleep less, eat little, and study more.” The necessities of life, such as the nourishment of the body, became something less desired or a hindrance to him from studying the word of God. When you get disappointed because your belly keeps interrupting your studies and you will not take the time to go and feed it you’ll understand the way Calvin lived his life, and probably why he was so ill and died at an early age. I have missed a few breakfast meals, but I would say by the measure of Calvin’s work he probably spent days without food or sleep, in God’s word. May God bless us with a portion of what He gave to John Calvin. For God’ glory!

  6. Bill says:

    @H.P. Well said brother.

  7. Mystie says:

    Gosh! Historic Protestant, nobody wants to post after reading your post. You intimidate with your intellect! Keep it simple for the rest of us!!

  8. Angel says:

    I second that Mystie.LOL! I will just read everyone elses post.LOL:)

  9. Mrs. Historic Protestant says:

    Thanks ladies! Do you see what I have to live with?!? He has to break it down for me. LOL!

    MRS. H.P.

  10. That’s not funny! LOL

    What I meant to say was Calvin is my homeboy.lol

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