A Topical Index To Luther’s Sermons

Trans. J. N. Lenker et al. (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2001) prepared by Shane Lems, M.Div
© 2007 Shane Lems. All Rights Reserved.

Usage: You may link to this index but it may not be copied wholesale without the permission of the author of the index.

Note: The first four volumes have two parts. Thus, I & II below are parts I and II of volume one, III and IV are parts I and II of volume two, V and VI are parts I and II of volume three, parts VII & VIII are parts I & II of volume four.

Gospel is my “catch-all” category, one where you’ll see Luther at his gospel-best. “Works” is negative, but “good works” is positive, or truly good works. “Papism” or “Pope” are general terms for all of Rome and her teaching, while “Monasticism” is general for monks, nuns, orders, etc. “Word” means Bible or preached word, a theme Luther trumpets often. Luther also used personal/autobiographical illustrations in his sermons, which are quite telling concerning his early days as a monk. Be sure to note the following pages (ff) of some citations.

Also note that this index is a bit subjective. Of course I have not listed every reference of every topic and some emphases may even be stilted, I admit. I advise the reader not to make any theological conclusions on Luther’s emphasis in preaching from this list alone. Yet for all the shortcomings of the index, I hope it is helpful. Please inform me (at lems at att.net) of any errors or significant additions.

Two Kingdoms……IV.212, 217, 220ff; VII.200, 209, 234ff, 274ff, 280ff; IX.100ff, 246, 279, 283; VIII.132, 350; XI.132ff, 162ff, 225, 281ff

3rd use of the law…..IX.65

Absolution…..I.391; II.174, 198, 235ff, 349; XI.251
Anabaptists…..III.435; IV.254, 283; VIII.201; XI.147
Aristotle…..I.331, 344; 2.43; III.397
Arius……VIII.79, 93
Autobiographical ……I. 377; II.201, 254, 263, 271, 376, 406ff; III.147ff; VII.293, 349;
VIII.20, 73, 92, 203, 242, 296, 298, 322ff, 342, 349; IX.77, 149, 162;
XI.75, 135ff
Baptism…..II.80ff; III.188ff, 203ff; III.228, 234,426; VII.242ff; VIII.143ff;
IX.153,179, 221ff, 307
Bondage of the will…….XI.109
Christ alone…….III.252ff; VII.197ff; X.82
Christ as judge (not)……I.30, 33, 78, 99, 110; II.325ff; III.344; IX.51, 106
Christ in the OT…..I.150ff, 174, 283ff, 373, 450; II.29, 125, 180ff, 292ff,
Christ the King…..I.24; III.333, 117, 125
Christ, ubiquity of…..I.383ff
Christ’s merits……III.115, 126;
Church……III.64ff, 67ff, 319ff; IV.327, 367; VII.324ff; VIII.193, 290, 300ff;
IX.300; X.62; XI.234
Civil government…….III.35ff, 381; IV.149, 175ff, 193;
Confession …..II.195ff
Death…..II.125ff, 178, 228;
Devil……I.263, 286, 320, 344ff, II.94, 103, 160, 263, 280, 313, 320ff, 343;
III.56, 58, 120, 149, 242, 247, 263, 301ff, 327ff, IV.30ff, 33ff, 128ff,
251, 257, 329; 368ff; VII.304ff; VIII.76ff, 85ff, 89ff, 98, 123ff, 198,
219, 327, 363; IX.107, 111ff, 134, 143, 169, 265, 323, 342, 395, 482,
488; X.14ff, 34, 106ff; XI.59, 200ff, 219, 232, 239ff, 242, 296ff,
Faith alone…..III.360ff; VII.122ff, 125; IX.88, 265; X.71, 80, 95, 99,
Faith…….I.143, 233, 408; II.270, 354; III.69, 202, 245ff, 454; IV.207, 303ff,
373, 378; VII.239, VIII.52, 167, 281; IX.244, 257, 235, 308, 331;
XI.22, 81, 127, 140, 185ff, 218, 298
Faith/works…..I.109, 280; II.72ff, 92ff, 108; III.187, 225ff, 388; IV.102, 340ff;
VII.125, 157, VIII.57; IX.193
Free will…..I.25; II.159ff, 236; III.76, 80ff
Good works…….VIII.168; XI.37, 56, 77
Gospel…..I.443ff; IV.184, 236; VII.179, 197, 207, 249; VIII.43ff, 48, 293, 377;
IX.68, 162, 361, 370, 388, 430, 439; X.11, 39, 68; XI.31, 109
Grace…..I.27-30, 409-410; III.357
Gratitude……..I.318, 413; III.232; IV.287, 289; VII.347; VIII.158, 332
Holy Spirit, the…..II.292ff; III.134ff, 156ff, 278ff, 299ff, 322, 328ff, 433; VII.122, 332;
VIII.173, 177, 209; IX.330; X.31, 97
Imputation…..VII.346, 352; VIII.346, 352; IX.89
Introspection……II.189, 242
Justification…….IX.450ff; X.71, 101
Kingdom, the…..II.332, 360, 408; III.28ff, 134ff , 222, 306,
Law …….II.366ff; III.115, 139, 232, 283, 377, 390ff, 425, 428, 432; IV.37, 73,
157ff, 170, 183, 346; VII.331; VIII.235ff, 245, 251ff; IX.61, 183;
X.79; XI.66ff, 250, 276ff
Law & preaching…….I.385; II.236, 365, 370;
Law and gospel…..I.96ff, 100, II.67, 177, 350; III.18ff, 147, 277, 361; IV.158ff;
VIII.174ff, 236ff; IX.184ff, 350
Lord’s Supper…..II.202ff, 224ff, 269ff;
Mass, the……..I.440; II.197, 229, 254; IV.39ff
Medieval darkness…..I.63, 2.46, 254, 260, 286, 312ff, 348; III.53ff
Merit……II.344, 372; III.447
Monasticism……I.423; III. 114ff, 127ff, 150ff, 186, 250; IV.60, 105, 241, 328;
VII.229, 312; VIII.63, 82, 267ff, 285; IX.149ff; XI.61, 75
Muntzer…..VIII.60, 79, 92
Original sin…..I.410
Papism……I.68; III.47, 122, 325, 331, 384, IV.122, 173ff, 285ff, 332; VII.155,
246ff, 254, VIII.60, 65, 80, 204, 208, 295, 297, 368; IX.145ff, 376;
X.69, 87, 103; XI.205, 215, 248, 280, 349ff;
Pilgrim……VII.275, VIII.192
Pope…….III.241, 347; IV.236ff, 241, 275, 281, 284, 390;
Prayer…..III.168ff, 176ff; VII.314; VIII.339ff
Preaching/Preacher……..I.44ff, 62, 94, 130ff, 146, 235, 260, 270, 371ff; II.97, 342, 355, 363,
376; III.161, 184ff, 400; IV.87, 160, 238; VII.241; VIII.241; IX.340,
463, 338ff, 463; X.35, 37, 81, 114, 238, 240; XI.371;
Preaching; lack of gospel……I.78-79, 105, 153ff;
Priesthood of all believers…..II.376;
Reason……I.22-23, 183, 192ff 210-215, 219, 225, 263, 279, 309, 360ff; II.33, 49,
244, 293; III.116, 119, 191, 249, 411ff, 437; IV.24, 205, 225; VII.311,
VIII.15, 27, 79, 81ff, 89, 162ff, 229, 270, 296, 309, 371; IX.198, 201,
304; X.29; XI.189, 210, 285, 288
Repentance…..II.314, 340ff
Righteousness…..III.144, 149; IV.74; IX.90, 124, 182, 184, 369; XI.135, 231, 282, 322
Roman superstitions……I.37-39, 243, 358, 397ff, 414, 408; II.333ff;
Sanctification…..II.315; VII.84
Scripture……..I.305ff, 337, 347;
Simul iustus et peccator. Saint/sinner……..III.281; VII.83, 187ff, 334ff; VIII.148ff, 171; X.39
Sola Gratia…..VIII.13, 51
Sola Scriptura…..VII.325ff
Suffering……..II.39, 44; III.79ff; VIII.90ff, 101
Theology of glory ¹……..III.111, 316, 342, 438; VIII.178; IX.124
Theology of the cross…..I.14ff, 264, 375, 309; II.33, 150, 190, 308ff; III.26ff, 213, 316, 453;
VII.106, VIII.381ff
Theosis (anti)…..III.316
Vocation……..I.249, 281ff; VII.276ff; IX.319; XI.10ff, 48, 174ff,
Word, the…….II.149ff; III.268; IV.92; VII.89, 207ff, VIII.31, 83ff, 320; IX.146ff,
198ff, 304, 332ff, 363; XI.39ff, 120ff, 241ff, 360
Works…..I.35, 145, 277, 408, 296; III.80ff, 225ff, 252ff, 348, 384ff, 416, 421;
IV.257; VIII.239; IX.428; X.70; XI.111, 129


¹ The actual terms “theology of glory” and “theology of the cross” are not used by Luther in his sermons though the concepts clearly come through.

Detailed Index of Luther’s Sermons (Volumes 5-7)

The following is a topical title index of Luther’s Hauspostille (house-sermons), which were preached between the years 1530 and 1534.  Since Luther followed the church calendar of his day, the titles of the sermons in the contents of the Baker edition are usually not specific enough to serve as a topical guide.

Although each sermon could be properly summarized in two words, namely, Jesus Christ, I find it helpful to use the following index as way to see what Luther had to say about different topics (especially these topics preached).

  1. The King and the Gospel p.17
  2. The King, Christ p.25
  3. The King, Christ p.31
  4. Judgment Day p.37
  5. Judgment Day p.44
  6. Coming Judgment and Our Conduct p.52
  7. Law, Gospel, and Two Kingdoms p. 59
  8. Christ Alone p.69
  9. Christ Alone p.76
  10. Faith, Works, and Imputation p.84
  11. John the Baptist Meets Christ p.92
  12. Good News: Christ is not a Judge for Believers p.99
  13. Christ, Sin, and Satan p.109
  14. Find God in Christ, an Exhortation p.121
  15. Christ’s Lowly Birth p.132
  16. Gospel-Hymn of the Angels p.138
  17. Believe With Your Heart p.144
  18. Hatred for the Gospel p.153
  19. The Gospel Reveals Wickedness: Antithesis p.165
  20. Christ’s Circumcision “Under the Law&” p.177
  21. Christ Alone p.188
  22. The Word and Satan p.196
  23. The Person of Christ p.208
  24. Christ’s Baptism p.216
  25. Christ as a Boy p.224
  26. Marriage p.233
  27. Faith p.242
  28. Faith and Its Object p.253
  29. Tares and Wheat p.264
  30. Christ’s Kingdom and Its Citizens p.278
  31. Christ’s Word p.285
  32. Christ Under the Law and Humility p.294
  33. God’s Word, Reason, and Faith p.302
  34. The Word and Prayer p. 312
  35. Prayer p.321
  36. The Devil and the Preaching of the Gospel p.329
  37. God’s Provisions for Us p.344
  38. God’s Word and His Provision p.351
  39. Christ’s Word p.354
  40. Christ’s Word and the I Am p.362
  41. Christ’s Spiritual Kingdom p.366
  42. Christ’s Suffering p.372
  43. Christ in Caiaphas’ House p.387
  44. Christ Before Pilate p.404
  45. Christ’s Mission and Suffering p.420
  46. The Gospel and Justification p.435
  47. The Sacrament of the Supper p.452
  48. Christ’s Suffering and Death p.466
  49. Christ’s Suffering and Death p. 476

Volume 6

  1. The Word and Genesis 3.15 p.7
  2. The Beautiful Gospel p.18
  3. Faith, Grace, Sin, and Forgiveness p. 32
  4. The Holy Supper p.41
  5. Christ, the Church, and the Gospel p.54
  6. Sin and Faith p.60
  7. Christ’s Sheep p.73
  8. Preaching and the Preacher p.79
  9. The Gospel and Suffering p.85
  10. Prayer p.104
  11. The Ascension of Christ p.112
  12. Faith and Works p.126
  13. The Holy Spirit and Comfort in Trials p.144
  14. Law and Gospel p.151
  15. The Holy Trinity p.166
  16. Faith, Love, and Works p.177
  17. The Gospel of Jesus Christ p.185
  18. The Golden Letters of the Gospel p.195
  19. Born From Above p.206
  20. Born From the Gospel p.217
  21. The Rich and Poor Man (Coveting) p.223
  22. The Gospel Feast p.241
  23. Christ: Not an Angry Judge for Christians p.250
  24. Kindness to Enemies p.258
  25. Good Works p.269
  26. Genuine Christianity p.276
  27. Sin and Grace p.283
  28. God’s Grace in Forgiveness and Salvation p.295
  29. Vocation/Calling p.302
  30. LoveOne Another p.311
  31. Sins and Forgiveness p.320
  32. God’s Provisions for Us p.327
  33. The Devil’s Hatred for the Word p.335
  34. The Word and the Devil p.342
  35. Stewardship p.350
  36. Money and Serving Others p.358
  37. God’s Patience and Punishment p.365
  38. Punishment for the Contempt of the Word p.375
  39. Humility and Serving p.380
  40. The Pharisees and Humility p.387
  41. The External Word p.395
  42. The Gospel and Love p.401
  43. Law and Gospel p.412
  44. Gratitude and Ingratitude p.422

Volume 7

  1. Serving Freely and Calling/Vocation p.7
  2. Trust and Reliance on God p.16
  3. Faith and Charity p.24
  4. Hope in Christ (in Death) p.30
  5. Sabbath and Serving p.36
  6. Vocation p.44
  7. Loving and Serving God p.51
  8. Great Blackout: Law and Gospel p.61
  9. Love Your Neighbor p.70
  10. Forgiveness, Faith, and Word p.79
  11. Opposition to the Word p.91
  12. Judgment Day p.100
  13. Sin, Bondage, and the Gospel p.107
  14. Word p.117
  15. Faith, Gospel, and Human Inventions p.122
  16. Sin, Forgiveness, and Two Kingdoms p.130
  17. Christians in the World p.146
  18. Church and State p.157
  19. Calling/Vocation p.169
  20. Gospel and Our Rescue p.176
  21. Gospel and Faith p.184
  22. God and the Devil p.192
  23. The Child Jesus (The Nativity) (Is. 9) p.209
  24. The Child Jesus (The Nativity) (Is. 9) p.221
  25. The Child Jesus (The Nativity) (Is. 9) p.229
  26. The Child Jesus (The Nativity) (Is. 9) p.237
  27. The Child Jesus (The Nativity) (Is. 9) p.246
  28. Christ the Child p.255
  29. Saul’s Conversion p.265
  30. Law and Light p.274
  31. The Incarnation p.284
  32. The Gospel of Grace p.294
  33. The Trinity p.299
  34. Saved From Sin and John the Baptist p.310
  35. John the Baptist and Christ p.324
  36. John the Baptist and Christ p.327
  37. Humility p.341
  38. Mary and the Gospel p.357
  39. Repentance and Forgiveness p.365
  40. God and the Devil p.374
  41. God’s Angels p.386

PT730 Studies In Distintives And Issues In The United Reformed Churches In North America (URCNA)

A directed study intended to supplement the existing preparation of URCNA students studying for the pastoral ministry and to focus their preparation for classical examinations.

Prerequisite: HT/ST615 Reformed Confessions.

1 or 2 Credits

The academic goal of the course is to expose the student to specific issues in systematic, historical, and pastoral theology related to the URCNAs.

The pastoral goal of the course is to give the student a structured, guided opportunity to excel in his classical exams.

The outcome of the course will be measured by classical examinations and, where possible, by feedback from the classes and examiners.


  1. Read and outline the Three Forms of Unity
  2. Memorize those questions and answers in the Heidelberg Catechism not memorized in HT/ST 615.
  3. Read and outline the Church Order of the URNCAs.
  4. Read Van Dellen and Monsma’s Commentary on the Church Order and submit a one 1-page reaction paper.
  5. Required attendance to and 1-page written reports on all URCNA lunchtime seminars.
  6. Mock oral exam

Assigned Readings

  1. Background to the Synod of Dort
  2. Preface to the Canons of Dort
  3. The Church Order of the Synod of Dort (1619)
  4. Dutch Reformed Church
  5. P. Y. DeJong, “The Rise of the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands” in P. Y. DeJong, ed. Crisis in the Reformed Churches: Essays in Commemoration of the Great Synod of Dort, 1618-1919 (Grand Rapids: Reformed Fellowship, 1968)
  6. Cornelis P. Venema, “Integration, Disintegration, and Reintegration: A Preliminary History of the United Reformed Churches in North America” in Always Reformed: Essays in Honor of W. Robert Godfrey
  7. URCNA Justification Committee Report
  8. URCNA Nine Points
  9. Commentary on the Nine Points
  10. Van Dellen and Monsma’s Commentary on the Church Order
  11. URCNA Form of Subscription
  12. URCNA Report on Deacons in the Churches
  13. URCNA-OPC Report
  14. URCNA Synod Escondido 2001 on Creation

Recommended Reading

  1. James D. Bratt, Dutch Calvinism in Modern America: A History of a Conservative Subculture
  2. ——Abraham Kuyper (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2014)
  3. Arie Baars, The Secession of 1834
  4. Hendrik Bouma, Secession, Doleantie, and Union 1834–1892
  5. Michael Brown, ed., Called to Serve: Essays for Elders and Deacons
  6. Abraham Kuyper, Centennial Reader
  7. Ron Gleason, Herman Bavinck: Pastor, Churchman, Statesman, and Theologian
  8. Peter S. Heslam, Creating a Christian Worldview: Abraham Kuyper’s Lectures on Calvinism
  9. CRC Position Paper on Women in Office
  10. Dorothy Sayers, Creed Or Chaos.

Assertion of Intellectual Property Rights

The instructor holds the copyright to all course lectures and original course materials. This copyright extends to student notes and summaries that substantially reflect the lectures or original course materials. Course lectures and materials are made available for the personal use of students only and may not be recorded or otherwise distributed (including the publication of student notes or summaries on social media) in any way for commercial or non-commercial purposes without the express written permission of the instructor.

The Decades of Heinrich Bullinger

Fifty Sermons Divided into Five Decades Containing the Chief and Principle Points of Christian Religion
(1587 English Translation)

Table of Contents Prepared by
Ryan Glomsrud M.A. (D.Phil. Cand., Pembroke College, Oxon)

Volume I

  1. The Preface (pp. 1-11)
  2. Of the Four General Synods or Councils (pp. 12-35)
  3. The First Decade of Sermons (pp. 36- 192)
    1. First Sermon: Of the Word of God; the cause of it; and how, and by whom, it was revealed to the world (36-57)
    2. Second Sermon: Of the Word of God; to whom, and to what end, it was revealed; also in what manner it is to be heard; and that it doth fully teach the whole doctrine of godliness (57-70)
    3. Third Sermon: Of the sense and right exposition of the word of God, and by what manner of means it may be expounded (70-81)
    4. Fourth Sermon: Of true faith; from whence it cometh; that it is an assured belief of the mind, whose only stay is upon God and his Word (81-97)
    5. Fifth Sermon: That there is one only true faith, and what the virtue thereof is (97-104)
    6. Sixth Sermon: That the faithful are justified by faith without the law and works (104-122)
    7. Seventh Sermon: Of the first articles of the Christian faith contained in the Apostles’ Creed (122-140)
    8. Eighth Sermon: Of the latter articles of the Christian faith contained in the Apostles’ Creed (140-157)
    9. Ninth Sermon: Of the latter articles of Christian faith contained in the Apostles’ Creed (157-180)
    10. Tenth Sermon: Of the love of God and Neighbor (180-192)
  4. The Second Decade of Sermons (pp. 193-435)
    1. First Sermon: Of laws, and of the law of nature, then of the laws of men (193-209)
    2. Second Sermon: Of God’s law, and of the two first commandments of the first table (209-237)
    3. Third Sermon: Of the third precept of the Ten Commandments, and of swearing (237-253)
    4. Fourth Sermon: Of the fourth precept of the first table, that is, of the order and keeping of the Sabbath-Day (253-267)
    5. Fifth Sermon: Of the first precept of the second table, which is in order the fifth of the Ten Commandments, touching upon honour due to the parents (267-298)
    6. Sixth Sermon: Of the second precept of the second table, which is in order the sixth of the Ten Commandments, thou shalt not kill: and of the magistrate (298-322)
    7. Seventh Sermon: Of the office of the magistrate, whether the care of religion appertain to him or no, and whether he may make laws and ordinances in cases of religions (323-344)
    8. Eighth Sermon: Of judgment, and the office of the judge; that Christians are not forbidden to judge; of revengement and punishment; whether it be lawful for a magistrate to kill the guilty; wherefore, when, how, and what the magistrate must punish; whether he may punish offenders in religion or no (345-369)
    9. Ninth Sermon: Of war; whether it be lawful for a magistrate to make war. What the Scripture teacheth touching war. Whether a Christian man may bear the office of a magistrate. And of the duty of subjects (370-393)
    10. Tenth Sermon: Of the third precept of the second table, which is in order the seventh of the Ten Commandments; thou shalt not commit adultery of wedlock; against all intemperance; of continency (393-435)

Volume II

  1. Dedication to Prince Edward VI, King of England and France (pp. 3-16)
  2. The Third Decade of Sermons (pp. 17-432)
    1. First Sermon: Of the fourth precept of the second table, which is in order the eighth of the Ten Commandments, thou shalt not steal. Of the owning and possessing of proper goods, and of the right and lawful getting of the same; against sundry kinds of theft (17-48)
    2. Second Sermon: Of the lawful use of earthly goods; that is, how we may rightly possess, and lawfully spend, the wealth that is rightly and justly gotten; of restitution, and alms-deeds (48-64)
    3. Third Sermon: Of the patient bearing and abiding of sundry calamities and miseries; and also of the hope and manifold consolation of the faithful (64-111)
    4. Fourth Sermon: Of the fifth and sixth precepts of the second table, which are in order the ninth and tenth of the Ten Commandments, that is, thou shalt not speak false witness against they neighbor; and, though shalt not covet they neighbor’s house, & c. (111-124)
    5. Fifth Sermon: Of the ceremonial law of God, but specifically of the priesthood, time, and place appointed for the ceremonies (125-167)
    6. Sixth Sermon: Of the sacraments of the Jews; of their sundry sorts of sacrifices, and certain other things pertaining to the ceremonial law (167-217)
    7. Seventh Sermon: Of the judicial laws of God (217-236)
    8. Eighth Sermon: Of the use or effect of the law of God, and of the fulfilling and abrogating of the same; of the likeness and difference of both the testaments and people, the Old and the New (236-300)
    9. Ninth Sermon: Of Christian liberty, and of offences. Of good works, and the reward thereof (300-357)
    10. Tenth Sermon: Of sin, and of the kinds thereof; to wit, of original and actual sin, and of sin against the Holy Ghost; and lastly, of the most sure and just punishment of sins (358-432)

Volume III

  1. The Fourth Decade of Sermons (pp. 1-114)
    1. First Sermon: Of the Gospel of the grace of God, who hath given his Son unto the world, and in Him all things necessary to salvation, that we, believing in Him, might obtain eternal life (1-55)
    2. Second Sermon: Of repentance, and the causes therefore; of confession, and remission of sins; of satisfaction and indulgences; of the old and new man; of the power or strength of men, and the order of things pertaining to repentance (55-114)
  2. Dedication to Edward VI, King of England and France (pp. 115-122)
  3. The Fourth Decade of Sermons CONTINUED (pp. 123-408)
    1. Third Sermon: Of God; of the true knowledge of God, and of the diverse ways how to know him; that God is one in substance and three in persons (123-173)
    2. Fourth Sermon: That God is the creator of all things, and governeth all things by his providence; where mention is also made of the goodwill of God to usward, and of predestination (173-194)
    3. Fifth Sermon: Of adoring or worshipping, of invocating or calling upon, and of serving the only, living, true, and everlasting God; also of true and false religion (194-238)
    4. Sixth Sermon: That the Son of God is unspeakably begotten of the Father; that He is consubstantial with the Father, and therefore true God. That the selfsame Son is true man; consubstantial with us; and therefore true God and Man, abiding in two unconfounded natures, and in one undivided Person (238-273)
    5. Seventh Sermon: Of Christ, King and Priest; of His only and everlasting kingdom and priesthood; and of the name of a Christian (273-297)
    6. Eighth Sermon: Of the Holy Ghost, the third person in the Trinity to be worshipped, and of His divine power (297-326)
    7. Ninth Sermon: Of good and evil spirits; that is, of the holy angels of God, and of devils or evil spirits; and of their operations (327-365)
    8. Tenth Sermon: Of the reasonable soul of man; and of his most certain salvation after the death of the his body (365-408)

Volume IV

  1. Biographical Notice of Henry Bullinger (pp. vii-xxxi)
  2. The Fifth Decade of Sermons (pp.3-526)
    1. First Sermon: Of the holy catholic church; what it is, how far it extendeth, by what marks it is known, from whence it springeth, how it is maintained and preserved, whether it may err. Also of the power and studies of the church (3-48)
    2. Second Sermon: That there is one catholic church; that without the church there is no light or salvation. Against schismatics. Wherefore we depart from the upstart church of Rome. That the church of God is the house, vineyard, and kingdom of God; and the body, sheepfold, and spouse of Christ; a mother and a virgin (49-92)
    3. Third Sermon: Of the ministry, and the ministries of God’s word; wherefore and for what end they are instituted of God. That the orders given by Christ unto the church in times past were equal. Whence and how the prerogative of ministries sprang, and of the supremacy of the bishop of Rome (93-127)
    4. Fourth Sermon: Of calling unto the ministry of the Word of God. What manner of men, and after what fashion, ministers of the Word must be ordained in the church. Of the keys of the church. What the office of them is that be ordained. Of the manner of teaching the church; and of the holy life of the pastors (128-163)
    5. Fifth Sermon: Of the form and manner how to pray to God; that is, of the calling on the name of the Lord; where also the Lord’s Prayer is expounded; and also singing, thanksgiving, and the force of prayer is entreated (163-226)
    6. Sixth Sermon: Of signs, and the manner of signs; of sacramental signs: what a sacrament is; of whom, for what causes, and how many sacraments were instituted of Christ for the Christian church; of what things they do consist; how these are consecrated; how the sign and the thing signified in the sacraments are either joined together or distinguished; and of the kind of speeches used in the sacraments (226-293)
    7. Seventh Sermon: That we must reason reverently of sacraments; that they do not give grace, neither have grace included in them. Again, what the virtue and lawful end and use of the sacraments is. That they profit not without faith; that they are not superfluous to the faithful; and that they do not depend upon the worthiness or unworthiness of the minister (293-351)
    8. Eighth Sermon: Of holy baptism; what it is; by whom, and when it was instituted, and that there is but one baptism of water. Of the baptism of fire. Of the rite or ceremony of baptism; how, of whom, and to whom it must be administered. Of baptism by midwives; and of infants dying without baptism. Of the baptism of infants. Against Anabaptism or re-baptizing; and of the power of efficacy of baptism (351-401)
    9. Ninth Sermon: Of the Lord’s holy supper; what it is, by whom, when, and for whom it was instituted; after what sort, when, and how oft it is to be celebrated, and of the ends thereof. Of the true meaning of the words of the super, “This is my body.” Of the presence of Christ in the supper. Of the true eating of Christ’s body. Of the worthy and unworthy eaters thereof: and how every man ought to prepare himself unto the Lord’s supper (401-478)
    10. Tenth Sermon: Of certain institutions of the church of God. Of schools. Of ecclesiastical goods, and the use and abuse of the same. Of churches and holy instruments of Christians. Of the admonition and correction of the ministers of the church, and of the whole church. Of matrimony. Of widows. Of virgins. Of monks. What the church of Christ determineth concerning the sick; and of funerals and burials (478-526)
  3. Appendix I: Dedication to the Marque of Dorset (pp. 528-545)
  4. Appendix II: Dedication to Masters Gualter, Simler, etc. (pp. 546-558)
  5. Index of Subjects and Persons (pp. 559-586)
  6. Index of Various Writers Quoted and Referred to (pp. 587-590)

Summary Of Zwingli On Baptism

Exposition of the Articles (1524)

© R. Scott Clark, 2000; 2014.

  1. Baptism is being enrolled by an “oath of allegiance” (sacramentum) into the church visible, an initiation into the people of God.
  2. If there is one people of God, with one faith, in one Savior, then it follows that the signs and seals of that salvation, Savior and faith, have not changed radically.
  3. Thus, he appealed to Colossians 2.11–12, where Paul linked circumcision and baptism, as evidence that Christian parents ought also to administer the sign of the covenant to their children.
  4. He agreed with Luther that the Sacraments strengthen faith, but he was clear to say that they do not give it. This is the work of the Spirit through the Word.
  5. Against the Anabaptists (i.e., Schwenkfelders) he argued that they added to SS by denying paedobaptism. NT is silent, therefore the command to administer the sign of the covenant continues to apply today.
  6. By forbidding it, they were adding to SS and doing exactly what Jesus said not to do: forbidding the children to come to him!
  7. If we deny that children should be baptized, then we must deny that women should come to the table, because there is no positive evidence that they were communicated in NT.
  8. If John’s baptism is substantially the same as Christ’s, then there is no categorical necessity of being discipled before baptism since John’s disciples had not even heard of Christ before they were baptized. John’s baptism was prospective and Christ’s retrospective.
  9. Certainly children were baptized in the OT. All Israel, children and adults were baptized with Moses in the Red Sea (1 Cor 10).
  10. Children of believers are born with original sin, but not original guilt and are therefore eligible for baptism.
  11. How can the children of NT believers be worse off than the children of the Jews who received the sign of the covenant, since this is a better covenant?
  12. The sign of initiation, in both covenants, always entailed a pledge to renew it with one’s children, hence the sign.

A Brief Outline Of Luther’s Bondage Of The Will

© R. S. Clark, 2000; 2014.

I Luther’s Critique of Erasmus (2/3)

II Luther’s Positive Development of the Doctrine of Predestination from SS (1/3)

Major propositions:

1 A fallen sinner is totally unable to cooperate with divine grace.

2 Salvation is exclusively the result of divine monergism

3 God foreknows what he does and does what he foreknows

4 To say that a fallen sinner has the power to cooperate with divine grace is a denial of the necessity of Christ’s work.

5 The human will is in bondage to sin because of our union with Adam in his fall

6 Everything happens according to the divine foreknowledge and will and therefore whatever occurs is, in this sense, ‘necessary’ but not ‘compulsory’.

7 The regenerate and unregenerate act according to their respective wills

8 Necessity does not destroy moral responsibility.

9 God’s will is immutable

10 Human free will is a denial of divine freedom

11 ‘Free will’ an ‘empty term’ which should be discarded

12 Predestination is the sine qua non of assurance .

13 God has predestined some to eternal life and others to eternal damnation.

14 Predestination is fundamentally paradoxical.

15 Ought does not imply can (Nominalism over realism).

16 ‘God preached’ must be distinguished from ‘God hidden’.

17 Sola gratia, Sola fide denies free will

18 Human inability disproves free will

Select Bibliography Of The Reformation

(rev. January 2006) © R. Scott Clark, 2006. All Rights Reserved.

1. References

Bagchi, David and David C. Steinmetz, ed. The Cambridge Companion to Reformation Theology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004).

Bauman, M., M. Klauber, ed., Historians of the Christian Tradition (Nashville, 1995).

Brady, T. A., H. A. Oberman, J. D. Tracy ed., Handbook of European History 1400-1600, 2 vol. (GR: Eerdmans, 1996).

Cross, F.L. and E. A. Livingstone, The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church. 3rd edn. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Collins, J.F., Primer of Ecclesiasitical Latin (Washington, D.C., 1985).

Douglas, J.D., ed., New International Dictionary of the Christian Church (Grand Rapids,1978).

Edwards, P. ed., The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 8 vol. (NY: Macmillan, 1967).

Elwell, W., ed., Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2002)

— ed., Handbook of Evangelical Theologians (Grand Rapids, 1993).

Ferguson, S. New International Dictionary of Theology. Downers Grove: Inter-Varsity Press, 1988.

Ferm. V., ed., An Encyclopedia of Religion. New York: Philosophical Library, 1945.

Hart, D. G. and M. Noll, ed. Dictionary of the Presbyterian and Reformed Tradition in America.Downers Grove: Inter-Varsity Press, 1999.

Hart, Trevor. ed. Dictionary of Historical Theology (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2001).

Hastings, J. ed., The Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics, 13 vol. (New York, 1908-28)

Hillerbrand, H., ed., The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Reformation (Oxford, 1996).

Höfer, J., ed., Lexikon für Theolgie unk Kirche, 10 vol. (Freiburg, 1957-67).

Houldon, Leslie, P. Byrne, Companion Encyclopedia of Theology (London, 1995).

Kepple, R. Reference Works for Theological Research (Lanham, MD, 1981).

Krause, G. and Gerhard Müller, ed., Theologische Realencyclopädie, (Berlin, 1977-).

Loetscher, L. , ed., The Twentieth Century Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, 2 vol. (Grand Rapids, 1955).

Maltby, William S. ed. Reformation EuropeA Guide to Research II (St. Louis, 1992).

McKim, D., and D. Wright, ed., Encyclopedia of the Reformed Faith (Louisville, 1992).

–ed., Historical Handbook of Major Biblical Interpreters. Downers Grove: Inter-Varsity, 1998.

Schaff, P., ed., The Schaff-Herzogg Encyclopdia of Religious Knowledge, 13 vol. (New York, 1908-12).

Stelten, Leo. F. Dictionary of Ecclesiastical Latin. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1995.

The New Catholic Encyclopedia (New York, 1967-78).

Trevor A. Hart, ed., The Dictionary of Historical Theology (Carlisle UK and Grand Rapids: Paternoster and Eerdmans, 2000).

2. Theology

2.1. Dogmatic and Systematic Theologies

2.1.1. Patristic

Schaff, P. et al., The Ante-Nicene, Nicene and Post Nicene Fathers, 32 vol. (Edinburgh, 1884-).

2.1.2. Medieval

Aquinas, Thomas. Summa theologiae, 61 vol. [Blackfriars E.T.] (Cambridge, 1964-1981).

—— Summa Theologica, 5 vol. (Westminster, MD [repr.] 1981).

Ockham, William. Quodlibetal Questions (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1999).

2.1.3. Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Protestants

Ames, William The Marrow of Theology, trans. John Dykstra Eusden (Durham, NC, 1983).

Arminius, James. The Writings of James Arminius, 3 vol. trans. and ed. J. Nichols and W.R. Bagnall (Grand Rapids, repr. 1977)

Beza, Theodore. The Christian Faith. trans. James Clark (East Sussex, 1992).

A Little Book of Christian Questions and Responses, trans. K. M. Summers (Allison Park, PA: Pickwick, 1986).
NB: Q. 160 should read, “He means we are not to keep the works of the ceremonial law.”

Bucanus, William. Institutions of the Christian Religion. trans. R. Hill. (London, 1606).

Calvin, John. Institutes of the Christian Religion.
Available chiefly in three English editions. The Battles’ translation published in the LCC series is the standard critical edition. The older Beveridge edition is available on-line at: http://ccel.wheaton.edu/calvin/institutes/icr1.txt. The Allen edition is also serviceable. The Battles’ trans. of the 1536 edn was published in English by Eerdmans in 1986. The Latin text of the Institutes is available in the Opera Selecta, 5 vol. ed. Peter Barth and W. Niesel (Munich, 1926-62) and in the Corpus Reformatorum, ed. C.G. Bretschneider. 101 vol. (Halle, 1834-1959) as well as in the Tholuck edn (Edinburgh, 1874). His commentaries are widely available in English translation in two editions.

— Calvin’s Calvinism: Treatises on the Eternal Predestination of God and the Secret Providence of God, trans., Henry Cole (Cambridge, 1856 repr.)

— Come out from among Them: Anti-Nicodemite Writings of John Calvin. Translated by Seth Skolnitksy. Geneva: Protestant Heritage Press, 2001.

— Sermons on Galatians, trans. A. Golding (London, 1574, repr. 1995).

— Sermons on Job. Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1993.

— Sermons on Melchizedek and Abraham: Justification, Faith and Obedience. Translated by T. Stocker. Willow Street, PA: Old Paths, 2000.

— Treatises Against the Anabaptists etc. (Grand Rapids, 1982)

— The Bondage and Liberation of the Will. A Defence of the Orthodox Doctrine of Human Choice against Pighius. Translated by G. I. Davies. Edited by A. N. S. Lane. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1996.

— Men, Women, and Order in the Church. Dallas: Presbyterian Heritage Publications, 1992.

— Concerning Scandals (Grand Rapids, 1978)

— Instruction in Faith (1537) (Phila., 1959)

— Theological Treatises (Phila., 1954)

— Tracts Tracts & Treatises 7 vol. (Grand Rapids, repr. 1983).

— Sermons on Psalm 119. Translated by TS. Audabon, NJ, 1996.

— Sermons on Ten Commandments (Grand Rapids, 1980)

— Sermons on Deuteronomy. Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1987.

— Sermons on Ephesians (Edinburgh, repr 1973)

— Sermons on the Saving Work of Christ (Grand Rapids, 1950)

— Sermons on Timothy and Titus (Edinburgh, repr. 1983)

— Sermons on the Book of Micah. Translated by Benjamin Wirt Farley. Edited by Benjamin Wirt Farley. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2003.

— Ecclesiastical Advice (Edinburgh, 1991)

— Sermons on Election and Reprobation. Translated by J. Field. Willow Street, PA: Old Paths, 1996.

Chemnitz, M. Loci Theologici 2 vol. trans. J.A.O. Preus (St Louis, 1989).

Heppe, Heinrich. Reformed Dogmatics, trans. G.T. Thomson (Grand Rapids, ).
The German edn with the Latin texts is: Die Dogmatik der evangelisch-reformirten Kirche. Elberfeld, 1861.

Johnson, W.S. and J.H. Leith, ed., Reformed Reader: A Sourcebook in Christian Theology, vol.1. (Louisville, 1993).

Kidd, B.J. Documents of the Continental Reformation (Oxford, 1911).

Kolb, R. Martin Luther as Prophet, Teacher and Hero: Images of the Reformer, 1520-1620(Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999).

Luther, Martin. Works. 55 vol. trans. and ed. J. Pelikan and H.T. Lehmann (Philadelphia and St. Louis,
1955-). The German and Latin texts are available in Luthers Werke Kritische Gesamtausgabe(Weimar, 1883-). There is also a six volume edition of Luther’s works called the ‘Philadelphia edition’.

— Bondage of the Will trans. Packer and Johnston (Cambridge, 1973)

Works 6 vol. (Phila., 1915)

— Three Treatises (Phila., 1970)

— Commentary on the Epistle to the Romans (Grand Rapids, 1954)

Melanchthon, Philip. Loci Communes 
The Loci Communes were the first Protestant dogmatics and crucially important for that reason alone. The 1521 edn particularly represents a brilliant distillation of Luther’s theology. Exists in three English editions. The 1521 edn. is found the the Library of Christian Classics edition,Melanchthon and Bucer, and the 1543 edn is published by Concordia Publishing House. The 1555 edn is available in Melanchton on Christian DoctrineLoci Communes 1555. ed. Clyde L. Manschreck (Oxford, 1965).

— Commentary on Romans. trans. Fred Kramer (St. Louis : Concordia, 1992).

Muller, R. A., Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics 4 vol. 2nd edn (Grand Rapids, 2003).

Olevian, A Firm Foundation, trans. and ed., L. Bierma (Grand Rapids, 1995).

Perkins, William. The Work of William Perkins (Oxford, 1970)

Polanus, Amandus. The Substance of the Christian Religion. trans. E.W. (London, 1595).

Rollock, Robert. Select Works of Robert Rollock. 2 vol. ed. William M.Gunn. (Ediburgh, 1849).

Ursinus, Zacharias. Commentary on the Heidelberg Catechism. trans. and ed., G. Willard (Philipsburg, 1985).

Vermigli, Peter Martyr. The Peter Martyr Library. ed. J. P. Donnelly and J. C. Mclelland (Kirksville: Sixteenth Century Essays and Studies, Truman State University.

Zwingli, H. Commentary on True and False Religion, ed., Samuel Macauley Jackson and C.N. Heller (Durham, 1981).

— and Bullinger (Library of Christian Classics) ed. G.W. Bromiley (Phila., 1953)

— Selected Works (Philadelphia, 1972).

— Early Writings (New York, 1912).

— On Providence and Other Essays, ed. S. M. Jackson, W.J. Hinke (Durham, NC, repr. 1983).

2.2. Historical Theologies

Berkhof, L., The History of Christian Doctrines (Edinburgh: Banner of Truth Trust, 1969).

Bradley, James E. and R.A. Muller, Church History: An Introduction to Research, Reference Works and Methods (Grand Rapids, 1995).

Bromiley, G., Historical Theology: An Introduction (Grand Rapids, 1978).

Cunningham, William. Historical Theology, 2 vol (1862. Edinburgh, repr. 1979)

Farmer, C. The Gospel of John in the Sixteenth Century (OUP, 1997).

Hägglund, Bengt, History of Theology. trans. Gene L. Lund 3rd edn (St Louis, 1968).

McGiffert, A.C. History of Christian Thought. 2 vol. (New York, 1954).

McGrath, A.E., ed., The Christian Theology Reader (Oxford: Blackwells, 1994)

Historical Theology (Oxford: Blackwells, 1998).

Iustitia Dei. A History of the Christian Doctrine of Justification 2 vol. (Cambridge: CUP, 1986-)

Olson, R. The Story of Christian Theology (IVP, 1999).

Pelikan, Jaroslav. The Christian TraditionA History of the Development of Doctrine. 5 vol. Chicago, 1984.

Ritschl, Albrecht. A Critical History of the Christian Doctrine of Justification and Reconciliation. trans. John S. Black. Edinburgh, 1872.

Seeburg, R., History of Doctrines, 2 vol. (Philadelphia, 1904)

Shedd, W.G.T., A History of Christian Doctrine, 2 vol. (New York, 1909)

Tillich, Paul. A History of Christian Thought, ed. Carl E. Braaten (New York, 1972).

3. Humanism

Bainton, R. Erasmus of Christendom (New York, 1969)

Bouwsma, William J. “Renaissance and Reformation: An Essay in Their Affinities and Connections.” In Luther and the Dawn of the Modern Era. ed. Heiko Oberman (Leiden, 1974).

— The Waning of the Renaissance 1550-1640 (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2000).

Copenhaver, B.P. and C.Scmitt, Renaissance Philosophy (Oxford, 1992)

Emerton, E. Humanism and Tyranny (Gloucester, MA, 1964)

Breen, Quirinius. Christianity and Humanism. Grand Rapids, 1968.

Hughes, Philip Edgcumbe. LefévrePioneer of Ecclesiastical Reform in France. Grand Rapids, 1984.

— “Jacques LeFèvre d’Etaples (c.1455-1536).” Calvinus ReformatorHis Contribution toTheologyChurch and State. Pochestroom, 1982.

Fleischer, M. The Harvest of Humanism in C. Europe (St Louis, 1992)

Kelley, Donald R. Foundations of Modern Historical Scholarship (New York, 1970)

— The Beginning of Ideology. Cambridge, 1981.

Kristeller, Paul Oskar. Renaissance Thought and its Sources, ed. Michael Mooney. New York, 1979.

Linder, Robert D. “Calvinism and Humanism: The First Generation.” Church History 44 (1975): 167-81.

Nauert, Charles G. “The Clash of Humanists and Scholastics: An Approach to Pre-Reformation Controversies.” Sixteenth Century Journal 4 (1973): 1-18.

Rummel, E. The Humanist-Scholastic Debate (Cambridge, MA, 1995)

Spitz, Lewis W. The Religious Renaissance of the German Humanists. Cambridge, MA, 1963.

— The Religious Renaissance of the German Humanists. Cambridge, Mass. 1963.

— “The Course of German Humanism.” Itinerarium ItalicumThe Profile of the ItalianReniassance in the Mirror of its European Transformations ed. H.A. Oberman and T.A. Brady. Leiden, 1975.

Trinkaus, C. The Scope of Renaissance Humanism. Ann Arbor, 1983.

4. Reformation Histories and Backgrounds

This is a good bibliography.

Bainton, R.H. The Reformation of the Sixteenth Century. Boston, 1952.

Burchill, Christopher J. ‘The Urban Reformation and its Fate: Problems and Perspectives in the Consolidation of the German Protestant Movement’. The Historical Journal 27 (1984): 997-1010.

Cameron, Euan. The European Reformation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1991).

Dorner, I.A. History of Protestant Theology. 2 vol. trans. George Robson and Sophia Taylor. Edinburgh, 1871.

Friedman, J. ed. RegnumReligio et RatioEssays Presented to Robert MKindon, (Kirksville, 1987).

Gregory, Brad S. Salvation at Stake: Christian Martyrdom in Early Modern Europe(Cambridge, MA and London: Harvard University Press, 1999).

 Heinze, Rudolph W.   Reform and Conflict : from the Medieval World to the Wars of Religion, A.D. 1350-1648. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2005.

Kirk, James. ed. Humanism and ReformThe Church in EuropeEngland and Scotland14001643. Oxford, 1991.

Lindsay, Thomas M. A History of The Reformation. 2 vol. New York, 1922.

Littell, F. H. ed. Reformation StudiesEssays Honoring Roland HBainton (Richmond, 1962)

Oberman, H.A. and Frank A. James III Via Augustini: Augustine in the Later Middle Ages, Renaissance and Reformation (Leiden, 1991)

Raitt, J. ed. Shapers of Religious Traditions in GermanySwitzerlandand Poland 15001600(New Haven, 1981)

5. Reformation Studies

Avis, Paul D. L. The Church in the Theology of the Reformers. Basingstoke, 1981.

Baker, D., Reform and Reformation: England and the Continent (Oxford, 1979).

Benedict, Philip. Christ’s Church Purely Reformed: A Social History of Calvinism (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2002).

Cameron, Euan ‘The Late Renaissance and the Unfolding Reformation in Europe’. ed. Derek Baker. Reform and ReformationEngland and the Continent c.1500– c.1750. Oxford, 1979.

— The Reformation of the Heretics (Oxford, 1984)

Chadwick, Owen. Reformation (New York, 1964)

Clark, R. S. “Regensburg and Regensburg II,” Modern Reformation (September/October, 1998).

Cochrane, Arthur C. ed. Reformed Confessions of the Sixteenth Century. Philadelphia, 1966.

Cunningham, Andrew and Ole Peter Grell, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: Religion, War, Famine and Death in Reformation Europe (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001).

Cunningham, William. The Reformers and the Theology of the Reformation. Edinburgh, 1967.

Dickens, A.G. English Reformation (2nd edn)

— Reformation and Society (New York, 1966)

Dixon, C. Scott, ed., The German Reformation (Oxford: Blackwell, 1999)

Ebling, Gerhard. ‘On the Doctrine of the Triplex usis legis in the Theology of the Reformation’.Word and Faith. trans. J. W. Leith. London, 1963.

Gerrish, B.A. ‘Biblical Authority and the Reformation’ Scottish Journal of Theology 10 1957: 337-51

—— ed., Reformers in Profile (Phila: Fortress, 1967)
Vignettes on late ME moral Reformers, 16c, Protestants and counter-Reformation figures.

Hall, P. ed. The Harmony of Protestant Confessions (repr. 1842, 1992)

Hillerbrand, Hans J. The World of the Reformation. London, 1975.

–.The Protestant Reformation. ed. New York, 1968.

Hsia, R. Po-Chia. Social Discipline in the Reformation: Central Europe 1550-1750. London, 1989.

Kidd, B.J. ed. Documents Illustrative of the Continental Reformation. Oxford, 1911.

Knox, R. Buick. ed. ReformationConformity and Dissent. Knox. London, 1977.

Leonard, E.G. A History of Protestantism. ed. H.H. Rowley and trans. J.M.H. Reid and R. M. Bethell. 2 vol. London, 1965-7.

Littell, Franklin H. ed., Reformation Studies. Essays in Honor of Roland H. Bainton (Richmond, 1962).

Lortz, Joseph. The Reformation in Germany. 2 vol. trans. Ronald Walls. London, 1968.

McGrath, Alister E. The Intellectual Origins of the European Reformation. Oxford, 1987.

— Reformation ThoughtAn Introduction. Oxford, 1988.

McNeill, J.T. ‘Natural Law in the Teaching of the Reformers’. Journal of Religion 26 (1946): 168-182.

Möller, Bernd. Imperial Cities and the ReformationThree Essays, trans., H.C. Erik Middlefort and Mark U. Edwards. Philadelphia, 1972.

Noll, M. ed. Confessions and Catechisms of the Reformation (Grand Rapids, 1991)

Oberman , H.A. ‘Europa Afflicta: The Reformation of the Refugees’ Archive fürReformationgeschicte 83 1992: 91-111.

— Forerunners of the ReformationThe Shape of Late Medieval Thought. Philadelphia, 1981.

— Masters of the ReformationThe Ermergence of a New Intellectual Climate in Europe. trans. D. Martin. Cambridge, 1981.

— The Dawn of the Reformation. T & T Clark: Edinburgh, 1986.

— Luther: Man Between God and the Devil. trans., Eileen Walliser-Schwarzbart. [reprint] London, 1993.

— Harvest of Medieval Theology. Cambridge, Mass, 1963.

— Luther and the Dawn of the Modern Era. Leiden, 1974.

— and T.A. Brady. ed. Itinerarium ItalicumThe Profile of the Italian Renaissance in the Mirrorof its European TransformationsDedicated to Paul Oskar Kristeller. ed. H. A. Oberman and T.A. Brady. Leiden, 1975.

— The Reformation. Roots and Ramifications. trans. Alan Colin Gow. Edinburgh, 1994.

Old, Hughes Oliphant. The Age of the Reformation. 5 vols. Vol. 4, The Reading and Preaching of the Scriptures in the Worship of the Christian Church (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002).

Ozment, Steven E. ed. Reformation EuropeA Guide to Research. St. Louis, 1982.

— The Age of Reform 12501550An Intellectual and Religious History of Late Medieval andReformation Europe. London, 1980.

— ed. The Reformation in Medieval Perspective. Chicago, 1971.

— The Reformation in the CitiesThe Appeal of Protestantism to Sixteenth Century Germanyand Switzerland. London, 1975.

Pauck, W., The Heritage of the Reformation (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1961).

Rupp, Gordon. Patterns of Reformation. London, 1969.

Scribner, R.W. The German Reformation. London, 1986.

Sessions, Kyle C. and Phillip N. Bebb, ed. Pietas et SocietasNew Trends in ReformationSocial HistoryEssays in Honor of Harold JGrimm (Kirksville, 1985).

Spitz, Lewis W. ed. The Protestant Reformation. Englewood Cliffs, 1966.

— The Protestant Reformation 1517-1559. New York, 1985.

— The Renaissance and Reformation Movements. 2 vol. St. Louis, 1971.

Steinmetz, David C. Reformers in the Wings. Philadelphia, 1971.

Trevor-Roper, H. R. Religion, the Reformation and Social Change. Second ed., London, 1972.

6. Luther and Lutheranism

Althaus, Paul. The Theology of Martin Luther. trans. Robert C. Schultz. Philadelphia, 1966.

Atkinson, James. The Great Light: Luther and the Reformation (Grand Rapids, 1968).

——Martin Luther and the Birth of Protestantism (London, 1968).

Bagchi, D. V. N. Luther’s Earliest Opponents: Catholic Controversialists, 1518-1525. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1991.

Bainton, R.H. Here I Stand (1950).

Bornkamm, H. Luther and the Old Testament. Translated by E. C. Gritsch and R. Gritsch. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1969.

— Luther in Mid-Career 1521-1530, trans. E. T. Bachmann, ed. K. Bornkamm (Philadelphia, 1983).

Braaten, Carl E. and R. W. Jenson ed., Union with Christ: The New Finnish Interpretation of Luther (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1998).

Brecht, M. Martin Luther: The Preservation of the Church 1532-1546, trans J. L. Schaaf (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1993),

Cargill-Thompson, W. D. J.. The Political Thought of Martin Luther Sussex, 1984

Heinrich Denifle, Luther and Lutherdom, trans. Raymond Volz (Somerset, OH: Torch Press, 1917)

Edwards, Mark U. Jr. Luther and the False Brethren (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1975).

Estes, James Martin. Peace, Order and the Glory of God: Secular Authority and the Church in the Thought of Luther and Melanchthon, 1518-1559. Leiden: Brill, 2005.

Farthing, John L. Thomas Aquinas and Gabriel Biel: Interpretations of St. Thomas Aquinas in German Nominalism on the Eve of the Reformation. Durham and London, 1988.

Gerrish, B.A. Grace and ReasonA Study in the Theology of Luther. Oxford, 1962

Green, Lowell C. “The Question of Theosis in the Perspective of Lutheran Christology,” inAll Theology Is Christology: Essays in Honor of David P. Scaer, edited by Dean O. Wenthe and David P. Scaer (Ft Wayne, IN: Concordia Theological Seminary Press, 2000)

Headley, J.M. Luther’s Use of Church History (New Haven, 1963).

Kolb, R. Martin Luther as Prophet, Teacher and Hero: Images of the Reformer 1520-1620(Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999).

Loewenich, Walther von. Luther’s Theology of the Cross. trans. H. J. A. Bouman (Minneapolis: Augsburg, 1976).

Lohse, Bernhard. Martin LutherAn Introduction to His Life and Work. Edinburgh, 1986.

— Martin Luther’s Theology: Its Historical and Systematic Development (Phila: Fortress, 1999).

Mackinnon, James. Luther and the Reformation. 4 vol. London, 1925-30.

Marty, Martin E. Martin Luther. New York: Viking Penguin, 2004.

McGrath, Alister E. Luthers Theology of the CrossMartin Luthers Theological Breakthrough. Oxford, 1985.

McSoreley, Harry J. Luther: Right or Wrong? An Ecumenical-Theological Study of Luther’s Major Work, the Bondage of the Will. Toronto, Amsterdam, London, and Minneapolis: Newman Press and Augsburg Publishing House, 1969.

Mannerma, Tuomo, ed., Tuomo Mannermaa and Kirsi Stjerna eds, Christ Present In Faith: Luther’s View Of Justification (Augsburg Fortress Publishers, repr. 2005).

Marius, R. Martin Luther: Christian Between God and Death (Harvard, 1999).

Oberman, H.A. Luther: Man Between God and the Devil (New Haven, 1989)

Pelikan, J. ed. Interpreters of Luther (Philadelphia, 1968).

Obedient Rebels: Catholic Substance and Protestant Principle in Luther’s Reformation (New York, 1964).

Plass, Ewald M., ed. What Luther Says. 3 vols. St Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959.

Preus, Robert D. The Theology of Post-Reformation Lutheranism A Study of Theological Prolegomena. 2 vol. St. Louis, 1970.

— The Inspiration of ScriptureA Study of the theology of the Seventeenth Century Lutheran Dogmaticians (Mankato, MN, 1955).

Preus, H. A. The Communion of Saints: A Study of the Origin and Development of Luther’s Doctrine of the Church (Minneapolis: Augsburg, 1948)

Rupp, G. Luther’s Progress to the Diet of Worms 1521 (London, 1951)

The Righteousness of God (London, 1953)

Schmid, Heinrich. The Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Translated by Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs. 4th ed. Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1889.

Spitz, Lewis P. and Wenzel Lohff ed. DiscordDialogue and ConcordStudies in the LutheranReformations Formula of Concord (Philadelphia, 1977).

Steinmetz, David. C. Luther and StaupitzAn Essay in the Intellectual Origins of the ProtestantReformation. Durham, N.C. 1980.

—— Luther in Context (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1996)

James M. Stayer, ed., Martin Luther, German Saviour, Mc Gill-Queen’s Studies in the History of Religion (Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2000)

Trueman, Carl R. “Is the Finnish Line a New Beginning? A Critical Assessment of the Reading of Luther Offered by the Helsinki Circle,” Westminster Theological Journal 65 (2003): 231-244

Watson, Philip S. Let God Be God! An Interpretation of the Theology of Martin Luther. London: The Epworth Press, 1947.

Wengert, Timothy J., ed. Harvesting Martin Luther’s Reflections on Theology, Ethics, and the Church. Edited by Paul Rorem, Lutheran Quarterly Books. Grand Rapids and Cambridge: Eerdmans, 2004.

7. Tyndale Studies

Tyndale, William. The Works of William Tyndale. Edited by Henry Walter. 2 vols, The Parker Society for the Publication of the Works of the Fathers and Early Writers of the Reformed English Church. Cambridge: The University Press, 1848-1849.

Cargill Thompson, W.D.J. ‘The Two Regiments: The Continental Setting of William Tyndale’s Political Thought’. Reform and ReformationEngland and the Continent c.1500– c.1750. ed. Derek Baker. Oxford, 1979.

Daniell, David, William Tyndale: A Biography. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994.

Dick, John A. R.,and Anne Richardson, ed., William Tyndale and the Law. Kirksville: Sixteenth Century Journal Publishers, 1994.

Edwards, Brian H., God’s Outlaw. Grand Rapids: Evangelical Press, 1976.

McGiffert, Michael. ‘William Tyndale’s Conception of Covenant’. Journal of EcclesiasticalHistory 32 (1981): 167-84.

Trueman, C. R. Luther’s Legacy: Salvation and English Reformers 1525-1556 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994).

8. Melanchthon Studies

Breen, Q. ‘The Subordination of Philosophy to Rhetoric in Melanchthon’ ARG 43 (1952)

Fraenkel, Pierre. Testimonia PatrumThe Function of the Patristic Argument in the Theology ofPhilip Melanchthon. Geneva, 1961.

Green, L. ‘Erasmus, Luther and Melanchthon on the Magnus Consensus: The Problem of the Old and the New in the Reformation and Today’ The Lutheran Quarterly 27 (1975).

Maag, Karin, ed., Melanchthon in Europe: His Work and Influence Beyond Wittenberg (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999).

Manschrek, C.L. Melanchthonthe Quiet Reformer. New York, 1958.

— The Bible in Melanchthon’s Philosophy of Education’ Journal of Bible and Religion 23 (1955).

Meijering, E.P. Melanchthon and Patristic Thought. The Doctrines of Christ, Grace, the Trinity and the Creation. Leiden, 1983.

Meyer, Carl S. ‘Melanchthon, Theologian of Ecumenism’, Journal of Ecclesiastical History 27 (1966).

Reed, A.C. ‘Melanchthon’s 1521 Loci Communes: The First Protestant Apology’ The Churchman

Rogness, Michael. Philip Melanchthon. Reformer Without Honor. Minneapolis, 1969.

Scheible, H. ‘Luther and Melanchthon’ trans. T. Wengert Lutheran Quarterly (1990)

Wengert, Timothy J., Law and Gospel: Philip Melanchthon’s Debate with John of Agricola of Eisleben over Poenitentia. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1997.

— Human Freedom, Christian RighteousnessPhilip Melanchthon’s Exegetical Dispute with Erasmus of Rotterdam. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Wengert is probably the leading scholar of Melanchthon in the English speaking world.

Zuck, Lowell H. ‘Heinrich Heppe: A Melanchthonian Liberal in the Nineteenth Century German Reformed Church’. Church History 51 (1982): 419-33.

— ‘Melanchthonianism and Reformed Theology in the Late 16th Century’ Controversy andConciliationThe Palatinate Reformation15591618. ed. Derk Visser. Pittsburgh, 1986.

9. Calvin and Calvinism

Anderson, Marvin W. ‘Peter Martyr, Reformed Theologian (1542-1562): His Letters to Heinrich Bullinger and John Calvin’. Sixteenth Century Journal 4 (1973): 41-64.

Armstrong, Brian G. Calvinism and the Amyraut HeresyProtestant Scholasticism andHumanism in SeventeenthCentury France. Madison, 1969.

Backus, Irena. ‘The Teaching of Logic in Two Protestant Academies at the End of the Sixteenth Century. The Reception of Zarabella in Strasbourg and Geneva’ Archiv fürReformationgeschicte 80 (1989): 240-51.

Balke, W. Calvin and the Anabaptist Radicals. trans. W.J. Heynen (Grand Rapids, 1981).

Baird, Henry Martyn. Theodre BezaThe Counsellor of the French Reformation. New York, 1899.

Barth, Karl., The Theology of John Calvin, trans. Geoffrey W. Bromiley (Grand Rapids, 1995).

Battles, Ford Lewis. ‘God Was Accommodating Himself to Human Capacity’. Interpretation 31 (1977): 19-38.

— ‘Calculus Fidei’. Calvinus Ecclesiae Doctor. ed. W. Neuser. Kampen, 1978.

— The Piety of John Calvin (Grand Rapids, 1978)

Bavinck, Herman. ‘Calvin and Common Grace’ Calvin and the Reformation trans. G. Vos. London, 1909.

Beardsley III. John W. Reformed DogmaticsJWollebiusGVoetiusFTurretin. New York, 1965.

Beeke, Joel R. Assurance of FaithCalvinEnglish Puritanism and the Dutch SecondReformation. New York, 1991.

— ‘Faith and Assurance in the Heidelberg Catechism and its Primary Composers: A Fresh Look at the Kendall Thesis’, Calvin Theological Journal 27 (1992): 39-67.

Bierma, Lyle D. ‘Covenant or Covenants in the Theology of Olevianus?’ Calvin TheologicalJournal 22 (1987): 228-250.

— ‘Federal Theology in the Sixteenth Century: Two Traditions?’ Westminster TheologicalJournal 45 (1983): 304-321.

— ‘Olevianus and the Authorship of the Heidelberg Catechism: Another Look’. SixteenthCentury Journal 13 (1982):17-27.

— ‘The Covenant Theology of Caspar Olevian’. Ph.D. Diss. Duke University, 1980.

— ‘The Role of Covenant Theology in Early Reformed Orthodoxy’. The Sixteenth CenturyJournal 21 (1990): 453-462.

— ‘Vester Grundt and the Origins of the Heidelberg Catechism’ Later CalvinismInternationalPerspectives Sixteenth Century Essays and Studies vol. 22 ed. W. Fred Graham Kirksville, MO, 1994.

— ed. An Introduction to the Heidelberg Catechism: Sources, History, and Theology. Edited by Richard A. Muller, Texts and Studies in Reformation and Post-Reformation Thought (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2005).

Bouwsma, William J. ‘Calvin and the Renaissance Crisis of Knowing’. Calvin TheologicalJournal 17 (1982): 190-211

— John CalvinA Sixteenth Century Portrait. Oxford, 1988.

Bray, John S. Theodore Bezas Doctrine of Predestination. Nieuwkoop, 1975.

Breen, Quirinus. John CalvinA Study in French Humanism. Grand Rapids, 1931

Burchill, Christopher, J. ‘On the Consolation of a Christian Scholar: Zacharias Ursinus (1534-1583) and the Reformation in Heidelberg’. Journal of Ecclesiastical History 37 (1986): 565-583.

— ‘Girolamo Zanchi: Portrait of a Reformed Theologian and His Work’. Sixteenth Century Journal 15 (1984): 185-207.

Butin, Philip. W. , ‘John Calvin’s Humanist Image of Popular Late-Medieval Piety and its Contribution to Reformed Worship’. Calvin Theological Journal 29 (1994): 419-31.

— Revelation, Redemption and Response. Calvin’s Trinitarian Understanding of the Divine-Human Relationship. New York, 1995.

Clark, R  Scott, “The Catholic-Calvinist Trinitarianism of Caspar Olevian,” Westminster Theological Journal 61(1999): 15-39.

— “The Authority of Reason in the Later Reformation: Scholasticism in Caspar Olevian and Antoine de La Faye,”Protestant ScholasticismEssays in Reassessment, ed., Carl Trueman, R. Scott Clark. Carlisle, UK: Paternoster, 1999.

— “Calvin and the Lex Naturalis,” Stulos Theological Journal 6 (1998): 1-22.

— & J. R. Beeke, “Ursinus, Oxford and the Westminster Divines.” The Westminster Confession into the 21st Century: Essays in Remembrance of the 350th Anniversary of the Publication of the Westminster Confession of Faith, ed. J. Ligon Duncan and Duncan Rankin. Reformed Academic Press, forthcoming.

— “Ridley, Latimer, and Cranmer: The Oxford Martyrs,” Reformation and Revival: A Quarterly Journal for Church Leadership: The Church, 7 (1998): 167-79.

— “The Belgic Confession – Article 14: Of the Creation and Fall,” Christian Observer 173.23 (December 1, 1995): 23.

— “The Belgic Confession- Article 15: Sin,” Christian Observer 173.24 (December, 1, 1995)

— “The Evangelical Fall from the Means of Grace,” The Compromised Church, ed. John Armstrong (Wheaton: Crossway, 1998).

— Caspar Olevian and the Substance of the Covenant: The Double Benefit of Christ. Rutherford Studies in Historical Theology, ed. David F. Wright and Donald Macleod (Edinburgh: Rutherford House, 2005).

—  “The Benefits of Christ: Double Justification in Protestant Theology before the Westminster Assembly,” in The Faith Once Delivered: Celebrating the Legacy of Reformed Systematic Theology and the Westminster Assembly (Essays in Honor of Dr. Wayne Spear), ed. Anthony T. Selvaggio (Phillipsburg: P&R Publishing, 2006)

Collinson, Patrick. The Elizabethan Puritan Movement. London, 1967.

Dent, C.M. Protestant Reformers in Elizabethan Oxford (Oxford, 1985)

deGreef, W. The Writings of John Calvin: An Introductory Guide trans. L.D. Bierma (Grand Rapids, 1993)

Dever, Mark E. Richard Sibbes. Puritanism and Calvinism in Late Elizabethan and Early Stuart England. Macon, GA: Mercer University Press, 2000.

Donnelly, John Patrick. ‘Calvinist Thomism’. Viator 7 (1976): 441-55.

— ‘Immortality and Method in Ursinus’s Theological Ambiance’ Controversy and Conciliation:The Palatinate Reformation15591618. ed. Derk Visser. Pittsburgh, 1986.

— ‘Italian Influences on the Development of Calvinist Scholasticism’. Sixteenth Century Journal7 (1976): 81-101.

— Calvinism and Scholasticism in Vermiglis Doctrine of Man and Grace. Leiden, 1976.

— ‘Immortality and Method in Ursinus’s Theological Ambiance’. Controversy and Conciliation:The Palatinate Reformation15591618. ed. Derk Visser. Pittsburgh, 1986.

Dowey, Edward A. The Knowledge of God in Calvins Theology. New York, 1952.

Duffield, G. ed. John Calvin. Courtenay Studies in Reformation Theology, I. Appleford, 1966.

Duke, Alistair, Gillian Lewis and Andrew Pettegree. ed. Calvinism in Europe 15401610ACollection of Documents. Manchester, 1992.

Eire, C.M.N. War Against the IdolsThe Reformation of Worship from Erasmus to Calvin. Cambridge, 1986.

Farthing, John L. ‘De Coniungio Spirituali: Jerome Zanchi on Ephesians 5:22-33′. Sixteenth Century Journal 24 (1993): 621-52.

— ‘Foedus Evangelicum: Jerome Zanchi on the Covenant’. Calvin Theological Journal 29 (1994): 149-67.

— ‘Christ and the Eschaton: the Reformed Eschatology of Jerome Zanchi’. Later Calvinism. International PerspectivesSixteenth Century Essays and Studies Vol., 22. ed., W. Fred Graham. Kirksville, 1994.

Foxgrover, David, ed. Calvin and the Company of Pastors, Calvin Studies Society Papers 2003. Grand Rapids: Calvin Studies Society, 2004.

Ganoczy, Alexandre. The Young Calvin. trans. David Foxgrover and Wade Provo. Edinburgh, 1977.

George, Timothy. ed. John Calvin and the ChurchA Prism of Reform. Louisvile, 1990.

Gerrish, B.A. ‘John Calvin and the Reformed Doctrine of the Lord’s Supper’. McCormickQuarterly 22 (1969): 85-98.

— Grace and Gratitude. Edinburgh, 1993.

— B. A. Gerrish, “John Calvin on Martin Luther,” in Interpreters of Luther: Essays in Honor of Wilhelm Pauck, ed. J. Pelikan (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1968)

Godfrey, W. Robert. ‘Biblical Authority in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries: A Question of Transition’, Scripture and Truth ed. D.A. Carson and John D. Woodbridge (Grand Rapids, 1983).

— ‘Reformed Thought on the Extent of the Atonement to 1618’. Westminster TheologicalJournal 37 (1975): 133-71.

— ‘Tensions within International Calvinism: The Debate on the Atonement at the Synod of Dordt 1618-1619’. Ph.D. Diss. Stanford University, 1974.

Graham, W. Fred ed. Later CalvinismInternational Perspectives. Kirksville, 1994

Grohman, D.D., The Genevan Reactions to the Saumur Doctrines of Hypothetical Universalism: 1635-1685. Th.D. thesis, Knox College, Toronto School of Theology, 1971.

Helm, Paul. Calvin and the Calvinists. Edinburgh, 1982.

— ‘Calvin (and Zwingli) on Divine Providence’. Calvin Theological Journal 29 (1994): 388-405.

Heppe, Heinrich. Reformed Dogmatics Set Out and Illustrated from the Sources. trans. G.T. Thomson. ed. E. Bizer. London. 1950.

Höpfl, Harro. The Christian Polity of John Calvin. Cambridge, 1982.

Jeon, J. K. Covenant theology : John Murray’s (1898-1975) and Meredith G. Kline’s (1922-) Response to the Historical Development of Federal Theology in Reformed Thought (Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1999).

Johnson, John H. Leith and Robert A., ed. Papers Presented at the Ninth Colloquium on Calvin Studies, Calvin Studies Conference. Davidson College and Davidson Presbyterian Church, 1998.

Jones, S. Calvin and the Rhetoric of Piety (Louisville: WJKP, 1995).

Kantzer, Kenneth S. ‘John Calvin’s Theory of the Knowledge of God and the Word of God’. Ph.D. Thesis, Harvard University, 1950.

Karlberg, Mark W. ‘Covenant Theology and the Westminster Tradition’. WestminsterTheological Journal 54 (1992): 135-152.

— ‘Reformed Interpretation of the Mosaic Covenant’. Westminster Theological Journal 43 (1980): 1-57.

— ‘The Mosaic Covenant and the Concept of Works in Reformed Hermeneutics: A Historical-Critical Analysis with Particular Attention to Early Covenant Eschatology’. Ph.D. Diss. Westminster Theological Seminary, 1980.

Kendall, R. T. Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649. Oxford, 1979.

Kingdon, Robert M. Adultery and Divorce in Calvin’s Geneva. Vol. 118, Harvard Historical Studies. Cambridge, MA and London: Harvard University Press, 1995.

Klauber, Martin I. ‘Continuity and Discontinuity in Post-Reformation Reformed Theology: An Evaluation of the Muller Thesis’. Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society 33 (1990): 467-75.

— ‘Between Protestant Orthodoxy and Rationalism: Fundamental Articles in the Early Career of Jean LeClerc’. The Journal of the History of Ideas 54 (1993): 611-36.

Lachman, David C. “The Marrow Controversy 1718-1723: An Historical and Theological Analysis,” Ph.D. Thesis, University of St. Andrews, 1979.

Lane, A.N.S. ‘Calvin’s Use of the Father’s and Medievals’. Calvin Theological Journal 16 (1981): 149-205.

–. ‘The Quest for the Historical Calvin’. The Evangelical Quarterly 55. (1983): 95-113.

— John Calvin: Student of the Church Fathers (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999).

Leith, John H., ed. Calvin Studies 8: The Westminster Confession in Current Thought, Papers Presented at at the Colloquium on Calvin Studies. Davidson, NC, 1996.

Leithart, Peter J. ‘Stoic Elements in Calvin’s Doctrine of the Christian Life. Part I: Original Corruption, Natural Law, and the Order of the Soul’. Westminster Theological Journal. 55 (1993): 31-54.

— ‘Stoic Elements in Calvin’s Doctrine of the Christian Life. Part II. Mortification’. WestminsterTheological Journal. 55 (1993): 191-208.

— ‘Stoic Elements in Calvin’s Doctrine of the Christian Life. Part III. Christian Moderation’.Westminster Theological Journal. 56 (1994): 59-85.

— ‘That Eminent Pagan: Calvin’s Use of Cicero in Institutes 1.1.5’. Westminster TheologicalJournal. 52 (1990): 1-12.

Letham, Robert, W. ‘Amandus Polanus: A Neglected Theologian?’ The Sixteenth CenturyJournal. 21 (1990): 463-476.

— ‘The Foedus Operum: Some Factors Accounting For Its Development’. The SixteenthCentury Journal. 14 (1983): 457-467.

— ‘Theodore Beza: A Reassessment’. The Scottish Journal of Theology 40 (1987): 25-40.

Lillback, Peter A. ‘The Continuing Conundrum: Calvin and the Conditionality of the Covenant’.Calvin Theological Journal 29 (1994): 42-74.

— ‘Ursinus’ Development of the Covenant of Creation: A Debt to Melanchthon or Calvin?’Westminster Theological Journal. 43 (1981): 247-288.

— The Binding of God: Calvin’s Role in the Development of Covenant Theology (Grand Rapids: Baker, 2001).

Manetsch, Scott M. Theodore Beza and the Quest for Peace in France, 1572-1598. Edited by Heiko Oberman. Vol. 74, Studies in Medieval and Reformation Thought (Leiden, Boston, Koln: Brill, 2000).

McGiffert, Michael. ‘The Perkensian Moment of Federal Theology’. Calvin Theological Journal29 (1994): 117-48.

McGrath, Alister E. A Life of John CalvinA Study in the Shaping of Western Culture. Oxford, 1990.

McKim, Donald K. ed. Encyclopedia of the Reformed Faith. Louisville, 1992.

— ‘William Perkins and the Theology of the Covenant’. Studies of the Church in History. ed., Horton Davies. Allison Park, Pennsylvania, 1983.

McNeill, J.T. ‘The Church in Sixteenth Century Reformed Theology’. Journal of Religion 22 (1942): 251-69.

— The History and Character of Calvinism. Oxford, 1954.

Muller, Richard A. ‘Duplex Cognitio Dei in the Theology of Early Reformed Orthodoxy’.Sixteenth Century Journal 10 (1979): 51-61.

— ‘Fides and Cognitio in Relation to the Problem of Intellect and Will in the Theology of John Calvin’. Calvin Theological Journal 25 (1990): 207-224.

— ‘Perkins’ A Golden Chaine: Predestinarian System or Schematized Ordo Salutis?’ SixteenthCentury Journal 9 (1978): 69-81

— ‘Christ in the Eschaton: Calvin and Moltmann on the Duration of the Munus Regium‘,Harvard Theological Review 74 (1981): 31-59.

Muller, Richard A. God, Creation and Providence in the Thought of Jacob Arminius. Grand Rapids, 1991.

— The Unaccommodated Calvin: Studies in the Foundation of a Theological Tradition (Oxford: OUP, 2000).

— After Calvin: Studies in the Development of a Theological Tradition, Oxford Studies in Historical Theology (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2003).

Christ and the Decree: Christology and Predestination in Reformed Theology from Calvin to Perkins ( Grand Rapids, 1986).

Murray, John. ‘Calvin’s Doctrine of Creation’. Westminster Theological Journal 17 (1954): 21-43.

— Calvin on Scripture and Divine Sovereignty. Grand Rapids, 1960.

Naphy, William G. Calvin and the Consolidation of the Genevan Reformation. Manchester, 1994.

Neuser, Wilhelm H. ed. Calvinus Sacrae Scripturae. Grand Rapids, 1994.

— ‘Calvin’s Teaching on the Notae Fidelium: An Unnoticed Part of the Institutio 4.1.8′. trans. Mark S. Burrows. In Probing the Reformed TraditionHistorical Studies in Honor of Edward A.DoweyJr. Louisville, 1989.

Nicole, Roger. ‘The Doctrine of Definite Atonement in the Heidelberg Catechism’. GordonReview 3 (1964): 138-45.

— ‘John Calvin’s view of the Extent of the Atonement’, Westminster Theological Journal 47 (1985): 197-225.

Niesel, W. The Theology of Calvin. trans. Knight. Philadelphia, 1956.

Nijenhuis, Willem. ‘Calvin and the Augsburg Confession’, Ecclesia Reformata. Studies on the Reformation. trans. Mary Foran. Leiden, 1972.

— ‘Calvin’s “Subito Conversio”: Notes on a Hypothesis”, Ecclesia ReformataStudies on the Reformation. vol., 2. Leiden, 1994.

Nischan, Bodo. ‘”The Fractio Panis’: A Reformed Communion Practice in Late Reformation Germany’. Church History53 (1984): 1729.

Nugent, D. Ecumenism in the Age of the ReformationThe Colloquy of Poissy. Cambridge, Mass. 1974.

Oberman, H.A. ‘Initia Calvini: The Matrix of Calvin’s Reformation’. Calvinus Sacrae ScripturaeProfessor. ed. Wilhelm H. Neuser. Grand Rapids, 1994.

— ‘The “Extra” Dimension in the Theology of Calvin’ Journal of Ecclesiastical History 21 (1970): 43-64.

Packer, J.I. ‘Calvin the Theologian’. In John CalvinA Collection of Essays‘. Grand Rapids, 1966.

Parker, T.H.L. The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God. London, 1952.

— John Calvin: A Biography (Philadelpia:Westminster Press, 1975).

Partee, Charles. Calvin and Classical Philosophy. Leiden, 1977.

Peterson, Robert A. Calvin’s Doctrine of the Atonement. Phillipsburg, N.J., 1983.

Packer, J. I. The Redemption and Restoration of Man in the Thought of Richard Baxter: A Study in Puritan Theology, Studies in Evangelical History and Thought. Carlisle, UK: Paternoster, 2003.

Platt, John. Reformed Thought and Protestant Scholasticism. Leiden, 1982.

Porter, C.W. Reformation and Reaction in Tudor Cambridge. Cambridge, 1958.

Prestwich, Menna. ed. International Calvinism 15411715 (Oxford, 1985).

Raitt, Jill. ‘Three Inter-Related Principles in Calvin’s Unique Doctrine of Infant Baptism’.Sixteenth Century Journal. 11 (1980): 51-62.

— The Colloquy of MontbeliardReligion and Politics in the Sixteenth Century. Oxford, 1993.

— The Eucharistic Theology of Theodore Beza. Chambersburg, PA. 1972.

Rainbow, J. H. The Will of God and the Cross (Allison Park, PA, 1990).

Reid, W. Stanford, “Justification by Faith According to John Calvin,” Westminster Theological Journal 42 (1980): 290–307.

Schaefer, Paul. “The Spiritual Brotherhood on the Habits of the Heart: Cambridge Protestants and the Doctrine of Sanctification from William Perkins to Thomas Shepard.” DPhil. thesis. Oxford University, 1994.

Schnucker, R.V. CalvinianaThe Ideas and Influence of John Calvin. Kirksville, MO: Sixteenth Century Publishers, 1988.

— ed. CalvinianaIdeas and Influence of Jean Calvin (Kirksville, 1988).

Tamburello, D.E. Union with Christ (Louisville, 1994)

Trueman, C. R. and R. S. Clark, ed. Protestant Scholasticism: Essays in Reassessment. Carlisle, UK: Paternoster, 1999.

van Asselt, W. and Eef Dekker, ed., Reformation and Scholasticism: An Ecumenical Enterprise(Grand Rapids: Baker, 2001).

van Ruler, J.A. The Crisis of Causality: Voetius and Descartes on God, Nature and Change(Leiden: Brill, 1995).

van Stam, F. P., The Controversy over the Theology of Saumur, 1635-1650 Disrupting Debates Among the Huguenots in Complicated Circumstances (Amsterdam: Holland University Press, 1988).

von Rohr, John. The Covenant of Grace in Puritan Thought (Atlanta, 1986).

Cornelis P. Venema, “The Twofold Nature of the Gospel in Calvin’s Theology: The Duplex Gratia Dei and the Interpretation of Calvin’s Theology,” Ph.D. Diss. (Princeton: Princeton Theological Seminary, 1985).

Vos, G. ‘The Doctrine of the Covenant in Reformed Theology’. Redemptive History and BiblicalInterpretationThe Shorter Writings of Geerhardus Vos. trans. and ed. Richard B. Gaffin. Phillipsburg, 1980.

Wallace, Ronald S. Calvins Doctrine of Word and Sacrament. Edinburgh, 1953

Warfield, Benjamin B. Calvin and Calvinism. New York, 1931.

Weir, David A. The Origins of the Federal Theology in Sixteenth Century Reformation Thought. Oxford, 1990.

Wendel, Francois. CalvinOrigins and Development of His Religious Thought. trans. Philip Mairet. London, 1965.

Willis, David E. Calvins Catholic ChristologyThe Function of the SoCalled ExtraCalvinisticum in Calvins Theology. Leiden, 1966.

Zachman, Randall C. The Assurance of Faith in the Theology of Martin Luther and JohnCalvin. Philadelphia, 1993.

10. Zwingli and Zwinglian Studies

Baker, J. Wayne. Covenant and Community in the Thought of Heinrich Bullinger. Philadelphia, 1980.

Büsser, Fritz. ‘Bullinger and 1566’. Conflict and Conciliation: The Palatinate Reformation, 1559-1618. ed. Derk Visser. Pittsburgh, 1986.

Gordon, Bruce, and Emidio Campi, eds. Architect of Reformation: An Introduction to Heinrich Bullinger, 1504-1575. Edited by Richard A. Muller, Texts and Studies in Reformation and Post-Reformation Thought (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2004).

McCoy, Charles S. and J. Wayne Baker. Fountainhead of FederalismHeinrich Bullinger andthe Covenantal Tradition with a Translation of De Testamento seu Foedere Dei Unico etAeterno (1534). Louisville, 1991.

Stephens, W. P. The Theology of Huldrych Zwingli. Oxford, 1984.

Venema, Cornelis. ‘Heinrich Bullinger’s Correspondence on Calvin’s Doctrine of Predestination’. Sixteenth Century Journal. 17 (1986): 435-450.

Wesel-Roth, Ruth. Thomas Erastus. Lahr-Baden, 1954

11. Bucer

Martin Bucer, Basic Instruction in Christian Love, translated by P. T. Fuhrmann (Richmond: John Knox Press, 1952).

Eells, Hastings. Martin Bucer (New York: Russell and Russell, repr. 1971)

Joel Edward Kok, “The Influence of Martin Bucer on John Calvin’s Interpretation of Romans: A Comparative Case Study,” Ph. D. diss. (Duke University, 1993).

Greschat, Martin. Martin Bucer: A Reformer and His Times. Translated by Stephen E. Buckwalter. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004.

Stephens, W.P. The Holy Spirit in the Theology of Martin Bucer (Cambridge, 1970).

Wright, D.F., ed., Common Places of Martin Bucer (Abingdon: Sutton Courtenay Press, 1971).

— ed., Martin Bucer: Reforming Church and Community (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994).

12. Counter-Reformation

Bagchi, D.V.N. Luther’s Earliest Opponents (Phila: John Knox Press)

Dickens, A.G. The Counter Reformation. London, 1968.

Kidd, B.J. The Counter Reformation 15501600. London, 1933.

Schroeder, H.J. ed. The Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent (Rockford, 1978)

13. Anabaptists and Radicals

Littell, Franklin H. The Origins of Sectarian Protestantism (New York, 1964).

Williams, G. H. The Radical Reformation (Phila., 1962; rev. repr. Kirksville, 1994)

Simons, Menno. The Complete Writings of Menno Simons (C. 1496-1561). Translated by Leonard Verduin. Edited by John Christian Wenger. Scottsdale, PA: Herald Press, 1956.

14. Cranmer

MacCulloch, D. Thoomas Cranmer: A Life (New Haven: Yale Univ. Press, 1996).
State of the art.

Ayris, P., D. Selwyn, Thomas Cranmer: Churchman and Scholar (London: Boydell and Brewer, 1999).

Ridley, J., Thomas Cranmer (Oxford: OUP, 1962),
The older, standard work.

G. Bromiley, Thomas Cranmer Theologian (New York:OUP, 1956).

Brooks, Peter Newman, Cranmer in Context (Cambridge: CUP, 1989).

15. Knox

MacGregor, G. The Thundering Scot: A Portrait of John Knox (Philadelphia: Westminster, 1957).

Ridley, J., Knox (Oxford: OUP, 1968).

Sefton, Jinkins, Torrance, John Knox (1993)

Reid, W. S. Trumpeter of God: a Biography of John Knox (New York: Scribner, 1974).

A Brief Glossary Of The Medieval And Reformation Church

©2011 R. Scott Clark. All Rights Reserved.
Revised 2007, 2011.


Abelard, Peter (1079-1142). Author of Sic et Non, an influential scholastic collection of apparently contradictory excerpts from the Fathers and Scripture. The Protestants used Abelard as a symbol of all that was wrong with medieval theology.

Act of Supremacy (1534) Made the King of England ‘the only supreme head of the Church in earth of the Church of England. Repealed by Mary Tudor and restored by Elizabeth I (1559). The act gave the monarch temporal authority over the church and the appointment of her officers.

Act of Uniformity (1549, 1552, 1559, 1662). 1) Imposed, in 1549, exclusive use of the First Book of Common Prayer and English in worship; 2) In 1552, following the Second Book of Common Prayer; 3) In 1559, following Elizabeth’s accession ordering the use of the 1552 edition and some earlier forms of worship; 4)Part of the restoration settlement and institution of the 1662 revision of the BCP.

Adiaphora (Lit. “matters of moral indifference”) Beliefs or practices which the 16th century reformers regarded as being tolerable, in that they were not contrary to Scripture. Of course, various theologians had different conceptions of what was indifferent. The adiaphorist controversy broke out after the Leipzig Interim (1548) when Melanchthon and his followers had compromised with Roman Catholic civil authorities and declared confirmation, the Mass (without transubstantiation), extreme unction and veneration of the saints to be indifferent. The Melanchthonians were attacked by the Gnesio (i.e., genuine) Lutheran M. Flaccius who saw these concessions as destructive of Protestantism. The controversy continued until the adoption of the Formula of Concord (1577).

Albertus Magnus (c.1200-1280). He matriculated at Padua where he entered the Dominicans in 1223. 1241-45 held the Dominican chair in the University of Paris. Was followed to Cologne by Thomas Aquinas. Gained fame defending the Aristotelian synthesis against the Muslim Averroes.

Alcuin (c.740-804) Theologian and scholar of the arts (he wrote on topics in the trivium and the quadrivium) he was major intelletual figure of the Carolingian Renaissance. He wrote on the Trinity, opposing adoptionism. With Boethius, Alcuin helped keep alive classical learning and transmit it to the Latin church.

Alexander VI (1431-1503) Pope from 1492. Rodrigo Borgia, a thoroughly corrupt and debauched person, whose election to the Papacy was secured through bribery. He prosecuted and murdered the reformer Savanarola and sought to assure the election of his son Caesare to the papacy!

Alexandrian School, noted for its Christology which placed emphasis upon the divinity of Christ and its method of biblical interpretation (which employed allegorical methods of exegesis). A rival approach in both areas was associated with Antioch.

Ames, William (1576-1633). English Reformed theologian, student of William Perkins, who spent most of his academic career in the Netherlands. His Marrow of Theology (1627) is a clear and powerful statement of early Puritan theology.

Amyraut, Moise (1596-1664) French pastor and theologian in the Academy of Saumur. HisBrief Treatise of Predestination (1634) caused a great deal of controversy. He argued that Christ’s death was hypothetically universal in intention. His defenders argued that the faith necessary for the appropriation of Christ’s death was itself a gift. His critics saw echoes of Arminius. Amyraut’s claim to be the true heir of Calvin’s theology (over against Beza) has been widely accepted, though not without challenge.

Anabaptism a term derived from the Greek word for re-baptizer and used to refer to parts of the radical wing of the Reformation. Among its major figures were relatively mild preachers such as Menno Simons and Balthasar Hubmair as well as more explosive personalities such as Thomas Müntzer, the Zwickau Prophets and events such as the Munster Rebellion.

Analogy of Being (analogia entis) The theory, especially associated with Thomas Aquinas, that there exists a correspondence or analogy between the created order and God, as a result of the divine creatorship. The idea gives theoretical justification to the practice of drawing conclusions about God on the basis of known objects and relations in the natural order.

Andrae, Jacob (1528-90) Lutheran theologian and controversialist. He participated in numerous colloquia, particularly with Reformed theologians. He defended Luther’s doctrine of the supper and attacked the Calvinist doctrine of Spiritual presence in the Eucharist and predestination. He is one of the chief authors of the Formula of Concord (1563) and editors of the Book of Concord (1580). With Brenz, Chemnitz, and Chrytaeus he led the Gnesio-Lutheran movement.

Anselm of Canterbury (c.1033-1109). Author of the Monologion, Proslogion, and Cur Deus homo. Archbishop of Canterbury. Declared Doctor Ecclesiae in 1720 by Clement XI. Anselm’s work was formative for the program of scholasticism. Credo ut intelligamFides quaerens intellectum.

Anti-Pelagian Writings Augustine’s writings relation to the Pelagian controversy in which he developed and defended his views on grace, predestination and justification.

Antiochene school A patristic school of thought, especially associated with the city of Antioch in modern-day Turkey, noted for its Christology (which placed emphasis upon the humanity of Christ) and its method of biblical interpretation (which employed literal methods of exegesis). A rival approach in both areas was associated with Alexandria.

Apophatic A term used to refer to a particular style of theology, which stressed that God cannot be known in terms of human categories. Apophatic (which derives from the Greek apophasis, “negation” or “denial”) approaches to theology are especially associated with the monastic tradition of the Eastern Orthodox church.

Apostles’ Creed No one believes that the Apostles’ Creed was actually written by the Apostles themselves. It is the fruit of about three centuries of Christian reflection on essential Christian beliefs, and for most Western Christians, an authoritative summary of the essentials of the Apostolic faith. It is probably related to the Old Roman baptismal creed which can be dated to the late third century. The title Apostles’ Creed was first used c.390 because some Latin fathers (e.g., Ambrose) believed that the Apostles actually wrote it. This belief persisted until the Reformation. The Creed is found in its present form in an 8c document. The Reformation era marked a resurgence in interest in the Creed. Many Protestants wrote commentaries on the Creed and structured their theology around it. Because of its terseness and antiquity it has become in the 20c a vehicle for ecumenicity.

Aquinas, Thomas (c.1224-74) Student of Albertus Magnus. A serious student of Aristotle in University, he joined the Dominican order in 1242/43. He arrived in Paris sometime in the 1250s. He taught in Paris and Rome among other places. In December of 1273 something happened that brought his writing career to an end. He died in Cistercian Abbey south of Rome. His two greatest works were the Summa contra gentiles and Summa theologiae. The latter, unfinished, became the basis for Roman theology in response to the Reformation. The former is his defense of the faith. Thomas was an intllectualist who, though positing an analogy of being, was not consistently an analogical theologian. For Thomas, from empirical obsersations we deduce universals by which the active intellect intersects with the divine intellect. Though usually described as an “Aristotelian,” his theology is inexplicable without understanding his debt to neo-Platonism. A strong predestinarian theologian, he also downplayed the effects of sin. For Thomas, nature is inherently defective and requires grace, as a result of creation, to perfect it (gratia naturam non tollit, sed perfecit). In this way the fall was from grace. Salvation after the fall is the result of grace and cooperation with grace. Grace creates in us a disposition (habitus) toward cooperation with grace but our cooperation is essential toward becoming justifiable. Hence, the same merit can be considered, from the divine perspective, as condign and from the human side, congruent. Salvation is partaking of the divine nature.

Aristotle (384-322 B.C.). In the 12c the main works of Aristotle appeared in Latin translation. In the 13c commentaries by Avicenna and Averroes appeared. Some were led away from catholic truth. Thus the need to harmonize Augustine and Aristotle. This is the calling of the Dominicans (aka Friars and Black Friars).

Arius (c.250-336) an Alexandrian presbyter who regarded Jesus Christ as the supreme of God’s creatures (thus denying his divinity), whose slogan was: ‘There was when the Son was not.’ He denied the consubstantiality of the Son ‘of like substance.’ Arianism was a major early Christological and anti-Trinitarian heresy stimulating the Nicene Creed (325 and 381 AD) and orthodox Christology.

Arminius, Jacobus [Jakob Hermandszoon] (1560-1609). Dutch Reformed theologian in Leiden and pastor. A one-time student of Theodore Beza in the Genevan Academy, he rejected Calvinism in favor of a sort of synthesis of Calvinism with semi-Pelagianism. Attempted to refute William Perkins’ on predestination and to revise the Heidelberg Catechismand the Belgic Confession. The Synod of Dort was convened to address his followers.

Articles of Religion (1553-1563). Built upon the Henrician Ten Articles (1536), Bishop’s Book(1537), King’s Book (1543) and first formulated in Forty-Two articles by Thomas Cranmer under the Calvinist King Edward VI. Because of the accession of the Roman Catholic Mary Tudor they were probably never enforced. In 1563, after the accession of Elizabeth I, they were revised to form the Thirty Nine Articles.

Articulus cadentis et stantis ecclesiae: Justification is the article [of faith] by which the church stands or falls. Attributed to J. H. Alsted (1588-1638).

Athanasian Creed formulated primarily to teach the doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation. Its date is uncertain, sometime in the period 381-428. It rejected those who deny the full deity of Jesus and his consubstantiality with the Father, ‘Neither confounding the persons, nor dividing the Substance’.

Atonement A term originally coined by William Tyndale to translate the Latin termreconciliatio, which has since come to have the developed meaning of “the work of Christ” or “the benefits of Christ gained for believers by his death and resurrection.”

Augsburg, Diet of (1530). Convened to consider, among other things the Lutheran Confession of faith Confessio Augustana as presented by Melanchthon.

Augsburg, Confession of: (1530) The Most significant of all Lutheran Confessional documents. The Augsburg was, however, signed by Calvin and other Reformed Protestants as well. First presented to Charles V at the Imperial Reichstag and published in 1530, the Augsburg was revised by its author Philip Melanchthon, most notably in 1540 in an edition known as the Augustana Variata.

AugsburgInterim of, (1548) The doctrinal formula drafted by two Roman Catholic Bishops and one Protestant theologian, to serve as the basis of a peace between Roman Catholics and Protestants in the Holy Roman (German) Empire. The interim was generally a failure was supplanted by the Leipzig Interim in the North and finally by the Peace in 1555.

Augsburg, Peace of (1555) The settlement between the Lutheran electors and the Roman Catholic (German) emperor Ferdinand I (22 September). The Pax Augustana was built on the principle, cuius regio, eius religio (whose the rule, his the religion). Those Lutheran territories would be fixed as Lutheran and the Roman Catholic termites likewise. The peace, unfortunately, did not accommodate the Calvinists which omission would not be corrected until after the Thirty Years war with the Treaty of Westaphalia (1648). Until then, Calvinists were forced to find refuge behind the Augsburg Confession.

Augustine (354-430) Bishop of Hippo (North Africa) and the Western Church’s greatest theologian. Taught that believers are elected to justification but that election is effected through divine grace through the grace available through the Church.

Augustinianism A term used in two major senses. First, it refers to the views of Augustine of Hippo concerning the doctrine of salvation, in which the need for divine grace is stressed. In this sense, the term is the antithesis of Pelagianism. Second, it is used to refer to the body of opinion within the Augustinian order during the Middle Ages, irrespective of whether these views derive from Augustine or not.

Auto de fe (Spanish) or auto da fe (Portugese) Lit. “act of faith.” Refers to public penance followed by the torture and execution of the death penalty for heretics by the Spanish inquisition. The first auto de fe was in 1481 in Seville and the last in 1826.


Barnes, Robert (1495-1540) Protestant Reformer and martyr. One of those who was said to gather at the Whitehorse Inn to discuss Protestant theology. Imprisoned, he escaped and fled to Germany because of his theology (1526), he later returned to serve as a mediator between Luther and Henry VIII. He was beheaded.

Belgic Confession (1561) A Reformed confession composed primarily by Guido de Bres. Adopted by most of the continental Reformed Churches.

Bellarmine, Robert (1542-1621) Italian Roman Catholic Counter-Reformation apologist, scholar, theologian, and member of the Society of Jesus. Bellarmine is most famous for his three volume (1586-93) controversial defense of Tridentine Roman Catholic theology against Protestant criticisms.

Berengar (c.1010-88 ). Like Ratramnus, again attacked transubstantiation (i.e., that the elements of the supper become the body of Christ). He argued for a sort of Spiritual presence of Christ, and that only believers receive Christ in the Supper. He was opposed by Leo IX in 1050 and by Gregory VII in 1078-9 and later by the Bishop of Canterbury, Lanfranc (d.c.1089) who defended transubstantiation. His response to Lanfranc, Rescriptum contra Lanfrancum is his only remaining work

Bede (c.672-735) Historian, theologian and teacher, the Bede was the foremost scholar and influential Christian leader in Anglo-Saxon England. In his early career he wrote on orthography, meter, and nature. He commented extensively on Scripture. He is most famous for his History of the English People, which is still a source for the period.

Beza, Theodore (1519-1605) French Calvinist scholar, theologian, apologist and consolidator of the Reformation. A trained in French legal humanism Beza had wide ranging interests. He was a pioneering scholar of the Greek New Testament (Codex Bezae) and Bible translator. His On the Right of Magistrates was an early formulation Protestant resistance theory. His impact on the development of international Calvinism can hardly be overestimated.

Blaurock, George (c.1492-1529) Anabaptist evangelist. He apparently initiated the practice of exclusive believer’s baptism in Zürich and founded a congregation about 1525. Exiled two years later he became an itinerant preacher in Central Europe planting Anabaptist congregations. He was burnt by Charles V for heresy.

Bodenstein, Andreas (see Karlstadt)

Boethius (c.480-c.524) Roman consul, Christian philosopher and theologian. One of the most significant transmitters of ancient learning to the Latin church, he translated some of the works of Aristotle adapted the trivium (grammar, logic and rhetoric) and the quadrivium (arithmetic, geometry, music, astronomy) for the West. Caught up in political intrigue, he died in prison. Strongly Trinitarian in his theology, Boethius established the definition of “person” with which the Medieval and Reformation churches worked, “the individual substance of a rational nature.” His definition of eternity also became standard: “The simultaneous and perfect possession of limitless life.” He wrestled with the questions of the “one” and the “many,” the relation of “being” to “existence,” and the relations of providence to human freedom. His most famous work is On the Consolation of Philosophy but also composed lesser known theological tracts which are in the Loeb Classical Library.

Bolsec, Jerome (†1585) A Protestant convert most famous for controverting with Calvin over predestination. Forced to leave Geneva, he eventually returned to Rome. Before he died he wrote slanderous biographies of Calvin and Beza.

Boniface (c.672-754) Born at Wessex, he is most famous for his mission to the Germans, and for his multiple missionary expeditions to the Friesians. Having laid the foundations of the German church and serving as the Abp of Mainz, he returned to Friesland for a final mission where he was matyred.

Book of Common Prayer (1549, 1552, 1559, 1662) The office service book of the Anglican Communion. Originally complied by Thomas Cranmer, the BCP attempted to revise and anglicise the medieval Latin rite. The first two editions were composed under the Calvinist King Edward VI. The Elizabethan edition omitted the ‘Black Rubric’ (an explanation that kneeling at communion is not an act of veneration of the host) was restored in the 1662 edition as a concession to the Puritans.

Book of Homilies (1547). Collection of Protestant sermons written by Cranmer, Bucer, Peter Martyr Vermigli intended for use by English clergy who were not themselves able to write Protestant sermons.

Book of Sports (1617-8) Written by James I in which authorized recreational sport on the Sabbath against Puritan sentiment. Later, Abp Laud forced it on many unwilling Puritan pastors.

Brenz, Johannes (1499-1570) German Lutheran Reformer. Most notable for his stout defense of Luther’s doctrine of the Eucharist.

Brethren of the Common Life were founded by Gert de Groot in the 14c as an association to foster a greater devotion to Christ and to advance moral reform in the Church. Thomas a’ Kempis (c.1380-1471), Pope Hadrian VI (1459-1523), the theologian Gabriel Biel (c.1420-95), the mystic Nicholas of Cusa (1401-64) were associated with the Brethren. The movement also influenced the development of the Renaissance through the humanists Rudolph Agricola (1443-85) and D. Erasmus (c.1469-1536)

Bruce, Robert (c.1554-1631) Popular Scots Presbyterian preacher who powerfully opposed the restoration of Episcopacy to Scotland.

Bucer, Martin (1491-1551). German Protestant scholar, theologian and apologist for the Reformation. Bucer is associated most strongly with the Swiss Reformation in Basle and Strasbourg. Having begun his Protestant preaching by 1523, Bucer belongs to the first stage of the Reformation. He probably represents a bridge the essentials of the Luther’s theology and the developments of the Reformation in the Swiss Reformation. Calvin was influenced by Bucer. With Melanchthon, he was among the more conciliatory Protestants.

Buchanan, George (1506-1582) Scots Calvinist scholar, an outstanding humanist scholar, he tutored both Mary Queen of Scots and James VI.

Bull. From the Latin term bulla or ‘seal’. A written papal mandate on some important theological or ecclesiastical matter. Early bulls were sealed with the papal signet ring.

Bullinger, Heinrich (1504-75). Swiss Protestant. He belongs to the second (consolidation) stage of the Reformation. Like all the Protestants, he accepted Luther’s fundamental principles and, with Zwingli, Bucer and Calvin, sought to develop the doctrine of the Christian life. He is important to the development of covenant theology and the progress of the English Reformation from its Lutheran to its Reformed stage.


Calvin, John (1509-64). French Protestant and the second most outstanding figure in the Reformation after Martin Luther. Born in Noyon, he spent his youth training for a career in the Roman Church. He was educated in French Legal Humanism in University in Orleans, Paris and Bourges. He became a Protestant sometime in the late 1520’s or early 1530’s. Associated most strongly with Geneva, he was scholar turned pastor. He wrote voluminously, taught daily through the Bible and preached from the NT each Lord’s Day. His greatest theological work is his Institutes of the Christian Religion which he revised several times from 1536-59. His contribution to Protestant theology was to link Luther’s doctrine of justification to a more developed doctrine of sanctification framed by a thoroughly Trinitarian understanding of creation and redemption.

Cameron, John (1579-1625) Scottish theologian who influenced the French Reformed Church. Most of his career was spent in France. It was from Cameron that Amyraut got his controversial theory of the atonement.

Canisius, Peter (1521-97). The outstanding German, Jesuit, Counter-Reformation, theologian of the 16c. His catechism (Summa Doctrinae Christianae) has gone through 130 editions.

Canons of Dort (1619). Five articles drafted and adopted by an international Reformed Synod convened at Dordtrecht by the Dutch Reformed Church in response to the five points of the Remonstrant (Arminian) theologians.

Cappadocian fathers A term used to refer collectively to three major Greek-speaking writers of the patristic period: Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nazianzen, and Gregory of Nyssa, all of whom date from the late fourth century. “Cappadocia” designates an area in Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey), in which these writers were based.

Capito, Wolfgang (1478-1541). German, early Protestant reformer of Strasbourg before Martin Bucer. Originally associated with Erasmus attempts at the moral reform of the church, he later moved to a position closer to Luther’s. He was one of the author’s of the Swiss Tetrapolitan Confession.

Cartrwright, Thomas (c.1535-1603) English Calvinist theologian, student of Beza, who strongly advocated Presbyterian church polity, though he did not separate from the Church of England. He served as a conduit for Continental Calvinism to England.

Catechism A popular manual of Christian doctrine, usually in the form of question and answer, intended for religious instruction.

Chalcedonian definition (451) The formal declaration at the Council of Chalcedon that the two natures of Christ are neither to be separated (Nestorianism) nor to be confounded (Eutychianism). Both Lutheran and Reformed (including Calvin and Zwingli) Christologies should be regarded as falling within the pale of Chalcedon.

Chemnitz, Martin (1522-86). A Lutheran theologian and consolidator of the GnesioLutheranmovement and controversialist against Rome. He defended Luther’s doctrine of ubiquity. Chemnitz is one of the primary authors of the Magdeburg Centuries, a polemic church history justifying the Reformation. He also wrote an influential critique of the Council of Trent (Examen concilii Tridentini, 1565).

Christology The locus of Christian theology dealing with the identity, person, and work of Jesus Christ, and particularly the relation of his human and divine natures.

Colloquy: (From the Latin colloquium) A formal theological debate (usually ecclesiastical rather than academic).

Conciliarism. A movement which grew out of Ockham’s critique of Pope John XXII. An attempt to decentralise ecclesiastical authority to the General council and maintain the indefectability of the Holy Catholic Church. The Council of Constance successfully ended the schism but also thus damaged conciliarism. Pius II issued the bull Execrabalis forbidding appeals to Councils (1460).

Concord, Formula of/Book of Concord (1577-80). The Formula Concordiae and the Liber Concordiae were the definitive Gnesio-Lutheran confessional documents of the consolidation written by Jakob Andrae (1528-90), Martin Chemnitz, Nikolaus Selnecker (1530–92). The Book of Concord positioned itself between Philip Melanchthon and Calvin on the one side and Rome on the other. These documents helped to consolidate Gnesio-Lutheran theological and political reaction.

Confession Although the term refers primarily to the admission of sin, it acquired a rather different technical sense in the sixteenth century -that of a document which embodies the principles of faith of a Protestant church. Thus the Augsburg Confession (1530) embodies the ideas of early Lutheranism, and the First Helvetic Confession (1536) those of the early Reformed church. The term “Confessionalism” is often used to refer to the consolidation of the Reformation, in the later sixteenth century, as the Lutheran and Reformed churches became involved in a struggle for power, especially in Germany. The term “Confessional” is often used to refer to a church which defines itself with reference to such a document. Confessions (which define denominations) should be distinguished from creeds (which transcend denominational boundaries).

Consensus Tigurinus (1549). This is the Zürich Agreement on the Lord’s Supper (Eucharist) reached by Heinrich Bullinger representing German speaking Swiss Protestants and John Calvin and G. Farel representing the French speaking Protestants.

Constance, Council of (1414-7) Called by Pope John XXIII to end the schism created by the Avignon Papacy. It also condemned early Reformers Hus and Wycliffe.

Consubstantiation A term used to refer to the theory of the real presence, especially associated with Martin Luther, which holds that the substance of the eucharistic bread and wine are given together with the substance of the body and blood of Christ.

Contarini, Gasparo Cardinal (1483-1542). Well born in Venice, Italy, he educated in Renaissance humanism in University in Padua. He served as an ambassador for Venice to Charles V. He gained fame as a theologian by defending the immortality of the soul and by critiquing Luther’s theology. Created Cardinal in 1535 by Paul III, he helped prepare the way for the Council of Trent, which he attended. He took something of a conciliatory position first at Ratisbon/Regensburg (Epistola de iustificatione) in a dialogue with Melanchthon and Bucer and later at Trent.

Copernicus, Nicolas (1473-1543) the father of modern astronomy. A student in the University of Crakow and in the University of Bologna, he began lecturing on mathematics and astronomy in Rome. Returning to Prussia, he formulated his theories, rejecting the Polemic-Geocentric universe. He published his theory in 1531 which was rejected by Pope Clement VII. His treatise On the Revolutions of the Celestial Orbs (1543) published just before his death contained a forward by the Protestant theologian Andreas Osiander warning that the views contained were only hypothetical. Other Protestant theologians, such as Calvin, were ambivalent. De revolutionibus was on the Roman Index (List) of banned books 1616-1757.

Council of Trent: (1545-63) Promulgated the official Roman Catholic response to and anathema against the Protestant Reformation. Vatican Council I (1869-70) solidified this response by adding the doctrine of Papal infallibility. Vatican Council II (1962-5), however, appears to move back from Trent and Vatican I by describing Protestants as ‘separated brethren’.

Covenant Theology A thread of biblical revelation and present seminally in Patristic theology, it was reformed by Martin Luther and developed by Johannes Oecolampadius and H. Zwingli in the early stages of the Reformation and later developed by Bullinger, Calvin, Ursinus, and Olevian in the 16th century. Throughout the 17th century, it was an important instrument used by the Reformed to protect Protestantism from Amyrauldianism and Arminianism. The development of covenant or federal theology was inhibited in the later 17th century and through much of the 18th century by the challenge presented by Englightenment rationalism as theologians were forced to focus on prolegomena. This 20th century has seen something of a revival of interest in both in neo-orthodox (Barthian) annd orthodox (confessional) covenant theology. The classic forms of covenant/federal theology held chiefly that there are two covenants. First a covenant of works made by God with Adam before the fall in which Adam, and all humanity in him, was promised eternal blessedness upon successful fulfillment of the terms of this ante-lapsarian probationary covenant—not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam having failed, God made a promissory covenant of grace to send a redeemer. Following Paul in Romans 5, Christ was said to be the Second Adam who by his obedience, suffering and death has secured redemption for his sheep, which is imputed to the elect and the benefits of which are received through faith alone. In this view all of Sacred Scripture is united by the common thread of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. Salvation and sanctification are conceived in covenantal terms. Reformed theology used the vehicle of covenant (or federal theology) to express its Protestantism and its more highly developed Trinitarianism— that is, salvation is Christocentric, but not Christomonist, and is fully the work of the entire Trinity. The covenant also incorporated a more highly developed doctrine of sanctification—that is, a life of holiness lived in gratitude to and for the glory of God is a necessary product of God’s gracious salvation, without becoming an instrument of justification or becoming confused with sanctification.

Coverdale, Miles (1488-1568). English Protestant Bible translator (Zürich, 1535) and leader of Puritanism. Three years later he made another translation of the Vulgate New Testament into English known as ‘The Great Bible’.

Cranach, Lucas [the elder] (1472-1553) German painter associated with Lutheran reformation. Painted and produced woodcuts of several reformation leaders.

Cranmer, Thomas (1489-1556) Archbishop of Canterbury. Fellow of Jesus College, Cambridge. Served Henry VIII by legitimizing his divorce from Catherine of Arragon in 1529 thus helping to precipitate the break of the English Church from Rome. He was also the principal author of the Book of Common Prayer 1549-52. Wrote many of the sermons included in the book of homilies used by Protestant clergy. Martyred under bloody Mary Tudor at Oxford, 21 March 1556.

Creed A formal definition or summary of the Christian faith, held in common by all Christians. The most important are those generally known as the “Apostles’ creed” and the “Nicene creed.”


d’Etaples, Jacques LeFevre [Faber Stapulensis] (1455-1536) French humanist scholar and commentator on Scripture. His method of interpretation influenced the next generation of French Protestants such as Farel and Calvin.

Daneau, Lambert (1530-1595) French Reformed theologian. A student of Calvin, he taught in the Genevan Academy with Beza. He is notable for his publications on ethics as distinct category of Protestant theology. He is an important figure in the development of Protestant orthodoxy.

de Bres, Guido (c.1522-1567) Principal author of the oldest confession of the Continental Reformed Churches, the Belgic Confession (1561). Martyred under Spanish oppression.

Deism A term used to refer to the views of a group of English writers, especially during the seventeenth century, the rationalism of which anticipated many of the ideas of the Enlightenment. The term is often used to refer to a view of God which recognizes the divine creatorship, yet which rejects the notion of a continuing divine involvement with the world.

Denk, Hans (c.1500-27) Leader of the Anabaptist Swiss Brethren. Died of the plague.

Dialectic. Greek word which describes a form of reasoning which shows the “mutually contradictory character” of two principles

Diet (German, Reichstag) a meeting of the German Imperial Senate convened by the Emperor and constituted by the seven Electors of the German (Roman) Empire, three of which were clerical and four of which were secular.

Docetism An early Christological heresy, which treated Jesus Christ as a purely divine being who only had the “appearance” of being human.

Dogma Gk. The term and cognates occurs six times in the NT. Luke 2.1 refers to Caesar’s ‘decree’ on the census and Acts 17.7 to the ‘decree’ that there is no god but Caesar. Ephesians 2.15 and Colossians 2.14 refer to Mosaic ‘ordinances’. Colossians 2.14 uses a verbal form to describe man-made judaizing regulations. None of them refers to ‘dogmatic theology’ proper. Its usage in Acts 16.4 which refers to the ‘decrees’ handed down by the Apostles at the Synod in Jerusalem, does furnish some basis for its usage in connection with ecclesiastical theological decisions. It is usually used as a synonym for theology and sometimes distinguished from it as that doctrine which has ecclesiatical approval.

Donatism A movement, centering upon Roman North Africa in the fourth century, which developed a rigorist view of the church and sacraments.

Double Justice/justification (duplex iustitia): The doctrine of justification (at least) implied in Article V of the Colloquy of Regensburg. The doctrine of double justification attempts to synthesize the Roman position with the Protestant position by teaching that righteousness is both imputed to and infused in the sinner. This position was rejected both by Trent and by most Protestants.

Dun Scotus (c.1265-1308). Doctor Subtilis or Doctor Marianus was one of Thomas’ most vigorous critics. Scotus was a Franciscan voluntarist. Where Thomas and the realists (Dominicans) emphasized the divine (and human) intellect, he emphasized against emphasized the primacy of the divine will and love. The beatific vision is of souls consumed by love for God. Denied with Thomas, the idea of innate ideas and agreed, with Thomas, that reason and revelation are compatible.


Eclesiology The doctrine of the Church.

Eck, Johannes (1486-1543) German, Roman Catholic theologian, professor at Ingolstadt, and critic of the Lutheran Reformation. He opposed Luther and Carlstadt at the Leipzig Disputation (1519). In the next year helped secure Luther’s excommunication and in 1530 attacked the Augsburg Confession.

Eckhart, Meister (c.1260-c.1328). German theologian and Dominican monk. A student of Albertus Magnus at Cologne, where he also taught. He later served as a prior and vicar in Eurfurt and Thuringuria and Saxony. He also taught in Paris, Cologne and Strasbourg. He was a pioneer of vernacular preaching. His extreme (pantheizing) mysticism earned him a trial before the Apb of Cologne. His 28 Propositions were condemned by John XXII in 1329.

Edict of Nantes (1598) signed by Henry IV of France to end the French Wars of Religion and securing tolerance for French Protestants.

Edward VI (1537-53) Calvinist boy-King of England, son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour. He was a bright boy, avid reader, committed to Reformed theology. His tutors were self-consciously Protestant. Under Edward the Church of England moved in a Calvinist direction. The book of homilies was published (1547). Among the changes he made to English worship: provided a copy of the Great Bible, condemned pictures, enforced the reading of the Gospel and the Epistle in English, in morning worship, enjoined communion in two kinds, removed altars in favor of wooden communion tables and, most importantly, sponsored the Book of Common Prayer, the Forty-Two Articles and the Catechism.

Elizabeth I (1533-1603) Queen of England from 1558 to her death and the daughter Anne Boleyn, succeeded Edward VI and Mary Tudor by act of Parliament. Unlike her two predecessors, Elizabeth, like her father, was primarily concerned about consolidating power and enforcing uniformity on a Kingdom divided badly by steering a middle way between Calvinism and Roman Catholicism. With her accession many of the Marian exiles (mostly Puritans) returned to England, though Puritans of the ‘hotter sort’ would not finder her reign terribly hospitable. Elizabethan religion was mildly Protestant. She ordered the Second Edwardian Prayer Book (1552) to be edited (so as to remove offense to Roman Catholics) and reissued in 1559. The Articles of Religion were reduced to 39. She was excommunicated by Pope Pius V in 1570.

Erasmus, Desiderius (c.1469-1536) Dutch humanist scholar, theologian and advocate ofPhilosophia Christiana (the Devotio Moderna – the imitatio Christi).Taught at Paris, Oxford and Cambridge. Controverted with Luther over the freedom of the will. A Loyal son of Rome, he advocated moral, not theological reform of the church. Edited the first and most important (though not the most accurate) early critical edition of the New Testament.

Erastus, Thomas(1524-83). Swiss-German physician and lay theologian. Influenced by Zwinglian theologians, he opposed the imposition of Calvinist church order in Heidelberg. The view that church is a creature of the state took its name from Erastus. His work on church and state was published posthumously in England and translated in the middle of the 17c. WCF Articles 23.3 and 31 were mildly Erastian.

Eschatology The locus of Christian theology dealing with the “last things,” especially the ideas of resurrection, hell, and eternal life.

Eucharist The term used in to refer to the sacrament variously known as “the mass,” “the Lord’s supper,” and “holy communion.”

Eutyches (c.378-454), Turkish monk who opposed Nestorius so strongly that he was accused to confounding the two natures of Christ. He taught that there were two natures before the incarnation before and only one nature after the incarnation. He was deposed and later restored and deposed again at the Council of Chalcedon in 451.

Evangelical A term initially used to refer to the Protestant movement through the 1550’s. It was often used synonymously with the term Reformed in a generic sense. After the 1550’s the term was increasingly replaced by the term Protestant.

Exsurge Domine. The papal bull issued by Pope Leo X on 15 June 1520 excommunicating Martin Luther in 41 propositions. Luther appealed on 17 November and publicly burned it in Wittenberg on 10 December.


Facientibus quod in se est, Deus non denegat gratiam also facere quod in se est…(“to those who do what is in them,” or “to him who does what is in him…” “God does not deny grace”: A medieval approach to justification particularly associated with the Franciscan school of theology (via moderna) including semi-Pelagians such as Ockham and later Gabriel Biel.

Farel, William (1489-1565) French Reformer of Geneva and other French-Swiss cantons. Like Calvin, he was influenced by Jacques LeFevre d’Etaples in Paris. He first became associated with the Reformation in Basle. In 1535, with Peter Viret, he led the initial stages of the Reformation of Geneva. He is most famous for the ‘dreadful imprecation’ by which, in 1536, he compelled Calvin to remain in Geneva.

Five Ways, the A standard term for the five “arguments for the existence of God” especially associated with Thomas Aquinas.

Flaccius, Matthias Illyricus (1520-75) An outstanding Gnesio (genuine) Lutheran theologian. Read Protestant theology in Basel and Tübingen. From 1541 he was a colleague of Melanchthon and Luther in Wittenberg and was appointed Professor of Hebrew in 1544. As a Gnesio-Lutheran he opposed the Augsburg Interim and was a critic of Melanchthon on several issues. He joined the Jena faculty in 1557 as Prof. of N.T. He was one of the major combatants in the Majorist controversy in 1561-2. After conflict with the faculty in Jena he failed in an attempt to found his own school in 1562. He was a major contributor to theMagedeburg Centuries, a monumental 13 vol. Protestant polemical history justifying the reformation.

Forensic: synonym for ‘legal’.

Foxe (1517-87) Author of Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, a leading early English historian of the Reformation. The first edition was published in 1563 and was revised thereafter and republished countless times. A Marian exile to the English congregation in Frankfort, where he sided with the Calvinist party, his identification of Protestant ‘martyrs’ with the martyrs of the early church was a powerful rhetorical move which strongly influenced for three centuries the way the Reformation story was told.

Francis I (reigned 1515-47) Roman Catholic king of France. Staunchly opposed the introduction of the Reformation into France by forbidding the publication of Luther’s works (1521). Nevertheless, Protestantism made its way into France. Calvin appealed to Francis, in his epistle dedicatory to the Institutes of the Christian Religion, for religious toleration of French Protestants.

Frederick (III) the Wise (1463-1525). Elector Saxony. Became Elector in 1486 and supported the rise of German humanism. Founded the University of Wittenberg in 1502 and later invited both Luther and Melanchthon to teach there. Frederick is most famous for being Luther’s patron and protector.

Frederick III (1515-76) Elector Palatine, German prince under whose leadership the Palatinate, (from 1559), one of the six ‘secular’ German electorates was transformed into a hotbed of continental Calvinism. Frederick chose the Calvinist way and sponsored the Heidelberg Catechism despite bitter and threatening opposition from the majority (Lutheran) electors and princes.

Free will With Augustine and against Pelagius and semi-Pelagianism, Luther affirmed in On the Bondage of the Will (1525), that fallen humans do not have the ability to will the contrary to God. When fallen humans believe, they do so because God has chosen them to believe. Calvin and Reformed theology took up this strand of Protestantism. Melanchthon and Later Lutheranism retreated from Luther’s denial of human free will.

French Wars of Religion (1562-1594) The nearly continual war between the Huguenots (taken from a Medieval romance about King Hugo) and Roman Catholics. In 1559 the French Protestant Church organized as a Calvinist basis. The Protestant Calvinist minority was fiercely opposed by the Catholic majority and Francis II (the house of Guise). The massacre on St. Bartholomew’s Day, (23-4 November) 1572, badly crippled the fledgling movement. Most reliable estimates begin at about 10,000 deaths. The Wars came to a close with the Edict of Nantes (1598).


Gerhard, Johann (1582-1637) German Lutheran scholastic theologian. He became professor at Jena in 1616. His greatest work was his Loci theologici (1610-22) was one of the most important texts in late Reformation Lutheran theology.

Gottschalk (c.804-c.869) A Swiss monk, he is most famous for his stoutly Augustinian and predestinarian soteriology. A controversial figure in his (Benedictine) order, he was embroiled in disputes through much of his life. Charged with an irregular ordination, he was more or less jailed in a monastery from where he published predestinarian views. He also defended a robust trinitarianism against the prevailing modalism of his day.

Grace: (L. gratia) Undeserved divine favor toward sinners. The medieval notion was that grace is a substance which can be imparted or dispensed through human agency to sinners. The Protestant view is that grace is a divine disposition toward sinners.

Gregory I (c.540-604) The learned son of a Roman senator, and himself praefector urbi of Rome. He left his life of privilege, sold his belongings and entered St Andrew’s monastery. A skillful administrator and diplomat, in 590 was made pope by acclamation of the people and clergy. His Pastoral Rule is still read and his exposition of Job witnesses the judicious use of the quadriga (q.v.), the emphasis in this text on the moral sense.

Grebel, Conrad (c.1498-1526) Leader of the Anabaptist Swiss Brethren. He died of the plague.

Grindal, Edmund (c.1519-83) Archbishop of Canterbury. Onetime chaplain to Edward VI, a Protestant who was forced into exile during Mary’s reign, who, upon his return to England in 1559, attempted to mediate between the Scots Presbyterians (Knox) and the defenders of the 1552 Prayer Book. He refused Elizabeth I’s order to suppress the Puritan prophesyings and was a moderate sympathizer with the Puritan critics of episcopacy.

Gropper, Johann (1503-59) German, Roman Catholic theologian and critic of Protestantism. He, negotiated the Book of Regensburg with Martin Bucer in 1540-41.


Habit: (L. habitus) A disposition toward obedience, on which basis certain Medieval theologians said one was justified.

Hapsburg Empire This family played a central rôle in the 16c. In the early phase of the Reformation Charles V (1500-58) collaborated with his brother Ferdinand I (1503-64), Archduke of Austria to alternately oppose and tolerate the Reformation as it suited their political needs. The Empire was Roman Catholic until the Reformation. With the eruption of Protestantism, Charles faced a three-front battle for control of the Empire. To the east the Turkish threat steadily increased. To the West he was prosecuting a war against Francis and the Papacy for the control of Europe. With his attention distracted externally, he lost ground internally. He was unable to stop the Reformation, and was forced to fight the Protestant Schmalkald League (of Protestant German princes) for control of the Empire. With the failure of the Interim (1548) he settled for the Peace of Augsburg (1555). Exhausted by it all, he abdicated in favor of brother Ferdinand the next year. On his abdication he divided his empire between his sons Philip II (1527-98) who was made King of Spain and for a time was married to “Bloody Mary” Tudor (1554-8), Charles (1540-90), and brother Ferdinand I. The weakness and division of the Empire only enabled the Reformation to flourish and Calvinism made inroads in Germany under Charles’ sons. Maximillian II (1527-76) ruled from 1564-76 and was essentially tolerant of the Reformation whilst maintaining a formal Roman Catholic allegiance. His son, Rudolf II (1552-1612) who ruled from 1576 was an odd duck, indulged in the black arts and supported the Counter-Reformation.

Heidelberg Catechism (1563) German Calvinist catechism written to consolidate the Calvinist Reformation of Heidelberg. Though its primary authors were (probably) Zacharias Ursinus and Caspar Olevian, it was approved by a synod in Heidelberg and its authorship remains somewhat uncertain. Its primary source was Ursinus Larger Catechism, it bears resemblance to earlier Lutheran documents and to Calvin’s Genevan catechism. It was adopted by several Reformed synods including the Synod of Dort (1618-19). It has remained, with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dort one of the Three Forms of Unity. It is, alongside the Westminster Shorter Catechism, the most beloved of all Calvinist confessional documents.

Helvetic Confession, First (1536) A confession in 28 articles written in response to the Pope Clement VII’s call for an ecumenical council to be convened at Mantua (later moved to Trent). The Reformed theologians of Basle led by Martin Bucer and Wolfgang Capito and the Reformed theologians of Zürich, namely H. Bullinger, L. Jud, O. Myconius, et al met 1-4 February. The document was signed on the last day. Luther read it in 1537 and responded favorably.

Helvetic Confession, Second (1561-6) A private confession in 30 articles written by H. Bullinger adopted by all the Swiss Cantons and used widely by Reformed Protestants across the world in the 16c. Bucer approved an early draft. It likely influenced the Heidelberg theologians as they drafted the Catechism (1563).

Henri IV (1553-1610) King of France. Raised as a Protestant (Calvinist) he became King of Navarre in 1572. In line to the French throne, he was forced to chose between his Protestant faith and his desire to rule a Roman Catholic nation. He was opposed by the Guise, Philip II and the Pope. In 1593 he converted to Rome to accede to the throne. Whether Henry was sincere in this ‘conversion’ is still debated hotly. He was, in all events, quite friendly to Protestants and promulgated the tolerant Edict of Nantes (1598). He was assassinated.

Henry VIII (1497-1547) King of England from 1509. He opposed the Reformation early. His tract against Luther’s earned him the title, Defensor Fidei (Defender of the Faith) from Leo X. He broke with Rome and made himself head of the English Church when Clement VII would not annul his marriage to Catherine of Arragon to he could re-marry and produce an heir The Pope excommunicated him in 1533. Three years later the break was complete. He dissolved the monastaries, confiscated their wealth, established the 10 Articles (1536), and required the English Bible to be set up in Churches (1538). Perhaps most importantly, he had Edward educated by Protestants. Yet he also ordered spasmodically persecution of Protestants.

Hoffmann, Melchior (c.1500-c.1543) German radical (Anabaptist) theologian. He associated with Lutherans becoming a lay-preacher in 1523. By 1529 he had abandoned Luther’s doctrine of the Eucharist arguing that it was only a remembrance. He also began to adopt pronounced apocalyptic-eschatological views. By 1533 he was convinced that Strasbourg would be the place where Jesus returned to consummate the golden age. A fiery visionary he was quite influential among the radicals.

Homoousion A Greek term, literally meaning “of the same substance,” which came to be used extensively during the fourth century to designate the mainstream Christological belief that Jesus Christ was “of the same substance as God.” The term was polemical, being directed against the Arian view that Christ was “of similar substance” (homoiousion) to God.

Hooker, Richard (c.1554-1600) Perhaps the principal theologian of the conforming stream of the Elizabethan Anglican church. He was the greatest defender of the Elizabethan via media(middle way) settlement between Rome and the Puritans. Mildly Calvinist in his soteriology, Hooker rejected the Calvinist regulative principle (only that may be done in worship which is explicitly commanded in Scripture or implicitly required) in favor of a more Lutheran approach (that which is not forbidden is allowed) to defend Episcopacy, the Erastian relations of Church and State in England. Nevertheless, he accepted the ordination of the Continental Protestants and held a Calvinist view of the Eucharist.

Hooper, John (d.1555) Bishop of Gloucester, and Worcester and one of the Oxford Martyrs, with Nicolas Ridley (Bp of London), to be burnt alive at the stake on the Broad Street in front of the Master’s Lodgings of Balliol College, on 9 February. He is perhaps most famous for his last words, ‘Be of good comfort Master Ridley, and play the man. We shall this day light such a candle, by God’s grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out’.

Hübmair, Balthasar (c.1485-1528) German radical (anabaptist). A student under the Roman Catholic theologian J. Eck, he began a parish priest serving until about 1523. After coming into contact with Zwingli and the Swiss Reformers, he identified with the Reformation. By 1525, however, he abandoned the magisterial Reformation for the radical side attacking Zwingli’s doctrine of infant baptism. Entangled in the peasant wars (1525) he fled to Zürich for safety, and was forced by Zwingli to renounce his radical views. Upon leaving he recanted and settled in Moravia where he wrote anabaptist tracts. He was extradited to Vienna where he was burnt on 10 March, 1528.

Humanism A complex movement which was one of the primary engines of the late Medieval and early Modern Renaissance. It was an intellectual and social move from 14c-16c toward pedagogical reform, intellectual, spiritual and moral renewal through a return ad fontesincluding Scripture, classical and patristic sources. It also connotes a commitment to a historical and grammatical way of reading texts, a rejection of mythology and superstition, and a return to rhetorical elegance. As it was not a single movement, there were Christian as well as pagan strains of Renaissance Humanism. The Christians, many of whom (but not all) became Protestants valued the Bible as the primary Christian text, whereas those infatuated with the Classical world sought to reproduce it in their own time. This enterprise largely failed and the rotting stump of Classical humanism degenerated into what became first Deism then the Enlightenment rejection of not only the Classical but also the Christian worldview.

Hus, Jan (c.1372-1415) Bohemian foreunner of the Reformation. After coming into contact with Wycliffe’s views he began agitating for moral reform of the Czech Church. He died at the stake.

Hypostatic union The doctrine of the union, without confusion, of divine and human natures in Jesus Christ. Some Gnesio-Lutherans regarded the doctrine of the hypostatic union as insufficient to account for the biblical revelation whereas Reformed theology gave to it more hearty support.


Ignatius of Loyola (c.1491/5-1556) Spanish founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). A soldier, he was wounded in battle. During his recovery he read the life of Christ and other biographies, after which he vowed to become a soldier for Christ. He made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem (1523) and took an MA is Paris (1535). There he committed himself unreservedly to the service of the Pope.

Imputation: The Protestant notion that Christ’s active (life) and passive (suffering and death) obedience (righteousness) is ‘credited’ graciously to sinners when they are united to Christ by faith.

Infusion: The process by which, according to most medieval theologians, sinners are filled up with divine grace for sanctification and ultimately for salvation.

Inquisition (1232-) The judicial punishment of doctrinal heresy by Roman Catholic church courts. Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II issued an edict giving the state the power to hunt out and punish heretics. Not to be outdone, Pope Gregory IX appointed Papal inquisitors, mainly from the Dominicans and Franciscans. Early on, ordinary penances were assigned, later physical punishment began to become more common. In the late 15c the Spanish Inquisition was instituted and existed officially until 1834. This inquisition was highly effective at wiping out the nascent Protestant movement in Spain.


Julius II (1443-1513) Pope from 1503. Nephew of Pope Sixtus IV who loaded him with benefices and bishoprics. On the election of Alexander VI to the papacy, he was forced to flee to France for his own safety. He was elected after the brief reign of Pius III. His chief accomplishment was to secure temporal power for the papacy within Italy. He was a generous patron of renaissance art and began St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, the indulgences for which stimulated Luther’s 95 theses.

Justification: Derived from the Latin v. iustificare ‘to make or declare righteous’. 1.Biblical doctrine is summarized in key passages such as Romans 1:17; 3:21; Galatians 2:20-1. Paul clearly taught a forensic doctrine of justification, that we are graciously declared righteous through faith in Christ. 2.Roman Catholic doctrine (at least since the Council of Trent) has been that one is made righteous through the operation of divine grace. 3.Protestant doctrine is that God freely imputes Christ’s righteousness to his people and declares them to be righteous in his sight. This righteousness is received by faith in Christ alone.


Karlstadt (c.1480-1541) [aka Andreas Bodenstein]. A German Protestant reformer, professor at the University of Wittenberg, and sometime colleague of Martin Luther. On becoming a Protestant he abandoned his Thomist realism, and moved to a radically Augustinian doctrine of sin and what might be termed a ‘puritan’ style of worship. Luther opposed the latter move and agreed with the former. Karlstadt may have been one of reason’s Luther became a more profound Augustinian. Because of his ecclesiastical radicalism Luther began to regard him as a traitor to the Reformation and he was eventually forced to flee to a professorship in Basle.

Knox, John (c.1513-72) The greatest of the Scots Reformers. Educated originally for the priesthood, he worked as a tutor until the mid 1540’s when he came under the influence of the Protestant George Wishart. By 1547 he was the preacher in St. Andrews. The same year he was taken prisoner with several other Scottish Protestants and imprisoned in France until 1549. Upon release he went to England and in 1551 he was made He was made chaplain to Edward VI. At Mary’s accession he fled with the other puritans, first to Frankfort where he pastored the puritans. He returned briefly to Scotland but was called in 1555 to Geneva where he pastored the English speaking congregation. In 1559 he returned to Scotland and in 1560 he wrote the Scots confession. He campaigned relentlessly against Mary Stuart through 1567 until her abdication.


Lambeth Articles (1595) Nine Calvinist articles authorized by Abp Whitgift teaching supralapsarianism.

Latimer, Hugh (c.1485-1555) Bp of Worcester and Reformer. Early in the 1520’s began to move toward Protestantism. He was one of the few pastors licensed to preach throughout England. With N. Ridley, he was one of the Oxford Martyrs in 1555.

Laud, William (1573-1645) Chancellor of the University of Oxford, Abp of Canterbury, and staunch Arminian opponent of English Calvinism. Attempted to suppress and impose uniformity upon the Puritans, transformed communion tables to altars. After the ‘etcetera oath’ he was suspended by Charles I. He was impeached and imprisoned by the Parliament. Tried in 1644 and decapitated in 1645.

Leo X (1475-1521) Pope from 1513 (at age 38!). He is most famous for excommunicating Martin Luther in 1520.

Limited atonement An approach to the doctrine of the atonement, taught by Augustine (d.430) Prosper (d.460) and later by Gottschalk and Ratramnus in the 9th century. In the 12th century, Lombard’s Sentences 3.20 taught a distinction between the sufficiency and efficiency of Christ’s death. In the 13th century, Thomas upheld this distinction , and since the Reformation associated with Calvinist writers (though Luther implied it in De servo arbitrio[1525]), which holds that Christ’s death is only effective for those who have been elected to salvation.

Loyola, Ignatius. See Ignatius.

Luther, Martin (1483-1546). German Protestant Reformer. Son of a Saxon miner, Martin was intended for the law, but, as a young man he became increasingly aware of God’s holiness and righteousness. He instead became an observant Augustinian monk. Unable to find relief through monkish exercises, and G. Biel’s semi-Pelagian theology, he was made a Professor of Biblical Theology at Wittenberg. As he taught through the Psalms he became increasingly Augustinian. As he lectured on the Book of Romans he had a breakthrough realisation that justification is not a process but an event, not the product of cooperation with grace but God’s unearned gift.

Lutheranism The religious ideas associated with Martin Luther, particularly as expressed in the Lesser Catechism (1529) and the Augsburg Confession (1530). A series of internal disagreements within Lutheranism after Luther’s death (1546) between hardliners (the so-called “Gnesio-Lutherans” or “Flacianists”) and moderates (“Philippists”), led to their resolution by the Formula of Concord (1577), which is usually regarded as the authoritative statement of Lutheran theology.


Machiavelli, Niccolò (1469-1527) Italian pagan classicist-humanist and early modern political philosopher in the service of the Medici’s. For him, politics is a purely secular business, the ruthless quest for power.

Magedeburg Centuries (see Flaccius).

Magisterial Reformation A term used to refer to the Lutheran and Reformed wings of the Reformation, as opposed to the radical wing (Anabaptism and unitarianism).

Major, George (1502-74) The principal figure in the controversy among Lutheran theologians (1551-2) over whether good works are necessary to justification. He originally taught that no one could be justified without good works. After being attacked by Nikolas von Amsdorff and M. Flaccius as a traitor the Reformation he modified his position to say that work are a token of the Christian’s faith.

Marburg, Colloquy (1529) called by Philip of Hesse in an attempt work out differences between the Swiss (Zwingli, Oecolampad, Bucer) and German Protestants (Luther and Melanchthon) on the Eucharist. Luther and Zwingli failed to agree on the nature of Christ’s presence in the Supper irrevocably separating Lutheran from Reformed Protestants.

Mary Queen of Scots (1542-87) Queen from 1543-67. The mother of the future King James VI, she was the Roman Catholic ruler of Scotland when the Protestant reformation erupted. Unable to suppress Knox et al she was forced to abdicate. She spent her last 14 years imprisoned and plotting her return to power until she was executed.

Mass Derived from the Latin missa [mitto, ere ‘to send’]. The concluding words of the mass areIte, missa est ‘Go, you are dismissed’. By the 5c the phrase missam facere was in use in the West. It now denotes a sacrificial, priestly offering which is the central act of Roman Catholic worship.

Meister. See Eckhart.

Melanchthon, Philip (1497-1560) Protestant Humanist and theologian. He was made Professor of Greek at Wittenberg. In 1521 he published his Loci communes, the first Protestant systematic theology. He was the primary author of the authoritative Lutheran confession: The Augsburg Confession (1530). As early as 1524 his own theology began to move away from Luther’s on predestination. By 1540 he moved away from Luther on the Supper and revised the confession to reflect his new views. Philip was massively influential on later Lutheranism and German Protestantism.

Merit, condign: (L. meritum de condigno). Medieval scholastic term which describes a claim to reward (salvation) on the basis of the inherent value of a work performed. A work was said to have condign merit if it is perforemd with the assistance of divine grace, with a Spirit-wrought motive, by one in the state of grace. A work has condign merit meets because it meets the terms of justice and therefore God is said to recognize its worth (condignity) as a matter of strict justice.

Meritcongruent: (L. meritum de congruo): Medieval scholastic term denoting a claim to reward (salvation) that lacks intrinsic value (condignity) and that is disproportionate to the reward offered. Such a work is said to have congruent merit and therefore God is not obligated to reward it but does so freely by imputing perfection to it. In some schemes, God was said to have covenanted to reward those “who do what lies within them” (facientibus quod in se est, Deus non denegat gratiam). It was thought possible by some medieval theologians for one outside of a state of grace to to receive congruent merit by doing “what lies within them.”

Millenary Petition (1603) An attempt by English Puritans to gain relief from the Elizabethan settlement (conformity) rejected by King James I.

Modalism A Trinitarian heresy, which treats the three persons of the Trinity as different “modes” of the Godhead. A typical modalist approach is to regard God as active as Father in creation, as Son in redemption, and as Spirit in sanctification.

Molina, Luis de (1535-1600) Spanish Jesuit, Roman Catholic theology. He taught a doctrine of salvation (Concordia liberi arbitrii cum gratiae donis, 1588) whereby the God is said to know that we will cooperate with divine grace.

More, Thomas (1478-1535) Lord Chancellor of England, Roman Catholic theologian and humanist scholar. He was an advocate, like Erasmus, of moral reform in the Church. He controverted against Luther. His opposition to Henry VIII’s divorce of Catherine of Arragon cost his life.

Münster (1534) Site of an infamous debacle in which apocalyptic (Melchiorite) Anabaptists arrived in Münster in large numbers. The new Burgomeister warned those who did not support the radicals to leave town. The Prince-Bishop attacked the city. Jan Beukelz succeeded the Burgomeister and dissolved the city council, imposed compulsory polygamy, executed leaders of a failed coup, and declared himself the ‘universal king of righteousness’. Münster became a symbol to the mainline-magisterial reformers for radical excesses.

Müntzer, Thomas (c.1490-1525) Leader of the radical reformation and social revolutionary. Initially attracted to Luther’s Protestantism, he was present for the Leipzig disputation. He was called to preach at Zwickau where he met the Zwickau Prophets. He was deposed for his radicalism and violent anti-clericalism. He issued a call to arms in defense of the gospel. He also helped stimulate the Peasants’ Revolt in 1525 in So. Germany.

Musculus, Abraham (1497-1563) Reformed Protestant theologian in Bern (Switzerland). Musculus was an Erastian and thus in conflict with Geneva on questions of Church polity. HisLoci communes (Common Places) was very influential among Reformed theologians.

Myconius, Friedrich (1490-1546) Protestant reformer and preacher. He was present for several of the most important theological conferences in late 1530’s and early 40’s.

Myconius, Oswald (1488-1522) Swiss Reformer and humanist scholar. An associate of Erasmus, he worked with Zwingli in the reformation of Zürich. He succeeded Oecolampad in Basle. He also worked for a compromise with the Lutherans on the Eucharist.


Nestorius (fl. 428-c.451) Patriarch of Constantinople, and an extreme Antiochene. He denied that the BVM was Theotokos. He seems almost to have thought of the two natures as two persons, and thus denied any real union of the divine with the human. He was condemned by the Council of Ephesus in 431. The Chalcedon Definition rejected Nestorius’ separation of the two natures.

Nicene Creed The creed was written to defend the orthodox Christian faith against those (Arians) who denied the doctrine of the Trinity and the deity of Jesus. The Arians contended that Jesus was substantially like God the Father homoiousion). The orthodox Church affirmed that Jesus is God the Son, consubstantial with the Father and the Spirit and thus used the term homoiousion.

Nominalism Strictly speaking, the theory of knowledge (epistemology) opposed to realism (Thomas Aquinas) associated most strongly with William of Ockham. It posits that, in effect, that there is no necessary relation between the name (nomen) and the thing named. Names are mere conventions. Theologically this movement has often been connected with a strong emphasis on the divine will (voluntarism).


Ochino, Berdardino (1487-1564) Italian Franciscan monk converted who became a Protestant reformer through the influence of Peter Martyr Vergmigli. He was well known for his eloquent preaching even before his conversion to Protestantism. He fled to Geneva to escape the inquisition. He pastored an Italian refugee congregation in Augsburg (1545-7). From there he was invited by Cranmer to England where he wrote against the papacy and the doctrine of predestination. On Mary’s accession he, he fled to Zürich where he was made a pastor. He was later expelled from office for heterodoxy and went to Poland where there was a growing anti-Trinitarian community.

Ockham,William (c.1285-1347) Venerabilis inceptor. An English Franciscan theologian and philosopher. A Greyfriar, he taught in Oxford and Avignon. A Philosophical nominalist, Ockham reacted to Thomas’ realism by arguing that universalia were merely hypothetical and by rejecting the efficacy of Thomas’ “Five Ways”. God’s existence is a revealed, not rational truth. Contrary to Thomas’ emphasis on universals, he wanted to discuss individua. Theologically he tended to Pelagianism and reacted to Thomas’ intellectualism by stressing the divine freedom and will (voluntarism) by distinguishing between the two powers (de potentia absoluta et ordinata). According to the absolute divine power (de potentia absoluta), God the Son might have become incarnate as a donkey, but according to the ordained power of God (de potentia ordinata) he became incarnate as a human being. Sin is “sin” only because God says so, not because it is so naturally. The sacraments were said to have power to impart grace de potentia ordinata only because of the pactum. That is, God having willed and promised he gives grace to those who do what is in them (facientibus quod in se est, Deus not denegat gratiam). This was the soteriology of the via moderna.

Oecolampadius (Johannes Hussgen/Husschin 1482-1531) German Protestant humanist scholar and theologian. He took up Luther’s position briefly, abandoned it, then returned to Protestantism by 1522. He was influential in advancing the Reformation in Basel. He sided with Zwingli at Marburg, (1529).

Olevian, Caspar (1536-85) One of the two primary authors of the Heidelberg Catechism (1563) and a central figure in the development of Reformed federal theology.

Orthodoxy A term used in a number of senses, of which the following are the most important: Orthodoxy in the sense of “right belief,” as opposed to heresy; orthodoxy in the sense of a movement within Protestantism, especially in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, which laid emphasis upon need for doctrinal definition.

Osiander (1498-1552). Protestant theologian. First associated with the Lutheran cause in 1522. Participated in the Marburg Colloquy (1529) and the Reichstag/Diet of Augsburg (1530). He signed the Lutheran Schmalkald Articles (1531). By 1549 he was professor of theology at Königsburg and the next year he published De Iustificatione rejecting imputed righteousness for infused righteousness. He was roundly attacked by Protestants for abandoning the gospel. His niece, Margaret, was Thomas Cranmer’s (illegal and hidden) wife (1532).


Parker, Matthew (1504-75) Archbishop of Canterbury. Supported the moderate Protestants under Henry VIII and Edward VI. Upon Elizabeth’s accession he was made Abp. Against the Puritans he ordered the use the surplice. He published the Bishops’ Bible, revised the Articles of Religion to 39 and enforced the Elizabethan settlement.

Patrick (c.389-461) Born in Britain, he was captured at age 16 and taken to Ireland by pirates where he lived for 6 years as a shepherd. During this time he became more devout in his faith. Having escaped, he traveled 200 miles north, talked his way aboard a ship and returned to Britain where he trained for the ministry. He returned to Ireland where he helped to establish the church. His widely read Confession witnesses to the influence of Augustine’s theology in Roman Britain.

Patristic An adjective used to refer to the first centuries in the history of the church, following the writing of the New Testament (the “patristic period”), or scholars writing during this period (the “patristic writers”). For many writers, the period thus designated seems to be c.100-451 (in other words, the period between the completion of the last of the New Testament writings and the Council of Chalcedon).

Paul III (1468-1549) Pope from 1534. A typical Renaissance pope—he had three sons and a daughter!—he also pursued the organizational reform of the church. He approved the Jesuit order, re-established the Inquisition and vigorously pursued a general council which became the Council of Trent. He made Michelangelo chief architect of St. Peter’s Basilica.

Paul IV (1476-1559) Pope from 1555. The first Counter-Reformation Pope. His violent opposition to Protestantism seemed only to strengthen the movement he hated.

Pelagius (c.400) British monk and lay theologian who taught that man is capable of cooperating (by free will) with God in working toward salvation, apart from prevenient (foregoing) divine grace. This view was rejected at the Council of Carthage AD 411) and strongly attacked by Augustine. Semi-Pelagianism teaches that one is able to cooperate with God toward salvation and thus merits divine grace which continues to help. This view dominated the Western Church from shortly after Augustine until the Reformation.

Perichoresis A term relating to the doctrine of the Trinity, often also referred to by the Latin term circumincessio. The basic notion is that all three persons of the Trinity mutually share in the life of the others, so that none is isolated or detached from the actions of the others.

Perkins, William (1558-1608) English Protestant (Puritan) Reformed theologian. A fellow of Christ’s College, and lecturer in Great St. Andrews Church, Cambridge. He was the first and greatest of the English Puritan Puritans divines. His Golden Chaine (1590) was extremely influential in Puritan theology. He inaugurated a style of theology which combined technical mastery with warm, practical popularity.

Peter of Lombard (c.1100-60). The ‘Master of the Sentences’. Peter wrote the standard textbook of medieval theology. Lombard’s Sententiae were unsurpassed until Aquinas’ Summa.

Pico della Mirandola, G. (1463-94) Leading Italian humanist scholar. A Classicist, he was one of the few people of his age to read Hebrew, Aramaic and Arabic. Most famous for his heterodox 900 theses which he proposed to defend in 1486 but no one took him up.

Pietism An approach to Christianity, especially associated with German writers in the seventeenth century, which places an emphasis upon the personal appropriation of faith, and the need for holiness in Christian living. The movement is perhaps best known within the English-language world in the form of Methodism.

Pius IV (1499-1565) Pope from 1559. As Pope he reversed the anti-imperial (Hapsburg) policy of Paul IV. His most notable accomplishment was to reassemble the Council of Trent and see it to its conclusion in 1562-3. After Trent he promulgated a new index of banned books and a new Roman Catechism (1564).

Pius V (1504-72) Pope from 1566. A Dominican monk, philosopher and theologian, he worked for moral reform in the church. He compelled Bishops and Priests to assent to the Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent, reformed the Breviary (Roman liturgical book), the Missal (book for the Mass), made Thomas Aquinas Doctor Ecclesiae and ordered his works reprinted. He prosecuted the Inquisition in Spain and excommunicated Elizabeth I.

Polanus, Amandus (1561-1610) O.T. Professor in Basel and an important figure in the development of Protestant (in this case Reformed) orthodoxy and scholasticism. Like most other Protestant orthodox/scholastic theologians he was first of all a biblical exegete. He wrote against Bellarmine and produced two systematic works. His Syntagma theologiae Christianae (1609) is an important extended defense of Reformed theology.

Pole, Reginald (1500-58) Abp of Canterbury and humanist scholar. While in Italy he criticised Henry VIII’s divorce from Catherine of Arragon. He served as a papal legate. He consulted with Contarini before Ratisbon. He was nearly elected Pope in ’49. On Mary’s accession he became papal legate to England. After Cranmer’s martyrdom in 1556 he was created Apb of Canterbury. He cooperated in the persecution of Protestants.

Principium theologiae the foundations of theology. Scripture is the objective foundation (principium externum) of “knowing” (cognoscendi) and it is God (principium essendi) who is known. Faith is the internal (internum) ground of knowing.

Protestant The term dates formally from the protest lodged at the Diet of Speyer (1529) by the Lutheran princes against the revocation of tolerance. The term, however, has long been used to refer to a system of doctrine which rejected the late Medieval Roman Catholic doctrines of salvation infused grace, semi-Pelagianism, merit, the papacy, the priesthood, and its twin sources of authority, in favor of an Augustinian (predestinarian) doctrine of salvation by prevenient, unmerited divine favor, because of which Christ’s merits are imputed to the undeserving sinner, the benefits of which are received through faith alone, which looks to Christ alone for salvation. Protestants also hold that Scripture alone has unique authority for faith and life.


Quadriga The fourfold pattern of Medieval biblical exegesis flowing from 3rd century Alexandrian (e.g., Origen) distinction between the “literal” and “spiritual” senses of the biblical text. The questions is sought to answer were grounded in theological virtues of 1 Cor 13. What does a particular text say about faith, hope and love? The quadriga was revised and used widely in the medieval church for more than a millennium. The senses are: 1.Sensus historicus/literalis: the grammatical-historical sense of a passage; 2.Sensus allegoricus: the doctrinal sense, i.e., what does the text say about what it to be believed? 3.Sensus anagogicus: the eschatological message of a text, i.e., what is to be hoped?; 4.Sensus moralis/tropologicus: the moral message, i.e., what is to be done? While the system was certainly abused in the medieval church, many scholars recognized that not every passage would or should yield every sense. Though the Reformers inveighed against it, in practice it was not entirely discarded.


Racovian Catechism (1605) A Polish Socinian (Unitarian) catechism.

Radical Reformation A term used with increasing frequency to refer to the Anabaptist movement – in other words, the wing of the Reformation which went beyond what Luther and Zwingli envisaged.

Radbertus, Paschasius (c.790-c.860). Carolingian theologian most famous for his dialogue with Ratramnus over the nature of the Lord’s Supper. In his De corpore et sanguine domini(831/833, rev. 844) is the first major treatise on the Lord’s Supper in the medieval church. InDe corpore he argued that, at consecration, the elements of the Supper become the body and blood of Christ, anticipating the later doctrine of transubstantiation. In his, De corpore et sanguine domini (843/844), written at the request of Charles the Bald, Ratramnus (also of Corbie) responded by denying the transformation of the elements of the supper by arguing for a sort of Spiritual presence of Christ in the Supper. The debate turned on the question of what is veritas (literal) and what is figura or symbolic. Ratramnus argued that the body with which Christ was born, crucified and raised, is the body which he possesses in the ascension. Therefore, the body which we eat in the Supper is represented to us in a figure.

Rationalism. The Rationalist is certain that man can know and understand things exhaustively. The rationalist believes that he has one principle which explains reality (e.g., Evolution). The Greeks said that all is one (See Monism above). Rationalists always deny the existence of whatever appeared to contradict their belief. Some rationalists say what is true is what fits a logical syllogism. Modern rationalists (e.g., logical positivists) insist that only that is true which can be verified by sense experience. The flip side to the verification principle is the “falsification principle” which tries to show that a universal statement is not true if it can be falsified. This procedure tends toward skepticism and irrationalism. Contemporary linguistic analysis, by philosophers such as W.V.O. Quine, is making the application of both the verification and falsification principles far more difficult

Ramus, Peter (1515-72) Late Renaissance-humanist educational Reformer who promoted himself as a radical anti-Aristotelian. His controversial theories were quite influential on several Calvinist theologians in the late 16c and early 17c. He was murdered in the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre.

Ratramnus (d. ca.868) see Radbertus.

Raphael (1483-1520) One of the most famous of Renaissance painters.

Realism. An epistemology which says that we says that we know universalia by abstracting them from particulars. In distinction from nominalism (q.v.), realism posits a genuine connection between a name and the thing named. Realists tended to be interested inuniversalia since it is these which give particulars their meaning.

Reformed Used early in the Reformation (c.1517-40’s/50’s) as a synonym for evangelical, i.e., those supporting the theological, moral and ecclesial reformation of the Church. As early as the late 1520’s, flowing from Zwingli’s Christological differences with Luther, a self-conscious break began to occur between Lutherans (though many Reformed, including Calvin,wore that badge with honor) and those wishing to press on with the Reformation. As a label it is slightly broader than Calvinist as it encompasses the Zwinglians (Zwingli, Bullinger, et al) and Peter Martyr and J. Zanchi and others as well as Calvin and the Calvinists.

Regensburg, Colloquy of: (1541) Also called Ratisbon. site of the Imperial Reichstag (Diet) of 27 April – 22 May 1541. Attended by J. Eck, J. von Pflug, J. Gropper representing Rome; and Philip Melanchthon, Martin Bucer and M. Pistorius representing the Protestants.

Renaissance Humanism (see humanism)

Reuchlin, Johannes (1455-1522) German humanist and Hebrew scholar and the uncle of Philip Melanchthon.

Ridley, Nicholas (c.1500-55) The Protestant Bishop of London who, with H. Latimer, was martyred in Oxford by Mary Tudor.


Sabellianism An early trinitarian heresy, which treated the three persons of the Trinity as different historical manifestations of the one God. See pp. 256-7.

Sacrament In purely historical terms, a church service or rite which was held to have been instituted by Jesus Christ himself. Although Roman Catholic theology and church practice recognize seven such sacraments (baptism, confirmation, eucharist, marriage, ordination, penance, and unction), Protestant theologians generally argue that only two (baptism and eucharist) were to be found in the New Testament itself.

Sadoleto, Jacopo (1477-1547) Cardinal, humanist scholar. In 1539 Sadoleto wrote a remarkable letter attempting to persuade the citizens of Geneva to return to Holy Mother Church occasioning an equally remarkable response by Calvin in defense of the Reformation.

Sanctification: (L. sanctificare, “to make or treat as holy”). Has definitive and progressive aspects. In Christ we are once for all declared holy for the sake of Christ, but called to work out that holiness by the grace of God. Protestants argue that Roman Catholic theology confuses sanctification and justification.

Sattler, Michael (c.1490-1527) Anabaptist leader. Trained as a monk, he associated with the Anabaptist movement, in Zürich, in 1525. He was expelled and fled to Strasbourg. He presided over the conference (1527) which drafted the Schleitheim Confession. He was brutally executed for his views.

Savanarola, Girolamo (1452-1498) Italian moral-ecclesiastical Reformer. A Dominican monk he became famous for a series of sermons preached on the Revelation and later for predicting judgment on Florence. When he was able to Charles VIII of France not to invade Florence he predicted a golden age for the city in which she would rule Italy. He also attacked to corrupt Papacy of Alexander VI. He was tried for heresy and executed.

Saxon Confession (1551) Protestant confession written by Philip Melanchthon written for the Emperor for the Council of Trent.

Schleitheim, Confession of (1527) An informal Anabaptist (Swiss Brethren) confession of faith in seven articles, composed in Schleitheim. The confession teaches believer’s baptism, pacifism, forbids oath taking.

Schmalkald Articles (1537) A confession of faith, in three parts, written by Luther in preparation for the Council to be convened at Mantua (eventually meeting at Trent). Though never officially endorsed, they were incorporated into the Lutheran Book of Concord (1580).

Schmalkald League (1531-47) A confederation of Protestant German princes formed in reaction to Charles V’s Augsburg Recess (1530). The league united Lutherans and Swiss Reformed Protestants temporarily against the Hapsburgs. Eventually Charles crushed the princes in battle.

Scholasticism: a technical and logical approach to systematic theological, in which each theological topic or locus was divided into its component parts, the parts analyzed and then defined precisely in careful propositional form.

Schwabach Articles (1529) 17 articles revised from the articles drafted for the Marburg Colloquy. They formed the basis for the Augsburg Confession (1530).

Scotism The scholastic philosophy associated with Duns Scotus.

Scots, Confession of Faith (1560) The first confession of faith by the Scots Reformed (Calvinist) Church. Adopted by the Scottish Parliament it was the confession of the Scottish Protestants until replaced by the Westminster Confession (1647).

Semi-Pelagianism A 17c (anti-Molinist) designation for the reaction against Augustine’s anti-Pelagian emphasis on original sin, our federal union with Adam and predestination. The semi-Pelagians agreed with Augustine that we fell with Adam but tended to minimize the effect of sin such that the sinner is said to be retain a free-will and is able to cooperate with divine grace. Prosper of Aquitaine (c.390-463), Gottschalk (c.804-c.869) and Gregory of Rimini (†1358) are among those who attacked the prevailing semi-Pelagianism in the West before the Reformation. Luther and the Reformers reacted strongly against the semi-Pelagianism of Late medieval theologians such as Gabriel Biel. Later Protestants attacked Arminius for semi-Pelagianism.

Sensus Deitatis A widely held Christian teaching but most closely associated with Calvin in the Reformation, taken from Romans 1-2, that all human beings are created with some true, but unsaving knowledge of God. Its primary function is to serve as a witness to our depravity and to leave us without excuse.

Seripando, Girolamo (1493-1563) Italian Cardinal and Papal legate to and one-time President of the Council of Trent. His views on sin and justification were not those of Trent and he attempted, with Contarini to forestall the semi-Pelagian settlement.

Servetus, Michael (1511-53) Spanish anti-Trinitarian lay theologian and physician. He corresponded with Calvin and replied to his Institutes at great length. He appeared unwisely, in Geneva, in 1533, where he was arrested (having already been burnt in effigy elsewhere) and eventually burnt by order of the city council.

Simons, Menno (1496-1561) Once a Dutch Roman Catholic priest, Menno renounced his orders and united with the Anabaptist movement in 1536. Ministered to Anabaptist communities for 25 years in the Netherlands and in North Germany. He stressed the community of believers, pacifism, withdrawal from the world and refused to use non-biblical terms in theology. The Mennonite movement takes its name from him.

Simul justus et peccator: Simultaneously righteous and a sinner (Luther).

Sin, venial, unlike moral sin, this sin does not deprive the soul of saving grace. The distinction was taught by Thomas and upheld by Trent. These do not require penance.

Sin, mortal, in Roman Catholic doctrine, is a deliberate sin willfully committed. If confessed, it can be pardoned; if committed just before death without intention of repentance results in loss of grace and eternal damnation.

Sixtus V (1521-1590) Pope from 1585. A Counter-Reformation Pope most famous for the revised edition of the Vulgate which he inaugurated.

Society of Jesus Founded by Ignatius of Loyola in 1534, approved by Paul III in 1540. Its goals were to foster reform in the Church, serve as a reaction to Protestantism, and to do missions in the New World. They have a particular loyalty to the Papacy and serve his pleasure. They are known for their outstanding educational program.

Socinus, Lelio (1525-62) Influenced by Italian Protestantism and sometime friend of P. Melanchthon, he criticised Calvin’s Trinitarianism but satisfied Bullinger as to his orthodoxy.

Socinus, Faustus (1539-1604) The nephew of L. Socinus, denied Christ’s deity and human immortality early in his career. By the 1570’s he was attacking orthodox Protestantism and advocating Unitarianism.

Sola’s the. A series of formula (sola gratia, sola fide, sola Scriptura, solo Christo, soli Deo gloria) which became shorthand for the theological (and especially the soteriological) distinctives of the Reformation. Protestants believe that Scripture is alone the primary authority for faith and life (not that it is the only authority); that salvation is by unearned divine favor received only by the instrument of apprehensive faith (as opposed to an infused virtue) which receives Christ’s imputed righteousness. Christ alone is the proper object of saving faith and God only ought to receive all glory in salvation. It is sometimes objected that these are later formula and not proper to the Reformation itself. This is inaccurate. The expressions or synonyms are found widely in 16th and 17th century Protestant writers.

Solemn League and Covenant (1643) The agreement between the Scots and the English Parliament to maintain the Presbyterian Church of Scotland and reform the Church of England. Also a mutual defense treaty enabling the Scots to participate in the Westminster Assembly.

Soteriology The locus of Christian theology teaching the doctrine of salvation.

Speyer, Diet of (1526) The diet which established the principle, cuius regio, eius religio (To each region, its own religion).

Speyer, Diet of (1529) Diet at which the term ‘Protestant’ came into being. The Roman Catholic majority of electors voted to end toleration of Protestants. Six Lutheran princes and 14 cities responded with a protest to Archduke Ferdinand defending the freedom of conscience and their rights as a minority within the Empire.

Staupitz, Johann (c.1460/9-1529) Vicar-General of the Augustinian Friars of which Luther was a member. He was Luther’s patron, arranging for him to come to the University of Wittenberg. His strong predestinarian theology greatly influenced Luther.

Stephanus, Robert (1503-59) Printer to Francis I and of several Latin editions of the Bibles, of the Hebrew Old Testament, and the Greek New Testament. He advertised his 1550 edition of the NT to be the textus receptus (received text). In 1551 he fled to Geneva where he aligned himself with the Protestant cause, printed Calvin’s works, and introduced the versification of Scripture still used today.

Stuart, James I (1566-1625) King of England from 1603. Also James VI, King of Scotland from 1567. Tutored by stout Calvinists, he nevertheless moved to restore episcopacy in Scotland. On Elizabeth’s death he acceded to the English throne by virtue of his descent from Henry VII through his mother. Because he had allied himself with England as King of Scotland, he became King of Great Britain. He refused the Puritan petition for relief from uniformity; ordered the translation of the Authorized Version of the Bible which was first published in 1611. He upheld the divine right of kings and apostolic succession.

Suarez, Francisco de (1548-1617) Spanish Jesuit Counter-Reformation, Thomist theologian. He gained fame as a commentator on Aquinas’ Summa. His synthesis of Thomas and Aristotle exercised considerable influence upon Protestant theology. He agreed with Molina’s ‘congruism’. God has ‘middle knowledge’ (scientia media) by which gives grace to the elect which he forsees they will use properly in specifically arranged circumstances. He is usually considered the greatest theologian of the Jesuits.

Summa Theologica/Summa Theologiae (1265-74) Thomas Aquinas’ chief theological work in three parts, First part (Prima) on God in se and on creation. Second Part (Prima Secundae) of God as the end of man; and (Secunda Secundae) of man’s return to God; Third Part (Tertia) of Christ as the way to God. The last was unfinished.

Swiss Brethren (1525) The oldest German speaking Anabaptist group.


Tauler, Johann (1300-61) A German Dominican mystic. Influenced by Meister Eckhart earned fame as a preacher and ministry to the infected during the plague. His mysticism was largely about committing oneself completely to the divine will. Union with God is desirable for the benefits which it produces in the human soul. Luther was influenced by Tauler.

Tetrapolitan Confession (1530) The oldest Reformed confession in Germany representing four Swiss cities. Drafted hastily at the Diet of Augsburg chiefly by M. Bucer, it sought toleration for Zwinglians who were about to be excluded from Imperial toleration and protection. Unfortunately, it failed to gain a serious hearing at the Diet.

Thirty Years War (1618-48) A series of religio-political wars fought in Central Europe. These wars were largely the result of the weakness of the Holy Roman (German) Emperor and the unresolved tension produced by the Peace of Augsburg (1555) which excluded Calvinists and Zwinglians from its peace.

Transubstantiation The medieval doctrine according to which the bread and the wine are transformed into the body and blood of Christ in the eucharist, while retaining their outward appearance.

Tremellius, Johannes (1510-80) Jewish-Christian Hebrew scholar who became a Protestant in 1541. Taught in Cambridge University and Heidelberg University. His Latin translation of the OT (for scholars) was the first major Protestant translation and was widely used by Protestant theologians.

Thomism, (via Thomae) The scholastic philosophy and theology associated with Thomas Aquinas. Thomism enjoyed a resurgence in the 16th century prior to the Council of Trent and especially after. Not all Thomists in the 16th and 17th centuries were Papists, however. Several significant Protestants were trained in Thomism, including Zwingli, Martyr and Zanchi.

Trent, Council of (1545-63) A general council first called for Mantua to address the issues raised by the Protestant Reformation. For military and political reasons the council was relocated to Trent. It represents the apex of the Counter-Reformation response to Protestantism. Though there was some internal dissent, the Council pronounced the anathema upon the central Protestant doctrines.

Tudor, Mary (1516-58) Queen from 1558. On Edward’s death she acceded the throne and moved swiftly to outlaw Protestantism. She earned her nickname ‘Bloody Mary’ but her ruthless persecution of Protestants which drove hundreds of them across the channel into Europe for protection. Some of those who did not join the Marian exile were martyred for their faith, notably Abp Cranmer, and Bishops Ridley, Latimer and Hooper. She died a natural death.

Turretin, Francis (1623-1687) Italian Reformed scholastic theologian of Geneva. The principal author of the Helvetic Consensus (1675), he also wrote the very influential Institutio theologiae elencticae (1679-85). Turretin was one of the highpoints of 17th century Reformed scholasticism. His theology was determinative for much of succeeding Reformed orthodoxy well into the 19c and especially at Princeton Seminary where his Institutio was a textbook for some time. Later when students were unwilling to read the Latin Charles Hodge depended heavily on Turretin for his own Systematic Theology.

Tyndale, William (c.1494-1536) Protestant theologian and the greatest English translator of the Bible. He made the first English translation directly from the Greek text of the New Testament despite serious obstacles and the constant threat of imprisonment and death. His translation was so well done that it composes 90% of what became the Authorised Version (1611). A student in both Oxford and Cambridge, he came to Protestant sympathies quite early, he marks the beginning of the transition from Lutheranism to Reformed theology in England. He combined Luther’s doctrines of grace with Zwingli’s doctrine of the sacraments. Most of his work was done in Antwerp and his translation first arrived in England in 1526. He was martyred for the gospel.


Ubiquity. (From the Latin, ubiquitas) The Lutheran doctrine of the sacraments, grounded in its Christology, which holds that by the communication of the attributes of his divinity to his humanity (communicatio idiomatum) Christ is physically everywhere present and especially in the sacraments.

Unam sanctam (1302) Papal bull issued by Boniface VIII declaring that there is no salvation outside the ‘one Holy and Apostolic Church’, and affirming authority of the papacy and its authority in both temporal and spiritual matters.

Unio Mystica The mystical union of the believer with Christ. Though the unio Christo is a standard part of Protestant theology emphasizing the forensic, federal, union of the believer with Adam first and then Christ, the unio mystica became a distinctive of Reformed theology uniting the doctrine of justification (forensic idea of union) with the doctrine of union, i.e., the mystical and experiential and morally renovating aspects of the believer’s union with Christ. The latter, of course, is logically premised on the former. This notion found expression in Calvin and symbolically in the Heidelberg Catechism (1563).

Ursinus, Zacharias (1534-1583) Silesian/German Reformer. He began his theological career as a student of Philip Melanchthon. After Philip’s death, he was influenced by Calvin and Bullinger and moved in a Reformed direction. He is the primary author of the Heidelberg Catechism (1563) and an important early federal theologian.

Usus legis The “use of the law’. Luther taught two uses of the moral law (Decalogue). The first and most important use is to teach us our sin (usus theologicus sive elenchticus sive paedigogicus). The second use is to restrain sin in civil society (usus civilis sive politicus). Though he did not describe it as such, he did teach the normativity of the moral law for the Christian. Melanchthon, the Formula of Concord and the Reformed theologians developed the same to become the third use of the law (usus didacticus sive normativus).


Valla, Lorenzo (1405-57) Italian humanist scholar and textual critic. He exposed the fraudulent Donation of Constantine. He criticised the Vulgate as a translation and attacked scholasticism violently.

Vatican The principal papal residence, in Rome, after the Avignon Papacy (1308-77). The Vatican underwent substantial improvement in the 16c and was a symbol to many Protestants of Episcopal excess.

Vermigli, Peter Martyr (1500-1562) Italian Protestant theologian. Trained in Thomistic scholasticism, he encountered Protestant theology in the late 1530’s. By 1542 his Reformed colors began to show and he was forced to flee to Switzerland where he was quickly accepted by leading Protestants, including Bullinger and Calvin. Peter Martyr was made Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford under Edward VI was among the first to adapt the new Protestant theology to the University by using Scholastic methods. His Common Places were widely read by Protestants in England and on the Continent. His influence can be traced in England to the Westminster Confession (1647) and on the Continent to the Canons of Dort (1619).

Via AntiquaThe Old Way. Realists in epistemology, they that there is a necessary relation between names and the thing named. Emphasis fell on universalia rather than individua. Theologically, they emphasized the logical priority of the divine intellect.

Via Moderna: The Modern Way. [Nominalists; e.g., William of Ockham] Argued that the relation between names and the thing named is more a convention than necessity. They reacted to Thomas by criticizing the claim that we know universals. In theology, they placed emphasis on the logical priority of the divine will (over the intellect) and emphasized the long-held distinction between the two divine potentia (powers) of the divine will.

Via mystica (The mystical way). A theological method in which the principle of knowledge is not Scripture by direct revelation. Orthodox Protestantism has attempted to steer between the via mystica and rationalism.

Vincentian canon: From Vincent of Lerins (d. ca. 450). A test or rule (hence “canon”) to determine the catholicity of a doctrine: “quod ubique, quod semper, quod ab omnibus creditum est” (that which is has been believed everywhere, always and by all; Comminitorium primum, 4.3, Migne, Patrologia Latina, 50, 640.

Vulgate (biblia vulgata) Latin translation of the Sacred Scriptures done mostly by Jerome from 382-4. It was the Bible of the Western Church for the next Millennium. Protestants were critical of many of its translations, and though they continued to use it until late in the 16c, the also began to make their own Latin translations for academic work. The fourth session of the Council of Trent (1546) declared it to be the only authorized Latin text of the Bible, though it was massively revised in the 1590’s.


Waldesnians A small Christian mendicant community traced to a 12c merchant, Valdes of Lyons. Protestant polemicists have argued that the Vaudois represented a sort of remnant of pure Pauline Christianity uninfected with Romanism. Though orthodox, they were nevertheless persecuted severely in the Inquisition. In the 1520’s and 30’s they adopted a Protestant confession and allied themselves with the Reformation. They apparently still exist in Rome.

Westminster Assembly and Standards—Confession and Catechisms (1643-9) A notable assembly of 121 theologians appointed during the English Civil War by the Long (Puritan) Parliament to make the Church of England “more agreeable to the Word of God”‘. The original goal was to revise the 39 Articles of Religion which was partially accomplished. When, however, the Solemn League and Covenant was concluded with Scots Presbyterians, the divines began a new confession altogether. The result was the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms (1647) which admirably summarized the consensus among Reformed Protestants in the English speaking world for the next two centuries.

Whitehorse Tavern The pub, where, according to legend, several Protestant reformers met to discuss the new Protestant theology drifting into England from the Continent. Among those involved in these discussions were said to be William Tyndale.

Whitgift, John (c.1530-1604) Abp of Canterbury under Elizabeth. Himself a Calvinist, he nevertheless repressed puritans in attempting to maintain the Episcopal uniformity against Presbyterian critics.

Whittaker, William (1548-95) Puritan, Calvinist theologian who drafted the Lambeth Articles and edited the influential Nowell’s Catechism.

Wishart, George (c.1513-46) Scots Reformer and English translator of the First Helvetic Confession. Travelled Scotland advocating Reformation. In his last years he may have plotted against a Roman Cardinal. He was martyred at St. Andrews.

Wollebius, Johannes (1586-1629) German speaking Reformed theologian of Basel/ A student of Amandus Polanus, he served in the pastorate and later taught Old Testament. His Compendium theologiae Christianae is an outstanding representative of early 17th century Reformed theology.

Wolsey, Thomas (c.1474-1530) English Roman Catholic Cardinal, chaplain to Henry VIII, and Lord Chancellor. He opposed Henry’s divorce of Catherine of Arragon and fell from favor.

Worms, Diet of (1521) Where Luther defended his Protestantism before Charles V. Having been called upon to recant his Protestantism, he is said to have replied, “Here I stand. I can do no other. God help me”. Charles V issued an edict, after Luther had departed, formally condemning Luther’s doctrine.

Worms, Disputation of (1540-1) A colloquy attempting to reconcile Protestants with Rome. J. Eck spoke for Rome and Melanchthon for Protestants. The conference was abandoned midway in favor of the Diet of Ratisbon/Regensburg.

Würtemberg, Confession of (1552) A Protestant confession of faith in 35 articles compiled by the Lutheran theologian J. Brenz. It was probably used in the revision of the English Articles of Religion.

Wycliffe, John (c.1330-84) English theologian, philosopher, and Reformer. An Oxford scholar, he rejected Ockham’s nominalism in favor of Augustine. He attacked the wealth and moral corruption in the church, arguing that the state has the right to remove corrupt clerics. In his attempt to foster reform, he formulated an early version of the doctrine Sola Scriptura, and attacked the legitimacy of the Papacy, monastic orders and the doctrine of transubstantiation. His conducted a vigorous preaching ministry. His relations to the later Lollard movement are uncertain. His disciples made and English translation of the Bible from the Vulgate. His views influenced the Czech reformer Jan Hus. His views were condemned at the Council of (1415). Though not Protestant per se (on justification), his views are among those which later helped to fuel the Reformation. He died of natural causes.


Xavier, Francis (1506-52) Jesuit missionary to the East Indies and Japan. Trained as a theologian and canon lawyer in Paris, he became a colleague to Ignatius of Loyla and helped to found the Society of Jesus (Jesuits). Having learned Japanese, he established a community of 2000 within two years of his arrival, but was driven out by Buddhist monks. He died in the midst of attempting a mission to China and was buried at Goa. Though his use of civil authority and inquisitorial methods has been much criticized in modern times, Pius X declared him the patron saint of missions. He was canonized in 1622.


Zanchi, Jerome (1516-90) Italian Reformed Protestant. Trained as a Thomist scholastic, he converted to Protestantism under the influence of Peter Martyr. Forced to flee to Geneva (1551) he studied under Calvin and taught for a decade in Strasbourg where he argued with the Gnesio-Lutheran J. Marbach over predestination, the Eucharist, and Christology. After a brief stint in the pastorate he was called to the University of Heidelberg. There he continued his work on predestination and defending the doctrine of the Trinity, and expositing Scripture. He is a significant figure in the development of Reformed orthodoxy.

Zwickau Prophets A group of Anabaptist radicals who claimed to have immediate divine revelation, taught an impending apocalyptic, and rejected infant baptism. In 1521 they relocated to Wittenberg and held discussions with Melanchthon, but were suppressed by Luther in 1522.

Zwingli, Huldrych (1484-1531) The father of the Swiss Reformation. Trained for the clergy, he came under the influence of Erasmian humanism. He applied his humanist skills to the study of Scripture and began to reach Protestant conclusions at about the same time as Luther. Whether he read and was influenced by Luther is a matter of debate. He worked with the local council in the Reformation of Zürich. Because of its relatively tolerant attitude, the city became a magnet for radicals. By 1525 he was defending infant baptism against anabaptist critics. Zwingli’s influence was great, but it was checked by Luther’s rejection of him. The chief reason for Luther’s rejection of Zwingli was that it appeared to Luther, even after they agreed on 14 articles at Marburg (1529), that Zwingli was a moralist, that the sacraments were about our work for Christ instead of Christ’s work for us. Zwingli consistently denied Christ’s bodily present in the Eucharist in favor of a memorialist view. Though some scholars hold that late in his life he moved toward a more highly developed view of spiritual presence, it seems rather that he simply strengthened his language about our psychological experience in the Supper. Zwingli’s theology received a mixed reception among later Protestants. Though certainly Protestant, he was less clear than Luther and Calvin about the exact nature of justification. He was a pioneer of covenant or federal theology among the Reformed. He died serving as chaplain to Swiss troops in the Second Battle of Kappel.

CH602 Medieval And Reformation Church

Course Description
The first half of the course shall study the development of medieval theology, doctrinal controversies, the development of the church, monasticism, mysticism and the forerunners of the Reformation. The second half shall study the theology and practices of the Protestant Reformation. We will consider the social and intellectual contexts in which the magisterial Reformation theology, piety, and practice developed. We will also give attention to the Counter Reformation and to the Anabaptist movements and to the later Reformation including the rise of Protestant scholasticism and confessionalism. Spring Semester. 4 credits.

Course Goals
—Academic Goal:

To enable the student to understand and discuss intelligently the institutional, theological, and social history of the church such that the student demonstrates understanding of dogmatic development in the history of the church from
c. 500AD–1619AD.

—Pastoral Goal:

To help the student gain a critical appreciation for the development of Christian theology, piety, and practice from c.500 AD–1619 AD.

Required Reading
NB: I do not discuss the background texts (Southern and Cameron) in class. The lectures assume that you have read them but you must read and master them in order to complete the course.

R. W. Southern, Western Society and the Church in the Middle Ages (New York, [repr.] 1978). This is a general background text not intended for class discussion.

Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae in either St Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, 5 vol. (Westminster, MD [repr.] 1981), or in A.M. Fairweather, ed. Aquinas on Nature and Grace (Philadelphia, 1959).

Summa TheologicaReference Nature and Grace pagination
1a. Q. 1 Art. 1.1–10 35–49
1a. Q.23 Art. 1–8 101–18
1a–2ae. QQ. 112–114 174–218

Euan Cameron, The European Reformation (Oxford, 1991). This is a general background text not intended for class discussion. Chapters 1–5, 14, 19, 21.

T. Lull ed. Martin Luther’s Basic Theological Writings:

    • Disputation Against Scholastic Theology
    • Heidelberg Disputation
    • Concerning the Letter and the Spirit
    • A Brief Instruction
    • Preface to the NT
    • Two Kinds of Righteousness
    • Bondage of the Will

R. Scott Clark, Iustitia Imputata Christi: Alien or Proper to Luther’s Doctrine of Justification?”Concordia Theological Quarterly 70 (2006): 269–310.

——, “The Benefits of Christ: Double Justification in Protestant Theology Before the Westminster Assembly,” Anthony T. Selvaggio, ed., The Faith Once Delivered: Celebrating the Legacy of Reformed Systematic Theology and the Westminster Assembly (Essays in Honor of Dr. Wayne Spear). (Phillipsburg: P&R Publishing, 2007), 107–34.

——, “Election and Predestination: Sovereign Expressions of God,” in David Hall and Peter Lillback, ed. A Handbook of Calvin’s Institutes (Phillipsburg: P&R Publishing).

——, “Calvin’s Principle of Worship,” in ed. David Hall, Tributes to John Calvin: A Celebration of his Quincentenary (Phillipsburg: P&R Publishing, 2010), 247–69.

John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, trans. F. L. Battles, ed. J. T. McNeill, 2 vols (Philadelphia, 1961), 1.1–10; 2.9–11; 3.1, 2, 11, 13, 17, 20, 24; 4.14–19.

Philip Schaff, ed. Creeds of Christendom (Grand Rapids, [repr.] 1983) or online:

Vol. 2: Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent, Tridentine Profession of Faith;

Vol. 3: Augsburg Confession, Formula of Concord, Heidelberg Catechism, Belgic Confession, Canons of the Synod of Dort, Westminster Confession of Faith.

R. Scott Clark, Caspar Olevian and the Substance of the Covenant: The Double Benefit of Christ (2005; Grand Rapids: Reformation Heritage Books, 2008) [all]

Willem van Asselt, ed. Introduction to Reformed Scholasticism, Reformed Historical-Theological Studies (Grand Rapids: Reformation Heritage Books, 2011).

Recommended Reading
Engelbrecht, Edward A. Friends of the Law: Luther’s Use of the Law for the Christian Life. St Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 2011.

The following chapters in Carl R. Trueman and R. Scott Clark, ed. Protestant Scholasticism: Essays in Reassessment (Carlisle: Paternoster, 1999).

  • Bagchi
  • Steinmetz
  • Muller
  • Schaefer
  • Godfrey
  • Trueman

Dorothy Sayers, “Lost Tools of Learning

G. R. Evans, ed. The Medieval Theologians (Oxford: Blackwells, 2001).

——A Brief History of Heresy (Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2003).

Marcia L. Colish, Medieval Foundations of the Western Intellectual Tradition 400-1400, Yale Intellectual History of the West (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1998).

Sabina Flanagan, Hildegard of Bingen, a Visionary Life, (Routledge, London, 1989).

Hildegard von Bingen,The letters of Hildegard of Bingen, trans. Joseph L. Baird, Radd K. Ehrman. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994).

Course Requirements:

  1. We live in a post-everything world of endless options. Nevertheless, in this course, your options are more limited. In order to pass the course you must demonstrate that you have learned and can adequately summarize and repeat the important material from the lectures and the readings.
  2. Mid-Term (covers the medieval church lectures and reading). 35%A failing grade on the mid-term means a failing grade for the course.
  3. Final exam (covers the Reformation church lectures and reading) 35 % A failing grade on the final exam means a failing grade for the course.
  4. Reading 30%
  5. Attendance. The WSC catalogue requires attendance to class. Class conflict petitions will not ordinarily be approved for this course.

Computers, Cheating, and Plagiarism
A student found to be using the computer inappropriately in class will face discipline.

Students who take class notes by computer tend to create a large, detailed transcript but they also tend not to analyze the information they are receiving. They hear the lecture but they do not listen to what is being said. In such a case, it is difficult to think about and interact with what is being said. As a consequence, students end the course with a large transcript of material with which they are not intimately familiar. This means that students have only reading week to master a large amount of relatively unfamiliar class material for the final exam.

In 2007, I encouraged students to take notes by hand. By doing so, those students had to listen closely to what was being said and they had to make a decision whether to write down anything and what to write. The student who takes notes by hand must synthesize and prioritize material. As a result, the student with handwritten notes has relatively less material to review before the exam. An informal survey of students with handwritten notes suggests that they felt better prepared for the final exam than they had with a large transcript.

Cheating and plagiarism are a serious infractions of the law of God and punishable by a measures determined by the faculty up to and including expulsion from the seminary. Cheating is presenting someone else’s work during an exam as your own. Plagiarism is presenting someone else’s work as your own in a paper. Please acknowledge all sources with appropriate footnotes. See the Student Handbook for a complete statement on plagiarism.

Questions in Class
They are welcome but in view of the amount of material to be covered (1000 years of religious, intellectual, social, political, and economic history) and the limited time in which to do it please be considerate of your classmates and your teacher. If your question may help to clarify something for the class, please ask. If it may lead us astray perhaps it is better to wait until after class.


Assertion of Intellectual Property Rights
The instructor holds the copyright to all course lectures and original course materials. This copyright extends to student notes and summaries that substantially reflect the lectures or original course materials. Course lectures and materials are made available for the personal use of students only and may not be recorded or otherwise distributed (including the publication of student notes or summaries on social media) in any way for commercial or non-commercial purposes without the express written permission of the instructor.

Chronology Of the Medieval And Reformation Church

Drafted c. 1995. Revised 2007

1100 c. b. Peter Lombard (1160). Magister Sententiae).

1155-58 Lombard publishes Sententiarum libri quatuor

1200 c. Albertus Magnus (d.1280)

1215 Fourth Lateran Council

c. 1225 b. Thomas at Aquino (d. 1274)

1231 Heidelberg becomes capitol of Palatinate

1239 Thomas studies in Naples.

1240-42 Thomas studies with Albertus Magnus.

1244 Thomas becomes a Domincan Friar.

1252 Thomas joins the faculty of Theology as Magister in Paris.

1255 The Faculty of Arts in the University of Paris makes the study of Aristotle compulsory.

1261 William of Muerbecker makes a new translation of Aristotle from Greek.

1263-65 c. b. Duns Scotus Johannes just over the border in Scotland (d.1308).

1274 d. Thomas Aquinas

1285 c. b. in Surrey, William of Ockham (Occam) Venerabilis Inceptor

1291 Duns Scotus ordained in Northampton

1298-1301 Duns Scotus teaches in the Faculty of Theology in Oxford

1302 Boniface VIII issues Unam Sanctam

1308 d. John Duns Scotus in Cologne.

1327 Ockham charges Pope John XXII with heresy.

1328 c. (d..1384), John Wycliffe is born in Yorkshire.

Ockham is excommunicated and forced to flee from Pope John XXII to the protection of Louis of Bavaria to 1347.

1331 Ockham expelled from the Franciscans.

b. Geert (Gerard) de Groot (1340-84) founder of the Brethren of the Common Life.

1341 Petrarch is made poet laureate in Rome.

1347 d. William of Ockham in Bavaria.

1348 First University founded at Prague

1349 d. Thomas Bradwardine

d. Robert Holcot

1353 Boccaccio’s Decameron.

1358 d. Gregory of Rimini

1365 University of Vienna founded

1372 b. Jan Hus (1372-1415)

1378-1417 Papal schism at Avignon

1374 Conversion of Geert de Groot, foundation of the Brethren of the Common Life

1380 b. Thomas a Kempis (1380-1471) most famous member of the Brethren of the Common Life, author of Imitatio Christi.

1384 d. John Wycliffe

d. Geert Groot, founder of the Brethren of the Common Life.

1386 Heidelberg University organized

1388 University of Cologne organized

1392 University of Eurfurt founded

1396 (d.) Marsilius of Ingehen, associated with the introduction of Nominalism to the University of Heidelberg.

1400 b.Nicolas of Cusa (c.1400-1464)

1406 (d. 1457) Lorenzo Valla.

1409 University of Leipzig founded.

1414-19 Council of Constance ending the Papal Schism

1420 Pierre d’ Ailly d.

b. circa. Gabriel Biel (d. 1495)

1425 University of Louvain founded

1429 d. Jean Gerson

1433 b. Alexander Hegius (von Heek), German humanist.

1437 Council of Basle

1440 Lorenzo Valla’s On the True Good.

1441 Thomas a’ Kempis (Van Kempen) publishes Imitatio Christi the primary example of the Devotio moderna.

1453 Fall of Constantinople: increased migration westward of Greek speaking scholars and their MSS.

1454 circa. First printing press at Mainz

1455 b. c. Jacques de d’Etaples (LeFevre/Faber Stapulensis d. 1536), French humanist and precursor to the Reformation (c.1455-1536)

Johannes Reuchlin (d. 1522), German humanist and Hebrew scholar and great uncle to Philip Melanchthon.

1450 Pope Nicholas V founds the Vatican Library.

1452-1519 Leonardo daVinci

1456 Johann Gutenberg publishes Latin Bible.

1460 b. Johannes von Staupitz (d. 1524 ).

Pius II issues Execrabilis on 18 Jan. forbidding those who resist papal commands to appeal to a council.

1460 University of Basle founded.

1463 b. Giovanni Pico Della Mirandola (d. 1494), Italian humanist.

1466 b. [d. 1536 d. Erasmus]

b. [1466-1540] Guillame Bude, French legal humanist.

1469 b. (d. 1527) Niccolo Machiavelli

1470 (d. 1519) Johann Tetzel.

1471 Sixtus IV (d. 1484) reigns, who extended plenary indulgences to the dead.

Thomas Wolsey (d. 1530)

1474 Condemnation of Via Moderna at Paris. Those sympathetic to the Via Moderna migrate to Germany.

1475-1564 Michelangelo

1477 War breaks out between France and the Hapsburgs.

1480 Karlstadt (aka Andreas Bodenstein, (c.1480-1541)

1481 b. Balthasar Hubmaier (d. 1528)

Decree against Via Moderna rescinded.

1482 (d. 1531) Johann Oecolampadius (a supporter of Zwingli) is born

1483 b. (prob.) Martin Luther (d. 1546). This is the date calculated by Philipp Melanchthon.

b. Gasparo Contarini (d. 1542), leader of the Augustinians at the Council of Trent. Early in his career he attended the Diet of Worms and wrote critically of Luther. By 1541 in Epistola De Iustificatione he moves formally closer to the Protestant position and was considered by some Roman Catholics to have capitulated. In truth, however, he continued to posit intrinsic, Spirit-wrought sanctity as the principal ground of justification and imputation as an augmenting ground.

1484 (d. 1531) Huldrych Zwingli born at Wildhaus, in NE Switzerland.

Gabriel Biel appointed to the chair at Tubingen.

1485 (d. 1555 )Hugh Latimer.

Henry (Tudor) VII to 1509.

d. Rudolph Agricola.

1486 Pico della Mirandola, Oration on the Dignity of Man.

Wendelin Steinbach (d. 1519) follows G. Biel at Tubingen until 1517.

1489 (d. 1565) William Farel is born.

Thomas Muntzer (1489-1525).

Thomas Cranmer to 1556.

1490 Albertus Pighius (d. 1542).

(c.1490-1553) Francois Rabelais, French Humanist.

1491 b. (d. 1551) Martin Bucer.

Ignatius of Loyola. b.1491 (d.1556).

J. Froben starts printing at Basle.

1492-1503 Pope Alexander VI reigns (Rodrigo de Borgia). Alexander openly kept a mistress, tried to assure his son, Cesare’s ascension to papacy, which only failed because he died of syphilis!

Christobal Colon (Christopher Columbus) discovers the New World.

1493 (d. 1573) Philippist Johann Pfeffinger who proposed synergy in salvation contra Gnesio-Lutherans.

1493-1519 Maximillian I reigns.

1494 b. (d..1536) William Tyndale

1497 (d. 1563) Wolfgang Musculus (Muslin).

Staupitz arrives at Tubingen.

b. [d.1560] Philip Melanchthon

1498 Zwingli begins study at the University of Vienna.

b. Andreas Osiander (d. 1552) Lutheran, participant in the Marburg Colloquy and the Diet of Augsburg.

1499 b. (d. 1560) John a’ Lasco (Laski)

Johann Brenz (d. 1570) Lutheran controversialist who opposed Calvin and Beza and others over the Eucharist.

1500-1524 There are eighteen major “peasant revolts” in Swabia, Thuringuria and Austria. Most of them are suppressed by the Swabian League.

b.Peter (Pietro) Martyr Vermigli (1500-1562).

1501 Luther matriculates in the University of Eufurt.

1502 (d.1546) Luther takes his B.A. from the University of Eurfurt.

Elector Frederick of Saxony founds the University of Wittenberg.

1503 Erasmus publishes his Enchiridion.

22 Sept -18 Oct Pius III reigns.

Julius II reigns to 1513. Julius allowed Henry VIII to marry Catherine of Arragon and began charging general indulgences to pay for the Sistine Chapel.

1504 Henry Bullinger, Swiss successor to Zwingli born.

b. Matthew Parker, Abp of Canterbury (1504-75).

1505 Lorenzo Valla’s Annotationes published.

Pico Mirandola publishes commentary on the Psalter.

Luther receives his M.A. and enters the Augustinian monastery at Eurfurt as a result of his vow to St. Anne.

Erasmus publishes Valla’s Annotations on the New Testament.

1506 Reuchlin publishes the first major modern Hebrew grammar.

Publication of the Amerbach edition Opera Omnia Augustini.

1507 Luther becomes a priest.

1508 Luther transferred to the University of Wittenberg where he lectures in moral philosophy.

1509 (d.1564) John Calvin born at Noyon (France).

Henry VIII (d.1547) born.

Erasmus publishes, In Praise of Folly (Enconium Moriae).

Luther obtains Bachelor of Biblical Studies degree. To 1511 Luther teaches at the University of Eurfurt.

Melanchthon enters Heidelberg University.

1510 Joachim Westphal, Lutheran critic of Calvin, particularly on the supper.

Luther goes to Rome to 1511.

1511 Michael Servetus (1511-1553).

11 June, Melanchthon receives his B.A. from the University of Heidelberg.

1512 Fifth Lateran Council meets to 1517.

d’ Etaples publishes his commentary on Romans.

Luther receives his Th.D and visits Rome (January/February).

Luther begins lecturing on the Bible at Wittenberg.

His application for an M.A. rejected by Heidelberg (because of his youthful appearance), Melanchthon arrives at Tubingen to take his Master’s degree.

1513 Pope Leo X (Giovanni de Medic) reigns to 1521.

Luther lectures on the Psalms at Wittenberg to 1515.

(c.1513-1572) John Knox.

Machiavelli publishes The Prince.

1514 Erasmus settles in Basle to 1529.

Miles Coverall ordained.

25 January, Melanchthon completes his M.A. Tubingen and begins a four year stint as Privatdocent lecturing on the Classics and publishing translations.

1515 (d.1576) 14 February Frederick III Elector of the Palatinate born at Pfalz-Simmern of the house of Wittelsbach.

Francois I rules France until 1547.

Luther lectures on Romans to 1516.

Sept. Defeat of the Swiss Confederation at the Battle of Marignano which announces that it will enter into no more foreign alliances.

Tyndale receives his MA at Oxford.

Peter Ramus (Pierre de la Ramee; 1515-72).

1516 (d.1590) Jerome Zanchi(us) born in Italy.

Erasmus publishes the first edition of his Novum Instrumentum Omne

Mary Tudor b. (d.1558).

Luther lectures on Galatians to 1517.

Luther and Karlstadt clash over the interpretation of Augustine.

Concordat of Bologna is reached giving Francois I effective control over the French Church.

G. Farel joins the reforming circle of Jacques Lefevre/d’Etaples in the court of the Bishop of Meaux.

1517 26 April, Karlstadt defends 151 Augustinian theses

October 31, All Saints Eve, Luther proposes ninety-five thesesat Wittenberg.

Luther Lectures on Hebrews.

Staupitz publishes Libellus de exsecutione aeternae praedestinationis

1518 March, Karlstadt reforms the theological curriculum at Wittenberg.

April, Luther attends Heidelberg Disputations.

Oct-Nov Luther appears before Cajetan at Augsburg.

Zwingli called to Zurich as Luetpriest.

Melanchthon publishes Rudiements of the Greek Language.

25 August, he arrives at the newly created University of Wittenberg.

29 August Melanchthon delivers his inaugural address De corrigendis adolescentiae studiis.

1519 Zwingli begins public preaching at the Grossmunster, Zurich.

Theodore Beza (d.1605), is born.

Charles V, elected German Emperor reigns to 1555.

27 June – 8 July, Luther and Melanchthon attend Leipzig Disputation vs. Eck.

Melanchthon begins and completes B.D. at the University of Wittenberg.

Luther condemned by the University of Cologne, 30 Aug.

Luther condemned by the University of Louvain, 7 November.

Edmund Grindal (1519-83).

Crato of Crafftheim b. 20 Nov. (d.1585/86)

1520 b. (d.1575) Matthias Flacius Illyricus, leader of the Gnesio-Lutheran faction at the Magdeburg School.

Luther condemned by the University of Paris, 15 April.

Pope Leo gives Luther sixty days to recant in Exsurge Domine, 15 June. Luther responds with a bonfire of the papal decrees and canon law.

Luther publishes On Christian Liberty; The Babylonian Captivity of the Church; Address to the Christian Nobility.

b. Suleiman I (d.1566) ruler of the Ottoman Empire.

Zurich city council issues a mandate requiring all preaching to be based on Scripture.

1521 Luther defends himself at Diet of Worms (27 January to 25 May). 18 April he gives the famous speech.

While he is gone, Zwilling and Karlstadt persuaded the Wittenberg Augustinians to burn all their images and mutilate their stone statues. The City Council promised to abolish all images and altars, save three, to “avoid idolatry”.

The Edict of Worms is issued on 26 May. Luther is excommunicated. and placed under Imperial ban and sequestered in Wartburg. When he returns to Wittenburg, Luther partly reverses this Karlstadt’s reforms and established a more tolerant attitude toward the images.

The First Italian War begins between Charles V (Holy Roman Emperor of the German Nation) and François I. The war for control of Northern Italy (Milan, Naples), lasting to 1526, essentially provides time for Luther to gather support after the Edict is issued. It effectively prevents prosecution of Luther. From 1521 to 1531 Germany is effectively governed by the Second Imperial Governing Council in the absence of Charles V.

April 19, Bucer is released from his monastic vows.

Melanchthon publishes the first edition of the Loci Communes.

Calvin goes up to college (Montaigu) a stronghold of the Via Moderna.

1522 Guido De Bres, born in Belgium.

Jan – Sept 1523 Hadrian VI.

Bucer marries and is excommunicated.

b. Martin Chemnitz (d.1586) Lutheran theologian who responded to the Canons and Decrees of Trent.

Breaking of the Lenten fast at Zurich, defended by Zwingli on the basis of Sola Scriptura.

Luther publishes his German language New Testament, September.

b. Martin Micronius (1522-1559)

1523 Zwingli publishes his 67 Articles in Zurich, 29 January. These articles were prepared for the First Zurich Disputation against the Roman Church before the magistrate. Zwingli’s theses won the day, and secured one of the first major Swiss cantons for the Reformation. The Zwinglian preaching produces an orderly removal of images under the direction of the City Council.

June 24, Zwingli publishes On Divine and Human Righteousness.

The Second Zurich disputation on the mass and images in the Church, 26-8, October.

d. Thomas Muntzer (?)

1523-34 Clement VII (Guilio de Medici) reigns.

Calvin matriculates in the University of Paris where he studies the Arts and Philosophy.

Bucer settles in Strasbourg, where his father is a citizen, and begins lecturing in the home of Matthew Zell.

O.T. scholar, Wolfgang Capito declares himself for the reformation.

1524 Erasmus begins conflict with Luther over freedom of the will.

The Ansbach Recommendations are the first Protestant confession.

Battle of Novara, 30 April. Zurich city council issues decree permitting removal of icons, 15 June.

German peasant wars reach their apex.

d. Johannes Staupitz

b. (d.1590) François Hotman

1525 Tyndale’s N.T. is printed at Cologne and Worms.

Friedrich III (1525-76).

Anabaptism breaks out in Zurich, first re-baptisms in January.

Zwingli publishes his Commentary on True and False Religion.

Zurich abolishes the mass.

Twelve articles of Memmingen set forth the grievances of the German peasantry.

Thomas Muntzer executed, 27 May with fifty-three others.

13 June Luther secretly marries Katharina von Bora, a former nun and follows with a public ceremony 27 June.

Luther publishes De Servo Arbitrio.

Guillame Farel publishes his Summary and Brief Description of All that is Necessary for Every Christian to Have Confidence in God and Help His Neighbor in 42 articles, in Basle.

1526 First German Reformed Congregation organized at Emden.

Charles V concludes the Peace of Madrid with Francois I of France ending the First Italian War.

Suleiman I defeats King Ludwig of Hungary, capturing a third of Hungary. The Hapsburgs have another war to fight, this time in the east.

Reichstag (Diet) convened at Speyer.

1527 Henry VIII sues for divorce from Catherine of Arragon.

The Second Italian War (François I, Henry VIII and Clement VII, allied against the Hapsburgs) until 1529. Charles sacks Rome this year.

Schleitheim Confession published, February.

d. Niccolo Machiavelli

1528 The Ten Theses of Bern are produced after a disputation between Zwingli and Eck which begins in 1526, accepting the reformation.

d. Balthasar Hubmaier

Calvin moves to Orleans and Bourges to read Law.

Patrick Hamilton martyred (b. 1504)

Charles V authorizes the death penalty for Anabaptists.

1529 Second Diet/Reichstag of Speyer ends toleration of Lutheranism in Catholic districts, 21 February.

Marburg Colloquy

Luther produces Larger and Smaller catechisms.

The Schwabach Articles drafted, the product of negotiations between Nuremberg and Saxony.

Luther, Melanchthon, Justus Jonas, Johann Brenz take the as yet unpublished Schwabach Articles to the Marburg Colloquy (1-3 October) to meet with Zwingli, Oecolampius, Bucer and Heidio. The meeting produces the 14 Marburg Articles. Article 15, on the Eucharist, failed agreement. Agreement might have made a Swiss-South German union possible against the Hapsburgs.

Catherine of Arragon appeals to Rome contra Henry VIII.

Henry replaces Wolsey with Thomas More. Wolsey failed to secure a divorce for him.

The Peace of Barcelona is concluded between Charles V and Pope Clement VII in June. The Peace of Cambrai is brokered in August by Francois’ mother an Charles’ V’s aunt [hence it is known as the ‘Ladies’ Peace’] between Charles V and François I preventing Charles from putting into effect the Edict of Worms.

Suleiman I attacks Vienna in September and October. Trouble at home forces him to withdraw.

[c.1529/30 – d. 1596] Jean Bodin, French political philosopher.

1530 The Reichstag meets at Augsburg. Confessio Augustana [Articles 1-21 are the Schwabach Articles and 22-28 are the Torgau Articles] is presented by Melanchthon.

The Tetrapolitan Confession is presented and published.

Zwingli presents the Confession of Faith to the German Emperor Charles V, to be considered at Diet at Augsburg, but like the Tetrapolitan, it failed to gain a hearing.

Pope Clement VII crowns Charles V Emperor in Bologna.

d. Cardinal Wolsey

Peter Viret and William Farel lead a reformed coup of Strasbourg.

John Whitgift (1530-1604).

1531 Zwingli publishes an Exposition of the Christian Faith to King Francis I of Francis.

Melanchthon produces his Apology for the Augsburg in response to the Roman Catholic Confutatio.

11 October, Zwingli dies in the second battle of Kappel.

Calvin returns to Paris to study theology.

The Schmalkald League is formed 27 February, by the signatories to the Confessio Augustana, Saxony, Hesse, Anhalt, Brandenburg, in protest to the proposed coronation of Ferdinand as ‘King of the Romans’. The league unites Lutherans and Zwinglians as well as princes from the north and south to become one of the first strong anti-Hapsburg elements in Germany.

1532 Calvin publishes his commentary on De Clementia.

Charles introduces the Religious Peace of Nuremberg to assure Protestant princes that no proceedings would be taken against them for religious reasons at the Imperial Cameral Tribunal. The Nuremberg Standstill effectively kills the Edict of Worms (1521).

Thomas Cranmer marries Margaret Osiander.

1533 Henry secretly marries Anne Boleyn. Elizabeth Tudor is born.

Thomas Cranmer is made Archbishop of Canterbury.

Calvin and Nicholas Cop with other Protestants flee from Paris after Nicholas Cop gives a “Lutheran” (i.e., evangelical) rectorial sermon.

Osiander issues his catechism.

b. [d.1592] Michel de Montaigne, French humanist.

1534 Oecolampadius publishes the First Confession of Basle.

Affair of the Placards provokes Francois I against the evangelicals, 18 October.

18 July Zacharias Ursinus (Beer/Baer) is born at Breslau (d. 6 March 1583).

1534-1549 Pope Paul III.

British parliament passes a law to prohibit appeals to Rome, also acts of supremacy, submission and of succession.

May, Calvin returns to Noyon to renounce his benefices and later in the year publishes Psychopannychia.

Martin Bucer issues his catechism.

Luther’s draft translation of the Bible is finished.

December, Bucer, Melanchthon, Bullinger attend a secret colloquy on the Lord’s Supper at Constance attempting to resolve differences. Bullinger’s formula that Christ is present and eaten “by faith” is accepted. Bucer submits ten articles which are also accepted.

Anabaptists taker over the city of Munster.

A. Osiander becomes Professor of Theology at Koenigsburg

1535 d.Thomas More.

Calvin begins, in Basle, his first draft of the Institutes.

Coverdale’s first translation appears.

Thomas Cartwright (1535-1603).

Bucer recalled to Augsburg where he confesses that in the Supper the “true body and the true blood are distributed, given and received in order to strengthen our faith.” Luther accepts this revision.

Geneva declares itself a republic.

b.Thomas Cartwright (d.1603) a student in Heidelberg and English Presbyterian-Puritan divine.

Osiander publishes De Iustificatione rejecting imputed righteousness for infusion.

1536 b. Caspar Olevian (von Olewig) at Trier

The Second Confession of Basle or The First Helvetic Confession is published.

On his way to Strasbourg to study Calvin is forced through Geneva by the war, July.

The Lausanne Articles of 1536 are published, October.

First Genevan Confession published.

First Edition of Calvin’s Institutes published.

Calvin prepares and publishes a brief catechism in French.

27 March, H. Bullinger, Bucer, Capito, Myconius, present to the General Council of the Swiss Churches the First Helvetic Confession.

Bucer, Melanchthon, Capito and Luther reach the Wittenberg Accord, 25 May and celebrate the Supper together. Key issue of manducatio indignorum is resolved by substituting “unworthy” for “unfaithful.” Apparently, Bucer and the Lutherans each placed different their own interpretations on the word. Significantly, Luther is willing to sign it and reach an understanding with the South Germans. However Luther does not see the Helvetic Confession until 27 May. The Zwinglians will not be moved and the sharp division over hoc est corpus meum re-emerges.

Cranmer convinces Henry of the Ten Articles.

Anne Boleyn is Beheaded.


d.Jacques Lefevre d’Etaples (Faber Stapulensis)

1537 Luther draws up the Schmalkaldic Articles for the Diet of Schmalkalden. Melanchthon adds Tractatus De Poteste Papae refuting the historical claims of the papacy but also saying that for the sake of peace in Christendom he would not object to the human power of the Pope over his Bishops if he (the Pope) did not object to the gospel. Both the Articles and the Tractatus were approved. The papal nuncio was rejected by the Protestant princes on the principle of judicial independence from the pope.

Henry marries Jane Seymour who dies giving birth to Edward. Marries Catherine Howard who died as did Anne.

A general council is called for Mantua, but not held due to political and military difficulties. Later re-convened at Trent, 1545.

21 October Frederick III marries Maria of Brandenburg-Anspach.

1538 Calvin refuses the Lord’s Supper to prominent Genevans and is forced to leave Geneva, and he flees to Strasbourg where he pastors a French speaking church until 1541.

1539 Bucer helps the syphilitic Philip (Landgraf) of Hesse, who was trapped in a loveless contracted marriage, make a secret bigamous marriage to a lady in waiting in his court. Luther and Melanchthon give approve by granting a private dispensation. Their fear is that the Landgraf will seek a dispensation from the pope if they don’t cooperate. It was later discovered the Landgraf also had a mistress, under which conditions Luther would not have cooperated, had he known. Unfortunately, his advice after the marriage was to cover it up with a “big, strong lie.”

Coverdale revises Matthew’s Great Bible and takes his doctorate at Tubingen.

Luther publishes Against the Antinomians contra Agricola.

Second edition of the Institutes is published.

First edition of Luther’s Works appears.

1540 Philip issues his privately revised edition of (the Variata) of the Augsburg Confession. The Edition of 1530 says, “the body and blood of Christ are truly present, and are distributed…” (Vere adsint, et distribuantur) Whereas the Variata says that “with bread and wine are truly exhibited the body and blood of Christ…” (quod cum pane et vino vere exhibeantur corpus et sanguinis Christi vescentibus in coena domini).

d. Thomas Cromwell.

Henry married Anne of Cleves.

Conference of Hagenau June -July, called by Charles V to discuss points of disagreement between Rome and Protestants. Calvin attends with the Strasbourg theologians, Melanchthon is ill. The conference fails to reach any accords.

Disputation of Worms, a colloquy arranged to reunite Protestants and Catholics in Germany. The Protestant side is represented by P. Melanchthon and Catholics by J. Eck. Beginning 25 November, the colloquy ends in January 1541 with an agreement over the nature of original sin, but the colloquy ended in view of the upcoming Reichstag at (Regensburg) Ratisbon. Calvin is present.

Calvin marries the widow Idelette de Bure.

The Society of Jesus (Jesuits) founded.

Calvin publishes his Reply to Sadoleto and his Commentary on Romans.

b. Sir Francis Drake (d. 1596)

d. G. Bude

1541 Calvin publishes a second, larger, revision of the French Catechism of 1536/7. It was translated into Latin in 1545, German 1556. Comparison with the Heidelberg, shows a good deal of similarity.

April 27 to May 22 Diet of Regensburg (Ratisbon) convened by Charles V. J. Eck, Julius Pflug (1549-1564), Johann Gropper (1503-59) with Gasparo Contarini (1483-1542) meet Melanchthon, Bucer and Pistorious (1503-83). Agreement is reached on justification (Calvin, who attended, was amazed at Catholic capitulation here. He felt the article was unclear in places) in May but they fail to reach agreement on the Eucharist, absolution, penance and the papacy. Both Luther and the Roman Curia rejected the draft compromises reached. The agreement on justification was a chimera.

Calvin returns to Geneva in September.

Calvin publishes first French edition of the Institutes.

1542 John a’ Lasco [1499-1560]](Laski, pronounced Waski from i.e., from the west) serves as Pastor to GRC at Emden until 1549. Laski organizes what may have been the first Coetus in the Palatinate of 200 Ministers who met weekly for forty years.

R. Bellarmine: (d.1621).

Mary Stuart ascends, in her minority, in Scotland.

1543 Melchior Hoffmann d.

The threat from the Moslem empire is so grave that Schmalkald League offers aid to the hated Hapsburgs.

1544 November 1544 The Council of Trent is convened

The Imperial Diet meets at Speyer. Charles requests help against the French and Suleiman I. The Protestants agree on the condition that “Christian reformation” will be discussed at a future “general, Christian and free council.” The pope accuses Charles of overstepping his competence and Calvin, ironically, writes in his defense.

Charles leads a campaign into France winning concessions. The Peace of Crepy signed in 14 September. On 19 September he concluded a secret treaty with the Turks. Charles is now in a position to move against the Protestant princes.

1545 Zurich Confession of Faith published.
Slaughter begins of the Waldensian (Vaudois) communities of the Luberon in Provence.

Imperial Diet of Worms meets and although he is promised by the pope military and financial support, Charles decides to hold another religious conference. War against the Protestants is postponed.

Elector Frederick II receives communion in two kinds and petitions for admission to the Schmalkald League and was refused.

John Fielde (1545-88).

Andrew Melville (1545-1622)

First session of the Council of Trent opens, 13 December.

1546 Luther dies in Eisleben, 18 February.

January Frederick II introduces the Reformation to the Palatinate with the first German Mass in Heidelberg. Masses without communicants end. Devotion and reservation of the Sacrament forbidden. Easter, he receives communion in two kinds.

The evangelical reformer George Wishart, burned in Scotland.

The Schmalkalkic War erupts. Frederick III governs Anspach for his brother–in-law who has joined the Emperor’s armies against the Princes.

Luther releases the final version of his Bible translation after revision with the help of a committee (consisting of Melanchthon, Cruciger, Bugenhagen, Jonas, Aurogallus [a Hebraist] and Roer [Secretary]).

Melanchthon refuses invitation to Heidelberg University.

Fourth Session of the Council of Trent 8 April.

b. Tycho Brahe (d.1601).

1547 Edward VI ascends the English throne as a ten year old. Edward was well tutored in the classics was able to translate Cicero’s De Philosophia into Greek and could read Aristotle’s Ethics in Greek! Edward supported the reformation with the help of Cranmer and the Duke of Northumberland.

P.M. Vermigli becomes the Regius Professor of Theology, Oxford until the Marian exile in 1553.

Schmalkaldic Princes are defeated.

1548 (to 1549) Consensus Tigurinus signed at Zurich.

April, Charles V having crushed the evangelical forces, imposes the Interim at the armed Diet of Augsburg. In the Palatinate, communion in two kinds is retained and married clergy.

Miles Coverdale abandons his order.

d. Mattheus Zell, a co-worker with Wolfgang Capito in Strasbourg.

1549 Cranmer issues the first edition of the Book of Common Prayer.

Martin Bucer is called to Cambridge as Regius Professor of Divinity.

P. M. Vermigli made Regius Professor of Divinity, Oxford.

1550 Ursinus begins seven years study with Melanchthon at the University of Wittenberg. He will study and travel with Melanchthon until 1557.

Olevianus goes to Paris, Orleans and Bourges to study law to 1557.

1550-1555 Julius III (Giovanni Maria Ciocchi del Monte).

Marian persecution begins.

Pamphlet is published at Magdeburg justifying the Protestant doctrine of resistance.

Peter Dathenus flees the Lowland persecutions for Edwardian England.

1551 Bucer dies at Cambridge

In the ‘Bishop’s Wars [1551-1552] Charles V’s power is broken.

1552 Joachim Westphal, begins attacks on both Calvin and the Consensus Tigurinus over the Lord’s Supper.

1553 Cranmer issues the Forty
Two Articles.

Edward VI dies.

Bloody Mary Tudor reigns in England until 1557. and drives the Reformed and Protestant to the Netherlands and elsewhere.

John Laski and 175 Reformed brethren, driven from England under Mary, are denied entrance in several countries, eventually settling in East Friesland.

November, Cranmer is tried for treason and sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered.

Cranmer, Ridley and Latimer are arrested and taken to Oxford where they appear before a commission to be investigated for heresy.

Jerome Zanchius succeeds Peter Martyr at Strasbourg as Professor of Theology. He is later able to obtain suppression of Hesshius’ attack against the Heidelberg Reformers and Frederick III on the Supper, and was attacked as a defector from the Augsburg Confession.

Servetus killed by the decree of the City Council in Geneva.

b. Josias Nichols (d.1639)

d. Rabelais.

1554 A catechism is prepared at Emden by John a’ Lasco, following the model of Calvin’s catechisms.

Osiander is condemned at the Naumberg Assembly for confusing justification for union with Christ.

Mary Tudor marries Philip II of Spain.

March, Cranmer, Ridley and Latimer and taken to the Bocardo, Oxford to await trial for heresy. 14 April, they dispute at St. Mary’s. 20 April all three were individually told to recant.

Count Simon of Lippe (1554-1613) one of the Calvinist Counts. Lippe is north of Hesse-Kassel and south of Braunschweig-Kalenberg.

Richard Hooker (1554-1600).

(d.1586) Sir Philip Sidney, English diplomat and poet who served Queen Elizabeth’s efforts to establish a Protestant League.

Summer, English refugees form a congregation in Frankfurt. Autumn, they call John Knox as pastor. A conflict between Presbyterians and Anglicans soon erupts. Knox, Whittingham et al appeal to Calvin regarding the Anglican service.

Knox publishes, Faithful Admonition to the Professors of God’s Truth in England.

1555 The Peace of Augsburg is established which will last until the Thirty Years War (1618).

The peace is a result of an assault of the princes upon the Emperor, and resulted in recognition of two religious groups, the Roman Catholic Church and adherents of the Augsburg Confession. The question will arise in the Palatinate, are the Reformed to be considered adherents to the Augsburg Confession? The “High” (Gnesio) Lutherans said absolutely not. Frederick seems to have held to the Augsburg after conversion to Evangelical Protestantism.

Charles V abdicates his throne. Replaced in 1556 by Ferdinand I.

9 April – 1 May Marcellus II.

23 May to 1559 Paul IV (Giampietro Carafa)

From now until 1559 there is an explosion of new Calvinist churches in France, centering South and west of Paris.

Early in the year until 1558 Mary and Archbishop Reginald Pole begins trying Protestants as heretics.

September, Cranmer is tried in St. Mary the Virgin before Papal Commissioners. Two days later the proceedings are sent to Rome. Cranmer has eighty days to appeal.

16 October Bishops Hugh Latimer and Nicholas Ridley are tried for heresy, convicted and burned at the stake on Broad Street in Oxford.

Between 1555-62 Geneva sends eighty-eight pastors from the Company of Pastors to France as missionaries.

4 February John Rogers, editor of Matthew’s Bible, becomes the first Marian Martyr, burned at the stake at Smithfield.

b. Robert Rollock (d.1598/99).

Martin Micronius ordains Peter Dathenus to the Reformed ministry in Frankfurt.

Knox forced from Frankfurt to Geneva. In October he is followed by fifteen English families.

1556 Ferdinand I begins rule (to 1564) Holy Roman Empire.

21 March Thomas Cranmer burns at the stake on Broad Street in Oxford.

Olevianus in boating accident with Herman Louis at Bourges France.

Otto Henry introduces a Protestant church order including superintendents.

Frederick II receives communion in a Protestant service on the Sunday before his death. Otto Heinrich, in ill health, succeeds from 1556-59. Otto encourages Reformation, abolishing the Mass and Catholic ceremonies in the Palatinate and is the Protestant leader at the Imperial Diet of 1556-57.

As heir to the Palatinate Frederick III takes up residence in Amberg as governor of the Upper Palatinate.

Beza publishes an annotated translation of Greek Testament.

The English congregation in Geneva adopts The Book of Order.

1557 Ursinus makes a study tour of Europe with Melanchthon, attending the Colloquy of Worms and including Geneva, where he receives all of Calvin’s works.

Ursinus returns to Wittenberg but receives a call to Breslau to teach at Elizabeth College until 1559.

Melanchthon heads the reorganization of Heidelberg University as an Evangelical University under Otto Henry.

Calvin responds to Westphal.

1558 Melanchthon, without a knowledge of Tilemann Hesshusen’s’ (Hesshius/Heshusius) character, recommends him for the Chair of Theology at Heidelberg.

Electors officially accept abdication of Charles V and accession of Ferdinand I.

At the death of Mary Tudor, Anne Boleyn daughter Elizabeth I ascends and reigns to 1603.

Mary Stuart abdicates to James VI and is executed in Scotland.

d. Charles V

b. Dudley Fenner (d.1587)

12 June, Elizabeth, Frederick III’s oldest daughter marries John Frederick, Duke of Saxony.

Zacharias Ursinus gives his inaugural lecture at the Elizabeth Gymnasium in Breslau, An Exhortation to the Study of Christian Doctrine.

1559 Frederick III accedes to the Electorship in the Palatinate.

John Knox returns to Scotland from Geneva.

Olevian returns to Treves to teach.

Calvin publishes final Latin edition of the Institutes.

The first National Synod of the French Reformed Church is held, embracing four hundred thousand followers, and would hold twenty-nine national Synods to 1659 at Loudun after which it was banned by Louis XIV in 1660.

Henri II dies, leading to domination of the French court by the anti-Protestant Guise family.

Genevan academy founded.

The Gallican Confession of Faith is published.

1559-65 Pius IV (Giovanni Angelo Medici)

Count Johann VI of Nassau Dillenberg (1559-1606).

British Parliament passes the Elizabethan Acts of Supremacy and Uniformity and restores an edited version of Edward VI’s 1552 Prayer Book.

Elizabeth makes Matthew Parker the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Elizabethan settlement is enacted.

d. Johann Gropper.

Ursinus publishes Theses on the Doctrine of the Sacraments at Breslau which led to his dismissal.

1560 Philip Melanchthon in Wittenberg. Ursinus goes to Zurich a second time and studies with Peter Martyr.

John a’ Lasco dies in Poland.

Frederick III ransoms Olevianus from prison in Treves (for preaching the gospel against state orders) to come to Heidelberg.

3-8 June Heidelberg Disputation of the question, is Hoc est corpus meum literal or metaphysical? H. Alting reports that Frederick said that the “Lutherans won in force and repartee, and the Reformed in simplicity and modest defense of the truth.”

Frederick orders the simplification of calendar and ornaments in Palatinate churches and imposes the Augustana Variata as the standard of discipline on the Palatinate. Those who are unable to subscribe (gnesio-Lutheran pastors) are forced to leave.

The Scottish Reformation Parliament meets and adopts the Scots Confession of Faith.

Jacobus Arminius (Jakob Hermandszoon; 1560-1609).

The Conspiracy of Amboise (by French Calvinist pastors to kidnap Francis II) fails.

Final French edition of Calvin’s Institutes is published.

Musculus publishes his Loci Communes.

1561 20 January to 8 February Protestant princes meet at Naumberg to bring Frederick ‘back from his errors.’ Frederick signs the Invariata of 1531 with the proviso that it was further explained in the Variata (1540). Civil war was thus prevented.

Guido de’Bres publishes the Belgic confession.

Frederick III orders the Roman Altars, baptismal fonts, pictures, removed from the churches and establishes the use of plain white bread in communion.

Philip of Hesse and Freidrich III attempt to have their adherence to the Augustana Variata accepted as falling within the terms of the Peace of Augsburg.

1562 Frederick orders a committee including Ursinus (age 28) and Olevian (age 26) to begin the Heidelberg Catechism. The Synod at Heidelberg (probably) adopted a draft of the Catechism.

Edict of January touches off the First (French) War of Religion. Seventy four Protestants killed while attending a sermon near Vassy.

d. Peter Martyr Vermigli

Ursinus publishes Catechisis Minor.

25 August Ursinus receives Doctorate from the University of Heidelberg, replaces Olevianus as Professor of Dogmatic Theology and gives his inaugural address on September 1.

1563 19 January The Heidelberg Catechism is approved and Johann Mayer prints the first edition in Latin and German.

The Canons of the Council of Trent are promulgated.

19 March, Peace of Amboise is signed.

Foxe’s Book of Martyrs (Acts and Monuments) appears in English.

The Anglican Church adopts the Thirty Nine Articles.

d. Seripando.

1564 Calvin dies in Geneva, 27 May.

Maximillian II succeeds Ferdinand I (to 1576).

Additional standards of church discipline are added for the Palatinate church council, the Kirchenrat.

Edmund Grindal becomes Archbishop of Canterbury.

b. Galileo Galilei (1564-1642)

b. William Shakespeare (d. 1616)

The Scottish General Assembly adopts the Genevan (English congregation) Book of Order as Book of Common Order.

1565 M. Chemnitz begins publishing Examen concilii Tridentini (1565-73) against Trent.

1566 25 March Frederick III addresses Diet at Augsburg defending his Protestantism gaining quasi-legal status for Calvinism in the Empire.

The Belgic Confession is adopted by Synod at Antwerp.

The Second Helvetic Confession is published by Henry Bullinger.

The Bilden storm, a wave of iconoclasm sweeps over the Low Countries.

Pius V (St.; Michele Gislieri) to 1572.

1567 The Duke of Alva, with the cooperation of the House of Savoy, marches on the Netherlands to crackdown on all forms of religious deviation in the Netherlands.

Guido de Bres hanged in Belgium for his faith.

Mary Stuart is defeated at Carberry Hill in June, imprisoned, and abdicates in July to the Protestant Lord James Stewart.

The Second War of Religion begins in France with the Conspiracy of Meaux.

Thomas Aquinas is made the fifth Doctor Ecclesiae


1568 The battle over Ecclesiology begins and Dr. Thomas Erastus (Zwinglian) advances 75 theses.

A Synod at Wesel adopts the Belgic Confession.

June-August Beza and Bullinger cooperate in a failed attempt to raise Swiss troops for the Third War of Religion (1568-70).

1569 d. Miles Coverdale.

Thomas Cartwright serves briefly as Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity (to 1570) during which time he proposes reformed style Presbyteries or Classes.

1570 The Palatinate Kirchenrat supplements the previous order for church discipline.

Thomas Cartwright is forced to Geneva.

August, the Peace of St. Germain is signed ending the Third War of Religion.

1571 A Synod at Emden adopts the Belgic Confession.

Beza serves as President of the Synod of La Rochelle.

b. Johannes Kepler (1571-1630).

1572 24 August, the assassination of Admiral Gaspard de Coligny under the supervision of the Duke of Guise sparks the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacres in France, killing approximately 30,000 Huguenots.

Gregory XIII (Ugo Boncompagni) -1585.

d. John Knox.

John Field begins a pamphlet campaign for Presbyterian church government in England.

The revolt of the northern provinces begins which will lead to the creation of an independent Dutch republic.

1573 The Swabian Concord toward Lutheran (Philippist and Gnesio-Lutheran) unity.

François Hotman publishes Franco-Gallia.

1574 Elector Augustus of Saxony suppresses forcefully four allegedly ‘crypto-Calvinist’ Philippists touching off a wave of violent anti-Calvinist sentiment among German Lutherans.

A national Synod at Dordtrecht adopts the Belgic Confession.

Francois Hotman publishes Francogllia, expounding a theory of resistance to unjust rulers.

Beza publishes De Jure Magistratuum (Du droit de magistrats)

Andrew Melville is recruited from Geneva to become the head of Glasgow University. Melville leads the Erastian forces in Scotland until his exile.

1575 d. H. Bullinger.

The Swabian-Saxon Concord is signed and also the Maulbronn Formula.

Leiden University founded

1576 26 October d. Frederick III.

Louis (Ludwig), son of Frederick, ascends and re-places Lutheranism in the Palatinate, only Lutheran books to be sold and read. Olevianus preaches against him and is jailed then exiled to Nassau-Dillenberg.

John Casmir returns from leading an army in support of the Huguenots.

Ursinus and Tossanus (court preacher) are deposed by Louis VI and with six hundred pastors and teachers flee the Palatinate to Neustadt. In Heidelberg they are replaced by gnesio-Lutherans.

14 October d. Maximillian II who is succeeded by the sometimes insane Rudolf II (to 1612).

The Torgau Book amalgamates Lutheran accords.

P.M. Vermigli’s Loci Communes published posthumously.

b. William Ames (d.1633).

Bodin publishes Six livre de la Republique.

1577 September, an international Reformed conference meets in Frankfurt, in anticipation of the Formula of Concord. Participants try to draw up a common confession for the Reformed Churches of Europe and arrange to send a delegation to the German Lutheran princes urging them not to adopt the Formula of Concord.

Lutheran form of Concord compiled in Bergen, near Magdeburg.

1580 25 June 25 Liber Concordiae signed by the electors Saxony, Brandenburg and Palatinate. The Elector Augustus of Saxony publishes the Liber Concordiae.

Michel de Montaigne publishes his Essays.

Drake navigates the globe.

1581 English Parliament outlaws Roman Catholicism

A General Assembly in Nassau-Dillenberg adopts the Palatine Church order and the Heidelberg Catechism.

b. James Ussher (d.1656)

Zacharias Ursinus publishes his Admonitio, a reply to the Book of Concord.

1582 Calendar changes

Julian calendar abandoned in favor fo the Gregorian calendar.

General Synod established using Palatinate Order of Worship of 1563 and Heidelberg Catechism.

b. Johann Gerhard (Lutheran orthodox theologian (d. 1637)

d. Theresa of Avila

d.Pierre Boquin. Boquin had made an attempt to reconcile the Augustana Variata to Calvinism at the Heidelberg Disputation in 1560.

1583 A company of actors stages Christopher Marlowe’s play, The Massacre at Paris rehearsing the St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacres.

John Whitgift becomes Elizabeth’s third Archbishop of Canterbury.

b. Simon Episcopius (d. 1643)

b. Hugo Grotius (d. 1645)

J H Alting (d. 1644)

b. Hendrick Alting, the first historian of the Heidelberg Reformation (d.1644).

d. Zacharias Ursinus

1584 Count Johann of Nassau and Wittgenstein establishes Johannea University in Herborn headed by Olevianus and including Johannes Piscator. Olevianus teaches Dogmatics from his Epitome of Calvin’s Institutes

1585 Edict of Nantes is revoked.

Sixtus V (Felice Peretti) succeeds Gregory XIII as Pope to 1590.

Beza publishes his Greek NT. Added to it the Vulgate and his own translation. Makes Codex Bezae.

Colloquy of Montbeliard.

Sir Walter Raleigh sends expedition to Roanoke Island, off N. Carolina.

England enters 80 Years War

Louis Cappel (d. 1658)

b. John Cotton (d.1652)

Olevianus publishes De Substantia.

1586 Johann VI converts the five Counts of the Wetterau, whose lands are included in the Herborn Synod.

Colloquy of Montbeliard.Christian I of Saxony, under the influence of Philippist Nikolas Krell, openly encourages Calvinism, suspending his allegiance to the Formula of Concord.

Mary Queen of Scots makes Philip II her heir

b. Thomas Hooker (d.1647)

d. Lucas Cranach (painter)

d. Martin Chemnitz (b. 1522)

d.Sir Philip Sidney

1587 Mary (Queen of Scots) Stuart is executed in London on Queen Elizabeth’s order after participating in a plot against Elizabeth.

d. Caspar Olevianus

d. Dudley Fenner (b.1558)

d. John Foxe (b.1516)

1588 Duke of Guise enters Paris, forcing Henri III to flee the city.

Duke of Guise and the Cardinal of Guise murdered at the orders of King Henry III. The people, however, revolted against the move and Parlement acted against him and he fled (again) to join Henri III of Navarre.

Spanish Armada defeated by England.

17 March, d. Dathenus

b. J H Alsted (d.1638)

b. E. Pascal (d.1651)

b. Thomas Hobbes (d. 1679)

1589 King Henry III assasinated.

French political intrigue and violence escalates

b. G. Voetius (d.1676)

1590 d. Girolamo Zanchi.

Anne of Denmark becomes Queen of Scotland

Urban VII succeeds Sixtus V for 12 days.

Gregory XIV succeeds Urban VII

d. Francois Hotman

1591 Dutch military forces are gradually gaining territory in the NL from the Spanish.

Innocent IX succeeds Gregory XIV.

b. Anne Hutchinson (b.1643)

D. David Blondel (d. 1655) – Fr. Prot. theologian

1592 d. Count Johann Casmir.

Clement VIII succeeds Innocent IX

Henri of Navarre converts to Catholicism in order to take the throne to become Henri IV.

Landgraf Moritz, the “Learned” of Lower Hesse becomes a Calvinist. He rules until 1627.

b. Johannes Amos Comenius (d. 1670). Comenius, a Bohemian Brethren, (Moravian) studied at Herborn and Heidelberg where he was influenced by millenarianism.

d. Michel de Montaigne

1593 d. Christopher Marlowe (b. 1564)

1594 Nikolas Krell tried for heresy after the death of Christian I of Saxony.

Henry IV crowned King of France

Richard Hooker publishes the first part of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity defending the Elizabethan settlement.

1595 The Lambeth Articles are drafted and completed. The articles were compiled under a committee under Archbishop Whitgift to defend double predestination. They were not formally authorized.

Romeo and Juliet first performed

1596 Ukranian Church renounces the authority of the pope

Plague hits parts of Europe

b. Rene Descartes (d. 1650)

b. Frederick V, Elector Palatine (d. 1632)

b. Moises Amyraut (d. 1664)

d. Sir Francis Drake (b. 1540)

1597 d. Peter Canisius (b. 1521) influential Jesuit

1598 Edict of Nantes formally ends the French Wars of Religion

Peace of Vervins ends the war between France and Spain

d. Philip II of Spain (b. 1526)

b. Oliver Cromwell (d. 1658)

d. Edmund Spenser (b. 1552)

d. Robert Rollock (b. 1555)

1600 b. Friedrich Spanheim (d. 1649)

b. Edward Calamy (d. 1666)

b. Charles I (d. 1649)

b. Samuel Rutherford (d. 1660)

d. Richard Hooker (b. 1554)

Cromwell: Simul Iustus Et Peccator

death_mask_of_oliver_cromwellJudging by his serene expression, he certainly doesn’t look like a man who should have changed England’s politics, culture and history forever. I refer to Oliver Cromwell and his expression preserved for the ages in his death mask on display at Warwick Castle, Warwick England.1

Oliver Cromwell (1559-1658) one of the signal personalities of English history and politics, played a crucial role in what was perhaps the turning point in England’s modern history 2. One of his homes is just a few miles from mine. Other than his death mask and a small plaque on a former home, there is little, in Oxfordshire 3 anyway, to indicate Cromwell’s historical importance, but Cromwell is an important figure indeed. 4

Oliver was the child of puritan parents and raised in an atmosphere generally congenial to Puritanism.5 His father died when Oliver was eighteen so he was raised by his mother with his seven sisters. Oliver’s schoolmaster and pastor was a puritan interested in the theater. 6 He matriculated in Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge University, whose master was Samuel Ward, one of England’s delegates to the Synod of Dort (1619).

Cromwell’s public political career began in 1628 when he was elected to Parliament, but he did not enjoy a meteoric rise to fame. Two years later, after some financial difficulty, he was forced to return to farming as a tenant. From 1530-36 he is said, according to a note by his physician, to have suffered extreme melancholy. 7 Yet, through this period, Cromwell’s commitment to Christ and his appreciation of the graciousness of grace seems to have increased.

In 1640 Cromwell was again elected to Parliament, not from Huntingdon, but this time from nearby Cambridge due to political maneuvering by his opponents. In the first two years Cromwell supported financial reforms and ecclesiastical reforms which would help the puritan cause. 8 In 1642 the English Civil War broke out and soon Oliver Cromwell had risen to a prominent place of leadership over the eastern third of the Parliamentary forces, which he fashioned into the “New Model Army.”.

It had been long enough since the last major war that many in the nobility who would support King Charles did not know how to fight. In addition, on the Parliamentary side, Cromwell’s “Ironsides” Regiment was hand-picked and famous for its self-discipline. Drunkenness was punished with the stocks and desertion with public whipping. Thus the Parliamentary forces, with better tactics and better artillery, had a distinct advantage.

King Charles described his Parliamentary opponents with epithets such as “Anabaptist” and “atheist” and accused them of being “destroyers” of church and state. Cromwell had come to command men of a wide range of men, including religious radicals like Anabaptists. His principle, in determining fitness for public service was that he was less concerned what a man’s beliefs were than his willingness to serve the public good. Not only were his policies and troops increasingly perceived as radical, so were his military tactics. Where the Kings troops on horseback would charge the enemy, they often did not regroup and were essentially done for the day. Cromwell’s troops had the ability to charge, regroup and charge again repeatedly thus turning potential defeats into victories.

The first civil war more or less whimpered to a close in 1646 with a Parliamentary victory During the course of the first war. After the first war Parliamentary forces had King Charles in hand, but the serious political, economic and social differences between Cromwell and the Parliamentary ‘Presbyterians’ which had simmered during the war, erupted after. Cromwell had accused the leader of the Presbyterian forces to being less than willing to prosecute the war, to avoid damaging the monarchy.

In 1648 Charles escaped mysteriously from the custody of Cromwell’s troops to the Isle of Wight (controlled by Cromwell’s cousin) and the Civil War was on again. By this time, there was a genuine fear by many in Parliament of Cromwell’s “radical” (i.e., democratizing) troops. There was little sympathy in the Commons for democratic reforms, i.e., freedom of association and especially land reform. Most in the Parliament simply wanted Charles to behave himself, to stop his land and tax grab and they hoped that neither side would win decisively. This hope was, as it turns out, vain.

Charles was re-captured and brought to London for trial. Cromwell was in Scotland for several weeks while Parliamentary troops took over the government, purged it of royalists and arranged for Charles’ trial. At first Oliver tried to save Charles’ life. After he arrived in London, however, he seemed to sense that the providence of God had specially arranged these events and he was soon arguing for Charles’ execution, even to the point of overseeing the signature of the death warrant. 9

Cromwell continued to lead Parliamentary forces against the Irish, Scots and Dutch. By 1653, however, the revolution was over and the nation was tired of war and its high costs. Cromwell not only had defeated the Crown, he was also at odds with his former comrades in arms, many of whom were executed. Cromwell had dissolved the Long Parliament (at musket point!) and the Barebones Parliament. After the latter parliament he was declared “Lord Protector” of England. In his inaugural oath he swore to protect freedom, property rights and to advance the gospel of Christ.

Governors are typically more conservative than campaigners. 10 Soon Cromwell was discovering that the national unity obtained during war, doesn’t often last in peace. The simple matters of civil administration and justice had to be attended to. So, ironically, he turned increasingly to the landed nobility for help in ruling England. Once in power, it is also alleged, Cromwell even made use of an astrologer to predict the future. 11

The first parliament under Oliver’s protectorate closed in failure. In 1655, Cromwell heeded his generals and established direct military rule in England. Dividing the country into eleven districts, each with a military governor.

I call your attention to a colorful Christian personality, but not to canonize him. Cromwell, like all believers, was simul iustus et peccator, i.e., at the same time justified and sinful. While you and I sin in relative (humanly speaking) anonymity, Cromwell’s sins are there for all the world to see and for historians to remember!

Cromwell’s life is both an encouragement and a warning to us. He is an encouragement because he illustrates what men and women of (Calvinist) faith are able, by God’s providence, to accomplish in this life. Cromwell’s faith propelled him toward social action. Cromwell stood for election, worked within the system for many years as a principled politician. While war is always evil, it is sometimes necessary. 12 Under the authority of elected officials, Cromwell successfully commanded his armies by force of prayer and his personality. Their slogan, “trust in God, and keep your powder dry”. illustrates the fact that Cromwell understood the distinction between trusting providence and presuming upon it.

As a ruler he advanced education and the arts, he was a proponent of tolerance and liberality (in the old fashioned sense of the word) and transformed England from an agrarian nation into a world military and economic power.

I am not suggesting that because he held Calvinist beliefs, we should admire everything Oliver did. Like David, Cromwell was a man of blood. He had no clear church affiliation 13 and he was a man of selective tolerance. Under his administration, Roman Catholics, in England, enjoyed more liberty than they did under James I or his son Charles, but he refused to extend that same tolerance to Catholics in Ireland. As a religious dissenter in England, as much as anyone, Cromwell should have understood that the state and the sword are miserable instruments for settling theological disputes. But, as you know, these were not particularly tolerant times. 14

The moral of the story, if you will, is not just that we should remember to never place our trust in men, but that we should be wary of even the most apparently godly political leaders. It is extraordinarily difficult for even the most pious of men to seek first God’s kingdom while aspiring to collect Caesar’s coin. 15


Hill, Christopher. God’s Englishman: Oliver Cromwell and the English Revolution. Penguin: London, 1970.

Fraser, Antonia. Cromwell: Our Chief of Men. London. 1973. Reprinted 1989.


1. The Earl of Warwick was one of Oliver’s friends and co-belligerents against King Charles.

2. This period is full of tremendously important events and people, (e.g., John Milton, the Westminster Assembly) far too many to be noted here.

3. Cromwell was born in Huntingdon near Cambridge, where the Cromwell Museum is now located.

4. This may be explained in part by the fact that during the Civil war, Oxford was home to the Court of Charles! One of Cromwell’s major modern biographers calls Oxford, a “royalist university.”

5. By Puritan and Puritanism I mean Calvinist and English Calvinism. The term is often used broadly to describe everyone who dissented from the Elizabethan Settlement including semi-Pelagians like Richard Baxter. To be reformed, is in this sense to be ‘puritan’ in that for the Puritans, Scripture is the sole authority for faith and life. In worship this leads to the regulative principle (we do that and only that in worship which is explicitly taught or implicitly required in God’s Word) and in the doctrine of salvation that leads to belief in the doctrines of grace. There are Anglican Calvinists of various sorts, but rigorous, thorough-going Calvinism is relatively unusual here. According to J.I. Packer, the Anglican ministry has been dominated since the time of Archbishop Laud, by Arminians. Thus the Puritans considered the Church of England to be “but halfly reformed.” During the recent conference to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the Westminster Confession of Faith, James Montgomery Boice, the pastor of Tenth Presbyterian Church (PCA), Philadelphia preached in the pulpit of Westminster Abbey. He was the first non-Anglican to stand in that pulpit since the restoration of 1660! So it is ironic that it was Bible believing American Calvinists (NAPARC) who brought this celebration to Westminster.

6. It is a common caricature that the puritans were mean-spirited “kill-joys” or anti-intellectual. As for the latter, Puritan’s made up a large part of the Royal Academy of Science. As for the former, it is well known among Puritan scholars that they were among the leading importers of French wine. Remember, Cromwell was one of eight children and he himself fathered five, indicating that at least these puritans likely had some romantic interest! Regarding the common myths repeated in our state school classrooms, It is a sign of laziness to simply impute to one’s enemies all the characteristics one most despises.

7. Some scholars have speculated that he was what is called today, manic-depressive. Psychoanalysis of the dead is risky business to say the least. The most notorious example of this sort of analysis is Eric Erikson’s Young Man Luther (Norton: New York, 1962.) in which Luther is analyzed from a Freudian point of view!

8. The Anglo-Catholic Archbishop Laud had prosecuted puritan “lectureships.” In churches where there was no permanent pastor, lectureships were endowed by men like Cromwell. These lectureships were restored under Cromwell’s administration.

9. Interpreting providence is notoriously hazardous. From a biblical point of view it is doubtful that this case of regicide can be justified.

10. The truth of this statement is self-evident. The radical Cuban communists led by Castro in the 1950’s turned as despotic as any right-wing regime when they took power in the 1960’s. The same is true of the Russian revolution and the French Revolution. Perhaps the major exception which proves (i.e., tests) this rule is the American Revolution. Certainly our experience tells us that governments tend to centralize power and wealth and inhibit

11. History is full of rulers, who having obtained power, forget who put them there! Solomon is an outstanding example. Unfortunately, Cromwell is not the only political leader in modern times to consult the stars for guidance.

12. Calvin abhorred revolution but allowed disciplined rebellion under the doctrine of “lesser magistrates” (Institutes of the Christian Religion 4.20.31). His immediate successor in Geneva, Theodore Beza, (in The Right of Magistrates) fleshed out this idea.

13. His New Model army was largely composed of “independents” as opposed to other regiments made up of Presbyterians. It was Presbyterians who sought to replace Anglican Episcopacy with Presbyterianism who opposed Cromwell most fiercely in the house of commons.

14. It is likely that Cromwell’s original aims were diluted or even eclipsed by a desire to solve practical financial problems, such as the need for a larger tax base. It is also true that Cromwell had some reason to fear Irish Catholicism as a military and political movement as much as a theology.

15. It is probably too much to ask that a man be both a skilled administrator and theologian. Cromwell, like most politicians was too often the pragmatist. One notable exception to this rule is the great pastor, theologian and statesman Abraham Kuyper, Prime Minister of The Netherlands, 1901-1904. See W. R. Godfrey, “Church and State in Holland” in Through Christ’s Word: A Festschrift for Dr. Philip E. Hughes (Presbyterian and Reformed: Phillipsburg, 1985).

[Note: this was written in Oxford, England in 1994 as part of an intended series of Letters From Oxford]

Calvin on the Eucharist

by W. Robert Godfrey

Originally published in Modern Reformation MAY/JUNE 1997

Both Luther and Zwingli had crucial points to make in the debate over the Lord’s Supper, but in my judgment, it was John Calvin who best resolved the question. Calvin began by agreeing with both sides on certain matters. He agreed with Zwingli that Christ is ascended and that his body is in heaven. He agreed with Zwingli that faith must be central in any adequate doctrine of the Lord’s Supper; it is only by faith that we can receive a blessing. But Calvin’s heart was really much closer to Luther because Calvin believed deeply and passionately that the Lord’s Supper is God’s gift to us. It is primarily God who acts in the Lord’s Supper. God is the giver; we receive that gift. With great passion Calvin agreed with Luther that we must seek our redemption in the body and blood of Christ and in his sacrificial death. We are united to Christ in his body and blood by the Holy Spirit. But that union is so intense, so real that we can rightly say we are “bone of his bone and flesh of his flesh” (Institutes III, 1, 3, cf. Gen. 2:23). Calvin said that we are embodied in Christ, as Ephesians 5:30 declares: “We are members of his body.” That is where our redemption comes from, Calvin insisted. Salvation is that union with Christ.

Calvin’s view, however, was not just that of a compromiser, taking bits and pieces from different people and fitting them together. He had his own distinct, important, and, I think, clear statement of what the Sacrament was about.

First, he insisted that the Word is crucial. The preached Word makes the Sacrament intelligible, he said. It is only in union with the Word that we know the Lord’s blessing. It is only by the Spirit working through the Word that the blessing is ministered to us and sealed upon us. Yet–and this is the second point–the blessing is represented and presented to us in the bread and the wine. What are bread and wine? They are food, nourishment. So, says Calvin, that is what they represent spiritually; spiritual food. As by the mouth we receive bread and wine to the nourishment of our bodies, so by faith (which is the mouth of the soul) we receive the body and blood of Christ unto everlasting life.

That food is Jesus Christ himself. We will only find life in Christ when we seek the substance of Christ in his flesh. For as soon as we depart from the sacrifice of his death we encounter nothing but death. In Christ’s flesh was accomplished man’s redemption. In it a sacrifice was offered to atone for sin in an obedience yielded to God to reconcile him to us. That flesh of Christ is our food, Calvin insists.

We are to feed upon the Word, to be sure. But Calvin would say we must feed upon Christ too–on Jesus himself, who offers himself and all his benefits to us in the Supper–because it is only by being in and with Jesus that we can find redemption. That is why the Supper is so important to us, so central in our life. It draws us back to the center and heart of the gospel. It is, you see, a visible Word; and the visible Word declares to us that there is salvation only in the body and blood of Christ. That body and blood are not just once and for all offered on the cross as a past and finished thing, but that body and blood, that real Christ, continue to be the life-giving spirit among us. It is our present union with Christ that builds us up and strengthens us. It is only as we seek union with the true Christ that we can be built up in that way.

Moreover, as Calvin says, that promise of communion with Christ is offered in the Sacrament to everyone. He says, “Truly he offers and shows the reality there signified to all who sit at that spiritual banquet, although it is received with benefit by believers alone, who accept such great generosity with true gratefulness of heart” (Institutes, IV, 17, 10). He says that the Sacrament is like rain from heaven. It comes down as the offer and promise of God of new life in Christ. But, like rain, it falls on different kinds of ground. When it hits ground prepared by faith it comes as blessing, nourishment, and a source of growth. When it hits the hard rock of unbelief, it is still the same offer and promise, but it flows away with no profit to the soul (see Institutes, IV, 17, 33).

Faith remains crucial to Calvin’s doctrine. It is only the faithful who know Christ. But when the faithful come to the table, they meet Christ himself. What Christ represents in the bread and wine he presents to faith as life-giving nourishment.

Frequency of Observance

On this basis, Calvin reflected on how often we ought to receive the Sacrament. Zwingli was in favor of administering the Sacrament once a year; and, of course, if you are having a memorial service, once a year is probably adequate. It is like Christmas. Christmas is delightful once a year, but it would be a bit much once a week. It is good once a year to spend some special time thinking about the birth of our Lord. But to do that every week would be impossible.

Calvin, on the other hand, said that the Sacrament is much more than just a memorial. It is not just a time when we sit and think good thoughts. It is a time in which we are fed, nourished. We meet the risen Christ. Therefore, it should be frequent. How often should you pray? Once a year? No, we should pray and feed upon the Word frequently. So, said Calvin, we should feed upon Christ himself frequently. In the Institutes he says twice, “The Lord’s Supper should be administered at least once a week” (IV, 17, 44, and 46).

Many Reformed Christians today administer communion only four times a year. We do that for a “good” reason. Geneva’s city council refused to let Calvin administer the Sacrament once a week and would only let him offer it four times a year. So we follow the spiritual wisdom of those wise men, the city councilmen of Geneva, and ignore Calvin himself.

For those of you who are more influenced by things British, it is interesting to note that in the 1644 Directory of Public Worship drawn up by the Westminster Assembly of Divines, it is said that the administration of communion should be frequent. Still, most Presbyterians have also followed something close to the wisdom of the Geneva councilmen.

The frequency of administration may say something about what we expect to find at that table (or, maybe I should say, whom we expect to find at that table) and what the blessing of meeting Jesus Christ there really is. Calvin himself was the first to admit that the ins and outs of that blessing were a mystery. In fact, Calvin, who so often is represented as sort of a grim logician, reveals quite a mystical streak at this point. He says, “It is a mystery of Christ’s secret union with the devout which is by nature incomprehensible. If anybody should ask me how this communion takes place, I am not ashamed to confess that that is a secret too lofty for either my mind to comprehend or my words to declare. And to speak more plainly, I rather experience than understand it” (Institutes, IV, 17, 32).

There is a shock! Good Presbyterians do not experience anything. We are God’s frozen people. But Calvin found such a meeting with Christ in the Lord’s Supper and such great blessings attached to it that his heart was filled by the Spirit. He found Christ and all his benefits. He found joy. He was gladdened by meeting his Lord, gladdened that he could come to the table and have his faith strengthened by that sure promise of God represented there.

Indeed, Calvin becomes so mystical that he speaks of the believer, as he receives the bread and wine actually being lifted up to heaven. Christ does not descend into the bread, but by the Holy Spirit the believer ascends into heaven, there to commune with the glorified Christ and all the blessings of his crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension (Institutes, IV, 17, 32, cf. Eph. 2:5-6).

Here again we can see Calvin’s use of the idea of God ministering to our weakness in the Sacrament. We come to the table with nothing to offer God, but we come to be blessed by the Lord.

We come “to offer our vileness and our unworthiness to him so that his mercy may make us worthy of him: we come to despair in ourselves so that we may be comforted in him; to abase ourselves so that we may be lifted up by him; to accuse ourselves so that we may be justified by him; moreover, we come to aspire to that unity which he commends to us in his Supper; and as he makes all of us one in himself to desire one soul, one heart, one tongue for us all” (Institutes, IV, 17, 42).

Calvin felt the pull of unity in the Sacrament, and he labored all his life to see that this unity was expressed. It grieved him deeply to see Protestant warring with Protestant over the Supper.

God’s Help and Media

Sacraments, as Calvin put it, are “God’s help and media.” When I ran across that quotation it set my mind to whirring. “Media” is just an untranslated word from the Latin; it should be “means.” The Sacraments are God’s means. But I thought that in our day of emphasis upon media that it is rather nice perhaps to leave it in the Latin. God gave his Church media, visible statements of his promise. And those visible statements are a way in which we can receive the blessing of the Lord.

Luther, in reflecting on this, once said, “For ‘we must have something new.’ [Luther always sounds so contemporary, does he not?] Christ’s death and resurrection, faith and love, are old and just ordinary things; that is why they must count for nothing, and so we weigh ourselves down with big piles of new teaching” (“On Councils and the Church,” Works, Vol. 41, 127-128).

That is just what has happened and will continue to happen. How easy it is for us to develop twitching ears that love to hear new things on the periphery of our faith or perhaps beyond the periphery of our faith–fascinating things that pique the interest. How we have a tendency to say, “Jesus’ death and resurrection, faith and love. That’s all sort of ‘ho hum.’ We’ve heard all that before. We know all about that stuff. We’ve got to get on to bigger and better things.” The Reformers call us back to the center and say that there is nothing bigger and better. There is nothing more important. There is nothing more central. There is nothing more necessary at every point in our Christian life than to go back to this: our redemption is in the body and blood of Christ.

I sometimes wonder how it might affect preachers if every sermon had to end in the Lord’s Supper. Would it give a healthy new dimension to the way our sermons develop and conclude? Would it force us back to the central things of the gospel? I ask in one of my classes: Is it possible that to some extent the development of the altar call in evangelicalism is a response to the felt inadequacy of our services when they do not end in the heart of the gospel? Is it perhaps an unspoken desire to have that central message made in the Sacrament that God has instituted? Might not our Church life be strengthened by frequent communion? To be sure, there can be nothing magical here. There are Churches that have the Lord’s Supper every week and have no blessing from it. But when we come to the Lord’s table properly, we will experience that communion with Christ by faith. Calvin commented most eloquently on this when he said:

Let us carefully observe then, when we wish to use the sacraments as God has ordained, that they should be like ladders, for raising us on high. For we are heavy and cumbersome, held down by earthly things. Thus, because we are unable to fly high enough to draw near to God, he has ordained sacraments for us like ladders. If a man wishes to leap on high, he will break his neck in the attempt; but if he has steps, he is able to proceed with confidence. So also if we are to reach our God. Let’s use the means which he has instituted for us, since he knows what is suitable for us (cited in Marcel, 179-180).

Christian growth is a gradual process. The Sacraments are one key element in that process when rightly used. They are like ladders that we may go up one rung at a time, coming ever to deeper fellowship with our Lord, to deeper knowledge of his redemption, to deeper gladness and strength in what he has promised. We never outgrow the Sacraments. On the contrary, as we climb we come more and more to appreciate the ladder just as firemen do as they go up and up. We come more and more to be glad that the ladder on which we stand is stable, sure, and firm.

I hope as time goes on and you participate in the Sacraments–observe (and recall your) baptism, receive the Lord’s Supper–that you will think on these things and realize what a great blessing the Lord has given to us in them. The Sacraments, like the Word, present and offer Christ and when received in faith give us Christ and all his blessings.


Dr. W. Robert Godfrey is president and professor of church history at Westminster Seminary California. Educated at Stanford University and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Dr. Godfrey is the editor of Through Christ’s Word (Presbyterian and Reformed) and the co-editor of Theonomy: A Reformed Critique (Zondervan)