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The Reformed Faith of John Calvin

The Reformed Faith of John Calvin
by David Engelsma

The Institutes in Summary

£18.00 + £1.80 (P&P) = £19.80
472 Pages
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As the subtitle indicates, The Reformed Faith of John Calvin is a summary (not an abridgment) in one volume of John Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion. In a succinct and systematic way, this book sets forth the essence of the Reformer’s teachings in his Institutes on the great truths of the Christian religion. 

Throughout, this summary of Calvin’s explanation and defence of the truths of the Christian faith is either expressed or supported by quotations of Calvin—in the judgment of the author, the most important and vivid statements of Calvin—so that the reader hears Calvin himself. One who reads this book will know the Institutes and its comprehensive, powerful instruction in the Reformed faith—the faith of the sixteenth-century Reformation of the church and the faith of true churches of Christ in the twenty-first century. 

Highlights of Calvin's doctrine in his Institutes (and thus this work by Prof. Engelsma) include the internal teaching of the Holy Spirit, providence, union with Christ, assurance, prayer, double predestination, church power, infant baptism and the Lord's Supper. This book not only summarizes, explains and analyses Calvin’s teachings; it applies the Reformer’s instruction to contemporary doctrinal issues. It even, occasionally, becomes so bold as to critique Calvin, for instance, his teaching in Book 2 that there are remnants of good in fallen man (pp. 133-137) and aspects of his doctrine of the Trinity (pp. 83-86) and civil government (pp. 394-397). 

At every point, the book provides exact reference to the Institutes in the accepted scholarly fashion, so that the reader can readily compare the summary of Calvin’s own presentation or, being stimulated, read further concerning a particular doctrine in Calvin’s great work. The Reformed Faith of John Calvin comes complete with a sketch of Calvin's life and a treatment of the nature, style and structure of the Institutes, as well as analyses of the history of its publication and its prefatory address to King Francis I of France. 

Many seminarians, pastors, elders and saints, perhaps even a theologian or two, although desirous of learning the content of the Institutes, are put off from reading it by the sheer size of the massive, two-volume work or are hindered by the demands of their calling. This summary will supply their want and, it is hoped, motivate them to read the Institutes itself. Significantly, The Reformed Faith of John Calvin was published in 2009 in commemoration both of the 500th anniversary of Calvin's birth and the 450th anniversary of the final edition of his Institutes.

"Professor Engelsma combines penetrating analysis with a readable style to bring out the depth of Calvin's theological genius. Through The Reformed Faith of John Calvin I came to a much clearer understanding of the centrality of Jesus Christ in Calvin's thought. That in itself is worth the price of the book." - Detroit, USA

"The most electrifying book on Calvin's theology is The Reformed Faith of John Calvin. It is short but nothing big is left out. If you want a cover to cover job on a Calvin's theology, this is it." - Australia

To read a review article of this book in the Protestant Reformed Theological Journal, click here.
To read a review of this book in the Beacon Lights, click here.
To read another review of this book, click here.

To read an excerpt of this book in Italian, click here.

To watch the video of the author interview concerning this book, click here.