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Thus Far Moderate Calvinism Documented

November 26, 2007

For Whom Did Christ Die?

I. Early Church and Medieval Patristics

  1. Saint Ambrose (337–397): the Source of an Idea
  2. Athanasius (293–373) on the Incarnation
  3. Chrysostom (347–407) on the Death of Christ
  4. Augustine (354–430) on the Death of Christ
  5. Prosper of Aquitaine (c.390–c.455) on Redemption
  6. Pope Leo the Great (400–461) on the Death of Christ
  7. Peter Lombard (1100–1160) on the Death of Christ: Christ Died for All Sufficiently, for the Elect Efficiently
  8. Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274) on the Death of Christ: Its Nature and Extent

II. Reformation Era

  1. Johannes Oecolampadius (1482–1531) on the Death of Christ
  2. Ulrich Zwingli (1484–1531) on the Unlimited Expiation and Unlimited Redemption
  3. William Tyndale (1494–1536) on the Death of Christ
  4. Juan de Valdés (1509–1541) on the Death of Christ
  5. Martin Luther (1483–1546) on the Death of Christ
  6. Martin Luther (1483–1546) on John 1:29 (unedited and complete)
  7. Hugh Latimer (1487–1555) on the Death of Christ
  8. John Hooper (d. 1555) on the Death of Christ
  9. Thomas Cranmer (1489–1556) on Death of Christ
  10. Erasmus Sarcerius (1501–1559) on the Death of Christ
  11. Peter Martyr Vermigli (1499–1562): Unlimited Redemption and Expiation, Incarnation and Related Issues
  12. Peter Martyr Vermigli (1499–1562) on Hebrews 2:9 and 14
  13. Augustine Marlorate (1506–1562) on the Death of Christ
  14. Wolfgang Musculus (1497–1563) on the Redemption of Mankind
  15. John Calvin (1509–1564) on Unlimited Expiation, Sin-Bearing, Redemption and Reconciliation
  16. Thomas Becon (1512–1567) on the Death of Christ
  17. Miles Coverdale (1488–1568) on the Death of Christ
  18. Pierre Viret on the Death of Christ
  19. Benedictus Aretius (1505–1574) on the Death of Christ
  20. Heinrich Bullinger (1504–1575) on Unlimited Expiation and Unlimited Redemption
  21. Thomas Lever (1521–1577) on Redeemed Souls Perishing
  22. Rudolph Gualther (1519–1586) on the Death of Christ
  23. Some Classic Calvinist Comments on Hebrews 10:29
  24. Zachary Ursinus (1534–1583) on the Death of Christ
  25. John Foxe (1517–1587) on the Death of Christ
  26. Zanchius (1516–1590) on the Death of Christ
  27. Jeremias Bastingius (1551–1595) on the Death of Christ
  28. Jacob Kimedoncius (d. 1596) on the Death of Christ: Unlimited Expiation and Redemption
  29. Robert Rollock (1555–1599) on the Death of Christ and Related Issues
  30. William Bucanus (d. 1603) on Unlimited and Limited Redemption
  31. Batholomaeus Keckermann (1571–1609) on the Death of Christ
  32. John Overall (1559–1619) on the Death of Christ
  33. David Paraeus (1548–1622) on the Death of Christ: Unlimited Expiation and Redemption

III. Second Reformation Era

  1. Richard Sibbes (1577–1635) on the Death of Christ
  2. John Davenant (1572–1641) on the Death of Christ
  3. William Twisse (1578–1646), Westminster Divine and Forgotton Hypothetical Universalist
  4. George Walker (1581–1651) Westminster Divine on the Death of Christ
  5. Thomas Adams (1583–1652) on the Death of Christ
  6. Robert Jenison (1584?–1652) on the Death of Christ
  7. Henry Scudder (d. 1652), Westminster Divine on the Death of Christ
  8. Richard Vines (1600–1655/6) Westminster Divine on the Death of Christ
  9. James Usser (1581–1656) on the Extent and Intent of the Death of Christ
  10. Bishop Joseph Hall (1574–1656) on Predestination and the Death of Christ
  11. Francis Rous (1579–1659) (Westminster Assembly Lay-Assessor) on Christ’s Dying For All, as to the Sufficiency of the Sacrifice
  12. Thomas Ball (1589/90–1659) on John Preston (1587–1628) on Universal Redemption
  13. Johannes Bergius (1587–1658) on the Death of Christ
  14. Jean Daille (1594–1670) on the Death of Christ
  15. Nathanael Hardy (1618–1670) on the Death of Christ
  16. Joseph Truman (1631–1671) on the Death of Christ
  17. Thomas Ford (1598–1674) Westminster Divine on the Death of Christ
  18. Nathaniel Stephens (1606?-1678) on the Death of Christ
  19. Stephen Charnock (1628–1680) on the Death of Christ
  20. John Bunyan (1628–1688) on the Death of Christ: Unlimited Expiation
  21. Henry Hickman (d. 1692.) on Universal Redemption in the Church of England, with Reference to the Synod of Dort, Ussher and Davenant
  22. Obadiah Hughes, (The Elder) (d. 1704) on the Death of Christ (From the Matthew Poole Commentaries)
  23. John Howe (1630–1705) on the Redemption of Christ
  24. John Humfrey (1621–1719) on the Death of Christ

IV. Post-Reformation

  1. James Saurin (1677–1730) on the Death of Christ
  2. Experience Mayhew (1673–1758) on the Death of Christ
  3. Jonathan Edwards (1703–1758) on the Death of Christ
  4. Jacob Catlin (1786-1826) on the Redemption of Christ
  5. James Richards (1767–1843) on the Death of Christ and the Extent of the Atonement
  6. Robert Balmer (1787–1844) on the Death of Christ: Mediating Between Two Extremes
  7. Thomas Chalmers (1780–1847) on the Death of Christ
  8. George Payne (1781–1848) on the Extent of the Atonement
  9. Erskine Mason (1805-1851) on the Extent of the Atonement
  10. Leonard Woods (1774–1854) on the Extent of the Atonement
  11. John Brown of Broughton (1784–1858) on the Death of Christ
  12. Gardner Spring (1785–1873) on Election, Unlimited Atonement and the Free Offer
  13. Henry B. Smith (1815–1877) on the Extent of the Atonement
  14. Charles Hodge (1797–1878) on the Death of Christ
  15. Samuel H. Cox (1793–1880) on the Extent of the Atonement
  16. Ransom B. Welch (1824–1890) on James Richards (1767–1843) on the Death of Christ
  17. James M Pendleton (1811–1891) on the Extent of the Atonement
  18. W.G.T. Shedd (1820–1894) on the Death of Christ
  19. Robert L. Dabney (1820–1898) on Unlimited Expiation and Limited Redemption
  20. Broughton Knox (1916–1994) on “Limited Atonement”
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16 Comments leave one →
  1. July 9, 2008 7:57 pm

    This is good information. Who are the modern moderate calvinist authors? I love the ancient sources. But also interested in modern (non-Geisler/non-Olson) sources. I’ll probably email two of my other contacts as well.

    Godspeed

  2. Flynn permalink*
    July 10, 2008 1:31 pm

    Hey Donald,

    The moderate position has been eclipsed in a great deal. Part of the problem is the loss of historical identity. I sometimes get the impression from some modern guys that to take an alternative position from the mainstream means to go it alone, which carries with it the stigma of being novel, of one straying for the historical mainstream.

    Some good authors to look for are Bruce Ware. Ware is positing what he calls “the multiple intentions view of the atonement.” From what I have read its basically the classic position with a new name tag.

    Bruce Demarest is a good scholar and is moderate.

    Millard Erickson is a moderate, that I can recall. Here with Erickson, we get the added stigma of the ‘4 point calvinist label,’ which really should be resisted.

    Thanks and take care,
    David

  3. July 10, 2008 7:24 pm

    Flynn thank you. I love the position and I’m making my way through your articles. I deeply appreciate what you have thus far shared and I’m bookmarking this site!

    I appreciate your efforts.

  4. Flynn permalink*
    July 11, 2008 3:26 pm

    Hey Donald,

    I had to leave off suddenly before. I was going to add, part of the problem is the stigma attached to moderate Calvinism. Many uber-calvinists dont have any solid historical awareness of this position. All they know of is the position of Giesler for example. Giesler really muddies and confuses the waters on this. But the response to Giesler in one critical work just made it worse with its uncritical responses.

    I think moderate Calvinists have been cowered for the most part by the rhetoric coming from various uber blogs and boards. Im thinking of the puritanboard specifically which is now not far removed from the old 5solas hypercalvinist board, which is now called the Predestinarian Network.

    On a lot of discussion boards, tulipism is really whats dominating the discussion assuming that it is exhaustive of Calvinist soteriology.

    Its this intimidation which is really derailing mature and reflective interaction between the various wings of Calvinism.

    Take care,
    David

  5. July 15, 2008 3:09 pm

    David

    I supposed I’m just trying to get all of thoughts in order for the positions. The Uber, High, Strict folk out there are the stumbling blocks. Your site and Tony’s, and the controversial calvinism blogs so far are the moderate (classical) calvinist I see. The Dallas 4 pointers have some similarities but they don’t see to go far enough.

    I appreciate your work and Tony’s.

    I guess I’m looking to digest this in a user friendly matter so when it comes back out, it will be cogent. But your blog and website information is a great starting point.

  6. Flynn permalink*
    July 16, 2008 2:05 pm

    hey Donald,

    So I get it, you want the easy way… the classic calvinism for dummies version. ;-) <==friendly smilie.

    I was talking to a friend on paltalk last night and he reminded me of Lightner's book: Death Christ Died, The
    by Robert P. Lightner (Author). You can get it on Amazon for a good price second hand. Its pretty good, tho it has one or two problems.

    I think Tony might know some more contemporary titles. On the will of God, Piper's essay is a must. Sam Storms book is good–it takes unlimited readings on verses like 2 Peter 3:9:Chosen for Life: The Case for Divine Election.

    There is not a lot of self-awareness out there among the uber-calvinists, hardly any. I was reading the puritanboard today and saw a post equating the combination of Calvinism with Fullerism equals Arminianism. The whole claim is so absurd. And I cant recall any discussions in the standard grad text books on the atonement anything documenting distinctions between pecuniary and penal satisfaction. Uber-calvinism only knows of 4 categories, hyper-calvinism, Calvinism, Amyraldianism and Arminianism (of course Semi-Pelagianism and Romanism are way off in the left wings).

    Most of the internet's uber-calvinists are completely historically unaware of the complexity of Calvinistic soteriology. Wading through all their sectarianism can be wearisome.

    Take care,
    David

  7. July 16, 2008 2:58 pm

    I appreciate the correspondence. I have emailed Tony, I just haven’t heard back from him yet.

    Lightner’s book I do own already. Actually I ordered from a local store here in OH, before the store closed down (providence?).

    I guess you could say for dummies (lol), with a full plate at times, I think I’m looking for a “reader’s digest version” with cliff notes no less. But such is life.

    I appreciate the Sam Storms recommendation though. I like Piper, I’ve just been put off by his DG thesis/book.

    The PB has been the source of discouragement for me in the past, until I realized by reading the C&C blog, and Tony’s blog, that this is who I am.

    Also, the Synod of Dort versus TULIP issue was extremely helpful.

    I’m running into other high/strict calvinist (I love that Uber term however!) on another forum. I’m trying to bring some balance to the a discussion. And I’m bone weary of the uber-calvinist/ownenis I keep seeing.

    What you two are doing is really impacting me and some others from what I can see. So, don’t stop or let up.

    I appreciate every jot and tittle of what I’m reading.

  8. Flynn permalink*
    July 16, 2008 4:51 pm

    Hey Donald,

    You say:
    Lightner’s book I do own already. Actually I ordered from a local store here in OH, before the store closed down (providence?).

    David: yes that is good. You are right, too right, there is not enough literature on the market covering these subjects.

    Donald: I guess you could say for dummies (lol), with a full plate at times, I think I’m looking for a “reader’s digest version” with cliff notes no less. But such is life.

    David: There is the yahoo list for questions and interactions. I understand, tho, its not something that can be picked up in on reading or one sitting. There are a lot of aspects to this.

    Donald: I appreciate the Sam Storms recommendation though. I like Piper, I’ve just been put off by his DG thesis/book.

    David: I am not familiar with the DG book. I normally don’t read Piper.

    Donald: The PB has been the source of discouragement for me in the past, until I realized by reading the C&C blog, and Tony’s blog, that this is who I am.

    David: I wont say in public my nick-name for the PB. ;-) It is clear that the board has shifted from being a more open banner of truth type calvinism to pure hypercalvinism. I don’t know of any banner of truth types there posting in the calvinism section on a regular basis. I heard recently that another banner guy has been banned. I don’t have all the details yet, tho.

    Donald: Also, the Synod of Dort versus TULIP issue was extremely helpful.

    David: ah yes, its always a big assumption that TULIP captures Dort. Do you remember Dabney’s lament that we must absolutely get rid of the idea of a limited expiation?

    Donald: I’m running into other high/strict calvinist (I love that Uber term however!) on another forum. I’m trying to bring some balance to the a discussion. And I’m bone weary of the uber-calvinist/ownenis I keep seeing.

    David: I had some free time this morning and scanned the Calvinism sections of 4 discussion boards. What struck me was the level of uberism. The uber-Calvinists all had the same tone, the same basic arguments, the same attempts to connect Arminianism with Pelagianism, etc. Its an odd propensity to read their opponent in the worst possible theological light. I was talking to a friend here today and he made the same basic point: one is slapped around with a bunch of alleged slippery-slope arguments. Its like, “if you believe X, you HAVE to believe in Z.” Some of these alleged entailments just don’t follow at all.

    I stole the “uber” from Phil Johnson who called a certain internet apologist an uber-apologist. I thought it was apt fro some of uber-Calvinist friends. :-)

    Donald: What you two are doing is really impacting me and some others from what I can see. So, don’t stop or let up. I appreciate every jot and tittle of what I’m reading.

    David: Thanks. The thing is that we need to learn to think outside of our box or paradigm when examining an issue, learning to read sources from both sides, and with a sympathetic attitude. When I first became a Calvinist, I was told by a friend that I should read books on both sides. I did… kinda… sorta. :-) With a friend, we found the supposedly best opposing book and read it. But our attitude stank, and by simply reading this one book we felt we had read enough of the “other side.” All the while I was completely unaware of the actual theological and historical categories which on the table for consideration. One of our goals is to have in the (internet) market place of ideas, these other categories available so folk can make better informed decisions. And in so doing, have a context where it is safe and to engage in ideas outside of the stereo-typed boxes.

    Thanks again,
    David

  9. July 16, 2008 8:22 pm

    If you like I would have to look up my archives but I have a book review of Desiring God that I thought was eye-openning.

    And I had a funny (humor, not strange) retort from a brother regarding the all or nothing view of the TULIP, where I asked where do that ruling come from for defining calvinism, and he basically said, because he said so. I hope he wasn’t serious, but I constantly tell my wife that there are motives behind the insinuations.

  10. Flynn permalink*
    July 16, 2008 9:23 pm

    Hey Donald,

    I dont know about works before Loraine Beottner’s Reformed Doctrine of Predestination, but he seriously argued that all the 5 points are logically inter-dependent, so that if you affirm one, you must affirm the others. Ive never seen how the L must logically follow. I can see the reasonableness of the others as suppositions.

    Ive never seen anyone demonstrate the logic of L if T is granted etc.

    Owen approached it from another angle, given the Covenant of Redemption (as he sees it) L must follow.

    Nicole and many others have said that given the nature of substitution L must follow.

    The last two, tho, dont prove that granting T (and U etc) necessarily entails L.

    It looks like you are really moving on this, Donald.

    Take care and thanks,
    David

  11. July 22, 2008 7:13 pm

    I see the logic in the system, and I agree with the L, from a logical stand point being inconsistent. I’m not a logician mind you, but to follow that logic, one would from a logical stand, have to deal with the hyper-issues as well, from a logical stand point. Many aren’t double predestinarians (can I use that term?)but I believe from the logical stand point, one must deal with the whole from at least a supralapsarian view point facing the possibility of border line hyper, if not a hyper.

  12. Flynn permalink*
    July 24, 2008 11:37 am

    Hey Donald,

    Something is happening in the way many high Calvinists see the nature of imputation. Its as if they see it as a transference of sin. Thus, the sins of the elect were numbered and gathered up, and all the specific charges against those sins are then charged to Christ.

    When I was a high, I assumed this sort of thing: the charge of the law against a specific number of sins was transferred to Christ: not the sin itself, but the charge or condemnation due to it. I know no sound high would want to go Crispian and say that sin itself was transferred, so when we all speak of sin being transferred to Christ, we all mean the charge against it from the law, etc.

    I don’t know why this mentality has crept in. Its not as if specific acts of Christ’s righteousness are cataloged, numbered and then proportionately divided up and imputed to the elect. Christ’s single act of righteousness is sufficient and therefore imputed to all believers.

    If we could divide up the righteous acts of Christ, for the purposes of making the point, its not as if Christ had to comply with or accomplish a specific amount of law-keeping acts which are then distributed accordingly. So, for my 10 sins of lying, Christ accomplished 10 law-keeping acts (ie fulfilling the law against lying) along with your 10, and Josh’s 10, so that he had to effect 30 acts of law-keeping for the law against lying. Does that make sense?

    His one act of righteous law-keeping is sufficient for all liars. And I really mean all liars as it is not indexed or defined by the amount or number of the elect or of mankind; for the number of the elect or of mankind, could theoretically have been larger or smaller according to what God could have willed to elect or create.

    I cant think of another way to underline the problem. If anyone has a better example, or wants to correct mine (cos I cant help thinking I am missing something) please speak up.

    Thanks,
    David

  13. July 24, 2008 7:45 pm

    Brother,

    I thinked you nailed it. AMEN!

  14. Flynn permalink*
    July 24, 2008 10:48 pm

    Hey Donald,

    I was trying to improve the on how to explain it. I think this may be helpful too. The 10 commandments are summaries of all case law. The law against lying, sums up all forms of lying, all kinds and all quantities. Christ suffered the curse against lying–period. Suffering the punishment against lying, he “covers” all kinds and quantities of lies. Its not as a multitude of lying charges were imputed, of all the various kinds and quantity. Thats how I view this following the insights of C Hodge and Calvin.

    I am hoping Tony may read this and pipe in too. :-)

    Thanks and take care,
    David

  15. July 25, 2008 4:49 pm

    David,

    Something just occurred to me while reading through these comments, especially your last two. The scriptures say that if we offend in one point then we are guilty of the whole law, so would it not follow that one penalty is all that is required to satisfy the law, i.e. the death of the God-man?

    Blessings,
    Terry

  16. July 26, 2008 9:47 am

    David,

    Where I am going with the above is this: If what I said above does follow then this would preclude any tallying up of sin, etc.?

    Blessings,
    Terry

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