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Edmund Calamy (1600-1666) on John 3:16

December 22, 2008


Mr. Calamy–I argue from the iii. of Joh[n] 16, In which words a ground of God’s intention of giving Christ, God’s love to the world, a philanthropy the world of elect and reprobate, and not of elect only; It cannot be meant of the elect, because of that ‘whosoever believeth’… xvi. Mark, 15. ‘Go preach the gospel to every creature.’ If the covenant of grace be to be preached to all, then Christ redeemed, in some sense, all–both elect and reprobate; but it is to be preached to all; there is a warrant for it… For the minor, if the universal redemption be the ground of the universal promulgation, then… the minor, else there is no verity in promulgation. All God’s promulgations are serious and true… Faith doth not save me, but only as an instrument to apply Christ. There is no verity in the universal offer except founded in the…

Alex Mitchell and John Struthers, Minutes of the Sessions of the Westminster Assembly of Divines (London: William Blackwood and Sons, 1874), 154.   [Notes: The portion of the minutes contained in the old Mitchell-Struthers “Minutes,” referencing the redemption of the elect only, or not, is identical to the same in  Chad B. Van Dixhoorn’s new edition of the minutes, Reforming the Reformation: Theological Dabate at the Westminster Assembly, 1643-1652, 6:202-209. Regarding Calamy, he was not only a Westminster divine, but one of the leaders of the English Presbyterians until his death.  Lastly, it should be noted that Calamy, along with a reported one third of the divines, signed the Westminster in good conscience, while holding to the classical construction of John 3:16 and Christ’s redemption of mankind, in some form or another.]

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