Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Recent Articles in ISJT on Calvin

Now that I'm "all about systematics," I thought I'd draw attention to a couple of interesting articles in the International Journal of Systematic Theology 11.4 (2009):

Union and Communion: Calvin's Theology of Word and Sacrament
"Some scholars consider Calvin's teaching on the sacraments to be an integral part of his theology. Others have challenged the Reformer's consistency in this area, regarding Calvin's eucharistic teaching in particular as a 'foreign, uncongenial element' in his work. My argument in this article is that Calvin's eucharistic teaching, particularly in its 'more nearly patristic' emphases, is neither inimical nor secondary to his system but is in fact an essential and promising outworking of his theology. As with other perspectives, Calvin's understanding of Word and sacrament generates a particular kind of ecclesiology with emphases that remain ecumenically significant and vital for the life and mission of the church."

Imputation as Attribution: Union with Christ, Reification and Justification as Declarative Word
"Calvin's integration of the christological features of the eucharistic controversy with soteriological questions in his refutation of Andreas Osiander marks a critical development in Reformed theology. In this article, that development is extended further in reconsideration of the nature of imputation as a linguistic action. It is argued that imputation is a soteriological corollary of the christological idea of attribution. Imputation thus conceived clarifies not only how it is located within the doctrine of union with Christ, but how that union and imputation provide clarity in ongoing discussions about reification of sin and righteousness as well as the nature of justification as a declarative word."

John Calvin's Soteriology: On the Multifaceted 'Sum' of the Gospel
"This article explores John Calvin's soteriology through examining his multivalent and yet succinct 'sum' of the gospel: the double grace of justification and sanctification received in union with Christ. The essay begins with a description of the scope and range of this teaching in Calvin, its biblical, patristic and Reformational sources, and its application to a wide range of doctrinal loci. After this, particular features of Calvin's account are highlighted as promising for contemporary retrieval. The essay concludes with historiographic reflections that intersect with ongoing disputes in interpreting Calvin's teaching on union with Christ and the double grace."

A Mirror for God and for Us: Christology and Exegesis in Calvin's Doctrine of Election
"Although John Calvin's doctrine of election is often criticized, it remains seriously under-described in both content and form. By attending to one strand of its content (Christ and election), and one persistently unappreciated aspect of its form (exegesis), this article attempts a substantial construal of the doctrine in Calvin's theology. It aims to show that, for Calvin, Christ is the subject of election in that he is its author, and Christ is the object of election in that he mediates both election itself and the salvation which flows from election. The focus on Calvin's exegesis of election and Christology establishes contact points with some important theological concerns: Karl Barth's reading of Calvin; election and the extra Calvinisticum; and 'christocentrism' in Calvin's theology."

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