“John Calvin, Tradition, and the Modern Evangelical Church”
R. Ward Holder, Professor of Theology, Saint Anselm College
Thursday, February 13
7pm, Blanchard 339
It has been a long-standing custom to think of the Protestant Reformers as defenders of biblical religion – setting aside the human inventions that had tarnished the clarity of the gospel message for the pure revelation of divine truth. Two modern movements have made this ideal setting forth of the Reformation less certain. First, historians have been delving into how the various figures of the era of the Reformations both consciously and unconsciously used the theological tradition in their work. Second, after the post-modern re-discovery of the importance of traditions for communities of discourse, a wide variety of thinkers from liberal Protestant, Roman Catholic, and even Evangelical camps have turned to tradition as a key source for doctrinal considerations. This lecture seeks to explore how a clear historical definition of John Calvin’s use of the theological tradition for his doctrinal work can provide a more stable source both for historical research, and for the contemporary theological engagement with their own traditions for Evangelical and Reformed communities.