Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Elijah was just a man. . . . . . . and so was John Calvin

I really appreciated this post from the folks at Desiring God. They have a conference coming up to celebrate the 500th birthday of John Calvin. Sometimes conferences like these can turn into a chest bumping, self congratulatory affair that lift too high the principal topic or person that is being discussed.

Obviously John Piper and the folks at DG are trying really hard to fight against that. I think this is an important lesson. . . to hold your convictions with humility. After all, John Calvin was only a man who had flaws, sins, and historical slip-ups. Does this make him less of a theologian and not worthy of our attention? Not at all. But, it's good to be nuanced, honest, and humble about our theological camps/teachers/fathers. . . . After Jesus, they were all just men. And, after the biblical writers were done, there were no more inspired texts. It's helpful to remember that.

I still remember doing a paper on John Calvin for my American History class in college (it was on the Puritans). I went to the Library at UNO (go mavs) and read some exerpts of his work for research purposes. I still vividly remember walking back down the main concourse at UNO, outside, in the summer (this music major was a big fan of summer classes) walking about 2 feet off the ground as I felt I had just discovered a whole new zip code of theology, heaven, and God-saturated thinking. That was a big day for the Holy Spirit's work in my life. I'm grateful for John Calvin. . . .the man.


ps. these videos are mostly done by baptists. . . so don't take offense at their baptist slant on some of Calvin's traditional reformed views. I'm most concerned with the overall tone of humility.

No comments: