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The Unaccommodated Calvin: Studies in the Foundation of a Theological Tradition (Oxford Studies in Historical Theology) [Paperback]

By Richard A. Muller (Author)
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Item Specifications...

Pages   320
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.88" Width: 6.48" Height: 0.76"
Weight:   0.98 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 20, 2001
Publisher   Oxford University Press
ISBN  0195151682  
EAN  9780195151688  

Availability  0 units.

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Item Description...
This title attempts to understand Calvin in his 16th-century context, with attention to continuities and discontinuities between his thought and that of his predecessors, contemporaries, and successors. Richard Muller is particularly interested in the interplay between theological and philosophical themes common to Calvin and the medieval doctors, and in developments in rhetoric and method associated with humanism. He shows that Calvin's theology evidences the impact of humanist philology and rhetoric, of patristics, and also - both positively and negatively - of the categories of medieval scholastic thought. Calvin's conclusions, together with those of a group of contemporary Reformed and Lutheran thinkers, famously became the basis of much later Protestant theology. But understood in its 16th-century context, Muller argues, Calvin's theology proves both intriguing and intractable to 20th-century concerns. This intractable and unaccomodated Calvin, he says, is important to our historical understanding in direct proportion to the level of distortion found in several generations of modern dogmatic analysis of Calvin's thought.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > Modern Renaissance   [119  similar products]
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
R. Muller, A Phenom  Jul 19, 2005
I am not a seminarian. I hardly have a knowledge of the reformers' lives and works. I'm a US history student. However, I'm interested in the Reformation and Post-Reformation period. I chose Muller's book to help me understand Calvin and his work (the Institutes, I'm reading through them). More than this, I chose this book because Muller wrote it. And I'm glad I read it. Muller is a historical theologian who stands heads and shoulders above most historians in any field, including that which he specializes in. His ability to analyze pertinent material is incredible. You'd also think he's read everything written in the sixteenth century. He does such an amazing job presenting his theses, and then forcefully making his conclusions.
To say something about the text for readers: he shows how we must understand the historical context of Calvin and his Institutes in order to properly understand Calvin and his Institutes. He does this by comparing Calvin and his Institutes to reformers contemporary to him.
Sorry I can't say more. I'm not going to sit here and give a book report. I will put it simply: get the book if you dare. A warning: this is heavy reading. It is also reading that greatly rewards its readers, I mean deeply. Muller is a phenomenon. He truly presents an unaccommodated Calvin, i.e. Calvin on his own terms.
Reading Calvin for the First Time  Apr 26, 2000
By writing this book Richard Muller has done a wonderful service, both for serious students of Calvin as well as the casual reader who has the slightest interest in the Reformer's thought. Muller presents Calvin's thought in its own context, demonstrating in the process how often his writings have been misconstrued by modern scholars asking modern questions of texts that were written over four hundred years ago.

One of the keys to Muller's work is his use of original documents, whereby he unfolds the relationship between the various genres in Calvin's body of works. He shows that Calvin's magnum opus, The Institutes of the Christian Religion, serves a limited purpose in his corpus, and must be carefully read in the context of both his sermons and his biblical commentaries. This insight alone clears away generations of false conclusions, and reveals details that other scholars have failed to note. Further, Muller provides important insights into the development and structure of The Institutes.

This book is a must-read for anyone who seeks to understand Calvin. It is also a model for how documents from earlier ages of church history ought to be read and studied. No serious student of church history should be without it.


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