With John Calvin’s birthday coming up in a few days, he was born 500 years ago on June 10, 1509, I though it would be fitting to do a post on the Calvinist theology.
Calvin is best known for the theological system that was named after him – Calvinism. Note that while Clavinist churches are still in existence today not all the churches adhere to all the classical features of Calvinism. As a theology what makes classical Calvinism distinctive is that it teaches the sovereignty of God in salvation and in life. The five points of Calvinism include:
The doctrine of total depravity – The inability of man to follow God and save himself due to inherent sin.
The doctrine of unconditional election – States that God’s choice in who is to be with him is based on his mercy alone and not on foreseen virtue, merit, or faith of the chosen people.
The doctrine of limited atonement – Says that atonement is only for those chosen by God even though he has the power to save everyone he has chosen not too do so.
The doctrine of irresistible grace – Says that those that God has chosen will be brought to faith in time and that these people would not be able to resist the call of the Gospel.
The Perseverance of the saints – Asserts that those that God has chosen has “eternal security” and that those that fall away from the faith are apparently not among the chosen.
As mentioned earlier, there are lots of variations of Calvinism today with modern variations being embraced more and more in North America. With his birthday coming up this would be good news to Calvin were he alive.