The Theology of John Calvin (Google eBook)

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Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, Jan 1, 1995 - Biography & Autobiography - 424 pages
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This historically significant volume collects Karl Barth's lectures on John Calvin, delivered at the University of Gottingen in 1922. The book opens with an illuminating sketch of medieval theology, an appreciation of Luther's breakthrough, and a comparative study of the roles of Zwingli and Calvin. The main body of the work consists of an increasingly sympathetic, and at times amusing, account of Calvin's life up to his recall to Geneva. In the process, Barth examines and evaluates the early theological writings of Calvin, especially the first edition of the Institutes.
  

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Contents

VII
13
VIII
14
IX
25
X
50
XI
69
XII
70
XIII
90
XIV
103
XXXV
284
XXXVI
293
XXXVII
306
XXXVIII
307
XXXIX
309
XL
317
XLI
320
XLII
322

XV
129
XVI
133
XVII
146
XVIII
157
XIX
162
XX
172
XXI
177
XXII
187
XXIII
194
XXIV
210
XXV
214
XXVI
216
XXVII
226
XXVIII
234
XXIX
243
XXX
248
XXXI
258
XXXII
264
XXXIV
271
XLIII
323
XLIV
331
XLV
337
XLVI
346
XLVII
347
XLVIII
350
XLIX
356
L
365
LI
366
LII
369
LIII
375
LIV
385
LV
386
LVI
393
LVII
402
LVIII
410
LIX
418
LX
423
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About the author (1995)

Karl Barth was born in Basel, Switzerland, in 1886. A theologian, Barth is considered to be one of the most prolific writers Christendom has ever produced. His Church Dogmatics runs well over 12,000 pages in English translation. There also is a great body of occasional writing. Barth would be worthy of note if only for his first published work, a commentary on The Epistle to the Romans. In 1918, when he published this study, Barth was a young pastor in his native Switzerland. The guns of World War I could still be heard, their angry shells destroying, perhaps forever, the liberal optimism of Continental theology. Where was the progress young Barth had learned about from Harnack in Berlin? Where was human rationality, dispelling the noisome holes of ignorance and superstition, when the great leaders of Christendom descended to the barbarity of trench warfare? For answers Barth turned St. Paul's greatest epistle, as St. Augustine of Hippo and Martin Luther had before him. Barth obtained a post at the University of Bonn, but Hitler objected to his work with the Confessing Church (see Dietrich Bonhoeffer), and he was forced to return to his own country, there to produce all his great tomes. Turning theologians from their rational optimism, Barth has driven them to consider again the power of the Word of God-the acted, spoken, inscripturated, incarnated Word was always his chief theme. Against it, all human pride and pretension, all schemes for utopian societies, all theologies based on anything other than the Bible and Christ have proved transient. Barth's objectors reply that Barth's God is too far away like Soren Kierkegaard; that Barth spoke of the "infinite qualitative distinction" between God and man; that Barth ignores scientific advances; and that he cares little for dialogue with other religions. Yet Barth's oppposers never complain of a lack of erudition or ecumenical concern. To some Barth is the greatest theologian the church has produced. Barth died in 1968 as he had hoped-with his Dogmatics still unfinished.

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