ConsiderPeace for the Troubled Heart. Made up of meditations on scripture texts, it’s different from other devotionals. These meditations breathe a Christian experience that is drawn from scripture, formed and regulated by sound doctrine, and realistic in a world of sin, suffering, and struggle.
Each chapter is divided into sections, so you can read it in parts—morning, noon, and evening. This is a great way to thoroughly meditate on the chapter throughout the day.
Scripture teaches no dualism, but an antithesis. There are no two primal causes and eternal principles, constantly warring with each other, but God is one. He alone is eternal and the primal cause and there is no other eternal principle or primal cause next to him. Neither is he both good and evil, nor are the principles of good and evil to be traced to his being, for he is a light and there is no darkness in him. But this good and glorious God according to his eternal and sovereign good pleasure wills to reveal his praises, his eternally adorable virtue antithetically, that is,inopposition to darkness. Darkness, evil, sin are not primal principles, eternally coordinate with light, goodness, righteousness, but the former are subservient to the latter, darkness must serve to bring out the glory of the light, the devil serves to enhance the unsearchable riches of God's being and virtues and works.
In the light of this idea of an antithesis we can understand the placing of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” in paradise. By means of it, God carries the antithesis into the life and before the consciousness of man, made after his image.
As the subtitle indicates, The Reformed Faith of John Calvin is a summary (not an abridgment) in one volume of John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion. In a succinct, systematic way, the book sets forth the essence of the great reformer's teachings in his Institutes on all the truths of the Christian religion.
Throughout, this sum of Calvin's explanation and defense of the truths of the Christian faith is either expressed or supported by quotations of Calvin. The book is replete with quotations from the Institutes (in the judgment of the author, the most important and vivid statements of Calvin), so that the reader hears Calvin himself.
One who reads this book will know the Institutes and its comprehensive, powerful instruction in the Reformed faith—the faith of the sixteenth-century Reformation of the church and the faith of true churches of Christ in the twenty-first century.
The book also gives a brief explanation of certain of Calvin's teachings, offers analysis of Calvin's doctrine, applies the reformer's teachings to contemporary doctrinal issues, and even, rarely, becomes so bold as to criticize Calvin's doctrine, for instance, Calvin's teaching that the magistrate is called to enforce the first table of the law of God.
Many seminarians, pastors, elders, and laity, perhaps even a theologian or two, although desirous of learning the content of the Institutes, are put off from reading it by the sheer size of the massive, two-volume work or are hindered by the demands of their calling. This summary will supply their want and, it is hoped, motivate them to read the Institutes itself.
ebook versionavailable in .mobi format (for Kindle users) and .epub (all other devices).