Saturday, October 28, 2006

Reformation Day: John Calvin

"They who strive to build up firm faith in Scripture through disputation are doing things backwards...Since for unbelieving men religion seems to stand by opinion alone, they, in order not to belive anything foolishly or lightly, both wish and demand rational proof that Moses and the prophets spoke divinely. But I reply: the testimonty of the Spirit is more excellent than all reason. For God alone is a fit witness to himself in his Word, so also the Word will not find acceptance in men's hearts before it is sealed by the inward testimony of the Spirit. The same Spirit, therefore, who has spoken through the mouths of the prophets must penetrate into our hearts to persuade us that they faithfully proclaim what has been divinely commanded...By this power we are drawn and inflamed, knowlingly and willingly, to obey him, yet also more vitally and more effectively than by mere human willing or knowing...I speak of nothing other than what each believer experiences within himself. [My emphasis]"

[Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion Edited by John T. McNeil pp. 79-80. Copyright MCMLX. Westminster John Knox Press, Louisville/London. (Also pp. 157-158 of Iain Murray's Evangelicalism Divided)]

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