Christian Humanism and the Puritan Social Order (1)

I begin here a series of posts on Margo Todd’s 1987 book, Christian Humanism and the Puritan Social Order. The book is a corrective on the (still popular) scholarship of the 1960s and 1970s. The text below includes her thesis. If puritans were a self-conscious community of zealous religious reformers, they were also possessed of …

Philosophies that didn’t help: Philosophical Issues and Developments in the Post-Reformation Era 2

Man is created for worship. And if he will not worship the one true God, he will find something else to worship. “Atheists”, “deists”, “practical atheists”, even followers of ancient Hermes all found something to hold onto with the resurgence of the various “reappropriations” of classical philosophies. In some respects, it was the second century …

Philosophical Issues and Developments in the Post-Reformation Era, 1

Philosophy was an “add-on” to theology for the post-Reformation writers. It was “an aid to learning” (“ancilla”) but it did not contain the substantive material that was to be considered when evaluating “theology proper” (i.e., issues surrounding the Doctrine of God, etc.). In other instances, it was found, some philosophies were outright hostile to Christianity. …

Doctrine of God: Context in Doctrine and Piety

Muller is concerned to set “Reformed Orthodox” thinking of the late 16th and 17th century writers in their proper context: they were both “churchly” – concerned about how their writings emerged from and fit into the life of the churches. “Theology proper” most notably the Doctrine of God, arose precisely as a way to help …