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The Theology of John Calvin
PAPERBACK; Published: 11/20/1995
ISBN: 978-0-8028-0696-3
Price: $ 39.50
448 Pages
DESCRIPTION
Though Karl Barth wrote his lectures on John Calvin more than seventy years ago, the wrestling of one theological giant with another can hardly fail to be exciting and instructive. Delivered at the University of Göttingen in 1922, Barth's lectures offer a brilliant theological analysis of the Reformation — of Calvin in particular — while at the same time providing vital insights into the development of the theologian Barth himself.

Barth's lectures open 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 portion of the lectures 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 1536 edition of the Institutes.
REVIEWS
Church Times (U.K.)
"A fascinating insight into Barth's developing assessment of the Reformation."
Interpretation
"Refreshing and informative. . . This is a great book by a great theologian about a still greater theologian. . . Although Calvin research has far surpassed Barth's 'youthful' explorations, this is a rewarding study that any student of the Reformed tradition will find magnetic, instructive, and useful."
Journal of Theological Studies
"This book, The Theology of John Calvin, is highly significant. It is, as is customary, elegantly and scrupulously translated by Geoffrey Bromiley. . . Everyone who takes Barth seriously should read this book at least once!"
Religious Studies Review
"Of great interest to Calvin scholars as well as to students of Barth's theology."
Sixteenth Century Journal
"The book is significant not only as an early-twentieth-century interpretation of Calvin . . . , but also as a reflection of Barth's theological development shortly after the second edition of his Epistle to the Romans, as he begins to come to grips with the foundations of the Reformed theological tradition and his place within it. The book itself will come as a real surprise to Calvin scholars who are unfamiliar with Barth's approach to historical studies."
The Expository Times
"What makes this book such a good read is the fact that not only is the reader introduced to the best mind on Calvin, but in so doing is exposed to theological method at its most brilliant. . . The relevance of this book cannot be overstated."
H. Martin Rumscheidt
—Atlantic School of Theology
"These lectures are a significant marker on the road of Barth's theological progress. Barth's resolute joining of the knowledge of God and the knowledge of history, widely valued by many, is already present in these lectures from 1922. Biography, history, theology, reflection, and actualization for our time flow smoothly one into the other.. Barth brings to these lectures a rare congeniality and sensibility for what was at the heart of the Protestant Reformation - then and now. A captivating and reliable introduction to Calvin and to his theology."
Ronald S. Wallace
—Columbia Theological Seminary
"An important contribution to modern Calvin studies. It deals as much with Calvin's life as with his teachings, and as we would expect, Barth had mastered all the details of Genevan affairs and of Calvin's writings, letters, and disputations to make himself an authority on his subject. This book will prove useful also for its searching introduction to the Middle Ages and Luther."

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