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2 - Calvin, Tradition, and Exegesis

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 May 2022

R. Ward Holder
Affiliation:
Saint Anselm College, New Hampshire
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Summary

The second chapter engages an area that should not exist, according to the traditional historiography. If Calvin, as a good evangelical reformer, avoided all entanglements with the tradition by maintaining his sole focus on the scriptures, a chapter that considers tradition and exegesis should be impossible. But the evidence demonstrates that is far from the case. In examinations of Calvin’s Commentaries on Romans and II Corinthians, and his Lectures on Genesis and Daniel, the readers will see an extraordinary array of considerations of the orthodox exegetical traditions. Further, evidence is presented to show moments when Calvin turned away from the plain sense of scripture in order to pursue the “fuller sense” that would allow him to provide the stronger doctrinal teaching – even at the cost of less-strict maintenance of the doctrine of the scriptures. This was carried out across his considerations of both testaments, and in both the earlier and later stages of his career.

Type
Chapter
Information
Calvin and the Christian Tradition
Scripture, Memory, and the Western Mind
, pp. 41 - 67
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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