John Calvin Further Reading

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Further Reading

(Literary Criticism (1400-1800))


Bihary, Michael. Bibliographia Calviniana. N. J.: Princeton University Press, 1992, 194 p.

Comprehensive bibliographic resource.

Gamble, Richard C. "Current Trends in Calvin Research." In Calvinus Sacrae Scripturae Professor, pp. 91-112. Grand Rapids, Mi.: Eerdmans, 1990.

A bibliographic essay surveying historical, linguistic, and theological scholarship on Calvin.


Bouwsma, William J. John Calvin: A Sixteenth-Century Portrait. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988, 310 p.

Biography that "tries to interpret Calvin as a figure of his time: As a representative Freud intellectual, an evangelical humanist and therefore a rhetorician, and an exile."

McGrath, Alister E. A Life of John Calvin. Oxford: Blackwell, 1990, 332 p.

General biographical survey.


Barth, Karl. The Theology of John Calvin. Grand Rapids, Mi.: Eerdmans, 1995, 424 p.

The preeminent Swiss neo-orthodox theologian thoroughly treats his Reformation predecessor.

Battenhouse, Roy W. "The Doctrine of Man in Calvin and in Renaissance Platonism." Journal of the History of Ideas 9, No. 4 (October 1948): 447-71.

Revisionist argument by a noted literary scholar who sees humanistic Platonism and even Pelagian roots in Calvin's thought.

Battles, F. L., et al. John Calvin. Grand Rapids, Mi: Eerdmans, 1966, 228p.

Anthology containing essays, among others, on Calvin's letter writing and sermons.

Belloc, Hilaire. How the Reformation Happened. London: Jonathan Cape, 1928, 293 p.

Anti-Calvinist polemic by a pre-Vatican II triumphalist Catholic.

Butin, Philip Walker. Revelation, Redemption, and Response: Calvin's Trinitarian Understanding of the Divine-Human Relationship. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995, 232 p.

Assesses the significance of Calvin's understanding of the divine-human relationship and its importance to the historical development of Christian doctrine.

Davies, Rupert E. The Problem of Authority in the Continental Reformers: A Study in Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1978, 158 p.

Davies examines the central epistemological problem of Protestantism, and indeed of all theology, "Is there any accessible source of religious truth which is wholly authorative?"

Dickens, Arthur Geoffrey. Reformation and Society in Sixteenth-Century Europe. London: Thames and Hudson, 1966, 216 p.

Illustrated introduction to the Reformation milieau.

Doumergue, Emile. Jean Calvin, les hommes et les choses de son temps. 7 vols. Lausanne: 1899-1927.

Monumental scholarly source on Calvin, available only in French.

Eire, Carlos M. N. War against the Idols. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986, 325 p.

Addresses Protestantism's attack at the use of images in Catholic worship.

Elton, Geoffrey R. Reformation Europe 1517-1559. London: Collins, 1963, 349 p.

Overview of the European situation and key personalities at the time of the Reformation.

Foxgrover, David. "Calvin as a Reformer: Christ's Standard Bearer." In Leaders of the Reformation, pp. 178-210. London and Toronto: Associated University Presses, 1984.

Analysis of Calvin's self-assessment as one called to restore a church in ruins.

Gerrish, Brian A. The Old Protestantism and the New: Essays on the Reformation Heritage. Chicago: University of Chicago, 1982,422 p.

Essays on various Reformation issues relating to the clarification of Reformation principles.

——. Grace and Gratitude: The Eucharistie Theology of John Calvin. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1993, 210 p.

A study of the Lord's supper in Calvin.

Graham, W. Fred. The Constructive Revolutionary. Richmond: John Knox Press, 1971, 271 p.

Thorough survey of the effect of Calvin and Calvinism on socio-economic life.

Hall, Charles. With the Spirit's Sword. Zurich: Evz-Verlag, 1968, 227 p.

Traces the Pauline theme of spiritual warfare in the theology of Calvin.

Hancock, Ralph C. Calvin and the Foundations of Modern Politics. Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press, 1989, 221 p.

Calvin is shown to encourage and critique democratic theory.

Hesselink, I. John. Calvin's Concept of Law. Allison Park, Penn.: Pickwick Publications, 1992, 311 p.

The law of God is treated as a positive aspect of Calvin's theology expressing God's rule.

Hoitenga Jr., Dewey J. Faith and Reason from Plato to Plantinga. Albany: State University of New York, 1991, 263 p.

An introduction to Reformed epistemology.

Kendall, R. T. Calvin and English Calvinism to 1649. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1979, 238 p.

Historical and theological dissertation regarding Calvin's thought as found in the works of Theodore Beza, and further transposed into the English setting of William Perkins and the Westminster Assembly.

Leith, John H. John Calvin's Doctrine of the Christian Life. Louisville: Wesminster/John Knox, 1989, 230 p.

Discussion of piety in relation to Calvin's theology.

Littell, Franklin H., ed. Reformation Studies: Essays in Honor of Roland H. Bainton. Richmond: John Knox Press, 1962, 285 p.

Collection two essays on Calvin regarding his theological method and his view of the relation of God's Grace to His Glory.

McNeill, John T. "The Democratic Element in Calvin's Thought." Church History 18, No. 3 (September 1949): 153-71.

A study of Calvin's political theory—defending liberty, fraternity through God's Fatherhood, but having doubts about the possibility or benefit of equality.

——. The History and Character of Calvinism. New York, 1954, 466 p.

Very thorough study of Calvinism in western culture.

——. "The Significance of the Word of God for Calvin." Church History 28, No. 2 (June 1959): 131-46.

Summary of Calvin's views on the supremacy of scripture in faith and practice.

Parker, T.H.L. "The Self-Revelation of the Creator." In The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God: A Study in the Theology of John Calvin, pp. 7-24. London: Oliver and Boyd, 1952.

Contends that for Calvin, mankind's knowledge of God, though innate through the created order, is most fully comprehended in the Special Revelation of Scripture.

——. "Christianae Religionis Institutio." In John Calvin: A Biography, pp. 34-50. Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1975.

Analyzes the Institutes, giving a picture of its character, purpose, treatment of the Law, faith, prayer, sacraments, and Christian Liberty. He further notes that its summary of standard catechismal topics according to the "Bible Alone" hermeneutic helped define the emerging Reformed Faith.

——. Calvin's Preaching. Louisville, Kent.: Westminster/John Knox Press, 1992, 202 p.

An updated, and rearranged version of Parker's 1947 The Oracles of God: An Introduction to the Preaching of John Calvin, which, like its predecessor, attempts to show "a Calvin very different from the unattractive effigy" that has characterized our English speaking image of the Reformer."

Partee, Charles. "Calvin's Central Dogma Again." The Seventeenth Century Journal 18, No. 2 (Summer 1987): 191-99.

Suggests that we move from the central doctrine God's Sovereignty to "Union with Christ" in studying Calvin.

Richard, Lucien Joseph. The Spirituality of John Calvin. Atlanta, Ga.: John Knox Press, 1974, 207 p.

Examines the roots and fruition of Calvin's spirituality relating to devotion, piety, and wisdom.

Selinger, Suzanne. Calvin Against Himself. Hamden, Conn.: Archon Books, 1984, 238 p.

Psycho-history that sees Calvin as a product of his times and culture.

Steinmetz, David C. Calvin in Context. New York: Oxford University Press, 1995, 235 p.

General introduction to Calvin's thought, with context provided by the writings of Calvin's own contemporaries and their sources.

Warfield, B. B. Calvin and Augustine. Philadelphia: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing, 1980, 507 p.

Appreciative essays of Augustine and his chief disciple by the Princeton's turn of the century Biblical inerrantist.

Wendel, Francois. Calvin. New York: Harper and Row, 1950, 383 p.

An exposition of the theology of Calvin stressing the origins and development of his religious thought.

Zachman, Randall C. The Assurance of Faith. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1993, 258 p.

Calvin and Luther are both shown to agree that assurance of salvation "lies in the grace and mercy of God towoard us in Jesus Christ crucified, revealed to us in the gospel."