John Calvin the Theological Work Term Paper

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John Calvin

The theological work of John Calvin revolutionized the approach to Protestant Christianity, thoroughly examining it in a questioning and unflaggingly rational paradigm. Born Jean Chauvin in 1509 in Picardie to a French attorney, Calvin was sent to the University of Paris at a young age to be immersed in the study of humanities and the law. By 1532, he was serving as a Doctor of Law at Orlean's; his education endowed him with the clear sight of legal thought, which he applied not only to his own edition of Seneca's De Clementia, replete with commentary, but also to the changing seas of theology engaging Christian Europe. The power of his theological approach was not only the critical analysis he brought to the discussion, but in his application of mental reasoning to connect the man Christ and his work.

While Calvin spent his life analyzing the connection between Christ, the man of miraculous works, with the life of Christ the God, the crux of his understanding and connection of the two rests in the Three Offices of Christ. Calvin systemized the man and His works with the three-fold positions of Christ: first, as a Prophet, second as a Priest, and third as a King.

Moreover, it is to be observed, that the name Christ refers to those three offices: for we know that under the law, prophets as well as priests and kings were anointed with holy oil. Whnce, also, the celebrated name of the Messiah was given to the promised Mediator."

Christ served in each of the three offices at the same time as Calvin outlined in the Institutes.

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The basis for the three-fold office was conceptualized for Calvin by the book of Deuteronomy. The first office, that of the prophet, comes from Deuteronomy 18:18, "I will raise up for them a prophet like you among their brethren; and I will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command."

TOPIC: Term Paper on John Calvin the Theological Work of John Assignment

John and Paul accepted Christ as the prophet, Calvin noted, even though the title was not included in the epistles. Yet, Calvin sees the biblical proof that they accepted him as such in John 1:18, which says that Christ was a man who "both gave revelation from God and was himself the quintessential revelation from God." It is in this manner that Calvin substantiates the Christian premise that Jesus Christ is different than the other prophets, also explaining his absences from the epistles.

Calvin called the second office of Christ that of the Priest. Jesus Christ the Prophet was God's representative to the people; as the Priest, he was their representative to God. In all of his analyses of the doctrinal Christian faith, Calvin singled out Jesus as separate from the standard positions that he did fill, only with abundance, of the Old Testament societies. As Priest, he was different than those normal to the Levitical order by not offering an animal sacrifice to God in repent for sin; Calvin argued that Jesus, himself, was the sacrificial lamb. Calvin said that Christ, as a Priest, entered the Holy of Hollies, the heavenly place, to lead in the people before the presence of God. Calvin says that Christ, as a man and Priest, is able to do so as other priests did, but as God, was able to live there forever. Romans 8:34 and Hebrews 7:25 provide proof for his claim, saying that the Christ "ever lives to make intercession" for the weaknesses of man; in doing so, Calvin claims Christ as the eternal Priest.

Calvin finds the last office of Christ to be that of the King. While David rules Israel, Jesus exerts dominion over all Earth, Universe, and Church.

I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of Glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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