The CCEL Times 4.7 (July 1, 2009)

Submitted by bdv4 on Wed, 2009-06-24 13:35.

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In This Issue:

From the Director

July 10 is the big day—John Calvin’s 500th birthday [1] [2].
Love him or hate him, there is no denying that he has been monumentally
important to Protestants, fundamentally influencing the way Protestants
read the Bible through his commentaries, summarizing and shaping Protestant theology through his warm, pastoral all-time classic Institutes of the Christian Religion.

On another note, we are continuing the summer book study series with an on-line study of Andrew Murray’s Absolute Surrender.
A South African born to Scottish missionary parents and a prolific
author, Murray wrote more than 240 books, many of which are still
popular today. Every Christian should know the importance of total
dedication to God in order to serve him effectively, so if you haven’t
already read this book, why not join the group?

Harry Plantinga

Director of the CCEL

Featured Classic

John Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion

Reviewed by John Witvliet, Director of the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship

This review was originally published in The CCEL Times 2.1

John Calvin was trained as a lawyer and a humanist and provided
some of the most mature theological statements of the Reformation
period. Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion is
arguably one of the top five theology books ever written. This
masterful work is filled with commanding knowledge of the Bible and of
church history, but Calvin also writes with a lot of pastoral concern
for real worshipers, and writes with a lot of enthusiasm for faith. And
so the work can nourish not only scholars in their studies, but all
worshipers in their daily prayer and reflections.
Read this classic at the CCEL

Guide to Calvin’s Institutes from the CCEL

Read more works by John Calvin at the CCEL

Listen to John Witvliet on John Calvin’s legacy for worship renewal from the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship

Featured Hymn

All People That On Earth Do Dwell (‘Old One Hundredth’)

versification of Psalm 100 by William Kethe

The English text by William Kethe … first appeared in the Anglo-Genevan Psalter of 1561 and in John Day’s Psalmes of David in English Metre,
also of 1561. Since then it has been published in virtually all
English-language psalters and hymnals. … Kethe lived in Geneva for
some time but traveled to Basel and Strasbourg to maintain contact with
other English refugees. Kethe is thought to be one of the scholars who
translated and published the English-language Geneva Bible (1560), a
version favored over the King James Bible by the Pilgrim fathers. The
twenty-five psalm versifications Kethe prepared for the Anglo-Genevan
Psalter of 1561 were also adopted into the Scottish Psalter of 1565.
His versification of Psalm 100 is the only one that found its way into
modern psalmody.

Learn more about this hymn at the Hymnary

Read about the Hymnary

Featured Discussion Group

The Prayer Warriors

The CCEL’s longest running discussion group is hosted by Maria
Smith, who writes, "If you are a prayerful person, then this group is
for you, to find better ways to express what is in your heart." This
group was created a year and a half ago, and it is our most active
discussion group. Thanks in large part to Maria, new members are
readily welcomed, struggling members are comforted, and all
participants feel appreciated. The Prayer Warriors discussion group is
truly a blessing to all of us associated with the CCEL. Maria starts
her welcome to the group by stating, "This is a group that is vital to
the Christian life." This group is truly vital to the Christian life,
and it’s also a vital part of the CCEL community.

Learn more about this group

Find more groups

Classic Reflections

Calvin’s opening paragraph of the Institutes:

Our wisdom, in so far as it ought to be deemed true and
solid Wisdom, consists almost entirely of two parts: the knowledge of
God and of ourselves. But as these are connected together by many ties,
it is not easy to determine which of the two precedes and gives birth
to the other. For, in the first place, no one can survey himself
without forthwith turning his thoughts towards the God in whom he lives
and moves; because it is perfectly obvious, that the endowments which
we possess cannot possibly be from ourselves; nay, that our very being
is nothing else than subsistence in God alone. In the second place,
those blessings which unceasingly distil to us from heaven, are like
streams conducting us to the fountain. … Every person, therefore, on
coming to the knowledge of himself, is not only urged to seek God, but
is also led as by the hand to find him.
— John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, Book 1, Chapter 1, Paragraph 1

Read this classic at the CCEL

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