David W. Hall

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For at least a decade, some of us have been chanting like Christopher Walken in the infamous Saturday Night Live skit, “More cowbell! More cowbell!” Except we have been begging for “More Bucer! More Bucer!” Particularly, the reading audience needed access to his 1524 Grund und Ursach, one of the more important early treatises in […]

David W. Hall
Ottomar Cypris
Thursday, March 1st 2018

Pastor as Ultimate Need-Meeter:The pastor is a sensitive therapist/social worker, understanding the congregation's needs and meeting these needs in extraordinary ways. Even the best versions of this model need to beware: only Christ is truly heroic and able to do for people what they really need done. Pastor as Entrepreneur: The church exists to support […]

David W. Hall
Friday, March 1st 2013

Epilogue The Calvinist view of liberty, wherever it spread, gave citizens confidence and protections. Within a century, the American colonies would exhibit these Calvinistic distinctives. Not incidentally, one of the first colonial law codes was named “The Massachusetts Body of Liberties.” So close were law and liberty that Calvin’s disciples customarily associated law codes with […]

David W. Hall
Friday, October 30th 2009

Music in the Vernacular: The Psalter One of Calvin's early initiatives was to translate music designed for use in public worship into the language of the day. Realizing that what people sing in a holy context has enduring impact on how they act, Calvin wanted worship’in all its aspects’to be intelligible. Shortly after his settling […]

David W. Hall
Tuesday, September 1st 2009

7. Parity Among all Professions:The Doctrine of Vocation Another of the culture-shaping aspects of Calvin's thought was his emphasis on the sacredness of ordinary vocations. Before Calvin and the Protestant Reformation, the doctrine of vocation or calling was thought to be exclusively for the clergy. However, his view of work as inherently dignified by our […]

David W. Hall
Monday, July 13th 2009

5. Collegial Governing: The Senate Calvin argued long and hard that government should not and could not do everything; it had to be limited in its task and scope. If it was not, it would run aground as in the time of the Hebrew prophet Samuel. Calvin's sermon on 1 Samuel 8 addresses one of […]

David W. Hall
Friday, May 1st 2009

3. Ethics and Interpretation of the Moral Law: The Decalogue Calvin's interpretation of the Ten Commandments as ethical pillars was widely influential for generations of character development. In his discussion, he argued that this moral law was necessary; for even though man was created in God's image, natural law alone could only assist in pointing […]

David W. Hall
Friday, February 27th 2009

1. Education: The Academy Calvin broke with medieval pedagogy that limited education primarily to an aristocratic elite. His Academy, founded in 1559, was a pilot in broad-based education for Geneva. Although Genevans had sought for two centuries to establish a university, only after Calvin's settlement did a college finally succeed. (1) By the time of […]

David W. Hall
Wednesday, January 7th 2009

“Modern Reformation has championed confessional Reformation theology in an anti-confessional and anti-theological age.”

Picture of J. Ligon Duncan, IIIJ. Ligon Duncan, IIISenior Minister, First Presbyterian Church
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