Originally Posted by Johan
Pilgrim, is there a difference between Reformed and Calvinism or they the same thing? As many consider themselves to be Calvinists, so many consider themselves to be Reformed.
I've answered this question before, even recently, but it's definitely worth addressing it again. It all comes down to definitions. In the strict historical meaning of "Reformed" a church/individual would not only embrace the biblical doctrines associated with Calvinism (Five Points), but also the sovereignty of God, rejection of worldliness, holiness of life, the Five Solas, etc., but would in addition include church polity and paedobaptism. The church polity aspect is sometimes allowed to be expressed differently although very similarly, e.g., the difference between the Dutch Reformed churches and Presbyterianism. In the looser use of the term "Reformed", which was common a number of years ago, it was understood and applied more generally to include all who embraced simply the "Five Points". On the other hand, there are those who define "Reformed" to be restricted to only the Dutch Reformed churches. Calvinism is sometimes understood and applied in a similar way as Reformed but typically it includes only the Five Points, and praxis (doctrine of sanctification; 3rd use of the law). So, again, it all comes down to one's definition of the terms. Personally, I like to use "Reformed" in the historical comprehensive sense as briefly spelled out above. And I use Calvinism/Calvinist to include all but church polity and paedobaptism.

Now, there is/was an article which I am quite sure I provided a link for some years ago here that referred to a very good article on this subject. It was written, if I'm not mistaken, by a professor of church history who taught at Calvin Seminary in Grand Rapids, MI. I've searched for the link before but I couldn't find it. hairout But, I'll try another search and perhaps it will turn up. IF it does, I'll add it to this reply. grin

Would you believe I found it? claphands

You can find the article here by Richard Muller: How Many Points?

Last edited by Pilgrim; Thu Feb 23, 2017 6:53 AM. Reason: Added article link

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