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Calvin's Commentaries - Volume 1 - Genesis…

Calvin's Commentaries - Volume 1 - Genesis

by John Calvin

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Outstanding stuff from Calvin.

He is over-scrupulous in avoiding the Trinity in Gen. 1, but it's because he is adhering to a hermeneutic that is a vast improvement over most of his immediate predecessors.

He is too biblical to be stoic or ascetic, but many of his comments lean that way. Some tilt too far, such as his chastening description of Judah's blessing in Gen. 49. "Judah might be so extravagant as to wash his garments in wine, but this isn't to say God approves it." Possibly misses the hyperbole, and cf. Solomon's magic of turning silver into dirt because of its abundance.

He is very hard on the patriarchs - both in clear instances like polygamy and in murkier questions like the tricksinesses that often occur at points of covenantal succession. His is the more traditional read; James Jordan's Primeval Saints might provide some ballast here.

Great comments on the covenants - he clearly sees their fundamental unity, throughout their different expressions, and is quick to find the church in the OT, and excellent at extracting exhortations for us without simply moralizing.

His operating principle is that interpretation begins and ends with Christ, and that serves both Genesis and the reader very well. ( )
  cjsdg | Sep 15, 2011 |
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