John Calvin

by beachbum90 ~ February 5th, 2010. Filed under: Chapter 13: Reformation, Religious Wars, and National Conflicts.

John Calvin was one of the great reformers of of the reformation period. Although raised as a devout catholic, he came to belive in the ideals of protestantism. He believed that the human race was prone to sin, and were ultimately lost unless God should intervene. He was further a subject of the French monarch, and was therefore in jeapordy for his beliefs, that differed from Francis I’s catholic background. Calvin was forced to flee France, where he took refuge in Switzerland. It was here that he published his highly influential book: The Institutes of the Christian Religion. In it he provided sound arguments for the subject of protestantism. Calvin believed, like Luther, in the concept of predestination, however he disagreed with Luthers notion that “Gods laws” were meant to convince people that it was impossible to earn salvation of their own efforts, and that once they accepted this they were able to do good works.

Calvinists tended to be hardworking, and thoroughly committed to a sense of moral righteousness. They believed that to do good works was proof of God’s decision to save them (since their fate was already predetermined). In 1541 John Calvin reorganized the churches of Geneva,, which soon became a hot spot for protestant refugees.

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