Interesting Upcoming Book on Samuel Rutherford

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ChristianTrader

Puritan Board Graduate
The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford

This book offers an examination of the theology of Samuel Rutherford (c.16001661), beginning with the doctrine of revelation and concluding with assurance of salvation. It is drawn largely from Rutherfords magnum opus or summa theologiae the Examen Arminianismand is set within the context of the seventeenth century dispute with Arminianism and the more contemporary debate concerning Calvin versus the Calvinists.

Amazon.com: The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford (Studies in Christian History and Thought): Guy M. Richard: Books


The Author also wrote this provocative journal article:

Samuel Rutherford's supralapsarianism revealed: a key to the lapsarian position of the Westminster Confession of Faith?

CJO - Abstract - Samuel Rutherford's supralapsarianism revealed: a key to the lapsarian position of the Westminster Confession of Faith?
 
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NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
FYI. I have Guy Richard's permission to reprint the SJT article in the 2008 Confessional Presbyterian journal, which is coming along but needs some more work; probably fall release. Most everything is due in June but the editor is behind on his own stuff.

The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford

This book offers an examination of the theology of Samuel Rutherford (c.16001661), beginning with the doctrine of revelation and concluding with assurance of salvation. It is drawn largely from Rutherfords magnum opus or summa theologiae the Examen Arminianismand is set within the context of the seventeenth century dispute with Arminianism and the more contemporary debate concerning Calvin versus the Calvinists.

Amazon.com: The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford (Studies in Christian History and Thought): Guy M. Richard: Books


The Author also wrote this provocative journal article:

Samuel Rutherford's supralapsarianism revealed: a key to the lapsarian position of the Westminster Confession of Faith?

CJO - Abstract - Samuel Rutherford's supralapsarianism revealed: a key to the lapsarian position of the Westminster Confession of Faith?
 

VirginiaHuguenot

Puritanboard Librarian
Any word on when The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford is due to be published? Amazon says the publication date is today (July 15, 2008); however, Amazon and Paternoster both say it's not yet available.
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
I dunno; but the author thought it was eminent when he gave me an author's byline for the article reprint in CPJ (see above) several weeks ago.
 

VirginiaHuguenot

Puritanboard Librarian
Any word on when The Supremacy of God in the Theology of Samuel Rutherford is due to be published? Amazon says the publication date is today (July 15, 2008); however, Amazon and Paternoster both say it's not yet available.

I preordered it from Barnes and Noble, and it is listed as shipping on July 28th.

CT

Any further updates? Barnes and Nobles says as of today that it is not available. At Christianbook.com it says it will ship on or about August 12, 2008.
 

Prufrock

Arbitrary Moderation
The Author also wrote this provocative journal article:

Samuel Rutherford's supralapsarianism revealed: a key to the lapsarian position of the Westminster Confession of Faith?

Thoughts on this article from those who have read it now? Is his thesis sustained? Has there been much reaction or response to this from historical theologians, especially with reference to the lapsarian position of the WCF?
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
Thoughts on this article from those who have read it now? Is his thesis sustained? Has there been much reaction or response to this from historical theologians, especially with reference to the lapsarian position of the WCF?

Of special benefit in the article is the opportunity for a glimpse into the Eph. 1:4 unpublished discourse, which seems to be available only to those who can travel to the library to obtain it.

The author argues well that Rutherford's supralapsarianism is not as harsh as biographers and historians have made out. The provision of salvation and the human desert of reprobation is often couched in infralapsarian terms. So Rutherford is seen to be a "moderate supralapsarian." The problem is that I am unaware of what an immoderate supralapsarian would look like. Beza, Perkins, Twisse, and Goodwin, with whom I am most familiar, all couch their schemes in infralapsarian language when it comes to the provision of salvation and the desert of reprobation. The author's analysis fails to acknowledge the agreement amongst Calvinist theologians when discussing the order of the decree in its movement from the fall to redemption. It is to be expected that an evangelical preacher would not lose biblical proportion by drawing undue attention to the "horrible" aspects of the decree, but would preach what would serve for the encouragement of men to be made partakers in the benefits of redemption. Hence I consider the "moderate" adjective to be somewhat non-descript.

One aspect of Rutherford's view which is somewhat unique is his Christological emphasis, which one also observes in Goodwin, but this has only been mentioned in passing by the article.

On the question as to the stance of the Westminster Confession, the author has shown clearly that it is not distinctively infralapsarian. At this point he discerns that the two schemes share an affinity when discussing the decree to redeem from the fall (Fesko's analysis, in the Westminster Confession into the 21st century, 2:477ff., fails to recognise this point). He also observes that the Confession is at least "patient" of supralapsarianism, and in fact shows marks of that position's distinctive thesis, that God does not foreordain anything because He foresaw it as future.
 

NaphtaliPress

Administrator
Staff member
Paul,
Dr. Richard tells me he has been out of the loop so to speak since Katrina (he is pastor of the FPC Gulfport whose building was destroyed), and he is unaware if there have been any responses to the journal article. It is fair to say I guess that none have been brought to his attention if there have been.

Matthew,
I passed along your comments and pastor Richard sent me this note by way of response. Since he is pleased to receive queries directly I'll PM his contact to anyone interested in pursuing more information directly.
I think Rev. Winzer's questions may be answered by reading the full section in my book. I took an excerpt from the book and expounded on it some in regard to the WCF in order to publish it in the Scottish Journal (which, obviously, was also published in CP). The book has a little more detail--and I could have gone into even more detail in the book by citing examples in Beza, which I've got in my notes (see pp. 116-126, especially pp. 123-4, of my book). I think Rev. Winzer will find that Rutherford's supralapsarianism is at least expressed differently from that of Beza (and Beza's is at least expressed differently from that of Perkins). The least that can be said about Rutherford's supralapsarianism is that it is clearly expressed more moderately than is Beza's. This was understood by contemporaries in the 16th-17th centuries. If he, or anyone else, would like to contact me directly for more information, that would be fine. I'd be happy to discuss the matter with him/them.
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
I think Rev. Winzer's questions may be answered by reading the full section in my book.

Thankyou to Dr. Richard for taking the time to consider my thoughts on his article. I look forward to reading his book, where a fuller treatment of the subject might show that a less moderate supralapsarianism did in fact exist amongst the school of theologians I previously mentioned.
 
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