The Crisis of Calvinism in Revolutionary England, 1640-1660
Title Details

276 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

2 line illus.

Series: Studies in Modern British Religious History

Series Vol. Number: 47

Imprint: Boydell Press

The Crisis of Calvinism in Revolutionary England, 1640-1660

Arminian Theologies of Predestination and Grace

by Andrew Ollerton

  • Description
  • Contents
  • Reviews
This book investigates a puzzling and neglected phenomenon - the rise of English Arminianism during the decade of puritan rule.

Throughout the 1650s, numerous publications, from scholarly folios to popular pamphlets, attacked the doctrinal commitments of Reformed Orthodoxy. This anti-Calvinist onslaught came from different directions: episcopalian royalists (Henry Hammond, Herbert Thorndike, Peter Heylyn), radical puritan defenders of the regicide (John Goodwin and John Milton), and sectarian Quakers and General Baptists. Unprecedented rejection of Calvinist soteriology was often coupled with increased engagement with Catholic, Lutheran and Remonstrant alternatives. As a result, sophisticated Arminian publications emerged on a scale that far exceeded the Laudian era. Cromwellian England therefore witnessed an episode of religious debate that significantly altered the doctrinal consensus of the Church of England for the remainder of the seventeenth century.

The book will appeal to historians interested in the contested nature of 'Anglicanism' and theologians interested in Protestant debates regarding sovereignty and free will. Part One is a work of religious history, which charts the rise of English Arminianism across different ecclesial camps - episcopal, puritan and sectarian. These chapters not only introduce the main protagonists but also highlight a surprising range of distinctly English Arminian formulations. Part Two is a work of historical theology, which traces the detailed doctrinal formulations of two prominent divines - the puritan John Goodwin and the episcopalian Henry Hammond. Their Arminian theologies are set in the context of the Western theological tradition and the soteriological debates, that followed the Synod of Dort. The book therefore integrates historical and theological enquiry to offer a new perspective on the crisis of 'Calvinism' in post-Reformation England.
Introduction: Religious Identity and Doctrinal Debate

Part I. 'This Quinquarticular war': Charting the rise of English Arminianism
1 . The Crisis of Calvinism in the 1650s: Background and Explanation
2. Puritan Arminianism
3. Episcopal Arminianism
4. Sectarian Arminianism
Part I Conclusion

Part II. 'Quinqu-Articularis' : Tracing the contours of English Arminian Theologies
5. Ordo Decretorum: Confessional Traditions and Doctrinal Disputes
6. John Goodwin's Arminian Theology
7. Henry Hammond's Arminian Theology
Part II Conclusion

Conclusion: Reimagining English Theology

Bibliography
Index
"Who would benefit from reading the book? Theologians naturally, and especially those concerned with the religious differences of seventeenth-century England." FACHRS
"A welcome and stimulating contribution to the study of seventeenth-century theology. Ollerton makes his case
clearly and persuasively. His theological analysis is acute, and he is sensitive to the theological variety and eclecticism of his subjects. His study will be of value to anyone interested in the intellectual currents of
seventeenth-century England." JOURNAL OF ECCLESIASTICAL HISTORY

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Title Details

276 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

2 line illus.

Series: Studies in Modern British Religious History

Series Vol. Number: 47

Imprint: Boydell Press