Calvinist Clergy of the 18th Century Compared to R2K “Calvinist” Clergy

Calvinist Minister John Witherspoon, as might be expected, earnestly and eloquently supported every measure adopted by Congress for securing independence. When the important moment came for signing the Declaration, and some of the members were hesitating to affix their names to it, he delivered an eloquent appeal, in which he said:

“That noble instrument upon your table, which ensures immortality to its author, should be subscribed this very morning by every pen in the house. He that will not respond to its accents, and strain every nerve to carry into effect its provisions, is unworthy the name of a freeman. For my own part, of property I have some, of reputation more. That reputation is staked, that property is pledged, on the issue of this contest. And although these gray hairs* must soon descend into the sepulcher, I would infinitely rather they should descend thither by the hands of the public executioner than desert at this crisis the sacred cause of my country.”

All honor to him and to the Church and the principles which he so eloquently represented ! That Church may well be proud of having her clergy so honorably represented among the signers of the Declaration of Independence.

Witherspoon remained in Congress, excepting for a short period, till 1782, and contributed perhaps as largely as any one member to the patriotic cause.

Nathaniel McFetridge
Calvinism in History

How Calvinism has changed. Today if Witherspoon had been so involved in the affairs of State the R2K boys would have, at the very least, censored Witherspoon.

McFetridge gives account after account of Calvinists in American History who would have scorned and mocked R2K even more than I have done. The idea that the Minister had no business being involved in the common realm as a minister would have seen as complete and utter skubala.

McFetridge tells us of the Presbyterian Dr. John Rodgers the leading Presbyterian clergyman in New York city who,

“had to fly from New York city on the entrance of the British troops, who seized his church and turned it into a hospital. Congress acknowledged his patriotism and ability by employing him on an important mission to the South. He was chaplain in the army, and after- ward chaplain of the State convention of New York. He threw all his eloquence, influence and possessions upon the side of the good cause, and did more perhaps, in the beginning, to arouse the people than any other clergyman.”

McFetridge speaks of the Calvinist clergy in America as a whole,

Thus I might trace through all that severe conflict the spirit of the Calvinists, and find it always the same—true to the cause of independence; indeed, the only unswerving champion of it.

The Radical Two Kingdom theology of Van Drunen, Horton, D. G. Hart Clark, and T. David Gordon, is a lie. It has no connection whatsoever to the living, breathing Calvinism rooted in history and grounded in Scripture. What the R2K lads are offering up is anti-Calvinism. R2K is not a correction of Calvinism but rather it is a bastardization of Calvinism. The Calvinism of our Fathers was a faith that made men of boys. R2K makes effeminates of boys. The Calvinism of our Fathers put steel in the spine of its adherents and made them tough and unyielding as barbed wire. The Calvinism of R2K puts a “run away and surrender” spirit in the character of its adherents and makes them only tough when it comes to resisting historic Calvinism.

Author: jetbrane

I am a Pastor of a small Church in Mid-Michigan who delights in my family, my congregation and my calling. I am postmillennial in my eschatology. Paedo-Calvinist Covenantal in my Christianity Reformed in my Soteriology Presuppositional in my apologetics Familialist in my family theology Agrarian in my regional community social order belief Christianity creates culture and so Christendom in my national social order belief Mythic-Poetic / Grammatical Historical in my Hermeneutic Pre-modern, Medieval, & Feudal before Enlightenment, modernity, & postmodern Reconstructionist / Theonomic in my Worldview One part paleo-conservative / one part micro Libertarian in my politics Systematic and Biblical theology need one another but Systematics has pride of place Some of my favorite authors, Augustine, Turretin, Calvin, Tolkien, Chesterton, Nock, Tozer, Dabney, Bavinck, Wodehouse, Rushdoony, Bahnsen, Schaeffer, C. Van Til, H. Van Til, G. H. Clark, C. Dawson, H. Berman, R. Nash, C. G. Singer, R. Kipling, G. North, J. Edwards, S. Foote, F. Hayek, O. Guiness, J. Witte, M. Rothbard, Clyde Wilson, Mencken, Lasch, Postman, Gatto, T. Boston, Thomas Brooks, Terry Brooks, C. Hodge, J. Calhoun, Llyod-Jones, T. Sowell, A. McClaren, M. Muggeridge, C. F. H. Henry, F. Swarz, M. Henry, G. Marten, P. Schaff, T. S. Elliott, K. Van Hoozer, K. Gentry, etc. My passion is to write in such a way that the Lord Christ might be pleased. It is my hope that people will be challenged to reconsider what are considered the givens of the current culture. Your biggest help to me dear reader will be to often remind me that God is Sovereign and that all that is, is because it pleases him.

4 thoughts on “Calvinist Clergy of the 18th Century Compared to R2K “Calvinist” Clergy”

Leave a Reply to jetbrane Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *