John Calvin

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A Brief Biography of John Calvin

A Brief Biography of John Calvin


John Calvin or Chauvin, born July 18, 1509 in Noyon, Picardy, the most eminent of French reformers and the greatest theologian of his century. He was the son of a property manager in the service of the canons Noyon and a devout Catholic mother died prematurely. Calvin receives an ecclesiastical benefice which allows him to pursue first to Noyon. After Noyon, he studied in Paris to colleges of March and Montaigu. His father intended him for the priesthood but, result of conflict with the canons of Noyon, he directs his son to the right. Calvin studied law at Orleans, and Bourges, with the best teachers of his time. The study of law a lasting Calvin's thought. He still considers the law in a positive way, as opposed to Luther. On the death of his father, he turned to theology and literature. His first book is a De Clementia commentary of Seneca. He frequented humanist circles and circles theologians discuss where the new ideas. He learned Greek and Hebrew.

John Calvin was a great theologian Protestant. He received a humanist education and adheres to the Reformation to 1533, convicted in France as heresy. Refuge in Basel, he published his major work, the Institution of the Christian religion. Appointed pastor at Geneva, the place decisive policy that gives the Church the fact banished from the city. He left for Strasbourg in 1538 and became pastor of the French refugees. Back to Geneva in 1541 where he remained until his death, he organized the theologically modern church, giving it an image of austerity. Calvin sometimes used to reduce the force opponents into exile or to the stake. It is also one of the first writers in French, a language he chooses to facilitate the spread of its ideas characterized by rigor, logic and clarity. In 1559, the effort of religious organization leads to the Synod of Paris, who published forty articles summarizing the Reformed doctrine.


In 1534, he broke definitively with the Catholic Church in resigning his ecclesiastical benefices. In 1534, Calvin moves frequently to Angoulême, Nerac, Paris, Noyon and Orleans). Calvin was in Paris when the case broke in 1534 of cupboards. During the crackdown, he left the France and took refuge in Basel. He continues to work theological. His first dogmatic text is the introduction to the French translation of Olivetan Bible by his cousin. His second book is a summary of the essentials of the faith Christian: The institution of the Christian Religion, (1536). This is the first edition Latin of his major work he continues to revise and expand throughout his life.

The Geneva Call

Calvin could have continued his brilliant career as an intellectual without a providential accident. He wants to go to Strasbourg. The direct route is closed because of war. It must pass through Geneva. Geneva has adopted the Reformation, under the influence of the reformer Guillaume Farel. The latter, hearing the presence of Calvin Geneva, immediately think ...
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