Your thoughts on Augustus Toplady?

Discussion in 'Theology and Doctrine' started by Old Christendom, Apr 6, 2013.

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  1. Old Christendom

    Old Christendom Well-Known Member

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    "Historic proof of the doctrinal Calvinism of the Church of England : including among other particulars, I. A brief account of some eminent persons..." by the Reverend Augustus Montague Toplady.

    You can read the book online here.

    Calvin influenced, by letter, the reformation of the 1549 BCP. Cranmer's 1552 BCP, with Bucer's help, emerged.

    Cranmer, so highly impressed by Calvin, wrote to Calvin to write often to Edward VI.

    Hooker, "Calvin was the wisest man ever produced by the French Church."

    Bishop Morton, "Calvin had eminent judgment in Scriptures."

    Bishop Stillingfleet re: Calvin. "That eminent servant of God."
    Joseph Scalinger. "Hard to forbear any man who did not highly esteem John Calvin."

    Bishop Hooper, highly esteeming Calvin and before his death in the Marian persecution (1555), wrote Calvin from prison, beseeching Monsieur Jean's prayer. Let it be noted that Calvin heard of the ghastly persecutions.

    Bishops Jewel, Abbot and Ussher honour John Calvin.

    Toplady observes that the Universities (Oxford and Cambridge) revered Calvin "until the debaucheries of Laud."

    Calvin writes to (the future ABC) John Whitgift in 1561 in general favour of the Elizabethan Prayer Book of 1559. (We'd add, let all Presbyterians at Westminster, Reformed and other anti-BCP institutions be advised.)

    Whitgift notes that Calvin allowed episcopal sees.

    While the Puritan hotheads were rising in the later part of Elizabeth's reign, Beza wrote Bishop Whitgift in 1591 on two fronts: distancing himself from the Puritan hotheads and giving general approbation to episcopal government.

    Bishop Bancroft, later Archbishop of Canterbury, a Calvinist, produces letters by the Italian Reformer, Zanchius, approving of episcopacy.

    Swiss Reformers, Calvin, Beza, Zanchius, Sadeel, Bullinger and Gualter, did not oppose decency and order in Prayer Book worship.

    Earnest efforts were undertaken during the Marian period of Popedom to extinquish the Protestant and Anglican Bishops' views of gratituous and unconditional election, invincible grace, justification without works, predestination, and total depravity. Why? It undercut Romanism on all fronts.

    Toplady rightly affirms that Arminianism and Romanism on grace, free will, justification and works are similar.

    Queen Mary 1 outlaws all books--in England and at the Universities--by Luther, Oecolampadius, Zwingli, Calvin, Bucer, Peter Martry, Latimer, Hooper, Coverdale, Tyndale, Cranmer or "other Protestant predestinarians whose names are enumerated here."

    John Rogers, Lecturer in Divinity at St. Paul's, a Protestant, Reformed Anglican, put to death at Smithfield, 4 Feb 1555.

    Laurence Saunders, Cathedral of Lichfield, writes his wife before death (at the stake) about the gratituity of justification and the invincible work of God's grace and assurance. The "seal of final perseverence" is given to us. We are a "peculiar and elect people." Burned 8 Feb 1555 for the Protestant, Reformed and Anglican faith.

    Dr. Rowland Taylor, Rector in Suffolk, writes admirably of the Reformation and "the diffusion of the Gospel." He speaks of Thomas Bilney and the congregation "getting rooted in the Scriptures." Taylor was a Doctor of Canon and Civil Laws to wit, a lawyer. Toplady said Tayloer had the "piety of Calvin, the intrepidity of Luther, and the orthodoxy of both." The Papist Bishop, Edmund Bonner, degraded him and hit him on the breast with his Papist crozier. Taylor burned 9 Feb 1555, a Protestant, Reformed and Anglican martyr.

    Four days before death on 9 Feb 1555, Dr. Taylor wrote that Abraham was justified by faith, by grace, by promise and not by works as evinced in Romans 4 and Galatians, and that Abraham's faith in Genesis 22 was the fruit of a long-held status of justification. Justification, like faith, was a gift. If not a gift, then a person has a right to self-glory.

    Thomas Causton and Thomas Higbed speak to Bishop Bonner. A Catholic Church, built on the Apostles and Prophets, for whom Christ died, forgiven because of Christ's merits alone, justified freely, and all effected by Christ alone for "His people." Yes, limited and efficacious atonement. They too were burned at the stake.
     
  2. Celtic1

    Celtic1 Well-Known Member

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    The victims of Calvin's theocracy might have thought it was too bad that Calvin didn't get what he gave Servetus.
     
  3. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I respect Calvin as a zealous Christian, etc., but it doesn't mean his theology was right. These quotes mean nothing. I agree with Thomas Aquinas in many things and think he was a great man, so does that make me a papist-thomist?
     
  4. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Hooper is quoted with approval despite the fact that he was an Anti-Vestarian and his heresies would be rejected & condemned in the 1560s.

    Joseph Scaliger is quoted despite having nothing to do with the church, so whoever put this list together, and I hope it wasn't you Old Christendom, tried to pass off a willful falsehood.

    The rest of your quotes contain a long list of Bullinger, Beza et al. not outright rejecting the Prayerbook, as if that were to prove something. It is an rhetorical tactic of making the list seem larger than it is.

    There is an implicit effort to take quotations from the 16th century only, as if the rest of our Church history is less important and doesn't matter, which is an intrinsically anti-Church position and unworthy of serious comment. He who can only appreciate a narrow artificially-constructed period of a few decades out of the whole FIVE HUNDRED YEARS of the recent Church is automatically against the Church as a whole.

    Then we have this eye-popping doozy:

    "Bishop Bancroft, later Archbishop of Canterbury, a Calvinist, produces letters by the Italian Reformer, Zanchius, approving of episcopacy. "

    Bancroft spent his whole life opposing the Puritans and was a big player in the anti-Calvinist phalanx. He, and they, wrote against irresistible grace, rejected Presbyterian government, taught the divine right of bishops, and other such sundry topics. The fact that they won, and that Anglican history follows their track shows us that the Anglican church can be characterized in THEIR image, and is as far from Calvinism as can be.

    I will add that everyone knows that Hooker spent a large part of the Ecclesiastical Polity criticizing Puritans and Calvin's establishment at Geneva. He also preached synergistic sermons.
     
  5. Old Christendom

    Old Christendom Well-Known Member

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    I took those comments from a blog I usually read. Obviously, that mistake about Bancroft is regrettable.

    However, the topic itself is Augustus Toplady's book which I linked to in the beginning of the post. His main contention is that Reformed theology was the theology of the Church of England during the Reformation. That Arminianism largely triumphed after the Caroline Divines is a known fact by all.
     
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  6. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    Yes, Hooker confirms what you say--if you're reading the edited, expurgated versions perpetuated by the Tractarians. Just as Tractarians misread Cranmer and the Anglican Formularies, they also deliberately twist Hooker's words to make it seem as if he is opposed to Calvinism. Nothing could be further from the truth. Hooker wasn't a Puritan. But he was by no means an Arminian. His theology was Calvinist and in line with Cranmer's sympathies.
     
  7. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Who ever suggested that Cranmer was a part of a movement that didn't exist for another 300 years. Honestly, who are you having this argument with? At least be accurate about what Cranmer said. From my reading its clear he was a proponent of the pneumenal presence of Christ, which coincidentally was simular the Calvin's stance on the Lords Supper. And while I don't agree with either, it's obvious that both disavowed memorialism. Are you sure you're even a Calvinist. You seem more like a Zwinglian to me.
     
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  8. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    Zwingli's view was not "mere" memorialism. That's a modern view of the Baptists and Anabaptists. If you read the Consensus of Tigerinus, written by Calvin, btw, there is clearly agreement between the Zwinglians and the Calvinists. The Lutherans, however, would not sign due to the Westphal controversy.

    Cranmer's view was that those who are not true believers eat only bread and wine. The Lutherans held that even without faith the body and blood of Christ is present in, with and under the creatures of bread and wine because they held that the human nature of Christ is omnipresent after the resurrection and not just locally present at the right hand of the Father in heaven.

    Spiritual presence is in the sacrament, not the elements of communion. That means that the emblems or outward signs are empty signs if anyone takes the sacrament who is not doing so "worthily". Worthy participation means that they have a "lively and true faith". That is not "mere" memorialism, since by faith the participant is truly and "spiritually" eating the body and drinking the blood of Christ "by faith". It is a spiritual reception that is only possible by faith and through the agency of the Holy Spirit. Thus, the sacrament is an outward "sign" of an "inward grace." The catechism of the 1662 BCP says that as well.

    Peace,

    Charlie
     
  9. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    To be Anglican means you accept the Anglican Formularies. If you reject those, you're not Anglican. Scripture alone is the Word of God.
     
  10. highchurchman

    highchurchman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I couldn't agree more, words of sense. We have to ask however, when have we said differently?

    As orthodox, or traditional catholics we believe in Revelation, Scripture and the Seven Councils. As has been said before, the Councils and the early fathers , for Anglicans , interpret and explain the Scriptures and it isn't left to every Tom ,Dick or Harry to turn their hand at the matter!
     
  11. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    You're being deceptive, sir. There is only one Revelation and that Revelation is Holy Scripture alone. The canon of Scripture is listed in Article 6. Also, the Anglican Formularies only endorse the Apostles' Creed, the Nicene Creed, the Athanasian Creed and the Definition of Chalcedon. Therefore, your assertion that the Anglican Reformation includes the 7 ecumenical councils is blatantly false.
     
  12. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Do you recognize the authority of the 4 Councils Charlie? Most Anglicans going back to Henry the VIII recognize the 4 councils.
     
  13. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    Do you recognize the authority of Holy Scripture?

    Article XXI


    General Councils may not be gathered together without the commandment and will of princes. And when they be gathered together, forasmuch as they be an assembly of men, whereof all be not governed with the Spirit and word of God, they may err and sometime have erred, even in things pertaining to God. Wherefore things ordained by them as necessary to salvation have neither strength nor authority, unless it may be declared that they be taken out of Holy Scripture.


    I should add that the Thirty-Nine Articles also say that the creeds are only true as they draw their warrant from Holy Scripture:

    Article VIII​


    Of the Three Creeds​


    The three Creeds, Nicene Creed, Athanasius' Creed, and that which is commonly called the Apostles' Creed, ought thoroughly to be received and believed; for they may be proved by most certain warrants of Holy Scripture.


     
  14. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely. Do you consider the 4 Councils unscriptural?
     
  15. highchurchman

    highchurchman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    If you would like to read just a little further about the English reformation, you would find that the Anglican Church believed in Four Councils as being Christological, two being explanatory and one being about manners! (Field: On the Church.) These were the seven ecumenical councils. This was affirmed by the Anglican Convocation in 1536 & 42, as well as 1572. The Parliament , which was composed of Anglicans only, affirmed in the first year of Eliza, that the Councils were the basis of Anglican Authority and could be used in cases of heresy. The formula, which was repeated oftimes was the first four and as many others as necessary! I don't need to deceive, the truth is written oft enough for those who seek it and its easy to find.As has been written on this board oftimes, the 39 Articles are subsiduary to the Seven Councils of the Church! Further, if you bothered to read the comments posted, you would realise that the Seven Councils of Bishops, interpret scripture, it is Christ who revealed.
     
  16. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    Be that as it may, the Thirty-Nine Articles trump all creeds and church councils. The Articles specifically state that church councils can and do err.

    I reject icons and prayers to the saints as idolatry. I care not for any ecumenical council that says otherwise. Further, the Thirty-Nine Articles affirm that whatever is not taught in Scripture is not binding in matters of salvation:

    Article VI

    Of the sufficiency of the Holy Scripture for Salvation

    Holy Scripture containeth all things necessary to salvation: so that whatsoever is not read therein, nor may be proved thereby, is not to be required of any man, that it should be believed as an article of the faith, or be thought requisite or necessary to salvation.

    As Article VIII clearly says, the creeds only have authority as they draw their warrant from Scripture. The same goes for church councils.

    I do accept the creeds that deal with the Trinity and Christology, including the dyothelite view of 681 A.D.

    Charlie
     
  17. Celtic1

    Celtic1 Well-Known Member

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    Well, something we agree on finally. I posted much the same before you arrived.
     
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  18. Celtic1

    Celtic1 Well-Known Member

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    That's not quite what the Articles affirm, now is it? Scripture is primary and final. The Articles affirm that. Not even the Articles are above scripture. Are you sure you're Anglican?
     
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  19. Charlie J. Ray

    Charlie J. Ray Active Member

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    I accept the first four ecumenical church councils for the most part. The creeds are the product of those councils. I do not give a blanket endorsement to church councils and neither do the 39 Articles.
     
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  20. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member

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    If councils can and do err, as the 39 Articles do affirm, then the 39 Articles cannot trump all creeds and church councils, since it is a product of a church council. At most it can be held on equal footing with other church councils. But considering it was only a regional council and relied on the affirmations of the earlier ecumenical councils, then I would argue the council which drew up the Articles is subservient to them. But, of course, all are subservient to the Word of God written. I don't think anyone here would say otherwise. Which again causes me to question who exactly you're arguing with Charlie.
     
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