"A Theological Guide to Calvin's Institutes" fills a gap in the literature for Reformation studies. While much has been written about the Institutes, this book is the first to undertake a section-by-section analysis of John Calvin's magnum opus.
Twenty leading Calvin scholars exhibit a firm understanding of and passion for Calvin's work, covering each part of the Institutes and providing essential background information on the Institutes as well as a bibliography of Calvin resources. Contributors include David B. Calhoun, William Edgar, Michael S. Horton, Robert L. Reymond and Richard B. Gaffin, Jr.
This long-needed work will serve as the natural companion to Calvin's "Institutes of the Christian Religion" for classes, students, pastors, and others for years to come.
Having first read The Institutes in 1978, I always wanted to have something that would help me over the rough spots. This book does just that. Each essay covers a portion of The Institutes and has been written by leaders in the field of Calvinistic studies. These scholars are sympathetic to Calvin but don't follow him blindly. In a few places they mildly disagree with him (but in an agreeable manner). The essays are not difficult to read and offer much help in understanding the structure and reasons for Calvin's magnum opus. Dr. J. I. Packer's Introductory essay is worth its weight in gold. (I have read some descriptions of The Institutes by others who obviously have not read them through or don't understand them very well. It is a work that has been called, "one of the ten greatest books ever penned," and any Christian would profit immensely from reading them.)
Calvin is an extremely careful, Biblical scholar and the work is shot through with warmth and devotion to Christ and a desire to honor God and His sovereignty over His universe.
I think this is going to be a book that will be used in many schools, churches and seminaries and I know I will continue to study it and enjoy the essays many many times. This is a terrific book that should make you want to tackle The Institutes (I have never attended Bible school or seminary). They are well worth the effort. - Dan T