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Calvin and World Missions 1


 Calvin and Missions

We shall always find it hard to love the man, John Calvin, who darkened the human soul with the most absurd and blasphemous conception of God in all the long and honored history of nonsense. Will Durant

Like his dear Lord Jesus, John Calvin has often been wounded in the
house of his friends.   Some Christians - who should rejoice in his ministry -practically hate him as much as Rome ever did. All manner of things
have been spoken and written against him. Often these are without
any foundation at all. One such falsehood - and no lie is of the truth
(1 John 2:21) - is that Calvin had no burden for souls. 
Colin Maxwell

 It was 1990 when I received my first introduction to John Calvin. I was a Christian for only two years and I was sitting in a soteriology class listening to the professor talk about the different views of salvation.  After class I met with the professor to get some clarification.  I explained to him my thoughts concerning the order of salvation and asked if that was what he was teaching.  It was not, and went on to explain that the position I expressed was known as Calvinism. I did not know what that meant and he went on to explain who John Calvin was and what he believed.  It made sense to me, but my professor and most of the student body vehemently disagreed.  They may not have stated their opinion as bluntly, but Jimmy Swaggert’s oft-quoted assessment of Calvin covers their sentiments well: “Calvin has caused untold millions of souls to be damned.”

            Is this true?  Is John Calvin personally responsible for damning millions of souls? Or, is he a man who can teach us much about evangelistic zeal and missionary outreach?  Over several posts, i will argue that history testifies to the latter. Calvin was a man passionate about the gospel and zealous to see it proclaimed throughout the whole world.