The Call by the Gospel

Hendrik van den Belt

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    According to a common view, the doctrine of the divine calling to salvation –along with the distinction between the outward calling and the inward or effectual calling – is specific for the Reformed tradition. This article, however, argues that the distinction is a catholic one, because it is rooted in the New Testament and from Augustine onward was common in Medieval theology. The early Reformation saw the calling as a proclamation of the Gospel – together with the Law – and emphasized the proclamation of the promises in the form of absolution for the true believers. In the polemics on predestination Calvin
    increasingly stressed the inner work of the Spirit as mark of election. Reformed Orthodoxy defined the inner calling as an effectual calling; the work of the Spirit is essentially the effect of the preaching of the gospel. In the later pietistic understanding the duplex vocatio became intertwined with the modern distinction between subject and object.
    Translated title of the contributionThe Call by the Gospel
    Original languageDutch
    Pages (from-to)23-40
    Number of pages18
    JournalTheologia Reformata
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 1-Mar-2018


    • Call
    • Vocatio
    • Abraham Hellenbroek (1658- 1731)

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