Chapter

The Irreducible Triunity of God: The Reformed Minority Report’s Strict Distinction of the Two Ways of Speaking

Brannon Ellis

in Calvin, Classical Trinitarianism, and the Aseity of the Son

Published in print June 2012 | ISBN: 9780199652402
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191742002 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199652402.003.0007
The Irreducible Triunity of God: The Reformed Minority Report’s Strict Distinction of the Two Ways of Speaking

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This chapter examines the ‘strict distinction’ approach to twofold trinitarian language from the Reformed ‘minority report’ — represented by early seventeenth-century theologians Lucas Trelcatius, Bartholomeus Keckermann, and Johannes Maccovius — who followed most closely Calvin's own emphases. Such a strict distinction is not meant to imply radicality or intensity in distinction — something akin to separation or conceptual opposition between Unity and Trinity — but consistency in distinction. The Calvinian Reformed view demurred from the notion of essential communication and its attendant ontology of the manner of divine procession as inappropriate to classically ruled trinitarian speech. This minority nonetheless, again like Calvin, strongly affirmed both the immanent reality of personal procession and taxis in God, and the aseity that belongs to each person as an integral hypostasis of the one, simple divine essence.

Keywords: John Calvin; consubstantiality; essential communication; eternal generation; Bartholomeus Keckermann; Johannes Maccovius; divine ontology; Lucas Trelcatius; trinitarianism; triunity

Chapter.  12887 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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