This course is an introduction to the period of the church of ca. 1625 – 1700, and explores the relationship of Post-Reformation Reformed theology and Medieval, Reformation, and the early modern era, development and codification of Christian doctrine in the Protestant tradition. Attention will be given to primary sources and the transitional moments of continuity and discontinuity of intellectual thought of sixteenth- and seventeenth-century continental Europe, and considers the implications of biblical exegesis, doctrinal formulation and praxis of the Post-Reformation Reformed era in particular. The life and work of Petrus van Mastricht (1630-1706) will be used as a case study. Mastricht was the successor of Gisbertus Voetius (1589-1676) at the University of Utrecht, the summit of 17th century Reformed orthodoxy and orthopraxis, and was a highly recommended theologian for Jonathan Edwards’ (1703-58), asserting,
As to the books you speak of: Mastricht is sometimes in one volume, a very thick, large quarto; sometimes in two quarto volumes. I believe it could not be had new under eight or ten pounds. Turretin is in three volumes in quarto, and would probably be about the same price. They are both excellent. Turretin is on polemical divinity; on the Five Points, and all other controversial points; and is much larger in these than Mastricht; and is better for one that desires only to be thoroughly versed in controversies. But take Mastricht for divinity in general, doctrine, practice, and controversy; or as an universal system of divinity; and it is much better than Turretin or any other book in the world, excepting the Bible, in my opinion. Jonathan Edwards, Letters and Personal Writings, ed. George S. Claghorn and Harry S. Stout, vol. 16, The Works of Jonathan Edwards (New Haven; London: Yale University Press, 1998), 217.