This Systematics course will be taught by Dr. Michael J. Lynch, and will run from July 5 through August 27th. The syllabus is available here.
Are some elected to eternal punishment? Or is damnation always a matter of human, not divine, choice? Is hell locked from the inside or the outside? Such questions have made divine predestination and reprobation one of the most contentious points of Christian belief since the early medieval Augustinian and Pelagian debates. This doctrine and the interpretation of its use in Scripture, especially by the Apostle Paul, reached something of zenith in the early modern period when, just after the Reformation, both Protestants and Roman Catholics attacked their own theologians as well as those of the other part of Western Christendom.
This class will be an introduction to these debates, observing how medieval predestinarianism was both embraced and debated in the early modern period. To that end, special attention will be given to the two great early modern controversies regarding predestination: Congregatio de Auxiliis and the Synod of Dordt. Because of the nature of early modern predestinarian debates, we will also inevitably touch on questions of free choice, theodicy, grace, and human nature.
Dr. Lynch (Ph.D, Calvin Seminary) teaches Humanities, Theology, Latin, and Greek at Delaware Valley Classical School in New Castle, DE.