"The Word of God leaves no half life to man, but teaches, that, in regard to life and happiness, he has utterly perished. Paul, when he speaks of our redemption, says not that the half dead are cured (Eph. 2:5, 6; 5:14) but that those who were dead are raised up." From Book II of the Institutes
Institutes of the Christian Religion is one of the most important and straightforward works of theology ever written, yet so few people actually read it. The Christian Heritage Series presents all four books of the Institutes in complete, unabridged, easy-to-read volumes. John Calvin certainly writes good theology, but he also writes with beauty and clarity-and both these aspects are captured in Beveridge's translation. Calvin is concerned that readers not be puffed up with new knowledge, rather he wants us to be drawn to the majesty and holiness of God in order to know our sin and our need for grace. Read this classic to grow closer to God.
Book 2 of the Institutes is about the knowledge of God the redeemer-Jesus Christ. Calvin captures the completeness of our redemption, explaining the depths of our sinfulness and the ways that Jesus Christ is present in both the old and new covenants. The law is a picture of Christ's righteousness, and the gospel is the declaration of Christ's redemption of us. Whether he's unpacking the ten commandments or describing Christ as prophet, priest, and king, Calvin makes Jesus and his work on the cross the center of our theology.
"Please remember that Calvin's goal in writing the Institutes was not to distill out of Scripture the "theology things" that we all ought to be thinking. To do so would be to attempt to replace Scripture. Rather, his goal was to give us a map so that we could run back into Scripture and better understand what we find there. And as we read book II of the Institutes, what we find is that throughout Scripture what we should always see is Christ set before us." From Ben Merkle's Introduction