Predestination was one of the most widely discussed theological topics in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries and one of the most complex. In England, as on the continent, intensification of the efforts to spell out just what exactly was intended by the concepts of election and reprobation contributed to the hardening of theological and political lines around the turn of the century. In England, the preparation of the Lambeth Articles by prominent Anglican divines for the purpose of settling a theological dispute at Cambridge University served as a kind of flash point in the discussion: they were intended by their authors to explain what was, in their minds, the consensus interpretation of the position outlined in the Thirty-nine Articles, but they had instead the unintended consequence of clarifying how fragile, even non-existent, the consensus position was.
This book begins with a summary of the understanding of predestination embodied in the Thirty-nine Articles and then moves to the Lambeth Articles, which were composed a generation later. After a close look at the Lambeth Articles themselves, the essay then turns to examine the impact of this debate upon the work of Richard Hooker, one of the pre-eminent Anglican theologians of the late 16th Century. It closes with some thoughts on what Christians in the late 20th Century might learn from the predestination controversy, nearly 400 years later
ISBN: 978 0 946307 41 8