Thursday, May 27, 2010

Book Review: The Five Points of Calvinism by Edwin H. Palmer

The Five Points of Calvinism was first published in 1972. Then again in 1980, the year of Edwin Palmer's death. And three decades later, you will still be hard pressed to find a more brief yet thorough treatment of the TULIP of theology. (No, really. I just spent ten minutes looking over my bookcase—to no avail.)

Don't let the cover of this book fool you. Though it says "A Study Guide" on the front, it stands up perfectly fine for personal reading. However, every chapter is followed by over a dozen (sometimes two dozen) in-depth questions about the previous chapter. When I say in-depth, I mean you should probably have a good grasp on the material at hand before leading a group through such questions.

If I had one disappointment, it was that Michael Horton didn't have more to say in the foreword. I thoroughly enjoyed both Christless Christianity and The Gospel-Driven Life and was hoping for more than just a glorified blurb in the front of the book.

However the resource materials in the back were a pleasant surprise, making up for my disappointment in Michael Horton's brevity. Here you will find excerpts addressing the five points of Calvinism from The Belgic Confession of Faith, The Westminster Confession of Faith and the Heidelberg Catechism.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Recommended for: Anyone investigating Calvinism, all those who consider themselves part of the Young, Restless and Reformed

This book was a free review copy provided by Baker Books.

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