John Owen 's Holy Spirit

1235 Words5 Pages
JOHN OWEN’S VINDICATION OF HOLY SPIRIT’S DEITY AND ITS BENEFITS FOR BELIEVERS
Against the Socinians, John Owen vindicated the deity of the Holy Spirit, as well as his benefits for believers, within a Christological context. The Socinians were not the only opponents Owen dealt with, but they were notorious for their anti-Trinitarian views. On Owen’s theological engagement, Crawford Gribben assessed the Socinian threat as a gift to Owen for drawing “attention to the ambiguity of the boundaries of orthodoxy permitted by the state,” and that Owen “took advantage of the moral panic.” While it is true that Owen produced theological works in response to Socinianism, Owen regarded Socinianism as a major threat. The same applies to other
…show more content…
Before examining the doctrines of Socinian and those of Owen, however, it is important to consider the historical context of these theological controversies.
Historical Context
John Owen’s Context
John Owen (1616-1683) was born in Stadhampton, near Oxford, to Henry Owen, a man of Puritan sympathies. After finishing local grammar school, Owen matriculated at Queen’s College, Oxford, in 1631. Owen achieved his Bachelor of Arts in 1632. He finished his Master of Arts studies in 1635 and ordained deacon. Then Owen engaged in a 7-year course for a Bachelor of Divinity. In 1642, Owen published A Display of Arminianism, the first among many of his works. Owen soon received much attention and was invited to preach before Parliament.
In 1649, after the execution of Charles, Owen again preached to parliament. Here, Oliver Cromwell was present and chose Owen as his chaplain. Owen was then appointed Dean of Christ Church, Oxford, in 1651. In the following year, Owen became vice-chancellor and served until 1657. As a preacher who joined Cromwell’s revolution, Owen’s appointment was a symbolic victory over monarchy. In other words, the new appointments to key university positions were symbolic of the wider ambitions of the Cromwellian administration.
As the “Oxford Reformer,” as Gribben put it, Owen promoted Calvinistic piety that transcended the political and cultural division of the university. In 1651, for example, Owen outlined the qualities of Calvinistic piety when he
Get Access