Where’d All These New Calvinists Come From? A (Serious) Top 10 List from Mark Dever
Of course, theologically, the answer is “because of the sovereignty of God.” But I’ve never been convinced by hyper-Calvinism’s argument that because God has determined the ends, the means don’t matter. Means do matter. And as a Christian, as an historian who had lived through the very change I was considering, I wondered what factors had been used by God.
- Charles H. Spurgeon
- D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
- The Banner of Truth Trust
- Evangelism Explosion
- The inerrancy controversy
- Presbyterian Church in America (PCA)
- J. I. Packer
- John MacArthur and R. C. Sproul
- John Piper
- The rise of secularism and decline of Christian nominalism
Some additional pieces worth reading:
- Trevin Wax’s suggested supplement to Dever’s list, focusing on 9/11.
- Collin Hansen’s CT cover story and the book that brought the conversation into the public square.
If Dever’s list were ongoing and updated, I would also add the following factors (focusing on the American context):
- The publication and explosive success of Wayne Grudem’s Systematic Theology
- The Passion conferences
- September 11, 2011 (per Wax’s suggestion above)
- The role of Christian publishing (Eerdmans, P&R, Baker, and now Crossway and a number of smaller publishers)
- The steady growth of seminaries (e.g., Westminster Theological Seminary, Westminster Seminary California, Covenant Theological Seminary, Reformed Theological Seminary, the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, etc.)
- The rise of organizations devoted to developing and networking around a God-centered, gospel-driven vision. Dever mentions MacArthur, Sproul, and Piper—associated with Grace to You, Ligonier, and Desiring God. To that list could be added the Gospel Coalition, Redeemer City to City, Together for the Gospel, Acts29, 9Marks, Sovereign Grace Ministries, etc.