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Historical Theology (Post-Reformation)

The post-Reformation is deep. There's a sense of breadth, but it's the depth which truly grabs you. You can spent a lifetime diving into the history of theological development in the post-reformation period.

Book The Fundamental Meaning Of Theology: Archetypal And Ectypal Theology In Seventeenth-Century Reformed Thought (Willem van Asselt)

Start here. This article is a solid gateway into post-reformation thought. If you don't have a strong grasp on the archetypal/ectypal distinction, your studies will not go far in this period -- and you are missing a critical guard rail against heresy. The archetypal/ectypal went on to fuel Westminster Confession of Faith section 7 and shows up in the Van Til creator-creature diagram, which is the logo for this website.

Book Introduction to Reformed Scholasticism (Willem van Asselt)

Reformed Scholasticism is a term much easier to define than "puritan". It just deals with Reformed theology as developed in and for the seminaries. It's not the opposite of "stuff Pastors do" as is often supposed, but it's the way doctrine is packaged in Pastoral theological training.

Book Dictionary of Latin and Greek Theological Terms (Richard Muller)

With a general understanding of a topic, you're ready to begin your studies. The first step is always terminology. Keep this volume with you during your studies. You're not going to get far without this.

Book Post-Reformation Reformed Dogmatics (Richard Muller)

This is the standard series for historical theology. It's a four volume set which is in and out of print often. You need to buy it when it's available, but it's so big, that the Logos edition is probably a better choice for most people.

Book A Puritan Theology: Doctrine For Life (Joel Beeke and Mark Jones)

This book covers some of the major doctrinal developments in the puritan era. Puritan is a largely undefinable term, but "puritan era" gives you a pointer to the 17th century.


The next few resources are not meant to be read end-to-end. You're meant to refer to them topically.

Book Drawn into Controversie (Michael Haykin, Mark Jones, ed.)

This book is similar to A Puritan Theology, but it's theme thematic. It's a set of essays written by various authors relating to debates around the 17th century.

Book Protestant Scholasticism: Essays in Reassessment (Carl Trueman and R. Scott Clark)

This book crosses the boundary between reformation and post-reformation. It consciously covers various time periods.


With a framework for the time period, and a solid set of compenia, you're ready to zoom in on various special topics.

Book After Calvin (Richard Muller)

What's the relationship between the Reformers and the Reformed? This relationship is the relationship between Calvin and his students.

Book The Doctrine of The Pactum Salutis In The Covenant Theology of Herman Witsius (J. Mark Beach)

A topic which will come up repeatedly in this time period is the pactum salutis. The parallel developers of covenant theology usually stream from an understanding of the pactum salutis.

Book Toward the Pactum Salutis: Locating the Origins of a Concept (Richard Muller)

Where did the development of a pactum salutis originate?

The following three books are part of Muller's smaller compendium series. These represent excellent scholarly examples of how far you can zoom into a topic and still not exhaust it. I worked through these a very long time ago -- I can't recall if I even finished all three; only two of them are highlighed.

Book Calvin and the Reformed Tradition: On the Work of Christ and the Order of Salvation (Richard Muller)

Book Divine Will and Human Choice: Freedom, Contingency, and Necessity in Early Modern Reformed Thought (Richard Muller)

Book Christ and the Decree: Christology and Predestination in Reformed Theology from Calvin to Perkins (Richard Muller)

Primary Sources

Book A Treatise on True Theology (Franciscus Junius)

With an introduction by Willem van Asselt and a forward by Richard Muller, you know you're dealing with something that needs to be on your required reading list.

This is the primary source the article titled "The Fundamental Meaning Of Theology" was referring to. It will help orient you to the correct model of thinking about theology.