Synopsis Purioris Theologiae / Synopsis of a Purer Theology

Latin Text and English Translation: Volume 1, Disputations 1-23


This bilingual edition of the Synopsis Purioris Theologiae (1625) makes available for the first time to English readers a seminal treatise of Reformed Scholasticism. Composed by four professors of Leiden University (Johannes Polyander, Andreas Rivetus, Antonius Walaeus, and Anthonius Thysius) , it gives an exhaustive yet concise presentation of Reformed theology as it was conceived in the first decades of the seventeenth century. From a decidedly Reformed perspective, the Christian doctrine is defined in contrast with alternative or opposite views (Catholic, Spiritualist, Arminian, Socinian). Both on the academic level and on the ecclesiastical level, the Synopsis responds to challenges coming from the immediate context of the early seventeenth century. The disputations of this first volume cover topics such as Scripture, doctrine of God, Trinity, creation, sin, Law and Gospel. Volume One was published in 2014; volume Two will come out in the second half of 2016; Volume Three, the final volume, is scheduled for 2018.
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Biographical Note

R.T. (DOLF) TE VELDE (1974), Ph.D. (2010). Postdoctoral researcher at the Theological University Kampen. Author of The Doctrine of God in Reformed Orthodoxy, Karl Barth, and the Utrecht School (Brill, 2013). RIEMER A. FABER (1961), Ph.D. (1992). Associate Professor of Greek and Latin Philology, Department of Classical Studies, University of Waterloo, and Director of the Waterloo Institute for Hellenistic Studies. WILLEM J. VAN ASSELT (1946-2014), Ph.D. (1988), was retired honorary senior lecturer in Church History at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Since 2008 he was Professor of Historical Theology at the Evangelische Theologische Faculteit in Leuven (Belgium). W.A. (WILLIAM) DEN BOER (1977), Ph.D. (2008). Postdoctoral researcher in Early Modern Reformed Theology at the Theological University Kampen, and Research Associate at the Jonathan Edwards Centre, University of the Free State, South Africa. Author of God’s Twofold Love. The Theology of Jacob Arminius (1559-1609) (Vandenhoeck&Ruprecht, 2010).

Review Quote

“This book includes an impressive critical apparatus. The original Latin text and the English translation appear face-to-face on every page, offering access for further academic study and comparison. Footnotes provide detail on church fathers, theological terms, and issues referred to in the text, making it easier to follow. The editors have also included an excellent glossary of Latin theological concepts and terms. In addition, a general index and index of scriptural references serve as helpful tools to use this text more effectively. An extensive bibliography of primary and secondary works provides opportunities for those who intend to pursue additional research.” Martin I. Klauber, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. In: Renaissance Quarterly, Vol. 69, No. 1 (Spring 2016), pp. 338-339. “The translation by Riemer Faber is fluid, accurate, and readable. … With this new edition of the Synopsis, the editors and translator have made an important treatise of Reformed scholasticism accessible to a much wider audience. Their efforts are commendable, and we anticipate the subsequent volumes that will complete the set.” Keith D. Stanglin, Austin Graduate School of Theology. In: Calvin Theological Journal, Vol. 50, No. 2 (2015), pp. 318-320. “impressive … a valuable contribution to the study of historic Reformed theology.” Wes Bredenhof, Free Reformed Church of Launceston, Australia. In: The Confessional Presbyterian, Vol. 11 (2015), pp. 220-222.

Table of contents

Acknowledgements List of Abbreviations Introduction Praefatio Ad Illustrissimos, Potentissimosque Hollandiae Westfrisiaeque Ordines. DISPUTATIO I. De Sacrosancta Theologia. DISPUTATIO II. De Sacrae Scripturae Necessitate et Auctoritate. DISPUTATIO III. De Libris Canonicis et Apocryphis. DISPUTATIO IV. De Sacrae Scripturae perfectione, et inutili traditionum non scriptarum ad eam adjectione. DISPUTATIO V. De Sacrae Scripturae Perspicuitate et Interpretatione. DISPUTATIO VI. De natura Dei et divinis attributis. DISPUTATIO VII. De Sacrosancta Trinitate. DISPUTATIO VIII. De Persona Patris et Filii. DISPUTATIO IX. De Persona Spiritus Sancti. DISPUTATIO X. De Mundi Creatione. DISPUTATIO XI. De Providentia Dei. DISPUTATIO XII. De Angelis Bonis ac Malis. DISPUTATIO XIII. De Homine ad imaginem Dei creato. DISPUTATIO XIV. De Lapsu Adami. DISPUTATIO XV. De Peccato Originali. DISPUTATIO XVI. De Peccato Actuali. DISPUTATIO XVII. De Libero Arbitrio. DISPUTATIO XVIII. De Lege Dei. DISPUTATIO XIX. De Idololatria. DISPUTATIO XX. De Juramento. DISPUTATIO XXI. De Sabbatho et die Dominico. DISPUTATIO XXII. De Evangelio. DISPUTATIO XXIII. De Veteri et Novo Testamento. Preface addressed to the most honorable and all-powerful States of Holland and West-Friesland Glossary of Concepts and Terms Bibliography Scripture Index General Index


Scholars and students in historical and systematic theology; all those interested in intellectual history of the Early Modern era; classical scholars with an interest in patristic and later Christian literature.