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'With Him in Heavenly Realms': Lombard and Calvin on merit and the exaltation of Christ

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Author(s)

T. Robert Baylor

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Abstract

Peter Lombard argued that Christ merited his own exaltation. Since all humans attain their end by merit, and since Christ was true man, it follows that Christ merited exaltation for himself. Calvin repeatedly rejects this idea, arguing that Lombard obscures the fully benevolent character of Christ's mission because he abstracts Christ's humanity from his divinity. Calvin's polemic against Lombard leverages his anti-Pelagian critique against medieval theologies of merit that reduce Christ's capacity as a representative and restrict the church's full participation in Christ's atonement. Instead, Calvin attempts to establish the substitutionary character of Christ's work by rooting Christ's merits in more strictly christological grounds.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-175
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Systematic Theology
Volume17
Issue number2
Early online date2 Mar 2015
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2015

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