"I think, if people actually read Calvin, rather than read Max Weber, he would be rebranded. He is a very respectable thinker. And one of the crucial things he brings to me, is that the encounter with another being is an . . . occasion in which you can, to the best of your ability, honour the other person as being someone sent to you by God."
She maintains that – behind the one-dimensional, fire-and-brimstone iconoclast of popular lore – there is a way to read Calvin which will change the way we see everyone.
"He says that, if a person offends you, Christ is waiting to take the guilt of the offence on himself; so you have to consider the other person, in a sense, exonerated, even in the course of his offence towards you. [There] is always the question 'what does God want out of this situation?' To me this is extremely beautiful – in a way, the most beautiful articulation of the Christian ethic I have ever seen."
Tuesday, September 03, 2013
What Calvin brought to Marilynne Robinson
Oh, I do so like this piece on Marilynne Robinson, which John Piper tweeted today. She is on my wishful dinner-guest list. I think she’d have a pleasant evening conversing with George Eliot and Christina Rossetti. In this interview she says all manner of interesting things about writing and finding out where your imagination lives, about sermons and clergy, about the so called “problem” of predestination. But what I particularly like today is this comment on what she learnt from Calvin: