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Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion (1536–59) was one of the most influential theologies of the era.Toward the middle of the 16th century, the Reformed began to commit their beliefs to confessions of faith, which would shape the future definition of the Reformed faith.Due to Calvin's missionary work in France, his programme of reform eventually reached the French-speaking provinces of the Netherlands.Calvinism was adopted in the Electorate of the Palatinate under Frederick III, which led to the formulation of the Heidelberg Catechism in 1563, and in Navarre by Jeanne d'Albret.The protestant part of this reformation was considering that the Bible be interpreted by itself, meaning the parts that are harder to understand are examined in the light of other passages where the Bible is more explicit on the matter. Reformed churches may exercise several forms of ecclesiastical polity; most are presbyterian or congregationalist, though some are episcopalian.The term Calvinism can be misleading, because the religious tradition which it denotes has always been diverse, with a wide range of influences rather than a single founder. Calvinism is largely represented by Continental Reformed, Presbyterian, and Congregationalist traditions.Calvinism (also called the Reformed tradition, Reformed Christianity, Reformed Protestantism, or the Reformed faith) is a major branch of Protestantism that follows the theological tradition and forms of Christian practice of John Calvin and other Reformation-era theologians.Calvinists broke from the Roman Catholic Church in the 16th century.
The document demonstrates the diversity as well as unity in early Reformed theology.
The doctrine of justification by faith alone was a direct inheritance from Luther.
John Calvin (1509–64), Heinrich Bullinger (1504–75), Wolfgang Musculus (1497–1563), Peter Martyr Vermigli (1500–62), and Andreas Hyperius (1511–64) belong to the second generation of Reformed theologians.
Calvinism differs from Lutherans on the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, theories of worship, and the use of God's law for believers, among other things.
As declared in the Westminster and Second Helvetic confessions, the core doctrines are predestination and election. Keller, John Piper, David Wells, and Michael Horton.