February 20, 2016

Edward Reynolds (1599–1676) on God’s General and Special Love

Insomuch that even in God himself (to whom these passions are but by an anthropopathy attributed) that more general love of his providence and preservation (which is common to all his creatures) is (if I may so speak) of a lower degree (though not in respect of any intention or remission in his will, but only the effects thereof towards the things themselves) than that more special love of adoption, which he extendeth only to those, whom he vouchsafeth to make one in him, who was ‘unigenitus’ and ‘dilectus’ from everlasting.


Note that Reynolds, a Westminster divine, connects God's general love with His "providence and preservation" that is "common to all his creatures." Biblically, and historically among all mainstream Calvinists, God's providential bounties that extend to all men are indicative of God's common, general or beneficent love.

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