President Emeritus and Professor Emeritus of Church History
Dr. Godfrey has taught church history at Westminster Seminary California since 1981, having previously taught at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Stanford University, and Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia. He is an ordained minister in the United Reformed Churches in North America. He is the author of several books, including Learning to Love the Psalms, An Unexpected Journey: Discovering Reformed Christianity (P&R, 2004), John Calvin: Pilgrim and Pastor (Crossway, 2010) and co-author of Westminster Seminary California: A New Old School (WSC, 2012). In 2010, a festschrift was published in his honor entitled Always Reformed: Essays in Honor of W. Robert Godfrey, edited by R. Scott Clark and Joel E. Kim.
PLENARY I & II: Why Dort Happened, or Why Arminius Is Not the Hero of the Story
We will consider the historical and theological background to the synod, examining particularly the role of Arminius. We will see that Arminius does not deserve his modern reputation as a victim of mean Calvinists, and that the synod was necessary to save the Reformation.
J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics
Dr. Horton has taught apologetics and theology at Westminster Seminary California since 1998. He is an ordained minister in the United Reformed Churches in North America. Additionally, Dr. Horton is host of the White Horse Inn, a nationally syndicated, weekly radio talk show exploring issues of Reformation theology in American Christianity. He is also editor-in-chief of Modern Reformation magazine. Dr. Horton is author of more than twenty books. His most recent publications are Pilgrim Theology: Core Doctrines for Christian Disciples (Zondervan, 2010), Calvin on the Christian Life: Glorifying and Enjoying God Forever (Crossway Books, 2014), and Ordinary: Sustainable Faith in a Radical, Restless World (Zondervan, 2014), Core Christianity: Finding Yourself in God’s Story (Zondervan, 2016).
PLENARY III: A Real Atonement for Real Sinners
Did Jesus make salvation possible for all or did he actually save his people from their sins? Although many Christians claim to be “4-Point Calvinists,” the “L” in TULIP (“Limited Atonement”) is indispensable. It’s not the result merely of systematic coherence but of scriptural teaching. Furthermore, your view on this doctrine reflects broader assumptions about sin and redemption. Only hypothetical sinners need a hypothetical atonement.
Professor of Church History and Historical Theology
Dr. Clark has taught at Westminster Seminary California since 1997, during which time he also served as Academic Dean (1997-2000), and has also taught at Wheaton College, Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, and Concordia University, Irvine. He has been a minister in the Reformed Church in the United States and is presently a minister in the United Reformed Churches in North America. He has served congregations in Missouri and California. Among his publications are Always Reformed: Essays in Honor of W. Robert Godfrey (co-editor and contributor) and Recovering the Reformed Confession.
PLENARY IV: Unconditional Election and the Free Offer of the Gospel
One of the first points the orthodox Reformed reaffirmed years before the Great Synod of Dort, is that God freely offers salvation to all in the “serious” and “promiscuous” or free and well-meant offer of the gospel. We offer the good news to all with the confidence that God has graciously chosen his people, in Christ, from all eternity. This is a valuable, biblical truth well grounded in Scripture, in the Canons, which we need to appreciate again in our day.
Professor of Biblical Languages
Dr. Telfer is a minister in the Presbyterian Church in America. Prior to joining the faculty of WSC in 2011, he served as pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church (OPC) in the Chicago area for nine years and as Adjunct Professor of Greek at Mid-America Reformed Seminary for seven years. He has served as a pastor in North Carolina and as an Orthodox Presbyterian missionary in Eritrea where he learned to preach in Tigrinya (a sister language to Hebrew). He is the author of Wrestling with Isaiah: The Exegetical Methodology of Campegius Vitringa (1659-1722), published by Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht. He is the translator of Vitringa’s The Spiritual Life published by Reformation Heritage Books (forthcoming) and author of a number of articles in various theological journals.
PLENARY V: Dort and the Holy Exercises of Piety
A pastoral concern for the well-being of Christ’s sheep motivated the Synod of Dort from its inception to the final formulation of its statements. In this lecture we explore the Synod’s interest in practical godliness, and the relevance of its teaching for the practice of the Christian life today.
President and Assistant Professor of New Testament
Rev. Kim has taught New Testament at Westminster Seminary California since 2005 and in May 2017 was appointed as the fourth president of WSC. He is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church in America and has served as Associate Pastor of Segaero Presbyterian Church in Los Angeles. Rev. Kim taught historical and systematic theology at Calvin Theological Seminary and International Theological Seminary in Los Angeles, as well as in Taiwan and Indonesia. He is the son of a pastor in the Christian Reformed Church. He has served on the English Ministry pastoral staff of Korean-American churches during his M.Div. studies at Westminster Seminary California and subsequent to his graduation in 1997, in California and Michigan.
PLENARY VI: The Relevance of Dort in Oprah’s America
The Synod of Dort is a model of the church at work, expressing the mind and hearts of the saints as they reflected deeply on the Word of God. Both the assembly and the Canons it produced are not mere artifacts of history, but a continuing resource to contemporary Christians as the modern church in many places struggle to understand and expound the truth so clearly taught in the Canons, namely the amazing grace of God in our salvation.