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A Treatise on True Theology with the Life of Franciscus Junius (Junius)

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Reformation Heritage Books
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Franciscus Junius (1545–1602) was an influential pastor and professor during the developmental years of Reformed orthodoxy. As a skilled linguist, biblical exegete, and theologian, Junius shaped the Reformed tradition in profound ways.

Junius’s Treatise on True Theology is a scholastic introduction to the discipline of theology. He reflects on the definition of theology, where it comes from, and the variety of modes it takes. This book set a lasting pattern for many Reformed theologians in their approach to dogmatics, establishing a benchmark for theological prolegomena for years to come. Accompanying this work is The Life of Franciscus Junius, which provides an autobiographical account of the tumultuous days of Junius’s life and the complex circumstances that the Reformed churches faced during the French and Spanish wars of religion.

Although Junius’s significance in the history of Protestant theology is increasingly valued by historians, most of his impressive body of works is not available to English-speaking readers. David C. Noe’s fine translation of these two important writings will certainly rectify this deficit. Readers are further aided by Willem van Asselt’s valuable introductory essay, which offers a scholarly perspective on the treatise and on Junius’s life and work in the context of the rise of Reformed scholasticism and orthodoxy.

Table of Contents:

The Life of Franciscus Junius


The Life of Franciscus Junius

The Death of Master Franciscus Junius

A Treatise on True Theology


Thirty-Nine Theses Are Demonstrated in this Treatise

1. Whether True Theology Exists

2. What Theology Is

3. How Many Parts Theology Contains

4. Archetypal Theology

5. What Ectypal Theology Is, and in How Many Parts It Consists

6. The Theology of Union in Christ

7. The Theology of Vision in the Heavens

8. The Theology of Revelation in This Life

9. In How Many Parts the Mode of Communicating Theology Exists

10. Natural Theology

11. Supernatural Theology

12. What Theology Stated Absolutely Is

13. The Material Cause of Our Theology

14. The Formal Cause of Our Theology

15. The Efficient Cause of Our Theology

16. The End of Our Theology

17. Theology in the Subject

18. The Conclusion of the Work



Franciscus Junius (1545–1602) taught theology at the Casimirianum Neustadt, the University of Heidelberg, and the University of Leiden.



 “Lambert Daneau (1530–1595) described Franciscus Junius as ‘a man of singular learning’—and that he was. His biblical scholarship was cited widely by writers from a variety of traditions in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. His influence on the Reformed tradition has been profound, even if not all Reformed folk are aware of it. Now, English readers will be able to see for themselves why that was. This work, with Willem van Asselt’s introduction and Junius’s moving and delightful autobiography, is a most valuable source for the continuing recovery of the Reformed tradition and a window into the theology and piety of classic Reformed theology.” — R. Scott Clark, professor of church history and historical theology, Westminster Seminary California

“The present volume is a significant effort on several counts. It presents an invaluable and highly influential work to contemporary students of Reformed thought. It offers the first English translation of Junius’s autobiography, a work published posthumously in the seventeenth-century edition of Junius’s complete works. It also offers,by way of the introduction, a perspective on the treatise and on Junius’s life and work in the context of the rise of Reformed scholasticism and orthodoxy.” — Richard A. Muller, from the foreword

“True Theology is an excellent example that early modern Reformed theology was not a rationalistic, deterministic, or decreetal system, but rather a relational enterprise, determined by and determinative of the divine–human relationship.The important role Junius played in helping shape this Reformed tradition and the significance of his True Theology for the development of Reformed dogmatics cannot be overestimated.” — Willem J. van Asselt, from the introduction