Bill Mounce has a new addition to the free resources available at BiblicalTraining.org, Louis Berkhof’s Systematic Theology.
Available as either a PDF or ePub, this is a classic text in Reformed thought. Below, Mounce give us an introduction to Berkhof and the influence he had on 20th century theology.
“1873-1957. American Calvinist theologian. Born in the Netherlands, he emigrated as a child to the USA, where his family joined the Christian Reformed Church, at that time still small and using the Dutch language. Attracted to the ministry, he attended and graduated from the church's fledgling Calvin Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He went on to postgraduate work at Princeton and after a brief pastorate was called to teach at Calvin Seminary (1906). There he spent three decades as teacher, and from him almost every Christian Reformed preacher learned systematic theology.
During the 1920s he played a leading role in the controversies of the day, including the debates over Herman Hoeksema's “hyper-Calvinism,” which led to Hoeksema's formation of the Protestant Reformed Church. Berkhof's main interest was in systematics, and he followed closely the Dutch Calvinist theologians Abraham Kuyper and C. Hodge and B.B. Warfield. Berkhof wrote extensively; his major work is his Reformed Dogmatics (3 vols., 1932), which in popularized form (Manual of Reformed Doctrine, 1933) was used extensively in the schools of the Christian Reformed Church. His last book, written at eighty, was The Second Coming of Christ (1953).”