One of the first dogmaticians is Isidore of Seville (died in AD 636).  His writings, which encompass everything there was to be known at the time, are grammatical, historical, archeological, dogmatic, moral, and ascetic in nature.  He brought classical and patristic learning to his people, offering extracts from pagan and Christian works, but nothing original.  In his Etymologies (in twenty books), he speaks, in Book 6, of Scripture; in Book 7, about God, angels, prophets, apostles, clergy, and believers; in Book 8, of the church; and, in Book 9, about the nations.  His Three Books of Sentences Concerning the Supreme Good is excerpted especially from Augustine and Gregory and was a model for medieval collectors of sentences.  Book I treats of God, creation, time, the world, sin, angels, humanity, the soul, Christ, the Holy Spirit, the church, heresy, law, Scripture, Old and New Covenants, prayer, baptism, martyrdom, miracles, the Antichrist, and the end of the world.  Books II and III are ethical in content.  Isidore’s work is a compendium that delivered the theological capital of previous centuries to the Germanic people.  But, an independent treatment of this legacy was not achieved.

From: Reformed Dogmatics: Volume 1: Prolegomena by Herman Bavinck; translated from the Dutch by John Vriend (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2003), p. 141.  The translation is of the second Dutch edition (1906).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s