Ozment, Steven E. The Age of Reform: 1250-1550 : An Intellectual and Religious History of Late Medieval and Reformation Europe. New Haven, Conn. ; London: Yale University Press, 1980. Kindle Electronic Edition.
Chapter 11, “Calvin and Calvinism” pp. 352-381. Part 5, “Were Calvinists Really Protestants? pp. 372-381.
Ozment here compares the various reform movements. “If modern scholars lament his [Calvin’s] dogmatism and personal vindictiveness, they still consider the movement he inspired more socially and politically progressive than Luther’s” (Ozment 1980, 372). Ozment suggests that many of the political reforms seen in Geneva were actually against the will of the Calvinists but could not be stopped. “A remarkable feature of the later Middle Ages is that theology and religion also had lives of their own independent of larger historical circumstances” (Ozment 1980, 374). Luther’s reforms “offered individuals personal certitude of salvation, already in this life, provided only that they believe it” (Ozment 1980, 374). This goes against our natural inclinations, as we are accustomed to assessing our works to see our status. Ozment asserts that Luther has been accused of emphasizing justification as opposed to other reformers who emphasized sanctification. Yet all Reformers of not stressed that salvation was not caused by good works but would lead to good works. Calvin saw good works as the sign that one was elect. Luther did not see the presence or absence of works as a meaningful sign (Ozment 1980, 39). This was, in Ozment’s view, the distinctive departure from Rome.