Sir:

     In his recent ET article defending saintly Doddridge against adverse criticism, Dr. Clifford ended by stating,

“Even more at odds with the facts, Dr George Ella asserts that Doddridge’s Calvinism was ‘higher’ than Dr John Gill’s!”

This is incorrect. My original ET article (Feb. 1995), including Doddridge’s balanced analysis of Calvinism, which I share, was radically shortened in the American version. Nevertheless, this version still shows clearly that I look upon Doddridge as being ‘higher’ in his Calvinism than Gill on one of the Five Points only, namely election and reprobation. Concerning allied points, I affirmed that Doddridge disagreed with Gill on justification, but not radically so, and that he fully agreed with Gill that Christ’s sacrifice for the elect also worked out universal benefits. This latter point is commonly denied by those who are ill-termed ‘High Calvinists’ or ‘Hyper-Calvinists’. I believe, as stated in yet a third version of my original manuscript, that Doddridge’s theology was fully consistent with the findings of the Synod of Dort and their rejection of Supralapsarianism (Highest Calvinism). I refer Dr Clifford to the indexed versions of Doddridge’s Lectures on Divinity and Gill’s Body of Divinity for the facts with which I am no wise at odds. Furthermore, I missed Doddridge’s own balanced, but at times highly negative, appraisal of Baxter in Dr. Clifford’s attempt to fit Doddridge into Baxter’s shoes.

George M. Ella, Mülheim