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In reflecting on this assignment of preparing a suitable essay to honor John Hesselink, I was reminded how much our ecclesiastical and academic paths have crossed thanks to our mutual interest in John Calvin, Herman Bavinck, and Karl Barth more broadly and the relation between theology and law more particularly. At a time that I was floundering in my dissertation work dealing with Herman Bavinck's understanding of the imitation of Christ, it was John's then recently published essay, "Christ, the Law, and the Christian: An Unexplored Aspect of the Third Use of the Law in Calvin's Theology," that helped get me on track. Also, within a one-year span we both produced little books intended to help the Reformed community understand its identity. Then, when we moved within thirty miles of each other, together we became part of a wonderful ecumenical venture in translating and publishing the magisterial Reformed Dogmatics of Herman Bavinck. Finally, he served in a distinguished way as the external reader for Calvin Seminary's first completed Ph.D. dissertation, a project I was supervising on the eschatology of Karl Barth. I count it a privilege to have shared the churchly as well as academic theological task with John Hesselink and am honored to participate in this tribute to his service to Christ and the church.
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