From the archive: Scotland ‘largely pagan country’. 8 December 1938

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PROFESSOR A Dewar Gibb of Glasgow University, in a broadcast discussion last night, said he regarded Scotland as “a largely pagan country”.

He was speaking in the Libel on John Calvin? series with Prof G D Henderson, Aberdeen, and the Rev D H C Read, Coldstream. “To my mind, Calvin was a hard and even a cruel man,” said Professor Gibb. “His treatment of his adversaries was hateful. His creed, I believe, fostered spiritual arrogance and self-righteousness, and was in the last resort arbitrary and incomprehensible. I regard the possibility of a Calvinistic revival as deplorable.” The Rev and Prof Henderson contested the arguments. “The whole success of modern advertising is a demonstration of how people will respond to dogmatic assertions,” said Mr Read. “The weakness of the Church seems rather to be that there is not nearly enough dogmatic assertion of the truths by which people can live.”