All Articles For Gritters, Barry

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Prof. Gritters is professor of Practical Theology in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. The Protestant Reformed Churches are a Psalm-singing denomination. They sing Psalms in worship—and little else. The families sing Psalms (as well as good hymns) in their homes—many Psalms. Their children are taught the Psalms in the Christian schools—where Psalms have pride of place. The PRC are gladly Psalm-singing churches. They understand what an old preacher meant when, praising the Psalms, he said: “David has for ages subdued more hearts with his harp than ever with his sword and scepter.” And they believe that one of the instruments God uses to...

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This October 1 issue is the beginning of our 84th year of publishing the Standard Bearer. We thank God for His goodness in preserving the magazine for all these years as a “standard” for the Reformed faith and life. We bear the standard gladly, with the confidence that the God of grace will use it to bless His church and people—worldwide. God give us faithfulness to His Word. A few changes are in store for the coming volume year. The editors and staff express hearty thanks to two writers who are “putting down their pen.” Rev. G. VanBaren, emeritus minister, has...

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Prof. Gritters is professor of Practical Theology in the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Reformation and missions? The Netherlands of the sixteenth century and world evangelism? Some might propose these as new examples of oxymoron. In the early decades after the Lord began reforming His church, the Reformed believers in the Netherlands (and elsewhere, for that matter) did relatively little mission work outside their own lands. But the sixteenth and seventeenth century Reformed in the Lowlands did make important contributions to God’s cause of missions in the world—enduring contributions worthy of note by Reformed churches today. Reasons for inactivity in missions The...

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It is time again for a report of our work here on “Seminary Hill.” We recently passed the mid-point of second semester; next week is Spring Break; after that there are only five more weeks of class until exams. Exams for the returning students, that is. Not for graduating students. The rule in the Theological School Constitution states that the final examination of graduatingstudents will be oral. At synod. In public. No one is more conscious of that than our three senior seminarians. Since they have returned from their internships in January, they have been keenly anticipating the three days of public exams...

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* This editorial concludes the (revised) 2010 graduation message of the Protestant Reformed Seminary, more a sermon than a speech. It appears only now in February because other editorials took precedence this fall and winter. May the message, heard by a goodly number last June, also be of use to the churches and the SB community at large. In this new year, please commit us at the seminary to God in prayer. Good Shepherds God’s Word here, in Ezekiel 34, is not intended so much to warn evil shepherds as it is to comfort the flock whose welfare depends on their...

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* This editorial is the (revised) 2010 graduation message of the Protestant Reformed Seminary, more a sermon than a speech. It appears only now in February because other editorials took precedence this fall and winter. May the message, heard by a goodly number last June, also be of use to the churches and the SB community at large. In this new year, please commit us at the seminary to God in prayer. Graduates, members of the Synod of the Protestant Reformed Churches, Theological School Committee, members of the PRC, family and friends of the graduates, and those who have traveled...

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In this issue’s letters section, we print correspondence from Rev. Douglas Kuiper, who questions the propriety of identifying church and kingdom. I did that in my four editorials entitled, “A (Sharp) Pastoral Warning to Students in Christian Colleges” (Oct. 1, Nov. 1, Nov. 15, Dec. 1). I said, “The kingdom is the church.” In the letters section I briefly answer Rev. Kuiper. I take opportunity in this editorial to address the question more fully. At the heart of his letter is the question, “Is the word is the right word to use when speaking of their (church and kingdom) relationship?”...

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Previous editorial in this series: December 15, 2010, p. 125. Our delightful journey to beautiful Namibia in Africa last summer took place because of the PRCA’s commitment to manifest the unity of Christ’s holy, catholic church. In the providence of God, two books written by PRC ministers, and two believers (a husband and wife wanting to witness to their faith) influenced six small churches in Namibia to invite the PRCA to visit Africa to inform them of the faith and practice of our churches. For that story and a summary of our journeys, see my editorial of December 15, 2010. The Contact...

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This editorial is the story of a delegation from the PRCA’s Contact Committee, two books from the Reformed Free Publishing Association (RFPA), two Reformed believers (husband and wife) who zealously witness to their business clients, and how these all intersect in six small churches in the desert country of Namibia, Africa (which to most Americans is still the “Dark Continent.”) The story is an editorial because it is more than the story of a fascinating trip in a beautiful land teeming with wild animals. The story is a report of a denomination seeking out other true churches in the world,...

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Previous article in this series: September 15, 2008, p. 484. “Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.” Jeremiah 6:16 In the last two editorials I showed that the church’s practice of catechizing her youth is an old path. From the very beginning, the church taught her own youth the ways of God in Jesus Christ. In the Old Testament the Levites had this special privilege. In...

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