All Articles For Gritters, Barry

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The United States of America is in steep decline. She is so because of God’s righteous judgment upon her. What she has so passionately wanted—sin—the righteous Judge of heaven and earth judges her with: sin and more sin. According to Romans 1, God “gives her over to a reprobate mind,” so that she does “those things which are not convenient.” “Not convenient” is “not suitable” or “not appropriate,” somewhat of an understatement to point out that even common sense would not allow one to behave as our society does! Our society asked for sexual liberty in the name of avoiding...

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The USA is rushing to ruin, a ‘victim’ of her own out-of-control passions for sex, violence, lies, godless pleasures, and every form of wickedness. Some might say she is going to hell in a handbasket, but that sounds to be making light of a very serious matter. Our society is plunging herself into ruin, asking for a tsunami to overcome her from both the Atlantic and Pacific. Recently, some in our society have been pushing back against a few of the evils that most disturb them. The media and others who have a voice in our society have been complaining...

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You might attribute my sentiments to the cynicism of an aging man, but the country I find myself in today is not the country in which I grew up in the 1950s and 60s. It has not changed for the better. There is such evil in our land that, without faith in God and knowledge of what Scripture prophesies, I would despair for my grandchildren’s future. I know I must not be anxious, but I am still very concerned for them and what they will face in their lifetime. Like never before in the United States of America, and likely...

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Previous article in this series: December 15, 2017, p. 125. With the New Year upon us, it is customary to think of improving ourselves personally. Christians may want to read more, eat less, adopt an exercise regimen, develop different entertainment practices, or change spending habits. True, one person may be inclined to self-examination more than another, but we all do well to consider ourselves regarding correcting personal flaws and promoting spiritual growth. The apostle Peter warns that, if there is not growth in a man, he may well be led away with the error of the wicked and fall from...

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In the November 1 special issue of the Standard Bearer, I wrote on the Reformation principle Semper Reformanda, or “Reformed and always being re-formed.” I defined that important principle as the calling of the church always to be examining herself in the light of the Word of God, and then making necessary correction based on that Word of God. Always. There never is a time when the church may rest satisfied with herself. She must start with being “Reformed,” and then always be willing to be “re-formed.” She is active in that calling by examining herself. Thus: “ecclesiastical self-examination.” Because...

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These words—“we unhesitatingly recommend”—could well be hung on the wall of all consistory rooms of Reformed congregations. In large enough print, that every time the council members walk into the room they see and are aware of them. These words are the heart and center of the “Letter of Recommendation” that a council must give to their minister if he leaves for another church. The elders and deacons must declare: “We unhesitatingly recommend our minister to you.” One of the more important (even if infrequent) decisions that a consistory must make is the decision to write this recommendation. A minister...

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One of the less familiar treasures—and yet a great treasure—of our Reformation heritage is expressed in the theme, “Reformed and always being reformed.” Abbreviated in Latin, the expression is Semper Reformanda.1 Even if it is less familiar than some other themes like Sola Scriptura or Sola Gratia, “Always being reformed” is a fundamental aspect of our Reformation heritage. But the expression is less familiar because it did not develop until after the Reformation. Yet, without it we are not fully or genuinely Reformed. The historical origin of the motto is unclear. An otherwise obscure preacher, the Dutchman Jocodus van Lodenstein,...

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Welcome Professor-Elect Rev. Douglas Kuiper! On September 20, God willing, a few short days after this issue appears, Rev. Douglas Kuiper will be installed as the tenth professor in the history of the Protestant Reformed Seminary. Elected by the 2017 Synod of the Protestant Reformed Churches in June, he will be replacing Prof. Russell Dykstra as Professor of Church History and New Testament Studies, a position Prof. Dykstra has held since 1996. Prof. Dykstra will preach at the installation service, to be held in Faith PRC in Jenison, MI. According to the rules of the seminary, the transition process begins...

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It has been several years since the Standard Bearer has undergone significant design changes. While the contents of the Standard Bearer will always take precedence to its appearance, the two must work together. Over the last few years, the Reformed Free Publishing Association’s Membership and Marketing Committee has been discussing the idea of a complete redesign of the magazine. The goals were to have a periodical that is pleasing to the eye, easy to read, and still maintains the previous standards in regards to the content. This new design will be revealed starting with the October 1, 2017 issue. The...

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(The text, slightly revised, but maintaining as much as possible the spoken form and personal address, of the graduation speech for the Protestant Reformed Theological School. Commencement took place on June 15, 2017, in Hudsonville PRC auditorium, for seven graduates: Matthew DeBoer, Brian Feenstra, Joseph Holstege, Jonathan Langerak, David Noorman, Stephan Regnerus, Justin Smidstra.) Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery. Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy...

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