Recently I received the following letter from Wellington, New Zealand, one of the places where Rev. C. Hanko and I visited, lectured, and preached during our tour. The letter is private correspondence, though there is nothing secret about. its contents. Rather than take the trouble of getting permission to publish—something that would take a long time—I will omit names. The contents of the letter speaks for itself.
Dear Professor Hoeksema,
I would like to express my gratitude to you and to Rev. Hanko for your visit to New Zealand. My thanks go also to the other members of the Protestant Reformed Churches, whose interest in and concern for others the Lord stirred up to make the visit possible.
I have followed with interest the reports of your tour in the Standard Bearer and rejoice with you in seeing how the Lord has used you, in many places, to confirm and encourage the saints to stand firm in the faith. It is a cause for thanksgiving also to read that the Synod of your churches has granted the request of the OPC group in Christchurch for a pastor to be sent over.
Prior to your visit to New Zealand my progress out of the “morass” of Arminianism was being somewhat hindered by those from whom I expected help. My religious connection, since becoming a Christian nine years ago, has been with those whom you would probably call “Plymouth Brethren.” I gradually found out that their views on election, predestination and. the sovereignty of God were not in accord with Scripture. From time to time I received help and encouragement, directly and through publications, from persons who seemed to be more enlightened in these matters. However, on deeper study I discovered that these too believed in a god whose desires are frustrated and who is not .really in control of the destinies of the finally impenitent. Since I respected those with whom I disagreed and thought it highly probable that they knew better than I did, I naturally reexamined their views but could not reconcile them with Scripture. I then found myself in the unenviable position of being in disagreement, on basic doctrine, with almost all Christians of my acquaintance.
Your visit to Wellington, in addition to the encouragement of your Friday evening lecture, brought me into contact with Mr.______, with the brethren of the OPC, with the Standard Bearer and with RFPA publications; for all of these I now thank our God.
There is still a lack of like-minded people in Wellington, but at least I now know that there are some in other places.
Knowing something of your commitments, I do not expect an answer to this, but I thought that by writing this expression of gratitude even I might be of some encouragement to you.
There are many things which I still must learn and unlearn, but I feel that with the foundation rightly laid the prospects for the building are bright. The Potter will fashion the vessel according to His good pleasure, and I have no wish to ask Him, “What doest Thou?”
May His name be glorified!
Yours in Christ,