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This is being written while Synod is still meeting and will be a brief review of work thus far accomplished. The usual pre-Synodical service was held on Tuesday evening, June 1, in the Fuller Avenue auditorium. The Rev. J. De Jong, president of the Synod of 1947, delivered the sermon. Rev. De Jong chose as his text, II Timothy 4:1-4.
Church Discipline. . . . In the following paragraphs are truths which we all know and recognize as such and yet of which we may well be reminded from time to time; and which it is always well to emphasize:
I’ll never forget the man who thought that the Canons of Dordt were implements of war, manufactured in Dordt. Evidently mistaking Canons for cannons, and thereby revealing how totally ignorant he was of the Canons. Our people by and large are not that ignorant.
It was not so much anger as fear that prompted David to take immediate action against Nabal. David was worried about what that “very great” (verse 3) and bitterly hostile man might do to him, were he permitted to live. The sacred text makes this clear. First, David was decided to slay only the males of Nabal’s household (verses 22, 34). Second, in reproving David, Abigail speaks of the Lord’s withholding him from saving himself with his own hand.
Romans 9, we have seen, surely establishes the particular and wholly unconditional character of the promise or promises of God. To this we called attention in the two previous numbers of our paper. The apostle Paul, we noted, was struggling with a great problem. He was confronted, on the one hand, with the word or promise of Jehovah that the Lord would bestow the salvation of His eternal covenant upon Abraham and his seed. And, on the other hand, he was troubled because of the rejection of Israel.
The sixty-third question of the Heidelberger treats of the relation between justification and faith. “Why sayest thou,” the Catechism asks, “that thou art righteous by faith only?” And the answer is twofold: negatively, the Catechism replies, “Not that I am acceptable to God, on account of the worthiness of my faith;” and, positively, the answer is, “but because only the satisfaction, righteousness, and holiness of Christ, is my righteousness before God; and that I cannot receive and apply the same to myself any other way than by faith only.”
These days I received a letter from the Board of our paper, asking me to publish a speech which the Rev. H. Veldman spoke at a recent meeting of our paper. The brethren of the Board opine that this speech may help them in the work of propagating our paper among our people. And they are right. We gladly do so. And since in this issue there is no room anywhere else, we gladly give the space of our editorials for its publication.
Notice of the passing of this man of God in the Netherlands came to us on the 25th of last month, that is, on the day the forms of our Standard Bearer closed, and we could insert the notice as such, and no more. There was no time or room for a proper editorial expressing our sympathy both to the bereaved family, and the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands. Hence, this editorial at a later date.
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: and I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish; neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand. I and My Father are one.” John 10:27-30