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In the Scripture grace and the command or exhortation are always connected, and the former, grace, presented as the cause, reason and fountain of obedience to the command in faith and repentance and holy living.
As was stated, God’s people had corrupted themselves. They had turned quickly aside out of the way which the Lord had commanded them. They had made a molten calf and worshipped it, and sacrificed thereunto, and said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which have brought thee up out of the land of Egypt. Ex. 31:7, 8.
The undersigned intends to write a series of popular expositions on the first epistle of Peter during the next few months. These articles do not intend to be technical exegesis; such is the task of the minister in his study. There will be as little of this “workshop” in these articles as possible. Not that these articles are not based on as careful exegesis as this writer can perform, but these exegetical labors will not stand in the foreground.
The Annual Meeting of the RFPA was held on Sept. 25. New board members chosen were K. Ezinga (Fourth), G. E. Bylsma and H. Velthouse (First). Retiring members: J Oomkes, P. Dykema and G. Borduin. The Society decided to increase the membership dues to $5.00 effective Jan. 1, 1953.
Having interrupted our train of thought in regard to the subject of teacher training for the past two issues, it will do no harm to try to catch the connection a bit, before plunging into the material itself.
Fears have been expressed during the course of our present discussion on “conditions” that this conditional presentation of the truth is vitally necessary if our churches are to continue in the proclamation of a full and complete gospel. Not to stress this “important phase” of the Scriptures would have for its result a calamity of catastrophic proportions and impoverish our churches to the extent that we no longer would enjoy a “full-orbed” gospel.
Moreover, as we have said before, this new birth is a heavenly birth. It is a birth from above, and not from the earth. It is principally resurrection. A new principle of life is instilled in our hearts by the wonder of regeneration, and this new life is not earthy, but heavenly. It is not from below, but from above. In regeneration we have the beginning of the resurrection. It is the principle of the resurrection. It is the life of Christ, the risen Lord Himself.
At the close of my last article on the current subject I said that I would refer to the Baptism Form, which according to my conviction is one of the most beautiful and clearly Reformed documents which have come down from our fathers.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16 A beautiful text indeed! But a text that is almost universally misunderstood, and certainly very often misquoted.