The passage which we will this time consider contains instructions from Paul to Timothy in regard to what must be constantly held before the attention of the church in order that she may truly walk in godliness, steadfast in the truth in Christ Jesus. The church must be built and established in Christ and walk in all good works of faith and gratitude. The saints in Christ must walk in the good works which have been before prepared for her that she should walk in them.
I further quote from the reply by the former consistory as follows: “b) The classis erred when it stated that ‘the first (statement) teaches a general promise of God to all that hear.’
Esteemed Editor: Since, quotations seem to be in vogue and since the following quote is so applicable to our present church struggle and the “shenanigans” (which, without consulting my Roget’s, is the most charitable word I can think of at the moment), allow me to quote a portion of something written many years ago and which may be found in the back of our Psalters in the “Conclusion” at the end of our Canons:
“Gereformeerd of Arminiaans?” i.e., Reformed or Arminian? that is the question which the Rev. Idzerd Van Dellen placed at the head of his department in De Wachter of October 19th. It is a question to which the Reverend, in our opinion, could have given a definite answer but did not. True, his article left the impression that he knew where he stood as to being Reformed or Arminian, but he closes his article with almost the same question with which he began, and therefore left the matter hanging in the air as far as his readers were concerned.
The Ministry Of The Word “The office of the ministry is to continue in prayer and in the ministry of the word, to dispense the sacraments, to watch over his brethren, the elders and deacons, as well as the congregation, and finally, with the elders, to exercise church discipline and to see to it that everything is done decently and in good order.”— Article 16
Our fathers insist here that the sense and certainty of this eternal and unchangeable election results in the very opposite of carnal security and moral laxity. Positively, they maintain that it bears fruit, first of all, in that the elect humble themselves before God. This is indeed worthy of special notice.
We were discussing in our previous article the idea of the sacrament as entertained by the early Church Fathers during the first three centuries of the Church of God in the new dispensation, and we were about to quote from Cyprian to show that this Church Father used the term “sacrament,” with respect to prayer and the Trinity.
Our attention was called by more than one defender of conditional theology and of the Schism of ’53 to a statement in our September 15 contribution to this department. Since these parties were of the opinion that we had done Classis West (she was Classis West of the Protestant Reformed Churches yet at that time) a great injustice by accusing her of something of which they thought she was entirely innocent, we promised to make a correction and explanation at this time.
And with that power of imagination, though by itself it is a perfectly good power, given to us by God, I can nevertheless make representations in my own mind which are not in harmony with reality, with the reality of God, of the world, of Christ, of myself, and of the neighbor.