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In the last issue of the Standard Bearer we began a quotation of an article written by the Rev. J. Howerzyl in the Reformed Guardian on the subject noted above. We closed our article with a rather lengthy quotation on which we wish to make some reflections now. The reader may refer to the last issue for this quotation.
“The office peculiar to the deacons is diligently to collect alms (aalmoezen) and other contributions of charity (andere armengoederen), and after mutual counsel, faithfully and diligently to distribute the same to the poor as their needs may require it; to visit and comfort the distressed and to exercise care that the alms are not misused; of which they shall render an account in consistory, and also (if anyone desires to be present) to the congregation, at such a time as the consistory may see fit.” (Art. 25, Church Order)
Article III. Who teach: That Christ by his satisfaction merited neither salvation itself for anyone, nor faith, whereby this satisfaction of Christ unto salvation is effectually appropriated; but that he merited for the Father only the authority or the perfect will to deal again with man, and to prescribe new conditions as he might desire, obedience to which, however, depended on the free will of man, so that it therefore might have come to pass that either none or all should fulfill these conditions.
Continuing with our article in the previous issue of theStandard Bearer, to the effect that the doctrine of transubstantiation was not the accepted doctrine of the Church during this particular period of the history of the Church, we concluded with the remark that we would quote from Reinhold Seeberg as he has written on Augustine’s view of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper. We quote him as follows: “The peculiarities of the separate sacraments may be briefly stated.
That, of course, is the only way to pray. A desire expressed in any other way than in the way of His fear is not a prayer to God. Any supplication uttered in any other way than in His fear will never be heard by the living God. There is so much that goes under the name of prayer today that is anything but prayer. There is so much that goes under the name of prayer that is never heard because it is no prayer.
So extensive, far-reaching and comprehensive are the implications of embracing a world and life view, that there is virtually no subject that can be discussed, no field of study entered upon, nor any opinion and judgment rendered without reflecting such a world and life view. Here too, we again observe the practical application and the implications of what it means to be a Christian a child of God in the sphere of “civics.”
9. And the word of Jehovah came to me saying, 10. Take from the exiles, from Cheldai, from Tobijah, and from Jedaiah, and go thou on the same day, go thou into the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah whither they have come from Babylon; 11. and take silver and gold and make crowns, and set them upon the head of Joshua, the son of Josedech, the high priest; 12. and speak to him, saying, Thus speaketh Jehovah of hosts, saying, Behold a man, Brand his name; and from his place he shall grow up, and build the temple...
In the first place, we may call attention to the fact, that the expression “revelation of Jesus Christ” usually, if not always, has this sense in Scripture. In I Cor. 1:7 we read: “So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ” (R.V. The authorized version has erroneously “coming” of our Lord Jesus Christ).
Election and Assurance Although Dr. Berkouwer repeatedly speaks of the relation between the truth of election and the assurance of salvation, he never properly explains this relation. Always he makes a false distinction between the doctrine of election and accepting the promise of God. The preaching of the promise is a general offer of salvation to all that hear the gospel, but the preaching of election stands alongside of, or even opposed to, to this offer of the general promise of salvation.