Rev. A. Mulder, of Kalamazoo, declined the call extended him by our Creston congregation. —Randolph’s new trio consists of the Revs. C. Hanko, R.C. Harbach and M. Schipper. —The congregations of Forbes and Isabel jointly extended a call to our Missionary, Rev. G. Lubbers. —Grand Haven’s congregation called the Rev. G. VanBaren from the trio presented to them.
RECENT MOVEMENTS TOWARDS ECUMENICISM The unity of the church has always been a grave problem in the history of theology and of the church in the New Dispensation. In recent years this problem has come to the foreground of religious thought many times.
To ward off the publication of heresies by means of civil or ecclesiastical censorship has proven ineffective and unsuccessful. The Roman Catholic Church put forth a very vigorous effort to accomplish this especially at the time of the Reformation in the sixteenth century. They considered the writings of the Reformers to be heretical and, therefore, forbade their publication. They threatened the authors of these works with excommunication and martyred and persecuted those who in any way helped to publish or to distribute this forbidden literature.
The Reformation was a protest against human authority, asserted the right of private conscience and judgment, and roused a spirit of criticism and free inquiry in all departments of knowledge. It allows, therefore, a much wider scope for the exercise of reason in religion than the Roman church, which requires unconditional submission to her infallible authority. It marks a real progress, but this progress is perfectly consistent with a belief in revelation on subjects which lie beyond the boundary of time and sense.
It has been correctly observed by expositors of Holy Writ that the Gospel of Matthew is written for the believers who were once under the law of the Old Testament, in the days of the types and shadows, but who are now believers in Christ Jesus; that Matthew consequently is writing in this entire Gospel from the viewpoint that in Christ the entire Old Testament promises, covenants, types and shadows are fulfilled.
The church and the worldly state have allied themselves, in the first place. The one supports the other, and the other directs and aids the one. Where the one goes, the other follows. For the beast carries the woman, which at least also seems to imply that after all the beast employs the woman for his own purpose and carries her whithersoever he will, though in turn he is the strength and support of the woman, and she owes it to the beast that she is decked with jewels and precious stones and arrayed in purple.
Continuing to mention various objections against the suggestion that early adolescents be encouraged to partake of the Lord’s Supper before they make confession of faith, we may take note of the following:
And the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage … And … God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I … And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows …