Professor Herman Hanko, now teaching in our Seminary, has declined his call to become pastor of First Church in Grand Rapids. Our church in Randolph, Wisconsin, has extended a call to Candidate Kenneth Koole. Rev. Ronald VanOverloop, pastor of Hope Church in Walker, Michigan, has accepted the request of our Synodical Committee for Contact with Other Churches to labor in Christchurch, New Zealand for a period of nine or ten months. Permission for this rather special ‘loan’ of their pastor has been granted by the Hope Church Council. Rev.
Jesus Christ was the greatest preacher that ever walked upon the face of the earth. He taught by both word and deed. We have recorded for us in Holy Writ the most beautiful sermon which was ever preached, preached by our Lord Himself, the Sermon on the Mount. In this sermon Christ reveals to us the truth concerning the kingdom of God, which is a heavenly kingdom of righteousness, whose ruler is God through Christ, and whose subjects are God’s children. The last time that the undersigned wrote in this department we discussed the proper use of our time.
Having been sent under oath to get a wife for Isaac, Abraham’s servant sought the help of Him Who had established His covenant with Abraham and with his seed after him. Before going to look for a covenant wife for Isaac, he looked up to God on high, came before the throne of grace and sought the invaluable help of Him Who alone could make the search prosperous.
“We believe, that the ceremonies and figures of the law ceased at the coming of Christ, and that all the shadows are accomplished; so that the use of them must be abolished amongst Christians; yet the truth and substance of them remain with us in Jesus Christ, in whom they have their completion. In the meantime, we still use the testimonies taken out of the law and the prophets, to confirm us in the doctrine of the gospel, and to regulate our life in all honesty, to the glory of God, according to his will.” The Belgic Confession Article XXV
Our approach to the problem has to be covenantal. Now, I don’t intend to discuss with you this evening the idea of the covenant. You hear this idea explained to you from your respective pulpits and there is much written on it in our circles. And for those who desire to become more familiar with the idea of covenant education I recommend for your reading Rev. D. Engelsma’s little book, “Reformed Education.”
What a contrast between bastards and sons. A bastard is an illegitimate child. From the point of view of those who are responsible for his existence, he shouldn’t have been born, his existence testifies of sin. From his own point of view he is a misfit, he doesn’t belong in the home. There are such spiritual bastards. Jesus spoke of the Pharisees, “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do,” John 8:44.
We make only a short statement by way of introduction to the following pamphlet. Just because the Reformation of the church is now a relevant issue, Luther’s 400th anniversary has a more urgent significance. Also in Luther’s day men did not thoughtlessly begin the demolition of what was incurably filled with dry rot. A lengthy and earnest study of church polity preceded Luther’s appearance, and in a number of writings the matter of the Reformation of the churches was at that time earlier advocated.
In recent months two periodicals, Calvinist Contactand The Banner, have carried pictures of Dr. Paul Schrotenboer, General Secretary of the Reformed Ecumenical Synod, at his audience with Pope Paul VI, and, along with the pictures, articles about this occasion. In Calvinist Contact an article by Dr. Schrotenboer was entitled “May We Pray for the Pope?” The entire article as well as the affirmative answer to the question in its title ought to constitute a warning to Reformed churches against the kind of ecumenicity for which the RES stands.