All Articles For Vol 92 Issue 05 12/1/2015

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Missionary Activities The Classis of the Protestant Reformed Churches in the Philippines (which meets three times a year) met Saturday, October 31 in the Provident Christian Church of Marikina and was hosted by the Berean PRC. One of the main items on the agenda was the request of the Maranatha Protestant Reformed Church (MPRC) in Valenzuela City to join the Federation of Protestant Reformed Churches in the Philippines. There have been many meetings and months of preparation to determine if that congregation was one in doctrine and faith with the churches of the federation. Our Protestant Reformed missionaries (especially Rev....

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The Triple Knowledge: An Exposition of the Heidelberg Catechism. Herman Hoeksema. 2nd edition. 10 vols. Jenison, MI: Reformed Free Publishing Association, 2015. Cloth. $179.95. [Reviewed by Rev. Joshua D. Engelsma.] I must admit that, when I first caught wind that the Reformed Free Publishing Association (RFPA) was putting out a second edition of Hoeksema’s Triple Knowledge, I was a bit skeptical. I already possessed the hefty three-volume set; was it really necessary to replace them? But any lingering doubts I may have had were put to rest when I received my copies of the first five volumes. The project is...

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Previous article in this series: August 2015, p. 446. The Classis of the Protestant Reformed Churches met in session on September 18, 1929. A number of recommendations were received at this Classis from the Committee on Home Missions made up of Elhart, Korhorn, and VanDellen. Among these recommendations, Classis considered one that was of unusual importance: “that our leaders put forth every effort to instruct our members thoroughly in the basic doctrines and in the Confessions, in order that our members who come in contact with brothers and sisters of other churches may try to win them in the spirit...

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Maybe some of you young women are eagerly waiting for the moment when a young man looks you in the eyes and affectionately pledges his love for you. Maybe some of you young men look forward to making this pledge and hearing the response whispered in your ear, “I love you, too.” It feels good to be told, “I love you.” Some of you may have experienced this already in a dating relationship. But what do these words mean? When I have asked young people, engaged couples, and even some married couples what this means, many have struggled to answer....

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Rend is an uncommon word in the Bible, but one with a rather specific use, which actually sharpens its meaning and enhances its significance. In Scripture, to rend is the opposite of to sew (Eccl. 3:7), and refers almost exclusively to the tearing apart of fabrics, or, occasionally, items with textile-like qualities. Being woven like textiles, nets can be rent (John 21:11); or altars that are constructed with interlocking stone (I Kings 13:5). And because the heavens act as a cloak shielding God from view, the prophet prays God to rend them and come down (Is. 64:1), a prayer fulfilled...

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Lord’s Day 29 Question 78. Do then the bread and wine become the very body and blood of Christ? Answer. Not at all; but as the water in baptism is not changed into the blood of Christ, neither is the washing away of sin itself, being only the sign and confirmation thereof appointed of God; so the bread in the Lord’s supper is not changed into the very body of Christ; though agreeably to the nature and properties of sacraments, it is called the body of Christ Jesus. Question 79. Why then doth Christ call the bread His body, and...

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Previous article in this series: October 15, 2015, p. 37. “For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.” That’s from Psalm 51. Stunning words, really, when we consider them in light of who wrote them. And when. They were written by David, the man “after God’s heart,” who knew God’s law and loved it. He was therefore well acquainted with the book of Leviticus, which, if nothing else, made it crystal clear that sacrifices and offerings were not optional. Repeatedly we read concerning the ceremonial rites, “as the Lord commanded Moses.” And...

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Retirement of Ministers I am writing in response to the editorial of Professor Dykstra in the June issue of the Standard Bearer. In this editorial, Professor Dykstra states that, given a goodly number of graduates from the seminary in a couple of years, Lord willing, and very few openings in the churches, “one option is to push ministers in their low to mid-sixties into early retirement? (Vol. 91, No. 17, 390). …The church order makes no provision for early retirement of ministers. They may seek emeritation when they reach a point in their lives when they can no longer do...

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Previous article in this series: November 15, 2015, p. 77. The church that is Reformed is also a confessional church. That is, the church officially embraces, genuinely believes, and actively teaches the Reformed confessions in her life. For the PRCA, these creeds are the Three Forms of Unity and the ancient ecumenical creeds in these confessions.1 We have shown so far that to be Reformed is to be Covenantal, to be Calvinistic, and to have a proper view of the Church. The fourth “C” I am proposing is Confessional. That is, if a person properly identifies himself as Reformed, he...

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What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. James 2:14-17 There was a problem in the early Christian church of showing respect of persons. To have respect of persons is to...

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