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Vol 97 Issue 14

Results 1 to 9 of 9

Jesus’ appearance to James

After that, he was seen of James. I Corinthians 15:8 In the first part of this chapter Paul reminds the Corinthian saints of the gospel that he had proclaimed to them. He had proclaimed not only the death of Jesus Christ but also His resurrection. The resurrection of Jesus had been verified by many witnesses: “He was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: after that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all...

Schism: Disorder

The recent schism in one of our congregations, which has had repercussions throughout the denomination, is a grief for everyone involved. The church of Christ has been rent. Families and friends are divided. Before God we lament, cry for mercy, and submit to His chastening hand (March 1 editorial). The schism is also a threat to the denomination, since those who have departed are calling us and our children to leave the alleged apostatizing PRCA and join them. So serious is the PRCA’s departure that for them not to “come out from among” us and be separate would be sinful...

Critical theory

Critical theory beyond postmodernism Christianity is the revelation of the truth. Jesus is “the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6), and He gave a good confession before Pontius Pilate: “To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Everyone that is of the truth heareth my voice” (John 18:37). Our society is increasingly hostile to truth, not only to the truth of God’s Word, but also to the very idea of truth. The modern assault on truth was concentrated for a while in postmodernism....

Jonah’s fish

Jonah 1:17 The story of Jonah’s being swallowed by a “great fish” is often ridiculed by unbelievers. It even figured in the famous Scopes trial in 1925 in an exchange between Clarence Darrow and William Jennings Bryan. Darrow, counsel for the defense of John Scopes who was accused of teaching human evolution contrary to Tennessee law, asked Bryan: “But when you read that Jonah swallowed the whale—or that the whale swallowed Jonah…how do you literally interpret that?” To which question Bryan, the counsel for the prosecution, answered: “When I read that a big fish swallowed Jonah…I believe in a God...

The Council of Constantinople (AD 381): Other decisions

Previous article in this series: March 1, 2021, p. 250. The Second Ecumenical Council settled the controversy regarding the doctrine of the Trinity. It also made decisions regarding church government. Two such decisions we noted in our last article: it required bishops to labor within their own geographic jurisdictions; and it stated that the Bishop of Constantinople receives honor after the Bishop of Rome. We conclude our treatment of this Council by noting some of its other decisions, or “canons.”   Maximus never was a bishop A certain Maximus considered himself to be a bishop, and ordained other men to...

Relating good works and justification (f)

What justification is When God justifies the guilty, elect sinner by imputing to him the righteousness of Christ, He not only subtracts something from the sinner’s account but He also adds to it. The Reformed faith teaches that in the act of justification God executes a kind of legal subtraction in clearing the sinner’s account of all his guilt. God pardons the sinner by canceling all his debts and declaring, “I forgive you. It is as if you never had had nor committed any sin” (cf. Heidelberg Catechism, LD 23). In the one act of justification, God also executes a...

Years of trial: Missions threatened (1947-1953) (3)

Previous article in this series: January 1, 2021, p. 161. There were divisions among the members of the Mission Committee and among the members of the committee appointed by First PRC of Grand Rapids. The Lord had now provided our churches with two missionaries who were to work together in the labors of home missions. In 1948 there were two possible places to perform their work: in Lynden, Washington and in Ontario, Canada among the Dutch immigrants who had been members of the Liberated Churches (LC) in the Netherlands. Some men on the Mission Committee and First PRC committee wanted...

Lessons from the judges (3) Jephthah’s vow

The last judge we met in our series was Gideon. Jephthah was one of the judges that came after Gideon. Israel had apostatized—again. Faithful Jehovah, in chastisement, sold them into the hand of enemies, one of which was Ammon. Jehovah raised up Jephthah as judge to fight against the Ammonites. Jephthah was a Gileadite, the son of Gilead, and born of a harlot. Please read the first part of Judges 11 for context. Our concern is the vow that Jephthah made before going to war against Ammon—the latter half of Judges 11.   Serious This vow of Jephthah was serious....

News from our churches

Trivia question How many students were enrolled in the PRC seminary in September 1974? Find the answer later in this column. More trivia next time.   Minister activities Rev. E. Guichelaar (Randolph, WI) declined the call to Kalamazoo, MI PRC. Rev. J. Smidstra (First Holland, MI) received the call from Wingham PRC, declining it on March 21. Byron Center has formed a new trio consisting of Revs. R. Barnhill (Peace PRC), J. Engelsma (Doon PRC), and D. Holstege (missionary to the Philippines). On March 7 they voted to call Rev. Engelsma to be their next pastor. The Irish government had...

4/15/2021