January 4, 1963
Rev. Herman Hoeksema
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Dear Rev. Hoeksema:
May I first of all extend to you a happy and blessed New Year.
As I was reading in the January, 1963, issue of the Standard Bearer, I came across this statement in the Meditation written by Rev. Vos, I think entitled THE DAYS OF THE YEARS OF OUR LIFE.
The statement is found on page 146, as follows: “If you raise a doubt about that, think on the long days when you shall be dead and buried, always lying down and looking up at the cover of your coffin.”
May I have an explanation of this from you. Certainly you do not believe anything so ridiculous.
Thank you. May I hear from you please.
The Rev. Herman Hoeksema gave the undersigned the letter quoted above, with the request that I answer the brother, which. I hereby do.
1. Let me hasten to assure the brother that I join him and the Rev. Herman Hoeksema in “not believing anything so ridiculous”. Yes, if you take what I wrote literally, then it is nonsense. Neither do I believe that the brother thought that I teach such nonsense.
2. I used what is called “poetic license”. Look it up in your dictionary. And I quote: “Allowable deviation from established rule; variation from standard for a purpose; as, poetic license.”
3. And I think that my purpose was reached, also in. brother Verbrugge. I wanted my readers to think of their body after it is buried, lying down, and staring with empty eyes to the cover of their coffin. Finally your eyes will disappear, and all that will be left is two holes in the head of your skeleton. You know, it is good to think on that. That is the reality of your life . . . and death.
Rev. Gerrit Vos