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Creedal Amillennialism

In a recent edition of the Standard Bearer, Rev. Ron Cammenga tried to argue that because of his belief that the Three Forms of Unity are explicitly a-millennial, it follows from this that all other millennial positions are heretical (Vol. 76, No. 2, p. 32). I was wondering if Rev. Cammenga is prepared to be consistent with his own logic here. For instance, since the creeds are explicitly infralapsarian, does it follow that supralapsarianism is heretical? Or even better, since the creeds openly and plainly teach the establishment principle, does it follow that any denial of the establishment principle is heretical, opt-out clauses notwithstanding?

Allen Baird

Ballymena, Northern Ireland

RESPONSE:

In the article to which you refer (“Creedal Amillennialism,” SB, Vol. 76, No. 2, p. 32), I did indeed contend that the Three Forms of Unity are explicitly amillennial. The Three Forms of Unity not only set forth positively the amillennial position, but also repudiate the main tenets of the other major millennial views. The brother makes no appeal to these confessions to demonstrate that, contrary to my contention, they do make allowances for postmillennialism or premillennial-dispensationalism. With regard to the infralapsarian and supralapsarian debate, while it is true that the Canons of Dordrecht are written from the infra position, nowhere do the Canons explicitly condemn supra. Anyone knowledgeable of the history is aware that the Canons were the product of and endorsed by infras and supras alike. It has always been the position of the Reformed churches, and of the Protestant Reformed Churches as well, that consistent infra and consistent supra are both confessionally Reformed. As to the matter of the establishment principle, nowhere, in my judgment, do the Three Forms of Unity endorse the establishment principle. If the brother has Article 36 of the Belgic Confession in mind, I do not believe that the article sets forth the establishment principle, but merely calls upon the magistrate to enforce both tables of God’s law. That is not to be equated with the establishment principle.

— Rev. Ron Cammenga