The committee of the Editorial Staff that was appointed to prepare the anniversary issue of ourStandard Bearer thought it would be interesting to present some significant quotations from past volumes of the Standard Bearer. To make a significant quotation from an article apart from the context in which it is found is rather difficult. Moreover, space will not permit making such quotations from all forty volumes. The citations below were taken from the first ten volumes. They are not all significant for the same reason. But I do believe that they all will show that theStandard Bearer in its early volumes lived up to its initial claims. They will also show that the fundamental note of our Standard Bearer is the same now as it was in yesteryear. Those who possess the bound volumes might find it interesting to spend an evening looking up and reading the articles from which these quotations were taken.
“And thus it happens that I, the undersigned, am of the group editing this periodical. The fact that I agree to serve upon the editorial staff of the ‘Standard Bearer’ amounts to an admission on my part that I too reject the views and conception of things which the term common grace stands for. For me it is quite impossible to adhere to the principles embedded in the term common grace and remain on friendly terms with Scripture. . . .
“I, as a reformed preacher, cannot and will not preach total depravity and in the next breath assure my hearers that the depraved sinner, in his depraved state, performs noble deeds, has pure emotions and thinks good thoughts. God’s Word unclothes- the sinner, strips him of every virtue and sends him naked to Christ. God forbid that I stop that sinner on the way to clothe him in the beautiful garments of common grace. I should fear lest that sinner would no longer feel the need of Christ.”
—Rev. G.M. Ophoff, Vol. I, No. 3, pp.21-22
“. . . All these may be phases of the covenant-relation, the covenant itself is always more than any one phase of it. It is living and most intimate fellowship between God and man. It is the relation of friendship in which God makes Himself known to man, reveals to him His secrets, walks with him and talks with him, eats and drinks with him, loves him and blesses him with His own favor which is better than life, and places him as His party in the midst of the world. And on the other hand, in that covenant-relation man knows his God with that knowledge which is eternal life, loves and adores Him, dwells in His presence and inquires in His temple to behold the beauty of the Lord, is His friend-servant, His party in the world, His prophet over against the false prophet, His priest over against the false priest, His king over against the Prince of this world and his power. That is God’s covenant with his people in the world. And essentially it is always the same. . . . ”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. II, p. 42
“It is evident that this was not a matter of grace, neither was there any restraint upon the development of sin imposed by the confusion of tongues. Only the race was forced into new channels of development, and these same organic lines of development sin would needs follow in the future. This development is such, that a premature unity and world kingdom is prevented for the time being. The power of anti-Christendom that is in the world cannot realize its needed unity and establish its great and universal kingdom. Henceforward the sinful world shall be a kingdom divided against itself, For as each nation separately strives to attain the purpose that could not be attained in Shinar’s valley, nation rises against nation and kingdom against kingdom, and there are wars and rumors of war. And as long as this separation and division and conflict continues the kingdom of Antichrist cannot come and the man of sin cannot reveal himself in all his power, In the meantime this development of the race in different nations along organic lines, as it is today, serves God’s purpose with regard to the realization of His church and covenant. For out of every nation and tribe and tongue He gathers His church, and the elect are combined into one great body of Christ Jesus. The diversity of nations and tongues must, of course, serve the riches of the body of Christ. . . . . . ”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. III, p. 342
“Young men! thus Scripture says, you are strong! You have overcome the evil one!
“That means that the world is no theatre and no playground, but a battlefield, and that we have our fight not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers, against the spiritual wickedness in high places. That means, not that you are strong in body and have a well-developed muscle. That is very good. I like to see a young man that is also in the physical sense of the word strong. But it is not the main thing. Physical exercise is for that reason worth but little. It can have but a small place in our lives. It does not prepare you for the main battle. You cannot fight the devil with your powerful fist. But it means that you are strong in spirit. It signifies that the fear of God is in your hearts, that the love of God is poured forth in your souls, that your minds are enlightened by the grace of God, that you are well founded in the truth, in the principles of the Word of God, that you understand the world in which you live and are well able to discern between the powers of darkness and the light in Christ, that you have put on the whole armor of God and are able to stand in the evil hay.
“Young women, you must adorn the truth1 It is your calling in the light of the Word of God, not to follow after the vain fashions of the world, to become transformed according to the manifestation and form of this world, but to be an example of true Christian modesty and beauty and virtue!”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. IV, p. 245
“The Church of Jesus Christ in the world is such a camp in the midst of an hostile land, or, if you please, a walled city, surrounded by the hosts of the foes of God and His Christ. The city consists of the living members of the body of Christ, or those, that have been called out of darkness into the marvelous light of God, in order that they might be a royal priesthood, an elect race a peculiar possession unto God, and their calling it is to shew forth the praises of Him that called them and gave them a place in the Kingdom of His dear Son. And in that living city every heart of every citizen is a gate, a possible avenue of approach through which the foe might enter the city and destroy it. And the foe is always watching, is constantly on the alert, to make his attack at a point that is not sufficiently guarded, that is left unprotected and defenseless for a moment, in order that he may enter and destroy and devour the citizens.”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. V, p. 361
“If atonement is really atonement, its purpose and intent must needs be co-extensive with its application. “If the effectiveness of atonement depends upon our choice, or even upon the faith of those that are saved, it cannot properly be called atonement.
“For the doctrine of vicarious atonement implied that Christ took the guilt of those, for whom He atoned, upon, Himself, and by His blood paid for the debt of their sin before God.
“It follows that the sins of those for whom Christ atoned are blotted out forever. Their guilt is removed. Their debt is paid. This blotting out of their sins, this payment of their debt, does not take place the moment they believe, but did take place on Calvary, once for all. Neither does this payment of the debt of those for whom Christ died depend on their faith or unbelief. Faith is no condition for the forgiveness of sins, though the latter cannot be possessed or enjoyed without the former. The atonement of Christ is an objective fact, and its effectiveness depends solely upon the question: Whom did Christ represent on the cross? For whom did He die?
“Now, either Christ died for all, or He died for the elect, as regards God’s purpose and Christ’s intention.”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. VI, p. 12
“It is noteworthy that Rebekah remained Isaac’s only love. So completely did she seem to have filled his life, so large a place did she secure for herself in his heart that in that life and heart of his there was room for no other. It shows that what the Lord joins together is so perfectly and completely united that no points of contact remain for other and new connections. Contract a marriage that meets with the approval of Heaven, and you join yourself to a mate the Lord prepared for you with your every need before His eye. How stupendously foolish then to pass Him by when you set out in quest for a mate. . . . . .He has given you a sign whose speech, if to it your ears are attuned, will enable you to make the proper selection. It is the sign of godliness and true Christian piety. . . . . ”
—Rev. G.M. Ophoff, Vol. VII, pp. 36-37
“In the midst of and in distinction from the evil world that lieth in darkness and is perverse in all its ways because of sin, it is the calling of the people of God to live by grace from the principle of regeneration according to the will of God in every sphere of life, individual, family, social, industrial, political and ecclesiastical, so that they may be children of light in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation. Hence, they insist that all education, that must prepare their children for such an all-sided Christian walk in the world, shall be adapted to this purpose.”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. VIII, pp. 488-489
“Finally, I want to say yet that earthquakes proclaim to us antithetically that there is an immoveable kingdom coming. You may be certain that in the New Jerusalem there will never be an earthquake. For it is the city that hath foundations. And then men attempt to make buildings that, are ‘quakeproof.’ He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh! ‘Quakeproof.’ If it were not so dreadful, one would want to laugh about it. Before God nothing stands. The ungodly cry: ‘The great day of His wrath is come and who shall be able to stand?'”
—Rev. G. Vos, Vol. IX, p. 332 (translated)
“The fear of the Lord is the sole thing that counts!
“For His mercy is not-upon-all. The mercy of the Lord is not general. It is very particular. It is upon them only that fear His name!
“Not, indeed, as if His mercy were upon them, because they fear Him, for quite the contrary is true. It is not our fear of His name that evokes His mercy, but it is His everlasting mercy that is first and that is the everlasting cause that we may fear Him.”
—Rev. H. Hoeksema, Vol. X, p. 171