It has become a rather common habit of the Rev. Kok to quote the Rev. H. Hoeksema as if this theo­logian taught a Dogmatics the warp and woof of which is, that faith is a condition of salvation. Now I have noticed all the while that brother Kok did not ever quote from the “notes” dictated by Rev. H. Hoeksema, dictated by the latter in class also to the Rev. B. Kok, who then was yet “but a student”. Intellectual hones­ty would seem to dictate that such be done. However, the quotations given by Rev. Kok are calculated to leave a very wrong impression of the teaching of Prof. Hoeksema. And these wrong impressions may not go unchallenged by the facts.

I believe that I may say that I have sat at the feet of Rev. Hoeksema twice as long as the Rev. B. Kok. He sat at his teacher’s feet but three years. I have enjoyed that singular privilege for six years. Maybe that is why I have “soaked up” a little bit more of his teachings than did brother Kok. At any rate, the lat­ter has not had the graciousness to quote from these rather important and pertinent “notes” of our former and esteemed Professor.

I shall quote from time to time from the Dogmatic Notes given by Prof. Hoeksema during the early and happy years of our Seminary. They were then dic­tated in the Dutch language to the entire student body, and these were put by the students into mimeographed form. Rev. Kok has these notes in his possession un­less he has lost them. If he has he can obtain a copy of the same from the undersigned. Then he can check up on my translation and findings. Let his and my motto be: Epi Pasan Aleetheia!

This time I wish to quote and translate the “In­troduction” to the Fourth Locus of Dogmatics, Soteriology. (The doctrine of applied salvation) I shall first quote this introduction, and then I shall make a few observations.

I quote the following:

“Soteriology treats of the work of God, through Christ whereby He realizes His covenant of grace in the hearts of His elect people, by causing them to partake in the benefits of His covenant, merited by Christ. With this belongs most na­turally the treatment of the ordo salutis (order of salvation) and the separate benefits, which God causes to come out and through Christ to His people.

“The point of departure for us should be, in the treatment of Soteriology what the apostle so beautifully expresses in Ephesians 1:3, 4. (quoted in Greek)

“For verily in this passage, first of all, it is emphatically stated, that all the spiritual blessings which are spoken of in Soteriology, come to us solely out of Christ and in fellowship with Him. The fact of the matter is, that God has blessed Christ as the head of His Church, which is His body, and that by means of this blessing Christ He has also enriched His peo­ple with all spiritual blessings.

“God has blessed Christ. He has pronounced His word of blessing (eulogia) upon Him. He has exalted Him on the ground of His perfect obedience and deep humiliation. He has raised Him out of the dead, clothed and filled Him with glori­ous, new and eternal life; Him He has exalted at His own right hand in heaven, and He has given Him power over all creatures in heaven and on earth, (quoted are Phil. 2:11, 12 and Eph. 1:19, 20)

“But there is more. He has also wrought the same great rower in Christ, whereby He has raised Christ from the dead, (een eneergeeken en too Christoo) So that the living operation of the life-giving and exalting power now also works in Christ Jesus as the head of His Church. This God performed when He gave His Holy Spirit to Christ as the exalted head of His Church, by which Christ became the life-giving Spirit. By this Spirit Christ constantly receives from the Father that quicken­ing and exalting divine energy, whereby He imparts the blessings of salvation to His Church bought with a precious price.In the receiving of the spiritual benefits spoken of in Soteriology the operation: along the entire line from Regeneration to Glorification never proceeds from man. Where such is the case one is a Remonstrant. The Savior Himself bestows as the Medi­ator and head of His Church all the spiritual blessings to those, who were given Him of the Father. (Quoted Acts 2:33; Eph. 2:8-10)

“Obiectively God has given all the spiritual blessings to His people in thus blessing our Savior, for Christ is the head and the Church is His body according to divine appointment. The blessings that are given to the head are already of the body, even though it be true, that they are not yet fully imparted to the body. For faith does not receive the salvation in Christ in piece meal fashion, in order in that way to finally apply to themselves the full Christ. On the contrary, it appropriates the full Christ and in the fellowship of this full Christ, it constantly increases in a richer possession of the spiritual blessings, un­til we shall have attained unto the perfect fellowship of God’s covenant.     

“These spiritual blessings, which the Church possesses ob­jectively in Christ are wrought m her through His Spirit. (Acts 2:33 See above) He pours out the Spirit in the Church, dwells in her through that same Spirit, and causes the life-giving pow­er of the resurrection and exaltation to work in her. Thus He imparts the divine grace to all His own. Since this grace is not imparted in the entire fulness at once, but in the way of a process and steps, therefore we can speak of the Order of Sal­vation in Soteriology.

“Furthermore, Ephesians 1:3, 4 also point out the deepest origin of the blessings of salvation for Christ and in Him for the Church to be: God’s eternal election. He has blessed us in Christ even as He has elected us from before the foundation of the world. All things find their purpose and end in God’s

eternal decree. God has willed to reunite all things in heaven and on the earth in Christ. It never was His plan and purpose to glorify and perfect all things in the first Adam. All things must be exalted in His Son. The covenant must be perfected in Him, and all creatures must be united and exalted in heavenly glory under His dominion. All things in God’s counsel are subservient to this great purpose. And all things in time must serve that purpose, sin and the godless, the devil and hell, including all the powers of darkness. For to realize that purpose God has willed to prepare for His people the deep way of suffering. Indeed the so-called covenant of works is raised up with the first Adam, but according to God’s decree and Adam’s guilt the latter falls away and does not remain standing in that covenant. God, however, causes His word to stand, realizes His counsel and maintains His covenant. Of this better covenant Christ is the head. As such He has come to fulfill all things through His suffering and perfect obedience and as the head of the covenant now also realizes the spiritual covenant by shedding forth the blessings of salvation in the Church.

“Only thus do we arrive in Soteriology to a right concep­tion of things, and are we protected from all kinds of errors, which also press themselves to the foreground in this matter of applied salvation.”

We would like to make a few observations here at this point.

First of all, notice that Rev. Hoeksema is not philosophical in his “point of departure” but that he is very exegetical throughout.

Secondly, that he hews the line of the “golden chain” of the Canons of Dordt, tracing all things back to the fountain and origin, the will of God’s decree. And that, too, according to the Supralapsarian scheme of Ephesians 1:3-14.

Thirdly, that Rev. Hoeksema allows man no part in saving himself, even in the matter of applied salva­tion. He carefully maps out the course to avoid all Remonstrant conceptions. All is God’s efficacious power in Christ.

Finally, that in this framework, as here set forth by Rev. Hoeksema, there is no room left for faith as being a condition, or prerequisite. It will be perfectly clear that faith was, for Rev. Hoeksema in 1928, sim­ply the God-wrought means in Christ, whereby the blessings are imparted unto us even as God elected us in Christ unto holiness and blamelessness. Profes­sor Hoeksema stood foursquare in the way of Dordt in this “Introduction” to Soteriology, and he, being a careful builder, does not fall into the sin of Remonstrantism, which defines faith as a condition or cause and requisite.

Thus taught the Rev. H. Hoeksema in 1926-30, when Rev. B. Kok was yet a student!

—G. Lubbers