Notice of the passing of this man of God in the Netherlands came to us on the 25th of last month, that is, on the day the forms of our Standard Bearer closed, and we could insert the notice as such, and no more. There was no time or room for a proper editorial expressing our sympathy both to the bereaved family, and the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands.
Hence, this editorial at a later date.
But even now, we are severely handicapped when we set ourselves to write about the death of our departed brother. We know next to nothing of his history. Both our reading public here, and the brothers and sisters in the Netherlands will kindly remember this, when evaluating our humble efforts.
Above we said that we feel that we should express our sympathy to the Reformed Churches, and we did not specify whether we meant the Reformed Churches that are called the Synodicals, or the Reformed Churches, Art. 31. And we did so purposely. For although we know next to nothing of the precise details of the Dr.’s life, we do know that he was a man who was held in high esteem in the Reformed Churches. The very fact that he served the church as Professor at Kampen for fully thirty years would bear out this testimony. He received this distinction before the deplorable break which occurred in the years 1942-46.
A man that was held in high esteem!
Those are the words which I used.
And they were borne out when we listened to the evaluation of Dr. Greijdanus from the mouth of Prof. Dr. K. Schilder, especially during his last visit to our shores. Whenever he spoke of him we noted a warm friendship, grateful appreciation, and most of all, a distinct note of reverence for the departed brother’s personal piety which, according to Dr. Schilder, was outstanding in his life and walk.
If we take into account the wonderful fruits of his enlightened mind, such as are reflected in his published writings, coupled with his primary position at the Theological School at Kampen, we realize that his passing is a great loss to the cause of the Reformed Churches in the Netherlands.
However, we hasten to add that we speak as a man. We are of yesterday and know nothing. We talk about shocks, and losses, and catastrophes, but God is Cod. He is the All-wise God and covenant Jehovah. He always knows what He is doing. And He doeth all things well. The passing of this brother, who might occupy such an exalted position in His church on earth, was nothing but adorable wisdom. And that is so from every point of view: for him, his sorrowing relatives, the Reformed Churches, maintaining art. 31, the Reformed Churches in ecclesiastical bondage, and for the Church at large.
At the sounding of the trump when the Arch-angel of God shall usher in the judgment, we shall see more clearly than we do now. And then we shall see that the darkest hours of the church, when tears and blood and untold suffering were her portion, were really the golden hours, the hours when the eternal mystery of Godliness would shine the brightest. Just one example : the crucifixion of our Lord! The instituted church thought that it was the end of everything. And all the while the loss, the shock of the Cross, the catastrophe of a crucified Jesus was really the central ray in the ocean of light that beams from our Father’s mercy!
Sorrowing relatives of brother Greijdanus! Sorrowing churches of the Netherlands! Arm yourselves with the same thought! It is sweetest consolation.
The brother now sings in jubilant tones of the mercy of His God!
But we are still in the shadows.
Let us work while it is day that no one take our crown!