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Lord’s Day 30 Question 80. What difference is there between the Lord’s Supper and the popish mass? Answer. The Lord’s Supper testifies to us that we have a full pardon of all sin by the only sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which He Himself has once accomplished on the cross; and, that we by the Holy Ghost are ingrafted into Christ, who according to His human nature is now not on earth, but in heaven at the right hand of God His Father, and will there be worshiped by us—but the mass teaches, that the living and dead have not the...

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Previous article in this series: November 15, 2015, p. 84. Councils And in the same order also we place the decrees and canons of councils. Wherefore we do not permit ourselves, in controversies about religion or matters of faith, to urge our case with only the opinions of the fathers or decrees of council; much less by received customs, or by the large number of those who share the same opinion, or by the prescription of a long time. Who is the judge? Therefore, we do not admit any other judge than God himself, who proclaims by the Holy Scriptures...

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Lord’s Day 29 Question 78. Do then the bread and wine become the very body and blood of Christ? Answer. Not at all; but as the water in baptism is not changed into the blood of Christ, neither is the washing away of sin itself, being only the sign and confirmation thereof appointed of God; so the bread in the Lord’s supper is not changed into the very body of Christ; though agreeably to the nature and properties of sacraments, it is called the body of Christ Jesus. Question 79. Why then doth Christ call the bread His body, and...

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Previous article in this series: August 2015, p. 438.   The True Interpretation of Scripture   The apostle Peter has said that the Holy Scriptures are not of private interpretation (II Pet. 1:20), and thus we do not allow all possible interpretations. Nor consequently do we acknowledge as the true or genuine interpretation of the Scriptures what is called the conception of the Roman [Catholic] Church, that is, what the defenders of the Roman [Catholic] Church plainly maintain should be thrust upon all for acceptance. But we hold that interpretation of the Scripture to be orthodox and genuine which is...

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Lord’s Day 28 Question 75. How art thou admonished and assured in the Lord’s Supper that thou art a partaker of that one sacrifice of Christ, accomplished on the cross, and of all His benefits? Answer. Thus: That Christ has commanded me and all believers, to eat of this broken bread, and to drink of this cup in remembrance of Him, adding these promises: first, that His body was offered and broken on the cross for me, and His blood shed for me, as certainly as I see with my eyes, the bread of the Lord broken for me and...

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Previous article in this series: May 1, 2015, p. 346. (Second Helvetic Confession, Chapter 1, B) Fundamental to everything that the Reformed Christian believes and confesses is the truth of sacred Scripture: “…in this Holy Scripture, the universal Church of Christ has the most complete exposition of all that pertains to a saving faith, and also to the framing of a life acceptable to God…” (SHC, 1.1). What we believe and confess is derived from Scripture, is taught in Scripture, and can be defended on the basis of Scripture. It is what we believe about Scripture more than anything else...

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Previous article in this series: February 1, 2015, p. 202. Lord’s Day 27 Question 72. Is then the external baptism with water the washing away of sin itself? Answer. Not at all: for the blood of Jesus Christ only, and the Holy Ghost, cleanse us from all sin. Question 73. Why then doth the Holy Ghost call baptism “the washing of regeneration” and “the washing away of sins”? Answer. God speaks thus not without great cause, to wit, not only thereby to teach us that, as the filth of the body is purged away by water, so our sins are...

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Previous article in this series: March 1, 2015, p. 254. With this article we begin our consideration of the thirty chapters of the Second Helvetic Confession. Considering the length of these chapters, our plan is to write two Standard Bearer articles on each chapter. We will quote the individual sections of each chapter; following each section we will give a brief exposition. We intend to use the titles of the chapters of the Confession as the titles for our articles. Although the chapters of the Second Helvetic Confession are quite lengthy, quoting them is necessary if the purpose of familiarity with the...

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Previous article in this series: January 1, 2015, p. 158. Background The Second Helvetic Confession was written in 1562 by Heinrich Bullinger (1504-1575), whose life we considered in our previous article. It was intended by Bullinger to be buried with him as a testimony to the faith for which he had lived and which he had defended to his dying day. But despite his intentions, before he died Bullinger’s confession came to light and was widely disseminated. This was due to a request from the pious Elector of the Palatinate, Frederick III, that Bullinger prepare a clear and complete exposition...

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Lord’s Day 26 Question 69. How art thou admonished and assured by holy baptism that the one sacrifice of Christ upon the cross is of real advantage to thee? Answer. Thus: that Christ appointed this external washing with water, adding thereto this promise, that I am as certainly washed by His blood and Spirit from all the pollution of my soul, that is, from all my sins, as I am washed externally with water, by which the filthiness of the body is commonly washed away. Question 70. What is it to be washed with the blood and Spirit of Christ?...

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