All Articles For Editor's Notes

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Unprecedented, as far as I am aware. Prof. Russell Dykstra was but one year from finishing the five-year transition period into his retirement as faculty in the PRC seminary when on May 30 he accepted a call to become pastor of Byron Center, MI PRC. First, the pastorate (Doon and Hope GR); then twenty-five-years as professor at seminary; now back to the pastorate. At age 67. Sixty-seven these days is not what 67 was 50 years ago, but it still does not carry the strength of youth. It was very understandable then that only two days later, at the Standard...

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In October 2021 the faculty of the Protestant Reformed Theological Seminary presented a conference on the doctrine of preaching. That the conference treated the doctrine of preaching means that it did not touch on matters of style and delivery, but rather on the nature and content of the preaching, as set forth in Scripture and the Reformed confessions. The four main articles in this issue of the Protestant Reformed Theological Journal contain the written version of those speeches. The first article underscores that the preaching of the gospel, by one who is properly called to that work, is the voice...

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The ‘editorial’ in this issue is not what had been planned. Unexpected circumstances sometimes require change of plans. A schism in the church is such a circumstance. In place of editorial is lament. We are familiar with the book of Lamentations. Many psalms are laments also. These expressions of grief are models for the people of God, proper expressions of sorrow in times of trouble. Laments often follow a pattern. Study the Psalms of lament to see that pattern. Readers will also recognize the biblical and confessional language used to form this lament. The church has her vocabulary and expressions,...

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What comes to mind when you hear (or read) of “the French Reformation”? Most, I suspect, have little knowledge of this aspect of the sixteenth-century Reformation that began in Wittenberg (Luther), and spread through many countries in Europe. The great majority of our readers come from a European context (ethnically and theologically) other than France. Many are tied to the Reformation in the Netherlands by blood lines. Theologically, we connect with Martin Luther in Germany and John Calvin in Geneva. A very small group has ties to French Huguenots (the term used to identify Reformed believers in France). Consequently, France...

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With heartfelt gratitude to God, we begin the ninety-seventh year of the Standard Bearer. It should be obvious that in order for the SB to find its way into your mailbox twenty-one times in the next year, many people put in significant effort. That starts with some forty men and women who have committed to write anywhere from three to twenty articles in the next year.1 Behind the scenes, managing editor Charles Terpstra sets the schedule for the writers (and reminds them when theirs are due), edits every contribution submitted, and along with the editors, proofreads every issue. Then there...

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Once again our Standard Bearer appears in a special garb. This time it is upon the request of the P.R.Y.P.F. that just recently held its second annual convention in Grand Rapids. We assure our young people that we are both proud and happy to serve them through the Standard Bearer in this way. The convention we just mentioned was a wonderful success. Our hearts were warmed and gladdened when we saw the zeal and activity of our young men and young women, their interest in the things of the kingdom of God. They certainly manifested a Christian spirit throughout, not...

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Below you will find some unusual items related to God’s ‘frowning providence’ of sending the coronavirus worldwide. In order to fit these special items, we delay printing of other articles that were planned for this issue. We trust the reader understands the appropriateness of addressing the current issues in the church and world. We did not ask anyone to produce special articles. Rather, we noticed what pastors and consistories were doing to care for their flocks in these unusual times, and then asked for permission to print what they had produced: A special sermon, “Coronavirus and the King,” edited for...

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Death. The last enemy. When it comes, death tears apart body and soul, leaving behind sorrow, loss, and pain. In God’s sovereign providence, death is very much on the minds of people all around the world as new counts of deaths caused by the coronavirus are reported daily in the news. When this issue was planned, we knew nothing of the scourge that was coming. Death itself is painful. It is not natural, for it is God’s punishment for man’s sin. The child of God does not have a terror of death, for our Lord went through death that He...

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As the front cover indicates, our annual Reformation issue is devoted to the Reformation in Zurich. The decision to highlight Zurich is based largely on the fact that this year marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in this city located in the northeast side of Switzerland. In 1519, Ulrich Zwingli began preaching in the main church in Zurich. His preaching was astoundingly different from what the people had ever heard—he preached directly from the Bible. In this way God began the process of Reformation. The Reformation in Zurich is largely overshadowed by two other major sixteenth-century reforms. On the...

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In a special worship service in the Grandville Protestant Reformed Church held September 4, Rev. Brian Huizinga was installed as the Professor of Theology and Old Testament Studies in the Protestant Reformed Theological Seminary. In this issue, we print an edited version of Prof. R. Cammenga’s fine sermon on Acts 27:23b (“whose I am, and whom I serve”) delivered in the installation service. It replaces the editorial for this issue. The next issue of the Standard Bearer (Nov. 1) will be the annual Reformation issue. The theme will be the Reformation in Zurich, Switzerland, and it will high­light such notable...

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