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All Articles For Our Doctrine

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In answer to the question: “Of what advantage to us is Christ’s ascension into heaven?’’ the Catechism mentions a threefold benefit resulting from the glorification of our Lord for the Church on earth: He is our advocate in the presence of His Father in heaven; His presence in heaven is, to us, a pledge of our future glorification; and from His heavenly glory He send us His Spirit as an earnest, so that, principally, we are with (Him in heaven, and seek the things which are above by the power of that Spirit. A few words must be said about...

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Q. 50. Why is it added, “and sitteth at the right hand of God?” A. Because Christ is ascended into, heaven for this end, that he might there appear as head of his church, by whom the Father governs all things. Q. 51. What profit is the glory of Christ, our head, unto us? A. First, that by his Holy Spirit he pours out heavenly graces upon us his members; and then that by his power he defends and preserves us against all enemies. Q. 52. What comfort is it to thee that Christ “shall come again to judge the...

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Chapter 1: Our Exalted Lord (cont.) If, therefore, the exaltation of our Lord took place in, and affects only His human nature, it plainly follows that it does not denote a divine power, and that we must carefully distinguish between His power as the Son of God in the divine nature, and the power He exercises in and through His human nature. The two natures of Christ, though inseparably united in the Person of the Son of God, are never fused or mixed, not even at His exaltation at the right hand of God. The human nature did not become...

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Chapter 2: The Significance Of Christ’s Exaltation (cont.) He rules, not only within the domain of His Church, and by grace; but also in the realm of creation, and over all the forces of darkness in this world, by His power. All power is given unto Him, in heaven and on earth. Angels and principalities and powers are subject unto Him. And this power He employs, according to the Catechism, to defend and preserve us against all enemies. The Church is in the world. And in that world she has many enemies. For the world is in darkness, and of...

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And throughout the New Testament, the hope of the Church in the world is fixed upon the return of her Lord in glory. At the occasion of the ascension of Christ from Mount Olivet, the angels that stand by the amazed apostles as they gaze up into the heavens address them as follows: “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” And these words, while in their comparison of the ascension of...

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Chapter 3: The Coming Of The Lord (cont.) A second observation that must be made concerning the coming of the Lord is that it is the final wonder of grace. The confession that we believe in a literal, personal return of our Lord Jesus Christ must not tempt us to overlook the equally important truth that it is a wonder, and that, therefore, we dare not conceive of it and speak of it in terms derived from our present, earthly life and existence. There can be no doubt that this is frequently done. We are inclined to picture the return...

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In the course of the history of dogma, various notions were developed and propounded with respect to the idea of the final judgment. That the course of this world would be finally closed by a judgment of God was taught in the Church from the very beginning of the new dispensation. But different conceptions were formed of this revelation of the righteous judgment of God. Already in the middle ages one meets with the notion that the judgment will take place only in the consciousness of those that shall be judged, that is, all the moral creatures. It will be...

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Chapter 4: The Final Judgment. (cont.) Tins also implies that the final judgment will take place through the Spirit of Christ, This already follows from the fact that all the works of God are of the Father, through the Son, and in or by the Spirit,. And if the judgment is to be accomplished by Christ, as the visible Representative of the invisible God, it must be the Spirit of Christ through whom the verdict is bound undeniably upon the consciences of men. Besides, thus the Scriptures teach us directly. Even now, the Comforter, the Spirit of truth, whom Christ...

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Eternally, therefore, the Spirit searches the depths of God, and knows the mind of God, “For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.” 1 Cor. 2:11 Besides, also the work of creation is ascribed to this Spirit of God, as well as to the Father and to the Son. In the beginning “the Spirit moved upon the face of the waters,” Gen. 1:2. And “by the Word of the Lord were the heavens made; and all...

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Besides teaching us that the Holy Ghost “is true and co-eternal God with the Father and the Son,” the Catechism also places the following confession on the lips of the believing Christian: “that he is also given me, to make me by a true faith partaker of Christ and all His benefits, that He may comfort me and abide with me for ever.” In these words, our instructor speaks of the Holy Ghost as He is become the Spirit of Christ. A distinction must be made between the Holy Ghost as such, as the third Person of the Holy Trinity,...

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