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False doctrine and a corrupt life! 

Heresy and schism! 

The lie and sin! 

Since the day that the devil approached man in paradise till this very day these have always gone hand in hand. 

Defending conditional theology and defending lawlessness are inseparably connected! 

Deceiving with the lie of false doctrine and deceiving with misrepresentations of the facts go hand in hand! 

A corrupt doctrine and walking in error belong together! 

We like to have you see that as we begin to write concerning the church political side of the conflict which under God’s providence and grace had brought about a purification of the Protestant Reformed Churches. And walking in error is not living in His fear. He who is afraid of the gospel and feels safer with the Arminian approach—sometimes called the “pedagogical approach”—cannot walk in God’s fear. He must walk in error.

One thing that has deliberately been left out of the facts that were presented (that is, left out by those who want to defend and to be defended in their stand for conditional theology and schismatic action) is that the Rev. H. Hoeksema protested to Classis against his consistory, the consistory of the First Protestant Reformed Church of Grand Rapids, Michigan. He did not protest to Classis against Rev. De Wolf. That he did to his consistory, and when his consistory upheld Rev. De Wolf in his heretical statements, the Rev. H. Hoeksema protested to Classis against his consistory

We do not have at hand his protest, since we are at this writing serving the congregation of our Protestant Reformed Church at Redlands, California. And we were not sent here by the Rev. H. Hoeksema, as a recent Concordia article would have it. The Rev. H. Hoeksema is not the evil man of Rev. De Wolf’s cross-bill. He does not meddle in the affairs of other congregations and take a man out of his own congregation and send him across the country to a group of people as a lawless dictator. The undersigned was requested by the consistory of the Redlands Protestant Reformed Church to labor here, and undersigned’s consistory, realizing the need, graciously consented to his coming down here to serve in that need. 

But, even then, we remember very clearly that the document he sent to Classis East contained three points of protest. He protested against (1) his consistory’s action in defending the first heretical statement of Rev. De Wolf. (2) He protested againstthe consistory’s action in defending the second heretical statement of Rev. De Wolf. And (3) he protested against the action of his consistory in taking a stand contrary to a former decision without first retracting that former decision. Besides, the very minutes of Classis East, we recall, read to the effect that a protest is read of the Rev. H. Hoeksemaagainst his consistory. The same is true of the Rev. Ophoff’s protest. 

What does all this mean? 

It gives the correct answer to the deceptively presented question as to when the case of Rev. De Wolf became the case of his elders, and as to why they had to be deposed. We say that this question has been deceptively presented, because those who asked the question knew very well that the protest was against the consistory and not against Rev. De Wolf. It became the case of these elders the moment the Rev. H. Hoeksema and the Rev. Ophoff filed with that consistory their protests which they intended to send in to Classis East. That is why Classis East decided that all the elders who were walking in the error of those three points of protest had to apologize as well as Rev. De Wolf, the author of the statements. We hope to write more on that subject too, a little later, the Lord willing, but let it be stated here that in this Classis was not guilty of “stipulating the whole course of action.” It did not do any more than it was called upon to do by the protestants. They asked for a judgment upon the elders as well as upon Rev. De Wolf and his statements. 

Another fact which is silenced by those walking in error is that on the consistory meeting of June 1 the motion to adopt the advice of Classis carried by a unanimous vote. To be sure the eleven elders that wanted to defend Rev. De Wolf with his heretical statements did not vote either for or against the motion; and for that reason it was the unanimous vote of the eleven elders, who stood for the truth, against not one single negative vote. But that in no way alters the fact that the motion carried and that unanimously. 

From that moment on these eleven men were under discipline and might never vote again in the case. In fact the Church Order declares that they might not even vote on that meeting of June 1 in regard to adopting the advice of Classis. For, as tie pointed out above, they were personally involved in the case ever since the Rev. Hoeksema and the Rev. Ophoff filed their protests with the consistory as protests to Classis in regard to their behavior. Article 33 reads, “Those who are delegated to the assemblies shall bring with them their credentials and instructions, signed by those sending them, and they shall have a vote in all matters, except such as particularly concern their persons or churches.” And article 29 calls the Consistory such an ecclesiastical assembly. There is one way in which they Might be allowed to vote at that June 1 meeting, and that is, they might be given the opportunity to vote for the adoption of the advice of, Classis in order thereby to reveal that they, after the thorough discussion of the matter by Classis, were now convinced of their error and would not walk in it anymore. 

Now it is claimed that these men were intimidated and were under undue pressure, and that they did not vote because of this fact. That is a misrepresentation of the facts. Beside the fact which we just pointed out that they had no right even then to vote against the advice of Classis, this thing stands out in bold relief that all the actions of those men that evening revealed the very opposite of intimidation as does the speech of the Rev. G. Vos as he explained to these men the decision of Classis. That speech of his is a full of brotherly love as man could ever make his speech. He pleaded with them. He showed them that he still had confidence that they would do the right thing. He warned them. Indeed! In love he warned them not to take “to their bosom” those heretical statements. He showed them that he was seeking their good and not threatening them .with any evil that he or Classis would bring upon them. He warned them of God’s judgment but not of man’s retaliation. 

And these men were not frightened one bit by his words. Facts show that. After his speech, and even though the whole committee was there to witness it, one of Rev. De Wolf’s supporters made very boldly and rebelliously a motion to adjourn the meeting as soon as the committee had presented the decision of Classis. Intimidated? Under undue pressure? Not at all! Nor did this end their boldness. When the motion was then made to adopt the advice of Classis, one of these elders who defended Rev. De Wolf still dared to make in all boldness and rebellion a motion to table the matter. Frightened men do not behave that way. Men under undue pressure are not psychologically able to make such moves. 

Indeed, these men were afraid. They had fear in their hearts, but it was not the fear of the Lord. They feared for their own position and honor among men. They were not afraid either of the Classis or of the committee sent by the Classis to acquaint them with its decision. They were not intimidated. They were not under undue pressure. They invented this idea later on in order to deceive those who did not know the facts. 

Besides, here is another fact that the Conditional-walkers-in-error will hush and cover up. The eleven faithful elders together with the Rev. C. Hanko and the Rev. H. Hoeksema in the presence of the committee sent by the Classis gave Rev. De Wolf and his elders time to consider the matter and to decide whether they would apologize. They even gave them permission to meet as a group to discuss and to decide what they would do. This was definitely wrong. Such permission should not have been given them. And they should not have been allowed to function in their offices while they took the time to decide. But it does show that they were not put under undue pressure and were not intimidated at all. 

Had the consistory sent these eleven men and Rev. De Wolf out of the meeting—as is frequently done in discipline cases—and then called them in one by one to ask each one whether he would apologize, we could understand that they might make the claim of undue pressure and intimidation. Understand well that such procedure would not have been intimidation or undue pressure, but we say that we could understand that they would interpret it as such. 

Now it is a plain case of walking in error in order to defend themselves and to maintain themselves in their false doctrine. They know that they were the ones against whom the protest was lodged. They know that Classis judged them to be wrong. They know too that the Church Order demands that if they think that they have been wronged that they must appeal to a higher body and meanwhile submit to the decision of the majority. BUT THEY CHOSE TO WALK IN THE WAY OF ERROR! 

And therein is revealed the hypocrisy of Conditional Theology. It falsely clamors time and again: “Tell us what WE must DO. Tell us what God has done. But, by all means, tell us what WE MUST DO!” Don’t you believe it. Those addicted to conditional theology do not want to be told what man must do. They choose to walk in error. They insist on preaching the law as a condition to salvation. But they do not intend to walk in that law. They will make their own church order. Conditional theology is not God-centered, does not seek the glory of God in all and it therefore walks in the way which cannot glorify God. It makes a church order that will seek to glorify man. And when you show them their error, they try to hide behind the false claim that to call one’s attention to his evil walk is not to love that individual. That to, let one continue in his sin is not love to God against whom they sin, they conveniently ignore, because Conditional Theology is not concerned with God’s glory but with an erroneous idea of MAN’S salvation. 

Conditional theology always asks what the conditions are for man’s salvation. It does not begin as its starting point nor have as its goal the glory of God revealed in Christ. It is man centered. Therefore it always asks the question, what must I do to be saved? And that it is a man-made theory and lacks the power of the truth of God ought now to be plain. For though it has been presented to Protestant Reformed membership as essential that man may be kept from being careless and profane, Rev. De Wolf—whom they have let be their mouthpiece and scapegoat—has, with his evil cross bill as well as all his walking in error with his elders and followers, shown us that such a philosophy only leads to walking in error, to more carelessness of walk of life than our churches had ever seen in their midst before. The conditional theology of Rev. De Wolf and followers (instigators also) lead to all the walking in error which followed since June 1.