The law should drive us to Jesus Christ as our only hope of salvation. “The law is a kind of mirror,” wrote John Calvin (Inst. 2.7.7). In the light of its perfection we see our sin and failure. The church father Augustine wrote: “If the Spirit of grace is absent, the law is present only … Continue reading The three “uses of the law”
The Trinity in the Heidelberg Catechism
“Contemporary Christians by and large do not appropriate God for themselves in a specifically trinitarian way. Yet both worship and thought remain replete with symbols expressing God as triune—symbols, however, that remain at a certain remove from actual life.” (William J. Hill, The Three-Personed God, p. 251) Reformed Christian do not escape this problem. We … Continue reading The Trinity in the Heidelberg Catechism
“Your comfort”: The personal approach of the Heidelberg Catechism
The Heidelberg Catechism was not the only catechism written in the time of the Reformation. The method of teaching children through questions and answers was very popular at that time. Many Reformed leaders published catechisms, including Luther, Calvin, and Ursinus. But the Heidelberg Catechism became the most popular of all. One thing that stands out … Continue reading “Your comfort”: The personal approach of the Heidelberg Catechism
CanRC and FRC (1): Pursuing our Unity
In Chatham, ON, there are several “Dutch Reformed” churches. Two of them are the Canadian Reformed Church, called “Eben-Ezer”, and the Free Reformed Church, “Living Hope”. These churches are similar in many respects, but the contact between them is very limited. In my mind, this is a sad state of affairs. I believe that we … Continue reading CanRC and FRC (1): Pursuing our Unity
Covenantal and experiential preaching
In the preaching of the gospel, who are addressed and in what way?
The Bible as the Word of God
We believe that the Bible is the Word of God, and must therefore have a central place in our lives. The Bible is God's revelation, the norm for our faith, and to be interpreted in the community of the confessing church.
This article addresses a focus in preaching that is practised in the Reformed churches, and which I also much utilize in my own sermon-writing.
The canon of the Bible and apocrypha
The canon is the collection of 66 books that we recognize as Scripture. How did the canon develop? And what about the apocrypha and other books that did not make it into the canon of the church?