Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s day 7

February 18, 2018

7. Lord’s Day

Q. 20. Are all men then, as they perished in Adam, saved by Christ?
A. No; [a] only those who are ingrafted into him, and, receive all his benefits, by a true faith. [b]

Q. 21. What is true faith?
A. True faith is not only a certain knowledge, whereby I hold for truth all that God has revealed to us in his word, [a] but also an assured confidence, [b] which the Holy Ghost [c] works by the gospel in my heart; [d] that not only to others, but to me also, remission of sin, everlasting righteousness and salvation, [e] are freely given by God, merely of grace, only for the sake of Christ’s merits. [f]

Q. 22. What is then necessary for a christian to believe?
A. All things promised us in the gospel, [a] which the articles of our catholic undoubted christian faith briefly teach us.

Q. 23. What are these articles?
A. 1. I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth: 2. And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord: 3. Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary: 4. Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead, and buried: He descended into hell: 5. The third day he rose again from the dead: 6. He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty: 7. From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead: 8. I believe in the Holy Ghost: 9. I believe a holy catholic church: the communion of saints: 10. The forgiveness of sins: 11. The resurrection of the body: 12. And the life everlasting.

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Westminster Confession, week 7

February 17, 2018

Chapter 4: Of Creation

1: It pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,[85] for the manifestation of the glory of His eternal power, wisdom, and goodness,[86] in the beginning, to create, or make of nothing, the world, and all things therein whether visible or invisible, in the space of six days; and all very good.[87]

2: After God had made all other creatures, He created man, male and female,[88] with reasonable and immortal souls,[89] endued with knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness, after His own image;[90] having the law of God written in their hearts,[91] and power to fulfil it;[92] and yet under a possibility of transgressing, being left to the liberty of their own will, which was subject unto change.[93] Beside this law written in their hearts, they received a command, not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil;[94] which while they kept, they were happy in their communion with God, and had dominion over the creatures.[95]


Canons of Dordt, week 7

February 16, 2018

The First Head of Doctrine: Divine Election and Reprobation

Article 12: The Assurance of Election

Assurance of this their eternal and unchangeable election to salvation is given to the chosen in due time, though by various stages and in differing measure. Such assurance comes not by inquisitive searching into the hidden and deep things of God, but by noticing within themselves, with spiritual joy and holy delight, the unmistakable fruits of election pointed out in God’s Word — such as a true faith in Christ, a childlike fear of God, a godly sorrow for their sins, a hunger and thirst for righteousness, and so on.

Article 13: The Fruit of This Assurance

In their awareness and assurance of this election God’s children daily find greater cause to humble themselves before God, to adore the fathomless depth of his mercies, to cleanse themselves, and to give fervent love in return to him who first so greatly loved them. This is far from saying that this teaching concerning election, and reflection upon it, make God’s children lax in observing his commandments or carnally self-assured. By God’s just judgment this does usually happen to those who casually take for granted the grace of election or engage in idle and brazen talk about it but are unwilling to walk in the ways of the chosen.


Larger Catechism, week 7

February 15, 2018

Q. 24. What is sin?
A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, any law of God, given as a rule to the reasonable creature.[92]

Q. 25. Wherein consisteth the sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell?
A. The sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell, consisteth in the guilt of Adam’s first sin,[93] the want of that righteousness wherein he was created, and the corruption of his nature, whereby he is utterly indisposed, disabled, and made opposite unto all that is spiritually good, and wholly inclined to all evil, and that continually;[94] which is commonly called original sin, and from which do proceed all actual transgressions.[95]

Q. 26. How is original sin conveyed from our first parents unto their posterity?
A. Original sin is conveyed from our first parents unto their posterity by natural generation, so as all that proceed from them in that way are conceived and born in sin.[96]

Q. 27. What misery did the fall bring upon mankind?
A. The fall brought upon mankind the loss of communion with God,[97] his displeasure and curse; so as we are by nature children of wrath,[98] bond slaves to Satan,[99] and justly liable to all punishments in this world, and that which is to come.[100]

Q. 28. What are the punishments of sin in this world?
A. The punishments of sin in this world are either inward, as blindness of mind,[101] a reprobate sense,[102] strong delusions,[103] hardness of heart,[104] horror of conscience,[105] and vile affections;[106] or outward, as the curse of God upon the creatures for our sakes,[107] and all other evils that befall us in our bodies, names, estates, relations, and employments;[108] together with death itself.[109]

Q. 29. What are the punishments of sin in the world to come?
A. The punishments of sin in the world to come, are everlasting separation from the comfortable presence of God, and most grievous torments in soul and body, without intermission, in hell-fire forever.[110]


Belgic Confession, week 7

February 14, 2018

Article 12: The Creation of All Things

We believe that the Father created heaven and earth and all other creatures from nothing, when it seemed good to him, by his Word– that is to say, by his Son. He has given all creatures their being, form, and appearance, and their various functions for serving their Creator. Even now he also sustains and governs them all, according to his eternal providence, and by his infinite power, that they may serve man, in order that man may serve God. He has also created the angels good, that they might be his messengers and serve his elect. Some of them have fallen from the excellence in which God created them into eternal perdition; and the others have persisted and remained in their orginal state, by the grace of God. The devils and evil spirits are so corrupt that they are enemies of God and of everything good. They lie in wait for the church and every member of it like thieves, with all their power, to destroy and spoil everything by their deceptions. So then, by their own wickedness they are condemned to everlasting damnation, daily awaiting their torments. For that reason we detest the error of the Sadducees, who deny that there are spirits and angels, and also the error of the Manicheans, who say that the devils originated by themselves, being evil by nature, without having been corrupted.


Shorter Catechism, week 7

February 13, 2018

Q. 13. Did our first parents continue in the estate wherein they were created?
A. Our first parents, being left to the freedom of their own will, fell from the estate wherein they were created, by sinning against God.[37]


Children’s Catechism, week 7

February 12, 2018

Q. 25. What did God promise in the covenant of works?
A. To reward Adam with life if he obeyed him.

Q. 26. What did God threaten in the covenant of works?
A. To punish Adam with death if he disobeyed.

Q. 27. Did Adam keep the covenant of works?
A. No; he sinned against God.


Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s day 6

February 11, 2018

6. Lord’s Day

Q. 16. Why must he be very man, and also perfectly righteous?
A. Because the justice of God requires that the same human nature which has sinned, should likewise make satisfaction for sin; [a] and one, who is himself a sinner, cannot satisfy for others. [b]

Q. 17. Why must he in one person be also very God?
A. That he might, by the power of his Godhead [a] sustain in his human nature, [b] the burden of God’s wrath; [c] and might obtain for, and restore to us, righteousness and life. [d]

Q. 18. Who then is that Mediator, who is in one person both very God, [a] and a real [b] righteous man? [c]
A. Our Lord Jesus Christ: [d] “who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” [e]

Q. 19. Whence knowest thou this?
A. From the holy gospel, which God himself first revealed in Paradise; [a] and afterwards published by the patriarchs [b] and prophets, [c] and represented by the sacrifices and other ceremonies of the law; [d] and lastly, has fulfilled it by his only begotten Son. [e]


Westminster Confession, week 6

February 10, 2018

Chapter 3: Of God’s Eternal Decree

5: Those of mankind that are predestinated unto life, God, before the foundation of the world was laid, according to His eternal and immutable purpose, and the secret counsel and good pleasure of His will, has chosen, in Christ, unto everlasting glory,[73] out of His mere free grace and love, without any foresight of faith, or good works, or perseverance in either of them, or any other thing in the creature, as conditions, or causes moving Him thereunto;[74] and all to the praise of His glorious grace.[75]

6: As God has appointed the elect unto glory, so has He, by the eternal and most free purpose of His will, foreordained all the means thereunto. Wherefore, they who are elected, being fallen in Adam, are redeemed by Christ,[76] are effectually called unto faith in Christ by His Spirit working in due season, are justified, adopted, sanctified,[77] and kept by His power, through faith, unto salvation.[78] Neither are any other redeemed by Christ, effectually called, justified, adopted, sanctified, and saved, but the elect only.[79]

7: The rest of mankind God was pleased, according to the unsearchable counsel of His own will, whereby He extends or withholds mercy, as He pleases, for the glory of His sovereign power over His creatures, to pass by; and to ordain them to dishonor and wrath for their sin, to the praise of His glorious justice.[80]

8: The doctrine of this high mystery of predestination is to be handled with special prudence and care,[81] that men, attending the will of God revealed in His Word, and yielding obedience thereunto, may, from the certainty of their effectual vocation, be assured of their eternal election.[82] So shall this doctrine afford matter of praise, reverence, and admiration of God;[83] and of humility, diligence, and abundant consolation to all that sincerely obey the Gospel.[84]


Canons of Dordt, week 6

February 9, 2018

The First Head of Doctrine: Divine Election and Reprobation

Article 10: Election Based on God’s Good Pleasure

But the cause of this undeserved election is exclusively the good pleasure of God. This does not involve his choosing certain human qualities or actions from among all those possible as a condition of salvation, but rather involves his adopting certain particular persons from among the common mass of sinners as his own possession. As Scripture says, When the children were not yet born, and had done nothing either good or bad…, she (Rebecca) was told, “The older will serve the younger.” As it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated” (Rom. 9:11-13). Also, All who were appointed for eternal life believed (Acts 13:48).

Article 11: Election Unchangeable

Just as God himself is most wise, unchangeable, all-knowing, and almighty, so the election made by him can neither be suspended nor altered, revoked, or annulled; neither can his chosen ones be cast off, nor their number reduced.