Shorter Catechism, week 22

May 31, 2016

Q. 33. What is justification?
A. Justification is an act of God’s free grace,[91] wherein he pardoneth all our sins,[92] and accepteth us as righteous in His sight,[93] only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us,[94] and received by faith alone.[95]


Children’s Catechism, week 22

May 30, 2016

Q. 74. What do the first four commandments teach?
A. Our duty to God.

Q. 75. What do the last six commandments teach?
A. Our duty to our fellow men.


Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s day 22

May 29, 2016

22. Lord’s Day

Q. 57. What comfort does the “resurrection of the body” afford thee?
A. That not only my soul after this life shall be immediately taken up to Christ its head; [a] but also, that this my body, being raised by the power of Christ, shall be reunited with my soul, and made like unto the glorious body of Christ. [b]

Q. 58. What comfort takest thou from the article of “life everlasting”?
A. That since I now feel in my heart the beginning of eternal joy, [a] after this life, I shall inherit perfect salvation, which “eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man” to conceive, and that to praise God therein for ever. [b]


Westminster Confession, week 22

May 28, 2016

Chapter 14: Of Saving Faith

1: The grace of faith, whereby the elect are enabled to believe to the saving of their souls,[278] is the work of the Spirit of Christ in their hearts,[279] and is ordinarily wrought by the ministry of the Word,[280] by which also, and by the administration of the sacraments, and prayer, it is increased and strengthened.[281]

2: By this faith, a Christian believes to be true whatsoever is revealed in the Word, for the authority of God Himself speaking therein;[282] and acts differently upon that which each particular passage thereof contains; yielding obedience to the commands,[283]trembling at the threatenings,[284] and embracing the promises of God for this life, and that which is to come.[285] But the principal acts of saving faith are accepting, receiving, and resting upon Christ alone for justification, sanctification, and eternal life, by virtue of the covenant of grace.[286]

3: This faith is different in degrees, weak or strong;[287] may be often and many ways assailed, and weakened, but gets the victory:[288] growing up in many to the attainment of a full assurance, through Christ,[289] who is both the author and finisher of our faith.[290]


Canons of Dordt, week 22

May 27, 2016

The Second Head of Doctrine: Christ’s Death and Human Redemption Through It

Having set forth the orthodox teaching, the Synod rejects the errors of those

III

Who teach that Christ, by the satisfaction which he gave, did not certainly merit for anyone salvation itself and the faith by which this satisfaction of Christ is effectively applied to salvation, but only acquired for the Father the authority or plenary will to relate in a new way with men and to impose such new conditions as he chose, and that the satisfying of these conditions depends on the free choice of man; consequently, that it was possible that either all or none would fulfill them.

For they have too low an opinion of the death of Christ, do not at all acknowledge the foremost fruit or benefit which it brings forth, and summon back from hell the Pelagian error.

Having set forth the orthodox teaching, the Synod rejects the errors of those

IV

Who teach that what is involved in the new covenant of grace which God the Father made with men through the intervening of Christ’s death is not that we are justified before God and saved through faith, insofar as it accepts Christ’s merit, but rather that God, having withdrawn his demand for perfect obedience to the law, counts faith itself, and the imperfect obedience of faith, as perfect obedience to the law, and graciously looks upon this as worthy of the reward of eternal life.

For they contradict Scripture: They are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Jesus Christ, whom God presented as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood (Rom. 3:24-25). And along with the ungodly Socinus, they introduce a new and foreign justification of man before God, against the consensus of the whole church.


Larger Catechism, week 21

May 26, 2016

Q. 91. What is the duty which God requireth of man?
A. The duty which God requireth of man, is obedience to his revealed will.[397]

Q. 92. What did God at first reveal unto man as the rule of his obedience?
A. The rule of obedience revealed to Adam in the estate of innocence, and to all mankind in him, besides a special command not to eat of the fruit of the tree knowledge of good and evil, was the moral law.[398]

Q. 93. What is the moral law?
A. The moral law is the declaration of the will of God to mankind, directing and binding every one to personal, perfect, and perpetual conformity and obedience thereunto, in the frame and disposition of the whole man, soul and body,[399] and in performance of all those duties of holiness and righteousness which he oweth to God and man:[400] promising life upon the fulfilling, and threatening death upon the breach of it.[401]

Q. 94. Is there any use of the moral law to man since the fall?
A. Although no man, since the fall, can attain to righteousness and life by the moral law:[402] yet there is great use thereof, as well common to all men, as peculiar either to the unregenerate, or the regenerate.[403]


Belgic Confession, week 21

May 25, 2016

Article 30: The Government of the Church

We believe that this true church ought to be governed according to the spiritual order that our Lord has taught us in his Word. There should be ministers or pastors to preach the Word of God and adminster the sacraments. There should also be elders and deacons, along with the pastors, to make up the council of the church. By this means true religion is preserved; true doctrine is able to take its course; and evil men are corrected spiritually and held in check, so that also the poor and all the afflicted may be helped and comforted according to their need. By this means everything will be done well and in good order in the church, when such persons are elected who are faithful and are chosen according to the rule that Paul gave to Timothy.[75]

Article 31: The Officers of the Church

We believe that ministers of the Word of God, elders, and deacons ought to be chosen to their offices by a legitimate election of the church, with prayer in the name of the Lord, and in good order, as the Word of God teaches. So everyone must be careful not to push himself forward improperly, but he must wait for God’s call, so that he may be assured of his calling and be certain that he is chosen by the Lord. As for the ministers of the Word, they all have the same power and authority, no matter where they may be, since they are all servants of Jesus Christ, the only universal bishop, and the only head of the church. Moreover, to keep God’s holy order from being violated or despised, we say that everyone ought, as much as possible, to hold the ministers of the Word and elders of the church in special esteem, because of the work they do, and be at peace with them, without grumbling, quarreling, or fighting.

Article 32: The Order and Discipline of the Church

We also believe that although it is useful and good for those who govern the churches to establish and set up a certain order among themselves for maintaining the body of the church, they ought always to guard against deviating from what Christ, our only Master, has ordained for us. Therefore we reject all human innovations and all laws imposed on us, in our worship of God, which bind and force our consciences in any way. So we accept only what is proper to maintain harmony and unity and to keep all in obedience to God. To that end excommunication, with all it involves, according to the Word of God, is required.


Shorter Catechism, week 21

May 24, 2016

Q. 32. What benefits do they that are effectually called partake of in this life?
A. They that are effectually called do in this life partake of justification, adoption, and sanctification, and the several benefits which in this life do either accompany or flow from them.[90]


Children’s Catechism, week 21

May 23, 2016

Q. 72. How many commandments did God give on Mount Sinai?
A. Ten commandments.

Q. 73. What are the ten commandments sometimes called?
A. The Decalogue.


Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s day 21

May 22, 2016

21. Lord’s Day

Q. 54. What believest thou concerning the “holy catholic church” of Christ?
A. That the Son of God [a] from the beginning to the end of the world, [b] gathers, defends, and preserves [c] to himself by his Spirit and word, [d] out of the whole human race, [e] a church chosen to everlasting life, [f] agreeing in true faith; [g] and that I am and forever shall remain, [h] a living member thereof. [i]

Q. 55. What do you understand by “the communion of saints”?
A. First, that all and every one, who believes, being members of Christ, are in common, partakers of him, and of all his riches and gifts; [a] secondly, that every one must know it to be his duty, readily and cheerfully to employ his gifts, for the advantage and salvation of other members. [b]

Q. 56. What believest thou concerning “the forgiveness of sins”?
A. That God, for the sake of Christ’s satisfaction, will no more remember my sins, neither my corrupt nature, against which I have to struggle all my life long; [a] but will graciously impute to me the righteousness of Christ, [b] that I may never be condemned before the tribunal of God. [c]


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