Larger Catechism, week 37

September 14, 2017

Q. 149. Is any man able perfectly to keep the commandments of God?
A. No man is able, either of himself,[917] or by any grace received in this life, perfectly to keep the commandments of God;[918] but doth daily break them in thought,[919] word, and deed.[920]

Q. 150. Are all transgressions of the law of God equally heinous in themselves, and in the sight of God?
A. All transgressions of the law of God are not equally heinous; but some sins in themselves, and by reason of several aggravations, are more heinous in the sight of God than others.[921]

Q. 151. What are those aggravations that make some sins more heinous than others?
A. Sins receive their aggravations,

1. From the persons offending[922] if they be of riper age,[923] greater experience or grace,[924] eminent for profession,[925] gifts,[926] place,[927] office,[928] guides to others,[929] and whose example is likely to be followed by others.[930]

2. From the parties offended:[931] if immediately against God,[932] his attributes,[933] and worship;[934] against Christ, and his grace;[935] the Holy Spirit,[936] his witness,[937] and workings[938] against superiors, men of eminency,[939] and such as we stand especially related and engaged unto;[940] against any of the saints,[941] particularly weak brethren,[942] the souls of them, or any other,[943] and the common good of all or many.[944]

3. From the nature and quality of the offense:[945] if it be against the express letter of the law,[946] break many commandments, contain in it many sins:[947] if not only conceived in the heart, but breaks forth in words and actions,[948] scandalize others,[949] and admit of no reparation:[950] if against means,[951] mercies,[952] judgments,[953] light of nature,[954] conviction of conscience,[955] public or private admonition,[956] censures of the church,[957] civil punishments;[958] and our prayers, purposes, promises,[959] vows,[960] covenants,[961] and engagements to God or men:[962] if done deliberately,[963] wilfully,[964] presumptuously,[965] impudently,[966] boastingly,[967] maliciously,[968] frequently,[969] obstinately,[970] with delight,[971] continuance,[972] or relapsing after repentance.[973]

4. From circumstances of time[974] and place:[975] if on the Lord’s day,[976] or other times of divine worship;[977] or immediately before[978] or after these,[979] or other helps to prevent or remedy such miscarriages;[980] if in public, or in the presence of others, who are thereby likely to be provoked or defiled[981].

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Belgic Confession, week 11

September 13, 2017

Article 17: The Recovery of Fallen Man

We believe that our good God, by his marvelous wisdom and goodness, seeing that man had plunged himself in this manner into both physical and spiritual death and made himself completely miserable, set out to find him, though man, trembling all over, was fleeing from him. And he comforted him, promising to give him his Son, “born of a woman,”[31] to crush the head of the serpent,[32] and to make him blessed.

Article 18: The Incarnation

So then we confess that God fulfilled the promise which he had made to the early fathers by the mouth of his holy prophets when he sent his only and eternal Son into the world at the time set by him. The Son took the “form of a servant” and was made in the “likeness of man,”[33] truly assuming a real human nature, with all its weaknesses, except for sin; being conceived in the womb of the blessed virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit, without male participation. And he not only assumed human nature as far as the body is concerned but also a real human soul, in order that he might be a real human being. For since the soul had been lost as well as the body he had to assume them both to save them both together. Therefore we confess, against the heresy of the Anabaptists who deny that Christ assumed human flesh from his mother, that he “shared the very flesh and blood of children”;[34] that he is “fruit of the loins of David” according to the flesh;[35] “born of the seed of David” according to the flesh;[36] “fruit of the womb of the virgin Mary”;[37] “born of a woman”;[38] “the seed of David”;[39] “a shoot from the root of Jesse”;[40] “the offspring of Judah,”[41] having descended from the Jews according to the flesh; “from the seed of Abraham”– for he “assumed Abraham’s seed” and was “made like his brothers except for sin.”[42] In this way he is truly our Immanuel– that is: “God with us.”[43]


Shorter Catechism, week 37

September 12, 2017

Q. 70. Which is the seventh commandment?
A. The seventh commandment is, Thou shalt not commit adultery.[158]

Q. 71. What is required in the seventh commandment?
A. The seventh commandment requireth the preservation of our own and our neighbor’s chastity, in heart, speech, and behavior.[159]

Q. 72. What is forbidden in the seventh commandment?
A. The seventh commandment forbiddeth all unchaste thoughts, words, and actions.[160]


Children’s Catechism, week 37

September 11, 2017

Q. 105. What is prayer?
A. Prayer is asking God for things which he has promised to give.

Q. 106. In whose name should we pray?
A. Only in the name of Christ.

Q. 107. What has Christ given us to teach us how to pray?
A. The Lord’s Prayer.


Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s day 37

September 10, 2017

37. Lord’s Day

Q. 101. May we then swear religiously by the name of God?
A. Yes: either when the magistrates demand it of the subjects; or when necessity requires us thereby to confirm a fidelity and truth to the glory of God, and the safety of our neighbour: for such an oath is founded on God’s word, [a] and therefore was justly used by the saints, both in the Old and New Testament. [b]

Q. 102. May we also swear by saints or any other creatures?
A. No; for a lawful oath is calling upon God, as the only one who knows the heart, that he will bear witness to the truth, and punish me if I swear falsely; [a] which honour is due to no creature. [b]


Westminster Confession, week 36

September 9, 2017

Chapter 21: Of Religious Worship, and the Sabbath Day

7: As it is the law of nature, that, in general, a due proportion of time be set apart for the worship of God; so, in His Word, by a positive, moral, and perpetual commandment binding all men in all ages, He has particularly appointed one day in seven, for a Sabbath, to be kept holy unto him:[437] which, from the beginning of the world to the resurrection of Christ, was the last day of the week: and, from the resurrection of Christ, was changed into the first day of the week,[438] which, in Scripture, is called the Lord’s Day,[439] and is to be continued to the end of the world, as the Christian Sabbath.[440]

8: This Sabbath is then kept holy unto the Lord, when men, after a due preparing of their hearts, and ordering of their common affairs beforehand, do not only observe an holy rest, all the day, from their own works, words, and thoughts about their worldly employments and recreations,[441] but also are taken up, the whole time, in the public and private exercises of His worship, and in the duties of necessity and mercy.[442]


Canons of Dordt, week 36

September 8, 2017

The Third and Fourth Heads of Doctrine: Human Corruption, Conversion to God, and the Way It Occurs

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

VI

Who teach that in the true conversion of man new qualities, dispositions, or gifts cannot be infused or poured into his will by God, and indeed that the faith [or believing] by which we first come to conversion and from which we receive the name “believers” is not a quality or gift infused by God, but only an act of man, and that it cannot be called a gift except in respect to the power of attaining faith.

For these views contradict the Holy Scriptures, which testify that God does infuse or pour into our hearts the new qualities of faith, obedience, and the experiencing of his love: I will put my law in their minds, and write it on their hearts (Jer. 31:33); I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring (Isa. 44:3); The love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us (Rom. 5:5). They also conflict with the continuous practice of the Church, which prays with the prophet: Convert me, Lord, and I shall be converted (Jer. 31:18).


Larger Catechism, week 36

September 7, 2017

Q. 146. Which is the tenth commandment?
A. The tenth commandment is, Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shall not covet they neighbour’s wife, nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s.[910]

Q. 147. What are the duties required in the tenth commandment?
A. The duties required in the tenth commandment are, such a full contentment with our own condition,[911] and such a charitable frame of the whole soul toward our neighbour, as that all our inward motions and affections touching him, tend unto, and further all that good which is his.[912]

Q. 148. What are the sins forbidden in the tenth commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the tenth commandment are, discontentment with our own estate;[913] envying[914] and grieving at the good of our neighbour,[915] together with all inordinate motions and affections to anything that is his.[916]


Belgic Confession, week 10

September 6, 2017

Article 15: The Doctrine of Original Sin

We believe that by the disobedience of Adam original sin has been spread through the whole human race. It is a corruption of all nature– an inherited depravity which even infects small infants in their mother’s womb, and the root which produces in man every sort of sin. It is therefore so vile and enormous in God’s sight that it is enough to condemn the human race, and it is not abolished or wholly uprooted even by baptism, seeing that sin constantly boils forth as though from a contaminated spring. Nevertheless, it is not imputed to God’s children for their condemnation but is forgiven by his grace and mercy– not to put them to sleep but so that the awareness of this corruption might often make believers groan as they long to be set free from the “body of this death.”[30] Therefore we reject the error of the Pelagians who say that this sin is nothing else than a matter of imitation.


Shorter Catechism, week 36

September 5, 2017

Q. 67. Which is the sixth commandment?
A. The sixth commandment is, Thou shalt not kill.[155]

Q. 68. What is required in the sixth commandment?
A. The sixth commandment requireth all lawful endeavors to preserve our own life, and the life of others.[156]

Q. 69. What is forbidden in the sixth commandment?
A. The sixth commandment forbiddeth the taking away of our own life, or the life of our neighbor, unjustly, or whatsoever tendeth thereunto.[157]