13 Nov GS 1989 art 159
GS 1989 ARTICLE 159
Committee II presents:
Agenda Items VIII, B, 1, a, 2 c, h, i
- 1. Report of the Standing Committee for the publication of the Book of Praise (Creeds and Confessions).
- 2. Letter from the Church at Hamilton, ON.
- 3. Letter from the Church at Ottawa, ON.
- 4. Letter from the Church at Cloverdale, BC.
- 5. Letter from the Church at Burlington-East, ON.
- 1. The Committee proposes the following changes in the Belgic Confession:
- a. Art. 2 – change “invisible qualities” to “invisible things”
- b. Art. 24 – make the title “Our Sanctification and Good Works”
- c. Art. 28 – change “state or quality” to “status or standing”
- d. Art. 33 – change “infirmity” to “weakness”.
- 2. The Committee proposes the following changes in the Heidelberg Catechism:
- a. Lord’s Day 4- change to: “But does not God do man an injustice . . .”
- b. Lord’s Day 5 – change to: “Therefore we must make full payment, either by ourselves or through another.”
- c. Lord’s Day 10 – change to: “indeed, all things, come to us not by chance but by His Fatherly hand.”
- d. Lord’s Day 11 – change to: “Do those who seek their salvation and wellbeing in saints, in themselves, or anywhere else, also believe in the only . . .”
- e. Lord’s Day 28 – Add in the quotation of 1 Cor.11:23-26 the words “This cup is the new covenant in My blood.”
- f. Lord’s Day 36 – change to: “Rather, we must use the holy name of God only with fear and reverence . . .”
- g. Lord’s Day 44 – change to: “Rather, with all our heart we should always hate all sin and delight in all righteousness.”
- h. Lord’s Day 44 – change to: “First, so that . . .
- Second, so that, while praying to God for the grace of the Holy Spirit, we may never stop striving to be renewed more and more after God’s image, until after this life we reach the goal of perfection.”
- The Church of Burlington-East proposes to change Lord’s Day 5, Q/A.13 from “can we ourselves” to “can we by ourselves.”
- 1. The Committee adduces the following reasons for the changes in the Belgic Confession:
- a. art. 2: “qualities” is further removed from the Greek text of Romans 1:20
- b. art. 24: This is consistent with the heading of art. 22 and art. 23.
- c. art. 28: “state or quality” is obsolete and open to misunderstanding.
- d. art. 33: “infirmity” has a restricted meaning in modern English. The Church at Hamilton agrees with the proposed changes.
- 2. The Committee adduces the following reasons for the changes in the Heidelberg Catechism:
- a. Lord’s Day 4: It is closer to the original.
- b. Lord’s Day 5: The original indicates that we must make payment.
- c. Lord’s Day 10: “to us” is in the original.
- d. Lord’s Day 11: This sentence structure makes memorization easier.
- e. Lord’s Day 28: The first sentence was inadvertently left out.
- f. Lord’s Day 36: The sentence, beginning with “In short . . .”, is longer than the preceding one.
- g. Lord’s Day 44: “So that” reacts to the question “why?”. The idea “that we may be zealous for good deeds” brings into the text more than the original expresses.
- 3. The Church at Cloverdale is against the change in Lord’s Day 4 because it considers this hardly to be an improvement in style, but showing traces of stilted “Dutchism.”
- 4. The Church at Burlington-East states that “In light of the proposed change in Answer 12, we suggest this question to read, ‘can we by ourselves make this payment?’”
- 5. The German in Lord’s Day 5, Question 13 reads, “durch uns selbst” and also the Latin has “per nos.”
- 6. The Church at Ottawa considers that the prooftext in Q/A 17 should be Isaiah 9:6 instead of Isaiah 9:5.
- 7. Regarding Lord’s Day 44, the Church of Cloverdale accepts the proposal by the Committee to insert the word “so” but considers the change in the second part unnecessary.
- 1. to accept the Committee’s proposed changes in the Belgic Confession.
- 2. to accept the Committee’s proposed changes in the Heidelberg Catechism including as well those proposed by the Churches at Burlington-East and Ottawa.