What Can We Learn from the Process By Which The Church Received the Belgic Confession?

The Christian Reformed Church has 3 Creeds and 3 Confessions. Every office bearer (Minister of the Word, Commissioned Pastor, Elder, Deacon) signs these documents. This becomes the basis for participation as an authority of the church.

The summary on the our denominational website of the Belgic Confession is a good one.  Confessions emerge out of struggle. The note reports that De Bres adapted his confession from Calvin

“In its composition the author availed himself to some extent of a confession of the Reformed churches in France, written chiefly by John Calvin, published two years earlier. The work of de Brès, however, is not a mere revision of Calvin’s work, but an independent composition. In 1566 the text of this confession was revised at a synod held at Antwerp”

  • Confessions are written out of conflict to clarify and define.
  • Confessions emerge out of contexts borrowing on the good work of others adapting this work for a particular need.
  • Confessions are part of a political process but transcend them.
  • Confessions both express and then shape the faith and Scripture reading of the church for its own narrative continuity.
  • Confessions separate and distinguish church practice
  • Confessions are tools we use to bring order and understanding.

Will we ignore this tool in this time of need?

About PaulVK

Husband, Father of 5, Pastor
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