The following letter to the editor of Christian Renewal magazine was written by Reg Barrow and submitted via email Friday, March 15, 1996.
Dear Friends at Christian Renewal (Letter to the Editor):
I was very disappointed at the conclusions reached by J. Tangelder in his review (CR, Mar. 11/96) of our recently published book A PRESBYTERIAN POLITICAL MANIFESTO by Michael Wagner.
First, he concludes that Wagner's approach is not "Biblically sound." Has Mr. Tangelder ever bothered to study the history of the Reformation? All the major divines in the Reformation from Popery (which took place during the 16th and 17th centuries), whether they were Anglican, Presbyterian or Independent, came to the same basic conclusion as Wagner: this being that the Bible teaches the civil establishment of Christianity (i.e. "establishmentarianism"). The question for the Reformers was not whether the true religion should be established civilly; but rather which expression of Christianity should be established (and how would they know who to reward and who to punish). Calvin is a prime example of this, as Eire points out in his classic study WAR AGAINST THE IDOLS: THE REFORMATION OF WORSHIP FROM ERASMUS TO CALVIN. He notes that Calvin believed that it was the role of the civil government "to wage war on Roman Catholic worship" (p. 266), "that those in power were the guardians of pure worship" (p. 269), "that earthly Princes ought to govern in the name of Jesus Christ" (p.269), and that it was the civil magistrate's duty before God "to wipe out even the smallest traces of idolatry" (p. 269). Furthermore, "Calvin says that kings should not hesitate to wipe out idolatry in their land, because God has set them on high for the purpose of enlightening the people" (p. 269). If this is not the establishmentarism that Wagner speaks of, I do not know what is; and Calvin has been considered somewhat moderate in his views, especially when compared with men such as John Knox and Christopher Goodman -- who were much more aggressive.
Moreover, the establishmentarianism of the Reformation was not limited to just individual divines, "Dr. M'Crie in his STATEMENT OF THE DIFFERENCE, shows that all the Confessions of the Protestant and Presbyterian Churches of the Reformation, both in Britain and on the Continent of Europe, held and maintained the Establishment Principle." M'Crie goes on to give extracts from THE CONFESSION OF HELVETIA; THE CONFESSION OF BOHEMIA, called the CONFESSION OF THE WALDENSES; THE CONFESSION OF SAXONY; THE FRENCH CONFESSION; THE BELGIC OR DUTCH CONFESSION; THE CONFESSION OF THE ENGLISH CONGREGATION IN GENEVA; THE SCOTS CONFESSION and THE WESTMINSTER CONFESSION, all proving that "these confessions harmoniously agree in declaring as with one mouth that civil authority is not limited to the secular affairs of men, and the public care and advancement of religion is a principle part of the official duty of magistrates." See our publication of Theodore Beza's (Calvin's successor in Geneva) HARMONY OF THE PROTESTANT CONFESSIONS (section 19, "Of the Civil Magistrate") and the Westminster Confession of Faith (chapter 23) to confirm M'Crie's findings. M'Crie, in opposition to Tangelder, then rightly concludes, "Such is the harmony of doctrine in the Protestant churches on this head, expressed in their confessions and public formularies drawn from the word of God; a harmony which deserves great attention, and from which none should rashly depart." The only so-called Protestant group that generally opposed establishments was the anti-covenantal, anabaptists. But seeing that the humanism and pluralism of the anabaptist heresy has permeated so much of what once was Reformed Christianity, I guess I should not be surprised that Tangelder would make such an error.
Furthermore, Tangelder again exhibits his ignorance of Reformation history when he states that "Confessions of Faith are not political programs." Nothing could be further from the truth. This is exactly what the Westminster Confession was, in part. For how will the civil magistrate govern righteously, if not by the law and testimony of God? And who interprets the "law and testimony" correctly, but the ministers and followers of Christ? The Westminster Divines were producing the Westminster Confession as part of the covenanted Reformation sworn to in the Solemn League and Covenant (1643). According to this covenant, the Confession was to bind England, Scotland and Ireland to its pronouncements in both the ecclesiastical and civil spheres. The parliamentarians in these countries even swore this covenant. And lest there be any doubt left in the mind of the reader as to the intent of this covenanted Reformation, I suggest that everyone obtain the WORKS of George Gillespie (who was one of the leading Westminster divines) and read his "Miscellany Questions," chapter 15: "Of Uniformity in Religion, Worship of God, and Church Government," and chapter 16: "Whether it be Lawful, Just and Expedient, that there be an Ordinance of Parliament for the taking of the Solemn League and Covenant, by all Persons in the Kingdom, Under a Considerable Penalty..."
Additionally, in answer to some of Tangelder questions concerning "the diversity of Reformed churches" and our modern disunity (which is the evident judgement of God upon a backsliding "Reformed" community that refuses to walk in the old paths, and is often so blinded as to not even know that the path exists -- as can be seen in Tangelder's review, regarding the Reformation doctrine of civil government), history shows that the Reformed Presbyterian churches in the British Isles, during the mid-seventeenth century, were light-years ahead of any churches that I know of (and my company, Still Waters Revival Books, serves Christians in 54 different countries at present). As William Hetherington points out, in his classic HISTORY OF THE WESTMINSTER ASSEMBLY OF DIVINES (1856, SWRB 1993), concerning some of the very proposals that Wagner is once again setting forth in his PRESBYTERIAN POLITICAL MANIFESTO, true unity will come (and did during the days of the Westminster Assembly in a limited way, what I would call a foretaste of millennial glory), when Protestants once again understand the meaning of covenanted Reformation. Some of your readers will find the reference (in the following quotation) to the "deep thinking divines of the Netherlands" to be of special interest. Hetherington writes, "There was one great, and even sublime idea, brought somewhat indefinitely before the Westminster Assembly, which has not yet been realized, the idea of a Protestant union throughout Christendom, not merely for the purpose of counterbalancing Popery, but in order to purify, strengthen, and unite all true Christian churches, so that with combined energy and zeal they might go forth, in glad compliance with the Redeemer's commands, teaching all nations, and preaching the everlasting gospel to every creature under heaven. This truly magnificent, and also truly Christian idea, seems to have originated in the mind of that distinguished man, Alexander Henderson. It was suggested by him to the Scottish commissioners, and by them partially brought before the English Parliament, requesting them to direct the Assembly to write letters to the Protestant Churches in France, Holland, Switzerland, and other Reformed Churches. . . . and along with these letters were sent copies of the Solemn League and Covenant, a document which might itself form the basis of such a Protestant union. The deep thinking divines of the Netherlands apprehended the idea, and in their answer, not only expressed their approbation of the Covenant, but also desired to join in it with the British kingdoms. Nor did they content themselves with the mere expression of approval and willingness to join. A letter was soon afterwards sent to the Assembly from the Hague, written by Duraeus (the celebrated John Dury), offering to come to the Assembly, and containing a copy of a vow which he had prepared and tendered to the distinguished Oxenstiern, chancellor of Sweden, wherein he bound himself 'to prosecute a reconciliation between Protestants in point of religion.'. . . [O]n one occasion Henderson procured a passport to go to Holland, most probably for the purpose of prosecuting this grand idea. But the intrigues of politicians, the delays caused by the conduct of the Independents, and the narrow-minded Erastianism of the English Parliament, all conspired to prevent the Assembly from entering farther into that truly glorious Christian enterprise. Days of trouble and darkness came; persecution wore out the great men of that remarkable period; pure and vital Christianity was stricken to the earth and trampled under foot (pp. 337-339)."
Many modern Christians, not unlike Tangelder, seem to want to look to what is "politically feasible" and not to what is "politically faithful," thus their works are cursed and the land suffers increasing judgement. Only when we are politically faithful, as the Westminster Divines were, will we have made any real headway in the civil sphere. Wagner's PRESBYTERIAN POLITICAL MANIFESTO begins to lay out the only course to God's blessing in politics. If you want a temporal cease-fire with humanism and something, syncretistic, Satanic, pragmatic and "politically feasible," in this day of great apostasy, go to one of the parties that compose their policy and draw their pretended authority from the beast (and not the Word of God); the Liberals, the Reform Party, the NDP, the Conservatives, the BQ and yes, even the CHP (who bargain with votaries of Antichrist [the Pope]), will all welcome compromised Christians with open arms. All these parties are, in the words of the Cameronian (Covenanter) political philosopher Alexander Shields, "rotting away under the destructive distempers of detestable neutrality, loathsome lukewarmness, declining, and decaying in corruptions, defections, divisions, distractions, confusions; and so judicially infatuated with darkness and delusions, that they forget and forego the necessary testimony of the day" (A HIND LET LOOSE, 1797 edition, p. 20). For my part you can keep your "politically feasible" unfaithfulness ("he which is [politically--RB] filthy, let him be filthy still," cf. Rev 22:11); I will walk in the "footsteps of the flock," and travel the covenanting road of Reformation and Scripture (with the magisterial Reformers of the past)! For as Greg Price has pointed out, "when the Lord brings that future covenanted reformation it will not be limited to only three kingdoms of the earth, but by the grace and power of Christ our King, it will be a covenanted reformation that will encompass all of the nations of the earth (Ps. 2:6-12; Is. 2:1-4; Mt. 28:1-20) and will bring to the church a visible unity and uniformity that (unlike pleas for unity today) is firmly grounded upon the truth" (Preface to The Duty and Perpetual Obligation of Social Covenanting, SWRB reprinted 1996). This applies to the civil sphere also. "For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted" (Isa. 60:12).
One last note, Michael Wagner is working on his doctorate in "political science," not "science," as mentioned in the review.
President, Still Waters Revival Books
(Reformation resources at great discounts!)
Home page at: http://www.swrb.com/ (FREE BOOKS HERE TOO!)
E-mail: email@example.com (request a FREE catalogue)
Mail: 4710-37A Ave. Edmonton AB Canada T6L 3T5
Voice: (780) 450-3730
Puritan Book Sale
Christian Reconstructionism Critiqued Super Sale
Westminster Confession of Faith Super Sale
Puritan Bookshelf CD Series Super Sale
Reformed Presbytery (RPNA, Covenanters)
(reconstituted after 113 years) Super Sale
The Covenanted Reformation Defended Against Contemporary Schismatics: A Response and Antidote Primarily to the Neopresbyterian Malignancy and Misrepresentations, and the Manufactured "Steelite" Controversy, Found in Richard Bacon's A Defense Departed; With a Refutation of Bacon's Independency, Popery, Arminianism, Anabaptism and Various Other Heresies (Including an Exhibition of His Opposition to Scripture and the Covenanted Reformation, in General; and His Opposition to John Calvin, John Knox, the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland [Especially 1638-1649], Samuel Rutherford, George Gillespie, the Testimony of the Covenanter Martyrs, the Reformed Presbytery, the Puritan Reformed Church of Edmonton and a Host of Other Prominent Reformers from Past Generations, in Particular) -- With Copious Notes on Mr. Bacon's Backsliding and His Blackening of the Blue Banner; as Well as Various Replies to Other Modern Malignants by Greg Barrow (Greg Price, Reg Barrow, Larry Birger, et al.) (Though set in the context of a debate with one individual, this book addresses a number of specific problems which plague the Presbyterian and Reformed churches of our day in general. "It conclusively and irrefutably demonstrates that those churches which today call themselves Presbyterian [and even many which claim a more general Reformed heritage] have grievously departed from the Scriptural standards and principles of the previous Spirit led Reformations [of the 16th and 17th centuries]. This will become progressively [and painfully] clear as the reader witnesses evidence upon evidence of defection from biblically based Reformation attainments (Phil. 3:16) -- and the burying and/or removing of the ancient Reformation landmarks. Ultimately, when the testimony and evidence [presented in this book] is weighed in light of Scriptural verities, it is entirely safe to say that the original Reformers would not only have sought negative ecclesiastical sanctions against our modern pseudo-Reformers, but in many cases negative civil sanctions as well," writes Reg Barrow in the "Publisher's Preface." This book, of over 300 [8.5" X 11"] pages, is also offered as a cerlox bound photocopy [$14.98 US funds] or a Hardcover photocopy [$25.00 US funds]. It is also free on most of the CDs in both the REFORMATION BOOKSHELF CD set [30 CDs, http://www.swrb.com/Puritan/reformation-bookshelf-CDs.htm ] and the PURITAN BOOKSHELF CD set [32 CDs, http://www.swrb.com/Puritan/puritan-bookshelf-CDs.htm ])
All titles below available from Still Waters Revival Books at:http://www.swrb.com/pcopy/photoc.htm.
Biblical Civil Government Versus the Beast; and, the Basis for Civil Resistance This is the best modern testimony for the biblical principles of civil magistracy -- which were so prominent during the height of the second Reformation -- that we have seen. Price documents the teachings of many of the major Reformers (and some of the church fathers) and in an easy reading manner simplifies what can at times become a very complex subject. This particular Reformation message, proclaiming Christ's Kingship over the nations (and the practical outworking of the same), has been buried from the view of the general public for some time now, but is once again being brought to light in this very helpful introductory book. A sobering appendix has been added (written by a friend of the covenanted Reformation) which shows why it is unlawful for a Christian to swear any oath to uphold and defend the U.S. Constitution. This appendix also compares the points of difference between classic (or historic) Reformed teaching and modern Reformed teaching regarding magistracy and religion. Special attention is payed to the OPC, the PCA and the RPCNA and the changes that these groups have made to second Reformation confessional standards (concerning matters related to the civil magistrate). Statements by B.B. Warfield are also contrasted to the older Reformed views. You won't find a better easy-to-read and easy to understand introduction to this important topic -- a topic which impacts directly on every Christian's testimony for the crown rights of King Jesus!
This book is also offered FREE of charge on SWRB's web page at: http://www.swrb.com/newslett/newslett.htm
Statement of the Difference...Particularly on the Power of Civil Magistrates Respecting Religion, National Reformation, National Churches, and National Covenants (1871)
The ablest exposition in the English language of the Establishment Principle... Dr. (George) Smeaton describes the Statement as a masterly defense of the principles of establishments as Scripture truth: and the most complete vindication ever given to the world of the position occupied by the Reformed Church of Scotland, on the whole subject of national religion and the magistrates legitimate power in promoting it. 'The same thoroughness,' wrote the late Rev. D. Beaton, 'which gave such abiding value to his great biography of Knox, is shown in this, his less known work... Dr. McCrie in his Statement shows that all the Confessions of the Protestant and Presbyterian Churches of the Reformation, both in Britain and on the Continent of Europe, held and maintained the Establishment Principle. 'These harmoniously agree,' he writes, 'in declaring as with one mouth that civil authority is not limited to the secular affairs of men, and that the public care and advancement of religion is a principle part of the official duty of magistrates.' He goes on to give extracts from The Confession of Helvetia; The Confession of Bohemia; The Confession of Saxony; The French Confession; The Belgic or Dutch Confession; The Confession of the English Congregation in Geneva; The Scots Confession and The Westminster Confession of Faith. 'Such is the harmony of doctrine in the Protestant churches on this head,' he remarks, 'expressed in their confessions and public formularies drawn from the Word of God; a harmony which deserves great attention, and from which none should rashly depart' (as cited in Christ's Kingship Over the Nations by C.J. Brown).
Concerning the doctrine of national obedience to Christ, M'Crie demonstrates in the most convincing way that there are few doctrines "of the practical kind, in which the best interests of mankind and the general state of religion in the world, are more deeply concerned, than in the right and wrong determination of this question."
Contains an excellent preface by George Smeaton. Considered one of the definitive works on Church/State relations, defending the historic Reformed position. An extremely rare and very expensive item if located as a rare book.
Church and State: The Biblical View
A compilation of articles from some of the best Christian minds in history, including Cunningham, Smeaton, M'Crie, Symington, Gillespie, the Westminster Divines, Bannerman, Owen, and Shaw. This book shows that, generally speaking, the leaders of the Reformed faith have all come to substantial agreement regarding what the Scriptures teach about Christ's Kingship over the nations and the Church. Establishmentarianism is clearly seen to be the historically Reformed consensus, and this has a huge impact on the way one views both the Church and the state, in relation to Scripture. Much eschatology is also mingled in with the teaching on church and state. Portions of these sections deal with some of the most encouraging promises from God that you will ever read/hear (as related to the victory that is prophesied to come in history, before the bodily return of the Lord Jesus Christ).
Free audio (MP3) of this book starts at:http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?sermonid=72802135251
Cassettes below are for sale at: http://www.swrb.com/music/cassets.htm
Reformation Politics Versus the Beast
An excellent summary of Price's latest book Biblical Civil Government Versus the Beast; and, the Basis for Civil Resistance. Here Price lays out the biblical and historical basis for the most highly developed aspects of Reformation thought regarding civil government. He explains the biblical view of civil magistracy and applies it to the present situation; showing why most modern civil rulers are tyrants and thus should not given conscientious submission (according to Romans 13:1-7). Price's list of how modern rulers habitually violate each of the ten commandments should prove illuminating; as well as his citations from the searing indictments against wicked rulers given from famous Reformed leaders of the past. This book also discusses tactics of Christian resistance, while answering the question: Should Christians hold office or vote in the present circumstances? This highly controversial cassette will certainly seem shocking to those who are not familiar with Reformation thought on this topic -- but it is faithful to Scripture, the original confessions of the Reformation and the testimony of the covenanting martyrs (who gave their lives resisting the civil beast and proclaiming Christ's absolute Kinship over the nations).
Objections to Covenanting Answered
A powerful example of why the teaching prevalent during the days of the height of the second Reformation brought international transformation to all areas of life -- including whole nations covenanting with Christ to uphold His word and law! This lecture also includes some of the most controversial teaching (near the end of the tape) that you are likely to hear from any living minister of Christ -- though Knox, Rutherford, Renwick and many other covenanted Presbyterian ministers often put their lives on the line for these very truths. These truths continue to be a point of standing testimony in our day of ecumenical apostasy, theological declension, and ecclesiastical and civil deformation. "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me" (John 10:27) was never more true than regarding the lost and buried attainments (of the covenanted Reformation) being brought to light once again in our day through the preaching and teaching of Greg Price.
The Two Sons of Oil; or, the Faithful Witness for Magistracy and Ministry upon a Scriptural Basis (1850 edition, reprinted 1995)
A Covenanter classic opening Revelation 11:3-4 and Zechariah 4:14. It has been hailed as the "best presentation of the position of the Covenanter Church that has been written." Noting that the "[t]ime has been, when the whole body of Presbyterians, in Scotland, England, and Ireland, unanimously subscribed" to these principles, "[f]or civil and ecclesiastical reformation" and that thousands bled and died for the glorious covenanted cause of civil and ecclesiastical reformation; Wylie sets out to explain and defend "that cause. Not because it is an ancient cause; not because many have sealed it with their blood; but, because," as he says, "I thought it the doctrine of the Bible, and the cause of Christ." This book explains how to tell if a government (especially a civil government) is faithful to Christ and thus to be obeyed for conscience's sake. It also gives direction regarding when and how to resist (and disassociate) yourself from governments which get their power from "the beast." Moreover, this book gives clear testimony as to what the Bible requires of civil magistrates, noting "that civil rulers should exercise their power in protecting and defending the religion of Jesus." It also gives plain reasons why dissent from the government of the United States (and other covenant breaking nations) is the legitimate Scriptural pattern.
Civil Government: An Exposition of Romans 13:1-7 (1853)
Does the Bible give any qualifications for Christians to judge whether or not a given civil magistrate is a lawful or unlawful "power" in the eyes of God? Does the very existence of a civil "power" (say Hitler's Nazi state) make them a legitimate government according to Romans 13? Or, can a civil government obtain its "power" from "the beast" ó as some so-called churches do? Should civil "authorities" be judged according to the secret or revealed will of God? This is a fine piece of exegetical work, well nigh irrefutable, arguing that God has given clear revelation regarding the lawfulness and unlawfulness of any given civil magistrate. Willson's Scriptural conclusion will surprise many, anger not a few, and, we believe, be found honoring to God. Though the book is easy reading, these are deep waters with implications that are among the most far reaching. Knox, Rutherford and Gillespie would be proud!
The Subjection of Kings and Nations to Messiah (1820)
A lengthy sermon of 64 pages preached Dec. 6, 1819. Based on the text: "All Kings shall bow down before him: all nations shall serve him" (Ps. 72:11). Maintains that this text refers to a commanded duty, concerning Christ not Solomon, and should be translated "Let all kings bow down before him: Let all nations serve him." Explains this national duty, enquires as to how it is to be nationally preformed, then proceeds to make practical application of the subject. Shows that nations have a duty, as nations, to bind themselves to Christ by covenant, to consecrate themselves to Him, to swear allegiance to Him (as their King and Lord), and to obey all His holy law! Furthermore, Willson maintains that it is a great sin for nations to remain in rebellion against Christ by not performing these duties. He also demonstrates how and why a high-handed sin of this nature brings corporate guilt upon the nation. Moreover, this sin provokes God to wrath (as seen in an escalation of national calamities), until the day, barring repentance, that the national "cup of wrath" overflows. Also contains helpful direction regarding the individual's social responsibility as a Christian in times of national corporate defection from Christ's crown and covenant (i.e in times exactly like those that we live in).
The Duty and Perpetual Obligation of Social Covenanting
The material found in this bound photocopy addresses a forgotten and neglected ordinance of God: social covenanting. God's people in times of repentance and thanksgiving, trial and blessing have been a covenanting people. In the most pure times of ecclesiastical and civil reformation throughout history, both church and state under the mediatorial rule of Christ have by the grace of God bound themselves together by covenant to promote and defend the true Christian religion. The first document adopted by the Westminster Assembly was in fact, the Solemn League and Covenant (1644). It united the kingdoms of Scotland, England, and Ireland in a covenanted reformation of both church and state in order to preserve, promote and defend the true Christian religion (as summarized in the Westminster Confession of Faith, Larger and Shorter Catechisms, Directory For Public Worship, and Form of Church Government), and in order to expose and uproot all false teaching contrary to the Scripture and these standards. Furthermore, it was not only the desire of the Westminster Assembly to unite in covenant the three British kingdoms, but rather to include in this covenanted reformation all of the Reformed Churches throughout Europe. Consider the goal of the Assembly as summarized by Hetherington: "There was one great, and even sublime idea, brought somewhat indefinitely before the Westminster Assembly, which has not yet been realized, the idea of a Protestant union throughout Christendom, not merely for the purpose of counterbalancing Popery, but in order to purify, strengthen, and unite all true Christian churches, so that with combined energy and zeal they might go forth, in glad compliance with the Redeemer's commands, teaching all nations, and preaching the everlasting gospel to every creature under heaven. This truly magnificent, and also truly Christian idea, seems to have originated in the mind of that distinguished man, Alexander Henderson. It was suggested by him to the Scottish commissioners, and by them partially brought before the English Parliament, requesting them to direct the Assembly to write letters to the Protestant Churches in France, Holland, Switzerland, and other Reformed Churches. . . . and along with these letters were sent copies of the Solemn League and Covenant, a document which might itself form the basis of such a Protestant union. The deep thinking divines of the Netherlands apprehended the idea, and in their answer, not only expressed their approbation of the Covenant, but also desired to join in it with the British kingdoms. Nor did they content themselves with the mere expression of approval and willingness to join. A letter was soon afterwards sent to the Assembly from the Hague, written by Duraeus (the celebrated John Dury), offering to come to the Assembly, and containing a copy of a vow which he had prepared and tendered to the distinguished Oxenstiern, chancellor of Sweden, wherein he bound himself 'to prosecute a reconciliation between Protestants in point of religion'. . . . [O]n one occasion Henderson procured a passport to go to Holland, most probably for the purpose of prosecuting this grand idea. But the intrigues of politicians, the delays caused by the conduct of the Independents, and the narrow-minded Erastianism of the English Parliament, all conspired to prevent the Assembly from entering farther into that truly glorious Christian enterprise. Days of trouble and darkness came; persecution wore out the great men of that remarkable period; pure and vital Christianity was stricken to the earth and trampled under foot. . ." (William Hetherington, History of the Westminster Assembly of Divines , [Edmonton, Alberta: Still Waters Revival Books], pp. 337-339). The material presented herein is commended to the reader with the sincere prayer and confidence that God will again restore the Church of Jesus Christ to a glorious covenanted reformation--one that will even surpass that one to which she had attained at the time of the Westminster Assembly. However, when the Lord brings that future covenanted reformation it will not be limited to only three kingdoms of the earth, but by the grace and power of Christ our King, it will be a covenanted reformation that will encompass all of the nations of the earth (Ps. 2:6-12; Is. 2:1-4; Mt. 28:1-20) and will bring to the church a visible unity and uniformity that (unlike pleas for unity today) is firmly grounded upon the truth" (Greg Price, Preface). The material contained in this compilation was gathered together by the session of the Puritan Reformed Church of Edmonton/Prince George. Its 210 pages contain the following items, as listed in this bibliography for social covenanting.
1. Samuel Rutherford, Due Right of Presbyteries , pp. 130-139
2. George Gillespie, The Works of George Gillespie, Vol. 2, pp. 71-88.
3. John Brown of Wamphray, An Apologetic Relation , pp. 167-175, 181- 207.
4. David Scott, Distinctive Principles of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, pp. 14-90.
5. William Roberts, The Reformed Presbyterian Catechism , pp. 134- 152.
6. The Reformed Presbytery, An Explanation and Defence of the Terms of Communion , pp. 181-187.
7. The Reformed Presbytery, Act , Declaration and Testimony , pp. 11- 23.
8. The Reformed Presbytery, The Auchensaugh Renovation , pp. 115- 140.
9. The Church of Scotland (1639), The National Covenant of Scotland , pp. 345-354 in the Westminster Confession of Faith published by Free Presbyterian Publications.
10. The Westminster Assembly (1644), The Solemn League and Covenant , pp. 355-360 in the Westminster Confession of Faith published by Free Presbyterian Publications.
11. The Church of Scotland (1648), A Solemn Acknowledgement of Publick Sins and Breaches of the Covenant , pp. 361-368 in the Westminster Confession of Faith published by Free Presbyterian Publications.
The Duty of Nations, in their National Capacity, to Acknowledge and Support the True Religion (1853)
Excerpted from the Reformed Presbyterian Catechism below, this book deals with the inescapable necessity, of the demand found in the Word of God, for the Civil establishment of Christ and King and Lawgiver over every nation on earth. If you are sick of the cease-fire with humanism, set forth by the syncretistic, Satanic and pragmatic pagan politicians of our day, (those who bargain with votaries of Antichrist [the Pope], publicly tolerate all manner of false religions (e.g. Islam) and idolatry, and compose their policy and draw their pretended authority from the beast [and not the Word of God], this book is for you! For all pagan politics is summed up in the words of the Cameronian (Covenanter) political philosopher Alexander Shields, as "rotting away under the destructive distempers of detestable neutrality, loathsome lukewarmness, declining, and decaying in corruptions, defections, divisions, distractions, confusions; and so judicially infatuated with darkness and delusions, that they forget and forego the necessary testimony of the day" (A HIND LET LOOSE, 1797 edition, p. 20). Pick up this book and begin the political walk in the "footsteps of the flock," traveling the covenanting road of Reformation and Scripture (with the magisterial Reformers of the past)!
The Reformed Presbyterian Catechism (1853)
A manual of instruction, drawing from such notable authors as William Symington and J.R. Willson, presenting "arguments and facts confirming and illustrating the 'Distinctive Principles'" of the Reformed Presbyterian Church. Chapters deal with: "Christ's Mediatorial Dominion in general;" Christ's exclusive Headship over the Church;" "The Supreme and Ultimate Authority of the Word of God in the Church;" Civil Government, the Moral Ordinance of God;" Christ's Headship over the Nations;" "The Subjection of the Nations to God and to Christ;" The Word, or Revealed Will of God, the Supreme Law in the State;" "The Duty of Nations, in their National Capacity, to acknowledge and support the True Religion:" "The Spiritual Independence of the Church of Christ:" "The Right and Duty of Dissent from an immoral Constitution of Civil Government;" "The Duty of Covenanting, and the Permanent Obligations of Religious Covenants;" "The Application of these Principles to the Governments, where Reformed Presbyterians reside, in the form of a Practical Testimony;" and finally "Application of the Testimony to the British Empire." A most important book, as we approach (possibly) the end of the great apostasy and will be in need of preparing for the dawning of the glorious millennial blessings to come; the days prophesied in which the church "shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings" (Isa. 60:16).
Distinctive Principles of the Reformed Presbyterian Church (1841)
This book is not designed to discuss "the (many-RB) doctrines which the Reformed Presbyterian church holds in common will others," but is written to set forth RP distinctives. It tackles its subject from three major heads: "Social Covenanting;" "The Dominion of Christ;" and "The Universal Application of Scripture (civil as well as religious)." It shows that while these doctrines "are held by many, as abstract doctrines of divine truth, they are not embodied in the testimony of any other Christian denomination: nor made necessary to ministerial or Christian fellowship. Although other individuals may hold these doctrine, it is a 'distinctive' feature of the RPC to embody them in her testimony; and to make them terms of communion." It also explains how these are the same distinctives that were maintained "at the era of the reformation, (when) the covenanted church of Scotland bore a distinguished testimony for all the offices of Christ, as prophet, priest and king: and for the pure doctrines, worship, discipline, and government of the house of God." The author states that "the great object aimed at is to help forward the glorious triumph of the Messiah, so beautifully described in the 72nd Psalm. When 'all Kings shall fall down before him; and all nations shall serve him.'"
Back to swrb home page