Last time, we saw that the church has many enemies. The second petition asks God to preserve the church by overthrowing those enemies. Today, we see that the Heidelberg Catechism identifies one very specific strategy of Satan: “wicked counsels devised against Thy holy Word.” Because this strategy can be seen in many places today, let us take heed to this aspect of the petition.
The Word of God is the foundation of the church. Read that sentence again. Is that how you would identify the foundation of the church? Perhaps you are thinking of that passage in Eph. 2 that says that Jesus Christ is the chief corner stone. If that is the case, then we should say that Jesus is the foundation of the church, not the Bible. Well, it is true that Christ alone is the foundation of the church. Our Lord said as much to Peter in Matt. 16:16,18. Peter confessed, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus responded, “Upon this rock (that is, the rock of truth that Jesus is Christ), I will build my church.”
Nevertheless, it remains true that the Scriptures are the foundation of the church. This does not mean that the Scriptures supplant Christ as the church’s foundation, but that the Scriptures reveal Christ. The Word of God is the revelation of Christ. Without the Scriptures, we don’t know anything about Christ. Another way to say it is this: Christ, as revealed in the Word of God, is the foundation of the church. This is what Eph 2:20 means when it says that the church is built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone.
For this reason, the Scriptures are constantly under attack by Satan. He is constantly devising “wicked counsels” to overthrow the Word. He devised higher criticism, which claims that certain portions of God’s Word are merely the thoughts of men. He devised doctrinal heresies that corrupt and twist the clear Word of God. He even devises some Bible translations that are so loose and unfaithful that they teach false doctrine. Satan knows that if he can undermine Scripture, he has undermined the foundation of the church.
For that reason, the church asks to be preserved against the nefarious attacks on the Word. Fervently, she prays: Thy kingdom come . . . by thy Word.
- Date: 1-December
Rev. Andrew Lanning (Wife: Stephanie)
Ordained: September 2006
Pastorates: Faith, Jenison, MI - 2006; Minister-on-Loan to CERC, Singapore through Grandville PRC - November, 2012- Dec. 2017; Byron Center PRC - Dec. 2017Website: www.byronprc.net/
Address1947 84th St. SW
State or ProvinceMI
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