THE HEIDELBERG CATECHISM
THE HEIDELBERG CATECHISM
THE HEIDELBERG CATECHISM
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1. Lord’s Day
Question 1. What is thy only comfort in life and death?
That I with body and soul, both in life and death, (a)
am not my own, (b)
but belong unto my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ (c)
who, with his precious blood, has fully satisfied for all my sins (d)
and delivered me from all the power of the devil; (e)
and so preserves me (f)
that without the will of my heavenly Father, not a hair can fall from my head (g)
yea, that all things must be subservient to my salvation, (h)
and therefore, by his Holy Spirit, He also assures me of eternal life (i)
and makes me sincerely willing and ready, henceforth, to live unto him. (j)
Question 2. How many things are necessary for thee to know, that thou, enjoying this comfort, mayest live and die happily?
the first, how great my sins and miseries are; (b)
the second, how I may be delivered from all my sins and miseries; (c)
the third, how I shall express my gratitude to God for such deliverance. (d)
The First Part – Of The Misery Of Man
2. Lord’s Day
Question 3. Whence knowest thou thy misery?
Answer: Out of the law of God. (a)
(a) Rom.3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
Question 4. What does the law of God require of us?
Answer: Christ teaches us that briefly, Matt. 22:37-40, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength. This is the first and the great commandment; and the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” (a)
(a) Deut.6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. Lev.19:18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD. Mark 12:30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. Luke 10:27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.
Question 5. Canst thou keep all these things perfectly?
Answer: In no wise; (a) for I am prone by nature to hate God and my neighbour.(b)
(a) Rom.3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: Rom.3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. Rom.3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; 1 John 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 1 John 1:10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. (b) Rom.8:7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. Eph.2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. Tit.3:3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another. Gen.6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. Gen.8:21 And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done. Jer.17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Rom.7:23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
3. Lord’s Day
Question 6. Did God then create man so wicked and perverse?
Answer: By no means; but God created man good, (a) and after his own image, (b) in true righteousness and holiness, that he might rightly know God his Creator, heartily love him and live with him in eternal happiness to glorify and praise him. (c)
(a) Gen.1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day. (b) Gen.1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. Gen.1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. (c) Col.3:9 Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; Col.3:10 And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: Eph.4:23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; Eph.4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. 2 Cor.3:18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
Question 7. Whence then proceeds this depravity of human nature?
Answer: From the fall and disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve, in Paradise; (a) hence our nature is become so corrupt, that we are all conceived and born in sin. (b)
(a) Genesis 3. Rom.5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: Rom.5:18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. Rom.5:19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. (b) Ps.51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Gen.5:3 And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image; and called his name Seth:
Question 8. Are we then so corrupt that we are wholly incapable of doing any good, and inclined to all wickedness?
Answer: Indeed we are; (a) except we are regenerated by the Spirit of God. (b)
(a) Gen.8:21 The imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Gen.6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. Job 14:4 Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one. Job 15:14 What is man, that he should be clean? and he which is born of a woman, that he should be righteous? Job 15:16 How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water? Job 15:35 They conceive mischief, and bring forth vanity, and their belly prepareth deceit. Isa.53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. (b) John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. John 3:5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 1 Cor.12:3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. 2 Cor.3:5 Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God;
4. Lord’s Day
Question 9. Does not God then do injustice to man, by requiring from him in his law, that which he cannot perform?
Answer: Not at all;
(a) for God made man capable of performing it; but man, by the instigation of the devil, (b) and his own wilful disobedience, (c) deprived himself and all his posterity of those divine gifts.
(a) Eph.4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Eccl.7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions. (b) John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. 2 Cor.11:3 But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. Gen.3:4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: (c) Gen.3:6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. Rom.5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: Gen.3:13 And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. 1 Tim.2:13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 1 Tim.2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
Question 10. Will God suffer such disobedience and rebellion to go unpunished?
Answer: By no means; but is terribly displeased (a) with our original as well as actual sins; and will punish them in his just judgment temporally and eternally, (b) as he has declared, “Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things, which are written in the book of the law, to do them.” (c)
(a) Gen.2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. Rom.5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: (b) Ps.5:5 The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity. Ps.50:21 These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes. Nah.1:2 God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies. Exod.20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; Exod.34:7 Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation. Rom.1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Eph.5:6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. Heb.9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: (c) Deut.27:26 Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them. And all the people shall say, Amen. Gal.3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
Question 11. Is not God then also merciful?
Answer: God is indeed merciful, (a) but also just; (b) therefore his justice requires, that sin which is committed against the most high majesty of God, be also punished with extreme, that is, with everlasting punishment of body and soul.
(a) Exod.34:6 And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Exod.34:7 Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation. Exod.20:6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. (b) Ps.7:9 Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end; but establish the just: for the righteous God trieth the hearts and reins. Exod.20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; Exod.23:7 Keep thee far from a false matter; and the innocent and righteous slay thou not: for I will not justify the wicked. Exod.34:7 Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children’s children, unto the third and to the fourth generation. Ps.5:5 The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity. Ps.5:6 Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man. Nah.1:2 God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on his adversaries, and he reserveth wrath for his enemies. Nah.1:3 The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.
The Second Part – Of Man’s Deliverance
5. Lord’s Day
Question 12. Since then, by the righteous judgment of God, we deserve temporal and eternal punishment, is there no way by which we may escape that punishment, and be again received into favour?
Answer: God will have his justice satisfied: (a) and therefore we must make this full satisfaction, either by ourselves, or by another. (b)
(a) Gen.2:17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. Exod.20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; Exod.23:7 Keep thee far from a false matter; and the innocent and righteous slay thou not: for I will not justify the wicked. Ezek.18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die. Matt.5:26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing. 2 Thess.1:6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; Luke 16:2 And he called him, and said unto him, How is it that I hear this of thee? give an account of thy stewardship; for thou mayest be no longer steward. (b) Rom.8:3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: Rom.8:4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
Question 13. Can we ourselves then make this satisfaction?
Answer: By no means; but on the contrary we daily increase our debt. (a)
(a) Job 9:2 I know it is so of a truth: but how should man be just with God? Job 9:3 If he will contend with him, he cannot answer him one of a thousand. Job 15:15 Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight. Job 15:16 How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water? Job 4:18 Behold, he put no trust in his servants; and his angels he charged with folly: Job 4:19 How much less in them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, which are crushed before the moth? Ps.130:3 If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? Matt.6:12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. Matt.18:25 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made. Matt.16:26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
Question 14. Can there be found anywhere, one, who is a mere creature, able to satisfy for us?
Answer: None; for, first, God will not punish any other creature for the sin which man has committed; (a) and further, no mere creature can sustain the burden of God’s eternal wrath against sin, so as to deliver others from it. (b)
(a) Ezek.18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die. Gen.3:17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Heb.2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; Heb.2:15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. Heb.2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Heb.2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. (b) Nah.1:6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by him. Ps.130:3 If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?
Question 15. What sort of a mediator and deliverer then must we seek for?
Answer: For one who is very man, and perfectly (a) righteous; (b) and yet more powerful than all creatures; that is, one who is also very God. (c)
(a) 1 Cor.15:21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. Jer.33:16 In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The LORD our righteousness. Isa.53:9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 2 Cor.5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (b) Heb.7:26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Heb.7:16 Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life. (c) Isa.7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isa.9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Rom.9:5 Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Jer.23:5 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. Jer.23:6 In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. Luke 11:22 But when a stronger than he (a stromg man armed) shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.
6. Lord’s Day
Question 16. Why must he be very man, and also perfectly righteous?
Answer: Because the justice of God requires that the same human nature which has sinned, should likewise make satisfaction for sin; (a) and one, who is himself a sinner, cannot satisfy for others. (b)
(a) Ezek.18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die. Ezek.18:20 The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. Rom.5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: Rom.5:15 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. Rom.5:18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. 1 Cor.15:21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. Heb.2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; Heb.2:15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. Heb.2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. 1 Pet.3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: Isa.53:3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Isa.53:4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. Isa.53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. Isa.53:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. Isa.53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. (b) Heb.7:26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Heb.7:27 Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this he did once, when he offered up himself. Ps.49:7 None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him: Ps.49:8 (For the redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever:) 1 Pet.3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
Question 17. Why must he in one person be also very God?
Answer: That he might, by the power of his Godhead (a) sustain in his human nature, (b) the burden of God’s wrath; (c) and might obtain for, and restore to us, righteousness and life. (d)
(a) Isa.9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isa.63:3 I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment. (b) Isa.53:4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. Isa.53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. (c) Deut.4:24 For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God. Nah.1:6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by him. Ps.130:3 If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? (d) Isa.53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. Isa.53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Acts 2:24 Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it. 1 Pet.3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. John 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
Question 18. Who then is that Mediator, who is in one person both very God, (a) and a real (b) righteous man? (c)
Answer: Our Lord Jesus Christ: (d) “who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” (e)
(a) 1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life. Rom.9:5 Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Rom.8:3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: Gal.4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, Isa.9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Jer.23:6 In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. Mal.3:1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. (b) Luke 1:42 And she (Elisabeth) spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou (Mary) among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. Luke 2:6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. Luke 2:7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. Rom.1:3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; Rom.9:5 Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Philip.2:7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: Heb.2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; Heb.2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Heb.2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. Heb.4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. (c) Isa.53:9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Isa.53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Jer.23:5 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. Luke 1:35 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. John 8:46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? Heb.4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Heb.7:26 For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; 1 Pet.1:19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: 1 Pet.2:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 1 Pet.3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: (d) 1 Tim.2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Heb.2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. Matt.1:23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. 1 Tim.3:16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. Luke 2:11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. (e) 1 Cor.1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
Question 19. Whence knowest thou this?
Answer: From the holy gospel, which God himself first revealed in Paradise; (a) and afterwards published by the patriarchs (b) and prophets, (c) and represented by the sacrifices and other ceremonies of the law; (d) and lastly, has fulfilled it by his only begotten Son. (e)
(a) Gen.3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel. (b) Gen.22:18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice. Gen.12:3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. Gen.49:10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. Gen.49:11 Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: (c) Isaiah 53. Isa.42:1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. Isa.42:2 He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. Isa.42:3 A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. Isa.42:4 He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law. Isa.43:25 I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins. Isa.49:5 And now, saith the LORD that formed me from the womb to be his servant, to bring Jacob again to him, Though Israel be not gathered, yet shall I be glorious in the eyes of the LORD, and my God shall be my strength. Isa.49:6 And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. Isa.49:22 Thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the Gentiles, and set up my standard to the people: and they shall bring thy sons in their arms, and thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders. Isa.49:23 And kings shall be thy nursing fathers, and their queens thy nursing mothers: they shall bow down to thee with their face toward the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD: for they shall not be ashamed that wait for me. Jer.23:5 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. Jer.23:6 In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. Jer.31:32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: Jer.31:33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. Jer.32:39 And I will give them one heart, and one way, that they may fear me for ever, for the good of them, and of their children after them: Jer.32:40 And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put my fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from me. Jer.32:41 Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly with my whole heart and with my whole soul. Mic.7:18 Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy. Mic.7:19 He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. Mic.7:20 Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old. Acts 10:43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins. Rom.1:2 (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) Heb.1:1 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Acts 3:22 For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you. Acts 3:23 And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people. Acts 3:24 Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days. Acts 10:43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins. John 5:46 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. (d) Heb.10:1 For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. Heb.10:7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. Col.2:7 Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving. John 5:46 For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. (e) Rom.10:4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. Gal.4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, Gal.4:5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. Gal.3:24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. Col.2:17 Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.
7. Lord’s Day
Question 20. Are all men then, as they perished in Adam, saved by Christ?
Answer: No; (a) only those who are ingrafted into him, and, receive all his benefits, by a true faith. (b)
(a) Matt.7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Matt.22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen. (b) Mark 16:16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. Isa.53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Ps.2:12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him. Rom.11:17 And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree; Rom.11:19 Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in. Rom.11:20 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: Rom.3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: Heb.4:2 For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. Heb.4:3 For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world. Heb.5:9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; Heb.10:39 But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul. Heb.11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Question 21. What is true faith?
Answer: True faith is not only a certain knowledge, whereby I hold for truth all that God has revealed to us in his word, (a) but also an assured confidence, (b) which the Holy Ghost (c) works by the gospel in my heart; (d) that not only to others, but to me also, remission of sin, everlasting righteousness and salvation, (e) are freely given by God, merely of grace, only for the sake of Christ’s merits. (f)
(a) James 2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. (b) 2 Cor.4:13 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak; Eph.2:7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus. Eph.2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Eph.2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. Eph.3:12 In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him. Gal.2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. Heb.11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Heb.11:7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith. Heb.11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. Heb.11:9 By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: Heb.11:10 For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God. Heb.4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. James 1:6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. Matt.16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. Philip.1:19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, Rom.4:17 (As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were. Rom.4:21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform. Rom.5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: Rom.1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Rom.10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Rom.10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Rom.4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, Rom.4:18 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. Rom.4:19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara’s womb: Rom.4:20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; Rom.3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Rom.3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; (c) Gal.5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Matt.16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. 2 Cor.4:13 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak; John 6:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent. Eph.2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Philip.1:19 For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, Acts 16:14 And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. (d) Rom.1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Rom.10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. 1 Cor.1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. Acts 10:44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. Acts 16:14 And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. (e) Rom.1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith. Gal.3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith. Heb.10:10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Heb.10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. Gal.2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified. (f) Eph.2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Rom.3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Rom.5:19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. Luke 1:77 To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins, Luke 1:78 Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us,
Question 22. What is then necessary for a christian to believe?
Answer: All things promised us in the gospel, (a) which the articles of our catholic undoubted christian faith briefly teach us.
(a) John 20:31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name. Matt.28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Mark 1:15 And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
Question 23. What are these articles?
Answer: 1. I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:
2. And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord:
3. Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary:
4. Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead, and buried: He descended into hell: 5. The third day he rose again from the dead:
6. He ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty:
7. From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead:
8. I believe in the Holy Ghost:
9. I believe a holy catholic church: the communion of saints:
10. The forgiveness of sins:
11. The resurrection of the body:
12. And the life everlasting.
8. Lord’s Day
Question 24. How are these articles divided?
Answer: Into three parts; the first is of God the Father, and our creation; the second of God the Son, and our redemption; the third of God the Holy Ghost, and our sanctification.
Question 25. Since there is but one only divine essence, (a) why speakest thou of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost?
Answer: Because God has so revealed himself in his word, (b) that these three distinct persons are the one only true and eternal God.(a)
Deut.6:4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: Eph.4:6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. Isa.44:6 Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God. Isa.45:5 I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me: 1 Cor.8:4 As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one. 1 Cor.8:6 But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him. (b) Isa.61:1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; Luke 4:18 The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, Gen.1:2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. Gen.1:3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. Ps.33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. Isa.48:16 Come ye near unto me, hear ye this; I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; from the time that it was, there am I: and now the Lord GOD, and his Spirit, hath sent me. Ps.110:1 <> The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool. Matt.3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: Matt.3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Matt.28:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 1 John 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. Isa.6:1 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Isa.6:3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: 2 Cor.13:13 All the saints salute you. Gal.4:6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Eph.2:18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Tit.3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Tit.3:6 Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour;
Of God The Father
9. Lord’s Day
Question 26. What believest thou when thou sayest, “I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth”?
Answer: That the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (who of nothing made heaven and earth, with all that is in them; (a) who likewise upholds and governs the same by his eternal counsel and providence) (b) is for the sake of Christ his Son, my God and my Father; (c) on whom I rely so entirely, that I have no doubt, but he will provide me with all things necessary for soul and body (d) and further, that he will make whatever evils he sends upon me, in this valley of tears turn out to my advantage; (e) for he is able to do it, being Almighty God, (f) and willing, being a faithful Father. (g)
(a) Genesis 1 and 2. Exod.20:11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it. Job 33:4 The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life. Job 38 and 39. Ps.33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. Acts 4:24 And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: Acts 14:15 And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein: Isa.45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things. (b) Matt.10:29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. Heb.1:3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; Ps.104:27 These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season. Ps.104:28 That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good. Ps.104:29 Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Ps.104:30 Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth. Ps.115:3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. Matt.10:29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. Eph.1:11 In whom also we hav
10. Lord's Day
Q. 27. What dost thou mean by the providence of God? A.
The almighty and everywhere present power of God; (a)
whereby, as it were by his hand, he upholds and governs (b)
heaven, earth, and all creatures; so that herbs and grass, rain and drought, (c)
fruitful and barren years, meat and drink, health and sickness, (d)
riches and poverty, (e)
yea, and all things come, not by chance, but be his fatherly hand. (f)
(a) Acts 17:25-28; Jer.23:23,24; Isa.29:15,16; Ezek.8:12. (b)
Heb.1:3. (c) Jer.5:24; Acts 14:17. (d) John 9:3. (e) Prov.22:2. (f)
Q. 28. What advantage is it to us to know that God has created, and by his providence does still uphold all things?
A. That we may be patient in adversity; (a)
thankful in prosperity; (b)
and that in all things, which may hereafter befall us, we place our firm trust in our faithful God and Father, (c)
that nothing shall separate us from his love; (d)
since all creatures are so in his hand, that without his will they cannot so much as move. (e)
(a) Rom.5:3; James 1:3; Ps.39:9; Job 1:21,22. (b) Deut.8:10;
1 Thess.5:18. (c) Ps.55:22; Rom.5:4. (d) Rom.8:38,39. (e) Job 1:12;
Job 2:6; Acts 17:25,28; Prov.21:1.
Of God The Son
11. Lord's Day
Q. 29. Why is the Son of God called "Jesus", that is a Saviour?
A. Because he saveth us,
and delivereth us from our sins; (a)
and likewise, because we ought not to seek, neither can find salvation in any other. (b)
(a) Matt.1:21; Heb.7:24,25. (b) Acts 4:12; John 15:4,5; 1 Tim.2:5;
Isa.43:11; 1 John 5:11.
Q. 30. Do such then believe in Jesus the only Saviour, who seek their salvation and welfare of saints, of themselves, or anywhere else?
A.They do not;
for though they boast of him in words, yet in deeds they deny Jesus the only deliverer and Saviour; (a)
for one of these two things must be true, that either Jesus is not a complete Saviour; or that they, who by a true faith receive this Saviour, must find all things in him necessary to their salvation. (b)
(a) 1 Cor.1:13,30,31; Gal.5:4. (b) Heb.12:2; Isa.9:6; Col.1:19,20;
Col.2:10; 1 John 1:7,16.
12. Lord's Day
Q. 31. Why is he called "Christ", that is anointed?
A. Because he is ordained of God the Father, and anointed with the Holy Ghost, (a)
to be our chief Prophet and Teacher, (b)
who has fully revealed to us the secret counsel and will of God concerning our redemption; (c)
and to be our only High Priest, (d)
who by the one sacrifice of his body, has redeemed us, (e)
and makes continual intercession with the Father for us; (f)
and also to be our eternal King, who governs us by his word and Spirit, and who defends and preserves us in that salvation, he has purchased for us. (g)
(a) Heb.1:9; Ps.45:8; Isa.61:1; Luke 4:18. (b) Deut.18:15; Acts 3:22;
Acts 7:37; Isa.55:4. (c) John 1:18; John 15:15. (d) Ps.110:4. (e)
Heb.10:12,14; Heb.9:12,14,28. (f) Rom.8:34; Heb.9:24; 1 John 2:1;
Rom.5:9,10. (g) Ps.2:6; Zech.9:9; Matt.21:5; Luke 1:33; Matt.28:18;
John 10:28; Rev.12:10,11.
Q. 32. But why art thou called a Christian? (a)
A. Because I am a member of Christ by faith, (b)
and thus am partaker of his anointing; (c)
that so I may confess his name, (d)
and present myself a living sacrifice of thankfulness to him: (e)
and also that with a free and good conscience I may fight against sin and Satan in this life (f)
and afterwards I reign with him eternally, over all creatures. (g)
(a) Acts 11:26. (b) 1 Cor.6:15. (c) 1 John 2:27; Acts 2:17. (d)
Matt.10:32; Rom.10:10; Mark 8:38. (e) Rom.12:1; 1 Pet.2:5,9;
Rev.5:8,10; Rev.1:6. (f) 1 Pet.2:11; Rom.6:12,13; Gal.5:16,17;
Eph.6:11; 1 Tim.1:18,19. (g) 2 Tim.2:12; Matt.25:34.
13. Lord's Day
Q. 33. Why is Christ called the "only begotten Son" of God, since we are also the children of God?
A. Because Christ alone is the eternal and natural Son of God; (a)
but we are children adopted of God, by grace, for his sake. (b)
(a) John 1:1-3,14,18; Heb.1:1,2; John 3:16; 1 John 4:9; Rom.8:32. (b)
Rom.8:15-17; John 1:12; Gal.4:6; Eph.1:5,6.
Q. 34. Wherefore callest thou him "our Lord"?
A. Because he hath redeemed us, both soul and body, from all our sins,
not with silver or gold, but with his precious blood, and has delivered us from all the power of the devil; and thus has made us his own property. (a)
(a) 1 Pet.1:18,19; 1 Pet.2:9; 1 Cor.6:20; 1 Cor.7:23; 1 Tim.2:6; John
14. Lord's Day
Q. 35. What is the meaning of these words "He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary"?
A. That God's eternal Son, who is, and continues (a)
true and eternal God, (b)
took upon him the very nature of man, of the flesh and blood of the virgin Mary, (c)
by the operation of the Holy Ghost; (d)
that he might also be the true seed of David, (e)
like unto his brethren in all things, (f)
sin excepted. (g)
(a) Rom.1:4; Rom.9:5. (b) 1 John 5:20; John 1:1; John 17:3; Rom.1:3;
Col.1:15. (c) Gal.4:4; Luke 1:31,42,43. (d) John 1:14; Matt.1:18,20;
Luke 1:32,35. (e) Ps.132:11; Rom.1:3; 2 Sam.7:12; Acts 2:30. (f)
Philip.2:7; Heb.2:14,17. (g) Heb.4:15.
Q. 36. What profit dost thou receive by Christ's holy conception and nativity?
A. That he is our Mediator; (a)
and with His innocence and perfect holiness, covers in the sight of God, my sins, wherein I was conceived and brought forth. (b)
(a) Heb.7:26,27; Heb.2:17. (b) 1 Pet.1:18,19; 1 Pet.3:18; 1
Cor.1:30,31; Rom.8:3,4; Isa.53:11; Ps.32:1.
15. Lord's Day
Q. 37. What dost thou understand by the words, "He suffered"?
A. That he, all the time that he lived on earth, but especially at the end of his life, sustained in body and soul, the wrath of God against the sins of all mankind: (a)
that so by his passion, as the only propitiatory sacrifice, (b)
he might redeem our body and soul from everlasting damnation, (c)
and obtain for us the favour of God, righteousness and eternal life. (d)
(a) Isa.53:4; 1 Pet.2:24; 1 Pet.3:18; 1 Tim.2:6. (b) Isa.53:10,12;
Eph.5:2; 1 Cor.5:7; 1 John 2:2; 1 John 4:10; Rom.3:25; Heb.9:28;
Heb.10:14. (c) Gal.3:13; Col.1:13; Heb.9:12; 1 Pet.1:18,19. (d)
Rom.3:25; 2 Cor.5:21; John 3:16; John 6:51; Heb.9:15; Heb.10:19.
Q. 38. Why did he suffer "under Pontius Pilate, as judge"?
A. That he, being innocent, and yet condemned by a temporal judge, (a)
might thereby free us from the severe judgement of God to which we were exposed. (b)
(a) John 18:38; Matt.27:24; Acts 4:27,28; Luke 23:14,15; John 19:4.
(b) Ps.69:4; Isa.53:4,5; 2 Cor.5:21; Gal.3:13.
Q. 39. Is there anything more in his being "crucified", than if he had died some other death?
A. Yes there is; for thereby I am assured, that he took on him the curse which lay upon me; (a)
for the death of the cross was accursed of God. (b)
(a) Gal.3:13. (b) Deut.21:23.
16. Lord's Day
Q. 40. Why was it necessary for Christ to humble himself even "unto death"?
A. Because with respect to the justice and truth of God, (a)
satisfaction for our sins could be made no otherwise, than by the death of the Son of God. (b)
(a) Gen.2:17. (b) Rom.8:3,4; Heb.2:9,14,15.
Q. 41. Why was he also "buried"?
A. Thereby to prove that he was really dead. (a)
(a) Matt.27:59,60; Luke 23:52,53; John 19:38-42; Acts 13:29.
Q. 42. Since then Christ died for us, why must we also die?
A. Our death is not a satisfaction for our sins, (a)
but only an abolishing of sin, and a passage into eternal life. (b)
(a) Mark 8:37; Ps.49:7. (b) John 5:24; Philip.1:23; Rom.7:24.
Q. 43. What further benefit do we receive from the sacrifice and death of Christ on the cross?
A. That by virtue thereof, our old man is crucified, dead and buried with him; (a)
that so the corrupt inclinations of the flesh may no more reign in us; (b)
but that we may offer ourselves unto him a sacrifice of thanksgiving. (c)
(a) Rom.6:6. (b) Rom.6:6-8,11,12; Col.2:12. (c) Rom.12:1.
Q. 44. Why is there added, "he descended into hell"?
A. That in my greatest temptations, I may be assured, and wholly comfort myself in this, that my Lord Jesus Christ, by his inexpressible anguish, pains, terrors, and hellish agonies, in which he was plunged during all his sufferings, (a)
but especially on the cross, has delivered me from the anguish and torments of hell. (b)
(a) Ps.18:5,6; Ps.116:3; Matt.26:38; Heb.5:7; Isa.53:10; Matt.27:46.
17. Lord's Day
Q. 45. What does the "resurrection" of Christ profit us?
A. First, by his resurrection he has overcome death, that he might make us partakers of that righteousness which he had purchased for us by his death; (a)
secondly, we are also by his power raised up to a new life; (b)
and lastly, the resurrection of Christ is a sure pledge of our blessed resurrection. (c)
(a) 1 Cor.15:16; Rom.4:25; 1 Pet.1:3. (b) Rom.6:4; Col.3:1,3;
Eph.2:5,6. (c) 1 Cor.15:12,20,21; Rom.8:11.
18. Lord's Day
Q. 46. How dost thou understand these words, "he ascended into heaven"?
A. That Christ, in sight of his disciples, was taken up from earth into heaven; (a)
and that he continues there for our interest, (b)
until he comes again to judge the quick and the dead. (c)
(a) Acts 1:9; Matt.26:64; Mark 16:19; Luke 24:51. (b) Heb.7:25;
Heb.4:14; Heb.9:24; Rom.8:34; Eph.4:10; Col.3:1. (c) Acts 1:11;
Q. 47. Is not Christ then with us even to the end of the world, as he has promised? (a)
A. Christ is very man and very God; with respect to his human nature, he is no more on earth; (b)
but with respect to his Godhead, majesty, grace and spirit, he is at no time absent from us. (c)
(a) Matt.28:20. (b) Heb.8:4; Matt.26:11; John 16:28; John 17:11; Acts
3:21. (c) John 14:17-19; John 16:13; Matt.28:20; Eph.4:8,12.
Q. 48. But if his human nature is not present, wherever his Godhead is, are not then these two natures in Christ separated from one another?
A. Not as all, for since the Godhead is illimitable and omnipresent, (a)
it must necessarily follow that the same is beyond the limits of the human nature he assumed, (b)
and yet is nevertheless in this human nature, and remains personally united to it.
(a) Acts 7:49; Jer.23:24. (b) Col.2:9; John 3:13; John 11:15;
Q. 49. Of what advantage to us is Christ's ascension into heaven?
A. First, that he is our advocate in the presence of his Father in heaven; (a)
secondly, that we have our flesh in heaven as a sure pledge that he, as the head, will also take up to himself, us, his members; (b)
thirdly, that he sends us his Spirit as an earnest, (c)
by whose power we "seek the things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God, and not things on earth." (d)
(a) 1 John 2:1; Rom.8:34. (b) John 14:2; John 17:24; John 20:17;
Eph.2:6. (c) John 14:16,7; Acts 2:1-4,33; 2 Cor.1:22; 2 Cor.5:5. (d)
19. Lord's Day
Q. 50. Why is it added, "and sitteth at the right hand of God"?
A. Because Christ is ascended into heaven for this end, that he might appear as head of his church, (a)
by whom the Father governs all things. (b)
(a) Eph.1:20,21,23; Col.1:18. (b) Matt.28:18; John 5:22.
Q. 51. What profit is this glory of Christ, our head, unto us?
A. First, that by his Holy Spirit he pours out heavenly graces upon us his members; (a)
and then that by his power he defends and preserves us against all enemies. (b)
(a) Acts 2:33; Eph.4:8. (b) Ps.2:9; Ps.110:1,2; John 10:28; Eph.4:8.
Q. 52. What comfort is it to thee that "Christ shall come again to judge the quick and the dead"?
A. That in all my sorrows and persecutions, with uplifted head I look for the very same person, who before offered himself for my sake, to the tribunal of God, and has removed all curse from me, to come as judge from heaven: (a)
who shall cast all his and my enemies into everlasting condemnation, (b)
but shall translate me with all his chosen ones to himself, into heavenly joys and glory. (c)
(a) Luke 21:28; Rom.8:23; Philip.3:20; Tit.2:13; 1 Thess.4:16. (b) 2
Thess.1:6,8-10; Matt.25:41-43. (c) Matt.25:34; 2 Thess.1:7.
Of God The Holy Ghost
20. Lord's Day
Q. 53. What dost thou believe concerning the Holy Ghost?
A. First, that he is true and coeternal God with the Father and the Son; (a)
secondly, that he is also given me, (b)
to make me by a true faith, partaker of Christ and all his benefits, (c)
that he may comfort me (d)
and abide with me for ever. (e)
(a) 1 John 5:7; Gen.1:2; Isa.48:16; 1 Cor.3:16; 1 Cor.6:19; Acts
5:3,4. (b) Gal.4:6; Matt.28:19,20; 2 Cor.1:21,22; Eph.1:13. (c)
Gal.3:14; 1 Pet.1:2; 1 Cor.6:17. (d) Acts 9:31; John 15:26. (e) John
14:16; 1 Pet.4:14.
21. Lord's Day
Q. 54. What believest thou concerning the "holy catholic church" of Christ?
A. That the Son of God (a)
from the beginning to the end of the world, (b)
gathers, defends, and preserves (c)
to himself by his Spirit and word, (d)
out of the whole human race, (e)
a church chosen to everlasting life, (f)
agreeing in true faith; (g)
and that I am and forever shall remain, (h)
a living member thereof. (i)
(a) Eph.5:26; John 10:11; Acts 20:28; Eph.4:11-13. (b) Ps.71:17,18;
Isa.59:21; 1 Cor.11:26. (c) Matt.16:18; John 10:28-30; Ps.129:1-5. (d)
Isa.59:21; Rom.1:16; Rom.10:14-17; Eph.5:26. (e) Gen.26:4; Rev.5:9.
(f) Rom.8:29,30; Eph.1:10-13. (g) Acts 2:46; Eph.4:3-6. (h) Ps.23:6; 1
Cor.1:8,9; John 10:28; 1 John 2:19; 1 Pet.1:5. (i) 1 John 3:14,19-21;
2 Cor.13:5; Rom.8:10.
Q. 55. What do you understand by "the communion of saints"?
A. First, that all and every one, who believes, being members of Christ, are in common, partakers of him, and of all his riches and gifts; (a)
secondly, that every one must know it to be his duty, readily and cheerfully to employ his gifts, for the advantage and salvation of other members. (b)
(a) 1 John 1:3; 1 Cor.1:9; Rom.8:32; 1 Cor.12:12,13; 1 Cor.6:17. (b) 1Cor.12:21; 1 Cor.13:1,5; Philip.2:4-8.
Q. 56. What believest thou concerning "the forgiveness of sins"?
A. That God, for the sake of Christ's satisfaction, will no more remember my sins, neither my corrupt nature, against which I have to struggle all my life long; (a)
but will graciously impute to me the righteousness of Christ, (b)
that I may never be condemned before the tribunal of God. (c)
(a) 1 John 2:2; 1 John 1:7; 2 Cor.5:19,21. (b) Jer.31:34; Ps.103:3,4;
Ps.103:10,12; Mic.7:19,23-25. (c) Rom.8:1-4; John 3:18; John 5:24.
22. Lord's Day
Q. 57. What comfort does the "resurrection of the body" afford thee?
A. That not only my soul after this life shall be immediately taken up to Christ its head; (a)
but also, that this my body, being raised by the power of Christ, shall be reunited with my soul, and made like unto the glorious body of Christ. (b)
(a) Luke 16:22; Luke 23:43; Philip.1:21,23. (b) 1 Cor.15:53,54; Job
19:25,26; 1 John 3:2; Philip.3:21.
Q. 58. What comfort takest thou from the article of "life everlasting"?
A. That since I now feel in my heart the beginning of eternal joy, (a)
after this life, I shall inherit perfect salvation, which "eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man" to conceive, and that to praise God therein for ever. (b)
(a) 2 Cor.5:2,3. (b) 1 Cor.2:9; John 17:3.
23. Lord's Day
Q. 59. But what does it profit thee now that thou believest all this?
A. That I am righteous in Christ, before God, and an heir of eternal life. (a)
(a) Hab.2:4; Rom.1:17; John 3:36.
Q. 60. How are thou righteous before God?
A. Only by a true faith in Jesus Christ; (a)
so that, though my conscience accuse me, that I have grossly transgressed all the commandments of God, and kept none of them, (b)
and am still inclined to all evil; (c)
notwithstanding, God, without any merit of mine, (d)
but only of mere grace, (e)
grants and imputes to me, (f)
the perfect satisfaction, (g)
righteousness and holiness of Christ; (h)
even so, as if I never had had, nor committed any sin: yea, as if I had fully accomplished all that obedience which Christ has accomplished for me; (i)
inasmuch as I embrace such benefit with a believing heart. (j)
(a) Rom.3:21-25,28; Rom.5:1,2; Gal.2:16; Eph.2:8,9; Philip.3:9. (b)
Rom.3:9. (c) Rom.7:23. (d) Tit.3:5; Deut.9:6; Ezek.36:22. (e)
Rom.3:24; Eph.2:8. (f) Rom.4:4,5; 2 Cor.5:19. (g) 1 John 2:2. (h)
1 John 2:1. (i) 2 Cor.5:21. (j) Rom.3:22; John 3:18.
Q. 61. Why sayest thou, that thou art righteous by faith only?
A. Not that I am acceptable to God, on account of the worthiness of my faith; but because only the satisfaction, righteousness, and holiness of Christ, is my righteousness before God; (a)
and that I cannot receive and apply the same to myself any other way than by faith only. (b)
(a) 1 Cor.1:30; 1 Cor.2:2. (b) 1 John 5:10.
24. Lord's Day
Q. 62. But why cannot our good works be the whole, or part of our righteousness before God?
A. Because, that the righteousness, which can be approved of before the tribunal of God, must be absolutely perfect, (a)
and in all respects conformable to the divine law; and also, that our best works in this life are all imperfect and defiled with sin. (b)
(a) Gal.3:10; Deut.27:26. (b) Isa.64:6.
Q. 63. What! do not our good works merit, which yet God will reward in this and in a future life?
A. This reward is not of merit, but of grace. (a)
(a) Luke 17:10.
Q. 64. But does not this doctrine make men careless and profane?
A. By no means: for it is impossible that those, who are implanted into Christ by a true faith, should not bring forth fruits of thankfulness. (a)
(a) Matt.7:18; John 15:5.
Of The Sacraments
25. Lord's Day
Q. 65. Since then we are made partakers of Christ and all his benefits by faith only, whence does this faith proceed?
A. From the Holy Ghost, (a)
who works faith in our hearts by the preaching of the gospel, and confirms it by the use of the sacraments. (b)
(a) Eph.2:8,9; Eph.6:23; John 3:5; Philip.1:29. (b) Matt.28:19,20; 1
Q. 66. What are the sacraments?
A. The sacraments are holy visible signs and seals, appointed of God for this end, that by the use thereof, he may the more fully declare and seal to us the promise of the gospel, viz., that he grants us freely the remission of sin, and life eternal, for the sake of that one sacrifice of Christ, accomplished on the cross. (a)
(a) Gen.17:11; Rom.4:11; Deut.30:6; Lev.6:25; Heb.9:7-9,24;
Ezek.20:12; Isa.6:6,7; Isa.54:9.
Q. 67. Are both word and sacraments, then, ordained and appointed for this end, that they may direct our faith to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, as the only ground of our salvation? (a)
A. Yes, indeed: for the Holy Ghost teaches us in the gospel, and assures us by the sacraments, that the whole of our salvation depends upon that one sacrifice of Christ which he offered for us on the cross.
(a) Rom.6:3; Gal.3:27.
Q. 68. How many sacraments has Christ instituted in the new covenant, or testament?
A. Two: namely, holy baptism, and the holy supper.
Of Holy Baptism
26. Lord's Day
Q. 69. How art thou admonished and assured by holy baptism, that the one sacrifice of Christ upon the cross is of real advantage to thee?
A. Thus: That Christ appointed this external washing with water, (a)
adding thereto this promise, (b)
that I am as certainly washed by his blood and Spirit from all the pollution of my soul, that is, from all my sins, (c)
as I am washed externally with water, by which the filthiness of the body is commonly washed away.
(a) Matt.28:19. (b) Matt.28:19; Acts 2:38; Matt.3:11; Mark 16:16; John
1:33; Rom.6:3,4. (c) 1 Pet.3:21; Mark 1:4; Luke 3:3
Q. 70. What is it to be washed with the blood and Spirit of Christ?
A. It is to receive of God the remission of sins, freely, for the sake of Christ's blood, which he shed for us by his sacrifice upon the cross; (a)
and also to be renewed by the Holy Ghost, and sanctified to be members of Christ, that so we may more and more die unto sin, and lead holy and unblamable lives. (b)
(a) Heb.12:24; 1 Pet.1:2; Rev.1:5; Rev.7:14; Zech.13:1; Ezek.36:25.
(b) John 1:33; John 3:5; 1 Cor.6:11; 1 Cor.12:13; Rom.6:4; Col.2:12.
Q. 71. Where has Christ promised us, that he will as certainly wash us by his blood and Spirit, as we are washed with the water of baptism?
A. In the institution of baptism, which is thus expressed: "Go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost", Matt.28:19.
And "he that believeth, and is baptized, shall be saved; but he that believeth not, shall be damned.", Mark 16:16.
This promise is also repeated, where the scripture calls baptism "the washing of regenerations" and the washing away of sins. Tit.3:5,
Acts 22:16. (a)
(a) Tit.3:5; Acts 22:16.
27. Lord's Day
Q. 72. Is then the external baptism with water the washing away of sin itself?
A. Not at all: (a)
for the blood of Jesus Christ only, and the Holy Ghost cleanse us from all sin. (b)
(a) Matt.3:11; 1 Pet.3:21; Eph.5:26,27. (b) 1 John 1:7; 1 Cor.6:11.
Q. 73. Why then does the Holy Ghost call baptism "the washing of regeneration," and "the washing away of sins"?
A. God speaks thus not without great cause, to-wit, not only thereby to teach us, that as the filth of the body is purged away by water, so our sins are removed by the blood and Spirit of Jesus Christ; (a)
but especially that by this divine pledge and sign he may assure us, that we are spiritually cleansed from our sins as really, as we are externally washed with water. (b)
(a) Rev.1:5; Rev.7:14; 1 Cor.6:11. (b) Mark 16:16; Gal.3:27.
Q. 74. Are infants also to be baptized?
for since they, as well as the adult, are included in the covenant and church of God; (a)
and since redemption from sin (b)
by the blood of Christ, and the Holy Ghost, the author of faith, is promised to them no less than to the adult; (c)
they must therefore by baptism, as a sign of the covenant, be also admitted into the christian church; and be distinguished from the children of unbelievers (d)
as was done in the old covenant or testament by circumcision, (e)
instead of which baptism is instituted (f)
in the new covenant.
(a) Gen.17:7. (b) Matt.19:14. (c) Luke 1:15; Ps.22:10; Isa.44:1-3;
Acts 2:39. (d) Acts 10:47. (e) Gen.17:14. (f) Col.2:11-13.
Of The Holy Supper Of Our Lord Jesus Christ
28 Lord's Day
Q. 75. How art thou admonished and assured in the Lord's Supper, that thou art a partaker of that one sacrifice of Christ, accomplished on the cross, and of all his benefits?
A. Thus: That Christ has commanded me and all believers, to eat of this broken bread, and to drink of this cup, in remembrance of him, adding these promises: (a)
first, that his body was offered and broken on the cross for me, and his blood shed for me, as certainly as I see with my eyes, the bread of the Lord broken for me, and the cup communicated to me; and further, that he feeds and nourishes my soul to everlasting life, with his crucified body and shed blood, as assuredly as I receive from the hands of the minister, and taste with my mouth the bread and cup of the Lord, as certain signs of the body and blood of Christ.
(a) Matt.26:26-28; Mark 14:22-24; Luke 22:19,20; 1 Cor.10:16,17;
1 Cor.11:23-25; 1 Cor.12:13.
Q. 76. What is it then to eat the crucified body, and drink the shed blood of Christ?
A. It is not only to embrace with believing heart all the sufferings and death of Christ and thereby to obtain the pardon of sin, and life eternal; (a)
but also, besides that, to become more and more united to his sacred body, (b)
by the Holy Ghost, who dwells both in Christ and in us; so that we, though Christ is in heaven (c)
and we on earth, are notwithstanding "flesh of his flesh and bone of his bone" (d)
and that we live, and are governed forever by one spirit, (e)
as members of the same body are by one soul.
(a) John 6:35,40,47-54. (b) John 6:55,56. (c) Col.3:1; Acts 3:21;
1 Cor.11:26. (d) Eph.3:16; Eph.5:29,30,32; 1 Cor.6:15,17,19; 1 John
3:24; 1 John 4:13; John 14:23. (e) John 6:56-58; John 15:1-6;
Q. 77. Where has Christ promised that he will as certainly feed and nourish believers with his body and bleed, as they eat of this broken bread, and drink of this cup?
A. In the institution of the supper, which is thus expressed: (a)
"The Lord Jesus, the same night in which he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he brake it, and: said: eat, this is my body, which is broken for you; this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying: this cup is the new testament in my blood; this do ye, as often as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.
For, as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do show the Lord's death till he come." 1 Cor.11:23-26.
This promise is repeated by the holy apostle Paul, where he says "The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread." 1 Cor.10:16,17.
(a) 1 Cor.11:23-25; Matt.26:26-28; Mark 14:22-24; Luke 22:19,20;
29 Lord's Day
Q. 78. Do then the bread and wine become the very body and blood of Christ?
A. Not at all: (a)
but as the water in baptism is not changed into the blood of Christ, neither is the washing away of sin itself, being only the sign and confirmation thereof appointed of God; (b)
so the bread in the Lord's supper is not changed into the very body of Christ; (c)
though agreeably to the nature and properties of sacraments, (d)
it is called the body of Christ Jesus.
(a) Matt.26:29. (b) Eph.5:26; Tit.3:5. (c) Mark 14:24; 1
Cor.10:16,17,26-28. (d) Gen.17:10,11,14,19; Exod.12:11,13,27,43,48;
Exod.13:9; 1 Pet.3:21; 1 Cor.10:1-4.
Q. 79. Why then doth Christ call the bread "his body", and the cup "his blood", or "the new covenant in his blood"; and Paul the "communion of body and blood of Christ"?
A. Christ speaks thus, not without great reason, namely, not only thereby to teach us, that as bread and wine support this temporal life, so his crucified body and shed blood are the true meat and drink, whereby our souls are fed to eternal life; (a)
but more especially by these visible signs and pledges to assure us, that we are as really partakers of his true body and blood by the operation of the Holy Ghost as we receive by the mouths of our bodies these holy signs in remembrance of him; (b)
and that all his sufferings and obedience are as certainly ours, as if we had in our own persons suffered and made satisfaction for our sins to God.
(a) John 6:51,55. (b) 1 Cor.10:16,17.
30. Lord's Day
Q. 80. What difference is there between the Lord's supper and the popish mass?
A. The Lord's supper testifies to us, that we have a full pardon of all sin by the only sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which he himself has once accomplished on the cross; (a)
and, that we by the Holy Ghost are ingrafted into Christ, (b)
who, according to his human nature is now not on earth, but in heaven, at the right hand of God his Father, (c)
and will there be worshipped by us. (d)
But the mass teaches, that the living and dead have not the pardon of sins through the sufferings of Christ, unless Christ is also daily offered for them by the priests; and further, that Christ is bodily under the form of bread and wine, and therefore is to be worshipped in them; so that the mass, at bottom, is nothing else than a denial of the one sacrifice and sufferings of Jesus Christ, and an accursed idolatry. (e)
(a) Heb.7:27; Heb.9:12,25-28; Heb.10:10,12-14; John 19:30; Matt.26:28;
Luke 22:19,20. (b) 1 Cor.6:17; 1 Cor.10:16. (c) Heb.1:3; Heb.8:1,2;
John 20:17. (d) Matt.6:20,21; John 4:21-24; Luke 24:52; Acts 7:55,56;
Col.3:1; Philip.3:20,21; 1 Thess.1:10; Heb.9:6-10. (e) Heb.9:26;
Q. 81. For whom is the Lord's supper instituted?
A. For those who are truly sorrowful for their sins, and yet trust that these are forgiven them for the sake of Christ; and that their remaining infirmities are covered by his passion and death; and who also earnestly desire to have their faith more and more strengthened, and their lives more holy; but hypocrites, and such as turn not to God with sincere hearts, eat and drink judgment to themselves. (a)
(a) 1 Cor.10:19-22; 1 Cor.11:28,29.
Q. 82. Are they also to be admitted to this supper, who, by confession and life, declare themselves unbelieving and ungodly?
A. No; for by this, the covenant of God would be profaned, and his wrath kindled against the whole congregation; (a)
therefore it is the duty of the christian church, according to the appointment of Christ and his apostles, to exclude such persons, by the keys of the kingdom of heaven, till they show amendment of life.
(a) 1 Cor.11:20,34; Isa.1:11-15; Isa.66:3; Jer.7:21-23; Ps.50:16.
31. Lord's Day
Q. 83. What are the keys of the kingdom of heaven?
A. The preaching of the holy gospel, and christian discipline, or excommunication out of the christian church; by these two, the kingdom of heaven is opened to believers, and shut against unbelievers.
Q. 84. How is the kingdom of heaven opened and shut by the preaching of the holy gospel?
A. Thus: when according to the command of Christ, it is declared and publicly testified to all and every believer, that, whenever they receive the promise of the gospel by a true faith, all their sins are really forgiven them of God, for the sake of Christ's merits; and on the contrary, when it is declared and testified to all unbelievers, and such as do not sincerely repent, that they stand exposed to the wrath of God, and eternal condemnation, so long as they are unconverted: (a) according to which testimony of the gospel, God will judge them, both in this, and in the life to come.
(a) Matt.16:18,19; Matt.18:15-19; John 20:21-23.
Q. 85. How is the kingdom of heaven shut and opened by christian discipline?
A. Thus: when according to the command of Christ, those, who under the name of christians, maintain doctrines, or practices inconsistent therewith, and will not, after having been often brotherly admonished, renounce their errors and wicked course of life, are complained of to the church, or to those, who are thereunto appointed by the church; and if they despise their admonition, are by them forbidden the use of the sacraments; whereby they are excluded from the christian church, and by God himself from the kingdom of Christ; and when they promise and show real amendment, are again received as members of Christ and his church. (a)
(a) Matt.18:15-18; 1 Cor.5:2-5,11; 2 Thess.3:14,15; 2 Cor.2:6-8.
The Third Part - Of Thankfulness
32. Lord's Day
Q. 86. Since then we are delivered from our misery, merely of grace, through Christ, without any merit of ours, why must we still do good works?
A. Because Christ, having redeemed and delivered us by his blood, also renews us by his Holy Spirit, after his own image; that so we may testify, by the whole of our conduct, our gratitude to God for his blessings, (a)
and that he may be praised by us; (b)
also, that every one may be assured in himself of his faith, (c)
by the fruits thereof; and that, by our godly conversation others may be gained to Christ. (d)
(a) Rom.6:13; Rom.12:1,2; 1 Pet.2:5,9,10; 1 Cor.6:20. (b) Matt.5:16;
1 Pet.2:12; 1 Pet.1:6,7. (c) 2 Pet.1:10; Matt.7:17; Gal.5:6,22,23. (d)
1 Pet.3:1,2; Rom.14:19.
Q. 87. Cannot they then be saved, who, continuing in their wicked and ungrateful lives, are not converted to God?
A. By no means; for the holy scripture declares that no unchaste person, idolater, adulterer, thief, covetous man, drunkard, slanderer, robber, or any such like, shall inherit the kingdom of God. (a)
(a) 1 Cor.6:9,10; Eph.5:5,6; 1 John 3:14.
33. Lord's Day
Q. 88. Of how many parts does the true conversion of man consist?