21 June, 2007

Of Dusty Old Synod Reports

I have been attempting to collect old Synod reports from the RPCNA. When I mean old, I do not mean 1985. I mean late-1800s and early 1900s. Finding these has been a real joy, because when I read one there is this sensation that I am most-likely the only person who has read this in about 100 years (maybe I am conceited, maybe I am wrong, but I still think along these lines).

The amount of material that is devotional in nature is quite amazing as well. From what I hear from some people in Reformed denominations, synods (as well as classis, presbyteries, etc.) have a legal and formal sense that is usually less than worshipful.

These old reports are filled with material that causes one to lift up holy hands to the Lord Jesus Christ. Here is one example, from the RPCNA Synod, 1910. It is from the Report on the Committee of the Sabbath:

The Sabbath is the mountain day between the weeks. Here Jesus is found teaching and pronouncing blessings. They, who will, may have this high day with Jesus, and enjoy His fellowship- the very essence of happiness How rich and numerous the blessings that come to such! This mountain is strewn with precious gifts: comfort for the sad; pardon for the guilty; bread for the hungry; rest for the weary; riches for the poor; visions for the pure; society for the lonely; crowns for the humble; heaven for the persecuted; the Holy Spirit for all. What happy experiences the Sabbath brings to those who worship in the Spirit! What views of life, of destiny, of eternity! What stirrings of the soul, what incoming power, what feelings of holy awe what consciousness of kinship with God! How the horizon bounds back, and life grows large! How near heaven seems to be! How real the Throne, the Lamb, the angels, and the Redeemed! Blessing upon blessing for the Sabbath-keeper. "Blessed is the man that doeth this, and the son of man that layeth hold on it; that keep the Sabbath (Is. 56:2.)!


Mark said...

Yeah, I'm willing to bet you are the only one to read them in 100 years. Nice find on the quote, though, it's always good to see the Sabbath held in high regard.

As for lifting holy hands - as Presbyterians, we're supposed to stroke our chins and say "that's a really good point". Lifting hands in charismatic and probably indicative of the dread disease liberalism.

Oddball said...

-I ponder my own oddity at times, given that I found "How to read a book" by Mortimer Adler an exciting read.

-Are you combing Ebay for these things, Nate? I doubt you'll have much likelyhood of someone sniping the things last second.

Gary McCullough said...

Dear Nate,

I found an old testimony of my church - The Reformed Presbyterian Church of Ireland - from 1901; it was likewise filled with excellent matter (such as we rarely hear today). Mr. Silversides quotes from it in his book 'The Free Offer - Biblical and Reformed'.

Anyway, would you mind at all if I used this quote on one of my quote pages at puritanismtoday?

I look forward to more such quotes?


Nathan said...


That would be quite fine.