WILHELMUS   BRAKEL

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    WILHELMUS BRAKEL, Thess F.

    (AD 1635-1711)

    Minister of the Gospel in Rotterdam

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    THE CHRISTIANS REASONABLE SERVICE

    in which Divine Truths concerning the

    COVENANT OF GRACE

    are Expounded, Defended against Opposing Parties, and their Practice Advocated

    as well as

    The Administration of this Covenant in the Old and New Testaments

    by

    WILHELMUS BRAKEL, Th. F.

    Minister of the Gospel in Rotterdam

    Volume 1 of 4

    Translated by Bartel Elshout

    Edited by Joel R. Beeke

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    All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America.

    This translation is based on the third edition of the original Dutch work entitledRedelijke Godsdienstpublished by

    Bolle, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

    The Christians Reasonable Service, Volume 1ISBN 1-877611-56-5

    Copyright 1992

    Third printing 1999

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    [Page omitted: Dutch title page]

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    The Christ ians Reasonable Service

    General Contents

    V O L U M E O N E

    Theology: The Doctrine of God1. The Knowledge of God from Nature2. The Word of God

    3. The Essence of God

    4. The Divine Persons5. The Decrees of God: General Observations

    6. Eternal Predestination: Election and Reprobation

    7. The Covenant of Redemption Between God the Father and God the Son Concerning the Elect; or, the Coun

    of Peace8. The Creation of the World

    9. Angels and Devils

    Anthropology: The Doctrine of Man10. Concerning Man, Particularly the Soul

    11. The Providence of God12. The Covenant of Works

    13. The Breach of the Covenant of Works

    14. Original and Actual Sin15. Mans Free Will or Impotency and the Punishment Due Upon Sin

    Christology: The Doctrine of Christ16. The Covenant of Grace

    17. The Necessity of the Atonement by the Surety Jesus Christ

    18. The Divinity, Incarnation, and Union of the Two Natures in the One Person of Our Lord Jesus Christ

    19. The Three Offices of Christ, and Particularly His Prophetic Office20. The High Priestly Office of Christ

    21. The Kingly Office of Jesus Christ

    22. The State of Christs Humiliation by Which He Made Atonement for the Sins of the Elect23. The State of Christs Exaltation

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    viii

    V O L U M E T W O

    Ecclesiology: The Doctrine of the ChurchThe Church

    The Duty to Join and Remain with the ChurchThe Communion of Believers with Christ and with Each Other

    27. The Government of the Church, and Particularly the Commissioning of Ministers

    The Offices of Minister, Elder, and Deacon

    29. Ecclesiastical Authority and the Use of the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven

    Soteriology: The Doctrine of Salvation30. The External and Internal Call

    31. Regeneration

    32. Faith

    33. Distinguishing Marks of Saving Faith34. Justification

    35. The Adoption of Children

    36. Spiritual Peace

    37. Spiritual Joy38. The Sealing of the Believer by the Holy Spirit and by Means of the Sacraments

    39. Holy Baptism

    40. The Lords Supper41. The Practice of the Lords Supper Consisting in Preparation, Celebration and Reflection

    42. The Life of Faith in Reference to the Promises

    43. A Warning Exhortation Against Pietists, Quietists, and All Who in a Similar Manner Have Deviated tNatural and Spiritless Religion Under the Guise of Spirituality

    V O L U M E T H R E E

    Soteriology: The Doctrine of Salvation (cont.)44. Sanctification and Holiness45. The Law of God: General Considerations

    46. The First Commandment47. The Second Commandment

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    ix

    48. The Third Commandment

    49. The Fourth Commandment

    50. The Fifth Commandment51. The Sixth Commandment

    52. The Seventh Commandment

    53. The Eighth Commandment

    54. The Ninth Commandment

    55. The Tenth Commandment56. The Glorification of God

    57. Love Toward God58. Love Toward the Lord Jesus

    59. The Fear of God

    60. Obedience Toward God61. The Exercise of Hope in God

    62. Spiritual Strength or Courage

    63. The Profession of Christ and His Truth

    64. Contentment65. Self-denial

    66. Patience67. Sincerity (or Uprightness)

    68. Prayer69. The Lords Prayer Explained and Applied; The Address and the First Petition: Hallowed Be Thy Name

    70. The Second Petition: Thy Kingdom Come

    71. The Third Petition: Thy Will be Done72. The Fourth Petition: Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread

    73. The Fifth Petition: Forgive Us Our Debts as We Forgive Our Debtors

    74. The Sixth Petition: Lead Us not into Temptation, but Deliver Us from Evil

    V O L U M E F O U R

    Soteriology: The Doctrine of Salvation (cont.)75. Fasting76. Watchfulness

    77. Secret Prayer

    78. Spiritual Meditation79. Singing Spiritual Songs

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    x

    80. Vows

    81. The Practice of Reflecting upon Previous Experiences

    82. Love Toward Our Neighbor83. Humility

    84. Meekness

    85. Peaceableness

    86. Diligence

    87. Compassion88. Prudence

    89. Spiritual Growth90. Regression of Spiritual Life in the Godly

    91. Spiritual Desertion

    92. The Temptation Toward Atheism or the Denial of Gods Existence93. The Temptation Whether Gods Word Is True

    94. Unbelief Concerning Ones Spiritual State

    95. The Assaults of Satan

    96. The Power of Indwelling Corruption97. Spiritual Darkness

    98. Spiritual Deadness99. The Perseverance of the Saints

    Eschatology: The Doctrine of the Last Things100. Death and the Ensuing State of the Soul101. The Resurrection of the Dead

    102. The Last Judgment and the End of the World

    103. Eternal Glory

    Appendix: The Administration of the Covenant of Grace in the Old and New TestamentsThe Church of the Old Testament from Adam to Abraham

    The Church from Abraham to SinaiThe Ceremonial Laws Given at Sinai and the Condition of

    the Church from Sinai to Christ

    Jesus Christ and His Mediatorial Office in the Old TestamentThe State of Believers in the Old Testament

    The Church of the New Testament from the Birth of Jesus

    Christ to the Revelation of John

    Indexes:1) Subject Index2) Textual Index

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    Conten t sVolume One

    Preface xi

    Acknowledgments xx

    Wilhelmus BrakelA Biographical Sketch xxx

    Youth and Education xxxViews Concerning the Ministry xxxii

    Sermons x

    Pastorates in Friesland xlvPastorate in Rotterdam lxi

    The Dutch Second Reformation (Nadere Reformatie) lxxxThe Term Nadere Reformatie lxxx

    The Essence of the Dutch Second Reformation lxxxi

    Assessment in Secondary Sources xcv

    To the Congregation of God(Preface by Wilhelmus Brakel)

    cxii

    THE CHRISTIANS REASONABLE SERVICE

    Theology: The Doctrine of God

    1. The Knowledge of God from Nature ###3The Foundation of Religion ###

    The Form or Essence of Religion ###The Regulative Principle of Religion ###

    The Practice of Religion ###

    The Innate Knowledge of God ###The Origin of the Natural Knowledge of God and Morality ###1

    2. The Word of God ###23The Word of God Prior to Moses ###2

    The Names Assigned to Gods Word ###2

    The Necessity of the Written Word ###2The Origin of the Holy Scriptures ###2

    The Inherent Divine Authority of the Holy Scriptures ###2The Mediate Causes Whereby God Has Provided Man with His Word ###3

    The Substance or Contents of the Word of God ###3Addition to or Deletion from the Holy Scriptures Prohibited ###3

    The Old Testament: Binding for New Testament Christians ###3

    The External and Internal Composition of the Holy Scriptures ###4Scripture Is not Subject to Various Interpretations ###4

    The Perspicuity of the Holy Scriptures ###4

    The Pope Not the Infallible Judge of Scripture ###5The Function of Reason in the Exposition of Holy Writ ###5

    Scripture Does not Support the Erroneous Views of Men ###6

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    The Holy Scriptures: To be Read by Every Member of the Church ###6

    The Translation of the Scriptures into Other Languages ###6The Necessity of Scripture ###7

    Our Obligations Towards the Holy Scriptures ###7

    Guidelines for the Profitable Reading of Scripture ###7

    3. The Essence of God ###83The Names of God ###8The Name JEHOVAH ###8

    The Name ELOHIM ###8The Essence of God ###8The Attributes of God ###8

    The Perfection of God ###9

    The Eternity of God ###9

    The Infinity and Omnipresence of God ###9The Simplicity of God ###9

    The Immutability of God ###10

    The Communicable Attributes of God ###10

    The Knowledge of God ###10The Will of God ###11

    Our Conduct and Gods Will ###11The Holiness of God ###12The Goodness of God ###12

    The Love of God ###12

    The Grace of God ###12The Mercy of God ###12

    The Longsuffering of God ###12

    The Righteousness or Justice of God ###12The Power of God ###13

    The Duty of the Christian to Reflect upon the Attributes of God ###13

    Directions for Reflecting upon the Attributes of God ###13

    4. The Divine Persons ###13The Holy Trinity ###13

    The Singular Essence of Gods Being ###14Divine Personality Defined ###14

    The Divine Essence Consists of Three Persons ###14

    The Divinity of Each Person of the Trinity ###14The Eternal Generation of the Son as t