A Brief Outline of the Canons of Dordt (), the Original Five Points of Calvinism. Rev. Angus Stewart. Head I: Of Divine Predestination (Unconditional. The Canons of Dordt of , the Reformed Tradition’s response to the Arminiam views of the Remonstrants in the Dutch Reformed Church. Everyone knows the acronym TULIP, but not everyone knows where this acronym comes from. The Canons of Dordt are among the most.
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But that others who are called by the gospel obey the call and are converted is not to be ascribed to the proper exercise of free will, whereby one distinguishes himself above others equally furnished with grace sufficient for faith and conversion dorct the proud heresy of Pelagius maintains ; but it must be wholly ascribed to God, who, as He has chosen His own from eternity in Christ, so He calls them effectually in time, confers upon them faith and repentance, rescues them from the power of darkness, and translates them into the kingdom of His own Son; that they may show forth the praises of Him who has called them out of darkness into His marvelous light, and may glory not in themselves but in the Lord, according to the testimony of the apostles in various places.
By such enormous sins, however, they very highly offend God, incur a deadly guilt, dirdt the Holy Spirit, interrupt the canoms of faith, very grievously wound their consciences, and sometimes doordt the sense of God’s favor, for a time, until on caons returning into the right way of serious repentance, the light of God’s fatherly countenance again shines upon them.
For these contradict the apostle, who declares: We know it by the Spirit he gave us 1 John 3: Because the Canons are an answer to the Five Points of the Remonstrance, they set forth only certain aspects of the truth rather than the whole body of the truth, as do our other confessions.
For thereby they contradict the Holy Scriptures, which declare that God infuses new qualities of faith, of obedience, and of the consciousness of His love into our hearts: As many as are called by the gospel are unfeignedly called. But this is in no wise effected merely by the external preaching of the gospel, by moral suasion, or such a mode of operation, that after God has performed his part, it still remains in the power of man to be regenerated or not, to be converted, or to continue unconverted.
For God has most earnestly and truly declared in His Word what is acceptable to Him, namely, that those who are called should come unto Him. Article 9 – The Assurance of This Preservation Of this preservation of the elect to salvation, and of their perseverance in the faith, true believers for themselves may and ought to obtain assurance according to the measure of their faith, whereby they arrive at the certain persuasion, that they ever will continue true and living members of the church; and that they experience forgiveness of sins, and will at last inherit eternal life.
This our Savior teaches in the parable of the sower.
So especially the apostle Paul: This assurance, however, is not produced by any peculiar revelation contrary to or independent of the Word of God, but springs from faith in God’s promises, which He has most abundantly revealed in His Word for our comfort; from the caanons of the Holy Spirit, witnessing with our spirit that we are children and heirs of God Rom cqnons Following the death of Arminius — canns, his followers set forth a Remonstrance published in in five articles formulating their points of departure from the stricter Calvinism of the Belgic Confession.
Article 9 – Human Responsibility for Rejecting the Gospel Canonns is not the fault of the gospel, nor of Christ offered through the gospel, nor of God who calls men by the gospel and confers upon them various gifts, that those who are called by the ministry of the word refuse to come and be converted. This we cannot escape, unless satisfaction be made to the justice of God.
Wherefore, this Synod of Dort, in the name of the Lord, conjures as many as piously call upon csnons name of our Savior Jesus Christ to judge of the faith of the Reformed Churches, not from the calumnies which on every side are heaped upon it, nor from the private expressions of a few among ancient and modern teachers, often dishonestly quoted, or corrupted and wrested to a meaning quite foreign to their intention; but from the public confessions of the Churches themselves, and from this declaration of the orthodox doctrine, confirmed by the unanimous consent of all and each of the members canlns the whole Synod.
So that men may be brought to believe, God mercifully sends the messengers of these most joyful tidings, to whom he will and at what time he pleases; by whose ministry men are called to repentance and faith in Christ crucified.
And hereby we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit which he gave us,” I John 3: For thereby they contradict the Holy Scriptures, which declare that God infuses new qualities of faith, of obedience, and of the consciousness of his love into our hearts: That in the true conversion of man no new qualities, powers or gifts can be infused by God into the will, and that therefore faith through which we are first converted, and because of which we are called believers, is not a quality or gift infused by God, but only an act of man, and that it can not be said to be a gift, except in respect of the power to attain to this faith.
Much less cause have they to be terrified by the doctrine of reprobation, who, though they seriously desire to be turned to God, to please him only, and to be delivered from the body of death, cannot yet reach that measure of holiness and faith to which they aspire; since a merciful God has promised that he will not quench the smoking flax, nor break the bruised reed. And therefore with holy adoration of these mysteries, we exclaim in the words of the apostle: And if the elect of God were deprived of this solid comfort that they shall finally obtain the victory, and of this infallible pledge of eternal glory, they would be of all men the most miserable.
Article 13 – The Fruit of This Assurance The sense dordy certainty of this election drdt to the children of God additional matter for daily humiliation before him, for adoring the depth canonz his mercies, for cleansing themselves, and rendering grateful returns of ardent love to him, who first manifested so great love towards them.
But this is altogether Pelagian and contrary to the whole Scripture which, besides this, teaches another and far more powerful and divine manner of the Holy Spirit’s working in the conversion of man, as in Ezekiel: For this is nothing less than the denial of all that efficiency of God’s grace in our conversion, and the subjecting of the working of Almighty God to the will of man, which is contrary to the apostles, who teach that we believe accord to the working of the strength of his might Eph 1: But we are in no wise to conduct ourselves towards them with haughtiness, as if we had made ourselves to differ.
Therefore election is the fountain of every saving good, from which proceed faith, holiness, and the other gifts of salvation, and finally eternal life itself, as its fruits and effects, according to the testimony of the apostle: And they contradict the apostle John, who teaches that opposite with express words in his first epistle: This is also repugnant to the continuous practice of the Church, which prays by the mouth of the Prophet thus: And this is the perspicuous, simple, an ingenuous declaration of the orthodox doctrine respecting the five articles which have been controverted in the Belgic Churches; and the rejection of the errors, with which they have for some time been troubled.
Canons of Dort | Christian Reformed Church
These canons are in actuality a judicial decision on the doctrinal points in dispute from the Arminian controversy of that day.
While the Remonstrants had hoped to gain a hearing for their views, they were functionally condemned as drdt by the Synod and banished from the church until the political climate changed with the death in of Prince Maurice, who along with Franciscus Gomarus had led the movement to suppress the views of Arminius.
So also this grace of regeneration does not treat men as senseless stocks and blocks, nor take away their will and its properties, neither does violence tp it. Since the church was closely intertwined in both political and social spheres, such sharp theological dissension threatened to spill over into political unrest. That the reason why God sends the gospel to one people rather than to another is not merely and solely the good pleasure of God, but rather the fact that one people is better and worthier than another to which the gospel kf not communicated.
For these adjudge too contemptuously of the death of Christ, do in no wise acknowledge the most important fruit or benefit thereby gained, and bring again out of hell the Pelagian error.
This mystery of His will God reveals to but a small number under the Old Testament; under the New Testament the distinction between various peoples having been removed He reveals it to many.
Article 12 – This Assurance as an Incentive to Godliness This certainty of perseverance, however, is so far from exciting in believers a spirit of pride, or of rendering them carnally secure, that on the contrary, it is the real source of humility, filial reverence, true piety, patience in every tribulation, fervent prayers, constancy in suffering, and in confessing the truth, and of solid rejoicing in God.
Canons of Dort (A.D. 1619)
Divine Election and Reprobation. Man was originally formed after the image of God. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name John What do you have that you did not receive? That it was not the purpose of the death of Christ that he should confirm the new covenant of grace through his blood, but only that he should acquire for the Father the mere right to establish with man such a dorrdt as he might please, whether of grace or of works.