I call upon You, Lord, God of Abraham and God of Isaac and God of Jacob and Israel, You who are the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the God who, through the abundance of your mercy, was well-pleased towards us so that we may know You, who made heaven and earth, who rules over all, You who are the one and the true God, above whom there is no other God; You who, by our Lord Jesus Christ gave us the gift of the Holy Spirit, give to every one who reads this writing to know You, that You alone are God, to be strengthened in You, and to avoid every heretical and godless and impious teaching.

St Irenaeus of Lyons, Against the Heresies 3:6:4

Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Scots' Confession, Chapter 5

The Continuance, Increase, and Preservation of the Kirk

We most constantly believe that God preserved, instructed, multiplied, honoured, decored, and from death called to life his kirk (i.e., church) in all ages, from Adam, till the coming of Christ Jesus in the flesh.[1] For Abraham he called from his father's country; him he instructed; his seed he multiplied;[2] the same he marvelously preserved, and more marvelously delivered from the bondage and tyranny of Pharaoh;[3] to them he gave his laws, constitutions, and ceremonies;[4] them he possessed in the land of Canaan;[5] to them, after Judges and after Saul, he gave David to be king, to whom he made promise, that of the fruit of his loins should one sit for ever upon his regal seat.[6] To this same people, from time to time, he sent prophets to reduce them to the right way of their God,[7] from the which often times they declined by idolatry. And albeit for their stubborn contempt of justice, he was compelled to give them in the hands of their enemies,[8] as before was threatened by the mouth of Moses,[9] insomuch that the holy city was destroyed, the temple burnt with fire,[10] and the whole land left desolate the space of seventy years;[11] yet of mercy did he reduce them again to Jerusalem, where the city and temple were reedified, and they, against all temptations and assaults of Satan, did abide till the Messiah came, according to the promise.[12] 

1. Ezek. 6:6-14.
2. Gen. 12:1; 13:1.
3. Ex. 1, etc.
4. Josh. 1:3; 23:4.
5. 1 Sam. 10:1; 16:13.
6. 2 Sam. 7:12.
7. 2 Kings 17:13-19.
8. 2 Kings 24:3-4.
9. Deut. 28:36, 48.
10. 2 Kings 25.
11. Dan. 9:2.
12. Jer. 30; Ezra 1, etc.; Hag. 1:14; 2:7-9; Zech. 3:8.

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