“What I do want to do, however, is just to mention, though in a necessarily desultory way, a few of those things about the life of the Christian Reformed Church which have kept it from falling away into the dominant Modernism and have been the instruments in preserving its truly Christian witness: 1. Separation for the Sake of Faithfulness, 2. Theological Consistency, 3. Indoctrination by the Pastors, 4. Church Discipline and 5. Christian Schools.”
J. Gresham Machen, “The Presbyterian Guardian” (1936)
From where I sit at ground zero, one is certainly hard-pressed to say that one through four of Machen plaudits are glaring marks of today’s CRC. Like day beams hitting reflective glass, the fifth is though. We even take up offerings to off set its costs (and bookend offerings for scriptural charges of the church: missions). In light of the wide disparity, one wonders what one thing finally has to do with another. If day schooling helps ensure confessional Reformed orthodoxy, how does one explain the theological and worship trends of the CRC?
This isn’t to suggest that day schooling actually works against ensuring faithfulness, or even that it can’t play some role, however incidental, in furthering it. But one does wonder what she would look like if the CRC took her confessional heritage half as seriously as she takes day schooling.
Yes, those are TULIPS adorning the west lawn of Jefferson’s Monticello. I couldn’t, ahem, resist.