Reformed Reflections

From the Pastor's Desk (1989 - 1993)


Centuries ago three rabbis were asked to discuss the following question put. before them: "Which is more important, is study more important, or is practice more important?" One rabbi said, "Practice is the more important." Another said, "Study is the more important." Whereupon they all spoke and said, "Study is the more important for study leads to practice." These rabbis taught that study, interpretation, and debate are the discipline for living. Ideas lead to action.

How much value do we still place on study? We tend to ask, "Are the courses taught at school and church practical?" But life is based on theory, on ideas. That is why the apostle Paul began his epistles with doctrine, and he concluded them with practical application. In other words: This is what we believe. This is how we ought to work out our beliefs in practice.

The Bible stresses the importance of study. The Christian faith has content. Therefore, we seek to instruct our youth in Bible knowledge, the Creeds and the Confessions. If there ever was a need for informed church membership, it is now. Our times are confusing. Via the mass media we are being bombarded by ideas totally alien to the Gospel. The apostle Paul wrote to young Timothy, 'Study to shew, thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15).

Johan D. Tangelder