Sem Scenes – November/December 2017

On this Friday, for fun, let’s take a look around and see what has been happening at the PRC Seminary of late (this Fall of 2017).

An early Fall picture of seminary front.

I have been taking a few pictures of people and things, so here you go!

Sunset on Wednesday night this week.

The next morning – this Thursday after first snowfall of the new season.

Mrs. Judi Doezema’s Christmas cactus (forefront) and Mandevilla plant (background) – taken this week.

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One of our students (Jacob Maatman) playing the pump organ at seminary.
Note: He loves good Luther hymns and Genevan Psalms as well as classical pieces.

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We enjoyed a special visitor from the Netherlands this week (Cees Van Steenselen), who sat in on classes at seminary, visited two of our Christian schools, and whom I took downtown Grand Rapids by the river for a short (cold!) stay by the fish ladder.

A certain new professor excited about his new office.
Don’t worry, we are teaching him how to use his furniture properly.
🙂

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Sometimes we get “friendly” visitors outside the doors whom we don’t want to come inside (though they have in the past – just ask Rev. R. Barnhill, our former snake-lover!).

Finally, a book plate I recently came across in one of the Letis books. As we enter the winter season, one to make us long for Spring.

Published in: on December 8, 2017 at 2:17 PM  Leave a Comment  

Recent Additions to the PRC Seminary Library (3rd Quarter 2017)

SemLibrary2In October of this year I submitted the following list of books to the Theological School Committee of the PRC Seminary. It is a list of significant books obtained and processed for the third quarter of this year, covering July to Sept. Not intended to be exhaustive but selective, the list highlights some of the more important additions to our library.

The list also is sent, of course, to our faculty and students, so that they can have an idea of what is being added for their benefit. I trust the list will serve to benefit you readers too. Not simply so you can see how your monies are being spent, but also so that you may find something to use and read for your personal growth.

I divide the list into the following categories to help organize the books. The somewhat unique formatting follows the way the books are catalogued in the program I use (Resourcemate).

Happy browsing!

Biblical studies/ Commentaries/ theology

  • Focus on the Bible Series: Job: The Mystery of Suffering and God’s Sovereignty / Richard P. Belcher, Jr. — 1st-pb. — Fearne, Ross-shire, GB : Christian Focus, 2017.
  • God’s Word for YouJohn 1-12 for You / Josh. Moody; Andreas J. Kostenberger. — 1st-hc. — England: Good Book Company, 2017.
  • Mentor Commentary: Psalms: Volume 1 – Psalms 1 – 72 & Volume 2 – Psalms 73 – 150/ Allan M. Harman – Fearn, Ross-shire, GB: Mentor (Christian Focus), 2011.
  • Teach the Text Commentary SeriesEcclesiastes and Song Of Songs / Edward M. Curtis. — 1st – hc. — Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2013.
  • Reformation Commentary on Scripture, OT & NT (IVP) – I Corinthians /S. Manetsch
  • Welwyn Commentary: The Book of Psalms: From Suffering to Glory; Volume 1: Psalms 1 – 72 – The Servant-King / Philip Eveson. EP BOOKS, 2014.

Individual Titles

  • Justified by Faith: Study Outlines on Romans / Johannes Francke — 1st-pb. — London, Ontario: Inter League Publication Board, 1991.
  • Seeking the Face of God: Nine Reflections on the Psalms / David Martyn Lloyd-Jones; Christopher Catherwood. — 1st U.S.-pb. – Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2005.
  • A History of the Bible as Literature: Volume 1: From Antiquity to 1700 / David. Norton — 1st-hc. — Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993 [Letis collection]
  • A History of the Bible as Literature: Volume 2: From 1700 to the Present Day / David. Norton — 1st-hc. — Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993 [Letis].
  • The History of the Higher Criticism of the New Testament: Being the History of the Process Whereby the Word of God Has Won the Right To Be Understood / Henry S. Nash, 1854-1912. ; Shailer Mathews. — 2nd-hc. —  New York: Macmillan, 1906 [Letis collection]
  • The Old Testament Explained and Applied. / Gareth. Crossley — 1st – reprint – hc. — Webster, NY: Evangelical Press, 2002.
  • The Christ of Wisdom: A Redemptive-Historical Exploration of the Wisdom Books of the Old Testament / O. Palmer. Robertson; Walter C. Kaiser. — 1st-pb. — Phillipsburg, N J: P & R Publishing, 2017.
  • Knowing God in the Last Days: Commentary on 2 Peter / Mark H. Hoeksema. — 1st-hc. — Jenison, MI : Reformed Free Publishing Association, 2017.
  • Divine Sabbath Work / Michael H. Burer; Richard S. Hess — 1st-hc. — Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2012 (Bulletin For Biblical Research Supplements) vol. 5
  • What Christians Believe About the Bible / Donald K. McKim. — 1st-pb. – Nashville, TN: T. Nelson, 1985.
  • Scribes, Scrolls, and Scripture : A Student’s Guide to New Testament Textual Criticism / J. Harold (Jacob Harold) Greenlee, 1918-. — 1st – pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans, 1985.
  • Stump Kingdom : Isaiah 6 – 12 / Dale R. Davis. — 1st-pb. — Fearn, Ross-shire, GB: Christian Focus Publications.

Church History/Biography

  • Rebel in the Ranks: Martin Luther, the Reformation, and the Conflicts That Continue to Shape Our World / Brad S. Gregory, 1963-. — 1st-hc. — San Francisco, CA: HarperOne, 2017.
  • The Ninety-Five Theses in Their Theological Significance / Benjamin B. Warfield, 1851-1921. — Solid Ground Christian Books, 2017. (Solid Ground Reformation 500 Title)
  • Maarten Luther: Doctor Der Heilige Schrift, Reformator Der Kerk. / Willem J. Kooiman, 1903-1968 — 2nd-hc. — Amsterdam : W. ten Have, 1948
  • Luther and His Katie / Dolina. MacCuish. — reprint-pb. — Fearn, Ross-shire, GB: Christian Focus, c1983.
  • Remembering the Reformation: An Inquiry into the Meanings of Protestantism / Thomas Albert Howard, Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2016.
  • Introducing Tyndale: An Extract from Tyndale’s “An Answer to Sir Thomas More’s Dialogue” / William Tyndale, d. 1536; John Piper; Robert J. Sheehan — 1st-pb. — Edinburgh: The Banner of Truth Trust, 2017.
  • Ulrich Von Hutten and the German Reformation / Hajo Holborn, 1902-1969. ; Roland H. Bainton, trans. — 1st Harper ed. – pb. — New York, NY: Harper & Row, 1937.
  • The Counter-Reformation / Arthur G. Dickens — 1st – pb. — London: Thames & Hudson, 1968 [Letis collection]
  • The Catholic Reformation / Michael A. Mullett — 1st-pb. — London: Routledge, 1999.
  • The Counter-Reformation, 1500-1600 / B. J. Kidd — 1st-hc. — London : Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1933 [Letis collection]
  • The Censorship of the Church of Rome and Its Influence upon the Production and Distribution of Literature: A Study of the History of the Prohibitory and Expurgatory Indexes, Together with Some Consideration of the Effects of Protestant Censorship and of Censorship by the State / George H. Putnam, 1844-1930 — 1st-hc. — New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 1906 (2 vols) [Letis collection]
  • Papist Pamphleteers: The Allen – Persons Party and The Political Thought of the Counter – Reformation in England, 1572-1615. / Thomas H. Clancy — 1st-hc. – Chicago, IL : Loyola University Press, 1964.
  • Inquisition and Society in Spain in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries / Henry. Kamen. Bloomington : Indiana University Press, 1985 [Letis collection]
  • Robert Bellarmine: Saint and Scholar / James Brodrick, 1891-1973. — 1st-hc. — Westminister, MD: The Newman Press, 1961 [Letis collection]
  • How the Pope Became Infallible: Pius IX and the Politics of Persuasion / August Hasler; Peter Heinegg, transl. — 1st-hc — Garden City, N.Y. : Doubleday, 1981 [Letis collection]
  • The Decline and Fall of the Roman Church / Malachi. Martin. — 1st-hc. — New York: Putnam, 1981 [Letis collection]
  • Revivalism and Separatism in New England, 1740-1800: Strict Congregationalists and Separate Baptists in the Great Awakening / C. C. Goen — 1st-hc. — New Haven, CT: Yale Univ. Press, 1962.
  • Church History: An Introduction to Research Methods and Resources / James E. Bradley; Richard A. Muller — 2nd-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 2016.
  • Frisians to America, 1880-1914: With the Baggage of the Fatherland / Annemieke Galema — 1st-pb. — Groningen, the Netherlands: REGIO-Project Uitgevers, 1996.
  • Lives of the Fathers: Sketches of Church History in Biography / Frederic W. Farrar, 1831-1903 — 1st- hc — Edinburgh: A. & C. Black, 1889 (2 vols.) [Letis collection]
  • The Medieval Church: From the Dawn of the Middle Ages to the Eve of the Reformation / Carl A. Volz. — 1st-pb. – Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 1997.

Creeds/Confessions/History of

  • Only by True Faith: An Explanation of the Heidelberg Catechism – Book 1 – Lord’s Days 1-24 / Arthur Van Delden — 2nd-pb. — Kelmscott, Australia: Pro Ecclesia, 2000. And Book 2, Lord’s Days 25-52

Dogmatics/Theology/Historical Theology

  • Thomas Aquinas and John Gerhard. / Robert P. Scharlemann; David. Horne. — 1st-hc. — New Haven: Yale University Press, 1964 (Yale Publications in Religion), vol.7 [Letis collection]
  • The Papacy in the Modern World, 1914-1978 / J. Derek. Holmes; John T. Ellis. — 1st-hc. — New York: Crossroad, 1981 [Letis collection]
  • Know the Truth: A Handbook of Christian Belief / Bruce. Milne; James I. Packer — 3rd-pb. — Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 2009.
  • Three Central Issues in Contemporary Dispensationalism: A Comparison of Traditional and Progressive Views / Herbert W. Bateman; Elliott E. Johnson; Darrell L. Bock; Herbert W. Bateman — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1999.
  • Jerome Zanchi (1516-90) and the Analysis of Reformed Scholastic Christology / Stefan Lindholm — 1st-hc. — Gottingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2016 (Reformed Historical Theology), vol. 37
  • Hand in Hand: The Beauty of God’s Sovereignty and Meaningful Human Choice / Randy C. Alcorn. — 1st-pb. — Colorado Springs, CO: Multnomah Books, 2014.
  • All That Is in God: Evangelical Theology and the Challenge of Classical Christian Theism / James E. Dolezal; Richard A. Muller — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: Reformation Heritage Books, 2017.
  • Christ and Covenant Theology: Essays on Election, Republication, and the Covenants / Cornelis P. Venema; Sinclair B. Ferguson — 1st-pb. — Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R Publishing, 2017.
  • Confessing the Impassible God: The Biblical, Classical, and Confessional Doctrine of Divine Impassibility / Ronald S. Baines; Richard C. Barcellos; James T. Butler; Ronald S. Baines — 1st-pb. — Palmdale, CA: RBAP, 2015.
  • The Anatomy of Arminianisme: or the Opening of the Controversies Lately Handled in the Low-Countryes, Concerning the Doctrine of Providence, of Predestination, of the Death of Christ, of Nature and Grace / Peter Moulin, 1568–1658. — Bound Photocopy. — London: Nathaniel Newbery, 1620.
  • On the Body of the Lord / Magnus Albertus, Saint, 1193?-1280; Albert M. Surmanski, transl.; Gregory F. LaNave — 1st-hc. — Washington, DC: Catholic University of America Press, 2017 (Fathers Of The Church – Mediaeval Continuation), v.17
  • Predestination / Howard G. Hageman, 1921-1992. — 1st-hc. — Philadelphia, PA: Fortress Press, 1963.
  • Dispensationalism in America: Its Rise And Development / C. Norman Kraus; Lefferts A. Loetscher, 1904-1981. — 1st-hc. — Richmond, VA: John Knox Press, 1958.
  • Naming the Antichrist: The History of an American Obsession / Robert C. Fuller, 1952-. — 1st-pb. — New York: Oxford University Press, 1995.
  • Jerome, Greek Scholarship, and the Hebrew Bible: A Study of the Quaestiones Hebraicae In Genesim / Adam. Kamesar — 1st-hc. — Oxford : Clarendon Press, 1993 (Oxford Classical Monographs) [Letis collection]
  • Cornerstones of Salvation: Foundations and Debates in the Reformed Tradition / Lee Gatiss — 1st-pb. — Welwyn Garden City, UK: Evangelical Press, 2017.
  • Particular Redemption: The End and Design of the Death of Christ / John Hurrion, c.1675 – 1731; Iain Hamish Murray; John Elias — 1st-pb. — Edinburgh: Banner of Truth, 2017.

Philosophy/Logic/Ethics

  • A Spiritual House: Reflections on Some Current Ethical Issues / W. Pouwelse — 1st-pb. — Winnipeg: Premier Publishing, 1986.
  • Like Living Stones: Reflections on Some Current Ethical Issues / W. Pouwelse — 1st-reprint-pb. — Winnipeg: Premier Publishing, 1985.

Practical Theology/Missions

  • The Apostolic Preaching and Its Developments: Three Lectures with an Appendix on Eschatology and History / Charles H. Dodd, 1884-1973. — 1st-reprint-hc. — London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1936.
  • Fulfilling the Great Commission: Papers Read at the 1992 Westminster Conference / Jean-Marc Berthoud; Paul Cook; David Kingdon — 1st-pb. — London: The Westminster Conference, 1992.
  • Counsel to Gospel Ministers: Letters on Preaching, Exemplary Behavior, and the Pastoral Call / John (Haddington) Brown, 1722-1787; Joel R. Beeke; Randall J. Pederson — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: Reformation Heritage Books, 2017.
  • The Beauty and Glory of the Christian Worldview / Joel R. Beeke; Thomas Derek W. H.; Michael Barrett — 1st-hc. — Grand Rapids, MI: Reformation Heritage Books, 2017.
  • Marriage, Divorce and Remarriage: Critical Questions and Answers / Jim. Newheiser; Edward T. Welch. Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing, 2017.
  • Messages of the Word: Sermons by Ministers of the Reformed Church in America / James F. Zwemer; John W. Beardslee; Ame. Vennema; James F. Zwemer — 1st-hc. — Holland, MI: Holland Printing Co., 1912.
  • Love One Another, My Friends: St. Augustine’s Homilies on the First Letter of John: An Abridged English Version / Saint Augustine , Bishop of Hippo; John. Leinenweber — 1st-hc. — San Francisco, CA: Harper & Row, 1989.
  • Making All Things New: Restoring Joy to the Sexually Broken / David Powlison — 1st – pb. – Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2017.
  • How to Preach and Teach the Old Testament for All Its Worth / Christopher J. H. Wright — 1st – pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2016.
  • Glorious Remembrance: The Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper as Administered in the Liturgy of the Reformed Churches / Ray B. Lanning — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI : Reformation Heritage Books, 2017.

Misc. (Science, Family, Education, etc.)

  • A History of Classical Scholarship: From the Sixth Century B.C. to the End of the Middle Ages / Sir John Edwin. Sandys — 3rd – hc. — Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1921 (3 vols., covering all periods of history) [Letis collection]
  • History of Classical Scholarship from 1300-1850 / Rudolph. Pfeiffer — 1st-reprint-hc. — Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976 [Letis collection]
  • The American Intellectual Tradition: Volume I, 1630 – 1865 and Volume II: 1865 to the Present / David A. Hollinger; Charles Capper — 1st-pb. — New York: Oxford University Press, 1989.
  • The Bible and Christian Education: Papers Delivered at the Educational Convention of the National Union of Christian Schools, 1925 / J. Althuis; G.W. Hylkema; H. Van Zyl — 1st-pb. — National Union of Christian Schools, 1925.
  • Acts of Synod of the Christian Reformed Church: 2017 / Christian Reformed Church in North America; Steven R. Timmermans — 2017-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI: Board of Publications of the Christian Reformed Church, 2017.
  • Godliness and Good Learning: Four Studies on a Victorian Ideal. / David Newsome; James Prince Lee, 1804-1869; David Cannadine — 1st-pb. — London: Cassell, 1961.

Periodicals (Old & New)

  • 9Marks Journal (Calvinistic Baptist)
Published in: on November 14, 2017 at 10:49 PM  Leave a Comment  

PRC Seminary – New Building! 1973-74

Besides assisting me in the PRC Seminary library, Kevin Rau also helps with some archival projects, which, being a lover of history – especially church history! – he always enjoys.

The last few weeks he has been taking some time to sort through some old issues (donated loose ones) of the Standard Bearer, with his eyes alert especially to items related to PRC history – seminary news, church organizations/anniversaries, minister ordinations, mission news, memoriams, etc.

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Yesterday, while going through some early 1970s issues, he found some news reports on and pictures of the construction of the new seminary building at it current location (4949 Ivanrest Ave., Wyoming, MI) when our theological school moved from the basement of First PRC in Grand Rapids, where it had been stationed for nearly 50 years.

Sem-new-building-1973-74_0002Since we did a feature on the 1993-94 addition to that building yesterday, today we will go back another 20 years to the construction of the original structure. And yes, you will note how free and clear the property was at that time of its current surroundings – not only tall trees, but also malls, stores, houses, and churches.

Sem-new-building-1973-74_0003In fact, I heard a cute story from our secretary yesterday (when I showed her the SB pics) that when they first moved into the area, she and her husband (the former registrar, whose name will go unmentioned to protect the guilty!) used to go on the roof of seminary on 4th of July evening – from which perch they could view fireworks in all directions! Can you see it? What a hoot, as a friend of mine would say. 🙂

Sem-new-building-1973-74_0004Happy Friday to you all! Have a safe and blessed weekend.

Published in: on November 10, 2017 at 3:49 PM  Leave a Comment  

PRC Seminary Expansion! 1994-95

Recently, while looking for some paperwork in my office file cabinet, I discovered some old pictures of my predecessor (Mr. Don Doezema) on the major expansion project at the PRC Seminary in 1994-95. This was the addition that housed the new professor offices, the new library, the PRC archives, and the RFPA (the latter two in the lower level). Today we make these our PRC archives feature for this week.

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Removing trees and breaking ground on the new seminary addition

Plans and preparations for this addition originated with the PRC Synods in 1991 and 1992, when these broader assemblies instructed the Theological School Committee (TSC) to hire an architect to draw up plans for expansion, approved those plans, and “authorized the TSC to proceed with producing construction drawings when 50% of the estimated cost of the addition has been collected in gifts, and to award a construction contract when 75% of the estimated cost is collected” (from a special brochure published by the TSC in August of 1993).

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Footings set and walls poured

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In that August 1993 brochure a final appeal was made to the churches to contribute to this project, with hopes of breaking ground in 1994. That appeal was effective and in the Fall of 1994 the project commenced, with completion coming in 1995.

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Wood and steel framing goes up

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Progress on the exterior during the winter months

Next time we will include some interior pictures and then the open house that was held when the addition was done.

Published in: on November 9, 2017 at 8:57 AM  Leave a Comment  

Letis Collection Book Plates

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The last couple of weeks Andrew Koerner, my new summer library helper, and I have returned to cataloging some more books out of the Letis collection.

20170705_083725While the majority of the best books for our seminary library have been incorporated from this collection, we are now working on some of the specialty books (Dr. Letis had, for example, a good number of books on Roman Catholicism, feminist theology,  and biblical higher criticism.).
20170705_152913One of the interesting features of some of the older books is the book plates in the front. Some reflect Letis’ own stamp on the book he purchased,  while others reflect the former owner, including individuals and libraries – and in one case, a convent.
20170707_112323I post pictures of a few here for your enjoyment.
20170707_112059I bought some beautiful plates a few years ago from a local book store, and have placed them in a few of my favorite books. 🙂

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Published in: on July 7, 2017 at 9:44 PM  Leave a Comment  

Spring 2017 PRT Journal Available

The Spring 2017 issue of the Protestant Reformed Theological Journal is now available in print form and in multiple digital forms (Vol.50, No.2).

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As you will see from the cover image, this issue contains a variety of significant Reformed reading material.

Prof. R. Cammenga, editor of the PRTJ, gives these “notes” at the beginning in summary of this issue:

This is the second and last issue of the fiftieth volume of the Protestant Reformed Theological Journal.  We welcome our readers to its pages.  Included are several articles.  The Rev. Thomas Reid favors us with the transcript of the second of two speeches that he gave last spring before the faculty, student body, and area Protestant Reformed ministers.  The article highlights the labors and contributions of a recent French Reformed theologian, Auguste Lecerf.  PRCA pastor, Rev. Thomas C. Miersma, contributes an article on the special offices and gifts in the New Testament church.  He asks whether these gifts and offices continue in the church today, and if not, why not?  The undersigned has two contributions to the issue.  The first is the second part of my examination of the teaching of common grace in light of the five solas of the Reformation.  The contention of the series is that the doctrine of common grace vitiates the five solas that constitute the Reformation’s enduring contribution to the New Testament church.  The second contribution is another installment of the “John Calvin Research Bibliography.”  A number of our readers have expressed appreciation for the bibliography as a useful tool for doing research into all the main areas of Calvin’s theology.  The bibliography arose out of my work in crafting a special interim course on the theology of John Calvin.  The course is scheduled to be taught once again as the winter interim between the two semesters of the 2017-18 school year.

      Included in this issue is what we hope will be a regular feature from the seminary’s librarian, Mr. Charles Terpstra.  Mr. Terpstra highlights the significant recent additions to the seminary library.  We include this not merely for the information of our readers.  But we invite our readers to make use of our library for study and research.  We are even open to loaning our books to our constituency and friends.

      And, of course, we have our section of book reviews—a goodly number of reviews in this issue.  We want to do what we can to inform our readers of new books of special interest that are being published.

      Read and enjoy!

    Soli Deo Gloria!                                                                                                      —RLC

If you wish to receive a free print copy of this issue, or to be added to our mailing list, contact our secretary at the email found on our home page. To download free print edition, use the link given above.

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End of Semester at Seminary

This past week the PRC Seminary concluded its second semester, with classes ending on Friday May 12 and exams yesterday, May 18. There are still some papers to be written (for Dogmatics) and the seniors are still busy preparing for their synodical exam in June, but most everyone is breathing a sigh of relief.

Because some were leaving for out of town rather soon, we held our annual Spring picnic last night at the home of Prof. and Mrs. R. Dykstra. Though the evening cooled off quickly, it was a beautiful night of good food, rich fellowship, and healthy fun. After a delicious potluck supper, outdoor games were played, and later group singing took place inside.

Below are a few pictures from the evening, including a nice group picture set up on Prof. Dykstra’s camera.

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Don Doezema shows off his bean-bag form, with Prof. Gritters waiting for his turn. In a classic battle between registrars and professors, the registrars lost. 😦

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Lots of bean bag toss was enjoyed, but also ladder toss and bocce ball.

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The whole Seminary family!

A week ago, we had our final grilled brat lunch together, complete with some extra guests from Singapore and a few of the wives. That time of fellowship was finished off with some intense games of ping-pong. Below are a couple of snapshots of that fun.

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As you will see, the seminarians take their game seriously, headbands and all. 🙂

Published in: on May 19, 2017 at 10:44 PM  Leave a Comment  

More Special Visitors to the PRC Seminary (and some beautiful blossoms)

sign-daffodils-spring-1

This week the PRC Seminary once again hosted some special visitors – two more Christian school classes. On Tuesday, April 25, the fourth graders from Hope PR Christian School (Walker, MI) paid us a visit (taught by Mr. Dan Hanko).

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After listening to Prof. R. Cammenga’s introductory talk on the seminary and its work, the students were given a tour of the building.

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Following that, the students gathered for devotions with the faculty and students, with the students introducing themselves for the benefit of the Hope CS students. And then it was time for snacks over coffee – or, in the students case, over juice boxes.

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On Thursday, April 27, Mrs. Jordan Pettit’s fourth-grade class from Heritage Christian School (Hudsonville, MI) made a visit to us. This group too was informed by Prof. R. Cammenga of the nature and labors of the seminary and then given a tour of the facilities.

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And, of course, shared homemade snacks were provided – something we always look forward to! 🙂

We are grateful that our Christian school teachers take an interest in the special school we have in our PRC Seminary, and that they take the time to stir up interest in their students. In this way we are encouraged in our labors – and we trust some special seeds of interest in the ministry of the Word are sown in the souls of a few of the young boys. May the Lord so work!

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As part of this post, I will also include some pictures of the beautiful trees blooming on our property. April and May are special times as the spring trees blossom here and everywhere in West Michigan. Once again, see the handiwork and glory of our Creator-Father!

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O, and it’s Friday – time for grilled brats! 🙂 Have a good day!

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Published in: on April 28, 2017 at 2:22 PM  Leave a Comment  

Photocopy of Rare Sir Isaac Newton Letter in T. Letis Collection

Today Kevin Rau and I stumbled on a rare find while browsing in the Dr. Ted Letis collection at the PRC Seminary.

We were on a mission to find some possible correspondence between Gordon Clark and Letis for a contact who will be publishing the letters of Clark in his next book (cf. Doug Douma’s The Presbyterian Philosopher: The Authorized Biography of Gordon H. Clark; Eugene, OR, Wipf & Stock, 2016).

GodfreyKneller-IsaacNewton-1689While we did not find any new correspondence between Letis and Clark in the boxes of containing much of the personal research of Letis, we did find an amazing photocopy of a letter of Sir Isaac Newton (1642 – 1726)- yes, that Newton, the famed mathematician and scientist.

Newton was also a professing Christian, and in 1690 he wrote a letter to a friend expressing his views on biblical-textual matters, which is why the late Dr. Letis was interested in what he had to say. In that letter, Newton wrote to John Locke about two disputed texts in the Bible – I John 5:7 (on the Trinity – “For there are three that bear record in heaven”) and I Timothy 3:16 (about Christ being “God …manifest in the flesh.”).

The letter was published posthumously first in 1754 (in English) and came to be called (from the title Newton himself gave at the top of the letter – cf. below) An Historical Account of Two Notable Corruptions of Sacred Scripture, in a Letter to a Friend, from which title you can judge what Newton’s views were. Although Newton was accused of holding anti-trinitarian views because of this, and even claimed by the Arians, the charge does not hold according to this section found on the Internet:

Even though a number of authors have claimed that the work might have been an indication that Newton disputed the belief in Trinity, others assure that Newton did question the passage but never denied Trinity as such. His biographer, scientist Sir David Brewster, who compiled his manuscripts for over 20 years, wrote about the controversy in well-known book Memoirs of the Life, Writings, and Discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton, where he explains that Newton questioned the veracity of those passages, but he never denied the doctrine of Trinity as such. Brewster states that Newton was never known as an Arian during his lifetime, it was first William Whiston (an Arian) who argued that “Sir Isaac Newton was so hearty for the Baptists, as well as for the Eusebians or Arians, that he sometimes suspected these two were the two witnesses in the Revelations,” while other like Hopton Haynes (a Mint employee and Humanitarian), “mentioned to Richard Baron, that Newton held the same doctrine as himself”.[67]

The letter went through several published editions, the title page of one of which Letis also had in the sleave with the copy of Newton’s letter. Both of these items I scanned and show you here.

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The photocopied first page of these letters is what Letis had, and he got it from the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford (England), which holds the original letters and their copyright (evident from the stamp on back of photocopy). Below is that copy.INewton-letter-1690-2

For more on the fascinating history and contents of this letter of Newton, visit this page.

presence-of-creator-inewton

As an added note (now that I have checked the Letis collection again), the library of Letis contained at least five (5) biographies on Isaac Newton, including this one. So, Letis’ interest in Newton was not a passing one.

New and Noteworthy in the PRC Seminary Library – 1st Quarter 2017

Having passed the first quarter of 2017, plus this week being National Library Week, it is time to inform you of some of the latest additions to the PRC Seminary library.

For the benefit of the Theological School Committee that oversees all aspects of the PRC Seminary, including the library, as well as for the benefit of the faculty and student body I have compiled the following list of significant titles obtained in the first quarter of this year (2017).

I divide the list into categories so that it is easier to keep track of the kinds of books we look for. I hope this helps you see the quality of titles we strive to add each year. Keep in mind, that as long as this list appears, it is only a sampling of what is actually added.

And I would remind our PRC members as well as friends that even though the library exists first of all for our faculty and students and area ministers, its resources are for YOU too. It is very much a denominational resource (you support it financially and spiritually!), and I hope you will feel free to make use of the excellent reading and research materials we have.

Now, on to the list! All of these are cataloged and currently available.

Biblical studies

  • IVP Reformation Commentaries (OT & NT)
  • IVP Ancient Christian Commentaries (OT & NT)
  • Preach the Word Series (Crossway)
  • Reformed Expository Commentary Series (P&R)
  • Specific Commentaries
    • Revelation / Joel R. Beeke, 1952-. ; Jon D. Payne . — 1st-hc. — Grand Rapids, MI : Reformation Heritage, 2016. (The Lectio Continua Expository Commentary On The New Testament)
    • Genesis: Everything Created by God : Outlines on the book of Genesis /  Isaac De Wolff, 1901-1976.. ; J. de Vos, J. Plug, M. VanderWel, Transls.. — 1st Engl.-reprint-pb. — London, Ontario : Inter-League Publication Board, c2001.
    • Content Yet Contending : Jude / Daniel R. Hyde. — 1st-pb. — Welwyn Garden City, UK : EP BOOKS, 2017.
    • John Calvin’s Sermons on 1 Timothy : Volume 1 [Sermons 1-27, 1 Timothy 1-3] / Jean Calvin, 1509-1564. ; Ray. Van Neste. ; Brian Denker. — 1st- revsd.-updated-pb. — Middletown, DE : CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2016 [both volumes].
    • Unceasing Kindness : A Biblical Theology Of Ruth / Peter H. W. Lau. ; Gregory Goswell. ; Donald A. Carson. — 1st-pb. — Downers Grove, Illinois : A Pollos, InterVarsity Press, 2016.

Church History

  • Ulrich Zwingli : Shepherd Warrior / William Boekestein. — 1st-pb. — Fearne, Ross-shire, GB : CF4Kids, 2016.
  • Being Protestant In Reformation Britain / Alec. Ryrie. — 1st-pb. — Oxford, United Kingdom : Oxford University Press, 2013.
  • Beyond The Ninety-Five Theses : Martin Luther’s Life, Thought, And Lasting Legacy / Stephen J. Nichols. — 1st-pb. — Phillipsburg, NJ : P&R Pub., 2016.
  • The Life And Times Of Martin Luther : Selections From D’Aubigne’s Famed History Of The Reformation Of The Sixteenth Century / J. H. (Jean Henri) Merle d’Aubigne, 1794-1872. ; H. White. — 1st-hc. —  Chicago : Moody Press, 1950.
  • Protestantism After 500 Years / Thomas Albert Howard, editor. ; Mark A. Noll, 1946- , editor. ; Jr. Witte, John. — 1st-pb. — New York, NY : Oxford University Press, 2016.

Creeds/Confessions

  • Believe and Confess : Volume One / Cornelis G. Bos, 1909-1988. — 1st-pb. — London, Ontario : Inter-League Publication Board, 2001. (2 volumes)
  • The Christian’s Only Comfort In Life And Death : An Exposition Of The Heidelberg Catechism, Volume 1: Lord’s Days 1-26 / Theodore VanderGroe, 1705-1784.. ; Bartel Elshout. ; Joel R. Beeke . — 1st Engl.-hc. — Grand Rapids, MI : Reformation Heritage Books, 2016. (2 volumes)

Dogmatics/Theology/Historical Theology

  • The Cambridge Companion To Reformed Theology / Paul T. Nimmo, (Paul Thomson). ; David A. S.. Fergusson. ; J. Todd Billings. — 1st-pb. — New York : Cambridge University Press, 2016.
  • Biblical Covenantalism: Engagement with Judaism, Law, Atonement, the New Perspective, and Kingdom Hope : Volume One: Biblical Covenantalism in Torah: Judaism, Covenant Nomism, and Atonement / Douglas W. Kennard. ; Paul D. Wegner. — 1st-pb. — Eugene OR : Wipf & Stock, 2015 (3 volume work).
  • Covenant Theology : A Reformed Baptist Perspective / Phillip D. R. Griffiths. — 1st-pb. — Eugene OR : Wipf and Stock, 2016
  • “I Will Be Your God” : An Easy Introduction to the Covenant of Grace / Wes Bredenhof. — 1st-pb. — London, Ontario : Inter-League Publication Board, 2015.
  • Reformation Riches For The Contemporary Church : Liberation For Both Skeptics And Burned-Out Evangelicals / David Bruins. — 1st-pb. — Eugene OR : Wipf and Stock, 2016.
  • Devoted To God : Blueprints For Sanctification / Sinclair B. Ferguson. — 1st-pb. — Edinburgh ; Carlisle, PA : Banner of Truth, 2016.
  • Searching For Adam : Genesis & The Truth About Man’s Origin / Terry Mortenson. ; William D. Barrick. ; Thomas J Nettles. ; Terry. Mortenson . — 1st-pb. — Green Forest, AR : Master Books, 2016.
  • The Works Of William Perkins : Volume 2 – Commentary on Galatians / William Perkins, 1558-1602. ; Paul M. Smalley. ; Joel R. Beeke, 1952- editor. ; Joel R. and Derek W.H. Thomas Beeke. — Reprint – hc. — Grand Rapid, Mich. : Reformation Heritage Books, 2015.
  • The Works Of William Perkins : Volume 3 – Commentary on Hebrews 11 / William Perkins, 1558-1602. ; Randall J. Pederson, 1975-. ; Joel R. Beeke, 1952- editor. ; Joel R. and Derek W.H. Thomas Beeke. — Reprint – hc. — Grand Rapid, Mich. : Reformation Heritage Books, 2017.
  • God The Son Incarnate : The Doctrine Of Christ / Stephen J. Wellum, 1964- , author. ; John S. Feinberg, 1946-. — 1st-hc. — Wheaton, Illinois : Crossway, 2016.
  • After Merit : John Calvin’s Theology of Works and Rewards / Charles Raith, II , author. ; Herman J. Selderhuis, 1961-. — 1st-hc. — Gottingen : Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht GmbH & Co., 2016.
  • Death and the Afterlife / Robert A. Morey, 1946-. ; Walter Martin. ; Roger Nicole. — 1st-pb. — Minneapolis, Minn. : Bethany House, c1984.
  • The Atonement of Christ. / Oliver B. Greene. — 1st-hc. — Greenville, S.C. : Gospel Hour, c1968.
  • Lectures in Systematic Theology : Volume I – Doctrine of God / Greg Nichols. ; Rob Ventura. — 1st-pb. — San Bernardino, CA : CreateSpace Independent Publishing, 2016.
  • Who Made God? : Searching for a Theory of Everything / Edgar H. Andrews. — 3rd-pb. —  Darlington, England ; Carlisle, Pa : EP Books, c2009.
  • Luther and the Beloved Community : A Path for Christian Theology after Christendom / Paul R. Hinlicky. ; Mickey L. Mattox. — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, Mich. : W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co., 2010.
  • Doing Theology for the People of God : Studies in Honor of J.I. Packer / Donald M. Lewis. ; Alister E. McGrath, 1953-. ; J. I. Packer, (James Innell). — 1st-pb. — Downers Grove, Ill. : InterVarsity Press, c1996.

Practical Theology

  • Schooling The Preachers: The Development Of Protestant Theological Education In The United States, 1740-1875 / James W. Fraser, 1944-. — 1st-hc. — Lanham : University Press of America, 1988.
  • The Doctrines of Ministerial Order in The Reformed Churches of the 16th And 17th Centuries / James L. (James Lyon) Ainslie. — 1st-hc. — Edinburgh : T. & T. Clark, 1940 (Letis collection).
  • Endangered Gospel: How Fixing The World Is Killing The Church / John C. Nugent, 1973-. — 2016. — Eugene OR : Cascade Books, 2016.
  • Christ’s Under-Shepherds : An Exploration Of Pastoral Care Methods By Elders In The Christian Reformed Churches Of Australia Relevant to the Circumstances of Twenty-first-century Australia / Leo Douma. ; Graeme Chatfield . — 1st-pb. — Eugene OR : Wipf and Stock, 2016 (Australian College Of Theology Monograph: Bible and Languages)
  • A History of Pastoral Care in America : From Salvation to Self-realization / Brooks. Holifield. — 1st-pb. — Nashville : Abingdon Press, 1983.
  • The Elder : Today’s Ministry Rooted in All of Scripture / Cornelis Van Dam, 1946-. ; Robert A. Peterson . — 1st-pb. — Phillipsburg, N.J. : P&R Pub., 2009.
  • The Deacon : Biblical Foundations for Today’s Ministry of Mercy / Cornelis Van Dam, 1946- , author.. — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, MI. : Reformation Heritage, 2016.
  • Pastoral Ministry From A Covenantal Perspective : With Specific Application to the RCUS / Maynard Alan Koerner. — 1st-pb. — Lexington, KY : CreateSpace Independent Publishing, 2014.
  • Preaching With Balance : Achieving And Maintaining Biblical Priorities In Preaching / Donald L. Hamilton. — 1st-pb. — Fearn, Ross-shire, GB : Mentor, 2007.
  • For The Glory Of God : Recovering A Biblical Theology Of Worship / Daniel Isaac Block, 1943-. — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, Michigan : Baker Academic, 2014.
  • The Shepherd as Theologian / John MacArthur, 1939-. ; William D. Barrick. ; R. C. (Robert Charles) Sproul, 1939-. ; John MacArthur, 1939-. — 1st-hc. —  Eugene, Oregon : Harvest House Publishers, 2017.
  • The Quick-Reference Guide to Biblical Counseling : Personal and Emotional Issues / Timothy E. Clinton, 1960-. ; Ronald E. Hawkins. — 1st-pb. — Grand Rapids, Mich. : Baker Books, 2009.
  • The Family : A Christian Perspective on the Contemporary Home / Jack O. Balswick. ; Judith K. Balswick. — 2nd-pb. — Grand Rapids : Baker, c1999.

Periodicals (Old & New)

  • Comment (new)
  • Founders Journal (Calvinistic Baptist)
  • Reformed Journal (added some more missing years from a donation)