Three faithful office bearers—pastor, elder, and deacon—along with several families, have separated themselves from Crete Protestant Reformed Church with the signing of an Act of Separation and Reformation. This came in response to the unrighteous suspension of Rev. Langerak.
A letter was read yesterday in PR churches explaining this separation.
Announcements of this nature are becoming commonplace in the Protestant Reformed Churches.
There were two items of note in the letter.
First, Crete PRC added the charge of perjury against Rev. Langerak. It is striking that as consistories in the PRC continue to study Article 80 of the Church Order, they can only come up with new charges to lay against the righteous and have yet to find a charge that would apply to the minister who teaches heresy or the elders who defend it.
Second, the consistory has forgotten that they are doing their work before the face of Jehovah God.
That is the only explanation for their plea to the Lord that he “especially uphold and sustain us in the truths He has entrusted to our care.”
What a strange addition to the letter, when it was exactly on behalf of those truths that Rev. Langerak was contending on the pages of Sword & Shield.
And the consistory told him to stop.
So Rev. Langerak did what a faithful minister does and obeyed God rather than man. “For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? For if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ” (Gal. 1:10).
And Crete’s consistory responded the way an apostatizing church does and suspended him.
Where does that leave the PRC today?
It leaves them with a repeat of history.
This is from the Reformed Free Publishing Association website about the founding of the PRC. It is remarkable how the apostatizing church throughout history relies on the same charges against the faithful.
When it became clear that these ministers (Hoeksema, Ophoff, Danhof) would never give up their fight for the truth, the CRC closed its church publications to them in an effort to stifle their opposition to the error of common grace. In response, Danhof, Hoeksema, and Ophoff, together with fifteen laymen who stood strong with them throughout the controversy, organized the Reformed Free Publishing Association in April, 1924. Their sole purpose in organizing the RFPA was the publishing of the Standard Bearer, a monthly magazine dedicated to defending the doctrine of particular grace and the whole truth of God’s word. The first issue was published on October 1, 1924…Herman Hoeksema was deposed in 1924 for refusing to keep silent about the truth of God’s sovereign particular grace. Revs. Danhof and Ophoff were subsequently deposed from the CRC after they were charged with insubordination and initiating public schism by defending the truth via the Standard Bearer (https://rfpa.org/pages/history).
This suspension also leaves the PRC with Witsius, the conditional covenant, and continued compromise of justification by faith alone. It leaves them scouring the bushes for the elusive antinomian. But it also leaves them without two of the very few voices that were willing to enter the trenches and do the work of a faithful soldier of Jesus Christ and contend—actually contend—for the faith once delivered to the Protestant Reformed Churches.
So the blessed, although painful work, of church reformation continues.
“And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God” (Zechariah 13:8–9).