Van Dixhoorn on the Ministry of the Word

Confessing the Faith

In studying for a class on the Westminster Confession of Faith, it was recommended to me that I get a copy of Chad Van Dixhoorn’s commentary on the confession, entitled Confessing the Faith.

I began by reading the commentary on Chapter 14 of the confession (since this is the beginning of the session that we will discuss in the next class session). I liked these paragraphs and thought I would share them with you.

“The ministry of the Word is used by the Spirit to work saving faith in us. It should be added that the Word of God can increase and strengthen our faith.

What new Christian and what seasoned saint will not confess that his or her faith is often weak? All the honest ones will. For that reason Christian elders impress upon every believer the importance of attending as often as possible to the preaching of the Word. We want to see trust in Christ grow and be strengthened as the weeks and years go by. The Apostle Peter once urged believers to desire what he called ‘ the pure milk of the word’ precisely so that they would ‘grow up into salvation’ (1 Peter 2:2). Paul said much the same to the leaders of the Ephesian church when he commended his listeners to the ‘word of his grace, which can build you up’ (Acts 20:32). This is biblical advice; the soundest sort of wisdom.”

In the internet age, we have many ways of encountering Christian teaching in written, audio and video formats. I could fill my podcast app with enough teaching to listen all my waking hours.

But there is something very special about hearing the Word of God proclaimed by capable preachers along with my brothers and sisters in Christ. I read recently, that for many years, Martyn Lloyd-Jones resisted having audio recordings made of his sermons for this reason.