From the Editor. As John Bouwers, in his article, “The Biblical Case for Ecumenicity,” observes, ecumenicity was a commitment central to John Calvin’s ministry. The June-July 2015 issue of Ordained Servant addressed this theme with several articles based on lectures given at the “Semper Reformanda Conference,” held at the United Reformed Churches in North America Classis Eastern US on October 14, 2014. Bouwers’s article was also given at that conference.
From its inception in 1936, the Orthodox Presbyterian Church has been deeply interested and involved in ecumenicity. One decades-old example is our joint venture in Great Commission Publications with the Presbyterian Church in America. A more recent example is our Psalter-hymnal project with the United Reformed Church.
Danny E. Olinger’s “Geerhardus Vos: Life in the Old Country, 1862–1881” is the first in a series of articles that will become the chapters of a full biography of Vos. This is a first for Ordained Servant. A biography of Vos is long overdue. We shall read it with great interest.
T. David Gordon’s review article assessing Mari K. Swingle’s i-Minds: How Cell Phones, Computers, Gaming, and Social Media Are Changing Our Brains, Our Behavior, and the Evolution of Our Species is important because Swingle does not come from the Media Ecology circle. She is a “Canadian neurotherapist, whose research and clinical specialty is in the neurology of brain waves, and how such neurology affects human behavior.” As Gordon points out, this is a healthy corrective for those who think any critical thinking about the electronic environment is curmudgeonly.
Our next review article this month is my review of Katie Roiphe’s The Violet Hour: Great Writers at the End. This is a secular treatment of the topic of death, offering a fascinating conjunction of the topics of literary biography and death. If all of life ought to be, as the Puritans insisted, a preparation for death, then this cautionary tale will be of interest to every pastor.
John Fesko reviews Christian Dogmatics: Reformed Theology for the Church Catholic, edited by Michael Allen and Scott R. Swain. This is a very fine example of contemporary systematic theological scholarship covering the main rubrics and making the coverage accessible for the busy pastor.
Allen Tomlinson reviews Ken Golden’s Presbytopia: What It Means to Be Presbyterian. This useful little book is meant to prepare visitors for church membership in a Reformed church.
Don’t miss the poem by G. K. Chesterton, “A Hymn for the Church Militant.” He gives a surprising twist on the theme which is commensurate with the topic of ecumenism.
Blessings in the Lamb,
FROM THE ARCHIVES “ECUMENICITY”
Ordained Servant exists to help encourage, inform, and equip church officers for faithful, effective, and God-glorifying ministry in the visible church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Its primary audience is ministers, elders, and deacons of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, as well as interested officers from other Presbyterian and Reformed churches. Through high-quality editorials, articles, and book reviews we endeavor to stimulate clear thinking and the consistent practice of historic, confessional Presbyterianism.