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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“The Aids of Thy Plenteous Grace”: The Collect for the First Sunday after the Epiphany

Another Sunday, another Collect. Here is the prayer for the First Sunday after the Epiphany from the Order of Worship for the Reformed Church in the United States. The prayer asks for grace so that we can know our duties and perform them. It is quite similar to today’s Collect from The Book of Common Prayer, […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

Humanizing the Reformers: Melanchthon on Childbirth and Child Death

From the vantage-point of centuries, it can be difficult to remember that the magisterial Reformers–or, indeed, any other historical figures–were actual human beings, made of the same stuff as we are, subject to the same joys and sorrows we share. In Act 3 of The Merchant of Venice, Shylock says, of Jews and Christians:   […]

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Archive Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine Steven Wedgeworth

The Federal Vision: Two Understandings of Salvation Held Together By One Name

(This essay continues a series on the Federal Vision that I have been writing since November, 2019. The first installment can be found here. The second is here. The third is here, and the fourth is here. Though I earlier stated that this essay would be my final one, I see the need for one […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“Bathed in the Light of the Incarnate Word”: The Collect for the Second Sunday after Christmas

I’m a couple of days late with this, but here is the Collect for the Second Sunday after Christmas from the Order of Worship for the Reformed Church in the United States. It turns on the same general theme as the Collect for this Sunday in The Book of Common Prayer, but is slightly longer […]

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Archive Reformed Irenicism Sacred Doctrine Steven Wedgeworth

Douglas Wilson and Justification

Douglas Wilson is the embodiment of “RIP my mentions.” His controversies range from politics to theology to literature. People laud him as a visionary leader, and people deride him as a cult leader. To some he is too conservative. To others, he has departed from the true Reformed tradition. Wilson has copycat followers, deranged former […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“Circumcised in His Spotless Flesh”: The Collect for the Circumcision of Christ

New Year’s Day traditionally coincides with the commemoration of the circumcision of the infant Christ, in whom “dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily,” on his eighth day, as recorded by Luke. Below is the Collect for that occasion from the Order of Worship for the Reformed Church in the United States. (One of […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“Rooted in the Mystery of the Word Made Flesh”: The Collect for the First Sunday after Christmas

The Collect for the First Sunday after Christmas from the Order of Worship for the Reformed Church in the United States is below. Whereas The Book of Common Prayer repeats the Collect from Christmas Day, the Order gives a different prayer that takes its beginning from John 3.16. The prayer then goes on to draw on Ephesians 2.8 (“the […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“Out of the Mouth of Babes”: The Collect for the Holy Innocents

December 28 marks the commemoration of Herod’s slaughter of the Holy Innocents. Particularly in light of circumstances here and around the world, it would perhaps be prudent for all Christian churches to observe the Festival of the Holy Innocents as a matter of public testimony. (One of the best and most piercing imaginative meditations on […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“Shine Graciously upon Thy Church”: The Collect for John the Apostle

The second day after Christmas has traditionally provided an occasion for Western Christians for reflecting on the Apostle John. Below is the Collect included for that purpose in the Order of Worship for the Reformed Church in the United States. The editors comment that December 27 is used for this purpose “because [John] was the bosom […]

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Archive E.J. Hutchinson Nota Bene Reformed Irenicism

“Look Steadfastly Up into Heaven”: The Collect for the Protomartyr

It is not, of course, problematic from a Protestant point of view to remember with gratitude the example of holy men and martyrs. Indeed, it is meet and right so to do. After all, Hebrews 11 does the same. To that end, here is the Collect for December 26, the day that in the West […]