Two Office Life

This week our congregation should have elections for ruling elders. I say should, because we were snowed out on Wednesday. That gave us a few extra days for prayer and searching the Scriptures.

Here are the Vows that a ruling elder must take in the RP Church:

1. Do you believe the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the Word of God, and the only infallible rule of faith and life?

2. Do you believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the only Redeemer of men, and do you confess Him publicly as your Saviour and Lord?

3. Do you believe that it is the duty of Christians to profess publicly the content of faith as it applies to the particular needs of each age and situation, and that such public profession, otherwise called covenanting, should be made formally by the churches and other institutions as well as informally by each believer according to his ability?

4. Do you believe in and accept the system of doctrine and the manner of worship set forth in the Westminster Confession of Faith, the Larger and Shorter Catechisms, and the Testimony of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, as being agreeable to, and founded upon, the Scriptures?

5. Do you believe it to be the teaching of Scripture—that church and state are distinct and separate institutions; that both are under the mediatorial rule of the Lord Jesus Christ; and that the permanent form of church government is presbyterian?

6. Do you believe that Jesus Christ is Saviour and Lord of men and nations, and that in loyalty and obedience to Him, it is our duty to follow the noble example of the faithful confessors and martyrs of Jesus in their witness for divine truth, and in their sacrifices and labors to establish the Kingdom of God on earth?

7. So far as you can know in your own heart, is it the call of Christ, the glory of God and the welfare of the church, and not any selfish object, that moves you to undertake this sacred office?

8. That you may perform faithfully all the duties of the office to which you have been called, do you engage to seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit? Do you promise, in His strength, to live a holy and exemplary life, to study and promote the purity, peace, unity and progress of the church—to watch over the spiritual growth of the members of the congregation, to endeavor to win others to Christ, to visit the afflicted and to attend the meetings associated with your office?

9. Do you promise subjection in the Lord to the courts of this church, and engage to follow no divisive courses from the doctrine and order which the church has solemnly recognized and adopted; and do you promise to submit to all the brotherly counsel which your brethren may tender you in the Lord?

And, for the itinerant preacher part: I am preaching at the RPCNA in Atlanta, GA this Lord’s Day. Please pray for me and my family.


The primary task of elders is to “take heed…to all the flock,” and “to feed the church of God” (Acts 20:28; cf. 1 Pet. 5:1-3). This means that they must endeavor to keep the congregation together, to return those to the flock who have strayed, and to be watchful against wolves who come from without to create unrest among the members with false doctrine.Secondly, they must particularly give heed to the walk of each member. There must be careful supervision as to how one conducts himself at home; that is, whether there is love and harmony and whether each member in his particular position of the household conducts himself properly towards others (II: 146).