(Heidelberg Catechism. part 2) 13. Lord's Day Q. 33. Why is Christ called the "only begotten Son" of God, since we are also the children of God? A. Because Christ alone is the eternal and natural Son of God; (a) but we are children adopted of God, by grace, for his sake. (b) (a) John 1:1-3,14,18; Heb.1:1,2; John 3:16; 1 John 4:9; Rom.8:32. (b) Rom.8:15-17; John 1:12; Gal.4:6; Eph.1:5,6. Q. 34. Wherefore callest thou him "our Lord"? A. Because he hath redeemed us, both soul and body, from all our sins, not with silver or gold, but with his precious blood, and has delivered us from all the power of the devil; and thus has made us his own property. (a) (a) 1 Pet.1:18,19; 1 Pet.2:9; 1 Cor.6:20; 1 Cor.7:23; 1 Tim.2:6; John 20:28. 14. Lord's Day Q. 35. What is the meaning of these words "He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary"? A. That God's eternal Son, who is, and continues (a) true and eternal God, (b) took upon him the very nature of man, of the flesh and blood of the virgin Mary, (c) by the operation of the Holy Ghost; (d) that he might also be the true seed of David, (e) like unto his brethren in all things, (f) sin excepted. (g) (a) Rom.1:4; Rom.9:5. (b) 1 John 5:20; John 1:1; John 17:3; Rom.1:3; Col.1:15. (c) Gal.4:4; Luke 1:31,42,43. (d) John 1:14; Matt.1:18,20; Luke 1:32,35. (e) Ps.132:11; Rom.1:3; 2 Sam.7:12; Acts 2:30. (f) Philip.2:7; Heb.2:14,17. (g) Heb.4:15. Q. 36. What profit dost thou receive by Christ's holy conception and nativity? A. That he is our Mediator; (a) and with His innocence and perfect holiness, covers in the sight of God, my sins, wherein I was conceived and brought forth. (b) (a) Heb.7:26,27; Heb.2:17. (b) 1 Pet.1:18,19; 1 Pet.3:18; 1 Cor.1:30,31; Rom.8:3,4; Isa.53:11; Ps.32:1. 15. Lord's Day Q. 37. What dost thou understand by the words, "He suffered"? A. That he, all the time that he lived on earth, but especially at the end of his life, sustained in body and soul, the wrath of God against the sins of all mankind: (a) that so by his passion, as the only propitiatory sacrifice, (b) he might redeem our body and soul from everlasting damnation, (c) and obtain for us the favour of God, righteousness and eternal life. (d) (a) Isa.53:4; 1 Pet.2:24; 1 Pet.3:18; 1 Tim.2:6. (b) Isa.53:10,12; Eph.5:2; 1 Cor.5:7; 1 John 2:2; 1 John 4:10; Rom.3:25; Heb.9:28; Heb.10:14. (c) Gal.3:13; Col.1:13; Heb.9:12; 1 Pet.1:18,19. (d) Rom.3:25; 2 Cor.5:21; John 3:16; John 6:51; Heb.9:15; Heb.10:19. Q. 38. Why did he suffer "under Pontius Pilate, as judge"? A. That he, being innocent, and yet condemned by a temporal judge, (a) might thereby free us from the severe judgement of God to which we were exposed. (b) (a) John 18:38; Matt.27:24; Acts 4:27,28; Luke 23:14,15; John 19:4. (b) Ps.69:4; Isa.53:4,5; 2 Cor.5:21; Gal.3:13. Q. 39. Is there anything more in his being "crucified", than if he had died some other death? A. Yes there is; for thereby I am assured, that he took on him the curse which lay upon me; (a) for the death of the cross was accursed of God. (b) (a) Gal.3:13. (b) Deut.21:23. 16. Lord's Day Q. 40. Why was it necessary for Christ to humble himself even "unto death"? A. Because with respect to the justice and truth of God, (a) satisfaction for our sins could be made no otherwise, than by the death of the Son of God. (b) (a) Gen.2:17. (b) Rom.8:3,4; Heb.2:9,14,15. Q. 41. Why was he also "buried"? A. Thereby to prove that he was really dead. (a) (a) Matt.27:59,60; Luke 23:52,53; John 19:38-42; Acts 13:29. Q. 42. Since then Christ died for us, why must we also die? A. Our death is not a satisfaction for our sins, (a) but only an abolishing of sin, and a passage into eternal life. (b) (a) Mark 8:37; Ps.49:7. (b) John 5:24; Philip.1:23; Rom.7:24. Q. 43. What further benefit do we receive from the sacrifice and death of Christ on the cross? A. That by virtue thereof, our old man is crucified, dead and buried with him; (a) that so the corrupt inclinations of the flesh may no more reign in us; (b) but that we may offer ourselves unto him a sacrifice of thanksgiving. (c) (a) Rom.6:6. (b) Rom.6:6-8,11,12; Col.2:12. (c) Rom.12:1. Q. 44. Why is there added, "he descended into hell"? A. That in my greatest temptations, I may be assured, and wholly comfort myself in this, that my Lord Jesus Christ, by his inexpressible anguish, pains, terrors, and hellish agonies, in which he was plunged during all his sufferings, (a) but especially on the cross, has delivered me from the anguish and torments of hell. (b) (a) Ps.18:5,6; Ps.116:3; Matt.26:38; Heb.5:7; Isa.53:10; Matt.27:46. (b) Isa.53:5. 17. Lord's Day Q. 45. What does the "resurrection" of Christ profit us? A. First, by his resurrection he has overcome death, that he might make us partakers of that righteousness which he had purchased for us by his death; (a) secondly, we are also by his power raised up to a new life; (b) and lastly, the resurrection of Christ is a sure pledge of our blessed resurrection. (c) (a) 1 Cor.15:16; Rom.4:25; 1 Pet.1:3. (b) Rom.6:4; Col.3:1,3; Eph.2:5,6. (c) 1 Cor.15:12,20,21; Rom.8:11. 18. Lord's Day Q. 46. How dost thou understand these words, "he ascended into heaven"? A. That Christ, in sight of his disciples, was taken up from earth into heaven; (a) and that he continues there for our interest, (b) until he comes again to judge the quick and the dead. (c) (a) Acts 1:9; Matt.26:64; Mark 16:19; Luke 24:51. (b) Heb.7:25; Heb.4:14; Heb.9:24; Rom.8:34; Eph.4:10; Col.3:1. (c) Acts 1:11; Matt.24:30. Q. 47. Is not Christ then with us even to the end of the world, as he has promised? (a) A. Christ is very man and very God; with respect to his human nature, he is no more on earth; (b) but with respect to his Godhead, majesty, grace and spirit, he is at no time absent from us. (c) (a) Matt.28:20. (b) Heb.8:4; Matt.26:11; John 16:28; John 17:11; Acts 3:21. (c) John 14:17-19; John 16:13; Matt.28:20; Eph.4:8,12. Q. 48. But if his human nature is not present, wherever his Godhead is, are not then these two natures in Christ separated from one another? A. Not as all, for since the Godhead is illimitable and omnipresent, (a) it must necessarily follow that the same is beyond the limits of the human nature he assumed, (b) and yet is nevertheless in this human nature, and remains personally united to it. (a) Acts 7:49; Jer.23:24. (b) Col.2:9; John 3:13; John 11:15; Matt.28:6. Q. 49. Of what advantage to us is Christ's ascension into heaven? A. First, that he is our advocate in the presence of his Father in heaven; (a) secondly, that we have our flesh in heaven as a sure pledge that he, as the head, will also take up to himself, us, his members; (b) thirdly, that he sends us his Spirit as an earnest, (c) by whose power we "seek the things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God, and not things on earth." (d) (a) 1 John 2:1; Rom.8:34. (b) John 14:2; John 17:24; John 20:17; Eph.2:6. (c) John 14:16,7; Acts 2:1-4,33; 2 Cor.1:22; 2 Cor.5:5. (d) Col.3:1; Philip.3:14. 19. Lord's Day Q. 50. Why is it added, "and sitteth at the right hand of God"? A. Because Christ is ascended into heaven for this end, that he might appear as head of his church, (a) by whom the Father governs all things. (b) (a) Eph.1:20,21,23; Col.1:18. (b) Matt.28:18; John 5:22. Q. 51. What profit is this glory of Christ, our head, unto us? A. First, that by his Holy Spirit he pours out heavenly graces upon us his members; (a) and then that by his power he defends and preserves us against all enemies. (b) (a) Acts 2:33; Eph.4:8. (b) Ps.2:9; Ps.110:1,2; John 10:28; Eph.4:8. Q. 62. What comfort is it to thee that "Christ shall come again to judge the quick and the dead"? A. That in all my sorrows and persecutions, with uplifted head I look for the very same person, who before offered himself for my sake, to the tribunal of God, and has removed all curse from me, to come as judge from heaven: (a) who shall cast all his and my enemies into everlasting condemnation, (b) but shall translate me with all his chosen ones to himself, into heavenly joys and glory. (c) (a) Luke 21:28; Rom.8:23; Philip.3:20; Tit.2:13; 1 Thess.4:16. (b) 2 Thess.1:6,8-10; Matt.25:41-43. (c) Matt.25:34; 2 Thess.1:7. Of God The Holy Ghost 20. Lord's Day Q. 53. What dost thou believe concerning the Holy Ghost? A. First, that he is true and coeternal God with the Father and the Son; (a) secondly, that he is also given me, (b) to make me by a true faith, partaker of Christ and all his benefits, (c) that he may comfort me (d) and abide with me for ever. (e) (a) 1 John 5:7; Gen.1:2; Isa.48:16; 1 Cor.3:16; 1 Cor.6:19; Acts 5:3,4. (b) Gal.4:6; Matt.28:19,20; 2 Cor.1:21,22; Eph.1:13. (c) Gal.3:14; 1 Pet.1:2; 1 Cor.6:17. (d) Acts 9:31; John 15:26. (e) John 14:16; 1 Pet.4:14. 21. Lord's Day Q. 54. What believest thou concerning the "holy catholic church" of Christ? A. That the Son of God (a) from the beginning to the end of the world, (b) gathers, defends, and preserves (c) to himself by his Spirit and word, (d) out of the whole human race, (e) a church chosen to everlasting life, (f) agreeing in true faith; (g) and that I am and forever shall remain, (h) a living member thereof. (i) (a) Eph.5:26; John 10:11; Acts 20:28; Eph.4:11-13. (b) Ps.71:17,18; Isa.59:21; 1 Cor.11:26. (c) Matt.16:18; John 10:28-30; Ps.129:1-5. (d) Isa.59:21; Rom.1:16; Rom.10:14-17; Eph.5:26. (e) Gen.26:4; Rev.5:9. (f) Rom.8:29,30; Eph.1:10-13. (g) Acts 2:46; Eph.4:3-6. (h) Ps.23:6; 1 Cor.1:8,9; John 10:28; 1 John 2:19; 1 Pet.1:5. (i) 1 John 3:14,19-21; 2 Cor.13:5; Rom.8:10. Q. 55. What do you understand by "the communion of saints"? A. First, that all and every one, who believes, being members of Christ, are in common, partakers of him, and of all his riches and gifts; (a) secondly, that every one must know it to be his duty, readily and cheerfully to employ his gifts, for the advantage and salvation of other members. (b) (a) 1 John 1:3; 1 Cor.1:9; Rom.8:32; 1 Cor.12:12,13; 1 Cor.6:17. (b) 1 Cor.12:21; 1 Cor.13:1,5; Philip.2:4-8. Q. 56. What believest thou concerning "the forgiveness of sins"? A. That God, for the sake of Christ's satisfaction, will no more remember my sins, neither my corrupt nature, against which I have to struggle all my life long; (a) but will graciously impute to me the righteousness of Christ, (b) that I may never be condemned before the tribunal of God. (c) (a) 1 John 2:2; 1 John 1:7; 2 Cor.5:19,21. (b) Jer.31:34; Ps.103:3,4; Ps.103:10,12; Mic.7:19,23-25. (c) Rom.8:1-4; John 3:18; John 5:24. 22. Lord's Day Q. 57. What comfort does the "resurrection of the body" afford thee? A. That not only my soul after this life shall be immediately taken up to Christ its head; (a) but also, that this my body, being raised by the power of Christ, shall be reunited with my soul, and made like unto the glorious body of Christ. (b) (a) Luke 16:22; Luke 23:43; Philip.1:21,23. (b) 1 Cor.15:53,54; Job 19:25,26; 1 John 3:2; Philip.3:21. Q. 58. What comfort takest thou from the article of "life everlasting"? A. That since I now feel in my heart the beginning of eternal joy, (a) after this life, I shall inherit perfect salvation, which "eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man" to conceive, and that to praise God therein for ever. (b) (a) 2 Cor.5:2,3. (b) 1 Cor.2:9; John 17:3. 23. Lord's Day Q. 59. But what does it profit thee now that thou believest all this? A. That I am righteous in Christ, before God, and an heir of eternal life. (a) (a) Hab.2:4; Rom.1:17; John 3:36. Q. 60. How are thou righteous before God? A. Only by a true faith in Jesus Christ; (a) so that, though my conscience accuse me, that I have grossly transgressed all the commandments of God, and kept none of them, (b) and am still inclined to all evil; (c) notwithstanding, God, without any merit of mine, (d) but only of mere grace, (e) grants and imputes to me, (f) the perfect satisfaction, (g) righteousness and holiness of Christ; (h) even so, as if I never had had, nor committed any sin: yea, as if I had fully accomplished all that obedience which Christ has accomplished for me; (i) inasmuch as I embrace such benefit with a believing heart. (j) (a) Rom.3:21-25,28; Rom.5:1,2; Gal.2:16; Eph.2:8,9; Philip.3:9. (b) Rom.3:9. (c) Rom.7:23. (d) Tit.3:5; Deut.9:6; Ezek.36:22. (e) Rom.3:24; Eph.2:8. (f) Rom.4:4,5; 2 Cor.5:19. (g) 1 John 2:2. (h) 1 John 2:1. (i) 2 Cor.5:21. (j) Rom.3:22; John 3:18. Q. 61. Why sayest thou, that thou art righteous by faith only? A. Not that I am acceptable to God, on account of the worthiness of my faith; but because only the satisfaction, righteousness, and holiness of Christ, is my righteousness before God; (a) and that I cannot receive and apply the same to myself any other way than by faith only. (b) (a) 1 Cor.1:30; 1 Cor.2:2. (b) 1 John 5:10. 24. Lord's Day Q. 62. But why cannot our good works be the whole, or part of our righteousness before God? A. Because, that the righteousness, which can be approved of before the tribunal of God, must be absolutely perfect, (a) and in all respects conformable to the divine law; and also, that our best works in this life are all imperfect and defiled with sin. (b) (a) Gal.3:10; Deut.27:26. (b) Isa.64:6. Q. 63. What! do not our good works merit, which yet God will reward in this and in a future life? A. This reward is not of merit, but of grace. (a) (a) Luke 17:10. Q. 64. But does not this doctrine make men careless and profane? A. By no means: for it is impossible that those, who are implanted into Christ by a true faith, should not bring forth fruits of thankfulness. (a) (a) Matt.7:18; John 15:5. Of The Sacraments 25. Lord's Day Q. 65. Since then we are made partakers of Christ and all his benefits by faith only, whence does this faith proceed? A. From the Holy Ghost, (a) who works faith in our hearts by the preaching of the gospel, and confirms it by the use of the sacraments. (b) (a) Eph.2:8,9; Eph.6:23; John 3:5; Philip.1:29. (b) Matt.28:19,20; 1 Pet.1:22,23. Q. 66. What are the sacraments? A. The sacraments are holy visible signs and seals, appointed of God for this end, that by the use thereof, he may the more fully declare and seal to us the promise of the gospel, viz., that he grants us freely the remission of sin, and life eternal, for the sake of that one sacrifice of Christ, accomplished on the cross. (a) (a) Gen.17:11; Rom.4:11; Deut.30:6; Lev.6:25; Heb.9:7-9,24; Ezek.20:12; Isa.6:6,7; Isa.54:9. 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