Relationships in the home, as set forth in the article by Rev. Van Baren, was the issue taken up by the first of two discussion groups of the 1985 Convention.

One very important point our group focused in on was that a foundation of love is imperative to a successful, God-glorifying family.

What does this mean? If you read I Corinthians 13, you’ll find that love (charity) is longsuffering, is not proud, behaves not unseemly, and on and on. If we apply what we read in this chapter to our interactions with other family members, we will have assur­ance that our homes are pleasing to God and will be, in turn, wonderful places to live in too. Everything exists to glorify God, and when we work to have our homes do this, we can have faith that God will make them prosper and not forsake them.

But a family is not just a group of people who love each other. Each member has a specific role to play. We know what these roles are because the family is a picture of the church of all ages. Fathers are types of God the Father in so far as they make rules and bestow blessings. They, as husbands, are types of Jesus, Who is husband to the church, by being the headship of their wives. Jesus is known as the elder brother, and while it is everyone’s responsibility to consciously be like Christ, we can see how likeness to Christ in older children would be a special benefit to the family. Wives in their devotion to husbands are pictures of the church in its devotion to God. And children, content, obedient, and in subjection to the father, are types of the church as children of God are in their relation to Him. But all of these, in order to survive as a unit, must show true love towards each other as defined in I Corinthians 13.

At the end of his article, Rev. Van Baren asks if it isn’t “cool” to be spiritual. Essentially, the family itself is not something we conventionally think of as cool. But even within the family, it is very hard to talk about spiritually personal things, and very easy to lose faith and forget the spiritual importance of the family altogether. Family members are re­sponsible fortuning in to each other’s spiritual conditions. If this is neglected, apathy will destroy the family.


“Therefore, only He who has progressed in the Gospel who reckons himself happy in communion with God and rests in that alone. He puts it before the whole world and is ready for its sake to give up everything.”                               Calvin on I John 1:4


The Christian is placed in many different circumstances while on this earth. Some are characterized by hardships and trials, and others are full of joy and peace. How should the Christian respond? Throughout the Bible there are numerous times where God’s people sang in response to their various circumstances. Singing in response to God’s ordering […]

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The book of Proverbs was written by King Solomon to his young adult son. Solomon’s purpose in writing Proverbs was “that the generation to come might know them [God’s wonderful works]…that they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments” (Ps. 78:6–7). Throughout the book, Solomon […]

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The group of churches that John writes to in this trio of epistles had recently experienced a split because of doctrinal controversy. We do not know the exact content of the error that these false teachers were spreading, but it is apparent from John’s writing that their teaching somehow denied the truth of the incarnation—that […]

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Jael: An Example of Christian Warfare

This article was originally presented as a speech at a Protestant Reformed mini convention held at Quaker Haven Camp in August 2021. Jael lived during the era of the judges. Deborah the prophetess was the judge who served Israel at the time of Jael. During this time, the Canaanites under the rule of king Jabin […]

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Indiana Mini Convention Review 2021

One of this year’s “mini conventions” was hosted by Grace and Grandville Protestant Reformed Churches at Quaker Haven Camp. Located just over two hours away in northern Indiana, the camp was a perfect fit for the 120 kids and 15 chaperones who attended. A total of twelve different churches were represented: Byron Center, Faith, First […]

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Editorial, November 2021: Catechism Season

At the point that this edition of Beacon Lights arrives in the homes of our subscribers, most young people in the Protestant Reformed Churches will have been sitting under the catechism instruction of their pastor or elders for more than a month. If our readers are honest, that observation probably comes with a (quiet) sigh […]

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Tennessee Young People’s Retreat 2021

The 2021 Tennessee young people’s retreat was held August 9 to 13 by Providence, Hudsonville, Unity, and First (Holland) Protestant Reformed Churches. The retreat took place at Eagle Rock Retreat Center in the city of Tallassee. It was about an eleven-hour drive, give or take a bit due to stops for food and restrooms. Though […]

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