It was in the summer of 1924 that several members of the Second Christian Reformed Church of Sioux Center were not in accord with the doctrine which had been accepted by their churches. It was then that Rev. H. Hoeksema and Rev. H. Danhof wrote their book on “Zonde en Genade” (Sin and Grace). Many read this, and then subscribed to the Standard Bearer, reading and studying the articles, with which they fully agreed.

Many times the preaching of the Revs. Hoeksema and Danhof were heard–their preaching concerning the truth of God’s Sovereignty, of man’s depravity, and of God’s sovereign, elective grace. They also explained the three points in relationship to those doctrines. Several members, some of whom were consistory members, protested against the actions of the Synod of 1924 and, as we all know, the Synod did not pay attention to them but held fast to their decision of 1924. All that was left for these members to do was either to submit to the decision of Synod, which was impossible, or to leave – which they did.

But in the summer of 1926 there were a few developments. That summer Student W. Verhil who was preaching for the Doon congregation, was asked to preach for us on Sunday evenings, which he did. These meetings were held in the Town Hall where a goodly crowd attended.

It was sometime during the month of October the same year that a letter was sent to the Rev. H. Hoeksema signed by 18 individuals, expressing the desire to be organized as a Protesting Christian Reformed Church. During the week of November 15, 1926 the Revs. Hoeksema and Ophoff arrived at Sioux Center. It was decided to organize on November 22. On the Sunday of November 21 three services were held in the Town Hall. Rev. Hoeksema based his sermons on Ephesians 1.

On Monday evening of November 22 Rev. Hoeksema again spoke in the Town Hall. The text which he chose was Revelations 2:10b: “Zijt getrouw tot den dood, en Ik zal u geven de koon des levens”, (Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life). It was that same evening that 10 families were organized into a Protesting Christian Reformed Church. Afterwards Rev. Ophoff installed the two elders and one deacon into their respective offices. Soon after having been organized into a congregation it was decided to buy a building lot and proceed to build a basement church. A humble beginning it was.

On Christmas Day of 1926 we had Christmas service in our own (yet uncompleted) building for the first time. How the hearts of the congregation were filled with gratitude to God that they might now hear the pure Word of God preached to them from week to week.

Soon a call was extended to Candidate Vos, who answered that he could come over and help us. The expectation for fast growth were at first high, but the reality was that a slow growth was enjoyed. Though from a human point of view this was not so desirable, yet it is perhaps the healthiest.

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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