Our Children Need Public Worship

I know a few good pastors out in California, including Pastor Dan Hyde. Every book I have read by him has been profitable. Right now I am reading his short book  on children in worship, The Nursery of the Holy Spirit.  Here is a great paragraph explaining why our children need to be in worship with us. All punctuation is his except brackets and I have removed footnotes.

With a renewal in biblical doctrine in many evangelical circles today, for example, among “New Calvinism,” it is a great time to reevaluate our practice [of excluding children from worship] and to ask how we can become more “children-friendly” as churches in the area of worship. This is also a great time to do this given the content [context?] in which we live, as our children are being assaulted in their faith more than ever before. Even before many children are born they are assaulted by “Pro-Choice.” Our culture is more and more seeking to allure children into a worldview of hedonism, materialism, and narcissism. The church, therefore, needs to be a refuge for children from the earliest age. One practical expression of this is  in welcoming our children to join us before the throne of God’s grace in worship, giving them a meaningful place in the church. As the church education professor, John Westerhoff III, has shown, the biblical example of three generations in the church’s worship results in interaction and sharing among generations as well as a sense of experiencing the whole community of faith. The children of believers, therefore, are children of the church and belong in the Holy Spirit’s most child-friendly nursery-public worship.

Second Helvetic Confession: The Bible and Tradition

Here is the third post (post 1, post 2) on the Second Helvetic Confession. In chapter 2, Bullinger dives into the the relationship between Scripture and tradition. I have put some key phrases in bold.

THE TRUE INTERPRETATION OF SCRIPTURE. The apostle peter has said that the Holy Scriptures are not of private interpretation (2 Pet. 1:20), and thus we do not allow all possible interpretations. Nor consequently do we acknowledge as the true or genuine interpretation of the Scriptures what is called the conception of the Roman Church, that is, what the defenders of the Roman Church plainly maintain should be thrust upon all for acceptance. But we hold that the interpretation of the Scripture to be orthodox and genuine which is gleaned from the Scriptures themselves (from the nature of the language in which they were written, likewise according to the circumstances in which they were set down, and expounded in the light of and unlike passages and of many and clearer passages) and which agree with the rule of faith and love, and contributes much to the glory of God and man’s salvation.

INTERPRETATIONS OF THE HOLY FATHERS. Wherefore we do not despise the interpretations of the holy Greek and Latin fathers, nor reject their disputations and treatises concerning sacred matters as far as they agree with the Scriptures; but we modestly dissent from them when they are found to set down things differing from, or altogether contrary to the Scriptures. Neither do we think that we do them any wrong in this matter; seeing that they all, with one consent, will not have their writings equated with the canonical Scriptures, but command us to prove how far they agree or disagree with them, and to accept what is in agreement and to reject what is in disagreement.

COUNCILS. And in the same order also we place the decrees and canons of councils.

Wherefore we do not permit ourselves, in controversies about religion or matters of faith, to urge our case with only the opinions of the fathers or decrees of councils; much less by received customs, or by the large number of those who share the same opinion, or by the prescription of a long time. Who Is The Judge? Therefore, we do not admit any other judge than God himself, who proclaims by the Holy Scriptures what is true, what is false, what is to be followed, or what to be avoided. So we do assent to the judgments of spiritual men which are drawn from the Word of God. Certainly Jeremiah and other prophets vehemently condemned the assemblies of priests which were set up against the law of God; and diligently admonished us that we should not listen to the fathers, or tread in their path who, walking in their own inventions, swerved from the law of God.

TRADITIONS OF MEN. Likewise we reject human traditions, even if they be adorned with high-sounding titles, as though they were divine and apostolical, delivered to the Church by the living voice of the apostles, and, as it were, through the hands of apostolical men to succeeding bishops which, when compared with the Scriptures, disagree with them; and by their disagreement show that they are not Apostolic at all. For as the apostles did not contradict themselves in doctrine, so the apostolic men did not set forth things contrary to the apostles. On the contrary, it would be wicked to assert that the apostles by a living voice delivered anything contrary to their writings. Paul affirms expressly that he taught the same things in all churches (I Cor. 4:17). And, again, “For we write you nothing but what you can read and understand.” (II Cor. 1:13). Also, in another place, he testifies that he and his disciples – that is, apostolic men – walked in the same way, and jointly by the same Spirit did all things (II Cor. 12:18). Moreover, the Jews in former times had the traditions of their elders; but these traditions were severely rejected by the Lord, indicating that the keeping of them hinders God’s law, and that God is worshipped in vain by such traditions (Matt. 15:1 ff.; Mark 7:1 ff).

There is nothing really surprising here. The reformed church has always held that Scripture is the final authority and that all doctrines of men, councils, and traditions are to be held up to Scripture to see if they agree. If they do not agree they are to be rejected.

Likewise the reformed church has always held tradition in high regard while keeping it subordinate to the Bible.

Finally, notice in the very first paragraph the key doctrine that Scripture is supposed to interpret Scripture.