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Database

The Use of Tokens in Our Covenanter Communions.

James Dodson

1908-Robert James George (1844-1911).-The first of two articles written by George, this one chronicles the decline of the use of communion tokens amongst 19th century Reformed Presbyterians in America with observations concerning the result of their disuse. This was the first step toward introducing open communion. 

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Absolute Predestination.

James Dodson

1562-Jerome Zanchius (1516-1590).-A classic statement of the doctrine of predestination from an early Reformer who presents a supralapsarian point of view on the subject.

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John Cowan (1778?-1817)

James Dodson

Nothing seems to be known about John Cowan's birth and early life. It seems most probable that he studied theology under John M'Millan III., who was the instructor for the Reformed Presbytery around the time of his presentation for the ministry. He appears in the records of the Reformed Presbytery first as a candidate for licensure. He was licensed at Douglas on 9th of March, 1803, and was eligible to receive calls. His competence may be seen in the fact that by 1804, he had received two calls--one to the congregation at Chirnside; the other to the congregation at Stranraer. At a meeting, on August 15, 1804, he chose the latter and was duly ordained there, November 21 of that year. From that time, his presence in the presbytery was regular and he was chosen moderator of the Reformed Presbytery in 1805/6....

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The Duties of the Gospel Minister.

James Dodson

1809-John Cowan.-An excellent sermon, from the ordination of Andrew Symington, on the duties of Gospel ministers outlining the care they must exercise and the preparations they ought to have to fulfill that office. Included is a very interesting and pointed charge to the congregation instructing them regarding their responsibilities toward their new pastor and charging them to fulfill their duties towards him.

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Creeds and Confessions Defended,

James Dodson

1810-John Paul (1777-1848).-A muscular defense of creeds and confessions and many other points of Presbyterian and Covenanter doctrine with it. Paul does not spare his opponent on any front. While not for the faint of heart, Mr. Paul explains why creeds should be without error and fully subscribed by all communicants.

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A Discourse on Women Prophesying and Headcoverings.

James Dodson

1665-Joseph Mede (1586-1639).-An interesting discourse on 1 Cor. 11:5 explaining what Paul meant when he spoke of women prophesying.  In the course of the discussion, he throws some light on the function of precentors and the antiphony between the preceptor and the congregation (much like lining of the Psalms). Pointedly, he also discusses what Paul meant to teach respecting headcoverings or veils for women in the worship of the church.

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A Brief Catechetical Exposition of Christian Doctrine.

James Dodson

1632-William Twisse.-A treatise containing four catechism. The first designed to explain and distinguish the sacraments; the second treats the Lord's prayer; the third expounds the Ten Commandments; and the fourth unfolds the articles of the Apostles' Creed. This is a good example of many early Reformed catechisms written specifically for helping communicants prepare for a right reception of the Lord's supper.

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William Twisse (1578-1646)

James Dodson

William Twisse was born near Newbury, England, in 1578. Educated at Winchester, at the age of eighteen he moved to New College, Oxford. In 1604, he received his degree in Master of Arts and, that same year, was ordained to the ministry. In 1614, he was awarded a Doctorate in Divinity. From an early age he was noted for his profound erudition and his fame came to the attention of the court of King James who appointed him chaplain to Lady Elizabeth in her travels to the Palatine. Upon return, he became the minister of Newbury. When the Book of Sports was issued in 1617/8, Twisse refused to read and publicly declared himself against it. Though many Puritan ministers were suspended from the ministry or even imprisoned, King James allowed Twisse to remain unmolested because of his reputation in all the Reformed churches. In 1643, he was chosen to be the prolocutor to the Assembly of Divines...

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A Letter Addressed to T—— B——, of P——, Exhibiting Some Steps of Defection in the Reformed Presbyterian Church.

James Dodson

1840-David Steele.-Mr. Steele's first salvo in a long war of words over the defections that increasingly plagued the Reformed Presbyterian Synod throughout the nineteenth century. Mr. Steele was a witness to the events that transpired at the various Old Light Synods after the split in 1833 until their defections drove him to form a separate presbytery, in 1840, to uphold the testimony. He shows that it was necessitated by the habitual judicial tyranny some of which he records in this letter.

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PSALLO.

James Dodson

1882-William Wishart (1821-1906).-An article from the Evangelical Repository examining the claims of proponents of musical instruments in worship taken from the meaning of the Greek word PSALLO.  Dr. Wishart explains why PSALLO does not provide Biblical support for the use of mechanical instruments of worship.

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The Two Sons of Oil; or, The Faithful Witness for Magistracy and Ministry Upon a Scriptural Basis.

James Dodson

1803-Samuel Brown Wylie.-This small treatise constitutes one of the most readable and comprehensive expositions of the Reformed Presbyterian position with respect to the application of its principles on civil magistracy in the United States. Written in the early days of the republic, it shows that godless principles were incorporated into the U.S. Constitution.

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