Resolutely no - 12
Almost a year ago (15-04-2017, Vastberaden nee /11 – Resolutely no /11) I urgently requested the GKN ministers, especially rev. J.R. Visser, to hurry on with the discussions on ecclesiastical unity between DGK and GKN.
But now a letter was sent by GKN (08-03-2018, here called LETTER) to DGK churches.
And again, just like in their letter of March 2016 to DGK, the GKN-churches onesidedly end the talks with DGK and state ultimatums.
The LETTER publishes all kinds of confidential information from the discussions between DGK and GKN. Apparently our publications also got attention. This is why we’d like to pay attention to this letter, which was approved by the GKN synod with only one vote against.
The LETTER is in italics and red, while other quotations will be in italics and indented.
The numbers of the LETTER-parts are ours.
1 - To: Deputies ACOBB DGK
The three talks we have had with each other could be held after an initial refusal.
For your information: this refusal was made by the GKN.
2 - You know that our General Synod found it difficult to accept the instructions you received from your synod. We made this clear in an introductory conversation. At the same time we urgently and consistently asked you what your intentions were. What is the aim of talking to another federation of churches, if preliminary talks already include a judgement about that federation. We pointed out expressions like “schismatic churches” and “tolerating false doctrine”. Literally we read in the acts: “Also concerning a schismatic church - in which the foundation of 2.a. functions for the remaining parts - Christ’s church has a calling to examine as well as possible if unity in truth is possible. 28 Acta General Synod Groningen 2014-2015. In the case of sins against the Lord of the church, like an unjustified schism of his congregation, guilt must be confessed before re-unification can take place.
In a further talk, on your request, you explained that in your view these expressions didn’t imply criticisms. They were only points of discussion, which should lead to an assessment. On these grounds we as deputies of the Reformed Churches of the Netherlands started talks with you.
Before our first talk took place we as deputies thought it necessary to ask you if you yourselves as deputies had a non-prejudiced opinion about us.
Of course everybody has a (provisional) opinion on a church federation with which talks are to be opened. Much more so for the GKN, which for the larger part emanated from the DGK . It was already in 2009 that Rev. R. van der Wolf knew that he certainly wouldn’t join DGK, for
‘I also think that within the RCr (Reformed Church restored - DGK) a certain radicalisation has taken place. It should be discussed quietly and in all openness.’
And he also publicly talked about CGK and HHK . There isn’t anything wrong with that, is there? Indeed, but dó talk about it quietly and frankly!
3 - We asked that question on integrity because of a number of very unpleasant articles on a website from your ecclesiastical circle. In those articles a number of ministers were judged, not heard and in public, as if they would have a double agenda.
We were glad you distanced yourselves emphatically from what was written in your own circle. You didn’t see a need to publish this. You deemed it sufficient to say this personally to continue the talks. We didn’t want to press you in this matter, because the said website is active within your churches, but you are not responsible for what is written there.
In order to get this clear, we asked the GKN deputies for further information:
‘We read your letter of March 8, 2018, to deputies ACOBB DGK, which was published on the publicly accessible website of your churches. In this letter, although anonymously, you refer to publications on the website eeninwaarheid.info and certain accusations are written, see second paragraph of your letter. You would have discussed these publications in the talks between your deputies and DGK deputies and together you had given a negative judgment.
We would like to receive a copy of the account (or accounts), in which the website and its articles were discussed, so that we can make out what the objections are and whether or in what way we should take action on this.’
Answer from the GKN-deputies in two lines:
‘Accounts of the discussions with the deputies of the churches belong to the resp. synods and are not published. Also further information on the talks between the churches will not be supplied.’
This is really quite troubling to us. It is not fair to be anonymously accused, is it? Why not frankly say what you mean?
By the way, eeninwaarheid.info is not a DGK-website, but a fully independent internet-magazine with an editorial staff consisting of people from DGK ànd GKN. There is not any (preliminary) consultation about our publications with ecclesiastical parties. And that’s how we’d like to keep it.
We consider it strange that GKN has again  published parts from confidential discussions and consequently refuses to give us any further information (refuses to hear both sides). And that even a negative judgment of DGK deputies about eeninwaarheid is mentioned. Is that allowed? Doesn’t our Catechism mention something about this?
But more important is that the LETTER asserts:
4 - ‘a number of very unpleasant articles, which judge a number of ministers, not heard and in public, as if they would have a double agenda’.
As a matter of fact we reminded resp. rev. Visser of his words in the talks about unification, which words in our opinion don’t match with the official dealings of his churches . We did it with a lot of arguments and based on facts. So not ‘not heard’, as the LETTER asserts, for we did hear rev. Visser and offered him all the space he needed on the site to explain and discuss his opinions with us.
He indeed made use of that offer . We also visited rev. Visser in his hometown Staphorst. But, he ended the discussion:
‘We hope to continue the talks. They won’t take place in the press. Also not partially. The talks will be with the deputies and on synod’ .
That is understandable and acceptable. But then, is it proper 'to press’ the DGK-deputies to publish a negative judgment on our EIW-articles and next, when they refuse, to do it yourself?
Why is that? Is it to picture the actions of DGK-deputies as hypocrite and those of the GKN as open and honest? Or to play off DGK-members against each other? Honestly, we don’t like this kind of actions.
I also talked to rev. R. van der Wolf about his resentful words and resolutions of the past, of which the consequences are perceptible up until the present . Before our publications we asked this minister several times for a discussion ('hearing both sides'), but he refused categorically.
Why did I say that the GKN words are not in agreement with the acts in the talks? I have extensively accounted for this, see the series Vastberaden nee (Resolutely no) in the rubric Kerkverband (Church federation). Here now only a few things from it.
In Vastberaden nee 11 I gave a chronology of events concerning the contacts between DGK and GKN between March 2016 and April 2017. Under the heading Planning I wrote:
‘So in March 2016 the GKN-synod decided not to continue the first orientating discussion with the DGK. The DGK-synod had to change its mandate to their deputies first. That mandate was said to contain judgments and conditions, which made an open discussion impossible for GKN. However within a fortnight the DGK-deputies made it clear that it was not about judgments or conditions, but about points for discussion. 
But the GKN synod was not and is not satisfied with this. Although now their deputies are allowed to orientate themselves further, its results will not be discussed until synod agenda of October 2018. In this way the matter has been planned in such a way that as yet DGK-synod 2018 will have to answer the GKN letter of March 2016 before finally in October 2018 the GKN synod will consider if there is any possibility for the talks to continue.
Last year, on March 19, 2016,  we already wrote: I hope the reader won’t blame me, but doesn’t this very much look like a delaying tactic?’
It appeared to become literally true. The present LETTER now indeed maintains the original plan:
5 - ‘…that a fruitful discussion can only be continued, if you as churches publicly distance yourselves from the points we mentioned by a decision from your General Synod.’
‘The points’ – we’ll come back to them – are the same as in 2016! Now the DGK synod will as yet have to discuss things in order to make a decision that suits the GKN. Only then the GKN synod will decide if the orientating discussions between the church federations have been fruitful enough for any (orientating?) continuation. More than three years after the DGK brother hand was extended in 2015 . Exactly according to the GKN intention and planning from two years back…
In our public discussion  between rev. Visser and me he suggested that the GKN-synod had even mentioned the hope for an earlier DGK-synod, so that ‘the points’ could be taken from the table. But from the GKN-synod acts, now available, it appears that under his (rev. Visser’s) guidance such an urgent request had already been declined a week earlier with 7 against 4 votes… 
We continue with the LETTER.
6 - It was totally different after the first discussion, because at that time articles were published in the Bazuin from dr. P. van Gurp (see appendix 1). These articles were about the question if the Church Order (CO) also belonged to the foundation of the church. While you and we had reached agreement and had said that the CO didn’t belong to the foundation of the church, your ecclesiastical press mentioned that the CO does belong to it. We confronted you with this and asked you to distance yourselves from it. You explained then how dr. Van Gurp in your opinion meant his words. You pointed out that there is ‘something true’ in his reasoning. Again we as deputies GKN didn’t want to press you to do more. But the discrepancy between the discussion we had with you and the clear counter-voice in your ecclesiastical press did touch us.
See the two articles by dr. P. van Gurp in the appendixes 1 and 2 .
This matter is not an unimportant point of discussion. It’s about the foundation of the churches, a thing which must be clear to all . Don’t the GKN-deputies have a point here? Let’s take a look at the acts and reports of the general synod. It’s there that the combined churches speak. We find:
‘The Reformed Churches are churches which want to live according to Scripture and confession. We as reformed churches also want to live according to the Church Order, as it has been revised for the last time in 1978. These are matters which form the foundation of our churches and which have been agreed upon earlier…’
Crystal clear. The foundation is formed by three elements: the Scripture, the confession ánd the Church Order 1978.
Only, the above mentioned paragraph is not from DGK-acts, but from the GKN-acts. As early as March 2016 the GKN synod, in which all congregations were represented, said this according to the Acts of the Geral Synod of the Reformed Churches of the Netherlands (GKN) convened in Ede on Saturday, March 12, 2016, article 11 .
Don’t the GKN deputies have something to explain now and to admit that there is ‘something true’ in this…?
But can’t we together quickly agree on :
- The holy Scripture is the foundation of all Christian life of church and church members.
- The confession is the foundation of the doctrine of the church and of personal faith.
- The church order is the foundation on which we as churches live and work together?
7 - At the end of the first two talks we agreed to make a public statement about the reached consensus. We proposed the text that DGK and GKN stand on the foundation of Scripture and confession. After some time we received your answer, that you wanted to publish: DGK and GKN want to stand on the same foundation. A small change, which includes big space. That verb ‘want to’ can be read positively. But looking at earlier experiences, we remember what your GS mentioned about ecclesiastical unity. We quoted before, but will do so again:
“Also regarding a schismatic church in which the foundation of 2.a. functions for the remaining parts, Christ’s church has the calling to examine as far as possible if unity in truth is possible. 28 Acta General Synod Groningen 2014-2015. In the case of sins against the Lord of the church, like an unjustified schism of his congregation, guilt will have to be confessed before re-union can take place.”
Again because of the mandate to talk with each other, we didn’t want to ask you more about what the difference is between ‘stand on’ and ‘want to stand on’ in the light of your instruction. We were grateful for the result of our first talks and wanted to go on.
What’s the difference between ‘stand on’ and ‘want to stand on’?  It is explained most convincingly by a quote from the acts of the GKN synod itself, GS Ede, March 18, 2017, art. 16.
After establishing that the mutual deputies start from the same foundation, the synod continues:
‘This is reason now to continue the talks on the substance and in that way to examine if there is mutual recognition and acknowledgment. That should happen carefully and in all openness. Being alert remains a requirement. Much has happened and trust has been damaged. We experience and have experienced that brothers and sisters take their refuge there. Much isn’t clear yet and hasn’t been talked through. Unconditional mutual recognition and acknowledgment must become evident. Then there is a real break-through. ()
We want clarity about recognition and acknowledgment from both sides: you really stand on the foundation of Scripture and confession. When that’s what we want, communication by way of talks is necessary.’ (bold, djb)
And that’s what was decided upon (1 vote against). So the GKN-brothers do know what the difference is between ‘stand on’ and ‘want to stand on’ the foundation: first examine and only then recognition and acknowledgment!
And ‘again’ GKN-deputies according to their LETTER suppose that, in their own opinion, they acted with mild hearts, because they didn’t want to go on asking the DGK-deputies about the difference between ‘stand on’ and ‘want to stand on’ in the light of the DGK instruction.
But that wasn’t necessary, according to their acts they already knew, didn’t they?
8 - So we didn’t understand how you could recommend in your report to General Synod Lansingerland to uphold the instruction of the previous Synod without any change in it. We thought we made it clear to you that certain expressions, previously stated, could constitute difficulties in mutual discussions. A lot of explanations from you and an urgent request from you were needed to initiate the talks. In the meantime we agreed, although differently communicated, that both churches stand on the same foundation.
(Note 1: In the discussion of March 5 DGK deputies mentioned that this still needs further discussion.)
We hope to come back to that DGK-report after synod Lansingerland will have considered this .
The quick observation ‘that both churches stand on the same foundation’ surprises us, for only four months ago, click here, it really says something different, i.e. ‘want to stand on’. We also couldn’t find anything else of that recognition in the GKN-acts themselves.
On the contrary! The letter of the GKN synod of 18-03-2016 still lies on the table. In that letter GKN denies that DGK is following the age-old reformed track and so is not reformed. Until today this judgment has not been taken back! It is still a ‘Resolute no’ to DGK.
9 - It appears that you yourselves don’t have any difficulty with the expression that “also regarding a schismatic church the foundation of 2a can function for the remaining parts” i.e. not only Scripture and confessions, but also the Church Order.” Looking back, haven’t we made any progress in those first two talks? You keep labeling us as a schismatic church.
(Note 2: The trouble mentioned here is in the use of the terms: the talk about ‘the schisms’ and about ‘schismatic churches’. Speaking about the ‘schisms’ is a pure reflection of the situation (of schisms) in the churches, which can be further discussed. Repeatedly labeling the GKN churches as schismatic church(es) has a judgment in itself previous to talks which still have to take place.)
So not only considerations are quoted here, but considerations in the context of the talks with the GKN. And that, while we agreed that the CO didn’t belong to the foundation of Christ’s church.
(Note 3: In the instruction matters like living in unity according to the reformed church order, the schisms and the suspensions from the past and the justification of the liberation of 2003, are still summarized among ‘fundamental matters’.) [bold GKN]
No doubt you can imagine that we as GKN deputies feel that we didn’t get any closer by our talks.
I’m trying to understand the reasoning of GKN-deputies and synod.
The CO is not a part of the foundation of the church, so matters like suspensions, depositions, schisms are nó fundament-al matters. You can think quite differently about them. And also you can put them quietly aside, like the ‘buitenverbanders’ (now NGK) did in 1967 with the grounds for the Liberation in 1944. If you do want to talk about these matters and maybe think a confession of guilt is needed, then you are binding above Scripture!
Is that what is meant?
I get the uncomfortable feeling as if in essence a different understanding of the church becomes obvious, in which schisms are not such fundamental problems, but only a matter of church order. If you don’t like each other so much, you just ‘simply’ liberate yourself and ‘call away from the consistory’, like in Dalfsen and Zwolle, and you go on and meet somewhere else. If only the gospel of free grace remains to be heard in such a ‘reformation’! Then you can also quietly constitute a GKN-congregation next to a DGK-congregation to facilitate choices for the preaching of the gospel (Amersfoort).
And, we ask this carefully, does this vision also has a link with why some ministers in the GKN left the GKv without calling their congregations to reformation and separation, and in this way abandoned them to confusion and bewilderment, to continue their ministry somewhere else?  
What does it mean for the GKN: catholicity of the church? That the church is anywhere wherever a preacher gets room for the Word?  Was that why rev. A. Veldman could preach in the GKN without any form of a fellowship relation with his church federation? Does this explain the allergy of the GKN for the word schismatic, because it urges to confessional accountability in a schism? And was that why the schisms of congregations in Christ’s church could euphemistically be called only acts which ‘don’t deserve a beauty-contest prize’?  Should we all consider this ‘simply reformed’ or else be punished by being labeled ‘churchistic’?
When these observations have a base of truth, then I think there is every reason to continue talks with each other about the catholicity of the church. For these are indeed fundament-al matters!
But I really hope I’m mistaken in these observations and I’m quite willing to publish any correction.
The GKN brothers continually object to the characterization schismatic. And it’s certainly an ugly word for an ugly matter, just like ‘false church’ and ‘’sect’, with which words we should be careful and not use them as a label in and out of season. Maybe the following distinction can help to soften the emotions about this:
- ‘Schism’ points to the fact of a schism;
- ‘Schismatic’ typifies acting schismatically and is not confessionally accounted for;
- ‘Schismatic churches’ point to an accepted mindset within a congregation.
An example in the ecclesiastical context: ‘the calling away from the consistory’ by members of de reformed church in Dalfsen led to a schism, the action was illegal, schismatic in my opinion . The co-operation and support for this by ministers from the GKN necessitates an investigation whether such activities are acceptable or tolerable and are considered ‘simply reformed’ by the GKN.
A last remark about this.
The GKN is touched by the word ‘schismatic’. And sure, it’s not nice. But shouldn’t those people who underwent a schism, like in Dalfsen and Zwolle, by which the continuation of the congregation was seriously endangered, shouldn’t they have much more reason to be ‘touched’ and shouldn’t you expect them to refuse talks? Those people who experienced the consequences of the caused schisms and deeply suffered from them? Comparable with a divorce, as someone once said?
And watch how exactly these brothers with almost traumatic experiences, by the love of Christ, yet reached out the brother hand and keep reaching out, saying: come on brothers, let us talk together and try to clear away those difficult matters!
10 - Unfortunately this very thing became even worse because of the latest developments. Again the editors of De Bazuin (appendix 2) think it necessary to make some remarks in connection with the talks. One of our churches is publicly called a ‘sect’, which ‘separated from the church of Jesus Christ in a self-willed way’. And further: ‘that’s the way things are. Church against sect. Sure, there are talks. Heresy can be recognized and put away, guilt about sins can be confessed.’ Such is what your churches publicly say: a sect can confess guilt, when for the rest the foundation functions.
Do we really have to end the talks because of what a brother, not involved in the talks, says in De Bazuin? Was this brother on this point a speaking tube for the churches?
Moreover De Bazuin is no longer the official organ of DGK, as you probably know. That had already been decided by synod Groningen 2014/2015 and has now been established by synod Lansingerland 2018.
By the way, as to the publication of br. Oosterhuis in De Bazuin, he didn’t use the word schismatic, but quoted something from the brochure Weerlegging (2010) from DGK Zwolle . So it is news from years ago. Why is it mentioned nów by the GKN deputies?
11 - Brothers, you’ll understand that we can’t continue the talks in this way. Apparently much depends on the interpretation with which you explained the decisions and instructions of GS 2014. Anyway, your interpretation isn’t shared by the deputies who were charged by the same churches to edit the magazine De Bazuin. Who also hope to continue their work under God’s blessing, as they write. In the meantime we don’t doubt your explanation, which you think fit to give to the instruction and considerations of your General Synod. We do have doubts whether your explanation has back up in your own church federation. At the same time this implies that we doubt whether the talks we have with you are useful. For here, at the same table, we can talk with each other and reach agreement. But both in your reports to your own churches and in the official magazine of your churches matters are presented differently.
Honestly, we just don’t grasp this at all. Apart from the almost exasperating way in which all kinds of things are confused here – when there is a sincere will conform Christ’s commandment to look for unity with anybody who believes and loves Him in truth, then for us these arguments melt as snow before sunshine…
We remember the earlier mentioned interview we (br. J. Peters and I) had with rev. Van der Wolf (2009), when we asked him why he hadn’t chosen for DGK when he left Urk. His answer was:
‘I have never made it a secret. I suppose there are a lot of brothers and sisters in the Lord Jesus Christ in the RCr (DGK) with whom I’d like to sit down at the same Lord’s Supper table. I’d like to contribute my share to lay good contacts and open discussions. But I think that within the RCr, especially in the church government, a certain radicalization has occurred.. That’s what should be discussed quietly and in all frankness.’ 
Exactly this is what has been our wish for years! But why is it that in our observations this minister hasn’t made it come true in any way?
12 - So we suppose that a fruitful talk can only be continued when you publicly distance yourselves as churches from the points we mentioned by a decision from your General Synod.
(Note 4: With this we mean that your synod creates clarity about the foundation of the church and the mindset based on that and so also on the startingpoint of further talks. The obscurity and discrepancy are illustrated, underlined and fed by the obstacles mentioned:
- An unaltered instruction for deputies ACOBB, in which the results of our talks haven’t been implemented and in which we are still considered and labeled as schismatic churches
- The article in De Bazuin, in which Oosterhuis talks about the GKN as being a schismatic and sectarian church)
Ah, here we have it. This is what was already said in March 2016. GKN requires the DGK synod to sweep ‘the points’ for discussion off the table, which points the former synod Groningen 2014-2015 had put on the table. Only after everyone in DGK talks and thinks like GKN, only thén a continuation of ‘orientating talks’ will again be possible and finally, as planned by the GKN, in October 2018 GKN’s synod can contemplate on the usefulness of continuing the talks. .
Three years after DGK initiated the start of the talks with GKN…
13 - Don’t see it as a definite rejection. We’d like to appreciate your interpretation and the results of the discussions up to now. But we no longer know whether we are talking with brothers who let us hear the voice of the DGK. For you say different things from what is written in the official organ of your churches. And you say some things differently – as may be clear from the combined statement on what the foundation of the church is. Also the now proposed instruction by you to your synod calls for the question if what we discussed really has influence. We are still labeled as schismatic churches. It is still said that there is heresy in our midst.
But if DGK honestly finds ‘the points’ have to come to the table, shouldn’t it then be possible to discuss them? If there is still no peace and clarity on e.g. if the ‘kadertheorie’ may or may not be supported and spread, why shouldn’t that be discussed, but in advance and inaccessibly  been swept off the table based on ‘otherwise we don’t want to talk’? That’s not the way in which adult Christians associate with each other, is it?
Compare the answer of Sake Stoffels, university lecturer ‘praktische theologie’ at the VU, on the question ‘Why is there so much ado in the church and why do we find it so difficult to face up to it and handle it?’ Among other things he said:
‘We are much attached to harmony and unity and somehow that is a calling from the gospel. But it can result in not discussing pressing matters any more, they simply disappear, but afterwards they can cause a terrible row. Much ado in the church is connected with arrears in maintenance and not willing to face conflicts. In that way in future times a congregation can be frustrated by conflicts from the past. So it’s important to dig into the past. Some congregations could certainly rip up some old sores.’ .
We agree wholeheartedly.
14 - We call on you to remove the obstacles mentioned which originated on your side so that further talks between our churches can take place.
With brotherly greetings,
Followed by signatures Deputies Unity Reformed Confessors (Deputaten Eenheid Gereformeerde Belijders).
Schisms always turn out to be accompanied by much grief and harsh words. Grown anger remains felt and fed. To repent and confess guilt is difficult. Yet it has to happen, if we want to keep following Christ and to take our seats at the Lord’s table. My mother taught me the golden rule: to get angry is human, but to remain angry is devilish.
The crucial question we have to ask each other is: do we sincerely want to go on together as brothers and sisters or do we prefer to play the game ‘zwarte pieten’ (giving each other all the guilt) to keep up appearances for the outside world?
I conclude with the updated conclusion of my previous article (Vastberaden nee 11) in this series in which I directly talked to rev. Visser and his churches:
‘For years now I have observed all this with sadness and frustration. And again, more than three years after the first request of DGK, your synod finally discusses the results of your orientating talks. Just compare that with the urgency which I tried to make obvious…
I have often restrained myself and have myself allowed to be restrained to put my finger on the sore spots. But in my opinion time is long overdue to receive clarity from you. As I observe it from the LETTER GKN deliberately keeps a distance from the DGK. I can’t make anything else of it.
At the same time I cherish hope. For I estimate that there are quite a lot of people in DGK and GKN who dó , yes indeed dó want to serve the Lord together in one church as soon as possible. And who actually want to take steps for that. Before it is too late.
I’d like to thank the Lord on my bare knees for that.’
Next week, April 7, the DGK synod Lansingerland hopes to speak about and take decisions on the talks with the GKN. [See for a report the next edition in the series Vastberaden no /13, Resolutely no / 13. We wish the brothers wisdom and the Lord’s blessing and the powerful guidance of his Spirit. So that actually all those who heartily love the Lord with the same precious faith may get closer together. And that we are once again given and bound to each other to live and serve together in Christ’s church for the glory of his Name, the salvation of his people and also as a light in this world.
Article entitled Fundament of dr. P. van Gurp in the Bazuin 03-05-17.
Article entitled De binding aan de kerkorde, dr. P. van Gurp, in the Bazuin 14-06-17.
Article entitled Vrijmaking, maar waar heen?, br. H. Oosterhuis, in the Bazuin 24-01-18.
 See scheme in Vastberaden nee 6, Rubric Kerkverband, click hier. The scheme shows which GKN congregations originated from the RCr (DGK). After the latest developments the scheme needs an update.
 For the interview click here (part 2).
 Vastberaden nee 1, Rubric Kerkverband, click here. And it appeared also not to be correct.
 The characterisation ‘double agenda’ is from the GKN-deputies.
 Vastberaden nee 11, Rubric Kerkverband.
 The letter to the editor and our comments in Vastberaden nee 1, Rubric Kerkverband.
 Vastberaden nee 10, Rubric Kerkverband, click here.
 Vastberaden nee 1, Rubric Kerkverband, March 2016, click here.
 Eenheid DGK en GKN 8, Rubric Kerkverband, click here.
 Vastberaden nee 1, Rubric Kerkverband, March 2016. See app. 1. Letter to the editor rev. J.R. Visser, click here.
 GKN-Acts 12-03-16, p.23
 Not so nice not to publish the publications which are referred to in the LETTER and to which such strong conclusions are linked. Even the second article of dr. Van Gurp which gives extra information is missing.
 By the way it is striking that nów the GKN-deputies do refer to the opinions of a person not involved in the talks and let those opinions be co-defining for the progress of the talks.
 There are two articles 11 in these acts. The second one is meant here.
 The character of these 'foundations' is different. So you can and may not change the Scripture. That is not valid for the confession, if proved that they are in some point not in agreement with the Scripture. The same goes for the church order, which can also be adapted on practical/organisational points. Although also in the CO unrelinquishable matters are formulated such as e.g. about the congregation, the offices, the public worship, sacraments and church discipline. See app. 1 and 2.
 Once again the GKN deputies talk about confidential matters. It is not done that GKN deputies, after a joint and positive press report was published, now return to it by way of the backdoor.
 Planned for 07-04-18.
 How different acted the rev. H.W. van Egmond and rev. H.G. Gunnink, when they - not before two public meetings took place in Bedum and Zuidhorn based on correctly going the ecclesiastical track - separated themselves from the GKv and emphatically called upon their brothers and sisters there to liberate themselves too.
 Compare the new church vision of dr. H.J.C.C.J. Wilschut who based on that vision took the step to the PKN (Protestant Church of the Netherlands), zie Vertrek dr. Wilschut, Rubric Kerkverband, click here.
 Rev. Laurens Heres (GKN) in acts GKN synod 01-10-16.
 I proved this with facts, see KerkKroniek 0.2, Rubric Kerkverband, click here
 We don’t consider here the disqualifications in the brochure De reformatie der kerk en het eeuwige evangelie, with which those who made the schism tried to justify themselves.
 Why doesn’t GKN act conform its own principles:
‘The question at the access to the church federation is always if the church which wants to join is a church of Christ and not whether they do everything in the same way which we are accustomed to. If this last thing would be requested, we would go in the direction of a denomination or we are getting sectarian tendencies. If another church becomes part of the church federation it is not that such a church joins the church, but it is a union of true churches of Christ’, GKN acts 12-03-16, p6.
 Compare GKN synod statement in 2016: ‘Consciously has been chosen not to review ecclesiastical decisions from before the origin of the church federation in 2009’, GKN acts 12-03-16, p7.
 ND 26-03-18.
Translation: R. Sollie-Sleijster