Is OPC a strict Calvinist association?
Thank you for your question to us. I must give you two answers, because "strict Calvinist association" can mean a couple of things.
If your question regards our beliefs as a church, the answer is an unequivocal "yes". All officers subscribe to the Westminster Confession and Catechisms, which are available on our website. Every minister vows to preach the Bible, but he also vows that he believes that what the Westminster standards teach is an accurate representation of what the Bible says. If he cannot do so with a clear conscience, he is not permitted to be a minister of our church; we will bind no man's conscience to preach that which he does not believe the Bible teaches. You can see these vows here, Chap. XXIII.8. So, what we proclaim is "strictly Calvinistic", also called "the Reformed faith."
If your question regards our membership at large, the answer is a little different. In order to belong to an OPC church, the person must have a creditable profession of faith. Unlike some churches, we do not require each member to subscribe to the Westminster standards or to some other Reformed creed. The prospective member is told clearly what this church professes to be the Scriptural teachings, and agrees to submit to the government and disciple of the church. But he is received upon his profession that he rests in Jesus Christ alone. You can see the membership vows here, Chap. IV.B.2.
I hope this helps you.
"Questions and Answers" is a weekly feature of the OPC website. The answers come from individual ministers in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church expressing their own convictions and do not necessarily represent an "official" position of the Church, especially in areas where the Standards of the Church (the Scriptures and the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms) are silent.
The questions come from individuals like yourself. If you have questions about biblical and theological matters, you are invited to send them by e-mail by using the "Pose a Question" link on the OPC home page or by clicking here.
At least one new question is posted each week, so there should always be something new here for you to read. (For those people who would like to look at previous questions and answers, they will continue to be available as well.)
The purpose of the OPC website's "Questions and Answers" is to respond to biblical and theological questions. Matters of church discipline, disputes, or debates go beyond the scope of our work. We recommend that you present your concerns in these areas to the appropriate judicatory. In most cases this will be to a local pastor, elder, or session. We do not want the website to replace personal involvement in, or commitment to, the local, visible church.
While we will respond to every serious questioner, we are not bound to give a substantive answer to every question, should we deem the question to be beyond the scope of our purpose or our own ability to answer.
You will receive an answer by e-mail. Please be patient as many of our respondents are busy pastors. The response to your question may take up to two (2) weeks. Some of the questions submitted will be chosen to be posted here, along with the corresponding answers.
Note that the "Questions and Answers" posted on the site have been editedall personal references are removed, Scripture references or from some source may be added, and sometimes portions are expandedto make the questions and answers more useful to a larger audience.