February 05, 2006 Book Review

The Confession of Faith and Catechisms of the OPC with Proof Texts

The Confession of Faith and Catechisms of the OPC with Proof Texts

OPC Committee on Christian Education, Ed.

Reviewed by: G. I. Williamson

The Confession of Faith and Catechisms of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church with Proof Texts. Published by (and available from) the Committee on Christian Education of the OPC, 2005. Hardback, 450 pages, $12.00. Reviewed by OP minister G. I. Williamson.

This is a very important event in the history of the OPC. From the very beginning of our history, there was a concern for the publication of a carefully edited text of both the Westminster Confession of Faith and the Larger and Shorter Catechisms as officially adopted by the OPC. And there was also a concern to carefully edit the proof texts cited in support of the text of these documents. As the preface shows, a long process of diligent work went into the final product, which has now been made available to the church (and to others in the Presbyterian and Reformed world).

While the official text of our Confession and Catechisms has been available without proof texts for many years, we all had to rely on outside sources for editions that provided these in full. Now this is no longer the case.

The most important thing, of course, is the content of this wonderful resource. But it is an added blessing that what is inside is so well packaged. The type used is easy to read, and each proof text cited is noted in bold type to make it easy to navigate between them. The book is also bound in very sturdy material, and is 5 by 7 inches in size. It makes a fine companion volume to The Book of Church Order.

To illustrate the kind of diligent work that went into this production, we mention a proof text found in some editions that cites a verse in Hebrews (abbreviated Heb.). Some excellent detective work finally revealed that this is a simple typographical error that should have been Habakkuk (Hab.). It is this kind of careful work that will give this book enduring value. And while there will be some who will continue to prefer the original text of the Westminster Assembly, there will also be many throughout the world who hold to the same revised text as we do of the Westminster Confession of Faith.

It is our hope that this publication will be a blessing to the wider Presbyterian and Reformed family.



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