Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 9 image

Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 9

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[Of all the answers in the Catechism, this may be my personal favourite, other than the famous first and last ones. It presents as attractive a definition of providence as you will find anywhere, and does it in a way that makes Reformed theology look both thoroughly practical and thoroughly beautiful (which, let's face it, is not always the case). God is my creator and my Father, he provides whatever I need, and he will always turn anything bad into good, being both able (as Almighty God) and desiring (as faithful Father) to do so.

As an aside, it is worth noting that Heidelberg presents God as a sender of adversity, which I have commented on here before, but also that this is intimately connected with his ability to turn it to our good. A God who can send the storms can also say "thus far, and no farther" (Job 38:11); a God who can ordain the betrayal and death of his Son (Acts 4:28) can also ensure that it works to save all who believe. If God is not sovereign over Satan himself, such that everything that happens ultimately sits under his authority, then we cannot be certain that all things will work out for our good. But he is, and it does, so we can.]

Q26. What do you believe when you say,
“I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth”?

A26. That the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who out of nothing created heaven and earth
and everything in them,
who still upholds and rules them
by his eternal counsel and providence,
is my God and Father
because of Christ the Son.
I trust God so much that I do not doubt
he will provide
whatever I need
for body and soul,
and will turn to my good
whatever adversity he sends upon me
in this sad world.
God is able to do this because he is almighty God
and desires to do this because he is a faithful Father.

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