Announcement Date: 2014-10-23

Communication regarding the proposal to open the offices of elder and minister of the Word also to women, from Lawrence K. Spalink, missionary of the Christian Reformed Church in NA, October 15, 2014


  1. I regard very highly the gifts and abilities of sisters, and I assert that we have a duty to aggressively and effectively ascertain and employ these in the churches. This is to God’s glory and the blessing of the church, the communication of the Gospel to the world and the bringing of hope to the poor.


  1. I pledge my support to the sisters who are serving in this way.


  1. However, I believe that the Spirit of God is speaking clearly in his Word. It is an inappropriate way to handle Scripture to make it say “yes” when it says “no.” That “no” is not a naive accommodation to the culture of that day, but it is based in the aim of the Creator and his purposes in his creation in regard to the relationship between male and female. (If this is not so, the basis for opposing the activism of homosexuals and the promotion of same sex marriage is also lost.)


  1. The opening sermon of this general assembly and also the report of the Mission and Social Problem Committee point out for us that by employing a new way of interpreting the Constitution, the government is trying to overturn the overt and intended pacifism in the articles of the Constitution in order to justify collective self-defense and increase the nation’s capacity to make war. The proposed communication of protest to the government makes clear how wrong this activity is. If that is the case, reinterpreting the Bible similarly in order to induce precious female members into a path that the Bible forbids is also very unfortunate.


  1. I am rather embarrassed that over the years, many of your reports and discussions have pointed positively to and made use of some of the study reports of my own denomination. I pray earnestly that you in the Reformed Church in Japan will not embark on a similar path, which has caused so much damage to my mother church. [I am referring to the departure of about 45,000 conservative and faithful members of the church who felt they could no longer be part of the CRCNA, a matter I had noted to the GA in earlier remarks. The committee’s summary of a survey of churches that have opened the offices to women about fallout afterwards says of the CRCNA only that women still face obstacles and have trouble getting calls, but fails to mention that a major secession ensued.]


  1. I promise that whether you adopt the proposal or defeat it, my love for the Reformed Church in Japan will not change. I will by no means regard you as my enemy. Though I would like to make a great contribution, what I can offer is very limited assistance, but I desire that you allow me to continue working together with you in the evangelization and building up of the church in Japan. I urge those churches both domestic and foreign that are also in the relationship of mission cooperation with you to do the same.


–Distributed to those in attendance at the Reformed Church in Japan General Assembly, with the prior permission of GA Moderator Rev. Akira Komine


















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