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- Submitted: Jan 24 2012 09:37 PM
- Last Updated: Jan 31 2012 11:45 PM
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- Author: Wilhelmus à Brakel, Th. F.
- e-Sword Version: 9.x - 10.x
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a Brakel, Wilhelmus - The Christian's Reasonable Service (4 vols)
Systematic Theology Calvinism Puritan Covenant
Wilhelmus à Brakel, Th. F.
9.x - 10.x
Theology Summary: Brakel is a 5 point calvinist with a decidedly Puritan slant.
First published in 1700, The Christian’s Reasonable Service (De Redelijke Godsdienst) ran through twenty Dutch editions in the eighteenth century alone! The title is derived from Romans 12:1, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” It expresses what God requires from man, and particularly from the Christian, that he serve Him in Spirit and in truth—intelligently, rationally, and in harmony with and response to God’s revelation of Himself, His Word.
With a Puritan flavor and representing Reformed experiential religion at its best, Wilhelmus à Brakel systematically moves through the major doctrines of the Bible in hopes of seeing the minds of God’s people renewed for the purpose of promoting godliness. Throughout his work, but particularly in the practical application of each doctrine, à Brakel strives unceasingly to exalt the name of Jesus as the name that the Father has given above every other name—there being no other name given under heaven among men whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12).
With over 2,500 pages in the printed edition, The Christian's Reasonable Service is a systematic exposition (systematic theology) of Christian doctrine, covering all of the intricacies and debated points of Reformation and post-Reformation dogmatics. This is done is scholastic fashion, with great precision and theological acumen. That being said, it was primarily written for the author's congregation and is a tremendous work of piety and pastoral concern. Brakel labors to bring practical application to each doctrine he treats, showing the value and use of the truths of God's Word. It is not enough to assent to right doctrine; one must also engage these truths with hearts of faith and repentance. Let this work be an encouragement to all who read it, and an example to today's ministers in directing doctrine to its proper end.
About Wilhelmus à Brakel
WILHELMUS à BRAKEL (1635–1711) studied theology at the universities in Franeker and Utrecht and was particularly influenced by his mentor, Gisbertus Voetius. He served four congregations in his native province of Friesland before moving to his final and longest pastorate of twenty-eight years in Rotterdam.