The Power of Indwelling Corruption: The Christian’s Reasonable Service – Wilhelmus à Brakel
(1) The complaints of the saints: “O Lord, why hast Thou made us to err from Thy ways, and hardened our heart
from Thy fear?” (Isa 63:17); “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and
bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am!” (Rom 7:23-24).
(2) Such texts in which believers confess the power of indwelling corruption: “Iniquities prevail against me” (Ps
(3) Such texts in which saints pray to be kept from this. “Keep back Thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let
them not have dominion over me” (Ps 19:13).
(4) Related warnings. “And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption”
(Eph 4:30); “But exhort one another daily, while it is called To-day; lest any of you be hardened through the
deceitfulness of sin” (Heb 3:13).
The Nadere Reformatie
Translated into English as Dutch Second Reformation or Dutch Further Reformation, refers to an era in church history during the Dutch Republic from ca. 1600-1750. The representatives of the period endeavored to work out the principles of the Protestant Reformation in family life, church, and society balancing and valuing both orthodoxy and piety. As such the Nadere Reformatie resembles other expressions of the Post-reformation Reformed era including English Puritanism and German Pietism.
Wilhelmus à Brakel (1635-1711) was a major representative of the Nadere Reformatie, and a contemporary of Gisbertus Voetius and Herman Witsius. À Brakel’s pastorate in Rotterdam from 1683-1711 was marked by the monumental publication of a four-volume work entitled the Redelijke Godsdienst (The Christian’s Reasonable Service) which was a systematic theology written for the members of the congregation. The work is permeated with practical and experiential application of expounded doctrines, thereby establishing the vital relationship between objective truth and the subjective experience of that truth.