The Sessions of the Synod of Dordt, Week Twenty-Eight: Sessions 176-180

Session 176: Monday, May 27 AM
Synod heard the advice of the committee regarding the appeal of the Remonstrant minister from Hoorn (session 175). It decided that the Synod of North Holland had judged him properly. At the same time, it decided to exhort the provincial synod to labor to get him to sign the Belgic Confession, Heidelberg Catechism, and Canons of Dordt; and, if he would sign these, to restore him to office.

Session 177: Monday, May 27 PM
Synod read the judgment it had made at the previous session to the delegates from North Holland and to the appellant.

The committee appointed to draw up two shorter catechisms (session 17) presented its drafts. Synod read and approved the shorter one. It decided not to read the longer one, but to permit its use.

Synod appointed a committee to thank the States General for calling and supporting the Synod, and to ask it to approve and enforce the decrees of the Synod. A letter was drawn up in which the States General was informed of specific decisions, particularly in the Post-Acta sessions (the sessions after the foreign delegates had left), and asked to ratify them.

Session 178: Tuesday, May 28 AM
One of the synod’s clerks had been tasked to abbreviate the acts of Synod before the Synod adjourned. Time was running out; the task could not be completed before the Synod adjourned. So Synod appointed one member from each of its Dutch delegations, including one professor, to meet at some point after Synod adjourned to review and approve the condensed Acts. Later in the session it also assigned this committee the task of reviewing the Dutch liturgical forms (an English translation of which is found on the back of the 1912 Psalter) with a view to adding them to the public editions of the Acts.

Synod made several decisions regarding the calling of the next national Synod. This synod was to be called in three years; however, the United Provinces never called another national synod. The next national synod was held in 1816, after the Dutch Republic had become the United Kingdom of the Netherlands. Synod appointed Classis Dordrecht to arrange for the convening of the next national synod. It decided to ask the States General to invite the Dutch churches in Great Britain and Germany to the next national Synod. And it appointed four men to bring these requests to the States General, and to report to the next national synod.

Synod decided to close its meetings with a public worship service of thanksgiving at the Grote Kerk, led by Rev. Balthasar Lydius, the minister of the church at Dordtrecht.

The president and two vice-presidents were delegated to thank the magistrates of Dordrecht for their courtesy and help in hosting the Synod.

Session 179: Tuesday, May 28 PM
Synod read and approved the minutes of the sessions from May 22 to May 28.

Session 180: Wednesday, May 29 AM
Synod met at the Kloveniersdoelen for prayer, then proceeded to the great church in Dordrecht. There Balthasar Lydius preached on Isaiah 12:1-3. Lydius thanked God for his favor shown to the churches in the Netherlands and his blessing on the synod’s work, and asked God to bless the decisions of the Synod for the good of the churches. The delegates then returned to the Kloveniersdoelen, while the president and vice-presidents went to the city hall to thank the city magistrates. When all were gathered together again, one of the States General deputies thanked the Synod for its labors, and the officers of Synod returned thanks to the States General for their support. After other closing formalities, the Synod adjourned.