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Now Israel may say, and that in truth

It was during this same period in Scottish history that new confessional standards were written by six reformers, which had theology reflecting the work of John Calvin. The Scots Confession, in large part, established the doctrinal distinctives of the Church of Scotland, and the Kirk came to be called Presbyterian. In these documents, we see the Reformation solae clearly put forth, including soli deo gloria, a Latin term for “Glory to God alone.”

Now Israel may say, and that in truth,
If that the Lord had not our right maintained,
If that the Lord had not with us remained,
When cruel men against us rose to strive,
We surely had been swallowed up alive.

Yea, when their wrath against us fiercely rose,
The swelling tide had o’er us spread its wave,
The raging stream had then become our grave,
The surging flood, in proudly swelling roll,
Most surely then had overwhelmed our soul.

Blest be the Lord who made us not their prey:
As from the snare a bird escapeth free,

Their net is rent and so escaped are we:
Our only help is in Jehovah’s name,
Who made the earth and all the heav’nly frame.

– Old 124th, Louis Bourgeois, 1551

Today, the landscape of spiritual warfare is somewhat different for God’s people, but Satan’s baseline effort to undermine God’s kingdom and defeat His people has not changed. In the 21st century, most Western Christians hardly have to fear the sword and the spear, but we daily face the systematic and insidious onslaught of moral relativism, pagan philosophies and political agendas without the church; and the subtly lethal dilution of the gospel and hard but essential truths within the church.

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