Here is why Paulin Bédard recommends reading the book "La grace defined and defended"
How can events 400 years ago still nourish our faith today? Pastor Kevin DeYoung gives us the joy of explaining with clarity and vivacity the biblical doctrines of salvation that were defined and defended at the Synod of 1618-1619 in Dordrecht, the Netherlands.
What is it? What is at stake in this old debate between Arminians and Reformers concerns the wonderful grace of God in Jesus Christ. From our eternal election in Christ, through the atonement made for his sheep on the cross, leading - in the midst of our corruption and our death in our sins - to the overwhelming miracle of regeneration by the Holy Ghost, to to the perseverance of the saints leading to eternal glory to come, God's redemptive plan for his elect is all to the glory of the Triune God and to the greater comfort of his children. Such is the plan of this book, which follows the Canons of Dordrecht article by article: predestination, redemption, corruption, conversion, glorification.
A little book, of course, can't say everything, especially on such glorious subjects, but it can say a lot. Those who seek in this work the detailed biblical basis of the doctrines set forth in the Canons (or rulings) of Dordrecht risk being hung up on their appetites, for, although this basis appears in several places, this book is not intended to provide an in-depth exegetical demonstration, which other works have already done before him. Its purpose is to clearly explain these biblical doctrines of salvation, as confessed at the Synod of Dordrecht.
These explanations will allow readers to appreciate all the theological precision, to understand the issues in the light of the historical context of the XVII e century, and to perceive the innumerable benefits for the Church and the Christians of our time. In short, by tracing the paths of history, theology, apologetics and pastoral care, Pastor DeYoung makes us rediscover the importance of Dordrecht for Christian life today.
The practical applications that he offers us are all pastoral avenues that everyone can explore on their own. The doctrine of election, for example, will inspire us to worship and humility, give us confidence in trials, and stimulate our zeal for mission and evangelism. The doctrine of perseverance will strengthen our certainty of salvation, warn us against nonchalance and immorality, help us better understand the importance of preaching and the sacraments, etc. In particular, I take note of the author's interesting suggestion that the doctrine of election has been revealed to us to impart great confidence, not to engender anxiety. In the current context where more and more people suffer from anxiety, this avenue deserves to be explored ...
In short, this book does not offer milk for children, but solid food for those who aspire to grow to maturity in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. A most edifying reading!
- Paulin Bédard
Author of the book The solid foundation of salvation ;
pastor of the Reformed Christian Church of Beauce, Quebec