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The Historical Development of the PCA Book of Church Order

Chapter 28 : Discipline of Noncommuning Members

Paragraph 1 : On the Training of Children

28-1. The spiritual nature, instruction and training of the children of the Church are committed by God primarily to their parents. They are responsible to the Church for the faithful discharge of their obligations. It is a principle duty of the Church to promote true religion in the home. True discipleship involves learning the Word of God under the guidance of the Holy Spirit both at home and in the Church. Without learning there is no growth and without growth there is no discipline and without discipline there is sin and iniquity (1 Timothy 4:7).

[Historical Summary : The current PCA text dates to _____.]

Background and Comparison :
1. PCA 1973, RoD, 2-1, Adopted text, as printed in the Minutes of General Assembly, p.145
2. Continuing Presbyterian Church 1973, RoD, 2-1, Proposed text, p. 39
3. PCUS 1933, RoD, II-§168
4. PCUS 1925, RoD, II-§168

The spiritual nurture, instruction, and training of the children of the Church are committed by God primarily to their parents who are responsible to the Church for the faithful discharge of their obligations, and it is a principle duty of the Church to promote true religion in the home.

PCUS 1879,
Rules of Discipline, II-1
The oversight of the children of the Church is committed by God primarily to believing parents, who are responsible to the Church for the faithful discharge of this duty. The responsibility of parents continues during the minority of their children, and extends to all such conduct contrary to the purity and sobriety of the gospel as parents may and ought to restrain and control.


PCUS 1869 draft, Canons of Discipline, II-1
The oversight of the children of the Church, in the first instance, is committee by God to believing parents, who are responsible to the
Church for the faithful discharge of this duty. The responsibility of parents continues during the minority of their children, and so long thereafter as they remain inmates of the family; and extends to all such conduct contrary to the purity and sobriety of the Gospel, as
parents may and ought to restrain and control.

PCUS 1867 draft, Canons of Discipline, II-1 and II-2
I. Every person who is the child of a professing Christian is federally a member of the church, is under its care, and subject to its government, inspection and training; but he is not subject to those forms of discipline which involve judicial process, until he make a profession of faith in Christ.
II. The oversight of the children of the church, in the first instance, is committed by God to believing parents, who are responsible to the church for the faithful discharge of this duty. The responsibility of parents continues during the minority of their children, and so long thereafter as they remain inmates of the family; and extends to all such conduct, contrary to the purity and sobriety of the gospel, as parents may and ought to restrain and control.

COMMENTARY :
F.P. Ramsay, Exposition of the Book of Church Order
(1898, p. 174), on II-1:
CHAPTER II. - OF THE DISCIPLINE OF NON-COMMUNICATING MEMBERS.
After stating the obligations of parents to children in the Church, in the first paragraph, the rest of the chapter has to do with the duty of the Church, as such ; first, to instruct her children ; second, to recognize or to plead with them on their arrival at years of discretion ; and third, to continue to seek them. A paragraph is appended to determine as to the jurisdiction of what particular church given non-communicating members belong.
147.--I. The oversight of the children of the Church is committed by God primarily to believing parents, who are responsible to the Church for the faithful discharge of this duty. The responsibility of parents continues during the minority of their children, and extends to all such conduct contrary to the purity and sobriety of the gospel as parents may and ought to restrain and control.

This paragraph defines, not the full responsibility of parents to God, but their responsibility to the Church, for the behavior of their children ; and while judicial prosecution may not be had of non-communicating children, it may be had of their communicating parents for such conduct of their children contrary to the purity and sobriety of the gospel as parents may and ought to restrain and control.



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FoG..
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11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
I. King & Head of Church
.§1.
§4
§5
RoD
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
II. Preliminary Principles
§1
§2
§3
§4
§5
§6
§7
§8
DfW
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
[FoG = Form of Government ; RoD = Rules of Discipline ; DfW = Directory for Worship]