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The Supreme Court of Canada has become increasingly involved in determining which of the laws that the Canadian Parliament has passed are constitutional. The authority or standard by which they judge Canadian law is The Constitution Act, 1982 (containing the Charter of Rights and Freedoms). If a particular law is deemed contrary to the guarantees of The Constitution, then the Supreme Court nullifies that law. If a particular law is considered to uphold the guarantees of The Constitution, then the Supreme Court upholds that law. All the laws of Canada are interpreted through the authority of The Constitution Act, 1982.
The use of written materials as an authority or standard by which we judge other writings or even behaviors is a common feature in our world today. Christians, for millennia, have operated in a similar vein. Christians use the Bible as the authority for living an obedient and faithful life. In particular, Reformed Christians have historically been known as "people of the Book." The formula of Declaration for Ministers of Word and Sacrament read by all Reformed Church in America candidates during their ordinations or installation services declares, "I accept the Scriptures as the only rule of faith and life." The Bible (or the Scriptures) is central to our Reformed heritage and faith. Thus, we believe that the Bible is the final authority by which we judge our beliefs, our patterns of thinking, our motives, our behaviors, and our attitudes.
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