Here we see that the French inclusion of the deacons with the consistory was NOT because they viewed the office of deacon as a ruling office, but because they viewed their deacons as called at the same time to be assistant elders. Here they were evidently able to give some “after the fact” justification of their actual practice, while at the same time being careful not to blur (theologically) the Scriptural distinction between the office of elder and that of deacon. Nevertheless, this Synod still did not permit deacons to take part in discussion of discipline cases.
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