23 Question. Did all the Free Church people accept the Declaratory Act?
Answer. No, those who adhered to the Confession of Faith and opposed the new departures in doctrine and worship (the Constitutionalists) opposed the Declaratory Act.
24 Q. Why were those who opposed the Declaratory Act called Constitutionalists?
A. Those who opposed the Declaratory Act were called Constitutionalists because they adhered to the original Creed and Constitution of the Free Church.
25 Q. Did all the Constitutionalists join the Free Presbyterian Church?
A. No, a number of the Constitutionalists remained behind in the Declaratory Act Free Church.
26 Q. Were the Constitutionalists right to remain in the Declaratory Act Free Church?
A. No, the Constitutionalists should have followed the course of separation which their speeches indicated and promised.
27 Q. What reason did these Constitutionalists give for acting as they did?
A. The Constitutionalists who remained in the Free Church said that they were not under the Declaratory Act because they had dissented against it.
28 Q. Did their dissent free them from the operation of the Act?
A. No, dissent simply relieved them from any complicity in passing it.
29 Q. What was the effect of remaining under the operation of the Act?
A. All office-bearers in the Declaratory Act Free Church were compelled to allow others to accept and preach the doctrines of the Declaratory Act, which for such office-bearers was a sinful breach of their ordination vows; therefore protesting and separating was the only principled, consistent and safe option.
30 Q. What reason did the Constitutionalists give for remaining in the Declaratory Act Free Church?
A. They affirmed that because the Questions and Formula were not changed, therefore the law was not changed.
31 Q. Did the fact that the Questions and Formula remained unchanged justify the Constitutionalists’ continuing in the Declaratory Act Free Church?
A. No; because the original Creed and Constitution of the Church itself was changed, the unchanged nature of the Questions and Formula was irrelevant. The Constitutionalists could no longer fulfil their avowed commitments to exercise discipline over office-bearers who preached doctrines contrary to the Confession of Faith, such as those within the Declaratory Act.
32 Q. Why were the Questions and Formula left unchanged?
A. The Questions and Formula were unchanged because of a lack of honesty. This was a political ploy to achieve the desired outcome without upsetting the minority.
33 Q. Where did this leave the constitution of the Free Church as expressed in the Formula to be subscribed by office-bearers?
A. The Declaratory Act emptied the Formula of all meaning and it was a dead letter while the Declaratory Act was in operation.
34 Q. What became of the Constitutionalists that remained in the Declaratory Act Free Church?
A. A number of the Constitutionalist ministers (25 in number) refused to enter the Union between the Free Church and the United Presbyterian Church in 1900, and continued under the name of the Free Church of Scotland.
35 Q. Would those who refused to enter the Union of 1900 have remained in the Declaratory Act Free Church if there had been no Union?
A. Had there been no Union in 1900 there is no evidence that the Constitutionalists would have left the Declaratory Act Free Church at a later stage.
36 Q. Did the Constitutionalists not repeal the Declaratory Act in 1906?
A. Yes; this action proved that they were under its operation for thirteen years; yet they erred in stating within the repeal Act that the Free Church had “always adhered” to the Confession of Faith, for this was manifestly false.
37 Q. What inferences can be drawn from the manner in which they repealed the Declaratory Act in 1906?
A. The preamble to the Act repealing the Declaratory Act condemns the position of the Free Presbyterian Church in 1893 as schismatic and masks unfaithfulness in those who remained. Until this is repealed the Churches are fixed in their separate positions by an untruth that is contrary to the constitution of the Free Presbyterian Church.
38 Q. Did these courses indicate a different outlook on the doctrinal and ecclesiastical situation?
A. Yes, the Free Presbyterian Church considered that the Constitutionalists were too weak in their doctrinal and ecclesiastical stance, and owing to this the Free Presbyterian Church was no nearer seeing eye to eye with the Free Church in 1906 than in 1900.
39 Q. Why did the Free Presbyterian Church never repeal the Declaratory Act?
A. The Free Presbyterian Church made a complete break with the Declaratory Act Free Church in taking a separate position and never had this Act as part of its constitution, so there was no need to repeal it.
40 Q. What became of the majority of the Declaratory Act Church?
A. The majority Free Church joined the United Presbyterian Church to form the United Free Church of Scotland.
41 Q. Is this Church still in existence?
A. No, the United Free Church joined the Church of Scotland in 1929, but a minority which refused to enter that union still exists.
42 Q. When did the Free Church of Scotland come into existence?
A. The Free Church came into existence in 1843 in what is commonly called the Disruption.
43 Q. Why did the Disruption of 1843 take place?
A. The Disruption took place because the State was interfering with the liberties of the Church.
44 Q. In what way was the State interfering with the Church?
A. The State interfered with the Church Courts by insisting on ministers being intruded into congregations against the will of the people.
45 Q. What is Erastianism?
A. Erastianism is to place the Churches of Christ, and the affairs necessarily and peculiarly belonging to them as such, under the laws or the administration of the civil magistrate
46 Q. What was the course of events that led to the Disruption?
A. After ten years of conflict in the Church Courts and the Civil Courts, a great number of the ablest and most pious of the ministers and people left the Church of Scotland in May 1843.
47 Q. What chief claim did the Free Church make?
A. The Free Church in 1843 claimed to be the Church of Scotland free, which meant that she claimed historical continuity with the true Reformed Church of Scotland.
48 Q. Does the Free Presbyterian Church make this claim?
A. Yes, the Free Presbyterian Church claims to represent the Free Church of 1843 and the Reformed Church of Scotland.
49 Q. Has the State ever recognised the claim of the Free Church?
A. No, the claim of the Free Church of 1843 was never recognised by the State but this does not render the claim invalid by any means.
50 Q. When did the Reformed Church of Scotland come into existence?
A. After several years of struggle, Scotland renounced Popery in 1560 and the Reformed Church of Scotland was established by Parliament that year.
51 Q. Was the Established Church in Scotland always Presbyterian?
A. Originally the Reformed Church of Scotland was Presbyterian but there were times when Episcopacy was in the ascendancy under the Stuart kings. The best of the Scottish people, however, did not submit to Episcopacy.
52 Q. Give some instances of the refusal of the Scottish Church to submit to Episcopacy?
A. There was a notable national rising against Episcopacy at the signing of the National Covenant in 1638, and in the Glasgow Assembly of the same year (which period has come to be known as the Second Reformation), and again at the Revolution Settlement in 1690.
53 Q. What is the relation of the Free Presbyterian Church to the Second Reformation?
A. Both the Free Church of 1843, and with it the Free Presbyterian Church, heartily acknowledge the attainments of the Second Reformation
 This Church had been formed by the union of the Relief and United Secession Churches in 1847.
 Catechism of the Principles and Constitution of the Free Church of Scotland, 1847, Q. 225.
 See the Free Church Act of 1851 in the Authorised Standards of the Free Church, and the Free Presbyterian Synod Resolution on Reformation Attainments, Appendix III.7 on page 48.