The Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland began in 1893, out of the controversy over the Declaratory Act passed by the Free Church of Scotland in 1892. These articles, written soon after, explain the issues involved.
- Reasons for Separation. This first article from the first issue of the Free Presbyterian Magazine shows that although the general declension in the Free Church of Scotland had raised many questions of duty among the godly, the passing of the Declaratory Act was the formal reason for the Free Presbyterian separation.
- How the Declaratory Act changed the constitution of the Free Church. This article shows: (1) That the Declaratory Act changed the constitution of the Free Church of Scotland; and (2) No one holding the principles of the 1843 Free Church could consistently remain in the body calling itself the Free Church after 1893.
- Explanatory Criticism of the Declaratory Act. This lengthy article explains the meaning of the Declaratory Act section by section, to show its truly pernicious nature.
- The Consequences of the Declaratory Act. This article summarises 10 adverse consequences flowing from the Declaratory Act.
- The Declaratory Act and Admission into Office in the Free Church. This article shows the implications of the Declaratory Act for all those becoming office-bearers in the Free Church after its passing.
When these documents are sufficiently weighed, it cannot be wondered at that the Free Presbyterian Church of Scotland values creed subscription, and makes a decided point of requiring all its office-bearers to make an unqualified profession of adherence to the whole Westminster Confession of Faith.
Other articles and papers were written later:
- Rev Donald Beaton wrote an article in the Free Presbyterian Magazine in 1927 (vol. 32, p. 41 ) on the Constitutional Aspect of the Declaratory Act.
- At the 1943 Synod, 50 years after the formation of the Free Presbyterian Church, Rev Neil MacIntyre delivered a paper, A Brief History of the Free Presbyterian Church, in which he gave a concise explanation of the Declaratory Act controversy.