Service - 11:00 AM
Glory to be Revealed in Us
Heidelberg Catechism, Lord's Day 23; Romans 8:15-22
I. What It
Creation's Attitude Towards It
Attitude Towards It
Psalms: 145:1-8; 39:6-13; 104:28-33; 16:6-11
Service - 6:00 PM
The Office of Believer (4)
Excommunicated Brother Repents
37:3-9; 40:1-5; 85:6-13; 51:11-17
cassettes of the worship services, contact the bookstore.
CPRF website: www.cprf.co.uk
Quotes to Consider:
Church Order, Article 78: "Whenever anyone
who has been excommunicated desires to become reconciled to the church
in the way of repentance, it shall be announced to the congregation,
either before the celebration of the Lord’s Supper, or at some other
opportune time, in order that (in as far as no one can mention
anything against him to the contrary) he may with profession of his
conversion be publicly reinstated, according to the form for that
Announcements (subject to God’s will):
Audio tapes of the lecture on "The Synod of
Dordt" are on the back table especially for those unable to attend
Catechism: Monday at 7 PM at the manse with the
Campbells Tuesday at 5:30 PM at the Murrays (Membership class at 6:30
Bible Study will be held this week Wednesday at
7:45 PM at the manse on the office of believer.
The Reformed Witness Hour next Lord’s Day,
16 April (8:30-9:00 AM, on Gospel 846MW) is entitled "Not Here, But
Risen" (Mark 16:1-8).
Congregational Outing: A boat trip on the River
Lagan (with a walk and picnic) is being planned for Monday, 17 April
("Easter Monday") at 11 AM. Cost will be £5/adult and £2/child (12
years old or under). A sign-up sheet is on the back table. See William
Graham for more details.
Upcoming Lectures: "The 7,000 Who Have Not
Bowed the Knee to Baal," S. Wales, 21 April
BRF Conference: 42 of the 50 places on the
coach going to the conference have now been booked.
A list of the books, tapes and pamphlets stocked by
the Wellington Protestant Reformed Fellowship (New Zealand) has
been added to the CPRF website for those in that part of the world who
want PRC material.
Church Site: A temporary construction fence has
been set up on the site.
Last Week’s Offerings: General Fund - £1091.30.
Building Fund - £322. Donations: £200 (building fund), £40
(tapes), £8 (books), £6 (building fund).
PRC News: This past Monday, Rev. Eriks was
asked to speak at a commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the
Hudsonville tornado. Rev. Eriks opened with prayer, read a part of
Rev. Vos’ sermon which was preached the Sunday after the tornado
(recorded in the book O
Taste & See), and made a few comments. Rev. Slopsema received
the call to Faith PRC. Covenant PRC in New Jersey has a new trio
consisting of Revs. A. Brummel (S. Holland, IL), R. Kleyn (Trinity,
MI), and T. Miersma (Spokane, WA).
Form of Readmitting Excommunicated Persons
Beloved in the Lord, it is known to you, that
some time ago our fellow member N., was cut off from the Church of
Christ; we cannot now conceal from you, that he, by the above
mentioned remedy, as also by the means of good admonitions and your
christian prayers, is come so far, that he is ashamed of his sins,
praying us to be readmitted into the communion of the Church.
Since we, then, by virtues of the command of God,
are in duty bound to receive such persons with joy, and it being
necessary that good order should be used therein, we therefore give
you to understand hereby, that we purpose to loose again the
aforementioned excommunicated person from the bond of
excommunication, the next time when by the grace of God we celebrate
the Supper of the Lord, and receive him again into the communion of
the Church; except any one of you, in the meantime, shall show just
cause why this ought not to be done, of which you must give notice
to us in due time. In the meantime, let every one thank the Lord,
for the mercy shown this poor sinner, beseeching him to perfect his
work in him to his eternal salvation. Amen.
Afterwards, if no impediment be alleged, the Minister shall
proceed to the readmission of the excommunicated sinner, in the
Beloved Christians, we have the last time
informed you of the repentance of our fellow-member N. to the end,
that he might with your foreknowledge be again received into the
Church of Christ: and whereas no one has alleged anything why his
readmission ought not to take place, we therefore at present purpose
to proceed to the same.
Our Lord Jesus Christ (Matt. 18), having
confirmed the sentence of his Church, in the excommunicating of
impenitent sinners, declares immediately thereupon, "that whatsoever
his ministers shall loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven";
whereby He gives to understand, that when any person is cut off from
his Church, he is not deprived of all hopes of salvation; but can
again be loosed from the bonds of condemnation. Therefore, since God
declares in his word, that he takes no pleasure in the death of a
sinner, but that he turn from his wickedness and live, so the church
always hopes for the repentance of the backslidden sinner, and keeps
her bosom open to receive the penitent; accordingly the apostle Paul
(1 Cor. 5), commanded the Corinthian (whom he had declared ought to
be cut off from the Church) to be again received and comforted,
since being reproved by many, he was come to the knowledge of his
sins: to the end that he should not be swallowed up with overmuch
sorrow (2 Cor. 2).
Secondly. Christ teaches us in the
aforementioned text, that the sentence of absolution, which is
passed upon such a penitent sinner according to the Word of God, is
counted sure and firm by the Lord; therefore, no one ought to doubt
in the least, who truly repents, that he is assuredly received by
God in mercy, as Christ says (John 20), "Whosesoever sins ye remit,
they are remitted unto them." But now to proceed to the matter in
hand: I ask thee, N., whether thou do declare here with all thine
heart before God and his Church; that thou are sincerely sorry for
the sin and stubbornness, for which thou has been justly cut off
from the Church? Whether thou do also truly believe, that the Lord
has forgiven thee, and does forgive thy sins for Christ’s sake, and
that thou therefore are desirous to be readmitted into the Church of
Christ, promising henceforth to live in all godliness according to
the command of the Lord?
Answer. Yes, verily.
Then the Minister shall further say:
We then, here assembled in the name and authority
of the Lord Jesus Christ, declare thee, N., to be absolved from the
bonds of excommunication; and do receive thee again into the Church
of the Lord, and declare unto thee that thou are in the communion of
Christ and of the holy sacraments, and of all the spiritual
blessings and benefits of God, which he promises to and bestows upon
his Church: may the eternal God preserve thee therein to the end,
through his only begotten Son Jesus Christ. Amen.
Be therefore assured in thy heart, my beloved
brother, that the Lord has again received thee in mercy. Be diligent
henceforward to guard thyself against the subtlety of Satan, and the
wickedness of the world, to the end, that thou may not fall again
into sin: love Christ, for many sins are forgiven thee.
And you, beloved Christians, receive this your
brother, with hearty affection; be glad that he was dead and is
alive, he was lost and is found; rejoice with the angels of heaven,
over this sinner who repents: count him no longer as a stranger, but
as a fellow-citizen with the saints, and of the household of God.
And whereas we can have no good of ourselves, let us, praising and
magnifying the Lord Almighty, implore his mercy, saying:
Gracious God and Father, we thank thee through Jesus Christ,
that thou hast been pleased to give this our fellow-brother
repentance unto life, and us cause to rejoice in his conversion.
We beseech thee, show him thy mercy, that he may become more and
more assured in his mind of the remission of his sins, and that
he may receive from thence inexpressible joy and delight, to
serve thee. And whereas he has heretofore by his sins offended
many, grant that he may, by his conversion, edify many. Grant
also that he may steadfastly walk in thy ways to the end: and
may we learn from this example, that with thee is mercy, that
thou mayest be feared; and that we, counting him for our brother
and co-heir of life eternal, may jointly serve thee with filial
fear and obedience all the days of our life, through Jesus
Christ, our Lord, in whose name we thus conclude our prayer:
Our Father which is in heaven. Hallowed be thy
name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in
heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but
deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power and
the glory, for ever. Amen.