Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
Lord’s Day, 17 April, 2011
"Those that be planted in the house of the Lord
shall flourish in the courts of our God" (Ps. 92:13)
Morning Service - 11:00 AM
The Prayer of the Church in Babylon (5)
The Desolate Church Appeals to Father [download]
Scripture Reading: Isaiah 63:7-64:12
Solemn Affirmations That God Is Our Father
The Earnest Pleas for Father to Look Upon Us
The Passionate Questions Concerning Father’s Mercies Towards Us
Psalms: 79:8-13; 95:1-5; 77:3-9; 80:14-19
Evening Service - 6:00 PM
Ingrafted Into Christ [download]
Scripture Reading: John 15:1-27
Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 7
Psalms: 90:1-7; 95:6-11; 80:8-13; 119:65-72
Stephen Murray for
CDs of the sermons and DVDs of the worship services.
Quotes to Consider:
John Calvin on Isaiah 63:16: "God
permits us to reveal our hearts familiarly before him; for prayer is
nothing else than the opening up of our heart before God; as the
greatest alleviation is, to pour our cares, distresses, and anxieties
into his bosom. ‘Roll thy cares on the Lord,’ says David (Ps. 37:4) ...
[Isaiah] calls God a Father in the name of the Church; for all
cannot call him thus, but it is the peculiar privilege of the Church to
address him by a father’s name. Hence it ought to be inferred that
Christ, as the first-born, or rather the only-begotten Son of God,
always governed his Church; for in no other way than through him can God
be called Father."
T. Reade: "True faith is not a mere
passive impression, or an inoperative notion. It is a holy principle
wrought in the soul by the Spirit of God, producing gracious habits,
holy affections, filial reverence, and obedience."
Announcements (subject to God’s will)
classes: Monday, 6:00 PM - Joseph, Jacob, Nathan & Alex
Monday, 6:45 PM - Zoe, Amy & Lea
Tuesday Bible study: 11 AM, on II
Thessalonians 3:3f. on confidence in the saints and withdrawing from
Belgic Confession class: 7:45 PM. We’ll continue our study of
Article 10, looking at the eternal generation of the Son.
Thursday membership class: 7:30 PM
on eschatology, the last times.
The Reformed Witness Hour next
Lord’s Day (8:30-9:00 AM, on Gospel 846MW) is entitled "The Not Quite
Empty Tomb (John 20:1-10) by Rev. R. Kleyn.
Offerings: General Fund - £434.84.
The Council will hold their monthly
meeting on Monday, 2 May, at 8 PM.
Everyone is invited to a CPRC/LRF
Overnighter at the Newcastle Youth Hostel in Co. Down on Friday, 6
May. We now have a large enough group to have the hostel to ourselves
and so we have more beds available. Come join us at this fine location
in the centre of Newcastle, overlooking the beach. Cost is just £15 per
person. Directions can be found on the hostel website
Website Additions: 1 Italian, 1
Serbian, 1 Portuguese and 2 German translations were added.
PRC News: Hope PRC called Rev. Marcus (Edmonton, Canada). Trinity
will call from a trio of Revs. W. Langerak (Southeast, MI), Koole
(Grandville, MI), and Haak (Georgetown, MI).
Letter published in the Grand Rapids
Press, 14 April, 2011
God’s Love Can’t Be Defeated
The opposition in Grand Rapids to Pastor
Rob Bell’s book, Love Wins, surprises me ("Past couple of weeks
‘most painful,’ pastor says," Grand Rapids Press, April 6).
The reason for his doubt about eternal
punishment is his conviction that God loves all humans and desires to
save them all. His argument is simple: Those who are loved by God will
not perish. The title of the middle chapter of the book is, "Does God
Get What God Wants?"
If the premise is right (God loves all
humans), the conclusion is sound—and orthodox (there is no hell).
The love of God cannot be defeated. As
Pastor Bell puts it: "Love wins." As the Reformed faith puts it: "The
love of God is sovereign!’
The day I am convinced that God loves all
humans without exception, on that day I become a universalist—a very
Most of those opposing Bell share his
conviction about the universality of the love of God in the gospel of
But they condemn his conclusion.
For them, the love of God fails.
This is worse heresy.
DAVID J. ENGELSMA
Professor of Theology, Emeritus Protestant Reformed Seminary Grand
What Would It Take to Prove Election and
Rev. Angus Stewart
Some people wonder if the Bible teaches
absolute predestination: God’s unconditional election of some sinners to
everlasting salvation in Jesus Christ and His unconditional reprobation
of other sinners to eternal destruction in the way of their sins.
What would it take to prove this? What if
God in His Word told us of twin boys in their mother’s womb, and said
that before they were even born—and therefore before they could believe
or not believe, or do good works or bad works—one was the object of
God’s love and election while the other was hated?
What if an apostle, anticipating objections
to this, emphatically denied that God is unrighteous in so doing, and
quoted Old Testament Scripture to prove the absolute sovereignty of
God’s mercy and compassion, and asserted that salvation is not of man’s
free will or of man’s exertions but solely of divine mercy?
What if the Holy Ghost, knowing full well
the objections of fallen man to this teaching, proceeded to give a
well-known Old Testament example of a man whom God hardened and
destroyed in order to show the power of His glorious name? What if He
then affirmed the absolute sovereignty of divine hardening and, rebuking
those who find fault with God’s ways, taught that God is the great
potter who can do what He wills with the vessels He makes, destroying
some and bringing others to glory?
This is exactly what we do have in Romans
9:10-24. If anyone wants to know if the Bible teaches unconditional
election and unconditional reprobation, they should look up and read
Romans 9:10-24: "And not only this; but
when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac; (For
the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil,
that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of
works, but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall
serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have
I hated. What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God?
God forbid. For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will
have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of
God that sheweth mercy. For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for
this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in
thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.
Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will
he hardeneth. Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault?
For who hath resisted his will? Nay but, O man, who art thou that
repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed
it, Why hast thou made me thus? Hath not the potter power over the
clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another
unto dishonour? What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make
his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath
fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his
glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,
Even us, whom he hath called, not of the Jews only, but also of the