Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
Lord’s Day, 28 August, 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
John and the Word [download]
Scripture Reading: Luke 3:1-22
Psalms: 97:1-7, 11; 106:1-7; 119:105-112; 27:1-5
Evening Service - 6:00 PM
Christ’s Incarnation [download]
Scripture Reading: Matthew 1
Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 14
Profound Meaning of It
The Great Profit of It
Psalms: 84:1-6; 106:8-15; 132:10-17; 40:6-10
Stephen Murray for
CDs of the sermons and DVDs of the worship services.
Quote to Consider:
Leon Morris on John 1:7: "Testimony is
a serious matter and it is required to substantiate the truth of a
matter. It is clear that our author wants us to take what he writes as
reliable. He is insistent that there is good evidence of the things he
sets down. Witness establishes the truth. It does more. It commits a
man. If I take my stand in the witness box and testify that
such-and-such is the truth of the matter I am no longer neutral. I have
committed myself. John lets us see that there are those like John the
Baptist who have committed themselves by their witness to Christ. But he
is also bold enough to think that God has committed Himself. He has
borne witness in various ways. He has committed Himself before the world
in all that the Son was and did. The men who have borne their witness
have committed themselves, but the important thing is the witness of
Announcements (subject to God’s will)
A new CR News is available on the
back table. Free daily meditation booklets for September are also
on the back table.
The Council will meet this Thursday,
1 September, at 7 PM.
Rev. McGeown travels to S. Wales
this week Thursday to give a lecture entitled "Friendship With God."
Please remember him and this witness in your prayers.
A congregational meeting will be
held next Lord’s Day, 4 September, after the evening service, at which
male confessing members will vote to approve or disapprove Ivan Reid for
elder (3-year term) and to elect William Graham and Philip Hall as
deacons (one for 3 years and one for 2 years). Any lawful objections
should be made in writing and received by the council in sufficient time
prior to 4 September. To learn more about the steps in electing elders
and deacons, see Church Order 22, 24 and 27.
The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast
next Lord’s Day (Gospel 846MW at 8:30 AM) will be "Conviction for
Christian Education" (Ephesians 6:4) by Rev. Haak.
Catechism classes start on the week
beginning Sunday, 11 September. Catechism books, etc., will be given out
and times will be arranged in the next few days.
Our Tuesday morning Bible study will
hold its first meeting on 13 September at 11 AM. We will be studying the
Antichrist in the book of Revelation. Plan now to attend and bring a
Belgic Confession Class
will start the year on 14 September at 7:45 PM. We will look at
Belgic Confession, Article 12, Of the Creation. All are welcome.
The next men’s meeting will be held
on Saturday, 17 or 24 September, 8 PM at the Kennedy’s to study Daniel
Offerings: General Fund: £392.90 Donations: £200 (DVDs),
£150 (CR News).
The Virgin Birth of Christ
According to Godliness, pp. 137-138)
One of the fundamentals of our faith is the
virgin birth of Christ. Both the reality and significance of Christ’s
humanity are inseparably connected with belief in his virgin birth.
Because this truth is fundamental, it has
been often denied. Some in the early church, called the Gnostics, denied
Christ’s virgin birth. It is still under attack today.
Some modern Bible versions, such as the
Revised Standard Version, attack the virgin birth of Christ by
retranslating the word virgin in Isaiah 7:14 as "young woman."
The Mormons deny it with their blasphemous teaching the Christ was born
of sexual relations between the Father and Mary. Many today think the
virgin birth was only a legend about Jesus that the early church
believed, but that is no longer credible today. All of these attacks
only serve to show how important the doctrine is. The devil does not
waste his time attacking matters of no consequence.
The virgin birth of Christ is important,
first, because it is a testimony to Christ’s real humanity. Although
Christ did not have a human father, he was nevertheless born as we are.
If he had not been, he would not be like us in all things except sin
(Heb. 2:17; Heb. 4:15).
Also, the virgin birth, with emphasis on
the word virgin, is a confirmation of the fact that though Jesus
was born a man of the flesh and blood of Mary, he was nevertheless born
"not of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John
1:13). As Isaiah pointed out long ago (Isa. 7:14), the virgin birth is a
sign that Jesus is indeed Immanuel, God with us.
Faith in the virgin birth does not require
belief in the perpetual virginity of Mary, as Rome teaches, or as
the Swiss reformed Zwingli taught. It is not the virginity of Mary,
either before of after Christ’s birth, that guarantees Christ’s
sinlessness, but his conception by the power of the Holy Spirit. Luke
1:35 clearly teaches this: "The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee; ...
therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be
called the Son of God."
That a virgin birth is difficult to
understand should not surprise us. It is part of the wonder and miracle
of grace. When ordinary human conception and birth remain a mystery, how
can we expect to understand fully the miracle of Christ’s coming into
the world? Its being scorned should not surprise us either. Christ’s
virgin birth belongs to his work as our Savior, and only faith can
receive him and the truth concerning him.
May that miracle of Christ’s virgin birth
point us to the even greater miracle of what he did in the flesh when he
suffered, bled, and died for the sins of all those whom the Father had