Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 11 December, 2016
“And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed
by the renewing of your mind ...” (Rom. 12:2)
Morning Service - 11:00 AM
The Holy Trinity at the River Jordan
Scripture Reading: Matthew 3
Text: Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 8
I. The Amazing Event
II. The Historic Location
III. The Future Significance
Psalms: 107:1-9; 21:7-13; 114:1-8; 25:8-14
Evening Service - 6:00 PM
The Life of Jacob (23)
Joseph, Jacob’s Favourite Son
Scripture Reading: Genesis 37
Text: Genesis 37:1-11
I. His Father’s Favourite
II. His Brother’s Hatred
III. His Revelatory Dreams
Psalms: 119:33-40; 22:1-7; 106:11-18; 128:1-6
For CDs of the sermons and DVDs of the worship services,
If you desire a pastoral visit, please contact Rev. Stewart
or the elders
CPRC Website: www.cprc.co.uk • Live Webcast:
CPRC YouTube: www.youtube.com/cprcni
CPRC Facebook: www.facebook.com/CovenantPRC
Quote to Consider
Homer Hoeksema on Genesis 37: “This history illustrates the
biblical principle evident throughout the history of God’s
people: the devil and the power of darkness must accomplish
their evil work; but in doing so, they must, and always do,
serve God’s good purpose. The result is always twofold. On
the one hand, in serving that purpose the wicked are
condemned. On the other hand, God’s people are saved and
glorified and have the victory” (Unfolding Covenant History,
vol. 3, p. 112).
Announcements (subject to God’s will)
Standard Bearer subscriptions are due. Please either pay the
RFPA directly (www.rfpa.org) ($36) or pay Rev. Stewart (£29)
who will pay the RFPA for you.
Monday evening’s Catechism Classes:
5:45 PM - Taylor, Josh, Corey & Katelyn (Beginners NT)
6:30 PM - Bradley & Samuel (Juniors OT)
7:15 PM - Jacob, Alex & Nathan (Heidelberg Catechism, book
The Council meets tomorrow evening at 8 PM at the church.
The Tuesday Bible Study meets at 11 AM to study further the
Belgic Confession Class meets this Wednesday at 7:45 PM to
start Article 30, “The Government of and Offices in the
Ladies’ Bible Study meets this Friday, 10:30 AM at church
(followed by lunch) to discuss Proverbs and the lesson on
holy marriage. All ladies are welcome. Any questions, see
The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel
846 MW at 8:30 AM) by Rev. Bruinsma is “Remembering the
Creator in Youth” (Ecc. 12:1).
Mid-term catechism tests are set for next Monday, 19
December, and then we will have a 2-week break (26 December
& 2 January).
The Lord’s Supper is scheduled for 25 December. Rev. McGeown
and Rev. Stewart will be exchanging pulpits that day.
S. Wales Lecture: Rev. McGeown will speak on “Christian
Contentment” Thursday, January 12, in The Round Chapel,
Margam, at 7:15 PM.
The church visitors, Rev. VanOverloop and Sid Miedema, and
their wives, are planning to arrive on Friday, 13 January.
Keep Friday, 20 January, free for the congregational dinner
at Ross Park Hotel. A sign-up sheet is on the back table.
Offerings: General Fund: £753.15. Building Fund: £328.90.
Donations: £79 (USA), £20 (N. Ireland).
PRC News: Southwest PRC called Rev. Eriks. Rev. Griess
declined the call to serve as home missionary. Rev. R. Kleyn
is considering the call to be third missionary to the
Philippines. Rev. Brummel is considering the call to First
Beagle 2, Stardust, Spirit and Opportunity
Brian D. Dykstra
“... and there was light” (Genesis 1:3b).
For those interested in science and astronomy, December
2003/January 2004 brought some fascinating news. Four
unmanned space probes completed or arrived at critical
stages in their missions. These four probes are listed in
The Beagle 2 is a European probe which was built in Great
Britain. The Beagle 2 was scheduled for a six-month mission
on the surface of Mars where it would search for signs of
life in a region once thought to have been a Martian sea.
This probe, which would travel on the surface of Mars,
landed on Christmas Day and has not been heard from since.
As an aside, it is no accident that this probe is named
“Beagle.” It is named in honour of Charles Darwin’s ship.
Darwin travelled on the Beagle when he went to the Galápagos
Islands, where he developed the theory of evolution.
The other three probes are American and are funded with U.S.
tax dollars. Stardust travelled 242 million miles from earth
and passed within 311 miles of a comet, Wild 2. Its mission
was to take pictures of the comet and gather some of the
dust which surrounds the comet in a fuzzy haze. In two
years, Stardust will return and drop to earth a canister
containing the dust particles gathered from the comet. These
dust particles will then be studied in laboratories across
the earth. This is an attempt to test scientists’ latest
theory of the beginning of life on earth. Some now think
that comets contain organic chemicals. Scientists say
collisions between earth and comets were common billions of
years ago. These collisions “seeded” the earth with the
organic chemicals needed for the evolution of life.
The last two probes, Spirit and Opportunity are rovers with
missions to Mars. They are to photograph and closely examine
Martian soil to search for signs of water which could have
supported life. The Spirit has already landed, sent back
some photographs and travelled a short distance on Mars.
NASA has since lost the signal from Spirit and is trying to
contact it again. The Opportunity is scheduled to land
January 25. These twin missions have a total price tag of
All of these missions are to test the theory of evolution.
Perhaps comets are the key to how life started on earth.
Since life evolved on earth, could the evolutionary process
be observed on Mars as well? Sinful man desires to stamp out
God’s creation account and be rid of anything similar to it.
In its “Who Knew?” column, the August 2003 National
Geographic had this to say in an article which reported that
an emerging theory claims our universe is only one of many:
“The inflationary theory states that very early in the
expansion the cosmos suddenly inflated, becoming
unimaginably vast in a fraction of a second.” In the
December 2003 National Geographic, a reader had this
response: “This idea is hardly new. It’s frighteningly
similar to these ancient words: ‘In the beginning, God
created the heavens ...’” Why the word “frighteningly”?
What will these probes find? This is where we should be
careful. After all, years ago many in the church held that
the earth was the centre of the universe, and they believed
the Bible supported them in this claim. I am also reminded
of family history. My great-grandmother had my family over
for Sunday dinner the day the Apollo 11 astronauts landed on
the moon. She refused to watch the television reports which
covered this historic mission, because before he passed
away, her husband had said that God would never allow man to
land on the moon. He based this opinion on Psalm 115:16:
“The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord’s: but the earth
hath he given to the children of men.” My great-grandfather
felt God would not give the moon to men since it was part of
the heavens. Man would be limited to the earth.
The Bible is an accurate account of history. What we observe
in creation must be put under the authority of the Word as
revealed to us by the Creator. We must not do as the
theistic evolutionists and elevate “scientific findings”
over the Bible.
There is a story of a now deceased minister which serves us
as a good example. Back in the late 1960s or early 1970s,
our churches were beginning to do some work with a group in
the Houston, Texas area. This minister took a tour of the
Johnson Space Center. He is reported to have spoken to an
employee there. His words were something to the effect, “Why
are you spending all this money to send men to the moon to
find out how old it is? I can tell you exactly how old it
is! The moon is one day younger than the earth because God
created the earth on the third day and the moon on the
Creation is tied to the gospel. What kind of God do we need
to deliver us from our sins? Are our sins so minor that the
perfectly holy God can easily forgive them because our sins
are not that offensive to Him? Our salvation depends upon a
God of strength, of strength great enough to speak the word
and things are brought into existence. A God who cannot
create all things in six days could not be strong enough to
cleanse us from our sins. An Almighty God speaks. The result
is: “and there was light.” This same God speaks, “Thy sins
be forgiven thee.” Which of those two tasks requires the