Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 21 December, 2014
“But our God is in the heavens: he hath done
whatsoever he hath pleased” (Psalm 115:3)
Morning Service - 11:00 AM - Rev. M. McGeown
Administration of the Lord’s Supper
Jesus the Bread of Life
Scripture Reading: John 6:24-51
Text: John 6:35
I. The Meaning
II. The Satisfaction
III. The Reception
Psalms: 46:1-7; 89:26-34; 78:14-25; 63:1-5
Evening Service - 6:00 PM - Rev. M. McGeown
Ye Are the Light of the World
Scripture Reading: Matthew 5:1-26
Text: Matthew 5:14-16
I. The Meaning
II. The Calling
III. The Purpose
Psalms: 119:129-136; 89:35-43; 97:5-12; 27:1-6
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
Quotes to Consider
Belgic Confession 35: “... Now, as it is certain and beyond
all doubt that Jesus Christ hath not enjoined to us the use
of His sacraments in vain, so He works in us all that He
represents to us by these holy signs, though the manner
surpasses our understanding and cannot be comprehended by
us, as the operations of the Holy Ghost are hidden and
incomprehensible. In the meantime we err not when we say
that what is eaten and drunk by us is the proper and natural
body and the proper blood of Christ. But the manner of our
partaking of the same is not by the mouth, but by the Spirit
through faith. Thus, then, though Christ always sits at the
right hand of His Father in the heavens, yet doth He not
therefore cease to make us partakers of Himself by faith.
This feast is a spiritual table, at which Christ
communicates Himself with all His benefits to us, and gives
us there to enjoy both Himself and the merits of His
sufferings and death, nourishing, strengthening, and
comforting our poor comfortless souls by the eating of His
flesh, quickening and refreshing them by the drinking of His
Announcements (subject to God’s will)
After a week of self-examination, confessing members in good
standing are called to partake of the sacrament of the
Lord’s Supper. Your participation in the Lord’s Supper is in
part a witness that you repent of your sins, believe that
Jesus Christ is your righteousness and desire to live a new
and godly life. As this heavenly food can be taken to one’s
judgment (I Cor. 11:28-30) and as the common reception of
this food is a confession of doctrinal unity (Acts 2:42),
the elders supervise the partaking of the sacrament.
Visitors from other denominations must request permission
from the Council.
A letter from the Philippines is available on the back
Monday Catechism: There will be no catechism on Mondays 22
and 29 December. It will resume on Monday, 5 January.
The Tuesday Bible study meets at 11 AM to study “The Kingdom
of God and the Sovereignty of God (3).”
The Belgic Confession Class will not meet this week or next
week but will resume on Wednesday, 7 January.
The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel
846MW at 8:30 AM) by Rev. Bruinsma is entitled “God’s Saints
Preserved” (Psalm 37:27-28).
All are invited to the manse on New Year’s Eve for games and
fellowship at 7:30 PM or any time thereafter. Please let the
Stewarts know if you plan to come.
The congregational dinner is set for Friday, 9 January, at
the Ramble Inn (on the dual-carriageway between Antrim and Ballymena). Watch for more details next week.
Offerings: General Fund - £714.76.
Website Additions: 3 Spanish and 15 Indonesian translations.
The Scorners and the Scorned
Brian D. Dykstra
Proverbs 3:34: “Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he
giveth grace unto the lowly.”
We are all too familiar with scorners. Our society is full
of those who scorn God, His Word and His true church. Look
at the area of science and medicine. Those who believe the
creation account of Genesis 1 are ridiculed as backward,
throwback hicks. Anyone who stands for the truth of creation
outside of our circles, and a precious few other groups,
will be met with open ridicule and contempt. How could you
possibly be serious! A creation week! The world is a mere
six thousand years old! Don’t you have any sense? Are you
totally blind or ignorant of all of the scientific
discoveries of the last century? You really believe that
Bible stuff! Standing up for creation in public
universities, and, sadly, even in Christian colleges, is to
make oneself open to sarcastic comments.
If some Christian dares to write to the local newspaper and
express the thought that some human activity currently in
the news is sin and brings the punishment of God, we can all
anticipate the response. It will not take long for an
atheist to take a shot. Often the agnostic will point out
that the Bible also commands people not to wear clothing of
mixed fabric, to stone those who violate the Sabbath day and
that those who dash the small children of the enemy against
rocks will do so with joy. Who in their right mind would
take seriously a book which contains commands and attitudes
such as that?
How does the world view a godly lifestyle? What do they
think of our striving to be faithful in marriage? You mean
you didn’t live together first before you were married?
There was no sex in your relationship until you were
married? You’ve been faithful to your spouse ever since? Who
are you people? We all know someone who has gone through the
harsh pain and deep scars of divorce. You mean to tell me
that you are still faithful to your spouse even though they
left you and remarried? You now live your life alone and
still regard that person who cheated on you as your
Think of how our family lives and the relationships in our
homes are viewed by the world. Male headship? Submissive
wives? Children are spanked? Parents supervise their
children and judge their behaviours and attitudes by the
standard of God’s law? Do you know that recent studies have
shown that less than half of American families have two
parents who are married to each other under the same roof?
Any outsider who happens to be a social worker or
anthropologist would not believe their findings if they were
to do a study of the family structures found in our
Unfortunately, we can see some examples of scorn in our own
Christian classrooms. Some students will put others down
either because of their own insecurities or from haughty
pride. Sometimes you can even see the pride in their faces
as they look with disdain at those of lower social status.
The godly advice we give our classes is not always met with
universal approval either.
The root of scorn is pride. Man thinks he has developed
enough over the years not to need the antiquated fable of
creation. If God were to inspire the Bible today, He would
realize that we could handle the concept of the universe
developing over the course of billions of years. Society has
matured to such and extent that we no longer need the
structures of old-fashioned marriage. The world is no longer
as dangerous as it once was, so you should let your children
experiment more with their own lifestyle and modern
attitudes. Your children will be outcasts if you don’t.
God scorns these scorners. He righteously hates them. Who do
they think they are? Can they really do anything to God?
They can ridicule and dismiss God as much as they wish, He
still reigns supreme in heaven. The world can persecute His
church and torment us in life and seek to be rid of us. He
will still comfort us, raise us from the dead and cause us
to rule with Christ over all the new creation.
God hates pride because He knows what we have made ourselves
in Adam. We are nothing more than totally depraved sinners.
We are incapable of any good apart from Him. We cannot save
ourselves. He holds our every breath in His hand. Knowing
how weak and sinful we are, we had better not be proud.
God’s scorn will also have a terrible effect, unlike the
scorn of the proud. He is powerful enough to bring a
terrible judgment upon sinners. When Christ returns, even
the wicked will bend the knee and acknowledge that God is
just and righteous in all His ways.
Here is God’s just antithesis. We have seen God’s attitude
toward the proud, but God gives grace to the lowly. God’s
grace is given—given, not earned. Grace is not given to
everybody. God gives grace to the lowly, the humble: the
centurion with the dying servant, the publican with lowered
eyes, Mary Magdalene with her former disreputable life.
In his commentary on this verse, Charles Bridges quotes
Leighton’s commentary on I Peter 5:5 which is a quotation of
this verse: “He pours (grace) out plentifully upon humble
hearts. His sweet dews and showers of grace slide off the
mountains of pride, and fall on the low valleys of humble
hearts, and make them pleasant and fertile.”
May we and our students be blessed with the grace which our
heavenly Father gives to the lowly.