Protestant Reformed Church
Lord’s Day, 24
glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving,
and power, and might,
be unto our
God for ever and ever" (Rev. 7:12)
Morning Service - 11:00 AM
Vision of Christ’s Glory (5)
Isaiah’s Call to Preach (I)
Clarity of the Preaching
Result of the Preaching
Purpose of the Preaching
Psalms: 34:1-10; 118:10-18; 119:65-72; 115:1-11
Service - 6:00 PM
Isaiah’s Vision of Christ’s Glory (6)
Isaiah’s Call to Preach (II)
It to New Testament Preachers
It to the Visible Church
Its Context Today
Psalms: 84:1-6; 118:19-29; 147:9-18; 135:4-11
cassettes of the worship services or CDs of the sermons, contact Sean
Quote to Consider:
Prof. Herman Hanko: "... [Ministers] must never
forget that in the pulpit they are really nothing other than the
mouthpiece of Christ and that therefore they are solemnly called to
preach the whole of the Scriptures. God’s purpose must be accomplished
and His cause justified. Besides, although it is the heartbreaking
experience of all those who preach to see many leave the truth, this is
to be expected, for this is the purpose of the gospel. The gospel saves,
but it also hardens. It brings to glory, but it also condemns. It is the
Rock of Ages, but it is also a stone of stumbling. And when it becomes
evident to the faithful servant of God that the gospel also hardens, he
stands aside that the purpose of God may be accomplished" (Mysteries
of the Kingdom, p. 24).
Announcements (subject to God’s will):
Covenant Reformed News is available. The articles include
"Wine in the Bible," "Preparing for Another World (2)" and "Is There
Time in Heaven?"
We extend our sympathy to the Courtneys and Hallidays
in the death of Roni’s mother this past Monday. The funeral was held on
Catechism Classes: Monday, 5:30 PM at the Murrays
Monday, 7:00 PM with the Campbells at the manse
Membership Class: Tuesday, 8:30 PM at the
Midweek Bible Study will be held on Wednesday,
7:45 PM, at the manse. We will study II Timothy 3:9ff. on the folly of
false teachers manifested.
Offerings: General Fund - £469.40. Donations:
£200 (General Fund), £180 (tapes), £50 (CR News), £8 (CR News).
The Reformed Witness Hour next Lord’s Day
(8:30-9:00 AM, on Gospel 846MW), is entitled "Wait on the Lord" (Psalm
Women’s Bible Study meets next week Tuesday, 4
March, 10:30 AM at the Murrays.
Lectures: 7 March, Rev. Stewart, "God’s Magnifying His Word," in
Rev. Stewart, "God’s Magnifying His Word," in South Wales
Plan on a congregational outing on Easter
Monday, 24 March. More details later.
Anyone interested in attending the P. R. Young
Peoples’ Convention on 14-18 July please see Rev. Stewart for more
Website Additions: 30 Italian, 1 Russian (the
107-page "Historical Introduction" from
Voice of our Fathers by Homer C. Hoeksema), and 1 Ukrainian
translations have been added. The Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds in Yoruba
and Fon (languages in Nigeria and Benin) have also been added.
PRC News: Rev. D. Kleyn (Holland, MI) received
the call to the Philippines. South Holland P. R. Christian School will
start classes in their new building tomorrow.
And when the
woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to
and a tree to
be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat,
and gave also
unto her husband with her; and he did eat
After the sun and moon, Venus is the brightest object
in the sky. It dazzles the eye with its brilliant white light whether it
is visible in the morning or evening sky. Venus can be especially
beautiful when it is near the moon. Venus’ size, nearly the same as
Earth’s, and proximity as the closest planet to Earth, puts it just at
the cusp of the human eye’s ability to discern it not as a point of
light, but as having size. Those who have particularly acute vision have
claimed to see the slowly changing phases of Venus. This optical
challenge is part of the allure of observing Venus.
It is understandable how such a bright, beautiful,
purely shining object would be named after the Roman goddess of beauty.
The Greeks called this planet Aphrodite, also their goddess of love and
beauty. I doubt this is the "agape" love with which we are familiar from
the New Testament, but is likely an ignoble form of attraction with
which the Greek culture was intimately familiar.
It is a rare astronomical event for Venus to pass
between the Earth and the sun. In 1761 Mikhail Lomonosov, a Russian
scientist, used a telescope to observe Venus’ transit across the sun’s
face. He wanted to measure Venus’ diameter. He experienced a little
difficulty, however, when he noticed the edges of Venus’ disk were not
sharp and crisp, but fuzzy. He quickly realized this meant Venus had an
About the same time, noted French scientist Pierre
Laplace developed an idea called the nebular hypothesis. Laplace
proposed that the planets condensed out of rings of gas left over from
the formation of the solar system. The rings furthest from the sun
cooled first, with the inner planets forming later. The belief among
astronomers was that Mars was a planet past its prime, Earth was in the
prime of life and Venus is what Earth was like many eons ago.
The late 1800s saw the rise of a scientific theory
called "pluralism," the belief in the existence of life on an infinite
number of habitable planets throughout the universe. This coincided with
the period when Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution caught the public’s
interest. The conclusion of the scientific community was that if
organisms can develop and evolve on Earth, then why not on other
planets? Venus, with its atmosphere (assumed to have oxygen) and
nearness to the warmth of the sun, was thought a prime candidate for the
development of life. Couple this idea with Laplace’s nebular hypotheses,
and Venus was thought to be a swampy world, covered with dripping
vegetation which flourished in a steamy climate in which some form of
life was evolving. Venus was imagined to be a tropical paradise. In
reference to these opinions, Richard Corfield in his book, Lives of
the Planets, titles the chapter from which this information was
taken, "The Greenhouse in the Sky: Venus."
The reality of this dazzlingly beautiful planet is in
great contrast to what was once imagined. The first hint came in the
1920s when scientists began to study the light reflected by Venus to
determine the chemicals its atmosphere contained. Scientists were
surprised to find very little water vapour there (meaning Venus was not
a swampy prehistoric Earth), but they did find an abundance of carbon
dioxide, a gas which would trap the heat of the nearby sun.
Then in 1956 astronomers turned their radio
telescopes toward Venus. They found that Venus was emitting great
amounts of microwave radiation, a clue that the surface of Venus was
very, very hot. In December of 1962, a space probe launched by the
United States, Mariner 2, flew by Venus. Corfield reports the
findings, "In fact, the results showed that the surface of Venus is not
just hot, it is as hot as the interior of a self-cleaning oven ...
[There are] no global oceans, no swamps, no giant tree ferns, no
enormous insects, and no amphibian-like creatures crawling their way
Venus, despite its gorgeous appearance, is no Garden
of Eden. The Soviet Union sent several probes to Venus’ surface in the
1960s and 1970s. These probes were built to withstand temperatures of
500 degrees Celsius and atmospheric pressures equal to being three
thousand feet underwater. Soviet scientists were amazed their probes
functioned for about an hour because they were designed to work for
thirty minutes. Venus, once thought to be lush and verdant, was actually
a caustic, extremely hot pressure cooker. Looks can be deceiving.
Eve saw the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of
good and evil. Its fruit was not foul smelling nor was it corrupted with
rot and worms. While holding it in her hand, the fruit did not ooze
through her fingers in some sloppy, rotten mess. She saw fruit which had
every appearance of being good. Her eyes were pleased with what she saw.
To take and eat would make her wise. The fruit was alluring and
That is the story of sin. Satan presents the world of
sin to us and our children in ways which appeal to us. Satan also knows
that different temptations will be alluring to different people. What is
tempting to one might hold no appeal at all to another. Yet, it is the
same. Sin looks good to our weak flesh. To enter into its pleasures
would bring us happiness and joy. Satan would have us believe that.
However, what are the spiritual effects of sin? Adam
and Eve learned only too well. The happiness promised by Satan never
materialized. Instead, Adam and Eve now fled in shame from God’s face.
They couldn’t enjoy His holy company as they previously had. They found
they weren’t happy at all, and we must remember that as yet, Adam and
Eve had not learned that their Creator was the God of redemption. They
were miserable as they wondered what God would do with them.
The next time we see Venus as the beautiful, glorious
morning or evening star and are reminded of the goddess of love and
beauty, keep in mind what lurks beneath her clouds. She is not what she
appears to be. As we struggle daily with our sinful flesh, we must keep
in mind the alluring nature of sin and temptation. What appears to be so
inviting and pleasant, is actually very caustic for the soul. Give
thanks to the God of our redemption who saves us from the lust of the
Mr. Brian Dykstra, teacher at Hope P. R. Christian