Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
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Covenant Protestant Reformed Church

83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 5 January, 2014

“But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious,
longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth” (Psalm 86:15)

Morning Service - 11:00 AM

Infant Baptism
The Prayer of Hannah  [download]  [youtube]

Scripture Reading: I Samuel 1:1-18
Text: I Samuel 1:1-18

I. Provoked to Tears
II. Presumed to Be Drunk
III. Promised a Son
Psalms: 42:1-5; 59:7-12; 25:15-22; 62:5-8, 11-12

Evening Service - 6:00 PM

The Joy of Hannah  [download]  [youtube]
Scripture Reading: I Samuel 1:19-2:10
Text: I Samuel 1:19-2:10

I. The Birth of a Son
II. The Dedication of Samuel
III. The Prayer of Praise
Psalms: 34:1-10; 59:13-17; 30:1-2, 5-8; 113:1-9

For CDs of the sermons and DVDs of the worship services, contact Stephen Murray
If you desire a pastoral visit, please contact Rev. Stewart or the elders

CPRC Website: • Live Webcast:
CPRC YouTube:
CPRC Facebook:

Quote to Consider

Ronald S. Wallace: “In the voice of Eli, [Hannah] heard the voice of God. He was saying, ‘I have heard you and I understand. You are mine! Trust me with your prayers, your hopes, your words, your plans, your home, your future, and your nation’” (Hannah’s Prayer and Its Answer, p. 19).

Announcements (subject to God’s will)

This morning we will witness the baptism of Hannah Joy, infant daughter of William and Alison Graham. May the Lord be with them as they raise this covenant child in the fear and admonition of the Lord.

The Covenant Reformed News, the Beacon Lights and the Standard Bearer are on the back table. Standard Bearer renewals are due. You can pay the RFPA directly ($35) or you can pay Rev. Stewart (£21.50) and he’ll pay the RFPA for you.

Thank you, congregation, for your gifts, words of encouragement and prayers on our behalf during this past year. We give thanks to God for you and rejoice in His work of grace in you. May we together in this new year be “stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord” (I Cor. 15:58). Rev. & Mary Stewart

Monday Catechism:
Bradley, Samuel (Beginners NT) - 5:30PM
Alex, Nathan (Juniors OT) - 6:15PM
Jacob, Joseph (Seniors OT) - 7:00PM
Timothy (Essentials of Reformed Doctrine) - 7:45PM

The Council meets tomorrow night at 8:30 PM

Tuesday Bible study meets at 11 AM to study Christ’s controversy regarding the forbidding of remarriage (while one’s spouse lives).

Belgic Confession Class will be held this Wednesday at 7:45 PM to start article 23 on the great gospel truth of justification.

Ladies’ Bible Study meets this Friday at 10:30 AM at church. All women are welcome to join us to study Deborah.

Men’s Bible Study meets this Saturday at 8 PM at the Kennedys to study chapter 7 of the Ezra study guide.

The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel 846MW at 8:30 AM) is entitled “By Faith Looking For a City” (Heb. 11:9-10) by Rev. Bruinsma.

Upcoming Events:
24 January - Rev. Eriks and Sid Meidema arrive for church visitation
29 January - Rev. Eriks’ lecture: “Knowing the Truth in an Age of Uncertainty”
31 January - congregational dinner at Leighinmohr Hotel
28 February - lecture in Lurgan: “John Knox and Predestination”

Offerings: General Fund - £504.19.

Website Additions: 2 Afrikaans and 2 Hungarian translations.

PRC News: Rev. Bruinsma declined Doon PRC. Faith PRC called Rev. Haak.

Lawful Oaths and Vows

Rev. Angus Stewart


In response to “Should Courts Drop Swearing on the Bible?” (English Churchman 7886), it should be noted that lawful oaths were not only made in the Old Testament (e.g., Gen. 24:2-9; Deut. 6:13; 10:20; Isa. 65:16) but also in the New Testament.

The apostle Paul made oaths to God to attest the truth of his claims (Rom. 1:9; 9:1; II Cor. 1:23; Gal. 1:20). The mighty angel from heaven swears “by him that liveth for ever and ever” (Rev. 10:6). Jehovah delivered the gospel promise by swearing by Himself (Gen. 22:16-17; Heb. 6:13-14). Being abjured by the high priest, the Lord Jesus affirmed under oath that He was “the Christ, the Son of God” (Matt. 26:63-64). The next day, because of His own oath and the gospel promise that God swore, He died on the cross as a propitiatory sacrifice for our sins to bring us the blessings of salvation. Moreover, God swears by Himself that on the judgment day every knee shall bow and every tongue shall swear that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father (Isa. 45:23; Phil. 2:10-11). This oath will involve billions of people, the reprobate wicked as well as elect believers!

The Saviour's words (Matt. 5:33-37) do not cancel the third commandment (Ex. 20:7), reducing the Decalogue to the Ennealogue, or contradict other Old and New Testament Scriptures or condemn His own testimony (Matt. 26:63-64). They forbid swearing by that which is not God and thoughtless or profane swearing by His name in causal conversation or on trifling occasions.

Thus, contrary to the Anabaptists (e.g., Quakers), the Reformed have always confessed that there is an appropriate time, place and manner for assertory oaths and promissory vows (e.g., baptism, church membership, church office and wedding vows). The last of The Thirty-Nine Articles states, “As we confess that vain and rash swearing is forbidden Christian men by our Lord Jesus Christ, and James His apostle, so we judge, that Christian religion doth not prohibit, but that a man may swear when the magistrate requireth, in a cause of faith and charity, so it be done according to the prophet's teaching, in justice, judgment, and truth” (cf. Heidelberg Catechism, Lord's Days 36-37; Westminster Confession 22).