Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
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Covenant Protestant Reformed Church



Rev. Angus Stewart

Lord’s Day, 10 July, 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

The Son’s Messianic Kingdom (5)

The Gospel Call   [download]   [youtube]

Scripture Reading: Proverbs 1

Text: Psalm 2:10-12

I. Be Wise

II. Kiss the Son

III. Serve the Lord

Psalms: 119:89-96; 105:1-7; 5:7-12; 2:6-12


Evening Service - 6:00 PM

The Only Begotten Son of God   [download]   [youtube]

Scripture Reading: John 1:1-18

Text: Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 13

I. The Meaning

II. The Significance

Psalms: 136:1-10; 105:8-14; 89:23-28; 2:4-11


Contact Stephen Murray for CDs of the sermons and DVDs of the worship services.


CPRC website:

CPRC YouTube:

CPRC Facebook:


Quotes to Consider:

Matthew Henry on Psalm 2:12: "Kiss the Son; enter into a covenant of friendship with him, and let him be very dear and precious to you; love him above all, love him in sincerity, love him much, as she did to whom much was forgiven, and, in token of it, kissed his feet (Luke 7:38). With a kiss of allegiance and loyalty, as Samuel kissed Saul (I Sam. 10:1). Swear fealty and homage to him, submit to his government, take his yoke upon you, and give up yourselves to be governed by his laws, disposed of by his providence, and entirely devoted to his interest."

Belgic Confession, Article 10, That Jesus Christ is true and eternal God: "We believe that Jesus Christ, according to his divine nature, is the only begotten Son of God, begotten from eternity, not made nor created (for then he should be a creature), but co-essential and co-eternal with the Father, the express image of his person, and the brightness of his glory, equal unto him in all things. He is the Son of God, not only from the time that he assumed our nature, but from all eternity, as these testimonies, when compared together, teach us. Moses saith, that God created the world; and John saith, that all things were made by that Word, which he calleth God. And the apostle saith, that God make the worlds by his Son; likewise, that God created all things by Jesus Christ. Therefore it must needs follow, that he, who is called God, the Word, the Son, and Jesus Christ, did exist at that time, when all things were created by him. Therefore the prophet Micah saith, His goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting. And the apostle: He hath neither beginning of days, nor end of life. He therefore is that true, eternal, and almighty God, whom we invoke, worship and serve."

Announcements (subject to God’s will)

The July CR News is on the back table and a new British Reformed Journal is available for subscribers.

With sadness, the membership papers of Francesco De Lucia and the Hamills have been sent to their homes at their request.

Thank-you to those who recently helped clean the church building, doing the windows, etc. Thanks also to those who helped with the barbecue on Friday and those who helped with gardening at the manse beforehand.

Membership Class: Thursday, 7:00 PM on membership vows.

The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel 846MW at 8:30 AM) will be "The Prophet Who Ran Away" (Jonah 1:3) by Rev. Haak.

Offerings: General Fund - £389.30. Building Fund - £568.30. Donations: £100 (CDs), £25 (DVDs), £200, £200 (DVDs).

Website Addition: 1 Italian translation.

PRC News: Cornerstone PRC’s new trio consists of Candidates Huizinga, N. Decker and Jonathan Mahtani. Rev. N. Langerak declined the call to Hope PRC.

This is part 1 of the 47th and final e-mail by Prof. Engelsma on justification:

Dear European Forum,

The final judgment will be the public expression of the elect believer’s justification by God through His Judge, Jesus Christ. It will also be the public expression of condemnation upon the reprobate unbeliever.

This coming public justification of the elect believer will be according to his works: "We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad" (II Cor. 5:10). The Belgic Confession does full justice to the biblical teaching that all men will be judged according to their works: "The dead [shall be] judged according to what they shall have done in this world, whether it be good or evil" (37).

Because judgment of the believer according to his works seemed to them to compromise the gospel of justification by grace alone, a number of Reformed theologians in the past, including such luminaries as Turretin, denied that believers will be judged at all in the final judgment. They argued that it would be improper for the sins of the believers to be brought to public view, inasmuch as they have been blotted out by the blood of Christ, and that it contradicts justification by faith alone, apart from works, to teach that believers will be judged according to their works. Therefore, they concluded that only the reprobate, ungodly unbelievers will be judged in the final judgment according to their works.

These theologians and their followers erred. The Bible clearly teaches that "we," that is, believers, must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, and that there we will be judged according to our works (II Cor. 5:10). Also, Christ’s account of the final judgment in Matthew 25 has the sheep appearing in judgment as well as the goat. And the sheep are justified according to their good works, specifically, feeding the hungry Christ, giving drink to the thirsty Christ, etc. (vv. 35-40).

Those who deny that the elect believer must appear in the judgment are guilty of several mistakes. They do not understand the main purpose of the final judgment, which is the public vindication of God in the salvation of Christ’s church and in the damnation of Christ’s and the church’s enemies—the "theodicy."

They do not understand the nature of the final judgment of the elect believer. It is not at all terrifying, an ordeal to be dreaded, a huge embarrassment before the whole world. Rather, it is an event that the believer desires and looks forward to—his "day in court" for one who is righteous, and is confident of his unassailable righteousness, and who desires that the world shall recognize and acknowledge his righteousness.

The Heidelberg Catechism expresses the attitude of the believer regarding the final judgment: "What comfort is it to thee that ‘Christ shall come again to judge the quick and the dead?" The prospect of the judgment is not a terror, but a comfort. The comfort is not that the believer will be exempted from the judgment, but that "the very same person who before offered Himself for my sake to the tribunal of God, and removed all curse from me" will be the Judge (Q. & A. 52).

Those who deny that the believer will appear in the final judgment, probably thinking that they do the believer a favour, are in fact depriving him of a great good.

Also, those orthodox Reformed theologians, big or little, who deny that the believer will appear in the judgment misunderstand completely what it means that the believer will be judged according to his works. They suspect that this is a form of works-righteousness. (It may also be the case that some professing Reformed Christians have been motivated to deny a coming judgment according to works because their whole life was evil; they were thorough-going, fully developed antinomians, and had good reason to shrink from judgment.)

Judgment according to works is fundamentally different from judgment on the basis of works. Scripture does not teach that the final judgment of the elect believer will be "on the basis of" works. That would be the doctrine of justification by works. That would make the good works of the believer his righteousness with God, at least in part. That would mean that entrance into eternal life and glory would be based on the believer’s own deeds, at least in part.

The final judgment of the elect believer will be based on the obedience of Christ in the place of and on behalf of the believer, and on the substitutionary obedience of Christ only, exactly as is the case regarding the believer’s justification now. The only work that will be the believer’s righteousness before God the Judge in Christ will be Christ’s lifelong obedience to the law and Christ’s atoning death in the believer’s stead, precisely as is the case regarding the believer’s righteousness before God now. The justification of the believer in the final judgment will be gracious—purely gracious.

That this will be the nature of the final judgment of the believer is abundantly evident from Scripture. First, it will be justification, and justification is by faith alone, apart from works, as Romans 3-5, the book of Galatians, and many other passages of Scripture teach. God will not, indeed cannot, justify in one way now—by faith—and in another way then—by works. Were my justification in the final judgment to be by my own works, I would accuse God of deceiving me all my life long, when He justified me by faith alone.

Second, that the coming justification will be purely gracious, not based on the works of the believer, is indicated by the order of events on Judgment Day. The first event will be the resurrection of the dead. The elect believers will be raised in their new, glorious bodies, made like the body of Jesus Christ, and will stand in the judgment in these bodies, as perfected saints, ready to inhabit the new world. Before they are judged according to their works, they have received the great good that was their hope all their life, namely, the resurrection of the body. Whatever role the good works play in the judgment, it cannot be that of the basis of their salvation, for they are perfectly saved before these good works ever come up.   ... to be continued