Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
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Covenant Protestant Reformed Church

83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 22 March, 2015

“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

Faith: Our Bond With Christ  [download]  [youtube]
Scripture Reading: John 14:23-15:17
Text: Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 7

I. The Idea of a Bond
II. The Nature of This Bond
III. The Life of This Bond
Psalms: 25:8-14; 101:1-6; 118:20-29; 27:1-5

Evening Service - 6:00 PM

Continual Gratitude  [download]  [youtube]

Scripture Reading: Psalm 34
Text: Psalm 34:1-3

I. Its Expressions
II. Its Reasons
III. Its Lessons
Psalms: 122:1-9; 101:3-8; 56:1-8; 34:1-10

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

Herman Hoeksema on Lord’s Day 7: “Faith is not another work by performing which we become worthy of salvation. All the work that makes us worthy of righteousness and eternal life and glory has been performed and completely finished by Christ. Even the gift of faith He merited for us by His perfect obedience. Nor is faith a condition upon our fulfillment of which God is willing to give us the salvation merited for us by Christ. There are no conditions whatsoever unto salvation. It is free and sovereign. Nor is it the hand by which we on our part accept the proffered salvation. Often it is presented thus. Salvation is compared to a beautiful gold watch which I freely offer to someone. I hold it in my extended hand and beg the person upon whom I would bestow this gift to take it ... Thus, it is alleged, faith is the hand whereby we take hold of the salvation proffered in the gospel. But also this is not true. For, first of all, the reception and appropriation of the benefits of Christ is by no means such a mechanical and external transaction as taking a watch from a man’s hand. It is a profound spiritual activity of the entire soul. And secondly, the natural man has no hand whereby he is able to accept the salvation of God in Christ, were it merely offered him. No, but faith is a bond, a spiritual bond, whereby we are so united with Christ that by it we live out of Him” (The Triple Knowledge, vol. 1, p. 306).

Announcements (subject to God’s will)

On the back table are short evangelistic tracts on St. Patrick which were handed out at Mt. Slemish this past Tuesday. Feel free to take some of these to read or pass on.

This evening will be preparatory for the Lord’s Supper to be held next Sunday morning, 29 March.

The Tuesday Bible study will meet at 11 AM to discuss “The Kingdom of God and the Church.”

The Belgic Confession Class on Wednesday at 7:45 PM will continue our study of Article 25 on “The Abolition of the Ceremonial Law.”

The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel 846MW at 8:30 AM) by Rev. R. Kleyn is entitled “The Success of His Mission” (Isaiah 53:10-12).

Lurgan Lecture: Rev. Stewart will speak at the Lurgan Town Hall on “The Threat of Rome to Protestant Churches Today” on Friday, 10 April, at 7:30 PM.

S. Wales Lecture: On Thursday, 23 April, Rev. McGeown will give a lecture on “Christian Comfort” at the Round Chapel in Port Talbot.

Offerings: General Fund - £916.35.

Website Addition: 1 Indonesian translation.

PRC News: The new trio for missionary to the Philippines is Revs. Brummel, Decker and Eriks. The CERC of Singapore is sending Rev. Lanning and Elder Fai Chong to India to visit Emmanuel Singh with a view to taking spiritual oversight of that field.

The devotionals on Proverbs are finished, but Mr. Brian Dykstra has kindly given us other articles that he has written as a teacher in a Protestant Reformed Christian school. Once again, the article below and articles in future weeks show us the blessings of a Christian school—something for us to pray for and work toward. There is much here, too, that we can apply to our lives in the church. The articles teach us some practical lessons for raising our own children and grandchildren in this “present evil age.” And they call us all to remember the parents and children of the church in our prayers.

Vineyards Not Planted

Brian D. Dykstra


“And it shall be, when the Lord thy God shall have brought thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee great and goodly cities, which thou buildedst not, And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and wells digged, which thou diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which thou plantedst not; when thou shalt have eaten and be full; Then beware lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage” (Deut. 6:10-12)

I helped to survey an interesting parcel of property at the end of last summer. My crew chief and I went to greenhouses. The amount of equipment there was amazing. There were hundreds of racks and trays for growing plants. Automatic sprinklers hung from the roofs. Many feet of hoses slithered along the greenhouse floors. As my boss and I worked our way around the property, ventilation fans would automatically turn off and on. Some greenhouses had windows on the side walls or along the roof ridge, which would open and close automatically to regulate the building’s temperature. The greenhouses had been built in phases over the course of many years. It was impressive.

This business was now run by brothers who had inherited it from their father. One brother even inherited the family house. Newer houses for the other brothers now stand next to the old family homestead. I couldn’t help but wonder how much it would cost to replace this business, if disaster or fire should destroy the property.

In Deuteronomy chapter six, Israel was given instruction in preparation for the time when they would enter the promised land. Soon the people of God would no longer have to live in tents or wander as nomads as they tended to their flocks and herds. They would move into strong cities which they had not built. They would move into houses already furnished. They would enjoy the fruits of gardens, vineyards and orchards which they had not planted. They would “inherit” the goods of their enemies.

There was a danger that once they had eaten and were full, they would forget the Lord who had kept the promise He made to Abraham. Perhaps they believed that the land was theirs and would always be theirs no matter how spiritually careless they became. After all, they were safe in the knowledge that they were the children of Abraham.

We are, however, familiar with Israel’s history. The years passed. Times changed. Sin, which has an organic life, grew and spread. Finally, God brought upon Israel the curses which He warned He would bring upon them if they were to forget Him. He took them out of the promised land.

We, too, have “inherited” something which we have not built, our Protestant Reformed schools. Hope School has been here for more than fifty years. Many of us cannot remember a time when Hope School was not here. Our fathers and grandfathers saw the need for true, Reformed day school education in a time when the public schools might not have seemed so bad when compared to today or the available Christian schools were not as laced with the effects of heresies.

Have we grown accustomed to God’s blessing us with Protestant Reformed schools? Do we assume that Hope School has been here so long it will continue to endure, perhaps on mere inertia, for many years to come? Israel “inherited” possesions from her enemies who were not interested in Israel’s spiritual survival. How much more thankful should we be who have inherited rich blessings from those who demonstrated a vital interest in the survival of God’s covenant blessings in Jesus Christ. If our heritage of Protestant Reformed schools were to be lost, could it be replaced?