Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 18 October, 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 - Rev. M. McGeown
Philemon: An Object Lesson in Forgiveness (1)
Slavery and the Bible
Scripture Reading: Exodus 21
Text: Philemon 1-25
I. The Old Testament Situation
II. The New Testament Situation
III. The Christian Response
Psalms: 126:1-6; 116:9-19; 107:8-14; 114:1-8
Evening Service - 6:00 PM - Rev. M. McGeown
Philemon: An Object Lesson in Forgiveness (2)
Greeting a Beloved Brother
Scripture Reading: Philemon 1-25
Text: Philemon 1-3
I. A Beloved Brother
II. An Affectionate Greeting
III. A Moving Self-Designation
Psalms: 34:1-10; 117-1:2; 16:1-7; 36:5-11
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
W. J. Conybeare and J. S. Howson: “During the long delay of
his trial, St. Paul was not reduced, as he had been at
Caesarea, to a forced inactivity ... he was permitted the
freest intercourse with his friends, and was allowed to
reside in a house of sufficient size to accommodate the
congregation which flocked together to listen to his
teaching. The freest scope was given to his labours,
consistent with the military custody under which he was
placed ... And that which seemed at first to impede must
really have deepened the impression of his eloquence; for
who could see without emotion that venerable form subjected
by iron links to the coarse control of the soldier who stood
beside him? How often must the tears of the assembly have
been called forth by the upraising of that fettered hand,
and the clanking of the chain which checked its energetic
action!” (The Life and Epistles of St. Paul, p. 686).
Matthew Henry: “[Philemon] had a servant named Onesimus,
who, having purloined his goods, ran away from him, and in
his rambles came to Rome, where Paul was then a prisoner for
the gospel, and, providentially coming under his preaching
there, was, by the blessing of God, converted by him, after
which he ministered awhile to the apostle in bonds, and
might have been further useful to him, but, understanding
him to be another man’s servant, Paul would not, without his
consent, detain him, but sends him back with this
letter-commendatory, wherein he earnestly sues for his
pardon and kind reception.”
Announcements (subject to God’s will)
We welcome Rev. McGeown who will be preaching for us today,
while Rev. Stewart leads the services in the LRF.
Monday evening’s Catechism classes:
5:45 PM - Taylor, Josh, Corey, Bradley & Samuel (Beginners
OT, book 2)
6:30 PM - Alex & Nathan (Seniors OT)
7:15 PM - Jacob, Joseph & Chris (Heidelberg Catechism, book
The Tuesday Bible study will meet at 11 AM to study the
background of apostasy in Israel’s kingship.
The Belgic Confession Class will meet this week Wednesday at
7:45 PM to study Article 26, looking at the nature of, and
errors regarding, Christ’s intercession.
The Reformed Witness Hour
broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel
846MW at 8:30 AM) by Rev. Bruinsma is entitled “Reserved
unto Eternal Fire” (Jude 5-7).
Ballymena Reformation Lecture: Rev. Stewart will speak on
“Jan Hus: His Martyrdom and Ecclesiology,” on Friday, 30
October, here at the CPRC. Flyers are available on the back
table to pass out to family and friends, etc.
The Council’s next meeting is Monday, 9 November, at 8 PM.
Offerings: General Fund: £716.43.
Website Additions: 3 Spanish translations.
Old Testament Passages on Slavery
“And if a man sell his daughter to be a maidservant, she
shall not go out as the menservants do. If she please not
her master, who hath betrothed her to himself, then shall he
let her be redeemed: to sell her unto a strange nation he
shall have no power, seeing he hath dealt deceitfully with
her. And if he have betrothed her unto his son, he shall
deal with her after the manner of daughters. If he take him
another wife; her food, her raiment, and her duty of
marriage, shall he not diminish. And if he do not these
three unto her, then shall she go out free without money”
“And he that stealeth a man, and selleth him, or if he be
found in his hand, he shall surely be put to death” (Ex.
“If a man be found stealing any of his brethren of the
children of Israel, and maketh merchandise of him, or
selleth him; then that thief shall die; and thou shalt put
evil away from among you” (Deut. 24:7).
“Thou shalt not rule over him with rigour; but shalt fear
thy God … And as a yearly hired servant shall he be with
him: and the other shall not rule with rigour over him in
thy sight” (Lev. 25:43, 53).
“And if men strive together, and one smite another with a
stone, or with his fist, and he die not, but keepeth his
bed: If he rise again, and walk abroad upon his staff, then
shall he that smote him be quit: only he shall pay for the
loss of his time, and shall cause him to be thoroughly
healed. And if a man smite his servant, or his maid, with a
rod, and he die under his hand; he shall be surely punished.
Notwithstanding, if he continue a day or two, he shall not
be punished: for he is his money … And if a man smite the
eye of his servant, or the eye of his maid, that it perish;
he shall let him go free for his eye’s sake. And if he smite
out his manservant’s tooth, or his maidservant’s tooth; he
shall let him go free for his tooth’s sake” (Ex. 21:18-21,
“Thou shalt not deliver unto his master the servant which is
escaped from his master unto thee: He shall dwell with thee,
even among you, in that place which he shall choose in one
of thy gates, where it liketh him best: thou shalt not
oppress him” (Deut. 23:15-16).
“And if thy brother, an Hebrew man, or an Hebrew woman, be
sold unto thee, and serve thee six years; then in the
seventh year thou shalt let him go free from thee. And when
thou sendest him out free from thee, thou shalt not let him
go away empty: Thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy
flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy winepress: of
that wherewith the Lord thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt
give unto him. And thou shalt remember that thou wast a
bondman in the land of Egypt, and the Lord thy God redeemed
thee: therefore I command thee this thing to day” (Deut.
“And if a sojourner or stranger wax rich by thee, and thy
brother that dwelleth by him wax poor, and sell himself unto
the stranger or sojourner by thee, or to the stock of the
stranger’s family: After that he is sold he may be redeemed
again; one of his brethren may redeem him: Either his uncle,
or his uncle’s son, may redeem him, or any that is nigh of
kin unto him of his family may redeem him; or if he be able,
he may redeem himself” (Lev. 25:47-49).
“And it shall be, if he say unto thee, I will not go away
from thee; because he loveth thee and thine house, because
he is well with thee; Then thou shalt take an aul, and
thrust it through his ear unto the door, and he shall be thy
servant forever. And also unto thy maidservant thou shalt do
likewise” (Deut. 15:16-17).
“If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or
sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four
sheep for a sheep. If a thief be found breaking up, and be
smitten that he die, there shall no blood be shed for him.
If the sun be risen upon him, there shall be blood shed for
him; for he should make full restitution; if he have
nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft” (Ex. 22:1-3).
New Testament Passages on Slavery
“Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you,
Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin” (John 8:34).
“What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law,
but under grace? God forbid. Know ye not, that to whom ye
yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to
whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience
unto righteousness? But God be thanked, that ye were the
servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form
of doctrine which was delivered you” (Rom. 6:15-17).
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor
free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one
in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:28)
“Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor
uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but
Christ is all, and in all” (Col. 3:11).
“And, ye masters, do the same things unto them, forbearing
threatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven;
neither is there respect of persons with him” (Eph. 6:9).
“Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and
equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven” (Col.
“Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters
according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in
singleness of your heart, as unto Christ” (Eph. 6:5).
“Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the
flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in
singleness of heart, fearing God: And whatsoever ye do, do
it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men” (Col.
“Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own
masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his
doctrine be not blasphemed. And they that have believing
masters, let them not despise them, because they are
brethren; but rather do them service, because they are
faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things
teach and exhort” (I Tim. 6:1-2)
“Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters, and
to please them well in all things; not answering again; Not
purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may
adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things” (Titus
“Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was
called. Art thou called being a servant? care not for it:
but if thou mayest be made free, use it rather. For he that
is called in the Lord, being a servant, is the Lord’s
freeman: likewise also he that is called, being free, is
Christ’s servant” (I Cor. 7:20-22).
“Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man,
but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for
sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers
and murderers of mothers, for manslayers, For whoremongers,
for them that defile themselves with mankind, for
menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there
be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine” (I