Service - 11:00 AM
and the End of the World
Psalms: 48:4-11; 36:8-12; 105:26-37; 119:161-168
Service - 6:00 PM
Christian Love (14)
Greatest is Love
I. The Three Graces
Greatest of the Graces
103:1-2, 19-22; 37:1-7; 27:4-6; 23:1-6
For audio cassettes of the worship services, contact the bookstore.
CPRF website: www.cprf.co.uk
Quotes to Consider:
John Calvin on miracles:
"Faith does not depend on miracles, or any
extraordinary sign, but is the peculiar gift of the Spirit, and is
produced by means of the word ... There is nothing to which the flesh
is more inclined than to listen to vain revelations ...
Impostors in their working of miracles are the
ministers of God’s vengeance, in order that the reprobate may be taken
in their snares ...
Any miracles ... which seek to glorify the creature
and not God, and which bolster up untruths and not the Word of God,
are manifestly of the devil."
R. C. H. Lenski on I Corinthians 13:13:
"What John says regarding our love while we are in this earthly state
may surely be used to cast a light upon our state above where it will
be love that brings us into the fullest union and communion with God.
It is faith’s nature to receive, but love gives; and giving is greater
than receiving. God’s fullest purpose is attained in us when we are
filled with love. Hope also looks forward to receiving, but love is
full possession and completed joy. And for every new joy which hope
receives in heaven love will be the response on our part. When we come
to rest on the bosom of God, it will be by love."
Announcements (subject to God’s will):
There are a number of free sermon videos
available in the back for those who are interested. A letter from Rev.
Spriensma in the Philippines is on the back table.
The second offering this morning is for the
Catechism: Monday at 7 PM at the manse with the
Campbells Tuesday at 5:30 PM at the Murrays Thursday at 7 PM at the
Bible Study will be held this week Wednesday at
7:45 PM at the manse on the nature of church authority.
The Reformed Witness Hour next Lord’s Day,
12 March (8:30-9:00 AM, on Gospel 846MW) is entitled "The Last of the
Vinegar" (Mark 15:35-37).
Upcoming Lectures: "Miracles & the End of the
World," Limerick, Wednesday, 29 March "The Synod of Dordt," Ballymena
Protestant Hall, 8 PM, Friday, 7 April
Last Week’s Offerings: General Fund -
Donations: £10 (C. R. News), £23.20 (Bookstore), £35 (S.
PRC News: Rev. R. Kleyn (Trinity, MI) declined
the call to Faith PRC. Rev. Key (Hull, IA) declined Kalamazoo.
Covenant PRC (New Jersey) called Rev. Slopsema (First, MI). Classis
West met, examined, and approved Candidate Dennis Lee. He will be
ordained and installed in Edgerton PRC on 7 April.
John Calvin on miracles:
In demanding miracles from us, they [Roman Catholic
apologists] act dishonestly, for we have not coined some new gospel,
but retain the very one the truth of which is confirmed by all the
miracles which Christ and the apostles ever wrought. But they have a
peculiarity which we have not—they can confirm their faith by constant
miracles down to the present day! Nay rather, they allege miracles
which might produce wavering in minds otherwise well disposed; they
are so frivolous and ridiculous, so vain and false. But were they even
exceedingly wonderful, they could have no effect against the truth of
God, whose name ought to be hallowed always, and everywhere, whether
by miracles, or by the natural course of events. The deception would
perhaps be more specious if Scripture did not admonish us of the
legitimate end and use of miracles. Mark tells us that the signs which
followed the preaching of the apostles are wrought in confirmation of
it (Mark 16:20); so Luke also relates that the Lord "gave testimony to
the word of his grace, and granted signs and wonders to be done" by
the hands of the apostles (Acts 14:3). Very much to the same effect
are those words of the apostle, that salvation by a preached gospel
was confirmed, "the Lord bearing witness with signs and wonders, and
with divers miracles" (Heb. 2:4). Those things which we are told are
seals of the gospel, shall we pervert to the subversion of the gospel?
What was destined only to confirm the truths shall we misapply to the
confirmation of lies? The proper course, therefore, is, in the first
instance, to ascertain and examine the doctrine which is said by the
Evangelist to precede; then after it has been proved, but not till
then, it may receive confirmation from miracles. But the mark of sound
doctrine given by our Saviour himself is its tendency to promote the
glory not of men but of God (John 7:18; 8:50). Our Saviour having
declared this to be the test of doctrine, we are in error if we regard
as miraculous works which are used for any other purpose than to
magnify the name of God. And it becomes us to remember that Satan has
his miracles, which, although they are tricks rather than true
wonders, are still such as to delude the ignorant and unwary.
Magicians and enchanters have always been famous for miracles, and
miracles of an astonishing description have given support to idolatry:
these, however, do not make us converts to the superstitions either of
magicians or idolaters. In old times, too, the Donatists used their
power of working miracles as a battering ram, with which they shook
the simplicity of the common people. We now give to our opponents the
answer which Augustine then gave to the Donatists: "The Lord put us on
our guard against those wonder-workers when he foretold that false
prophets would arise, who, by lying signs and divers wonders would, if
it were possible deceive the very elect" (Matt. 24:24; Joan. Tract.
23). Paul, too, gave warning that the reign of antichrist would be
"with all power, and signs, and lying wonders" (II Thess. 2:9).
But our opponents tell us that their miracles are
wrought not by idols, not by sorcerers, not by false prophets, but by
saints: as if we did not know it to be one of Satan's wiles to
transform himself "into an angel of light" (II Cor. 11:14). The
Egyptians, in whose neighbourhood Jeremiah was buried, anciently
sacrificed and paid other divine honours to him (Hieron. in Praef.
Jeremy). Did they not make an idolatrous abuse of the holy prophet of
God? And yet, in recompense for so venerating his tomb, they thought
that they were cured of the bite of serpents. What, then, shall we say
but that it has been, and always will be, a most just punishment of
God, to send on those who do not receive the truth in the love of it,
"strong delusion, that they should believe a lie" (II Thess. 2:11)?
(from the "Prefatory Address to King Francis I" in
Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion)