Covenant Protestant Reformed Church
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Covenant Protestant Reformed Church

83 Clarence Street, Ballymena BT43 5DR
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 19 March, 2017

“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 (9)
Paul’s Confident Conclusion  [download]  [youtube]

Scripture Reading: Philemon 1-25
Text: Philemon 21-25

I. Confident of Philemon’s Obedience
II. Confident of His Own Release
III. Confident Among Many Witnesses
Psalms: 84:1-3, 10-12; 32:1-5; 16:1-7; 146:5-10

Evening Service - 6:00 PM - Rev. M. McGeown

Faithful Jehovah’s Unfailing Compassion  [download]  [youtube]

Scripture Reading: Lamentations 3:1-41
Text: Lamentations 3:22-23

I. The Meaning
II. The Circumstances
III. The Demonstration
Psalms: 137:1-6; 32:6-11; 74:4-9; 102:13-18

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 Lamentations 3: “From the one great, eternal, boundless, and endless compassion in God’s heart there flow numberless deeds of mercy, blessing and keeping his people and preparing them for eternal glory. These mercies explain the marvelous fact that we are not consumed” (Peace for the Troubled Heart, p. 180).

Matthew Henry on Lamentations 3: “God is sometimes angry with his own people; yet it is to be complained of, not as a sword to cut off, but only as a rod to correct; it is to them the rod of his wrath, a chastening which, though grievous for the present, will in the issue be advantageous. By this rod we must expect to see affliction, and, if we be made to see more than ordinary affliction by that rod, we must not quarrel, for we are sure that the anger is just and affliction mild and mixed with mercy … When God’s hand is continually turned against us, we are tempted to think that his heart is turned against us too ... Whatever hard things we suffer, we must never entertain any hard thoughts of God, but must still be ready to own that he is both kind and faithful.”

Announcements (subject to God’s will)

We welcome Rev. McGeown who will be preaching for us today, while Rev. Stewart is in the Limerick Reformed Fellowship. We also welcome Kelsey Kuiper (Faith PRC) who is studying at the University of Limerick this term and Dale Mansona of the LRF.

This evening’s service will be preparatory for the Lord’s Supper next Sunday morning.

Monday evening’s Catechism Classes:
5:45 PM - Taylor, Josh, Corey & Katelyn (Beginners NT)
6:30 PM - Bradley & Samuel (Juniors OT)
7:15 PM - Jacob, Alex & Nathan (Heidelberg Catechism, book 2)

The Tuesday Bible Study meets at 11 AM to consider the idea of the land in the Old Testament.

The Belgic Confession Class meets on Wednesday at 7:45 PM to conclude our study of article 31 by looking at the believer’s calling regarding the office-bearers.

Men’s Bible Study meets this Saturday at 8 PM at the Kennedys to discuss chapter 1 of War of Words by Paul Tripp.

The Reformed Witness Hour broadcast next Lord’s Day (Gospel 846 MW at 8:30 AM) by Rev. R. Kleyn is “Sexual Purity” (Ex. 20:14).

The next S. Wales Lecture by Rev. McGeown on “Why the Trinity?” is planned for Thursday, 6 April, at 7:15 PM in the Round Chapel, Margam.

Plan now to attend a CPRC lecture by Rev. Stewart on “Are All Men in the Image of God?” on Friday, 12 May, at 7:30 PM.

Offerings: General Fund: £707.60.

St. Patrick Versus Homosexuality

Rev. Angus Stewart

(published in the Belfast News Letter on 16 March, 2017,
and the Belfast Telegraph on St. Patrick's Day, 17 March, 2017)


Among the St. Patrick's Day parades in various places around the world, some homosexual groups are marching.

But what does Patrick himself—the man who is supposed to be honoured by such parades—have to say about homosexuality?

In his autobiography, after being kidnapped and forced into slavery as a shepherd, Patrick relates his escape from Ireland. He boarded a ship without complying with the request of the (male) sailors: "I refused to suck their breasts for fear of God, but rather hoped they would come to the faith of Jesus Christ, because they were pagans" (Confession 18).

In fifth-century pagan Ireland, sucking a man's nipple was a sign of friendship or of the reception of protection. Patrick "refused" to engage in it out of the "fear of God" to avoid any homosexual connotations. Instead, this faithful Christian, whose two writings are saturated with the Word of God, and who would later return to Ireland as a missionary and be known as its patron saint, "rather hoped they would come to the faith of Jesus Christ."

Patrick preached, rebuked sin, and called to repentance and faith in Christ crucified in the confidence that Scripture consists of the words "of God and the apostles and prophets, who have never lied. He that believeth shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be condemned. God hath spoken" (Letter to Coroticus 20).

This includes God's beautiful creation of marriage between one man and one woman (Gen. 1:27; 2:24; Matt. 19:4-6), as a picture of the union of Christ and His bride the church (Eph. 5:22-33), and, therefore, the prophetic and apostolic opposition to sodomy and lesbianism (Gen. 19:1-29; Lev. 18:22; 20:13; Isa. 3:9; Eze. 16:49-50; Rom. 1:26-27; I Cor. 6:9-11; I Tim. 1:10; Jude 7).