Protestant Reformed Church
Rev. Angus Stewart
Lord’s Day, 2 November, 2008
"Happy is he
that hath the God of Jacob for his help,
whose hope is
in the Lord his God" (Ps. 146:5)
Morning Service - 11:00 AM
Lie Not One to Another
Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 43; Colossians 3:9-11
I. The Command
II. The Reasons
Psalms: 63:1-8; 148:1-8; 52:1-7; 51:4-10
Evening Service - 6:00 PM
Covetousness is Idolatry
Lord’s Day 44; Colossians 3:1-7
I. The Meaning
II. The Mortification
III. The Antidote
Psalms: 95:1-7; 148:7-14; 10:3-8; 42:1-5
CPRC website: www.cprc.co.uk
Quote to Consider:
Herman Hoeksema on the ninth commandment: "The
curse is that by the lie there is, under the wrath of God, created an
atmosphere of suspicion and malice and hatred and envy and distrust in
which one chokes rather than lives. The liar destroys his neighbour,
destroys himself, and destroys, if possible, the church of Christ. But
if we speak the truth in love, there is, under the blessing of God,
created an atmosphere of confidence, the confidence of love, of seeking
one another’s well-being, in which it is a joy to live, in which one can
breathe freely as a child of God in the Lord Jesus Christ. He that
speaks the truth in love saves his neighbour, saves himself, and saves
the church of Jesus Christ. For God dwells where the truth dwells.
Hence, as children of God we have a double calling, or rather, one
calling with two aspects: put off the old man, that moves in the sphere
of lying; and put on the new man in Jesus Christ our Lord, that always
speaks the truth in love. Then there will be joy and peace and light in
the midst of Zion, and God will dwell with us" (Triple
Knowledge, vol. 3, p. 420).
Announcements (subject to God’s will):
A new CPRC book/pamphlet/audio catalogue is
available on the back table.
The second offering this morning will be for the
The Council meets tomorrow evening at 7:30 PM
at the manse.
Tuesday, 4:30 PM - Jacob Buchanan
Tuesday, 5:30 PM - Jamie & Debbie Murray
Tuesday, 7 PM - Campbells at the manse
Thursday, 11:00 AM - Beginners OT Class
Midweek Bible Study meets this Wednesday, 7:45 PM
at the manse. We will continue our study of I Peter 1:8f. on joy
Prof. Engelsma’s 2-hour radio interview on the
truth of the Lord’s Day and the fourth commandment can be listened to
live on-line this Thursday, 6 November at 7:30 PM Eastern Standard Time
or 12:30 AM that night UK time (http://live.covenantradio.com).
The Reformed Witness Hour next Lord’s Day
(8:30-9:00 AM, on Gospel 846MW), is "Facing Death - Talitha Cumi" (Mark
Ladies’ Bible Study meets next Tuesday, 11
November, at 10:15 AM at the Murrays.
Offerings: General Fund - £455.45. Donations:
£100 (Building Fund), £71.50 (Ballymena Lecture), £2,940.00
(Wellington PRF in New Zealand).
Upcoming Lectures: "The Reformation’s Teaching on the Church"
Limerick School Project, Friday, 5 Dec., 7:30 PM
Porthcawl, South Wales, Friday, 12 Dec., 7:15 PM
Website Additions: A new
Psalm-Singing Resources page has been set up. Also added this
week were 4 Italian and 2 Afrikaans translations.
Luther and Reformed Education
Mr. Brian D. Dykstra, teacher at Hope Protestant Reformed
I am not telling you anything new by stating that
Michigan, the United States and now also the world are facing tough
economic times. The business section of The Grand Rapids Press
reported on these troubles in its Saturday, October 18, 2008 edition.
From an article from the Associated Press titled "Building Report Spells
Recession," I quote:
The nation is on track to build fewer homes this
year than at any time since the end of World War II, adding to the
woes of an economy that analysts said Friday almost certainly has
entered a recession.
While the economic outlook darkened even further
with bad reports on layoffs and consumer confidence, it was one of the
quietest days since the financial meltdown began a month ago. Wall
Street’s tumultuous week turned out to be its best in five years …
A monthly survey by the National Association of
Home Builders showed sentiment among home builders hit a record low in
David Seiders, chief economist for the group, said
builders are being hit by the double whammy from the financial
turmoil: It’s harder for them to get loans to pursue new houses, and
more difficult to sell those they do build.
He forecast that builders will keep slashing
production in coming months, with construction starts for new homes
and apartments totalling just 936,000 this year, the lowest level
since 1945 …
"I don’t think there is any ambiguity with respect
to whether we are in a recession," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at
Moody’s Economy.com. "I think it actually started at the end of last
year, and because of the financial panic we are going through now, it
is likely to last another year."
Other economists said they were looking for at
least three consecutive quarters of contraction, reflecting in part
the fact that consumers, who account for two-thirds of total economic
activity, are showing the strains of the biggest upheaval in the
financial sector in 70 years.
Although the present economic situation is not as
dire as the Great Depression of the 1930s, we certainly face some
challenges. One factor is that until the last few years when the
construction business began slowing down, we have enjoyed many years of
good economic times. We have grown accustomed to a standard of living
which would be remarkable to our grandparents and great-grandparents.
For those among us who are younger, these are the first challenging
economic times we have faced. Now that our wallets, purses, checking
accounts and other financial balances no longer appear as healthy as
they once did, we have some priorities to re-establish. When money is
tight, and it seems as if every dollar matters, we begin to ask
fundamental financial questions. What causes are worth our financial
support? How great a sacrifice are we willing to make for Reformed
education? How much are our schools worth to us?
Tuition for the schools we use and donations to the
deficit drives of the other schools we support constitute a significant
portion of our incomes. We can begin to wonder whether Reformed
education is worth the cost.
When a baseball team struggles, they work on the
fundamentals of the game. Pitchers will work on throwing strikes.
Fielders will work on sure-handed catches and making strong, accurate
throws to the proper base. Batters will concentrate on swinging at
strikes and putting the ball in play. The same holds true for us. An
examination of the fundamentals of Reformed education would help us to
determine what our schools are worth to us. Are these Christian schools
which are dedicated to Reformed education worth the cost during these
financially troubled times?
In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Prof. D. Engelsma
wrote several articles about Christian education which appeared in the
Standard Bearer. In his articles Prof. Engelsma cites three
important works by Martin Luther. These works are Luther’s "Open Letter
to the Christian Nobility of the German Nation concerning the Reform of
the Christian Estate" which was written in 1520; his 1524 work titled,
"To the Councilmen of all Cities in Germany that They Establish and
Maintain Christian Schools;" and a sermon written in 1530 titled "A
Sermon on Keeping Children in School."
My plan (which is subject to God’s counsel) for my
"Back-of-the-Note" articles this school year is to look at these
fundamental works of Luther on Christian education in the order in which
he wrote them. Next month we will take our first look at Luther’s "Open
Letter." I do not know whether I will be able to finish my treatment of
Luther’s three important works this school year. If I do not finish,
many financial experts say the current economic recession could continue
for a year, and if such is the case, we might benefit from continuing to
examine Luther’s works next school year.