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Morning Worship

Morning Worship, Every Lord’s Day at 11.30am, DV, at

The Old Reformed Church at Ballymacashon

(Congregational)

78 Saintfield Road, Killinchy, Co.Down. BT23 6RN.
Psalms – Bible Reading – Exegetical Preaching


For information contact 07802466302 or click https://saltyscrivener.uk/ballymacashon-congregational…/

We always welcome visitors!

Martin Luther: “at home, in my own house, there is no warmth or vigour in me, but in the church when the multitude is gathered together, a fire is kindled in my heart and it breaks its way through.”

Find us at 78 Saintfield Road,

Killinchy,

NEWTOWNARDS Co.Down,

BT23 6RN

Catechism Class. Lord’s Day 20A Q53 

Catechism Class. Lord’s Day 20A Q53 

The PERSON of the Holy Spirit

Welcome again to our weekly catechism class, and we have reached Lord’s Day 20.  Our instructor is still teaching us the doctrine that lies beneath the words of the historic Apostle’s Creed.  This is important for us, for we are part of the historic church, we are at one with believers who have been redeemed by the blood of the lamb, throughout all ages.  Our teacher follows the creed with one single question about the Holy Spirit in LD20, Q53:-

Q.53, What do you believe concerning the Holy Spirit? A. First, he is, together with the Father and the Son, true and eternal God.  Second, he is also given to me, to make me by true faith share in Christ and all his benefits, to comfort me, and to remain with me forever. 

Listen to the PODCAST HERE

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Now, that really makes the Catechist a lot different from many modern evangelical churches, where there is a huge emphasis on the Holy Spirit, and his gifts among the believers.  Some of our Pentecostal friends, brothers and sisters in the Lord, may even say that we are at fault in the Reformed churches, – for we underplay the work of God the Holy Spirit.  Do we? Is the Catechist guilty of making less than he should of the Holy Spirit and his work?  Actually, I think not!  READ: John 16:13-14  

And, let’s apply that:-

Firstly, our reformed understanding of the place of the Holy Spirit in worship is reflective of the primary work of the Holy Spirit, which is to glorify Christ. When we are singing our praises to the Lord Jesus, when we are praying to him, and worshipping him, and learning about him, that’s when the Holy Spirit is doing his work. 

Secondly, our understanding of the place of the Holy Spirit in worship is reflective of the Biblical revelation of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament, which makes much more, and reveals to us much more about God the Father and God the Son, than it does about the Holy Spirit. That’s not at all surprising, considering that the Holy Spirit’s role is Christocentric, and considering that the Holy Spirit inspired the Biblical writers, – who merely reflected the Spirit’s own emphasis on God the Father and God the Son.  

So, the Catechist, and the Creed, and the historical worship practices of the Reformed Churches, simply reflect the work and the focus of the Holy Spirit himself.  

The catechist asks us what we believe about the Holy Spirit, and he divides his answer into two parts, the PERSON of the Holy Spirit, and the work of the Holy Spirit.  We shall follow that example, and we shall look who the Holy Spirit is, and then in our next lesson, we’ll see what the Holy Spirit does.  The first thing we need to discover is the most basic of all:-

1 The Holy Spirit is a PERSON. God is three distinct persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, in One God.  We call this the Trinity. And that brings us to our first statement about the divinity of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a PERSON, not an inanimate force. If you read the AV THOUGH, in Romans 8, you may see this, Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.  The Scrivener TR Greek Text reads, αυτο το πνευμα – the words translated ‘itself’ is auto – it simply indicates the ability to work independently, (think of our words ‘automatic’ or automobile’) to work without outside aid – so the Amp: “but the Spirit Himself [knows our need and at the right time]” The fact that the holy spirit himself examines our hearts, knows our needs, at exactly the right time, when those needs are troubling us, and knows how to express those needs in intercession before God, better than we can express them ourselves is not the only indication of his personhood.  He fulfils the criteria for personhood in many different ways, and we see these in Scripture:

  • He is a TEACHER. Warning his disciples about the dangers of persecution, Jesus comforted them in Luke12:11-12 
  • He SPEAKS. Acts 13:2  
  • He PRAYS. As we have already seen, in Romans 8:26  
  • He can be GRIEVED. Ephesians 4:30  

So, the Holy Spirit is a PERSON. Now, we need to add that the Holy Spirit is one of the three persons of the Godhead. So-

2 The Holy Spirit is GOD.  There are ample biblical examples of the deity of the Holy Spirit.  When Jesus taught his disciples the baptismal formula in Matthew 28:19, they were to baptise in the NAME (singular) of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, all co-equal within the Godhead.  In Genesis 1:2, the Holy Spirit, together with the father and the Son are active in Creation.  Genesis 1:1-2 When Ananias and Sapphira lied to the Holy Spirit about their money, they equally were lying to God. Acts 5:3-4  And when Paul teaches us that God indwells the believer, he equates that with the Holy Spirit, 1 Corinthians 3:16  

So, because the Holy Spirit is God he is …

  • Omnipresent.   There is nowhere that we can go, that the Holy Spirit is not there!  The Holy Spirit is a SPIRIT. We cannot see him – but he is with us, within us, around us. READ how the psalmist described this in Psalm 139:7-10,  Finally, for now, we need to note that…
  • The Holy Spirit is Eternal.  Hebrews refers to him as the ‘eternal spirit’ in Hebrews 9:14  

So, now that we have established some very simple and basic truths about who the Holy Spirit is, we can proceed in our next lesson, to see what the Holy Spirit does, and how we, as believers in Christ, benefit from his work.  

© Bob McEvoy

News and Prayer Update.

News and Prayer Update.

It’s Monday morning, 23rd May 2022, and this is the regular Monday PrayerCast – where we take a look back over some of the recent news and events in Northern Ireland and further afield, with a Christian worldview. Let’s start with the amazing Ukrainian victory! Slava Ukraini! I’m referring of course to the Ukrainian victory in the Eurovision Song Contest. When I was a boy we used to talk about a ‘corny joke.’ A corny joke was one where the punch line was so predictable that no-one laughed. The Eurovision Song Contest is the ultimate corny joke.

Listen to the PODCAST HERE


Read more…

Catechism Class. L D 19D, Q52

Catechism Class. Lord’s Day 19D, Q52

From Whence He Shall Come!

The Apostle’s Creed states, ‘from whence He shall come, to judge the living and the dead.’  Our instructor seeks to understand this phrase, not in a cold objective way, but to apply it us, as Christian believers.  He assumes that Christ’s coming will be a COMFORT to we who long to see Him.

Q.52 asks, “What comfort is it to you that Christ will come to judge the living and the dead?”  The answer we must give is, “In all my sorrow and persecution I lift up my head and eagerly await as judge from heaven the very same person who before has submitted himself to the judgment of God for my sake, and has removed all the curse from me.  He will cast all his and my enemies into everlasting condemnation, but he will take me and all his chosen ones to himself into heavenly joy and glory.” 

READ Titus 2:13-14 How will Christ’s return, on the last day, be a comfort to ME – to YOU, personally?

LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

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Monday PrayerCast 16th May 2022

News and Prayer Update.

It’s Monday morning, 16th May 2022, and  this is the regular Monday PrayerCast on the Semper Reformata Podcast, – it’s our weekly News and Prayer Update from NI with a Christian worldview. 

LISTEN TO THE PODCAST HERE.

Let’s talk politics.

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Be Ready – The Lord Will Return!

Be Ready 

Text: 1 Thess 5:1-11

Paul has advised the Thessalonian church that they should not be worried about the Lord’s return. In fact it should be a comfort to them, something to await with expectation, and joy, a reuniting of those who have died in Christ, as the  great shout is heard and the trumpet sounds and the dead are raised and we rise to go to be with the Lord… It is a continuation of the astounding power of God, that raised Jesus from the dead and seated Him at the right hand of God, and that gives us new life and prepares us for that very day, (the power of Christ’s resurrection), and which will at the last day bring together all the scattered DNA of those through the centuries that are His, and give them new resurrection bodies and an eternal home in a world where there is no longer any death. …and thus we shall also be with the Lord, 8 Therefore comfort one another with these words!

Our catechism question and answer recognises this great comfort too. Heidelberg Catechism, Lord’s Day 19, Q52, “What comfort is it to you that Christ will come to judge the living and the dead?” 

In 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, Paul goes on to describe how that ‘comfort’ – how that hope of the Lord’s return will practically outwork itself in the life of the believer…

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Just for Fun…

Just to prove that Christians like to laugh (occasionally) here’s a handy guide to finding your perfect spiritual home on this earth…

Can you recognise yourself?

Catechism Class. Lord’s Day 19C, Q.51 

Catechism Class. Lord’s Day 19C, Q.51 

Our Defence

As our catechist reminds us, Christ, seated at the Father’s right hand and reigning as our king, – by his power, defends and preserves us against all enemies.  Note then-

  1. He defends us by HIS POWER.  Although Luther had a powerful man as a friend and protector, it is the power of God in whom we trust, not in the power of men, even princes, like Frederick.  Christ’s power is superior, – he is omnipotent – all powerful!  Psalm 118:9  
  2. He protects us, as his church and individually. This is wonderfully personal, we have promises in the scriptures that God will always protect us, will never leave us, will care for us.  Without the permission of our Saviour, not a single hair can fall fall from the believer’s head!  That promise is also a corporate guarantee to the church.  Matthew 16:18   
  3. He preserves us.  He will never permit us to be plucked out of his hand – we are held tight in the Saviour’s grip.  John 10:28  Our eternal security does not depend on our own strength.  If it did we would fall away and be lost, but it rests on Christ, a firm and solid foundation, and he will never fail us.

Lord’s Day 19 Q.51, How does the glory of Christ, our Head, benefit us? A. First, by his Holy Spirit he pours out heavenly gifts upon us, his members.  Second, by his power he defends and preserves us against all enemies

How wonderful is our Saviour, and mighty defender who delivers us out of the hands of our enemies? Who are these enemies, that we need the greatest and most powerful defender to keep us safe from them?

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Monday PrayerCast, 9th May 2022

News and Prayer Update.

It’s Monday morning, 9th May 2022, and this week we’ve got a kind of a special edition, – about FOOD!  There’s two major food issues, present day logistics –  in other words transportation costs and the availability of transport, that causing price-rises, – and future global and local food policies. So, let’s take some time this morning to think about food, glorious food…

LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

-oOOo-

Are you aware of Government Farm Retirement Incentives?

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Saved – and KEPT by Christ. John 10:22-30

Kept and Defended by Christ

Text: John 10:22-30   

In this study, we learn that when you have been rescued from your sin, by our Lord Jesus Christ, it is Christ Himself who calls you, brings you into his flock, and like a shepherd guards the flock, watches over you, until you arrive safely in heaven. 

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Why No Women Pastors? 1 Tim 2:11-15

A Faithful Woman’s Ministry

Where Paul Defines Women’s Ministry in1 Timothy 2:11-15  

The Bible has a very high view of women. READ: Galatians 3:28, Despite the attack of feminists and liberals, Paul was no misogynist. But, he insists, there is one single thing that a woman shouldn’t do.  

LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

l. A Compliant Ministry! Let a woman learn in silence with all submission. 12 And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence.

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