Skip to content

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

Always Ready to Give Account. Acts 25:13-27

Always Ready to Give Account

Text: Acts 25:13-27 

This study is mostly history and background that we will need to understand what’s happening later, in Acts 26.  Festus has a problem!

1 The Problem27 For it seemeth to me unreasonable to send a prisoner, and not withal to signify the crimes laid against him.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Roman Law was strict.  Under certain circumstances, a man who was accused of a crime had a right of appeal, and that went right to the top of the empire to the supreme court of the day, to Caesar himself. The Law of Rome dictated that any lessor magistrate, like Festus, would have to make sure that an appellant to the court at Rome had substantial charges placed against him, and that they were properly documented, in a file, personally submitted by the procurator.  Festus would have to write that letter himself.   But did it all add up?  Festus KNEW Paul was innocent.  Acts 25:10, 25.  If he sent a man to Caesar who had no charges to answer, – he was in danger of wasting the time of the supreme court, – and what would he write anyway?  This whole matter seemed to be about nothing other than the Jewish religion, and Festus knew nothing about it!  What a problem, – until a solution offered itself, in the shape of one King Herod Agrippa II.

Read more…

The Civil Magistrate.

The Christian and the Civil Authorities

Text: Acts 25:10-11

In Acts 25:10-11  Paul is saying – if I have broken the civil law, I deserve to be punished.  So, as a Christian, if I break the law, should I accept my punishment, willingly, even if that punishment is thought to be harsh?  To get a better insight into what Paul is thinking here we should couple Paul’s words here with what he wrote in Romans 13:1-7.   

1. Paul’s Principles Stated.  Romans 13:1-7

Read more…

The Prism: NI, Covid Passports and The Free Offer of the Gospel.

The Prism – NI, Covid Passports and the Free Offer of the Gospel

In this episode of The Prism, I want to look at an issue that has recently emerged in Northern Ireland, where I live.  The Executive of the local Assembly, by a vote of just 6 people, (There’s 10 ministers in the assembly) has mandated the use of ‘Covid Certification’ – a vaccine passport, for entry to venues where people will gather, including concerts, cinemas, restaurants, and so on. Only the ‘fully vaccinated’ will be permitted to enter such places, and venues must enforce the diktat, or face a one thousand pounds fine.  Their objective, apparently is to stem the flow of Covid infections and thus prevent overcrowding in the hospital system.  The implications of this new pass will be huge.  Already, firms are cancelling their Christmas functions, with one venue reporting that they have lost £50,000 of bookings overnight.  

Image by Alexandra_Koch from Pixabay

CLICK TO LISTEN TO THE PODCAST

Read more…

Table-Talk: Angels?

TableTalk – What does the Bible Say About Angels? 

READ.  Psalm 8:4-5

When ‘good’ people die, do they become angels?  In this New Age, there is an unhealthy interest in angels. There are people who think that when a person dies, they become an angel.  You’ll hear them expressing sentiments like, “Fly high, now you’ve got your wings…”.   As Christians we know that this is NOT true! 

o people become angels when they de? The answer is a resounding NO!

READ Job 38:4-7 Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you have understanding. 5  Who determined its measurements? Surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? 6  To what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, 7 When the morning stars sang together, And all the sons of God shouted for joy?   At Creation, there were ‘created beings’ watching God doing his creative work.  Was it Adam and Eve?___________

Question: In the spiritual order, are angels above or below mankind?

READ: Psalm 8: 4-5 What is man that You are mindful of him, And the son of man that You visit him?  5  For You have made him a little lower than the angels, And You have crowned him with glory and honour.  

Read more…

Echoes of Remembrance

A moving and heartfelt Remembrance Sunday at The Old Reformed Church at Ballymacashon, when we marked with solemnity, the sacrifices of those who served and those who died, during 1st and 2nd World Wars, and subsequent conflicts, and the gallantry and dedication of the UDR, RIR, USC and RUC in the face of terrorism.
We WILL remember them

Extracts from the Annual Service of Remembrance held on 14th November 2021, have been incorporated into a PODCAST

CLICK THIS LINK TO LISTEN

Ballymacashon Church on Remembrance Sunday

Preaching Politics – Acts 25:1-12

Preaching Politics

Text: Acts 254:27-25:12

Retaining integrity in a political career, especially when that career climbs into one of the ‘great offices of state’ is extremely challenging, and politicians need our prayers.   We will use this passage as a case-study!  First let’s learn about:-

A Typical Bust of ‘Caesar.’

1. The Political Situation.

Read more…

Table Talk – The Paranormal?

Table-Talk: What does the Bible say about the Paranormal?

Text: Romans 8:38-39

In this study we want to ask why there is such an interest in spiritual darkness?  Does the Bible have anything to say about superstition, about the paranormal, about ghosts, and about the ‘afterlife’ in general.  And why are people so interested and fascinated with ‘life after death’ when they are not at all interested in learning that there is a heaven and a hell?   In his book, “The Truth Behind Ghosts,” Christian author and lecturer Ron Rhodes says that ‘The Paranormal is the New Normal!’  Rhodes suggests that there are several reasons for this unhealthy interest in the occult, ghosts and hauntings, like Paranormal TV programmes and Paranormal films and books.  Celebrity culture too as people follow their favourite stars. Games too.  In the 1960s there was a great rise in people exploring eastern mysticism. Any connection with the occult will lead into paranormal curiosity and exploration.  There’s one factor that the Bible continually stresses throughout, the real underlying reason why people searching for the light, find themselves groping in the darkness.  It is found in the words of Jesus in John 3:19  The human heart will always, in its own sinful rebellion, veer towards what is evil, Genesis 6:5   Jeremiah 17:9. Ok, let’s look into it…

Read more…

WHY DID FELIX NOT REPENT?

FELIX AND THE DOCTRINE OF THE EFFECTUAL CALL OF GOD

Text: Acts  24:22-27

Why did Felix Not Repent?

Text: Acts  24:22-27

When I was a teenager there was a popular song being sung in evangelistic meetings by choirs and soloists.  Here’s a verse and chorus.  “There’s a line that is drawn by rejecting the Lord, Where the call of His Spirit is lost, And you hurry along with the pleasure-mad throng— Have you counted, have you counted the cost? Have you counted the cost if your soul should be lost, Though you gain the whole world for your own? Even now it may be that the line you have crossed—Have you counted, have you counted the cost?”

The idea that underlies the Hymn ‘Have you counted the cost,’ is that you must come to Christ, make your decision, right now while the Spirit of God is striving with you, because if you don’t there may come a day when the Holy Spirit will stop striving, and for you it will be too late.  You have put off salvation, God has abandoned you to your eternal fate and you are lost forever.  You can never be saved.  The technical term for it is ‘semi-pelagianism,’ and it is directly contrary to the orthodox biblical doctrine of how God saves sinners.    There are many people who believe that our passage in Acts is an example of a man who was awakened by God, was convicted by the Holy Spirit, and who hesitated, procrastinated, put off salvation, – until it was too late and he was lost.  But is it? 

A Convenient Time?
Read more…

The Way – Acts 24:10-21

The Way and The Resurrection

Text: Acts  24:10-21

Caesarea, the Governor’s Court.  Felix beckons him to speak, and Paul, knowing that now he is under the protection of the court addresses his defence directly to his accusers, the Temple rulers of the Jews.  Let’s look at Paul’s defence.

Are you searching for the way? Jesus said, “I am the way…”

1 Paul’s Opening RemarksForasmuch as I know that thou hast been of many years a judge unto this nation, I do the more cheerfully answer for myself:  

Like Tertullus, Paul opens with a salutation, but while Terulullus opens with a diatribe of crawling obeisance, lies and flattery that he knows is not true, Paul’s speech is a simple statement of the truth.  Respectfully, he states that Felix, for a long time, has been sitting in this court, judging the affairs of the Jews, and because of that, Paul is happy enough to make his case before him.  “M’Lud, – You’ve been around here long enough, to know the score.  To know these Jews, and to know the lawyer and to know that I have no record of criminal behaviour!”


2 Paul’s Defence. v12ff

Read more…

The Theology of Fashion – TableTalk @ Ballymacashon

Does the Bible have anything to say about how a Christian presents himself or herself to the world?

Is there a THEOLOGY OF FASHION?

In our last TableTalk, we talked aboutAPPEARANCE – and particularly the outward appearance of the Christian.  Does it matter what I look like, what I wear, what way I do my hair etc?  What does my appearance say about me?  Here’s a Scripture text, to start the discussion:-

1 John 2:15-17 “Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.”  

That statement of Johns, that we are not to love the world, and the things that the world values, – sexual attraction, material possessions and self-esteem, – should help us to lay a foundation for our understanding of our appearance – what our outward appearance says about us to others.   Your clothes speak for you.  When people look at us, do they see people who are conforming to the values of the world, or who have turned away from those lusts and passions? 

Our outward appearance says a lot about us! So, our topic is APPEARANCE – the Theology of Fashion. 

Read more…