Meditation for Sunday, March 7.

Meditation

Blessed are the peacemakers. Matt. 5:9.

There is a fourfold peace that we must study and cherish.

An Oeconomical peace, peace in families. It is called ‘the bond of peace’ (Ephesians 4:3). Without this all drops in pieces. Peace is a girdle that ties together members in a family. It is a golden clasp that knits them together that they do not fall in pieces. We should endeavor that our houses should be ‘houses of peace’. It is not fairness of rooms makes a house pleasant, but peaceableness of dispositions. There can be no comfortableness in our dwellings till peace be entertained as an inmate into our houses.

There is a parochial peace, when there is a sweet harmony, a tuning and chiming together of affections in a parish; when all draw one way and, as the apostle says, are ‘perfectly joined together in the same mind’ (1 Corinthians 1:10). One jarring string brings all the music out of tune. One bad member in a parish endangers the whole. ‘Be at peace among yourselves’ (1 Thessalonians 5:13). It is little comfort to have our houses joined together if our hearts be asunder. A geometrical union will do little good without a moral union.

There is a political peace, peace in city and country. This is the fairest flower of a prince’s crown. Peace is the best blessing of a nation. It is well with bees when there is a noise; but it is best with Christians when (as in the building of the Temple) there is no noise of hammer heard. Peace brings plenty along with it. How many miles would some go on pilgrimage to purchase this peace! Therefore the Greeks made peace to be the nurse of Pluto, the god of wealth. Political plants thrive best in the sunshine of peace. ‘He maketh peace in thy borders, and filleth thee with the finest of the wheat’ (Psalm 147:14). ‘Peace makes all things flourish’. The ancients made the harp the emblem of peace. How sweet would the sounding of this harp be after the roaring of the cannon! All should study to promote this political peace. The godly man when he dies ‘enters into peace’ (Isaiah 57:2). But while he lives peace must enter into him.

There is an ecclesiastical peace, a church-peace, when there is unity and verity in the church of God. Never does religion flourish more than when her children spread themselves as olive-plants round about her table. Unity in faith and discipline is a mercy we cannot prize enough. This is that which God has promised (Jeremiah 32:39) and which we should pursue (Zechariah 8:18-23). Saint Ambrose says of Theodosius the Emperor, that when he lay sick he took more care for the Church’s peace than for his own recovery.

Thomas Watson

Announcements for Sunday, February 28.

  • Marv Barnard’s mother passed away last Sunday and was buried on Thursday. Please remember in prayer and with sympathy Marv and Mary Barnard and their children in this loss.
  • The side entry door of the church will now be open before each worship service.
  • Come over and Help (COAH) is the mission organization that we are collecting for today. COAH partners with churches in Eastern Europe to bring glory to God through gospel proclamation and practical ministry. Please see a list of the various projects at coah.org.
  • Dear Congregation, Yesterday the consistory had a virtual video meeting with Rev. Pronk. Pastor Pronk continues to believe the Lord is leading him to Providence. The past months have been very difficult for Rev. Pronk and his family, but he also has experienced the Lord’s presence and communion in a rich measure as he deals with the long wait. We are continuing to look for any option possible for Pastor Pronk to follow the call of the Lord and come and minister among us. We have written a letter to request an exemption, Pastor Pronk continues to pursue personal contacts with the officials at the embassy, and we are working with a contact from US Representative Peter Meijer’s office. Rev. Pronk now has an appointment with the US embassy in Amsterdam on May 3. Please continue to pray with us that Pastor Pronk and his family will be able to finally make the trip. Please look for a link to a video message from Pastor Pronk in your email inbox next week.

Meditation for Sunday, February 28

Meditation

Blessed are the peacemakers. Matt. 5:9.

This is the seventh step of the golden ladder which leads to blessedness. The name of peace is sweet, and the work of peace is a blessed work. ‘Blessed are the peacemakers’.

The reasons why we should be peaceable-minded are two:

First, we are called to peace (1 Corinthians 7:15). God never called any man to division. That is a reason why we should not be given to strife, because we have no call for it. But God has called us to peace.

Second, it is the nature of grace to change the heart and make it peaceable. By nature we are of a fierce cruel disposition. When God cursed the ground for man’s sake, the curse was that it should bring forth ‘thorns and thistles’ (Genesis 3:18). The heart of man naturally lies under this curse. It brings forth nothing but the thistles of strife and contention. But when grace comes into the heart it makes it peaceable. It infuses a sweet, loving disposition. It smooths and polishes the most knotty piece. It files off the ruggedness in men’s spirits. Grace turns the vulture into a dove, the briar into a myrtle tree (Isaiah 55:13), the lion-like fierceness into a lamb-like gentleness. ‘The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb and the leopard shall lie down with the kid . . .’ (Isaiah 11:6-9). It is spoken of the power which the gospel shall have upon men’s hearts; it shall make such a metamorphosis that those who before were full of rage and antipathy shall now be made peaceable and gentle ‘The leopard shall lie down with the kid’. It shows us the character of a true saint. He is given to peace. He is the keeper of the peace. He is ‘a son of peace’.      Thomas Watson

Announcements for Sunday, February 21.

  • Come over and Help (COAH) is the mission organization that we are collecting for next week. COAH partners with churches in Eastern Europe to bring glory to God through gospel proclamation and practical ministry. Please see a list of the various projects at coah.org.
  • We would like to thank our church family for the kind cards, texts, messages and conversations in the loss of our dear sister and beloved Auntie.  Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. Will and Jane Heikoop and family.
  • Please remember those in prayer that cannot gather with us due to the infirmities of old age.

Meditation for Sunday, February 21.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matt. 5:8.

Is there such a blessed privilege after this life? Then let me persuade all who hear me this day:

  1. To get into Christ. We cannot come to God but by Christ. Moses when he was in the rock saw In this blessed rock, Christ, we shall see God.

2 To be purified persons. It is only the pure in heart who shall see God. It is only a clear eye can behold a bright transparent object. Those only who have their hearts cleansed from sin can have this blessed sight of God. Sin is such a cloud as, if it be not removed, will for ever hinder us from seeing the Sun of Righteousness. Christian, have you upon your heart ‘holiness to the Lord’? Then you shall see God. There are many, says Augustine, could be content to go to heaven, but they are loath to take the way that leads thither. They would have the glorious vision but neglect the gracious union.

Let me turn myself to the pure in heart.

  1. 1.Stand amazed at this privilege, that you who are worms crept out of the dust should be admitted to the blessed sight of God to all eternity. It was Moses, prayer, ‘I beseech thee, show me thy glory’ (Exodus 33:18). The saints shall behold God’s glory. The pure in heart shall have the same blessedness that God himself has. For what is the blessedness of God but the contemplating his own infinite beauty!
  2. 2.Begin your sight of God here. Let the eye of your faith be still upon God. Moses by faith ’sawhim who is invisible’ (Hebrews 11:27). Often look upon him with believing eyes, whom you hope to see with glorified eyes. ‘Mine eyes are ever towards the Lord’ (Psalm 25:15). While others are looking towards the earth as if they would fetch all their comforts thence, let us look up to heaven. There is the best prospect. The sight of God by faith would let in much joy to the soul. ‘Though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable’ (1 Peter 1:8).
  3. 3.Let this be as cordial-water to revive the pure in heart. Be comforted with this, you shall shortlysee God. The godly have many sights here that they would not see. They see a body of death; they see the sword unsheathed; they see rebellion wearing the mask of religion; they see the white devil. These sights occasion sorrow; but there is a blessed sight a-coming, ‘They shall see God.’ And in him are all sparkling beauties and ravishing joys to be found.

4 Be not discouraged at sufferings. All the hurt that affliction and death can do is to give you a sight of God. As one said to his fellow-martyr, ‘One half hour in glory will make us forget our pain’. The sun arising, all the dark shadows of the night fly away. When the pleasant beams of God’s countenance shall begin to shine upon the soul in heaven, then sorrows and sufferings shall be no more. ‘The dark shadows of the night, shall fly away. The thoughts of this beatifical vision should carry a Christian full sail with joy through the waters of affliction. This made Job so willing to embrace death: ‘I know that my redeemer liveth, and though worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God’ (Job 19:25, 26).

Thomas Watson

Announcements for Sunday, February 14

  • Please remember with prayer and sympathy the Hoogmoed family as Mrs. Claire Hoogmoed, mother of Mr. Ron Hoogmoed, passed away last Friday evening. She was 86 years old and lived in North Carolina.
  • Dear Church Family,

Thank you for all the displays of love and kindness that you have shown over the last year to Elizabeth and us during her illness and passing away. We felt supported by your prayers and love. “As for me, I will behold Thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I wake, with Thy likeness. Psalm 17:15.                   Walter Rozeboom and children.

  • The consistory received the transfer of membership for Nathan Kelderman to Providence Reformed Church.

Meditation for Sunday, February 14

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matt. 5:8.

The reasons for purity are:

Purity is a thing called for in Scripture: ‘Be ye holy for I am holy’. It is not only the minister bids you be holy, but God himself calls for it. What should the Holy God do with unholy servants?

Because of that filthy and cursed condition we are in before purity be wrought in us. We are a lump of clay and sin mingled together. Sin not only blinds us, but defiles us. It is called filthiness (James 1:21). And to show how befilthying a thing it is, it is compared to a plague-sore (1 Kings 8:38), to spots (Deuteronomy 32:5), to a vomit (2 Peter 2:22), and to a ‘menstruous cloth’ (Isaiah 30:22), which (as Jerome says) was the most defiling thing under the law. All the legal warnings which God appointed were but to put men in mind of their loathsomeness before they were washed in the blood of Christ. If all the evils in the world were put together and their quintessence strained out, they could not make a thing so black and polluted as sin does. A sinner is a devil in man’s shape. When Moses’ rod was turned into a serpent, he fled from it. Would God open men’s eyes and show them their deformities and damnable

spots, they would be afraid and fly from themselves as serpents! This shows what need we have of purity. When grace comes it washes off this hellish filth. It makes them who are as black as hell to become white as snow.

Because none but the pure in heart are interested in the covenant of grace. Covenanted persons have ‘the sprinkling with clean water’ (Ezekiel 36:25). Now, till we are thus sprinkled, we have nothing to do with the new covenant and by consequence with the new Jerusalem.

Purity is the end of our election. ‘He has chosen us that we should be holy’ (Ephesians 1:4). Not for holiness, but to holiness. ‘Whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son’ (Romans 8:29). God predestinates us to Christ’s image, which image consists ‘in righteousness and true holiness’ (Ephesians 4:24). So that till you are holy, you cannot show any sign of election upon you, but rather the devil’s brand-mark.

Purity is the end of our redemption. If we could have gone to heaven in our sins, Christ needed not have died. Why did he shed his blood but to redeem us from ‘a vain conversation’? (1 Peter:18, 19); and, ‘who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people’ (Titus 2:14). Christ shed his blood to wash off our filth. The cross was both an altar and a laver. Jesus died not only to save us from wrath, but to save us from sin (Matthew 1:21). Out of his side came water which signifies our cleansing, as well as blood which signifies our justifying (1 John 5:6). The truth is, it were to make the body of Christ monstrous, if the head should be pure and not the members.         Thomas Watson

Announcements for Sunday, February 7.

Announcements

  • Baptism will be administered this morning for:

Lucy Grace, daughter of Mr. And Mrs. John Kersten

  • Elizabeth Rozeboom passed away last Wednesday. Please remember in prayer and with sympathy, Mr. Walter Rozeboom with his children and grandchildren. Also, Elizabeth’s mother, Mrs. Jane Mast and her siblings with nieces and nephews.
  • Please remember in prayer those who are unable to worship with us today due to the weakness of old age or illness.

 

  • January collections are the following:

General $8,680.28

CEF $   699.00

Benevolent $1,874.56

Mission-Sumba $1,771.21

Mission-Sumba $1,772.21

Meditation for Sunday, February 7.

And the blood shall be for you for a token upon the houses where ye are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. Ex. 12:13.

 

My Savior, for my dear ones I claim Thy promise true;

The Lamb is “for the household”- the children’s Savior too.

On earth the little children, once felt thy touch divine;

Beneath the blood-stained lintel, Thy blessings give to mine.

 

O Thou who gave them, guard them-those wayward little feet;

The wilderness before them, the ills of life to meet.

My mother-love is helpless; I trust them to Thy care!

Beneath the blood-stained lintel, oh, keep me ever there!

 

By faith I rest upon Thee, Thou wilt not disappoint;

With wisdom, Lord, to train them, my shrinking heart anoint.

Without my children, Father, I cannot see Thy face;

I plead the blood-stained lintel, Thy covenant of grace.

 

O wonderful Redeemer, who suffered for our sake,

When o’er the guilty nations, the judgement storm shall break,

With joy from that safe shelter may we then meet Thine eye,

Beneath the blood-stained lintel, my children, Lord, and I.

Anonymous

What says one? “Do you preach a conditional salvation?” Yes I do, there is the one condition “Where I see the blood I will pass over you.” What a blessed condition! it does not say, when you see the blood, but when I see it. Thine eye of faith may be so dim, that thou canst not see the blood of Christ. Ay, but God’s eye is not dim: He can see it, yea he must see it; for Christ in heaven is always presenting his blood before his Father’s face. The Israelite could not see the blood; he was inside the house; he could not see what was on the lintel and the doorpost; but God could see it; and this is the only condition of the sinner’s salvation—God’s seeing the blood; not your seeing it. O how safe, then, is every one that trusts in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is not his faith that is the condition, not his assurance; it is the simple fact, that Calvary is set perpetually before the eyes of God in a risen and ascended Saviour. “When I see the blood, I will pass over you.” Fall on your knees then in prayer, ye doubting souls, and let this be your plea: —”Lord, have mercy upon me for the blood’s sake. I cannot see it as I could desire, but Lord thou seest it, and thou hast said, ‘When I see it, I will pass over you.’ Lord, thou seest it this day, pass over my sin, and forgive me for its dear sake alone.”

C.H. Spurgeon