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Christ Church Sunday Morning Service (9:00 am)
July 1, 2018 @ 9:00 am - 11:00 am
Announcements & Meditation
– Call to Worship –
Minister: Grace, mercy, and peace to you, from God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Congregation: And also to you.
Minister: Lift up your hearts!
Congregation: We lift them up to the Lord!
Our God, Our Help in Ages Past, p. 374
– Confession –
Along the Streams of Babylon, in Sadness, pp. 178-179
CONFESSION OF SIN
Congregation is invited to kneel if able
1 John 1:8-9
+ ASSURANCE OF PARDON
Minister: Your sins are forgiven through Christ.
Congregation: Thanks be to God!
Minister: Christian, what do you believe?
Congregation: I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the Holy Ghost, and born of the virgin, Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into Hades. On the third day He rose again from the dead, ascended into Heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
Minister: Judge me, O Lord; for I have walked in my integrity;
Congregation: I have trusted also in the Lord, therefore I shall not slide.
Minister: For Your lovingkindness is before my eyes:
Congregation: And I have walked in Your truth.
Minister: I have not sat with vain persons,
Congregation: Neither will I go in with liars.
Minister: Lord, I have loved the habitation of Your house,
Congregation: And the place where Your honor dwells.
Minister: My foot stands in an even place;
Congregation: In the congregations I will bless the Lord.
Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise, p. 310
– Consecration –
+ SCRIPTURE READING
Psalm 34:1-10, Matthew 5:1-12
Reader: The Word of the Lord.
Congregation: Thanks be to God!
ADMISSION OF NEW MEMBERS
Jesse and Ceididh Hall
Mabrey Jo Williams
Congregational Charge: Little child, for you Jesus Christ came to this earth, struggled and suffered; for your sake He crossed Gethsemane and went through the darkness of Calvary; for your sake He cried ‘It is finished’; for your sake He died and for your sake He overcame death; indeed for your sake, little child, and you – still – know nothing of it. And thus the word of the apostle is confirmed: ‘We love God, for He loved us first.’
Bless Now the Man Who Does Not Walk, p. 3
Opening: Romans 8:27
Thanksgiving: Romans 14:6
Petitions: John 5:14
Psalm 127, bulletin p. 10
CC: Calvinism 4.0: Election by the Father (Douglas Wilson)Sermon
Everyone who believes the Bible knows that the doctrine of sovereign election is taught there. Unfortunately, this does not mean that we have universal agreement on the doctrine. There are two main approaches to the subject, the first being that God elects His own on the basis of foreseen faith. The second approach, which I am setting before you here as the teaching of Scripture, is that God elects His own on the basis of His good pleasure alone. The usual name for this understanding is unconditional election, which may cause some confusion. Unconditional election can sound like arbitrary election, or capricious election, which it is not at all. There are conditions involved in our election, just not any conditions to be met by us.
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth” (Rom. 8:28–33).
Summary of the Text
When Scripture says that “all things work together for good,” this does not mean that every episode in your life has a happy ending. It does not mean that if you wreck your old automobeater that God will bequeath to you a new BMW. The blessing is for those who are the called according to His purpose (v. 28), and then he outlines that purpose. For those upon whom He set His electing love beforehand (i.e. foreknew), He predestined to a final glorification, that of being conformed to the image of Jesus Christ (v. 29). This is so Christ could be the firstborn among many brothers. And the whole thing is put together in a tight weave. Here it is: foreknown > predestined > called > justified > glorified (v. 30). The glorification is what we are predestined to, and the calling and justification are God’s intervention in our lives to bring this about. And the headwaters of all of it is the election of the Father. What is the application? It is to not care what the enemies of your soul might want to say about it (v. 31). If God gave up His Son to accomplish this salvation of yours, why would He be reluctant to give you anything else (v. 32)? Who can bring an accusation against God’s elect when God is the one who justifies? If God justifies in the middle of this unbreakable golden chain, we may reason—in fact, so invited, we must reason—from that middle to both the beginning and end of it, which means election and glorification. And the headwaters of all it is sovereign election.
We must begin with the understanding that election cannot be understood apart from Christ. Christ is the Elect One, and all those whom God choose to give to Him are therefore elect in Him. Our election can no more be separated from Christ than any other aspect of our salvation. We are elect because He is elect.
“Behold my servant, whom I uphold; Mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: He shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles” (Isaiah 42:1).
The New Testament contains this same truth.
“Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded” (1 Peter 2:6). “Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,” (1 Peter 1:20).
Our election and Christ’s election are also seen together.
“Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world” (John 17:24).
In short, God loves you from forever because He loves His Son from forever.
The biblical answer to the question of when is unambiguous. Before the world was created, before eternal times, God picked out a people for Himself. For those who honor Scripture, there can be no real debate about when God’s election of His people occurred.
“Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began” (2 Tim. 1:9).
Two more should suffice. “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matt. 25:34).
And of course: “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love” (Eph. 1:4).
For those who believe the Bible, this is really the heart of the debate. There is really no honest way to evade the force of the Bible’s teaching on when election occurs. Therefore, those who want to dispute the force of this truth do it by seeking to modify the nature of this election.
The biblical position is that God made this choice according to His good pleasure. The more popular view is that He made His choice on account of foreseen faith.
First, the Bible excludes human choice as the basis of God’s choice:
“(For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) . . . “So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy . . . Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.” (Romans 9:11, 16, 18).
But what about the “foreknowledge” argument . . .?
“Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied” (1 Peter 1:2).
“For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren” (Rom. 8:29).
There are two important things to note in the Romans passage. One is the object of the verb, and the second is the nature of the verb. The object consists of persons, not actions. The verb refers to love, not cognition.
When this doctrine is understood and affirmed, there are practical consequences.
Real confidence: “Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth” (Rom. 8:33).
True tenderness: “Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering . . .” (Col. 3:12).
And the only way such triumph and tenderness can live in peace together is when you are clothed in the election of Christ.
CCD: Are You Ready to be Stirred Up? (Matt Meyer)Sermon
“Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior, knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells” (2 Peter 3:1-13).
What is Peter trying to stir up in his readers? (verses 1-3)
What were the false prophets scoffing at (verse 4)? And, why did it require refutation?
Was the scoffing a surprise (verse 5)?
Is God constrained by time like us (verses 6-8)?
What is the reason for God’s delay? (verse 9)
What are five reasons Jerusalem is so special?
Let’s define terms: (verse 10-13)
Day of the Lord —
New Heavens and New Earth —
What action does Peter expect to be stirred up? (verses 11-12)
What one specific act of faith can I make based on Peter’s message?
Ending with The Lord’s Prayer, p. 411
Blessed the Man that Fears Jehovah, p 166
– Communion –
Let Christian Faith and Hope Dispel, pp. 360-361
In Every Time I’ll Always Bless the Lord, pp. 60-61
– Commissioning –
+ CLOSING DOXOLOGY
The congregation may raise hands
CHARGE & BENEDICTION
The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26