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The Lord Hath Done Great Things

This special meditation has been prepared by PRC home missionary, Rev. Aud Spriensma.

The Lord Hath Done Great Things

Meditation on Psalm 126:1-3     

When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream. Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them. The LORD hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.

It is so easy for us to feel sorry for ourselves and complain. But instead of looking at the negative, we, like Israel, need  to count our blessings. Israel had been in captivity in Babylon because of her sins. But God did not leave her there. Through chastisement, He corrected His people who were worshipping other gods, and then brought them back into their homeland.

What things had the LORD done? He created the world in six days. When Adam and the human race fell into sin, God came to Adam and promised that the Seed of the woman would crush the head of the serpent. He translated Enoch up into heaven and saved Noah and his family with a flood. He gave to Abraham the promised son that was impossible, for Abraham and Sarah were unable to conceive. God delivered His people from Egypt and brought them into the Promised Land. With David and Solomon, God gave His people a great kingdom and prosperity and peace. More recently, God brought His people out of Babylon. With godly leaders, the temple was rebuilt and the walls of the city restored.

Our text exclaims that the LORD has done “great things”. The work of God was great because it was life changing. God’s people were once again in their own land, with the temple rebuilt and worship reestablished. These things were great because of what it revealed about Israel’s God. He is Jehovah. Even the heathen nations around Israel acknowledged His greatness: “then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them” (vs.2). The name Jehovah is His covenant name. He is all-sufficient, unchanging, wise, all-powerful, righteous, and He has chosen us for His people. Great things are done for us because He is great: great in His love, goodness, mercy, and faithfulness.

Can you list some of the great things He has done for you? He gave His only begotten Son for our salvation! Think of the work of Jesus Christ: the wonder of His incarnation, His suffering and death, His resurrection, ascension, and His ruling at God’s right hand. Think of the Holy Spirit as He gives life to all things, works spiritual life in each of His children, and leads the church in the truth. God has done great things. When the church falls into apostasy, He brings reformation. Psalm 126 is another song of ascent sung when God’s people were traveling together up to Jerusalem. Let’s get even more personal. Can you hear one saint saying to another, “Come, hear, all ye that fear the Lord, while I with grateful heart record what God has done for me; I cried to him in deep distress, and now his wondrous grace I bless, for he has set me free” (Psalter 175 stanza 2)? Have you struggled with a besetting sin, and crying to the Lord, He set you free from that captivity? Have you or a loved one gone through a difficult illness or walked through the valley of the shadow of death and found that the Lord was a “very present help in trouble?”

How great it is that God says to you and me, “I will be your God. You are my beloved sons and daughters. God says that to us each Sunday morning and evening in the votum and salutation. How great is His mercy for us poor sinners, that He stoops to help and save. How great is His work of taking dead sinners and making them alive in Jesus Christ. By His Spirit He calls us, gives us faith, works our conversion, justifying, sanctifying, and preserving us.

Our response, when we think on these great things, is that of joy, laughter, and gladness. It is the laughter of true faith. It is the joy of salvation. It is not only a joy in the good things God has and is doing. It is gladness in God himself. He is faithful to me even though I am so unfaithful. What a God we know, love, and serve. So go forth; “Count your many blessings, name them one by one. And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done” (Edwin O. Excell, 1851-1921).

“Come, all ye people, bless our God and tell his glorious praise abroad, who holds our soul in life,          who never lets our feet be moved and , though our faith he oft has proved, upholds us in the strife.” Psalter 175, stanza 1

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This Week's PRC and Sister-Church News, July 5-11, 2020 (Updated)

1 Corinthians 14 33Today, July 5, is the twenty-seventh Lord's Day of 2020; we may report the following news and information concerning PRC congregations, the Seminary, sister churches, and mission fields.

As our PR congregations in the U.S. and Canada continue to worship publicly and a few of our sister churches begin to worship publicly again (Covenant ERC in Singapore and Covenant PRC in N. Ireland for the first time today! see the sister-church news below), we commit our way unto the Lord of heaven, who holds the whole world in His powerful hands and who holds His people in His hands of love and grace. As we bring one another to the throne of grace in this time of need, let us pray fervently for our fellow saints in those lands and places where restrictions remain tight (India, the Philippines), trusting that our Lord will care for us all and will receive our thanks and praise whether it comes from two or three or from 200.

Give unto the LORD, O ye mighty, give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. The LORD sitteth upon the flood; yea, the LORD sitteth King for ever. The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace. Psalm 29:1,2, 10,11

QUOTE OF THE WEEK:

What kinds of snares are set before you to catch you unawares? Great are the temptations of our sinful  flesh: sexual lust, greed, pride, worldliness, drunkenness, bitterness, anger, and revenge. There are the snares of the world with flattery, pleasure, attention, or the threat of violence, ridicule, persecution, and death. Satan has a whole legion of demons with him who has had 6000 years of practice at seducing, tempting, and deceiving God’s saints. How can the church stand up to such power? How are you and I able individually to withstand them? The only reason the people of God continue in this world is the almighty power of their God. His strength is all sufficient. What would the people of God have been like if the Lord was not on their side?

~ Rev. A. Spriensma in "The Great Escape!," one of his special meditations from this past week

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  • For those who may still be limited to house worship, whether in full or in part, we invite you to visit the PR churches page and follow the links to the websites where the churches' livestream may be found.

  • Rev. G. Eriks is considering the call to Unity PRC (received June 17). He plans to answer by July 12.

  • Rev. N. Langerak is considering the call from First PRC, Edmonton, AB (received June 21).

  • The Consistory of Kalamazoo PRC has formed a new trio consisting of Revs. S. Key (Loveland, CO), R. Kleyn (Spokane, WA), and C. Spronk (Faith). The congregation will vote today. UPDATE: Rev. C. Spronk has received this call.

  • Special matter of prayer as mentioned in Immanuel PRC's (Lacombe, AB) bulletin today: Rev. and Deb Bleyenberg plan to attempt a border crossing at Coutts, Alberta this week Thursday so that they can join our congregation. We ask that the Lord will grant strength and watch over our pastor and his wife as they travel to the border and D.V. be admitted into Canada.
  • Did you know... that
    • There was a special wedding in NW Iowa this past Friday night and the groom was one of our PRC pastors? We congratulate Rev. Stephan Regnerus (pastor of Lynden, WA PRC) and his bride Tori (Mowery), who were united by the great Bridegroom of the church on July 3. May the Lord richly bless their union for His glory and their good. 
    • Grace PRC is 25 years old this week? This from her bulletin today: Tomorrow, July 6, marks the 25th anniversary of the organization of Grace Protestant Reformed Church. As we worship our Lord today, may this milestone in the history of our church give additional cause to rejoice in His faithfulness and wonderful grace. A celebration is being planned for this fall.
    • Wingham PRC (Ontario) is worshiping for the first time since the COVID-19 shutdown in that province? We rejoice with them in God's goodness and pray God continues to care for them in His perfect wisdom and mercy.

DENOMINATIONAL NEWS:

sem front july 2020

PRC Seminary News:

  • The seminary is now enjoying its summer break. Some of the plans the professors and students had for the summer have changed due to COVID-19 cancellations and postponements (trip to Mexico, PRYP's Convention, etc.), but there are other activities that may still be held. Continue to pray for faculty, students, and staff as they continue their labors this summer.

  • Now that the stay-at-home order has been lifted in Michigan, the seminary is open daily for any needs our members and friends may have. The library and bookstore are also open for use. Feel free to call or email the seminary if you wish to have your needs fulfilled in other ways.

  • The seminary's summer break always brings with it some maintenance and enhancement projects. Already completed are the parking lot re-striping and a new AC unit. This past week some new landscape was added in the back along the new addition outside the library window. Still to be done are the re-routing of our roof drains in the front of the building, some more repainting inside, and carpet cleaning, among other things being investigated and quoted.

  • The Fall 2020 semester schedule and calendar has been approved by the Theological School Commitee and posted on the seminary's website. The first semester will begin, D.V. the week of August 24.

  • Seminarian Josiah Tan began his internship this past week (July 1 - Dec.31) in First PRC under Rev. C. Griess. 

  • The PRC Synod 2020 approved the entrance of Luke Bomers (Hope PRC, Walker, MI) and Arend Haveman (Trinity PRC, Hudsonville, MI) into the seminary this Fall. Both are finishing their pre-sem studies this summer. Pray for them as they prepare to take up their studies for the ministry in a few months.

  • The Spring 2020 issue of the PR Theological Journal is currently available in digital (pdf and epub) form. Our printer has informed us that it will be a few weeks before the print edition can be produced. There are good articles on nineteenth-century Southern Presbyterians, Calvin's view of the reward of grace, a plea for biblical languages, and two book review articles besides other book reviews. Check it out on the seminary's journal page!

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Check out the latest newsletter from our "sister" in Singapore!

SISTER-CHURCH NEWS:

  • Concerning our sister church in Singapore, Covenant ERC, the following may be noted from her bulletin today (and recently):
    • We thank God that the authority has allowed religious worship to resume, though in a limited way. In compliance to MCCY’s guidelines, Session has divided the congregation into four groups, with approximately 50 worshippers per group, so that each group will be able to come to church for two worship services a month. Session reminds the congregation to follow the safe management measures that are implemented for our worship service. Pray for patience as we wait for the authority to lift more restrictions on public worship so that we come back to church as a whole body of Christ to worship God on Sunday.
    • Due to the Phase 2 restrictions on travels and employment pass approval, Grandville PRC, our MOL calling church, has concurred with Session’s suggestion to suspend the calling of MOL for the time being. 
    • The June 2020 newsletter - Reformed News Asia #60 - was published and posted this past week. You may find it on this page.
  • Concerning our sister church in Ballymena, N. Ireland, Covenant PRC,  the following may be noted:
    • She resumed services for the first time since the lockdown in the UK in March. Her bulletin today had this note: We welcome everyone back to the worship services here in our church building.... We are thankful to the Lord for keeping us safe and enabling us to worship together again. May we be blessed under the preaching of the Word.
    • Read the latest CPRC newsletter - June 2020!
    • Read the new June 2020 issue of the "Covenant Reformed News"!

  • Concerning the PRC in the Philippines, the following may be gleaned from the bulletins of the Berean PRC, Bulacan PRC, Maranatha PRC, and Provident CC:
    • Congregational and Denominational News:

~ Berean PRC: Rev. V. Ibe will lead us in our worship services today via live-streaming on Facebook Live. The saints in Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija will join us today in services via live streaming on Facebook, the Lord willing. We pray for God’s continued care and blessings upon them in this time of crisis. May God strengthen them with His Word!

~ Maranatha PRC:  

 Rev. L. Trinidad, our Pastor will lead us in both Worship Services live stream via Facebook: Maranatha Protestant Reformed Church, at 9:00 a.m and 11: a.m., Lord willing.

An extension of the General Community Quarantine (GCQ) in Metro Manila is up to July 15, 2020. The guidelines are as follows: distancing with Face masks, 21 yrs. old below and 60 yrs. old above still under the 24-hour curfew, for other people the curfew hours from 10:00 PM - 5:00 AM. The permitted transportations are Cars, Pickup, SUV, AUV, Van, and Buses. With this, let us pray that the Church’s worship services will return to her normal Church activities.

~ Provident PRC:  Rev. Holstege will preach both times today. Both the first (https://youtu.be/XS1hQrsS1sw) and the second service (https://youtu.be/dDEZ2d7DKWI) will be live-streamed.

~ And for more on the life and work of our "sisters" in the Far East read the news under Philippine missions.

  • The PRC also has a "corresponding relationship" with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) of Australia. We remember these brothers and sisters in our prayers and labors also.

Matthew 28 19 20

PRC MISSION NEWS:

Domestic Labors

  • Remember in prayer our home missionary, Rev. A. Spriensma, who continues to labor in the West Michigan area and beyond through Byron Center PRC, the calling church.
    • Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, his present travels and activities are quite limited. The ongoing Bible study in Dorr, MI led by our missionary is currently postponed also.
    • But, he has been writing short meditations for the PRC website and is now speaking for the Reformed Witess Hour radio program (for four months).
  • Limerick Reformed Fellowship News:
    • Rev. M. McGeown sent this note along with the bulletin this week: Today was our first day back after 14 weeks of listening to/watching the service from home. It was wonderful to be with the saints again and to mingle our voices together in praise to our God! We rejoice with them in the blessing of corporate public worship once again.
    • He recently accepted the call to Providence PRC in Hudsonville, MI. Plans are being made for him to complete his labors in Limerick and move to Michigan as soon as it is possible, but it could be many months before that happens.
    • A new Limerick RF Newsletter was published last month (May). You may find that here.

Philippine Missions:

  • Berean PRC News: This congregation continues to work in Gabaldon, Nueve Ecija (the saints join Berean PRC services via live-stream during this time of restrictions).
  • PRC of Bulacan News: The Consistory reports that they have begun public services again in the PR Fellowship in Albuera. Rev. J. Flores is leading them by Zoom (morning service only).
  • Maranatha PRC News: 

    The missionary work in Sipalay, Negros Occidental is temporarily cancelled due to the Enchancement Community Quaratine. Let us pray that the Lord will end this plague and let His work of preaching and teaching be continued.

  • For more on life and activities in the Philippines from the personal perspective of the missionary's, visit the Kleyn's blog, the Holstege's, and the Smits!

We remember in prayer the needs of these busy pastors and missionaries in the Philippines, especially in these difficult days of COVID-19  restrictions on their travels and labors. May the Lord of the harvest give them grace to carry on as best they can and to be encouraged in all their labors.

India:

  • Let us remember to pray for the Lord's blessing on Georgetown PRC's labor in Vellore, India. The saints in that part of the world continue to experience tight restrictions and limited functions.
  • Let us pray for our sister church's work (Covenant ERC in Singapore) in Kolkata, through Rev. E. Singh. The body of Christ in that place is also deeply affected by the pandemic. This update was in CERC's bulletin today: Do remember the saints in Kolkata in your personal and family prayers. Rev Singh has informed that the family, whose roof was blown away by Amphan cyclone in May, has completed rebuilding their house. We thank God for the quick restoration provided to the family. Pray that God grant patience and faithfulness to the saints as they wait for the authority to lift the lockdown so that worship service can resume. Pray that the Lord bless the labours of Rev Singh as he preaches the Word of God to bring comfort to the saints and to gather the people of God into the fellowship.

Myanmar:

  • Let us also remember Hope PRC's (Grand Rapids, MI) support of and involvement with Rev. Titus' work in Myanmar. Our brothers and sisters here too need our prayers and encouragement as they suffer under coronavirus quarantines and economic hardships. Rev. Titus continues to minister the Word to his flock through the means of social media and modern technology.

July Standard Bearer preview article
Watch for the July issue of the Standard Bearer - it's the special PRC Synod 2020 issue - plus plenty of other good content!

SPECIAL NOTICES:

  • Are you interested in the doctrines and practices of the PRC? Would you like to learn more about her? Or, are you in need of some pamphlets and/or articles published by the PRC for use in evangelism and/or witnessing? Visit the PRCA Evangelism page for a complete list of materials available in digital format or by order from the publishing church.
  • The Reformed Book Outlet  is open again, with temporary limited hours. We will be open on Tuesday, 10am - 1pm, Wednesday, 1pm - 6pm, and Saturday, 10am - 1pm. Please follow the guidelines that will be posted on the door when visiting the store. As always, you can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any orders as well!
    The Reformed Book Outlet’s 3rd annual summer reading challenge is beginning on June 15 and will go through August 22 this year! This challenge is for adults and children, and there are prizes for completing the challenge. Visit our store or Facebook page for more details. You can sign up and pick up a packet at the store during business hours, or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to sign up and we will send you a packet!

RWH Logo 2019

  • Listen to the Reformed Witness Hour each Sunday - on a radio station near you or on Sermonaudio wherever you are!
    • At present Rev. A. Spriensma (PRC home missionary) is delivering the messages and this month he is focusing on the truth of God's covenant of grace. Today's message is titled "Enoch Walks with God" based on Genesis 5:22-24. Listen to the broadcast on the station near you, on your favorite podcast, or visit the links provided here to listen to this program.

    • From the Reformed Witness Hour Committee:

~ The Reformed Witness Hour Committee wishes to remind everyone that you can receive their bi-monthly newsletter via email simply by signing up at http://eepurl.com/gikNsL.  Each newsletter contains information about places around our globe where the RWH is downloaded; news about the RWH’s witness on the radio and via the internet, printed booklet, and CD and links to many popular and relevant RWH messages.

~ A Spanish edition of the RWH has been produced and may be found on this YouTube channel (PRC Espanol). Why not check it out - and help spread the word!

 
Yg Calvinists

ESPECIALLY FOR PRC Young People and Young Adults:

  • The Young Calvinists will be holding a Virtual Young People's Gathering via zoom on August 8 from 11am-5pm. As a small replacement for convention, this will feature a lecture on Heaven by Prof. B. Gritters, mixer games, discussion groups and more! There will also be an indoor and outdoor Singspiration at Fair Haven on Sunday, August 9 at 8pm. Sign up for one or both before July 20 at the following link! https://forms.gle/vhpopvBpDUUYi8bQ8.

  • The Western Young People's Retreat - Update! Lynden and Spokane Young People's Retreat is still on for July 14-17, 2020, at Camp Sanders in Tensed, Idaho. For registration information or other questions please contact Rev. Rodney Kleyn by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • PRYP Convention News (good news from Georgetown PRC!): 2021 Young People’s Convention: Our Steering Committee has signed a new contract with Lake Williamson Christian Center for next year.  ...We have reserved the second week in August, arriving on Monday August 9 and departing on Friday August 13, 2021.  There will be no other groups at Lake Williamson on the second week and we would have the camp to ourselves (similar to this year). May the Lord preserve our enthusiasm and bless our plans for our Young People’s growth.

  • The latest issue of the young peoples' magazine, Salt Shaker, is available (from Singapore!). Find the June 2020 issue here.

  • Colorado Retreat: Registration for the retreat is closed! For further updates, please visit our Facebook page Colorado Young Adults Retreat 2020. Pastors Key and Guichelaar will speak for us on II Timothy 1:7, as we learn to be more 'Brave and Bold in the Faith'.

  • Save the date for a Singles’ Conference!  We will host another three-day event in the Grand Rapids area, September 25-27, for singles ages 25+. The weekend will include two speeches, a discussion group, and several social activities.  Plan to attend and be encouraged and edified by other like-minded singles! Stay tuned for more details.
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Trusting in the LORD

This special meditation has been prepared by PRC home missionary, Rev. Aud Spriensma.

Trusting in the LORD

Meditation on Psalm 125: 1,2

They that trust in the LORD shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth forever. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the LORD is round about his people from henceforth even for ever.”

There are two beautiful comparisons made in these two verses. Believers are compared to Mount Zion and the mountains round about Jerusalem are compared to the LORD surrounding his people. Both pictures reveal the unshakeable and unmovable status of the trust of believers and the security of believers. What comfort that gives us in these times of agitation, distress, dread, and fear. Are you distressed over your sin? Perhaps you have heard evil news about your or a loved one’s health. Are you going through trouble with a family member, co-worker, or fellow saint? Then there is always also the attacks brought against believers by the devil and the ungodly world around us. But, unlike Peter who looked at the storm-tossed sea, we fix our eye upon the LORD.

Verse one deals with the conscious activity of faith. Believers trust in the LORD. That trust is worked in us by God. That trust comes from a true knowledge of God. How can you trust a doctor unless you know that he is competent to treat your specific ailment? Likewise one cannot trust God without knowledge of Him. God reveals Himself to us in nature, in the Scriptures, and in His Son, Jesus Christ. The activity of true faith, as we know from Lord’s Day 7, is a sure knowledge of what God reveals in His Word and a hearty confidence, assurance, and trust.

The object of our trust is not in ourselves, doctors, politics, or anything but “in the LORD.” We know Him in His names, His virtues, and His wonderful works.

The word, “LORD”, in all capital letters is Jehovah. He is all powerful. He is all wise. He is all sufficient. He does not change, unlike the circumstances in our lives. He is always present, unlike Baal who appears to be sleeping or on a vacation as Elijah suggests to the false prophets. Jehovah is the name of our covenant God in Jesus Christ. Believers were given by God to Christ in eternity. Christ was given by God to us in His incarnation, suffering and death on the cross. It is by the work of the Holy Spirit that we are united to Christ. It is the Holy Spirit who works and strengthens faith in us.

Believers who trust in the LORD are stable and unmovable right now, (not “shall be” as the italicized words in our text). The picture drawn for us is that of a mountain in all of its grandeur, height, and steadfastness. The rain and snow fall upon it and the winds blow, but the mountain stands, nothing threatens it. How unlike they are than the sand dunes of Michigan which are threatened by strong winds and high lake levels. The dunes are blown or washed away. As boys and girls sing, “The foolish man built his house upon the sand…The wise man built his house upon the rock…So build your life on the Lord Jesus Christ.” It is not just any mountain. There were larger mountains. But Mount Zion was where Jerusalem (the church) was established. In Jerusalem was the temple with the Ark of the Covenant and the mercy seat. God dwelt there in fellowship with His people!

Oh, at times we might be shaken by doubt or fear. But nothing in this world or even death itself can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. He works in us to draw us back in faith and trust to Himself. The stability of the believer is not in himself but in the LORD. Those words, “in the LORD” are the key to this text. It is the Lord who establishes our hearts as He established the mountains. It is the LORD who surrounds us as the mountains surrounded Jerusalem. The believer cannot be moved, not so much because his trust is so great, but rather, Jehovah is ever present and all powerful. He always surrounds His people like As the three friends of Daniel were not touched by the flames in the fiery furnace because of a fourth individual that appeared with them, so God surrounds His people. The object of believer’s trust is in the LORD alone! Can you put your name in the text and say, “I, trusting in the LORD, am like Mt. Zion!

The psalm ends with the blessed serenity of the believer: “but peace shall be upon Israel.” God will give peace to those who trust in him. There is inner peace, calmness of heart, and confidence. The true believer is unmovable, for ever abiding in the love of God.

What time I am afraid I put my trust in Thee; In God I rest, and praise his word, so rich and free. In God I put my trust, I neither doubt nor fear, for man can never harm with God my helper near. In God, the Lord, I rest, his word of grace I praise, his promise stands secure, nor fear nor foe dismays.”  ~ Uzziah C. Burnap 1895

Never a trial that he is not there, never a burden that he doth not bear; never a sorrow that he doth not share, moment by moment, I am under his care. Moment by moment I’m kept in his love, moment by moment I’ve life from above; Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine, moment by moment, O Lord, I am thine.”  ~ May Whittle Moody 1870-1963

Be still, my soul, the Lord is on thy side! Bear patiently the cross of grief or pain; Leave to thy God to order and provide, In every change He faithfully will remain. Bew still , my soul, thy best, thy heavenly friend thru thorny ways leads to a joyful end.”  ~ Jean Sibelius 1865- 1957

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Reformed News Asia - June 2020

Issue 60
Pamphlets

We print pamphlets written by our members and those from other Reformed churches of like-minded faith. They include a wide range of topics from doctrines to church history and practical Christian living. These pamphlets serve to promote knowledge of the true God as expressed in the Reformed faith.
NEWPamphlet!

Please click the picture to get the online copy of the pamphlet.
Questions in the Bible - Exodus, Ruth, 1 Samuel
By Prof Hermon Hanko

This project was inspired by 'Pastoral Voice' written by Rev. Andy Lanning for CERC in Oct 13-Jan 14 which covered 6 questions in Genesis.

There are many questions within the Bible, 2,540 to be exact.

The Christian Literature Ministry has shortlisted and compiled a list of them based on certain criteria:

i) Can be linked to Christ
ii) Significant in history of church
iii) Spiritual lesson for us
iv) A question we may also ask

After 6 years of effort, 12 books of the bible have been completed. In addition to the 6 meditations from Rev. Lanning, the writers are: Prof. Herman Hanko, Rev. Richard Smit and Rev. Cory Griess. We are grateful for their labour of love.

May you benefit spiritually from the meditations, and pray with us that gradually we may compile more meditations from questions in other books of the Bible.


Click here to view our catalogue of pamphlets.

Click here to make an order.

All pamphlets are free. CERC reserves some discretion regarding large orders and/or orders from those outside Singapore.
 
Featured Book
For local orders (S'pore), please contact Ms Daisy Lim at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
For international orders, click here.
Unfolding Covenant History: From Samuel to Solomon - Volume 6
by David J. Engelsma

From the RFPA website:

After a fifteen-year hiatus, and fourteen other published titles, Prof. David J. Engelsma continues the Unfolding Covenant History series, a covenantal exposition of the Old Testament.

The Old Testament history covered in this volume is extensive, covering the account of the life and significance for the covenant of Samuel, Saul, David, and Solomon. This is the history recorded in 1 and 2 Samuel; 1 Kings 1–11; 1 Chronicles 10–29; and 2 Chronicles 1–9. In addition, the volume takes into consideration other passages in scripture (Psalms) that reflect on this history.

This history is also rich in significance with regard to the development of God’s covenant and covenant dealings with his people. It includes the institution and early functioning of the office of the prophet; the institution of the office of king; the stark contrast between the people’s choice as king, in the charismatic, but reprobate, Saul, and God’s elect, David; and the realization of the fellowship of the covenant in the Old Testament in the temple. Among the fascinating and controversial events of the history on which the volume sheds light is the appearance to Saul of the “witch of Endor.”

 
Audio Recordings
Over the past 2 months, we were glad to have Bro Josiah Tan back with us. He was able to give us a series of exhortation on the Feasts in Leviticus.

Click to listen to them:

The Passover of the LORD
The Feast Of Unleavened Bread
The Feasts of First Fruits
The Feast of Pentecost
The Feast of The Trumpets
 
Upcoming Events!
 
Save the date!

21 24 Dec 2020 - Church Camp 2020
 
 
Past Events...
 
CERC 33rd Annual Congregation Meeting

CERC concluded our 33rd Annual Congregation Meeting on 27 June via an online platform. We thank God for keeping us and for providing for our needs over the past 33 years. We are thankful to God for providing us Office bearers, namely 2 Elders and 1 Deacon who have been elected at the ACM. We pray for all the Office bearers that God will grant them the grace, strength and wisodom in their calling. 
 
CERC Activities (May - June)

Due to the current situation, most Church activities for these months have been cancelled or postponed. Worship services, bible studies and meet-ups have been brought online.However, with the relaxing of the restrictions, we might be able to conduct congregational worship in smaller numbers. We thank God and let us continue to pray for God's guidance and His will for the days ahead. 
 
CERC Kolkata 

We continue to remember our brothers and sisters in CERC Kolkata Fellowship who have been affected by the pandemic and the disastrous trail of the Super Cyclone. Let us pray for our Missionary Pastor as he cares for the saints in Kolkata. Do pray that the Lord will protect and preserve them.

 
Notes
 
Salt Shakers

Salt Shakers is a bi-monthly magazine published by the youth in Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church (CERC). Included in each issue are writings pertaining to bothReformed doctrine and practical theology. Contributors to Salt Shakers include our pastor, youth and members of CERC, and pastors and professors from the Protestant Reformed Churches in America. Salt Shakers also features articles from the Standard Bearer and other Reformed publications. Click here to access.

 
Covenant Evangelical Reformed Church
We are a Reformed Church that holds to the doctrines of the Reformation as they are expressed in the Belgic Confession, the Heidelberg Catechism and the Canons of Dordt.

Lord’s Day services on Sunday at 930 am & 2 pm • 11 Jalan Mesin, #04-00, Standard Industrial Building, Singapore 368813 • www.cerc.org.sg 
 
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The Great Escape!

This special meditation has been prepared by PRC home missionary, Rev. Aud Spriensma.

The Great Escape!

Meditation on Psalm 124: 6,7,8

Blessed be the LORD, who hath not given us as a prey to their teeth. Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped. Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.

The title of this meditation might sound like the escape of a person out of a prison or a soldier escaping from the clutches of the enemy army.  I think of my father’s imprisonment by the German army when they invaded the Netherlands in World War II. He and several of the prisoners were able to escape the prison before they would have been taken away to one the German work (death) camps. The Holy Spirit led David to write this psalm, probably after his son Absalom with many followers pursued him over the Jordan River, and the LORD gave David a great victory over his enemies.

The church in this world is surrounded by enemies. There is first of all our own sinful flesh, which we have to fight against every day. Second, there is the world that is not a friend to grace, but hates and pursues the followers of Jesus. Third, our “adversary the devil, like a roaring lion, walketh about seeking whom he may devour.” Apart from divine support, the church of Christ would quickly fall before its raging enemies. Several examples are given in this psalm. The enemies are like a hungry animal, ready to eat us up like a little morsel of meat. The wicked are like the undertow of Lake Michigan, which would suck the swimmer under and away from shore, or like a tsunami wave that wipes out complete villages. The last example in the psalm is that of a professional trapper in the woods who snares his prey in his net.

What kinds of snares are set before you to catch you unawares? Great are the temptations of our sinful  flesh: sexual lust, greed, pride, worldliness, drunkenness, bitterness, anger, and revenge. There are the snares of the world with flattery, pleasure, attention, or the threat of violence, ridicule, persecution, and death. Satan has a whole legion of demons with him who has had 6000 years of practice at seducing, tempting, and deceiving God’s saints. How can the church stand up to such power? How are you and I able individually to withstand them? The only reason the people of God continue in this world is the almighty power of their God. His strength is all sufficient. What would the people of God have been like if the Lord was not on their side?

Enoch, prophesying against the wickedness in his day, would have been killed if God had not translated him up to heaven. Noah and his family were the lone survivors when God saved him and his family with a flood. Israel would have been left under Pharaoh’s cruel slavery and the death of all their male infants in the time of Moses except for the Lord’s ten plagues against Egypt.. Unless the LORD fought for Israel against the Canaanites, the thick walls of the cities and the giants of the land would not have been conquered. The Midianites swarmed the land of Israel in the time of Gideon, but with the Lord on their side, Gideon with  only 300 Israelites won a decisive battle and routed the enemy. So we can continue to go through the history of the church. Over against the cruelty of the Roman Catholic Church, the Protestants were imprisoned, tortured, and put to death. But nothing was able to stop God’s reformation of His church!

The LORD changes not, nor does His compassion fail. He is on our side. We might despair when we see the world that we live in grow increasingly wicked and ferocious, and in the church we see great apostasy, slander, and schism. But our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth. His purpose is to save us alive.  We must confess, “If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say; If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, when wicked men rose up against us: Then they had swallowed us up quick.” This is the believers’ confidence.  God is on His throne. If God is for us, who can be against us? Believers can rejoice in the promise of Jesus Christ, “ I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it”. All authority belongs to our Christ. We are more than conquerors through Christ who loved us. All the power of our sinful flesh, the world, and Satan and his host cannot destroy the church because the infinite strength of the Creator defends and helps us. “Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.” This verse is used in many Reformed churches to open their worship services.

Looking at the unrest today in the world and even in the church, what comfort to say, “Our help in in the name of Jehovah who made heaven and earth.” He is on our side! We are escaped from the hands and plots of our enemies.

Now Israel may say, and that in truth, If that the Lord had not our right maintained, If that the Lord had not with us remained, Wen cruel men against us rose to strive, We surely had been swallowed up alive.”

“Blest be the Lord who made us not their prey; As from the snare a bird escapeth free, Their net is rent and so escaped are we. Our only help is in Jehovah’s name, Who made the earth and all the heavenly frame. Louis Bourgeois, 1551

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This Week's PRC and Sister-Church News, June 28 - July 4, 2020

ephesians 1 3Today, June 28, is the twenty-sixth Lord's Day of 2020 (half way through the year of our Lord 2020!); we may note the following news and information concerning PRC congregations, the Seminary, sister churches, and mission fields.

As our PR congregations in the U.S. and Canada continue to worship publicly and a few of our sister churches begin to worship publicly again (in the Philippines), we commit our way unto the Lord of heaven, in whose hands are all our times (Psalm 31:15). And we pray fervently for our fellow saints in those lands and places where tight restrictions remain, trusting that our Lord knows what is best for His own and that He receives our praise and thanks whether it be from church sanctuary or from home.

Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's. Psalm 103:1-5

QUOTE OF THE WEEK:

Many troubles come to the pilgrims in their lives and travels. Often we are fearful and despairing. Is Jehovah still gracious? We have sinned against Him time and time again. But the temple is before us with the altar of burnt-offerings. The temple before us tells us that our God is still there. The LORD is Jehovah God. He is the “I AM”; the self-sufficient, self- existent God who has no needs and changes not. His relationship with His people does not change, no matter how many sins they commit. He is their God who loves them, Yes, He will chastise those whom He loves. But can you smell the smoke of the sacrifices? There is the forgiveness of sins through the blood that is shed in our place. This all pointed forward to the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus on Calvary’s cross. Oh, what a day when Jerusalem the holy city comes down from heaven (Rev. 21). Then there will be no more sin!

~ Rev. A. Spriensma in "Help for the Weary Pilgrim," his latest special meditation written for these trying times

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  • For those who may still be limited to house worship, whether in full or in part, we invite you to visit the PR churches page and follow the links to the websites where the churches' livestream may be found.

  • Rev. G. Eriks is considering the call to Unity PRC (received June 17). He plans to answer by July 12.

  • Rev. N. Langerak is considering the call from First PRC, Edmonton, AB (received June 21).

  • Following Rev. C. Haak's decline of her latest call, the Consistory of Kalamazoo PRC has formed a new trio consisting of Revs. S. Key (Loveland, CO), R. Kleyn (Spokane, WA), and C. Spronk (Faith).

  • The Council of Grandville PRC recently made two decisions regarding calling a man to serve as minister on loan to Singapore. The first was to honor the request of Covenant ERC to put on hold calling an MOL due to ongoing restrictions in Singapore. And second, to withdraw their trio of Revs. G. Eriks, E. Guichelaar, and R. Kleyn out of wisdom and courtesy to these men. May the Lord soon open the way for calling a MOL again.
  • Did you know... that
    • Mrs. Wilmina Lanting, widow of Rev. George Lanting, passed away this past week in South Holland, IL at the age of 99? We pray for the comfort of the Lanting family in their loss even as we rejoice in Mrs. Lanting's deliverance from this vale of tears. Do you know how many minister widows that leaves in the PRC?
    • some of our churches have resumed the sacrament of baptism - and now the sacrament of the Lord's Supper also? We thank God for these additional means of grace some of our members can receive and witness once again for the strengthening of our faith.

DENOMINATIONAL NEWS:

PRC Synod 2020:

TrinityPRC new sanctuary 2018

  • The PRC Synod 2020 met the week of June 9-12 at Trinity PRC. Below is a brief summary of her work and decisions.  For more details see the daily reports on this section of the PRC website.

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PRC Seminary News:

  • The seminary has completed its second semester and entered its spring/summer break. Some of the plans the professors and students had for the summer have changed due to COVID-19 cancellations and postponements, but there are other activities that may still be held. Continue to pray for faculty, students, and staff as they continue their labors this summer.

  • Now that the stay-at-home order has been lifted in Michigan, the seminary is open daily for any needs our members and friends may have. The library and bookstore are also open for use. Feel free to call or email the seminary if you wish to have your needs fulfilled in other ways.

  • The Fall 2020 semester schedule and calendar has been approved by the Theological School Commitee and posted on the seminary's website. The first semester will begin, D.V. the week of August 24.

  • Seminarian Josiah Tan and his family recently returned safely to the States. Plans are for him to begin his internship July 1 in First PRC under Rev. C. Griess. Due to the tight restrictions in Singapore Sem. Marcus Wee and his family are staying in the States this summer.

  • The PRC Synod 2020 approved the entrance of Luke Bomers (Hope PRC, Walker, MI) and Arend Haveman (Trinity PRC, Hudsonville, MI) into the seminary this Fall. Both are finishing their pre-sem studies this summer. Pray for them as they prepare to take up their studies for the ministry in a few months.

  • The Spring 2020 issue of the PR Theological Journal is currently available in digital (pdf and epub) form. Our printer has informed us that it will be a few weeks before the print edition can be produced. There are good articles on nineteenth-century Southern Presbyterians, Calvin's view of the reward of grace, a plea for biblical languages, and two book review articles besides other book reviews. Check it out on the seminary's journal page!

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PRC in the Philippines Classis meeting (Provident PRC)

SISTER-CHURCH NEWS:

  • Concerning our sister church in Singapore, Covenant ERC, the following may be noted from her bulletin today (and recently):
    • Recently, with the relaxing of the Phase 2 Circuit Breakers’ restriction, the church is allowed to conduct congregational worship but with not more than 50 worshippers. However, the social distancing requirements must be strictly followed. One of the restrictions is that the worshippers are not allowed to sing during the worship service. The Session is looking into the possibility of having worship services with 50 people or less at each worship service with all the restrictions. We are working at dividing the congregation into four groups. Do pray for the Session as they decide on this.
    • Due to the Phase 2 restrictions on travels and employment pass approval, Grandville PRC, our MOL calling church, has concurred with Session’s suggestion to suspend the calling of MOL for the time being. Grandville PRC’s consistory also decided to withdraw the trio that was formed on 17 March 2020 of Rev. Eriks, Rev. Guichelaar, and Rev. Kleyn.
    • The April 2020 newsletter - Reformed News Asia #59 - was published and posted recently. You may find it on this page.
  • Concerning our sister church in Ballymena, N. Ireland, Covenant PRC,  the following may be noted:
    • Rev. A. Stewart continues to lead the services via live-stream.
    • Rev. Stewart was interviewed on Iron Sharpens Iron Radio on “Regeneration: God’s Gift of a New Heart” this past Thursday, June25.
    • Read the latest CPRC newsletter - June 2020!
    • Read the new June 2020 issue of the "Covenant Reformed News"!

  • Concerning the PRC in the Philippines, the following may be gleaned from the bulletins of the Berean PRC, Bulacan PRC, Maranatha PRC, and Provident CC:
    • Congregational and Denominational News:

~ Berean PRC: Rev. V. Ibe will lead us in our worship services today via live-streaming on Facebook Live. The saints in Gabaldon, Nueva Ecija will join us today in services via live streaming on Facebook, the Lord willing. We pray for God’s continued care and blessings upon them in this time of crisis. May God strengthen them with His Word!

~ Maranatha PRC:  

Rev. D. Kleyn, our Missionary will lead the First Worship Service and Rev. R. Smit will lead the Second Worship Service both livestream via Facebook: Maranatha Protestant Reformed Church at 9:00 a.m. And 11:00 a.m. respectively. 

An extension of the General Community Quarantine (GCQ) in Metro Manila is up toJune 30, 2020. The guidelines are as follows: distancing with Face masks, 21 yrs. old below and 60 yrs. old above still under the 24-hour curfew, for other people the curfew hours from 10:00 PM - 5:00 AM. The permitted transportations are Cars, Pickup, SUV, AUV, Van, and Buses. With this, let us pray that the Church’s worship services will return to her normal Church activities.

~ Provident PRC:  Rev. Holstege will preach for our morning worship service today. There will also be a live stream of the worship service (https://youtu.be/8x9CXeHUqfc). The elders will send a link to a worship service of Zion PRC led by Rev. Ron VanOverloop for our afternoon family worship.

~ Re the PRCP Classis held June 12: God be praised beloved for the fruitful work of the Classis of the PRCP held at Provident PRC in Provident Village, Marikina City. One of the highlights of this meeting was the approval of the two brothers from PPRC... as full-time students in our Seminary with the view of serving God as Minister of the Word and Sacraments in the PRCP, the Lord willing. We pray for God’s blessings upon them and their families as they prepare for this coming school year.

~ And for more on the life and work of our "sisters" in the Far East read the news under Philippine missions.

  • The PRC also has a "corresponding relationship" with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) of Australia. We remember these brothers and sisters in our prayers and labors also.

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*The Reformed Book Outlet in Hudsonville, MI is open once again! And they have a summer reading challenge for you! See below for details.

SPECIAL NOTICES:

  • Are you interested in the doctrines and practices of the PRC? Would you like to learn more about her? Or, are you in need of some pamphlets and/or articles published by the PRC for use in evangelism and/or witnessing? Visit the PRCA Evangelism page for a complete list of materials available in digital format or by order from the publishing church.
  • *The Reformed Book Outlet  is open again, with temporary limited hours. We will be open on Tuesday, 10am - 1pm, Wednesday, 1pm - 6pm, and Saturday, 10am - 1pm. Please follow the guidelines that will be posted on the door when visiting the store. As always, you can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any orders as well!
    The Reformed Book Outlet’s 3rd annual summer reading challenge is beginning on June 15 and will go through August 22 this year! This challenge is for adults and children, and there are prizes for completing the challenge. Visit our store or Facebook page for more details. You can sign up and pick up a packet at the store during business hours, or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to sign up and we will send you a packet!

RWH Logo 2019

  • Listen to the Reformed Witness Hour each Sunday - on a radio station near you or on Sermonaudio wherever you are!
    • Beginning this month, Rev. A. Spriensma (PRC home missionary) will deliver the messages, with a special focus on missions. Today's message is titled "O Zion, That Bringest Good Tidings" based on Isaiah 40:9. Listen to the broadcast on the station near you, on your favorite podcast, or visit the links provided here to listen to this program.

    • From the Reformed Witness Hour Committee:

~ The Reformed Witness Hour Committee wishes to remind everyone that you can receive their bi-monthly newsletter via email simply by signing up at http://eepurl.com/gikNsL.  Each newsletter contains information about places around our globe where the RWH is downloaded; news about the RWH’s witness on the radio and via the internet, printed booklet, and CD and links to many popular and relevant RWH messages.

~ A Spanish edition of the RWH has been produced and may be found on this YouTube channel (PRC Espanol). Why not check it out - and help spread the word!

 
CO Retreat 2020 banner

ESPECIALLY FOR PRC Young People and Young Adults:

  • The Young Calvinists will be holding a Virtual Young People's Gathering via zoom on August 8 from 11am-5pm. As a small replacement for convention, this will feature a lecture on Heaven by Prof. B. Gritters, mixer games, discussion groups and more! There will also be an indoor and outdoor Singspiration at Fair Haven on Sunday, August 9 at 8pm. Sign up for one or both before July 20 at the following link! https://forms.gle/vhpopvBpDUUYi8bQ8.

  • The Western Young People's Retreat - Update! Lynden and Spokane Young People's Retreat is still on for July 14-17, 2020, at Camp Sanders in Tensed, Idaho. For registration information or other questions please contact Rev. Rodney Kleyn by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • PRYP Convention News: With heavy hearts Georgetown PRC and the Federation Board have decided to postpone the 2020 Young People’s convention until next year. Due to the current conditions in our country, getting 500 -600 people together in one location does not seem wise at this time. The Fed Board would like to adhere to the guidelines put out by the government and we do not want to have the parents weigh the benefits of sending their child to the convention against the risk of exposing them to this virus. Georgetown PRC is planning to host the convention next year.

  • The newest issue of the young peoples' magazine, Salt Shaker, is available (from Singapore!). Find the June 2020 issue here.

  • Colorado Retreat: Registration for the retreat is closed! For further updates, please visit our Facebook page Colorado Young Adults Retreat 2020. Pastors Key and Guichelaar will speak for us on II Timothy 1:7, as we learn to be more 'Brave and Bold in the Faith'.
  • Save the date for a Singles’ Conference!  We will host another three-day event in the Grand Rapids area, September 25-27, for singles ages 25+. The weekend will include two speeches, a discussion group, and several social activities.  Plan to attend and be encouraged and edified by other like-minded singles! Stay tuned for more details.

Acts2 38 39

PRC MISSION NEWS:

Domestic Labors

  • Remember in prayer our home missionary, Rev. A. Spriensma, who continues to labor in the West Michigan area and beyond through Byron Center PRC, the calling church.
    • Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, his present travels and activities are quite limited. The ongoing Bible study in Dorr, MI led by our missionary is currently postponed also.
    • But, he has been writing short meditations for the PRC website and is now speaking for the Reformed Witess Hour radio program.
  • Limerick Reformed Fellowship News:
    • Rev. M. McGeown continues to lead the services via live-streaming during the UK's lockdown. He recently accepted the call to Providence PRC in Hudsonville, MI. Plans are being made for him to complete his labors in Limerick and move to Michigan as soon as it is possible, but it could be many months before that happens.
    • A new Limerick RF Newsletter was published last month (May). You may find that here.

Philippine Missions:

  • Berean PRC News: This congregation continues to work in Gabaldon, Nueve Ecija (the saints join Berean PRC services via live-stream during this time of restrictions).
  • PRC of Bulacan News: The Consistory reports that they have begun public services again in the PR Fellowship in Albuera. Rev. J. Flores is leading them by Zoom (morning service only).
  • Maranatha PRC News: 

    The missionary work in Sipalay, Negros Occidental is temporarily cancelled due to the Enchancement Community Quaratine. Let us pray that the Lord will end this plague and let His work of preaching and teaching be continued.

  • For more on life and activities in the Philippines from the personal perspective of the missionary's, visit the Kleyn's blog, the Holstege's, and the Smits!

We remember in prayer the needs of these busy pastors and missionaries in the Philippines, especially in these difficult days of COVID-19  restrictions on their travels and labors. May the Lord of the harvest give them grace to carry on as best they can and to be encouraged in all their labors.

India:

  • Let us remember to pray for the Lord's blessing on Georgetown PRC's labor in Vellore, India. The saints in that part of the world continue to experience tight restrictions and limited functions.
  • Let us pray for our sister church's work (Covenant ERC in Singapore) in Kolkata, through Rev. E. Singh. The body of Christ in that place is also deeply affected by the pandemic. This update was in CERC's bulletin today: Continue to remember our brothers and sisters in CERC Kolkata Fellowship after being battered by the COVID 19 restrictions and disastrous trail of the Super Cyclone. Pray for our Missionary Pastor as he cares for the saints in Kolkata. They still cannot congregate together to worship. Our pastor still faced many issues with livestreaming due to internet connection problem. We are thankful that our Pastor could start bible study at his place and has the opportunities to share the Gospel and Reformed Faith to others. A couple of them are joining his Bible Study. Do pray that the Lord will protect and preserve them.

Myanmar:

  • Let us also remember Hope PRC's (Grand Rapids, MI) support of and involvement with Rev. Titus' work in Myanmar. Our brothers and sisters here too need our prayers and encouragement as they suffer under coronavirus quarantines and economic hardships. Rev. Titus continues to minister the Word to his flock through the means of social media and modern technology.
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Help for the Weary Pilgrim

This special meditation has been prepared by PRC home missionary, Rev. Aud Spriensma.

Help for the Weary Pilgrim

Meditation on Psalm 121: 1,2,8

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help? My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth…The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

Psalm 121 is the second of fifteen Songs of Ascent. These are songs that were sung by the Israelites as they travelled to Jerusalem for the three yearly festivals. Some of God’s people had to travel over one hundred miles. As they went up to the temple, they would see the hills or mountains around Jerusalem. Mt. Zion was the mountain on which the temple was built. What great anticipation there was! They could see the temple there! The hills or mountains around Jerusalem were a great place to build the city. These hills served as natural protection from enemies around.

The psalmist expresses his confidence in God’s protecting providence. “I will lift up mine eyes.” This is a gesture of prayerful dependence. “From whence cometh my help?” This is a question, “where does my help come from?” Do we look to the hills for help? No, our dependence is not upon earthly things. The answer to the question asked in vs. 1 is found in vs. 2. “My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.” He, who created the hills and everything else, is able and willing to help me. There on Mt. Zion is the temple, with the holy of holies, the Ark of the Covenant, and the mercy seat. This was the place for worship of Jehovah. There the Lord dwelt in the midst of His people.

Many troubles come to the pilgrims in their lives and travels. Often we are fearful and despairing. Is Jehovah still gracious? We have sinned against Him time and time again. But the temple is before us with the altar of burnt-offerings. The temple before us tells us that our God is still there. The LORD is Jehovah God. He is the “I AM”; the self-sufficient, self- existent God who has no needs and changes not. His relationship with His people does not change, no matter how many sins they commit. He is their God who loves them, Yes, He will chastise those whom He loves. But can you smell the smoke of the sacrifices? There is the forgiveness of sins through the blood that is shed in our place. This all pointed forward to the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus on Calvary’s cross. Oh, what a day when Jerusalem the holy city comes down from heaven (Rev. 21). Then there will be no more sin!

We are weary spiritual pilgrims to that city. We must still wrestle against principalities and powers of darkness as well as our own sinful nature. But Jehovah is our help, someone who comes to our aid by surrounding and embracing us. “He will not suffer thy foot to be moved.” He gives us stability in our lives. He will keep us. That word, “keep” or “keeper” is used three times. But that same Hebrew word is used another three times, translated as “preserve”. The psalmist tells us six times in this short psalm that God guards, watches over, and protects us. Why does he mention it six times? There is so much repetition so that it soaks into our consciousness. What anxiety can survive these repeated promises? “Day and night”, “our going out and coming in”: these opposites designate totality. The Lord’s protection is continuous, without interruption, against all kinds of dangers. This does not mean that believers will never suffer, but that God’s providence will guard them from anything that would truly do them harm. He will work all things for their good (Rom 8:28).

Today, as believers, we are the temple of God. He is in you and me. In your pilgrimage in this world, look up and see how precious you are to Him. He is shaping us to prepare us for that city that has foundations whose builder and maker is God. Look ahead as the weary Israelites did in their travels to Jerusalem. Look up! Know who your helper is! Trust him. Love Him. Serve Him.

One of our greatest comforts is to know that God is always the guardian of His people. Even in the greatest trouble, God’s people have no reason to fear. Faith assures the Christian that all will be well. God is always there for us; He never slumbers or sleeps. If God did not spare His Son, but gave Him up for us, then surely He will give us all that we stand in need of. Look ahead! There is the city that has foundations. Look up. Jehovah God is our help and keeper for Jesus’ sake!

Jerusalem the golden, with milk and honey blest, Beneath thy contemplation sink heart and voice oppressed. I know not, O I know not what joys await us there, What radiancy of glory, what bliss beyond compare!”

There is the throne of David; and there, from care released, The song of them that triumph, the shout of them that feast; And they who with their Leader have conquered in the fight, forever and forever are clad in robes of white. (Bernard of Cluny, 12th century)

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"Great Is Thy Faithfulness"

This special meditation has been prepared by PRC home missionary, Rev. Aud Spriensma.

Meditation on Lamentations 3: 21-24

“ This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the LORD’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.” (Lamentations 3: 21-24)

On Sunday morning and evening, many of our churches have the pleasant task of trying to seat all of our members in the sanctuary for worship. Pleasant, I say; what a nice problem. In an age when many churches have a problem of trying to fill their seats, we have the opposite problem of crowded sanctuaries!  That is said with all humility. God has been, and is, so good. He has blessed us with faithful members who desire to worship and hear the gospel preached!

What is the cause of all of this? It is God’s great faithfulness to us; His mercies are new every morning. This is where the above text comes  and fills us with humility. We do not deserve this blessing.” It is of the LORD’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not!”

We as Protestant Reformed Churches do not deserve this. We are sinners who deserve God’s wrath and condemnation.  It is all of His mercy to us in our Lord Jesus Christ! We are Christ’s church. Christ Jesus is continuing to gather and build His church.  By His Word and Spirit we continue to be preserved, so that our church is able to be a light in the midst of great darkness.

We are able to pass on to the rising generations the beauty and greatness of our God and His marvelous works. We are able to reach out to others in our community and share with them the rich and precious heritage that has been given to us.   We are sinners, but listen to the rest of the story: we are redeemed sinners, forgiven all of our sins through the spilled blood of our Lord Jesus. Imputed to us is Christ’s righteousness. We are new creatures, sons and daughters of God by adoption, filled with Christ’s Spirit. And we have a glorious hope! Jesus is coming again. As members of His kingdom, we  will one day be with Him in the new heavens and new earth. Yes, as Jeremiah says in the above text, “therefore we have hope.”

Listen then also to what God says in His Word through Jeremiah (Lam. 3:24- 26): “ The LORD is my portion. The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.” God is good to His church.

With this glorious truth we press on in our service to Christ. Filled with humility, love, trust, and dependence we serve the Lord with gladness, making known His mercies and faithfulness to the rising generations. To God is the glory both now and forever!

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Synodical Committees

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  • Emeritus Committee
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Contact/Missions

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Classical Officers

Classis East
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Classis West
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