LORD’S DAY 39, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 39 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses The Ten Commandments.

Q. What is God’s will for you in the fifth commandment?

A. That I honor, love, and be loyal to my father and mother and all those in authority over me; that I submit myself with proper obedience to all their good teaching and discipline;1 and also that I be patient with their failings—2 for through them God chooses to rule us.3

1 Ex. 21:17Prov. 1:84:1Rom. 13:1-2Eph. 5:21-226:1-9Col. 3:18-4:1.
2 Prov. 20:2023:221 Pet. 2:18.
3 Matt. 22:21Rom. 13:1-8Eph. 6:1-9Col. 3:18-21.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo  Gloria!

 

LORD’S DAY 38, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 38 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses The Ten Commandments.

Q. What is God’s will for you in the fourth commandment?

A. First, that the gospel ministry and education for it be maintained,1 and that, especially on the festive day of rest, I diligently attend the assembly of God’s people2 to learn what God’s Word teaches,3 to participate in the sacraments,4 to pray to God publicly,5 and to bring Christian offerings for the poor.6 Second, that every day of my life I rest from my evil ways, let the Lord work in me through his Spirit, and so begin in this life the eternal Sabbath.7

1 Deut. 6:4-9, 20-251 Cor. 9:13-142 Tim. 2:23:13-17Tit. 1:5.
2 Deut. 12:5-12Ps. 40:9-1068:26Acts 2:42-47Heb. 10:23-25.
3 Rom. 10:14-171 Cor. 14:31-321 Tim. 4:13.
4 1 Cor. 11:23-25.
5 Col. 3:161 Tim. 2:1.
6 Ps. 50:141 Cor. 16:22 Cor. 8 & 9.
7 Isa. 66:23Heb. 4:9-11.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo  Gloria!

 

LORD’S DAY 37, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 37 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses The Ten Commandments.

Q. But may we swear an oath in God’s name if we do it reverently?

A. Yes, when the government demands it, or when necessity requires it, in order to maintain and promote truth and trustworthiness for God’s glory and our neighbor’s good. Such oaths are grounded in God’s Word1and were rightly used by the people of God in the Old and New Testaments.2

1 Deut. 6:1310:20Jer. 4:1-2Heb. 6:16.
2 Gen. 21:24Josh. 9:151 Kings 1:29-30Rom. 1:92 Cor. 1:23.

Q. May we also swear by saints or other creatures?

A. No. A legitimate oath means calling upon God as the only one who knows my heart to witness to my truthfulness and to punish me if I swear falsely.1 No creature is worthy of such honor.2

1 Rom. 9:12 Cor. 1:23.
2 Matt. 5:34-3723:16-22James 5:12.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

 

LORD’S DAY 36, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 36 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses The Ten Commandments.

Q. What is the aim of the third commandment?

A. That we neither blaspheme nor misuse the name of God by cursing,1perjury,2 or unnecessary oaths,3 nor share in such horrible sins by being silent bystanders.4 In summary, we should use the holy name of God only with reverence and awe,5 so that we may properly confess God,6 pray to God,7 and glorify God in all our words and works.8

1 Lev. 24:10-17.
2 Lev. 19:12.
3 Matt. 5:37; James 5:12.
4 Lev. 5:1Prov. 29:24.
5 Ps. 99:1-5Jer. 4:2.
6 Matt. 10:32-33Rom. 10:9-10.
7 Ps. 50:14-151 Tim. 2:8.
8 Col. 3:17.

Q. Is blasphemy of God’s name by swearing and cursing really such serious sin
that God is angry also with those who do not do all they can to help prevent and forbid it?

A. Yes, indeed.1 No sin is greater or provokes God’s wrath more
than blaspheming his name. That is why God commanded it to be punished with death.2

1 Lev. 5:1.
2 Lev. 24:10-17.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

 

LORD’S DAY 35, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 35 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses The Ten Commandments.

Q. What is God’s will for us in the second commandment?

A. That we in no way make any image of God1 nor worship him in any other way than has been commanded in God’s Word.2

1 Deut. 4:15-19Isa. 40:18-25Acts 17:29Rom. 1:22-23
2 Lev. 10:1-71 Sam. 15:22-23John 4:23-24

Q. May we then not make any image at all?

A. God cannot and may not be visibly portrayed in any way. Although creatures may be portrayed, yet God forbids making or having such images if one’s intention is to worship them or to serve God through them.1

1 Ex. 34:13-14, 172 Kings 18:4-5.

Q. But may not images be permitted in churches in place of books for the unlearned?

A. No, we should not try to be wiser than God. God wants the Christian community instructed by the living preaching of his Word—1 not by idols that cannot even talk.2

1 Rom. 10:14-15, 172 Tim. 3:16-172 Pet. 1:19.
2 Jer. 10:8Hab. 2:18-20.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!  

 

LORD’S DAY 34, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 34 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses The Ten Commandments.

Q. What is God’s law?

A. God spoke all these words:

THE FIRST COMMANDMENT.

“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; you shall have no other gods before me.”

THE SECOND COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, but showing love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.”

THE THIRD COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.”

THE FOURTH COMMANDMENT.

“Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day;
therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and consecrated it.”

THE FIFTH COMMANDMENT.

“Honor your father and your mother, so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving to you.”

THE SIXTH COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not murder.”

THE SEVENTH COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not commit adultery.”

THE EIGHTH COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not steal.”

THE NINTH COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”

THE TENTH COMMANDMENT.

“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or male or female slave, or ox, or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”1

1 Exodus 20:1-17Deuteronomy 5:6-21

Q. How are these commandments divided?

A. Into two tables. The first has four commandments, teaching us how we ought to live in relation to God. The second has six commandments, teaching us what we owe our neighbor.1

1 Matthew 22:37-39

Q. What does the Lord require in the first commandment?

A. That I, not wanting to endanger my own salvation, avoid and shun all idolatry,1sorcery, superstitious rites,2 and prayer to saints or to other creatures.3

That I rightly know the only true God, 4 trust him alone, 5 and look to God for every good thing6 humbly7 and patiently, 8 and love, 9 fear, 10 and honor11 God with all my heart. In short, that I give up anything rather than go against God’s will in any way.12

1 1 Corinthians 6:9-1010:5-141 John 5:21.
2 Leviticus 19:31Deuteronomy 18:9-12.
3 Matthew 4:10Revelation 19:1022:8-9.
4 John 17:3.
5 Jeremiah 17:5, 7.
6 Psalm 104:27-28James 1:17.
7 1 Peter 5:5-6.
8 Colossians 1:11Hebrews 10:36.
9 Matthew 22:37 (Deuteronomy 6:5).
10 Proverbs 9:101 Peter 1:17.
11 Matthew 4:10 (Deuteronomy 6:13).
12 Matthew 5:29-3010:37-39.

Q. What is idolatry?

A. Idolatry is having or inventing something in which one trusts in place of or alongside of the only true God, who has revealed himself in the Word.1

1 1 Chronicles 16:26Galatians 4:8-9Ephesians 5:5Philippians 3:19.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

 

LORD’S DAY 33, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 32 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional, like last week’s, addresses the subject of the believer’s gratitude to God for their salvation.

Q. What is involved in genuine repentance or conversion?

A. Two things: the dying-away of the old self, and the rising-to-life of the new.1

1 Romans 6:1-112 Corinthians 5:17Ephesians 4:22-24Colossians 3:5-10.

Q. What is the dying-away of the old self?

A. To be genuinely sorry for sin and more and more to hate and run away from it.1

1 Psalm 51:3-4, 17Joel 2:12-13Romans 8:12-132 Corinthians 7:10.

Q. What is the rising-to-life of the new self?

A. Wholehearted joy in God through Christ1 and a love and delight to live according to the will of God by doing every kind of good work.2

1 Psalm 51:8, 12Isaiah 57:15Romans 5:114:17; Romans 6:10-11Galatians 2:20.

Q. What are good works?

A. Only those which are done out of true faith,1 conform to God’s law,2 and are done for God’s glory;3 and not those based on our own opinion or human tradition.4

1 John 15:5Hebrews 11:6; 2 Leviticus 18:41 Samuel 15:22Ephesians 2:10.
3 1 Corinthians 10:31.
4 Deuteronomy 12:32Isaiah 29:13Ezekiel. 20:18-19Matthew 15:7-9.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

LORD’S DAY 32, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 32 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses the subject of the believer’s gratitude to God for their salvation.

Q. Since we have been delivered from our misery by grace through Christ without any merit of our own, why then should we do good works?

A. Because Christ, having redeemed us by his blood, is also restoring us by his Spirit into his image, so that with our whole lives we may show that we are thankful to God for his benefits,1 so that he may be praised through us,2 so that we may be assured of our faith by its fruits,3 and so that by our godly living our neighbors may be won over to Christ.4

1 Romans 6:1312:1-21 Peter 2:5-10.
2 Matthew 5:161 Corinthians 6:19-20
3 Matthew 7:17-18Galatians 5:22-242 Peter 1:10-11
4 Matthew 5:14-16Romans 14:17-191 Peter 2:123:1-2

Q. Can those be saved who do not turn to God from their ungrateful and unrepentant ways?

A. By no means. Scripture tells us that no unchaste person, no idolater, adulterer, thief,
no covetous person, no drunkard, slanderer, robber, or the like will inherit the kingdom of God.1

1 1 Corinthians 6:9-10Galatians 5:19-21Ephesians 5:1-201 John 3:14.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

 

LORD’S DAY 30, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 30 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses the subject of The Lord’s Supper or Communion.

Q. How does the Lord’s Supper differ from the Roman Catholic Mass?

A. The Lord’s Supper declares to us that all our sins are completely forgiven through the one sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which he himself accomplished on the cross once for all.It also declares to us that the Holy Spirit grafts us into Christ,2 who with his true body is now in heaven at the right hand of the Father3 where he wants us to worship him.4

But the Mass teaches that the living and the dead do not have their sins forgiven through the suffering of Christ unless Christ is still offered for them daily by the priests. It also teaches that Christ is bodily present under the form of bread and wine where Christ is therefore to be worshiped. Thus the Mass is basically nothing but a denial of the one sacrifice and suffering of Jesus Christ and a condemnable idolatry.

1 John 19:30Heb. 7:279:12, 25-2610:10-18.
2 1 Cor. 6:1710:16-17.
3 Acts 7:55-56Heb. 1:38:1.
4 Matt. 6:20-21John 4:21-24Phil. 3:20Col. 3:1-3.

Q. Who should come to the Lord’s Table?

A. Those who are displeased with themselves because of their sins, but who nevertheless trust that their sins are pardoned and that their remaining weakness is covered by the suffering and death of Christ, and who also desire more and more to strengthen their faith and to lead a better life. Hypocrites and those who are unrepentant, however, eat and drink judgment on themselves.1

1 1 Cor. 10:19-2211:26-32.

Q. Should those be admitted to the Lord’s Supper who show by what they profess and how they live that they are unbelieving and ungodly?

A. No, that would dishonor God’s covenant and bring down God’s wrath upon the entire congregation.1 Therefore, according to the instruction of Christ and his apostles, the Christian church is duty-bound to exclude such people, by the official use of the keys of the kingdom, until they reform their lives.

1 1 Cor. 11:17-32Ps. 50:14-16Isa. 1:11-17.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

LORD’S DAY 29, 2019.

On each Lord’s Day this year, we will display the 52 devotionals taken from the Heidelberg Catechism which are structured in the form of questions posed and answers given.

The Heidelberg Catechism was originally written in 1563. It originated in one of the few pockets of Calvinistic faith in the Lutheran and Catholic territories of Germany. Conceived originally as a teaching instrument to promote religious unity, the catechism soon became a guide for preaching as well.

Along with the Belgic Confession and the Canons of Dordt, it forms what is collectively referred to as the Three Forms of Unity.

The devotional for LORD’S DAY 29 is as follows. Please take note of the biblical references given in each answer. This morning’s devotional addresses the subject of The Lord’s Supper or Communion.

Q. Do the bread and wine become the real body and blood of Christ?

A. No. Just as the water of baptism is not changed into Christ’s blood and does not itself wash away sins but is simply a divine sign and assurance1of these things, so too the holy bread of the Lord’s Supper does not become the actual body of Christ,2 even though it is called the body of Christ3 in keeping with the nature and language of sacraments.4

1 Eph. 5:26Tit. 3:5.
2 Matt. 26:26-29.
3 1 Cor. 10:16-1711:26-28.
4 Gen. 17:10-11Ex. 12:11, 131 Cor. 10:1-4.

 

Q. Why then does Christ call the bread his body and the cup his blood, or the new covenant in his blood, and Paul use the words, a sharing in Christ’s body and blood?

A. Christ has good reason for these words. He wants to teach us that just as bread and wine nourish the temporal life, so too his crucified body and poured-out blood are the true food and drink of our souls for eternal life.1 But more important, he wants to assure us, by this visible sign and pledge, that we, through the Holy Spirit’s work, share in his true body and blood as surely as our mouths receive these holy signs in his remembrance,2 and that all of his suffering and obedience are as definitely ours as if we personally had suffered and made satisfaction for our sins.3

1 John 6:51, 55.
2 1 Cor. 10:16-1711:26.
3 Rom. 6:5-11.

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!