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Sunday Schedule

9 AM Sunday School for All Ages

10 AM Worship
Scripture: 2 Kings 1; Matthew 27:24-32
Sermon: "Hallelujah! What a Savior!"
Songs: PH 280, PH 111B, PH 352, PH 348

6 PM Worship
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 10:1-14; Malachi 3:6-12
Sermon: The Changeless God
Songs: PH 429, PH 119D, PH 159

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Westminster Confession 27.1-2

Sacraments are holy signs and seals of the covenant of grace,(1) immediately instituted by God,(2) to represent Christ, and His benefits; and to confirm our interest in Him:(3) as also, to put a visible difference between those that belong unto the Church, and the rest of the world;(4) and solemnly to engage them to the service of God in Christ, according to His Word.(5)

(1)Rom. 4:11; Gen. 17:7,10; see the refs. for section 2 below. (2)Matt. 28:19; 1 Cor. 11:23 (3)1 Cor. 10:16; 1 Cor. 11:25,26; Gal. 3:27; Gal 3:17 (4)Rom. 15:8; Exod. 12:48; Gen. 34:14 (5)Rom. 6:3,4; 1 Cor. 10:16

There is, in every sacrament, a spiritual relation, or sacramental union, between the sign and the thing signified: whence it comes to pass, that the names and effects of the one are attributed to the other.(1)

(1)Gen. 17:10; Matt. 26:27,28; Tit. 3:5

A sacrament “is an external sign, by which the Lord seals on our consciences his promises of good-will toward us, in order to sustain the weakness of our faith, and we in turn testify our piety towards him, both before himself and before angels as well as men” (Calvin, Institutes 4.14.1).

Sacraments are important. That might seem understated, but it's true. The lack of sacramentology among many Christians has led to great weaknesses in their theology and practice. For some, nothing is sacramental because they are unnecessary. All that is needed is a personal relationship with Jesus. This approach, though, leads to a kind of shallow undervaluing of what God has given for the benefit of his people. For others, they go the other way. Everything is sacramental. This also leads to a deficiency. It is true that sacraments are ordinary (bread, wine, water), but they are set apart for extraordinary purposes. To make everything a sacrament ends up devaluing what God provides in the same way that giving everyone a first place ribbon in a race devalues the experience.

Sacraments, our Confession tells us, are those things that God himself gives for specific purposes. In the Old Testament there were many, but in the New Testament there are only two: baptism and the Lord's Supper. The purpose, we read, is threefold: to represent Christ and his benefits to us, to put a difference between the church and the world, and to call us to service to the Lord. In baptism our Triune God puts his name upon us, calling us to repent of our sins and to serve him. The Supper nourishes our faith and calls us to live as those who do not live by bread alone, but by every mouth that proceeds from the mouth of God.

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Dear Congregation and Friends,

I hope you are well this week. We are getting close to starting up our weekly studies again! This semester the monthly Paideia Group will be discussing Martin Bucer's Care for Souls. You can register here.

Sunday school classes begins this Sunday!

Wisdom. What is it good for? How do we get it? This Sunday we begin our Sunday school class on Book 1 of Calvin’s Institutes.
“Our wisdom, in so far as it ought to be deemed true and solid Wisdom, consists almost entirely of two parts: the knowledge of God and of ourselves.”
Knowledge of God and knowledge of self. This is where Calvin begins the discussion of wisdom. We need it and God gives is.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” - James 1:5
Ultimately, this wisdom from God is given to us in the Person of Jesus Christ:
"In Christ God shows us his righteousness, goodness, wisdom, power, in short, his entire self. We must, therefore, beware of seeking him elsewhere, for everything that would set itself off as a representation of God, apart from Christ, will be an idol." ~ John Calvin on Colossians 1:15

Ongoing classes/events:
Sunday school classes for all ages at 9 AM! The adult class is covering Calvin's Institutes, Book 1, chapters 1-7. Children continue with their "Show Me Jesus" curriculum.
Our Monday Night Bible study meets each week at 7 PM at the Pastor's home. This semester we continue our study of First Peter. The first Monday of each month includes a spaghetti at 6 PM.
Dinner & Theology meets each Wednesday at 6 PM. We are discussing the Westminster Shorter Catechism together. Each month one of our meetings is dedicated to the Paideia Group led by Richard Gamble.
The women's Bible study meets each Thursday at 7:30 PM at the church. See Corrie Church for information.
Our men's study will meet on Saturday, February 1st at 9 AM. We're studying William Gouge's Building a Godly Home.
Our next fellowship dinner will be Sunday, February 16th at 5 PM.
The Session has set the annual Congregation Meeting for Sunday, February 9th, following the morning worship service. The hospitality committee will provide a light lunch.

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