Opening Prayer Thoughts
Praise and confession.
- Praise God that He is the Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty; the one who is, was and is to come. Praise God for the privilege of worshipping Him in public and in our families.
- Pray to God for the wonderful fact that he has brought us out of bondage to sin. Revelation 4:18, James 1:18.
Doctrine for the Mind and Heart
Westminster Shorter Catechism, Question 49 – Which is the second commandment?
Answer – The second commandment is: You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to thousands who love me and keep my commandments.
This is taken from https://matt2819.com/wsc where you will find proof texts.
Comment – For the sake of our children's children, we need to stand firm on this and not accept any images of God, including pictures of Jesus in books.
Verse to memorise.
James 1:17 – "Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”
Pray and ask for the Holy Spirit's help as you read God's Word.
Please read Nehemiah 13:1-3.
Notes previously prepared by Rev. Dr. Tim Donachie, with slight amendments.
Nehemiah 13:1-3 – Exclusion From Worship
During the worship of God and especially through the reading of the Word of God, the people became more aware of the standards that God had set for His own people. It is, of course, quite clear that we can only know what it is that God requires of man as we find it recorded in what has been revealed to us in the Holy Scriptures. In the case before us in this passage, it was the teaching given in Deuteronomy 23:3-4 describing those who were to be excluded from the assembly of the Lord. The Amorites and the Moabites and their descendants down to the tenth generation were not to be a part of the people of God on account of their conduct towards the people of Israel. In the call that God gave to Abram, God promised to bless those who blessed Abram and to curse those who cursed him, Gen. 12:3; and here this promise is fulfilled, for the Amorites and the Moabites did not meet the Israelites with food and water when they came out of Egypt and even hired Balaam to curse them, and now this ill-treatment is turned upon their own heads as they are excluded from the people of God.
Having heard the Word of God, the people immediately sought to put it into practice and began to exclude from their company those who had no right to be there. No doubt many of these people had lived amongst the Israelites for many years and were probably friends and neighbours. Perhaps some even participated in Israelite worship, but nevertheless, they were not a part of God's people.
There are many blessings that come through participating in public worship but, in and of itself, it does not make a person a child of God. To be a member of the church of God requires the new birth, the forgiveness of sins, and a personal relationship with God through the Lord Jesus Christ.
Sing with joy in your heart to God.
Psalm 105A. Link to the words. Link to it being sung.
Thank God that he has made you alive in Christ, renewing your mind, regenerating your heart, and giving you a will inclined to experience and enjoy the freedom and liberty to live by His laws and statutes.
Yours in Christ,
Rev. Dr. Andrew Quigley
Minister, Ottawa RPC