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Popular culture is heavily influenced by New Age ideas. Is the word “vibes” a regular word in your everyday speech? One might use that word to describe a certain “energy” they feel coming from a person. “He had good vibes” generally means that an individual perceived friendliness and a level of ethical and moral goodness […]

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Ordinary Means of Grace

It’s possible that the most feared word to the teenage mind is the word ordinary. No one wants to be ordinary. Ordinary students don’t get the best scholarships for college. Ordinary athletes don’t receive awards or win state championships. And ordinary-looking people don’t receive the sort of attention that might lead to getting asked out […]

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Looking Back with Luther

“We are beggars, this is true.” The story passed down through history is that these words were scribbled down by Martin Luther on a piece of paper and stuffed into his pocket while he was lying on his deathbed. You can imagine what he was thinking. He was a weary pilgrim at the end of […]

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Love for the Lord’s House

“For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand…” (Psalm 84:10). Young people, do you live for the weekend? You might think that a strange question, or one you aren’t quite comfortable answering. We don’t have to answer that for ourselves, though. The Word of our God answers for us that we must live for […]

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Worship With Awe

Come to God’s house to worship Him With reverence and with awe: For great and holy is His name And righteous is His law. Our earthly cares are put aside That in His love we may abide. Since we such sinful creatures are, It’s not an easy task To rid our minds of mundane things […]

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The Reformed Heritage of Congregational Singing

Have you ever been in an argument where you were debating choir versus congregational singing? Did you know what to say? Do you know where that whole idea of choir singing stems from and that our fathers fought against this practice? Congregational singing is one of the many issues that the men of the reformation […]

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Contemporary Worship

Dear Editor, I have recently read the April 1999 copy of the Beacon Lights in my parent’s house. One article that I found very interesting was the one written by Kristin Brands, “In the Beauty of Holiness.” After reading this particular article, I was very disturbed with what Kristin, and assumably the people who published […]

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In the Beauty of Holiness*

*1997 scholarship essay An increasing move is being made in our day to leave the traditional form of worship, which we know, for new, contemporary forms of worship. What are these trends? WHY are they present? Are they wrong? What does the Bible have to say on this subject? How are we to respond? First […]

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$1.3 Million Emergency Aid Package for Worship

“Worship me!” our God commands. “Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters,” Revelation 14:7. Worship me, says the God of our salvation, “For the Lord is great, and greatly to be […]

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How Are We to Worship?

As time goes by, worship is increasingly changing in many churches. Rev. McAtnee, in an article from The Outlook, explains that we all know we worship at church, but we are having a hard time deciding what worship is. The contemporary trend of worship tries to meet the needs of the people. Churches are making […]

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Many churches today are introducing into their worship services all sorts of elements which are foreign to the Scriptures. In this paper we will see what proper worship is, as well as what the elements of worship ought to be. We will then look at contemporary trends of worship and compare them to proper worship, […]

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Public Worship

Public worship today comes in a wide variety of forms and substance. A quick glance at the “Religion” section of the newspaper on any given weekend reveals some of what goes on in churches on Sunday mornings. We are aware of worship services which are comprised of and include plays, films, bands and choirs and […]

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Fulfillment of the Lord

II Thessalonians 2:13-14 – “But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through the sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory […]

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Why Go to Church?

It is the practice of Christians to go to church. But why? The answer to this lies in the very name Christian. What is a Christian? If you were to look in a dictionary the definition would be something like this: “a follower of Christ, pertaining to Christ,” or something of that nature. Who then […]

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Special Music: Bane or Blessing?

Since joining the Protestant Reformed Church­es, some criticism has been directed towards me, criti­cism concerning special music. In my old church (Christian Reformed), I often accompanied special music on the piano and sang in the church choir. I also played synthesizers for a group of young people who presented a musical in various Reformed and […]

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Singing a New Song

It is not until we come to Genesis 31 that we find the word song or singing in Scripture.  There Laban used the word song in his rebuke against Jacob.  Jacob had fled away from Laban with his two wives, who were daughters of Laban.  Laban had treated Jacob shamefully and unjustly, and that moved […]

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The Liturgy of Our Churches

I. The Meaning of “liturgy”. A. Definition. 1. Webster: a rite or body of rites prescribed for public worship. 2. We might explain it this way: the liturgy consists of all the parts of our public worship service as well as the particular position of each part in the whole service. B. Thus the liturgy […]

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Individual Prayer before Worship

Prayers of the individual members of the congregation before the service belong only indirectly to the service. It is important because it is intended to put the people in the proper frame of mind to worship. The time before the service should be put to this purpose and not for socializing or for looking around. […]

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How Would Your Church Rate?

If your church were rated on its Sunday service by someone from the outside, someone who was thoroughly familiar with its Christian function and purpose, how do you suppose it would fare? Since we believe that the church is made up of the body of believers what we are in fact asking is, how would […]

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Coming Before His Presence

Perhaps the greatest hoax perpetrated by the devil is that the Christian life is only grief and sadness. The devil wants us in believe that there is no joy, no real glad­ness for Christians — especially for young Christians. To be a Christian means, the great Deceiver would have us think, to walk around with […]

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Sabbath Pleasures

Editor’s Note: This article was originally given by Mr. Vink as an after-recess program in the Sr. Mr. and Mrs. Society of First Church. I trust that you will find, as I did, that although the examples are local, the concern expressed is universal. Jon Huisken “If because of the Sabbath, you turn your foot, […]

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Changes in the Church

The traditional Sunday worship services as we have always known them are becoming the object of much criticism. The church is accused of being irrelevant and outdated. Demands are made for more involvement in the worship service – more congregational participation. These accusations are not only made by critics of the church, such as atheists […]

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Fight For The Truth

Author’s Note I was assigned to write a report on “Trends in the Church” for my Bible course at Central Christian High School in Grand Rapids. It was understood that this would mean trends in the Christian Reformed church even though I am now Protestant Reformed. While I was doing my research on this assignment, […]

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