Saturday, September 02, 2023

The God Who Selects Families for His Children [2023.09.02 Pastoral Letter and Hopewell Herald]

Hopewell Herald – September 2, 2023

Dear Congregation,

By God’s help we hope to hear from Matthew 1:18–25 about the way God brought His only-begotten Son into the world. The family by which Christ came was vital to His mission in this world.

Then, as I sat down to write the weekly letter, we received the blessed news of another covenant child brought into the world. The Lord chose for him a family where he would worship the Lord day by day in the home and week by week in the assembly. A household that is part of Christ’s church, so that already he bears the title “saint.” A household where, his whole childhood long (not just until he professes faith), he will be called to repentance and faith in dependence upon the Spirit Who gives repentance and faith.

What a God-appointed blessing is a holy household! Its members are marked off by the sign of Christ’s heaven-and-earth authority to give life and godliness in Himself by His Spirit. And its weeks are marked off by a day that is a “holy convocation” (a consecrated calling together) in which we gather to the God of grace in worship that He has comprised of the means of His grace.

Whether yours is a household of one or a household of twenty, I pray that your household is such a household. And that your day tomorrow will be such a day.

Truly, worship is due to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, Who is such a God as has given us such a salvation!

Looking forward to gathering to Him together,


Audio lessons to help you prepare for the Lord’s Day:

▪Theology Simply Explained — WSC102, The Kingdom of Grace and Glory 
▪Psalm 100, “Praising Our Own God with Joy” 
▪Isaiah 19–20, “God Humbles & Heals Even Egyptians” 
▪Titus 1:8–9, “Teaching-Sanctified Teachers of the Word” 
▪Matthew 1:18–25, “God With Us to Save Us” 
▪Leviticus 8, “Filling the Priest's Hand

LORD'S DAY – September 3, 2023 

9:50 a.m. Breakfast Line Opens

10 a.m. Sabbath School
This week, we will continue our study in the Biblical Theology of the Diaconate, the church in the post-apostolic age.

11 a.m. Public Worship

Children’s Catechism for September 3
Q56. What is it to repent? To be sorry for sin, and to hate and forsake it because it is displeasing to God.

Shorter Catechism for September 3
Q102. What do we pray for in the second petition? In the second petition, which is, Thy kingdom come, we pray that Satan’s kingdom may be destroyed; and that the kingdom of grace may be advanced, ourselves and others brought into it, and kept in it; and that the kingdom of glory may be hastened.
[WSC 102 Simply Explained: “
The Kingdom of Grace and Glory”]

Songs for September 3 morning service: 
TPH100B “All People That on Earth Do Dwell” [mp3]
ARP94B “Who for Me Withstands the Wicked” [mp3]
ARP24 “The Earth and the Riches” [mp3]

Scripture Text for first portion of worship service
Psalm 100

Scripture Readings and basis for confession of sin and petition for help
Isaiah 19–20 
Titus 1:8–9

Sermon Scripture text and topic
We will be hearing a sermon from Matthew 1:18–25 on “God With Us to Save Us

Lord’s Supper! (Please see the section at the end of the Worship Booklet on how rightly to prepare for and take it).

1 p.m. Coffee Fellowship and Catechism Class

1:30 p.m. Fellowship Lunch
Memory Verse for September 3, Matthew 1:21, “And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall His Name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”

3:00 p.m Evening Praise and Preaching
We will be hearing a sermon from Leviticus 8 on “Gratitude for the Keeping Open of the Way to God

Hopewell this Month

Hopewell’s Presbytery Prayer Focus for September
Bethel ARP in Oak Hill, AL

September Psalm of the Month
ARP94B Who for Me Withstands the Wicked

Upcoming Events

Wednesday, September 6, Midweek Prayer Meeting. 6:30 p.m. in the Chapel. We will hear a sermon from Romans 8:19–22 then pray until just before 8 p.m.
• Saturday, September 23, Leadership (men’s and boys’) breakfast, 6:30a in the Fellowship Hall
• Thursday, September 28, Session Meeting, 6p.m. in the Fellowship Hall.


Congregational Prayer Requests (new/updates in bold)

Lord’s Day worship/study, Daily worship/discipleship/evangelism in homes and community
▪ Repentance of the Church and Nations (especially our own) for rejection of the Kingship of Christ
▪ For an end to PP in Nashville and repentance of everyone involved.
▪ KR’s Bible Study at the Pregnancy Center, especially Shelly and Claire (both needing motivation to come), Alonya (difficult repentance decision to make), and Sofia (expecting on 1st of October)—that all would hunger and thirst for Christ and His Word
▪ Early Rain Covenant Reformed Presbyterian Church (Pastor Wang Yi in prison), Christians in Nigeria, and other persecuted churches like them
▪ R&C H for new Bible translating work
▪ AM and his ministry at Ft. Campbell
▪ JB and his ministry at Ft. Detrick
KC’s acquaintance Linda and friend Nancy, who need Christ; for her dear friend to join a sound church and walk healthily with the Lord
▪ J&M C for recovery and thriving of mom, baby Liam, and the whole family; PRAISE for his healthy birth Sep 2
▪ Pray with J&T B for her, her mother, and sisters Selena and Loretta, and their entire family in the recent losses of her father and her nephew Jared; and for his new walking tours venture; and for Jonathan’s recovery, effectiveness of treatment
▪ Pray with S&D B for Andrew to keep improving
Pray with S&D B and D&D R for Doug and Dianne’s oldest son Dave
▪ Pray with D&V F for transplant rejection to stay low; for recovery from recent foot pain
▪ Pray with D&M G for her father’s recovery from stroke and severe COPD, and her 82yo mother’s aneurism; for Drew and Sarah w/baby #3 due that she would make it to mid-September; and for Jordan and Atlanta w/baby #8 due in March
▪ Pray with C&P G for wisdom, humility, and boldness during interactions with not yet believers and extended family. Growth and evidence of the fruit of the Spirit in parenting and marriage, and that vestibular therapy would be beneficial for vertigo issues (P). For friends, the Mueller family, as they grieve the loss of Dave.
▪ Pray with J&H H for his father’s cancer; for sweetness in his parents’ remaining time together; for his youngest brother’s salvation, and that brother’s son and daughter; for Juan and Mosheh
▪ Pray with R&M J for Claire’s continued thriving; for her father’s liver cancer, especially for clearing targets to move to top of transplant list, for her mother’s comfort and peace through it, even as she recovers from recent fall, and for M’s physical and spiritual endurance and wellness through it all
Pray with O&A L for her unbelieving mother w/heart condition and breast cancer, and her family’s grieving over her brother; for A’s persistently severe headaches; for their many family in Cali who need to be walking by faith in Christ; for O (and A, O, E, and R, and his entire extended family) in the loss of his father, but especially for his mom who still misses him so dearly
▪ Pray with M&S M, and the whole family, for their adjustment to life with baby Eloise; and for recovery of her sister Savannah from C-section and adjustment to being a mother; and for their and their Dr’s ability to treat her mold toxicity
▪ Pray with C&L M for his brother Lee; and for his dad’s heart blockage removal; and for her recovery from ankle injury
▪ Pray with SM for the Lord’s strengthening her under her illness, healing her from it however He wills, sanctifying it to her, and making it useful to His glory and others’ good
▪ Pray with C&T P for him to find favor with new employer and to serve the Lord faithfully at work and home
▪ Pray with J&D P for her sister Frankie
▪ Pray with H&K P for her various health issues, especially her feet
▪ Pray with JuR for God-glorifying employment; for friend Jace, that perfect love would cast out fear
▪ Pray with D&K R for their family’s growth in godliness, especially dying to self, godly speech, and Lord’s Day keeping; and for Micah and Rachel and family in the loss of twin girls at 31 weeks
▪ Pray with JeR for coworker Josh, electrocuted and lost both legs, married 29yo
▪ Pray with J&S R For her family, especially mom, to find their hope in Christ; for Chloe’s family to hold Christ as preeminent; for coworker Cyndy and husband Dave (he needs lungs, both need the Lord); for spreading Christ’s love to neighbors; for friend Rachel and her mother-in-law Mary Lou, as they continue to grieve the loss of their husbands, and for Rachel’s brother Aaron in alcohol rehab; for boss Scott’s family’s salvation; for LDS coworker Trent; with IR as he battles against remaining sin; for S and baby due mid-Feb
▪ Pray with B&E R for their callings in the home; for employment for Ben with a courageously Christian company; for newly converted friend Ashlee, her unbelieving husband Adam, and Bayhaven OPC’s ministry to them; for conversion of family (his dad; his brothers Joshua, Zachary, Kaleb); for reformation of family and neighbors Elijah and Heather; for neighbors Bereket and Beka who are expecting (especially for Bereket’s spiritual leadership)
▪ SU’s biblical wisdom and courage; for Emma’s wellbeing and her believing roommate Tasha’s desire to be reunited with sister Penny
▪ Pray with P&D W for niece Emilyn to have much-needed spiritual metabolic changes; and for both of their health, especially his many health challenges
Please pray with the Oak Hill ARP church in Oak Hill, AL, throughout September
▪ Please pray for all ARP presbyteries, churches, and agencies
▪ Please pray for our nation, state, community and all the officials thereof  

Prayer, with thanksgiving, being one special part of religious worship, is by God required of all men: and, that it may be accepted, it is to be made in the name of the Son, by the help of his Spirit, according to his will, with understanding, reverence, humility, fervency, faith, love, and perseverance; and, if vocal, in a known tongue. (WCF 21.3)

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