Tag Archive | Holy Days

Who Needs Them, When Hearts And Eyes Of Faith Are Turned Sabbath?

Douglas Kelly, “The Puritan Regulative Principle and Contemporary Worship,” from volume 2 of The Westminster Confession into the 21st Century:

First Reformed Presbyterian Church - Cambridge, MA -DSC00550“Our desperate need of recovering the Sabbath is much more pressing, I believe, than whether or not we do or do not encourage yearly celebrations of the dominical feasts [i.e., Christmas, Circumcision, Good Friday, Easter, Ascension, and Pentecost]. By giving up Sabbath observance for whatever reasons, we have unwittingly contributed to the quicker secularization of our culture, and have in so doing left a deep gap or vacuum in the spirit of both churched and unchurched people for some kind of touch with traditional transcendent realities. If Sabbath observance is of no real consequence to church people, then the world has yet another practical argument for the peripheral nature of God and the transcendent … . And more to our concern here, if we neglect a whole-hearted observance of the Christian Sabbath, the Lord’s Resurrection Day, we do lose something of the transcendent; indeed, we lose a great deal of it in the very church itself.

Why fill in this deep, hurting gap with attempts at resuscitating ever more of the church year? Is there anything wrong with humbling ourselves and repenting of our abuse of the Lord’s Day, and seeking to return to a happy keeping of it? I suspect that would make the currently popular bringing in of church seasons such as Advent and Lent quite superfluous. After all, these seasons were historically closely tied in to the Medieval Penitential System. Who needs them, when hearts and eyes of faith are turned Sabbath by Sabbath to our great High Priest, who through the power of His atoning blood and resurrection, continually presents us to the Father?”

Source: https://gairneybridge.wordpress.com/2013/12/19/tis-the-sabbath/

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Under a More Heavy Bondage

Jerusalem, Solomon's Temple. 009.Holy land photographed. Daniel B. Shepp. 1894

It is good to ponder the observance of Christmas and other feast days apart from the emotion of the season:

“Yes, some will say, to observe the Jewish days after they were abolished by God, was sinful and dangerous, but we do not keep Jewish days. But mark what these men say, God abolishes his own, and yet they think he gives liberty to man to set up others. If upon God’s abolishing his own, men have liberty to set up theirs, then Christians are under a more heavy bondage, and grievous pedagogy, than ever the Jews were, for it is better to have a hundred days of God’s appointing, than one of man’s, and more honourable. Further, if God appoint, there needs no scruple, as if man appoint: yea, if God appoint, we may expect a special blessing, and efficacy, and presence of God; we cannot expect such things in man’s appointment. Now, if when God has taken away Jewish ceremonies and days, man might lawfully appoint others as he pleases, we may pray to God with good reason to bring us under the bondage of the law again, rather than to be thus under man’s power.”

~Burroughs on Hosea.

Source: http://www.puritanboard.com/showthread.php/88256-Do-you-plan-on-celebrating-Christmas/page3, Comment #86

What Could Be Wrong With Feast Days?

Sean Anderson:

Franz-Skarbina-9“We may ask, as long as the day is cleansed from popish and heathen superstition, what could be wrong with the feast days? Is it not just another occasion to preach redemptive history? One issue is that of Christian liberty. When the church elders call a meeting, they expect the congregation to attend. This arguably binds the conscience of the congregation to a man-made tradition, thereby violating their Christian liberty. Another issue is that of the regulative principle of worship, that we should worship the Lord according to his will rather than our own… When it comes to public worship, we cannot justify a practice simply because we feel we ought to do it – without scriptural warrant – or because we simply think it is a good thing to do in order to honour God.”

Read more: https://solascripturachristianity.wordpress.com/2015/03/26/feast-days-and-the-sabbath/

Now That The Nativity Feast Day Is Over…

Aert de Gelder 004

Please consider what our Protestant ancestors believed, taught, and practiced:

“Shall we suppose that Christ and his apostles, in abrogating those days which God himself had appointed to be observed, without instituting others in their room, intended that either churches or individuals should be allowed to substitute whatever they pleased in their room? Yet the Christian church soon degenerated so far as to bring herself under a severer bondage than that from which Christ had redeemed her, and instituted a greater number of festivals than were observed under the Mosaic law, or even among pagans.”

~M’Crie on Esther

Source: http://www.puritanboard.com/showthread.php/88256-Do-you-plan-on-celebrating-Christmas/page3, Comment #86

Halloween and Sinful Imitation

The Protestant Standard:

800px-Halloween“The question we must ask is whether, despite the innocency in which many of these things are done, the imitation of these practices acceptable…

3rd John 11 says that we are to ‘follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.’ The Greek word ‘mimeomai’ which is here translated ‘follow’ literally means to mimic or imitate, and is used on other occasions where the people are instructed to follow or mimic the godly example and faith of the Apostles. However in this instance it instructs us in what we are not to imitate, specifically ‘that which is evil’. It is a clear scriptural command not to copy or imitate that which has a sinful influence or origin, but to abstain ‘from all appearance of evil’. There are three reasons why we ought to steer away from any form of sinful imitation.”

Read more: http://protestant-standard.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/the-danger-of-sinful-imitation.html#more

Halloween: Not For The Truly Reformed

Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe.  (Jeremiah 10:2-3)

Brian Schwertley:

800px-Halloween“The second most popular “holy” day, holiday or festival in the United States at the present time is Halloween. We live in an age that is so corrupt theologically, and compromised ethically, that celebrating Halloween has become accepted by most professing Christians and is even advocated by purportedly Reformed churchmen (e.g., James Jordan, Gary DeMar, Steven Wedgeworth, David Mathis) and organizations (e.g., the supposedly pro-biblical law or theonomist para-church organization called American Vision founded by Gary DeMar in the 1980s). The fact that Reformed scholars and writers are defending Halloween in print (i.e. publicly) and are apologists for professing Christians participating in Halloween traditions raises some important questions about Halloween itself and the state of modern “conservative” Reformed denominations. Therefore, in this brief essay, we need to analyze the professing Christian church man’s arguments for celebrating such a day and in the process we will look at the roots and modern practice of Halloween. In this study, we will reveal that many modern Reformed scholars and pastors no longer really adhere to or practice the Reformed faith (i.e. the Reformed faith as defined by the Westminster Standards. It is a modern errant view which defines the Reformed faith solely in terms of soteriology.)”

Read more: http://www.reformedonline.com/uploads/1/5/0/3/15030584/halloween.pdf

The Five Points of Perth

Trees007Bayou Huguenot explains why the Reformers rejected the Five Points of Perth, which are:

  1. Kneeling at Communion
  2. Private Communion
  3. Immediacy of Baptism to Infants
  4. Confirmation by Bishops
  5. Recognition of Holy Days

Read more: http://bayouhuguenot.wordpress.com/2014/05/10/some-other-five-points/