Monthly Archives: June 2015

A CREC (Communion of Reformed Evangelical Churches) Response to the Obergefell Decision

You can view the statement on the website for the CREC:

It is also permanently linked from the Documents page, under the Statements heading:
Please note that a number of the phrases are drawn from the CREC memorial on “Homosexuality”, which you can view on at Christ Covenant Reformed Church’s website:
Pray for the Church of Christ in the United States. May we repose in Christ and remain faithful to our Lord. Please consider these words of encouragement, from a book on prayer, by James Beeke and Joel Beeke.

It is easy to focus on the mountains surrounding us: mountains of unbelief, worldly enticements, wrong doctrinal statements and balance, and our own poor understandings and abilities. But we are also called to focus upon who God is in Christ — One who is greater than all these mountains.

Focus upon who God is in Christ, and may “The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble; the name of the God of Jacob defend thee” (Psalm 20:1).

Church of Christ

“The Church of our text [Matt. 16:18] is made up of all true believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, of all who are really holy and converted people. . . . The members of this Church do not all worship God in the same way, or use the same form of government. Some of them are governed by bishops and some of them by elders. Some of them use a prayer-book when they meet for public worship and some of them use none. The thirty-fourth Article of the Church of England most wisely declares, “It is not necessary that ceremonies should be in all places one and alike.” But the members of this Church all come to one throne of grace. They all worship with one heart. They are all led by one Spirit. They are all really and truly holy. They can all say ‘Alleluia,’ and they can all reply, ‘Amen'” (J.C. Ryle, Holiness, 217).

Vivid Symbols

“All these ceremonial regulations, whether of food, of clothing, of agriculture, of sacrifices, were not ends in themselves, possessing intrinsic merit, but were vivid symbols of the fact that Israel was a holy nation, belonging to Jehovah, dedicated to holiness of life, to faith, and obedience, and called to exhibit the character of God here on earth” (John C. Wenger, Separated unto God, 17).

“How sad it was that the Jewish hierarchy, together with many of the people of Israel, looked upon their external separation from the Gentiles as ends in themselves and as guarantees of divine favor rather than as symbols of the spiritual relationship and condition which God requires of those who are His sons and daughters! (19)


“I want you to beware of presumption. Do not abuse God’s mercy and compassion. Do not continue in sin, I beseech you, and think you can repent, and believe, and be saved, just when you like, when you please, when you will, and when you choose. I would always set before you an open door. I would always say, “While there is life there is hope.” But if you would be wise, put nothing off that concerns your soul” (J.C. Ryle, Holiness, 187).

Active Membership

“Each mature Christian has, of course, the responsibility to ‘test all things.’ But Christian truth is a corporate possession. The church is the context within which we should expect to have wrong ideas gently corrected and right ones gently suggested, and where we in turn may contribute to the same activities. This will mean active membership in a local church and perhaps a variety of Christian groups; it should also involve careful listening to Christians of other backgrounds and periods of history” (N.T. Wright, Colossians and Philemon, vol. 12, Tyndale New Testament Commentaries, gen. ed. Leon Morris,  43).

Mighty To Save

“This is the main doctrine to be gathered from the history of the penitent thief [see Luke 23:39-43]. It teaches us that which ought to be music in the ears of all who hear it — it teaches us that Jesus Christ is “mighty to save” (Isa. 63:1)” (J.C. Ryle, Holiness, 182).

Israel’s Separation Unto the Lord

“The central blessing of the Lord to the children of Israel was not a superior biological inheritance, nor a better national home, nor any material blessing at all; it was a unique knowledge of God Himself. This knowledge rested upon the self-disclosure of God to Israel. . . . All of Israel’s differences from her national neighbors were, therefore, the results of, or symbols of, her spiritual separation unto the Lord; the fact that Israel alone was God’s peculiar and special treasure, His covenant people” (John C. Wenger, Separated unto God, 7 & 9).


J.C. Ryle encourage Christians to look at the example of Moses; see Hebrews 11:24-26. “Such were the things that Moses refused–rank, pleasure, riches, all three at once” (J.C. Ryle, Holiness, 138).

Ryle asks, “Are you willing to give up anything which keeps you back from God?” (144)

Our Sense of Salvation

“Inconsistency of life is utterly destructive of peace of conscience. . . . I bless God that our salvation in no wise depends on our own works. By grace we are saved — not by works of righteousness — through faith – without the deeds of the law. But I never would have any believer for a moment forget that our SENSE of salvation depends much on the manner of our living. Inconsistency will dim our eyes, and bring clouds between us and the sun. The sun is the same behind the clouds, but you will not be able to see its brightness or enjoy its warmth, and your soul will be gloomy and cold. It is the path of the well doing that the day-spring of assurance will visit you, and shine down upon your heart” (J.C. Ryle, Holiness, 121-122).