Sermons

Why We are Still Required to Keep the Fourth Commandment (3) The Meaning of Jesus’ Fulfillment of the Fourth Commandment

And so, the rest that we enjoy on the Sabbath is the rest that comes from worshipping God with a clear conscience because our sins have been atoned once for all by the blood of Christ. This is a wonderful part of the promise inherent in the Fourth Commandment. If we keep it as God intends, we experience something of the rest that Jesus gives to those who are trusting in him. A rest that comes from a pure conscience because of the blood of Christ and a rest that comes from delighting in the worship of God in the security of his love and favor. This satisfies the deepest longing of the human soul.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Parenting for the Fulfillment of God’s Promise

The world says that to find freedom you must define yourself and follow your heart and fulfill your desires. God says that that is the way of death. Instead he calls you to the way of life which involves submitting to the calling that he has placed upon you. The way of life is the way of conforming your will to the will of God for you and one part of that is that you enthusiastically submit to the nurture of your parents. Strange as that may sound in the light of the spirit of our age, submission is the way of true freedom and the way of life and the way of blessing and the way of being part of the work of God which is moving toward the ultimate of blessing in the new creation.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Wisdom Is Not Provoking the King

The great thing that Ecclesiastes is showing us that if you only look at life from the perspective of under the sun, life can be very dark and hopeless. There is a lot of pain. There is a lot of suffering. There is a lot of frustration. And there is always death on the horizon, our own death and the death of our loved ones. If that is all there is, life can have its short-term pleasures, but there is a lot of suffering and then there is death.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Advice from a Disillusioned Teacher

But the author of Ecclesiastes does not take that route. He knows that God is sovereign. He knows that God is somehow involved in everything that happens. And this is a huge part of his problem. The great problem that he is struggling with is exactly the fact that he knows that God is somehow involved in every bad thing that happens. This is why he is so disillusioned with life in God’s world.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Why We are Still Required to Keep the Fourth Commandment (1) A Creation Ordinance

We believe that when God rested on the seventh day and blessed the seventh day and made it holy, he intended that the cycle of six work days and one holy day of rest should last as long as the world would last. We believe that this passage in Genesis teaches that the pattern of six work days and one holy day of rest is a permanent part of the structure of time as God created it. It is part of the nature of things in God’s creation.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

The Ascension of Jesus

Now the key to this perspective is the cross of Jesus Christ. The cross helps us to see how God uses weakness and apparent defeat to win the greatest victories. The one who sits at God’s right hand is the one who lived life as a pauper, and from human perspective lived a life of failure and defeat. How much worse can it get if you are executed and all of your followers run away! Jesus’ death seemed to be an utter failure. And yet the moment of the greatest darkness and despair was the moment of triumph and victory. Hebrews 2:14 tells us that it was through death that Jesus destroyed “the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil.”
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

The (Apparent) Futility of Life

These verses draw out the implications of life under the sun if God is not in the picture. But they also describe what life can look like for believers when they feel that God’s way with the world does not make sense and that life seems to be nothing more than pain and futility.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

The Vanity of Not Enjoying Life

The Bible teaching is that the kind of happiness that we need is a happiness that comes from being right with God so that we can face the judgment of God without fear. It is a happiness that comes from being right with God. It is a happiness that comes from being in a harmonious relationship with God. And it is a happiness that comes from learning to live in harmony with God’s law which is the blue-print for a rich and satisfying life.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra