The Parish Register
Navigate The Parish Register From Here



powered by FreeFind

 

A SHORT DECLARATION OF THE TRUE, LIVELY, AND CHRISTIAN FAITH

[The following is the first point of a three point sermon taken from The Homilies. Historically the three primary sources for Anglican belief and practice have been the Bible, the Book of Common Prayer, and The Homilies.]

THE FIRST COMING UNTO GOD, good Christian people, is through faith; whereby as it is declared in the last Sermon, we be justified before God. And lest any man should be deceived, for lack of right understanding hereof, it is diligently to be noted, that faith is taken in the Scripture two manner of ways.

There is one faith which in Scripture is called a dead faith; which bringeth forth no good works, but is idle, barren and unfruitful. And this faith, by the holy Apostle St. James, is compared to the faith of devils; which believe God to be true and just, and tremble for fear, yet they do nothing well, but all evil. And such a manner of faith, have the wicked and naughty Christian people; which confess God, as St. Paul saith, in their mouth, but deny him in their deeds, being abominable, and without the right faith, and to all good works
reproveable. And this faith is a persuasion and belief, in man’s heart, whereby he knoweth that here is a God, and agreeth unto all truth of God’s most holy word, contained in holy Scripture, so that it consisteth only, in believing of the word of God, that it is true. And this is not properly called faith: but as he that readeth Cesar’s Commentaries, believing the same to be true, hath thereby a knowledge of Cesar’s life and notable acts, because he believeth the history of Cesar, yet it is not properly said, that he believeth in Cesar, of whom he looketh for no help nor benefit; even so he that believeth, that all that is spoken of God in the Bible is true, and yet liveth so ungodly, that he cannot look to enjoy the promises and benefits of God, although it may be said, that such a man hath a faith and belief, to the words of God, yet it is not properly said, that he believeth in God, or hath such a faith and trust in God, whereby he may surely look for grace, mercy, and everlasting life at God’s hand, but rather for indignation and punishment, according to the merits of his wicked life. For as it is written in a book entitled to be of Didymus Alexandrinus, “Forasmuch as faith without works is dead, it is not now faith; as a dead man is not a man.” This dead faith therefore, is not that sure and substantial faith, which saveth sinners.

Another faith there is in Scripture, which is not as the foresaid faith, idle, unfruitful, and dead, but worketh by charity, as St. Paul declareth Gal. 5: which, as the other vain faith is called a dead faith, so may this be called a quick or lively faith. And this is not only the common belief, of the articles of our faith, but it is also a sure trust and confidence, of the mercy of God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, and a stedfast hope, of all good things to be received at God’s hand; and that although we through infirmity, or temptation of our ghostly enemy, do fall from him by sin, yet if we return again unto him, by true repentance, that he will forgive and forget our offences, for his Son’s sake, our Saviour Jesus Christ, and will make us inheritors with him, of his everlasting kingdom, and that in the mean time, until that kingdom come, he will be our protector and defender, in all perils and dangers, whatsoever do chance; and that though sometime he doth send us sharp adversity, yet that evermore he will be a loving Father unto us, correcting us for our sin, but not withdrawing his mercy finally from us, if we trust in him, and commit ourselves wholly unto him, hang only upon him, and call upon him, ready to obey and serve him. This is the true, lively, and unfeigned Christian faith, and is not in the mouth, and outward profession only, but it liveth and stirreth, inwardly in the heart. And this faith is not without hope and trust in God, not without the love of God, and of our neighbours, nor without the fear of God, not without the desire to hear God’s word, and to follow the same in eschewing evil, and doing gladly all good works. This faith, as St. Paul describeth it, is the sure ground and foundation of the benefits, which we ought to look for, and trust to receive of God, a certificate and sure looking for them, although they yet sensibly appear not unto us. And after he saith, He that cometh to God, must believe both that he is, and that he is a merciful rewarder of well doers. And nothing commendeth good men unto God so much, as this assured faith and trust in him.

Of this faith, three things are specially to be noted: first, that this faith doth not lie dead in the heart, but is lively and fruitful, in bringing forth good works; second, that without it can no good works be done, that shall be acceptable and pleasant to God; third, what manner of good works they be, that this faith doth bring forth.

For the first. As the light cannot be hid, but will show forth itself at one place or other; so a true faith cannot be kept secret, but when occasion is offered, it will break out, and show itself by good works. And as the living body of a man, ever exerciseth such things, as belongeth to a natural and living body, for nourishment and preservation of the same as it hath need, opportunity, and occasion; even so the soul that hath a lively faith in it, will be doing always some good work, which shall declare that it is living, and will not be unoccupied.

Therefore, when men hear in the Scriptures, so high commendations of faith, that it maketh us to please God, to live with God, and to be the children of God, if then they phantasy, that they be set at liberty from doing all good works, and may live as they list, they trifle with God, and deceive themselves. And it is a manifest token, that they be far from having the true and lively faith, and also far from knowledge, what true faith meaneth. For the very sure and lively Christian faith, is not only to believe all things of God, which are contained in holy Scripture, but also is an earnest trust and confidence in God, that he doth regard us, and that he is careful over us, as the father is over the child whom he doth love, and that he will be merciful unto us, for his only Son’s sake; and that we have our Saviour Christ, our perpetual Advocate and Priest; in whose only merits, oblation, and suffering we do trust, that our offences be continually washed and purged, whensoever we repenting truly, do return to him with our whole heart, stedfastly determining with ourselves, through his grace, to obey and serve him, in keeping his commandments, and never to turn back again to sin. Such is the true faith, that the Scripture doth so much commend: the which, when it seeth and considereth what God hath done for us, is also moved, through continual assistance of the Spirit of God, to serve and please him, to keep his favour, to fear his displeasure, to continue his obedient children, showing thankfulness again by observing (or keeping) his commandments; and that freely, for true love chiefly, and not for dread of punishment, or love of temporal reward, considering how clearly, without our deservings, we have received his mercy and pardon freely.

This true faith will show forth itself, and cannot long be idle. For, as it is written, The just man doth live by faith, he neither sleepeth nor is idle, when he should wake and be well occupied. And God by his Prophet Jeremy saith, that he is a happy and blessed man, which hath faith and confidence in God: for he is like a tree set by the water side, that spreadeth his roots abroad toward the moisture, and feareth not heat when it cometh; his leaf will be green, and will not cease to bring forth his fruit. Even so faithful men, putting away all fear of adversity, will show forth the fruit of their good works, as occasion is offered to do them

 

Parish News

Thank you to those who put up and later took down the Advent & Christmas decorations. Your work is greatly appreciated.


The Preschool Christmas Program took place Wednesday morning, Dec. 20, 2006, in the chapel. It was followed by refreshments in the Parish Hall. The program was quite lovely as the children, dressed up as angels, shepherds, Wiseman, lambs and Mary & Joseph, sang the songs of Christmas.


On Christmas Eve we gathered in the chapel at 11:00 p.m. for a service of Lessons & Carols combined with Holy Communion. Christmas was ushered in as we sang “Silent Night” by candlelight. The service was preceded by a time of fellowship and refreshments in the Parish Hall.


As has become our traditions a collection of food was received during Advent and Christmas for the Tinley Park Food Pantry. We wish to thank all of those who generously contributed.


In Memory

Marie Ball, age 81, the mother of Patty Levi, went to be with the Lord Dec. 13, 2006. Our sympathies are extended to Patty and her family as well as her two sisters & brother & their families.


Outing

An outing is planned for all age groups in the church for Sunday, Feb. 25, 2007. The Encore Concert Band will be performing at 3:00 p.m. at Century Junior High in Orland Park. Those going will have lunch together before the concert. See Sue Horosinski for details.


Lent begins Ash Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2007. On the Wednesdays in Lent we will gather for a soup supper in the Parish Hall at 6:30 p.m., followed by the Lenten Service in the Chapel at 7:30 p.m.


St. Andrew’s Senior Group

The seniors will be attending a travelogue Thursday, March 8, 2007, at 10:45 a.m. in Oak Lawn. The travelogue presented by Mrs. Elaine Spencer is entitled “Cherry Blossoms of Japan.” It will be followed by a luncheon. The total cost will be $6.00 per person. For more information contact Sue Horosinski or Edwina Greco.


The Annual Parish Meeting will be held on Sunday, March 11, 2007 following church. A catered lunch will be provided in the Parish Hall prior to the meeting.


Missionary of The Month

Greg & Helena Wright. Home Office Computer System. Arab World Ministries. Upper Darby, PA 19082.


Why Should We Observe Lent?

(1) We observe Lent because it causes us to STOP.
Lent says, “Stop and rest awhile.” Lent says,
“Stop doing wrong.”


(2) We observe Lent because it says to LOOK.
Look inward for an honest self-examination.
Look upward to see the Cross of Christ with healing and love.
Look forward to the hope of the Resurrection.


(3) We observe Lent because if says to us, “LISTEN.”
Listen to the words of Christ, listen to the voice of God, listen
to the winds of the Spirit of God.


Just as these three words, STOP, LOOK, AND LISTEN, are important for our safety in travel, they may also be helpful for our journey through Lent.


VISIT OUR WEBSITE
www.andrewrec.org

 

 

 

Happy Birthday!

Feb. 3 – Adele O’Brien
Feb. 7 – Michaela Smith
Feb. 9 – Mike Acke
Feb. 12 – Sara Hassert
Feb. 14 – Edwina Greco
Feb. 18 – Lawrence Klingen
Feb. 23 – Lorie Conn Stultz
Feb. 28 – Larry Woodard
Feb. 28 – Dorothy Novak

 

By Helen Kitchell Evans

Steadily the old year passes;
Another year arrives again.
Will it bring a better way
To stamp out greed in hearts of men?

Another year extended to us
By our Lord’s amazing grace;
Another chance to overcome
The problems of our human race.

Another year of striving
To find a way for peace;
Another chance for planning
How to make wars cease.

Another year; the time flies on!
The rate is ever faster!
Let us cherish every hour
As we try to serve our Master.

 

 


Navigate The Parish Register From Here


The Very Reverend Frank M. Levi, M.A., Rector    Bishop Franklin H. Sellers, D.D., Rector Emeritus    The Reverend Derrick Hassert, Ph.D., Curate    18001 94th Avenue   Tinley Park, IL 60487    (708) 614-7404    FAX (708) 614-7435 AndrewREC.org Home Contact the Webmaster Sign our guestbook View our guestbook

Reformed Episcopal Church Online www.recus.org AndrewREC.org Home Previous Month Back Issues of the Parish Register Calendar of Events PDF Version of the Parish Register Next Month