I must apologize to our readers for the absence of “Bits and Pieces” on the past three Sundays. As most of you know, I spent the last seventeen days in hospital culminating in the insertion of a pacemaker.  I am thankfully home again in the recuperation process.

    I want to take this opportunity to thank the many who visited me in hospital and those who sent cards and messages assuring us of your prayers.  They were much appreciated.  Hospital is definitely a learning experience, and so I want to repeat the article written by Dr. Saunders for the 2023 church phone directory. It is most appropriate.


      You may never know just how much that phone call, text, or e-mail means to someone going through one of life’s many trials.  The ministry of encouragement is something that even the weakest saint can be involved in.

     It does not take great theological skill or higher education.  It is a simple task that comes in the form of a kind word or gentle expression that communicates love and compassion.  The Lord’s statement, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” [Acts 20:35], applies as much here as in any place.  The joy that comes to our hearts when we have lifted up someone who is having a hard day is well worth the effort.

     Maybe someone you know is climbing a rock face of difficulty and they are stuck.  They can’t go up or down and a storm is closing on them.  That word of encouragement from your heart, based on the promise of God’s Word, maybe just the ‘lifeline’ needed to hoist them to the top or lower them safely to the ground.

     Life is busy, but taking the time to be a ‘helper’ is a precious ministry of encouragement.  May the Lord help us to “love one another”  [John 13:34] and so fulfill the law of Christ. [Dr. Larry Saunders].]


     The author and his wife are very sorry to know of the death of their brother-in-law, Don Richards.  Don was 90, and he and his late wife, Anna, were a great help to us when we arrived in 1976 to start the work of Toronto Free Presbyterian Church.  At that time we underwent a maelstrom of opposition from the media, but Anna and Don stood faithfully with us.  We were close friends while they were alive, and travelled to many places together.  Don worked for S.A. Armstrong, pump makers, and on his retirement, took up wood carving and was very proficient at it.  Don was well-known among many for his Christmas carvings.  Our prayerful sympathy goes out to Donna (Kocsis), Pauline (Edsid), and Barry Richards and their families at this time.


“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given”  [Isaiah 9:6].

     One of the most stupendous miracles of all time was undoubtedly the incarnation of Christ, when the Son of God came down from heaven as a Man to redeem mankind.  How could a Spirit become a Person, how could the Creator become created, and how could God become man?  The answers are found in this text.

     THE ETERNAL SONSHIP OF CHRIST.  In the verbal inspiration of the Bible every word counts.  Note the wording of this text.  The Son is not born, He is given.  The Father testified, “This is my beloved Son” [Matthew 3:17].  Jesus said, “I am the Son of God”  [John 10:36].  The Spirit said, “I am the Son of God”  [John 1:32 & 34].  Jesus did not begin in Bethlehem.  He said,  “Before Abraham was , I am”  [John 8:58].