Bits and Pieces – 30th Edition – September 27, 2020
Bits and Pieces is a random collection of news and views compiled by Dr. Frank McClelland for Toronto F.P.C.
The Government of Ontario has tightened Covid19 restrictions following a spike in cases. Fortunately, churches are not further affected at this time so public services will continue with the usual pandemic restrictions. The Sunday services will be at 11.00 am and 6.30 pm with the pastor speaking. The pre-evening prayer time will be in the church basement at 5.50 pm and concurrently on Zoom. The Wednesday prayer meeting will be at 7.30 pm on Zoom.
THE DAY OF ATONEMENT
The Day of Atonement will be celebrated this year on September 28. [Leviticus 16:34].
The Day of Atonement, Yom Kippurim, is of great significance to the modern Jew but should mean much more to the Christian. The events of the day form a very appropriate picture of the crucified Christ and what He accomplished for His people on the cross.
It was celebrated once a year, once in a full period of time, just as Jesus made “one sacrifice for sins forever” [Hebrews10:12], once in the lifetime of this world.
Only the high priest could enter the Holiest of All. Jesus, our High Priest, entered into the presence of God to make atonement for us. Aaron divested himself of his glorious garments for a plain linen robe. Jesus left the splendour and glory of heaven to wear the plain robe of humiliation and condescension. Its whiteness speaks of His purity.
Two goats were central to the sacrifice. One was killed, its shed blood picturing Christ’s death for the sins of His people. The other, the scapegoat, had the sins of Israel confessed on it and was freed to leave the camp for the wilderness. It is a beautiful picture of Christ the Lamb of God bearing away our sins.
When Aaron had presented and sprinkled the blood in the Holiest of All, he came forth. His blood-stained robe was exchanged for his garments of beauty and glory. The bells on the hem rang, indicating that he had entered the presence of God, made atonement, and come forth alive. What joy there was in Israel!
Jesus died on the cross, shed his precious blood, made atonement for His people, and came forth in glorious resurrection. What joy that should bring to believers! We serve, not a dead philosopher, but a living Redeemer. Let us rejoice this day in Him.
CHRISTIANS KILLED IN INDIA
CBN News has recently reported [July 29, 2020] on the killing of five Christians in four provinces in India, presumably by Hindu nationalists. Their crime? Simply for being a Christian. Todd Nettleton, Voice of the Martyrs (VOM) told the story of four men and one woman who were persecuted unto the death. One teenage man, Sumara, came to the Lord in 2017 and faced immediate persecution in his village because he left Hinduism. His pastor could no longer return to the village so Sumara became a sort of lay pastor to the local Christians. On the guise of wanting to speak with him, the persecutors took him out and killed him. The radical Hindus believe that everyone should be a Hindu. If not they will face persecution.
One of the major problems is that the media will not report on Christian persecution. But prayer is greater than the press and western Christians should increase their prayer for the persecuted church in India and in other countries. Practical help can also be sent through organizations like VOM.
LOVE AND LAW
If you love you will unconsciously fulfill the whole law, and you can readily see for yourself how that must be so. Take any of the commandments. “Thou shalt have no other Gods before me.” If a man loves God you will not need to tell him that. Love is the fulfilling of that law.
“Take not His name in vain.” Would he ever dream of taking His name in vain if he loved Him? “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.” Would he not be too glad to have one day out of seven to dedicate more exclusively to the object of his affection? Love would fulfill all these laws regarding God, and so if he loved man you would never dream of telling him to honour his father and mother, he could do nothing else. You would only insult him to suggest he should not steal. How could he steal from those he loved? In this way, love is the fulfilling of the law. [Wm. Kelly, Simcoe 1925].
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The Toronto church annual meeting will be held on Zoom on Wednesday, September 30 at 7.30 pm. Normally it would be held in April but had to be postponed due to Covid19.
“Our Shepherd goes before us and His sheepdogs – goodness and mercy – come behind us, so that we need fear no attack from any direction.” [Alexander Simpson on Psalm 23].