Grace Protestant Reformed Church

My Only Comfort in Life and in Death

Date: AM
Text: Isaiah 51; Lord's Day 1
Psalters: 269, 324, 301, 204
Series: Heidelberg Catechism (2016-18)
  1. What it is.
    1. The Heidelberg’s treatment of Scripture’s teachings is from the subjective, personal, experiential perspective.
    2.  What comfort is NOT.
    3. Comfort arises from knowledge over against a contradictory experience.
    4. A summary of faith’s knowledge is found in our creeds: Apostles’, Belgic, Heidelberg, Canons.
  2. What must be known for comfort when faced with misery?
    1. First, faith and truth recognize that I am a sinner!
      1. My constant experience of misery indicates that something is seriously wrong!  I am a sinner!
      2. It is essential that I know the horrible nature of my sin against my God and Father and the power with which it enslaves me.
    2. Second, faith seizes on Scripture’s declaration of redemption in Jesus, so I belong to Him – He makes me His responsibility.
      1. Jesus fully satisfied for all my sins, paying the full price needed, so the Father is well-pleased.
      2. And He preserves me as His possession, making all things subservient to my salvation.
      3. He assures me of eternal life. My appropriating the gospel by faith is the work of His Spirit assuring me that I am His child.
    3. Third, my faith makes me willing and ready to live unto Him, so I know how to show my gratitude to God for saving me.
  3. My comfort is experienced in my consciously belonging to Him, and consciously not belonging to myself.
    1. Comfort does not take away my misery, but enables me to respond better (properly) to my misery by bearing it (I Cor. 10:13).
    2. Comfort is only experienced in the way of my constantly confessing that I “am not our own.”
    3. This is an “only” comfort, for while all else will disappoint, my God never does.