Sunday (The Lord's Day)

Worship Times

11 AM Morning
  6 PM Evening

Classes

9:45AM (Sept.-June)

Address
53 Antrim St
Cambridge MA
02139
Phone
617.864.3185

No classes on Nov. 23 and 30 due to families travelling for the Thanksgiving holiday.

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Welcome /////

We invite you to investigate the Christian faith at First Reformed Presbyterian Church. Our church is made up of people of all ages, from many places and backgrounds, who share a common living faith and seek to live faithful lives. Come and listen, ask questions, and participate in bible studies.

We are a congregation of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America.

Worship Services /////

We follow a historic Reformation liturgy which includes prayer, the singing of Psalms, the reading of Scripture, preaching, an offering, and in the morning service, the Lord's Supper.

Our praise of God follows a 3000 year old biblical tradition. We sing the Psalms of the Bible with the accompaniment of our hearts and voices (a cappella = chapel style). We sing in four-part harmony but generally sing the first verse in unison. This way if you are not familiar with the tune your ear can pick it up.

We believe that the children of believers are part of the church. We teach our children about worship and they are welcome to stay with you through the entire service. If, however, a young child is not comfortable, there is a nursery available.

If you visit us and would like to partake of the Lord's Supper during the morning service, please come by 10:45AM so that you can briefly meet with one of our elders to confirm that you are a baptized Christian and a member in good standing of a Bible-believing church. Members in good standing of other RPCNA congregations are always welcome to partake with us.

On the first Sunday of each month, there is a prayer meeting at the chuch building during the evening worship time. During months that have five Sundays, there is a Psalm Sing on the last Sunday at 6PM instead of a worship service.

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Community /////

And they continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. | Acts 2:42

As members of Christ's body, we talk, eat, share and fellowship with one another. After worship is a time of great encouragement as many weeks we become the "church that won't go home." When we do leave, many times it is to another member's house to share a meal.

As a larger community, we join together for a fellowship meal on the third Sunday of the month following the morning service.

Our History /////

Our congregation was officially established in July, 1895. We have been worshipping and serving in Cambridge ever since. Learn more about the history and make-up of our church in this article written by one of our elders. 

The Reformed Presbyterian Church in Cambridge

By Tom Fisher, Elder

In May, 1894, a few members of the First Boston Reformed Presbyterian Church, along with some members of First United Presbyterian Church, Cambridge, petitioned the New York Presbytery of the RPCNA to organize a mission church in Cambridge. Instead of granting the petition, the presbytery formed a commission of elders to urge the group to unite with one of the Boston congregations. But the group insisted that a congregation was needed in Cambridge itself, and they convinced the commission to provide them with preaching, commencing with a worship service on July 15th in the hall of the YWCA in Central Square.

The group slowly grew, and at each of the next two meetings of the New York presbytery, a petition was presented for the organization of a congregation. The presbytery twice declined to do this, so the group appealed to the Synod. On June 12, 1895, the Synod granted the appeal by a nearly unanimous vote.

On July 9th, 1895, the commission met and Rev. S. R. Wallace of Brooklyn, N.Y. preached a sermon on Psalm 48:2 entitled "The Incomparable Beauty of the Church." Following the sermon, seventeen communicants were enrolled and officers were elected, examined and ordained. The new congregation continued to meet in the YWCA hall, and on December 10th, they unanimously called Rev. Samuel Gormley Shaw, then pastor at Walton, N.Y., to be their first pastor at a salary of $100 per month. He was installed in February, 1896. The congregation continued to grow, and in May of the same year, land for a building was donated on Antrim Street. On September 24th, the congregation met for the first time in its present location.

In addition to its local ministry, the congregation has supported various denominational ministries throughout its history. These have included overseas missions in Syria, China, Cyprus, Japan, and Sudan, and home missions across the U.S. and Canada, as well as the Reformed Presbyterian Home for aged persons, the R.P. Seminary (both in Pittsburgh, PA), and Geneva College (Beaver Falls, PA). Over the years, the congregation has also supported the ministries of The Center for Urban Theological Studies in Philadelphia, PA, White Lake Covenanter Camp in the Catskill Mountains, and the Daybreak Crisis Pregnancy Center of Boston.

The present congregation maintains Sabbath School classes for all ages and several midweek fellowship groups, in addition to regular worship on the Lord's Day. The congregation has a long history of active involvement in annual presbytery summer camps held at White Lake, NY.

In recent years, our members and adherents have included persons born on all of the six inhabited continents of the earth, making us a visible witness that the grace of God in Jesus Christ has been extended to people of "every nation and kindred and tongue." Our desire is that God will be pleased to continue to use this congregation to proclaim the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ until He returns.

Broader Community /////

Find out about our daughter congregation, the Berkshire Reformed Presbyterian Church, which meets in Housatonic, Mass.

Atlantic Presbytery /////

Other congregations in the Atlantic Presbytery:


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We believe that the Bible is the Word of God and that it is "profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness"
(2 Timothy 3:16). We subscribe to the Westminster Confession of Faith and the Reformed Presbyterian Testimony, which, we believe, provide an accurate summary of the teachings of the Bible. These documents can be found in our denomination's Constitution. The following are our most basic beliefs.

We Believe /////

  • ...the Bible is God's only true word to humanity.
    • The entirety of Your word is truth, And every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever. | Psalm 119:160
  • ...we are all sinners needing God's forgiveness.
    • Good and upright is the LORD; Therefore He teaches sinners in the way. | Psalm 25:8
    • "I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance." | Luke 5:32
  • ...Jesus Christ is God's Son and the only Savior of sinners.
    • And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. | 1 John 4:14
    • "Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?" And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. | Luke 24:26-27
  • ...Jesus Christ defeated death by rising from the dead, now rules over all things, and will come again to judge the living and the dead and establish His people in glory.
    • "Him God raised up on the third day, and showed Him openly, not to all the people, but to witnesses chosen before by God, even to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead. And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained by God to be Judge of the living and the dead." | Acts 10:40-42
    • "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." And He said to me, "Write, for these words are true and faithful." | Revelation 21:4-5

Our Purpose /////

  • ...is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
    • Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. | Psalm 73:25
    • Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. | 1 Corinthians 10:31
  • ...is to worship God in Spirit and truth.
    • All nations whom You have made Shall come and worship before You, O Lord, And shall glorify Your name. | Psalm 86:9
  • ...is to strengthen our relationship to God and with one another.
    • Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. | Colossians 3:16
  • ...is to equip each member for works of service.
    • As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. | 1 Peter 4:10
  • ...is to communicate the Good News of Jesus Christ to others.
    • ...[Paul was] explaining and demonstrating that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I preach to you is the Christ." | Acts 17:3
    • "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." | John 14:6
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Mid-week Groups /////

At mid-week meetings, you will find fellowship around the Bible, with teaching, prayer and sharing of what is going on in our lives.

  • Arlington-Lexington
    • Meets on Wednesday evenings at 7:30PM. Begins with a short bible study, concluding with a time of sharing and prayer.

      Currently studying: 1 Peter

  • Cambridge
    • Meets on Wednesday evenings at 7:00PM. Currently the group is engaged in a doctrinal study, which is then followed by a time of prayer.

      Currently studying: a study on trials in the Christian life using Thomas Boston’s classic The Crook in the Lot

  • East Boston
    • Meets on Saturday afternoons at 3:00PM. Immerse yourself in the word during an in-depth study of the bible.

      Currently studying: Psalms

* Click on a group or map location to find out more.
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Articles /////

Click on a title to reveal a brief description of the article.

Worship

  • The Psalmody of the Church
    • This paper was written by a study committee of the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America. It was received by the Synod of 2004, published in the Minutes of Synod, and is to be circulated and taught in the church. We make a pdf copy of this paper available here. It is a valuable study on Psalmody in the church. We commend it warmly to you, in hopes that it will encourage you in the ways of biblical worship.
  • The Worship of the Church
    • "Our main task will be to answer the question, What is the public worship of God in the Church? We begin with a review of our historic doctrinal understanding of the worship of the Church, then provide a brief summary of the theological arguments supporting the regulative principle of worship. We then develop a theology of worship framed in biblical theological terms. Building on all these, we sketch a covenantal form of worship." This paper was adopted as a position paper of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America by the Synod of 2003.
  • On the Regulative Principle of Worship (Synod 2002)
    • "The Reformed understanding of the practice of biblical worship is usually summarized by the Regulative Principle of Worship."
  • Dr. Christian Adjemian on the Regulative Principle of Worship
    • "If we did not have the Scriptures, we would not be discussing the regulative principle of worship. Apart from the word of God, man can be a seeker, but cannot know God to worship him in truth (Acts 17:23)."
  • John Owen on the Regulative Principle of Worship
    • "John Owen produced a robust, Christ-centered ecclesiology in which the regulative principle supports the Christian life the way joists support a floor."
  • G.I. Williamson on the Regulative Principle of Worship
    • G.I. Williamson presented this paper at the Fifth International Conference of Reformed Churches, Westminster Theological Seminary, June 20-27, 2001. This paper will give you a historical, confessional, and theological overview defending the biblical doctrine of worship, which Reformed churches all held until the 19th Century. Given the confusion and conflict over worship in churches today, we invite you to consider this principled approach to the worship of God.
  • Nine Lines of Argument in Favor of the Regulative Principle of Worship, by Dr. T. David Gordon
    • Arguments from the limits of church power, liberty of conscience, faith, history, etc...
  • Are the Psalms really appropriate for New Testament worship?, by H. Leverne Rosenberger
    • "Here is the response of an elder who sang mostly Gospel songs in his youth, and who graduated to "the great hymns of the church" for most of his adult life. Then he discovered that all the Psalms could be sung from Psalters, and that they have an edifying power like no other human composition."
  • What is Your Worship Style?, by Dr. William J. Edgar
    • "People ask me, "Is your church's worship traditional or contemporary?" That's a hard question to answer in the Reformed Presbyterian Church because our worship is neither "traditional" nor "contemporary." In fact, we don't even think about worship that way."

Miscellaneous

  • War and the Christian Citizen
    • Seventeen propositions from the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America.
  • Biblical Exegesis in a Postmodern Culture, by Dr. Christian Adjemian
    • "If we are to going to build a theology and to teach and build up the Christian church, we have to know what our teaching is going to be based on, and what our authority is going to be based on and from where that authority is to be derived."
  • What is Biblical Meditation?, by Dr. Christian Adjemian
    • "Godly meditation is a choice means of enjoying the presence of the Lord. Meditation becomes a form of prayer, as the soliloquy is punctuated with remarks, with song, with shouts, with cries, groans, or questions addressed to the Lord. It is a practice which fills the consciousness with knowledge of the Lord."
  • On Women Deacons, by Dr. Christian Adjemian
    • "In this paper I study and analyze the relevant passages concerning women in service to the church. This includes 1Tim 3:11, 5:3-10; Romans 16:1-2. The exegesis and analysis show that women deacons are present in the New Testament. The paper also responds to a number of counter-arguments."
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Sermons /////

Directions

The closest T-stop to our building is Central on the Redline. When you exit the station, turn onto Prospect Street and walk several blocks until you reach Broadway. Turn left. Walk until you reach the Broadway Bicycle Shop and then turn right onto Antrim St. The church is about halfway down the street on your left.

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Traveling from the  North  |  East  |  South  |  West

Take I-93 South to exit 30 (MA-38/Mystic Ave). Exit and at the stop light, turn left onto Mystic Ave. After .7 miles, bear right onto MA-28 S/McGrath Hwy. Stay on MA-28 for .8 miles and after crossing the bridge, take the exit on the right for Washington St. At the stoplight, turn right onto Washington St. After a few blocks, bear left onto Prospect St. and then immediately turn right onto Somerville Ave. In one block, turn left onto Webster Ave. Take the first right onto Newton St. which then becomes Concord Ave. Follow Concord Ave to a stop sign. Turn left onto Beacon St. Right before the next stop light, turn right and Cross Cambridge St. onto Antrim St. The church is on your right.

Take the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) West to exit 20 (Brighton/Cambridge). Exit and after the tollbooth, bear right towards Cambridge. Go through the light, over the Charles River and continue on River Street. After you cross Massachusetts Avenue, at Central Square, the street becomes Prospect Street. Continue on Prospect Street to the third traffic light after Central Square. At this light, turn left onto Broadway. Go through one more light and look for a parking spot. Antrim Street will be the next street on your right but it is a one way street in the opposite direction. To park on Antrim St., turn right onto Fayette St., right onto Cambridge St. and then immediately right onto Antrim St. The church is on your right.

Take I-93 North to exit 20 (Worcester) for the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) West. Follow the Turnpike to exit 20 (Brighton/Cambridge). Exit and after the tollbooth, bear right towards Cambridge. Go through the light, over the Charles River and continue on River Street. After you cross Massachusetts Avenue, at Central Square, the street becomes Prospect Street. Continue on Prospect Street to the third traffic light after Central Square. At this light, turn left onto Broadway. Go through one more light and look for a parking spot. Antrim Street will be the next street on your right but it is a one way street in the opposite direction. You could turn right at the following street (Fayette St.) and then right and right again to get onto Antrim, but it's easier to park on Broadway and then walk up Antrim St. to the church. The church is on your right.

Take the Massachusetts Turnpike (I-90) East to exit 18 (Alston/Cambridge). Exit and after the tollbooth, bear right towards Cambridge. Go through the light, over the Charles River and continue on River Street. After you cross Massachusetts Avenue, at Central Square, the street becomes Prospect Street. Continue on Prospect Street to the third traffic light after Central Square. At this light, turn left onto Broadway. Go through one more light and look for a parking spot. Antrim Street will be the next street on your right but it is a one way street in the opposite direction. To park on Antrim St., turn right onto Fayette St., right onto Cambridge St. and then immediately right onto Antrim St. The church is on your right.

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