The Law and Temple Window

Bellshill Central Parish Church is extremely fortunate to have many beautiful stained glass windows.

The corner windows were gifted in memory of the Blackie Family, benefactors of the Church for many years and were dedicated on 14 October 1973. These were designed by the renowned Gordon Webster with the leadwork being undertaken by Neil Hutchison.

The pictures displayed in the windows help you focus on the stories which lie behind and which, in fact, tell the whole story of the Bible. You are welcome to visit the Church, look at the windows and then read in one of the Pew Bibles the whole story depicted in each window.

The Giving of the Law/The Building of the Temple

This window is the first window on the West Side of the Church as you enter from the Main Vestibule.



This window is split vertically into two separate storiesOn the left, Moses can be seen carrying The Ten Commandments with, perhaps, Aaron and Joshua beside him.  In the background, Mount Sinai is dazzling with the Lord’s presence.  According to a section at the back of the Pew Bible, this happened between 1700 BC and 1250 BC.  Moses had led the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt and, at Mount Sinai; God gave Moses the Law and made a covenant with the people – an agreement of special relationship between the Israelites and God.

  1. Worship no god but me.
  2. Do not make for yourselves images of anything in heaven or on earth or in the water under the earth.
  3. Do not use my name for evil purposes
  4. Observe the Sabbath and keep it holy.
  5. Respect your father and your mother
  6. Do not commit murder.
  7. Do not commit adultery.
  8. Do not steal.
  9. Do not accuse anyone falsely.
  10. Do not desire another man’s house; do not desire his wife, his slaves, his cattle, his donkeys, or anything else that he owns.

The whole story can be read in the Book of Exodus, starting at page 56 of the Pew Bible.

img_20181118_23033568808158643922605.jpgThe right hand side of the window tells about ‘The Building of the Temple’ and King Solomon can be seen with the plans in his hand and one of the workers with a piece of wood in his hand.  To put a date on this event; Solomon ruled between 970 BC and 931 BC and in 1 Kings 6 (page 336 of the Pew Bible), it states that Solomon began building the Temple 480 years after the people of Israel left Egypt and it took 7 years to build.

The story can be found in The First Book of Kings and the First and Second Books of Chronicles, starting at page 329 of the Pew Bible.  King David had wanted to build a temple as a permanent home for the Covenant Box which held the Ten Commandments but God would not allow it because David had spilled too much blood as a soldier.  However, David had drawn up the plans for the whole building, down to the last detail, all as instructed by God and he passed all this on to his son Solomon.  David had also bought the land and organised a lot of the materials.

It can be can read that David gave 100 tonnes of gold and 240 tonnes of silver for decorating the walls.  Other leaders and officials gave 170 tonnes of gold, 340 tonnes of silver, 620 tonnes of bronze, 3400 tonnes of iron.  There were also precious stones donated.  When Solomon started the building, he had 70,000 men transporting materials and 80,000 quarrying stone with 3,600 acting as supervisors.  The wood came from Lebanon; cedar, cypress and juniper.  It was tied into rafts and floated by sea to Joppa and then taken to Jerusalem and Mount Moriah.  There is also a lot of description of the inside of the building.  With all the gold and silver, it must have been really grand but, in 2 Chronicles 2, Solomon says:

‘I intend to build a great temple, because our God is greater than any other god.  Yet no one can really build a temple for God, because even all the vastness of heaven cannot contain him.  How then can I build a temple that would be anything more than a place to burn incense to God?’

When all the work was done, Solomon arranged for the Covenant Box, containing the tablets that Moses had received from God on Mount Sinai, to be brought to the Temple.


The Creation Window

Bellshill Central Parish Church is extremely fortunate to have many beautiful stained glass windows.

The four corner windows were gifted in memory of the Blackie Family, benefactors of the Church for many years and were dedicated on 14 October 1973. These were designed by the renowned Gordon Webster with the leadwork being undertaken by Neil Hutchison.

(first window on the east or left as you enter from the main door)

This window is split into six panes and tells about the Creation as described in Genesis (pages 3 and 4 of the Pew Bible):


Then God commanded, “Let there be Light.” And he named the light ‘Day’ and the darkness ‘Night.’ That was the first day.
Then God commanded, “Let there be a dome to divide the water.” He named the dome ‘Sky.’ That was the second day.


Then God commanded, “Let the water below the sky come together in one place so that the land will appear.” He named the land ‘Earth’ and the water ‘Sea.’ Then he commanded, “Let the earth produce all kinds of plants.” That was the third day.
Then God commanded, “Let lights appear in the sky to separate day from night.” So God made the sun and the moon and the stars. That was the fourth day.


Then God commanded, “Let the water be filled with many kinds of living beings and the air be filled with birds.” That was the fifth day.
Then God commanded, “Let the earth produce all kinds of animal life.” Then God said, “And now we will make human beings; they will be like us and resemble us.” God looked at everything he had made and he was very pleased. That was the sixth day.


Second World War Memorial

Located in the Church Vestibule are three plaques – two commemorating the Great War (WW1) 1914-1919 and one commemorating the Second World War (WW2) 1939-1945.

Dedicated to the Glory of God and in loving memory of this from this church who gave their lives in the Second World War.

It contains the names of seven men who gave the ultimate sacrifice while serving for their King and country during 1939-1945

The inscription bears the phrase Greater love Hath no man. From John 15:13

Thomas Watson, 483 Squadron RAAF, is the last name of the memorial.

Details about Thomas are also found on the war memorial Scotland website here

Here are three pictures of Thomas, his log book, and the plane he flew in.

Great War Memorials

Located in the Church Vestibule are three plaques – two commemorating the Great War (WW1) 1914-1919 and one commemorating the Second World War (WW2) 1939-1945.

The first plaque lists the names of those who died during the Great War, with the inscription THEIR NAME LIVETH FOR EVERMORE.

WW1 Fallen

The second plaque lists the names of the men from the congregation who served in the various armed forces during the Great War.

WW1 those who served

Download a PDF version of the plaques – here. Where you can see in greater detail all of the names included.


The Great War

While yet the year 1914 was no more than two-thirds gone, the sounds of a great conflict were rumbling through the air. By the first week of August, our own country was involved and everyone knows what that meant for men and women and little children. To thousands, the word Sacrifice took on a more sinister and intense meaning than had been known before. Through the length and breadth of the land, the call was for Service. Men wanted! And the response was magnificent. True, in ignorance they went; ignorant of almost all the horrors of up to date warfare. But they went! And all of our churches over the whole country bear proud, if sad testimony to the fact.

The first intimation of the immense struggle and its far flung disturbances is found in the September records of the Macdonald Memorial Church when, with one voice, the use of the hall was granted in advance, if the need should arise, for quartering soldiers. Four weeks and the halls of the country required for the needs of war! Was there anything during these days that engaged the attention of the people but that gigantic struggle on sea, land and in the air? The call for men was not long abroad when the young men of the congregation were beginning to respond. In all, of those who joined the Colours and served in the Great War, no less than 109 went from the congregation. It would have been a happy experience if we could have recorded that all these men returned but it was not to be. The homes of the congregation have had to bear heavily, if silent, the price of gallantry and service. What it has meant to them only the inmates fully understand. The home, like the heart, knoweth its own bitterness. There is in the vestibule of the church a tablet commemorating the service of all those who went and another commemorating those who made the supreme sacrifice.

It was, of course, not till the completion of the war that the setting up the Memorial Tablets was taken in hand. Those who undertook the scheme were Messrs Blackie, Doncaster, Lyle and Neill. They secured plans and estimates from several firms and finally the office bearers decided to give the work to Archibald Hamilton of Glasgow, for an estimate of something like £72. As may be seen, the tablets were done in brass mounted upon mahogany – a simple yet handsome design eminently suitable for the purpose, where the names need no embellishing but are glorious in themselves. An appeal was made to the congregation for a liberal collection by envelope and the response was the handsome sum of £64 2s 6d. For those who have survived the great struggle, perhaps even greater than this handsome testimony, will be to realise those ideals in peace set forth in the red flame of war.

Ours the years’ memorial store
Hero days and names we reckon
Days of brethren gone before
Lives that speak and deeds that beckon

One in name, in honour one
Guard we well the crown they won
What they dreamed be ours to do
Hope their hopes and seal them true

This war was noted for its wonderful “advance” in aerial warfare and these activities and engagements were not confined to the customary Front but extended anywhere and everywhere that the combatants chose to go. Night raids for destructive purposes were soon a common occurrence. Zeppelins and aeroplanes were heard in the dead of night. To impede their movements and direction the lighting restrictions were introduced with the result that the church was no longer a possible place for evening worship and the congregation retired to the hall. In this way, the second service was conducted week by week for some time.

In September of 1916, Mr Steele (Minister of Macdonald Memorial) was approached to go and work with the Troops in France in the service of the YMCA. He brought the matter before the Session and they unanimously acquiesced in his decision to go. The period was for three months. The Rev W R Thomson of the West U F Church (the present Bellshill St Andrew’s) kindly consented to act as Moderator during the minister’s absence. Just before Mr Steele left for France, he issued a pastoral letter to the congregation which was accompanied by a list of preachers during his absence. This thoughtful and friendly act on the part of the minister was very much appreciated by the congregation. Mr Steele was away during the first three months of 1917 and, during his absence, the office bearers gallantly kept the flag flying at home. This, of course, with the assistance of the ladies of the congregation, who diligently had their hands busy providing comforts for the soldiers and sailors. The Ladies’ Work Party has played an important part in the life of Macdonald Memorial U F Church, sometimes inconspicuously plying the busy needle and sometimes in the grand style as subsequent events will show. They arranged to send comforts to the soldiers and Mr Steele, therefore, was very grateful to receive from their hands some portion of these gifts that he might distribute them in the area where he was engaged. Moreover, a patriotic concert was arranged and similarly Mr Rusk gave a lantern lecture on the War, both of which efforts were to provide funds for these laudable schemes of the ladies. In the month of March an urgent letter came from the YMCA telling of the splendid work of the minister with the Troops and soliciting an extension of service for him. The Session felt they must needs listen to such an appeal and with the unanimous assent of the congregation, expressed their willingness to “carry on” for another month. So after a very successful, if arduous, four months, Mr Steele returned to the Home Front at the end of April.