Proverbs 31: Best Wishes from your Monster-in-Law
“A capable wife who can find?” I confess that I don’t like Proverbs 31. To be more precise, I don’t like what Christian thinkers do with it. Proverbs 31 deals, for the most part, with an idealistic description of “a capable wife”. It has, from time immemorial, been used to make wives everywhere feel inadequate […]Read More
A Parable to Explain Jesus’ Claim to be “Son of God”
The Kingdom of God is like a Furniture Maker… When people think about how Jesus’ can claim to be the “Son of God”, they most often think in terms of the Virgin Birth: Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel said to her, “The Holy […]Read More
John 20:19-31 – The Honoured Guests and Their Servant Leaders
Blessed are those who have not seen… Ever wonder why some people got a “bolt from the blue” encounter from God, and you didn’t? Jesus says that you are the one who is blessed, not them. How does that work…? I preached this message on Sunday, April 12 2015.Read More
“Zealot” – Reza Aslan’s Implausible Jesus Story
Not the Greatest Story Ever Told: Aslan agrees that the Gospels are “The Greatest Story Ever Told”, in his Author’s Note. His own version is… not. Aslan is a masterful storyteller (he should be, because he’s a professor of creative writing!), but the story he is telling has some serious problems. Aslan is not an historian, nor […]Read More
Reflections on the Trip of a Lifetime: In Review
The Greece and Turkey Trip in Review After we returned, I wrote a little summary of the Study Tour for my Bible College’s magazine, Summa Supremo. I found it recently and thought I’d add here.Read More
Was Luther wrong about “Justification by Faith”?
Justified by Faith Luther made axiomatic the claim that the believer is “Justified by Faith”. He was right, of course, but did he understand what that phrase meant to the author of it, and to the original audience?Read More
The Beauty of Manhood
Manhood is beautiful It feels odd, even risky, using those words, “Manhood is beautiful”, doesn’t it? Beauty has come to mean firstly something visual, and secondly something, or just about anything, other than manhood. But manhood is beautiful, and the realisation of that is profoundly important. Particularly for men.Read More
The Fundamentals of Christianity, as encoded in the Writings of Moses
The core of the Christian/Jewish polemic: What was Moses trying to say? At the very core of the ministry of Jesus, and the teachings of his apostles, is a fundamental claim about what Moses was saying in the first five books of the Bible. Either he was saying that the Covenant struck at Mt Sinai […]Read More
3 Words that will forever change the way you read the Gospel of John: Week 21
Chapter 21 This is the final part in a 21-part series which traces “seeing” and “hearing”, and looks at how they relate to “believing”, through the Gospel of John. In Chapter 21Read More
Biblical Election: It’s not a Democracy
Is God a Voter, and each of us a Politician? Since at least the Middle Ages, the Biblical concept called “Election” has been thought of in terms roughly equivalent to the democratic process. The democratic process uses the same word. But that’s not what it means in the Bible. In the Bible the word has […]Read More
3 Words that will forever change the way you read the Gospel of John: Week 20
Chapter 20 This is part 20 of a 21-part series which traces “seeing” and “hearing”, and looks at how they relate to “believing”, through the Gospel of John. In Chapter 20 we start to draw the major themes together in some very dramatic ways. This chapter has a lot of “seeing” in it, which finally points […]Read More
To God, There are no Dead Men – Luke 20:38
The Words of Life I met a mentally unstable, completely homeless, suicidal man. He had planned to commit suicide by drug overdose in just a few days’ time, on his birthday. He insisted that he had no reason to go on living. Many would probably look at his situation and agree.Read More
3 Words that will forever change the way you read the Gospel of John: Week 19
Chapter 19 This is part 19 of a 21-part series which traces “seeing” and “hearing”, and looks at how they relate to “believing”, through the Gospel of John. In Chapter 19, Jesus is beaten, crucified, and buried. In a chapter which begins, “Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged”, has in the middle, “So they […]Read More
In The Mall… What’s it all about?
Introduction I was asked to compile a brief story about what I’ve been up to. Much of this story comes from other blog posts, but there’s also some unique content here. It’s a bit of a summary/roll-up.Read More
… and this just in: News from the Streets of Ipswich. Issue 15
The Word on the Street Angel of Ipswich So many amazing and fascinating things go on in Ipswich, as I move around on the streets making friends with people. There are lots of stories I can’t share, for various reasons, but I find there are many that I can. I hope this series gives a […]Read More
… and this just in: News from the Streets of Ipswich. Issue 14
The Word on the Street Love is the Answer So many amazing and fascinating things go on in Ipswich, as I move around on the streets making friends with people. There are lots of stories I can’t share, for various reasons, but I find there are many that I can. I hope this series gives […]Read More
If there’s any “Church life” in twenty years’ time… what will it look like?
The Church will not be the same in 2035. What will it be like? I have great confidence that the Church will be healthy and strong in 2035, because Jesus will still be Lord. I am under no illusion, however, that it will be the same as it is today. In fact, the way church life […]Read More
It is more blessed to give than to receive… So give someone else a turn!
When giving becomes a selfish act When we place ourselves in the role of “giver”, say as in charitable act, we place another person in the role of “receiver”. We get to feel good about ourselves, and they get to suffer the indignity of accepting a handout. Who is more blessed? We are. Selfish… isn’t it?Read More
Jesus! Why so Violent???
Did it really have to be so violent? A good friend of mine asked me this question, and on reflection, it’s a question that others most probably ask, too: “Would he still have been a saviour if he had died peacefully in bed? Why did Jesus’ death need to be so violent?”Read More