In our church landscape, we tend to accept a structure where our church leaders are paid workers who draw a salary that comes from the tithing of the fellowship. However, it is worthwhile to see how this measures up to NT teaching on church function. What does the Bible teach about paid ministry? Furthermore, did the early church set a precedent where leaders made a career of paid ministry?
Those who use Scripture to support the concept of paid ministry tend to lean heavily on one seemingly obscure verse from the OT which would attract very little attention were it not quoted twice by Paul in the New Testament:
‘Do… Continue reading
As we approach the end of 2020, we reflect on what has been a monumental year. A year we will believe that will prove to have greatly accelerated the world towards the coming end-time climax as outlined in Scripture. Our respond to Covid-19 has been the main catalyst to this and the mainstream media has been bombarding us with worst-case scenarios and gloomy predictions.
This is led to a variety of negative responses within society such as increased anxiety, worry and tension. This is all epitomised by a climate of fear. Fear is defined as an ‘unpleasant emotion caused by the threat of danger, pain or harm’.… Continue reading
Taking any Bible verse in isolation should always be done cautiously and will often lead to a distorted view of Scripture. The context and co-texts around any Bible passage are crucial when seeking an accurate interpretation. It is not unusual to be confronted with a barrage of isolated verses that are used to attack or silence someone, usually within the church environment. The ‘Do Not Judge’ phrase used by Jesus Christ is one of the classic examples and may well be the most misused verse in the Bible.
‘Do not judge, or you too will be judged.’ (Matthew 7:1 NIV)
This verse is often used as though it is the… Continue reading
In the times we live in, we often lament the extreme shortage of solid Bible teachers in the church landscape. One of the few we would recommend as being serious about Scripture is John MacArthur. It has been interesting to observe the response of the church to the Covid lockdown, particularly his church which we would argue has taken a fairly provocative stance in this instance by filing a lawsuit against the State.
We recently blogged about whether churches were being unfairly treated by the secular authorities in relation to the UK. We concluded that, as things stand, we do not feel that the church is being treated unfairly during… Continue reading
Over recent weekends, we have witnessed violent protests as the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement responds to the tragic and indefensible death of George Floyd in the US. As the fallout spills into the UK, last weekend’s protests were met with counter-protests this weekend which also ended in violence; a situation made worse by the unqualified endorsement of BLM by most of the mainstream media. The sight of the UK police ‘taking the knee’ before BLM protesters and the defacing of symbols of British history has added to the sense of unease and polarised an already volatile situation.
Although we unequivocally support the notion that black lives matter, we fear… Continue reading
There is an increasing trend of events being cancelled or refused bookings by venue hosts because of the nature of the activity intended. This is part of a trend known as ‘cancel culture’. On the face of it, this seems reasonable, but it has led to difficulty for organizations that seek to promote events that uphold Biblical values. For example, the American evangelist Franklin Graham (eldest son of Billy Graham) had a number of meetings cancelled earlier this year in this country because the venue refused to fulfil the booking after be subjected to pressure from lobby groups. LGBT event organisers have boycotted a venue in Blackpool that had accepted… Continue reading
Although the vast majority of churches (along with most of society) have remained compliant with Covid-19 restrictions throughout the pandemic, there are signs of frustration within some church circles who suggest the church is being treated unfairly as restrictions are eased.
On the extreme end of the spectrum (in the US), a number of churches have sought litigation against local authorities citing breaches of ‘freedom of religion’ and protesting that the ‘government does not get to dictate the method of worship of the faithful’.
Fortunately, we are not aware of this provocative approach in the UK. However, there are indications that churches this side of the pond are considering some… Continue reading