One of the greatest tragedies with the Christian calendar is that we only tend to explore the nativity accounts once a year. It is great that we are now approaching this important season and are presented with this scene surrounding Jesus’ birth.
And it is helpful to reflect on the response to the news of Jesus’ birth from the various characters in the nativity accounts. Some greeted these events with worship while others with opposition or indifference.
Maybe this was partly because the Old Testament portrayal of the coming Messiah was complex. For example, what to make of the virgin birth (Isaiah 7:14), or the seeming contradiction of the coming… 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 UK, we are now many weeks into the lockdown and we get the sense that the gradual easing of the restrictions is not too far away. With the benefit of time, we are now far enough into the pandemic to begin to tentatively answer some questions we have heard in Christian circles – questions like is Covid-19 is an act of God? So, let’s cautiously unpack the answers to some of the questions that are common within the church landscape.
Is Covid-19 an Act of God?
The answer to this is ‘yes’ and ‘no’ but mostly ‘no’ given the way the question is usually framed. In a very… Continue reading
Jesus often spoke in parables, some of which are still well-known to today’s secular culture, but these parables often carry a very direct and shocking message if taken at face value. Parables can also be difficult to interpret due to the heavy use of imagery and symbolism – however, there are a few occasions where Jesus uses a parable and then explains the meaning for the audience. One such occasion is the parable of the wheat and the tares – a very simple message with a crystal clear but disturbing message.
Danny recently preached a sermon on this passage which was intended at an outreach service – feel free to… Continue reading
For those who hold a Biblical view of the sanctity of life, this has been a disturbing week. New York is among a number of US States which are now legalising abortion up to birth – in fact, the ‘Reproductive Health Act’ allows for the killing of babies who somehow survive the abortion process during labour and are born alive – which is effectively infanticide. This legislation defines a ‘person’ as a ‘human being who has been born and is alive’ – thereby dehumanising all babies in the womb.
Ray Comfort has an incredible gift of evangelism and we have a few of his video’s on our website where his unique style can be observed – he seems able to combine a genuinely loving and caring approach without compromising any of the truths of the gospel. He also has an ability to articulate the gospel so clearly and personally to people from all kinds of backgrounds.
We find it interesting that in many of the clips in Ray’s videos, it is the reality of a coming judgment that appears to grab peoples attention and the reality of their own need of salvation when presented with God’s moral law –… Continue reading
In the United Kingdom we can see many examples where the law is paralysed. Throughout the Old Testament, the prophets would frequently lament the corruption and injustice they witnessed within their nation.
Micah, for example, paints a shocking picture of the immorality of his day:
The faithful have been swept from the land; not one upright person remains. Everyone lies in wait to shed blood; they hunt each other with nets. Both hands are skilled in doing evil; the ruler demands gifts, the judge accepts bribes, the powerful dictate what they desire– they all conspire together. The best of them is like a brier, the most upright worse than a… Continue reading