I’ve finally got round to reading J.C. Ryle’s classic Holiness. Here is a quote that captures the piercing writing style of Ryle: “Heavy must that weight of human sin be that made Jesus groan and sweat drops of blood in agony at Gethsemane, and cry at Golgotha, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46). Nothing, I am convinced, will astonish us … Continue reading Heavy must that weight of human sin be…
At Kingsgate over these last few weeks, we’ve been exploring together ‘Healthy Church Life’ through the last few verses of Acts 2. Here we are painted a glorious picture of a devoted community who give themselves wholeheartedly to the apostles’ teaching, fellowship, communion and prayer and then, allowing those things to spill out into ever-increasing circles – taking care of the needy, witness and evangelism … Continue reading Bread and Butter Christianity
A couple of days ago I started reading Jonathan Leeman’s book One Assembly. It is a really well written book and is deeply thought provoking! Here is is summary quote at the end of a long chapter on ‘what is the church?’: “What is a church? It’s an embassy of Christ’s kingdom. It’s a group of Christians who together identify themselves and each other as … Continue reading What is a church?
This quote from Scott Sauls is so wonderful in it’s description of true friendship: “Real friends see each other as long-term companions and give to each other the rare gift of long-term loyalty. Instead of using each other, they serve each other. Instead of keeping score with each other, they support, champion, encourage, serve, forgive, and strengthen each other. In real friendship, the flourishing of … Continue reading What does a real friend look like?
READ “But some men came down from Judea and were teaching the brothers, “Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.” (v1) THINK Acts 15 is so utterly removed from our day-to-day lives that it is almost impossible to understand what a huge and dangerous situation was brewing here and that if left unchecked, could undermine the whole gospel of Jesus … Continue reading ACTS 15: THE RELIGIOUS ITCH
“The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter. And after there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them (Acts 15:6-7, ESV) Today I was reminded of the dramatic and critical moments of chapter 15 in the life and mission of the early church. The gospel had been advancing into many new communities and regions and yet a … Continue reading The place of wise counsel and spiritual reflection
Here are some startling words written by J.I. Packer in the forward to a reprint of John Owen’s book Death of Death. Read these words slowly and then gulp when the reality that they were first penned in 1959 (yep 1959!) hits you: There is no doubt that Evangelicalism today is in a state of perplexity and unsettlement. In such matters as the practice of … Continue reading A new (another) gospel and why it really matters
Let me be clear, I’m very grateful for zoom, skype and more lately google meet. They have enabled a kinda of face-to-face meetings in a season of pandemic, lock-downs and growing isolation. However, I think the following quote from Scott Sauls sums up why I’m looking forward to ditching zoom (well mainly) and reengaging in true cheek to jowl community. “Unlike true friendship, relating to … Continue reading Why I can’t wait to ditch zoom
Over the past few months, there have been increasing numbers of articles about pandemic induced frustration. People from all walks of life are finding that their emotional resilience is just not where it normally is and the silliest of things is triggering them. This is not surprising after the year that we have been through and is quite understandable. For many of us, we’ve been … Continue reading I feel frustrated (there, I’ve said it!)
“This withdrawal of theology from the world of secular affairs is made more complete by the work of biblical scholars whose endlessly fascinating exercises have made it appear to the lay Christian that no one untrained in their methods can really understand anything the Bible says. We are in a situation analogous to one about which the great Reformers complained. The Bible has been taken … Continue reading Quote: Why we need a fresh reformation