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Uncovering the Secrets of Christ’s Kingdom

Posted by on 10:09 am in Blog, Church & Ministry |

Uncovering the Secrets of Christ’s Kingdom

Spies, espionage and state secrets seem to be prominent in the news once more. China is so exercised about foreign espionage that this week it launched a website encouraging people to report national security threats. Sometimes we get a glimpse of the extent of the hidden world of intelligence agencies in gathering information about foreign countries. The controversy surrounding Facebook and the covert use of data is another dimension of how far attempts to obtain prized information may go. What do we know of the secrets of Christ’s...

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What Should We Do if God is Hiding His Face?

Posted by on 10:43 am in Blog, Church & Ministry |

What Should We Do if God is Hiding His Face?

Sometimes we have to ask ourselves searching questions. Is the spirit of prayer evident to the extent it ought to be? Is the work of the Holy Spirit restrained in relation to the ordinances of God’s worship? Why does the Word not have the powerful effect it ought to have? No doubt there are exceptions but when we take a general view of the professing Church these signs are evident. It’s what Scripture calls God hiding His face (see Isaiah 8:17-18; Job 34:29; Psalm 44:24; Isaiah 64:6). Why would God do this? And if this is the...

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Is the Moral Revolution Over?

Posted by on 3:34 pm in Blog, Current Issues |

Is the Moral Revolution Over?

What has happened to the #MeToo movement which followed the Harvey Weinstein controversy? It certainly gained huge prominence and publicly exposed the abuse that predators wanted to keep hidden. It was vitally important to hear such behaviour vilified. It was also refreshing to hear about any limits to our culture’s licentiousness. And yet it was only a matter of time before a backlash of liberal opinion re-asserted the “freedoms” of the sexual revolution. The liberty for anyone to do whatever they please. But we don’t...

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6 Times When We Best See Christ’s Intercession

Posted by on 2:56 pm in Blog, Christian Living |

6 Times When We Best See Christ’s Intercession

Christ’s intercession in heaven is unseen but that does not mean we cannot see the benefits and effects of it. Because it is unseen we are inclined to forget about it and not derive the comfort and help we should. The more we meditate on it, the more it ought to fill us with a sense of wonder. As we consider our own weakness and neglect in prayer by contrast it helps us to think that He is more conscious of our spiritual needs than we are. He knows the spiritual dangers we face better than we do. The more we contemplate Christ’s...

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Why Do We Pray in Jesus’ Name?

Posted by on 12:46 pm in Blog, Christian Living |

Why Do We Pray in Jesus’ Name?

Perhaps many never ask why, though they always do it. Other people resist any formula that they think reflects unthinking ritual. Yet Christ commands this (John 14:13-14). We ought certainly to think about what words we use in prayer. Praying in Christ’s name is important because our prayers must be distinctly Christian. But praying in Christ’s name means vastly more than merely mentioning His name. It’s even possible to say “Lord, Lord” without the heart being yielded to Christ (Matthew 7:21). This is a question...

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Why Lies Spread Faster than the Truth

Posted by on 11:47 am in Blog, Current Issues |

Why Lies Spread Faster than the Truth

False news travels six times faster than the truth according to a new scientific study. It’s 70% more likely to be retweeted. The study analyses 126,000 false stories tweeted by roughly three million people more than 4.5 million times. We’re aware of fake news and robots that generate it online. It seems that the robots are not responsible for the speed at which fake news travels – we are. What is it in human nature that is drawn to sharing falsehood? It should be of great concern to us. The author of the study, Professor...

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Signs of Those Who Are Only Satisfied With Christ

Posted by on 11:23 am in Articles, Christian Living |

Signs of Those Who Are Only Satisfied With Christ

In a world constantly seeking the retreating mirage of satisfaction in the things of this life we need to know where to find true spiritual satisfaction. Samuel Rutherford said that seeking such satisfaction in this world is like digging into cold ice expecting to discover warm fire. Spiritual satisfaction is in Christ and what He has done alone. As Calvin put it: “The whole of God is found in him, so that he who is not satisfied with Christ alone, desires something better and more excellent than God.” Not to be satisfied with...

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Praying for the Conversion of the Jews

Posted by on 4:44 pm in Articles |

Praying for the Conversion of the Jews

They were on a Scottish hillside in fear of government troops arresting or killing those at this “illegal” worship service. Why would the young preacher pause his sermon and begin to pray for the restoration of the Jews? It was 11 July 1680, a Lord’s Day. The government was hunting Richard Cameron, just 32 years of age, across the moors and hills of Scotland. His crime was that he would not submit to the government total control of the Church. To worship in secret was considered rebellion and there was a high price on his head. Within eleven...

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What Do We Forget in Forgetting the Church’s History?

Posted by on 3:50 pm in Blog, Church & Ministry |

What Do We Forget in Forgetting the Church’s History?

It doesn’t seem like a high priority to many. What pressing relevance can previous centuries have when our world is so different? Isn’t it just for those who like that sort of thing? No, because God requires us to recall His works done in the past (Psalm 105:5). And do we think that God has stopped working since the apostles? Church history glorifies God. We are to learn for our own benefit from what has happened to God’s people in the past (1 Corinthians 10:11; Romans 15:4). How will we understand our own times unless we...

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The Ultimate Test for a Sermon

Posted by on 10:56 am in Blog, Church & Ministry |

The Ultimate Test for a Sermon

This will only be of interest to those who listen to preaching or those who preach. But of course that ought to include us all one way or the other.  We all want to know what makes a good sermon. It is taken for granted that it must be clear, faithful to Scripture and engage the soul with spiritual realities. Sincerity, clarity and accuracy are important criteria. But there is something more that makes all the difference to a sermon. James Durham effectively sums up the ultimate test for a sermon in one word – Christ. The following...

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