The Christ We Do Not Know
Jan05

The Christ We Do Not Know

A provocative statement perhaps. Yet, we hear so much casual use of the name of Christ and glib talk of knowing Jesus. This isn’t the same as knowing a mere mortal and we should never seem to put Christ on that level. We can have a true and real knowledge of Christ as a person but He is infinite. There is always more to know and discover not only about but in Him. That should inspire humble awe. Samuel Rutherford never stopped...

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Should We Pray “Lead Us Not Into Temptation”?
Dec15

Should We Pray “Lead Us Not Into Temptation”?

The Pope says, “no” (as has been widely reported recently). “It is not a good translation because it speaks of a God who induces temptation.” There is nothing ambiguous about the wording of the original. Pope Francis does not suggest that the translation needs to be improved because of language but because of theology.  It is true that God does not tempt anyone (James 1:13-14) and that the word for tempt can also mean to...

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Have We Lost the Ten Commandments?
Dec08

Have We Lost the Ten Commandments?

Most Britons think that only six of the Ten Commandments are still relevant. These were the results reported in a YouGov poll in recent weeks. It’s not hard to guess which ones have become unpopular: the first four relating to our duty to God. What is shocking but not surprising is that most of those professing to be Christians agreed. It hardly seems credible that 60% of Christians would not believe we should only worship the one...

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Overcoming Spiritual Information Overload
Nov24

Overcoming Spiritual Information Overload

Sometimes it’s called infobesity. Constantly force fed hundreds of messages through all kinds of media, we are unable to digest information. Even if we could digest it, would it nourish our life and soul? We are drowning in information but starved for wisdom. Information overload paralyses our ability to think, make decisions and identify priorities. It’s a spiritual issue of course. What if all the information we consume...

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Luther’s Gospel Breakthrough
Nov02

Luther’s Gospel Breakthrough

It was not so much the 95 theses as Luther’s later study of Scripture that fully crystallised his understanding of the gospel of grace. He came to the book of Romans but was stopped in his tracks by the word “righteousness” in chapter one. For Luther this meant God’s justice and judgment. “I meditated night and day on those words” he says, until at last, by the mercy of God, I paid attention to...

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Did Luther Reject the Ten Commandments?
Oct23

Did Luther Reject the Ten Commandments?

It is not uncommon to encounter the idea that Luther discarded the Ten Commandments. The idea is that he emphasised grace so much against works and gospel so much against law that he downplayed the believer’s use of the Ten Commandments. Alternatively it is suggested that he was worried people would return to works righteousness if they were taught the obligation of holy living by the Ten Commandments. It is a strange idea...

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