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Thinking the Best Thoughts

Posted by on 11:53 am in Blog, Christian Living | Comments Off on Thinking the Best Thoughts

Thinking the Best Thoughts

Recent research concludes that “taking time to think kind thoughts about yourself and loved ones has psychological and physical benefits”. The study set out to discover why this could lead to higher levels of wellbeing and better mental health. Participants were given an audio tape that either encouraged them to think positively or negatively. There was a positive physical benefit for those in the first group. Yet the most important thing is not merely our physical but our spiritual wellbeing. We can think thoughts that make us...

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Don’t Judge?

Posted by on 6:06 pm in Bible & Theology, Blog | Comments Off on Don’t Judge?

Don’t Judge?

Who are you to judge? It’s a popular way to deflect any declaration that a specific action is wrong. It can even be backed up with a verse: Jesus says, “Judge not” (Matthew 7:1). Is this really the proof text for unlimited “tolerance”? Does it mean that we cannot make any assertions about whether something is right or wrong? Should we stand aside and observe people’s sin or virtuous actions without saying or thinking anything? As rational and moral creatures this is virtually impossible. It would even...

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God is Still a Consuming Fire

Posted by on 10:40 am in Bible & Theology, Blog | Comments Off on God is Still a Consuming Fire

God is Still a Consuming Fire

Many people are ready to embrace the idea that God is love, if they themselves can define what that means. Perhaps they want it to mean that God affirms them no matter who they are and what they do. Or that God is there for us when we need Him. It fits in well with a therapeutic culture that focuses everything on the self. But it doesn’t fit with the biblical view of God as transcendent and glorious in holiness. It is true that God is love and He is good but God is also holy. He is a God of both mercy and justice. He is described as a...

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Who Are You?

Posted by on 11:38 am in Blog, Current Issues, Marriage & Family | Comments Off on Who Are You?

Who Are You?

From gender to nationality to race – can we choose the identity we want? Are these things that drive identity politics real? Even if we resist every other label – what exactly does human mean these days? Other subtle influences within society point us to find our identity in what we have and what do. Is there something fixed that goes beyond changeable subjective notions? Yes. We can draw our identity from what God has done and what God has said. We need to go back to the beginning, to creation. We cannot understand who we are...

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Who Do You Trust?

Posted by on 8:38 am in Blog, Christian Living, Current Issues | Comments Off on Who Do You Trust?

Who Do You Trust?

Our’s is a world of distrust. Besides commerce and community, our most meaningful relationships depend on trust. But it has imploded. “The 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer tracks the decline in confidence in institutions and the media over the years. It shows how a crisis of truth has brought this about. “Without trust, the fabric of society can unravel to the detriment of all”. Of course the problem is that we need some shared values so as to establish trust. Who do you trust? God’s faithfulness is of absolute...

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How to Live Without Regrets

Posted by on 9:00 am in Blog, Christian Living | Comments Off on How to Live Without Regrets

How to Live Without Regrets

“No regrets” is probably the most popular life motto currently. Almost everyone seems to be claiming it for themselves. It means living in the moment without thinking before or after about your actions. Get what you want out of life. Don’t admit that any decision you’ve taken was wrong. But such a philosophy is inevitably destructive. The person with no regrets whatsoever is the person with no conscience whatsoever. Can people really walk away from marriage breakdowns etc saying “no regrets”? Aren’t there words...

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What is Personal Reformation?

Posted by on 3:43 pm in Blog, Christian Living | Comments Off on What is Personal Reformation?

What is Personal Reformation?

There’s no shortage of people offering personal transformation and life-hacking. It’s all about the power of positive thinking, planning and self-belief. It’s breezy and simplistic, offering instant and effortless change with a few tweaks. Personal reformation is entirely different. It is all about grace not self-help. It doesn’t masquerade as a quick fix in a few easy steps; it is extensive and lifelong. It is being transformed by the renewing of our mind and working out God’s perfect will in practice (Romans...

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Our Need of the Ever New, Unbegun Beginning

Posted by on 12:46 pm in Blog, Current Issues | Comments Off on Our Need of the Ever New, Unbegun Beginning

Our Need of the Ever New, Unbegun Beginning

We have a certain natural inclination to “some new thing” (Acts 17:21). We live in time and that makes the expectation of change inevitable. New beginnings (such as a new year) can open fresh opportunities for transformation.  But it becomes unhealthy when we value things simply because they are new rather than using a more enduring standard. An addiction to novelty creates destructive rootlessness and distraction. It afflicts the world and the Church. Adhering to things simply because they are old rather than because they are...

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Top 5 Second Reformation Books of 2018

Posted by on 8:10 am in Articles, Bible & Theology | Comments Off on Top 5 Second Reformation Books of 2018

Top 5 Second Reformation Books of 2018

It’s common at this time of year to look back at the best books of the year. Lists and reviews of books can certainly be helpful. Here are the best books published during the year that mined the riches of the Second Reformation. 1. Exposition of Job (James Durham) “It is certain to be good, for Durham is always admirable.”— Charles Spurgeon. The book of Job can be difficult to follow but Durham provides the flow of the debate and a succinct summary of the arguments. It is also helpfully applied. Durham’s work is compact, with a few...

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Applying the Most Popular Promise of 2018

Posted by on 4:08 pm in Blog, Christian Living | Comments Off on Applying the Most Popular Promise of 2018

Applying the Most Popular Promise of 2018

According to the YouVersion Bible App, Isaiah 41:10 “was shared, bookmarked and highlighted more than any other this year” on their platform. It’s one of the many “fear not” verses of the Bible and some find that significant. No doubt the focus on bible verses addressing fear may be facilitated by the emoji-based search on YouVersion’s Bible App. This allows users to tap images corresponding to various emotions which in turn locate related Bible verses. Apparently individuals conducted more than 18 million searches to find...

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