What is it with yeast? A reader asks about Leviticus

I received this email this morning from a friend:I thought I would give you a progress report on my Bible reading . I have now completed Leviticus, and to be perfectly honest I found it a bit hard going. Here are some thoughts I would appreciate your brief comments on.The laws must have been imposssible to keep, life must have been one long round of sacrifices and ceremonies.In your opinion; which of the two is it easier to live uder The law, or grace?What is it with yeast?I have … [Read more...]

Spurgeon: a forerunner of the moderate charismatic?

PyroManiac has served us well and honestly by providing quotes which show Spurgeons view of impressions. The balance he brings is fantastic. All of the quotes are worth reading, but here are some that stand out to me:'A Well-Ordered Life' (sermon #878):Some, I know, fall into a very vicious habit, which habit they excuse themselvesnamely, that of ordering their footsteps according to impressions.Every now and then I meet with people whom I think to be rather weak in the head, who will … [Read more...]

Preaching with passion and imagination

One of the best things about blogging is when several things come together on one day. My pastor Tope and I were talking face to face earlier today (yes I know thats so pre-blog!) about what kind of preaching impacts hearts and lives and not just minds. We had a great time, so imagine my joy to come home and bump into the following "by chance":3:17 lists his favorite books on preaching, and summarises this story on the vital place of imagination in preaching: "Grandma Thatcher hobbles into … [Read more...]

Loving God's law

I was reading Psalm 1 this morning. It struck me that this psalm has a very different attitude to God's law than many Christians.The psalm as a whole warns us first not to follow "the counsel of the wicked" and to not listen to "scoffers". It struck me how much these days the church does listen to the ideas of society out there, and just how much like scoffers the MSM can often be.The church today often feels it needs to follow the lead of the world. This psalm says instead that true blessing … [Read more...]

Pentecostal and charismatic dialogue

The Internet Monk writes about feeling unable to have a conversation with charismatics. Well Michael, here I am talking and willing to listen- lets interact. Charismatics out there need to hear what this brother is saying about us, and not react by condemning him but by reaching out and learning to give and receive respect and understanding.To take his points one by one-1. The scripture. There are many charismatics and pentecostals who sadly fit the description you give. But we are not all … [Read more...]

The Toronto Blessing

Eleven years on from the birth of the Toronto Blessing I republished an article I wrote at the time. Some thought this was a time when the Church seemed to be going mad.UPDATEIn January 2008, the following post was identified as the 12th all-time most popular post with readers of this blog. The 13th most-read post was my post concerning Bishop Tom Wright's response to John Piper.The post below was republished from an article I wrote many years ago. In some ways it was this article that first … [Read more...]

Team work as defined by the One Anothers of the bible: true community

Church is all about community, and teamwork. I intend to blog a lot more about team in the next little while (UPDATE: I have now done so at It is teamwork that will change the world) . To whet your attitude and to underline to any unchurched christian out there that solitary christianity is deeply unsatisfying, here are a list of many of the "one anothers" of the bible- we cannot do these unless we are in a real community that allows us to interact with each other. Please read these slowly, … [Read more...]

Ps 30, More on Christian Joy and the Blogger Challenge

Well, the Blogging challenge is continuing to cause a steady trickle of interest. Previous entries can be found here and here.Today, one blogger asks "Can a Christian be TOO happy?" meanwhile an excited blogger (who is about to get even more excited I suspect) writes-The Christian world has become so severely man-centred that we can find it massively difficult to grasp a God who created us to glorify him, a God whose true reality is so unfathomably brilliant and pure and holy and glorious, yet … [Read more...]

"Why Did Jesus die?" my Alpha talk

This is the rough outline I used for last thursday's Alpha talk on "why did jesus die?" Just to make clear to anyone who thinks I am into the penal substitutionary view as an exclusive explanation of the cross, I have no problem with using the outline Alpha proposed (which is almost identical to this one)Why did Jesus Die?For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son that whoever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life John 3:16 For all have sinned and fall short … [Read more...]

The purposes of God for man

Day 2 of the purpose driven life discusses the purposes of God for each and every man. Psalm 139 is quoted (although not in a familiar version)O LORD , you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven … [Read more...]