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First Sunday in Advent: HOPE

Advent Sunday begins a season of expectancy.  Remember that first appointment at the antenatal clinic? Something -Someone!- is on its way and the weight of the expectancy gathers momentum! The notion is expressed in the line of that old carol: … Continue reading

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The Deborah Principle (1)

Introducing the principle There is a principle that governs gifting and ministry within the kingdom of God. It is located in Gal 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for … Continue reading

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Understanding the Gift of Prophecy

What is prophecy?   Commenting on 1 Thessalonians 5:20, John Calvin wrote: “By the term prophesying I do not mean the gift of foretelling the future, but as in 1 Corinthians 14:3 the science of the interpretation of Scripture, so … Continue reading

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Reviewing Campbell on “Wrath” in Romans

In Douglas Campbell’s 2009 book The Deliverance of God: An Apocalyptic Rereading of Justification in Paul , there’s a useful approach to understanding the idea of “Wrath.” Paul, after a normal introduction, seems to state a thesis about the “wrath of God” … Continue reading

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Let’s get this building sorted out! (1 Cor 3:10-23)

It’s time to get the building sorted out. In other words, you have to have the right foundation in order for the finished work to endure whatever comes next. Jesus’s story about the Wise and Foolish, choosing Rock or Sand, … Continue reading

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Charisma or Character? (Matthew 7)

“Be wary of false preachers who smile a lot, dripping with practiced sincerity. Chances are they are out to rip you off some way or other. Don’t be impressed with charisma; look for character. Who preachers are is the main … Continue reading

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How does God guide us? (Acts 16:6-10)

“Paul and his companions travelled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia. 7 When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, … Continue reading

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How does the Holy Spirit guide me? (Romans 8)

There are multiple pictures in Romans 8 of how the Spirit-filled life operates. Perhaps we could understand the Holy Spirit as a SatNav. One of the most frequent questions with which I am met as a working pastor is about the … Continue reading

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“A mystery to myself”- (Romans 7:14-25)

There are four key chapters in Romans (Chapters 5-8) devoted to Christian life as the experience of God’s grace, four chapters in which Paul examines the character and meaning of Christian life in the world. The tone of these chapters … Continue reading

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Does God get angry? (Romans 1)

First, it’s a way of speaking There are many passages in Scripture that would seem to talk about God’s anger. In fact, as Psalm 7:11 puts it: God “displays his wrath every day.” It’s important, however, to begin an answer with … Continue reading

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