Rival Kings (Matthew 2:1-12)

Herod saw Jesus as a rival to his power. However, Jesus was the rightful king and Herod was no match for him. We can allow idols to become rivals for our affection for Jesus. These can be things we enjoy like food, relationships, sport etc, good things like going to church, serving, charity or thingsContinue reading “Rival Kings (Matthew 2:1-12)”

What does the Bible say about giving?

The Prosperity Gospel deal is that if you give the right amount of money to the right pastor and he gives it the right blessing then you will be blessed in your personal finances.  In other words you should tithe. I think that well-meaning Evangelicals come unstuck on the question of tithing. Or to goContinue reading “What does the Bible say about giving?”

Do we have grace?

I first heard of Vernon Higham when Wesley Aiken, pastor at Rochester Baptist Church came back from a holiday. Higham had been the visiting speaker at the church where Wesley’s family went on their holidays. Wesley described this frail elderly man taking to the pulpit and preaching a gospel sermon about the grace of GodContinue reading “Do we have grace?”

Does the Bible talk about money more than it talks about love, heaven and hell?

The short answer is “No.”  If it did, then you would notice it as a recurring theme when you are part of a church where expository preaching is practiced.  You would either notice that the preacher kept, accurately and transparently showing how the text applied to your wallet, or you would wonder why the preacherContinue reading “Does the Bible talk about money more than it talks about love, heaven and hell?”

The Prosperity Problem

We know there’s something bad out there called “The Prosperity Gospel.” We know it’s bad because most preachers and pastors will quickly tell us that it’s wrong and that they don’t teach it. However, I’m not sure that we quite grasp exactly what the problem is. The risk then is that we can end upContinue reading “The Prosperity Problem”

In the beginning (Matthew 1:1-17)

Introduction Two things that have been coming up in my Bible reading and in the thoughts we’ve been sharing online over the last few weeks have been The cry of ‘how long oh Lord’  expressed by God’s people in the face of suffering Can we trust God to keep his promises? These questions are deeplyContinue reading “In the beginning (Matthew 1:1-17)”

Preaching to yourself

During the Coronavirus Pandemic, we’ve used a mix of Facebook, Youtube and Zoom to help people gather for prayer, praise and Bible teaching. Preaching for a Facebook or Youtube audience is a fascinating experience. You cannot see the congregation, your best indication of whether or not people are present and engaging is if they addContinue reading “Preaching to yourself”

He was raised for our justification

An odd kind of Easter Easter is not as we expected to be is it? It’s not what we were looking forward to.  Normally today we would have invited as many from the community to come and join us for a big service together at the chapel. We would have decorated the building with balloonsContinue reading “He was raised for our justification”

Avoiding False Assurance

This is the next bit of our mini-series “A last Conversation with Jesus. Read John 13:18-30. Judas is present at the Last Supper but Jesus says that his words do not apply to him. Judas may be tempted to find assurance in his active participation in the Lord’s Supper or his role as treasurer butContinue reading “Avoiding False Assurance”