Male and female leadership questions (5) Implications for church life

Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com

First of all, I think we can rule out two extremes.  We cannot take the egalitarian approach but nor can we endorse the traditional Brethren approach and a number of traditional approaches which in effect fail to recognise that women are equal in nature.  We should recognise that sadly churches have got this badly wrong… Continue reading Male and female leadership questions (5) Implications for church life

Male and female leadership questions (4) Pulling things together theologically

We are now in a position to see how the boundaries function together in order to create theological principles which should shape church practice. We’ve seen that there are both permissions and restrictions for women in Paul’s letters in terms of leadership and teaching. We’ve also seen that these relate to Creation and The Fall… Continue reading Male and female leadership questions (4) Pulling things together theologically

Be careful with your offence

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

When Steve Chalke infamously used his punchline comparing Penal Substitution to “cosmic child abuse” a lot of people picked up on how offensive this was  towards God. I think Chalke’s defence would be that it could not be offensive to God because the God he believed in had not punished his son on our behalf… Continue reading Be careful with your offence

Teaching Proverbs

It’s probably a book of the Bible rarely preached on as a sequential expository series. People tend to focus on individual proverbs in isolation. However, when I spent time with a local church working through Proverbs as a teaching series, we found it deeply helpful and encouraging. So, if you are looking for a future… Continue reading Teaching Proverbs

“Do you want to be clean?” Preaching to the affections from the Old Testament

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

I mentioned the other day the conversation I had with Dan James about Haggai 2.  One of the things I’ve been challenged about increasingly is the importance of preaching to the affections.  This is an old puritan phrase meaning that our preaching should speak to the whole person not just to the intellect. We don’t… Continue reading “Do you want to be clean?” Preaching to the affections from the Old Testament

How not to be a heretic – preaching the negatives

One well known preacher allegedly once said that if we are to preach the Gospel properly, so that it’s full force is heard, then we are likely to be accused of being anti-nominans.  An anti-nomian (against law) is someone who believes and teaches that the law only applied before Christ, we are now under grace… Continue reading How not to be a heretic – preaching the negatives

How much application?

We are usually told that we need “more application” and that our sermons shouldn’t become boring technical lectures, so this article from Chris Thomas may prove a surprising read to many. For balance, you may want to read this from Steve Kneale showing that there are still people arguing for more application. I also want… Continue reading How much application?

How to listen to sermons when it’s the last thing you feel like doing

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Sometimes the last thing you want to be doing is listening to a sermon.  It might simply be that you are exhausted and too tired to take in what is being said, sometimes it’s because what is being said is too painful, too close to the bone, sometimes it’s the other extreme, what is being… Continue reading How to listen to sermons when it’s the last thing you feel like doing

How to listen to character study sermons

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Years ago my dad did a series of Bible studies which he called “An A-Z of Old Testament Characters.” I’m not sure if he managed to find someone for every letter, but there was certainly enough mileage to keep the series going for a good while.  It’s no surprise that character studies have proved popular.… Continue reading How to listen to character study sermons

How to listen to evangelistic sermons (when you already are a Christian)

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

At any one time in a gathering there will be Christians and non-Christians present. This presents the preacher with a challenge.  Does he primarily focus on preaching to the Christians to edify and build them up or does he focus on evangelising the enquirers. Either way, he risks leaving part of the audience behind. Or… Continue reading How to listen to evangelistic sermons (when you already are a Christian)