3pm, Friday 3rd April, 33AD – The Messiah Died

 

jesus-died-on-the-cross

 

Just in case you forgot! I know everyday is the Lord’s and we remember Him moment by moment, but I can’t get over this time of year. I mean, God became a man whilst staying God and being man; and then He went on to pull off the most audacious rescue in all eternity. Forget muscly hero bursting in with big guns and clenched fists – this rescue was on a scale and dimension we can only point to. God went to a cross and died.

Jesus is the true passover lamb, and however you end up spending this Good Friday don’t forget to pause for just a moment to remember that God died so that we don’t have to. Once He was on the cross that was it for sin and death…

Talk more on Sunday.

Go well my friends 😀

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Jesus is Alive – So What?

empty-tomb-of-jesus

So many great minds have rejected the literal resurrection of Jesus from the dead; is it really something we should take seriously? After all, hasn’t science proven that dead people are just that – dead, and they don’t come back?

People have struggled with the resurrection of Jesus from day 1 (or day 3 if you prefer). The Jewish leaders bribed the gobsmacked Roman guards who had been flattened by the angelic presence as the world’s Messiah came striding back from death itself. Others have argued that the resurrection was a grief inspired hallucination, or it was simply a lie to build and reinforce a draconian religion that preyed on the vulnerable. Even today some churchgoers would argue that it is a mistake to take the resurrection literally, as though it was our generation who had discovered that dead people don’t tend to come back. Read more

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Things That Make Jesus Angry


It might be hard for us to come to come to terms with, but Jesus does get angry. I don’t mean He loses the plot and becomes the slave of an emotion warped by sin, but He does get angry and seeing as He is the same yesterday, today and forever, we would do well to be aware of what hacks Him off.

Unfruitfulness

Whilst on His way to Jerusalem Jesus confronted a fruitless fig tree – Read more

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What did Jesus mean when He said ‘church’?

Jesus didn’t speak much of the church in the Gospels but when He did, He said He would build it and it would have authority over the resistance of hell as well as the ability to self govern. Over the last couple of years or so, I have been asking the Lord what did He see when He said church. His answer has turned my understanding upside down… or should I say the right way up?

Having given three articles over to why I don’t want to go to church, I now want to take a more positive approach as to what church is and why I want to be totally involved. A contradiction? No, not really because there is church and then there is church. 😉

Read more

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Easter – Pagan Festival?

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The chocolate eggs, rabbits and Easter cards have been with us since February, and now the time is almost here it will be to a lot of people be a big ‘so what’. Even many Christians are uncertain about it; the very word Easter has it roots in paganism and fertility rights, hence the eggs and the rabbits. 

So, why do a whole load of Christians get excited about a pagan festival?  I believe that it is all to do with meaning, the meaning and emotion that we attach to a word or season. The word Christmas for example is loaded with meaning, even the most hardened atheist can feel something at the thought of Christmas, the joy of the family getting together or the hedonistic delight of the office party. And so it is with Easter, we can attach anything or nothing to the word and the season. Read more

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Don’t Call It Church!

We have all heard it again and again, following Jesus is a relationship and not a religion – To this I say a hearty “amen”. The thing is how does this pan out in our daily living, do we ‘follow Jesus in the way’ or ‘visit Him on a Sunday’? Ironically, the very thing that advertises as being a help can actually be very detrimental to following after the Lord Jesus; I am of course talking about church. Read more

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What’s The Church’s Problem With Women? – Part 6

“In this church there is no fashion, no smiles, no fun, no hairdo, no jewellery. We believe in godly women!”

Is she really a Jezebel?

Yeah, and don’t let her wear shoes and make sure she isn’t allowed out on her own. You can always tell a churched women, not sure of herself, conflicted, often dressed about fifty years behind the times and determined to please others.

But when you read Bible verses like this, is it in any wonder? “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array” 1 Timothy 2:9 (KJV)

Literally millions of women around the world live in fear, confusion, deprivation and suffer beatings; and what’s more, often the church supports and even enforces this desperately wicked situation. Why? Because the Bible says so?

Read more

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No, You Can’t Sin Your Way Out of Salvation!

That old chestnut do you believe in ‘once saved always saved’? Keeps doing the rounds, and is often said with a degree of superiority that suggests that if you do believe it then there is clearly something wrong with you. Personally I struggled with this for years, on one hand worried that I might blow it for all eternity and then on the other hand arrogantly looking down my nose at those lesser Christians who still had sin in their lives.

Perhaps part of the problem is that we are asking the wrong question; perhaps we should be asking ‘are you saved’? After all Jesus gives the most chilling warning in Matthew 7:21 where he tells us that on judgement day people who did all sorts of wonderful works in His Name will find them selves banished into everlasting suffering. What is that all that about?

Read more

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Alive!

empty-tomb-of-jesusI can’t do this post justice. God planned from eternity the resurrection of Jesus, I am about to fly out to work with a school in Italy and have left myself about 5 minutes for this post. Good job I wasn’t on the heavenly planning committee for the resurrection.

Ever since that Sunday 2000 year ago people have been trying to disprove the resurrection, but of course they can’t. Believing in Jesus and what he did isn’t like believing in fairies, there is no superstition involved. Our faith is opened eyed and rooted in reality.

History proves that Jesus lived and died; the only rational explanation to what happened next and the 3 billion people who follow him today, is that Jesus rose from the dead as he said he would.

What does that mean to us? Here are the headlines on the greatest work of God:

  • Sins are forgiven – anyone can receive forgiveness from the God who loved them before they were created.
  • The powers are defeated – Satan and his cohorts were defeated by the weakness of God (think on that one when you can’t sleep).
  • New creation has started – Forgiveness, new creation and resurrection are really part of the same thought and they were proven and initiated when Jesus rose from the dead.
  • Hope for all – Jesus’ resurrection means that the plan worked and that anyone anywhere can know God in the knowledge that they too will have a resurrection when the material realm is restored.
  • Though we die, yet shall we live – that is about as good as it gets! Death no longer has the victory, the battle is won and our future guaranteed.

The hope Easter brings is off the scale, and I would like to leave you with this paraphrase of something JJI Packer wrote – When God is holding you, you are not strong enough to break away.

Love and blessings my friends 😀

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Reign In Life

To reign in life, that is a nice thought.

When Paul wrote this in Romans 5:17, what did he have in mind? Was it a picture of us sitting by a pool and being waitLight of worlded on by lesser people – people by the way who are definitely not reigning in life.

We know instinctively that the Christian calling is not one of laziness and luxury, but what was Paul saying?

For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. Romans 5:17

The picture we have here is one that goes all the way back to the garden, the time when mankind fell from their high calling. What was that calling? We were created to be image bearers; those who reflected God’s good and compassionate reign into the world and then reflected the worlds praises back to Him. A royal priesthood, no less.

When sin entered we hid from God and  reflected creation back to itself, which in turn unleashed all the corruption and horror that we see through history and to the present day.

Everything changed when Jesus went to the cross. There He defeated sin and death on our behalf, and now we have forgiveness and resurrection. We have a new covenant, the new creation has begun and those who turn to God can start to reflect the Divine to the dying. We pick up the mantle of the One who died and rose again, and reign in life. Not as overlords or tyrants, but servants who reflect the loving, suffering giving heart of God and declare the more than good news, that Jesus is risen and He is Lord.

Go well my friend.

 

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