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All articles in category Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Only connect!

Article

September 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Only connect!

Only connect! John Donne, the seventeenth century preacher and poet, famously wrote: ‘No man is an island entire of himself’. In a culture that prizes the rights of the individual over responsibility to the community, Donne’s words need to be heard once more. Christians are not immune to the individualistic spirit of the age…

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Article

September 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Learning to be a Christian widow

After my husband died, I remembered something which happened many years earlier. We were newly married and visiting people my husband knew well, when the lady said something to me I never forgot. She was fifty-something, had teenage children and her husband had just left his pastorate of 20 years. The family was in…

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The evangelical Cinderella

Article

September 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

The evangelical Cinderella

Something is happening in evangelical circles. There’s been a subtle shift; a movement with no name and no leader, but spreading like the mists that roll in from the sea — swift, silent and chilling. It’s hard to put your finger on it, but it shows itself in a plethora of ways — the…

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Where are the ministers?

Article

September 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Where are the ministers?

Where are the ministers? There continues to be a shortage of men coming forward for the Christian ministry. Many evangelical churches that can afford to support and are actively looking for a minister are unable to find one. In many areas of the country, if two or three smaller churches were willing to form…

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Full of sap in old age

Article

August 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Full of sap in old age

Full of sap in old age There are all sorts of different views about growing old, and most of them are pessimistic. That is understandable, because old age generally brings physical and intellectual decline in many different forms, and limitations and losses that permeate the whole of life. In a fallen world this is…

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‘She’s still my wife’

Article

August 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

‘She’s still my wife’

‘She’s still my wife’ Recently Pat Robertson made news when he declared that divorcing a spouse with Alzheimer’s is justifiable, because it is ‘a kind of death’ (http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctliveblog/archives/2011/09/pat_robertson_s.html). The simplest thing I can say is that he didn’t get that teaching from the Bible. The very concept of Christian marriage rests upon a vow…

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Christian unity a fact

Article

August 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Christian unity a fact

Christian unity a fact John 17 records the prayer of our Lord Jesus before he went to the cross to die for our sins. This has sometimes been called ‘the high priestly prayer’ of the Saviour, because here he prays for all his followers. He prays for their security (v.11), joy (v.13), protection from…

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A new name

Article

August 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

A new name

A new name Emma Scrivener has written of her life-threatening experience of anorexia as a child and an adult. She says, ‘Although I sought and received professional medical help, it was my faith and a loving church community that finally changed my life’. Here is an extract from her book (with permission). I sat…

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Satan’s tactics

Article

August 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Satan’s tactics

Satan’s tactics One of the features of church growth theory over the last few decades has been its preoccupation with the size of the local church. In our increasingly urban world, the gurus of church growth have exhorted us to renounce ‘smallness’ in favour of ‘bigness’. One of them has trumpeted ‘bigness’ as the…

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Knowing God

Article

July 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Knowing God

Knowing God It is almost four decades since J. I. Packer wrote his classic Knowing God. Today this theme is as important as ever, since knowing God is essential to having eternal life. Jeremiah knew God. In his day, the Assyrian empire had collapsed and the Babylonian empire was growing. Jeremiah was ordained and…

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Knowing God

Article

July 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Knowing God

Knowing God It is almost four decades since J. I. Packer wrote his classic Knowing God. Today this theme is as important as ever, since knowing God is essential to having eternal life. Jeremiah knew God. In his day, the Assyrian empire had collapsed and the Babylonian empire was growing. Jeremiah was ordained and…

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So many mysteries!

Article

July 2012
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

So many mysteries!

So many mysteries! To many of us a sneeze is a mystery! And falling in love; and the workings of a washing machine or a mobile phone; and the sowing of seed, the reaping of a harvest; and so on! What a mass of mysteries life really is. What is our life? What is…

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