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All articles in category Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Building the church in dark days – Alun McNabb

Article

August 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Building the church in dark days – Alun McNabb

We report at length Alun McNabb's ministry at the Crumlin Fraternal Conference, Co. Antrim, on 3 June because we believe it makes some important statements.Alun McNabb's theme was 'Building the church in dark days' and he addressed it in two sessions. In the first session he took as his text Psalm 100:4: 'Enter into…

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Conquering the shy gene – Jim Elliff

Article

August 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Conquering the shy gene – Jim Elliff

Like it or not, much of church life and our impact on society depends on conversation. Do you do much of that? It is the responsibility of everybody in the church - including the shy people. There may be a 'shy gene' somewhere in your make-up, but if it becomes an excuse to ignore others…

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Togetherness in the gospel

Article

June 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Togetherness in the gospel

'I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy, for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now' (Philippians 1:3-5).Although togetherness in Christ is implicit from the outset of the letter to the Philippians, the word 'fellowship' does…

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Conviction and conversion

Article

May 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Conviction and conversion

Miller Avenue Church is small — forty congregants on Sunday morning is a good crowd. One of the many advantages I enjoy as pastor of a small church is that I can observe the spiritual birth and growth of people quite easily. Though I have been a pastor for over three decades, it has…

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Togetherness in the church

Article

May 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Togetherness in the church

'Paul and Timothy, bondservants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus who are in Philippi, with the bishops and deacons: grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ' (Philippians 1:1-2).Forgive the pun, but the coin in koinonia (fellowship) has two sides. Last month we saw…

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Evangelical superficiality

Article

April 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Evangelical superficiality

'God? He's my big mate in the sky', proclaimed a Christian taxi driver. A young Christian, asked why he always used the name 'Jesus' and never 'Lord', explained, 'Because "Jesus" is more acceptable to people outside the church. It's more "user friendly".' 'I don't pray to the Lord, I pray to Jesus', explained a…

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Sport and the Christian

Article

March 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Sport and the Christian

'Sport should never become a religion, but true religion does have something to say in the world of sport' (Derek Cleave).Sport is an area of modern human culture that has received little attention from adherents of the Christian faith. True, in recent years there has been a plethora of biographies and autobiographies of sports…

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Children at the edge of unbelief

Article

February 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Children at the edge of unbelief

The greatest agony for the Christian parent is seeing their children walk away from the faith. The sense of helplessness and feelings of guilt are often overwhelming. As children mature into adults they pass along a dark and convoluted road where they struggle to find their own identity. Somewhere along this track many young…

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Deconstructing evangelicalism (2)

Article

February 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Deconstructing evangelicalism (2)

Massive cultural shifts within Western society have resulted in what might be called the deconstruction of 'evangelicalism'. This time-honoured and once comprehensible term for New Testament Christianity has been forced to bear new and often contradictory meanings, as we began to see last month.Then I considered 'traditional evangelicalism' and 'pragmatic evangelicalism'. This month I…

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The pastor’s wife

Article

February 2006
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

The pastor’s wife

Her husband has been trained for his task, spending years anticipating the future and the likely problems he will encounter. In other words, much thought and many prayers will have gone into his preparation. His wife, on the other hand, is unlikely to be in that position - seldom being trained for the role…

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Preachers and their hearers

Article

November 2005
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Preachers and their hearers

As Peter preached the gospel to Cornelius and his friends, 'The Holy Ghost fell upon them which heard the word' (Acts 10:1-48). This should not surprise us. Such a marvellous manifestation of God's grace may be reasonably expected when men and women come to hear the Word of God with the attitude Cornelius had:…

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A place for prayer

Article

September 2005
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

A place for prayer

Then he said to his servants, 'The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find'. And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good. So the…

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