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All articles in category Articles

Historical

February 2020
Articles > Historical

Thomas Chalmers (1780-1847)

Often described as the greatest Scotsman of his age, Thomas Chalmers was something of a polymath. He became a colossus for evangelical historic Calvinism in Scotland in his day and arguably the most influential instrument used by the Lord in His Church in Scotland since John Knox.                 It wasn’t like that initially, though, for,…

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Article

January 2020
Articles > Biblical/theological

Divided we fall

A new year! 2019 is over. When you read this, 2020 will have begun. What will I remember about the year that’s gone? I will look back on many things with joy and gratitude. But other things have cast heavy shadows. And among those things, some of the darkest shadows have been the divisions…

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Article

January 2020
Articles > Biblical/theological

The pastor’s wife

Nowadays when submitting research articles for publication in scientific journals it is standard that we complete a disclosure statement to declare any conflicts of interest (COI) which might have influenced what we have written. Thus, I realise that for this article I need to declare my COI: Conflict Of Interest Statement: The author declares…

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Article

January 2020
Articles > Personal view

Confront the culture but don’t lose the gospel

Without a doubt, there has been a culture war going on in western civilisation for many decades. According to one definition, a culture war is a ‘conflict between social groups and the struggle for dominance of their values, beliefs, and practices’. There was a time when people had respect for authority. Teachers, parents, police…

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Article

January 2020
Articles > Comment

Free speech is our freedom to preach the gospel

Free speech is more than just a civil liberty. For us as evangelicals, it’s our freedom to tell people the good news of Jesus Christ. Therefore, we welcome the settlement between Cumbria Police and street preacher Dale Mcalpine. Yes, there are some cranky street preachers out there who make us all wince. But many…

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Article

January 2020
Articles > Biblical/theological

Loved with everlasting love

We often think we truly know a scriptural passage, only to dig a little deeper and be pleasantly surprised. For me, Revelation 3:20 fell into this category. It is often misunderstood. It has been applied evangelistically, used to urge unbelievers to ‘open the door’ of their heart to Jesus as he stands outside knocking.…

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Historical

January 2020
Articles > Historical

Katherine Willoughby, the Puritan Duchess (1519-80)

‘[She] was born a Catholic and became a convinced and zealous Puritan; she was born to a sheltered and secure life and, by her own honesty and outspokenness, she courted persecution and lived in danger. She was a woman of wit and beauty and charm, and of great integrity… Many whose thinking and writing…

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Article

January 2020
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

What’s all this about social justice?

Morality is back. Once again, moral absolutes are not just possible but popular. The #metoo movement has demanded universal standards of sexual morality. People are talking about social justice and the need to liberate the oppressed. This all gives tremendous gospel opportunities, because it invites the question: on what basis can universal moral standards…

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Article

December 2019
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Truth, lies and Santa Claus: What shall we tell our children about Father Christmas?

It’s not a problem now. Our children are that bit older. But for years we had to threaten them with dire penalties as Christmas approached. They mustn’t say it. They mustn’t even hint at it. Whatever anyone said to them, they mustn’t let it slip. They don’t believe in Santa. I well remember the…

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Article

December 2019
Articles > Comment

Be wise as serpents and harmless as doves

Vote for the least-worst candidate, and pray Depending on your point of view, the last few years have either seen parliamentary democracy at its best, or its worst. Whatever view you take on that, we are nevertheless privileged to live in a democracy. Let’s not give in to the cynicism and apathy which blights…

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Article

December 2019
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow’

Outside the snow has just fallen. It looks so lovely and white when it first falls to the ground. But I can also see that it is not pure on the street, for it mingles with the dirt and grime and becomes a mushy mess. Many years ago, a young lady saw in her…

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Article

December 2019
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

The trashing of truth

‘If liberty means anything at all it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear’, wrote George Orwell. Nearly 75 years ago Animal Farm was published. Famously, its author, George Orwell, believed that real liberty must involve the freedom to call out lies. We live now in an age…

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