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April 2018
Articles > Guest column

GUEST COLUMN: A man full of life

Charles Haddon Spurgeon was a man who went at all of life full-on. He laughed and cried much; he read avidly and felt deeply; he was a zealously industrious worker and a sociable lover of play and beauty. He was, in other words, a man who embodied the truth that to be in Christ means to be made ever more roundly human, more fully alive. Mr Great Heart It takes no great insight to see that Spurgeon in his ministry was a big-hearted man of deep affections. His printed sermons and lectures still throb with passion. At times the emotional freight of his sermon would...

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April 2018
Articles > Comment

COMMENT: A dangerous new buzz phrase

‘Spiritual abuse’ is a new buzz phrase that is gaining momentum, and I believe it is a dangerous idea. It will become another stick to hit evangelicals with. I first came across this phrase when I heard about the case of Timothy Davis, an Anglican clergyman who was convicted by a church tribunal for the ‘spiritual abuse’ of a teenager in his congregation. Specific case In what is believed to be the first case of its kind, the tribunal held that Rev. Davis had acted inappropriately by, among other things, holding one-to-one Bible studies with the youth over a period of 18 months. Did Rev....

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April 2018
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Who is perverting education?

Amanda Spielman, Ofsted’s Chief Inspector of schools, in a speech to a Church of England foundation (quoting Psalm 119), commended educationalists who made the focus of their schools the teaching of ‘knowledge and good judgment’. She also said, ‘Ofsted inspectors are increasingly brought into contact with those who want to actively pervert the purpose of education’. Since Psalm 119 is all about the Word of God, one might assume Amanda Spielman was targeting those who try to remove or twist God’s Word. But no, her target was those who ‘actively undermine fundamental British values or equalities law’.1 She went on to identify the Christian Institute...

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April 2018
Articles > Scientific (including creation)

Harvard-educated scientist gives four new claims against Darwin

Ever since Charles Darwin’s publication in 1859 of On the origin of species, western civilisation has felt the repercussions of Darwin’s radical ideas. To this day, the vast majority of the scientific community accepts genealogical kinship between mankind and monkeys. Yet, after Darwin died, several scientific developments began to quietly set the stage for a revolution against Darwin. In isolation, each of four events have foretold a minor disturbance in the settled scientific view. Together, they foreshadow a major upheaval in how we understand natural history; they give us four reasons why Darwin’s On the origin of species is no longer a settled point of view. The...

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April 2018
Articles > Historical

William Chalmers Burns (1815-1868)

A missionary in China was once asked if he knew a fellow-missionary by the name of William Burns. ‘Know him, sir? All China knows him; he is the holiest man alive’. Given that it is now 150 years since William Burns died, these words were spoken a long time ago. And certainly he has not been forgotten in the intervening period. But it is inevitable that to a growing number of Christians Burns should be a complete stranger, or, at best, a mere name. Inevitable, but regrettable; Burns for many reasons deserves still to be widely known. Kilsyth William Chalmers Burns was born in Dun,...

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April 2018
Articles > Biblical/theological

A glorious resurrection

The Christian believer’s hope of life after death is highlighted by a comment attributed to John Quincy Adams, sixth president of the United States (from 1825 to 1829) and a leading opponent of slavery. A friend once asked him when he was an old man, ‘How is John Quincy Adams today?’ His reply was, ‘I am doing very fine sir, but the building in which I live is getting rather tottery. I fear I must soon have to vacate it. I expect, however, to move into a new one some day’. John Quincy Adams’ remark was biblical. Death is not the cessation of existence, but...

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April 2018
Articles > Historical

J C Ryle

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March 2018
Articles > Guest column

GUEST COLUMN: Spurgeon’s fainting fits

It comes as a surprise to some that Charles Spurgeon had a lifelong battle with depression. His reputation as a famed and powerful preacher, his cheery wit, and his sheer manliness might lead us to imagine there could never be a chink in his Victorian Englishman’s armour. It shouldn’t be a surprise, of course: life in a fallen world must mean distress, and Spurgeon’s life was indeed full of physical and mental pain. Aged 22, as pastor of a large church and with twin babies at home to look after, he was preaching to thousands in the Surrey Gardens Music Hall when pranksters yelled ‘Fire!’...

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