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Everything in 2004 issue

Peace and security

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Peace and security

Until August 1994 I wasn't interested in God. One of my closest friends became a Christian and tried to talk to me about it, but I just wasn't interested. In fact I felt quite sorry for her.Then I was visited by another lady who offered to read the Bible with me. I politely told…

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Genius at Work – James Clerk Maxwell

Historical

December 2004
Articles > Historical

Genius at Work – James Clerk Maxwell

The family house in Edinburgh was a very strange place. Almost everything in it was designed by 'father' - a mildly eccentric barrister with a passion for mechanical things and an amazingly inventive mind.Not long after the birth of James Clerk Maxwellin 1831, his father took it into his head to design a new…

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Coping with anxiety

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Coping with anxiety

According to a recent UK government survey, more than 10% of the population suffer from neurotic anxiety disorders. Eighty million prescriptions for tranquillisers and antidepressants were dispensed in 1994 - and the number has risen rapidly since then. Some 60% of employees apparently suffer from feelings of insecurity and anxiety. What is the cause?…

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Confused about God

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Confused about God

While serving as a submariner in the Royal Navy I often ended up drinking and secretly taking drugs - available from a 'fence' on board my sub. This seemed to fill the emptiness inside me for a time. But no matter how much I drank, or how many drugs I took, the emptiness would…

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The Bible came alive

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

The Bible came alive

Since becoming a true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, I have experienced peace and assurance such as I had never known. I have found a faithful friend in Christ. I was just looking out for myself. I certainly wasn't looking for Christ and had no idea what joy he would bring. I remember…

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Does God communicate?

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Does God communicate?

I live in Edinburgh, home of the Scottish Parliament. This time last year there was much debate and newspaper correspondence over a decision by that parliament.What was the decision? That the words 'Season's greetings' should replace 'Christmas greetings' on its Christmas cards! This was not the first time, of course, that our Lord Jesus…

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Who wants to be a millionaire?

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Who wants to be a millionaire?

The quiz show Who wants to be a millionaire? is one of the most popular TV programmes in Britain and the USA. Recently, on the British programme, a man was going for the last question and the £1,000,000 prize. He had sailed through the previous questions easily and with confidence. This man was not…

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Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Helping the helpless

Police officers and traffic wardens go to work every day knowing they may face personal danger, but accept that it's part of their job. Missionaries and volunteers at the Waterloo Centre also know they are at risk, but their love and concern for the helpless and hopeless keep them going.Will Thorburn manages the centre…

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What a lovely surprise!

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

What a lovely surprise!

Recently a friend told me the moving story of her husband's death a few months ago following a short, uncomfortable illness. Just before he died he opened his eyes wide with an expression of joyful wonder and said: 'What a lovely surprise!' He was a Christian believer looking forward to heaven. It would seem…

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Is it easy to enter the kingdom?

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Is it easy to enter the kingdom?

Some questions can be answered two ways. If I ask, 'Is it easy to fit new taps in your bathroom?', a plumber or a DIY man will say, 'Yes, nothing to it'. But others would say, 'No way, I would never attempt something like that'. It does rather depend on your perspective.In the same…

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Grumpy old men

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Grumpy old men

Stuart Prebble, a former producer of TV's World in Action, is a grumpy old man. It irritates him that quality programming has been replaced by trivial nonsense such as Big Brother, I'm a Celebrity, Get me Out of Here, David Beckham the Early Years, and the like.He complained to his friends, his colleagues, his…

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No point to anything!

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

No point to anything!

I was 23 when I was converted. I had no Christian background, nor had I ever heard the gospel before. I did, however, know a lot about humanism, hedonism and agnosticism. At the time of my conversion I was living with drug dealers and had lost all hope in everything. There was absolutely no…

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Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Seeking satisfaction

Until I was sixteen, I had never given any serious thought to the Bible, and could count on the fingers of one hand how many times I had been into a church. I was living a typical college lifestyle and trying to find enjoyment in what our society had to offer. I went to…

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Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Why you need the Lord Jesus Christ

How many needs we all have! We must breathe in oxygen every few seconds, eat food every day and sleep for hours every night. Life is impossible unless our basic needs are met. We need to love and be loved – life would be intolerable if everyone rejected us. But that is not all.…

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Seekers and finders

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Seekers and finders

So why would a small group of men leave behind comfort, security and luxury, and follow a star in search of a king?We have no precise details about the 'wise men' who came to visit the infant Jesus - nor even how many there were. We do know, however, that they were rich, for…

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Two is not enough

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Two is not enough

Charlie's Coffee Shop, early morning. The door swings open and three mothers in their early thirties fall in, resembling a military platoon after a day of heavy combat - and it's still only 9.08a.m!Kate carries a baby strapped in a stroller, Helen a toddler glued to her skirt. Sarah has a lighter load, carrying…

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Born again

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Born again

In 1993, I started to attend church for the first time on a regular basis. God must have been drawing me because I felt that this was the right thing to do. We were driving 50 minutes each way to get to my grandmother's Baptist church every Sunday. We also attended a modern-style non-denominational…

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Darkness and light

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Darkness and light

Christ came 'to give knowledge of salvation to his people by the remission of their sins, through the tender mercy of our God by which the Dayspring from on high has visited us - to give light to those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death. To guide our feet into the…

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An unusual announcement

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

An unusual announcement

We are bombarded daily with information and announcements - some relevant, some not. We learn to ignore most of them! But there is one announcement we must heed, for it has eternal consequences.It is the angel's announcement of the coming of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the world. We must look beyond the seasonal…

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Incredible joy

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Incredible joy

My life was not worth living before Ibecame a Christian. I used to phone the taxi rank just to hear another voice. I was so lonely I wanted to die, but I had a daughter so I couldn't commit suicide. I was abused sexually as a child, and wanted to die back then, but…

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What’s it all about?

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

What’s it all about?

A modern artist, attending an exhibition of his own abstract paintings, was disappointed to find that one of his most admired paintings was hanging upside down. My life in the 60s was like that - a piece of upside-down abstract art. It had a lot of movement, energy and colour but no real meaning…

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Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Conman and crook

My whole life is a chronicle of wasted years - of shame and failure. For over fifty years I was a conman, a crook who lived on my wits. I was without conscience or scruple, a hypocrite. I was born in Hong Kong. There were thirteen children - five boys and eight girls. We…

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Changed for ever

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Changed for ever

It is a joy and honour to tell you the difference Jesus Christ has made in my life. While on a business trip to the Bahamas in April of 2003, my life changed for ever. The day I was converted started like any normal day. I wasn't 'looking' for any spiritual revelation. I had…

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Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

What is Britain’s problem?

Jack the giant killer, Popeye, The Lord of the rings and The Lion, the witch and the wardrobe - what do they have in common? On the surface not much. One is a fairy take, one is a cartoon, one is the nation's favourite novel and one is a children's classic. But they all…

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I thought I was a Christian

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

I thought I was a Christian

I thought I was destined for heaven. I believed in God and Jesus, said my prayers every night and led a 'good clean life'. I was christened as a baby, brought up as a churchgoer, and confirmed in the Church of England. What had I to worry about? But one day my brother, Michael,…

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I felt his faith

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

I felt his faith

My name is Matthew Abraham. I am an attorney in Michigan where I live with my wife and three children. My journey in Christian faith really began in June of 2001 when I heard a gentleman speak with a conviction and passion I'd never heard before - certainly not on the topic of his…

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What’s really important

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

What’s really important

Last Summer's Olympic Games were part of a four-year cycle - they aim to be back! You may love them or hate them, but there's no doubt that people all over the world take them seriously.Sport is one of those things that seems to assume a place of prominence in national life and what…

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Article

December 2004
Ireland

Green shoots in the Emerald Isle

After several years without a ministry visit there, evangelist and author John Blanchard recently spoke at four separate meetings in the Republic of Ireland. He began with a Saturday night evangelistic apologetics meeting in Springhill Court Hotel, Kilkenny. The suite was comfortably full and there was rapt attention to the message. John told Evangelical…

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Logical atheism? No such thing!

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Logical atheism? No such thing!

Yet atheists always assume they have the intellectual high ground - they give the impression they are the logical ones, whereas Christians are those who have taken the fanciful leap of faith. One of Britain's most distinguished writers and broadcasters, Sir Ludovic Kennedy, said he wrote his book All in the mind - A…

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Stunned by the truth

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Stunned by the truth

In the late Eighties, when my rugby-playing days came to an end, I began playing more and more squash. Steve, a frequent opponent, belonged to Bethesda Baptist Church, Stowmarket. One day after a game we began discussing evolution. I had been taught evolution at school and believed it to be the truth - the…

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Article

December 2004
United States of America

Missionary Spotlight-Church alive

We are often told by the media that the Christian Church is losing members and dying on its feet. This is not true either in the UK or internationally. Some churches may be declining, but in others God is working powerfully. We bring you the story of one, a once-small Baptist church in the…

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Has science got rid of God?

Article

December 2004
Scientific (including creation)

Has science got rid of God?

Speaking on BBC television, atheist Richard Dawkins claimed, 'I think science really has fulfilled the need that religion did in the past, of explaining things, explaining why we are here, what is the origin of life, where did the world come from, what life is all about'. He is mistaken. The fact is that…

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Good news in the night

Article

December 2004
Evangelistic

Good news in the night

If your phone rings in the middle of the night, you don't expect good news. With dulled senses and some foreboding, you lift the phone expecting the worst. But the best good news that ever came did so in the night. An angel sent by God appeared in the night to shepherds in Israel…

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Article

November 2004
Slovakia

Missionary Spotlight – Fact File – Slovak Republic

Fact File – Slovak Republic Area: A landlocked country of 18,932 square miles; once the eastern 40% of Czechoslovakia.     Neighbours: Poland, Ukraine, Hungary, Austria and the Czech Republic.     Environment: The rugged Carpathian Mountains, including the Tatras, lie to the north (highest point 2,655 metres). South-western Slovakia’s fertile lowland extends to…

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Article

November 2004
Slovakia

Missionary Spotlight – Fact File

  Area:A landlocked country of 18,932 square miles; once the eastern 40% of Czechoslovakia.   Neighbours: Poland, Ukraine, Hungary, Austria and the Czech Republic.   Environment: The rugged Carpathian Mountains, including the Tatras, lie to the north (highest point 2,655 metres). South-western Slovakia’s fertile lowland extends to the River Danube on the Hungarian border.…

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Augustine: Vessel and champion of grace

Historical

November 2004
Articles > Historical

Augustine: Vessel and champion of grace

Here's an interesting question - why should a 21st century Evangelical learn theology from a 5th century African bishop? The answer is that the bishop knew more about God’s grace, both theologically and in his spiritual experience, than many of us. The bishop is of course Augustine of Hippo, the early Church Father whose…

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The Immaculate Conception – drama, dogma and disaster

Article

November 2004
Cults and other religions

The Immaculate Conception – drama, dogma and disaster

The Roman Catholic world is preparing to commemorate the promulgation of 'The Immaculate Conception' of Mary 150 years ago. Much has taken place already to celebrate this event and the climax is expected on 8 December 2004.Worship of Mary, the mother of Jesus, is standard practice in the Church of Rome. A Catechism of…

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Archbishop Deya’s ‘miracle-babies’

Article

November 2004
Cults and other religions

Archbishop Deya’s ‘miracle-babies’

In August this year, journalist John Waite brought to public notice an alarming practice carried out in the name of Christ. It should be a major concern for all Christians, particularly those working with believers who know the pain of infertility.The practice is the supply of so-called ‘miracle-babies’ by Kenyan Archbishop Gilbert Deya, who…

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Article

November 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

Culture clashThere is much heart-searching over the clash of cultures in Britain’s multi-ethnic society. The media sometimes approach overload in dealing with the subject, as politicians and community workers jostle to air their views.Yet the most basic culture clash of all often goes unrecognised — the conflict between the wisdom of the world and…

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Missionary Spotlight – Christianity in Slovakia

Article

November 2004
Slovakia

Missionary Spotlight – Christianity in Slovakia

Slovakia, like Poland, Spain and Italy, is predominantly Catholic, even though it has many churches claiming to be Protestant. These include Baptists, Moravians and various kinds of Brethren. However, in Slovakia, Protestants are largely ecumenical and liberal in theology; and the real, regenerate church — believers saved by grace, through faith in Christ —…

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Preaching Christ

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

They also set up false witnesses who said ... 'We have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth with ... change the customs which Moses delivered to us' (Acts 6:13-14).Last month we saw how New Testament preachers ‘found’ Christ in the Old Testament in Messianic prophecies and types. But they also found Christ…

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Steve Chalke and the cross of Christ

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Steve Chalke and the cross of Christ

Suppose you sang this verse from Charles Wesley’s hymn ‘All ye that pass by’:For what you have doneHis blood must atone:The Father hath punished for you his dear Son.The Lord, in the dayOf his anger, did layYour sins on the Lamb, and he bore them away.And then someone turned on you, and denounced this…

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The Immaculate Conception – drama, dogma and disaster

Article

November 2004
Cults and other religions

The Immaculate Conception – drama, dogma and disaster

The Roman Catholic world is preparing to commemorate the promulgation of 'The Immaculate Conception' of Mary 150 years ago. Much has taken place already to celebrate this event and the climax is expected on 8 December 2004.Worship of Mary, the mother of Jesus, is standard practice in the Church of Rome. A Catechism of…

Read more
Preaching Christ  11. Stephen’s sermon

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ 11. Stephen’s sermon

They also set up false witnesses who said ... 'We have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth with ... change the customs which Moses delivered to us' (Acts 6:13-14).Last month we saw how New Testament preachers ‘found’ Christ in the Old Testament in Messianic prophecies and types. But they also found Christ…

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Called by grace

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Called by grace

Matthew Levi - a tax collector-turned-Christian - had no qualms about recounting his own call to follow Christ. Simply and succinctly he writes in his Gospel: 'As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax office; and he said to him, "Follow me", and he rose and…

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Does God perform miracles today?The story of penicillin (part 2)

Historical

November 2004
Articles > Historical

Does God perform miracles today?The story of penicillin (part 2)

Last month we saw that the discovery of penicillin (and thus of antibiotics generally) involved what Professor R. G. Macfarlane has called an 'incalculably large series of coincidents'. Let us now summarise these.1. The way in which the special mould got into Fleming’s laboratory and onto a Petrie dish loaded with staphylococci bacteria (staphs)…

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THE MAKER’S DIET: SHOULD WE TRY IT?

Article

November 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

THE MAKER’S DIET: SHOULD WE TRY IT?

On 11 April 2004 a new book appeared at number 10 on the New York Times best-seller list and shot straight to the top of online booksellers' lists.1,2 The Maker's diet by Jordan S. Rubin has fast become one of the most popular health plans in the USA.Rubin claims that his health plan is…

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The mystery of sovereignty

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The mystery of sovereignty

God is utterly sovereign in all things, yet we human beings remain responsible for our actions. This is one of the most difficult, yet also one of the most crucial, teachings of the Bible.We cannot easily see how both these things can be true at the same time, but the Scripture certainly teaches both.…

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Missionary Spotlight – A visitor in Slovakia

Article

November 2004
Slovakia

Missionary Spotlight – A visitor in Slovakia

Czechoslovakia divided into two distinct republics in 1993. The Czech Republic is largely irreligious, but the Slovak Republic is predominantly Roman Catholic. In addition to Catholicism, shrines and large church buildings in Slovakia evidence Eastern Orthodoxy, and it is estimated there are about 400,000 adherents of Lutheranism. The credal distinction between Romanism and Lutheranism…

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Guest Column

Article

November 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

Have we lost the priority?I wonder how we can encourage Christians in the UK to give a special place to the church prayer meeting. I detect a change in attitude to corporate prayer and a tendency for it to decline. At the same time, it seems that God's blessing often rests conspicuously on churches…

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Lessons from a broken tree

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Lessons from a broken tree

All night the wind howled. The heavy wooden beams of our log house groaned in protest. In the morning I wandered around our property surveying the damage. Broken branches littered the ground. To the north, the gale had felled a wood-pecker-riddled tree. To the south the wind had snapped off the top half of…

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Word and Spirit

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Word and Spirit

Who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life (2 Corinthians 3:6)The Bible warns the professing church over and over again that if God’s people persist in sin and abandon close fellowship with him, his…

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Christ’s New Covenant

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Christ’s New Covenant

3.  The heart of the covenant'For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my laws in their mind and write them on their hearts: and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. None of them…

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Guest Column

Article

November 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

Have we lost the priority?I wonder how we can encourage Christians in the UK to give a special place to the church prayer meeting. I detect a change in attitude to corporate prayer and a tendency for it to decline. At the same time, it seems that God's blessing often rests conspicuously on churches…

Read more
THE MAKER’S DIET: SHOULD WE TRY IT?

Article

November 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

THE MAKER’S DIET: SHOULD WE TRY IT?

On 11 April 2004 a new book appeared at number 10 on the New York Times best-seller list and shot straight to the top of online booksellers' lists.1,2 The Maker's diet by Jordan S. Rubin has fast become one of the most popular health plans in the USA.Rubin claims that his health plan is…

Read more
Word and Spirit

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Word and Spirit

Who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life (2 Corinthians 3:6)The Bible warns the professing church over and over again that if God’s people persist in sin and abandon close fellowship with him, his…

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The conversion of Arthur Pink : Part 2. Appointment with God

Historical

November 2004
Articles > Historical

The conversion of Arthur Pink : Part 2. Appointment with God

What drew Pink to theosophy is unknown. Perhaps, as in the case of others, it was the society's claim to experience occult phenomena, and certainly their practices were allied to spiritualism. In a later address on the subject Pink spoke of spiritualism (belief in communication with the spirit of the dead) as the ‘pioneer’…

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Steve Chalke and the cross of Christ

Article

November 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Steve Chalke and the cross of Christ

Suppose you sang this verse from Charles Wesley’s hymn ‘All ye that pass by’:For what you have doneHis blood must atone:The Father hath punished for you his dear Son.The Lord, in the dayOf his anger, did layYour sins on the Lamb, and he bore them away.And then someone turned on you, and denounced this…

Read more
Preaching Christ

Article

October 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

10. New Testament practice (cont.)'Then Philip opened his mouth and beginning at this Scripture preached Jesus to him' (Acts 8:35)Last month we considered New Testament practice in preaching Christ from the Old Testament. I identified three ways in which NT writers and preachers ‘found’ Christ in the OT — in direct Messianic references, in…

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Guest Column

Article

October 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

The joy of Jesus ChristIn his book The four loves, C. S. Lewis analyses four different kinds of love. The Bible speaks of different kinds of joy too. I want to draw your attention to four of them.There is the joy of the wicked — ‘For like the crackling of the thorns under a…

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Christ’s new covenant

Article

October 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Christ’s new covenant

2. A better covenantIn the previous article we considered the 'main point' that Christ is our High Priest and intercessor, the one who comes between ourselves and a holy God - who comes from God to us and brings us to God. This present article will consider why a new covenant was needed.Speaking through…

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Missionary Spotlight – Zambia today

Article

October 2004
Zambia

Missionary Spotlight – Zambia today

We have wonderful opportunities to preach Christ in Zambia, and the people are so ready to listen! Lusaka Baptist Church’s (LBC) weekly TV programme has a wide audience, and there are many positive comments from viewers. We are also greatly encouraged by the progress of our sister Reformed Baptist churches in Zambia. This is…

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ET for Christmas?

News

October 2004
News

ET for Christmas?

‘It’s cheap but not nasty!’ someone said. ‘Sure, you would pay that for a good evangelistic tract!’ another commented. The arguments in favour flowed thick and fast. ‘It’s a good format, with a mixture of articles, some long enough to read in the train and some short enough to read over a cup of…

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False conversions – the sad reality

Article

October 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

False conversions – the sad reality

In 1998 Evangelical Press published my book Are you really born again? which was essentially a study of true and false conversions. It was the product of several years of work on the nature of Christian conversion, promoted by my understanding of the contribution of Charles Finney to evangelical Christianity. For the first time…

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Article

October 2004
General

ETI – encouraging progress

The new (October to December) issue of Evangelical Times Internationalcompletes ETI’s first year. The slimmed-down airmail edition of Evangelical Timesnow has subscribers in 46 countries world-wide and a rising circulation.   We are grateful to God for this progress but are conscious that many opportunities remain untapped. Readers can join us in this ministry…

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The conversion of Arthur Pink – Part 1 – Early years

Historical

October 2004
Articles > Historical

The conversion of Arthur Pink – Part 1 – Early years

Arthur Walkington Pink was born on 1 April 1886 - in Nottingham beside the River Trent and in what was then accounted 'the richest country of the world'. Queen Victoria had reigned over a rising prosperity for half a century, and the government of Robert Cecil, third marquis of Salisbury, ruled a quarter of…

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News

October 2004
News

Should British Evangelicals be in prisons?

We cover here the launch a a new conservative evangelical mission to reach prisons across the UK. Gerard Chrispin shares the vision behind DAYLIGHT Christian Prison Trust.Only rarely do we seem to hear anything good about prisons in the UK. By God’s grace there is a notable and encouraging exception — for those who…

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Luther on faith

Historical

October 2004
Articles > Historical

Luther on faith

Faith is not what some people think it is. Their human dream is a delusion. ‘Faith is not enough,’ they say, ‘You must do good works, you must be pious to be saved.’ They think that, when you hear the gospel, you start working, creating by your own strength a thankful heart which says,…

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Article

October 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

Evil - silent witness to the truthThe existence of evil is a potent apologetic argument for the truths of Christianity. Evil is an experiential reality that atheists and agnostics cannot hide from, however ingenious their philosophical arguments. The writer can recall an ex-RAF officer explaining that he could not believe in the existence of…

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Trembling at God’s Word

Article

October 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Trembling at God’s Word

'This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word' (Isaiah 66:2).The one who trembles at God’s Word need tremble at nothing else! But who is it that trembles at God’s Word?1. He who understands God’s Word. There may be those who hear God’s Word…

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Bird brain!

Article

October 2004
Scientific (including creation)

Bird brain!

Last month we reported briefly on recent findings regarding the fossil Archaeopteryx. In this longer article Paul Garner develops the matter further.Archaeopteryx— meaning ‘ancient wing’ — must be one of the most famous fossils in the world. The first skeleton belonging to this creature was discovered in the Solnhofen Limestone of Bavaria in 1861…

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Strangers on the earth – In the footsteps of Baxter and Bunyan

Historical

October 2004
Articles > Historical

Strangers on the earth – In the footsteps of Baxter and Bunyan

The late 17th century saw the last period of organized persecution of Christians in England and produced some of the finest pieces of Christian literature in the English language. The experiences of evangelical believers at that time have a number of things to teach us, as we may soon be facing similar challenges.Christians living…

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Does God perform miracles today? The story of Penicillin

Historical

October 2004
Articles > Historical

Does God perform miracles today? The story of Penicillin

This is part 1 of a 2 part series Part 2 is here I read recently a discussion between two well-known Evangelical ministers. One asked, ‘Is God still performing miracles today?’ The other answered, ‘God can certainly perform miracles today – in fact he can perform miracles at any time. But is he performing…

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Missionary Spotlight – Mongolia – ten years on

Article

October 2004
Mongolia

Missionary Spotlight – Mongolia – ten years on

  Not a few ‘wordsmiths’ have tried to capture a cloud on paper with a pen. Standing in the desert in Mongolia, I turn full circle and on all sides see the earth surrounded by floating balls of cotton-wool. Try to touch them and they are not there, but from where I stand they…

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JACOB HAVE I LOVED

Article

October 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

JACOB HAVE I LOVED

With just 21 verses, Obadiah is the Old Testament's shortest book. It can be read in minutes. And at first glance it appears to be nothing but a prophecy of doom against Edom - an ancient nation buried in the dust of antiquity.Yet this slender prophecy finds its place in the Book of God,…

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Is CARE careless?CARE’s approach to sex education

News

October 2004
News

Is CARE careless?CARE’s approach to sex education

Many parents are now deeply alarmed at the sex education that is being taught to schoolchildren. The Times headline, 'Free contraception boosts teen promiscuity and STDs', reflects this concern.The story of a 14-year-old schoolgirl given an abortion without her mother’s knowledge or consent — on the advice of a young sexual-health advisor — has…

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Jabez – a man of prayer

Article

October 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Jabez – a man of prayer

Tucked away in a neglected book of the Bible are three references to a man named Jabez — who lived some time before the Israelites entered the Promised Land. Just two verses, in a chapter full of names, record all that is known about Jabez, but what we are told is both interesting and…

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The Evangelical Library -problems and prospects

News

September 2004
News

The Evangelical Library -problems and prospects

The Evangelical Library is a unique resource which is both underused and underfunded. The correspondence set out below - consisting of observations by Mr Mike Iliff and an invited response from Library Chairman Professor Paul Helm - highlights both the problems and opportunities that face the work. We print these letters in a deliberate…

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Beware virtual history!

Historical

September 2004
Articles > Historical

Beware virtual history!

Christian faith stands or falls on history. Without the great events of revelation and salvation it loses substance. Its confessions contain vital historical references such as the facts that Christ was 'crucified under Pontius Pilate' and rose 'on the third day'.Theological liberalism, as exemplified by the 19th century Tübingen school, understood this perfectly, and…

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Training for eternity

Article

September 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Training for eternity

Among all the earth’s living wonders, nothing can match the beauty and versatility of the human body. In fact, it is so remarkable that all the nations of the world celebrate it every four years at the Olympic Games.Sport is one of the oldest and noblest ways of expressing pride and experiencing pleasure in…

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Missionary Spotlight-Visit to Mali

Article

September 2004
Mali

Missionary Spotlight-Visit to Mali

  Monday 19 January   Arrived at Bamako at 06.45. It was warm and breezy. In the terminal it was chaos, but we were rescued by the only English speaker, an American. We had a long wait for a bus to Mopti. It was old and the air got ever hotter as we sat…

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Earth and the Christian

Article

September 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Earth and the Christian

The environment is at the centre of society's agenda these days and most people go along with this. Christians, therefore, need to have a well thought-out response. What is a proper biblical view of the Earth and creation as a whole?The creation account in Genesis includes the refrain 'and God saw that it was…

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Christ’s new covenant – The main point

Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Christ’s new covenant – The main point

The letter to the Hebrews was written in the first century to a congregation of Jewish Christians. That is not a contradiction in terms. These people were born Jewish, members of the nation of Israel under the old covenant, but had come to believe in Jesus Christ as the Redeemer promised throughout the Old…

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Archaeopteryx was just an early bird

Article

September 2004
Scientific (including creation)

Archaeopteryx was just an early bird

  British scientists have decided that the fossil Archaeopteryx is not, after all, the 'missing link' between reptiles and birds but was a fully developed bird. The conclusions (published in the scientific journal Nature and reported in the Times on 5 August) stem from a new examination of the creature's skull.   Using the…

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Evangelical – Roman Catholic relationships – Part 3

Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Evangelical – Roman Catholic relationships – Part 3

We come to the third and final part of my review of Leonardo de Chirico’s book, Evangelical theological perspectives on post-Vatican II Roman Catholicism (Bern: Peter Lang, 2003).In the first article, I outlined the historical and theological background to Evangelical-Roman Catholic relationships from 1950 onwards. In the second, we considered six Evangelical theologians identified…

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Guest Column- The weakness of Jesus Christ

Article

September 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column- The weakness of Jesus Christ

When Christ came into this world he came as a weak and helpless baby. He left this world hanging on a cross, in agony beyond description. His life was marked by continual suffering, reproach and rejection. He was, in this world’s terms, weak.But, of course, he is the Lord of glory, the creator of…

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Christ supreme

Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Christ supreme

'That in all things he may have the pre-eminence' (Colossians 1:18)No greater issue confronts the church today than the centrality and supremacy of Christ. A low view of Christ's place and person leaves the Christian in a state of spiritual and doctrinal infancy.Firstly, it is God’s purpose for Christ to have the pre-eminence in…

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Sennacherib loses face

Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Sennacherib loses face

In 1851 the young Englishman Austin Henry Layard (pronounced Laird) was excavating at the ancient site of Nineveh, opposite Mosul in modern Iraq. He opened up room 36 of Sennacherib's 'Palace without Rival', in the mound of Kuyunjik.The walls of the small room were covered with magnificent carved slabs — now in the British…

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Article

September 2004
Mali

Missionary Spotlight – Northern Mali’s young church

The church in northern Mali consists of first generation Christians who need grounding in new attitudes to sin and morality. For example, in Islam stealing is no great sin provided nobody catches you! In Christ, people discover genuine honesty. Many Christians are under pressure from family and friends to return to Islam. Being part…

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Missionary Spotlight – Even the water is dry

Article

September 2004
Mali

Missionary Spotlight – Even the water is dry

  Mali — a former French colony not yet reached by the twenty-first century — is four times the size of the UK, with a population of 12 million. Two-thirds of it is Sahara desert. However, it has an intriguing and glorious past — embracing the ancient Malian and Songhay empires as well as…

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Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The source of strength

Our front page last month addressed the challenge of a new era — such as Joshua faced following the death of Moses. But how did Joshua respond? Initially, not well.This may not be obvious, but Joshua’s state of mind is betrayed by the exhortation to ‘be strong and of good courage’ (Joshua 1:6,7,9). Why…

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‘The dungeon flamed with light’- Evangelical revivals of the 18th century

Historical

September 2004
Articles > Historical

‘The dungeon flamed with light’- Evangelical revivals of the 18th century

Four marks of revival 3 The Farewell Discourse of John 14-16 contains some of the richest teaching on the Holy Spirit in the New Testament. Among the things that our Lord teaches about the Spirit is that when he comes in Pentecostal power he would 'convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgement'.…

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The Evangelical Library – – problems and prospects

News

September 2004
News

The Evangelical Library – – problems and prospects

Much that Michael Illif highlights in his insightful assessment of the Evangelical Library has been acknowledged by the Trustees for some time. Just over two years ago they resolved to take steps to transform the library. Acting on the advice of an independent advisor (now our Communications Director) an upgrade of all the library’s…

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Walking with God

Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Walking with God

What can we learn from Enoch? The Bible says little about him. He was born 622 years after Adam was created. He was the seventh generation from Adam, though with the great ages to which people lived in those days, Adam was still alive for much of Enoch's life.Of Enoch’s first 65 years we…

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Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Cultivating Christian character (3) – Healthy and effective fruit

Love can never be fully understood without a spiritual comprehension of the love of God, particularly as it was displayed at Calvary. It is impossible to experience true joy unless we have a right relationship with God. How can any person know the real meaning of peace, and experience its the true value, if…

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Preaching Christ

Article

September 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

9. New Testament practice'For [Apollos] vigorously refuted the Jews publicly, showing from the scriptures that Jesus is the Christ' (Acts 18:28).Last month we began to consider the subject ‘Preaching Christ from the Old Testament’. I asked two questions — firstly, should we always seek to present Christ when preaching from the Old Testament, whatever…

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Whatever happened to the human race?

Article

September 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Whatever happened to the human race?

This is the twenty-fifth anniversary of the publication of Whatever happened to the human race? It is a remarkable book.  In a list of 'books that changed me', this unquestionably ranks in my top five. I have just re-read it with unexpected profit.Whatever happenedwas more than just a book by a theologian (Schaeffer) and…

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Article

August 2004
Armenia

Missionary Spotlight-Artur Marandyan’s testimony

I was born on 1 November 1975, in Kirovogam (now Fanatsor) in Armenia. I was brought up in a good family, being the oldest of three children. My parents were nominal Christians. One day in 1988 my parents took us children away with them on a business trip. But we never returned to Kirovogam,…

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Revival in Essex

Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

Revival in Essex

If you are sometimes tempted to think that 'Old England' has gone for ever - that few quiet corners of the country remain to tell the story of past generations - then you must visit the sleepy village of Chrishall in Essex on a sunny morning in early summer.Thatched cottages stand along its winding…

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Preaching Christ

Article

August 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

Preaching Christ from the Old Testament'Then  Paul... reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and demonstrating that the Christ had to suffer and rise again from the dead, and saying, "This Jesus whom I preach to you is the Christ"' (Acts 17:2-3).Preachers seldom have difficulty preaching from the Old Testament - but preaching Christ…

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The cutting edge

Article

August 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The cutting edge

What does inerrancy mean? It means that the Bible is wholly true. Paul Feinberg has written, 'Inerrancy means that when all facts are known, the Scriptures in their original autographs and properly interpreted will be shown to be wholly true in everything they teach, whether that teaching has to do with doctrine, history, science,…

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Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

The onset of the 1904 revival – a timeline

These events are reported without theological analysis 1891: Evan Roberts (1878-1950), converted as a young boy, becomes a communicant member at Moriah Calvinistic Methodist (CM) Church, Loughor (near Swansea), aged 13. He is challenged by an exhortation of Moriah elder William Davies to seek the Holy Spirit and never miss a meeting. Later, Roberts…

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Evangelical – Roman Catholic relationships

Article

August 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Evangelical – Roman Catholic relationships

Last month I described in a simplified way some of the historical and theological background to Roman Catholic-Evangelical relationships (and the attitudes that accompanied them) from 1950 to the present time.Readers should now be in a better position to appreciate Leonardo De Chirico's valuable book, Evangelical theological perspectives on post-Vatican II Roman Catholicism. In…

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Article

August 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Cultivating Christian character (2)

‘But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control ‘ (Galatians 5:22-23) As we seek to persuade people of the truth and efficacy of the gospel we need to bear some things in mind. Firstly, it is only the power of the Holy Spirit that can…

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What is revival?

Article

August 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

What is revival?

In evaluating revivals we must reason from valid theology. And if we are to be Evangelicals and not mystics, our authority must be Scripture, not just experience.The fundamental theological question must be: 'What is a biblical revival?' Acts 2 provides the normative answer. Revival is a surge of life from the Holy Spirit, bringing…

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Article

August 2004
Armenia

Missionary Spotlight-Reaching the Ezids

It is estimated that there are 500,000 Ezids in the world today. Ezids are an ethnic group related to the Kurds, who live in Armenia, Georgia, Iraq, Syria and Turkey. About 50,000 live in the Ararat valley of Armenia, where Hope to People missionaries from the Ukraine have been working for over a year.…

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Guest Column

Article

August 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

How often do you give time to meditate on the character of Jesus Christ? Have you recently considered the humility of Jesus Christ?The Gospels show that Christ's entire life was one of humility. We see the humble - and humiliating - surroundings in which he is born. With Mary heavily pregnant, she and Joseph…

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The dungeon flamed with light

Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

The dungeon flamed with light

Last month we saw that revivals may differ from one another in many respects. Yet there are some characteristics that recur in all revivals, whatever their historical setting and whatever leaders are involved. We now consider four of these characteristics.Australian historian Stuart Piggin defines revival thus: 'Revival is a sovereign work of God the…

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1904 – the Welsh Awakening

Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

1904 – the Welsh Awakening

A century ago, Wales experienced that last national religious revival - an awakening whose influence was felt in the four corners of the world and (according to the estimates of the time) brought in 100,000 new converts. Yet this great movement of the Spirit had small beginnings - that did not always involve the…

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No grapes, no nuts

Article

August 2004
Evangelistic

No grapes, no nuts

Christian Science (officially, the Church of Christ, Scientist) is a rather 'quiet' organisation that rarely hits the headlines. It is of interest, however, because of its apparent claim to link science and Christianity. But like the American breakfast cereal 'Grape Nuts', which contains neither grapes nor nuts, Christian Science it is neither Christian nor…

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Conversion

Article

August 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Conversion

Conversion is the change of life that accompanies regeneration. In the New Testament the word conversion indicates 'turning back', 'returning' or 'changing director' (cf. John 21:20).The New Testament uses the word 'conversion' to denote a decisive, God-ward reorientation: 'you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait…

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Article

August 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

Last month we considered the example set by Paul and his fellow missionaries when they evangelised Thessalonica. We saw that they, in turn, were following the example of Christ who, 'being in the form of God ... humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death' that he might redeem us to God…

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Missionary Spotlight-Compassion in Cambodia

Article

August 2004
Cambodia

Missionary Spotlight-Compassion in Cambodia

The ministry of Christ was characterised by compassion for the whole person. It was against the backdrop of ministering to physical needs (Matthew 9:36-38) that Jesus told his disciples to pray for workers for the spiritual harvest. It is difficult to maintain the balance between ministering to physical and spiritual needs while keeping the…

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Reflections on the Welsh Revival

Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

Reflections on the Welsh Revival

Scripture is full of counsel about the importance of remembering - something specially needful in an age that seems determined to abandon history. Deuteronomy 32:7 says, 'Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father; and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you'.Psalm 105 begins…

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Reflections on the Welsh Revival

Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

Reflections on the Welsh Revival

Scripture is full of counsel about the importance of remembering - something specially needful in an age that seems determined to abandon history. Deuteronomy 32:7 says, 'Remember the days of old; consider the years of many generations; ask your father; and he will show you, your elders, and they will tell you'.Psalm 105 begins…

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John Eliot: Puritan Missionary to the Indians

Historical

August 2004
Articles > Historical

John Eliot: Puritan Missionary to the Indians

The Puritans were deeply committed to missionary endeavour. All the well-known Puritan and Covenanting ministers subscribed to a petition presented to parliament in 1641 'for the propagating of the gospel in America and the West Indies'. The best example of this spirit was to be found in New England. The Massachusetts Bay Company's Charter…

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Missionary Spotlight-Papua New Guinea

Article

August 2004
Papua New Guinea

Missionary Spotlight-Papua New Guinea

The Christian worker made his way round PNG villages that had called for his help and advice. These villages had heard and responded to the gospel during the last 50 years. Like the church at Thessalonica, their parents and grandparents had ‘turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God’ (1…

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The stranger within our gates

News

July 2004
News

The stranger within our gates

We have all been strangers in a new place - disturbed when no one seems to care about us. Even in our own country we can have difficulty understanding the locals, and are reassured when we meet someone we can talk to . We learn something of what it means to be a stranger…

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Evangelical-Roman Catholic relationships

Article

July 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Evangelical-Roman Catholic relationships

The subject is a crucial one. It is also extremely relevant and pressing. As one might expect, it is a controversial subject too. I am referring to Evangelical-Roman Catholic relationships.No, I am not reporting on the latest Evangelicals and Catholics Together (ECT) developments or questionable appointments to evangelical agencies. My intention this month is…

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Eastern Orthodoxy

Article

July 2004
Cults and other religions

Eastern Orthodoxy

.  Understanding the Incarnationby William J. BaldwinThe Orthodox misunderstand the purpose and nature of the Incarnation. The Incarnation does not repeal the second commandment - it establishes it. When Hebrews calls Christ 'the exact representation of [God's] nature' it does so in the context of the uniqueness of Christ. God has spoken to us…

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Article

July 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Cultivating Christian character (1)

‘But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control’ (Galatians 5:22-23). These verses offer us a beautiful portrait of the fruit of the Holy Spirit. This ‘fruit’ is a cluster of nine interdependent (rather than independent) attributes that bear evidence of the work of the Spirit…

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Regeneration

Article

July 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Regeneration

Some years ago I spent many hours with a Nepalese friend explaining the message of Christ as best I could. We studied the Bible together and I tried to answer his many questions about God, Jesus, sin and salvation. I believed the Holy Spirit was working in his life and I longed to see…

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Are there any Christian leaders?

Article

July 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Are there any Christian leaders?

I have noticed a subtle shift in Christian vocabulary over the years. When I began my ministry in Hull in 1985 I received an invitation to the local 'Evangelical ministers' fraternal'. On arriving in Thirsk seventeen years later, I was invited to the local 'Church leaders' meeting'.These days, it seems, leaders is a more…

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Article

July 2004
Laos

Missionary Spotlight

Persecution in Laos Laos, the world’s third-largest illicit opium producer, is a country with primitive infrastructure. It has a rudimentary road system, limited telecommunications, and no railroads. Electricity is available in only a few urban areas. Subsistence agriculture accounts for half the gross domestic product. It is also a country where Christians face severe…

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The dungeon flamed with light

Historical

July 2004
Articles > Historical

The dungeon flamed with light

Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), described by Martyn Lloyd-Jones as 'pre-eminently the theologian of Revival', once said: 'The Holy Spirit, in his indwelling, his influences and fruits, is the sum of all grace, holiness, comfort and joy or, in one word, of all the spiritual good Christ purchased for men in this world: and is also…

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Ministering to asylum seekers

News

July 2004
News

Ministering to asylum seekers

The term 'asylum seeker' was not common until four years ago, but now it is used with disdain or even hatred - often incited by misrepresentation from politicians and the Press.Whatever your reaction, I want to tell you about some we have met during the last four years, and how our church is trying…

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Guest Column

Article

July 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

Praying for revivalby Roger EllsworthRevival is a time when God's people are moved to a higher level of prayer. Prayer is one of the indispensable means God uses to revive his people. There is no revival without it.Jonathan Edwards offered this observation about God's dealings with his people: 'When he is about to bestow…

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Reaping the results

Article

July 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Reaping the results

A school in Bath is facing conflict over the proposal of the governing body to introduce a policy of enabling the 'morning-after' abortion pill to be given to children without parental consent. The reaction of some parents was so strong that the final decision was stalled.The prescribing of such a drug to children under…

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Antidote for anxiety

Article

July 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Antidote for anxiety

'For thus saith the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength: and ye would not' (Isaiah 30:15)We are living in a hectic world of stress and strain. More and more people are seeing psychiatrists and counsellors for…

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Missionary Spotlight

Article

July 2004
Laos

Missionary Spotlight

Christianity in Laos As we climbed the wooden ladder of the house on stilts, I thought of its owner; a 95-year-old lady, and her long journey of faith. She had been walking it since the day her husband, once the village spirit medium, had believed and then been stoned to death for his faith.…

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Reeth Bookshop

News

July 2004
News

Reeth Bookshop

Faith Cook opened the Old Temperance Bookshop at Reeth over a year ago - and we're still here! Thanks to our willing volunteer staff we continue to open four afternoons and one morning a week.We have had customers from the USA, New Zealand and Australia. The latter was carrying an Evangelical Times advert for…

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Article

July 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

The power of exampleHowever you view the possible marriage of Prince Charles to Camilla Parker-Bowles, most would agree that they have set a deplorable example in their marital and extra-marital relationships.Whether the Church of England has set a better example in dealing with these matters is doubtful. Nor can our generation look to the…

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Article

July 2004
Laos

Missionary Spotlight

  Taking the good news into Laos In this age of instant information and the Internet, few places in the world remain as remote and unexplored as Laos. It is surrounded by high, rugged mountains to the north, east and south; and by the mighty Mekong River along its western borders.      …

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Preaching Christ

Article

July 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

1.  Preaching Christ to Christians'Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus' (Colossians 1:28).We now turn to a subject that is in some ways contentious - do we need to preach Christ to those who are already believers? Some…

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The cutting edge-An occasional series on doctrinal issues today

Article

June 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The cutting edge-An occasional series on doctrinal issues today

The new bishop of Durham, N. T. Wright, unlike the infamous Bishop Jenkins who once occupied that prestigious post, is no liberal Anglican. He is an internationally respected scholar who actually believes in the bodily resurrection of Jesus. Nevertheless, Tom Wright has become something of a controversial figure in conservative evangelical circles over the…

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Finding my feet

Article

June 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Finding my feet

In a recent interview reported in a national daily, Jason Robinson was asked about his sporting motto. His answer was: 'A biblical one, 'in everything, I do it unto the Lord'. It means I give my all to do well'.He was further asked: 'Who would you most like to invite to dinner - and…

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‘Go out quickly’ – Open-air evangelism

Article

June 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

‘Go out quickly’ – Open-air evangelism

In this age of high-tech media, is it necessary to take the gospel into the highways and byways? In our post-modern culture, is street preaching an appropriate means of evangelism? In the past the Lord has blessed such activities but doesn't it take something different to reach the sophisticated masses today? Well, as an…

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The dungeon flamed with light-Evangelical revivals of the 18th century

Historical

June 2004
Articles > Historical

The dungeon flamed with light-Evangelical revivals of the 18th century

Jonathan Edwards' treatise An Humble Attempt (to promote agreement and unity in prayer) was inspired by information he received during 1745. It concerned a prayer movement for revival which had been formed by a number of Scottish evangelical ministers, including his regular correspondents John McLaurin (1693-1754) of the Ramshorn Church, Glasgow; William McCulloch (1691-1771)…

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Article

June 2004
Fiji

Missionary Spotlight – Fact File – Fiji

 Fiji Fact File An island group in the South Pacific Ocean, of about 7,000 square miles. Fiji comprises 2 larger mountainous islands (Viti Levu and Vanua Levu) of volcanic origin, as well as 104 smaller inhabited islands and over 200 uninhabited islands.     Climate:Tropical.   Population:About 900,000.   Ethnic groups:Fijians 51%; Indians 44%;…

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Guest Column-Broken hearts and numbered stars

Article

June 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column-Broken hearts and numbered stars

Christians know what it is to have a passage of Scripture 'leap off the page'. This often happens with a portion that we have read many times before. When it occurs it is as if we were seeing the words for the first time. This was my experience some time ago with these words…

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Article

June 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

Is God calling you to the mission field?Both of our page three news items concern overseas mission. Have you ever wondered if the Lord is calling you to be a missionary? If so (or even if not so!), here is a checklist to focus your thinking and that of any church engaged in this…

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The gospel of grace in Australia

Article

June 2004
Australia

The gospel of grace in Australia

The centre of Australian evangelical life in Australia is the Anglican diocese of Sydney – centred on Moore College, the publications of Matthias Press, and the national leadership of Archbishop Peter Jensen. Its influence radiates outwards into the whole of Australian Christian life and work. While some aspects of this influence give me cause…

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Spiritual Warfare

Article

June 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Spiritual Warfare

Popular contemporary songwriter Graham Kendrick supports 'strategic level spiritual warfare; (SLSW). 'Satan', he writes, 'has the real-estate of villages, towns and cities over-shadowed by ruling spirits which work untiringly at his command to bring about his malevolent will - fostering fear, violence and deception'.1Last month we began to review Michael Reid's recent book on…

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Eastern Orthodoxy

Article

June 2004
Cults and other religions

Eastern Orthodoxy

Eastern Orthodoxy is self-consciously connected to the past. Its proponents pride themselves on their distinction from modern, rootless Evangelicals who neither have, nor seem to want, a doctrinal connection with the historic church.Williams and Anstall make a typical comment: 'Perhaps one of the most striking and unique things about Orthodox Christianity, especially in this…

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Missionary Spotlight

Article

June 2004
Laos

Missionary Spotlight

Christianity in Laos As we climbed the wooden ladder of the house on stilts, I thought of its owner; a 95-year-old lady, and her long journey of faith. She had been walking it since the day her husband, once the village spirit medium, had believed and then been stoned to death for his faith.…

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Missionary Spotlight-Recovering the gospel in Fiji

Article

June 2004
Fiji

Missionary Spotlight-Recovering the gospel in Fiji

Indigenous Fijians have professed Christianity for over 100 years, the gospel having first arrived through Methodist missionaries. But today the Methodist Church in Fiji has departed from its theological moorings and the biblical gospel. In the late 1970s a Baptist church was started in Lautoka, Fiji, with the aim of fresh evangelistic outreach to…

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Preaching Christ

Article

June 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

Heralding the Saviour'For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus' sake' (2 Corinthians 4:5).In previous articles we have considered two of the Greek words translated 'to preach' in our English Bibles - one meaning to 'tell good news (evangelise)' and another 'to tell thoroughly'. We…

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Is Scientific American unscientific?

Article

June 2004
Scientific (including creation)

Is Scientific American unscientific?

Last month we began to look at the attempts made by the popular science journal Scientific Americanto refute 15 creationist arguments (or more strictly, arguments attributed to creationists). We considered seven of these points and now complete our examination of the remainder. In each case, the heading summarises the argument in question. This is…

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Missionary Spotlight – Fiji’s gospel heritage

Article

June 2004
Fiji

Missionary Spotlight – Fiji’s gospel heritage

The Pacific islanders are well known as seafarers. With their huge canoes, they have criss-crossed the Pacific Ocean, travelling from one island kingdom to another. As far back as the sixteenth century, Tongans traded with the Lau group of islands to the east of the Fijian group. This trading led to inter-marriage and a…

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Preaching Christ

Article

May 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

5.   Preaching the atonementby Edgar Andrews'And I, brethren, when I came to you did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified' (1 Corinthians 2:1-2).Last month we explored what it means…

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Spiritual Warfare

Article

May 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Spiritual Warfare

Are you familiar with the initials SLSW? For a significant number of Christians, especially in the West, the initials are not only familiar - they are important. The initials stand for Strategic Level Spiritual Warfare.For over twenty years now, there has been a massive amount of writing and preaching on this subject. Its famous…

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Missionary Spotlight – Open door in Cambodia

Article

May 2004
Cambodia

Missionary Spotlight – Open door in Cambodia

My wife and I are Korean missionaries who have served in Cambodia since September 1997. We are supported by the Life Bible Presbyterian Church, Singapore. We trained in a Singapore Bible college before taking up our present assignment, which is our first full-time ministry for the Lord.   Six years   In 1997 there…

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‘The dungeon flamed with light’

Historical

May 2004
Articles > Historical

‘The dungeon flamed with light’

Evangelical revivals of the 18th centuryJonathan Edwards and praying for revival (1)by Michael HaykinIn an essay published in the mid-1960s, before the resurgence of interest in Jonathan Edwards, Peter Gay, an historian with little sympathy for Edwards’ theological vision, contrasted him with Charles Chauncy (1705-1787). Chauncy was Edwards’ main theological opponent during the Great…

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Article

May 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

Engaging the enemySometimes we are faced with evil situations we cannot change. Most depressing are those that militate against gospel progress. They may continue for years. An influential person in the workplace ‘rubbishes’ the witness of an evangelical Christian. An unconverted person ‘has it in’ for a converted member of their family. Or maybe…

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The charismatic movement – a short history

Historical

May 2004
Articles > Historical

The charismatic movement – a short history

3.   The Vineyardby Jonathan BayesOne result of the rapid progress made by 'Restorationism' in the years immediately after 1975 was that the renewal movement within the denominations (see Part 1 of this series) began to decline.Many people who had been involved in the renewal moved into the Restorationist movement, having become disillusioned with attempts…

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Should children be taught atheism?

Article

May 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Should children be taught atheism?

A new think-tank report has proposed that children should learn about atheism as part of their religious education in schools.The think-tank, which has close ties with New Labour, has had its radical views published by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR). The document suggests that the title ‘religious education’ should be ditched and…

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Missionary Spotlight

Article

May 2004
Cambodia

Missionary Spotlight

Mali, an OMF worker from Thailand, has been in Cambodia for eight years. She is a naturally warm and friendly person and gets into conversation with anyone, anywhere. Mali and I found Pu Song (with the help of his wife) in one of the poorest government hospitals in Phnom Penh. His emaciated body lay…

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Missionary Spotlight

Article

May 2004
Cambodia

Missionary Spotlight

‘You will rule in the midst of your enemies’ (Psalm 110:2) Saren, a burly, genial medical colleague and I were talking last week. Just 13 years old when the Khmer Rouge took power, he had been separated from his family and placed in a mobile brigade, building dams. He and I had been together…

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The cutting edge

Article

May 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The cutting edge

An occasional series on doctrinal issues todayThe Kingdom of God (2)by James M. RenihanIn the first article (March ET) we set about the task of defining the kingdom of God. We continue by considering who are its citizens and what are its characteristics.Who are its proper citizens and heirs? When the disciples asked who…

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Is Scientific American unscientific?

Article

May 2004
Scientific (including creation)

Is Scientific American unscientific?

The editor-in-chief of the leading popular science journal Scientific Americanhas charged creationists with being unscientific. In the July 2002 issue, John Rennie wrote an article entitled 'Fifteen answers to creationist nonsense', claiming that creationist arguments do not hold up. Although the article is nearly two years old, the issues have not gone away.If creationists…

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God accepts you!

Article

May 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

God accepts you!

'God accepts you as you are.' You often here this statement bandied about in Christian circles - but what does it actually mean?Is it just a cheap psychological phrase used by modern evangelists to elicit hasty, shallow decisions for Christ? Or a licence to sin, hiding behind a theology of ‘cheap grace’? In truth,…

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Article

May 2004
Cambodia

Missionary Spotlight – Cambodia Facts

  Area:69,898 square miles.   Neighbours : Thailand, Laos and Vietnam.   Environment : A tropical monsoon climate, with heavy rain in the few mountainous areas (Phnum Aoral 1,801 metres). Most of Cambodia consists of a low, flat, alluvial plain, dominated by the Mekong River. The large Tonle Sap (Great Lake) communicates with the…

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James Montgomery

Historical

May 2004
Articles > Historical

James Montgomery

James Montgomery was almost six when he travelled with his father from the Moravian Settlement at Gracehill, Co. Antrim, to the Moravian school at Fulneck  - which would be his home for the next ten years. During the voyage a violent storm struck fear into the boy, but he was comforted as his father…

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The eye and hand of God

Article

May 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The eye and hand of God

'But the eye of their God was watching over the elders of the Jews' (Ezra 5:5)With our eyes we apprehend reality by visual means. But our optical abilities, however good, are limited. We compensate, of course. We have surgical procedures and spectacles to correct impaired vision. We have created telescopes and microscopes to view…

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Guest Column

Article

May 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

The darkness of CalvaryHave you ever tried to imagine yourself watching the crucifixion of Jesus? What would you have found most unforgettable? With no shortage of details from which to choose, I would select the darkness that shrouded the land. This darkness fell at noon and lasted until three o’clock.There has never been such…

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Missionary Spotlight – Revenge and reconciliation

Article

May 2004
Cambodia

Missionary Spotlight – Revenge and reconciliation

Three years ago I went with a colleague to the Preah Key Mialia military hospital in Phnom Penh, notorious for its appalling conditions. The huge colonial building was filthy. Avoiding dead rats on the stairs, we walked through noisy corridors filled with mutilated men and women, on crutches and in old broken-down wheelchairs, who…

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Missionary Spotlight – African dimensions

Article

April 2004
Articles > World Mission > Africa

Missionary Spotlight – African dimensions

I have recently returned from southern Africa as part of my work for the Dorothea Mission and am reflecting on a memorable trip that overwhelmed the senses. I was left with a vision of the immense problems of the region and yet the immense opportunities. Problems   The problems run through every aspect of…

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Missionary Spotlight – Blessing in Kwazulu Natal

Article

April 2004
South Africa

Missionary Spotlight – Blessing in Kwazulu Natal

Hillcrest is a small but growing town in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa, some twenty miles inland from Durban. Its Baptist church, pastored by Jonathan Holdt, has a morning congregation of about 80 people. On the wall above the church door you see these words as you leave: ‘You are now entering the mission field’.…

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Three crosses, two thieves, one Saviour

Article

April 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Three crosses, two thieves, one Saviour

The two thieves were similar in many ways. Both were convicted robbers, perhaps even murderers; each was physically as close to Jesus as the other; both were witnesses to the suffering of Jesus; and both called on Jesus to save them.Initially, both thieves mocked and taunted Jesus (Matthew 27:44; Mark 15:32). One spoke abruptly…

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The glories of Christ

Article

April 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The glories of Christ

God sent his Son into the world that he might 'put away sin by the sacrifice of himself', for 'Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures' (Hebrews 9:26; 1 Corinthians 15:3). This is what sets the death of Christ apart from all other deaths. Everyone born into this sad world is under…

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Article

April 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

George Barna surveys the church

He has written a number of best-sellers including The frog in the kettle, The second coming of the church, and more recently, The state of the church (2002).SBC LIFE, the journal of the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee, published an interview with Barna in its January edition. What follows is a shortened version of…

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Concerning Cults

Article

April 2004
Cults and other religions

Concerning Cults

Richard had a fear of getting caught up in a cult and being deceived. He was seeking God and 'truth' and there were lots of questions he wanted answered - but reliably and authoritatively. Surely, here was a 'church' which could help him.But he was also reassured by the word 'family'. Richard thought highly…

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Missionary Spotlight

Article

April 2004
United Kingdom

Missionary Spotlight

Let’s call him ‘Rick’. We met him at a small midweek meeting in his prison. He listened attentively. It surprised me. This hard, scarred, tattooed skinhead, with a cocky cockney accent, did not strike me as one who would be serious about God. I don’t know why I reacted like that – for we…

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What you won’t learn from ‘The Passion’

Article

April 2004
DVD

What you won’t learn from ‘The Passion’

Mel Gibson's film The Passion of the Christ is being touted by religious leaders and organisations as 'one of the greatest evangelistic tools in modern-day history'.There are, however, some things you won't learn from it, even though it claims to be a faithful rendering of the biblical accounts.It will not teach you the gospelThe…

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Missionary Spotlight

Article

April 2004
Philippines

Missionary Spotlight

Manila is a bustling mega-city of 14 million people. I have been here for seven months, working alongside Cubao Reformed Baptist Church. God is giving us many evangelistic opportunities each week, but we have seen few conversions from our work. This raises many questions. Here are two that I find challenging. Two questions  …

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Article

April 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

The empty tomb of Jesus Christ declares that a time is fast approaching when every grave and cemetery will be emptied. Not only those who have died within living memory, but the whole human race, will be raised at the general resurrection of the dead, at Christ's Second Coming. Never again, after that climactic…

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Guest Column

Article

April 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

'Ask! What shall I give you?' said the Lord to young King Solomon (1 Kings 3:5) and David's son asked for 'an understanding heart' (v. 9). Not the highest gift, nor what his father would have requested (Psalm 27:4), but valuable - shrewdness, common sense, nous, the ability to read people and situations, practical…

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The gospel in the Arab world

Article

April 2004
Islam

The gospel in the Arab world

As a young National Serviceman, I was disappointed to be posted to Aden (now Yemen) in 1956 – I wanted to visit Singapore and Malaysia instead. After all, no tourists ever went on holiday to this barren spot!   But the Lord had reasons for sending me, because there I met Arabs for the…

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The dungeon flamed with light

Historical

April 2004
Articles > Historical

The dungeon flamed with light

The book seeks to answer both the misguided zeal of James Davenport and the cold intellectualism of Charles Chauncy - aberrant positions that we looked at last month. But it is noteworthy that the longest section of the book is an answer to Davenport's position.Edwards regarded the misguided zeal of those like Davenport as…

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The charismatic movement – a short history

Historical

April 2004
Articles > Historical

The charismatic movement – a short history

Needless to say, this did not go down well with other churches in the city! The three uniting congregations were an Independent Holiness Church, a charismatic House Church, and a Brethren Assembly. The new church was led by Bryn Jones.This event marked the emergence of 'Restorationism' as a separate strand within the charismatic movement,…

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Has science got rid of God

Article

April 2004
Scientific (including creation)

Has science got rid of God

Oxford scholar Peter Atkins accuses Christianity of propagating 'manifest nonsense that is totally incompatible with our scientific understanding of the world'. His colleague Richard Dawkins calls a God-centred worldview, 'ignominious, contemptible and retarded', and claims that religion 'is no longer a serious candidate in the field of explanation'.This is rousing stuff, and countless people…

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Passion of Christ – the movie

Article

April 2004
DVD

Passion of Christ – the movie

Many Protestant and Baptist religious leaders, as well as Roman Catholics, not only endorse the movie but even see it as an excellent means of evangelism and teaching. The fact that Billy Graham and James Dobson are among them ought to raise red flags for anyone who believes the biblical gospel. The media line…

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Preaching Christ

Article

April 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

Last month we saw that to 'preach Christ' faithfully we must preach him 'thoroughly'. That is the significance of the Greek word katangello, one of the three major terms translated 'preach' in our English New Testament.To preach nothing 'except Christ and him crucified' (1 Corinthians 2:2) might at first seem restrictive, but our text…

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The charismatic movement – a short history

Historical

March 2004
Articles > Historical

The charismatic movement – a short history

1. Renewalby Jonathan BayesDate: Sunday 2 April 1960. Place: an Anglican Church in California. The congregation is gathered for the morning service. Suddenly they are greeted with a surprise announcement.Some of them are rather taken aback. Their rector, Dennis Bennett, informs them that he has been baptised with the Holy Spirit. He tells them…

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Missionary Spotlight – Ugandan children in crisis

Article

March 2004
Uganda

Missionary Spotlight – Ugandan children in crisis

  Ongoing violence by rebels in the north of Uganda is having a devastating effect on the population, especially on the children. The rebel organisation known cynically as ‘the Lord’s Resistance Army’ (LRA) operates in the area around the city of Gulu. In 17 years of violence, 25,000 children have been abducted, and thousands…

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Developments Down Under

Article

March 2004
Australia

Developments Down Under

Having recently visited the UK, and been invited to write for ET about the situation facing Christians in Australia, I am most happy to contribute this short report on conditions in the Antipodes. Australia and Britain share many of the problems endemic in Western countries generally, and I am sure the reader will readily…

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No room for gloom

Article

March 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

No room for gloom

Few would dispute that we are living in difficult times for the church of Jesus Christ. We can almost feel the intensity of the evil and the antagonism towards the Christian faith. Outwardly there is not much to be optimistic about. The Christian, however, is taught to look at the things which are not…

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Guest Column

Article

March 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column

The challenge of old ageArecent birthday has spurred me to think about growing old! Not only are policemen getting younger, but people are living longer — ten years more on average than a generation ago.The number of over-80s in the United Kingdom is growing by ten thousand a year. Old age — with its…

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Missionary Spotlight – Romanian Encounter

Article

March 2004
Romania

Missionary Spotlight – Romanian Encounter

I want to share the single most significant event I experienced during a recent trip to Romania. It occurred on a Sunday. I was sent to preach in a village 90 minutes drive west of Iasi, where there has been recent severe persecution of Romanian Baptists by the Orthodox Church. After preaching in the…

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Sacrificial giving

Article

March 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Sacrificial giving

'When they arrived at the house of the LORD in Jerusalem, some of the heads of the families gave freewill offerings towards the rebuilding of the house of God in its site. According to their ability they gave to the treasury for this work 61,000 drachmas of gold, 5,000 minas of silver and 100…

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Article

March 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment

Taking sin seriouslyWhen Ezra tore his clothes, plucked his beard and ‘sat down appalled’, he was experiencing conviction of sin (Ezra 9:3). He did not mourn his personal sin, of course, but that of his fellow repatriates — who had been freed from captivity only to inter-marry with idolatrous Canaanites (9:1-2).Nevertheless, Ezra identified with…

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Preaching Christ

Article

March 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

3. Telling the good news thoroughly'God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles - which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in…

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Essential things

Article

March 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Essential things

Last month I suggested that the church had two essential functions to perform, one external and the other internal. Last time I focused on the external, namely, obedience to the Great Commission - because the church that does not evangelise must ultimately fossilise.Now I want to identify the internal essentials. I suggest that God…

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The glories of Christ

Article

March 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The glories of Christ

. His lifeLast month we considered the glory of Christ’s deity. Let us look next at the sinless life of the blessed Son of God.At his birth, the Lord Jesus Christ was the object of the wise men’s worship, as they presented their gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh (Matthew 2:11). Gold speaks of…

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‘The dungeon flamed with light’ Evangelical revivals of the 18th century

Historical

March 2004
Articles > Historical

‘The dungeon flamed with light’ Evangelical revivals of the 18th century

Jonathan Edwards (5)by Michael HaykinThe New Testament was written in the context of the greatest spiritual revival that the world has ever seen - and it plainly indicates that there are problems even in times of revival. The revivals of the eighteenth century were no exception.In New England, Jonathan Edwards soon realised that there…

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The cutting edge

Article

March 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The cutting edge

An occasional series on doctrinal issues todayThe kingdom of God (1)by James M. Renihan'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand'. With these words, John the Baptist preached to the nation of Israel, preparing the way for Messiah.Matthew tells us in the next chapter of his Gospel that Jesus went forth proclaiming the…

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Article

March 2004
Ukraine

Missionary Spotlight – Ukraine testimony

My name is Aleksandr. I was born in western Ukraine and my childhood was typical of many who were educated by communist (Komsomol) pioneers. We were taught the non-existence of God and the essential greatness of man. After I had been to a Komsomol republican camp (‘Young Guards’) I became leader of the youth…

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Missionary Spotlight – Women of Turkey

Article

March 2004
Turkey

Missionary Spotlight – Women of Turkey

  Millions of Turkey’s city-dwellers live in apartments. The doorman or kapiciis the caretaker of an apartment block, and every block employs one. He and his family usually live rent-free in a dark basement apartment, close to the central-heating boiler room.   His wife is responsible for cleaning the staircases and getting up early…

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Concerning Cults

Article

March 2004
Cults and other religions

Concerning Cults

Conversations with Godby Eryl DaviesThe title sounds good. You may even think it is a reference to prayer. However, you should not be deceived. In subtle and blatant ways these 'conversations' contradict the divine teaching of the Bible.But why refer to them here? There are two reasons for doing so. First, these ‘conversations’ are…

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Phenomena in revival

Historical

March 2004
Articles > Historical

Phenomena in revival

Almost all whom God has used in revival are quick to point out that unusual phenomena are merely incidental to the great work of God. One writer in The Life of Faith for January 1905 concluded: ‘It is possible to be occupied too exclusively with the mere incidents of the movement — deeply impressive,…

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The new pagans

Article

February 2004
Cults and other religions

The new pagans

Pagans were the country folk ('pagan' means country dweller) who resisted organised religion and practised ancient rituals and ceremonies. Their pre-Christian religion could be described as animism - the belief that everything is alive with natural or supernatural spirits.The ancient pagans used magical enchantments, honoured a myriad of gods and goddesses, and lived close…

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Article

February 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Feeling medium

Although I know something was wrong, the news came as a shock. I’ve always imagined myself blasting through the golden years with verve and energy – bounding up stairs at a single leap, running to the top of towering hills and thumping my chest in victory. No more. Suddenly my goals are more prosaic.…

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Concerning Cults

Article

February 2004
Cults and other religions

Concerning Cults

Mormon Fundamentalists (3)Do Dan Lafferty and Osama bin Laden have anything in common? 'I've asked myself that', Dan acknowledges. In prison with his brother Ron for the gruesome murder of their sister-in-law and her baby, Dan is reflective but unrepentant.'Is that what I'm like?' His personal answer is an emphatic 'No'. His reasons? The…

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The cutting edge-An occasional series on doctrinal issues today

Article

February 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The cutting edge-An occasional series on doctrinal issues today

The late twentieth and early twenty-first century have witnessed the proliferation of churches, some of which have mushroomed overnight into mega ecclesiastical outfits with aggressive marketing policies.Amissionary to India, Donald McGavran, had already formulated the main principles of church growth theory in the 1930s, but it was not until the 1970s that his ideas…

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A-level – and the fall of Byzantium

Historical

February 2004
Articles > Historical

A-level – and the fall of Byzantium

It is often said that our education system is being 'dumbed down'. Achievements are becoming meaningless because standards are being lowered. A-level results are improving year on year, but is it because the exams are getting easier and marking less rigorous? If there is anything in these allegations, should that be a matter of…

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Article

February 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment-Rest-home or race-track?

When the apostle Paul lists the 'fruit of the Spirit' in Galatians 5:22-23, he leaves 'self-control' or 'temperance' until last.The list begins with high-profile things like love, joy and peace. So is this ninth fruit an afterthought? Not at all, for it is basic to true Christian living.The terms 'self-control' and 'temperance' do not…

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Liberalism in Evangelical Garb

Article

February 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Liberalism in Evangelical Garb

My purpose is writing is to warn readers of books which appear to be evangelical but are not. Such is the latest work by David Wilkinson entitled The message of Creation (IVP, 2002, ISBN 0-8308-2405-7). There are good parts to the book - it asserts the sovereignty of God and the greatness of Christ…

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Judeophobia

Article

February 2004
Cults and other religions

Judeophobia

A Christian leader once asked me if I 'liked Jews'? I thought it was a strange question to ask someone who is committed to sharing the love of Jesus with Jewish people, and I answered without hesitation, 'Of course I do'. He appeared surprised.'I found them to be the rudest boys in school', he…

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Degree of discretion

Article

February 2004
Articles > Cultural and Ethical

Degree of discretion

Last December, Joanna Jepson, a 26-year-old Church of England curate, won the right to a judicial review of a case where a foetus with a cleft palate was aborted late in pregnancy.The judicial review, which will take place this year, will allow her to challenge the decision of West Mercia Police not to prosecute doctors…

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Missionary Spotlight-Myanmar – land of pagodas

Article

February 2004
Burma

Missionary Spotlight-Myanmar – land of pagodas

Myanmar (formerly Burma) is the largest country in mainland South East Asia. Its population is a union comprising many different nationalities, with fifty minority people groups speaking 128 different languages and dialects.   Buddhism   The country is covered with Buddhist pagodas. They are on every mountain and hill, near towns and villages –…

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Guest Column-Judge not

Article

February 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column-Judge not

Is any part of Scripture more popular or misquoted than these words from Matthew 7:1? They have been adopted as the charter for a permissive, non-judgemental approach to life, an 'anything goes' mentality which never forms, let alone expresses, an unfavourable opinion about anyone or anything. People who otherwise have little time for Jesus…

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Article

February 2004
Burma

Missionary Spotlight-The Union of Myanmar [Burma]

Area:261,218 square miles. Population:47 million. Neighbouring countries:China, Laos, Thailand, Bangladesh and India. Environment:Myanmar’s terrain is dominated by a horseshoe of mountains and highlands surrounding central lowlands and the plains of the Irrawaddy River. The long coastline in the west provides many natural harbours. Most of Myanmar lies within the tropics. Life expectancy:55 years. Myanmar…

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Preaching Christ

Article

February 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

What does it mean to preach Christ?'We preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling-block and to the Greeks foolishness, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God' (1 Corinthians 1:23-24).Last month we asked the question, 'What shall we preach?'. The New…

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Essential things

Article

February 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Essential things

It was the godly Richard Baxter who wisely said, 'In essential things unity, in doubtful things liberty, but in all things charity'.Here I want to focus on essential things. And I want to ask why so many Reformed churches and denominations are, generally speaking, failing miserably to focus on the essentials. While I hesitate…

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Missionary Spotlight-Contending for the faith

Article

February 2004
Burma

Missionary Spotlight-Contending for the faith

Adoniram Judson and his wife landed at Yangon in 1813. The first convert was gained in 1819. His name was U Naw and, as he witnessed to his family and others, several more were converted. This tiny foothold was obtained in the face of social and religious hostility. The Burmese were so strongly entrenched…

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Article

February 2004
Burma

Missionary Spotlight-Myanmar highlights

Last summer Joseph Hewitt, a retired UK Grace Baptist pastor, spent nearly three weeks visiting Christians in Myanmar. He and Chris Hughes have listed randomly the highlights of the visit. Speaking at six Bible colleges for time periods ranging from five minutes to over three hours. Also preaching at a Full Gospel Church, speaking…

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The glories of Christ

Article

February 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The glories of Christ

In this series of articles I want to bring before you some of the glories that belong to the Saviour - who is 'far above all' (Ephesians 4:10), who 'filleth all in all' (Ephesians 1:23); and who is 'all and in all' (Colossians 3:11).For this purpose we must firstly come to the inspired Word…

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‘Straight Talk’-gospel television goes on air

News

February 2004
News

‘Straight Talk’-gospel television goes on air

Readers may recall that in July 2003 Evangelical Times carried a report ('Television, the modern marketplace') on a new initiative for using satellite TV in the UK for biblical evangelistic preaching. The plan was to broadcast a five-minute, twice-weekly, no frills, preacher-to-camera presentation by men of proven faithfulness to the gospel and the courage…

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Thomas Cartwright – the father of Puritanism

Historical

February 2004
Articles > Historical

Thomas Cartwright – the father of Puritanism

Last month we left Thomas Cartwright in Geneva, where Theodore Beza had assumed the mantle of John Calvin. But friends in England regretted his absence, and Cartwright was encouraged to return in 1572.His advice was sought concerning negotiations with Catherine de Medici over Queen Elizabeth's possible marriage to the Duke of Anjou. Cartwright's opinion…

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Francis Schaeffer’s apologetic

Historical

February 2004
Articles > Historical

Francis Schaeffer’s apologetic

Dr Francis Schaeffer's defence of the gospel ('apologetic') is simple and consistent. His approach is perhaps best summarised in the opening words of his book The God who is there: 'Christian apologetics do not start somewhere beyond the stars. They begin with man and what he knows about himself'. Schaeffer, who has been called…

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Baptised by the Spirit

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Baptised by the Spirit

There are different views concerning baptism in the Spirit, even among Reformed Christians. Some see this baptism as synonymous with conversion, while others interpret the baptism in the Spirit as a subsequent experience, giving assurance of salvation and power for service.The key text in this debate is 1 Corinthians 12:13: 'For by one Spirit…

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Article

January 2004
Haiti

Missionary Spotlight-Haiti’s forgotten nightmare

Haiti has the dubious distinction of being the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. According to a UN report, it is the third hungriest nation, after Afghanistan and Somalia. Three out of five Haitians are illiterate and 2.5 million of its 8 million people are jammed into the capital city of Port-au-Prince – where…

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Preaching Christ

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Preaching Christ

Idoubt whether anyone called to preach would quarrel with the apostle Paul's sentiments. In theory at least, we all agree that Christ is to be preached. But experience shows that good intentions are not always carried out. Preaching some months ago at a church whose pastor had recently retired, I later received a note…

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Guest Column-Creation is no side issue

Article

January 2004
Articles > Guest column

Guest Column-Creation is no side issue

It is my heartfelt prayer for this nation that the church would at last begin to see that creation is no side issue. Its rejection lies at the heart of the desperate malaise of Western society, which has lost its way in a maze of man-centred relativistic thinking. The church has ceased to ask…

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Parables for profit 2-Travelling by balloon

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Parables for profit 2-Travelling by balloon

As a child I was fascinated by an adventure of Rupert Bear in which he took a ride in the basket of the professor's balloon. I cherished a desire to take a balloon ride myself. However, leisure ballooning was unavailable for a further 30 years, and only with the celebration of a special birthday…

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Anne Steele

Historical

January 2004
Articles > Historical

Anne Steele

Trusting God 'in trouble and in joy'Since childhood, I have often sung hymns composed by Anne Steele - hymns such as 'Father of mercies, In thy Word' and 'Father what'er of earthly bliss'. I knew only that she was an eighteenth-century Baptist hymn-writer, who suffered a good deal of ill health. When I came…

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Thomas Cartwright – the father of Puritanism

Historical

January 2004
Articles > Historical

Thomas Cartwright – the father of Puritanism

The year 2003 has supplied us with a feast of anniversaries, including John Wesley (b. June 1703), Bernard of Clairvaux (d. 1153) and Jonathan Edwards (b. October 1703). If they deserve our attention, so also does Thomas Cartwright - who died in December 1603 and was, according to Daniel Neal, the 'father of the…

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Article

January 2004
Haiti

Missionary Spotlight-Facts

Area: Covering the western third of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, Haiti measures 10,695 square miles.   Environment: The climate varies from tropical to semiarid, where mountains give shelter from the trade winds. Haiti can experience severe tropical storms between June and October. Its terrain is rough and mountainous (Chaine de la Selle 2,680…

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How to hold a day of prayer

Article

January 2004
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

How to hold a day of prayer

Has 'We're praying for you' become a cliché? The dictionary defines cliché as an idea that has become trite. Roget's Thesaurusequates cliché with commonplace, banal, trivial or stereotypical. Is prayer, then, so commonplace that it has become passéamong fashionable Evangelicals? Being labelled 'old-fashioned' is the ultimate insult. We want to be cool - 'with…

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Forgotten metaphors

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

Forgotten metaphors

Scripture speaks of God's people in the language of saints. We do not. Scripture speaks of Christians as a family. We do notWhy is there such a difference between the way the biblical writers describe us, and the way we describe ourselves? Business people who attend 'assertiveness' classes are taught about the 'power of…

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OUR TRIUNE GOD

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

OUR TRIUNE GOD

It is often assumed that the God of biblical revelation - the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ - is the same God that both contemporary Jews and Muslims worship. After all, these three great religions are all monotheistic, believing in one deity and one alone.But is this really true? Do Jews,…

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Article

January 2004
Haiti

Missionary Spotlight-Preaching in Haiti

Previously a missionary in Ivory Coast, Ken Wimer ministers in Shreveport, Louisiana (www. shreveg race.org). He trains Haitian preachers using Europresse (French EP) study courses; and annually runs a sovereign grace preachers’ conference in Haiti. This is his account of the 2003 visit.   Ten days, three countries, and four languages (English, Spanish, French…

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The joy of searching the Scriptures

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The joy of searching the Scriptures

The Holy Bible is the Word of the living God - providentially preserved, inspired, indestructible, incorruptible, indispensable, infallible and inexhaustible. Jesus our Lord instructed us to search the Scriptures (John 5:39). What does this mean, and how can we do it practically? We can use the phrase 'Search the Scriptures' as an acrostic (S-E-A-R…etc)…

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The Lord’s list

Article

January 2004
Articles > Biblical/theological

The Lord’s list

Ezra chapter two is a very specific and detailed record of the names, numbers and (in some cases) occupations of those who returned from Babylon in the first repatriation to Jerusalem under Zerubbabel.It is precisely the kind of passage that we are inclined to skip over in our quiet times and avoid reading in…

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Concerning Cults-Mormon Fundamentalists

Article

January 2004
Cults and other religions

Concerning Cults-Mormon Fundamentalists

A story of two parts - polygamy and violence. That is, in a nutshell, the story of Mormon Fundamentalism (MF). After considering polygamy in the last article, we now attempt to understand MF violence in its contemporary expression.I continue outlining the story of Dan Lafferty and his brothers in order to identify some of…

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‘The dungeon flamed with light’

Historical

January 2004
Articles > Historical

‘The dungeon flamed with light’

Jonathan Edwards (4) The impact of the revival that came to Northampton in the winter and spring of 1734-1735, which we looked at in November's ET, was nothing less than profound. Jonathan Edwards put it thus. 'This work of God, as it was carried on and the number of true saints multiplied, soon made…

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Article

January 2004
Articles > Comment

Comment-Fighting gently

We do not normally associate 'fighting' with 'gentleness' but surprisingly Scripture does just this. The association can be found in 1 Timothy 6:11-12: 'pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith…' The conjunction of gentleness with fighting is even more arresting when we remember that Paul's original manuscript would…

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