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Everything in September 2017 issue

Review

September 2017
Reviews > Book

All Things Made New – Writings on the Reformation

There has been a recent flurry of publications on the Reformation. Prior to this, Oxford professor Diarmaid McCulloch stood out in the renewal of Reformation studies. His titles include Thomas Cranmer: a life (1997) and Reformation: Europe’s house divided (2004). MacCulloch presents a balanced view, linking English Reformers with their continental counterparts, particularly those…

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Review

September 2017

Voices from the Past Vol 2

This book consists of selections from around 30 authors from the Puritan era, arranged as daily readings. The editor has condensed and abridged the extracts, seeking to remain faithful to the authors’ flows of thought. Each day’s section is headed by an appropriate verse. One cannot argue with the quality of the material here.…

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Review

September 2017

Grace Essentials

Christian Focus is to be commended for publishing a clear, concise and comprehensive compendium of John Calvin’s classic, The Institutes of the Christian religion. Systematic, biblical theology is presented in an accessible and appealing format. Using the ESV Bible text, this book is both illuminative and informative. Part one focuses on ‘The knowledge of…

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Review

September 2017

1,2,3 John – Redemption’s Certainty

The apostle John’s writings, especially his letters, are known to be a challenge to understand. The author of this commentary faces up to this fact. He acknowledges the profundity of John’s thoughts and the difficulty of his grammar. However, the book’s great strength stems from the writer’s conviction that there is a clarity to…

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Review

September 2017

Created and Creating

This is a disappointing book. The author has the learning, as he discusses the subject of culture and the church, but, as he himself admits, ‘The alert reader will have noticed the dearth of applications in this book’ (p.233). The book aims at ‘explorations into cultural analysis’ (p.50), but seems to conclude that this is…

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Review

September 2017

Life in Bible Times

This short book is divided into 22 brief chapters, each based on a biblical ‘picture’. The reader is led on a brief tour of life in Bible times, such as fishing, shepherding and living in tents. At each stop along the way, the author gives biblical examples and draws spiritual lessons from these topics.…

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Review

September 2017

Judah – From a sinful man to the saving Messiah

This book is the second in a series dealing with different characters in the Bible. In the introduction, the author makes the point that, although there isn’t a great deal about Judah in the Bible, his name appears there frequently. Also, the tribe that descended from him rises to eminence in Scripture. This book,…

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Review

September 2017

Gospel Culture

In western society we live in a time of unprecedented cultural change. It is a time when Christian morality is increasingly condemned as well as rejected. Christians often find it difficult to make voices heard in the public square. Any book which, like this one, causes readers to think deeply about how we should…

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Review

September 2017

God’s Divorce

This book is based on the author’s PhD thesis. His contention is that the early church was influenced in its understanding of the New Testament more by Neoplatonism than the Old Testament. So, marriage came to be seen as a sacrament made in heaven by God, and the ‘marriage’ of Adam and Eve in…

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Review

September 2017

Unbelievable?

Justin Brierley is the host of Premier Christian Radio’s Unbelievable? radio show. He describes how, as an undergraduate at Oxford University, his contact with sceptics made him question his belief in God and Christianity. He explains that the experience helped him affirm the rationality of Christian belief. This background explains the show he hosts.…

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Review

September 2017
Reviews > Book

Fine Gold from Yorkshire

Yorkshire is known for its food, athletes and cricketers. It should also be known for the number of notable Christians who have hailed from this county over the centuries. In Fine gold from Yorkshire, Faith Cook brings readers 21 biographies, plus eight brief summaries of men and women who gave their lives to Christ.…

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Review

September 2017

Spoken for — embracing who you are and whose you are

Spoken for is a brilliant read, which draws upon biblical promises as well as biographical anecdotes from Gunn and Bethke. They remind readers that, whether married or single, Christians have been chosen and pursued by God, and he should be our first love. The book is written in an informative, yet personal way. Through…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Youth Features

Fleas

The Bible commands us to constantly be praising God for all our blessings. But there is also a strange command in the Bible that has caused a lot of people to wonder. Paul commands believers in 2 Thessalonians 5:18: ‘In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > World Mission

Farsi media ministry

Farsi is the language of Iran, much of Afghanistan and neighbouring communities, totalling about 110 million Farsi-speakers. Except in the former Soviet republic of Tajikistan, Farsi is written in a modified Arabic script. Although many words have been borrowed from Arab neighbours, Farsi’s roots go back to the Indo-European language family, just like English.…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > World Mission > Africa > Eritrea

Eritrean crackdown

Christians in Eritrea are experiencing an increased state crackdown, with fears that even children face a future behind bars, Release International has warned. Launching a campaign to pressurise the Eritrean government to release Christian prisoners, Release International has revealed that at least 200 Christians have been arrested in house-to-house raids, in a tough new…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > World Mission > Europe > Moldova

Moldova (2)

Donald J. Morrison continues his report on gospel ministry to Romanians and Russians in Moldova’s rural countryside.. As we went around the village of Baurci Moldoveni with gospel materials, it was evident that the folk there had their own problems. Some of these, sadly, they have brought upon themselves. I found that alcohol addiction…

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News

September 2017
News > People > Obituaries

Erroll Hulse (1931-2017)

We heard from his family on 3 August of the passing of Pastor Erroll Hulse, in the Wetherby Manor Nursing Home, where he had been cared for recently, after suffering a stroke three and a half years ago. Erroll was born in South Africa in 1931 and graduated in architecture at Pretoria University. Helped…

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News

September 2017
News > Events

Event – Keswick Convention 2017

The annual three-week summer Christian convention at Keswick once more saw large attendances. The thousands attending included substantial increases in newcomers and younger people. Many meetings were live-streamed to other parts of the UK and to India, Canada, USA, Norway, Germany, France and the Netherlands. Among the many speakers were Don Carson of Trinity…

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Article

September 2017
Uncategorised

Event – FCC holiday

Just under 30 people attended the 2017 Free Church (Continuing) All-Age Holiday, held in Windmill Christian Centre, Arbroath, in July. Due to the popularity of the centre, we were not able to book our usual week-long slot; so, instead of not holding the holiday, the organisers opted to stage it over an extended weekend.…

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News

September 2017
News > Events

Event – Inskip bicentenary celebration

Some 200 years ago this year, a handful of converted people on the Fylde coast in Lancashire, convinced of baptism by immersion, purchased a portion of land for the princely sum of £10 and set to work erecting a Baptist chapel in Inskip, where the preaching of the gospel could be heard. The chapel…

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News

September 2017
News > Conferences

Conferences – Longhorsley Mission Bible Convention

In 1948, the Yorkshire evangelist Harold Watson was invited to speak during a weekend at Longhorsley Mission in rural Northumberland. When Mission members became aware of the interest being expressed by many people, it became obvious that the Mission hall in Longhorsley would not be able to accommodate everyone. The decision was made to…

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News

September 2017
News > Conferences

Conferences – NI pastors’ conference

Earlier this year, the Association of Baptist Churches (ABC) in Northern Ireland held its pastors’ conference at the Four Seasons Hotel in Carlingford. Some 92 men involved in ministry across the Island attended the conference. The speaker was Ray Evans, senior pastor of Grace Church Bedford. The theme was ‘Ready, steady, grow: equipping today’s…

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News

September 2017
News > Induction

Induction – Union Chapel, Bethersden, Kent

A good number of friends and supporters, from far and wide, joined together with us for a memorable afternoon, as we gave thanks to almighty God for his provision of our new pastor, Matthew Cox. Last year, 2016, was a difficult one, and there were times when we wondered whether the church would be…

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News

September 2017
News > Induction

Inductions – New ministers for Western Isles

Three newly licensed Free Church ministers have been called by Western Isles congregations in July. During a meeting of the presbytery on 10 July, presided by Rev. Murdo Campbell of Barvas Free Church, Rev. David MacDonald accepted the congregation’s call to Back Free Church, Stornoway, as assistant minister. Due to family commitments, Mr MacDonald…

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Conference – Marriage course

News

September 2017
News > Conferences

Conference – Marriage course

One of the greatest challenges in life is marriage. Two sinful people pledge their life-long commitment, love and faithfulness to each other, but do so knowing there will be hurt, sin, pain and failure at times in the future. How is a marriage to survive these inwards challenges, in addition to the constant undermining…

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News

September 2017
News > Conferences

Conference – South Wales Revival Conference

Bryntirion, at Bridgend in Wales, welcomed the 18th consecutive Revival Conference, held from 1-8 July. It was a most blessed time. The main speakers, Paul Mallard and Kenneth Stewart, preached in an authoritative, winsome and practical way. The former travelled virtually daily from Bath, following his wife’s hospitalisation. His five messages were from Psalms,…

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News

September 2017
News > Education

Education – Family Education Trust AGM

The transgender agenda is having a serious effect on school policies, the chairman of the Family Education Trust (FET) has warned. In his opening address to the 2017 annual general meeting, held in London, Arthur Cornell gave a broad overview of some key issues that had arisen in relation to the welfare of children…

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News

September 2017
News > Education

Education – Humanists pitch for SACREs

A humanist parent in Wales is challenging the Vale of Glamorgan Council at the High Court in Cardiff, over its decision to exclude a humanist representative from the local body responsible for overseeing religious education (RE) in the area. Kathy Riddick, who is also the co-ordinator of Wales Humanists, applied to join the Vale…

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News

September 2017
News > Mission

Mission – Christian play centre

A campaign has been launched to create the UK’s first dedicated Bible-themed play centre, in south Manchester. The interactive discovery centre for children, which will be not-for-profit, will include a large play area, café and function room, and will be entirely based around the Bible. Called ‘The Hidden Treasure Discovery Centre’, its organisers claim…

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News

September 2017
News > Mission

Mission – Bible banks double in three months

The West Midlands has seen a remarkable growth in the number of Bible banks. There are now 13 churches in the West Midlands with Bible banks, compared with just five churches a short time ago. Bible banks, which were the initiative of the Black Country Mission, have been set up in Anglican, Methodist, Baptist…

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News

September 2017
News > Mission

Mission – Gloucester carnival witness

The annual Bible salvation verse reading and giving out of gospel tracts to 40,000 people lining the route of the Gloucester carnival procession took place on Saturday 22 July, at 3.30pm. This Christian outreach has been done every year for 34 years. Following a strongly worded letter from a leading law firm in London,…

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News

September 2017
News > Mission

Mission – NTM 75th anniversary

The 75th anniversary of the New Tribes Mission (NTM) was celebrated with a special time of celebration and remembrance of its five missionary martyrs, who lost their lives in NTM’s first endeavour, attempting to contact the Ayorés in Bolivia in 1943. The social committee came up with the idea of a 1940s style British…

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News

September 2017
News > Media

Media – Pro-life advert upheld

The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has rejected complaints made against ‘Both Lives Matter’ (BLM) about a billboard campaign. In January 2017, BLM ran two billboards, which claimed, ‘100,000 people are alive today because of our laws on abortion. Why change that?’ Fourteen complainants argued this claim was misleading and could not be substantiated. The…

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News

September 2017
News > Media

Media – Harold Wilson lecture

Religion and theology have a crucial role to play in preventing democracies from descending into populist states where ‘might is right’, a former Archbishop of Canterbury has claimed. In his 2017 Harold Wilson Lecture, delivered to the University of Huddersfield, Dr Rowan Williams said theology might seem an abstract discipline. However, when properly understood…

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News

September 2017
News > Ethics

Ethics – Abortion case fees

Pro-life campaigner Aisling Hubert has had a claim filed with the European Court of Human Rights against the prohibitive costs she suffered, as a result of her private prosecution. As mentioned in previous editions of Evangelical Times, Miss Hubert launched a private prosecution against two doctors who had verbally agreed to perform ‘gender-abortions’, in…

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News

September 2017
News > Ethics

Ethics – Dangerous agenda

The government must not press ahead with its plans on transsexualism, according to a gay man who acted as speech writer to a cabinet minister. Graeme Archer, writing for Conservative home, said making it easier for people to change their biological sex would endanger young people. In his article, he criticised moves by Equalities…

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News

September 2017
News > Ethics

Ethics – People trafficking

More than 45.8m people globally are being exploited in modern day forms of slavery, in 167 countries across the world, latest figures have warned. Recent statistics from the National Crime Agency (NCA) show the number of people found in situations of possible exploitation is increasing. However, the 3,805 people referred to the NCA in…

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News

September 2017
News > Ethics

Ethics – Women at risk

A consultation on the Gender Recognition Act will be published in the autumn. Earlier this year, government leaders, such as Prime Minister Theresa May, and opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn both spoke out in favour of allowing people to self-identify. However, Simon Calvert, deputy director of public affairs at the Christian Institute, warned that women,…

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News

September 2017
News > Politics

Politics – Churches told, ‘Keep up!’

Equalities Minister Justine Greening has told churches in the UK that they need to keep up with modern attitudes and carry out same-sex weddings. In an interview with Sky News, the Conservative MP said she did not want to ‘prescribe’ how faith groups deal with the issue, but it was ‘important the church keeps…

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News

September 2017
News > International

International: India – Reaching the untouchables

Nearly 30 years ago, Operation Mobilisation (OM), which had been in India since 1964, started to reach out to the lowest caste of Indian society, the Dalit-Bahujan people, or ‘untouchables’. Joseph D’Souza, moderator bishop of the Good Shepherd Church of India, said: ‘The cry of the Dalits and other poor, marginalised people of India…

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News

September 2017
News > International

International – Yazidi victims

Hundreds of Yazidi women and girls, rescued or freed when IS was pushed out of Mosul in Iraq, are struggling to recover after three years of sexual abuse. A hard-hitting report from the New York Times says that systematic sexual abuse has left many girls unable to move, with many falling into a deep,…

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News

September 2017
News > International

International: Supporting Syrian widows

Syrian Christian widows are in desperate need of help, especially those remaining in the war-torn country. Many Syrian men, including Christians, were kidnapped by the so-called Islamic State in 2013; their wives were sent footage of their beheadings when they refused to convert. Other Christian men were killed over the last six years of…

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News

September 2017
News > Persecution

Persecution: UK – Richard Page

A Christian who was dismissed as a magistrate by the Lord Chancellor and Lord Chief Justice, after expressing his view that it was in a child’s best interests to be raised by a mother and a father, is challenging the NHS trust which subsequently removed him as a director. Richard Page, who had nearly…

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News

September 2017
News > Persecution

Persecution: India cracks down on Christian camps

Indian Christians have been arrested on trumped-up charges after holding church camps. The High Court of Madhya Pradesh, a stronghold of the Hindutva ideology, decided to hear the case of 10 Christian pastors and co-workers. They were arrested on charges of kidnapping, cruelty and forceful conversion. On 23 May, at Ratlam train station in…

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News

September 2017
News

Letter from America: Women’s roles in the Presbyterian Church in America

This June, the 45th General Assembly (GA) of the Presbyterian Church in America (PCA) met in Greensboro, North Carolina, to carry out the business of the church. The previous year had been a landmark year in the life of the church, as elders from the conservative Presbyterian church voted to usher in racial reconciliation…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Guest column

A desire to know Christ

‘It is a wonderful thing to know Jesus!’ We would all agree with that. It is something we sing about and rightly rejoice in. Indeed, it is what God promised his people: ‘No longer will they teach their neighbour, or say to one another, Know the Lord, because they will all know me, from…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Christmas — an opportunity for the gospel

Christmas means a lot of different things to different people. For some it is a time of drunkenness, debauchery, and crime. Others feel lonely because someone forgot them. Some are weighed down under the burden of many activities and the pressure of shopping. Then there are those who are dismissive of the whole thing.…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Answering difficult questions (2)

Continued from Answering difficult questions (1) Jesus’ enemies often tried to trap him with ‘clever’ theological questions, such as the one about marriage and the resurrection in Mark 12:18-27. ‘Then some Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to [Jesus]; and they asked him, saying: Teacher, Moses wrote to us that if a man’s brother dies,…

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Historical

September 2017
Articles > Historical

John Wesley and music

It comes as almost a shock to read in John Wesley’s Journal that this earnest minister was not above very occasionally attending a concert or, rather more often, looking over large estates of the kind you find in today’s National Trust. Clearly, Wesley not only regarded all the world as his parish, but saw…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Talking to yourself

I have heard it said that talking to oneself is the first sign of madness. Well, if that is the case, then I am mad! And, I sincerely hope that there are many more mad people who are reading this article! I have often talked to myself. Is that such a bad thing? I…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Home alone: a Christian widower’s struggle

‘You don’t get married to live on your own!’ Yet, in this world of disease and death, that loneliness comes to many men and women who have spent much of their adult working-life in the joy of a deeply satisfying Christian marriage. About two years ago, my wife for four decades fell asleep in…

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Article

September 2017
Articles > Ecclesiological & Pastoral

Humility: a neglected Christian virtue?

‘I bid every one among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think’, wrote the apostle Paul (Romans 12:3). An apocryphal story relates how, at the funeral of a successful businessman, tribute was paid to him, saying, ‘Bob was a self-made man, and he worshipped his maker’. Humour apart,…

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Historical

September 2017
Articles > Historical

Evangelicalism in Northern Ireland, 1967–2017

Visiting tourists and the Province’s 1.8 million citizens enjoy easy access to a rugged coast-line, with breathtaking beaches, fresh-water lakes and rivers that provide great fishing for the keen angler. Northern Ireland (NI) has some of the best-preserved castles and ancient forts, surrounded by myths and legends from ancient times, and a rich fertile…

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Historical

September 2017
Articles > Historical > Uncategorised

Evangelicalism in Wales, 1967–2017

The last 50 years have been years of change, both for Wales as a nation and for its evangelical witness. Its geography, culture, languages and politics have always been distinctive. Almost three million people live in this beautiful part of the United Kingdom and they speak two official languages, Welsh and English. However, Wales…

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Historical

September 2017
Articles > Historical

Evangelicalism in Scotland, 1967-2017

The state of evangelicalism in Scotland in 2017 reveals a much more complicated picture than 1967. At that time there were several main denominations of considerable strength. On the Presbyterian side there were the Church of Scotland, along with the United Free Church of Scotland, Free Church of Scotland, and Free Presbyterian Church of…

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Historical

September 2017
Articles > Historical > Uncategorised

50 challenging years

Over 1967-2017, confessional evangelical Christianity in Britain has faced some significant challenges. Here are six of them: 1) The so-called ‘New Perspective’ on the teaching of the apostle Paul. In a book entitled Paul and Palestinian Judaism by Ed Sanders, which appeared 40 years ago, the thesis was promoted that the Jews of Pauline…

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News

September 2017
News > Youth

Student pressures — caught between conformity and condemnation

Across the UK, students are preparing to start at university and college, while others are entering the workplace. But for Christians there is the additional challenge of the pressure to conform. Universities and colleges received 469,490 applications this year from UK students, according to UCAS data. Meanwhile, statistics from Universities UK suggest some 90…

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