Showing posts from October, 2017

Happy Reformation Day - 500 Years Old Today!

"We who are Jews by birth and not sinful Gentiles know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified. (Galatians 2:15-16 NIV) For we maintain that a person is justified by faith apart from the works of the law. (Romans 3:28 NIV) 
OK, so I know lots of people will be celebrating something else today, but that's a bad thing - seriously celebrating evil spirits and the devil what are you thinking of!

How much better to remember that 500 years ago today a monk called Martin Luther started a fire which spread across the western world and beyond. He had finally grasped, in the face of the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, that you could be declared righteous by God by faith and faith alone. Listen to what he said in his commentary on the book of Galatians:

God's Discipline and the Lord's Supper

Having preached through 1 Corinthians a while back, we’ve more recently been looking at the doctrine of Lord’s Supper as we work through the Thirty Nine Articles. I’ve been struck at how strong Paul is in 1 Corinthians 11 about those who take the Lord’s Supper unworthily.

If you know the book of 1 Corinthians then you’ll know the context of the church. It’s a church (like so many today) riven with sin - divisions, sexual sin, pride over spiritual gifts. The particular focus in 1 Corinthians 11 seems to be that when they meet for the Lord’s Supper there are divisions between the haves and the have-nots to the extent that the haves have so much that they get drunk (1 Corinthians 11:21)! Paul calls this “despising the church” and goes on to say that:
whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. (1 Corinthians 11:27 NIV)It couldn’t be much worse could it? Despising the church and sinning against …

The Word of God in Hard Times

Hard Times in the UKI think increasingly orthodox evangelical Christians are recognising that we are beginning to face hard times in the UK. The culture, especially as seen through the lens of the media, has decisively turned against us on issues of life, marriage, sexuality, gender, parenting and truth.Don’t misunderstand me. I don’t think things are as bad as they have ever been or as bad as they are in many places around the world - I don’t want to exaggerate. However, it does feel like we face pressure to conform to the world around or lose out. Although this feels commonplace in the New Testament and across history, for most of us, this feels like a change.Hard Times in 1 PeterWe’ve been studying 1 Peter as a leadership team and we’re just beginning to preach through it. Although there are obviously differences from 1st Century Asia Minor, it does seem in many ways to be a book that relates well to our current situation. There is clearly suffering and pressure to conform to the w…