Reading: Luke 19 "The people were displeased... 'He has gone to be the guest of a notorious sinner," they grumbled. Meanwhile, Zacchaeus stood before the Lord..." A couple of things stood out to me today. One is the response of the people to Jesus' acceptance of Zacchaeus. I actually get it, Jesus is the Liberator, … Continue reading Reflection #19: The Cost
In our last blog we discussed whether or not a gay person was putting their salvation at risk for being in a same-sex relationship. We concluded that despite the way this korero is normally framed, it is not in fact a salvation issue. For to say that someone is saved by what they do or … Continue reading Can The Church Accept Gay Marriage? P4: What about Repentance and the Gospel? / A.J. Hendry
What about Hell? One of the fundamental concerns that exist for Traditionalists is that if we get this wrong, LGBTQ people will be in danger of Hell. We do an injustice to many sincere and loving Christians, if we paint them out to be simply hate filled, closed minded, bigots, for holding a traditional belief. … Continue reading Can The Church Accept Gay Marriage? P3: What about Hell? / A.J. Hendry
Defining Sin has become a vital task for the Western Christian. I have wondered if at the centre of this, is a desire to say definitively who is "in" and who is "out". And as I've thought about this, I have wondered if this is fueled by a longing for certainty. Because, if I can … Continue reading Why are Christians so focused on Sin? / A.J. Hendry
I was having a chat with my brother the other day, a budding theologian and earnest scholar, and he said something very profound. “The scriptures,” he reflected, “for many people, have become almost like an idol.” The truth of the statement sort of just hit me. It seems that for much of the Western Church, … Continue reading The Bible as our Idol: Has our reverence for the Scriptures gone too far?
A Pondering - A quick thought or random wondering Some people believe that Jesus' death on the cross was necessary to appease the 'wrath of God'. There are many reasons why I believe this to be a twisted understanding of Gods character and the nature of atonement (I take a further look at some of … Continue reading A Pondering: What does the Passover say about the Atonement? Exodus, ‘God’s wrath’ and a story of Liberation
A Pondering - A quick thought or random wondering My studies have recently taken me into exploring the ideas of the church Fathers, with a specific focus on how these early Christians read, used and interpreted the Scriptures. One of the most interesting themes I am noticing is their existed the idea amoung some of … Continue reading A Pondering: What can we learn from the Church Fathers? Why just reading scripture isn’t enough…
How often have you heard Pastors warn you to be “careful lest you make friends with the world”? Personally, I hear this a lot. Especially in discussions where I have advocated for full inclusion of our rainbow whanau into the church. The comment is normally followed up with the speaker pointing to the Epistle of … Continue reading Flipping the Lens: What does it Really Means to be ‘Friends with the World?’
When was the last time you heard of a good dad punishing his kids by murdering or torturing them? Some people’s view of God is of a dogmatic, legalistic monster. And though I don’t share this opinion, I can totally see where they get it from. On the one hand, we are told that God is a loving father, and … Continue reading God – Dogmatic Monster Or Loving Father?
Flipping the Lens When I was a kid I knew what it meant to be a Christian. The rights and wrongs of Christian belief. Jesus died so we could go to heaven. Those who didn’t believe would go to hell. Adam was a real person, and there really was a talking snake and a guy named Job. … Continue reading The Bible isn’t true? Well maybe just not in the way you think…
A Pondering - A quick thought or random wondering Im not sure that those who argue that "speaking truth" is the most loving thing you can do for someone have fully thought that through. Unfortanetly, such a statement comes off as sounding either extremally hypocritical or just naive to the realities of how this world … Continue reading A Pondering: Always “speaking truth” Might Not Get You as Far as You Think
Christianity in the West has sold out to secularization. We have divorced ourselves from The Truth who is Jesus Christ, and instead chosen to give ourselves over to an illicit love affair with truth, in a campaign aimed at fighting for the secular priority of the individual’s right for freedom of speech. .. truth has become words. Ideas divorced from The Truth. Words – which if connected … Continue reading Has The Church Betrayed Christ For The “truth”?
I was in Rome, St. Peter’s cathedral. There’s a little prayer room in there where you can go to be with God. That’s when I finally came back to him. I’d spent a year avoiding God… too ashamed to spend time alone with him, too afraid of the disappointment and anger I believed I would … Continue reading Does God Punish Us? Or is That Just Another Lie the Devil Spins…