Tag New Testament

Philippians 3:1-2 Devotional

Philippians 3:1-2. Further, my brothers and sisters, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard...

Philippians 2:25-30 Devotional

Philippians 2:25-30. But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take...

Philippians 2:19-24 Devotional

Philippians 2:19-24. I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, that I also may be cheered when I receive news about you. 20 I have no...

Philippians 2:17-18 Devotional

Philippians 2:17-18. But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all...

Christus Victor and The Gospels

In John 6:15, after Jesus feeds the 5000, we read: “Perceiving then that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, Jesus withdrew again...

Philippians 2:14-16 Devotional

Philippians 2:14-16. Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you...

Philippians 2:12-13 Devotional

Philippians 2:12-13. Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and...

Philippians 2:9-11 Devotional

Philippians 2:9-11. Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,...

Philippians 2:5-8 Devotional

Philippians 2:5-8. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6 who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to...

Philippians 2:1-4 Devotional

Philippians 2:1-4. Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and...

Christus Victor and the New Testament

The Bible presents us with a victory motif, often brought together under the Christus Victor view of the atonement. This post is the third in a series considering Gustav Aulén’s...

Philippians 1:27-30 Devotional

Philippians 1:27-30. Whatever happens, conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. Then, whether I come and see you or only hear about you in my absence,...

Philippians 1:25-26 Devotional

Philippians 1:25-26. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, 26 so that...

Philippians 1:21-24 Devotional

Philippians 1:21-24. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labour...

Philippians 1:18-21 Devotional

Philippians 1:18-21. Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, 19 for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to...

Philippians 1:15-18 Devotional

Philippians 1:15-18. It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. 16 The latter do so out of love, knowing that I...

Philippians 1:12-14 Devotional

Philippians 1:12-14. Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. 13 As a result, it has...

Philippians 1:9-11 Devotional

Philippians 1:9-11. And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what...

Philippians 1:7-8 Devotional

Philippians 1:7-8. It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending...

Philippians 1:3-6 Devotional

Philippians 1:3-6. I thank my God every time I remember you. 4 In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy 5 because of your partnership...

The Last Battle: To Live is Christ

A line found on more than one character’s lips in The Last Battle is, “All world’s draw to an end, except Aslan’s own country”. Death is not the end but...

Men's Sexual Sins and Modesty

Last week I posted an article titled: Immodesty and Violence Against Women. It was prompted by the important conversations currently taking place in South Africa. Because my sphere of influence...

Immodesty and Violence Against Women

Last year a friend of mine was asked by a male pastor to change, because her jeans were too tight. Yes, you read correctly. Her jeans were too tight. To...

New Testament Principles for Mercy Ministry

Last week I posted a short article titled, Social Justice as Obedience to God. Much to my disappointment more than a few people felt it was unclear and unnecessarily theological....

Pastor, God Grows Churches

When I finished writing this post I had a toss up over what its title should be. So here is the alternative heading: Pastor, Neither Men Nor Methods Grow Churches. Theologically...

Pastor, Imitate The Apostle Peter

When I began the pastor series I had nothing more than a handful of anaemic drafts and almost no direction. I have appreciated interacting with readers (often pastors) about those...

Words of Eternal Life

After a particularly challenging sermon during Jesus’ earthly ministry we are told, “many of his disciples turned back and no longer walked with him” (John 6:66). Some of Jesus’ followers...

Why Bother With Church?

Why bother with church? Do I really need to attend this Sunday? Do you find yourself asking these question? Sunday rolls around and you can think of ten places you...

Jesus' Resurrection and the Christian Life

Though the reference eludes me, C. S. Lewis once wrote, “A man can't always be defending the truth; there must be a time to feed on it.” In the past...

The Work of Christ: Not Merely Substitution

Last year the church I was part of worked through Paul’s letter to the Philippians. On one occasion at a leaders’ meeting an argument broke out over Philippians 1:27-2:11. The...

Doodle: Did Jesus Decriminalise Sex Work?

Just over a year ago, Central Methodist Mission (CMM), in partnership with a local organisation for sex workers, printed and hung a large yellow banner that read: ‘Jesus was the...

Pastor, Sit Lightly on the Wisdom of the World

The phrase, “Plunder the Egyptians” is commonly heard amongst church leaders today, especially at conferences on church leadership and growth strategy. Usually the phrase is used to validate secular wisdom....

What is 1 Peter all about?

In 5:12 we read, “I have written to you briefly, encouraging you and testifying that this is the true grace of God. Stand fast in it.” Peter gives us a...

4 God Given Uses for the Bible

I recently taught 2 Timothy 3:10-17, on two separate occasions, and found myself stirred by this familiar passage. While studying at college it was a favourite to cite among both...

Why We Don't Serve in the Church

Last week I wrote a post unpacking part of John Calvin’s Institutes on gifts, the local church, and self-denial. Calvin shows that God is the giver of all that we...

The Wickedness of Word of Faith

We have written about evil, darkness, and sin at Rekindle, but last week I encountered first hand an evil that both broke my heart and enraged me. A friend in...

Unconvincing Arguments for Why Married Couples Must Have Children

Last year I wrote a response to Tim Challies, and what I thought were some weak arguments showing why married couples should not deliberately remain childless. Before we got married,...

How the Early Church Proves the Resurrection

In her most recent novel, Lila, Marilynne Robinson draws back the curtain on a character who, though present in her previous two novels, Gilead and Home, has remained fairly mysterious....

Some Misgivings about Andrew Heard's Lifeboat Analogy

In a recent conversation about the latest Generate Conference, a friend shared his reservations about an analogy Andrew Heard deployed in almost every session. If you are unfamiliar with it,...

Galatians: Faith in Christ or the Faithfulness of Christ

Nestled in the tightly argued and exegetically demanding section of Galatians 2:15-21 we read this: “A person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus...

Galatians: The Lord's Anointed may be Accursed

If you are a Christian then there is a good chance you have observed, or even received, the stern reproach: ‘Don’t speak against the Lord’s anointed.’ It is one of...

Galatians: Did Paul Deny the Truth of the Gospel?

Acts 16 starts thus: Paul came to Derbe and Lystra. A disciple named Timothy was there and the brothers spoke well of him. He was the son of a Jewish...

Should John 7:53-8:11 Be In Our Bibles?

In American Hustle, Irving Rosenfeld, Christian Bale’s character, says, “I believe that you should treat people the way you want to be treated; didn't Jesus say that? Also, always take...

The Pharisees According to Jesus

Last year I wrote a three part series on the Pharisees, prompted by my frustration at how the Pharisees are often portrayed in teaching and writing. My appeal throughout the...

Doodle: Pharisees versus Prophets

Being passionate about literature I often attempt to pull threads of thought through multiple works. I realise that occasionally the result of this is that my writing resembles little more...

Complex Pharisees: Literature and History

One of the first sermons I can remember hearing as a young Christian, possibly even as an unbeliever, was an exposition of Luke 18:9-14, where Luke recounts a stinging parable...

In Defence of the Pharisees

Regardless of which Christian tradition you belong to, I would wager that when a Pharisee is encountered in the Bible reading your expectation is overwhelmingly negative. After all, literary critics would...

Can I be a Christian but not a Churchgoer?

I recently read an article by a Christian blogger, Wendy van Eyck, explaining why she identifies as a Christian but not a churchgoer. This is not the first time I have...

Three Ways to Encourage Prophecy in Church Gatherings

Two weeks ago I posted arguing that many Christians have lost the biblical and benefical role of prophecy in the life of the local church. In that post I did...

Reclaiming a Place for Prophecy in Church Gatherings

I am an Anglican, mostly by theological training and partly by conviction. Thus I am convinced to varying degrees about issues such as local church government, paedobaptism, and denominational structure....

Good Friday: The Cry of Dereliction

The day had turned to dark, long before the sun set, as Jesus Christ hung on the cross. His enduring faith in his Father in heaven had brought him to...

Holy Week: What Lies Ahead

'The hardest action to take is the course previously unexplored.’ That is a line from William Horwood’s Duncton Quest, an epic tale about heroic perseverance amidst tragedy and hopeless circumstances....

Can Satan Grow the Church?

If Facebook has taught us anything it is that sensational titles are of paramount importance to being successful online. And I guess if this post were a video the title...

Christ's Temptation and Our Own

I recently posted on Jesus’ temptation in Matthew’s Gospel and argued that the event showed Satan offering Jesus means other than the cross of becoming the Messiah; signified Jesus’ overthrow...

Matthew: The Temptation of Christ

At his baptism, Jesus is called God’s “beloved Son” (Matthew 3:17), he is then partnered by the Holy Spirit and sent into the wilderness to be tempted (4:1). Having been...

Authenticity in Strange Places

I recently moved office and in the process uncovered my copy A. N. Wilson’s Paul: The Mind of the Apostle. In this imaginative biography, replete with dogmatic scepticism, Wilson plies...

Why Acts? Luke's Purpose for Writing the Sequel

What are we to make of the book of Acts? There is no other book like it in the New Testament, bridging the Gospels and the Epistles. Most agree that...

Prayer: Resigned and Stubborn

Writing on prayer is not a task lightly undertaken, mostly because it might give the impression that I believe my own prayer life is impressive or worth imitating. I do...

Does Barabbas' Release Illustrate Substitution?

‘When Jesus is held back for execution and Barabbas is set free we have a wonderful picture of substitution.’ Have you heard that before? I have. Perhaps you have even...

The Epistle of James: Wisdom and Works

For whatever reason, perhaps stemming from Martin Luther calling it a ‘right strawy epistle’, James is not a book many Christians are familiar with. If you know anything about James...

How Literary Criticism has Damaged Our View of the Gospels

I few months back I posted lauding literary criticism, propounded specifically by Old Testament scholar Robert Alter. Those posts might have given the impression that literary criticism is faultless, perhaps...

Why We Don't Do Sacrifices

I've finally reached the point in my Bible Education curriculum (part of my ministry is teaching Bible Ed. at a Christian school) where I get to draw all the threads...