Archive | January, 2009

From Mr Piper to Mr President

29 Jan

John Piper’s passionate plea and promise of prayer for the newly inaugurated President.

Battle at Kruger

26 Jan

Amazing, watch the whole thing!

A Wonderful Surprise?

23 Jan

News stories provoke a wide range of emotional responses. As the radio reports of the 7/7 bombing filled the air I felt waves of anger and patriotism wash over me. I was outraged and indignant as the television beamed pictures of the innocent children burned by the phospherous shells fired by the war criminals into Gaza. Today, as I opened the paper, I was heartbroken by the story of one man’s funeral and the feeble “hope” offered by the vicar.

“‘Sir John called himself an athiest for Christ,’ the vicar said. ‘He always came to midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. But he emphatically did not believe in life after death. My hope,’ she added, ‘is that he has had a wonderful surprise.'”  The Times

Sir John Mortimer, who died aged 85, was a barrister and an author whom some will remember for his famous creation “Rumpole of the Bailey”.   The “champagne socialist” was a keen advocate of a permissive society and was also a staunch athiest who believed his existence would end as his body drew its last breath on 16th January 2009. He was mistaken. The vicar hoped he would have “wonderful surprise” as he passed from this life. She too was mistaken.

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John Mortimer 1923-2009

I was devastated as I read the words of the vicar who held out a faint and futile hope to the family and stars, such as Jeremy Paxman and Bob Geldof, gathered at the funeral. Life does not end as our body ceases to function as we have an eternal soul. There is no “wonderful surprise” waiting for those who deny the existence of the God for it is made clear in Scripture that all those who do not place their trust in Christ will have to face eternity in Hell.

“He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the majesty of his power” 2Thessalonians 1:8-9

God’s justice and holiness demand that sin is punished and we are also told that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans3:23). This leaves us all with a problem that cannot be overcome by our own efforts. We cannot earn salvation nor can God turn a blind eye to sin.

A Wonderful Surprise

There is a wonderful surprise. A wonderful surprise that isn’t a vague hope but a certain hope giving eternal life to all who would place their trust is Jesus Christ. This good news is often referred to as the Gospel and is summarised by John Piper. 

“The Gospel is the news that Jesus Christ, the Righteous One, died for our sins and rose again, eternally triumphant over all his enemies, so that there is now no condemnation for those who believe, but only everlasting joy.”  John Piper

The Gospel In Six Minutes- John Piper

John Calvin and the Psalms

15 Jan

“Moreover, that which St. Augustine has said is true, that no one is able to sing things worthy of God except that which he has received from Him. Therefore, when we have looked thoroughly and searched here and there, we shall not find better songs nor more fitting for the purpose, than the Psalms of David, which the Holy Spirit spoke and made through him. And moreover, when we sing them, we are certain that God puts in our mouths these, as if he himself were singing in us to exalt his glory.” John Calvin

Is the the World a safer place?

10 Jan

There are only days left of George Bush’s presidency which have spanned the previous eight years. I am interested to see how you believe he has affected the world.

George Bush

I’m voting no and believe that as leader of the Free World Bush has made the planet a more dangerous place to live.

No Allah Bus

8 Jan

Much virtual ink has already been spilt over the 600 buses bearing the athiest advertisement stating “There is probably no God, now stop worrying and enjoy your life.”

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Dawkins at the Bus launch

I was wondering what the response would have been had the advert starkly proclaimed “There is probably no Allah”?

I’m not going to attempt to provide any sort of list of Christian and secular comments on this piece of news though there are many worth reading, check out the usual suspects. One of the responses which I found most interesting was the following comment on the Times website.

“There is probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life”. I have often wondered what humanist hospital chaplains say to patients with terminal cancer and their loved ones. Now I know.

Jon, London, England

Son of Hamas Leader Converted

6 Jan

As the world’s media relays constant coverage of the developing conflict in Gaza, a Middle East story filled with hope was brought to my attention by Joshua Harris’ weblog. Mosab Hassan Yousef is the son of an influential leader of Hamas who came to faith in Christ after becoming disillusioned with Islam in an Israeli prison cell and later deciding to read the Bible for himself. What a marvellous reminder that no one is beyond God’s saving power and that no situation is too difficult for God to act in.

Son of Hamas Leader who converted to Christianity

Mosab Hassan Yousef, our brother in Christ

Joshua Harris’ post

Yousef’s interview with Fox News