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Showing posts from February, 2016

On Repentance

Our theme today is one of Repentance.To repent of course, we need to have something to repent of, so my first question this morning is who here thinks that they have something to repent of.As show of hands should suffice – and I don’t need to know details!
It’s always good I think to get a sense of unity in a church.On a more serious note though, of course we seek to repent because of sin.What is sin?It often sounds like an outdated world in today’s world of postmodern thinking where nothing is really right or wrong.Postmodernism is something that so many people hide behind, everyone is due their opinion, and no opinion is better than any others.The trouble with that is, is that if we follow the Bible, then God’s truth is the ultimate truth, in other words there really is a real truth, we are then as followers of Jesus duty bound to figure it out, sooner rather than later.The original Greek that was used for what we call sin, was Hamartia, which means to “miss the mark”.Imagine watchin…

Bible Notes 26.02.16

Chrysalis Bible study 4: 26/02/2016Luke 2: 1 – 20 Refs:NIV Bible L Morris (Tyndale Commentaries) Luke M Wilcock (The Bible Speaks Today) Luke T Wright Luke for everyone B. M. Metzger (Ed) The Oxford Companion to the Bible
Having set the scene in the opening chapter of his Gospel Luke reaches the main event – the birth of Jesus. Somehow, familiarity with the story and the commercialisation of aspects of the events may have diminished the impact of these verses, so let’s try to enliven them!
Scholars have debated the accuracy of Luke’s reference to a census, there being no direct record of one having taken place at this time in this province, but there is ample evidence of similar procedures elsewhere at other times and according to some experts it is quite likely that changes in the administration of the Roman Empire around this time would have called for the creation of such a record and it is far from inconceivable that one did take place.
So once again we sense the unseen hand putting in …

Living in the shadow

I have lived with depression now for what seems an age.  It can be mighty weird at times.  Some days I think I am doing OK, only to find that those around me tell me I am having an off day, other days I feel lousy and people come up to me and say "you are looking very well!"

What is weirder is the effect it has physically.  I am a physiotherapist, and tended to work on the assumption of looking for a musculoskeletal cause for pain.  I currently live with migratory pain on a daily basis, which I am 99% certain is secondary to the depression.  Again, weirdly, the pain can be worse when I feel better mentally and vice versa.  There doesn't seem to be a pattern at all, which of course is why it is not musculoskeletal in origin.

There are things I can do, and things that just seem to undo me.  Coping with conflict is the hardest at the moment, I suspect that is something I share with the other 1:4 of the population.  I am relieved that with 2 Billion other sufferers I am not …

Luke : 1 57-80 - notes

The Birth of John the Baptizer and Zechariah’s song
It’s all about Jesus really
John’s Birth after Mary leaves Elizabeth.Luke has a tradition of a baby being named on the 8th day, this may refer to the tradition of“ Brit Malah”, or circumcision of a male child.However it is not clear how accurate Luke is being here with Jewish tradition of naming of a child.Some commentaries throw doubt on this, although internet research of Jewish custom does seem to tie the naming ceremony with the Brit.The circumcision will allow for the child to become part of the community, much like Baptism in Christianity is an entrance rite to the Church community.
Luke suggests that those present assume he will be called after his Father, but this again is problematic as there is ample evidence in the New Testament of sons not necessarily being named after their Fathers. Modern Jewish custom indeed does not recommend the naming of children after their parents if they are still alive.Peter’s father was for exampl…

Luke 1:25-56

Refs:NIV Bible L Morris (Tyndale Commentaries) Luke M Wilcock (The Bible Speaks Today) Luke B. M. Metzger (Ed) The Oxford Companion to the Bible
Luke’s focus shifts from Jerusalem to Nazareth and the second scene as the story unfolds. It is now six months since Elizabeth had become pregnant and Gabriel embarks on his second visitation – this time to the future mother of Jesus.
Mary: She is a virgin and in the Jewish tradition betrothed, to the carpenter Joseph who is probably quite a bit older than she is. Betrothal lasted about a year before marriage, it was a binding contract, moreso than engagement in our culture, and could only be dissolved by divorce. She is young, but what age do we think she might be?
As Colin pointed out last week, God hasn’t spoken in 400 years (Mary hasn’t heard what has happened to Zechariah and Elizabeth) but now she is visited by an angel.
If Gabriel’s greeting troubles Mary, do his words of “reassurance” seem likely to lessen her apprehension? What can…