From Here to Eternity: Giving thanks for Arthur Stace, 49 years on

Posted on July 30, 2016 
Filed under History

arthur-stace-headstone-photo-by-ramon-williamsToday, 30th July 2016, is the 49th anniversary of the home-calling of Arthur Stace.

Remembered today as ‘Mr. Eternity’, Arthur Stace committed his life to asking the men and women of Sydney to consider where they will spend eternity. His ‘one word sermon’ was written in yellow crayon on the streets of Sydney for three decades – until ill health prevented him.

Stace was also a keen evangelist, and was seen on Saturday nights preaching from the Open Air Campaigners van parked on the corner of George and Bathurst Streets in Sydney.

He was no eccentric, and there is no secret about his motives. He wanted men and women to place their trust in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The 50th anniversary of Stace’s death, 30th July 2017, falls on a Sunday.

This is an excellent opportunity for churches to remind the people of Sydney of his call to consider where they will spend eternity. (It is most appropriate for older Sydney-siders who remember actually seeing his work!)

The next year gives Sydney churches time to consider how they might use this anniversary for the eternal good of the people of our great city.

Top photo courtesy Ramon Williams. Read more about Mr. Eternity here.

Newcastle Bishop shares a message on the eve of the Royal Commission

Posted on July 30, 2016 
Filed under Australian dioceses

bp-greg-thompson-royal-commissionFrom the Diocese of Newcastle:

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse is holding a public hearing into the Anglican Diocese of Newcastle at Newcastle from Tuesday, 2 August 2016.

Bishop Greg Thompson shares a message with the Diocesan community about working together through what will be a confronting time as we face the past to help build a healthy future.”

Watch Bishop Thompson’s message here. And please pray for all concerned.

Amazing Love? A review article from Church Society

Posted on July 29, 2016 
Filed under Church of England, Culture wars, Resources

amazing-love-coverFrom Church Society in the UK:

‘Amazing Love: Theology for Understanding Discipleship, Sexuality and Mission’ is a new book, edited by Andrew Davison, which seeks to promote a change to the Church of England’s doctrine of marriage.

In an extended two-part review, Dr Peter Sanlon, Vicar of St Mark’s Church, Tunbridge Wells, analyses the claims of the book –

Part 1:

This aim of this book can be given in the authors’ own words: ‘This short book explains why we think it’s good for Christians to embrace their gay and lesbian brothers and sisters, and to celebrate their relationships … We think that the Church should be willing – delighted even – to hallow and strengthen such commitments.’…”

Part 2:

This volume has the appearance of being a digest of thoughtful and considered academic research. However that is just the surface reality – a carefully curated image. Academic publisher, long sub-title, titled academics listed as authors. It looks like academic work; but upon closer examination the mirage fades.…

It is stated on numerous occasions in the book that the aim of the authors is the embrace and acceptance of homosexual relationships by the Church of England. In reality the book has a much larger goal. The goal is nothing less than a wholesale revision of the Christian Faith into a different religion.

Prophetic from the Centre

Posted on July 29, 2016 
Filed under Theology

d-a-carson-2-7Crossways has released a free mini-book in PDF, .mobi and epub formats.

It’s adapted from Don Carson’s address to the first Gospel Coalition conference, in 2007.

The topic: Prophetic from the Centre – The Gospel of Jesus Christ in 1 Corinthians 15:1–19. Good to pass on to congregations!

A Roman Catholic canon for Belfast Cathedral

Posted on July 28, 2016 
Filed under Anglican Communion

edward-odonnellSt Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast, has appointed the Very Rev Edward O’Donnell, Parish Priest of St Brigid’s, Belfast, as an Ecumenical Canon.

This is the first time in the history of St Anne’s that a Roman Catholic Priest will serve on the Cathedral Chapter…”

St. Anne’s Cathedral, BelfastChurch of Ireland.

Two new posts at Law and Religion Australia

Posted on July 28, 2016 
Filed under Resources

Assoc Prof Neil FosterNeil Foster, at Law and Religion Australia, has updated his blog with two new posts:

Religious Freedom victory in Nova Scotia

and

Religious Vilification claim in Victoria rejected.

Informative reading for an understanding of what’s happening in the realm of religious freedom.

Related: The inaugural Freedom for Faith Conference, Friday 12th August.

What should we think about Pope Francis?

Posted on July 28, 2016 
Filed under Opinion, Resources

Pope Francis. Photo: The Vatican“Pope Francis in one of the most liked leaders in today’s world. …

An increasing number of Evangelicals say: ‘I like this pope, he talks about Jesus a lot…’

True, Francis knows the language that Evangelicals use (e.g. ‘conversion’, ‘mission’, ‘personal relationship with Jesus’) and is able to articulate it in a winsome way. …

The basic rules of interpretation, however, tell us that using the same words does not necessarily mean saying the same things. …

Evangelicals have to do their homework in order to go beyond the surface of mere phonetics in order to grasp the profoundly different theological vision underpinning Francis’ language. They may find it surprising how far Francis is from the standard evangelical understanding of the biblical Gospel. …

– At Vatican Files (Evangelical theological perspectives on Roman Catholicism), Leonardo De Chirico and Greg Pritchard write about the current Pope.

‘The best of’ Ask Pastor John

Posted on July 28, 2016 
Filed under Resources, Theology

ask-pastor-johnAndy Naselli has listening to all of the more than 900 episodes of “Ask Pastor John”, with John Piper, and offers links to a dozen which stand out for him.

‘Rabbi in Residence’ for TEC cathedral

Posted on July 27, 2016 
Filed under TEC

rabbi-in-residenceThe Bishop of Western Massachusetts in the US-based Episcopal Church has appointed a Rabbi in Residence for the diocese’s Christ Church Cathedral. From 1 September, Rabbi Mark Dov Shapiro will take adult education classes and will also ‘preach periodically in the Sunday liturgy.’…”

– Report from the Anglican Communion News Service.

Photo and announcement from the Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts.

D. A. Carson — Reflections on 40 years of theological education

Posted on July 27, 2016 
Filed under People, Resources

Dr Don CarsonThis week on Jason Allen’s Preaching and Preachers podcast, Professor D.A. Carson shares his story, and reflects on 40 years of theological education.

Very encouraging. Runs for 29 minutes.

(The Know Your Roots video series, mentioned in the interview and recorded in 1991, can be seen here.)

The End of Gender?

Posted on July 26, 2016 
Filed under Culture wars, Resources

the-end-of-gender“In the year 2000 I started giving talks on gender issues, based on research I had been doing in feminism. At the time I would speak of the ‘the end’ of feminism, meaning, the logical conclusion of feminist thinking. …

So, I predicted, the end of feminism – its logical outcome – was not likely to be lesbianism, which after all still asserts that there is a difference between men and women, and that women are to be preferred. Rather, the end of feminism was likely to be the disappearance of gender altogether.

But I did not expect to be proved so right, so soon.”

The latest (Summer 2016) issue of Commentary from Oak Hill College in London, is now available for download.

Plenty of good and thought-provoking reading.

You could start with Kirsty Birkett’s article, “The End of Gender?” on page 6.

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