Appalling famine in Madagascar set to worsen

Posted on January 24, 2021 
Filed under World news

“When the Rev Berthier Lainirina called the Archbishop of Sydney’s Anglican Aid from Madagascar in November, he had just heard that five family members of one of his friends had died of starvation, and 200 people had died in his village.

Since then, if it were possible, the situation has deteriorated. …”

– At SydneyAnglicans.net, Russell Powell has the story – and a link to where you can do something to help.

‘In some instances … feticide is undertaken’

Posted on January 23, 2021 
Filed under Australia, Culture wars, Opinion

“I wrote in November about the Liberal Bill before the parliament here in Adelaide which seeks to make lawful the killing of a foetus right up to the time, and immediately after, his or her birth. The upper house has already passed it. The lower house will vote on the February 3.

Since I first wrote of the bill, an anonymous someone in the Attorney-General’s Department or Health Department has distributed to MPs a document explaining how the Bill the department has drafted will operate.

This is question and answer #5 in that government publication:

Q: What happens in later term abortions?…”

– Retired Federal Circuit Court Judge Stuart Lindsay writes in Quadrant Online about a vile abortion bill. Important, though distressing, reading.

Also read the earlier article with its challenge to the churches.

(Photo: Stand for Life rally, Sydney, September 2019.)

Related:

‘Catholic’ Biden marks Roe v. Wade anniversary with pledge to make abortion available for ‘everyone’ – LifeSiteNews.

Remember our Chains

Posted on January 23, 2021 
Filed under Resources

“Across a wide swath of the world — from North Africa to North Korea, from Central Asia to Central Africa — ‘the persecuted church’ is simply ‘the church.’

These believers — like first-century Christians in a twenty-first-century world — live, serve, and witness in the face of hostility, and remind us of our roots.

And if the opening decades are any indication of things to come, this century promises to exceed the persecution of Christians of the last bloody century.…”

– Tim Keesee, founder of Frontline Missions International, describes the state of the persecuted church today. At Desiring God.

See also:

World Watch List 2021.

Anglican Connection Online Conference – February 2-3, 2021

Posted on January 22, 2021 
Filed under Resources

The 2021 Anglican Connection Conference in the USA, not surprisingly, will be an online conference.

One advantage of that is that Australians (and others outside the US) will be able to benefit!

“Our culture is like sand, shifting and changing. It says there is no right or wrong; you make your own truth. Fame and popularity have become more important than kindness and virtue. And just like the tide and the waves, our culture will bend us to its will as long as we sit on the shore.

Jesus said: “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock” (Matthew 7:24).

This year’s conference seeks to challenge and equip God’s people to understand our shifting culture and to point them to God’s Word at this time of complex cultural change.

The Anglican Connection is not only for Anglicans.

It is for all who are keen to harness the riches of the 16th Century Reformation in the Gospel cause today.”

Speakers include John Lennox and Rico Tice.

Update: John Mason writes, Registration at US$25.00 gives you access to the conference in ‘real time’ and at any other time until May 31. But you need to register by January 28.

See the Anglican Connection website for all the details.

While you’re there, check out John Mason’s weekly posts, “Word on Wednesday” weekly Bible reflections.

Many ACL members know John well. He’s ministered in Sydney, Canberra and New York.  He’s currently President of the Anglican Connection and Commissary to the Archbishop of Sydney in the USA.

Child Safety and Religious Freedom

Posted on January 22, 2021 
Filed under Opinion

“The NSW Government is currently inviting comment on draft legislation entitled the Children’s Guardian Amendment (Child Safe Scheme) Bill 2020.

The legislation has been drawn up in response to the work of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and as well as governing “secular” agencies caring for children, it will mandate a new scheme for child protection covering “religious bodies” (see cl 8AA definition of “child safe organisation”, para (c)).

The Bill is generally a good idea, but I want to suggest one amendment which will be needed for it to properly protect religious freedom. …”

– Neil Foster writes at Law and Religion Australia.

Albert Mohler’s The Briefing — 21 January 2021

Posted on January 21, 2021 
Filed under Culture wars, Opinion

In his The Briefing for 21 January 2021, SBTS President Albert Mohler takes a close look at the image and the reality of the incoming US Administration.

It’s a preview of the huge cultural and moral shifts coming to the US – and certain to influence Australia.

What’s wrong with the world? Is there hope?

Posted on January 21, 2021 
Filed under Resources, Theology

“Guilt, weakness, spiritual slavery, prejudice, arrogance, tribalism, conflict, war, victimhood, persecution, pain, suffering, futility, ignorance, lying, deceit, anger, theft, greed, pornography, sexual sin, darkness, fear, drunkenness, substance abuse, domestic abuse, workplace abuse, spiritual powers…

In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, he says many things about the problems we face in this world. He also gives us wonderful reasons to find life, hope and healing in Jesus Christ. Along the way, he provides practical teachings about how to respond and live together.

Here are some key reflections relating to the topic of what’s wrong with the world according to Ephesians in my series Lift Your Eyes: Reflections on Ephesians.”

from Lionel Windsor at Moore College.

On How Pastors Should Prepare their People for Eternity

Posted on January 20, 2021 
Filed under Resources, Theology

In the latest Pastors Talk podcast, Jonathan Leeman and Mark Dever chat about something more important than politics.

Challenging and encouraging. 25 minutes well spent. Do listen.

Listen here.

Mark also mentions the talk he gave at Together for the Gospel 2020The Accounting We Shall Give.

The future of the Australian Anglican Church – with Kanishka Raffel, Richard Condie and Jennifer Hercott

Posted on January 19, 2021 
Filed under Australian dioceses

“The unity of the Australian Anglican Church is hanging by a thread.

Bishop of Tasmania Richard Condie, Dean of Sydney, Kanishka Raffel, and Jennifer Hercott from St Luke’s Church in Emerald in Queensland all serve on the Board of GAFCON Australia, a group within the Anglican denomination who are committed to upholding biblical and historic Christian faith, within Anglicanism.

In 2019 the Wangaratta Diocese in Victoria voted to go ahead with blessing same sex unions.  That decision was followed by a vote in the Diocese of Newcastle in New South Wales.

The issue was expected to come to a head at the Australian General Synod in June 2020. But COVID put everything on hold, delaying the gathering till June this year…”

A very sobering and important edition of The Pastor’s Heart.

We can have Confidence

Posted on January 19, 2021 
Filed under Encouragement, Theology

“Sennacherib ruled Assyria from the capital city of Nineveh, which was the largest city in the world at the time. He was formidable, ruthless, a military ruler bent on collecting nations.

Nebuchadnezzar II, the ruler of the Babylonian Empire, surpassed him. He made Babylon even larger and greater than Nineveh. Nothing like it had ever been seen.

Cyrus surpassed them both, creating the world’s largest empire through merciless force. When Cyrus’ vast army marched, the ground shook for miles. …”

– Ligonier Ministries’ Stephen Nichols writes with godly encouragement to Christians in a world of turmoil.

Image: Dr. Stephen Nichols from a Ligonier Ministries video.

Worldview and Christian mission

Posted on January 18, 2021 
Filed under Apologetics & Evangelism, Resources

“I have a friend who was once a committed Buddhist. Wonderfully, he has come to know the Lord Jesus as his saviour. But he had a lot of questions.

The trouble was that his Christian friends kept answering questions he wasn’t asking. One of his big questions was, ‘How can you say God suffers?’ He was given lots of great answers explaining why people suffer – but he wasn’t confused about that. He knows people suffer. My friend couldn’t get his head around the idea that God might suffer on the cross. The reason this was such a big issue for him was because of his worldview. …”

– Dr David Williams, Director of development and training for CMS Australia at St Andrew’s Hall, spoke about worldviews at CMS Summer School.

SydneyAnglicans.net has published an edited version of his talk. Very helpful.

We Believe — The Story of the Apostles’ Creed

Posted on January 17, 2021 
Filed under History, Theology

“The Augsburg Confession. The Helvetic Confession. The Gallican Confession. The Belgic Confession. The Westminster Confession and Catechism. The Second London Baptist Confession. The Canons of Dort.

What do these historic evangelical confessions have in common? Each of them has its roots in the Apostles’ Creed.

The Creed, also known as the Twelve Articles of Faith, expresses essential biblical doctrines that have been articulated, defended, and embraced for nearly two thousand years of church history. …”

– At Desiring God, Brian Hanson gives a helpful backgrounder to The Apostles’ Creed.

See also:

Andrew Moody’s series on The Apostles’ Creed at The Gospel Coalition Australia.

Light at the End of the Tunnel — Mothers Union Sydney Seminar

Posted on January 17, 2021 
Filed under Resources

Here’s information about this year’s Annual Mothers Union Sydney Seminar, coming up on Friday 26th February.

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