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November 2011

O death where is thy sting

When Monty Python’s Life of Brian came out 30 years ago it caused a tremendous stir. Now there are definitely reasons to object to the film.  But we should not object simply because the film makes fun of religious people.  Jesus made fun of religious people.  Constantly. (e.g. The Mote and the Beam or Straining at […]

Faith, hope and love…

Heaven is a world of love.  So said Jonathan Edwards in a famous sermon by that title.  His text was our verse for today: “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”  (1 Corinthians 13:13) It’s a trio that Paul uses often in his letters to describe the […]

Now we see through a glass darkly

How would you compare life now to life when Jesus returns? So often we think of ‘the here and now’ as the concrete reality and Christ’s future as an ephemeral, ‘wafty’ hope.  Paul thought of things precisely the other way around. In the final paragraph of First Corinthians 13, Paul addresses our future hope.  When compared […]

Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things

First Corinthians 13 is dynamite.  It explodes every myth humanity has ever bought about spirituality. As we saw last time, Paul holds out three models of super-spirituality: the ecstatic worshipper, the profound prophet and the stoic do-gooder.  And he then detonates a bomb under each of them.  None of these super-saints are anything if they […]

A faith that can move mountains

Together with the 23rd Psalm, and perhaps John chapter 1, First Corinthians 13 is among the most popular chapters in the Bible.  It is read at weddings and at funerals, at state ceremonies, hospital bedsides, school assemblies.  It is the go-to Scripture for any and every occasion.  It is often simply known as St Paul’s […]

All things to all men

When we hear the phrase we think of two-faced gossips, slick marketing men or political spin doctors.  Actually Paul is speaking about a ministry philosophy of deep integrity.  He’s talking about a flexibility that seeks to honour something far deeper than cultural expressions. In 1 Corinthians 9 the Apostle is laying bare his modus operandi.  He is […]

The time is short

“I have discovered that all the unhappiness of men arises from one single fact, that they cannot stay quietly in their own chamber.”  So said French mathematician and Christian thinker Blaise Pascal.  Therefore, said Pascal, we fill our lives with diversions so that we might distract ourselves from “our feeble and mortal condition.” In other […]

Coming Very Soon – Devotional Paperback

I’ll be self-publishing the King’s English as a daily devotional in four quarterly instalments. Hopefully it will be available very soon on Amazon, STL, and through me.  Just in time for Christmas.  Just in time for all those New Years Bible-reading resolutions! Tell your friends! And thanks so much to James Watts for a great […]


What would convince the world to believe in God? I once asked an atheist the question: “What would convince you to believe in God?”  He answered: “Until god appears before me as a burning bush or I see his picture on the front of popular science magazines I will remain a non-believer.” It strikes me […]

The Powers That Be

Romans 13 has introduced two phrases to the world that seem to pull in different directions – at least in the way they are used. On the one hand we have “the powers that be.”  We commonly use this phrase to describe nameless authorities handing down impersonal judgements: —  “Apparently, in their infinite wisdom, the […]