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Judge not that ye be not judged

In the last week the BBC, CNN, the Daily Mail, The Telegraph and many other news sites and blogs have reported a hoax as fact. The hoax was this: Internet Explorer users are less intelligent than those using other web browsers. It is a lie that has spread like wildfire despite the thinnest of fabricated […]

Hell fire

Hell is one of the most liberating doctrines in the Bible.  To understand it brings health to your soul.  But you might need some convincing about that… We’ve already said that modern people seem far more fearful of “fire and brimstone” preaching than of “fire and brimstone” itself.  But the fires of which the Bible […]

The salt of the earth

If we call someone “the salt of the earth” we usually mean they’re real, honest, straight-talking, uncomplicated and dependable.  Jesus had something else in mind.  Although figuring out what exactly is not easy. Jesus begins the sermon on the mount with the beatitudes in which He proclaims the present-tense blessedness of His disciples.  These are […]

Baptism of fire

When the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps went ashore at Gallipoli, it was said to be a baptism of fire for these nations.  Less tragically, a baptism of fire might refer to a stormy first year of marriage or a difficult first match for a football manager.  It is the birthing of something new […]

The Desire of All Nations

There is a limit and a longing to us all.  And that interaction between the limit and the longing defines our human condition.  We are finite creatures, and yet this finite world does not satisfy. The prophet Haggai wrote in the 6th century BC to the Israelites in a strange kind of in-between time.  They […]

Reap the whirlwind

“Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”  Paul’s saying from Galatians 6:7 is a common biblical theme.  The judgement which befalls the wicked is not an alien imposition.  It is the way they’ve been heading all along, the destination of their course, the fruit of their living. Hosea looks on the northern kingdom, […]

For ever and ever

Given the suffering of this world, how can anyone believe in a good God or a happy ending? In Daniel 7, the prophet has a vision of the most terrible cruelty imaginable.  It was a “vision by night” that left him, in his own words, “grieved in my spirit… and the visions of my head […]

The writing is on the wall

In the Fuhrerbunker, Hitler married Eva Braun and the generals toasted the “Thousand Year Reich.”  But the writing was on the wall.  The phrase denotes the judgement of doom that gatecrashes the dinner party. The original party-pooping happened to the Babylonian King, Belshazzar.  In all probability, the invading Medes were already upon them and so […]

No rest for the wicked

It’s the sort of phrase your cheery postman might say on his rounds.  “Must push on I’m afraid, no rest for the wicked eh?”  We all titter politely and on with our day.  Yet such levity is incongruous. This saying is the biblical equivalent of verses such as “these shall go away into everlasting punishment” […]

Woe is me

What does a spiritual experience look like?  Warm feelings?  Groovy vibes?  Not if you ask Isaiah. In Isaiah chapter 6 the prophet has the ultimate spiritual experience.  He meets the LORD: “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the LORD sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train [i.e. […]