home > Pastor’s Desk > 2021 > December 3rd > WHO CARES?


During the time of Caesar Nero (54 - 68 AD) he would use Christians as living night torches by impaling them then dousing them in pitch then lighting them The world into which the Saviour of mankind entered as a baby was a very harsh place. Life was cheap. Might was right. The oppressed were abused and often mistreated by the Roman conquerors. Those expected to speak up for, and defend, the voiceless vulnerable — their religious leaders of the day — had become too easily corrupted in their pathetic attempts to win a crumb of their conqueror’s power. This corruption in the pursuit of financial gain and political leverage had blinded these supposed-to-be-shepherds to the true plight of those they should have served as guardians. Why on earth would God send His Son into our world at such a dark time?

¶ But when the time arrived that was set by God the Father, God sent His Son, born among us of a woman, born under the conditions of the law so that He might redeem those of us who have been kidnapped by the law.
Galatians 4:4 THE MESSAGE


A depiction of Christian about to be martyred in the ColosseumIn what would have to be the greatest reply to the oft asked question – what has the all-powerful, all-good God done about evil and suffering in the world? – God the Eternal Father sent His Eternal Son into this world of evil and suffering as a zygote (the earliest stage of human development) as His answer. In one of Dr. F.W. Boreham’s essays on this topic he pointed out how often it has been throughout history that just at the darkest hours in human history, a baby has been sovereignly born who would grow into a courageous leader who would be a further divine reply to the question about what has done about evil and suffering in the world. The greatest example of this of course is the Christmas Child. At just the precise time of one of earth’s darkest hours, the Christ was born. Little wonder then that Dr. Boreham could say that God’s answer to the world’s problems is always a baby. And the baby that God the Father sent to the world was the One who created it and everything in it (Col. 1:17-18). Did He come reluctantly? Did He come in the same way that the mythological Greco-Roman members of the pantheon of gods would come feeling rather indifferent to the injustices besetting the world? Let the written Word of God be our answer-

When He saw the crowds, He had compassion for them,
because they were harassed and helpless,
like sheep without a shepherd.
Matthew 9:36


Christ was moved with compassion for people. He felt their pain and saw their suffering. Did Jesus care? Asking this question sound utterly ridiculous even before I get the question mark! There is no doubt that Jesus cared. He demonstrated care for outcasts — such as lepers who shunned by society — but He didn’t care for them because they were a marginalised group or even because they were lepers. He cared for them because they were people created in the image of God. Jesus cared for the poor – but not because they were poor – but because they were people created in the image of God. Jesus cared for women – but not because they were women – but because they were people created in the image of God. And the same can be said of His care for those people with a different skin colour to His (which almost certainly was not ‘white’), or for those people of different ethnicity who could barely speak the language of the Hebrews without a tell-tale accent that brought scorn and even hatred among Israelites. He cared for these people despite these things because they too were created in the image of God. This reveals that Christ treated all people as sharing a common and unique bond: all people are created in the image of God and this common bond and shared privilege binds us each together as the ‘human race’ thus making all alternate adjectives of the word “race” superfluous and counter-productive to a biblical understanding of what it means to be human. Our initial question, who cares? is now forced to be adjusted to: Who should care? And the answer is immediately obvious. We should because we are the family of the divine image bearers. We are family.

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,”
has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge
of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
Second Corinthians 4:6



Those who know Christ! To worship is to adore, to behold, to praise, to reflect upon and reflect. Thus, we become like whatever we worship. When we reflect on Christ we marvel at His care for each individual in a crowd where each one probably thought that no-one saw them in the midst of a sea of faces – but Jesus did. They may have thought that when Jesus looked at the crowd He couldn’t have noticed them but He did. As they blended into the masses of people that often flocked to Christ they may have felt that non-one cared for them – but Jesus did. Consider how often Jesus spent time with one person: the woman at the well (John 4); Nicodemus the Scribe (John 3); the man at the Pool of Bethesda (John 5); the women condemned as an adulteress (John 8); the man born blind (John 9); Lazarus (John 11); and Pilate (John 19).  

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord,
are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another.
For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
Second Corinthians 3:18`

Time and time again throughout the gospels we see Jesus taking time out for the individual – a woman with the issue of blood, the Syrophoenician woman with a demonise daughter, a blind man on the side of the road. Jesus’ care for people is a remarkable insight into the Father’s care for each member of His earthly family of divine image bearers. And just as Jesus conveyed the Father’s heart of care for each person, we too are called to also convey it (Luke 10:25-37).


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This year we have been laying a foundation for knowing God and then each Sunday building upon it. Throughout June we are focusing on how knowing God enables us to find our joy in Him and consequently to discover that He enables us to find joy in our relationships with others. But sadly, for many people who have vowed to love, serve, and follow Jesus, this has not always been easy to do. This is why the current sub-theme of humility is critically important if someone desires to truly experience joy in each of their various relationships with others. 


In the past few months, we have been hearing in Church and also by reading the Pastor’s Desks that through the Psalms and by the Fruit of the Holy Spirit, we can know God more. The Psalms show God as our Shepherd, God’s character is unchanging, we can be still and know Him, and that He is poetic. The Fruit of the Spirit reminds us that God is faithful, gentle and kind, and that we need to stay close to Him in the same way a baby gets nutrients from its mother through the umbilical cord. Knowing these things, we can become more like God as He helps us outwork His character in our lives. Philippians 3:10 challenged me in this regard some time ago.


What comes to mind when you hear the word Rules? For some, it is a welcome relief to all the chaos surrounding us. Rules can provide comfort, safety, stability, predictability and protection. But for many others, as soon as you hear the word rules, it causes you to sigh loudly, followed by the instant urge to do the opposite. It can cause an immense sense of frustration along with that feeling of being boxed or caged in. Then some rules are plain silly as they make no sense, or there appears to be no apparent reason for why the rule/s exists in the first place. 

The Vine and the Umbilical Cord: Life, Abiding and Bearing FruitThe Vine and the Umbilical Cord: Life, Abiding and Bearing Fruit

Jesus’ allegory in John 15:1-17 of the vine and the branches provides a beautiful picture of the intimate and living relationship available to those who would abide in Him, the true Vine; and it illustrates how naturally the Holy Spirit is able to produce fruit in the lives of those who are willing to be branches abiding in the vine.

Knowing God Through The Fruit Of The Spirit

I’m sure you can picture an occasion where food delicacies are served and someone is there who has lost all sense of decorum to the point of being rude to get to the food before others and is unable or unwilling to engage in any level of conversation for the sake of finding the choicest of foods. Maybe that was you or me on occasions. Or an All You Can Eat challenge restaurant. It is a picture of complete lack of self-restraint (especially if Homer Simpson is involved). Whilst we are away, I am looking forward to visiting a town (Kenilworth) with a bakery tourist attraction that sells 1kg doughnuts. I’m not sure what will happen there, but I can imagine many have risen to a challenge.


Australia is now grappling with a national crisis — the violent abuse of women by men. Every four days in Australia a woman is being murdered [Source]. The sad probability is that she was murdered by “a current or former intimate partner” [Source]. But added to this alarming statistic is the even greater and more horrifying statistic of number of women who are experiencing abuse – physical; sexual; verbal; financial; psychological – daily. In fact, it is so prevalent that most people working in this arena know that most domestic abuse incidents in Australia are not reported. Abuse is oppression. And since the Bible is so clear and consistent in its condemnation of oppression of the vulnerable you would naturally assume that this national crisis was being thundered and denounced as a great evil from the majority of pulpits around our country at the moment. This assumption is further reinforced by the guesstimate that one-in-four women in every Australian church is regularly abused in some way by a man. But I suspect that it is not.


My cat, Lola, had a beautiful, fluffy, soft coat. I had her for 13 years so I knew her very well. She loved a cuddle and snuggling at night sleeping in the crook of my arm. She loved me but with others she could be a rascal, hissing or swiping her claws. She never scoffed her food but was a grazer. It was common to hear her crunching her biscuits for a midnight snack and she loved ice cream. She loved hiding in cardboard boxes or in the pantry. She particularly hated the car evidenced by her continual mournful meowing til she got out. As I knew her, she also knew me. She knew I would feed her and give her pats or cuddles. When I called her she knew my soft voice, my touch, my smell. She knew my growly voice when she had done the wrong thing. When I’d take her to the vet she would be still in my arms as the vet examined her and vaccinated her. If she was injured or sick I would look after her.


The Bible is an amazing book. As we look through the book of Psalms we can so unbelievably clearly see God at work. And also most poignantly, this Psalm – Psalm 22 – prophetically points to, and closely mirrors Jesus and the events of the cross mentioned in the New Testament. This Psalm is well over 1000 years prior to Jesus.There are some well known passages of Scripture that stand out as being prophetic promises of the Messiah. These prophetic words show us that God is Omniscient; He knows everything. The first Messianic prophecy shows that the seed of the woman would eventually defeat the devil.


home > Pastor's Desk > 2024 > April 12th > THIS IS HOW AN EXPERT SUCCESSFULLY FOUGHT SPIRITUAL WARSThe distance between the spiritual dimension and our earthly-material dimension is a lot thinner than most people realise! This means that there is a direct...


So many thriller movies are just funny. Of course they are not meant to be and many people would find them more like nightmare material. The producers would be horrified to see me giggling at some of their ‘scary’ bits, but it’s just the way I’m wired. I see more of the special effects than the story line and I see the absurdity of the scenes that lack the necessary rules of consistency instead of the fear factor they hope. I once watched a movie where the victim lay dead bleeding from the mouth but the make-up blood had not dripped to the ground with gravity, but rather, accidentally dripped up. The whole movie just became hilarious from that point on.