UNPACKING CHRISTIANITY

UNPACKING CHRISTIANITY

I have a thing for bags. Not shopping bags or lady’s handbags, but manly bags – functional bags. A few years back I became fed-up with the number of bags I was wearing-out, patching-up and hoping that I could extend their lives a little longer, only to accept the fact that despite all of my attempts, I had to throw them out. It was then that I made a life-changing decision. I decided that would stop buying bags and begin to buy luggage that was guaranteed to last. Since that moment, I have never had to throw out a bag or a case. As you could imagine this required a huge change in what I was prepared to spend on luggage. But the reason I value good luggage is not because I like carrying or wheeling bags and cases around — it’s because the right luggage enables the right things to be packed for the right journey. This is how I see Christianity. It is a journey because it requires packing our life luggage and following Christ as we walk with Him. If we were to unpack this life luggage we would find three essential items, and this what we will discover now as we unpack Christianity.

THE OLOGIES

THE OLOGIES

This Sunday I conclude the BECAUSE HE IS series. Each of the six instalments of this series has dealt with a truth about God. My hope throughout the series so far has been that I might introduce those unfamiliar or less acquainted with God to experience a richer, deeper and more intimate knowledge of Him. My motive for doing this has been to lead someone who had never loved God to come to gladly love Him — and for those who were in like of God to become besotted with their love for God. I have repeatedly said throughout this series so far that I have not wanted this to be merely a series of lectures or just interesting information for your fancy. (Added to this, I have confessed that Kim has forbidden me from lecturing this series!) But now, as I prepare to conclude this series this Sunday, I want to give you some of the theological background behind what I consider to be one of the most important series of sermons I have delivered. 

EVEN THOUGH IT’S UNFATHOMABLE, UNSEARCHABLE, AND UNCOMPREHENSIBLE, YOU STILL NEED IT!

EVEN THOUGH IT’S UNFATHOMABLE, UNSEARCHABLE, AND UNCOMPREHENSIBLE, YOU STILL NEED IT!

Jesus Christ Himself was the ultimate personification of wisdom (1Cor. 1:24, 30), yet He Himself, when He became incarnate, had to ‘increase’ in wisdom. And chances are that if Jesus had to ‘increase in wisdom’ then so do we! In God’s unfathomable wisdom He permits us to learn how to increase in wisdom by learning from our mistake and failures. Yet, there are times when, as James the brother of Jesus wrote, that God gifts wisdom to His children. This may not be a ‘Matrix type’ of human-software update, but it could come to you in way you did not expect in response to your prayer for God’s wisdom where you have a “light-bulb moment”. And when you experience one of those rarer moments of ‘received’ wisdom (where God gives us wisdom), it might be time to implement some wisdom from the life of Daniel, who, when it happened to him, he gave God the glory for it.

CYCLING, SIMULATION & CHANGE

CYCLING, SIMULATION & CHANGE

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THE GOSPEL OF YESTERDAY WE’VE NEARLY ALL FORGOTTEN

THE GOSPEL OF YESTERDAY WE’VE NEARLY ALL FORGOTTEN

I really like a clever movie and Yesterday is a really clever movie! All too often movie trailers reveal the two best scenes of a movie. But Yesterday’s trailers only hinted at the movie’s premise without spoiling it – or giving the plot away. All we are told in the trailers is that the entire world – except for one struggling singer-musician – has absolutely no recollection of the Beatles! After being hit by a bus just as a freak solar flare caused the entire planet to lose electrical and battery power, Jack Malik (the struggling singer-musician) is then hospitalised. Upon being released, his friends present him with a new guitar to replace his bus-crushed one. They beg him to try it and play them a song. He performs Yesterday and moves his friends to admiring tears. They ask him when he wrote this song. He thinks they are pulling his leg – but they aren’t. When he gets home he is baffled by their response and Googles “the Beatles” only to discover that not even Google has heard of the Beatles!