Feb 09 2024Reading Time: 8 minutes
“You can’t read the New Testament without seeing the call to holiness in the Christian life. But that holiness is a work of God’s grace as the Holy Spirit empowers the believer to live a life pleasing to God. New Testament holiness is a joyous privilege, not a heavy burden and duty.
New Testament holiness enhances life, it never diminishes it. This is what Jesus modelled so well and it’s why genuine seekers of God were…
Jan 13 2024Reading Time: 9 minutes
It’s been nearly five years since the religious community I grew up in ‘regretfully accepted my withdrawal from fellowship’. In reality, I did no such thing, their statement was simply an awkward and disingenuous way to excommunicate me because I could no longer affirm, without reservation, particular tenets they held to be watertight and immutable.
I feel that had the Bible genuinely been our mutually agreed authority, there would have been no good cause to excommunicate…
Dec 08 2023Reading Time: 7 minutes
It can be tempting to view the early first century church in rather glowing terms – a ‘golden age’ of church history when the believers were all-in, the church totally had it together, and the believers shared all things in common. I’ve heard Acts 2:42 touted as somewhat of a touchstone for church authenticity, with a revival of these (implied: blissful, albeit persecuted) glory days being the true mark of genuine Christian living.
And there’s no…
Apr 29 2023Reading Time: 16 minutes
One of the more detrimental teachings that I believe has defined the church throughout her history and which continues to exert influence today is the idea that God established some kind of hierarchy of men over women at creation. Hierarchy, it’s claimed, was, one; either part of God’s original plan for humanity, established from the beginning or, two; God’s prescriptive punishment (primarily upon the woman), because of sin.
(Not a reader? Take a listen instead ⇓)
Jul 07 2022Reading Time: 6 minutes
You may be aware that there are a few verses that, as traditionally interpreted, seem to completely contradict Paul’s recurring message of ‘freedom and oneness in Christ’, particularly in relation to women’s contribution to and participation in church ministry. The verses in question are found in 1 Corinthians 14:34-36, 1 Timothy 2:11-12, and 1 Corinthians 11:1-16.
1 Corinthians 14 is the only passage that (seems to) explicitly forbid women ‘speaking in church’ (and which is…
Feb 24 2022Reading Time: 8 minutes
“God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us, so that we’re free of worry on Judgment Day – our standing in the world is identical with Christ’s. There is no room in love for fear. Well-formed love banishes fear. Since fear is crippling, a…
Dec 09 2021Reading Time: 8 minutes
Leaving is never because of just one thing. Not really.
It’s the result of a thousand, inconsequential one things that all converge in a single moment of sudden, irreconcilable difference.
For me, the eventual leaving of the religious community I grew up in began as a tiny question fluttering at the back of my mind.
Back then, I’d never met a question I didn’t want to take apart, examine, rearrange and then carefully reassemble, perfectly ordered, and satisfactorily…
Dec 08 2021Reading Time: 12 minutes
“Behold, the virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call Him Emmanuel” (which means, “God with us”)” | Matthew 1:23, BRB
Scripture tells of a crowded family home in a bustling ancestral town, set at the southern end of the Judean hills. Filled to the brim already, perhaps with relatives from both near and far, there was no room in the guest quarters for the additional arrival of a heavily pregnant…
Nov 15 2020Reading Time: 21 minutes
The early Christians faced many challenges in their new life of faith in Jesus. The gospel boldly sought to realign humanity according to the values of a true and impartial God. Differences based on race or social status found no place in this new religion.
Jews who thought of themselves as God’s unique and chosen people were now to consider Gentiles as family, loved by the same God. Slave owners, rich in property and persons,…