Gaia: Has the church silenced the sermon of creation?

‘The heavens declare the glory of God;    the skies proclaim the work of his hands.Day after day they pour forth speech;    night after night they reveal knowledge…Their voice goes out into all the earth,    their words to the ends of the world.’ (Psalm 19.1-2, 4) ‘Since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen,…

Two types of prodigal. Two types of Father.

Writing about David, Absalom, Judas and Jesus reminded me of this thread I posted a couple of years ago on the return of two prodigal sons. When reading through 2 Samuel, I was struck by how vastly different Absalom’s return to David is in 2 Samuel 14ff, compared to the return of the younger brother…

Kiss the Son: David, Absalom, Judas and Jesus

I am currently taking a slow journey through the Psalms; roughly a Psalm a week, which I’m pondering across a few days, alongside my other readings. I’m really enjoying the slow pace, and the repeated reading, and I’m being hugely helped by James Hamilton’s brilliant commentary, which has made me appreciate how carefully arranged the…

“A word in season.” In favour of cherry-picking Bible verses

I was once coaching a preacher, and together we were critiquing another person’s sermon, in an effort to learn more about our craft. My friend commented that the sermon simply consisted of ‘cherry-picking Bible verses, and smashing them together’ to which I replied, ‘sounds like a great recipe for cherry jam!’ I was being flippant,…

The language of creation in Genesis and Job

I’ve recently been listening to the book of Job on my commute to work, which may explain why my colleagues have often found me a little morose first thing in the morning! Towards the end of the book, God speaks out of the heavens, to address the suffering of his servant Job and the questions…

One year on

One year ago today we arrived in Oxford! It feels simultaneously like ages have passed, and yet no time at all. This has no doubt been exacerbated by the fact that despite moving in April, I continued working for Christ Church London until the end of July (and indeed Helen only finished last month), and…

Eternal Prayers: Paying to pray on the blockchain

I often wonder what the Apostles would make of modern ‘Christianity’. If you could resurrect Paul for a week and get him to visit a selection of churches – or worse still, hand him an iPhone and let him scroll through Christian Twitter – what would delight him, and what would baffle him? What innovations…

What’s wrong? A conversation starter from David Foster Wallace

I was recently reminded of this paragraph from David Foster Wallace’s novel The Pale King: ‘The next suitable person you’re in light conversation with, you stop suddenly in the middle of the conversation and look at the person closely and say, “What’s wrong?” You say it in a concerned way. He’ll say, “What do you…

Day of Prayer for Ukraine: Three reasons to fast in a time of crisis

This Wednesday, 2nd March, the Pope has called for a day of fasting in response to the war in Ukraine. Many churches and Christians around the world will join in this initiative, devoting themselves to prayer and asking God to intervene and bring peace.  For lots of Christians, fasting is a practice that rarely features…