Blog - Christianity
In asking this question I’m not referring to the denomination or style of the church you’re part of (or not part of). Over my 30 years as a pastor, I’ve observed many “kinds” of people who refer to themselves as […]
There seems to be a lot of confusion amongst Christians as to the proper place for judging – or not judging. I was reading a Facebook thread on the weekend on Ireland’s vote for gay marriage, and especially U2’s Bono […]
A few weeks ago I posted a blog presenting the three main Christian views on hell. One of the things I found interesting in the responses to the blog was the repeated theme of taking the Bible literally. Comments were […]
Why are women allowed to speak in the church when the Bible says they should be quiet? There are two passages of Scripture that teach this very clearly: 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 and 1 Timothy 2:11-12:
“Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.”
“A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent.”
Someone accused me on Facebook recently of “being quiet” on the issue of same-sex marriage. While that’s not been the case, I have chosen not to engage in the vitriolic rants and raves between Christians and LGBTI people. It appears […]
I love history! It fascinates me – not just because it’s a study of past events but rather because of its insights into human nature. As German author Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel put it back in the 1800s, “We learn […]
"Born again!". It's a familiar term that's been done to death in recent times. If you google it you come up with all sorts of things from movies to songs, albums to books, and of course the Abba tribute band Bjorn Again. Born again is a hair product, a beauty mask, a motorbike restoration business and a fashion show. It's an American activist group and a comic book. Right here in Melbourne you can even cover your concrete slab with "Born again floors." Born again is an Elvis impersonator in Sydney, and rapper Snoop Dog said he was born again after visiting a Rastafarian Temple in Jamaica earlier this year where a High Priest told him, 'You are the light; you are the lion.' He now refers to himself as “ Snoop Lion” . I kid you not.
Well, they’ve come and gone from what was described as the world’s biggest atheist conference. Author Melanie Phillips described it as 2,500 hardcore believers in the absence of religion [giving] a hero's welcome to the high priest of belief in unbelief, Richard Dawkins.
It’s interesting to me that Richard Dawkins, who has made a career out of telling everyone how much more tolerant the world would be if only religion were obliterated, demonstrated huge intolerance in some of his remarks. He referred to the Pope as a Nazi, and described Family First senator Steve Fielding as “more stupid than an earthworm.” Oh, I see, we are to be tolerant but only towards those who agree with us!
The problem of suffering is the subject of the most frequently raised question concerning the Christian faith: “If there’s a loving God why is there so much suffering in the world?”
Suffering is something that touches everyone. From large-scale events such as wars and natural disasters, to suffering on an individual level like bereavement, sickness, broken relationships, involuntary singleness, depression, loneliness, poverty, persecution, rejection, and disappointment. Suffering can come in an endless variety of forms and no human being is immune from it – not even Christians.
Last week I posted my blog on the Bayside Church website as usual but, for the first time, I also posted it as a note on my Facebook page never thinking for one minute that my comments would stir up so much emotion.
One person in particular – a prominent American Evangelist – misunderstood my comments as being unsupportive of Israel. He said the Church has a Scriptural mandate to always be Pro-Israel and he cited Genesis 12:3 to support his view: “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse.”