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(How) should we proclaim bad news?

A little while ago, I preached on Isaiah chapter 1, and it challenged me to think through how we proclaim bad news in our preaching. I have generally observed a striking divide between theological traditions in relation to whether the gospel is in fact ‘good news’ (as the word ‘gospel’ tells us—a ‘good spell’ or word), […]

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Receiving Bad News

Can we preach bad news? Should we?

I have generally observed a striking divide between theological traditions in relation to whether the gospel is in fact ‘good news’ (as the word ‘gospel’ tells us—a ‘good spell’ or word), or whether we need to start with the ‘bad news’ of sin and judgement before we can say anything good. The NT gives a somewhat […]

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Should I choose the NIV?

Following my post yesterday on the translation decisions in the NIV, the debate has continued apace. Although some of the discussion is quite technical, and the protagonists are clearly not persuaded, David Instone-Brewer has been making some interesting points. One that caught my eye was on another well-known bugbear—the translation of Is 7.14 ‘A young woman/virgin […]

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Preaching on Advent 1

Here are some thoughts on making sense of the lectionary readings for Advent 1: Is 64.1–9; Mark 13.24–37 ‘Oh, that you would rend the heavens and come down!’ Isaiah’s cry of desperation resonates with the cry of many today. If only God would make everything clear! If only he would remove uncertainty, and bring clarity! […]

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Receiving Bad News

How/should we proclaim bad news?

Last Sunday I preached on Isaiah chapter 1, and it challenged me to think through how we proclaim bad news. I have generally observed a striking divide between theological traditions in relation to whether the gospel is in fact ‘good news’ (as the word ‘gospel’ tells us—a ‘good spell’ or word), or whether we need […]

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Is ‘our God greater’?

Over the last few months I have found myself less and less comfortable with the song by Chris Tomlin that has the chorus: Our God is greater, our God is stronger God you are higher than any other Our God is Healer, awesome in power Our God, Our God… At first I thought that the […]

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