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OXYGEN Christmas

Was Luke mistaken about the date of Jesus’ birth?

A couple of years ago I watched the film Gravity. The effects were spectacular, the photography breathtaking, the characterisations engaging, and the story held one’s attention throughout. It even raised some profound (religious?) questions about life, death and purpose. And yet, when I left the cinema, I could not decide whether I had enjoyed the film or […]

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baby-jesus-in-manger-with-mary-and-wise-men

Jesus was not born in a stable

I am sorry to spoil your preparations for Christmas before the Christmas lights have even gone up—though perhaps it is better to do this now than the week before Christmas, when everything has been carefully prepared. But Jesus wasn’t born in a stable, and, curiously, the New Testament hardly even hints that this might have […]

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centurion

Did Jesus heal the centurion’s gay lover?

At the end of May, Jeffrey John, Dean of St Alban’s, preached at Liverpool Cathedral on the healing of the centurion’s servant in Luke 7. You can listen to the sermon on the Cathedral’s Soundcloud stream. John is a consummate orator, and he begins with a story from his teenager years, when his vicar refers to […]

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OXYGEN Christmas

Was Luke in error about the date of Jesus’ birth?

Before Christmas 2013 I watched the film Gravity. The effects were spectacular, the photography breathtaking, the characterisations engaging, and the story held one’s attention throughout. It even raised some profound (religious?) questions about life, death and purpose. And yet, when I left the cinema, I could not decide whether I had enjoyed the film or not. For […]

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Reading Luke’s gospel

As we approach Advent, we are coming into the new Liturgical Year, and in the lectionary we will be in Year C. This is the year when we focus on continuous reading of Luke’s gospel, though as in other years there are significant contributions from John. I have just been teaching about Luke in Hereford Diocese […]

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baby-jesus-in-manger-with-mary-and-wise-men

Jesus wasn’t born in a stable

I am sorry to spoil your preparations for Christmas before the Christmas lights have even gone up—though perhaps it is better to do this now than the week before Christmas, when everything has been carefully prepared. But Jesus wasn’t born in a stable, and, curiously, the New Testament hardly even hints that this might have […]

Continue Reading
OXYGEN Christmas

Did Luke get the date of Jesus’ birth wrong?

This time last year I watched the film Gravity. The effects were spectacular, the photography breathtaking, the characterisations engaging, and the story held one’s attention throughout. It even raised some profound (religious?) questions about life, death and purpose. And yet, when I left the cinema, I could not decide whether I had enjoyed the film or not. […]

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stephens-martyrdom

Role models in the Acts of the Apostles

I’ve been at the Society of Biblical Literature annual meeting in San Diego. (I have been staying in the squat tower on the right.) It is an extraordinary global gathering of around 7,000 academics running over five days, and alongside are 5,000 academics meeting as the American Academy of Religion. The programme booklet giving details […]

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Jesus’ view of mission

I spent part of last week at our excellent clergy conference in Swanwick. (I will leave it ambiguous as to whether the clergy or the conference was excellent—or both!). As is the practice with the Partnership for Missional Church approach to mission (being used in a number of diocese including ours), we repeatedly spent time reflecting […]

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