Life as labyrinth

Last week, returning from a half-term break in France, we had a tyre blow out on the autoroute and, since almost everything is closed on a Sunday in France, we had an unplanned extra day there. We stayed over in St Quentin, a town of ancient foundation which was the capital of the war-like Viromandui, … Continue Reading

From text to (all-age) talk

Last Sunday I was speaking at St Ann’s with Emmanuel, an inner-urban church in Nottingham, using the lectionary gospel reading of Mark 1.1–8. I trace here the move from the text itself to the all-age talk and activity, and include details of the PowerPoint presentation I used. Features of the text The most striking thing … Continue Reading

Are the apocryphal gospels true?

In recent year the ‘apocryphal’ ‘gospels‘ have been making something of a comeback. (I put the word ‘gospels’ in inverted commas, since these documents are not really in the form of ‘gospels’—on which see below.) Perhaps the best-known of these is the Gospel of Thomas, a collection of 114 sayings attributed to Jesus which, as it … Continue Reading

End Times and Jesus’ return

There is going to be a flurry of interest in the whole question of ‘End Times’ in the autumn, as two films are released on the subject. The first is a remake of the ‘Left Behind’ film, based on the idea of the ‘rapture’ which forms part of J N Darby‘s dispensationalism, interpreted through the … Continue Reading

Making sense of the Second Coming

I’ve come to realise that there is one verse in the gospels which can unlock our whole understanding of what to expect in looking for Jesus’ return, the ‘second coming.’ The verse is Matt 24.34: ‘Amen I tell you, there is NO WAY this generation will pass away until all these things have come to … Continue Reading

Can leaders say ‘I am sorry—I was wrong’?

Mark Driscoll is a controversial figure, even in America. He has hit the headlines for a variety of reasons, including preaching that ‘God hates you‘ based on a verse in the Psalms. (If nothing else, this is useful in raising question about biblical interpretation!). In more academic circles, his work has raised serious questions about … Continue Reading