making and maturing disciples of Jesus Christ in Birmingham and for the world

This is a short article attempting to address current issues from a Christian perspective, or to shed light on specific Bible passages or Christian truths. It is usually written by Chris Hobbs, the Senior Minister (Vicar), and appears in the weekly notice sheet.

Photo by Richard Shephard

A drop in the bucket

Dear Friends, What are we to make of the recent turmoil and uprisings in countries such as Tunisia, Egypt and Libya? Isaiah had some astonishing words to describe how God saw the nations of his day: “Surely the nations are like a drop in a bucket; they are regarded as dust on the scales … […]

Ending Well

Dear Friends, In our morning sermon series, we have seen how the apostle Paul finished strong in the Christian race, passing on the baton of gospel ministry to his friend Timothy, and so to the next generation and beyond.  In my own reading, I have just finished Don Carson’s moving account of his own father’s […]

Marriage matters

Dear Friends, This week, a report published by the Relationships Foundation estimates the annual cost of family breakdown in this country to be a staggering £41 billion (yes, that’s billion), including the costs of welfare expenditure, legal and care costs, and spending on education, health and justice.  Further, research consistently shows that children who suffer […]

On our way to heaven

Dear Friends, When did you last think of heaven?  And do you think of heaven with confidence, hope and joyful expectation?  I have just re-read Mark Ashton’s little booklet On my way to heaven, written in his last months before he died last year of cancer.  There he writes, “The oncologist estimated I might have […]

A tale of two discriminations

Dear Friends, Admittedly, my title is not nearly as snappy as Dickens’ original ‘A Tale of Two Cities’.  However, it is what came to mind as I reflected on the news this week that a Christian couple who run a hotel have been found guilty of discrimination because they refused to allow a homosexual couple […]

The greatest thing in the world

Dear Friends, What is the greatest thing in the world? There are a number of ways of answering that question truly. But we would be wide off the mark if one of our answers wasn’t ‘love’. In 1 Corinthians 13, the apostle Paul goes as far as to say that, among faith, hope and love, […]

Not ashamed

Dear Friends, I‘m what they call a ‘late adopter’. That is, I wait to see which way a new technology is going before I adopt it – in fact, it‘s usually on the way out by the time I get around to it! Some people would just call me slow. Being a late adopter does […]

Consider the great love of the Lord

Dear Friends, It’s a challenge to know how best to encourage and inspire God’s people at the start of this new year. Some of you will be excited about what God may do this year, some apprehensive about what might happen, others disillusioned and not really expecting anything from God. Whichever of those best describes […]

Never the same again

Dear Friends, We don’t know much about the shepherds who were the first to hear the news that, “Today in the town of David, a Saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:11, NIV). They were simply doing what shepherds do, living out in the fields and keeping watch over their […]

Why did Jesus come?

Dear Friends, I belong to a ‘preaching group’.  Half a dozen of us meet every six weeks or so to encourage one another in our preaching.  The method is simple: we take it in turns to give a brief sermon outline, which is then lovingly mauled by the brethren (affectionately known as the ‘wolves’).  Actually, […]

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