Thought for the day

The Lion and the Lamb

No, that title does not refer to the name of a pub (although it could do)! I find it interesting that the exhibition of painting and sculpture by Paul Hobbs that we have hosted and enjoyed this past week should come in the middle of a sermon series on the book of Revelation – is

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Sincerity isn’t enough

  A few years ago I travelled back to Birmingham by train from London. It was when the train stopped at Watford Junction and then began returning to London that I knew something was amiss. I was on the wrong train! The thing is, I had been fully convinced that it was the right train.

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Really useful

  Philipp Melanchthon once enquired of his mentor Martin Luther about some people who had professed faith in Christ, wondering whether their faith was genuine. Luther wrote to him, saying that in order to explore whether they were genuine or not, “… you should inquire whether they have experienced spiritual distress and the divine...

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What is the Bible?

Those of us who are doing the equip training course have been enjoying reading some good books. (Perhaps I shouldn’t presume to speak for the others… at least I have been enjoying them!) What I have enjoyed most is seeing some old and familiar truths in new and exciting ways. For example, we have been

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Eat what you like

Some years ago I was invited to a community forum organised by the local police for local religious leaders. I think they were exploring the links between crime and different religious communities. What I can still remember is the trays of sandwiches on the table: kosher, halal, vegetarian and those with no restrictions. Some of

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‘This is the word of the Lord’

At the end of a Bible reading we routinely say, “This is the word of the Lord.” It can become mere routine, and we may rarely think about what we are saying, but this is actually an important statement about Scripture. So what does it mean? Simply put, we are saying that the words we

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Death: the human experience

It is an arresting title for an exhibition, and it was hard not to notice it as I walked past Bristol Museum and Art Gallery last week. As the brochure says, “death: the human experience is about the most universal of experiences that we will encounter.” That is certainly true: we are all going to

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The Lampedusa Cross

“One Sunday in 2011, at the height of the Arab spring, a carpenter from the Sicilian island of Lampedusa made a decision to stop making furniture. Francesco Tuccio was at Mass in his local church and among the congregation were bedraggled groups of newly arrived Eritrean migrants, weeping for loved ones who had drowned during

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Where I belong

As our plane approached Birmingham Airport last Monday, the flight steward asked me if I needed an immigration form. “No thank you,” I proudly replied, “I’m British.” I was coming home, after all; this is where I belong. Later, I half-expected the immigration officer inspecting my passport to greet me with a cheerful, “Welcome home,

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New Year’s Anti-Resolutions

Have you made any New Year resolutions? To be better? Work harder? Get fitter? Pray more? Read more? Do more? I came across a refreshing tonic to the traditional New Year resolution: the anti-resolution. Here are a few examples: – I will not try to get my body into better shape. I’ll learn to love the

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