Brief Book: Swirling Fire

Resource Talk

October 2013 saw the Strange Fire conference—and some ensuing controversy—take certain portions of the online evangelical world by storm.

Taking its name from the unauthorized offering to the Lord by Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron (Leviticus 10), John Macarthur of California held the conference to address what he sees as similar abuses of worship of God in pentecostal and charismatic Christianity.


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Your church is too small


Deep darkness is punctuated by the flash of a thousand cameras; rumbling bass rattles through my bones. Throughout the arena I can hear the burbling, surging, building crescendo of music ready to erupt—and then, with a synthesizer burst, lights erupt throughout the stadium, only to be extinguished just as quickly.1 (more…)

A conversation with John Piper


David Starling: I want to begin by saying thank you for your books and your sermons, and for making the trip out here to Sydney. We really appreciate all that’s involved in coming across the world to see us. (more…)

TWIST Reaction 3

Everyday Ministry, Life, Sola Panel

So was it important that the excellent things that Bob Kauflin was saying at the TWIST pastor’s conference were being said by a ‘Reformed charismatic’? (more…)

TWIST Reaction 2

Everyday Ministry, Sola Panel

From all that he said, from what others have told me, and from my brief personal conversation with him, Bob Kauflin seems like a thoughtful, humble, godly man, who loves Jesus and the gospel, and is conservative and Calvinist in his theological convictions. My second reaction to the TWIST pastor’s conference was simply one of appreciation: the material that Bob Kauflin presented was insightful, well-delivered, and stimulating. (more…)

Does the future have a church?

Pastoral Ministry

Tim Thornborough offers here a rough guide to where Protestantism is in the UK, and a look at some particular indicators that suggest several major strategic directions that we need to consider for the future. (more…)

Teasing the toothless tiger


The devil is our enemy, but how do we find out about him, and what can he do to us? Peter Bolt takes a walk through what the Bible says about Satan to determine what we need to know and how we are to treat him. (more…)

Thinking about emotions

Thought, Sola Panel

I’ve been thinking a lot about emotions recently. This, of course, may be precisely my problem. I shouldn’t be thinking about emotions; I should just be feeling them. (more…)

Gospel Convictions: Revised

When we distributed a draft version of our ‘Gospel Convictions’ statement in our 21st birthday issue (in April this year), we hoped that our sharp-eyed, Bible-tuned Briefing community would help us improve the statement with their feedback. We haven’t been disappointed! Our sincere thanks to all who took the time and trouble to respond. (We’ve published all the responses on our website if you’re interested in wading through them 1) (more…)

Nowist Left and Right

Up front, Sola Panel

After reading Lionel Windor’s excellent little article on ‘nowism’ (the insidious Christian tendency to live for this world rather than the next) in last month’s Briefing,1 I couldn’t help noticing this fascinating snippet from Ross Douhat at The Atlantic Monthly. (more…)

The surprising face of Hillsong

Thought, Sola Panel

Tony Payne and Gordon Cheng report from Hillsong Conference, 2006.

The sound hits you like a wave. The bass is throbbing. The drums kick through your diaphragm with each beat. The guitars thrum and swell. The lead singer is a good-looking guy with unkempt hair and stubble. He stands, arm raised, head thrown back.