An unavoidable truth: the doctrine of sin today


The heart and wellspring of all evangelical theology is the cross of the Christ. It is in the light of the cross that we truly understand God and truly understand ourselves.

It demonstrates God’s deep and determined love and it demonstrates God’s deep and determined love for sinners (Rom 5:8). I cannot avoid the reality and seriousness of my sin when I attend to the awful glory of what happened outside the walls of Jerusalem 2000 years ago. I cannot avoid the determined and loving purpose of God when I consider who it was who died there. The innocent Christ of God, the Word made flesh, the glorious Son who took to himself in the fullest way possible the form of a servant, was butchered as an insurrectionist by those who denied the Father who sent him. Since God was certainly not powerless to prevent it, nor does he take some kind of perverse pleasure in such acts of gross injustice and cruelty, especially when directed towards his Son, we are forced to ask what made it necessary. What was so serious that such a grim remedy was needed? What turns this divine and human tragedy into an act of love? (more…)

→ I’m a Christian and my house just burned down


A great article on the impact of the bush fires currently burning around Sydney on not only property, but theology and community too.

My house just burned down.

There was nothing that anyone could have done to put a halt to the marching wall of flame which devoured so much of the street in which I grew up. The tireless devotion of the ‘firies’ and the unwavering dedication of a legion of volunteers was simply no match for the onslaught which took so many of us off guard and has shaken the very fabric of our community. Beneath the darkening, ash laden skies, my faithful home filled with all of its treasures breathed one last sigh and resigned itself to the flames. Tonight, the interwoven stories of our community are alarmingly coming together with one accord as the fires rage on and the reality of loss becomes an all too familiar motif. Many a tear will be wept before this darkness has passed and no doubt with each tear will come the resounding question ‘Why?’

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Re-creation in the words of Jeremiah


It’s been my privilege in two previous issues to be your tour guide for a quick trip through Jeremiah—more of a scenic flight than a safari. Today our tour ends with the book’s final chapters—but here’s the story so far. (more…)

Forgiveness in the words of Jeremiah


In the first leg of our journey through Jeremiah we focused on the man and his preaching of judgement. We will now do a bit of touring through the middle chapters, but most of our time will be spent on just half a verse—a promise:

A Mini Christian Bookshop

Everyday Ministry, Sola Panel

There is no longer any Christian bookshop in the city I live in. But not everyone can, let alone will purchase books online. To generalise, this is particularly true of older generations and of the non-tertiary-educated. (more…)

Whose incarnation is it anyway?

Thought, Sola Panel

flickr: skycaptaintwoWithin the heart of the Christian faith is an astounding truth. God—who created and sustains the universe—became incarnate. The immortal and perfect Son of God shared our messy, sin-prone death-ridden lives of flesh and blood; he became human, walked with us, suffered with us, and subjected himself to our temptations. Ultimately, he died for us, satisfying God’s wrath, destroying death. While we all exist firmly and squarely on the ‘human’ side of the God-human divide, the incarnation means that we rebels can share in intimate fellowship with God himself through the Spirit of the risen Lord Jesus—now and for all eternity. (more…)

→ Hell-raiser


Tim Challies reflecting on Christian leaders who slide into gross moral or theological failure:

Did it begin with becoming a professional Christian instead of a man who communed with God day-by-day? Did it begin with allowing doubt to become a virtue and belief to become a liability? Did it begin with a desire to read the wrong books, to listen to the wrong preachers? Somehow, over months and years, he drifted away from the truth, he began to believe and then teach the lies. And then he followed those lies and celebrated them and destroyed his ministry.

Fear of God


I grew up with a serious fear of vampires. This was because one night sometime in early primary school, my mischievous (or culpably negligent) grandmother let me stay up and watch the classic 1922 silent horror film Nosferatu. (more…)

What joy in hell?


There is no joy in hell.

Its very existence reassures us of ultimate justice. Where else can the victims of the Holocaust find justice? But justice is little comfort when we consider hell’s horror. (more…)

The gospel according to Piper


Like the eagerly-awaited visit of Apollos to Corinth (1 Cor 16), John Piper’s visit to Sydney in August brought great excitement to many local Christians. David Starling examines Piper’s theology to see what kind of fruit this visit may bear. (more…)

Biblical and Systematic Theology

Thought, Sola Panel

My last three posts are examples of a church-history long debate. One on the merits and primacy of systematic theology verses biblical theology. (Being trained at a liberal seminary, I also recognize it as the way liberals pit bible passages against others) (more…)

The unconverted Christian


“Since you have taken off your old self…” can be a troubling verse for those who have always been Christian. Tim St Quintin goes searching for the old self in the believer from birth. (more…)

Union with Christ


Paul describes Christians as being ‘in Christ’, but what does that mean? Rory Shiner explores where we are, who we are, and why it matters where we are with now that we’re in Christ. (more…)