Important Information.

STOP PRESS: My first book (the first in a planned series!) is now available in paperback format. :-)
It is being published by AfJ Publications, Glasgow, and sells for £8.99 (for 230 pages). Initially, copies may only be ordered from me (p&p not included - but they may be collected in person!). Please contact me at
author@minister.com
The book is, of course, still available in its Kindle edition.


You'll find it at https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B009EG6TJW where you may read some sample chapters!

If you haven't got a Kindle (I haven't!), there is a FREE app at
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/feature.html/ref=kcp_pc_mkt_lnd?docId=1000423913

I am also considering producing an audio edition. Any feedback as to how welcome this might be would be appreciated, as it would involve a great deal of time and effort!

30% of the profits go to support the persecuted church.




Tuesday, 22 April 2014

A German take on the Holocaust!

Some posts are longer than others; and so are some video clips.  However, this is well worth watching - all the way through.

Monday, 21 April 2014

Unfair Dismissal!

The following has just been received from Christian Concern - (abridged):

"A Christian nursery nurse has been sacked for gross misconduct from her job in a London childrens nursery after explaining the Bible's teaching on homosexuality in response to a question from her colleague.
Sarah Mbuyi had worked at Newpark Childcare in Highbury, London, since April 2013. She became good friends with a gay colleague and they had frequent conversations about the meaning of Christianity.   

In January 2014, the colleague initiated another conversation with Sarah about Christianity. She said she was unhappy that she couldn't marry her female partner because of the church, and said she thought that God condoned homosexuality.

Miss Mbuyi explained: “When I said no God does not condone the practice of homosexuality, but does love you and says you should come to him as you are, she became emotional and went off to report me to my manager.

"I never ever condemned her, or accused her, but when she asked me directly what I believed, I was open about sharing the Bible
s teaching that homosexual sex (not the people) is wrong. It's clear that this offended her and she was determined to get me sacked, simply because I expressed traditional Christian beliefs."

After a one-sided disciplinary hearing in which Sarah was falsely accused of starting the discussion on homosexuality, nursery directors dismissed her immediately for gross misconduct.  

Sarahs dismissal suggests her employers think that expressing Christian beliefs is a legitimate grounds for dismissal."

The Prime Minister has recently appeared to be very keen to give the impression that he is a 'Christian' - yet he has been instrumental in pushing through the redefinition of marriage in order to accommodate a minority within the minority homosexual/lesbian community.  As Andrea Williams, CEO of the Christian Legal Centre points out, "... he wants to mould Christianity to his political agenda."!
   
When I was informed that my voluntary service as a Force Chaplain with the Strathclyde Police Force was no longer wanted - because of my own outspoken support, only on this personal blog - I (and others) suggested that this was what would happen if that iniquitous piece of legislation was pushed through.  Sadly, cases such as that of Sarah Mbuyi vindicate that prediction.  However it is, at the very least, interesting that the person who was the Government's main spokesperson on the issue, has already 'fallen from favour'. "... Do not be deceived; God is not mocked. For whatever a man sows, that he will also reap." (Gal 6:7).

Of course, many have tried, over the centuries, to rid themselves, and the rest of the world, of the Galilean Preacher.  All have failed.  Contemporary attempts will fare no better.  Indeed, there is a Day coming - and sooner than many may think - when, " ... at the Name of Jesus, every knee [shall] bow, in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth; and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." (Phil.2:10-11)

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Resurrection Day.

Well, after a lot of travelling; a lot of difficulties; but, of course, the loving hospitality of two dear families, we finally arrived at the static caravan in the Gironde, at 2230 yesterday.  This morning, we woke to the thought that today is Easter Day or, as some prefer to name it, Resurrection Day.

We are delighted that, with the erection of a new Reception at our end of the site, we are now able to access the internet from the warmth and comfort of the 'van.  Of course that will make it all the more difficult to give it up, when we move to a permanent house, in due course!  However, we were able to join with the congregation of Dalziel-St.Andrew's, in Motherwell, for their morning worship service - which is streamed on a weekly basis (http://www.dalzielstandrews.org.uk/watch-live/), and is also available on YouTube - link on the page already given), where the minister is a personal friend of many years, and where our younger daughter is involved in various areas of service.

It was an eggciting service, presented with eggsuberance by an eggspert at the task, who eggsplained all that he was doing, to the children who were present.  (Watch the service in order to understand why I have inserted such an eggsasperatingly set of eggxamples of 'eggie' comments.  If you don't, then the yolk's on you!).

So what is Easter?  Why give it an alternative title of Resurrection Day?  Well, simply because, just as Christmas is not predominantly top do with the fictional 'Father Christmas' (in spite of the reality of Saint Nicklaus), or the overindulgence in food that occurs - at least in those parts of the world in which such indulgence can be afforded; so Easter is not about chocolate eggs (although the egg is a symbol of new life), or the Easter bunny (there may be a 'creative' link there!).  Both, in fact, have to do with the One Who is truly central at each of those festival times - the Lord Jesus Christ.

At Christmas, we remember His incarnation - Almighty God, the Creator and Sustainer of all that is, taking upon Himself, in the Persona of the Son, human flesh, and living a life like ours, except without sin (see Heb.4:15).  At Easter, we remember that the reason for His coming was that He might "... save His people from their sin". (Matt.1:21).   He did this by paying the penalty that we deserve to pay.  On that first Good Friday, He hung on a wooden cross - not only bearing the sins of mankind upon His shoulders, but actually becoming sin, in all of its foulness, and filth, and revulsion, and detestation (II Cor.5:13).  What an amazing sacrifice - God the Son becoming so disgusting that God the Father, still dwelling in the sinlessness of eternity, could not even bear to look upon the Son, the Beloved.  "My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?" (Matt.27:46).

The enemy, the satan, the devil, together with all of his infernal minions, rejoiced. What he didn't know about was what C.S.Lewis, in the Narnia Chronicles, refers to as "deep magic".  So, having rested from His labours, the Son broke through the physical death that He had truly experienced, in resurrection power. Hallelujah!  As we were reminded this morning, the tomb was empty!

Of course, if we ignore, or reject, all of what Jesus has done, in time; then we have no claim on Him, in eternity.  Let Christian songwriter, Graham Kendrick, bring this longish post to an end.

"The price is paid; Come, let us enter in to all that Jesus died to make our own.
For every sin, more than enough He gave, and bought our freedom from each guilt and stain.

            The price is paid, Alleluia!; amazing grace so strong and sure!
            And so, with all my heart; my life in every part; 
            I live to thank You for the price You paid.

The price is paid - see satan flee away; for Jesus, crucified destroys his power.
No more to pay; let accusation cease; in Christ there is no condemnation, now!

The price is paid and, by that scourging cruel, He took our sicknesses as if His own.
And, by His wounds - His broken body there - His healing touch may now, by faith, be known.

The price is paid; 'Worthy the Lamb' we cry.  Eternity shall never cease His praise.
The church of Christ shall rule upon the earth; in Jesus' Name we have authority."

Have you submitted to the Lordship of the King of kings?  If not, then be assured that there is no better time to do so than now!  Your full salvation is part of that eternal 'package'.  Remember, the price is paid!


Thursday, 17 April 2014

It wos a cat wot did it!

It hit us as soon as we got into the car!  A fragrance; an aroma; actually a vile smell. We immediately knew what it was - feline urine (that's cat's pee to the less sophisticated/more vulgar!!!).  A few days earlier, my wife had transported some 'broken-down' cardboard boxes to the local Recycling Centre.  I remembered that one of them had been standing up against the bin.  It would appear that one of the local cats had taken a liking to it.

We sprayed the inside of the car with air freshener; we left the windows open; the smell lingered on.  I vacuumed the back,where the boxes had been transported; the smell lingered on.  I even shampooed the back of the car; the smell lingered on. Eventually, my wife suggested that the source of the offending pong might not have been a box in the back, but something that one of us had transported on a shoe.  We checked the front carpets.  The one that sits at my dear wife's feet was quickly identified as the culprit!  The front of the car was now subjected to a full valet service - with that particular piece of carpet receiving special attention!  What a difference - and just in time for the long journey to the static, in the Gironde area of France.

As I reviewed the situation, I realised that the whole episode was something of an analogy of life! So often, we are accosted by situations, and circumstances, that we find to be, at the very least,unpleasant.  We turn over a new leaf here; we make a New Year resolution there; we promise ourselves that we will do better. It's all to no avail!  The new leaf is no better than the old; the resolution rarely sees the end of January; we discover that we cannot even keep a promise to ourselves!

What we need to do, of course, is get to the root of the matter; the source of the problem.  We find it identified in the written Word of God - the Bible.  Writing to the believers in Rome, Paul makes the statement that "... all have sinned, and fallen short of the standard that God has set." (3:23).   Sin is the problem - and it effects every single one of us - no exception!

So what can be done?  Well, when my wife and I discovered the source of our little problem, we dealt with it by washing the carpet.  Sin is dealt with in a similar way - but the 'washing' is not with carpet shampoo.  In Acts 22, we have one of the records of the personal testimony of Paul.  In the 16th verse, he shares some words of the Lord to Him: "Have your sins washed away by calling on the Name of the Lord."; while John writes that it is "... the blood of Jesus, His Son, [that] cleanses us from all sin." (I John 1:7).

As we approach Good Friday, and a time when we especially remember the sacrifice made, for us, at Calvary, may we come to Him, Who alone can deal with our sin and shame - because He has already borne both - and seek His cleansing power. It is only as we are cleansed by the blood of the Lamb, that we will enjoy His resurrection life - both now, and in eternity!

Sunday, 13 April 2014

You are special.

Whilst browsing through a laptop hard drive, I came across the following - which I appear to have stored without any indication as to its source!  I have made a few amendments, but apologise for any unintended breach of copyright.  If you are feeling low, and nursing a low self-image, these words may help!

In all the world there is nobody like you. Since the beginning of time there has never been another person exactly like you. Nobody has your smile, your eyes, your hands, your hair. Nobody owns your handwriting, your voice. 

You're special.

Nobody can paint your brush strokes. Nobody has precisely your taste for food or music or dance or art. Nobody in the universe sees things in exactly the same way as you do.

You're special.

In all time there has never been anyone who laughs in exactly your way.  You're different from any other person who has ever lived in the history of the universe.  You are the only one in the whole of creation who has your particular set of abilities.  Nobody in the universe can reach the quality of the combination of your talents, your feelings.  Until the end of time, no one will ever walk, talk, think or do exactly like you. 

You're special. 

You're rare and in all rarity there is enormous value and because of your great value the need for you to imitate anyone else is absolutely wrong. You're special, and it is no accident that you are. Please realise that God made you for a special purpose. He has a job for you to do that nobody else can do as well as you can. Out of the billions of applicants, only one qualified. Only one has the unique and right combination of what it takes and that one is you.


You're special.

Indeed, you are so special that, if you were the only human being ever to have sinned; and you had committed, in your whole life, only one sin, Jesus - God the Son - would still have gone to a cross, and died, just for you!  Now that makes you really special!