But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

Think Theology - Apologetic Report
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The messages from September's Convergence Conference are all available now, and free to view, thanks to the good folk at Bridgeway Church. You can see from the titles what each one is about, but if you only have time to watch one, I recommend Matt Chandler's Friday evening session. (Christine...

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Wednesday, 16 October 2019 17:00

Trans Children and Responsible Adults

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The surge in numbers of those identifying as transgender is one of the strangest and most confusing trends of our cultural moment. Especially striking is the number of teenagers identifying as trans: one stark statistic is that the Tavistock Gender Identity Development Service (GIDS) has seen...

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The title “popular historian” might commonly bring to mind the equivalent of a tabloid hack, who won’t let facts spoil the yarn he’s spinning. If we imagine an author with no patience for scholarly rigour, it seems the wrong category for Tom Holland. His books do read like...

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Sunday, 13 October 2019 17:00

Why Christendom Is Still Christian

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Tom Holland’s Dominion: The Making of the Western Mind is certainly one of the books of the year, and one of those rare contemporary volumes that I would recommend all pastors read. I am thrilled that Joel Virgo has written us a proper review for this coming Wednesday, but in advance of that,...

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Thursday, 10 October 2019 16:00

Identifying the Image: Can Cain Help?

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In my last post, I argued against the common view that the image of God is lost or damaged through human sin. Despite its popularity, there is no Scriptural warrant for the view and there is biblical support for the idea that every human is created and remains in the image of God, just as Adam and...

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Thursday, 03 October 2019 16:00

Losing the Image?

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Was the image of God in humanity lost or damaged when Adam and Eve rebelled against God? It seems that many people think it was. Berkhof states, ‘it is unwarranted to say that man has completely lost the image of God’, but also says that ‘the image of God has indeed been vitiated...

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Wednesday, 02 October 2019 21:35

Anatomy of a Fiasco

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The UK’s membership of Europe has been controversial ever since it was first suggested and certainly since Charles de Gaulle said “Non” to our joining the EEC in 1967. As Brussels today considers the latest Brexit proposal from the British government it is worth considering how...

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Tuesday, 01 October 2019 17:00

On (Mis-) Defining Work

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One of the ways our economy impoverishes us spiritually is by teaching us that the only sort of work that is really work is work that a member of the capitalist class will pay us to do in the form of a wage of some sort.

But there is plenty of good work to be done in our neighbourhoods and cities...

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Sunday, 29 September 2019 17:00

“I Don’t Know What Came Over Me”

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This is such a searching comment from Sam Allberry’s (excellent) forthcoming book, Why Does God Care Who I Sleep With?:

It’s common these days when someone’s wrong is exposed for them to say, “I don’t know what came over me; this isn’t who I am”. David says...

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Thursday, 26 September 2019 16:00

Missing Millennials

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The UK church is ageing. Many of us might suspect this from our own contexts, and the relevant research confirms that this is a widespread reality. Millennials (those born between the early 80s and mid-90s) are one of the groups currently underrepresented in the UK church. As a millennial myself, I...

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Tuesday, 24 September 2019 17:00

Left and Right: A Way Foreword

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I don't always read forewords. Sometimes I skip them; sometimes I skim them. Usually, their function is to communicate to me that the writer of the foreword thinks the book is worth reading, and has put their money where their mouth is by spending some serious time writing about it. But when I...

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Thursday, 19 September 2019 16:00

A Protective Hedge Around the Scriptures

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Tyndale House is an amazing place. A research institute for biblical studies with a library containing one of the world’s most extensive collections relevant to the study of the Bible. The team there are committed to engaging in the highest level of academic research into the Bible and yet...

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Tuesday, 17 September 2019 17:00

The Meaning of Auschwitz

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Yoram Hazony's new book, The Virtue of Nationalism, is fascinating in all kinds of ways. His argument is that nationalism is virtuous rather than vicious, broad and inclusive rather than narrow and tribalist, and that the alternatives—anarchy on the one hand, or imperialism on the...

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Thursday, 12 September 2019 16:00

Transgender, Polyamory, and Busyness

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One of the things I love about Newday is that the event doesn’t shy away from the big topics of our day. One of the priorities of the Newday team is to tackle the questions which young people are asking and to equip young people and their youth leaders to think and live biblically in relation...

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Tuesday, 10 September 2019 17:00

Cranmer's Five Reasons for Divorce and Remarriage

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Domestic violence has long been recognised as a problem in the church. It did not emerge as a pastoral concern a few years or decades ago; it has been identified and responded to in a variety of ways for as long as there has been a church (and even before that, if you consider Deuteronomy 24:1-4)....

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Thursday, 05 September 2019 16:00

Emotions and Self-Control

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The Bible, psychology, and neuroscience are three of my favourite things to learn about. (Although admittedly my understanding of two out of the three is very much at a layman’s level!) I therefore really enjoyed two books I read recently which combine insights from all three to help give a...

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Tuesday, 03 September 2019 17:00

Surprised by Paradox

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It may just be me, but of all the new books I have come across or read this year, there don't seem to be many whose purpose is to inspire worship. There are lots (as there always are) on living the Christian life well, or understanding Scripture better, or handling contemporary issues, but few that...

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Monday, 02 September 2019 17:00

Multiplanting – A Review

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Further to Matt's post last week about multiplying churches, here's a book giving one model of how that can be achieved. If you're convinced by the 'why' and thinking about the 'how', Multiplanting, by Colin Baron, which was released this week, will provide some helpful pointers that you can apply...

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Sunday, 01 September 2019 16:00

Was Jesus Tempted To Commit Murder?

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Jesus was "tempted in every way, just as we are, yet without sin" (Hebrews 4:15). What an amazing truth. But what does it mean? Does it mean that he was tempted to do everything that any human has ever been tempted to do: murder, child abuse, genocide, and the rest? Most of us probably assume not....

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Thursday, 29 August 2019 16:00

Changes for CHANGED

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Controversy and confusion have been swirling around certain circles online over the last few weeks with the launch of a new initiative from Bethel called Changed. On its website, the movement introduces itself as ‘a community of friends who once identified as LGBTQ+. Today, we celebrate the...

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My friend Alan Frow has written a book that anyone with some kind of leadership position in any church of 200+ people should read. First, a paragraph I wrote about it, and then an explanation from Alan himself about what Broken for Blessing is about.This is not an out-of-reach account of a mega...

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Tuesday, 27 August 2019 17:00

Porn, Curiosity, Killing and Cat Videos

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There is a common thread that unites pornography, murder, Netflix, skim-reading, Facebook and cat videos, argues Matt Anderson in a superb piece at TGC. The link is curiositas: "a restlessness of the spirit and mind, an unsettled anxiety that pursues new spectacles to consume. Such pleasurable...

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Thursday, 22 August 2019 17:00

He Came Walking

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Matthew Henry's Commentary on the Bible may be old, but boy is it rich! Look at this part that I stumbled upon the other day, on Genesis 3:8:

Fear seized [Adam and Eve] immediately upon their eating the forbidden fruit, Gen. 3:8.

Observe here, What was the cause and occasion of their fear: They...

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Wednesday, 21 August 2019 16:00

Gospel Coaching

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I wonder how you feel about accountability. What ideas and emotions does the concept evoke in you? My associations with accountability are largely negative. Feelings of guilt about things I should have done but haven’t and feelings of shame about things I shouldn’t have done but have....

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We all know the parable of the Lost Sheep. The shepherd is Jesus, the ninety-nine sheep are Christians, the lost sheep is “one sinner who repents,” and the result is rejoicing in heaven. It’s clear as day in Luke 15, and it’s clear as day in our Kids' Bibles. Right?

Right....

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