Snippets from the interweb (25th June 2017)

Taking my cue from far better bloggers, like Tim Challies and JD Greer, I’m going to offer a regular roundup of interesting blogs and articles I have read each week. So, in no particular order:

Government to establish ‘Commission for Countering Extremism’ – Be afraid. Be very afraid

One man’s incisive reasoning is another woman’s ‘hate’. One man’s extremism is another man’s orthodox belief. Subjectivity reigns: perception is all. You cannot both stamp out extremist ideology in all its forms and sustain freedom of religion: one must give way to the other. The path is set. It is time to put on the whole armour of God.

Ecumenical vs. Evangelical

One of the most devastating attacks on the life and health of the church throughout all of church history has been what is known as the ecumenical movement—the downplaying of doctrine in order to foster partnership in ministry between (a) genuine Christians and (b) people who were willing to call themselves Christians but who rejected fundamental Christian doctrines.

The simplest Bible study

This is a great little article on how to conduct a simple and straightforward study of scripture.

Bible studies come in different shapes and sizes. Often study leaders face them with a certain level of fear and trepedation. We are not sure where to start so we do one of two things. Either we (1) Rely on a pre-prepared study in a book. Or, (2) We prepare a monologue where we talk to the group. I want to suggest two very simple questions that we use in our home group and which mean any group can study the Bible together.

Conscience win for Christian pharmacists

This is good news for pharmacists whose consciences won’t allow them to provide access to abortifacient or hormone-blocking drugs.

How to encourage your pastor

Naturally, as a pastor, I appreciated this.

Pastoring a church is not an easy job. Here are 10 ways you can encourage your pastor (or pastors).

Particular Baptists and the need for revival

I commented on this article earlier in the week (see here).

In the seventeenth century one of the most spiritually alive denominations in the British Isles were the Particular or Calvinistic Baptists.1 From the establishment in 1638 of their first congregation in London, they grew to the point, where, by 1660, there were some 150 congregations, and by 1689, there may well have been as many as three hundred across the British archipelago. What is amazing about this growth is that it came during a time of profound political turmoil, the British Civil Wars (1638-1651), and brutal repression (1660-1688). Religious toleration finally dawned in 1689, and the Baptists were now free to plant and build congregations that were duly registered with the state, though it was illegal for them to evangelize outside of their church buildings. The denomination as a whole, though, plateaued in its growth and, in some parts of England, actually went into decline.

From the archive: The Trump & Brexit results are not of the same kind; only the political discourse

As this week marked a year on from the EU referendum, it seemed to make sense to take a look at this again.

Trump himself said, before the election result, he was going to do a ‘Brexit-plus-plus-plus’. It was a comment repeated by several of his supporters, in one form or another, following the result. It has given fuel to the liberal self-soothing mechanism that Brexiteers must clearly be nuts because they and Trump supporters are of a kind. It is, of course, nonsense of the highest order. The Brexit result and the Trump victory are simply not the same.