22 Mar

Update from Ross

Taken from the intimation sheet: 22 March 2015

“They go from strength to strength.”- Psalm 84:7

“The promise… still holds good: “The youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.” Fretful spirits sit down and trouble themselves about the future. “Alas!” say they, “we go from affliction to affliction.” Very true, O thou of little faith, but then thou goest from strength to strength also. Thou shalt never find a bundle of affliction which has not bound up in the midst of it sufficient grace. God will give the strength of ripe manhood with the burden allotted to full-grown shoulders.”

CH Spurgeon

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08 Mar

Through the Curtain

Taken from the intimation sheet: 8 March 2015

Hebrews 10:19-25 

19 Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus,  20 by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body,  21 and since we have a great priest over the house of God,  22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.  23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.  24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.  25 Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another– and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

There’s a police station in Govan, not too far from where I was brought up. I remember when it was built being told that it would be a special, secure, station. Sure enough the first thing to go up was the wall around the periphery. The rest of the building was constructed in secrecy so that no one could see the layout. It’s now the most secure police station in Scotland, one of only a handful of stations in the UK allowed to hold top-level terrorist suspects. Read More

01 Mar

Learning to Love our Leaders

Taken from the intimation sheet: 1 March 2015

By the time you read this you’ll probably have heard me preach on the qualifications for deacons from 1 Timothy 3. The standards are high and every church Fellowship ought to hold its deacons to them.

That said, the work of all leaders within the church should be respected and members should be a continual source of encouragement to them. We ought to read 1 Timothy 3 and think “How can I help my leaders to live up to that?” Read More

22 Feb

People of the Cross: Reflections on the Death of 21 Coptic Christians

Taken from the intimation sheet: 22 February 2015

‘People of the Cross’ was one of the titles Islamic State gave to the Egyptian Christians they beheaded in a video released last Sunday. Like the term ‘Christian’ itself, it is a title intended as an insult but one which may be received by any believer in Jesus as a badge of honour.

In the video 21 men dressed in orange overalls are marched to a beach near Tripoli, forced down onto their knees, and then beheaded. Read More

15 Feb

God's children now (CH Spurgeon)

Taken from the intimation sheet: 15 February 2015

“1. See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.”

1 John 3:1-2

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us.” Consider who we were and what we feel ourselves to be even now when corruption is at work within us, and you will wonder at our adoption. Yet we are called God’s children. What a high relationship is that of a son, and what privileges it brings! What care and tenderness the son expects from his father, and what love the father feels toward the son! But all that, and more than that, we now have through Christ. Read More

15 Feb

God’s children now (CH Spurgeon)

Taken from the intimation sheet: 15 February 2015

“1. See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.”

1 John 3:1-2

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us.” Consider who we were and what we feel ourselves to be even now when corruption is at work within us, and you will wonder at our adoption. Yet we are called God’s children. What a high relationship is that of a son, and what privileges it brings! What care and tenderness the son expects from his father, and what love the father feels toward the son! But all that, and more than that, we now have through Christ. Read More

01 Feb

Lessons in the Kingdom from Ezra 7:1-10 (Part 2 of 2)

Taken from the intimation sheet: 1 February 2015

…He was a teacher well versed in the Law of Moses, which the LORD, the God of Israel, had given. The king had granted him everything he asked, for the hand of the LORD his God was on him.  7 Some of the Israelites, including priests, Levites, singers, gatekeepers and temple servants, also came up to Jerusalem in the seventh year of King Artaxerxes.  8 Ezra arrived in Jerusalem in the fifth month of the seventh year of the king.  9 He had begun his journey from Babylon on the first day of the first month, and he arrived in Jerusalem on the first day of the fifth month, for the gracious hand of his God was on him.  10 For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.

(Ezra 7:6-10)

Last week we remembered that Ezra was a child of God, from the people of God. Before he introduces himself (“this Ezra” v6) he introduces his family tree (v1-5). He knew that he could never have been a priest and would never have been a scribe, were it not for those who had gone before him. Read More

25 Jan

Lessons in the Kingdom from Ezra 7:1-10 (Part 1 of 2)

Taken from the intimation sheet: 25 January 2015

Ezra 7:1 After these things, during the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia, Ezra son of Seraiah, the son of Azariah, the son of Hilkiah, 2 the son of Shallum, the son of Zadok, the son of Ahitub, 3 the son of Amariah, the son of Azariah, the son of Meraioth, 4 the son of Zerahiah, the son of Uzzi, the son of Bukki, 5 the son of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest- 6 this Ezra came up from Babylon.

Those of us who have accepted Wade’s challenge to read through the Bible in a year will soon come across genealogies like the one in Ezra 7:1-5. The temptation when we face long lists of tough-to-read names, is to skip or to skim them. Read More

21 Dec

Wise men – and women – still seek Him!

Taken from the intimation sheet: Sunday 21 December 2014

Matthew 2

1 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem 2 and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.”

10When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh.

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14 Dec

Why Christ came (pt 2)

Taken from the intimation sheet: Sunday 14 December 2014

What do you associate with the word ‘Advent’? Maybe you think of opening a cardboard window to claim your morning chocolate, maybe your mind meanders back through memories of Christmases past, maybe you think of the stress of the season – getting presents and food and plans in place for the big day.

Advent comes from the Latin word adventus meaning ‘coming’. It is the time of year traditionally when God’s people fix their gaze on the first coming of Christ into the world, mindful that he will come again. In the midst of all that advent brings these days, let’s not lose sight of that.

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07 Dec

Why Christ came (pt 1)

Taken from the intimation sheet: Sunday 7 December 2014

What do you associate with the word ‘Advent’? Maybe you think of opening a cardboard window to claim your morning chocolate, maybe your mind meanders back through memories of Christmases past, maybe you think of the stress of the season – getting presents and food and plans in place for the big day.

Advent comes from the Latin word adventus meaning ‘coming’. It is the time of year traditionally when God’s people fix their gaze on the first coming of Christ into the word, mindful that he will come again. In the midst of all that advent brings these days, let’s not lose sight of that.

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23 Nov

Ode to the Church

by David Mathis (Desiring God Blog)
Taken from the intimation sheet: 
23 November 2014

There she stands in splendour, secure on the arm of her Father, adorned in brilliant white for her husband. The music sounds and beckons their short passage down the aisle. Read More

09 Nov

The Ultimate Sacrifice

Taken from the intimation sheet: Sunday 9 November 2014

This week past I’ve been involved in Remembrance Assemblies at Caldervale High School. The pupils, as is always the case, participated and contributed much to the events. They told us of their experiences at the Battlefields in Belgium, took part in a very moving Act of Remembrance (culminating in Rowan Cook playing the Last Post) and performed a song.

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02 Nov

Puritanical joy

Taken from the intimation sheet: 2 November 2014

I finished last Sunday morning’s sermon by making a controversial claim – the Puritans were far from miserable, and we ought to read more of their work for the good of our souls!

I’ve heard it said that the Puritans used to lie awake at night troubled that someone, somewhere, might be happy. ‘Puritanical’ is still defined in my dictionary as ‘marked by stern morality’.

Not so.

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26 Oct

Saints – yet a Feeble Flock

Taken from the intimation sheet: 26 October 2014

I spoke at the Youth Emphasis service last Sunday evening about our identity as saints in Christ. When we come to faith in Jesus, we are ‘set-apart’ as God’s people; we are cleansed in His eyes, made new, and kept as His holy people for His holy purposes. Saints are not morally perfect people, nor are they super-Christians who died a long time ago. All believers are, by the grace of God, saints. It is a glorious title which ought to offer every Christian comfort and joy.

This was a truth reclaimed by the Church at the time of the Reformation. Our society celebrates Halloween this Friday, but it’s also Reformation Day – the day that Luther is said to have nailed his 95 Theses to the Church door in Wittenberg in 1517.

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19 Oct

Holy Love that Bore the Blame

Taken from the intonation sheet: 19 October 2014

Last Sunday morning I read the opening verses of Isaiah 6:

Isaiah 6:1-5
In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him were seraphs, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. 3 And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” 4 At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke. 5 “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”

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12 Oct

How to pray for your Church

Taken from the intimation sheet: 12 October 2014

We recently looked at 10 Ways a Church Family can love one another, top of the list was ‘Pray’. How should we pray for one another? How should we pray for our Church? This week Erik Raymond of Ligonier Ministries, answers that question in 5 simple points. Why not take one for each day this week, Monday to Friday? Read More