Jul 282018

After finishing Paul’s letters this coming Thursday, we’re going to go back to the Old Testament and look at a couple of books that are traditionally identified as having been written by Solomon.

Ecclesiastes is written from the perspective of an old, wise man – looking back on a full and varied life and reflecting on his search for satisfaction and meaning.

It starts out by claiming that everything is pointless and finishes by encouraging people to remembering God:






Song of Solomon is, on the face of it, a collection of love poetry between a man and a woman but some assign theological meaning to it as well.


Back in the New Testament, we’re going to be working through the rest of the books in the order in which appear in the Bible which takes us to Hebrews. A letter written to encourage believers to stay faithful to Jesus Christ – and full of many expressions of the supremacy and greatness of Jesus. A really wonderful book.


Jul 182018

We’re going to finish looking at Ezekiel on Friday 20th July with the message of hope of restoration of the city, of the, with God’s presence and glory coming back to the temple, and God living, again, amongst His people.

And we’re going to move on to finish our look at the letters of Paul, three letters known as the Pastoral Epistles where he writes to two men about how they should conduct themselves and carry out their ministry.

Writing to Titus, Paul speaks about how he expects different groups of people in the church to live and to work, and stresses the importance of living as people who have received God’s grace, and – as those people – to carry out the good works God has for them.






In the first of his letters to Timothy, Paul reminds him of the greatness of God, encourages him to fulfil his calling, to carry out his ministry and to follow Paul’s example. Clearly someone for whom Paul cares deeply, and holds in the highest regard, Paul encourages him as he nears the end of his own life.






And in the second of these letters, Paul gives thanks for Timothy, encourages him to stand up under opposition, to show what it means to be a good worker for God, to resist those who are unfaithful and to rejoice in God’s faithfulness.






As we listen in to Paul’s encouragement and challenge to these two servants of Christ, how does he speak to us in our different situations as we seek to live and work for God?

Mar 152018

We’re going to finish looking at 2 Chronicles on Saturday March 17th and will leave the people of Judah in exile, with their city in ruins but with a message of hope that they will come home and rebuild.

When we come back to the Old Testament we’ll look at how these stories developed and unfolded through the words of two of the “major writing prophets” – Isaiah and Ezekiel.

In Isaiah we find words of criticism, challenge and warning to the people of God before the exile; words that speak to the people in exile and words that speak of their homecoming. And often words that take on even deeper significance in light of the life, work, death and resurrection of Jesus.







And then in Ezekiel, we find words of someone in exile to whom God’s word came and he speaks about God’s holiness, humanity’s sin, the reality of judgment but also the hope of restoration.

(See Lamar Eugene Cooper, Ezekiel, vol. 17, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1994), 40. for some more context)






An opportunity to step back a little from just the historical events and to see something of what was going on behind the scenes through this time in the history of the people of God.

But we’ll also pick up again our look at the writings of Paul – working through Colossians & Philemon (probably both written at the same time) and then Ephesians.

Colossians reminds us of the supremacy of Jesus and the implications of that for those who have chosen to follow him, while Philemon is a much more personal letter written on behalf of an escaped slave who had come to believe in Jesus.






Ephesians reminds us of the wonderful things that God has done for us through Jesus and calls us to live in unity with each other as we seek to follow and serve Him.

Exciting books and themes to explore – looking forward to sharing thoughts and reflections on them.

In terms of our “progression” we’ll be doing:

  1. Colossians and Philemon
  2. Isaiah
  3. Ephesians
  4. Ezekiel