A Reasonable Charismatic?

In a book entitled ‘Paul, the Spirit and the People of God’ Professor Gordon Fee explores the relationship of the Spirit of God and the believer. His thesis which is expounded in the much larger work ‘God’s Empowering Presence’ is that the whole of the life of the believer and the church is dependent upon the Holy Spirit. So, along with Wesley he sees the Spirit at work in the life of the believer before saving faith appears. He also has a very insightful piece in which he writes:

When the Spirit Came

As the day of Pentecost arrived there was a buzz in the air. The city of Jerusalem was packed with pilgrims from all over the world, in the holy city to celebrate both the harvest gathered in and (by this time more importantly) the anniversary of the giving of the Law at Mount Sinai. But for the disciples, as they gathered together, there would have been other thoughts and emotions that day. They knew fear, puzzlement, perhaps impatience as they gathered to wait... for what? They knew the promises of Jesus but what that really meant in practical terms was still a mystery to them.

Work Matters

There could have been many reasons why I was not the greatest circuit minister, but at least one reason is shared with too many other clergy. Being a full-time paid church employee can distort how you see life and remove you from the more normal experience of most church members. As a consequence, we clergy talk a lot about faith, but too often not enough about how faith relates to the workplace. Too many local preachers, I fear, also make this error.

Methodist and Pietist

British Methodism is being hailed as ‘a discipleship movement shaped for mission’. This slogan may be more aspiration than reality, but it does capture the spirit of our early Methodist origins. John Wesley’s vision of discipleship was deeply influenced by German Pietism, especially through his well-known contact with the Moravians. Pietism is not a denomination as such, but a spiritual movement that emphasizes a transforming experience of the Spirit in the soul, and the life of holiness which it empowers.

A Rite of Redemption

We've thought about some of the great themes of the Bible: in chapter 1 we thought about providence; in chapter two our theme was grace; in chapter 3 it was provision and now, in chapter 4, our theme is redemption. We have three 'Cs' to guide us through: the challenge, the condition and the celebrations.

The Challenge

“Evangelical” is our defining characteristic

David has served as Chaplain to Shebbear College, a Methodist School in North Devon and, prior to that, the minister of seven churches east of St Austell, Cornwall’s largest town. Hull is a trustee of the interdenominational mission organisation Share Jesus International and an Executive Member of Methodist Evangelicals Together, with responsibility for Theology and Research within the organisation. He co-hosts MET’s annual ‘Digging for Treasure’ expository preaching conferences and is an editor of three books about expository preaching.

Essay: How science points to the existence of God

In the four articles in this series on how science reveals God, I’ve presented evidence from the three major branches of science - physics, chemistry and biology - and also from human nature, which points to the existence of a creating and designing Mind as the answer to the origins of the universe and life. From physics, there is the finite beginning of the universe and its amazing fine-tuning. From chemistry, there is the unique or optimal suitability of chemical elements for biological function.

The Cries from the Cross

To understand Christ’s death on the cross, we need to examine the words He spoke, as He endured crucifixion. The Old Testament prophesied His death, the Epistles explain His death, but His own words reveal the heart of the lamb. Each sentence spoken with specific intent and spiritual insight helps us understand the significance of the crucifixion. They are not the faint cries of a dying man; they are words spoken with intent and precision; spiritual proclamations to a dying world.