Reacting to the Royal Wedding Sermon

Well, Bishop Curry’s sermon at the Royal Wedding has certainly been provoking some reaction. If a measure of a sermon’s success is its ability to get attention and a response, job done!  The reaction appears to fall into 4 main categories Continue reading

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Anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel

“Antisemitism (also spelled anti-Semitism or anti-semitism) is hostility to, prejudice, or discrimination against Jews A person who holds such positions is called an antisemite. Antisemitism is generally considered to be a form of racism.”[1] Continue reading

Talking about the Gay Lobby

On Friday I wrote about the controversy surrounding the Northern Men’s convention’s publicity. In particular these words:

“The leadership from those in authority in the denominations who should be the guardians of biblical truth has been muted to say the least and even in Bible teaching churches many appear to be wavering under the onslaught of the gay lobby. Add to this scenario the increasing problems associated with immigration, and Islam in particular and indeed many other things which push Christians further and further to the margins, there is for many a feeling of despair and even fear about standing up and speaking out.”

It is thought to be this statement that led to former Liberal Democrat Leader, Tim Farron to pull out from the conference.  Continue reading

The Ashers #gaycake case – and why the argument (sadly) doesn’t work

You are probably familiar with the Ashers’ Bakery #gaycake case. The Ashers refused to decorate a cake for a customer with a pro-gay marriage message. They were found to be discriminating against him. It is important to remember again that the issue was not a refusal to bake a cake or even to decorate a wedding cake but rather to decorate it with a message they fundamentally disagreed with. The Ashers were in effect being compelled to join in with a political campaign that they disagreed with. Continue reading

Target Cultures, Hostile Environments and Immigration

Amber Rudd resigned on Sunday evening not because of the Windrush Generation scandal (although that created the context for her resignation) rather, it was because she misled the House of Commons over whether or not the Home Office set targets for deportation removals.

Part of the confusion seems to be around different definitions of target.  Now, for as long as I can remember, there has been strong political support for controlling immigration. Not only that, but there has been a long history of setting targets both in government and in private business in order to encourage improvement. Hospitals have been set waiting time targets, manufacturers will have on time delivery targets, schools have targets for % Grades 9-5 (replacing the old A* – C) and individual pupils will have target grades. So, I am inclined to think that the confusion may have been genuine rather than intentional misleading as I’m not sure what Rudd had to gain from this.  Continue reading

Life and Death Decisions, Lawyers, Judges and family

This year has seen two very sad high profile medical cases relating to the treatment of seriously ill children, Charlie Garde and Alfie Evans. In the second case, the Christian Legal Centre got involved. As they explain here, they did so in order to ensure that a family were supported and had advocates speaking for them. Continue reading

The Problem with Anti-Semitism

A couple of weeks back, I was talking to Nueva Vida about Jude 16- 19. In the context of that we talked about why we take communion to remember. It is not just an intellectual remembrance, It goes deeper than that. We can remember facts but we can lose the significance, lose the freshness, lose the now-ness. Communion takes us back to that place. This is particularly important for succeeding generations who were not physically present at Calvary. Continue reading