Sex and power

What is power?[1]

Q asked at 21 CD youthclub last week

-Power = strength, might, force, dynamic. It’s to do with authority. It’s often linked to money.

-Power at play – Westminster, Hollywood

-Sin and power – who is in control …what kind of authority?

“God’s power is very different” – place your life within his power, authority and care.

Why? Continue reading

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Temptation, Power and Sin (2 Samuel 11)

Why we need to talk about Sin

We need to talk about sin. It’s the last thing we want to talk about, especially in church. Church is where we sing happy songs and talk about how God is love and we are saved by grace.  Sin encroaches on our safe space. Continue reading

Shame and Offence – Reflections on 2 Samuel 10 in the light of Westminster and Hollywood scandals

One thing about the recent sexual harassment scandals in Westminster and Hollywood that should horrify us is the way, not only that powerful men see sexual encounters as available for their enjoyment but their willingness to cause shame and offence to women.

A woman goes into a room filled with powerful men and one of them makes a joke based on double entendre. All the talk in the world about how she should toughen up and learn to play them at their game does not get us away from the fact that male politicians in this country have enjoyed the title “honourable gentleman” and I was brought up with the assumption that a gentleman would not want a lady to feel awkward, vulnerable, frightened or embarrassed in his company. Continue reading

Politicians, Power, sex and scandal (2 Samuel and the current crisis)

We’re about to teach through a section of 2 Samuel that includes

–          The humiliation of David’s ambassadors by foreign ruler

–          David’s affair with Bathsheba and murder of her husband Uriah

–          David’s son Amnon raping his half-sister Tamar

–          Absalom’s coup and public taking of his father’s concubines to have sex with

A common theme throughout this story of men exercising their power through sex, controlling and harming others for their own satisfaction.  They do that with the knowledge and implicit support of others who use this knowledge for their own gain.[1]

This series has been planned for a long time, so God’s timing is perfect. Here we are with sex scandals in Hollywood and Westminster, with men standing accused of using power to exercise control over others, tales of harassment and sexual violence whilst people in the know kept their mouths shut.  Particularly in Westminster, the suspicion is that party whips, journalists and rival politicians may be tempted when scandal comes to their attention to stay silent and use the knowledge for their own advantage. Continue reading

Why Cold Feet disturbed and challenged

I’m just catching up with last weekend’s TV having been in Austria for Hannes’ induction (watch this space for a report). So last night we settled down to watch Cold Feet.

The week before, we had discovered that Olivia, one of Karen and David’s twins was now pregnant aged 17.  This week picked up on the consequences and followed Matthew (16) and Olivia’s intense, heart breaking struggle about whether or not to keep the baby or to have an abortion. Continue reading

Murder (2 Samuel 2-3)

Why is it that although I’ve put my trust in Jesus I find that life s still messy and I still struggle with sin?”

This is a big question, and one that our passage helps us to answer. Continue reading

Guilt and Shame – objective and subjective

I wanted to highlight again an important factor in our understanding of guilt and shame.  Instinctively in modern, western Britain we think in terms of shame as something that is a subjective feeling.  Increasingly, as we saw right back when we first looked at guilt and grace, we treat guilt as subjective too. Continue reading