Monday, April 30, 2007


So last night Rebecca and I paid a visit to our home church at Castlereagh Gospel Hall in Belfast. They were having a special outreach night. They normally just have a Gospel preacher who comes and preaches his we heart out, but last night they showed a Steve Chalke DVD. Rather forward thinking for a Brethren service. Afterwards though I was hearing whispers that Steve Chalke had gone of the rails and had gone away from evangelicalism. I thought I should do some research on this rather than listen to nasty rumours that get spread around. But right enough it seems that Steve Chalke has, in his latest book The Lost Message of Jesus, claimed that he doesnt believe in the doctrine of Penal Substitution. Penal what you say? That's what I thought...

Wikipedia is good on this one

"Penal substitution is a theory of the atonement within Christian theology, especially cherished by Evangelicals of the Reformed tradition. Penal substitution means that Christ is punished (penal) in our place (substitution), thus satisfying the demands of justice, so God can justly forgive. It is thus a specific understanding of substitutionary atonement, where the substitutionary nature of Jesus` death is understood in the sense of a substitutionary punishment. It is also a specific form of satisfaction doctrine which focuses on God's justice being satisfied by Christ's bearing the punishment meant for sinners."

So I was thinking, what does Steve Chalke think was happening to Jesus when he was on the cross... maybe I should read his book and find out. I'll add it to my holiday reading list.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Mrs

Was so pleased to discover that my wee wife has finally started blogging. She is much better at writing and articulating her thoughts than me so I will probably retire from the blogging world!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Gone home

Bec and I were woken early this morning with a call from Campbell, our Cell leader, letting us know that Lindsay Emerson had passed away to be with the Lord. Lindsay was a member of our home group and was one of the most beautiful people we have ever known. We will miss her. Our hearts go out to Ali and all the family. Please keep praying for the Anderson and Emerson families.

Thursday, April 19, 2007


I studied Romans 1 this morning preparing to teach it to my staff team at our new weekly Bible and Prayer session. It was good to be reminded of the truth that the Gospel (you know, the good news, the message) is actually God himself. Paul calls it the Gospel of God. God is the wonderful, mindblowing, life changing, grace dispensing Gospel. It's not about him, it is HIM.
The Gospel is not a type of service, a style of music or chosen preaching style but rather it is a revelation of God, it is God. It has the power to save anyone, because it is God, it has the desired goal of faith, because God loves faith, it has as it's substance, the person of Jesus Christ, because He is God, it has as its aim, the renown of His name because we were created for His glory. God is the Gospel, the Gospel is God. I love it. It is not a Protestant Gospel, it is not a rich man's Gospel, although it can save both. It has no preference and it is not limited to creed, nation, caste, class, sex or age. It is the power of God to save, because it is God. I guess we have to be careful not to miss God as we present the Good news. As it turns out, the Gospel, is not a three point sermon on a Sunday night but rather the one who designed night...if you know what I mean

Monday, April 16, 2007

Incase you missed it.

Just incase you missed my wee interview with Stephen Nolan on BBC Radio Ulster, Grierso at YFCNI managed to get a copy onto the YFC Blog. Check it out... I haven't, can't listen to my own voice! The Interview

Monday, April 09, 2007

Before I am 30

So Rebecca, Johnny & Susanna, my wife and best mates went for a walk on Saturday to Peaklands Park. We have great laughs on our walks, we talk about life, experiences, holidays and well, anything. On Saturday during the walk I was asked if I had a list of things I wanted to do before I was 3o. I am 27 now, turning 28 this July. So now I have started to think, what are the things I want/would like to do/experience before I turn 30?

Here are a few, being a strategicly minded guy they include the goal and the plan to reach it.

  • Get fit again (Rebecca and I are reopening our membership with David Lloyd's when we move back to Belfast. I am also setting myself the target of making every rugby training session next season and finally kicking my addiction to fizzy drinks. I am currently on day 3 of my cold turkey fizzy drink quit)

  • Travel (This summer me, Bec, Sue & Johnny are travelling around the world, stopping at Hong Kong, Sydney, Aukland, Fiji and Los Angeles. I also hope to travel to the Youth for

  • Christ General Counsel in South Africa in 2008.)

  • Spend more time with my friends and make new friends. (I would love to start a Bible study in my house, wherever that may be)

  • Learn to swim ( I can swim, but it's more like survival swimming, I would love to learn to swim properly.)

  • Learn how to Ski

  • Preach more

So there are probably more and they might not seem very exciting or very difficult but its only two years away!