The Curiosity Index (09.01.2018)

How Podcasting Hurts Preaching This one has been shared a fair bit already and is quite interesting. To be clear it’s not about podcasts as much as it is about churches making their sermons into podcasts. There are lots of other formats of podcasts that this argument wouldn’t apply to. How to end congestion without giving up the car Well, not giving up all cars anyway…but the city you live in would be transformed! Visualizing things that happen every second around the world 52,000 likes added, 75 burgers sold, 6.5…

Read More

Questions about preaching

I love preaching but I rarely do it these days. The number of times I’ve preached has dropped from almost every week five years ago to just a handful of times a year.  I do sometimes miss it and I always enjoy it when afforded the opportunity. Now I’ve read & listened to John Piper’s short defence of the place of preaching and I get it. I’d certainly get it if I could preach as well as John Piper. Glen Scrivener gives a compelling argument for preaching that raises the dead…

Read More

Book Review: Preaching Christ

Preaching Christ by Edgar Andrews is a classic example of not judging a book by its cover, or for that matter its layout and design inside the cover because those, like the cover, are terrible. I almost didn’t read this book, I just assumed it would be awful, so bad is the production on this book. No small miracle then, that this is actually a very useful little book. Edgar Andrews is better known as an international expert in molecules and author of Who Made God? and once I made that connection I…

Read More

How to preach in a new language in just 4 months!

On July 15th of this year our family moved to Sweden and on Sunday November 13th I preached for the first time in Swedish. Here’s how it happened. First of all a few points to set the scene. Right now the only language I’m fluent in is English. I have appalling French and improving Swedish. I knew some words and phrases before moving here but our learning began in earnest in July (well August really). At present I have a basic level of conversation and I make frequent grammatical errors in…

Read More

Caesarius' advice on preaching

I’m reading Henry Chadwick’s history The Early Church and there are some absolute gems which I’ll post for your reflection, edification and application. Caesarius became Bishop of Arles in France in 502AD and he promptly used his sermons to address some of the superstitious behaviour that still existed. He was also concerned about the low quality of preaching in some of the churches so, “To raise the standard of preaching, he recommended that clergy should follow the Greek custom of reading sermons by acknowledged masters instead of producing their own…

Read More

How John Chrysostom upset the rich

I’m reading Henry Chadwick’s history The Early Church and there are some absolute gems which I’ll post for your reflection, edification and application. John Chrysostom (Golden Voice) was one of the greatest preachers of the early church and who under severe pressure was made Bishop of Constantinople (c 398AD). There he initiated a whole series of reforms raising the moral standard of the clergy and knocking on the head some of the more dubious accounting practices of the priests. But it wasn’t just the clergy who were on the receiving…

Read More

Book Review: A Peculiar Prophet

Every now and then I need to read a book on preaching. It’s so easy to slip into a default way of bringing the Word to people. The preacher gets comfortable and the people get comfortable. Everyone knows what to expect. It will sound like this and end like that. I want to be a continual learner about the art and craft of bringing alive the Word of God so that people meet the Word of God (Jesus) through my words. So it’s good to try and read, listen to…

Read More