Jesus

The Resurrection and the Meaningless Universe

What is the fundamental problem – the underlying anxiety – facing humanity in contemporary culture? That’s the question the church needs to ask, in order to see how the Resurrection of Jesus speaks deeply to us. Following J D Hall (especially in The Cross in Our Context), in this session argues that the fundamental problem confronting our culture is not the anxiety of guilt and shame so powerfully addressed by salvation theories that revolve around substitution. He argues that the real issue in our world is:

Practice Resurrection

On Tuesday morning Australian Time we woke up to shocking news. Notre Dame Cathedral was on fire. For a while it looked as though the whole thing was about to collapse into complete ruins, or that the amazing medieval rose windows and great organ would be destroyed. Thousands watched, cried, and sang as the central spire came crashing down and red fire bloomed into the night sky. Heroism, and great organisation prevented the worst from happening, but the cold, blackened embers of the roof, and the huge amount of damage, serve as a reminder of how fragile things are.

The Baptism of Jesus

Have you ever wondered why Jesus got baptised, given that he was without sin? In this presentation we explore three different levels of meaning in Baptism, which suggests an answer to that question.

The presentation draws on Rowan Williams' excellent little book Being Christian.

Hate and Love

Jesus said, shockingly, "‘Whoever comes to me and does not hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself, cannot be my disciple" (Luke 14:26.)

What are we to make of these strange, paradoxical words? One way into it is to take a look at what Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard said about the three modes of life - the aesthetic, the ethical, and the religious.

While not wanting to domesticate these strange words, we can perhaps get a better insight into what they might mean for us today.

Figtrees and Repentance (Luke 13: 1-9)

Luke 13:1-9

At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, ‘Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.’

God Loves You

God's love for you is the first, primary, basic fact about you. Here are three ways in which we can try to process this, on the surface, uncontroversial idea

• Theologically
– What does it mean to say this as a Christian?
•Spiritually / Experientially
– How do I come to know this at increasingly deep levels of myself?
• Transformationally
– God’s love is transformational – the best evidence is the life transformed into Christlikeness
 
 
St John of the Cross

Existential Faith - Three Ironic Heroes of Faith

This was a session in Cafechurch where we talked about the sort of faith we want - a faith which underpins our lives, even when we don't get the things we prayed for so hard, things which God seems to approve of. The three heroes were Job, Jonah, and St Thomas - all people who had to walk a hard path, but who were fundamentally, existentially open to God.

Alister wrote a blog post along similar lines, which might interest you...

A view of the the sun rising from Mt Sinai
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