Thursday, 24 March 2011

Let us Pray for Peace in the Middle East

With all the news in the Middle East it is time to pray for peace. With war in Libya, Jewish settlers murdered in their beds, and Palestinian homes bombed and children on both side killed there are no winners. Genuine peace talks seem as far away as ever and even Christians are encouraged to take sides for or against the State of Israel or Palestine. But Christianity is a faith of hope in the ressurection in Jesus Christ. It is a faith of life, of forgivness and love.

Friday, 18 March 2011

Israel threatens military action against Iran for its continued nuclear programme

This report has appeared in the Daily Mail today. I guess with the all instability in the Middle East and worries in Japan now might appear a strategic time to act, but it might in the medium term harden Islamic resolve and resistence against it.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Response to Paul Taylor

Paul Taylor of Answers in Genesis has written a review of my book, but given no right of reply on his blog. [Edit - Paul has now posted it on his blog - thanks Paul] So I am adding my comments here.

Firstly, Paul Taylor says that AiG takes no position on this question (which is I guess true), but then asserts that someone with my beliefs is below the standard of a true creationist, which implies he doesn't really accept AiGs position to be valid [Edit: Paul objects to this comment, see his reply below, so I accept that he does fully support the ministry and position of AiG and CSE].

But anyway, I believe that my beliefs set out in the book Zion’s New Name about Israel and the Church (and also Creation) closely reflect the teachings of St Paul in the New Testament, and the Protestant Reformation through Calvin. Calvin believed in a literal creation and that the Church was the continuation of Israel’s promises in a literal sense because the Church was founded by Jesus with a few Jews as the legitimate obedient root of Israel (read carefully Isaiah 1-10). Many Gentiles have been grafted into the Church as Israel, but I believe it remains the true expression of Israel in the world today.

He is of course free to disagree with me, but I don’t think it is fair to suggest my interpretation of Scripture is somehow below the standard of a creationist when I am closer to Calvin and the Reformation in these positions than Christian Zionists. I believe that evolution and Christian Zionism grew up at the same time in the 19th C and both were departures from good sound Protestant beliefs.[1]

The global Judeo-Christian meta-narrative involves Creation, Fall, Redemption through Christ as the fulfilment of Israel’s promises, and the final consummation of all things in Christ.

Now let me give a few Scriptures from St Paul (NIV). He first explains his concern that people were turning away from the true Gospel because of Judaisers in the Church, a concern I share when I hear Christian Zionist theology.

Gal 1:6-7 “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you to live in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ.”