Saturday, 17 February 2018

The Gifts of the Holy Spirit

Last Lord's Day I preached about spiritual gifts, charismata.

There are those, and they are called cessationists, who do not believe that certain spiritual gifts, the gifts of the Holy Spirit, are not available or genuinely present today in this time. Tongues, prophecy, healing and miracles, according to this position, ceased soon after New Testament times and when the canon of Scripture, the complete Bible, was established.

I find nothing in the Bible itself that tells me that the gifts of the Holy Spirit would not be available after the Apostolic age or that they would be available to for a very limited time. This position, therefore, denies miracles, signs and wonders throughout church history.

It is not part of their personal experience, so they are uncomfortable when other Christians testify to what they have seen, heard and touched concerning spiritual gifts. Some fellowships like to have everything under their control and strictly regulated so that nobody could prophesy extemporaneously.

In New Testament times signs, miracles and wonders were part of church life. The Holy Spirit is not limited to periods of time, to certain ages and eras. He is sovereign and like the wind He moves as He pleases outside of human action or agency. This also applies to His work in filling and empowering Christians throughout the ages and in various circumstances. He may work through crisis experiences and remarkable events, but He may also work quietly and gently. He may act quickly and He may act after a period of tarrying and waiting, after praise or prayer or fasting. We should not build any doctrine on our personal experience, such as the baptism in or of the Spirit, because the Holy Spirit works in many ways. His touch may be varied, mysterious and unexpected. 

Gun control of adolescents

We now know that the FBI failed to take the necessary action. Adolescents should not be allowed to bear arms unless they are supervised by a responsible adult. Such a move would prevent gang gun violence and make high school shootings less likely. Anyone expelled from school should have to submit to checks and should normally be prevented from owning weapons. These measures would reduce gun violence and fatalities.  

Friday, 16 February 2018

Better to be safe than sorry with guns

When it comes to guns, especially AR 15s, it is essential to find out if the buyer and owner has strange or questionable views on gun use. Nikolas Cruz's comments and photographs should have been taken into account, and he should have been forbidden to own guns. The signs of a disturbed mind were apparent, but people clearly looked the other way and failed to take some responsibility when they saw his social media ramblings. There must be much tighter gun controls and vigilance. Anyone suspected of aberrant behaviour should never be allowed to own a gun or fire one without supervision.

Unless there are much stricter gun control measures then we will have more school shootings and mass gun related fatalities. If we don't learn the lessons then history will repeat itself, as it has been doing.

If those under 21 had to be supervised by a responsible adult, and if this was strictly enforced (like  alcohol) when using weapons then I wonder how many lives would have been saved? 

Monday, 8 January 2018

Video assisted refereeing - at last!

Video assistant referee (VAR) technology has arrived. It was used in the match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Crystal Palace today. In time it will be part and parcel of high level games. It will correct errors and eliminate offside goals. This technology could make significant differences. It must be encouraged. It is already used in the Bundesliga and Serie A, and other sports have happily  embraced video technology.

Friday, 10 November 2017

JFK files: the kill shot was from the front

The recent release of JFK assassination files confirm what many suspected: the significant shots, including the fatal head shot, were from the front, not from the Texas School Book Depository at the rear. Dr Charles Crenshaw had already stated this in a book before he died. These papers reveal that Warren Commission failed to establish even the basic ballistic facts. The American people were fed lies and disinformation. The magic bullet theory was a fabrication, and Lee Harvey Oswald was a patsy. That may not be news to many people, but an assassination conspiracy now seems beyond any reasonable doubt.

Ovidlu Hategan: refereeing decisions that simply stink.

Ovidlu Hategan has made a penalty decision that defies reason and common sense. A travesty!  Switzerland were awarded a penalty when Corry Evans turned away from a close range shot in the Northern Ireland penalty area. It was no where near his hand.The ball definitely hit his shoulder. The photographic evidence is clear. It was a poor decision that goes into my hall of shame. Rodriguez scored from the spot and Switzerland won one nil.  Video referral should have prevented this shameful state of affairs. Hategan booked Evans to add insult to injury.

 Schar's early tackle on Stuart Dallas was worthy of a red card. Hategan therefore had a stinker of a match.

Monday, 22 May 2017

So Twin Peaks will be back and it's weirdsville once again

It has been called cult viewing and greatly anticipated, eagerly awaited, but I remember the original series being ridiculed and scorned by many viewers who lost patience with its absurdity, blatant irrationality. Strange characters, nonsensical dialogue, and surrealistic humour annoyed them. They thought that  David Lynch, the director, was taking the proverbial, indulging his fantasies and far out ideas.  The lady with the log, who believed it spoke, demon possession, people speaking backwards, and weird dream sequences made them hit the off button. They refused to take any more of this incomprehensible journey to weirdsville, USA.

Confused? You will be! That's what David Lynch does brilliantly, confuse and confound his audience.
And the Log Lady is back in the new series.


River Stour