Off The Shelf: An Anomalous Jew

He is one of the most influential and controversial figures in history so it is little wonder that there is a wide proliferation of material on the apostle Paul. In the midst of this milieu it can be difficult to pinpoint where to start in engaging with Pauline thought. An anomalous Jew by  Michael Bird is a collection of essays which will certainly help in this task. Three of these essays have been published previously (Chapters 1, 4 & 5) but they have been updated for this book to bring them into line with the main argument; Paul was a Jew, of sorts. Continue reading

Off the shelf: Transcending Mission

What constitutes mission within the life of the local church has gone through something of a renaissance over the last few years. Seeking to think about local and global spheres of ministry through the lens of mission has been helpful, but it has also brought some challenges. One example is this; just what do we mean when we talk about mission? This is the main thrust of what Stroope seeks to address in his provocative, yet well-reasoned assessment of the current situation in the discussion of mission. Continue reading

Exposure: OMF April 2019

“Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the dark, each in the room of his pictures? For they say, ‘The Lord does not see us, the Lord has forsaken the land’” (Ezekiel 8:12)

Just over a year has passed since our prophet had experienced a quite extra ordinary encounter with God. And here we see him caught up once again in an incredible experience with some shocking revelations. This section (8:1-11:25) is an exposure of the bad leadership which is at the heart of the people of God’s big problem. Continue reading

Partnership: OMF March 2019

“For you are not sent to a people of foreign speech and a hard language, but to the house of Israel…” (Ezekiel 3:5)

“What on earth are you choosing this section for to encourage us in praying for ministry among East Asia’s peoples Martin?” Good question. Well before we go any further it is important for us to pause and take this section to heart. It is the people of God, the ones who know the language and who should understand the purposes and character of God who can often be the most difficult group to see transformation and change among. Continue reading

Reset: OMF February 2019

“Such was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. And when I saw it, I fell of my face, and I heard the voice of one speaking”. (Ezekiel 1:28)

Everything had changed. Picture it. As Ezekiel stood looking out across his new home around the Chebar canal, he knew the world was never going to be the same again. It had been a long 5 years on the other side of the world. Reaching his 30’s made him stop to think about what could have been. Trained as a priest, ready to fulfil his calling; but that had all disappeared. Continue reading

Confidence? OMF November 2018

“Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.” (Revelation 3:19)

It’s often when I am not paying attention, reading a book or writing something like this that I make the mistake. I reach out to grab my cup of coffee, and much to my disgust I get a mouthful of tepid bean juice. In the grand scheme of things it is not the worst thing that can happen, but it is not the most pleasant experience either. Continue reading

OMF October 2018: Doors

“I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door which no one is able to shut” (Revelation 3:8)

Picture the scene with me. Something amazing has just happened. You have heard good news about a coming kingdom, a king who has defeated death, who transforms everything about life and who owns eternity. But where you live very few people know this message. In fact, it is viewed with great suspicion  by neighbours and as seditious by those in power. Continue reading