• Movies,  Reflection

    Movies Worth Re-watching (My Pick) – Gladiator (2000)

    One of the great changes in academia at the time this film was released was the re-ignited interest in the Roman Empire of old. I remembered that many journals and magazines were peppered with articles and facts about the victories, drama, politics and ultimate downfall of the greatest empire in human history. Rare feat for a film in my own opinion. There were a lot gore in the show – no sexual graphics – and a lot of story. It was the time tested story of a man who gained the world and lost it all in a moment. Against the rule and wrath of a mad emperor, this broken…

  • Christianity,  Preaching,  Reflection

    Traumatic Listening Experience

    It is often something that is not talked about publicly, but something that is frequently talked, whispered in private – that there is something disturbing in certain types of preaching. Coming from a conservative, evangelical, Reformed Christian persuasion there are things that are plainly obvious but are considered taboo to be talked about (at least openly). Simply: some preachings are dangerous to the listeners. Having time to step back from the activity of preaching, it is more plain to me now that certain types of preaching should be avoided at all cost and not indulged in – particularly if it is a weekly dose of. In my previous posts, I…

  • Commentary,  Devotion

    Commentary on Philippians 1:12-17

    It is easy to be in a hurry to rush that we miss many important aspects of “growth” itself. This is certainly very evident when it comes to the spiritual dimension. Paul, the apostle who grew not just intellectually but in his character and actions, showed the type of maturity that is often neglected and ignored by many impatient Christians: an ability to look at life through God’s lens. In verse 12 of his letter, he declares and points out to the brethren that the unpleasant circumstances that befell him was not out of God’s control but was purposed for God’s glory. How can imprisonment, isolation and persecution be purposed…

  • Devotion,  Thoughts

    Commentary on Philippians 1: 1-11

    The Word of God is bristling with power. This “power” is not perceived by worldly measurements; it is of divine origin. It is such a pity that many Christians flock to the weekly meetings on the Lord’s Day (Sunday) to be revitalised (in their mind), forgetting that we have the best fuel for our soul and body in this book (see 2 Peter 1:2-3). The natural tendency for the Christian believer is to take the Word for granted – to treat it like any other book. They insist that different books within the Bible must be held down by their own made-up pillars – often by their theological leanings and…

  • Christianity,  Reflection,  Thoughts

    Psalm 1:1-3

    The psalmist proclaims the blessedness of walking upright before the LORD in the opening verses of the poetic magnum opus of the Bible. If we were to read it with a liberal mindset that is saturated with modern inclinations and belief, we would find the first verse offensive: how can the psalmist have an elevated view on such a “holy person”? There is great offence to claim that a spiritually sensitive, godward looking person is more “blessed” than a pagan person. The world we live in has unfortunately become a morally selfish and dark world – one that elevates self to godhood (even though the words may not explicitly state…

  • Christianity,  Reflection

    On Whose Authority?

    And when he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching, and said, “By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority? Matthew 21:23 (NASB) The question posed by the Jewish leaders actually captures their religious mentality and mannerism at that time – spirituality is all about citing or referring to a particular rabbi or teacher: the more prominent the teacher, the “better” the teaching would be. In giving his own testimony of the conversion wrought in his heart, the apostle Paul would give evidence to the religious leaders of his own “religious…

  • Christianity,  Preaching,  Thoughts

    The Failure of Practical Expository Preaching

    History is one of those subjects that are vital in developing our thought processes and our character but is commonly hated by many. There is a prevalent notion among the newer generations that the only history that we should be bothered with is the history that we make. Such responses aptly summarise the key problem with these generations: preoccupation with self. In the modern evangelical movement (church scene), we find similar shifts happening especially with the ‘expository preaching’ development of the last few decades. Though this may not be reflected within the academic or theoretical arena, it certainly is seen in the practice. To set the context – “expository preaching”…

  • Reflection,  Thoughts

    Losing Assumptions

    Bruce Wayne in “Batman Begins”, played excellently by Christian Bale, said these words to his future arch-nemesis (but at that time hidden): “I needed to understand the thoughtsand feelings of those who stand inthe shadows… The first time you’re forced tosteal not to starve… …you lose many assumptions aboutthe simple nature of right andwrong.” Sometimes a book, a comic book or a poem strikes through the haze of your thoughts and like a ray of sun, pierces through that fog and gets straight to your heart. Occasionally, not often, something else does the same – and in this case, it is Nolan’s epic trilogy – at this particular line, delivered…

  • Christianity,  Reflection

    The Great Sin

    Genesis 3:7-8 – “Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths. And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.“ Many preachers would find unity in declaring the greatness of the Great Commission because it was the final command given before His ascension back to the heavenly realms in glory. Again, this logic and application are seen in the final words of the…