How we handle money and possessions is central to our spiritual health and our emotional well being. This book does not set out to provide all the answers but it aims to help us ask some of the important questions about what it means to be a faithful disciple of Jesus Christ around money and possessions. Nor is this a matter for just our personal discipleship. We need to be praying for our nation, especially for Christians who work as economists and bankers and politicians. We need to pray that what emerges from this turbulent period is a more gentle form of wealth creation, less aggressive, less driven by profit, more underpinned by spiritual, social and moral values.
In these economically constrained times, the Bible's emphasis on freedom and love offers both relief from the burdens we carry and a radical new way to live. The release from slavery and debt that lay at the heart of Israel's cycle of Jubilee celebrations reveals that the whole of the Law and Prophets, as fulfilled by Christ, is about loving God and loving our neighbour. But in practice it's difficult not to be influenced by consumerism and individualism. How do we guard against this? How can we apply our faith in practical ways? What disciplines may we put in place to help us worship God in every area of our lives?
John Polkinghorne is a world authority in the field of science and religion. He has written numerous books in this area, and his thinking is hugely influential. This book brings together his thoughts on several core issues in the debate: God, science and technology, and Christianity. This book will appeal to readers who are new to Polkinghorne's thought and who are just beginning to investigate the interplay between science and religion. It will also appeal to those who have read his smaller books, but would like one handy resource which brings his thought together, and to students studying science and religion.
Contextual Bible Study (CBS) is an exciting approach to group Bible study that encourages people of all ages and all walks of life to read the Bible together and to allow it to shape their understanding of the burning issues of the day. It is a way of reading that both established Christians and those new to the Bible find insightful, empowering, even life-changing. What is Contextual Bible Study? offers a wealth of practical guidance on how to make this approach work for you, and how to start a CBS group in your own area. It also provides stimulating questions for use during Advent and Lent, along with inspiring stories of the CBS approach in action. Read and apply the advice in this book, and group Bible study will never be the same again!
One of a series of 6 small books dealing in a short and accessible way with the key concerns for Christians. Again and again, we hear that such-and-such an opinion is not 'biblical', implying that the Bible speaks with a unified voice on any matter. With humour and examples drawn from art and life, Helen-Ann Hartley argues that our reading of this varied collection of writings has to be generous, not exclusive. To appreciate fully the Bible's richness and diversity, we have to wrestle critically and creatively with themes that attract us and repel us. Not only should we draw meaning from the Bible, we must let our lives contribute meaning to the stories it tells, engaging in conversation with those stories and allowing them to urge us into being -- to think, speak and act. Ultimately, to make sense of the Bible, we need to make sense of who we are in relationship to God.
This wonderful collection of 140 original prayers -- published here for the first time -- is suitable for anyone who leads public prayers, or is looking for a resource to enrich private devotions. Covering a wide variety of subjects, the prayers are grouped under broad headings: Through the year; Church and ministry; Pastoral prayers; Community; Government and justice; Home and family life; Food and hospitality, and Devotional prayers. A comprehensive index is provided to guide you quickly to exactly what you need.
This is a book to accompany the readings in year B of the Lectionary. It aims to help individuals and groups to understand and use Mark's Gospel. There are two other books that will follow this one: Journeying with Luke in Year C and Journeying with Matthew in Year A. This book's unique slant is that it asks readers to use their imagination 'to bring the Gospel to life.' It asks readers to visualize themselves in the scenes that Mark describes in order see Mark's Gospel in a fresh and exciting way.
The book is designed to provide practical help to those involved in filling a vacancy, showing how to make it a good process and end with a good appointment. At the same time, it is useful to clergy seeking appointments, and senior clergy actually making the appointments.
Who was Luke? Was he one of Paul's companions? Was he a doctor? We do know that he was educated and cultured, writing for people far away from where Jesus lived. In his Gospel, we find the foundation of our Christmas stories and the best-loved parables, those of the Prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan. We see Jesus' concern for the poor and the marginalized, especially women and children. And it's Luke who tells us of the repentant thief on the cross and of the risen Jesus accompanying the people on the road to Emmaus. In these twenty-six studies, we discover Luke's aim -- to present the good news of Jesus as clearly and unambiguously as he can.
Godzone is a book of mystery and illumination, a guide-book to the travels of the heart. With humour, story-telling and captivating originality, it entices the reader to join its hitchhiking author on the most important journey of all.
Is your church facing a period of change? Are you overwhelmed with too much to do? Or are you searching for a new vision? If you are looking to take your church in a new direction, then How to Develop Your Local Church can help you decide which path to follow. Written by an experienced practitioner, it will help you to understand your congregation better: how it operates, what its members take for granted, what their priorities are and what the 'character' of the congregation is. The book then explains some of the reasons for frustration and conflict in church life, and points to positive ways forward, giving guidance on planning and decision-making. Just as no two churches are the same, there is no 'one-size-fits-all' answer to how your church might develop. Rather, it is only by drawing upon the collective wisdom of the local congregation that worthwhile change will begin to happen.
Jesus and the Land will help Christians to form a biblical view about modern-day claims to the land in Israel-Palestine. Examining what the New Testament says about the idea of land being 'holy', this guide is accessible and non-technical.
What does it mean to 'live well' when you're exhausted from juggling the demands of work and a young family? When you've been around long enough to be scarred by loss, disappointment or frustration? When your memory is beginning to fade and you feel a burden to others? Whatever the situation we find ourselves in, this down-to-earth book will help restore a sense of purpose. Alan Hargrave draws upon 'rules of life', from Benedict to Iona, to enable us to think seriously about the pattern of our living. Through absorbing stories, honest and often very funny accounts of his own personal struggles, and the provision of many useful exercises, he aims to help us find our own 'rule of life' -- one that will not only sustain us, but allow the light that may have gone out of our eyes to shine once more! And as the energy we need to look beyond ourselves returns, so we will discover new and creative ways to express the love of God to our wonderful, needy world.
Nigel Yates brings together the religious and social dimensions of the 1950s and 60s and examines the enormous changes in moral attitudes that took place in these two decades. Much of the popular literature on post-war Britain tends to present the 1950s as a period of continuing repression and respectability in the area of private and public morality, and the 1960s as one in which there was rapid social change. Using a wide range of contemporary sources -- books (including novels), magazines, newspapers, advertising, fashion catalogues, films and television, as well as a number of significant archive collections -- Nigel Yates argues that changes in attitudes to religion and morality in the 1960s were only made possible by developments in the 1950s.
What are clergy for? In this lively and provocative volume, Alan Billings argues that they serve the mission and ministry of the Church, which is to make God possible. In each new era, how to carry out this mission effectively will vary, as the Church seeks to respond to changes in society and culture, but it is likely to involve clergy in a refocusing of their ministry. Part 1 of Making God Possible looks at recent cultural shifts and the challenges they present to Christianity in the twenty-first century. Part 2 explores some of the models of ministry which have been found in the Church in the past and which continue to exercise an influence: classical (the parson); evangelical (the minister); catholic (the priest), and utility (the social activist and personal therapist). The author skilfully draws out those things of lasting importance and value in each model that might contribute towards the renewal of the ordained ministry today.
'None of us has precisely the same path to follow, and yet all of us are summoned to follow a path . . . For many of us, the understanding emerges clearly in mid-life, at the very time when we suspect it is too late for us to do anything about it. Our soul knows better; it is simply time to wake up.' This inspiring and challenging book is for anyone who has ever asked, 'What now?' or 'What will be left of my life when I'm gone?' Storyteller and writer Mike Riddell brilliantly identifies the malaise that is particularly common in midlife and shows us how to make it a time for refocusing on what really matters. In an engrossing blend of reflection and story, he encourages us to regain our capacity for wonder and to discover the unique gift that only we can bring to the world.
Every politician needs inspiration and ideals in this cynical age. Frank Field's Anglican faith provides his inspiration, and a foundation for a set of ideals known as English Idealism, put forward by T. H. Green. These ideals built on Christianity to form a widely shared public ideology. As a leading politician and churchman, Field illustrates such ideals through the life and work of six people who have inspired him in his political career.
A major theme in the Gospels is 'peace'; indeed Jesus proclaimed: 'Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you'. Yet when we look at the world, peace can seem an elusive dream. Mary Grey looks at how the Advent story encourages forgiveness and reconciliation, both essential for peace, and how the Gospels can be key tools to help Christians work towards peace. She ties the Advent story in with current situations in the UK and in the Middle East and the book has both a personal and a global outlook. The book will make ideal reading for Advent and Christmas, either on your own or in a group. It is sure to challenge you to ask 'how can I help to make peace a reality for all God's children?'
In this engaging survey Paula Gooder looks at the ways in which the biblical writers saw heaven and earth connect, exploring all the major strands of belief about life after death, including the role of paradise, and what happens between death and resurrection.
The text of the New Testament, drawn from the New Testament for Everyone series, fully integrated to smooth joins between sections and provide a level of internal consistency, for example in how individual Greek terms are rendered. The translation is an accurate rendering of the Greek original, which is the product of a single mind (whose thought has developed over time) rather than a committee. It also represents Tom Wright';s view of the New Testament, something that has helped to shape his theology.
The Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL) programme is a UK government initiative designed to help children and young people develop social and emotional intelligence. SEAL aims to help children nurture skills such as understanding another's point of view, working in a group, sticking at things when they get difficult, resolving conflict and managing worries. SEAL Assemblies for Primary Schools is a collection of 42 SEAL-themed assemblies. A new addition to the highly successful SPCK Assemblies Book series, it will be a valuable resource for primary school teachers and clergy who wish to implement the SEAL curriculum.
In Christmas the Original Story Margaret Barker explores the nature of the Christmas stories and the nature and use of Old Testament prophecy. Beginning with John';s account, it then goes on to include Luke and Matthew, the apocryphal gospels, and the traditions of the Coptic Church, to throw light upon wise men and their gifts, the character of Herod, Matthew';s use of prophecy, the holy family in Egypt. This book also discusses the stories we get from the Infancy Gospel of Jesus and the development of the Orthodox Christmas icon, as well as the Christmas story and the Mary material in the Koran.
The bestselling Intercessions Handbook is designed for use in a wide range of formal and informal settings. In two introductory chapters, John Pritchard considers the importance and challenges of the vital task of intercession. He then offers practical examples of intercessions in traditional services, all-age worship, small groups and personal devotions. Material for seasons, major festivals and special events is also included.