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ARCHAEOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES

 
The Wall of Death: The Thanatos inscription
The Wall of Death: The Thanatos inscription

The author of Ephesians makes the point that in Christ the barriers between God and humanity, and the artificial barriers that people have put up against each other are destroyed.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Claire Fox’s ‘I Find That Offensive’
Claire Fox’s ‘I Find That Offensive’

A generation that accepts uncritically that ‘you can’t say that’ will slide from unwillingness to inability to disagree with or critique the propaganda it is relentlessly fed.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Latin America: The Catholic Church ‘imitates’ popular Protestantism
Latin America: The Catholic Church ‘imitates’ popular Protestantism

Although a postmodern stance toward faith relegates theological issues to the background, they are indispensable for understanding the missionary reality.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
What kind of a leader?
What kind of a leader?

It will be through spending time looking at Jesus that we will lose our appetite for self-promotion.

 
 
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ARCHAEOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES

 
Gudea of Lagash: A contemporary of Melchizedek
Gudea of Lagash: A contemporary of Melchizedek

In Jesus Christ, we have the perfect fulfillment of the idealized Sumerian vision of the Shepherd King that Gudea and other kings sought to achieve in their lifetime.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Cracks in the universe?
Cracks in the universe?

Since the 9/11 attack in 2001, we have seen more than 60 new Muslim movements to Christ.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Netherlands: pluralism and tolerance
Netherlands: pluralism and tolerance

The Netherlands is known throughout Europe as the leading exponent of radically liberal social, medical and ethical policies.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
‘#Wetoo’ in the Latino evangelical community
‘#Wetoo’ in the Latino evangelical community

It is time for us to say #wetoo if we are praying for a profound awakening in our churches, if we are willing our churches to have a renewed testimony in our society. We mustn’t fear.

 
 
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EUROPEAN DIGNITY WATCH

 
Advancing abortion in the name of the ‘right to life’: Yes, this is happening
Advancing abortion in the name of the ‘right to life’: Yes, this is happening

The push for a ‘right to abortion’ by the UN Human Rights Committee, under the guise of re-interpreting the ‘right to life’, is not just outlandish. It is also in strong contradiction to international law.

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
What happens if Catholics think the Pope is a heretic?
What happens if Catholics think the Pope is a heretic?

The one who is supposed to guard the Roman Catholic deposit of faith is charged with allegations of introducing confusion, if not heresy.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
God’s great evangelistic plan
God’s great evangelistic plan

We can make no greater investment of our resources than to help churches become infectious communities of gospel-gripped people.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The lost son
The lost son

Stories about lost children explore our greatest fears. The big TV revelation this summer was an impressive Argentinean series produced by HBO called The Bronze Garden.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Latin America: What Catholics have “learned” from Protestants
Latin America: What Catholics have “learned” from Protestants

The key question is whether Catholicism can consider popular Protestantism as God´s work. It is the same question that many traditional Protestant denominations also ask themselves.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Catholic exodus to the ranks of Protestant churches in Latin America
Catholic exodus to the ranks of Protestant churches in Latin America

The rapid growth of popular Protestantism has heightened the concerns of the Roman Catholic hierarchies in this region of the world.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Coincidence?
Coincidence?

In those regions which embraced the Reformation, Halloween came to be seen as incompatible with Biblical teaching.

 
 
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CHURCH PLANTING IN EUROPE

 
Baptist church planting in Eastern Europe
Baptist church planting in Eastern Europe

A recent EBF Mission Partnership conference in Georgia sought to ‘encourage, and inspire in ministry’ a group of indigenous church planters from Eastern Europe.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Schaeffer, a legacy of tears
Schaeffer, a legacy of tears

In search of authenticity (5). Schaeffer taught me how to mourn for the world, instead of judging it. He was a man of God who served as a prophet for his generation, which he understood so well.

 
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FEATURES

 
Can they hear us?
Can they hear us?

What if, when a police chief or politician spoke about human trafficking, we were ready to respond with our stories and expertise?

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
7 things preachers never say: weariness
7 things preachers never say: weariness

In some churches those “in ministry” are expected to have it all together… so there may be nobody to talk to.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Reclaiming our Christian foundations
Reclaiming our Christian foundations

A review of Nick Spencer’s The Evolution of The West: How Christianity Has Shaped Our Values.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Orthodoxy without love is monstrous
Orthodoxy without love is monstrous

In search of authenticity (4): Schaeffer was looking for the human contact that might reopen the discussion that the debate had closed.

 
 
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CHRISTIANS IN THE MEDIA

 
Working with the media: an interview with Michael Cromartie
Working with the media: an interview with Michael Cromartie

Michael felt that church leaders tend to see journalists as enemies. But they forget that journalists are all on very tight deadlines.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The myth of innate goodness
The myth of innate goodness

The story of “A High Wind in Jamaica” (Richard Hughes, 1929) might sound like a comedy, but it is in fact a drama of great cruelty, capable of making the skin of most insensitive readers crawl.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Think beyond a simple yes/no question
Think beyond a simple yes/no question

The Catalonia independence debate in Spain can easily be reduced to a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ question with the answer splitting families and faith communities. How could Christians respond to such a situation?

 
 
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FEATURES

 
The palm tree Irma broke
The palm tree Irma broke

A doctor visiting the Dominican Republic shares his thoughts after the storm.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Spotlight on Germany
Spotlight on Germany

Contemporary Germany may be the European leader, but the Berlin Wall still casts a long shadow over the country’s economic, political and spiritual landscape.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
The Paradox Of Abraham Kuyper
The Paradox Of Abraham Kuyper

This educationalist, Prime Minister and theologian has left an imprint on Dutch churches, schools, media and politics visible even a full century later.

 
 
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UNION
1

 
Delighting in the Trinity
Delighting in the Trinity

The Trinity is not some awkward add-on to God. No, God is beautiful, desirable, and life-giving precisely because He is the Father, the Son, and the Spirit.

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
“Greater Oneness in Christ”: What does it mean?
“Greater Oneness in Christ”: What does it mean?

So far, Evangelicals and Pentecostals have been talking about unity among “born again” believers. If they commit to “greater oneness” with the Roman Catholic Church and WCC, they need to reflect on what they become committed to.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Living with paradox
Living with paradox

Europe as the continent most exposed to the gospel over time and intensity, yet more recently also shaped by the abandonment of the gospel.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
The big advantage of shorter series
The big advantage of shorter series

Launching a series is an opportunity to invite people in and to invite people back in who might have drifted from regular attendance.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Not every exhortation is necessary
Not every exhortation is necessary

There are some things that are preached with great life impact simply through clarity of explanation.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
An urban adventure
An urban adventure

We too feel picked up by the scruffs of our necks by the same God of Abraham.

 
 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
Brexit in a fractured Europe: a relational vision and strategy for reconciliation
Brexit in a fractured Europe: a relational vision and strategy for reconciliation

There is an urgent need for Christians to seek the peace and prosperity of the whole continent of Europe at an uncertain time in its history.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
An enduring truth
An enduring truth

The only way the Reformation could possibly not still matter would be if beauty, goodness, truth, joy and human flourishing no longer mattered.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
In search of authenticity
In search of authenticity

The first of a series of articles on Schaeffer’s legacy and on the challenge he still poses to the world today.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Hungry people pay attention to food
Hungry people pay attention to food

When a preacher helps them to see that this passage is relevant to their deepest needs, they will give it their full attention.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The divine and the human in Chagall
The divine and the human in Chagall

The concern of the artist is to penetrate psychologically in the scenes of Old and New Testament.

 
 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
Art and social transformation
Art and social transformation

There are three great benefits of art, which every Christian should embrace: beauty, truth and imagination. 

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
7 things preachers never say: criticism and apathy
7 things preachers never say: criticism and apathy

It hurts when people’s grievances seem to inevitably hit the most visible targets in the church, which tends to be those who lead and preach.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Our many faces
Our many faces

The danger of deception lies not only in the fact that we are not what we appear to be, but also in ending up believing that we are something other than our true selves. A review of “Smoke and Mirrors” (2016).

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
Would you ever ask Muslims to pray for you? Pope Francis did
Would you ever ask Muslims to pray for you? Pope Francis did

This request shows that when the Pope talked about all religious people being “children of God” he did not simply mean members of the human family.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
There is no balm in Atwood’s Gilead
There is no balm in Atwood’s Gilead

“The Handmaid’s Tale” portrays the nightmare of a society governed by fanaticism and intolerance.

 
 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
What is the Islamic caliphate and why should Christians care?
What is the Islamic caliphate and why should Christians care?

A number of Muslim groups are actively seeking a Caliphate, although their conceptions of it differ. These groups include Al-Qa’ida, Daesh (IS), Hizb ut Tahrir, and the Muslim Brotherhood.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Looking forward
Looking forward

We should not only see the tares or weeds, the negative, but also remind ourselves of the positive things God is doing, the wheat.

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
Marian prayers as shapers of Roman Catholic theology and practice
Marian prayers as shapers of Roman Catholic theology and practice

The word rosary means “crown of roses”. The conviction behind this expression is that Mary has revealed that each time people say a “Hail Mary” they are giving her a rose.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The centenary of the author of ‘A Contract With God’
The centenary of the author of ‘A Contract With God’

Will Eisner invented the comic for adults in 1978 with a story about the crisis of faith of a Jewish immigrant.

 
 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
Restoring honor and removing shame: Core aspects of God’s mission
Restoring honor and removing shame: Core aspects of God’s mission

Honor and shame are prominent in Majority World cultures, where these moral values form the ‘operating system’ of everyday life. People avoid disgrace and seek status in the eyes of the community.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Malta: Europe’s southerly outpost
Malta: Europe’s southerly outpost

There is no doubt that one of the greatest challenges Malta has faced in recent years has been coping with the influx of migrants from North Africa and the Middle East.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
No God But One, by Nabeel Qureshi
No God But One, by Nabeel Qureshi

The force of Qureshi’s argument comes from applying the litmus test of history to the claims of each religion.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Blasphemy, Stephen Fry and the Gospel
Blasphemy, Stephen Fry and the Gospel

The New Testament writers tell us that God’s honour is not something so fragile that it needs to be protected by legal restrictions.

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
Sanctuaries as places of evangelization - Are they really?
Sanctuaries as places of evangelization - Are they really?

The word “evangelization” is used across the spectrum of the Christian world. The question is: What is the meaning of it? How is it defined? What does it refer to?

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Reforming Europe, how?
Reforming Europe, how?

Is the exit-strategy (like the one seen with Brexit) the only way forward amidst the widespread dissatisfaction towards the EU?

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Another French revolution?
Another French revolution?

Sadly ‘integrity’, ‘incorruptibility’ and ‘honesty’ are not words often used to describe today’s politicians. That’s why we cannot leave our future just to the politicians.

 
 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
Living as a Christian, registered as a Muslim?
Living as a Christian, registered as a Muslim?

Conversion from Islam is impossible in many places and in the few locations where it is possible legally, there are social and cultural impediments to change.

 
 
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FEATURES
1

 
But did Jesus really rise from the dead?
But did Jesus really rise from the dead?

We take a look at four theories regarding Jesus' 'supposed' resurrection from the dead.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Religion and sentiment
Religion and sentiment

This “Holy Week” in Spain thousands of people who refuse to follow Jesus will be moved by religious images. They will sing and cry.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Persecution in Mexico?
Persecution in Mexico?

We spoke with Protestant Christians who had had their electricity and water cut off, who had been removed from the local population registers, whose children had been prevented from attending school.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Is truth dead?
Is truth dead?

When the devil lies, Jesus said, he speaks his native language. As fallen human beings, it is our native language too. Lying is universal.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The Doors - Riders on the storm
The Doors - Riders on the storm

Through his mysterious death in Paris in 1971, the charismatic and self-destructive Jim Morrison managed to create a legend.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
7 ways to get your church reading
7 ways to get your church reading

What can you do when people just don’t seem interested in good books?

 
 
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ENGAGING MUSLIMS

 
Engaging with Muslims (III): Ways of being Muslim in Europe
Engaging with Muslims (III): Ways of being Muslim in Europe

Fundamentalist Muslims, Reformed Muslims, Converted Muslims, Secular Muslims... There are at least 11 ways this faith is lived out in Europe. 

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
That ‘Roman Plot’
That ‘Roman Plot’

Granted, the European Union is a very imperfect human project, not to be confused with God’s kingdom. Yet we are told to pray for God’s kingdom to come, that is, for his will to be done in Europe as it is in heaven.

 
 
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ENGAGING MUSLIMS

 
Engaging with Muslims (II): Islam in present-day Europe
Engaging with Muslims (II): Islam in present-day Europe

Islam is in Europe to stay, albeit progressively and in different forms. Different versions and traditions of Islam compete with each other. It has become Europe’s second religion after Christianity.

 
 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
Contextual challenges and creative responses in contemporary India
Contextual challenges and creative responses in contemporary India

While India has always had a religiously plural ethos, contemporary India has been polarized along religious lines with the advent of the Hindu nationalist political party to power in 2014 with an absolute majority.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Rebuilding the Bridge to Life
Rebuilding the Bridge to Life

It is good to rethink the gospel presentations we use.

 
 
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ENGAGING MUSLIMS

 
Engaging with Muslims (I): A need to understand whom we engage with
Engaging with Muslims (I): A need to understand whom we engage with

Statistics often do not give any indication of the religious commitment, beliefs and practices of a person. Some believe that only a third of all Muslims in Europe actively practice their Islamic faith.

 
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FEATURES

 
Reaching out to disabled students
Reaching out to disabled students

Produce information about your events in accessible formats. Book a sign language interpreter for the meetings during your mission week.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Dig Deeper
Dig Deeper

Most of the time most of us remain blissfully unaware of riches with which we have not yet engaged.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Driving to Brussels
Driving to Brussels

Citizens from all over Europe are driving to Brussels to offer themselves as ‘Official European Chauffeurs’, willing to bring refugees to their respective countries.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Way to heaven
Way to heaven

The main character of Himmelweg is a Red Cross worker who is an accessory to manipulating History, by covering up the truth of what really happened in a Nazi concentration camp.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Red tide rising
Red tide rising

Gavin Matthews on Arkady Ostrovsky’s The Invention of Russia.

 
 
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FEATURES
1

 
Climate change in Europe
Climate change in Europe

The response of the European Churches to climate change, as with all environmental issues, has been patchy, but there are signs that this is beginning to change.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Was Jesus a populist?
Was Jesus a populist?

When confronted with the dichotomy of ‘people’ or ‘elite’, Jesus refused to be cornered. His answers to trick questions introduced a new dimension.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES
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God speaks in “Silence”
God speaks in “Silence”

According to Endô, the Catholic Japanese author whose book is the basis of Scorsese’s new film, “Silence” isn’t about God’s silence, but about how God speaks through silence and trauma.

 
 
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MIND AND HEART

 
Being before doing (II)
Being before doing (II)

Beginning in the USA and expanding then to Europe, we witness the rise of a rampant individualism where “my rights” are the primary interest.

 
 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
The cumulative crisis of trust
The cumulative crisis of trust

Our churches should be examples of institutions that serve the common good, that speak out against injustice, and that are led with integrity.

 
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MIND AND HEART

 
Being before doing (I): Looking for priorities in our life
Being before doing (I): Looking for priorities in our life

Apparently, we all agree that the value of a person doesn’t depend as much from their doing as from their being. But, what does the world understand by being? 

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Moby’s complicated life
Moby’s complicated life

His autobiography “Porcelain”, introduces us this militant vegetarian, who defends animal rights, does not drink, smoke or take drugs, but confesses being addicted to porn.

 
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SECRET BELIEVERS

 
Yemen: Faith flourishes in the midst of war
Yemen: Faith flourishes in the midst of war

Jamil, a former Muslim: “Yemenis follow Christ with all their hearts. There is no way back. We all know that. Becoming a Christian will cost you much”.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Deep Questions
Deep Questions

The fact of Jesus’ death for us is an objective truth that should grip us and reassure us. Was I wanted? Most definitely, yes. The cross has proven that!

 
 
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FEATURES

 
I respect you
I respect you

Have I ever felt hated or rejected or made fun of? Yes, I have.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
‘Lucky’ survivors
‘Lucky’ survivors

Globally, some 65 million people have been displaced this year, roughly equivalent to Britain’s whole population.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The Jewish composer of the Reformation Symphony
The Jewish composer of the Reformation Symphony

Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847) converted to Christianity when he was young, going on to become one of the foremost Protestant composers.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
These Romans are crazy!
These Romans are crazy!

The final banquet that closes every Asterix book reflects humanity’s yearning for a happy ending.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Fully known, fully loved
Fully known, fully loved

We are totally vulnerable before him, whether we know it or not, he knows us. 

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
Is Pope Francis Making the Catholic Church Protestant?
Is Pope Francis Making the Catholic Church Protestant?

With Pope Francis the Roman Catholic Church is simply becoming more “catholic”, i.e. embracing and absorbing all, without losing its being “Roman”.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Broken dreams in Havana
Broken dreams in Havana

The new man, dreamed up by el Che, does not exist and will never exist, if he is not born from above.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
When the Gospel is All Past Tense
When the Gospel is All Past Tense

For years I sat and heard messages that seemed to be targeted at someone else (and often that someone else was not there). What a wasted opportunity.

 
 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
Finding security in the ‘risk society’
Finding security in the ‘risk society’

While the risk society is a secular phenomenon, it provides an opportunity for Christians to live distinctively and attractively.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Bob Dylan’s faith
Bob Dylan’s faith

One of the last biographies published about the Nobel literature prize winner says that Dylan has never rejected his faith in Jesus. But the lyrics of some of his songs reveal a spiritual battle.

 
 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
When the ‘unexpected’ happens
When the ‘unexpected’ happens

Because of the paradoxical relationship between God’s freedom and human freedom, Christians need a robust “theology of surprise”.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
The First Albanian School of Girls and Albanian Evangelicals
The First Albanian School of Girls and Albanian Evangelicals

We, the Evangelicals of Albania, understand that this is how we must love our nation today in order to be true to our gospel calling.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
My Nigerian daughter
My Nigerian daughter

I ask the Lord - who bore our griefs and pains - to erase the scars of the wounds and the pain of our Nigerian girl. And to show her that, for him and for all of us, she is a precious stone.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The Ramones, 40 years on
The Ramones, 40 years on

It would be a mistake to think that their story was nothing more than the nihilism of hopeless youth. Their rage was a cry of rebellion against an empty life.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Don’t shut your eyes!
Don’t shut your eyes!

509,980 is the number of people forced into labour in the EU. That’s more people than those living in Toulouse. Or Liverpool. Or Gdansk. Or Antwerp.

 
 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
One hundred days
One hundred days

There is a place for patriotism and healthy national pride. But surely we should get nervous when British exceptionalism and nationalistic fervour get wrapped up in religious language.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Journey in the Dark
Journey in the Dark

Morning always comes. We live in darkness, but we live with hope. And our hope is God Himself.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Power in Game of Thrones
Power in Game of Thrones

In the most award-winning series at the Emmys, sin is not sweetened to make it more attractive, but it is shown in its most repulsive light. Is this a glorification of evil, or its complete opposite?

 
 
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FORUM OF CHRISTIAN LEADERS

 
A Better Story: Re-imagining the Biblical Vision for Sex and Marriage
A Better Story: Re-imagining the Biblical Vision for Sex and Marriage

Across Western Europe and the US, those who hold to traditional Christian sexual ethics not only find themselves on the wrong side of popular opinion, but allegedly on the “wrong side of history” too.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
The stories we live by
The stories we live by

Putting to one side the hermeneutical questions around the identification of the EU with Bablyon, what is clear is that the demonization of the “other” inspires hatred not love.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
How do we treat our enemies?
How do we treat our enemies?

The main character in “Bridge of Spies” not only believes in the power of the word, but also seeks to identify himself with the other, with the enemy.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE
1

 
Bioethics in Europe: the facts and figures
Bioethics in Europe: the facts and figures

A look at European statistics on five key biomedical issues: surrogate parenthood, gender transformation, the new eugenics, euthanasia and abortion. 

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Mission after Brexit
Mission after Brexit

If the current situation has encouraged mission agencies in Europe to ask questions again about their core business and the values of service, radical availability, and sacrifice, then God will continue to be glorified, even in the midst of political turmoil and uncertainty.

 
 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
The truth about dying
The truth about dying

I have always found striking, the discrepancy between the public support for euthanasia (among those who are healthy) and my patients’ desire for continued life.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
10 pointers for “untrained” preachers
10 pointers for “untrained” preachers

Is there a Bible school where you could take a single course? Diligently hunt the best books to read, as well as well-informed people to engage with in conversation.

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
7 ways to guard hearts at church
7 ways to guard hearts at church

We need to be people who guard hearts in the church environment.  Good music and good preaching is not enough.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
The situation in Turkey - Some thoughts about the implications for ministry
The situation in Turkey - Some thoughts about the implications for ministry

An increasing atmosphere of Islamic triumphalism in the wake of the coup could potentially put pressure on Christians or increase the threat level for them in Turkey, but for now that threat isn't present.

 
 
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FEATURES

 
In or out: How should Christians approach the EU Referendum?
In or out: How should Christians approach the EU Referendum?

Viewing the issues of the referendum debate through the lens of what theologians call “salvation history”, the mission of God to redeem His creation, throws new light on them and provides vital perspective to help us make our decision on the 23 June.  

 
 
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FEATURES

 
Loving the Persecuted Church (I)
Loving the Persecuted Church (I)

In Revelation 13, we have a description of what a state or a government can become when everything goes wrong. A state can become a devouring beast, destroying everything in its path, and especially attacking Christians with demonic hatred.

 
 
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LOVE AND CONTEXT

 
Joyful versus entertained
Joyful versus entertained

Our modern society  has evolved in such a way that the manner it has chosen to resolve the class struggle has been to try to implement the entertainment principle as a “need” for human beings.

 
 
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CHRISTIANS IN THE MEDIA

 
Thierry Le Gall, a Breton pastor in parliament
Thierry Le Gall, a Breton pastor in parliament

“There are 2,200 in France and about 50 in the Bretagne region. However, these are still relatively unknown churches”. French public television France 3 airs report about evangelical pastor Thierry Le Gall. 

 
 
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VATICAN FILES

 
What happened to Justification by Faith?
What happened to Justification by Faith?

Any accommodation to the idea that we are ultimately capable of saving ourselves, any accommodation to the fact that salvation is not God’s gift from beginning to end is a slippery slope towards a false gospel.

 
 
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EDITORIAL

 
The Media and the Gospel
The Media and the Gospel

We love new technologies and we use them passionately. But we also know God’s mission is done through and for real people. The ELF conference in Wisla (Poland) reinforces our aim to analyse the big challenges of today through the Christian worldview.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Sex, religion and Prince
Sex, religion and Prince

It is impossible to understand Prince (1958–2016) without one of these two powerful forces, but the same could be said of many of us.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The Eagles’ long run
The Eagles’ long run

Glenn Frey (1948-2016) was the soul of The Eagles. The band’s success allowed them to enjoy everything that life had to offer them. The conclusion that they came to could not have been more disheartening.

 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE
1

 
The Book That Made Your World
The Book That Made Your World

Mangalwadi’s book ranges effortlessly though history, politics, economics, theology, sociology, and philosophy. His conclusion is cultures that are rooted in the Bible, provide the best environment for human flourishing.

 
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CHURCH PLANTING IN EUROPE

 
Nationalist extremism in Europe today and the Gospel of Jesus
Nationalist extremism in Europe today and the Gospel of Jesus

The extreme political right has simply developed a compelling narrative that weaves a dystopian mythology around the themes of ethnic dilution, conspiracy, migration, religious terrorism, and resource scarcity.

 
 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Seeing the risen one
Seeing the risen one

The latest film by the Coen brothers, “Hail, Caesar!” presents us with the problem of the ministry of the gospel on screen: how to see in order to believe.

 
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INSTITUTE - LEADERSHIP AND ETHICS

 
Our public faith
Our public faith

I find it amazing that God would “overcome” the world in the worst thinkable way, by letting his son be condemned to death. He allowed the darkest force to be used against him. 

 
 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
The global rise of secular and religious restriction and their impact on missions
The global rise of secular and religious restriction and their impact on missions

An evangelical emphasis on nurturing societies that encourage openness, tolerance, and diversity of religious expression should be seen as a benefit to all citizens and beneficial to mission and ministry globally.

 
 
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MIND AND HEART

 
“The Seven Words” from the Cross, Jesus’ supreme sermon
“The Seven Words” from the Cross, Jesus’ supreme sermon

To my mind, it is on the cross that the character of Christ reaches its greatest splendour. During the hours of deepest darkness, his words shine like radiant gold.
 

 
 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Preaching Myths (I)
Preaching Myths (I)

Myth 1: Since the preacher was led by God in the preparation, it would be wrong to evaluate the sermon.

 
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ARCHAEOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES

 
Adad-Nirari III: Jonah’s Assyrian King?
Adad-Nirari III: Jonah’s Assyrian King?

It is possible that the unnamed deliverer who saved the kingdom of Israel from the oppression and threat of the Arameans is none other than Adad-Nirari III himself.

 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The character and the actor in House of Cards
The character and the actor in House of Cards

“It only takes ten seconds to crush a man’s ambitions”, says Frank Underwood before becoming President.

 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
A season of unlikely heroes
A season of unlikely heroes

Films about an empowered orphan, a struggling entertainer, a clumsy bear, a quadriplegic’s wife and a downtrodden boy.

 
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ARCHAEOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES

 
The oldest love poem: A missing key to understanding Song of Songs?
The oldest love poem: A missing key to understanding Song of Songs?

The poem of Su-Shin is the oldest love poem ever discovered. Some of its lines sound very reminiscent of the Song of Songs.

 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Luther on screen
Luther on screen

This is not the story of a great man, but the story of a great God, who deeply loves miserable and tormented creatures like this monk.

 
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ARCHAEOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES
1

 
The Mosaic Law in light of ancient Near Eastern law codes
The Mosaic Law in light of ancient Near Eastern law codes

There are many skeptics today that argue that the laws contained in the Old Testament are written on the basis of earlier Sumerian and Babylonian law codes.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Is the genealogy really such a let down?
Is the genealogy really such a let down?

The fulfillment of God’s great sin-conquering, life-giving, problem-solving, Satan-defeating, promise plan was Mary’s son, baby Jesus.

 
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LOVE AND CONTEXT

 
The Christian entertainment industry
The Christian entertainment industry

Sony created a subdivision dedicated to producing Christian films. The disconcerting fact is that it follows a pattern that has nothing to do with gospel values.

 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
Devotional reading in the digital age
Devotional reading in the digital age

Digital reading, often by design, makes meditation difficult, because hyperlinks outward, continually refreshing newsfeeds and flashing ad banners are constantly encouraging us to move.

 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
Deceptively simple
Deceptively simple

Jesus is suggesting a deep and wide vision for how to change the world: individually and corporately, in the home and the workplace.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Long term effects
Long term effects

We should pause to ask what causal links can be demonstrated between the Reformation and economic growth, democratic stability, and social justice in Protestant-background countries.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
The paradox of Vincent van Gogh
The paradox of Vincent van Gogh

His own writings to Theo and his paintings of his latter phase bear witness to his preoccupation to the end with the person of Christ.

 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
Afraid of the Light
Afraid of the Light

Being secular, or humanist, or atheist, seems to mean saying that you are tolerant or inclusive, when all you actually want to do is erase any trace of Christianity from our midst.

 
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VATICAN FILES

 
“The Clay of Paganism with the Iron of Christianity”
“The Clay of Paganism with the Iron of Christianity”

Modern Catholicism is “a synthesis of medieval essentialism and modern existentialism”, the Dutch philosopher and theologian Cornelius Van Til said.

 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The man without a face
The man without a face

Any information that we have today of the existence of Spanish sixteenth century reformers we owe to a faceless man, Luis de Usoz (1805–1865).

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
From barrier to highway
From barrier to highway

The two great European rivers, the Rhine and the Danube, have been a natural barrier across the continent through the centuries from the Black Sea to the North Sea.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Healthy revival: 7 thoughts
Healthy revival: 7 thoughts

It gets mentioned in outreach planning. Preachers long to experience it through each new sermon. Reports on social media stir our longings.

 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
The object of our worship
The object of our worship

What we can learn from “American Gods”, the TV adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s best-selling novel.

 
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UNION

 
Pursuing the illogical studies?
Pursuing the illogical studies?

To be a good theologian is to seek to know and rely upon the Word of God better. It is to be a faithful Christian.

 
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EUROPEAN DIGNITY WATCH

 
Fundamental freedoms under serious threat by Spanish LGBTI law
Fundamental freedoms under serious threat by Spanish LGBTI law

Censorship, curbs on self-expression and communications that might be considered offensive, heavy fines for expressing views that could be interpreted as degrading, and having to prove one’s innocence if accused of discrimination.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
7 things preachers never say: Money
7 things preachers never say:  Money

We can preach about money after all, the Bible has a lot to say. But it is very awkward to talk about money for preachers.

 
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CHURCH PLANTING IN EUROPE

 
Romanian worshippers in the UK - some case studies
Romanian worshippers in the UK - some case studies

Are believers forming exclusively Romanian mono-cultural churches? Are they integrating into existing British churches? Are they joining in with multicultural churches that reflect Britain’s cultural and ethnic diversity?

 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
Schaeffer and the final apologetics
Schaeffer and the final apologetics

In search of authenticity (3): Francis Schaeffer’s interest was not so much to win arguments, but to win people.

 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
How the 2011 earthquake transformed gospel understanding in Japanese churches
How the 2011 earthquake transformed gospel understanding in Japanese churches

As Christians keep visiting the people affected by the disaster, they have come to be called Kirisuto-san or ‘Mr./Ms. Christ’, with respect and appreciation.

 
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FEATURES

 
Who would Jesus deport?
Who would Jesus deport?

20-25% of undocumented immigrants in the US are evangelicals and many of them are pillars in their churches and communities.

 
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BETWEEN THE LINES

 
The honesty and crisis of Francis Schaeffer
The honesty and crisis of Francis Schaeffer

In search of authenticity (2): In Schaeffer´s view what differentiates Christianity from any other religion, is that "God did everything"

 
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VATICAN FILES

 
Is the Roman Catholic Church Now Committed to “Grace Alone”?
Is the Roman Catholic Church Now Committed to “Grace Alone”?

For the Catholic Church, “by grace alone” means that grace is intrinsically, constitutionally, and necessarily linked to the sacrament, and thus to the Church that administers it.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE
1

 
Continental tales
Continental tales

A journey back into the past has encouraged us to believe that God is not yet finished with Europe.

 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
What does the ‘Trump Effect’ mean for the church and mission?
What does the ‘Trump Effect’ mean for the church and mission?

The deepening partisan ideological divide in all sectors of US society will mean that governance will most likely lurch from one extreme to another. This will have major ramifications for the church and mission.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Dreamers and refugees
Dreamers and refugees

God will use for good what Satan means for evil. He works on a different schedule.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
We are not church sub-culture guardians
We are not church sub-culture guardians

How can we know when instead of promoting the gospel in our context, we are merely reflecting the cultural and sub-cultural norms of our context? 

 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
Finishing the remaining 29% of world evangelization
Finishing the remaining 29% of world evangelization

2.1 billion people of world’s population has little or no Gospel access. Christ-followers should be outraged by this spiritual injustice.

 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
More than a job, less than a life
More than a job, less than a life

“It’s no more difficult to be a Christian singer than a Christian banker or anything else”, says artist Jonathan Veira in an interview about fame, art, work and the faith that inspires him.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Pulpit humour: 5 pointers
Pulpit humour: 5 pointers

Some churches get very upset if the preacher uses any humour in the pulpit. Other churches esteem humour above all else that comes from the pulpit.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Ripe under our noses
Ripe under our noses

Notice how many buddha statues or wall hangings are for sale in local garden centres, or in home improvement centres, or cosmetic shops.

 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
The Brexit election?
The Brexit election?

First and foremost, Christian voters must remember that God is sovereign – not Brussels, and not the UK government.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Easter does not fade
Easter does not fade

The heavenly hope was, for Peter, no “pie in the sky when we die” – it was a real and life defining certain expectation.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Diagnosing Sheep
Diagnosing Sheep

We need to listen well, watch carefully, pray diligently, and keep in mind that in pastoral care situations there will be multiplied factors at play.

 
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JUBILEE CENTRE

 
Empathy in the information age
Empathy in the information age

We should recognise that breadth of awareness is not evidence of the depth of our engagement.

 
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LOVE AND CONTEXT

 
‘Enslaved’ motherhood
‘Enslaved’ motherhood

Motherhood can sometimes be an idol to be worshiped - and as for all worship, it has its detractors and its fanatics.

 
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ENGAGING MUSLIMS

 
Engaging with Muslims (IV): The role of the Church
Engaging with Muslims (IV): The role of the Church

If we would talk as much with Muslims as we do about them, Europe would be a different place.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
Preaching and perspectives
Preaching and perspectives

The preacher speaks a message that is intensely personal, yet also expansively global in scope.

 
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FEATURES
1

 
What are we going to do if dad is deported?
What are we going to do if dad is deported?

One of the most painful situations for those serving among people without legal papers in the United States is to help parents to make plans for the care of their children in case they are arrested and deported.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Netherlands: Flirting With Christian Culture
Netherlands: Flirting With Christian Culture

Whether the election results swing left or right, the church will always steer its own course. And she will not be afraid to be critical of the government where the gospel would require. A manifesto by theologians Janneke Stegeman and Alain Verheij.

 
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CHURCH PLANTING IN EUROPE

 
International Church in Karlsruhe
International Church in Karlsruhe

Today’s multicultural European society seeks to integrate the foreigner yet often fails because of the differences that exist between cultures. We believe that this is a challenge that God is putting in front of the churches of today.

 
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VATICAN FILES

 
The “Uncertain Teaching” of Pope Francis
The “Uncertain Teaching” of Pope Francis

The traditional theological structure was geared to give Yes or No answers. The post-Vatican II structure is more inclined to suggest Both-And types of answer on all kinds of issues.

 
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LAUSANNE MOVEMENT

 
Mining for a living in the majority world
Mining for a living in the majority world

It is estimated that over 100 million people in the majority world base their livelihoods on locally mining gold, precious stones, and other high-value minerals with minimal equipment, capital, and training.

 
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SOLAS MAGAZINE

 
The transgender tsunami
The transgender tsunami

Transgenderism is the next major issue that Christians are going to have to come to grips with – theologically, morally, medically, legally and pastorally. Many in our churches have been taken by surprise.

 
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BIBLICAL PREACHING

 
The Bible Glows
The Bible Glows

Both content and form speak of the divine heart beating on every page of the Bible.

 
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VATICAN FILES

 
What kind of “Reformation” does Pope Francis have in mind?
What kind of “Reformation” does Pope Francis have in mind?

What the Pope has in mind is an altogether different kind of reformation, i.e. a reformation that will make his church more catholic and more Roman, doubtfully more evangelical.

 
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WINDOW ON EUROPE

 
Shock therapy
Shock therapy

Paul instructed his readers to pray for the authoritarian leaders of his day, so that the ‘soft powers’ of the gospel–love, truth and justice–could prevail.

 
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INSTITUTE - LEADERSHIP AND ETHICS

 
A disposition of hope today
A disposition of hope today

Hope perseveres in the face of hardship, recognizes that God in his grace wants to preserve this world and protect it from its self-destructive powers.

 
 

 
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AUDIOS Audios
 
Michael Schluter: Relationships are the key to build Europe Michael Schluter: Relationships are the key to build Europe

The economist summarises the manifesto “Confederal Europe: Strong Nations, Strong Union” and explains why personal relationships should be at the centre of our economy, education and democracy. 

 
Gary Wilkerson: The Bible, the Holy Spirit and the Reformation Gary Wilkerson: The Bible, the Holy Spirit and the Reformation

Pastor Gary Wilkerson talks about what all evangelical Christians can learn from the Protestant Reformation and underlines the need for more churches with both a sound doctrine and obedience to the Holy Spirit.

 
Lindsay Brown: Islam and the Gospel in Europe Lindsay Brown: Islam and the Gospel in Europe

Is the arrival of thousands of Muslims to Europe a threat to Christianity? What is the growth of evangelical churches in Eastern and Southern Europe? An interview with theologian and Lausanne Movement representative Lindsay Brown.

 
Efraim Tendero: Relationship with Roman Catholicism and other current issues Efraim Tendero: Relationship with Roman Catholicism and other current issues

The World Evangelical Alliance Secretary General participated in the Italian Evangelical Alliance assembly (Rome, 8-9 April). In this interview with Evangelical Focus, Bp Tendero talks about the need to listen to local churches and to face challenges like the refugee crisis and climate change. 

 
Greg Pritchard: European Leadership Forum Greg Pritchard: European Leadership Forum

Pritchard explains the vision of ELF, comments on the 2015 event in Poland and reflects on what it means to have an "evangelical identity".

 
Evi Rodemann: Youth and mission Evi Rodemann: Youth and mission

“We want to see the youth not just being equipped, but also being multipliers”, Evi Rodemann director of Mission-Net. The European Congress took place in Germany from December 28 to January 2.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
'Ungi kulimi changana' 'Ungi kulimi changana'

Educator and journalist Jordi Torrents shares images of the Sekeleka social centre in Mozambique. About 50 children live there, many with some kind of disability. All photos were taken with permission.

 
The President in an evangelical church on Christmas Eve The President in an evangelical church on Christmas Eve

For the first time, the President of Portugal attended a worship service in an evangelical church. It was in Sintra, on Christmas Eve.

 
Lausanne younger leaders gathering in Budapest Lausanne younger leaders gathering in Budapest

About 70 people from European countries met at the Younger Leaders Gen gathering in Hungary (19-22 October) to discuss the challenges of the church in the continent and build partnerships. Photos: Evi Rodemann and Jari Sippola.

 
I am not on sale I am not on sale

Young Christians gathered at Madrid’s central square Sol to denounce human trafficking. A flashmob highlighted the work of three evangelical NGOs which support women who escape sexual slavery in Spain.

 
Stamps to commemorate the Reformation Stamps to commemorate the Reformation

Poland, Lithuania, Namibia and Brazil are some of the countries that have issued special stamps on the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s 95 theses.

 
VIDEO Video
 
Heart Heart

A short animation film by Swiss cartoonist Alain Auderset tells the message of the Bible in four minutes.

 
He is... He is...

A video about Colossians 1:15-20.

 
Creation Care and the Gospel, in France Creation Care and the Gospel, in France

The conference drew about 90 delegates from across Europe. Scientists, theologians, activists reflected together on the theme “God’s Word and God’s World”.

 
“It is inconsistent to say we love the Creator while we destroy His creation” “It is inconsistent to say we love the Creator while we destroy His creation”

In creation care, “we need more people who lead by example”, says well-known Brazilian politician and activist Marina Silva. 

 
Philip Yancey interview Philip Yancey interview

An 8-minute interview with Philip Yancey on the role of Christians in a secularised society. Recorded in Madrid, September 2016.

 
An interview with Prof. John Lennox An interview with Prof. John Lennox

New atheism, the definition of "faith", Christianity in Europe, the role of the Bible in mission, and the need to listen more. An exclusive interview recorded at "Forum Apologética" (Tarragona, Spain) in May 2016.

 
 
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Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.