2008, 2021

“Aim at Heaven and you will get earth ‘thrown in’; …” C. S. Lewis

As we and many have said great strains are being put on the people of the nation and indeed the world. We all from time to time, need to re-evaluate the priorities of life and the way that we do things. We as church/ministry leaders and the teams around us have been no exception to this. Along with these extra strains, we have been contending with an increased attack on the church – on us as followers of Christ, an attack that has been with us since the fall. Today, we seem to be in a culture that is saturated with sex and self-actualization - idolatry where some, maybe many, are fearful of talking about marriage particularly in the sense of God’s design. We have a responsibility for the health, the spiritual health, of the church and this flows on to the nation. We are the game-changers working to the [...]

1808, 2021

The Erosion of Marriage

The ‘crude marriage rate’ [the number of marriages per 1000 of the estimated population] for 2019 was at its’ lowest ever point at 4.5. The number of marriages occurring in 2019 being 113,815. Provisional data for 2020 show the effect of the situation we live in with only 37,813 marriages occurring between January and June and were registered by the end of August – the 6 month’s average for the last 5 years being 55,492. Over the decades the percentage of marriages performed by a “Minister of Religion” has fallen to just 19.7% Evidently the reason given by some for being married by a “Civil Celebrant” is the freedom to personalise the ceremony, write one’s own vows and ditching traditions that they find meaningless or sexist. Whilst there is little difference between de facto and marriage there has been the great rise of de facto relationships/co-habitation before marriage from [...]

1208, 2021

Why should the church seek to build strong marriages?

Then, what should we do as a church? Marriage is God’s designed and is formed around two principles: covenant keeping and a triune relationship. Divorce is not as common among Christians as non-Christians, however when it does occur it can bring shame to the church and to God’s name. Many Christians buy into the lie that marriage is only about two people loving each other and people can fall in love and out of love, thus the gender of the two people is not an issue and divorce is justified. God established marriage as a triune relationship between Himself, Adam, and Eve. God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. There is fellowship, unity, and singularity of purpose within the Godhead (Jesus makes this clear in the Gospels). The more united that a husband and wife are to God the more united they will be to each other and the better [...]

2107, 2021

Kind words are like honey

Kind words are like honey— sweet to the soul and healthy for the body. Proverbs 16:24 [NLT] Some years ago, my wife and I were asked by a student at a Bible School in Latvia to pray for her friend whose husband, whilst going to church himself, had banned her from going and was also continually denigrating her, he also encouraged their young daughter to denigrate her as well. We were also told that when people from the church asked the husband about his wife, he told them various stories, but no one really tried to check with her. Just the other day we heard a father telling his young son that he did not like him and then a wife telling her husband that she always seemed to be doing wrong these days according to him. Scripture tells us much about the power of words and the power [...]

2505, 2021

Boldly

 We boldly need to continue to teach, equip and correct using all scripture Over these last months the attack on the Christian Church and the inspiration and authority of the Bible has not abated, despite the pandemic and the continuing acts of terrorism around the world. Some in the Church believe that we have brought this upon ourselves when scripture has been made culturally understandable to the society of today; when this is done sometimes the biblical message is sifted by worldly experience or knowledge until it fits with that experience and knowledge. This has happened in the context of marriage and family where the scriptural purpose and values of marriage and family are almost completely opposed to the world view. Regrettably, there are some in the Christian Church who believe their marriage, their family and indeed their life are all good, but is their measure against the world’s [...]

1012, 2020

In any year Christmas can be difficult times….

In any year Christmas can be difficult times for many families and individuals, and this year there have been added “stressors” during the year through quarantine-related separation and loss. Where families, or friends are experiencing anxiety or depression, it is okay to acknowledge it! Stress grows when people feel pushed and pulled in several seemingly impossible directions all at the same time. Stress also grows as spouses become more and more fatigued from trying to meet others’ needs and expectations, and sometimes from the usually unfounded fear of somehow letting their family and others down at Christmas. It is an unfortunate reality of life that when a husband or wife feels stressed they often turn away from their spouse. At a time when they need each other, they may instead criticize each other, which experts agree will be unhelpful. When under stress, a person is likely to take their frustration [...]

“Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband..”—
Ephesians 5. 31-33

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