Tag: Jesus

Meeting Jesus on your couch

Published June 2020

IF you have never the read the Gospels (the books Matthew, Mark, Luke and John in the Bible) or have read them but found them hard to imagine as history and difficult to picture as real life events, then may I encourage you to watch the free series The Chosen about the life of Christ on The Chosen app?

With a 8.5 user score on IMDb with over 5,000 user reviews, making it the highest-rated faith project of all time, and 100% critic score and 99% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes, this is not some painfully acted, poorly crafted Sunday school project.

The Chosen has surged into IMDb’s Top 250 All-time series list. It joins other prestigious series like Netflix’s The Crown and HBO’s hit series Band of Brothers and Chernobyl as the most highly rated historical dramas. Dubbed into Spanish, Portuguese, and Russian, besides its original English, it is currently being watched in nearly every country on earth. Continue reading

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Our faith is not blind

WORLD SIGHT DAY is on the 13th of October, celebrating our physical sight – a wonderful gift and a vital sense that helps us interpret and evaluate our environment.

However, there are many real and important things that are not visible to us like energy, love, and gravity.

What about faith? An oft-quoted Christian phrase is “we walk by faith and not by sight” but is it really true that “faith is blind”?

Homicide detective J. Warner Wallace, in his 2013 book entitled Cold Case Christianity: A Homicide Detective Investigates the Claims of the Gospels, discusses how, as a religious sceptic, he investigated the death of Jesus Christ and the evidence for God in the same manner he investigates cold cases (unsolved murders of the past) in his job.

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What type of father is God?

HAVE YOU HEARD people say ‘I like the Jesus of the New Testament (NT) but I don’t like the angry God of the Old Testament (OT)?’

According to Christianity, Jesus is God in human form. Jesus told His followers that if they had seen Him they had seen God.

Sometimes it seems to me though that we think they are two different types of gods: that the OT God is a stern, strict Victorian father who takes the strap to his children if they do wrong, whereas we imagine Jesus as a modern, fun parent who gives us lots of hugs and positive reinforcement.


But are either of these really the picture the Bible portrays?      

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Jesus in Jeans 2 – The fancy banquet

 – a modern rendering of the parable in Matthew 22:1-14

There was a tycoon who threw a party at a swanky restaurant. He issued an invitation in the local press that “whomsoever” wanted to come was invited. The only proviso was that they had to be dressed properly in the dinner jacket that he provided. His Son had gone out and, at much cost to himself, bought enough jackets to provide for all possible attendees.

Well, the poor beggar man was only too pleased to exchange his raggedy coat for the fancy dinner jacket and go into the party. He was overflowing with gratitude and couldn’t believe his good fortune.Continue reading

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Tips for Life

By Alan Bailey

WHAT a great range of stories we read in this paper! The life journey of people varies so much depending on where you were born, what kind of upbringing you had and a host of other factors. So failure and success, happiness and sadness, wealth and poverty, acceptance and rejection all have a part in the fabric of ordinary lives. What is common to all is the desire to find contentment, an answer to the questions and problems we face as individuals and communities.

Those who read these pages regularly will know that the solutions people have found over and over again have been in a new relationship, finding Jesus as Lord and Saviour and friend. Past mistakes have been wiped out and a new strength experienced. Lives have been turned right around.

The cry is often heard that this is just religion which takes various forms. It is popular to believe that all religions say much the same thing and that they are equally unbelievable. But is this a true assessment?


An honest examination of even elementary things will show that Christianity is very different from all other faiths. To deny this is to show lack of understanding. Here are three truths that reveal a huge contrast.

ONE: Religion is the result of mankind seeking God (or some equivalent). This has resulted in the invention of deities and their rules and demands, which are then laid on the backs of devotees. Christianity is based solely on what God has revealed. He gave the Ten Commandments; He became man and lived among us to teach us truth. So Christianity is God seeking mankind.

TWO: The message of all religions and cults is summed up in the word ”do.” The individual must save himself or herself. All destinies rest on performance. Only when you pass the tests will you have any hope at all. Sink or swim. It’s all up to you. Your good must outweigh the bad.

The Christian Gospel is summed up in the word “done.” At the centre of the message is Christ on the cross. He cried before He died: “It is finished.” The price was paid for sin, the door into God’s presence and favour was opened. Jesus rose from death and is able to save all who come to Him in faith. The good news is that the work is done; what we do is receive the benefit. The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life. (Romans 6:23)

How can He be compared to the various religious leaders? He is utterly beyond them.

THREE: Followers of religion have no certainty about their status. The teachings themselves disallow any assurance that they are right on track to some future heaven. All that can be done is to keep trying, hoping and inevitably doubting.

Christians can rest on the promises of God’s Word. God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. (1John 5:11-12) No wonder Jesus could say “I am the way, the truth and the life.” ●

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Essential element

By Alan Bailey

ON an average day, you and I use a staggering 450 litres of it. Yes, it could only be water— and we take it for granted. It’s just there at the turning of a tap. We not only drink it, we wash our dishes, ourselves and our clothes with it, water our gardens and flush our toilets. Not to mention washing the car and filling the pool.

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An appointment you must keep

Tips for Life

By Alan Bailey

ALMOST every new day brings us a reminder that our hold on life is very tenuous. The newspapers usually have more names in the death notices than in the births column. We hear of friends or relatives battling with disease and people being killed in accidents, wars and natural disasters.


We won’t have it written in our diary, but we can be sure that one day our life here will end. As God’s Word says, “It is appointed to man once to die.”

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Don’t mix truth and fantasy

By Alan Bailey

THE line between truth and fantasy is being blurred in many modern minds. Our technology has brought us loads of both, and the difference between them is getting harder to see. The world of game-playing on screen and the world of social media aren’t all that far apart. Add the deliberate deceit that is practised to take advantage of others and you have a labyrinth of notions that take a bit of analysing.

One result is that we read of Christmas “legends” where a mother and child are mixed with Santa Claus and Rudolph. The whole celebration is then based on tales and imagination meant to be pleasing to the minds and hearts of our children.

Without wanting to spoil the fun children have, we need to do some separating of fact from fiction. How much is actual history? Is there a great event being remembered or was there no great event?

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Dismal failure or master stroke?



In today’s world, only success will do. Coaches of competitive sport teams are often sacked because their teams have failed to produce the goods. Too many defeats, so the coaches are sent on their way.

In sport, losing is not an option. The same in business. If the bottom line is bad, heads roll. We believe that success, as we understand it, is the thing worth living and dying for.

So how do we rate the mission of Jesus? Was He a success or a failure? At Christmas we often hear the words repeated “peace on earth and goodwill to man.” Did He bring this kind of blessing to the people of His day?

Has there been much of it visible since then? Also, being nailed to a cross as a criminal after a public life of rejection is hardly the description of success.

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Our most serious disease

Tips for Life

by Alan Bailey

The cry of the present day seems to be “Get outta my way!”

You see the grimace on the face of the man or woman who was beaten to the parking bay at the supermarket. At times it will be heard in the impatient blowing of the car horn or the shouted insult. At least in the western world, considering oneself first has become the rule of life. Individualism has gone mad. Richard Dawkins blames what he calls the ’selfish gene’. It strikes me that it has much more to do with the conscious choices we make.

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