'Sin' has become an old-fashioned word. One reason for this is that sin is a religious word. It suggests that what one does wrong is wrong in the sight of God. Another reason is that the word 'sin' implies that there are some things that are absolutely wrong. It assumes some standard to which our lives ought to conform. Both of these reasons go against the modern trend in our culture which views morality as a matter of private opinion.
The word 'saint' often tends to denote some type of "super-Christian" above the rest of us. But this author understands saints to be people who reflect Christ in their lives in such a way that people who know them feel that by knowing them they know Christ better. Not because they are perfect, but because they themselves point us to Christ.
Is it childish when we go on asking God for things even as adults? What Jesus says about prayer is put in the simplest childlike way: "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you". This understanding of prayer makes sense only if we realize that for Jesus it belongs to a special kind of relationship with God - a relationship of trusting intimacy and close friendship. A child would not hesitate to ask a loving parent for anything.
Once Christians were very familiar with the image of the Last Judgment. Yet today, many wonder what it has to do with the gospel message of the love of God, or with the Jesus of the Gospels who lived and died for the salvation of sinners. However, it is the Jesus of the Gospels who makes it clearer than anyone else that He will sit in judgment over people. He will distinguish the innocent from the guilty as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats in a mixed herd (Matthew 25).
Hell is an absolutely serious reality for which people must be warned. This article highlights hell as the alternative to salvation. It is the fate of those who harden their hearts against God's love in Jesus Christ.
This article discusses three pictures that the Bible offers which describe what heaven is all about.
A very old Christian summary of the evil forces Christians have to contend with calls them "the world, the flesh, and the devil". This article discusses false and weak ways of dealing with evil. The author maintains that resistance to evil requires that we take up the whole armor of God.
Christians today are living in an increasingly anti-Christian society. Therefore, Christians are finding it increasingly necessary to be counter-cultural in order to live faithfully to the Gospel.
Are the four New Testament Gospels reliable accounts of Jesus? Are the Gospels accounts of real history? In this article, Richard Bauckham highlights the importance of the eyewitnesses described in the Gospels - those who were actually there at the events of Jesus' life. Bauckham asks the question: How are the Gospels related to the testimony of the eyewitnesses?
This lecture is on the care of creation. Francis Bacon was the first person to understand the dominion given to humans at Creation as a task for the progressive exploitation of the resources of creation for the improvement of human life. Before this, people had taken the command of Genesis 1:28 as authorizing the ordinary ways in which people already made use of non-human creation - i.e. farming, hunting, fishing, etc.
In contemporary culture there is a crisis of meaning, but most of the time it is swept out of sight. Not many think there are any answers to the big questions of meaning: “Why am I here?”, “What’s the meaning of life?” People tend not to ask them. They try to create meaning out of the things our societies urge us to fill our lives with: working and spending money. This lecture proposes that the Christian message about Jesus Christ has something to say to this crisis of meaning.
In this article, Richard Bauckham addresses the question: What was Jesus' overall intention in His ministry? What was He seeking to achieve?
This article suggests one way to read the Bible, which would call for reading Scripture with mission work as its central goal. This should not be the only way to read the Bible, but using mission as a hermeneutic for interpreting Scripture could help us to better understand how we ought to do missions.
What is the place of the letter of James in the New Testament, and what was the role of the person James in the early Church?
How should we understand and live out Christology in our modern context? Who is Jesus Christ for us today? This author maintains that our orthodoxy must be contemporary. This does not mean that our contemporary context should determine our faith, but that we should understand our orthodoxy within the modern context. This article discusses what a contemporary orthodox witness to Christ looks like.
The canonicity of the Gospels was an issue that arose in the period from the second to third century. In this time the church was determining the authority of these Gospels. In this article Richard Bauckham looks briefly at the way in which apostolic eyewitness functioned as a criterion of authenticity.