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Showing posts from April, 2019

Trust and Belief in What is to Come

Sunrise in Northern New South Wales The following is my sermon in St. Paul's Cathedral, Dunedin on Sunday April 28, 2019 When people speak of “faith”, what they usually mean is “belief”. So we talk of “believer’s baptism”, or when we want to enquire after someone’s relationship with God we ask, “do you believe in God?” and what follows next is usually a conversation about whether or not God exists. Faith is, in other words, about facts. It’s about the universe as we perceive it, and what happens or not as the case may be. But I think that when the New Testament talks about faith, it’s actually talking about something else. The noun used in the New Testament is pisteuo, which means something like “I put my trust in”. So faith isn’t about belief, it’s about trust. It’s not about struggling to believe a whole lot of stuff which cannot be proven, but it is, rather, an attitude or a way of thinking about what we believe. If you’ll bear with me for a bit I’ll try and expl

Going Back

Last weekend I was on retreat, one which, for a change, I was not leading. The four members of the Anglican Schools Office staff, of which I am one, were ensconced in a comfortable old house set in 5 hectares of grounds at Doctor's Point. I had used this house as a place of retreat some time before. During that first retreat, I had read Beginning to Pray by Anthony Bloom, in which he says that   To meet God means to enter into 'the cave of the tiger' -it is not a pussycat you meet - it's a tiger. The realm of God is dangerous. You must enter into it and not just seek information about it.   I had also taken a photograph I was pleased with. This one: So early on Saturday morning I decided to try and reproduce the shot. I walked out of the house and up the hill but found it wasn't going to be as easy as I'd thought. I did some quick arithmetic and realised that it was fourteen (14!) years since I had  taken that first photograph, and that in the mean