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Miscellaneous Bible resources

  • The meaning of the Last Supper: Luke 22:7-38 (A Sermon)
  • Galatians 3:28 – “Neither Male Nor Female”:What does this verse mean when it comes to male-female roles and relationships? Is it a “Magna Carta for humanity” that teaches complete functional equality of every human being in all areas of life? And what have Christians down through the ages taught about this verse? Michelle Philp explores the meaning of this much-quoted verse in its context, and assesses the history of interpretation of Galatians 3:28 from the early Christians to the present, with special reference to the phrase “neither male nor female”.Synopsis:

    This examination of the history of interpretation of Galatians 3:28 reveals that until the nineteenth century commentators understood Paul to be teaching a ‘complementarian view’ of equality for salvation which does not remove social distinctions/roles. No orthodox commentators on this text from the Patristic period through to the Reformers argued for a view of equality that blurred or removed distinctions. The departure from this historic interpretation is shown to have occurred in the nineteenth century under the influence of the Enlightenment concepts of equality where equality in one thing necessitated sameness in all things. The ensuing tension with other Pauline texts that assume distinctions were explained away using historical-critical methods from the same era. Drawing on the nineteenth century egalitarian understanding of Gal. 3:28 it is seen how feminist interpreters move a further step away from the traditional understanding due to their imposition of feminist culture on their hermeneutic.

  • Titus 2:3-5: Hand-me-ons: A sermon by Sandy Grant
  • Is the Bible Clear? The Bible, the Reformation and Postmodernism.
  • The Bible and Homosexuality – A summary of the current (2005) debate.
  • Open Letter to Brian Farran, Anglican Bishop of Newcastle, from Sandy Grant, St Michael’s Anglican Cathedral, Wollongong (Monday 11 February, 2008). Sandy Grant writes concerning Brian Farran’s public Statement regarding the GAFCON conference organised by conservative Anglicans and critical of the Archbishop of Sydney, Peter Jensen’s involvement in it.
  • Women teaching men the Bible – what’s the problem?A paper by Sandy Grant in response to Graham Cole.
    • Also available in PDF.
  • God in a Box? Stuart Starr, from Figtree Anglican Church, helps Christians to ask some important questions about the “discovery” of Jesus’ tomb.

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Recent blog posts

  • Shipwreck with rainbow in backgroundGrace in ministry: Avoiding the shipwreck (1 Timothy 1:12–20)
    "There was a widespread view expressed by participants that within [the church] culture there was an over-emphasis on sin and an under-emphasis on grace". The report describes how this grace problem permeated the culture. It affected membership commitment expectations, views of authority, pastoral care, and more. And yet, the thing is: Nobody would deny that this church believed in grace. They preached a conservative evangelical reformed doctrine of grace. But on the ground, in so many instances, grace was not a key feature of this church’s ministry and relationships—with disastrous results. Today I want us to grasp that in Christian ministry, grace can’t only be the content we preach. Grace also must permeate and transform everything about us personally. And I want to give some suggestions for things we can do even now in lockdown, to wage the warfare of grace. (a sermon)
  • Yes no“Paul within Judaism” and Romans 2:17–29
    My article on Romans 2:17–29 supports one key feature of the "Paul within Judaism" perspective, but undermines another common feature.
  • Photo by Engin Akyurt on UnsplashThe goals of Bible teaching (1 Timothy 1:1–11)
    In gospel ministry and Bible teaching, if you’re not committed to the right goal, or if you have the wrong goal, it’s not just a matter of being ineffective: you’ll be downright dangerous. So what is that goal? What are you seeking to achieve in your gospel ministry and Bible teaching - now and in the future? And how would you know if you’d done it right? This passage in 1 Timothy 1:1–11 speaks to this issue of the goals of ministry and teaching. It challenges us to think about our own aims in teaching, and to see how important it is to get it right. A sermon preached at Moore College Men's Chapel on 14 July, 2021.
  • Slow-burn crazy-making behaviours. Photo by Vadim Sadovski on UnsplashSlow-burn crazy-making behaviours: recognising and responding
    Do you know someone who seems to have drama and problems constantly appear around them? Whenever you relate to this person, perhaps you find yourself feeling vaguely guilty, or uncomfortable, or put down, or obligated to affirm them? Do you often feel like you’re questioning yourself and your actions because of what they say and do? You don’t feel the same way around other people; it’s just this individual who seems to attract these dramas and give rise to these feelings in you. If that’s the case, the chances are it’s not you who is the problem. It’s quite possible that the person you’re thinking of is exhibiting a pattern of behaviours that can be significantly detrimental to you and to others. This pattern of behaviours is hard to pin down; it doesn’t seem too serious in the short term, and indeed it might appear quite normal to a casual acquaintance. However, over the long term, it can cause serious problems for you and others. That’s especially true in close-knit communities, like families, churches and other Christian ministries.
  • Romans Crash CourseRomans Crash Course (video)
    A 75 minute video course in the Apostle Paul's letter to the Romans designed for church members and leaders.
  • The Mistranslation "Call Yourself a Jew" in Romans 2:17: A Mythbusting StoryThe mistranslation “call yourself a Jew”: A myth-busting story (Romans 2:17)
    This is a story about a scholarly myth and how I had the chance to bust it. I’m talking here about a small but significant 20th century biblical translation: “call yourself” instead of “are called” in Romans 2:17.
  • Breaking news: Religious Scandal in RomeThe named Jew and the name of God: A new reading of Romans 2:17–29
    I've just had an article published in the journal Novum Testamentum. In it, I provide a detailed defense of my new reading of Romans 2:17–29. This passage is not primarily about Jewish salvation - rather it's primarily about Jewish teaching and God's glory.
  • Photo by Joseph d'Mello on UnsplashPreaching the Pastoral Epistles
    A one-hour audio seminar with principles and ideas for preaching the biblical books 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy and Titus ("Pastoral Epistles")
  • A Crash Course in Romans: Livestream
    Here's a <90 minute "Crash Course in Romans" I'm running on Monday evening 1 Feb 2021. It's aimed at leaders and any interested members of my church St Augustine's Neutral Bay and Church by the Bridge Kirribilli. Anyone is welcome to watch the livestream.
  • Photo by Dmitry Ratushny on UnsplashWhat’s wrong with the world? Is there hope? (Ephesians)
    Guilt, weakness, spiritual slavery, prejudice, arrogance, tribalism, conflict, war, victimhood, persecution, pain, suffering, futility, ignorance, lying, deceit, anger, theft, greed, pornography, sexual sin, darkness, fear, drunkenness, substance abuse, domestic abuse, workplace abuse, spiritual powers... In Paul's letter to the Ephesians, he says many things about the problems we face in this world. He also gives us wonderful reasons to find life, hope and healing in Jesus Christ. Along the way, he provides practical teachings about how to respond and live together.

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