Mark’s Jesus: the Powerful Son of God

As I said in the first post in this series, on Matthew’s presentation of Jesus, an author’s introduction of a character tells us a lot about what they want us to think about that person. My earlier post looked at how Matthew introduced Jesus – emphasising his authority as a Jewish Davidic Messiah, king and…

Matthew’s Jesus: the Jewish King

First impressions are important. They don’t tell the whole story, but it’s hard to move too far away from your initial perception of a new person. It follows that how a character is introduced to you in a book is also incredibly important. You can learn a lot about what the author is trying to…

What are we reading when we’re reading the Bible?

A number of things that I have listened to and read recently have lead me to ask the question in the title. It’s a big question; one with profound implications for all Christians. So why do the most thoughtful answers seem to be addressed more in academia than in the church? Why talk about about…

Is the Bible a Message?

“We run into trouble when we take the Bible as a message to be preached rather than something to wrestle with.” That (paraphrased) gem from Pete Enns has been stuck in my head for months now, ever since I first heard it on the Liturgists podcast towards the end of last year. In recent weeks,…

Experience and the Bible

I meant for this blog to be part to of my Exploring the Bible two-parter, and when I wrote part 1 I had the intention of writing two different posts on how we interpret the Bible, one focusing on external means and the second on internal means. Since then I’ve heard and thought about some stuff…

Exploring the Bible Part 1

For me, a key part of Christianity is learning more about who God is and how we can be more like him. Theologians have debated for centuries whether knowledge of God comes primarily from internal sources (like reason, or experience), or from external sources (or ‘revelation’; like the Bible, or traditions). This is a very…

Meditation and the Bible

For long stretches of my Christian life, the Bible has seemed dry and inaccessible. Reading it has felt like a chore, something that I have done out of habit (to ‘check off the list’, as it were), or something that I haven’t done at all. There have been patches that I have been enthusiastic about…

Alternative Readings of the Prodigal Son

The parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32) is one of the cornerstones of Western Christianity, a classic story known by millions, helping us to appreciate the truth about God’s grace. There really couldn’t be a better passage to use to illustrate how diverse interpretations of the Bible can be. To start with, I’ll paraphrase…

Reading Ecclesiastes – ‘Destiny’, by David Gibson

Thanks to IVP, who kindly sent me a copy of the book to read and review, I was also able to ask David some questions about Destiny and the themes he talks about within the book. His answers make for a great read, so check that out before you go any further with this review….

An Interview with David Gibson

In a first for Brightest Day, I had the fantastic opportunity to interview David Gibson. For this honour I have IVP to thank, who very kindly arranged the opportunity for me to speak to David, and to David himself for taking the time to answer my questions. David is the author of Destiny, an engaging,…

The Son Before Jesus

“In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and…

The Value of All Humanity

We’re just over a month away from Christmas, the celebration of the day that the Christ was born to Mary in human form. That moment is undoubtedly one of the most significant encounters with God recorded in the Bible or anywhere else in human history, but it is not the only one. In the weeks…