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Responding well to opposition

In November 2013 a report from the House of Bishops Working Group on Human Sexuality was published. The group consisted of three other bishops and others. I realised in the summer of 2013 that I couldn’t sign up to its recommendations, and said I would need to submit a dissenting opinion.

Why Christians should expect opposition

In our culture, if you say something that others perceive to be wrong, you can provoke a verbal lashing or a social media storm, or worse. This article explores why God allows opposition to his people and shows how the Bible presents this as the normal Christian experience.

Is it wise to debate biblical sexuality?

This article is an edited extract from a much longer conversation about disagreeing well with those holding to a revisionist view of scripture. Stuart Parker was in conversation with Andrew Goddard for the Ascend Higher podcast. Andrew is an Assistant Minister at a church in London and a tutor in Christian Ethics. Over the last three years, he has deeply involved himself in the Church of England’s project “Living in Love and Faith”, which has brought together church leaders from both traditional and revisionist perspectives.

Review: "Purposeful Sexuality" By Ed Shaw

“What is the purpose of our sexuality?” That is the question that this short book wrestles with. Ed Shaw takes us deeper than the “human flourishing” arguments that only focus on our happiness in this life – he also helps us to mature beyond the simple youth-group questions (e.g. “Whom can I have sex with?”) to the deeper and ultimately more helpful question of “What is sexuality for?”

God never gave up on Me

To tell you my story, I should really go back to the 1970s. I grew up in rural East Anglia. My family were Quakers and so, from my birth, they took me along to the local Friends Meeting House. The one thing I most remember was being interminably bored!

Getting our Challenges in Perspective

The intention of this article is to help same-sex attracted Christians to get their particular challenge(s) in perspective, and to recognise that many other Christians also carry significant burdens resulting from their faith. Comparing the relative sizes of the crosses we bear with those of other Christians is an unhelpful exercise. If we judge that our particular burden is greater than that of others, it’s likely to fuel self-pity, resentment and pride.

Review: "The Fight of Your Life" vs "Willing But Weak"

Both books are readable, very theologically based, full of practical help and of use both to the individual and the pastor. So, choose where you want to start - either with a focus on dealing with temptation, or a focus on becoming self-controlled. And then come back later for the other one!

The Surprising Joy of Self Denial

I have found that when times are tough, the old urges become stronger, probably from me wanting to find an escape. However, I have also found that there is always some help available: through godly friends and mentors; the Word of God; Christian music and reading; prayer; contemplation and worship; physical activities such as sports; or creative activities such as art, craft and design.

The Cost of Discipleship

One night last winter, I attended one of TFT’s Support Groups that was meeting at a church building nearby. After the usual mix of fellowship, biscuits and witty banter, we said our goodbyes and headed home. I got in my car, switched on the engine, changed into reverse gear, started backing up, and… thud