From the Pastor's Desk

In August 2019 Marty Sampson, a prolific worship music writer and worship leader at Hillsong in Sydney, Australia, announced to his 5000 followers on Instagram that he was losing his faith.

When reading various accounts of this I was struck by one phrase that seems to be very much at the heart of his struggle, where  he  posted the following:- "How many miracles happen? Not many. No one talks about it. Why is the Bible full of contradictions? No one talks about it. How can God be love yet send 4 billion people to a place, all coz they don't believe? No one talks about it." 1

“No one talks about it”, that to me speaks volumes.  He has been a leader in one of the most influential mega-churches in the world, yet these basic questions appear never to have been addressed in the  twenty five or so years since he started out with Hillsong back in the nineties.

Hillsong, a “church”  that influences, according to Wikipedia, 100,000 a week worldwide. Yet one of its own leaders loses his faith because these basic questions are left unanswered.

I would be very surprised if our newest converts after a short time here at Southern Cross could not at least give a brief understanding of the answers to such questions.

As Christians we are called to “always be ready to give a defence to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.2  It is therefore the ministry of the local church to prepare you to do this, by answering these and many other questions.

An acquaintance of mine speaking to members of a particular mega-church here in Brighton asked them what their church taught on the “creation verses evolution” debate, they had no idea what their leaders taught on this issue. How on earth are they being prepared to give a defence of their faith to those who ask?

Why do we teach Scripture, its context and application? Why do we often explain the true and false opinions that abound over certain controversial issues? Why have we dealt with Church history, the Reformation, false doctrines that permeate the Church, as well as Biblical exposition? So that by God’s grace, when I am no longer your pastor, none who sat under my care and oversight can ever say, whatever the difficulty, “no one talks about it.”

This is why we are delighted to help sponsor the
Answers South Coast Conference
and encourage you all to attend this one day event,
it will help equip you to answer at least some of the controversial
topics that you will come up against in these days.

 

Source - various including the British Church Newspaper No 406 August 30th 2019. 
2 1 Peter 3::15 -
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