Everything changes, everything stays the same

Editorial

Regular readers of The Briefing will be familiar with the ways that the publishing industry has changed over recent years. Reading habits have altered, in no small part driven by exploding digital publishing and low-cost worldwide book distribution models. Furthermore, in the almost three decades The Briefing has been running, the marketplace of ideas has also changed. There was a time not too long ago when it was hard to get access to good quality, Reformed-evangelical articles and essays of the kind that The Briefing has always published; these days there are plenty of quality articles about Christ-centred life and discipleship all over the internet, most of them available for free. (more…)

threeways

Three ways to help

Everyday Ministry

I have never thought of myself as a technologist, but now I realize that we all are. As Tim Challies has pointed out in his book, The Next Story, humans are incurably and inherently technological. We shape and form and make things constantly as we fulfil God’s creational purpose for us to multiply and subdue the earth. The things we make are usually neither good nor evil in themselves—a wheel, a fork, an office block, a chair, a screwdriver, a book—but each one can be used well or badly, and each one comes with both risks and benefits. (Some technologies, I would contend, are just inherently evil—such as the office laser printer—but we will leave that discussion for another time.) (more…)

WSB authors welcome print version

Following its publication as an ebook in early May 2014, we are delighted that Women, Sermons and the Bible (WSB) will soon be available in a print version (available from Matthias Media in August). (more…)

Psalm 96:1-2

Bible 101

Oh sing to the LORD a new song;

sing to the LORD, all the earth!

Sing to the LORD, bless his name;

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Early reactions to ‘Women, Sermons and the Bible’

Resource Talk, Sola Panel

It’s been just over two weeks now since the release of Women, Sermons and the Bible (WSB), and my thanks to many of you for the messages of appreciation and support. I’ve been particularly encouraged by a number of people who have commented on just how clear and accessible the book is, even when dealing with quite complex arguments and claims. Here’s part of one email from a Sydney laywoman:
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More on Challies down under out West

More details on Tim Challies’ trip to Australia. Apart from the two public events in Sydney this week, Tim will be speaking in Perth on Technology, Pornography and Modesty. Here are the details: (more…)

An invitation to Nexus

Pastoral Ministry, Sola Panel

And besides, what is the point of ministry conferences anyway—do they actually change anyone or anything?

There was a moment of awkward silence in the room when the question was asked. (more…)

2 Timothy 4:1-2

Bible 101

I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.

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manifesto

A ministry manifesto

Thought

We had a talkfest here in Sydney recently called ‘The Festival of Dangerous Ideas’, at which participants could experience the frisson of discussing daring and explosive concepts with a soy latte in hand. Most of the ideas were in fact rather conventionally dangerous in a green-left sort of way, although gay activist Dan Savage received special marks for his dangerous idea that abortion should be made mandatory for 30 years to make a dent in the worldwide population problem. (The audience, having escaped the womb safely themselves, felt confident to clap.) (more…)

photo | Joe Lanman via flickr

A fresh agenda

Everyday Ministry

I have never migrated from one country to another. The farthest I have ever moved was 500 miles from our family farm to go to university in Sydney. It was more than 30 years ago, but I can still remember the swirling sense of excitement, anxiety and disorientation of those early months in the Big Smoke. New streets, new transport, new housemates, new church… new everything. (more…)

The vision splendid

Resource Talk

In 1988, when Matthias Media opened its door (there was only one) in a dingy office in Kingsford, where a stingy ray of sunlight struggled feebly down between the houses tall,1 our ambitions were pretty modest. We wanted to make a difference—to produce really first rate resources that would help people at the coal face of gospel ministry—but as we turned out the first copies of The Briefing on the Gestetner duplicator that lived in the little back room near the toilet, I can’t say that our vision reached very far afield. We hoped to produce some good material for the network of churches in our own local area and region, and anything beyond that would be a bonus. (more…)