Section navigation

Topic Archives: History & Biography

This year marks the 500th anniversary of the birth of the great Scottish Reformer, John Knox. God not only calls men to particular tasks in his kingdom; he also equips the men he calls with the personality, gifts, and strength to do the work. So it was with John Knox, the Reformer of Scotland. John […]

Category Articles
Date February 24, 2014
Read

I’ve just come to the end of a Sunday morning series on ‘The Five Points’. I have preached several series going through all the great doctrines of the Bible. But I’ve never wanted to pick out the five points particularly. Partly, that’s because I’m aware that some folk have emphasised them in an unhelpful way. […]

Author
Category Articles
Date February 12, 2014
Read

Although they have allies and are numerous, they will be destroyed and pass away. Although I have afflicted you, Judah, I will afflict you no more. Now I will break their yoke from your neck and tear your shackles away (Nahum 1:12-13). In July, 1755 as British General Braddock, along with young, twenty-three year old […]

Author
Category Articles
Date January 29, 2014
Read

I met Patience, a young black woman from Zambia, on my recent trip to Cape Town, South Africa. She is attending the Maranatha Family Church in Masephumalele, pastored by my friend Ronni Cronje. Patience, a year or so ago, was riding with her mother on a small taxi van from Zimbabwe to South Africa when […]

Author
Category Articles
Date January 10, 2014
Read

Imagine an ideal setting for spiritual revival. Odds are good that the razor wire and guard towers of Angola prison, Louisiana’s infamous maximum-security penitentiary, don’t fit the bill. Yet spiritual revival is precisely what is taking place among the prison’s inmate population, most of whom are incarcerated for life. ‘Dr. John Robson [who heads the […]

Category Articles
Date January 6, 2014
Read

It ranks as one of the wickedest acts of a Jewish king, it has had many parallels, and the end result of them all is a failure to destroy the Word of God. Here’s the story. King Jehoiakim of Judah was listening as the words of a scroll were read to him – a scroll […]

Category Articles
Date January 3, 2014
Read

It is recorded of John Newton that he said: ‘I read the newspaper that I may see how my heavenly Father governs the world.’ Spurgeon said that he read the newspaper to find illustrations for his sermons. In our 21st century it is very revealing to read God’s Word side by side with the newspaper. […]

Category Articles
Date December 20, 2013
Read

In 1993 Vladimir Radzihovski was living in southern Ukraine when he was invited to join the third of the river ‘Missions to Siberia’. Passenger ships were hired to visit cities, towns and small settlements along the banks of the rivers Ob and Irtish, to preach the gospel to those who had never heard it before. […]

Category Articles
Date December 18, 2013
Read

What do we make of Alexander Whyte? His books, unlike those of many of his liberal contemporaries, are still in print and are popular with Christians all over the world. Christian Focus publish his famous Bible Characters. Other books of his in print include: Lord Teach Us to Pray, Samuel Rutherford and some of his […]

Category Articles
Date October 29, 2013
Read

Although Robert Murray M’Cheyne did not take his place among the founders of the Free Church of Scotland (he was taken to glory just before the Disruption) he fully sympathised with their rejection of state control of the Church of Christ in Scotland, and would have been among them when their Deed of Separation terminated […]

Category Articles
Date October 25, 2013
Read

David Cameron will almost certainly get his Syrian war. Who will fight it, let alone who will win it, remains unclear. But who will lose it is already known – the Christians. The relentless persecution of Christ’s followers is foretold in the Gospels. Suffering is portrayed as the pathway to triumph. The global position today […]

Author
Category Articles
Date October 18, 2013
Read

Born in June of the year of the French Revolution, in the then village of Basildon, Essex, Allen Gardiner longed to go to sea, to fight the French, and to follow Mungo Park in exploring the interior of Africa. By 1810 he was at sea and engaged in fighting in the Pacific in the Phoebe […]

Author
Category Articles
Date October 11, 2013
Read

Having been vacant since June 2010 with the emeritization of Dr. L. W. Bilkes, the Free Reformed Church of Grand Rapids was privileged and blessed to install Dr. David Murray as a Free Reformed minister labouring in our congregation. Synod 2013 of the Free Reformed churches unanimously approved Dr. Murray to be called as Free […]

Category Articles
Date October 8, 2013
Read

Lately many new church buildings have or are still being built by congregations of our denomination. Some of these are the congregations’ second buildings since their founding. What a contrast this is to the situation in Israel. During the entire history of Israel as a modern state, not a single building was erected and dedicated […]

Category Articles
Date October 4, 2013
Read

On 30th August 2013 the news broke that Seamus Heaney had died in a Dublin hospital, following a short illness. A measure of the legacy left by the poet’s life and work was given by the widespread sense of sadness across cultures and continents that a man of greatness and forceful intellect had passed away. […]

Category Articles
Date October 4, 2013
Read

We are all familiar with the feeling of accomplishing a big task. Often we can feel the pressure almost physically in our muscles and bodies. But then one day we can say it is done, we tick it off and feel the relief. That is how we felt at HaGefen when the fifth and final […]

Author
Category Articles
Date September 27, 2013
Read

What an excellent book, a brilliant series of studies on theologians, witnesses, pastors and fathers of the church that both clearly and concisely tell us not only about the people themselves, their times and their beliefs but in so doing helps inform us about our own faith, theology and beliefs – especially if you are […]

Category Book Reviews
Date August 6, 2013
Read

‘No man in his time spake with such evidence and power of the Spirit . . . many of his hearers thought no man since the apostles spoke with such power.’ (John Livingston) Whilst he was in the ministry at Edinburgh, he shined as a great light through the whole land, the power and efficacy […]

Category Articles
Date August 2, 2013
Read

Thomas Guthrie’s statue in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh epitomises what many of us involved in Christian social action are seeking to achieve; with a Bible in one hand and the other resting protectively on a ‘ragged child’ Guthrie’s life combined the two great priorities of the church — truth and love. It is a mystery […]

Category Articles
Date July 26, 2013
Read

The present state of the Church of Scotland should be a cause for Christians everywhere to cry to God for mercy. For a professing Christian church to pass legislation that permits a congregation to call a minister (man or woman!) who is in a same-sex relationship is a theological scandal and a moral monstrosity. No […]

Author
Category Articles
Date July 23, 2013
Read

On 26 June 2013 the U.S.A. Supreme Court issued rulings that boosted the cause of same sex marriage by a 5-4 decision, and ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was unconstitutional. This is a major decision that will have long term impact. The court accelerated the advance of gay marriage in the US, […]

Author
Category Articles
Date July 16, 2013
Read

A report given at the General Assembly of the Free Church of Scotland, May 2013. China is a vast country, and a country of vast contrasts. There are peasant farmers and billionaire IT entrepreneurs; sophisticated Shanghai and the wilds of the Gobi desert; there are Buddhists, Daoists, Christians, Muslims, and those who follow no formal […]

Author
Category Articles
Date June 28, 2013
Read

A brief account of the early life of this remarkable preacher, assembled by T. H. W. Scott. Lying, filthy talking, and foolish jesting I was much addicted to, even when very young. Sometimes I used to curse, if not swear. Stealing from my mother I thought no theft at all, and used to take money […]

Author
Category Articles
Date June 21, 2013
Read

July 13, 2013, will mark the 200th Anniversary of the arrival in Rangoon of Adoniram and Ann Judson. More than a year earlier they had set sail in the brigCaravan from the safety of New England, but their lives were dedicated to Christ and to taking the gospel to the Burman empire. Their plan had intially […]

Author
Category Articles
Date June 18, 2013
Read

I was converted to saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ fifty-six years ago in January 1957. I had good parents and a stable home but neither my parents, nor I, nor my younger sister Ann, had any true knowledge of God before that date. My religious life amounted to saying private prayers in bed […]

Author
Category Articles
Date June 7, 2013
Read