Author Archives: David de Bruyn

Disembodied Christianity

Disembodied Christianity

This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Disembodied Christianity You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

During last week, I read one man rage at ‘conservative Christians’ for their desire to re-open churches. He then proceeded to point out that Hebrews 10:25 does not really prove that churches need to gather in physical buildings, and that all Christians who call for re-opened churches based upon Hebrews 10:25 are abusing the text.… Continue Reading

Let Us Break Bread Together On Our Screens

Let Us Break Bread Together On Our Screens

This entry is part 1 of 3 in the series Disembodied Christianity You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

“John, we’d love it if you and Susan would join us for a meal on Thursday evening.” “Uh…well, Mike, thanks but…isn’t that illegal? I mean, doesn’t the lockdown prohibit that kind of social gathering?” “Oh, no, I don’t mean that you and Susan come to our home. We’ll host you online.” “I’m still not following.… Continue Reading

Ten Mangled Words: Conclusion

Ten Mangled Words: Conclusion

This entry is part 63 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Words are not just names. If they were, we’d have no problem swapping out one label for another. No, words are things. Yes, they are man-made things, concatenations of syllables created by human cultures, and their particular meanings have been shaped through convention and association. But they are things that have meaning in themselves, and… Continue Reading

“Hate” – A Word Like “Atheism”

“Hate” – A Word Like “Atheism”

This entry is part 62 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

His name was Polycarp, and he was a disciple of the apostle John. He later became the pastor of the church at Smyrna. When he was very old, the vicious persecutions of Christians in Smyrna turned on him. He was arrested and told to deny Christ. He refused. He was brought into the stadium to… Continue Reading

The Crucifixion: Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday?

The Crucifixion: Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday?

The exact day of the week of Christ’s death has been debated for centuries. The day, while not fundamental to the gospel, is of some import, especially in countries like South Africa which celebrate Good Friday as a public holiday. Churches hold Good Friday services (were we allowed out the house!) What support is there… Continue Reading

Wrong Responses to a Loss of Corporate Worship

Wrong Responses to a Loss of Corporate Worship

When Israel lost its Temple in A. D. 70, you might imagine it would have prompted much soul-searching and repentance among the rabbis that had rejected Jesus as Messiah. In fact, the rabbis had known for forty years before that date that something was amiss. Yoma 39b of the Talmud records the strange occurrences from… Continue Reading

Why We Won’t Livestream During Lockdown (Though We Could)

Why We Won’t Livestream During Lockdown (Though We Could)

Left-click the bread icon to consume the bread.  >Click< >>>  Thank you. You have eaten the bread. Left-click the cup icon to consume the cup.  > Click< >>> Thank you. You have drunk the cup. Sound preposterous? Why shouldn’t we do virtual Lord’s Supper? Our technology has made this scenario possible. But is it desirable?… Continue Reading

The Complexity of Hating What God Hates

The Complexity of Hating What God Hates

This entry is part 61 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

No one should love what God hates. No one should hate what God loves. But, as we have seen, God has the ability to love and hate at the same time. It is this conscious simultaneity that we lack, and which adds such difficulty to our understanding of hate. We have seen the kind of… Continue Reading

God Loves (and Hates) You

God Loves (and Hates) You

This entry is part 60 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Does God hate the sin and love the sinner? We have seen it is more biblical to say that God both loves and hates the sinner. Several theologians have suggested just that. Augustus Strong wrote, “These passages show that God loves the same persons whom he hates. It is not true that he hates the… Continue Reading

Does God Hate Sinners?

Does God Hate Sinners?

This entry is part 59 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

God’s hatred is a necessary part of His love. Whatever opposes, harms, defiles or otherwise threatens what He loves experiences His displeasure, often erupting in righteous indignation: a divine demand for change. We could say that God’s hatred is an ally of His love, destroying those things which are destructive of the true, the good… Continue Reading

The Hate That God Hates

The Hate That God Hates

This entry is part 58 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

God does not hate all hate. Some hate is actively encouraged by God. Indeed, if hate exists as the opposite of love, it follows that in many cases we must hate the opposite, or the destroyer, of what we love. Some hate, however, is condemned by God. In the following verses, hate is the opposite… Continue Reading

Ten Mangled Words: Hate

Ten Mangled Words: Hate

This entry is part 57 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Hate has become the only sin the left recognises. To them, it is apparently not possible to sin sexually, and any and every form of sexual sin is to be celebrated publicly. Slaughtering innocents (perhaps the most heinous form of murder) is to be cheered and encouraged. Stealing other people’s property is no sin if… Continue Reading

Taste and Preference: A Last Word

Taste and Preference: A Last Word

This entry is part 56 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Why are there such different “tastes” among people? Is the debate over music in worship simply a “preference issue”?  Are matters of music, dress, recreation merely matters of “personal style”? We have tried to sort out the meanings of the word “taste”, and have seen two distinct meanings. The first is the act of judging,… Continue Reading

Taste Formed and Deformed by Culture

Taste Formed and Deformed by Culture

This entry is part 55 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Taste is never shaped in isolation. We learn to love what we love from our family, our church, our school, and our society. In other words, taste is largely shaped by culture. Culture can be defined as T. S. Eliot suggested, “the incarnation of a religion”. At the heart of any culture is Richard Weaver’s… Continue Reading

Taste Spoiled By Sweetness

Taste Spoiled By Sweetness

This entry is part 54 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

A discussion of taste is one of the most difficult (and unrewarding) ones to have, for most people are unreflective about their likes. “I know what I like!” is supposed to end the discussion, followed up with “different strokes for different folks”. Aesthetic immaturity is one of the reasons for a discrepancy in taste among… Continue Reading

Good Taste and Christian Taste

Good Taste and Christian Taste

This entry is part 53 of 63 in the series Ten Mangled Words You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Even atheists used to believe in good taste. The infamous David Hume wrote in his Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals “In many orders of beauty, particularly those of the finer arts, it is requisite to employ much reasoning in order to feel the proper sentiment; and a false relish may frequently be corrected by… Continue Reading

Church Visibility or Church Publicity?

Church Visibility or Church Publicity?

Church leaders find themselves today harangued and prodded to build an “online presence”. This usually means a busy Facebook page, a Youtube channel, a Twitter account, a static website, live-streamed services and more. Without these, we’re told, a church is mostly “invisible” to the world, and is “failing to reach its community”. It is even… Continue Reading

Royal Presents

Royal Presents

The off’rings of the Eastern kings of old Unto our lord were incense, myrrh and gold; Incense because a God; gold as a king; And myrrh as to a dying man they bring. Instead of incense (Blessed Lord) if we Can send a sigh or fervent prayer to thee, Instead of myrrh if we can… Continue Reading

The Magi

The Magi

Sometimes I wish that Balthasar Had not been gazing when that star Appeared, so many years ago. We were younger then and bold, though Not so rash as to dash our lives For sudden changes in the skies. But nightly we watched their motions. Their dance soon cast out all notions Of conjunctions we expected.… Continue Reading

A New Children’s Book: The Mirror Who Wanted To Be Someone

A New Children’s Book: The Mirror Who Wanted To Be Someone

I’m pleased to announce the release of a children’s book, The Mirror Who Wanted To Be Someone. Lovingly illustrated by Diane Shearer with hand-drawn illustrations, this is a fairy tale of the Christian story of creation, fall, redemption and restoration. A happy Mirror becomes confused when a Dragon tempts him to stop reflecting others, and… Continue Reading