Archive for April, 2014

We Remember

Posted: April 27, 2014 in Uncategorized
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anzacThis last week has been a time of remembering.

On Friday, Anzac Day, we remembered those who went to war and sacrificed their lives for their country. There were moving services all over the country as crowds gathered for dawn services, street marches and memorial services to remember the fallen and those who have served for their country at various places and various times in the last 100 years.

A week before that we celebrated Easter. This was a special week recognised by the church as Holy Week, a special time of remembering Jesus and the great sacrifice he made in offering his life for all of humanity. We spent time reflecting on the unjust trial he went through, the cruelty of his crucifixion, then the joy and hope of his resurrection.

Two weekends of sombre memories. Yet both were tinged with hope. Anzac Day services shared thoughts of renewed hope that we would learn from wars in the past and seek peace rather than conflict in the future. Yet somehow that hope still seems hard to achieve. As I write there are 10 armed conflicts occurring which are leading to at least 1000 violent deaths each year including Afghanistan, Somali, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Mexican drug war that saw more than 11,000 fatalities last year, the Syrian crisis, the Iraqi insurgency and conflicts in the Central African Republic and south Sudan.

It seems that no matter how much we march or remember, we still fall into our old ways. Despite all our best intentions to do better in future, we find ourselves in conflict with nations, our neighbours and even our friends and loved ones.

The hope that lingers with Easter is more than one that says, “I hope I can do better in future”. It is a hope that rests in Jesus whose sacrifice was beyond all others. I know that I’ll mess up again, but by trusting him in Him, I know that the debt of the past has been paid, and I have Someone who will help me through each day to discover a better way for the future.

This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

On Palm Sunday at church I invited people to write on a graffiti wall that was set up with the words, “What’s So Good About Good Friday?”

It’s an interesting question because on the surface there’s not much good about the idea of an innocent man dying a violent death on a Roman cross. In fact, you could argue that there’s nothing good about Good Friday at all.

But Good Friday isn’t just about a bad event that occurred a couple of thousand years ago. In fact it was an event that changed history completely. In his death, Jesus paid the debt that was owed by all of humanity for our rebellion against God. It was an extraordinary event that made it possible for individuals to receive forgiveness for sin and to live at peace with God.

Of course, the outcome of what Jesus did only makes a difference if we are willing to accept what he has done for us.

Check out the video which shows our graffiti wall and if you live in the High Wycombe area (in Western Australia) why not drop into Maida Vale Baptist Church, 24 Edney Road, High Wycombe at 9.30am on either Good Friday or Easter Sunday. We’d love to see you.

Who is Jesus #3

Posted: April 8, 2014 in Uncategorized

Here’s the third in the series, Who is Jesus? Some important questions here.

He was born like most people …

As we head towards Easter it’s a question we need to ask. Here’s what U2 frontman Bono has to say. What do you think?