200 Cafés is a weekly blog by Stewart Hunt. Read more about it here.

Satan’s Strategem

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Some years ago, I mentioned my appreciation of A.W. Tozer. (http://elthambaptist.com.au/posts/why-i-like-tozer/) A friend recently passed this on, and once again I conclude, the man was a prophet… far ahead of his time. “Satan’s Stratagem” –  An extract from “The Great Deceiver” by A.W.Tozer For we have not followed cunningly devised fables. (2 Peter 1:16) “It is amazing that Satan’s wiliest stratagem against Christian believers is to use our virtues against us! Perhap...

The knowledge of God

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Wisdom and knowledge are not the same. From a christian perspective, whilst knowledge can be taken, wisdom must be given. Of course, this can pose a problem when trying to work out the moral good in a situation. You see, whilst we may be unfamiliar with what is right, the problem is bigger than that. The problem is that we are way too familiar with what is wrong. So how can we have the wisdom to know what is right? Let’s start by trying to answer these two questions: Question 1, “Who can give wisdo...

The knowledge of good and evil

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Together we quickly did the math. It was twenty-five years ago that I would have sat in his theology class as an undergrad student (a fact that disturbed us both)! It was good to see Brian Edgar again after many years. As Professor of Theology, he stimulated my thinking then and he did so again last night at our “4:12” gathering. Brian was reflecting on how formative a book by Dietrich Bonhoeffer had been on his life. In his book “Ethics” (published in 1949 after his death), Bonhoeffer ...

Was it just for them?

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Driving a team around an unfamiliar area of Greece to hand out bibles has it’s challenges. The narrow streets, the one-way roads etc…  On one occasion recently, I really thought I’d lost some of the team members. They turned up in the shade of a carport receiving hospitality from a local Pastor. Actually… the local Pastor. Some 30 years ago (we discovered), he started what was now a church of twenty people. The only one in Trikala – a city of around 100,000. In the early days they wer...

A leader’s prayer

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I was given a book some years ago entitled “Leadership Prayers” written by Richard Kriegbaum. As we look ahead at possible options for growth, this particular prayer captured the sentiment of my heart. He writes, “I wish I could explain it all logically or factually fr everyone, God.This one I just know somehow, without all the normal rational processes. I sense directly what the data mean, without all the steps. I see the beginning and the end without the middle. I feel it in my gut, and I think ...

The End Game

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As I sat with the young couple for a pre-marriage counselling session, I shared with them the secret to a stress free wedding! “The secret is…” I began, “… to simply keep the glory of God as your ultimate objective.” “There’ll be so many decisions to make. Decisions you don’t feel qualified to make, like; the colour of the flowers, the cut of the suit, the car for the bride. What will put them all into perspective is to ensure the end game is the glory of God...

On fearing God

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When the bible commends to us the ‘fear of God’, it can initially be a little unsettling. Attempts to play down the meaning of the word ‘fear’ in the New Testament can often be driven by fear. We may fear (for instance) that if taken literally, we will loose intimacy with God. However, the greek word ‘phobos’ doesn’t give us any wriggle room here. It’s where we get the english word ‘phobia’ and not surprisingly means; panic flight, fear or terror. ...

Is the church heater working?

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With winter closing in on us, it’s timely that we check to see if the church heater is working. This church tradition is not new… there’s a story of it happening as early as the 1800’s. Nico Bougas1 writes, “Five young students, before ordination spent a Sunday in London and were anxious to hear some well-known preachers.  They found their way to Spurgeon’s Tabernacle.  While waiting for the doors to open a stranger came up to them and said, “Gentlemen, would you like to see ...

The heart of the matter

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No doubt you’ve heard of the term, ‘broken-hearted’. What a sad idiom. The heart is often thought of as: the spirit of a person, our true self, our core, the centre of our being and affections. Imagine for a moment that this could be broken. Not just in a ‘country & western’ kinda way but crushed beyond hope of repair. When you think of it, that’s exactly what the bible is all about. It starts with the idea that God created within you the perfect heart – a God-directed ...

On Abiding

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“How cool, imagine making a Skype video call whilst flying over the Indian Ocean?” Initially we were marvelling at the possibility of internet connections mid flight! But it wasn’t long before Johnathan Macris and I were actually bemoaning the fact that even at 30,000 feet above the ground, moments of quiet are rare. In fact, the average westerner is said to see around 14,000 advertisements a day asking them to buy the latest something or another. We live in a day where more and more the challenge to ab...

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