As we continue our Essentials sessions into the New Year, remember that you can access notes over at the Essentials hub page. (Click here.) Our most recent session was on our theology of the Holy Spirit. In addition to looking at how the early Church came to a broader understanding of the Spirit's ministry, we also reflected on that Word / Spirit balance - and the delight of the Spirit, to exalt Christ!
Hey everyone - I hope you've had a fun Christmas season, and have had a good start to the new year. As we enter 2020 we've got some great sessions lined up. The Virtues sessions will continue, and the next date we'll be announced as soon as possible. (I'll edit this post when I've got it to hand, so watch this space!)
We'll also be continuing with our Essentials series. I'm looking forward to us meeting again. There's such a lot of life and joy in the room! God is always faithful to his Word, and we've got some great subjects to cover. Our next meeting is on Wed 8th January and you can find all the dates here.
Hey guys - a really quick update here. We met last night as 'second years', and it was agreed that the Foundations sessions should be postponed until further notice.
We've said all along that we want to follow wherever God is taking us, and at the moment it seems that the Foundations sessions are no longer serving the purpose for which they were established. Whereas the Essentials course has much more 'life' in it, the Foundations sessions (though still decently attended) have reached something of a dead end.
It may be that this comes as a disappointment. Perhaps you were looking forward to joining us, or would want the Foundations course to restart. If this includes you, please don't hesitate to get in touch. (My email is firstname.lastname@example.org)
But for now, it is right to let the Essentials and Virtues sessions take front & centre. We hope this doesn't cause any inconvenience. Indeed, it is our expectation that this will free up TTS for wherever God is taking it next!
On Sunday we looked at our theology of Scripture - its nature, its authority, and its role in the Christian life. We started by observing that we're really still in the realm of 'Pneumatology', i.e. our theology of the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit who inspired the Scriptures, and it is the Spirit that makes the Word come alive in our hearts.
We also observed that it is utterly remarkable that God - the indescribable One - has described himself. Creaturely language cannot adequately describe the Creator, and yet the Creator has put his words in our mouths! Such things are too wonderful for us. And he has by the Spirit revealed the written Word, which points to the living Word, so as to bring his people to himself.
We looked at how Jesus approached the Bible - how he viewed it as final, authoritative, and sufficient, how to put it to memory and cherished it, using it as a tool in the hand for his purposes. In the notes you'll also find an examination of how Peter and Paul approached the Scriptures, as well as a brief discussion about how we ought to receive the Bible. I.e. Protestants have a canon of 66 books - why is that? Why do other traditions have more? What ought we to make of the so-called 'Apocrypha'? Etc.
Find notes below, as well as a couple of videos from different parts of the world, showing us perhaps what we have lost as a people so familiar with the Word - that is, wonder and thankfulness!
We're approaching the end of 2019 (where have the months gone?). Now is a good opportunity to update you all on where TTS is going as we move into the new year.
Theology That Sings has been around (in one form or another) for just over three years. Starting in Gill Brown's living room, then meeting at the McGrath's, before opening up to the Churches in Chester in Oct 2018. We've had dozens and dozens of people participate in sessions, and God has been incredibly kind to us. There have always been hungry sheep, and the Spirit has always been faithful to the Word, making it come alive as we explore it for ourselves.
Moving into 2020 there are going to be some changes. The Foundations and Essentials courses will come to their natural end in Jan/Feb 2020. There's a fairly large elephant in the room here - what next?! At this precise moment in time, we don't feel God leading us to run either course again (at least not immediately). The Virtues course will continue, and all those currently attending Foundations and Essentials are invited to start attending the Virtues sessions whenever they want.
Beyond that... we just don't know! Do pray for us as we seek God's leading. Will we re-run the Foundations course? Maybe. Perhaps in a completely different form. It's also possible that we'll create an entirely new thing, and host that instead. This is something we're actively praying about.
We have also enjoyed meeting at Nathan and Jo's house for the Essentials sessions since Sept 19. The group has actually grown since the change of venue; I think TTS has living rooms in its genes! The big announcement at this point is that as of Nov 19, the Foundations sessions will also be changing venue - we'll no longer be meeting at Freedom, but instead convene at Nathan and Jo's. The living room will be a little more squished, but I think it'll change the dynamics of the session in a positive direction.
I want to take this opportunity to thank Freedom Church for their amazing hospitality! They've been nothing but gracious and generous hosts, always available and willing to help.
Chester has a great heritage in the Lord. From the early Christians under Roman rule in Deva, to George Marsh the Boughton martyr, to Matthew Henry the Cestrian preacher - God has been faithful to this city for many centuries. Our prayer is that God reforms and revitalises the Churches of Chester in the power of his Spirit, according to his Word. For as long as we're able, Theology That Sings will serve God's people to exactly that end. What an exciting privilege! We invite you to join us at our next session, and to join us in prayer as we move forward.
Welcome to the Theology That Sings blog. Here you'll find news of upcoming events, as well as notes and notices.