3 October 2017

Friends in Christ,

When the Bishop ordains a presbyter in the Anglican Church he reads an exhortation to the newly ordained. He says:

“You will continually pray to God the Father, by the mediation of our Saviour Jesus Christ, for the assistance of the Holy Spirit; so that by daily reading and meditating on the scriptures, you may grow in your ministry; and that you may so strive to sanctify the lives of you and yours, and to shape them according to the teaching of Christ, that you may be godly patterns for the people to follow”.

This is why when I was the minister at Kiama and my Bishop, Ken Short, was coming to spend some time talking about the parish and my ministry, one of the two questions he would always ask me was, “How are you going reading the Bible?” This he saw, with good reason, to be my absolute priority.

Can I suggest that this exhortation is not just good for the minister? It is really a good exhortation for every Christian. Let’s ask these two sets of questions from the exhortation.

  • Do we want to live holy lives?
  • Do we want to be godly examples?
  • Do we want to grow in our ministry?

If so,

  • Are we reading the scriptures daily?
  • Are we weighing up what we read to shape our lives?
  • Are we praying for the Holy Spirit’s help?

We do have many obligations to fulfil and many good things to enjoy but if they come from God then it’s a good idea to deal with them in God’s way.

Thoughtful, Spirit-taught reading of scripture is the way we find God’s way.

Wish you well in Christ,

Reg Piper
Senior Assistant Minister