Talks by Kirk Mackenzie
A 2000-year-old letter written by one of Jesus’ friends, 1 Peter presents the Christian life as a journey that we all go on – beginning when we decide to start our relationship with Jesus, and ending when we see him face-to-face. Peter gives us directions for this journey, and this week Kirk explores Peter telling Christians to “be holy”, by being obedient. Obedience has a pretty lame reputation in most contexts, but Kirk shows us how being obedient can be a very good thing.
If you’ve done enough “good things” in your life, you get to go to the Good Place, right? And if you haven’t done enough “good things”, then you’ll go to the Bad Place, right? God says no! The only right way to be right with God is through a relationship with Jesus. It’s not about the things that you do in your life, it’s all about Jesus. Paul, in his letter to the Philippians even says it’s not about Jesus PLUS anything. It isn’t about Jesus plus these few key things, or traditions; it’s just about putting your faith in Jesus. If you think you’ve done too many bad things, so many that God can’t love you, to put it plainly: you are wrong. Anyone who puts their faith in Jesus can receive God’s love and forgiveness.
If you don’t have much experience of church, or Jesus, this talk is for you. Kirk shares some stories about how he came to be standing up talking about Jesus to people, his experiences around Christianity and how he came to follow Jesus. This episode features a clip from The I.T. Crowd. The I.T. Crowd is ©Channel 4 2006-2013
Kirk wraps up our series on the prophecies of Isaiah, and the character of The Servant. Isaiah 50:4-11 speaks of the Servant being obedient, even to death, and that they are to be obeyed, in the same way that God is to be obeyed. The Servant, who we living so far in the future from these prophecies know to be Jesus, is said to bring a light into dark places. God doesn’t promise to make life easy for Christians, and the Christian faith isn’t one of earning God’s love, but accepting God’s freely given gift. God does promise to love us, though, and be with us in those dark places, and tough life circumstances we might find ourselves in.
Kirk continues unpacking our new church vision, Vision 2022, looking at our desire to be an intergenerational community. Jesus asks his followers, “Who is my mother, and who is my brother?”. As Christians, we are all a part of God’s family, and should treat each other as such. Doing life together, with people from generations outside of your own, can be one of the best examples of Christian life. The bible reading for this talk is Matthew 12:46-50.
Our Look at Jesus series continues with Kirk exploring why John the Baptist would call Jesus the “Lamb of God”. What the heck does that mean? Kirk refers to the bible, John 1:29:34.
At our 11pm Candlelit Christmas Eve service, Kirk shares a reflection of zooming out from the Christmas story, to remember to look at the full life of Jesus, and to remember that the baby in a manger lived, died and was brought back to life, all for us…
The finale of our series, Jesus and the Spirit. Kirk looks at truth, fake news, and how we can be guided by the Spirit into all truth.
As Christians, we believe in one God, with three distinct identities: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The first two of these, are pretty easy to understand, at a basic level. God the Father is the big guy in the sky, God the Son is Jesus, God in human form, but the Holy Spirit? That’s tougher to wrap our tiny human brains around. This series looks at what Jesus said about the one who would come after him, the holy spirit.
The third chapter in Ruth’s story; we’ve met the main characters, and now the drama really begins. Ruth and Boaz find themselves in a potentially volatile situation, but Boaz’s character is revealed as he holds true to the law, and continues to protect and uphold Ruth. Caution: This episode is rated PG, and deals with issues around sexuality.
Continuing our Luke mini-series, we see Jesus tell a story about two men, praying to God. One prays loudly, basically saying “Thanks God, that I’m so great. Also, that other guy is the worst.” The second man, a tax collector, someone usually corrupt and generally not liked, prays humbly, and earnestly. Jesus says, be like him. How do we get right with God? Be humble. Kirk explains what that looks like.
Rather than sweeping conflict under the carpet and avoiding it we need to honestly and gently approach with other people when they have hurt or wronged us. Jesus tells us to go directly to the other person and deal with it one-on-one. This is perhaps t…