This page is based on the recognition that nothing has been added to the Old or New Testament for at least 1800 years. It is a collection of more recent items that members of the congregation are inspired by and revere in a similar way to the way that are inspired by and revere the writings contained in the Bible.
We recognise that the Bible contains a wide variety of material including histories, stories, religious songs, poetry, proverbs, prophecy, letters and visions and that if it were being written today might even include audio and video clips and works of art.
Following our service on the 26th February (which you can listen to here), members of the congregation have thus sent in their ideas of what could be included and these have been listed below. You should be able to click on each of the underlined titles to take you to the item itself. Some people have included a comment as to why they have suggested a particular item and these have been included.
Items are generally in the order they were received. I’ve focussed on one primary item from each person but included links to other material where they’ve suggested it as well.
(as well as the content below, this is continued on page 2)
I’d like you to meet Bokiyah
This is an amazing video of one inspiring young woman talking about another. It is world class storytelling reminiscent of so many of the stories we read in the Bible but it is also challenging and inspirational in the manner of many of Paul’s letters.
Barbara and I have just returned from South Africa, where we visited World Vision HQ and gained an up date on Sally’s Place. Although very personal, the story has a Gospel/Kingdom ring about it, with echoes of a dark tomb being lit up by a Resurrection of hope and new life.
As well as this personal story, I would like to see included any excerpt from Mandela’s speeches either at his Rivonia Trial or at his inauguration as President; Any of Tutu’s sermons; extracts from Bonhoeffer’s “Cost of Discipleship” or “Letters from Prison”.
Ray and Barbara Brown
With all the bad news of greed and dishonesty in the world, I was cheered by a news item that I saw in the last week. A lovely story amongst all the gloomy news.
Come though long expected Jesus
I really like the “Come thou long expected Jesus” video. In terms of what I revere, the Bible verse “I will lift up mine eyes to the hills, from whence cometh my strength?” is a favourite and I like the inscription in St Olaf’s Church, Wasdale Head. I also found the poppies installation at the Tower of London to be inspirational and wish I had seen it.
Here are 2 books that I would definitely include in my bible:
1. Mere Christianity by C S Lewis published in 1952. This book is strong on morals and human nature but on some subjects, particularly marriage, is rather limited. He mentions divorce but nothing else. I would refer to the current marriage liturgy of the Methodist church as being in line with my view.
2. The Big Sin (Christianity and the arms race) by Kenneth Greet published in 1982 this book is scientifically accurate and gives great insight into the dangers of nuclear weapons, nuclear deterrence (MAD), nuclear power generation and the arms race. He also looks into pacifism and the Just War concept. The atomic bomb that wiped out Hiroshima in 1945 was equivalent to 12 kilotons of TNT and instantly killed 200,000 humans. The Russians in 1962 exploded a hydrogen bomb of 57 Megatons, nearly 5,000 times more powerful. Neutron bombs kill all living things but leave buildings and the infrastructure intact. All these are treated with Christian emphasis and with plenty of backing from the Bible. Although I fear I may be in the minority I fail to understand how any Christian can be in favour of the possession or use of weapons of mass murder.
Two illustrations of the Trinity speak to me. Firstly Rublev’s famous painting of the 3 visitors to Abraham. One yet three but there is room at the table for us to join their work.
Whilst looking for a symbol of the trinity for the latest banners I also came across this picture. Three yet one but what impresses me is the movement in this image. So many trinity illustrations such as the shamrock are static, this dances and we are invited to join that dance.
I have forwarded examples which could relate to today from BBC news (main link, above) and the Glass Door Sleep Out in 2016 to help homeless in London.
Here also are one or two near death experiences from Doctors, who you might suggest are not given to fantasy: “Neurosurgeon goes to heaven in near death experience”, “The top doctor who swears he saw a glimpse of hell”, “Doctor describes near death experience”.
I included these because such testimonies could surely be similar to the early Church where such accounts may also bring cynical responses and disbelief.
Michael Buerk reports from Ethiopia 1984
October 1984, is the report of Michael Buerk from Ethiopia on the BBC news. It is just over 7 minutes on YouTube but as powerful and relevant as ever after over thirty years.
Picking up on the theme of the psalms I would like these two pieces of music to be included, both of which pick up on themes that are central to Christianity…grace, hope, compassion and love.