Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

10 Dyslexic Welsh Words

Because Welsh has a different orthography to English, at first blush a Welsh word may seem to be misspelled, though it is not. Here are 10 examples.

1 Beibl (ie Bible)
2 Teigr (ie Tiger)
3 Pensil
4 Papur
5 Caffi
6 Sinema
7 Theatr
8 Pasport
9 Blows (ie Blouse)
10 Sgert (ie Skirt)

J Mack J Akkerman

FYE (for your enjoyment)

Aber 2017 Fourth Evening Fourth Morning & Final Evening

Aber 2017 Seminar on Williams Pantycelyn

The only non plenary session I have attended in this last week in Aber is an excellent paper on Wales's greatest hymn writer William Williams, given by local man Gwyn Davies. Gwyn is an indidividual and this was a highly interactive lecture that was designed chiefly to draw attention to Pantycelyn and his wonderful hymns and other writings, that have been translated into English (ie The experience meeting and parts of Theomemphus). The lecture included a little moan about the modest three piece combo employed in the main meetings here. I don't think any Pantycelyn hymns have been sung in the main sessions this week.
The seminar is accessible onYouTube here.
Here is a less familiar translation of one of his Welsh hymns (best known in Bobi Jones' version In Eden sad indeed that day). I've had a go myself too.

Can I forget bright Eden’s grace,

My beauteous crown and princely place,
All lost, all lost to me?
Long as I live I’ll praise and sing
My wondrous all-restoring King,
Victor of Calvary.

Lo! Faith, behold the place, the tree
Wheron the Prince of Heaven, for me,
All innocent, was nailed;
One here has crushed the dragon’s might;
Two fell, but One has won the fight;
Christ Jesus has prevailed.

In Eden, this I'll long review - 
The blessings lost, more than the dew,
How my good crown fell too.
But victory on Calvary
Back again to him has won me - 
I'll sing while life I see.

On Calvary, as heat strength drains,
Our great High Priest he feels death's pains,
And blood flows from his veins;
Righteousness mine, there is no fee;
The books of heaven are cleared we see,
With no demand on me.

(Yn Eden, cofiaf hynny byth,
Bendithion gollais rîf y gwlith,
Syrthiodd fy nghoron wiw;
Ond buddugoliaeth Calfari
Enillodd hon yn ôl imi,
Mi ganaf tra fwyf byw.

Ar Galfarî, yng gwres y dydd,
Y caed y gwystl mawr yn rhydd,
Trwy golli gwaed yn lli';
Does dim heb dalu, rhoddwyd iawn
Nes clirio llyfrau'r nef yn llawn
Heb ofyn dim i mi.)

Aber 2017 Third Morning

Good stuff from Art again. (I'm glad someone told him how to pronounce Bore da - it was getting embarrassing).

New Banner Book

I have placed a similar blogpost to this on my John Elias and John Hurrion blogs (see here and here) saying that Banner of Truth have just republished John Hurrion's book on Particular Redemption. It includes a preface written by John Elias for the Welsh language edition that John Aaron has translated into English. You can see the original here.


Yesterday (Wednesday) a friend here in Aber (Mike Iliff) kindly took a myself and another minister friend (Peter McKenzie) down to Llangeitho. It's only about 20 miles away but for some reason I had never been.
The main thing to see is the statue of Daniel Rowland outside the present CM Chapel. Some few things inside the chapel go back to Rowland's time too (the flagstones on the way in and a communion cup). He began ministering in the Parish Church which we also saw. That is where he is buried and there is also a pulpit there he is believed to have preached from.
The other thing to see these days is a slate plaque outside the caffi, which notes that this is where Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones lived 1904-1914 (as reported on this blog some time ago).
It was a very nice afternoon out and a reminder of the greatness and providence of God. I can recommend the bacon bap at the caffi, very nice.
The 19th century was dne by Edward Griffith. Below it are these words

Daniel Rowland ganwyd 1713 bu farw 1790
O nefoedd! nefoedd! nefoedd! Buasai dy gonglau yn ddigon gwag on i buasai fod sion yn magu plant i ti ar y ddaear!


Daniel Rowland Born 1713 Died 1790
Oh Heaven! Heaven! Heaven! Thy corners would be sufficiently empty were it not that Zion is nursing for thee children upon the earth.

O nefoedd! nefoedd! nefoedd! was apparently a saying of Rowland.

Aber 2017 Second Morning and Third Evening (Wednesday)

Aber continues with our main speakers, Art Azurdia and Hector Morrison. They are easier to listen to as you get used to their very different styles. Hector Morrison was perhaps a little long but what a subject - the Father's discipline of his children. The full sevices are avaialbe on Youtube again.


10 Chelsea Players whose names begin with H 1964-1974

1. Ron Harris (61-80)
2. Peter Houseman (62-75)
3. John Hollins (63-75/83-85)
4. Marvin Hinton (63-76)
5. Tony Hately (66-67)
6. Chico Hamilton (66-68)
7. Stewart Houston (67-72)
8. Ian Hutchinson (68-76)
9. Alan Hudson (68-74/83-84)
10. David Hay (74-80)

(These are the main years when Peter Osgood was in the team)

Aber 2017 First Morning Second Evening

The main speaker this year is Art Azurdia who is speaking from Acts. He began with 1:1-11. Hector Morrison, principal of Highland Theological College, is slated to speak on the Fatherhood of God and began in Genesis. Both were worth listening too though not always easy to take in.

Aber 2017 First Evening

We had a great start to our conference yesterday evening. Ian Parry preached from Exodus 15. I was surprised to know he had been 55 minutes. It didn't really seem that long. You can access the wholeservice here on Youtube. 

Lord's Day August 13 2017

It was good to be in Aberystwyth once again on the Lord's Day. Things are a little different here this year. The EMW dedided that as my father-in-law would not be around they would hold services in the Great Hall, as they do for the conference itself. Peter Greasley and Adrian Brake preached I understand. The services can be found here and here on Youtube.
We went along to hear my son Rhodri in Alfred Place. A few others had decided to do the same but only a few. I'm sure it is not easy for a young minister to have four or five ministers present but if you remember they too need to be fed all should be well. He preached very helpfully from Exodus 3 and Lamentations 3:22, 23. It was wonderful to be there. We sang some of the hymns a capella and that was great. In the morning there was a distrubance. An older man appeared to be choking adn so Rhodri stopped proceedings and we sang a hymn. With a suitable reference to Eutychus he then gave the third adn final point of the sermon.
It was a good day. I was glad to be there.

Fun in Aberystwyth

We had a picture like this at home. I've long liked the idea.
Eat your heart out Uber
My youngest reads me a story

10 Beatles songs featuring harmonica

1. Please Please me
2. Chains
3. Love me do
4. There's a place
5. From me to you
6. Thank you girl
7. I'll get you
8. Little child
9. I should have known better
10. I'm a loser


We got to see the film Dunkirk last week. I don't need to say anything about it except that it is worth seeing. It attempts to give us the experience , which is an obvious thing to do, which menas little explanation and lots of action. Some of the story choices seem strange and people have had a field day with all the inaccuracies of various sorts. I was interested to learn that the man on whom the Mark Rylance character was based had been second officer on the Titanic. The air, land, seainterchange is doen very well. I picked up no hints to the marvellous providenc of God that some speak of and thought the film was generally anti-war, partly by dint of its accuracy. I remember visiting Dunkirk one day on a school trip to Ostende when I was 12. I was surprised when one of my sons (the history graduate I note) told me that the first revelation for him on seeing the film was that Dunkirk is in France not Scotland! 

Midweek Meeting August 9 2017

We were not a large number for the last midweek meeting before my holiday break - four church officers, two of their wives, two Korean friends and two others. We looked once again at the subject of heaven and the six negatives of Revelation 21, 22 - no sea, no tears or death, no temple, no wickedness, no night and no more curse. Everyone except the Koreans prayed after the Bible Study. There's alays a lot to pray for. I love the midweek meeting. I only wish more would come along. In some ways heaven will be like a midweek meeting - prayer considering the Bible story, etc. No-one ill be missing then.

Lord's Day August 6 2016

We began with communion last Sunday and then I preached another sermon on the judgement - the judgement of the righteous. Perhaps we should be preaching more on such themes. We were  alittle low in numbers but again two new people - a Southe African lady working as  acarer in the area and a Ghanaian lady who normally goes to church in Harlesden but lives near us. Another birthday celebration to follow. A new member has just turned 21. In the evening I preached on humility and putting pride to death - always easier to preach than to act on. I had a slight end of term feeling, although I am spekaing on Wednesday before heading off for me hols.

My Parents on their wedding day April 1955

10 father and son songs

1. Someday never comes/Creedence Clearwater Revival
2. In the living years/Mike and the Mechanics
3. Father and son/Cat Stevens
4. Tears in heaven/Eric Clapton
5. Beautiful Boy/John Lennon
6. A boy named Sue/Johnny Cash
7. Father to son/Queen
8. My old man/Ian Dury of the Blockheads
9. Sometimes you can't make it on your own/U2
10. Leading me there/Jan Akkerman

The Tremor of Forgery

The tremor of forgery is the thirteenth of Patricia Highsmith's 22 novels and about the tenth I have read. It first appeared in 1969. On the cover of this one they quote Graham Greene to the effect that this is her best, which I was doubting for much of the book but I found the final 10 chapters or so both gripping and full of interest as nce more she explores the whole area of morality and conscience. Those final chapters, of course, only work because of the long set up that precedes it.
This passage struck me

Ingham had a sick feeling he hadn't experienced since adolescence, when he had looked into some religious books at home, dusty old things that must have belonged to great-grandparents. "Repent your sins ... bare your soul to Christ" The questions and answers had assumed that everyone had sins, apparently even from birth, but what were they? The worst Ingham had been able to think of was masturbation, but since at the same time he had been browsing in psychology books which said it was normal and natural, what was there left? Ingham didn't consider that what he had done that night had been a sin or a crime, if he had killed the Arab at all, which would always be not quite certain, until someone actually found the corpse.

When we try and speak to people in terms of biblical morality, it is often an uphill task. Only a truly biblical world view gets things in the right perpective.
This is a theme Highsmith almost endlessly explored.

Midweek Meeting August 2 2016

Nine of us gathered yesterday to consider the second in a series on unseen realities. We looked at chunks of 1 Corinthians 15 and the resurrection of the body on the last day. I should have anticipated that there would be lots of questions. I was also rather poor gathering together material for prayer, several items only coming to mind after we had prayed. Many people to pray for at the moment. We got on with praying though and inched forward a bit I hope, by the grace of God.

Lord's Day July 30 2017

It's a funny time of the year but numbers kept up last Sunday and we had a good time even with many regulars and others away. There was a new Spanish lady who, like so many these days, is often working on the Lord's Day. A man who does come regularly but who I thought would not be there came. That was good. We were down to about 16 in the evening. I preached in the morning the first in a new series on the judgement day and in the evening another in the series on living the Christian life - this time growing in holiness (easy to preach not so easy to do). You sometimes think may be things are not hopeless. We sang happy birthday after the morning service to a lady who has just turned 70 and two girls, one just turned 12 and one about to turn 8. That worked out well as birthdays can easily be forgotten at this time of the year. 

10 Things - a nice website

As readers of this blog, we like lists of 10 here. Most of these lists are rather inconsequential I'm afraid but look at this website here for any number of such lists well worth a decko. See here.

Here's ten by Garry Williams on God's love.

1. God’s love is incomprehensible
2. God’s love can be known
3. God is known by analogy
4. The pictures of God in the Bible regulate themselves, including pictures of his love
5. We quickly leap to the wrong conclusions about God’s love
6. God’s love must be "read" within the rest of what Scripture teaches about his divine attributes
7. God’s love must be "read" especially within what Scripture teaches about his triune life
8. Reading God’s love in its wider context keeps us from error
9. Understanding the different manner of God’s love helps us to see its immeasurable magnitude
10. God’s love truly perceived always draws out from us a response of love

Famous (again)

I found this recently on IMDb. In 1967 I was only 8 so a little young for the part.
(Click on pic if necessary).