Monday, February 06, 2012

From the Garden to the City

From the Garden to the City : The Redeeming and Corrupting Power of Technology is the title of a short book by John Dyer, director of Web development at Dallas Theological Seminary.

From the Garden to the City deconstructs the concept of technology and examines it through the lens of Scripture. Studying Bible passages and insights from the best thinkers on technology, theology and culture, John Dyer shows how technology left unexamined can enslave us rather than honour God and fulfil his plan for us. With helpful observations and practical applications, he issues an urgent challenge to live faithful lives in this technology-saturated modern world.

This is an excellent book - faithful to the Bible - yet up to date with its knowledge of technology. I highly recommend it.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bible Overview (Lent Course)

I have created a website to provide links to the Lent Course presentations for the Bible Overview track that I ran at St Mary's Cheadle. This six week course was on Wednesday evenings, and began on March 9, 2011.

Update: By popular demand, the course is being repeated during Lent 2012. The first session is on February 22.

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

New website for M'Cheyne resources

A new website for Robert Murray M'Cheyne resources has been designed by a friend in Surrey.

We hope that you will like the fresh design of the new site. The process of adapting items from the old UK Online website is ongoing, but much is there already.

Please update your bookmarks and links, especially if you had linked online to the old website.

UK Online have delayed their closure by a week. It will close on 21 January, 2011. From then on, my email address ending in will no longer reach me.

There is a contact form on the new site.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

UK Online will close in January 2011

UK Online will close on 14 January 2011.

This means that my 14 year old website will then disappear (as such).

It is likely that the contents will still be accessible via the Internet Archive.

Here is a link to the M'Cheyne page via the Wayback Machine.

The menus should still be navigable, though page loading may be slow.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

This Year's Biography: Robert Murray M'Cheyne

Desiring God

Every year at our Pastors Conference, John Piper delivers a biographical message on a bygone saint whose life and influence are in some way instructive for us today.

At this next Pastors Conference, Piper will be focusing on Robert Murray M'Cheyne, the Scottish pastor, poet, and man of prayer from the 19th century. M'Cheyne died very young—he was only 29—but his life and writings have had a powerful and enduring impact on the church, for the better.

Conference details: Minneapolis, Minnesota, January 31 - February 2, 2011

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

McCheyne, McGonagall and the West End of Dundee

This talk was given last night during Dundee's WestFest.

David Robertson takes a look at the influence of Christianity in general and St Peter's in particular on the West End of Dundee, examining the impact of two famous west enders, the preacher, pastor and poet Robert Murray McCheyne, a former minister of St Peter's Church and William Topaz McGonagall. McGonagall is one of Dundee’s most famous citizens – the ‘world’s worst poet’ was actually a member of St Peter’s and his tragic/comic life gives surprising insight into 19th Century Dundee life.

The audio recording of this talk is now available online. Click here.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

M'Cheyne's Bible Reading Calendar now available in Thai

Missionaries in Thailand have translated M'Cheyne's Bible Reading Calendar into Thai.

May God bless this to His Church in Thailand.

Friday, March 05, 2010


*** Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds*** [Hebrews 10.24]

This is the blog of Clint Humfrey in Alberta, Canada.

He's a fan of Robert Murray M'Cheyne, as well as being a pastor, a NT scholar and a rancher.

Years ago, he contributed the guest essay Of Common Ilk to my M'Cheyne pages.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Diary of Jessie Thain

A friend emailed me today, and his message included this line, "If I remember correctly, R.M.M. was engaged when he died, and I assume that you have known his fiancĂ©e’s name.". The initials denote Robert Murray M'Cheyne (1813-43), the main subject of my website. Here's how I responded.

The general consensus is that he may have been engaged to Jessie Thain, though I have never seen a primary source proof that would cinch this. Some editions of Alexander Smellie's biography of R. M. McCheyne (a burning light) have as an appendix, Extracts from the diary of Jessie Thain.

His note prompted me to Google for her name and I came across this gem, from which I include a brief quotation below.
In his interesting book, “Robert Murray McCheyne,” Dr. Smellie mentions the fact that McCheyne was twice engaged to be married. The excellent young lady whom he first honoured with an offer of his life and love was discouraged by her relatives who thought they saw in McCheyne’s frail body a foreshadowing of an early death. The other young lady was the writer of this Diary. Certainly her references to McCheyne’s death in her Diary are strongly suggestive of a relationship nearer than that of a pastor to his flock. Spiritual affection for those in whom we see the image of the Lord is an ennobling grace which may not always be free from pain; but the love of Jessie Thain for Robert McCheyne, while holy and intensely spiritual, appears also to have the additional marks of the fond and reciprocating attractions of nature. One cannot but admire the delicacy and refinement with which she touches on this subject.
The online page from which this quotation is taken is entitled, Jessie Thain (The Friend of Robert Murray McCheyne) - Edited by Rev. Murdoch Campbell, M.A. The editor's introduction is dated Ross-shire, September, 1955.

Miss Thain was born 31st July, 1820, and was thus seven years younger than the one she loved. Her diary covers the period 31st December, 1843 to 28th November, 1847. M'Cheyne died on 25th March 1843, aged only 29, and there is a diary entry for the same date in both 1844 and 1845. It makes poignant reading.

NB. A 2003 paperback edition from Shiloh Publications is SOLD OUT. There were earlier editions in 1961 and 1967, as well as the originally edited one of 1955. These may sometimes appear in used book stores, whether online or in retail shops.

Monday, January 18, 2010

The Solitary Throne

Mahatma Gandhi once wrote, "I am unable to place Jesus Christ on a solitary throne." In response to this, two books appeared in the 1930s, both with the title, The Solitary Throne, written by Christian authors.
  • The Solitary Throne: Some religious beliefs of Mahatma Gandhi in the light of Christ's teachings, by Brenton Thoburn Badley (1876-1949). Madras : Methodist Pub. House, 1931 (rep. 1935).
  • The Solitary Throne: Addresses Given at the Keswick Convention on the Glory and Uniqueness of the Christian Message, by Samuel Marinus Zwemer (1867-1952): London, 1937.
Zwemer's book was also intended as a direct rebuke to Gandhi’s statement.

Where do you place Jesus Christ?

Are you like Gandhi, merely an admirer of his life and teachings, but unable to place him where God has placed him? Or are you like both Badley and Zwemer, not only his admirer, but his true follower, believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth that He has been exalted to the highest place that heaven affords?

This hymn by J. G. Deck puts it succinctly,
1 O GOD, Thou now hast glorified
Thy holy, blest eternal Son;
The Nazarene, the Crucified,
Now sits exalted on Thy throne:
To Him in faith we cry aloud,
Worthy art Thou, O Lamb of God.

2 Father, Thy holy name we bless,
And gladly hail Thy just decree
That every tongue shall soon confess
Jesus the Lord of all to be;
But oh, Thy grace has taught us now
Before that Lord the knee to bow.

3 Him as our Lord we gladly own:
To Him alone we now would live,
Who bowed our hearts before Thy throne,
And gave us all that love could give.
Our willing voices cry aloud,
Worthy art Thou, O Lamb of God.
Jesus the Nazarene, once crucified, but then risen from the dead, now sits exalted on a solitary throne, at the right hand of God.