Moderator's Comments - Posted 25 April 2016

There is a college in Oxford dating back to 1379 which has the audacity of being called, New College.

Travelling in the UK, one has a sense of one’s own mortality being surrounded by buildings 700 or even more years old.

In Australia, 100 is quite an achievement and 150 is remarkable since white settlement dates back to 1778, 228 years ago, we get few opportunities to have the sense of the briefness of our lives.

Moderator's Comments - Posted 13 April 2016

I have just been to an Emergency Meeting of the NSW General Assembly, which met at Roseville Presbyterian Church on Wednesday, 6 April 2016.

The issue, to test the appropriateness of the NSW Trustees’ suspension of the Council of Scots College, Sydney and to appoint a Management Committee to govern the College until the 2017 General Assembly.  Some argued that the Trustees’ action was appropriate, others, that it was inappropriate.

Members of our churches often write to me about issues they would like me to solve, but the reality is that the Moderator is the chairman, in my case of the General Assembly of Australia, and I have no more or less authority than a Teaching Elder in the local church.

Moderator's Comments - Posted 6 April 2016

I have had punctuality bred into me, even now, if I am meeting my sisters, I know they will be at least 10 minutes early and sometimes I am even earlier.

Some people are habitually late, I am habitually early.

Oscar Wilde said that he was always late on principle, the principle being that punctuality is the thief of time. Evelyn Waugh believed punctuality to be the virtue of the bored, those who have nothing better to do than to be on time.

The writer of Hebrews says that there is an appointment we will all meet, none will be either early or late:

Moderator's Comments - Posted 29 March 2016

Wee Waa’s boom years were the mid 1960’s to the mid 1980’s, there was plenty of water, and cotton, as an Australian industry, was in its infancy.

American farmers led by Paul Kahl and Frank Hadley, two Christian men from California, were instrumental in establishing the industry, centred on Wee Waa.

Wee Waa Presbyterian was our first parish. We ministered there from February 1976 to December 1981. This last Easter we had the joy of going back to lead the Easter services.

How things have changed!

Moderator's Comments - Posted 22 March 2016

Toplady’s hymn expresses it well:

“Nothing in my hand I bring,
Simply to thy cross I cling;
Naked turn to you for dress;
Helpless look to you for grace;
Foul I to the fountain fly;
Wash me, Saviour, or I die.”

By dying on that cross, Jesus won our salvation.

To do so, Jesus had to live a perfect life with no taint of sin, even his enemies had nothing of which they could accuse him, except that he ate with the wrong types of people. He had no sin of His own for which to die. Our sin was laid on him,

“we all like sheep have gone astray
Each of us has turned to his own way
And the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:6)

Alasdair Paine wrote recently,