What Do We Know About Jesus?

A century ago there was a lot of talk suggesting that Jesus never existed. ‘Just another dying-and-rising god,’ they said, ‘like Greek mythology.’ At much the same time Karl Marx was falling under the influence of a theology professor called Bruno Bauer who was sacked for heresy. He maintained that the Jesus story was dreamed up late in the second century. This bizarre view is still official Communist teaching. And today there are plenty of people who say Jesus was a visitor from outer space in a UFO!

All such views are doomed to failure. Why? Because they ignore the good historical evidence for Jesus of Nazareth.
  • First, you have the accounts of the life of Jesus, the Gospels, and the letters of the New Testament - a completely new literary explosion brought about by Jesus.
  • Second, there is evidence from Roman historians for Jesus’ existence, his unusual birth, his execution by crucifixion under Pontius Pilate, who governed the turbulent province of Judea from AD26 to AD36.
  • Third, there are archaeological remains which show that people were worshipping Jesus in Palestine and Italy by the middle of the first century.
  • Fourth, ancient Jewish testimony makes clear allusions to his unusual birth, his death on the cross, his miracles, his divine claims and the birth of the church. Both Jewish and Roman evidence is hostile to Christians. Therefore its testimony is all the more valuable, and it chimes in closely with what the Gospels tell us.
And what do the Gospels teach? They tell us that Jesus was more than simply the carpenter of Nazareth; more than a famous rabbi; more even than the best of men. But, on the other hand, they never tell us that he was just God Almighty dressed up as a human being.

No, they struggle at the boundaries of language to express their conviction that in Jesus Christ God has shown us what he is like, within the terms of a human life. Not that Jesus was all of God that there is; he constantly spoke of his ‘heavenly Father.’ Rather, that he is the tip of the iceberg of God, and the rest of the iceberg is all of a piece with the part we can see.

This is what astounded and thrilled those Jews who became the first Christian believers. Living side by side with Jesus for three years persuaded them that he was no mere man, but that God himself had cared enough to come and seek us out in the person of Jesus.

If we matter that much to God, no wonder their message became known as ‘godspel’: good news.

Taken from: A New Dimension, Discovering the reality of faith. By Michael green.




Excerpt from the past. Corps History No 30

A delight for a number of years in the 1930o was a garden party at the beautiful home of Mr and Mrs Wills at ‘Margin House’, Marryatt Road, Wimbledon Common. Held in July, it seemed to attract inclement weather! Nonetheless, those of us fortunate enough to attend remember the event with affection. The sizeable lake was a special attraction: the hardy ones enjoyed a swim and the lesser mortals were taken around the water by one of our bandsmen in a rowing boat. A number of stalls were manned by corps folk and refreshments a-plenty were provided. In the early evening it was music on the lawn provided by our corps band and including a number of solo items.

The financial reward to the corps seems to have been minimal but it was a day of relaxation and fellowship. Woolworth generously provided toys for sale on one occasion to the value of ten shillings (50 new pence!) Sunday 12 May 1935 was Jubilee Thanksgiving Day in the borough of Wimbledon, commemorating 25 years of the reign of King George V. The mayors Lady Roney (a great admirer and friend of The Salvation Army) proposed at our afternoon meeting a resolution to send a telegram of congratulation to His Majesty, seconded by our corps officer Major Price and Councillor Wesley James JP who was our corps sergeant-major. In the evening members of the corps united with other churches and various sections of the community in a thanksgiving service at the All-England tennis courts, our band leading ten thousand voices in the singing of hymns.

A great event over the weekend 21/22 January 1939 was the visit of Worthing corps band. A detailed programme costing six old pence (2½ new pence) admitted to both the Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon festivals with a net profit for the weekend of £12 going to our YP band funds. The festivals were compered respectively by our friend Mrs Wills (see above) and Jack Mackintosh, then Professor of Music at Kneller Hall, the headquarters of the Royal Military School of Music at Whitton, Twickenham. Mr Mackintosh was much in demand as a cornet/trumpet soloist and was a renowned teacher of brass, numbering among his pupils our own Paul Johnson.

During May/June that year our band gave a programme each Sunday afternoon in the bandstand at Trinity (now South Park) Gardens attended by some 300/400 people. Life was good ……. but over in Europe the war clouds were gathering.

Next months Cometh the hour, cometh the man.
Ron Foot




Prayer Corner

July brings those lazy, hazy days of summer, and the start of the school holidays. Do remember all Corps folk as they go away, and pray that the families with children will have a fun filled and tension free holiday. This month sees the final run-up to the Kid’s Holiday Club. Do pray for the leaders as they prepare for this event, and for the children who will attend. Already 16 have pre-registered for the event. This years prayer target is an average daily attendance of 50 children.

We should also uphold before God’s throne those in our Corps family or known to us who are in need of prayer. We think of Linda, Ernest and Mary, Sue and Philip, Olive Morris, Eddie and John. We give thanks that Major’s friend Mary has had good results from her medical checks. We give thanks for those that recently became Adherents. We also need to pray that as God is moving in our lives, and we are seeing growth within the out-reach of the Corps that we will not be lead into temptation or situations that will damage our witness as Christians to those around us.




Failure Need Not Be Final

Were the stirring words of Captain Jane Cowell from Divisional Headquarters on the 1st of June as she lead our Holiness Meeting. Captain Jane is responsible for the Social Care Ministry in our Division. She asked us to reflect on whether we have become settled in familiar ways, perhaps got stuck in a spiritual rut. She then challenged us to try something new and to step out of our spiritual comfort zone for Jesus sake. Our thanks go to her for a thought-provoking meeting.




Pentcost Picnic 8th June

Was an afternoon of sunny spells, inter-spaced by hail and rain, as a mixture of Parent and Toddler, Sunday Club and Kid’s club families gathered together. The Picnic started in South Park Gardens, and the young folk were able to roam and play hide and seek among the tress, before rain stopped play. The Picnic recommenced in the Community Hall with blankets and food spread out while a few indoor games such as twisted brought laughter and fun.




Game, Set And Match

To Joy and Bernie, for organising the Corps Strawberry Tea on 30th June. As Tim Henman played on in the background we enjoyed the feast of strawberries, scones, Pavlov, cheesecake, mouse, ice cream and many other delights. As Tim rested, we struggled with the quiz that Bernie had located on the inter-net. It was a good evening and raised £40 for Corps funds. Many thanks Joy and Bernie.




YP Outing 28th June

Tarantula’s, millipedes, locusts and a fluffy haired rabbit joined 28 children and adults for the Young People’s outing to Syon Park. Though several of the young folk had been before on school trips and with the family, the enjoyment of meeting creepy crawlies face to face and handling them had not diminished - neither had the shrieks and running out of the room at the sight of snakes and spiders. The afternoon was spent at Snakes and Ladders exploring the massive indoor soft play area and outdoor adventure playground. The weather was hot and sunny, and Sunday morning saw a number of the leaders with pink and sensitive sun burnt skin! A big thank you goes to all the leaders and helpers who came on the day and helped make it the wonderful time that it was.




Alex is ‘Oliver’

Mayhem Productions and Young Stars Theatre Group present ‘Oliver’ by Lionel Bart, 31st July to 2nd August 7.30pm (2.30pm on Saturday) at Epsom Playhouse.

Kerry and Alex Phillips are in the cast. Alex having the lead role as Oliver.

Box office 020 82860896 / 01372 742555
Tickets £10, concessions £8.50.




The Tate Family

Do you know how many members of the Tate family belong to your church?

There is old man Dic-Tate who wants to run everything, while Uncle Ro-Tate tries to change everything. There's sister Agi-Tate who stirs up plenty of trouble, with help from her husband, Irri-Tate. Whenever new projects are suggested, Hesi-Tate and his wife, Vege-Tate, want to wait until next year.

Then there is Aunt Imi-Tate, who wants our church to be like all the others. Devas-Tate provides the voice of doom, while Poten-Tate wants to be a big shot.

But not all members of the family are bad. Brother Facili-Tate is quite helpful in church matters. And a delightful, happy member of the family is Miss Felici-Tate. Cousins Cogi-Tate and Medi-Tate always think things over and lend helpful, steady hands.

And of course there is the black sheep of the family, Ampu-Tate, who has completely cut himself off from the church. How about it ---- do you know anyone in the "Tate" family?

Author Unknown




Any Old Stamps……

Gillian Roger, and her class at school, are collecting used postage stamps on behalf of Guide Dogs for the Blind. All the stamps collected are sold to raise money for the charity. Any stamps you are able to collect will be gratefully received by Gillian.




Science on 30th May

Twas a hot sultry morning, and here we are again outside Wimbledon station with children that are not our own.
All in the name of Science, yes the YP went to the Science Museum. Fun was had by all, even the leaders as they tried to ensure we did not loose anybody.

Some of us played at blowing bubbles, did you know that you can only create ball shaped bubbles, no squares, triangles, you can even set bubbles on fire! If the bubbles are made using methane and not air you can set them on fire.

All the children wanted to visit the flight path to try their hand at flying a helicopter, having a go in a simulator, or just to see the water rockets. Yes, rockets powered by water! Well actually water was pumped into a bottle compressing the air, the compressed air was then released producing the thrust, proving Newton’s 4th law of motion, ‘Each and every action has an equal and opposite reaction’.

This theory was also proven on the way home, A points failure in the Richmond area meant trains were diverted to Wimbledon lengthening the journey time considerably. This also leads to Paul’s Chinese proverb ‘Old worn out points brings aching joints from standing too long on crowded train’.

Also in the name of science on the homeward journey, we tried getting the train to move by vibrations as ‘Happy Birthday’ was sung to Rebecca, unfortunately it did not work, the decibels were enough to generate good vibrations but not enough to move the train.




Preaching programme for July

  Morning Holiness meeting Evening Salvation Meeting
6th 10-30 am lead by Major Rosemary Randall Monthly Corps Prayer Meeting at 5-30pm
6pm Salvation meeting lead by Major Rosemary Randall .
Sunday Club 12/1pm  
Junior Soldiers Class Children remain in Meeting  
13th 10-30 am lead by Major Rosemary Randall 6pm lead by Major Rosemary Randall.
Sunday Club 12/1pm  
Junior Soldiers Class 11/11-45am  
20th 10-30 am lead by Major Rosemary Randall 3 pm Praise Meeting lead by Songster Leader Joy Rogers
Sunday Club 12/1pm  
Junior Soldiers Class 11/11-45am  
27th 10-30 am lead by Major Rosemary Randall 6pm lead by Major Rosemary Randall
Sunday Club 12/1pm  
Junior Soldiers Class 11/11-45am  




Corps Diary July 2003

Tuesday 1st 8pm. Songster Practice. See Joy for details.
Saturday 5th 7pm. Festival of Praise by Eastbourne Citadel Band under the leadership of Bandmaster Vic Clement. Proceeded by a Corps Tea at 5pm at the Hall.
Friday 11th Kid’s Club. 6 to 7-30pm. See Ailsa for details.
Tuesday 15th 8pm. Songster Practice. See Joy for details.
Thursday 17th Bible Fellowship. Achan: Sin in the Community based on Joshua &. See Ron for details.
Monday 21st 7-30pm. Holiday Club Briefing for all leaders and helpers involved at holiday club.
Friday 25th Kid’s Club. Meet at Pizza Hut on the Broadway at 6pm. £4 per child. See Ailsa for details.
Tuesday 29th 8pm. Songster Practice. See Joy for details.




Following In Their Footsteps

The 3rd of July sees the church remembering Thomas, the “doubter”. His life is an encouragement to all those who feel guilty for doubting, as Thomas’ doubts blossomed into a strong faith. Traditionally it is believed that after Pentecost Thomas went to India, telling people of what he had seen and introducing them to a living faith. It is believed that a spear killed him. His willingness to die for his faith proves that doubts can change into strengths. Anne and Joachim, the parents of Mary are remembered on 26th July. We know little of them from history, but the impression of their lives is clearly reflected in the life of their daughter. We know that Mary, only a teenager when pregnant with Jesus, must have been brought up to be self-reliant and to worship God with all her being. Anne and Joachim must have been open-minded to be able to support their daughter through her pregnancy. There is no doubt that the way they brought Mary up had an influence on her ability to recognise God’s message and be willing to say “Yes Lord”.




Theme Songs for Bible Characters

Noah: “Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head”
Adam and Eve: “Strangers in Paradise”
Lazarus: “The Second Time Around”
Esther. “I Feel Pretty”
Job: “I've Got a Right to Sing the Blues”
Moses: “The Wanderer”
Jezebel: “The Lady is a Tramp”
Samson: “Hair”
Salome: “I Could Have Danced All Night”
Daniel: “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”
Joshua: “Good vibrations”
Peter. “I'm Sorry”
Esau: “Born To Be Wild”
Jeremiah: “Take This job and Shove It”
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: “Great Balls of Fire!”
The Three Kings: “When You Wish Upon a Star”
Jonah: “Got a Whale of a Tale”
Elijah: “Up, Up, and Away”
Methuselah: “Stayin' Alive”
Nebuchadnezzar. “Crazy”
Taken from: A Bucket of Surprises Compiled by J. John & Mark Stibbe.




Bible (trivia quiz)

1. Who was the greatest financier in the Bible?
2. Who was the greatest female financier in the Bible?
3. What kind of man was Boaz before he got married?
4. What kind of motor vehicles are in the Bible?
5. Who was the greatest comedian in the Bible?
6. Which servant of Jehovah was the most flagrant lawbreaker in the Bible?
7. Where is the first tennis match mentioned in the Bible?
8. Which Bible character had no parents?
9. Why didn't Noah go fishing?

Taken from: A Bucket of Surprises - Compiled by J. John & Mark Stibbe.

Your answers next month.




And the Lord is risen on a rocket

A SUNDAY school teacher tried to liven up the story of the Ascension by firing Jesus up to Heaven on a rocket. But her stunt with a firework backfired when neighbours dialled 999, thinking their Sunday morning peace had been shattered by gunfire. Police sent to St Mary’s Church in Kemp Town, Brighton, found teacher Jacalyn Boyes explaining the Bible story to her impressed pupils. Ms Boyes, 40, said: ‘I thought it was a great idea to let off a rocket with a picture of Jesus taped to it. Whoever said Sunday school has to be dull? I was embarrassed when the police said they were looking for the culprit. I told them why I had let it off and said I hoped they were not going to arrest me.’ One said, "If you sent the rocket up to Jesus, I’m sure He will find it in his heart to forgive you".’
From the Metro 10th June 2003