In recent weeks several letters that I have sent to the Belfast Telegraph have failed to be published. One of them related to their Religion Correspondent, Alf McCreary, being “cross” with the current Presbyterian Moderator, Dr Harry Uprichard, and that unpublished letter can be viewed on our website through this link
The most recent letter was sent to the Belfast Telegraph on Monday 15 May but once more it has failed to be published by them. I have discovered that ‘oversight’ for the ‘Letters’ section of the paper has in recent times changed and any honest observer of the letters now being published will note the obvious change in tenor and tone of those that make it for publication.
This failure by the Belfast Telegraph to ‘give voice’ to the views of Biblical Christians like myself is a very worrying development and so I have today sent the following letter by email to the Belfast Telegraph and any response from them will subsequently be added to this article.
When Tony Blair became British Prime Minister his popularity and reputation grew rapidly thanks to the efforts of one man – Alister Campbell – who became known as his ‘spin doctor’. Mr Campbell made sure that the press and media were kept fully informed about all that would enhance the standing of Mr Blair with the citizens of the United Kingdom and even further afield.
Well, if the Dalai Lama ever needs his own ‘spin doctor’ then he should seriously consider Alf McCreary, ‘Religion Correspondent’ with the Belfast Telegraph. In November 2005 the Dalai Lama paid a return visit to Northern Ireland and any reader of the Belfast Telegraph would be entirely without excuse if they claimed to be unaware of his visit.
Each Saturday in the Belfast Telegraph Mr McCreary authors a page entitled ‘This Life’ and it is usually made up of a lead article and perhaps one or two smaller items. On consecutive Saturdays [19th and 26th November] the lead article for each ‘This Life’ page was devoted to the Dalai Lama. One article was called ‘A welcome visitor’ and the other ‘The Dalai Lama and an Ulster “Blackman”’ [the term ‘Blackman’ refers to a member of a particular fraternal organisation and has nothing to do with race or colour].
Dear praying friends,
On 2 separate occasions in early December my attention was drawn to the incident in the life of Matthew Henry some 300+ years ago when the gifted Bible Commentator was robbed and in his diary at the close of that day he wrote ‘Let me be thankful first, because I was never robbed before; second, because although they took my purse, they did not take my life; third, because although they took my all, it was not much; and fourth, because it was I who was robbed, not I who robbed’. That story was fresh in my mind when on 15th December whilst moving boxes in our roof space I, through my own negligence, fell out the opening up into our roof space and landed some 7 feet below on the broad of my back on our landing. I managed to get myself up onto our bed and as I lay there I thought of Matthew Henry and I simply prayed something along these lines ‘Let me be thankful first, because I have never fallen out of a roof space before; second, because although I am battered and bruised I’m not paralysed or killed; third, because although it was a big fall, the least possible has happened; and fourth, because it was I who fell and not Margaret’. To all who so regularly pray for the well being of Margaret and myself I say ‘thank you’ and I supremely thank the Lord that He cared when I was careless. As you will see from the enclosed schedule of meetings, Bob Liichow has not been able, due to family commitments, to come in April so I’m delighted to welcome back Alan Morrison to address the topic of ‘God [channel] TV’. Your prayers and attendance where possible will be welcomed.
Dear praying friends,
Yet another year is drawing to a close and as time runs its course surely God’s ‘awake’ people can clearly see the outworking of that which is clearly predicted in God’s Word. If today society has not already spiralled down and reached the levels of days similar to those of Noah and Lot [wicked and immoral] then all I can say is that those former days must have been truly and unimaginably horrendous days. God’s people are called to be “salt” and “light” but today the world witnesses a professing ‘Church’ that has no “savour” and radiates no discernable “light”. As Roger Oakland said during his recent visit, professing believers have got their eyes upon ‘men, methods & movements’ and as a result the glorious gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ has been buried under an avalanche of purpose-driven, alpha-inspired, unscriptural feel-good trivia. And all the time Rome is advancing her claims and cause to be God’s one true church. On page 16 you will find details of Roger Oakland’s latest and timely book ‘Another Jesus’. [Enclosed with this newsletter is a photocopy of its front cover together with a copy of the front cover of a book that I myself have just had published called ‘Try the spirits: Volume 1’ [for details visit ‘Twoedged Sword Pubilcations’]. This book is a compendium of my writings on C S Lewis; Philip Yancey & The Alpha Course. It can be ordered from me – price £5.50 [includes p&p]. Thank you all for another year of faithful prayerful and practical support.