Nathan Brown

Nathan Brown

“I write with a smile on my face”

It's probably been 15 years, but ever since I first read Nathan Brown's articles I've been struck by the conciseness and frankness of his writing, the courage with which he tackles the prejudices and superficialities of religion, and the naturalness with which he invites his readers to live a spiritual life worthy of God's generous offer.

An ancient story with a different ending

The stories of gods and their vengeance permeated the ancient world—but one culture changed the story to introduce a better way to relate to the divine.

Agents of God

Undoubtedly, the best known of all Bible verses is John 3:16, but even this does not sound the same in its different renderings. One of these is a personalised version, sometimes employed in church settings: “For God so loved [insert your name here] that He gave His one and only Son, so that if [insert your name here] believes in Him, [insert your...

Living Biblically?

Many Christians say they take the Bible literally. They regularly spend time reading this Book they believe to be inspired by God and seek to understand how to apply it to their lives.

How well do you know your heroes?

In 2016, I noticed advertising for a new quiz show called Hard Quiz coming to ABC TV in Australia.

Things we forget about Martin Luther King Jr

Measuring more than nine metres tall, the pale granite carving of Dr King that is the centrepiece of the Martin Luther King Jr Memorial, just to the east of the National Mall in downtown Washington DC, makes it easy to forget that he was a relatively short man. His iconic likeness towers over visitors as his words carved into the stone walls around...

The Second Coming: Escape or Energiser?

"Lianne struggled with the idea of God," Don DeLillo’s narrator says of one of the characters in his novel, Falling Man. "She was taught to believe that religion makes people compliant. This is the purpose of religion, to return people to a childlike state… . We want to transcend, to pass beyond the limits of safe understanding— and what better way to do...

The Good Place: great questions, medium answers

In the opening scene of The Good Place, celestial being Michael (Ted Danson) explains that most world religions and philosophies get their respective understandings of the afterlife only about five per cent right.

Courage in the deluge

After a chance meeting of mutual friends, I was introduced to Tim and Sonia in a restaurant in central Toowoomba, Queensland, eight days before their home was washed away.

Circumstantial faith

As a believer—for present purposes, defined simply as one who believes—I have often wondered what and how I would believe differently had I been born into a family and culture with different beliefs. Obviously, I believe what I believe because I believe it to include truth, but would I have believed in this same truth if I had not been raised and taught...

Called to attention

We live in a world in which the news is far more pervasive than the events it reports. An event happens in one place but is almost instantly repeated and echoed in millions more. And while the event might be shocking, tragic or horrifying, a wider and sometimes greater toll is exacted by its reportage, by the slow-motion replays, by the breathless punditry...

Humble faith

The Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem is the oldest continuously-used church building in the world. It dates from the fourth century, when Roman Emperor Constantine’s mother visited the Holy Lands to identify locations from the life of Jesus for pilgrimage destinations and church sites. From a distance, the point of entry to the church is not obvious, particularly when the area is...

Practising faith

When I was at high school, I played basketball a lot—most days at school, then team training sessions and often two or three games each week. At university, I played on the best team I have been part of. We trained and competed regularly over two years, and twice won our league championship.
desmond doss

The unlikely story behind a blockbuster

In one sense, it was hardly an unusual story: a big-budget Hollywood war movie with a big-name director and famous actors, featuring long and ultra-violent action sequences, with heroes and enemies.

The hope of God’s judgement

To be able to see our world and life through the experiences of someone of a different culture and background is rare. It is a gift—but it can also be a jolt to our sensibilities and assumptions. The world we thought we knew can look very different through someone else’s eyes. This is one reason storytelling can be such a powerful form of...