ETHOS Institute™ for Public Christianity

A Christian think tank formed by the National Council of Churches of Singapore, Trinity Theological College and The Bible Society of Singapore.

NCCS Statement on Protestant Attitudes towards the Departed

The National Council of Churches of Singapore has issued a statement on Protestant Attitudes towards the Departed. Click here to read the statement.

NCCS Statement on Pre-Implantation Genetic Testing of IVF Embryos

The National Council of Churches of Singapore has issued a statement on Pre-Implantation Genetic Testing (PGT). Click here to read the statement.

Announcement on ETHOS Steering Committee

The new Steering Committee has commenced its two-year term from 25 October 2016 with the President of the National Council of Churches of Singapore (NCCS), Bishop Rennis Ponniah, as the newly appointed Chairman of ETHOS Institute.

Click here to view Steering Committee.




CREDO: Bible + Apologetics + Doctrine

CREDO is a new monthly column that addresses issues related to the Bible, apologetics and doctrine. 

The Importance of Tradition
by Dr Roland Chia

One of the most important contributions of the sixteenth century Protestant Reformation is its clear reminder to the Church concerning the primary authority of Scripture. Sola Scriptura – Scripture alone – was the battle cry of the great Reformers like Martin Luther and John Calvin in the wake of a Church that is so laden with human traditions that the essence of the Gospel was so severely obfuscated that it was no longer in view.

Modern evangelism has in the main sought to be true to the emphasis of the Reformers by stressing the authority of Scripture as the infallible Word of God. However, in doing so some evangelical Christians and churches have consequently adopted a pejorative and dismissive view of tradition, a view which the Reformers neither held nor encouraged.

In his book, The Fabric of Theology Richard Lints argues that in adopting this approach – enunciated in slogans such as ‘No creed but the Bible’ – evangelical Christians have deprived themselves of the rich theological and spiritual heritage and wisdom of the Church. As a result, their understanding of Christian existence is impoverished and, without the tutelage of the Church the Bible is often read, interpreted and applied in subjective and idiosyncratic ways.

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Just Say No: Personal Responsibility in a Fallen World
by Rev Dr Chiang Ming Shun

There is a sense in the world today that individual choices are no longer significant in the larger scale of events. The efforts of the individual appear to pale in comparison with the capabilities of large bureaucracies or huge multi-national corporations. Whether individuals recycle materials or conserve energy, for example, will no longer affect climate change; only government action will make a difference.

So hopes are pinned on collective action at the Paris talks on climate change in December 2015. An individual can do little but seek the best means of survival for oneself.

If individual action cannot change the course of events, is it safer or right to simply participate in these events, no matter how dishonourable or despicable they may be? If Christians cannot hold back the tide, should they stand their ground or should they float with the tide?

I think Christians should always speak the truth, and if that counsel or objection goes unheeded, Christians should walk away and not participate further, whatever the personal consequences threatened.

An extreme example may be helpful in framing the discussion.

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The Gay Gene Re-visited
by Dr Roland Chia

In 2014 Alan Sanders, a Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Northwestern University at Evanston, and his team conducted a study of 409 pairs of twin brothers to see if there are some linkages between homosexuality and chromosomal region Xq28.

This study – the largest to be undertaken to date – attempts to validate the results obtained by a study by Dean Hamer and his team of scientists in 1993 at the National Cancer Institute in the United States. Working with only 40 pairs of homosexual brothers, Hamer and his team discovered that 33 pairs (or 83%) had the same sequence of markers in the X chromosome region known as Xq28.

This had led Hamer to conclude that ‘One form of homosexuality is preferentially transmitted through the maternal side and is generally linked to chromosomal region Xq28’.

To their surprise, Sanders and his team – which included J. Michael Bailey, who together with Richard Pillard, conducted the famous twin study – found the same linkages between homosexuality and the chromosomal region Xq28 suggested by the earlier study by Hamer.

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Upcoming Events

  • 9 & 10 Jan - ETHOS Special Lecture: 'Is Jesus God? Challenges to the Deity of Christ'
    by Dr Andrew Loke
    Venue: Bible House Level 4 Seminar Room 
    Time: 7.30pm - 9.00pm (2 consecutive evenings)
    Click HERE to register
  • 17 Feb 2017 - ETHOS Engagement Series Public Lecture: 'Kindness: A Moral Argument for the Existence of God'
    by Dr William Wan
    Venue: Bible House Level 4 Seminar Room 
    Time: 7.30pm - 9.00pm
    Click HERE to register
  • 21 March 2017 - The ETHOS Conversation 2017 with Minister Chan Chun Sing and
    Dr Mathew Mathews
    Venue: Bible House Level 5
    Time: 7.30pm - 9.30pm
    More details coming. 

Featured Video

The ETHOS Annual Lecture 2016 is now available HERE.