The reality is there are two major trends taking place related to sermon length. I have been following these trends through anecdotal information and social media polls for three years. There are growing numbers of respondents who believe sermons should be longer. There are also growing numbers of respondents who believe sermons should be shorter. And there aren't many people in the middle of those two divergent views.
Christians around the world are changing their social media avatars to the arabic letter "n." In so doing, these Christians are reminding others around them to pray, and to stand in solidarity with believers in Iraq who are being driven from their homes, and from their country, by Islamic militants. The Arabic letter comes from the mark the ISIS militants are placing on the homes of known Christians. "N" is for "Nazarene," those who follow Jesus of Nazareth. Perhaps it's a good time to reflect on why Nazareth matters, to all of us. The truth that our Lord is a Nazarene is a sign to us of both the rooted locality and the global solidarity of the church.
What actually works is a form of prohibition. Don't misunderstand me; I'm not calling for a return to the kind of prohibition before 1933 in the United States. Nevertheless, it goes without saying that all forms of restrictive alcohol measures in state and federal law are an acknowledgement that alcohol is not an ordinary commodity. It poses a significant risk to the public's health and prohibitive determinations are necessary. This is especially true for those in their formative years.
Dozens of Christian faith leaders from the greater New York area united at the Faith Exchange in New York City on Friday to express their support for Israel in its current conflict with the Palestinian Hamas group. Israel and Hamas are currently involved in a violent and ongoing clash that one religious leader attending Friday's event described as one of the "defining issues of our time."
The U.S. pastor who took it upon himself to fly to Sudan to meet with and pray for imprisoned persecuted Christian mother Meriam Ibrahim was among those celebrating her freedom Thursday. He credited the 27-year-old married mother's release to the outcry of people from around the world who were captivated by her steadfast Christian witness in the face of impending death.
President Barack Obama's LBGT workplace discrimination order has revealed a rift among Democrats over whether religious freedom trumps gay rights. The Republican-controlled House of Representatives could exploit that rift by bringing the Senate-passed Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which has a religious exemption, to the floor for a vote.
These barriers can keep the power we need from being manifested in our lives and country. James 5:16 tells us, "The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." But is unrighteousness the only barrier to powerful and effective prayer? I am certain there are other barriers as well. Let me identify six.
Often, when a sports team is losing and the game is almost over, fans will start to head for the exits. Sometimes they want to beat the traffic home, but often, they're just disgusted with the way the game is going and can't watch any more. It's interesting to note the human movement: when the team seems sure to lose, the people move away, literally leaving the arena. If a miracle happens, and the team looks like it might win, they come streaming back.
In the summer of 1970, the American Southeast baked when eleven states faced federal enforcement of school desegregation, but that social scorcher will be small compared to the border crisis sizzling now from Texas to California. Believe it or not, President Richard Nixon's handling of the challenge 44 years ago could point the way to the best solution.
According to the Department of Homeland Security, the number of unaccompanied children trying to enter the United States illegally has nearly doubled in less than a year. U.S. Customs and Border Protection reports detaining about 50,000 children since last October, with thousands more crossing undetected.
At a Wednesday House committee hearing, experts debated whether or not a special counsel should be appointed to investigate claims that the Internal Revenue Service was unlawfully targeting conservative groups.
The Evangelical Christian community erupted in collective grief Wednesday as word spread online that the beloved 15-year-old son of Ergun Caner, renowned Christian author, Baptist minister and president of Brewton-Parker College in Mount Vernon, Georgia, reportedly committed suicide Tuesday.
The Council of Christian Colleges and Universities has named Shirley Hoogstra as its seventh president, following a tumultuous year under which they fired her predecessor after serving less than a year on the job. Hoogstra, a former practicing attorney turned vice president of student life at Calvin College, will become the first female to hold this position.
Faith & Freedom Coalition Chairman Ralph Reed said Tuesday that North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper's decision to not defend the state's law banning same-sex marriage violates his fiduciary responsibilities to the state's residents.
Several months before "Left Behind" opens in theaters, a prominent Christian apologist is reminding the American church that the movie's claims about the rapture are false.
Calling it an "undue burden" on a woman's right to abortion, a federal court on Tuesday, blocked a Mississippi law requiring doctors at abortion clinics to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. The requirement would have effectively shut down the state's sole abortion clinic – the Jackson Women's Health Organization - as only one of the three doctors there had been able to meet the basic requirements.
Facing mounting turmoil and disenchantment among his flock, the Rev. Kevin R. Johnson, prominent senior pastor of the storied 103-year-old Bright Hope Baptist Church in North Philadelphia who famously criticized President Barack Obama for failing black Americans last year, will effectively resign his post on Oct. 31.
The first official trailer for "Fifty Shades of Grey," a film based on the bestselling E. L. James book series, hit the internet last week like a tidal wave, spawning various reaction videos and a media frenzy.
Hope Hilley Carpenter, wife of Pastor Ron Carpenter, has addressed for the very first time their marital woes that were made public last year before the congregation she and her husband founded over 20 years ago. Mrs. Carpenter repented and apologized to members of Redemption World Outreach Center, but did not cite the specific sins or behavior she regards as stumbling blocks to her husband, family and church community.
Pastor Kong Hee's City Harvest Church, one of the biggest megachurches in Singapore, has celebrated its 25th year anniversary despite the ongoing high-profile trial of Kong and five other church officials accused of misusing millions in church funds.
The Episcopal Church celebrated the 40th anniversary of the denomination's ordination of the first women as priests Tuesday. In 1974, 11 women were ordained at the Church of the Advocate in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Hillsong NYC Pastor Carl Lentz has said that his church does not use the word "religion" because he finds it to be outdated, and says that he prefers the term "relationship with God."
U.S. bobsledder and Olympic hurdler Lori "Lolo" Jones has shared openly of her struggles in prior years of trying to accomplish things by her own strength, instead of relying completely on God. "That exhausted me. It broke me," she confessed to fans, moving many of them to reveal their own struggles.
Jeremy Lin, formerly of the Houston Rockets, marked his introduction with the Los Angeles Lakers this week by joining a nonprofit ministry in feeding the homeless of the City of Angels' infamous Skid Row. He also delivered a message to Lakers fans, promising that he would play for God and play aggressively.
Sway Calloway interviewed Lecrae this week as promotion for his upcoming album Anomaly and asked a few off color questions during the segment.
"Preachers of LA," the faith-based reality show that sparked controversy and critical debate over its flashy season one premiere, returns to the Oxygen network next month with what appears to be more sobering developments in the ministries and lives of its star Christian ministers.
A pastor's wife from Tulsa, Oklahoma and former competitive gymnast revealed her new look after losing over half of her body weight on Tuesday night's episode of ABC's "Extreme Weight Loss."
The recent downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 over Ukraine could be classified as a "war crime" due to the 298 civilians deaths of those on board the flight, a United Nations spokeswoman announced this week.
The end of Christianity in Iraq could be "very near" according to Canon Andrew White, the vicar of the only Anglican church in Iraq, as Islamic militants continue their attacks of Christians and the central government.
Chinese police in the city of Wenzhou have removed a cross from a local church in their most recent crackdown on Christianity in the Asian country, specifically in the Zhejiang province.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has criticized both Israel and Hamas and urged them to stop the fighting after a shell destroyed a U.N. school on Thursday in Gaza, killing 16 people and injuring over 200.
A former Microsoft worker created a new app for iOS that brings the biblical account of David to life in a way that has never been done before.
"The Giving Pledge," made public by Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett four years ago, has already attracted 127 billionaires who have pledged to give at least half of their wealth to philanthropic causes.