There is one type of church revitalization that is more successful than all others. The church closes its doors for a season, and then re-opens, usually with a new name and new leadership. I know this approach is not an option for most of you, so I gathered data from the "other" category. This category includes churches that kept the same name and, for the most part, the same leadership.
Faith in God is an amazing gift. It starts the moment your heart says: I believe Jesus is God's Son and that He came to rescue me. That alone is an incredible truth. But I wonder how many Christians decide that's where their faith ends, when the truth is, there's so much more to believe for in this life!
I want to begin this correspondence by saying that I believe very much in what you've stood for over the years. Your organization has worked tirelessly to defend our nation's Second Amendment. Although I never took the time to join the NRA, I am a fan and believe the nation is indebted to your great work. What concerns me, however, is a recent NRA-ILA alert that was sent to your members in North Carolina that I believe smears people of faith, like me, who oppose Sunday hunting.
I have no desire to pile on with more comments about Josh Duggar, who appears to be a very serious and committed Christian who has made no excuses for the sins of his youth and who deeply desires to make a positive impact for the Lord in the years ahead. I simply want to share some redemptive thoughts.
The Bible is an awesome adventure, introducing precious eternal teachings within specific historical contexts. Through its pages readers find universal principles dramatically revealed in extraordinary human persons. God's eternal principles always matter, and so do specific timely moments of Divine action within people's lives.
I'm not interested in litigating the specifics of this case—the civil authorities and the relevant employers are now alerted to the situation. I'm more concerned that we see that this story is one more in what has been an endless cycle of stories of sexual abuse in "churched" contexts. We cannot assume that we can avoid this topic simply by making sure our doctrines are right, our values conservative, and our people sheltered from the world. If we are not addressing this issue, it is only because we are ignoring what is going on in our communities, and all too often in our pews. This requires that churches come with conviction to this question preemptively, before any specific situation arises, with a word from God.
As cultural Christianity wanes the more faithful, traditional Christianity practiced by Evangelicals will stand out in ever more vivid contrast with mere civic or "country club" Christianity in America. The shameful gap between the "orthodoxy" (sound doctrine) and "orthopraxy" (sound practice) of too many Christians has been, and is, a disgrace to the Gospel.
And no amount of calm will dissuade critics, such as the Lynn, Massachusetts, school board member who compared Gordon College to the KKK and dismissed their work among the city's poorer children out of hand. In the end, no matter how "nice" we are, our faith in Jesus and our faithfulness to His teaching will be a scandal to the world. And we are and will be treated accordingly.
Presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, announced his presidential bid at Liberty University, a well-known conservative, Christian college founded by Jerry Falwell. It's a testament to his faith and Southern Baptist roots that have kept him grounded throughout his life. But here are five facts you may not know about Cruz's personal faith.
As hundreds of thousands of Christians and religious minorities are living homeless in Iraq due to the rise of the Islamic State, a pastor from New York City says it's a "total embarrassment" that most American Christians are not willing to travel to the Kurdish region of Iraq to care for the persecuted.
The decline in Americans who identify as Christian shown by a new Pew report is mostly due to those with weak church ties no longer identifying as Christian, Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, recently wrote. Was he correct? The Christian Post contacted Pew Research Center to find out.
Two Presbyterian pastors are facing a likely death penalty as their trial in the Republic of Sudan begins. The Rev. Yat Michael and the Rev. Peter Yen Reith of the South Sudan Presbyterian Evangelical Church have been charged with espionage and blasphemy, though the Church says they are being persecuted for their Christian faith, like other pastors in the Muslim-dominated country.
The Islamic State terrorist organization proclaims it's now "infinitely" closer to buying a nuclear weapon and sneaking it inside the United States than it has ever been, a "far-fetched" claim that's designed only to spark fear of deadly chaos on American soil.
Churches should stop spending so much time fighting against abortion and gay marriage and do more about poverty and suffering, some say. There are three important points to keep in mind when you hear this claim.
A U.S. Marine officer is now unemployed after she was found guilty at a court martial of disobeying the "lawful order" of her superior officer, who ordered her to remove biblical phrases that she had taped onto her computer and desk.
A Georgia Mom is said to be leaning on her Christian faith after she was arrested and shackled because her fourth grade son had too many unexcused absences from school over the past year. The National Association of Parents is now working to vindicate her but a school official says there is more to the story.
Somerset Academy, a Nevada public charter school, has come under fire from a local pastor after a teacher prohibited his daughter from including a reference to a Bible verse in a class project that asks students to describe themselves using slides.
Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar of the reality-show "19 Kids and Counting" have continued receiving the backing of evangelical voices amidst the molestation scandal revolving their oldest son, Josh Duggar. Evangelism Explosion International, a worldwide training ministry, said that while Josh Duggar's actions as a teenager were "reprehensible," he has admitted and abandoned his wrong conduct.
Memorial Day, a federal holiday since 1967, originated from the American Civil War to honor the Union and Confederate dead. During the early 20th century the occassion has been extended to recognize all Americans who have sacrificed their life during military conflict.
At least three people are reported to have died in record-setting rainfalls and flooding in parts of Texas and Oklahoma on Saturday and Sunday, with 2,000 people forced to evacuate. The flooding caused major damage and destroyed hundreds of homes, reports said.
In a high-energy parting shot to a gathering of several thousand Spirit-filled believers at the closing session of the Empowered21 Global Congress in Jerusalem, Israel on Sunday, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, Samuel Rodriguez warned that "there is no such thing as comfortable Christianity" and urged the group to use the power God gave them to declare Him to the world.
A vicar in the Church of England has proposed a motion that would allow for a liturgical celebration of an individual's identity following gender transition, much like a baptism, and would include a renaming ceremony.
Debbie Lee, mother of the first Navy SEAL to give his life in Iraq, spoke at Ed Young Jr.'s Fellowship Church in Texas on Sunday, urging greater education on the meaning of Memorial Day and for congregants to reach out to Gold Star families.
Diarmuid Martin, the archbishop of Dublin, believes the Catholic Church needs to reestablish itself as a moral authority in Ireland after the passing of same-sex marriage by popular vote last week.
The mental plight of American servicemen returning home from war zones has been well documented by various groups and news organizations. And there are many churches and faith-based organizations that are seeking to help returning veterans cope with life after combat, offering soldiers more than a "thank you" for their service.
At the border between Israel and Jordan in east Jerusalem, a lone Jordanian soldier dressed in camouflage and armed with a gun gazed nonchalantly at a spectacle unfolding before him on the other side of the river. Christians, busloads of them, were beginning to arrive.
Eight conservative Arizona pastors have banded together to teach a sermon series to their local community titled "Progressive Christianity: Fact or Fiction," but one local United Methodist Church pastor, who holds more progressive views on the Bible, says they're trying to alienate people who don't interpret the Scriptures literally.
Hillsong UNITED's new album "Empires" released this week with a message for Christians to "be building, speaking and living for the unseen aspects of God's kingdom," according to frontman Joel Houston.
The New England Patriots were riding high on the heels of winning the franchise's fourth Super Bowl title three months ago, but dreams of a seamless off season have been deflated by controversy. Don Davis, the Patriots' linebacker-turned-chaplain, is looking at the situation from a spiritual perspective and has a message for any Christian player potentially involved in the allegations that has resulted in $1 million worth of consequences for the team.
Will "Risen," an upcoming movie about the events following the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ, prove as successful as Mel Gibson's gritty and controversial "Passion of the Christ," the top-grossing Christian movie of all time?
Chipo Chung, who stars as Mary Magdalene in the 12-part series "A.D. The Bible Continues," recently revealed her own misconceptions about her character while discussing the Bible and women's roles in the early church with The Christian Post.
Wendy Raquel Robinson is well known for portraying strong women on television shows like the hard-hitting fictional character Latasha "Tasha" Mack on the BET series "The Game," but now that the series is ending the actress is combining her faith and gifts to solidify her legacy.
Islamic State (IS) Militants in Syria seized the ancient city of Palmyra on May 20, expanding their hold in Syria that now encompasses half of the country.
An Anti-Terrorism Court in Pakistan convicted on Thursday 106 suspects believed to have taken part in the lynching of a Christian couple in November 2014. Shama and Shahzad Masih were beaten and burned to death by a Muslim mob, who accused the Christians of burning a copy of the Quran.
Bishop John McAreavey, chair of the council for Justice & Peace of the Irish Catholic Bishop's Conference, told the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade that Christian persecution is at an "unprecedented" high, pointing to statistics that show 11 Christians are killed every hour of the day.
Osama bin Laden, the founder of al-Qaeda and mastermind behind the 9/11 attacks, repeatedly warned his supporters against the formation of terror group ISIS, newly released documents by the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence revealed.
The Foundation for African Heritage, a coalition of non-governmental organizations in Nigeria, has pushed back against suggestions by a United Nations organization that the pregnant women and girls rescued from Boko Haram be allowed to undergo abortions, which is illegal in most cases under local law.
Hundreds of former Marine and military veterans have been spared from the growing suicide and divorce rates among combat veterans who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder because a professional MMA fighter's faith-based retreat taught them that their disorder is no match for God's "blueprint" for their life.
At age 12, the concerns of most American children usually revolve around schoolyard politics and the awkwardness of becoming a teenager, but for Rifqa Bary, a young girl in Ohio, a life-changing decision to secretly convert to Christianity completely consumed her world and left her living in constant fear.
In a new book for mothers titled Be the Best Mom You Can Be Marina Slayton, a Christian mother of four and wife of former U.S. diplomat Gregory Slayton, has shared tips on parenting in the 21st century. It's a time, she says, when parents and children alike are facing new challenges such as growing hostility against Christianity and a higher rate of suicide, both of which have touched her family personally.
Kay Warren, the wife of Pastor Rick Warren, and their daughter, Amy Hilliker, took the pulpit on Mother's Day at Saddleback Church, challenging the congregation to grow a deep soul as they live their lives on earth.
The author of the book When Divorce Is Right, Pastor J. Bruce Sofia, offered honest, practical remarks on divorce, including Scriptural reasons to end a marriage and what God thinks of the decision.