While most within the Southern Baptist Convention applauded the opportunity to openly discuss how Christians should respond to the growing cultural and political acceptance of gay marriage during a three-day conference hosted by the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, most in the LGBT community tracking the event were not so pleased.
Day one of a three-day conference hosted by the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Commission discussing how Christians should react to the ongoing battle between those framing the homosexual lifestyle debate as a civil rights issue and those supporting what they believe to be biblical moral values, including traditional marriage, featured plenty of fireworks – most happening online through social media.
David Gushee has recast bad scholarship as martyrdom. According to his FB post, there are only two kinds of people in the world: Those who care for same-sex attracted persons and those who don't. He feels that love for same-sex attracted persons demands that we twist Scripture to mean what it can't possibly mean, read in its historical and literary context, so that such persons can now enter into homosexual unions free of any societal reservation or stricture.
In his great Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled" (Matt.5:6). Bible commentator William Barclay once wrote that it is difficult for us to feel the full import of Christ's words in this text. Unlike the people living in Palestine at the time – people for whom hunger and thirst were a problem every day – few moderns living in a period of prosperity know anything about real hunger and thirst.
For certain, I have learned from other spouses of ministers as well. But the most frequent comments have come from pastors' wives. In this article, I share with you the lessons I've learned from pastors' wives who tell me they have found great joy and meaning in their lives. Here are seven of those lessons:
Gay marriage proponents will not allow for religious freedom of their political opponents because their belief system does not allow for the fact that dissenters can be reasonable people of goodwill, Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University, argued at the Institute on Religion and Democracy's 2014 Diane Knippers Memorial Lecture.
I believe youth ministry is facing mission-drift when it comes to missions work. Far too many of our younger youth leaders view the "missionary" as an ancient relic of a bygone era whose place is as a dimly lit picture in the foyer of a steepled church on a "Go ye into all the world" wall. Missionaries are either ignored, marginalized or viewed as a necessity to pacify older tithers in the church and keep them happy.
Although much has been reported regarding the ethics and legality behind the city of Houston's subpoena of five Houston-area pastors that had asked them to turn over all of their sermons that address homosexuality, gender identity, and the city's first openly-lesbian mayor, little attention has been given to who those five pastors actually are and the ministries they operate.
People of faith do not forfeit their freedoms of speech and religion when they go into business. Public accommodations laws that elevate homosexual behavior to a protected status have been used to punish churches, wedding photographers, bakers, florists, wedding venues, faith-based adoption agencies, and even t-shirt makers in various states for refusing to participate in or promote an event or message that violated their conscience.
If you live in one of the 11 states where a Senate race is closely contested, you may be thinking of leaving home until after the November election. One study found that voters are seeing an attack on a candidate in 3 of every 4 Senate ads. You and I can't do much about the negative ads we must endure for another two weeks. But we can do something about our response to the anger they reflect.
A 1999 U.S. Supreme Court decision could play a role in the outcome of a lawsuit over Houston Mayor Annise Parker's denial of a petition to revoke the city's new Equal Rights Ordinance.
Sharing his own story of becoming a Christian as a same-sex attracted man at the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission's National Conference Tuesday, Moody Bible professor Christopher Yuan revealed how Christian parents can best love their lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transsexual children and guide them back to the Gospel.
Christians are being urged to come together on the International Day of Prayer for the persecuted church on Sunday, with persecution watchdog group Open Doors noting that hostilities against believers this year have reached unprecedented levels in modern times.
The Christian Association of Nigerian-Americans has accused the Milford School District in Connecticut of racism for banning a 7-year-old Nigerian-American girl from attending class on suspicion of Ebola, since she had traveled to Nigeria earlier this month. The school, which was sued by the father of the girl, argued that it acted in the best interest of its students and staff.
Houston Mayor Annise Parker has announced that she will withdraw the subpoenas against five pastors who have spoken out against the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, an LGBT city ordinance that some opponents claim would allow men to use women's public restrooms.
Two of Texas's most popular megachurch pastors, T.D. Jakes of The Potter's House and Robert Jeffress of First Baptist Church, Dallas, reflected dueling positions on the state's controversial voter identification law. Jakes dismissed it as "needless" while Jeffress argued that the law is necessary ahead of Tuesday's mid-term elections.
A federal court in Florida has granted a Catholic academic institution injunctive relief from having to pay fines for refusing to comply with the federal government's birth control mandate.
A panel of Christian leaders sounded off on the current state marriage and the distorted view young adults have of its meaning at the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission's National Conference held this week in Nashville.
The founder of New Life Fellowship Church in Queens, New York, Pastor Pete Scazzaro said he knew that an 80-hour work week with no rest was one of the issues holding his church back, in the past, from experiencing change for the better.
A large Texas congregation that recently decided to disaffiliate from the largest Presbyterian denomination in the United States is suing to keep its property.
Minister Janet Lovell and her congregation at Brooklyn's God's Miracle House of Prayer, Praise and Worship held a prayer meeting over the weekend for New York Ebola patient Dr. Craig Spencer's healing and the end of the fatal virus' spread across West Africa, America and Spain.
This year's New York City Movement Day event for Christian leaders demonstrated the importance of effective partnerships between faith communities and civic leaders. Former Philadelphia Mayor W. Wilson Goode Sr., president of the Palau Association, shared the success he's witnessed from a program he founded that mentors and builds relationships with the children of incarcerated parents.
Christian writer Brian Godawa dismissed recent comments made by actor Christian Bale characterizing the biblical Moses as "schizophrenic" and "barbaric" as ignorant bigotry.
Moses was "likely schizophrenic" and "one of the most barbaric individuals," says Christian Bale, who plays Moses in "Exodus: Gods and Kings," the latest in a series of biblically-based or inspired films. Director Ridley Scott adds that in his movie, the parting of the Red Sea will be caused by an earthquake, and not by God or Moses.
Scott Carson, a writer for HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher," said he hopes his play, "The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord," will lead people to seek out God and the spiritual side of life, now, rather than later.
Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, the executive producers behind the Emmy-nominated "The Bible" series, are raising $25 million to help Christians displaced or affected by the ISIS terror group in Iraq, Syria and neighboring countries before the winter arrives.
Alternative rock musician and Dove Award winning Christian Michael Gungor of the musical collective, Gungor, is now calling for unity in Christendom months after being branded a heretic and other names like "twofold son of hell" for challenging the literal interpretation of the book of Genesis in the Bible.
Evolution is not inconsistent with God, said Pope Francis during an unveiling of a bust of his predecessor, Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI, at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences on Monday.
The Donetsk and Luhansk regions in Ukraine are set to hold separatist elections on Nov. 2 aimed at legitimizing rebel leaders who are at war with the central government. Russia has announced that it will recognize the results of the elections, while Ukraine and Western governments have spoken out against them.
As many foreign fighters are becoming disillusioned by the Islamic State's atrocious violence and are considering fleeing the conflict to return to the safety of their homeland, ISIS leaders are using death threats and imprisonment to force the fighters to stay.
The American Center for Law and Justice has started a petition asking the U.S. government to stop sending foreign aid to Pakistan, the country that recently upheld the death sentence for Christian mother Asia Bibi for blasphemy. Figures have shown that the U.S. sent close to $8 billion to Pakistan in the past five years while Bibi has been imprisoned.
Although some are praising Silicon Valley technology companies Facebook and Apple for offering to pay for their female employees to undergo egg freezing procedures that would allow them to put off childbirth until after the prime of their careers, a Christian ethicist is arguing that companies paying for such fertility treatments send the message that "mothers are not welcomed in the workplace during the prime of their careers."