The number of Christians and the number of Christians becoming involved in their culture are both growing significantly, according to an annual radio address by the most listened-to Presbyterian minister in America.
Before a nationwide audience, Dr. D. James Kennedy, pastor of the 10,000-member Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, had his Spiritual State of the Union 2006 aired Sunday. While the Constitution requires the President to deliver a State of the Union address each year, Kennedy has been taking up the mantle to deliver a spiritual state of the union since 1978 that is timed to coincide with the President's address.
The "Spiritual State of the Union message, in my opinion, happens to be more important since that's the foundation upon which the nation is based," said Kennedy during the broadcast.
In this year's address, Kennedy acknowledged the good along with the bad, but emphasized on the positive trends that indicate that Christians are making a difference in American culture.
"We have seen the number of Christians in Washington increase enormously recently. In 1990, in the House of Representatives, they could find only five born-again Christians. In 2000, there were 100 such people in the Congress. In 2002, I think it was 125," said Kennedy. "I haven't got the figures on 2004, but it's growing, and Christians and decency and morality and the kinds of things that made this nation great in the beginning, are beginning to be felt again in America."
The Coral Ridge ministry Evangelism Explosion is another example of growth that he cited. Used in every nation and territory, the Presbyterian pastor credited the ministry with having led 25 million people to Christ from the period 2000-2006.
In the address, Kennedy also cited two prominent examples from pop culture as "encouraging" NBC's cancellation of television show, The Book of Daniel, and dropping a proposed cruci-fixins segment from an episode of Will & Grace that would've aired before Good Friday.
"So there is, I think, the beginning of a real spiritual awakening in this country," Kennedy said. "Oh, there's a lot yet to be done; there's no doubt about that. But things are a-changing and more and more Christians are waking up and getting involved. I hope that you are determined this year to be one of them."
Kennedy's presentation of the Gospel is heard via television, radio, and Internet throughout the world. After delivering his messages at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, the sermons are carried on nearly 600 TV stations and 500 radio outlets nationwide and nearly 200 nations.