Stan Mitchell, pastor of Gracepointe Church, a diverse congregation in Franklin, Tennessee, announced this month that the leadership of his church have decided to fully support the inclusion of gays in their church, including the right to marry same-sex partners.
In an emotional sermon on Jan. 11 first highlighted by Time magazine, Mitchell explained that the decision was the result of a two- and-a-half year evolution on sexual orientation and gender identity. The announcement in the video below, begins at 44:40.
"Some two- and-a-half years ago, we were thrust, I believe, by a divine wind into a prayerful, mindful, painful, invigorating, careful, and hopeful conversation regarding sexual orientation and gender identity," explained Mitchell in the run-up to the announcement to his congregation. more >>
Influential megachurch Pastor Rick Warren and 49 other Catholic and Evangelical scholars and intellectuals have signed their names to an eight-page declaration that opposes society's growing acceptance of same-sex marriages and labels homosexual unions as a "graver threat" to marriage than widespread divorce and cohabitation because it is a parody of marriage.
The declaration entitled "The Two Shall Become One Flesh: Reclaiming Marriage" was written by the alliance called Evangelicals and Catholics Together and is set to be published in the March edition of the religion journal First Things.
Although the Catholics and Evangelicals involved in the writing of this overarching declaration against sexual sin still hold differences when it comes to the legitimacy of divorce and use of contraception, their differences were set aside as they focused on tackling what they consider to be the biggest problem facing marriage in society today. more >>
This Christmas baby was the gift of a lifetime for this mother. Christina's son Judson was a blessing in disguise from the moment he was born. But, after a few months, she realized something had been wrong with him after stumbling from time to time.
After realizing there was an issue with Judson, his mother took him to the hospital praying for the best. When they diagnosed him with Leukodystrophy, Christina knew it was the worst possible thing that could have happened. Five months after getting this terrible news, Judson passed away at only 2 and a half years of age. A heart-wrenching loss for a any mother to deal with, and nearly impossible to recover from. But, this mother would never let the loss of her son not be remembered.
Christina realized God had a plan for her family's tragedy. She used the death of her son to inspire others to live life to the fullest and created a fundraiser in his name to raise money and helping doctors finds cures for these terrible diseases. Judson's name lives on forever and has help inspire all those with similar diseases. more >>
Neal and Danette Childs knew they were in danger. From their compound in Niger's capital city they could see three churches burning. The smoke was filling their home.
"We immediately started packing a trunk, putting in our valuables, our documents, and we loaded up the car," Neal told me. "There were concerns our family would be targeted."
"Our immediate response — there is that little bit of panic," he said during a telephone conversation from the West African nation of Niger. more >>
A survey examining Americans' views on Christian theology revealed that, among even self-identified Christians, there is confusion or disagreement about the Holy Spirit. Is the spirit a force or a personal being? Is the spirit present in only Pentecostal Christians, or in all believers? According to one theologian, the spirit is both a force and a being — and is present in everyone, not just Christians.
The overall findings of the survey, conducted by LifeWay Research and commissioned by Ligonier Ministries, might not be that earth-shattering to some — because, well, Christians and Americans in general believe differently about the Bible on many points. But what "The State of Theology" survey reveals about Evangelical Christians' beliefs about the historical doctrine of the Trinity might be surprising.
While 71 percent of Americans believe in the Trinity, the concept that God exists as three persons (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), 64 percent of them think the Holy Spirit is a force. Among those identified as Evangelical: 59 percent of them say the Holy Spirit is a force; 31 percent say the Holy Spirit is a person; and 10 percent just aren't sure either way (LifeWay). more >>
Sadie Robertson, who stars on A&E's "Duck Dynasty," recently shared photos from her all-female Bible study before encouraging her thousands of followers to spread only love.
The 17-year-old model revealed photos of a small group of six girls who gathered with their Bibles to discuss Scripture last week. Surrounded by a wide variety of candy and colored markers, Robertson and the rest of the group focused on Mark 12:31's command: Love thy neighbor.
"Gr8 bible study with gr8 people," Robertson shared on Instagram on Jan. 19. "I encourage you to make something special for someone who is special to you. let them know how much you appreciate them. pass on love. love your neighbor as yourself. love is contagious. you never know how much a little thing can encourage someone." more >>