R. Albert Mohler Jr., the president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary recently spoke with the New York Times about Hillsong Church and criticized the movement for watering down the Gospel message.
"It's a prosperity movement for the millennials, in which the polyester and middle-class associations of Oral Roberts have given way to ripped jeans and sophisticated rock music," said Mohler Jr. to NY Times. "What has made Hillsong distinctive is a minimization of the actual content of the Gospel, and a far more diffuse presentation of spirituality."
WASHINGTON — Contrary to popular opinion and previous research, the Christian Right was not responsible for people leaving their church, a new study finds.
While those who have left the Church appear to mostly have sympathies on the left side of the political spectrum, a correlation between those who have left the Church and views of the Christian Right does not imply that the Christian Right caused them to leave, according to researchers Paul Djupe, associate professor of political science at Denison University, and Jacob Neiheisel, assistant professor of political science at University of Buffalo, SUNY.
In their paper, "The Choice That Matters: Politics in the Role of Leaving Congregations," presented Aug. 30 at the American Political Science Association Annual Meeting, Djupe and Neiheisel found that politics was related to the reason some chose to leave their congregations, but not in the way many imagine. more >>
Pastor Perry Noble of NewSpring Church took to social media on Sunday to announce that 2,335 people had been baptized throughout their 10 South Carolina campuses.
Noble and his megachurch often celebrate large baptism and salvation numbers but he says the church in general needs to do a better job at celebrating God's work, including the name and story behind each individual.
"Over and over again His people are called to celebrate who God is and what He has done," Noble wrote in a blog post. "As His church, we should refuse to be silent when He has been so good … every number has a name, every name has a story and every story matters to God." more >>
Attendance numbers in a megachurch are important regardless of the criticism they might get because churches are not meant to stay small and comfortable, says Perry Noble, senior pastor of the multi-campus NewSpring Church.
Noble said he has "caught some flak" in the past for caring about numbers too much and he admits that NewSpring hopes to attract more people than they have now because Jesus also cared about attracting multitudes.
"We're all about the numbers because we believe that every number has a name, every name has a story, and every story matters to God," Noble said in a recent blog post. "We aren't just about NewSpring being a church of thousands of people … we want all churches to be thousands strong because of the potential the church has." more >>
A Rochester, New York rapper runs the street ministry M.O.G. (Man of God) where he mentors drug kingpins and has the full support from the city's mayor based on his contributions to the area.
D-Will (David Williams), a native of the city, aspires to be more than just a musician and has already broken serious ground for God in his community. He even won the mayoral volunteer service award for efforts with M.O.G.
"The whole purpose of M.O.G. [is to unite the body of Christ]. And if we're going to do so, we have to start with the men," said D-Will to The Christian Post. Us, as men, we've taken a back seat and have gotten lazy [in the church]. You see a lot of the women doing outreach. And with that I said [us men] have to take our place, and not as a sexist, but we need to take our place back with being the leaders in our communities and homes." more >>
There is a myth of church success in America that says, "The bigger the building, the bigger the budget, the bigger the attendance, the more successful you are."
In the sight of man, this might equal success, but in the sight of God, it might have nothing to do with success. In fact, it might simply be the beautiful façade hiding all kinds of spiritual rot and decay.
To be clear, I have had the privilege of preaching in some of the finest mega-churches in America, replete with large buildings, big budgets, and multiplied thousands of attendees. And I can personally attest to the fact that some of these churches are healthy in many ways: focused on Jesus, reaching the lost, making disciples, and giving themselves to prayer. more >>