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 >>
"It's time to plant the flag on school choice," Sen. Ted Cruz told a Capitol Hill briefing sponsored by the Heritage Foundation recently. Sen. Cruz told of his efforts to reach across the aisle—willing to work with the very liberal Texas Congresswoman Sheila Jackson-Lee (D) to help parents choose good schools for their kids.
Promising to make this an issue in the 2016 presidential campaign—with a knowing wink—the senator related his work when he served as an attorney at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). There, he supported serious studies of the effects of competition in the formerly regulated monopolies—telephones, railroads, and airlines.
Cruz said he wanted researchers to look not just at the customer satisfaction of those who exercised their new options and chose new carriers. He also wanted the FTC investigators to look at the consumer satisfaction of those who remained with their original carriers. What several FTC studies showed, he said, was that while the customers who left their old regulated service providers were enthusiastic about their new options, those who remained with the formerly regulated utilities reported either increased satisfaction or, in some cases, felt they were no worse off after de-regulation. more >>
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal did something supposedly "controversial." He called for a national revival.
As a Washington Post article by Rosalind S. Helderman noted: "Skipping an Iowa event that drew a number of 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls in favor of a controversial Louisiana prayer rally, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) called for a national spiritual revival and urged event attendees to proselytize on behalf of their Christian beliefs."
According to Helderman, Jindal insisted this was a religious event, not a political one. The rally was founded by American Family Association. more >>
Director Tim Chey who's behind the upcoming "David and Goliath" film has said that he's an evangelist, and promised that the movie will be different from 2014's Hollywood features "Noah" and "Exodus: Gods and Kings."
"Well first off, I'm not only a director, but also an evangelist," Chey said at a press junket. "So obviously I'm not going to make a film that's biblically not correct or does not give honor to the Lord."
The director referred to some of the criticism "Noah" and "Exodus" have received from people who've said they did not present a biblically-accurate narrative. more >>
It has been a discouraging week for evangelical Christians and others who are steadfastly devoted to protecting unborn life.
Last Thursday, as I joined with approximately 100,000 others at the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C., the ostensibly pro-life Republican leadership of the House of Representatives called off a scheduled vote on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Act. This legislation, which would prohibit abortions of unborn children past 20 weeks in their gestation in most cases, is a matter of conscience. Scientists believe that unborn children at 20 weeks are sufficiently developed so as to feel pain while abortion terminates their life. That's why most Americans, both women and men—including many who support the right to choose an abortion earlier in a pregnancy—support this bill. But in an apparent betrayal of the many pro-life evangelical and Catholic voters who just helped their party to gain control of both chambers of Congress, Republican leaders in the House decided against even offering a vote on the legislation.
Christian engagement in public policy is driven by the fundamental biblical conviction that all human life is made in the image of God and is thus to be cherished. Regardless of gender, ethnicity, legal status, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, disability, or any other qualifier, human life is sacred, and our faith requires us to advocate in particular for those who cannot speak up for themselves. Children still within their mothers' wombs certainly meet that definition. more >>