Dear Mr. Jenner,
You probably don't know who I am and certainly have no obligation to read on. Even so, I pray you will. As the great Olympic champion God gifted you to be, you were an inspiration to me as a boy and endured as such when I grew into adulthood and professional athletics. I hope you will serve to inspire many more generations of young people.
As it stands now, however, you instead appear poised to lead them astray. I implore you to reverse course. more >>
Christian singer/songwriter Jonny Diaz faced a decision this past fall that could have dramatically altered his career in music. After six years in Christian Contemporary Music, and the 2010 #1 hit song "More Beautiful You," Diaz suddenly was getting offers to sign with Country labels.
The reason was the success of a Country song Diaz had written for fun, but had never expected to record, called "Thank God I Got Her." The song, which talks about how Diaz doesn't "get" his wife's idiosyncrasies, but is glad he "got" her, didn't really fit the usual Christian radio format. So, Diaz intended to pitch the song to a Country musician to record.
But then, he started playing the song for live audiences and "the response was just killer," Diaz said. "People kept coming up after shows and asking what CD the song was on." So, Diaz recorded "Thank God I Got Her" and released it to Christian radio stations – where it bombed, reportedly because it was "too Country." more >>
What is the greatest moral crisis in America today? Is it sexual anarchy? Abortion? Human trafficking? Substance abuse? Something else?
As serious as these issues are, I believe the greatest moral crisis in America is the lack of the consciousness of God, beginning in the Church. It is imperative that we recover the awareness of the awesomeness of God, and that means preaching and teaching on His holiness, His justice, and His judgment.
These are major themes of the New Testament, from Jesus to Paul to Peter to John, and we do well to return to those themes in our ministry of the Word. more >>
NASCAR Hall-of-Famer Darrell Waltrip drove home the gospel message last week at the 63rd National Prayer Breakfast. To a crowded room, he shared his testimony about how a serious accident "knocked him conscious" of his spiritual state of being lost. In a moving testimony, Waltrip said he asked Jesus to forgive his sins and become his Savior, a decision that transformed his life. President Obama followed the NASCAR legend on the program, and the cautionary flags came out almost immediately. "We see faith driving us to do right," he said. "But we also see faith being twisted and distorted, used as a wedge -- or worse, sometimes used as a weapon… We see ISIL -- a brutal, vicious death cult that, in the name of religion…" If the President had stopped there or juxtaposed the present fruit of Islam with that of Christianity, we could have ended on a high note. But he didn't.
In a speech that I can only describe as surreal, the President went on to liken Christians to the monsters behind ISIS and American racism. "And lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. In our home country, slavery and Jim Crow all too often was justified in the name of Christ." First of all, the crusades were almost a thousand years ago. ISIS is killing today. What's more, every true follower of Christ condemns the acts of barbarism committed under the mask of religion -- in medieval or American history. The teachings of Christianity do not call for, nor do they condone, brutality or bigotry. Can the same be said of Islam? Are Muslims around the world denouncing the ruthless and inhumane actions of ISIS?
Speaking under the influence of political correctness, the President missed an opportunity to address the growing threat that radical Islam presents to the world. He could have challenged the leaders from the 100-plus countries who were present last week to stand united against this scourge. Let's be clear: "faith" isn't being used as a "weapon," as he suggested. Islamists are using weapons to kill innocent women and children. And many of those innocent women and children happen to be Christians -- the same victims the President conveniently glosses over when he talks about persecution of other religious groups. Unfortunately, theirs is a plight that continues to be a footnote in the administration's long chapter of religious liberty failures. While the President did manage to mention American pastor Saeed Abedini, who has been tortured for two years in an Iranian prison for his faith, he has yet to publicly demand his release. And Pastor Abedini is a U.S. citizen! more >>
Former Senator Rick Santorum, who is exploring a run for president in 2016, gave a rousing interview on Wednesday, warning Christians that they will face persecution for standing up for Christ.
Santorum gave the interview after the screening of "One Generation Away," a new docudrama that suggests Americans may be only one generation away from facing religious persecution. In it, he addressed the situation future American Christians may be dealing with for living their lives for Christ.
"I know how these stories end," Santorum told CNS News, "and if you're a believer you all know how it ends. And we know the good guys win, truth wins. And so your job is to just focus on being faithful, standing by the truth, fighting for the truth, understanding the world is broken, and that they will hate you and persecute you because you stand for Him and what He taught. And that's a great blessing, not something to be avoided but something to be embraced." more >>
Leading Evangelist Franklin Graham took to Facebook on Thursday to respond to President Barack Obama's implication at the National Prayer Breakfast that ISIS' brutality abuse of religious minorities in Iraq and Syria is similar to that of Christian brutality over 1,000 years ago.
In a post on his public Facebook page, Graham, the son of world-renowned Evangelist Billy Graham and the current president of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and humanitarian organization Samaritan's Purse, argued that just because people have used Jesus' name for "evil" purposes in the past does not mean that Jesus actually called on his followers to do such horrible acts, like the Crusades.
"Today at the National Prayer Breakfast, the President implied that what ISIS is doing is equivalent to what happened over 1000 years ago during the Crusades and the Inquisition," Graham wrote. "Mr. President — Many people in history have used the name of Jesus Christ to accomplish evil things for their own desires. But Jesus taught peace, love and forgiveness." more >>