NEW YORK — Although Luis Palau has always made it a rule to try to avoid publicly weighing in on political issues, the popular Argentinian evangelist wasn't able to avoid stepping into it a few years ago when he made "regretful" remarks about religious freedom in China. But the 80-year-old minister, who has preached to millions around the world, recently doubled-down on his rule of avoiding potential hot-button issues in his official capacity as an evangelist.
"I regret some of the remarks I made to reporters during my recent trip to China. It's not my role as an evangelist to suggest that churches in China should register. My role is to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ," Palau said in a statement after insisting nearly a decade ago in an interview that underground churches in China, sometimes targeted in state crackdowns, needed only to register with the communist-led government to "receive greater freedom and blessings from the government."
The respected evangelist also said in his 2005 interview with reporters in Beijing that "some reports of persecution in China were unjustified." Palau's remarks garnered swift rebuke from some persecution watchdog and human rights organizations, such as China Aid and Voice of the Martyrs. more >>
A Baptist pastor in Tennessee whose young congregation is focused on evangelizing the state's growing Islamic community has stated that the great obstacle to evangelizing Muslims is the American Church's apathy on the matter.
Raouf Ghattas, founder and pastor of the Arabic Baptist Church in Murfreesboro, has sought to evangelize among the city's growing Muslim population.
"Many are apathetic, afraid, or just not sure how to approach a Muslim in witness. We work to train churches and individuals in how to reach out to Muslims, but they still have to be the ones to be active," said Ghattas to The Christian Post on Friday. more >>
As a new, growing church plant with a four and a half year history, I am often asked about planting churches, pastoring, and choosing leaders. Among these questions, choosing the lead pastor often arises. This will be the focus of the article. In general, those considering the pastorate must…
…have a working knowledge of the truth: "He should be sure of what he means to say…and be ready to stake body and soul, goods and reputation, on its truth" (Martin Luther). In addition to studying and exegetical disciplines, one should read the Bible through once a year. I cannot emphasize this enough. The "primary" calling of a pastor is preaching and teaching. We must have a working knowledge of the Scriptures.
…have a desire to read. Many entering the ministry fail to cultivate a consistent devotional life. Lead pastors should be well versed in church history and all aspects of theology. Motivation to read should come from a desire to learn, not to impress. more >>
Well, that didn't take long. Wheaton's Fall 2014 hire Julie Rodgers, a "gay celibate Christian," has resigned from her post amid her shifting viewpoint on same-sex relationships , as reported by Eric Teetsel, Executive Director of the Manhattan Declaration. Rodgers, who served as a ministry associate for spiritual care, wrote and spoke often of her commitment to honor God's prescription for sexuality and marriage by remaining celibate. Now Rodgers says her commitment "has evolved through the years."
On her personal blog, Rodgers explains:
Though I've been slow to admit it to myself, I've quietly supported same-sex relationships for a while now. When friends have chosen to lay their lives down for their partners, I've celebrated their commitment to one another and supported them as they've lost so many Christian friends they loved. more >>
If we are really going to see a gospel-based moral and cultural revolution, then we must be a spiritual army, and if we are really going to be a spiritual army, then we must be a people who are submitted to authority.
Otherwise, there will be a revolution, but not a Jesus revolution. It will be a revolution of the flesh, a revolution of rebellion, of pride, of self-will, of independence, of retaliation, of carnal anger – of everything other than the Spirit of God.
It will not be born in heaven, but it will be "earthly, unspiritual, of the devil" (Jacob [James] 3:14). It could even, God forbid, lead to violent confrontations. more >>
About one hundred years ago a terrible massacre was taking place against Christians. It was the Armenian massacre, where literally hundreds of thousands of Christians were slaughtered just for being Christian by Muslims in what is now Turkey.
It is eerily similar to the crisis of today, where ISIS and Boko Haram and other radical Islamic groups are killing Christians just for being Christian. Masterminds of ISIS are scheming of new sadistic ways to kill their enemies, to videotape it, and post it on the Internet.
The 20th century was the most anti-Christian century on record. It was also the bloodiest century on record. In fact, the term genocide was coined in the 20th century. more >>