The Voice of the Martyrs, a Christian nonprofit that highlights the persecution of Christians worldwide, has drawn its attention this month to the hostilities faced by Christians in the Holy Land, and acknowledges that some might find its "position of highlighting Israel as a hostile nation" disagreeable and offensive.
"There's no persecution in the Holy Land … unless you share your faith," reads the quote on the cover of The Voice of the Martyr's February 2014 newsletter. The quote is attributed to Steven Khoury, an Arab Israeli Christian who pastors churches in Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Pastor Khoury has spoken in the media of witnessing church members being attacked because of their faith, and of losing an uncle who was martyred.
Someone once asked, "We know it's a sin to be angry about things that God isn't angry about, yet is it a sin not to be angry about things that God is angry about?"
We don't hear many sermons on the anger of God because He is "slow to anger," but it is real. The Bible tells us to consider both the "kindness and severity of God" (Rom. 11:22, ESV). Once in a while, maybe we should substitute the chorus "God is so good" with "God is so mad."
Scripture tells us, "Be ye angry, and sin not" (Eph. 4:26, KJV). In other words, there is such a thing as righteous anger toward that which is evil in the sight of God. more >>
There were some very special words spoken by quarterback Russell Wilson after his team's emphatic win in Super Bowl XLVIII, and I believe we can apply them as a word from the Lord to each of us.
Wilson, known as a committed Christian, is not the most likely candidate to play as an NFL quarterback, standing only 5'11" tall. But he says that his father, who died in 2010, always said to him as a boy, "Why not you, Russell?"
It was a lesson Wilson took to heart, sharing what he learned from his father with his team, the Seattle Seahawks. As he explained in a post-game interview, from the very beginning of the season, he said to his teammates, "Why not us?" And now they are the Super Bowl champs. more >>
Christianity began in the East, not the West, yet today Christians in the East are enduring an all-out-assault by Islamic terrorists, while Christians in the West live their lives largely oblivious to it all. This has to change.
This is no imaginary persecution; in Syria alone there have been reports of kidnappings, Christian communities intentionally displaced by militants and, worst of all, shootings and beheadings of Christians who refused to convert to Islam.
In Egypt radicals have recently destroyed dozens of churches, and the once vibrant Christian population in Iraq has been decimated. Christians in the West should stand up for those in the East out of regard for all they have given us over these thousands of years. more >>
The political mobilization of social conservative voters is far more extensive today than it was during the 1990s when the Christian Right helped the Republican Party take control of Congress, Ralph Reed, founder and chairman of the Faith & Freedom Coalition, told The Christian Post in a recent interview. Reed also spoke about new fundraising efforts among social conservative groups and the Republican "civil war."
"If anything, it is far more effective and significant today by a magnitude," he explained during the Jan. 20 interview.
One of the reasons, he said, is the availability of new technologies that enable the targeting of particular types of voters by campaign professionals. Some of the same technologies used to great effect by the Barack Obama campaign in 2012 are being used by FFC and other social conservative groups. more >>
Earlier this week it was reported that, for the third time, a Marlboro Man actor died of a smoking related disease after spending the last years of his speaking "out fiercely about the hazards of smoking." There's a biblical principle that underscores the tragic irony of these deaths, and it's summed up in one Hebrew word.
But first, a little history.
For those not old enough to remember the Marlboro Country ads, let me describe what we saw on our TV screens day and night. more >>