A false teacher can be anyone in a position of spiritual authority or claiming to be. Wolves don't often attack wolves, but they do go after sheep. They bring destructive teachings and lies into the church, often, by telling people what they want to hear (cf. Jeremiah 23). They provide layers of truth mixed with error, but even a broken clock is right twice a day.
Jesus said, "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits" (Matthew 7:15-16b).
"Beware" means to be on alert…to discern what is being said. False teachers take advantage of the fact that many people are not well educated in fundamental biblical truths. To detect a counterfeit, one must first know what the original looks like. It's impossible to gain a clear picture of absolute truth without going directly to God's Word. Unless one is firmly grounded in God's Word and led by His Spirit, one can easily be led astray. more >>
Contrary to recent reports based on studies that emphasize the growth of non-religious people in the United States and the decline of church attendance, Christianity in America is not dying, according to a new survey that examines the nuances and complexities of how people self-identify with faith by Waco,Texas-based Baylor University.
Scholars from Baylor University's Institute of Religion said during a recent conference that reports highlighting the departure of millenials from the organized religion of their parents are being greatly exaggerated.
"There's a story some people want to report — that religion is on life support — but it's just not true," said Byron Johnson, professor of the social sciences at Baylor and founding director of the Institute for Studies of Religion. more >>
A new Pew survey shows the number of Americans identifying as Christians declining from 78% to 70% since 2007. The religiously unaffiliated have increased from 15 to almost 23%. Non-Christian religionists have increased from about 5 to 6%.
Secularists and their fellow travelers are ecstatic. The secular utopia about which John Lennon crooned is impending. Christianity is finally dying! Some Christians who relish doom are bracing for collapse and the End Times. Other Christians more thoughtfully point out the survey reflects self-identification, not practice.
Some surveys show church attendance steady across decades, as are rates of core Christian beliefs. Evangelicals are the one Christian group to have grown numerically and almost retained their population percentage, now at 25%. A growing majority of Protestants are now Evangelical, and half of all Christians now identify as Evangelical or born-again. Liberal Mainline Protestantism unsurprisingly continues its fast decline, dropping from 18 to under 15%. Catholics dropped from about 24% to 21%. more >>
Russell Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, responded to the new Pew Study survey documenting the decline of Christians and rise of religiously unaffiliated, by calling the "increasing strangeness" of Christianity "good news" for the church.
"Christianity isn't normal anymore. It never should have been. The increasing strangeness of Christianity might be bad news for America, but it's good news for the church. The major newspapers are telling us today that Christianity is dying, according to this new study, but what is clear from this study is exactly the opposite: while mainline traditions plummet, evangelical churches are remaining remarkably steady," Moore said in a statement.
He added that the report shows that there are more honest atheists in America today, and that they are rejecting what Moore called "almost-Christianity," or traditions that "jettison the historic teachings of the church as soon as they become unfashionable." more >>
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama spoke Tuesday about the importance of faith and family during a panel discussion for the Catholic-Evangelical Summit on Overcoming Poverty at Georgetown University.
"Faith-based groups across the country and around the world understand the centrality and the importance of [poverty] in a intimate way — in part because these faith-based organizations are interacting with folks who are struggling and know how good these people are, and know their stories, and it's not just theological, but it's very concrete. They're embedded in communities and they're making a difference in all kinds of ways," Obama said.
The panel was moderated by The Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne and also included Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute, and Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam. more >>
In the delivery of a warning from God she says almost made the hair stand up on the back of her neck when she got it, Billy Graham's Daughter, Anne Graham Lotz, said God's judgement is coming to America and "it's going to be ugly."
"This past spring, Joel Rosenberg and I taught through the book of Joel as we led a prophecy seminar at The Billy Graham Training Center at The Cove. It was my privilege to give the first two messages that covered Joel 1:1 through Joel 2:17. The impact on me was profound," wrote Lotz in a post on her website on April 30.
"Both times, when I stepped off of the platform, I knew God had spoken. The messages almost made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. Why? Because God was clearly warning that His judgment is coming on America and on our world, and it's going to be ugly. I knew it then, and I know it now," she noted. more >>