It's messy. That's the only way I can describe to you the public debate between traditional and same-sex marriage. Trust me. Working for a pro-family non-profit in Washington D.C., I learned fast that death threats and harassing phone calls from gay activists were the norm.
Inside church sanctuaries, a similar struggle is brewing. Oh, there are less death threats to be sure. But the struggle to preserve marriage and sexuality between on man and one woman is just as messy on the inside as it is on the outside of our churches.
We can't ignore the "gay Christian" debate. For too long, I've seen pastors avoid the "politically charged" same-sex marriage issue. From the pulpit, they say things like, "Don't worry about marriage out there. Just defend God's design for marriage by living out yours well." These pastors have good intentions. But in their dodge ball efforts to not offend liberal members of their congregations, they have created a gaping hole in theological understanding of sexuality and marriage, especially among young Christians. more >>
A report released by the Southern Baptist Commission this week suggests that the country's largest denomination outside of the Roman Catholic Church is struggling to bring in new members from the Millennials and younger age group demographic.
According to the Pastors' Task Force on SBC Evangelistic Impact & Declining Baptisms, 25 percent of Southern Baptist churches baptized no new members in 2012, while 60 percent reported no baptisms for youth between the ages of 12 and 17. Also indicative of the denomination's struggle to attract Millennials were the 80 percent of churches which reported baptizing one or zero adults between 18 and 29.
Ed Stetzer, the President of the Southern Baptist-linked Lifeway Research, who worked on the team headed by Al Gilbert, the Vice President of Evangelism at the North American Mission Board which created the report, suggested the denomination had not focused enough on intentionally reaching non-Christians. more >>
In the American educational system, from first grade all the way up through high school, we're taught to memorize information, and then take a test. If we pass the intellectual test, then we move on to the next grade.
We've transferred this learning pattern to Christianity. We're trained to learn Bible concepts, principles and doctrines intellectually. And the more Biblical information we know, the greater disciples we are deemed to be.
I think this is killing the church in America, just like it hurt the Pharisees. more >>
Jase Robertson, who's best known for his sarcastic one liners in the reality TV show "Duck Dynasty," gets serious about faith by sharing his life's experiences in hunting, evangelism, marriage and parenting in his new book, Good Call: Reflections on Faith, Family, and Fowl.
Much like his Uncle Si, Jase maintains the humorous approach he's known for as he talks about how he managed to save his virginity until marriage, and the bag of pot a young man brought to a Bible study that he and his wife, Missy, hosted at their first home.
In the book, Jase is open about the anger he felt toward his father who had abandoned him and his two brothers; the uniting power of salvation when his father gave his life over to Jesus Christ; how his father's advice to R-U-N came in handy when a girl offered to let him undress her at a time when he was striving to save his virginity until marriage; and how the birth of his daughter, Mia, has enabled him and Missy to help other parents who have a child born with a cleft lip and soft palate. more >>
An organization focused on translating the Gospel into every language, plans to take Bible translation efforts to the Southern African nation of Angola despite dangerous conditions that could impede translators from reaching remote areas.
Hidden land mines cover a vast area of the country making travel extremely dangerous. However, Wycliffe Associates is currently working with linguistic experts to launch their initiative after discovering that 50 groups in the country do not have Bibles.
"These people have been ravaged by brutality and poverty," Bruce Smith, president and CEO of Wycliffe Associates said in statement. "They live in daily danger of stumbling onto hidden land mines. But worst of all, many have never even heard a word of scripture in their own language." more >>
Nick Vujicic recently gave his message of hope in Jesus during the weekend services at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California.
You can hear his message here: http://saddleback.com/visit/locations/onlinecampusmore >>