Pastors Mark Driscoll and Andy Stanley stressed the importance of preaching a sermon that carries a "sensitivity to the lost" while advising pastors on how to deliver better sermons during a web seminar hosted by The Rocket Company on Wednesday.
Mark Driscoll, founder and senior pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle, Wash., and author of the bestselling book Real Marriage, said that he thoroughly enjoys angling the "hard truth of the Bible" to those lost and struggling with their faith because he did not find a relationship with God until he was 19-years-old. "I remember what it's like to be lost," Driscoll told the "Preach Better Sermons" conference's host, Jeff Henderson, lead pastor of Gwinnett Church in Duluth, Ga.
"The whole point [of Christianity] is God is making room for more," Driscoll said, adding that we as Christians are "on a mission to see more people become God's people." more >>
Now more than 100 days into his second term in the White House, President Barack Obama was forced to assure journalists that he still has enough moxie to push his agenda through Congress after attention was drawn to his failure to inspire cooperation in a "dysfunctional" Congress.
"Mr. President, you are a hundred days into your second term. On the gun bill, you put, it seems, everything into it to try to get it passed. Obviously, it didn't. Congress has ignored your efforts to try to get them to undo these sequester cuts. There was even a bill that you threatened to veto that got 92 Democrats in the House voting yes. So my question to you is do you still have the juice to get the rest of your agenda through this Congress?" asked ABC News' Jonathan Karl during a 48-minute news conference at the White House on Tuesday.
Before highlighting the difficulties he was facing in getting his agenda through a divided Congress that has "gummed up" his efforts, however, Obama who appeared somewhat flummoxed by the question invoked Mark Twain. more >>
Evangelist Greg Laurie, who is scheduled to lead the nation in prayer at events hosted by government officials in Washington D.C. during the National Day of Prayer on Thursday, chose not to respond to gay activists who demanded that he be disinvited because he holds a biblical view that homosexuality is a sin. Instead, Laurie asked for prayer Monday in a post to his blog.
"I would appreciate your prayers as I pray for our nation. We all need to take the very real challenges facing our nation seriously," Laurie wrote. "America need God's help. We cannot back away from what He says in Scripture. The enemy will always attack when we seek to do God's work, so let's keep praying!"
Homosexual activists are labeling evangelist Greg Laurie as the "anti-gay California pastor" and are asking government officials to rescind Laurie's invitation to lead National Day of Prayer-related events in Washington, D.C. as the event's honorary chairman.
The Human Rights Campaign, the largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) advocacy group in America, contends that Laurie has a history of speaking out against LGBT Americans. And OutServe-SLDN, an association of actively serving LGBT military personnel, is calling on the Pentagon to remove the pastor from the agenda, citing "his blatantly anti-LGBT message."
"Pastor Laurie's message is out of step with what the majority of people of faith across this country believe," said Dr. Sharon Groves, director of HRC's Religion & Faith Program. "In greater numbers than ever before, people of faith are feeling compelled to speak up and organize for equality – because of their faith." more >>
While most churches say they already have or are working on having a multicultural congregation, the majority fall short when it comes to reflecting a diverse community of believers coming together during church services on Sundays, said an expert on multi-ethnic church planting and staffing.
"If you were to judge church brochures across America you would say that there is not a multicultural problem in the American church," Tony Kim, former pastor at Newsong Church in Irvine, Calif., told The Christian Post recently. Kim is the Communication Lead Associate for Slingshot Group. The Orange County-based organization specializes in church staffing and coaching pastors and leaders. "So everyone is open to it, but very few are willing to make a decision to step into that."
Kim said the Internet has created a deeper transparency between the church and the community. Someone new to a community, looking for a church to attend, can simply go to a church's website, take a look at the staff page, and make assumptions as to whether the church is representative or accepting of their ethnicity. more >>
Four years after his exit from the White House in 2009, more Americans now see former President George W. Bush's reign as a success, according to a new CNN/ORC International poll.
In January 2009, the poll showed that just 31 percent of Americans saw Bush's presidency as a success while a whopping 68 percent classified his time in office as a failure.
Numbers from the new poll conducted April 5-7, however, show that Americans now hold a warmer view of his time in office four years later. A total of 42 percent of Americans now view Bush's presidency as a success while the number of Americans who see his presidency as a failure fell to 55 percent. more >>