Pope Francis has hit back against those who say that focusing on the poor is a sign of communism, by stating in a speech that caring for the less fortunate is part of the Christian Gospel. He also said that if "faith doesn't reach your pockets, it is not a genuine faith."
Vatican Radio reported that Francis made the comments during mass on Tuesday in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he said: "Oh, this priest speaks about poverty too much, this bishop talks about poverty, this Christian, this sister talk about poverty. Well, they're a bit communist, aren't they?"
The Roman Catholic Church leader asserted that "poverty is at the very center of the Gospel: If we remove poverty from the Gospel, no one would be able to understand anything about the message of Jesus." more >>
Jewish author Avi Lipkin claimed Monday that "all" churches in America have been infiltrated by Muslim spies who frequently pretend to have found Christ but are really looking to provide intelligence to radical Muslims who will try to kill all Jews and Christians when jihad is ordered upon the U.S.
Lipkin, who has authored a number of books critical of radical Islam, frequently speaks at Christian churches around the U.S. to emphasize the importance of unity between the Jewish and Christian communities in standing against the advance of radical Islam. Lipkin, who immigrated from New York to Israel in 1968, spoke at this week's Future Conference held at Skyline Church in San Diego where he proclaimed that the world is facing the "most interesting" biblical period since the days of Jesus Christ and contended that the coming of the Messiah is just around the corner.
"We are realizing with our own very eyes fulfillment of more Bible prophecy than in any other generation in 2,000 years," Lipkin asserted. "I believe the Messiah is in our time and I believe Israel will realize its borders." more >>
Using Creflo Dollar's $65 million Gulfstream jet as one example of exploiting the poor, NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar slammed prosperity gospel advocates, comparing them to indulgence peddlers made famous during the Church's Reformation era.
"Like the professional pardoners of the Middle Ages who pedaled indulgences to the highest bidders, they pervert teachings for profit. These are the people that the word shame was invented to describe," Abdul-Jabbar asserted.
Scientists are praising Pope Francis' upcoming encyclical on climate change, a major written work calling on Christians to care for the planet and reverse harmful effects, which is set to be released on Thursday.
"The encyclical is going to go out to over 1 billion Catholics — that's a way of getting a message across to a segment of society that the scientific community could never do," said Jeff Kiehl of National Center for Atmospheric Research, according to USA Today. "I mean it's just unbelievable."
NASA climatologist Gavin Schmidt added: more >>
California megachurch pastor Greg Laurie shared with the congregation of his Harvest Church on Sunday what Jesus taught about Israel in the end times, and said that the United States needs Israel more than Israel needs America.
Israel is a tiny little piece of land, and yet we hear so much about the country in news, Laurie said in his message, titled, "What Jesus taught about Israel in the end times."
"Israel is at the eye of the hurricane of the great events of the end times," he stated. more >>
Christians have lost the art of persuasion and they need to get it back, Christian author Os Guinness argues in his new book, Fool's Talk: Recovering the Art of Christian Persuasion.
Balaam's ass is the patron saint of apologetics, Guinness likes to say, because the story from Numbers 22 illustrates that the key to being a good apologist is obedience to God.
In the story, Balaam is a prophet being disobedient to God. Several times, his donkey tries to turn him around, to put him on the correct path, but he is still resistant. Balaam only corrected himself when, in verse 28, "the Lord opened the mouth of the donkey," and the donkey talked to him. more >>