Pastor Derwin L. Gray of Transformation Church in Indian Land, S.C., is one of a growing number of Christian leaders in America who want to see churches do a better job of teaching discipleship in order to develop multi-ethnic congregations. The former NFL linebacker said that a key to helping Christians mature within churches that are struggling is to model after the ethnically diverse churches of the first century.
"As a pastor of an intentional, Gospel-centered, multi-ethnic church, the biggest problem is getting our people to believe that the Gospel of Grace is really as wonderfull as it is," Gray told The Christian Post via email. "Because we are ethnically, socially, economically, and generationally diverse, we are constantly teaching our people that at the heart of the Gospel, is servanthood."
He believes Christians should ask, "How can we embrace one another and learn from one another just like ethnically diverse churches of the 1st Century?" Adding, "Unity in the midst of diversity is simply breath-taking and a powerful witness to the unbelieving world." more >>
The first openly gay Episcopal bishop, Gene Robinson, made controversial remarks on ABC Australia's popular "Q&A" show on Monday, noting that Jesus lived an "alternative lifestyle" while highlighting how Jesus spent time with male disciples and that he loved them.
"Jesus had a very kind of alternative lifestyle," Robinson said, hinting at a possible sexual orientation for the Savior of the world.
When asked "What did Jesus say about homosexuality?" the Episcopal bishop responded "Jesus said nothing about homosexuality." more >>
Atheist-turned-Christian Lee Strobel, the former award-winning legal editor of The Chicago Tribune, has accepted a position as professor of Christian Thought at Houston Baptist University, it was announced Tuesday. Strobel told The Christian Post that he is excited to help equip students to make a difference for Jesus Christ.
"I'm excited about helping a new generation work through how we can naturally and effectively share the message of Jesus in the 21st century," Strobel told CP via email. "Our increasingly skeptical world presents special challenges as we seek to fulfill the Great Commission. HBU is assembling an impressive team to innovate new ways for Christians to bring God's message of redemption and hope to our neighbors, our nation and our world.
"I'm thrilled with the opportunity to encourage and equip these sharp young Christians to make a difference for Christ," he said. more >>
Pope Francis said during his homily at the chapel of the Casa Santa Marta on Tuesday that Christians should follow Christ from the heart, and not as if it's a career.
"If you follow Jesus as a cultural proposal, then you are using this road to get higher up, to have more power. And the history of the Church is full of this, starting with some emperors and then many rulers and many people, no? And even some – I will not say a lot, but some – priests, bishops, no? Some say that there are many ... but they are those who think that following Jesus is a career," the Roman Catholic Church leader said, according to Vatican Radio.
The pontiff stressed that Jesus is the way of the cross and that proclaiming his name should go "straight to the heart." more >>
Pope Francis, the leader of 1.2 billion Roman Catholics around the world, said that non-Catholics and atheists can do good and that God has redeemed everyone, in a recent speech that is making waves.
"The Lord has redeemed all of us, all of us, with the Blood of Christ: all of us, not just Catholics. Everyone! 'Father, the atheists?' Even the atheists. Everyone! And this Blood makes us children of God of the first class! We are created children in the likeness of God and the Blood of Christ has redeemed us all! And we all have a duty to do good. And this commandment for everyone to do good, I think, is a beautiful path towards peace.
"If we, each doing our own part, if we do good to others, if we meet there, doing good, and we go slowly, gently, little by little, we will make that culture of encounter: we need that so much. We must meet one another doing good. 'But I don't believe, Father, I am an atheist!' But do good: we will meet one another there," the pope said during Mass on Wednesday at the Domus Santae Martae in the Vatican. more >>
In case you missed it, May is National Masturbation Month.
Yes, there is such a thing.
Founded by Good Vibrations, a sex shop in San Francisco, May was chosen as National Masturbation Month in 1995 to protest against the firing of the Surgeon General, Joycelyn Elders, who suggested that young people should be taught masturbation in their sex education classes. Since 1995, many events have been created to celebrate what Good Vibrations said in its annual press release is a "necessary reminder that self-satisfaction is a healthy, accessible form of pleasure engaged by almost everyone." more >>