HOUSTON – In an impassioned sermon during his first opportunity to address the Southern Baptist Convention after being re-elected as president for a second term, Fred Luter, Jr. said the time for debating and arguing over theological differences among church members could be used instead to reach out to non-believers.
"Because of our love for the Scripture we've had some differences of opinion, but the problem is that while we are arguing about these topics, lost men, women, boys, and girls are dying and going to hell every single day," said Luter on the first night of the denomination's 2013 annual meeting.
"While we are arguing about these topics and debating about these topics, America is going to hell every day," he continued. "Time is running out. We do not have time for debate. We do not have time for arguing. The world needs to know that Jesus saves … for the sake of those who are lost." more >>
A new documentary about people's claims of seeing the Virgin Mary, "The Triumph," is scheduled for release in five countries and two dozen U.S. cities as Catholic believers help the film gain steam.
"The film is having a major impact on dialogue during the Year of Faith," Sean Bloomfield told the South African radio show, Radio Veritas. "People are so amazed that such a strong message of hope can also be so real -- it's really touching the audience in ways that I never anticipated."
The filmmakers are hoping the audience can view the movie with an open mind, as they interview skeptics, priests, believers, and non-Christians who claim they have seen an apparition of Mary. more >>
The popular king of horror stories, Stephen King, told NPR in an interview published Tuesday that he believes in God and intelligent design, and shared about his personal faith experience.
"If you say, 'Well, OK, I don't believe in God. There's no evidence of God,' then you're missing the stars in the sky and you're missing the sunrises and sunsets and you're missing the fact that the bees pollinate all these crops and keep us alive and the way that everything seems to work together," said the author of The Shining, The Green Mile, and Dreamcatcher, which were all adapted into full-length motion pictures.
The cosmos, he tells NPR, is "built in a way that to me suggests intelligent design. more >>
Christian broadcaster SAT-7, which transmits programs to the Middle East and North Africa, recently launched its own YouTube Live channel, dramatically expanding its evangelistic reach by use of the latest technology, the media organization announced this week.
YouTube Live broadcasting is free and will increase the reach of SAT-7 ARABIC broadcasts exponentially, say SAT-7 officials. "Arabic-speakers who live outside of the satellite footprints of SAT-7 channels now have yet another and better way to watch major events live on Android and iOS smart phones, iPads, tablets, computers, laptops, and smart TVs. This is especially important for a large community of Arabic-speakers living in the United States and Canada," the organization states.
Earlier this month, the SAT-7 ARABIC channel on YouTube (both live and videotaped) reached a milestone when it exceeded 10 million views since its creation in 2008. The milestone was achieved the day Orthodox Christians celebrated Easter on May 5. more >>
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 >>
A 6-year old California boy was allowed to perform a Christian song at his school's talent show last week after a legal group stepped up in his defense.
"We were extremely pleased, we're glad the district was so quick to respond," said Amanda Stroberg, the boy's mother, after the Salt Creek Elementary School in Chula Vista, Calif., decided to reverse its decision, according to ABC 10 News.
The kindergartener, Austin Stroberg, had been practicing on his acoustic guitar to perform the song "Our God Is Mercy" by Christian worship leader Brenton Brown at his school's talent show, but was initially told by school officials that he would not be allowed to sing on stage with a religious song. more >>