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Showing posts from July, 2019

Where do Americans find their identity?

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Baptist Press By Aaron Earls - Posted at Baptist Press : NASHVILLE (BP) -- In "Overcomer," a new film from Alex and Stephen Kendrick opening Aug. 23, a young girl struggles to understand where her identity is grounded. Most Americans say they find their identity in relationships and achievements, according to a new study. LifeWay Research asked 1,010 Americans about their sense of identity and what matters most about themselves. The study was conducted Sept. 21-23, 2018. These are important questions to ask, said Alex Kendrick, director of "Overcomer." "There is an ongoing debate in our culture about who or what gets to determine our identity," he said. "We believe the Creator gets to define His creation. When we find our personal identity in Christ, then that is the truest and most stable foundation we could have." Few Americans, however, say religion in general or faith in Christ specifically is at the forefront of their identity.

This journalist got a big scoop, only to watch Fox News steal his reporting...

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Copies of The Christian Chronicle. (Courtesy of Bobby Ross Jr. - The Poynter Report ) By Kelly McBride - Posted at The Poynter Report : Bobby Ross Jr. is a veteran religion reporter and a man of faith. He edits The Christian Chronicle, an independent news organization serving the Church of Christ community. It was surprising, then, when Ross took to Twitter last week to call out a Fox News reporter. The cable TV network “aggregated” (Ross will say “stole”) one of his best stories without doing its own reporting and without acknowledging Ross’ ground-breaking work. Ross’ scoop? Remember the American missionary doctor who almost died after contracting Ebola while treating patients in Liberia during the 2014 crisis, only to be saved by an experimental drug that had never been tested in humans? After five years, Dr. Kent Brantly is headed back to Africa to treat the sick. And Ross scored an in-depth interview with him, his wife, his counselor and his fellow missionary doctors

An Evangelical Megachurch Is Sued for More Than $1 Million in Child Sexual Abuse Case

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By Elizabeth Dias - Posted at msn news: A woman who said she was sexually abused as a child by a pastor at one of the country’s most prominent evangelical megachurches sued the church on Friday, alleging gross negligence and seeking more than $1 million in damages. The case against the Village Church — which is based in Flower Mound, Tex., outside Dallas, and is led by Matt Chandler — is perhaps the most high-profile current lawsuit alleging child sexual abuse in the Southern Baptist Convention. It comes as the largest Protestant denomination in the United States has vowed to address widespread sexual abuse in its congregations. The suit alleges that the church was “willfully negligent” in its failure to protect a child in its care from being sexually assaulted. It also says the church is liable for the actions of the pastor, who was removed from the staff last year. The woman is seeking damages after she says the abuse caused emotional distress, including an ongoing struggl

Lutheran Church [LCMS] affirms traditional stance on LGBT issues, compassion for LGBT people

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The 67th Regular Convention of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, taking place in Tampa, Florida on July 20-25, 2019. | Facebook/National LCMS Convention By Michael Gryboski - Posted at The Christian Post: The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod overwhelmingly passed a resolution reaffirming its traditional, biblical stance on gender identity and sexual orientation, while also calling for churches to “minister compassionately” to people who identify as LGBT. At the LCMS’ 67th Regular Convention in Tampa, Florida, on Tuesday, Resolution 11-03A, titled “To Encourage Synod to Develop Resources to Aid Congregations and Schools regarding Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Issues,” passed with 96.8% of the vote. Among its points , the resolution reaffirmed “the biblical truth that God created humanity as male and female” and commended people who “continue to live chaste and decent lives in repentant faith” in spite of “same-sex attraction and gender identity confusion.” It also cond

One Man’s Fall is Another Man’s Warning

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By David Qaoud - Posted at Gospel Relevance: It happens a lot. An evangelical Christian pastor disqualifies himself from ministry. As a young minister myself, I have been long warned and told of the temptations and sins that are unique to pastors. But there’s a difference between hearing about someone else’s fall and seeing it actually happen to them. I try not to celebrate when others lose. For me, there’s always an eerie feeling associated with someone’s downfall. What do you do when you hear the story of a Christian leader who disqualifies himself from ministry? Do you judge, critique, or assume motives? “Stupid failure,” you might think to yourself. Don’t say it. Instead, when you hear of a Christian leader who disqualifies himself from ministry, consider yourself warned. If you don’t think you’re capable of committing atrocious sins that will disqualify you from ministry, you don’t understand your own heart. As it’s been said, whenever we think “I would never do such-and-suc

“UNDER GOD:” UNDERSTANDING ITS REVOLUTIONARY USAGE

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By Brian P. O'Malley - Posted at Journal of the American Revolution: The words “under God” have been part of America’s fabric since its inception; any school child will recognize the words in the Pledge of Allegiance. But did the Founding Generation use this phrase the same way we do today? In 1775, Col. Benedict Arnold led a detachment of Continental forces into Canada. George Washington admonished Arnold to respect all the people of Canada, as “the Success of this Enterprize (under God) depends wholly upon . . . the favourable Disposition of the Canadians & Indians.”[1] George Washington often used the phrase “under God.” In his General Orders for July 2, 1776, Washington reminded his troops, “The fate of unborn Millions will now depend, under God, on the Courage and Conduct of this army.” Washington counseled Col. Fisher Gay: “Your own Reputation—the safety of the Army, & the good of the Cause depends, under God, upon our vigilance & Readiness.” In July 1776, Wa

Trump called out by some Christians for using ‘Lord’s name in vain’ at fiery NC rally

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“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” Exodus 20:7 By Mark Price - Posted at The Charlotte Observer Published July 18, 2019 The controversial “send her back” crowd chant at President Donald Trump’s North Carolina rally  may have gotten all the headlines, but some Christians are grumbling over something most of the media completely ignored. Trump cursed, and it was not just a few vulgarities. He took the Lord’s name in vain. Twice. Read more here. See also: ‘Appalled’ WV Senator Sends Trump Letter Over Use of Lord’s Name in Vain During NC Rally   (Christian News Network) AMERICAN EVANGELICALS, THE PRESIDENT AND THE THIRD COMMANDMENT (A Woman Who Fears the LORD...) Full Replay: Trump Holds 2020 Campaign MAGA Rally in Greenville, NC  (Real Clear Politics) Westminster Shorter Catechism   (Questions 53 - 56 - A Puritan's Mind) Q. 53. Which is the third comm

Time To Kiss New Calvinism Goodbye

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Joshua Harris - author of I Kissed Dating Good Bye By Dr. R. Scott Clark - Posted at Abounding Grace Radio: Yet another evangelical personality has announced that not only are he and his wife separating—this after he wrote a widely-read book on dating and courtship—but he has grave doubts about the truth of Christianity and he is intent on starting a podcast to share those doubts with the world. He announced the news of his separation on Instagram, which is something one might expect a movie star to do, and then asked for privacy. Days later, an interview appeared—so much for privacy—in the theologically and socially progressive (liberal) magazine, Sojourners , in which he lamented his “fundamentalist” past and expressed doubts not only about the historic Christian sexual ethic but also about the truth of Christianity itself. The Business Model Harris rose to prominence within the Sovereign Grace Ministries orbit, under the umbrella of C. J. Mahaney, another prominent “N

Know Your Idols

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For The Church By Laura Campbell - Posted at For The Church: Engaging with cultures different from our own is good for us. Such engagements tend to happen through friendships with people of different demographics, intentional variations in media consumption, and travel. Those who have had the privilege of visiting other countries (or even other parts of their own country) know the value of such experiences. Similar to the sensation of looking up into a starry night sky, witnessing a different culture makes us feel our smallness. We realize that the world is much, much bigger than the fleeting life we know. When we’re taken out of our own culture – perhaps in the form of a conversation, a different vein of Twitter, or a mission trip – it becomes easy to romanticize and demonize aspects of the culture we are exploring. As Christians, we can be very quick to identify the sins and idols of others. Sometimes this speck-identifying can be helpful in forming a realistic understanding o

Millennials’ LGBT unease grows

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By Eric Reed - Posted at iB2: An eight-mile trip into the countryside ended at an old barn which had been converted into a restaurant. “The food’s good here,” one of the travelers said as we set out after the Sunday service on winding rural and sometimes gravel roads. The former feed store set in cornfields was everything Cracker Barrel would hope to be, and just what we expected. What we didn’t expect was the poster taped to the door announcing the crossroads’ first “Drag Show” with three headshots of the lead performers. “If the Drag Show has reached this place, then times really have changed,” someone in our little church group mumbled. “I guess there’s no going back,” I thought to myself, just a half-hour after preaching on the decline of our public morality in Illinois with the recent actions of the state legislature as my chief examples: legalized marijuana, expanded gambling, and abortion with virtually no limits. And did I mention the gay-pride flag flying for the fir

How Far Should Reformation Go?

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Posted at Reformation Scotland: Reformation is not merely an event in the past; it is a present imperative. God’s Word constantly challenges us to ever closer harmony with its teaching. Reformation concerns each one of us. It means taking the authority of the Bible seriously in everything. We need to seek still closer obedience. Not only in our personal lives but also in the life of the Church. We need to reflect on where we are in relation to reformation and what still remains to be achieved as individuals, churches and communities. How do our lives, families and congregations match up to God’s requirements in His Word? One way of reflecting on such priorities is to consider examples of Reformations in Scripture. There are accounts of reforming work under kings such as Josiah, Hezekiah and Jehoshaphat. Donald Cargill gives a helpful exposition of the Reformation described in 2 Chronicles 19. What did it look like? Continue reading...

Orientation Identity and the Church

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By Barry York - Posted at Gentle Reformation: In this bravest and newest of worlds, people have taken upon themselves the responsibility to self-identify. Looking inwardly for their truth, they examine their thoughts and passions to determine who they are. If their heart is inclined, or oriented, in a certain direction, then that proclivity becomes who they are. Just a few short years ago, the big battle in this area was for people to be identified by their sexual orientation. As this article makes clear, this battle was basically won when the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. In those days, things were "simpler" as you were either straight, lesbian or gay. Yet soon after, LG grew into LGBQT, and it was that T for transgender that marked another seismic shift in the culture. For rather than simply being oriented toward the same sex, which at least had your orientation in part focused on yourself in relation to other people , in the transgender movement identity h

Human Rights need God

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By Johan Tangelder - Posted at Reformed Perspective: Do human rights need God? Bluntly stated, it all depends on your god. Those who reject that there is a God, say human beings are responsible for their own destiny and create our own morals… and even our own rights. WHAT THE STATE GIVES THE STATE CAN TAKE AWAY But the standard secular account of human rights is mistaken. What is widely overlooked today is that a worldview based on godless evolution cannot provide a reasonable foundation for either the universality or the permanence of human rights. How can relativism, so prevalent in the West, guarantee human rights? Philosopher Jacques Ellul properly warned us that it cannot protect “established human rights…against arbitrary power or against totalitarian definitions of right and wrong.” The truth is that human rights issues are deeply religious issues and therefore the God question cannot be avoided. But won’t basing human rights on God lead to a theocracy? Not if we keep

Revoice, Nashville, And The Therapeutic Revolution

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By Dr. R. Scott Clark - Posted at Abounding Grace Radio: More than 50 years ago Philip Rieff alerted us to what has been called the “therapeutic revolution.” The West did not pay attention and now our broader culture is awash in therapeutic categories and rhetoric. Anyone, on most any university campus, who dares to proclaim the existence of objective truth or reality would be immediately denounced as “hurtful,” and possibly attacked physically by masked, black-clad fascist thugs (the so-called Antifa movement). When Rieff published his seminal work, The Triumph of the Therapeutic Billy Graham, for good or ill, was the nation’s de facto pastor. Today the nation’s pastor is Oprah, who rose to famous by popularizing the therapeutic revolution. The Triumph Of The Therapeutic Consider the way people think and speak about civil government in our time. Remember that the civil government is empowered to use physical violence to enforce its laws. It is a blunt instrument fit to accomp

Christian University Caves in to the LGBTQ Crowd

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By Don Boys - Posted at American Thinker : You don't win battles when there is an abundance of white flags in your arsenal. Christian universities haven't grasped that concept. One after the other, Christian schools have hoisted the white flag of surrender regarding their practices, policies, and precepts. That's called apostasy. Last month, California passed a resolution calling on religious leaders to affirm homosexuality and "transgenderism" and to accept that Christian efforts to help people with unwanted same-sex attraction or gender confusion are "ineffective, unethical and harmful." Eager to please, Dr. Kevin Mannoia, Azusa Pacific University (APU) chaplain and the former head of the National Association of Evangelicals, kissed the LGBTQ ring and genuflected under the rainbow flag by "directing pastors and counselors to reject biblical views of sexuality and deny counseling for those struggling with unwanted same-sex attraction

Blasphemous Homecoming

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By Rev Robert K McEvoy - Posted at The Salty Scrivener: Blasphemous Homecoming One never expects doctrinal accuracy or biblical faithfulness from the musical wing of the Evangelical Industrial Complex, the America-based caucus designed to extract money from gullible Christians. After all, what does sound theology matter when you’re churning out sappy songs and emotion laden lyrics that tug at the heart strings and open the wallets of the evangelical mass market. But to include a blatant blasphemy in a supposedly ‘Christian’ album must reach a new low, even by contemporary music standards. Recently while searching for the words of a song to use as an illustration for a talk. I came across the Gaither’s ‘Israel Homecoming’ on iTunes. One of the tracks on the album is ‘Rivers of Babylon’ a song made widely popular by Bony M in the 1970’s. Here’s the lyrics, as Boney M sang them: By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down Yeah we wept, when we remembered zion By the

The importance of a Bible teacher’s transparency: it relates to accountability

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By Elizabeth Prata - Posted at The End Time: On June 18, I and 5 other ladies signed an Open Letter to Beth Moore and it was published on several of our platforms. It asked Moore 5 plain questions regarding her stance on homosexuality, and noted that her associations and partnerships with several high-profile gay-affirming and openly homosexual Christians were causing confusion between her life and whatever doctrine she held. (1 Timothy 4:16). So we asked the questions about her doctrine. The issues covered in this essay are a Bible teacher’s accessibility, accountability, and transparency. After two weeks of controversy, stirred because Mrs Moore refused to directly acknowledge the letter or answer the questions, ( timeline here ), then finally publishing a ‘kind of-sort of’ explanation, Beth Moore announced she was taking time off from Twitter. One of the charges Moore made against the publishers of the Open Letter was that we did not go through “the right channels.” Her

Bringing Back The Black Robed Regiment (Full Movie)

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Details: British loyalist Peter Oliver called them the Black Regiment and the British blamed them for stirring up the colonists. They preached politics from their pulpits and some of them actually led the men of their congregations off to war. It cannot be overstated – they were critical to the success of the War for Independence in 1776. Who were these men? They were America’s “patriot preachers” – some of the most outspoken proponents of truth and liberty in 18th century America. Yet, most modern American pastors haven't even heard of them. In this presentation, Oklahoma pastor and State Representative, Dan Fisher, gives a brief history of these Patriot Preachers. Convinced that the Bible impacted every area of life – including politics, these brave pastors stood in their pulpits each Sunday wearing their black robes, preaching from God’s Word about spiritual and civil liberty. Because of their willingness to preach the “whole counsel” of God, their congregations were well

PATRIOTIC SNEAKERS, A SPORT'S FIGURE AND BETSY ROSS

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By Angela Wittman Most of the baby-boomer generation will remember sitting through history and civics classes as children and young adults. It was the norm for us to be taught about our civil duties and the founding of our country - America. We also said the Pledge of Allegiance in school each morning and at night television stations signed off with an image of the American flag and the national anthem playing in the background. Fast forward to 2019 - we now have a sports figure dictating to a shoe manufacturer what products can and cannot be sold and the manufacturer complying.  It's reported that the sneakers were scheduled to be released to correspond with the anniversary of the signing of the American Declaration of Independence (July 4th) and featured the original 13 stars and the 13 red and white alternating stripes that is commonly known as the Betsy Ross flag. That is until Colin Kaepernick, a sports figure and spokesperson for Nike Shoes, found offense with it.  Nike,

The Christian Setting of the Declaration of Independence

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Posted at Christian Heritage Fellowship: For nearly a century, America’s Christian origin and the character of her Founding Fathers have been under attack from irreligious and Marxist nemeses. Pointing to half a dozen Founding Fathers (out of nearly 250), America’s Marxist and irreligious adversaries allege prominent Founding Fathers sought to establish a purely irreligious or secular state. But in fact, Congress aggressively sought to ban irreligion ( Journals of the Continental Congress , 16:252-253). [1] There is absolutely no evidence to suggest the Founding Fathers attempted to establish the first of America’s organic laws (the Declaration of Independence) upon an irreligious foundation. The evidence against the notion of an irreligious foundation of America is irrefutable. Learn more here.

Enjoy Your Freedom? Thank a Presbyterian.

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By Nathan Eshelman - Posted at Gentle Reformation: As those of us in the United States this week celebrate freedom from British governance, consider the many ways that Presbyterianism influenced the decision to enter a war for independence and take up arms against a magistrate: Only a Presbyterian understanding of Romans 13 would allow us to enter a war. The Bible calls for submission to magistrates, but Presbyterians understood the nuances that allowed for rebellion against tyranny. (See James M. Wilson's Establishment and Limits of Civil Goverment for an exposition of Romans 13.) It was psalm singing Presbyterians like Rev. James Caldwell who helped win some battles--when paper for musket wads was unable to be found--Isaac Watts' Hymnbook was used instead. "Give 'em Watts, boys!" King George referred to the war for Independence as the "Presbyterian rebellion." The Anglicans were never fans of rebellious presbyterians. Continue reading...

A Brief Biography of Betsy Ross

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Published at US History.org: One year before William Penn founded Philadelphia in 1681, Betsy Ross's great-grandfather, Andrew Griscom, a Quaker carpenter, had already emigrated from England to New Jersey. Andrew was successful at his trade. He was also of firm Quaker belief, and he was inspired to move to Philadelphia to become an early participant in Penn's "holy experiment." He purchased 495 acres of land in the Spring Garden section north of the city of Philadelphia (the section would later be incorporated as part of the city), and received a plot of land within the city proper. Griscom's son and grandson both became respected carpenters as well. Both have their names inscribed on a wall at Carpenters' Hall in Philadelphia, home of the oldest trade organization in the country. Griscom's grandson Samuel helped build the bell tower at the Pennsylvania State House (Independence Hall). He married Rebecca James who was a member of a prominent Q

REMEMBERING OUR HERITAGE: 'ONE NATION UNDER GOD'

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By Angela Wittman As we near Independence Day, I pray we will reflect upon our Christian heritage and the courageous men who founded our nation. I have assembled some quotes from our Founding Fathers that I pray you will take to heart and pass on to your children: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights..." --Declaration of Independence (July 4, 1776) "We have this day restored the Sovereign to Whom all men ought to be obedient. He reigns in Heaven and from the rising to the setting of the sun - let His kingdom come." --James Madison signing the Declaration of Independence, (July 4, 1776) "Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are the gift of God?" --Thomas Jefferson (1782) "It cannot be emphasized too strongly or t

Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God (Part One)

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By R. Andrew Myers - Posted at Virginia is for Huguenots: Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men . (Acts 5.29) "Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God." -- This famous saying of both Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin is said to have been on the epitaph of John Bradshaw (1602-1659), a British judge who presided over the trial of King Charles I, when his body was re-interred in Jamaica (where it was taken by his son to protect it from the fury of the Restoration towards regicides). "Men must be governed by God, or they will be ruled by tyrants." -- William Penn "Man will ultimately be governed by God or by tyrants." -- Benjamin Franklin As our nation draws closer to another Fourth of July commemoration of the U.S. Declaration of Independence, I thought it would be worthwhile to trace some of the known or probable influences of history upon the writing of our national Declaration of Inde