Author Topic: Christian family - family and home topics  (Read 660563 times)

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[Cfamily]Christians Like Me Believe We Must End the Drug War to Win It
« Reply #1816 on: November 08, 2020, 12:00:27 AM »

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Christians Like Me Believe We Must End the Drug War to Win It

Ballot initiatives decriminalizing drug use may be the best way to fight sinful drug abuse.

Voters in Arizona, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, and South Dakota were presented with state ballot measures this year concerning the legalization of marijuana for recreational or medical use. Washington, DC, residents were asked to weigh in on psychedelic mushrooms, with an initiative to effectively decriminalize them by putting their growth, possession, and sale “among the Metropolitan Police Department’s lowest law enforcement priorities.” And in Oregon, a ballot measure proposed making these same “magic mushrooms” permissible for closely supervised medical consumption while decriminalizing possession of hard drugs including heroin, cocaine, and LSD.

Every single measure succeeded, though the questions appearing on the ballot at all would have been unimaginable just a few elections ago—we are only eight years past the first state legalization of recreational marijuana. Our country’s prohibitionary approach to drug use is over a century old, but recent decades have seen a move away from marijuana prohibition, and this election’s mushroom initiatives suggest the drug war, more broadly, may be headed toward a truce. This is a shift Christians can, and do, support according to recent data. However, to support changes in drug laws is not to condone drug abuse, but rather a realization that the drug war has proven itself a moral and practical horror.

The Bible doesn’t discuss drugs. It doesn’t address addiction as a phenomenon with elements of illness, heredity, and moral agency alike; and it never mentions intoxicants like marijuana, psychedelic mushrooms, or narcotics. Yet we do have plenty of scriptural content on recreational alcohol use.

The Old Testament offers ...

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[Cfamily]Interview: The Bible Makes a Fashion Statement
« Reply #1817 on: November 09, 2020, 12:00:13 AM »
Interview: The Bible Makes a Fashion Statement

Theologian Robert Covolo encourages Christians to take matters of dress and style more seriously.

At first glance, the worlds of fashion and theology might appear to have little to do with one another. A shallow survey of each might even frame them as opposites, equating fashion with frivolity and ephemerality while painting theology as concerned with matters more eternal and profound. But the truth is that there are more Christians quietly shaping the fashion industry than one might suppose. And major Christian thinkers, from Augustine of Hippo to John Calvin, have had plenty to say about sartorial matters.

In his new book Fashion Theology, cultural theologian Robert Covolo explores the complex relationship between fashion and theology throughout history, highlighting the richness these disciplines stand to forfeit when they ignore each other. Journalist Whitney Bauck, who reports on the intersection of fashion and faith, spoke with Covolo about the theological depths opened up in the simple act of getting dressed each morning.

Why write a book on fashion and theology?

So many books have been written about the relationship between theology and film or literature or psychology or food. But dress is just as essential to our everyday existence. I realized there was nothing theological out there taking fashion studies seriously beyond a chapter here or there. Fashion studies is an expansive field of theoretical discourse that has spread to universities across the globe. And there has been little to no Christian engagement with it.

The other side of what interested me is that theology itself is a cultural pursuit. We’re always going to be producing theology because culture always has new questions about the relevance of the Christian faith. If we don’t understand theologians within their cultural context, we’re ...

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[Cfamily]Pro-Life Women Surge in Congress
« Reply #1818 on: November 10, 2020, 12:00:13 AM »
Pro-Life Women Surge in Congress

Even after doubling the number of GOP women in the House, abortion restrictions still face an uphill battle with a Democratic majority.

Pro-life legislators in the US House of Representatives made major gains on Tuesday with the election of 13 new pro-life women and the reelection of the House’s 11 incumbent pro-life women.

With female pro-life candidates running in eight House races that have not been called, the pro-life presence could still grow.

A record-breaking 107 women were elected to the House in 2020, surpassing the previous record of 102 set in 2019.

Pro-life groups welcome the new representatives and the encouragement their presence will provide to their pro-life colleagues.

Carol Tobias, president of the National Right to Life Foundation, said men advocating for the rights of the unborn are sometimes dismissed because they don’t deal with the direct effects of pregnancy the same way as women do.

“Bringing in more pro-life women will give encouragement and support to the leaders who have been speaking up for years,” she said.

All of the pro-life representatives elected this week are Republicans, and many say their position on abortion stems from their Christian faith.

“These gains are a repudiation of abortion extremism and further evidence that life is a winning issue in politics,” said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List in a statement celebrating the surge in pro-life women elected.

Seven of the 13 new pro-life women flipped seats previously held by Democrats, including Nancy Mace who defeated incumbent Joe Cunningham in South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District.

Mace, a 42-year-old single mother of two, will now become the first Republican woman to represent the 1st Congressional District. Mace mentions ...

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[Cfamily]Dutch Protestant Church Admits Failing Jews During World War II
« Reply #1819 on: November 11, 2020, 12:00:13 AM »
Dutch Protestant Church Admits Failing Jews During World War II

Ceremony recalls “sinful history” during Nazi occupation and beyond.

The Dutch Protestant Church made a far-reaching recognition of guilt Sunday for its failure to do more to help Jews during and after World War II, and for the church’s role in preparing “the ground in which the seeds of anti-Semitism and hatred could grow.”

The long-awaited, historic statement came at a solemn ceremony to mark Monday’s anniversary of the Nazis’ anti-Jewish Kristallnacht pogrom, or the “Night of Broken Glass.”

On November 9, 1938, Jews were terrorized throughout Germany and Austria. At least 91 people were killed, hundreds of synagogues burned down, around 7,500 Jewish businesses vandalized, and up to 30,000 Jewish men arrested, many of whom were taken away to concentration camps.

René de Reuver, speaking on behalf of the General Synod of the Protestant Church in the Netherlands, said the church’s role began long before Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany.

“For centuries a rift was maintained that could later isolate the Jews in society in such a way that they could be taken away and murdered,” De Reuver said.

“Also in the war years, the ecclesiastical authorities often lacked the courage to choose a position for the Jewish citizens of our country,” he added.

More than 100,000 Dutch Jews—70 percent of the Jewish community—didn’t survive World War II. Most were deported, along with Roma and Sinti, and killed in Nazi concentration camps.

In a statement to the Netherlands’ Jewish community, de Reuver acknowledged it had taken far too long for the church to recognize its role, adding: “We hope it is not too late.”

“The church recognizes faults and feels a present responsibility,” he said. “Anti-Semitism ...

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[Cfamily]How to Prevent the Next Evangelical Leadership Scandal
« Reply #1820 on: November 12, 2020, 12:00:10 AM »
How to Prevent the Next Evangelical Leadership Scandal

Working in PR, I’ve stepped in to help ministries after a crisis hits. What they need is more accountability before it happens.

It’s a far-too-common story: A pastor or prominent leader of a faith-based organization resigns because of sexual misconduct or abusive or controlling leadership.

In 2020, we’ve seen a fair amount of cases like these among evangelicals. When moral failure befalls our communities’ leadership, it can be a gut punch to our faith. Sexual misconduct and abusive leadership can hurt marriages, impair our institutions, forever damage the lives of those impacted, and harm our witness to a watching world.

Working as a public relations professional in the Christian world, I’ve had an up-close and personal view of how quickly crises can develop and how easily they can engulf an organization in controversy and confusion. I have been called on to help numerous ministries in crisis, many of which were struggling to come to terms with revelations of sexual impropriety or abusive leadership. My role is to try to minimize the public damage. But in many situations, it becomes clear that organizational problems existed far before the sin was ever made public.

Exposing the truth is necessary and helpful. We have a duty to name and call out sin in our communities, churches, and ministries. Open and honest media coverage can be a part of that process. But we can and must do more than expose sin within leadership when it happens. We must fight to prevent it from taking root in the first place.

We all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God; none of us is perfect. Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure….” Each of us is prone to sinful temptations in different ways. To deny this about ourselves is in itself a prideful flaw. This is exactly why evangelical ministries ...

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Re: Christian family - family and home topics
« Reply #1821 on: November 12, 2020, 11:14:30 AM »
How to Prevent the Next Evangelical Leadership Scandal

Let the Glory of God the Father be our object.

In Christ Jesus
our risen and glorified
Saviour, Lord and Head.


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[Cfamily]Died: Harry R. Jackson Jr., Charismatic Bishop and Trump Adviser
« Reply #1822 on: November 13, 2020, 12:00:13 AM »
Died: Harry R. Jackson Jr., Charismatic Bishop and Trump Adviser

Predicting a movement of black conservatives coming out of megachurches, he joined forces with the Religious Right to influence national politics.

Harry R. Jackson Jr., herald of a new black church and a voice of black conservatism, died on Monday at the age of 67.

Jackson was the bishop of an independent charismatic megachurch in Maryland. He allied with the Religious Right to call for a new civil rights movement that focused on abortion, opposing same-sex marriage, and promoting social policies that would strengthen black families. He regularly announced the coming of a new movement of black Christian conservatives that never quite materialized, but he pushed white evangelicals to use their political influence for more quid pro quo dealmaking.

Jackson achieved his greatest influence in Donald Trump’s White House, frequently attending functions, praying publicly, and advocating for policies such as the First Step Act, a prison reform bill that was signed into law in 2018.

“You can’t be a prophet to the culture while you’re standing outside of the room,” Jackson said in response to critics.

In the White House on Good Friday, Trump introduced the bishop as “a highly respected gentleman who is a member of our faith and a person that we have tremendous respect for.”

Jackson was born to Essie and Harry Jackson Sr. in Cincinnati in 1953. His parents had fled north from Florida only three years before, after his father was nearly killed by a white police officer. In Ohio they made a new life and did well enough to send their son to a private school. Most of Jackson’s classmates were wealthy. All of them were white. Jackson’s father told him the school was so expensive, this was his financial inheritance.

“That was the generation that felt education could do it for black people,” the younger Jackson recalled.

He excelled ...

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[Cfamily]When Political Prophecies Don’t Come to Pass
« Reply #1823 on: November 14, 2020, 12:00:08 AM »
When Political Prophecies Don’t Come to Pass

The Bible includes false prophets and true prophets whose words turn out to be false.

Prophecy is saying what God says, which is more often about forthtelling than about foretelling.

Sometimes, however, prophecies do predict the future. In late October, Pat Robertson declared that he had heard from the Lord: “Without question, Trump is going to win the election.” To Robertson’s credit, Trump did far better than expected. With Donald Trump’s 70 million votes, reportedly the second-highest total in US history, we might think that Robertson indeed heard something. But did he get the whole story?

In some elections, prophecies are more than 50/50 guesses. In 2016, Jeremiah Johnson, a pastor and prophet, accurately predicted Trump’s first term even before he emerged as a leader in the Republican primaries. Robertson was not alone in seeing another victory for the president in 2020. Most public prophecies, including those by Johnson, sided with Trump, sometimes mentioning a disputed election.

But even some who voted for Trump felt like God was saying that Biden would win this time. Ron Cantor, a Messianic leader based in Israel, said he twice heard from God that Biden would win because of the church’s idolization of Trump. He told followers, “Even if a miracle happened and [Trump] was, in fact, reelected, which seems less likely with each passing hour, proving the other prophets true, the warning here remains the same.”

If the election results hold despite recounts and court challenges, were all those others who predicted Trump’s victory false prophets?

Mistakes in prophecy do not make everyone who’s mistaken a false prophet, any more than mistakes in teaching make everyone who’s mistaken a false teacher. But false prophets exist—even cessationists, ...

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