Author Topic: Christian family - family and home topics  (Read 440124 times)

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Re: Christian family - family and home topics
« Reply #616 on: August 11, 2017, 10:29:09 AM »

C-Family @ Faithwall


Hello again,

Just another thought to add.

A friend of mine, talking about scenes of the type described in the OP (reply#614), commented: "You would not allow these things to take place within your own home, so why invite it in via the TV screen." It is an invasion of violence and moral depravity, which the mind should not be subjected to.

The same applies to the written Word, in the books we read, doesn't it?

In Christ Jesus

C-Family @ Faithwall



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[Cfamily]One-on-One with Jon Laansma on His New Book on Hebrews
« Reply #617 on: August 12, 2017, 01:01:25 AM »
One-on-One with Jon Laansma on His New Book on Hebrews

Associate Professor of Ancient Languages and New Testament offers new commentary.

I recently interviewed one of my new colleagues, Jon Laansma, associate professor of ancient languages and New Testament at Wheaton College, and author of the new book The Letter to the Hebrews: A Commentary for Preaching, Teaching, and Bible Study. The book was recently released, and is helpful for those communicating the book of Hebrews to others.

Ed: OK, you can’t start an interview on the Book of Hebrews without asking: who wrote the Book of Hebrews?

Jon: This is an interesting question, but the debate over names points us away from where the author wants us to look. The writer was a highly literate individual who cared deeply about this faltering community; he (probably “he”) wrote during the time the apostles were active (A.D. 60-80, probably) and was deeply plugged into their teaching, yet boldly went where they had not explicitly gone. He wants us to look to the throne of grace, where our Brother is seated as our sympathetic High Priest.

He wants us to see that we’re part of God’s story, whether we know it or not, and that faith is the only sound course to follow. Arguments over authorship have their place and can aid our reading, but they can also become an evasion.

Focusing on the human author can be doing precisely what the author did not want us to do.

Ed: So, I can’t know the author… so, then, why did you write this commentary? What niche does it fill today?

Jon: I wrote this for the kinds of readers Hebrews itself is after (5:11-6:3). The commentary pays close attention to what specialists say and speaks to many of their questions, but it is written above all for anyone who has a serious interest in understanding the scriptures whether or not they have formal training.

It ...

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[Cfamily]Too Soon for Perry Noble's Second Chance at Church?
« Reply #618 on: August 13, 2017, 01:00:59 AM »
Too Soon for Perry Noble's Second Chance at Church?

NewSpring says its founder, who was fired last year, still isn't qualified to pastor.

Pastor Perry Noble’s former megachurch isn’t ready to give him a second chance. So he’s giving himself one.

A year after firing Noble over his alcoholism, South Carolina multisite NewSpring Church continues to deem its founding pastor unfit to be restored to the pulpit. But that hasn’t stopped the 46-year-old preacher from guest speaking at more than 10 other congregations—and recently filing paperwork to start his own.

Noble, who has been working as a church growth consultant and says he has been sober for nearly a year, registered Second Chance Church in South Carolina last month, watchdog blogger Warren Throckmorton reported.

“I am able to confirm that the paperwork has indeed been filed for a new church in South Carolina—that is a matter of public record,” Noble’s assistant told CT. “However, no timeline has been set for the church. Perry is dedicated to his clients at The Growth Company, and serving them well.”

Meanwhile, leaders at NewSpring—which spans across 15 locations in South Carolina—recently reiterated their concerns. They addressed his appearances at other churches, such as Steven Furtick’s Elevation Church in neighboring North Carolina, at an event in late July. They declined to directly comment on Noble’s new church venture.

“We have been asked why Perry can preach at other churches but not at NewSpring,” said teaching pastor Clayton King. “We cannot speak for other churches and how they make decisions. For us, Perry currently does not meet the biblical qualifications of a pastor, teacher, shepherd.”

King listed 1 Timothy 3:1-5, Titus 1:5-9, and James 3:1 among their guidelines for the pastorate. He ...

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[Cfamily]North Korea Frees Ailing Canadian Pastor Serving Life Sentence
« Reply #619 on: August 14, 2017, 01:01:09 AM »
North Korea Frees Ailing Canadian Pastor Serving Life Sentence

The Presbyterian minister was arrested on a humanitarian mission in 2015. He returns home due to health concerns.

After more than two and half years, North Korea has released a Toronto megachurch pastor the regime imprisoned and accused of attempting to establish a religious state.

Though Hyeon-Soo Lim was issued a life sentence to hard labor, his health suffered and North Korea agreed to release the Christian visitor on “sick bail” for “humanitarian reasons” on Wednesday, the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported.

Lim is on his way home to his family, including a granddaughter he will meet for the first time, and his 3,000-member congregation, Light Korean Presbyterian Church in suburban Toronto. Canadian officials had traveled to North Korea to discuss his case a day prior to his release.

Lim, who was born in South Korea, had visited the Communist country around 100 times over 20 years to support an orphanage and nursing home his church founded. He was well-aware of the sanctions against proselytizing. In court, Lim read a statement admitting to a “subversive plot” to overthrow the government, but his church suspects that it was a forced confession.

His January 2015 arrest came just a couple months after the release of missionary Kenneth Bae, who faced similar charges as the longest-serving US prisoner in North Korean history.

During Lim’s imprisonment, his only outside contact came through letters until he was allowed a phone call home in March. His family also sent the 62-year-old blood pressure medication. Especially after the fate of Otto Warmbier (the American student who died after being freed in June), they remain concerned about his health.

The family spokeswoman told CNN:

There is a long way to go in terms of Reverend Lim's healing. Therefore, in the meantime we ask the ...

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Patriotism and the Church: Is It Too Much to Ask Churches to Be Careful?

Anything that replaces the worship of God is idolatry.

I recently wrote an article for Influence Magazine on patriotism and the church and wanted to add a few more thoughts.

As we celebrated Independence Day in the United States over the summer, I saw a lot of churches discussing America, God, and the Church, and how they fit together in the context of worship services. I want to challenge us towards a greater understanding of God’s kingdom in times of national celebration.

The Stats and the Concern

According to a LifeWay Research study, almost 90% of Protestant churches did something in their worship services to celebrate July 4th.

There is a statistic that brings an interesting fact to consider how and why the church is involved to such a large degree. Here it is:


53% of Protestant pastors say “our congregation sometimes seems to love America more than God.”

Now, when I point out the dangers of mixing patriotism and worship, some people are just deeply offended. Well, I’m deeply offended too—by this statistic. And, you should be as well.

When 53% of pastors agree that sometimes their congregations love America more than God, that should be sounding alarm bells. That is what is compelling me to write.

Idolatry Is the Real Issue

To be blunt: anything that replaces a love of God is idolatry, and this needs to be addressed. It is our job as pastors to point people to Jesus and highlight idolatry in our lives, in our churches, and in our culture.

And, our hearts are idol factories, according to Calvin, so we are drawn to them.

I go on to explain why this statistic shouldn’t actually surprise us, in some ways:

As recently as 60 years ago, the church was the community center, the pastor was the representative of the community, and the church building was the ...

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[Cfamily]Six Degrees of Separation: Why Our Witness Matters
« Reply #621 on: August 16, 2017, 01:00:54 AM »
Six Degrees of Separation: Why Our Witness Matters

Our lives reach farther than we can imagine.

Connectedness is largely taken for granted in today’s world. In many ways, interconnectivity is the air we breathe. Six degrees of separation is a familiar concept to many and it holds a magnifying glass to the relational connections we have. Originally developed in 1929 by a Hungarian playwright named Frigyes Karinth, the theory of six degrees of separation suggests that any two people on earth are connected by as few as six other networking relationships. The idea was popularized in America by John Guare, a playwright in New York who in 1990 developed a theater performance by the same name.

It may have been a small world when that play was released, but the reality is that the world has shrunken dramatically since then! Sysomos, a firm monitoring social media, reported in 2010 that the average relational distance on Twitter is 4.67 degrees of separation. Our increasing interconnectedness is taken for granted in many spheres of our lives, but let’s take a moment to consider how the principle of six degrees of separation might impact our evangelism.

Here’s an example from history of what that might look like:

In 1855, a Sunday school teacher by the name of Edward Kimball led a teenage D.L. Moody to Christ. About 20 years later, after one of his evangelistic meetings in the 1870s, D.L. Moody had a conversation with a man by the name of J. Wilbur Chapman through which Chapman received the assurance of his salvation.

About ten years later, in the 1880s, Billy Sunday converted to Christ during an evangelistic event hosted by the Pacific Garden Mission in Chicago. For a time, Billy Sunday worked for J. Wilbur Chapman, helping him organize Chapman’s evangelistic meetings, but Sunday then went on to host his ...

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[Cfamily]What a Playground’s Victory Means for Christian Schools
« Reply #622 on: August 17, 2017, 01:00:53 AM »
What a Playground’s Victory Means for Christian Schools

Supreme Court decision could change playing field for school choice movement.

In its biggest religious freedom case of the year, the US Supreme Court set a precedent for school choice decisions—but also didn’t.

While deciding in a 7–2 vote that Missouri was wrong to exclude Trinity Lutheran Church from state funding for playground safety simply because it is a religious institution, the court offered two different guides for the future.

“This case involves express discrimination based on religious identity with respect to playground resurfacing. We do not address religious uses of funding or other forms of discrimination,” reads a footnote in the decision, seeming to set the narrowest precedent in history.

At the same time, the court remanded two school choice cases to the lower courts for “further consideration in light of” the Trinity Lutheran ruling. In one—actually a set of three linked cases—the Colorado Supreme Court found that a voucher program was illegal because it provided state funding to religious schools. In the other, the New Mexico Supreme Court said religious schools can no longer participate in a state-funded textbook lending program.

“Why would the Supreme Court remand cases if [the ruling] had no bonding effect at all on any of the cases, or is irrelevant to them?” asked Marc DeGirolami, who teaches law and religion at St. John’s University School of Law. “It does suggest there is receptiveness in the court to a little bit more lenience with respect to some of these funding issues.”

Sending a case back to the state courts doesn’t mean the judges have to rule differently, but they might have to rule on different grounds, said Thomas Berg, a church-state expert at the University of St. Thomas law ...

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[Cfamily]A Deeper Debate over Drums in Church
« Reply #623 on: August 18, 2017, 01:00:58 AM »
A Deeper Debate over Drums in Church

Native Christians still wrestle with how their culture fits into their churches.

More than 20 years ago, Mohawk musician Jonathan Maracle says, God told him to use his drum—an instrument used in traditional religious ceremonies—while playing at a conference for First Nation Christians.

The ensuing performance spawned his music ministry, Broken Walls. And it also sparked a controversy.

The next week, when he brought out the drum to play for another community of Native Christians, he was asked to leave the village.

“Religion had come in and taught my people that the drum was evil,” Maracle said. “I had no idea how difficult of a task I had been handed. Nobody was using the drum to worship Jesus at this time in 1995.”

When white missionaries first spread the gospel to indigenous tribes, they often did so in ways that undermined tribal language and culture. Almost all Native Christian leaders agree on that.

But leaders remain divided over what contextualizing their faith should look like—and what role sacred objects, like drums, have in Christian worship.

“There were lots of mistakes that happened historically in Native mission work. But you don’t solve one problem by creating another one,” said Craig Smith, a member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe and president of Tribal Rescue Ministries. “That is what the movement is doing.” He organized a statement for the Christian and Missionary Alliance to warn his fellow Native Christians about “false teaching,” specifically around traditional sacred objects used in a Christian context.

Maracle’s drum playing began during a period when Native American communities were reexamining their own cultural practices—a soul-searching catalyzed by the New Age community’s interest ...

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