Church & Ministry

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Posted 4/17/14 at 5:41 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices

The Most Dangerous Idea

Ideas
Photo:Flickr/Marek Piepers - Creative Commons

By Phillip Jensen

Which dangerous idea has the greatest potential to change the world for the better?

This was a question put to the panellists at the end of a QandA show during the “Festival of Dangerous Ideas” last year.

One of the panellists asked time to think of an answer. That, in itself, is an extraordinary event in a show that censors anything above a sound bite.

The atheist homosexual panellist launched into his dangerous idea that “abortion should be mandatory” for 30 years to reduce the population.

The feminist, Germaine Greer expressed nothing new – just “freedom”.

When the compere asked Peter Hitchens, his answer clearly startled the others. “The most dangerous idea in human history and philosophy remains the belief that Jesus Christ was the Son of God and rose from the dead and that is the most dangerous idea you will ever encounter.” FULL POST

Posted 4/17/14 at 11:20 AM | John Dillard

He IS Risen!!!

Jesus had no servants, yet they called Him Master.

Had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher.

Had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer.

Had no army, yet kings feared Him.

FULL POST

Posted 4/17/14 at 10:52 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

The Three days each Week the Pastor Should Turn off his Computer

Photo: Flickr/Michael Napoleon - Creative Commons

By Joe McKeever

(This is for pastors on the subject of sermon preparation.)

The most vulnerable time for any sermon is in the couple of days prior to its delivery.

At those times, the pastor does not need to be getting criticism or additional input from helpers (like myself!) or further ideas from deep study. This is when he needs to be putting the finishing touches on his message and getting it ready for delivery.

The first part of the week….

Early in the week–unless the pastor is such a rarity that almost none of this applies to him–he should have nailed down his subject and text for Sunday’s sermon. He should know the “one big idea” the Lord wants communicated. And he should have a general idea where he’s going with this sermon. FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 11:46 PM | Duke Taber

A Vineyard Pastor’s Response To Ken Wilson’s Book, “A Letter To My Congregation”

I became a pastor in the Association of Vineyard churches 4 years ago. As I have gotten to know this family of Evangelical pastors and churches, I have found them to hold dear the same values that I have had since I planted my first church in 1988…….until now. As I write this, I must make one thing clear. I am not speaking in any capacity for Vineyard USA or its leadership. I am speaking for myself as a pastor within the association who loves the Vineyard, loves being a part of the larger body of Christ and who does his best to reach out to people regardless of where they find themselves in life.

In February, Ken Wilson, the Pastor of the Ann Arbor Michigan Vineyard Church released a book called “A Letter To My Congregation”. In this book, Ken changes his position on the LGBT issue as it pertains to gay marriage and appointing gays to leadership, including pastoral leadership. FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 6:07 PM | George W. Sarris

What Happened on Saturday?

As we look forward to celebrating Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday, the question naturally comes up, “What happened on Saturday?”  

Did Jesus just lay there in the tomb and rest for a day? Did He ascend into heaven and talk with His Father and the angels? Did He preach the gospel in the realm of the dead?

According to a controversial phrase in the Apostles’ Creed – after Christ was crucified, dead and buried . . . and before He rose again from the dead on the third day –

He descended into Hell.

That phrase and what it means has been debated throughout the centuries.

All of the early church fathers mention it, although they differ in their interpretations. The Catechism of the Catholic Church affirms it and explains that Jesus did really die and through his death for us conquered death and the devil ‘who has the power of death.’   FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 5:19 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices

8 Ways our View of the Bible Impacts Preaching

Photo: Patrick Hoesly - Creative Commons

By David Murray

Nothing is more important for the long-term health of a Church than its preaching, and nothing more impacts preaching than a preacher’s view of the Bible.

1. The Bible is the Word of God

If we don’t believe that the Bible is the Word of God, we will put human opinion and our own ideas on the same level as the Bible.

If we believe the Bible is the Word of God, we will treat it with reverence and respect. We will not dare to treat any other book or any human opinion on the same level.

2. The Bible is Inspired by God

If we don’t believe that every word of Scripture was inspired by God, we will not spend much time looking at the individual words in the Bible. We’ll tend to skim over the surface paying little attention to the details of the biblical text. FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 3:05 PM | CP Blogs

When Cats Attend Church

Photo: Flickr/pipilongstockings - Creative Commons
Flickr user pipilongstockings says, "This Cat appeared and kept us company at Ellingham Church."

Perhaps you've seen the videos of dogs mimicking their owners in prayer or dogs being blessed in church. Our feline friends also go to church. They just don't get as much attention.

According to Elizabeth Davenport, the dean of Rockefeller Memorial Chapel, "Every great cathedral has always had its cat if you look back through history."

Meet Modo, the Rockfeller Chapel Cat

The Church of the Advent has a web page featuring its cats and reminds us, "Easter Lilies and chocolates are lovely treats for humans, but they are lethal to cats (and chocolate can be lethal to dogs as well). Please keep your Easter treats away from your pets!" FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 1:55 PM | Kristi Porter

Tune In to The Orange Conference Live Stream, April 30–May 2

The Orange Conference, a conference for entire family ministry teams, will be held April 30–May 2, 2014, in Atlanta. A Live Stream will also be held online for those interested in the event but unable to attend in person. Over 6,000 key influencers—senior, NextGen, student, children’s and preschool leaders—will gather in person to experience the power of “Yes,” and learn new insights into influencing the faith and character of the next generation.

From the main stage, the OC14 online content will include the opening session with Reggie Joiner, the Family Experience Showcase and the last session. The time in-between will be filled with speaker/author interviews, giveaways, informational programming and much more. Some of the Live Stream interview participants include: Andy Stanley, Mark Batterson, Jon Acuff, Perry Noble, Sue Miller, Doug Fields, Geoff Surratt, Jim Wideman, Amy Fenton Lee, Carey Nieuwhof, Kevin Ragsdale, Ben Crawshaw, Brooklyn Lindsay, Yancy Richmond, Sherry Surratt, Ted Lowe, Elle Campbell, Kenny Conley and Tom Shefchunas, A complete schedule will be posted on the Orange Leaders blog soon, and will also be emailed to everyone who RSVPs for the Live Stream. FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 11:43 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

So, God Can't Use You? Ha!

Billy Graham

By Joe McKeever

“And Moses said, ‘Who me, Lord? I’ve not been to seminary. I didn’t even finish college. The other preachers won’t respect me. Pulpit committees won’t have anything to do with me. There’s a bounty on me back in Egypt. I stutter a lot, and tend to freeze up in front of groups. You’ve clearly dialed a wrong number, Lord.”

“And God said, ‘Shut up and listen.’” (My rather free version of Exodus 3-4.)

“The Lord can’t use a nothing nobody like me.”

Ever heard that? Ever said it?

Repent, sinner. You underestimate God! (And you might be overestimating your own importance in the equation.) FULL POST

Posted 4/16/14 at 11:15 AM | Alex Murashko

SAT-7: Egyptians Celebrate Easter

(Photo: Reuters)

"In a region characterized by high illiteracy rates, media censorship, and limited incomes, anyone with a satellite dish can turn on SAT-7 and hear the Word of God in his or her language. Our viewers can join a global fellowship of Christians within the privacy of their own homes -- a significant concern for those who live in violence-stricken or oppressive environments." -- SAT-7

SAT-7 posted:

Today (April 16), Egyptians are upholding centuries-old traditions that date back to the time of Christ. Farid Garas, Executive Director of SAT-7 Egypt, explains how the very first Passover has inspired this week’s lineup of Easter programs on SAT-7 ARABIC.

Farid shares:

“Over three thousand years ago, in this very land of Egypt, God commanded his people to eat supper together as families during what is known as ‘The Passover.’ It was a sign of fellowship and a symbol of the redemption of Christ himself through the practical sacrifice of a lamb. That night launched the freedom of the people of God.

The church of Egypt feels that these times in which we live are similar. On Monday, the church called every family in Egypt to celebrate at a special prayer meeting. It called for families to get together for fellowship, worship, celebration, and dedicating their lives to the Lord. Each family leader washed the feet of his family.

A Kids Prayer Team led this live prayer meeting at Kasr El-Doubara Evangelical Church (KDEC) in Cairo, and it aired live on SAT-7 ARABIC. The audience was encouraged to follow the meeting at their homes in front of the TV screen. FULL POST

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