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The Christian Music Paradox

By Ryan Duncan

We all have our opinions about Christian music. I don’t mean the songs you hear in a Sunday worship service (that’s an article for another day), I mean the recreational stuff you play in your car, or while out jogging. Many Christians love contemporary Christian music. They see artists like Casting Crowns, Colton Dixon, or Lecrae as pioneers, creating wholesome content in a market that thrives on self-obsession. Others however, find Christian music to be nothing more than a weak attempt at integrating faith and culture. Read more...

"We Need to Talk..."

By Sara Horn

 I don't know you, but your wife emailed me today looking for help and advice. Read more...

Is Capital Punishment Biblical?

By Mark Coppenger

 
www.sbts.edu
www.christianity.com
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THAT'S in the Bible?!

By Chris Legg & Dr. Stanley J. Ward

THE BIBLE IS NOT FOR THE SQUEAMISH Read more...

Discipline vs. Abuse

By Jay Scott Fitter

April is Child Abuse Awareness month and the subject invariably comes up: what constitutes abuse? Read more...

Satanism for Kiddies?

By Ryan Duncan

For all its bluster, many people find the practice of Satanism bizarre rather than intimidating. Among Christians, the religion is seen as either the practice of pure evil, or the hobby of someone with too much free time. According to Pastor Joe Thorn (see video below), even most Satanists are unsure of which category they fall into, since their ideology is primarily wrapped up in themselves. Despite the undeveloped nature of this religion, that fact remains that it exists. The question now is, "Should Christians be concerned or annoyed about this?" Read more...

Saeed Abedini's 2-Year Prison Anniversary

By Russ Jones

Naghmeh Abedini is inviting Christians around the world to band together on Sept. 26 in observance of the two-year anniversary of her husband Saeed Abedini’s sentencing to an Iranian prison, according to the Christian News Journal
 
“I’m doing a prayer vigil on this day to remember Pastor Saeed and others who are imprisoned for Christ, but also as a chance to come together as the Body of Christ and see the move of God as we pray together,” she said in a video posted on the Be Heard Project’s website, an initiative of the American Center for Law and Justice. “Please join me on this special day as we come together and pray.”
 
Christian Today reports that thousands are expected to gather at more than 460 prayer vigils in over 30 countries around the world to mark the two-year anniversary of his imprisonment.
 
International Christian Concern contends that since his imprisonment, Saeed has been subjected to long periods of solitary confinement and physical abuse. He is believed to be suffering from internal injuries that continue to go untreated and are causing him severe pain.
 
"We are privileged to join with thousands who will exercise their fundamental right of religious freedom by gathering to pray together, an act that, for Saeed Abedini and many more in Iran and around the world, would put them in prison, said Todd Daniels, ICC Regional Manager for the Middle East. “In a time when Christians around the world are facing increasing persecution, the church cannot remain silent. We urge Christians across the United States and around the world to gather and raise their voices to God on behalf of Saeed and others facing similar abuses and to raise their voice before world leaders and call for the freedom for all people to worship freely without fear of imprisonment or persecution.”
 
Organizations and churches are invited to host a prayer vigil. To register a vigil and receive information on coordinating a vigil, email globalvigil2014@gmail.com. Promotional materials to promote the event are located at beheardproject.com.
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Daddy Looks Different

By Kate Motaung

The conversation took place way back in my Bible college days, but for some reason it stuck with me.  I was playing table tennis with a guy friend of mine, like we did most days, when we weren’t in class or playing euchre.  And like most days, we talked as we rallied back and forth, the lightweight plastic ball a picture of our conversation.  It would usually alter between lazy, nonchalant flicks of the wrist to the more serious, intentional points. Read more...

Why I Agree with Religion-Basher Bill Maher

By Jim Denison

Comedian Bill Maher is no friend of religion.  He has called God "a psychotic mass-murderer," claims that "faith means making a virtue out of not thinking," and believes that "religion must die for mankind to live."
 
And yet, when Maher was interviewed recently by Charlie Rose, he became a passionate defender of Christianity.  Rose tried to claim that "a vast number of Christians" hold beliefs that are as radical as those of ISIS.  Maher countered: "No, that's not true.  Not true.  Vast numbers of Christians do not believe that if you leave the Christian religion you should be killed for it.  Vast numbers of Christians do not treat women as second class citizens.  Vast numbers of Christians . . . do not believe that if you draw a picture of Jesus Christ you should get killed for it." 
 
Maher's right, of course.  But it's hard to find such support for Christian faith in the news today.
 
For instance, this week the American Humanist Association announced a "Don't Say the Pledge" campaign, trying to get the phrase "under God" removed from the Pledge of Allegiance.  The National Freedom from Religion Foundation is working to get Gideon Bibles removed from university hotel rooms.  Atheists are protesting a cross on a war memorial in an Indiana state park, as well as a pizza restaurant in Wisconsin that gives a discount to people who bring in a church bulletin on Sundays.
 
In your opinion, is our culture's moral trajectory getting better or worse?  Are we living more by biblical truth, or less?  What can believers do to make a difference?
 
We often hear that "the truth will set you free," and that's true.  But there's a caveat: Jesus told a group of followers, "If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples."  Then and only then, "you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:31-32).  To know the truth, we must know the One who is the Truth (John 14:6).  The best way to reverse the moral slide of our day is to help people meet Jesus.  It is to pray, speak, and act in ways that lead others to him.  It is to define success by the question, Did I help people follow Jesus today?
 
This question motivates our ministry every day.  The Denison Forum engages contemporary issues with biblical truth, offers biblical teaching on practical life subjects, and provides devotional resources to help you encounter God more deeply.  God has grown our ministry so that we now reach more than 85,000 people in 203 countries every weekday, and our websites have received more than 3.3 million page views so far this year.
 
Twice a year we ask our readers to help us financially.  We are a donor-based ministry, depending entirely on the support of those who give to us.  So we are participating today in North Texas Giving Day, an annual fundraising event that has raised more than $60 million for nonprofits in our community over the last five years.
 
North Texas Giving Day provides a unique opportunity for organizations like ours because Communities Foundation of Texas has raised $2 million in bonus and prize funds.  Every gift given online of $25 and more will receive a portion of these funds.  And every gift matters.  Last year, 54 percent of our donors gave $100 or less.  A gift of $25 enables the Cultural Comment Read more...