Tuesday, May 20, 2014

All Around the Web - May 20, 2014

Albert Mohler - Why So Many Churches Hear So Little of the Bible
“It is well and good for the preacher to base his sermon on the Bible, but he better get to something relevant pretty quickly, or we start mentally to check out.” That stunningly clear sentence reflects one of the most amazing, tragic, and lamentable characteristics of contemporary Christianity: an impatience with the Word of God.

The sentence above comes from Mark Galli, senior managing editor of Christianity Today in an essay entitled, “Yawning at the Word.” In just a few hundred words, he captures the tragedy of a church increasingly impatient with and resistant to the reading and preaching of the Bible. We may wince when we read him relate his recent experiences, but we also recognize the ring of truth.

Galli was told to cut down on the biblical references in his sermon. “You’ll lose people,” the staff member warned. In a Bible study session on creation, the teacher was requested to come back the next Sunday prepared to take questions at the expense of reading the relevant scriptural texts on the doctrine. Cutting down on the number of Bible verses “would save time and, it was strongly implied, would better hold people’s interest.”

Koinonia - My Advice to Students — Matthew Barrett Says "Don't Forget to Read Scripture"

John Stonestreeet - I Filmed My Abortion
Abortion has almost always carried a stigma, even by those who support it. For example, when Bill Clinton famously said he wanted abortion to remain “safe, legal, and rare,” it was an admission from a staunch abortion-rights president that abortion, at best, is a necessary evil. And his wife, when running for the Oval Office, said that abortion is “a sad, even tragic choice to many, many women.”

Rare? Sad? Tragic? Well, don’t tell that to Emily Letts, the latest darling of the abortion-rights movement. Emily, a counselor at the so-called Cherry Hill Women’s Center in New Jersey, says she had an abortion but doesn’t have a tinge of guilt or sadness about it.

And to prove it, Emily filmed herself during the “procedure” and posted it on Youtube. Why on earth would she do that, you might ask. “I wanted to show it wasn’t scary,” Emily now says, “and that there is such a thing as a positive abortion story. It’s my story.”

Thom Rainer - Millennials and the Demise of Print: Five Implications for Churches
Of course, after I read the article, my mind traversed quickly to implications for local churches. I see at least five at this point.
  1. Churches not fully acclimated to the digital age need to do so quickly. It’s a matter of gospel stewardship. There is no need to compromise biblical truths, but there is a great need to be relevant.
  2. More of our congregants will be turning on their Bibles in the worship services rather than opening them to a print page. Some pastors view this practice as troublesome. One pastor recently commented to me: “How do we know if they aren’t looking at sport scores or something else?” We don’t know. And we don’t know where their minds are wandering if they don’t have a digital device with them.
  3. Church leaders should view this change as an opportunity to be more effective missional leaders. We would not expect international missionaries to go to a place of service without learning the language and the culture. The language and the culture of the Millennials are all digital.
  4. Leaders must keep current with changes in the digital revolution. While old guys like me will never be as conversant with the digital culture as our children and grandchildren, we must do our best to understand this ever-changing world. What is current and relevant today may be dated and irrelevant tomorrow.
  5. Social media is a key communication form for the Millennials; churches and church leaders must also be connected. I recently wrote an article on this issue. For now, a church not involved some way in social media is neglecting a large part of the mission field.

My Fox DC - Restaurant gives family 'Well Behaved Kids' discount

How to make a homemade batarang

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