Posts Tagged ‘Ravi Zacharias’

OD Today: 20 January 2009 (early edition)

January 20, 2009

We’re expecting lots of inauguration-related links; we saw overnight more than we’re sharing now.

  1. Darryl Foster calls out the Church of God in Christ regarding elder Ronald Kimbrew and his relationship to an online gay clergy group. “Is COGIC going to be silent while an organized culture of homosexual ministers and bishops populate its pulpits?”
  2. Chris Rosebrough mentions Queermergent. Rosebrough is working on an “emergent church is postmodern liberal (as opposed to modern liberal)” theme going at his various outlets. “Even though Emergents try to navigate a middle road between liberalism and conservatism, then end up supporting the same agenda as their Modern Liberal cousins.”
  3. Henry Neufield reflects on the meaning of race within the Obama inauguration story. “As a Christian I believe we do owe one another allegiance, and that we do have a duty to help free the oppressed, to care for the poor and needy. I think there is a moral duty to do such things not because they are good for me, but because they are good. At the same time, I think God has so ordered the universe that it seems that I can do good for myself by doing good for others, that I will live in a richer and better society if I am willing to sacrifice for others and fight for their rights.”
  4. Jonathan Dodson ponders the pros and cons of churches partnering with non-profit groups. “So the question is not should we partner with non-profits, but when and where should we partner with them. Sometimes it will be best to not partner and other times it will be best.”
  5. John Baker copies Joseph Farah‘s call for Christians to pray that Barack Obama fails.
  6. Chris Rosebrough offers his take on Gene Robinson’s prayer. “This ‘god’ is an idol and a demon. This ‘god’ is powerless to answer and save and worshiping and following this demon ‘god’ will land people in hell.” (YouTube)
  7. Ralph Petersen offers comments of Ron Livesay, a recently-retired principal from a Christian school, suggests that evangelicals voted for Barack Obama because they went to public schools. “What caused the children of the so-called “religious right,” to change their moral imperatives so dramatically? In this article, Phyllis Schlafly suggests that most likely it’s the humanistic attitudes and decision-making they learned in the public schools, which 89 percent of U.S. students attend.” Warning: some readers may be offended by a drawing of an anatomically correct somewhat humaniform rhinoceros.
  8. Phil Johnson at Pyromaniacs on whether he’d pray at the Obama inauguration if given the chance: he’d decline “because Obama’s own stated intention is to make his inauguration “the most inclusive, open, accessible inauguration in American history,” and I would not want to affirm that goal, even tacitly.” This is part of a series, and it starts here.
  9. Ken Silva continues his series on Ravi Zacharias and Henri Nouwen. “In the first place, it needs to be understood here that as a Roman Catholic monk Nouwen not only rejected Sola Scriptura but also the genuine Gospel of Jesus Christ. Even so, RZIM recommends we read the Roman Catholic Nouwen and then make up our minds “as to Christian commitment.” But the question that needs to be asked here is: Why would supposedly Protestant evangelical RZIM even want to recommend that we read for our Christian edification writings from someone who denied Christ’s Gospel in the first place?” For the record I think this is a fair question, and I feel compelled to point out that Nouwen was a priest and not a monk.
  10. Miriam Franklin shares an anonymous story with a warning about laying on of hands/impartation. “A week or so after this “laying of hands” and “impartation,” I began to have this intense almost uncontrollable lust and desire for the senior pastor’s wife who I worked with.”
  11. Christine at Talk Wisdom is concerned by how chummy the outgoing President is with the incoming President.
  12. Terry Mattingly, at GetReligion, pushes a book about how the press doesn’t get religion, and also brushes up against the question of American civil religion and the “Orthodoxy of No Orthodoxy.” “The apparent orthodoxy of forbidding all orthodoxies is a philosophical puzzle in liberalism since John Locke. Journalists cannot be expected to solve it.”
  13. Jeremy at Renewing Our Minds posts a link to a sermon claiming that Billy Graham is going to hell. I haven’t seen it yet and can’t summarize.
  14. Mike Ratliff stakes out the most conservative position on abortion: “Rape, incest, and birth defects do not justify taking the life of a child.” Well, the second-most, I guess, since he doesn’t broach the question of the life of the mother.
  15. Job at Jesus Christology comes full circle in his exploration of Israel/Hamas: “Despite my sympathy for the Palestinians and many disagreements with Israeli policies, I have always maintained that ultimately Israel has not only the right but the responsibility to defend itself when faced with a population that throws rocks at Israeli tanks trying to avoid civilian casualties rather than at the terrorists using them as human shields.”
  16. Ingrid Schlueter copies a press release regarding the Freedom of Choice Act. It looks like it originates with American Right to Life. I believe this is the first time Schlueter has referred to Barack Obama as “America’s New Messiah.” The same press release is also here, and doesn’t include the term “New Messiah.”
  17. Chris Rosebrough delves deep into Barack Obama’s religious beliefs. I hope to get to this episode of Fighting for the Faith Today, but it’s a full two hours. Update: The Obama/Cathleen Falsani interview starts at about ninety minutes, and the article Rosebrough reads can be found here. I can’t do this justice; I’d encourage anyone and everyone to read the interview and listen to Rosebrough’s analysis. He says Obama “sounds like a postmodern/emergent” because he prefers the “subjective voice” to the “objective Word of God.” The payoff comes at about 1:52-55 or so; Rosebrough changes his call on Obama’s salvation, if I understand him correctly. Note also Obama’s specific reference to civic religion: “Alongside my own deep personal faith, I am a follower, as well, of our civic religion. I am a big believer in the separation of church and state. I am a big believer in our constitutional structure. I mean, I’m a law professor at the University of Chicago teaching constitutional law. I am a great admirer of our founding charter, and its resolve to prevent theocracies from forming, and its resolve to prevent disruptive strains of fundamentalism from taking root in this country.”
  18. I’m Speaking Truth picks up John Piper’s comments on Barack Obama’s aims for the American church. This is pretty heavy stuff, but I’m guessing most if not all of my readers have already seen the phrase “a minister of condemnation,” and I’m not going to try to unwind all this theology here. I think Piper’s argument is that by including Gene Robinson in the inauguration Obama is making the American church itself a minister of sin and damnation.
  19. Defending Contending also comments on the Obama inauguration. “People, your king is here; may God have mercy on us.”
  20. Mollie Hemingway at GetReligion offers an inauguration link-fest, and raises the spectre of Rick Warren praying “in Jesus’s name.” “We’ll be sure to have more on coverage of the inaugural prayers. Will Warren be chastised for praying as a Christian (or, as Amy Sullivan at Time calls it, “if Rick Warren gets preachy when he prays,” God forbid).”
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OD Today: 5 January 2009 (late edition)

January 5, 2009

Everything proceeds apace today except for a couple of stories we’ve discussed here hitting the greater blogosphere and the Sovereign Grace Ministries abuse story. See below.

  1. Darryl Foster recounts contacting Beulah Heights University regarding Lewis Tait, an adjunct professor who signed the Equal Partners in Faith “Open Letter to Martin Luther King, Jr,” which reads in part “The “whosoever” of today are the diseased and the dis-eased, the discomforted and the distressed, those who live on the margins of the marginalized, who are the oppressed of the oppressed, the sexually battered and the abused, the homeless and the bereft, the HIV/AIDS infected, who are the young and old, female and male, lesbian and bisexual, transgender and straight. These are they, the children of God.” Foster’s comments include “We wanted to know why Dr. Tait signed the letter and if he still advocated homosexual rights as an instructor at a Christian Bible College.  Tait is a former member of the United Church of Christ, the first Christian denomination to openly ordain gay christians. The UCC is also home to Jeremiah Wright and lesbian bishop Yvette Flunder.”
  2. Michael Davis comments on vandalism at Most Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, Diamond Street, San Francisco. “These activists are actually helping those of us who support traditional marriage.”
  3. Jeremy at Renewing Our Minds shares a link for The God Makers II (Google Video).
  4. Jim Hamilton calls on preachers to preach the superscriptions to the Psalms. “the choice to ignore the superscriptions of the Psalms is nothing less than a radical text critical decision to exclude from consideration evidence that is in the text.”
  5. Michael Newnham picks up Noel’s Story at Sovereign Grace Ministries Survivors. Be warned that the story at SGMS is disturbing and involves (allegations of) child molesting and church coverup.
  6. Beaconlight at A Peculiar Pilgrim offers a summary/review of all seven volumes of C. S. Lewis‘s Chronicles of Narnia.
  7. Four Pointer shares a Rick Warren video on unholy alliances. “I guess Warren doesn’t practice what he preaches, having invited such people as Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton (both unabashedly pro-abortion) to speak at his church and removing any reference to homosexuality as being a sin from the Saddleback website.”
  8. Ken Silva offers part two of his response to Margaret Manning of Ravi Zacharias International Missions: “One can listen to mystic dreamers like Foster and Nouwen if they want to, but, I’ve got real news for you; what you just read above—from God Himself through Paul—is your authentic, true, real, sinful, and wicked, self.” He also reminds his readers that the Protestant Reformation was The Lord’s Reformation, and both Henri Nouwen and Thomas Merton were Catholic, while Martin Luther repudiated the Roman Catholic Church.
  9. Christine from Talk Wisdom comments on this past weekend’s Fox News special on Mosab Hassan Yousef: “One of the reasons why I might doubt this former Hamas member’s conversion is because I did not see (at the article link), nor hear (during the documentary) that he has been born again in Jesus Christ.”
  10. Job at Jesus Christology continues asking questions about Israel and the Palestinians, looking at God’s covenant with Israel. “Though I reject premillennial dispensationalism, I acknowledge the historical legitimacy of other forms of premillennialism, and I do not subscribe  to amillennialism, preterism, covenant theology, nor do I subscribe to replacement theology in its classic sense..”
  11. Kurt Nimmo (not an ODM) connects the dots between Pat Robertson’s recent comments on Barack Obama and socialism and Pat’s 1991 book The New World Order. “Last week, Robertson claimed to have a conversation with God and in this revelation — Robertson makes predictions based on his supposed conversations with God at the start of the new year — the preacher was told the “people will welcome socialism in order to relieve their pain. Nothing will stand in the way of a plan by Obama to restructure the economy in the same fashion as the New Deal in the ’30s.””
  12. Ron Paul (not an ODM) picks up the Stowers/Manna Storehouse story. Does anyone know the Stowers’ religious affiliation?

OD Today: 3 January 2009 (early edition)

January 3, 2009

Because of the large number of links left from yesterday, and the fact that it’s probably difficult to read or even scan a list of thirty-plus links, I’m going to try breaking today’s posts into two or more pieces.

  1. Crosstalk America’s podcast is updating a couple of days at a time. Part of yesterday’s episode is Paris Reidhead‘s sermon “Ten Shekels and a Shirt” (SermonIndex.net). He contrasts 19th-century liberalism/humanism and Fundamentalism, and calls both selfishness and not Christianity. He also calls Fundamentalism “Utilitarian Christianity.” “If all you repented for was to stay out of hell, all you are is a Levite serving for ten shekels and a shirt.”
  2. Kit continue dealing with the movie Zeitgeist, links to an article from Always Be Ready that aggregates the responses from various theologians.
  3. David Hocking updates the Israel/Hamas conflict, including the death of Nizar Rayyan.
  4. La Shawn Barber talks about a draft bill in South Carolina that would give women seeking an abortion the option of seeing a free ultrasound first.
  5. Underdog Theology gives Donald Whitney’s definition of the term “evangelical.”
  6. Michael Davis notes the Gideons‘ 100th anniversary: “1.5 billion scriptures in 187 different countries and in 85 languages, including 76.8 million distributions last year alone.”
  7. Defending Contending links to a Wolf Blitzer/CNN interview with Charles Barkley; story with summary here. In this interview, from February 2008, Barkley says the Republican Party is full of “fake Christians.”
  8. Ken Silva presents the first in what he promises will be a series of responses to a letter to one of his readers from Margaret Manning (of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries) regarding Henri Nouwen.
  9. Miriam Franklin opens a can of worms regarding what some people call “eternal security” and others “once saved, always saved.”
  10. Underdog Theology links to Donald Whitney’s paper on the boundaries of Evangelical Spirituality regarding spiritual disciplines.
  11. Chris Rosebrough calls Tadd Grandstaff (Pine Ridge Church)’s Christmas sermon the worst Christmas sermon of 2008. Be warned that the embedded video starts automatically.
  12. Brian Thornton says Rick Warren should plead for mercy on behalf of the nation during the Obama inaugural invocation. “IF the gospel is true, and faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ, then the ONLY loving thing Rick Warren should do in his invocation is to plead with God to save Barack Obama and all others who have not been born again to a living hope.”
  13. Cindy Kunsman asks if spiritual abuse is biblical, gives two summaries, from Ron Henzel and David Henke.
  14. Miriam Franklin parses Rick Joyner‘s teaching that 2008 was the beginning of the Church of the Last Days.
  15. Orrin Judd links to an article by Roger Scruton on the New Atheists and the strength of their arguments. “But what exactly does modern science tell us, and just where does it conflict with the premises of religious belief?”
  16. Dwayna Litz comments on the death of Jett Travolta, and links to an older article on Scientology.
  17. The latest installment of Fighting For The Faith Radio is available; I haven’t heard it and can’t comment beyond what’s in the show notes.
  18. John Sexton says Newsweek has Bush Derangement Syndrome on the basis of a sidebar ad.
  19. The latest episode of The Dividing Line is available for download.
  20. James White shares a letter from a Mormon convert to Christianity. “Sometime after that, after I had determined that the LDS church was false, I had become saved through reading some Josh McDowell materials.” The author also has some kind words for White.
  21. John Kubicek shares a Henry Lamb column from World Net Daily regarding a United Nations sustainable development initiative called Agenda 21. “We don’ t have much time left, folks. Barack Obama will be going right along with Agenda 21, and I’m pretty sure he’ll get it started as soon as he can eliminate the 1st and 2nd Amendments.”
  22. Phil Naessens shares the video for the Brian McLaren appearance on the Bleeding Purple podcast, in which McLaren says the doctrine of hell flies in the face of the Gospel. Note: the video is just the podcast audio plus still photos.
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OD Today: 30 December 2008

December 30, 2008

It’s New Years Eve Eve, and everybody’s either still on vacation or catching up after vacation. Here are today’s links, some of them a day old:

  1. La Shawn Barber comments on a story from World Net Daily about Jesse Kilgore, a 22-year-old man who killed himself after reading Richard Dawkins‘s book The God Delusion. “First, I take a hard stand when it comes to suicide. It’s the work of inconsiderate and self-centered cowards, whatever the reason.”
  2. Ingrid Schlueter picks up the Drew Zahn article on Focus on the Family pulling their Glenn Beck article; apparently misses the fact that World Net Daily is selling the same book on their website.
  3. Watcher’s Lamp collects links and briefly comments on the story of Gianna Talone Sullivan, who has visions of Mary, the mother of Jesus. “The foreboding messages from the Mary of Maryland resemble the end of days described in the Bible. However, the solution for global peace offered by the apparitions are not Biblical.”
  4. Defending Contending picks up the story of Jonathan Gagne and six other students in Granby, Quebec, who have been suspended for refusing to attend a mandatory Ethics and Religious Culture course.
  5. Defending Contending picks up Ingrid Schlueter’s comments on Franklin Graham’s comments on Rick Warren regarding his appearance at the Barack Obama inauguration, also takes a swipe at Billy Graham.
  6. John Baker picks up the story of Focus on the Family dropping their article pushing Glenn Beck’s book; comments on James Dobson: “its founder has a fallen Humanist view of what Faith in Christ is! He has a degree in and accepts atheist humanist explanations for peoples actions.”
  7. La Shawn Barber picks up the story of Herman Rosenblat, author of Angel at the Fence, a “true story” of love during the Holocaust that turned out to be fiction.
  8. Defending Contending shares a YouTube video of girls dancing to N*Sync, with links to two other cases of people dancing to pop music in a church sanctuary. “Ichabod!”
  9. James Thomas offers an “Appeal to Spirit-Filled Ministers.”
  10. Christian Research Network awards a “Political Correctness Award” to Rick Warren, citing this article from One News Now. I’m guessing no actual award will be presented.
  11. James White pushes a cruise; guest speakers include White, David Wheaton, Gary Demar, and Marshall Foster.
  12. Desert Pastor comments on the ongoing bombing of Gaza. Defending Contending links. “Americans would be crying for blood and the obliteration of whatever country desired to harm us on a daily basis.”
  13. John Robbins comments on Michael Horton’s recent interview with novelist Anne Rice. “He gave her a big platform to tout her garbage without any rebuttal, clarification, or warning.”
  14. Ken Silva offers more comments on contemplative and centering prayer; Silva’s argument is that because they originated with the Desert Fathers and not Jesus or His disciples it isn’t biblical: “This is where the antibiblical practice of Contemplative/Centering Prayer originated; it was not practiced or taught by Jesus Christ nor His Apostles, and it has no place in the life of the Christian.”
  15. Sam Guzmán links to this video sermon by South African pastor Keith Daniel: A Warning to America (76 minutes).
  16. John Sexton links to an article from the Orange County Register regarding Seabreeze Church, offers numerous comments. “Note: Giving dropped and no one is specifying why. The reader is left to assume it was the bad economy. It wasn’t.” “they took a $200K personal loan from a member (they took a couple actually, but one in particular came from someone who left the church two months later). The church has refused to repay the money after multiple requests.”
  17. Cindy Kunsman connects Geoffrey Botkin to Great Commission Ministries, with a timeline.
  18. Lighthouse Trails offers a Top 10 articles list.
  19. Orrin Judd links and offers comments on Barack Obama’s choices regarding church attendance: “After all, Christ only came on a donkey, the One rides a unicorn.” The Chicago Tribune article he links to offers some perspective, with a rundown of the church attendance habits of the previous four Presidents.
  20. Four Pointer does not like Coexist bumper stickers.
  21. Watcher’s Lamp offers two articles about Israel’s shelling of Gaza: one on Hamas shelling Israel, and another on Iran’s reaction and Egypt’s reaction, with related links.
  22. John Baker quotes and links an article from Right Side News by Caroline Glick regarding Hamas imposition of sharia law, including provisions for crucifixion of  “Christians, Jews and anyone else who does not conform to their ideology.”
  23. Michael Davis links and comments regarding a One News Now article on a lawsuit by Illinois pharmacists challenging an executive order by the governor, Rod Blagojevich, requiring them to sell “morning-after pills.” Davis’s comments: “Freedom of religion and conscience is at issue and many want to disregard the rights of individuals in favor of commerce. Throw in a progressive agenda that liberal politicians buy in to and you have the beginnings of oppression and persecution.”
  24. Ken Silva calls out Charles Stanley for recommending meditation.
  25. John Baker links and cites an article from Arabian Business regarding an agreement among five Arab nations (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates) to move to a single common currency.
  26. Ingrid Schlueter comments on an article from Yahoo! News about teens breaking virginity pledges: “Outside of the power of Christ in our lives, most of our vows against sin fall by the wayside. Our flesh is powerful and the culture around us is constantly parading around the supposed rewards of sin. Scripture tells us that the way that seems right to us, however, leads to death. Only when we are truly born again can we have the power of God in us to resist temptation.”
  27. Gay Christian Movement Watch comments on Gene Robinson‘s disappointment in Rick Warren’s invitation to give the invocation at the Barack Obama inauguration: “I should name this the battle of the false prophets.”
  28. Ed Stetzer on bearing false witness: “The same goes for people as diverse as Joel Osteen, Brian McLaren, and Jeremiah Wright. Regardless of how much we disagree and how passionate we feel, in all cases, people should be spoken of truthfully, even when we are disagreeing with them.We cannot not let a passion for the truth make it OK to not speak truthfully. God is never honored when we defend His truth by speaking falsely.”
  29. Ken Silva offers a quote from a book co-edited by Richard Foster regarding Thomas Merton.
  30. Orrin Judd shares some analysis on the current Israel/Hamas flareup.
  31. Scott McClare offers among other things a review of Francis Schaeffer’s book The Church At the End of the 20th Century.
  32. Herescope/Discernment Research Group shares a section of Jeremiah Burroughs’s book Exposition on the Prophecy of Hosea, particularly as a warning to an apostate church. I have to admit that I’m puzzled how the book of Hosea could be considered “the meat of the Word” for an evangelical Christian, and doubly puzzled that anyone from a Protestant tradition would consider “the Church our mother.”
  33. John Baker shares an editorial from the Boston Globe concerning human rights violations perpertrated by Hamas inside the Palestinian territories. “In direct contravention of international law, Hamas uses Palestinian civilians as human shields, utilizing homes, schools and community centers as launching pads, content in the knowledge that if innocent Palestinian civilians are caught in the cross-fire, it will be Israel that is criticized.”
  34. Ken Silva shares a letter from Margaret Manning, currently of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries. Silva, in his introductory notes, focuses mostly on Nouwen and a quote from his book Sabbatical Journey; Manning mentions Nouwen only once in a response that appeals mostly to Augustine and Luther: “We quote from Nietzsche and Ghandi – and yet no one is accusing us of being atheist or Hindu supporters. We quote from Oscar Wilde – and yet we are not being accused of supporting debauchery or supporting the homosexual lifestyle. Why is it then, if we quote from Henri Nouwen, or Richard Foster, for example, are we being accused of being in cahoots with ‘contemplative spirituality?'” This is a great question, and I’m looking forward to Silva’s answer.
  35. Lighthouse Trails shares another Top 10 list: their ten favorite articles by other authors this year. And another, their ten favorite articles from other ministries.

And in cult news, Wayne Bent of the Lord Our Righteousness Church has been sentenced to ten years in prison.

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OD Today: 26 December 2008

December 26, 2008

So much for peace on earth and goodwill toward men. Here are the links for today:

OD Today: 25 December 2008

December 25, 2008

I am hoping for slim pickings today. We’ll see.

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