Baptist Press Archive

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

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  • Evangelicals & politics: Reasons for voting 'complex'

    by Aaron Earls, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Politics is important for most evangelicals, but not so important that they question the faith of those who vote differently from them, a new study shows.

    A new survey from LifeWay Research sponsored by the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College explored the voting habits and political motivations of three groups of Americans: evangelicals by belief, self-identified evangelicals and those who are not evangelical by belief or self-identity. The survey was conducted May 9-16.

    Evangelicals by belief -- those who hold to four key theological statements developed by LifeWay Research and the National Association of Evangelicals -- were most likely to say politics is at least somewhat important to them (87 percent), with 30 percent saying it is extremely important. Read More

  • Cancer fails to derail her work with hurting people

    by Trennis Henderson, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    DALLAS (BP) -- Since being diagnosed with cancer in 2010, a key question Becky Ellison seeks to live by is: "If I had one more minute and I wanted to live it like God wanted me to live it, what would that look like?"

    For Ellison, part of that answer involves those who lead two key ministries to hurting people across Texas -- Christian Women's Job Corps and Christian Men's Job Corps.

    Ellison, who holds bachelor's and master's degrees in social work from Baylor University, has been involved in CWJC/CMJC ministries for 14 years. She began serving as a contract consultant with Woman's Missionary Union of Texas in 2008. Six years later -- and four years after her diagnosis -- she was invited to serve as the state WMU's full-time CWJC/CMJC strategist, consulting with 56 ministry sites throughout Texas. Read More

  • Outcry at Trump gender memo shows 'pain,' confusion

    by David Roach, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    WASHINGTON (BP) -- Angry reaction to news the Trump administration may revert to the traditional definition of gender in some federal programs, three evangelical commentators say, reveals society's confusion and need for ministry.

    The administration's proposal "may sound controversial, but it is not," Andrew Walker of Southern Baptists' Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission wrote in an Oct. 23 commentary. "The only stable way to determine what defines male and female are primary and secondary sex characteristics." Reaction to the proposal "by transgender activists demonstrates how confused our society is on what it means to be human and how far ingrained the transgender worldview has become in our thinking." Read More

  • Greear, LifeWay launch 'Ask Me Anything' podcast

    by David Roach, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    Photo courtesy of The Summit Church
    DURHAM, N.C. (BP) -- Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear has launched a podcast that allows him to engage listener-submitted questions about biblical, ethical, theological, political and practical issues.

    "Ask Me Anything: Honest Answers, Quick Questions" debuted Monday (Oct. 22) with three episodes, the first of which addressed what podcast cohost Todd Unzicker called the "number one question" Greear gets asked: "Pastor J.D., are you a Calvinist?" Ask Me Anything launches along with the LifeWay Leadership Podcast Network, which is carrying the podcast. Read More

  • Survey sees mix of orthodox belief, shifting opinions

    by Carol Pipes, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Six in 10 Americans say religious belief is a matter of personal opinion. For 7 in 10 Americans, such religious beliefs include one true God existing in three persons -- Father, Son and Holy Spirit. But an increasing majority of Americans deny Jesus has always existed and many say the Holy Spirit is a force rather than a personal being.

    Those are among the findings of a new study of American views on Christian theology from Nashville-based LifeWay Research.

    "When the majority of Americans believe religious belief is more personal opinion than objective truth, then we expect to see contradictory beliefs [as well as] beliefs that change over time," said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. Read More

  • GuideStone assesses stock market's recent volatility

    by Roy Hayhurst, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    DALLAS (BP) -- Increased market volatility, which has commanded increased headlines in the days leading up to the November mid-term elections, has caught many by surprise. However, David S. Spika, chief strategic investment officer for GuideStone Financial Resources, noted that stock market volatility is a common and normal occurrence.

    The stock market -- as measured by the S&P 500 Index, experiences price swings of 1 percent or more 62 times a year on average. The same broad index of the stock market averages only 71 trading days between declines of 5 percent or more.

    "The recent sell-off may feel unsettling to investors because they have been lulled into complacency by an historically low-volatility environment over the past couple of years," Spika said, "but it's actually quite normal and nothing to be concerned about at this time." Read More

  • 'Security' only reason for Asia Bibi verdict delay

    by Diana Chandler, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan (BP) -- Security is the only reason Pakistan's Supreme Court is delaying its ruling in an Oct. 8 appeal of Christian mother Asia Bibi's blasphemy conviction, a religious liberty expert told Baptist Press.

    "There's only one reason, security," said Shaheryar Gill, senior litigation counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ). "Generally the Supreme Court announces decisions the same day. In politically high-profile cases, or in these type security cases, these are the only times when the court doesn't announce.

    "And they don't even take that long actually, but this time it seems like they're taking a little bit longer," said Gill, who checks the court's website daily for updates and is in touch with the ACLJ's office in Pakistan. Read More

  • FIRST-PERSON: Western myths

    by Jeff Iorg, posted Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (3 months ago)

    Jeff Iorg is ready to answer the question, "How can you stand it out there?" when asked about the challenges of ministering in California and other parts of the western U.S. Read More