Baptist Press Archive

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

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  • Survey: Church remains key part of Christmas

    by Bob Smietana, posted Tuesday, December 09, 2014 (3 years ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Most Americans believe Christmas goes better with a visit to church, religious Christmas songs in public school concerts, and more focus on Jesus, a LifeWay Research survey shows.

    And while there's much banter on cable TV talk programs about a "War on Christmas," most Americans are fine when people wish them "Happy Holidays," according to the study. This year's latest controversy regarding Christmas involves atheist billboards featuring a fictional letter from a little girl who says she's too old for fairy tales. "Dear Santa," the billboard reads, "All I want for Christmas is to skip church." Read More

  • Atheist billboards: Christmas a 'fairy tale'

    by David Roach, posted Tuesday, December 09, 2014 (3 years ago)

    Image from
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Holiday billboards sponsored by an atheist group that call the Christmas story a "fairy tale" are indirect evidence of the "continuing cultural strength of Christianity" in the view of a Southern Baptist apologist. Read More

  • Mental illness headlines stir pastors to help

    by Staff/LifeWay Christian Resources, posted Tuesday, December 09, 2014 (3 years ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Evangelical leaders are increasingly speaking out about mental health issues. Many have begun to open up about their own bouts with depression or a family member's illness.

    Last month, The New York Times ran a front page story about pastors breaking the longtime silence around mental illness. The Times story led with the account of Southern Baptist pastor Matt Brogli receiving an anonymous phone call from a suicidal man. Read More

  • Fleeing war-torn homelands, refugees seek new life

    by Keith Weston , posted Tuesday, December 09, 2014 (3 years ago)

    Photo by Keith Weston
    MILAN, Italy -- Huddled around electrical outlets in the McDonald's of this city's largest railway station, Syrian refugees, many of them young men in their 20s, wait as their phones charge. A short walk away, a line forms as more Syrians wait to register with a local relief organization. Others sit near the station's entrance, patiently waiting for a van ride to one of the nearby refugee camps.

    Waiting has become a staple of life for many of these and other refugees in Milan, Italy, since fleeing their war-torn homelands. Most left Syria months ago, joining the rapidly growing stream of immigrants seeking a better life in Europe. United by family, friendship or simply the shared experience of suffering to get here, they remain hopeful and resilient. Yet they wait. Read More

  • MISSIONS: Our obligation to the nations

    by David Platt, posted Tuesday, December 09, 2014 (3 years ago)

    IMB President David Platt, adding his voice to this year's prayer emphasis for international missions in the Southern Baptist Convention, writes that global mission is "the purpose for which each of us was created." Through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions, he writes, "you are fueling and sustaining a missions movement with eternal ramifications." Read More

  • AT THE MOVIES: A schizophrenic Moses?

    by Phil Boatwright, posted Tuesday, December 09, 2014 (3 years ago)

    KANSAS CITY, Kan. (BP) -- According to the Hollywood Reporter, actor Christian Bale has said of Moses, "I think the man was likely schizophrenic and was one of the most barbaric individuals that I ever read about in my life." This on the completion of his new film, "Exodus: Gods and Kings," wherein Oscar winner Bale played the man who led the Jews out of bondage and into the Promised Land.

    Having seen the epic and special effects-laden story of Moses, I can assure you that what you see in the theatrical trailer is what you get in the film –- one enormous computer-generated imagery (CGI) spectacle after another.

    Defiance, battles, and slow-motion splattering of blood are also plenteous in the film opening Friday (Dec. 12). What there is little of is the true nature of the biblical story and the man Bale calls schizophrenic. Read More