During the Christmas season many take shots at the origin, meaning, and purpose of this day and post articles, videos, and arguments against or for Christmas on the internet. I thought it would be appropriate to go a little beyond the traditional stories to address the elephant in the room that is the origin of Christmas day, and to try to distinguish it from the purpose and meaning of Christmas that we celebrate as believers.
Every week, Rachel Pieh Jones, the author of Pillars: How Muslim Friends Led Me Closer to Jesus, writes a Good News Friday post on her blog, Do Good Better. She celebrates good things that happened in the past week to remind us that there is light amongst all the darkness.
Last Friday, I guest-wrote the Good News Friday post and shared a variety of positive stories about education, interfaith relations, and Pakistanis fighting blasphemy laws.
November is a very special month for me. Arius was born in November (he’ll be 5 this Friday), thus, this is the month that I became a father. Being a father is a privilege and great responsibility. I have learned so many things about my relationship with God the Father that I would not have learned otherwise.
At first, I didn’t want to be bothered. I didn’t want to just give him money because I wasn’t sure what he would use it on, even though he held a gas can. I just needed to finish the sermon, which of course was on loving your neighbor and showing mercy instead of judgment.
The Our Urban Voices Podcast is now streaming wherever you get your podcasts. For the first episode, I spoke with Pastor Boto Joseph of Jackson Heights Community Church about his journey from India to ministry in ‘Little India’ in Jackson Heights, Queens—the most ethnically diverse community in New York City.
A healthy transition is strongly correlated to the health of a congregation and its leadership. Further, a church’s capacity for a healthy transition can reveal more just the health of a church and its leadership. It tells how deep the congregation’s trust is in the Lord, and whether or not it is prepared to acknowledge God’s leading when a new pastor is elected.
As a first-generation Pakistani immigrant in the US, I knew I would need more than the usual qualifications and experience necessary if I was to pursue a Baptist senior pastorate, especially during a global pandemic. What I needed was a miracle—the hand of God in action.
Imran Khan’s government is intentionally distancing Pakistan from its traditional allies, Saudi Arabia and the United States, in favor of Turkey and China. But replacing the United States with China is premature.
At long last, I’m excited to announce the new podcast launch date! The first episode will be available the early morning of Tuesday, November 2.
The Kingdom people, followers of Christ who submit to the authority of God’s Word, should never show favoritism in the church. This raises the question: what about those who are outside the church? Well, we may want to answer this with another question: is our God impartial to everyone or only to those who are members of God’s household?
One of the sisters who attends our church had been battling cancer for five years, and now she has been told that this is it. She has been sent to hospice. This wonderful sister in the Lord was not bitter that her life is being cut short, but she was grieving over the fact that her expected departure from this world will break her children’s hearts.
Both Calvinists and Dispensationalists believe that the Christian is eternally secure in Christ. However, these two groups have different understandings of biblical faith, and which kind of faith is associated with our security in Christ. Pastor and dispensational theologian Charles Stanley believes that a saving faith might not be one that endures.
It goes without saying that if church leadership is healthy, the church will be healthy, and when the church is healthy, they follow Christ. Whenever change comes, they lean on Christ in and through the change.
Without historical accuracy I would not be able to study the passage of the scriptures that is presented to me with theological accuracy. My theological understanding begins by examining a portion of the scriptures in its historical context.
What would happen to a church or denomination that does not actively learn or apply biblical and systematic theology to its teaching ministry? Has this happened to your church or denomination?
Even though understanding the small can help one to understand the larger, this does not mean that the individual represents society.
Before one forms an opinion on whether the multi-site church movement is biblically accurate or not, it is imperative to establish the definition of a church.
My sister in-law told us to gather only what we needed, as all six of us would need to pile into a tiny car and escape the center as soon as possible. This was the moment that my nightmares became real. I had all of ten minutes to dress my two boys. Would we be able to return? Was this for a day or forever?
The more time church planters spend understanding the culture, the more effective they are in their ministry cultural context.
Book Review: Discovering Church Planting: An Introduction to the Whats, Whys, and Hows of Global Church Planting by J. D. Payne
North American church planters need to rely more on the Holy Spirit and less on models and strategies.
Nations with higher priority investments in education make individuals into effective workers and executives who contribute towards building their nations by contributing to their organizations. However, when knowledge is suppressed, and education is controlled through oppressive educational philosophies, education can tear down its citizens resulting in chaotic, dictatorial, societies which sooner or later will implode.
One of the first things Christians ask when you mention the word “Lent” is, “what is it?”
The top three priorities for church leaders should be modeling Christlike behavior, living in the Spirit of prayer (that he is devoted to prayer), and studying the Word of God rigorously and teaching it to others in meekness.
Unless Christians are able to understand the difference between mission and missions, they will never understand that we all are involved in mission–the mission of God.
Current church cultures and practices are inward efforts to reach the masses who may come inside the church week after week and even fall prey to their own self-righteous routine and good works, but these people will never be able to go out and make disciples.
I would like to look at three alternative proposals to John’s authorship of the Johannine letters. My hope is to answer a few very critical questions about John’s authorship of the Johannine letters by summarizing the internal and external evidence in favor of John’s authorship.
Today, when churches in the USA are looking for specific models or strategies that can help them to grow faster with less time commitment, Coleman argues for following Jesus’ model of spending most of His time with a few individuals. The issue with such a recommendation is that the church in the USA neither has the patience nor the time for such a slow paced strategy.
The normalization between the Arabs and Israelis diminishes Turkey’s role as the chief mediator between Israel and the Muslim world, so Erdogan’s anguish probably comes from fear of an “Arab option.”
He knew that he was involved in a habitual sin, so I did not need to preach at him. He needed a friend, a brother, and most importantly some counseling with practical steps.
In a society where the truth is sacrificed upon the altar of compromise and where right and wrong are constantly redefined, my worldview keeps me consistent with what is true, pure, and holy according to the Scriptures.