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Over 3,200 people from 98 partnering churches joined a prayer event in person and online Saturday to pray for the city's schools, youth and teachers.
A brief introduction to the charismatic Catholics and People of Praise, in the news now due to Amy Coney Barrett's nomination.People of Praise.You may never have heard of it before the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett––who is said to be a part of the group––to the Supreme Court.You will probably hear that they are a far-right fringe group, but they are actually part of the charismatic movement, and a bit of history may help us to understand them better.The Pentecostal and Charismatic MovementsCharles Parham founded the tiny Bethel Bible School in the heartland of Topeka, Kansas, in 1900. While he invited "all Christians and ministers who were willing to forsake all, sell what they had, give it away, and enter the school for study and prayer," he surely had no idea that 120 years later to the month of its founding, the Pentecostal / charismatic / spirit-filled movement would have 600 million adherents and be arguably the strongest global expression of Christianity across the twentieth century.Growing out of the larger eighteenth-century holiness tradition, that obscure beginning––including a watch night service December 31, 1900, where Agnes Ozman reportedly began speaking in Chinese–– was soon followed by manifestations in Houston, Texas, and the more publicized Azusa Street Revival in southern California.Soon, the movement spread across the nation and overseas. Denominations were formed (or reformed) over the decades: Church of God, Assemblies of God, Apostolic Faith, Church of God of Prophecy, and the International Church of the Foursquare Gospel. (Interestingly, the Church of God Cleveland predates Azusa and would later become a more traditional Pentecostal denomination.)And, as will become important later, these Pentecostals were also evangelicals. In 1943, American Pentecostal churches ...Continue reading...
Most people are citizens of someplace, either by birth or by choice, and with citizenship comes certain responsibilities. But what does it mean to be a good citizen? And how should Christians balance their primary allegiance to the kingdom of heaven with their earthly obligations to their communities and countries? This six-part blog series, produced under the direction of David Closson, FRC’s Director of Christian Ethics and Biblical Worldview, aims to explore how Christians can best steward these responsibilities from a biblical worldview. Learn more at FRC.org/worldview.This is part 2. Read part 1.Sometimes, one of the best ways of understanding something is understanding what it is not. For example, we can better understand light when we compare it to darkness, and hot when we compare it to cold. The same is true of citizenship; Christians can grow in our understanding of good citizenship by understanding what bad citizenship is.In the first blog of this series, we discussed two flawed Christian views regarding citizenship. The first says anyone who does not obey or uphold the governing authorities’ values and principles is a bad citizen. The second believes everyone is a bad citizen unless they are a Christian living in a Christian nation. As we discussed before, both schools of thought are flawed.According to the first view, anyone who hid Jews in their home and did not report them to the Gestapo were bad citizens of Nazi Germany. However, defying the authorities in this case and refusing to participate in genocide was the right thing to do, even though it made such people “bad citizens” in the eyes of the government.No government is entirely Christian. Therefore, if we held the second view, we would be forced to conclude that no one qualifies as a good citizen, not even Christians. This second view is flawed, because people can be good citizens even if their governments are flawed.Christian citizens must come to terms with the reality that sometimes being a good citizen of heaven may require being a “bad” citizen in the eyes of their government and countrymen. Christians are simultaneously called to love our neighbor (Matthew 22:39), honor the governing authorities (Romans 13:1-7), and honor God above man (Acts 5:29). Because our ultimate allegiance is to God, complying with earthly laws that go against God’s law is entirely out of the question for us.There are three primary disciplines that Christians must practice when discerning whether they must choose to be a “bad” citizen of earthly governments in order to be a good citizen of heaven.First, consider what Scripture has to say about what is being asked of you. In Daniel 3, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego chose not to bow down to King Nebuchadnezzar’s golden statue because this went directly against God’s command, “you shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image” (Deuteronomy 5:7-8). Scripture should always be our guide when decerning whether to obey earthly orders.Second, consider what your fears are and how they influence your decisions. Sometimes, complying with the governing authorities is the easiest option but not the most God-honoring one. Christ told us, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). Choosing to be a good citizen of heaven will often require sacrifice, pain, and courage.Third, seek counsel and pray for wisdom. Jesus promised his disciples and all future believers that, “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come” (John 16:13). Because we are citizens of heaven, we can have confidence that we will not be led astray as long as we seek Christ.Christian citizens should implement these three principles into our thinking as we engage politically. Even though our fear, uncertainty, frustration, or apathy might make it tempting to mentally check out of this fall’s election and not vote, we must choose the hard thing and engage. We should do so, remembering that “if anyone lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him” (James 1:5).We are not automatically good citizens—of earthly governments or of heaven—simply because we are Christians. And sometimes, being a good citizen of heaven can look like bad citizenship in the eyes of the world. Thankfully, we have an opportunity to be good citizens as we read God’s Word and listen to the guidance of the Holy Spirit as we seek to discern good citizenship from bad.
Here are “The 7” top trending items at FRC over the past seven days:1. Update: The Left’s anti-Christian Dogma Is Already Living Loudly within ThemWith the recent death of Justice Ginsburg, politicians and members of the press have already launched a full-scale assault on Judge Amy Coney Barrett—who has emerged as a leading contender for the vacancy—for her faith and religious beliefs.2. Update: Education to Form a More Perfect UnionWith public schools going virtual, many parents are finally taking a closer look at what their children are learning. And it’s not pretty. Parents are realizing their kids are being taught almost exclusively from materials produced by progressive organizations and are not learning American history.3. Blog: Should Christians Vote?Do American Christians have a moral obligation to vote? If the gospel has implications for all areas of life, including politics, pastors should strive to ensure their members are equipped and sufficiently informed to faithfully engage in the public square.4. Washington Watch: Dan McLaughlin on the historical precedent for Republicans to fill the Supreme Court vacancy in 2020Dan McLaughlin, Senior Writer at National Review Online, joined Tony Perkins to discuss his column, “History is on the Side of Republicans Filling a Supreme Court Vacancy in 2020.”5. Washington Watch: Sec. Betsy DeVos on President Trump’s efforts to restore patriotic education to American schoolsBetsy DeVos, U.S. Secretary of Education, joined Tony Perkins to discuss President Trump’s efforts to restore patriotic education to American schools.6. Washington Watch: Sharon Fast Gustafson on Kroger for firing employees who would not wear pro-LGBT apronsSharon Fast Gustafson, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) General Counsel, joined Tony Perkins to discuss the EEOC filing a lawsuit against the grocery company Kroger for firing employees who refuse to wear pro-LGBT aprons.7. Values Voter Summit 2020: America, Pray Vote StandFRC Action hosted the first ever virtual Values Voter Summit this week. Viewers heard leading conservative voices like Dana Loesch, Mark Meadows, Eric Metaxas, Allie Stuckey, and many more! You can hear from these speakers as well by accessing the video archive.For more from FRC, visit our website at frc.org, our blog at frcblog.com, our Facebook page, Twitter account, and Instagram account. Get the latest on what FRC is saying about the current issues of the day that impact the state of faith, family, and freedom, both domestically and abroad.Family Research Council's vision is a prevailing culture in which all human life is valued, families flourish, and religious liberty thrives. Join us to learn about FRC's work and see how you can help advance faith, family, and freedom.
C. S. Lewis's fiction can teach virtue, according to a new curriculum. But the true potential is so much more.My mother read The Chronicles of Narnia to my brother and me at night, while the four of us—my father half-listening while reading a novel of his own—lay on my parents’ enormous bed. I remember such strong emotions with the series. When we got to The Last Battle, the final installment, I felt warm affection for the foolish donkey Puzzle, grief at the fall of Narnia, sharp frustration at the dwarves who couldn’t see the truth of a remarkable feast set before them.As a parent myself now and a teacher and an Anglican priest, I’ve been revisiting the Lewis of my childhood. What did I learn in Narnia? What virtues did I come to value on the other side of that wardrobe? How powerful is Narnia at moving, molding, and directing young hearts?Quite, according to a new character curriculum, Narnian Virtues. Designed by education professors Mark Pike and Thomas Lickona, the curriculum teaches “universal virtues” to children ages 10 to 14 using The Chronicles of Narnia. It is supported in part by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation and has been taught at a variety of schools, both secular and Christian, as part of a pilot program designed to test the possibility of teaching virtue.According to the educators’ vision, this program is not aimed at behavior management, which is often taught in schools. Rather, it is designed to teach students “to know the good, to love the good, and to do the good.” As the literature says, it is premised on the belief that “the Narnia novels have the capacity to motivate a wide range of readers to make efforts to develop the will as well as the skill needed for good character.”The qualitative results of the pilot program show ...Continue reading...
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