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Do the Ten Commandments Have a Place in the New Testament Church?
NBC is taking a poll on "In God We Trust" to stay on our American currency.
The ministry leader believed declining US churches could be revitalized by hearing Wesleyans “with a different accent.”H Eddie Fox, who hoped to renew American Methodism through evangelism and increased connections with global Christianity, died on Wednesday at age 83.Fox led World Methodist Evangelism for 25 years, teaching, training, and empowering Methodists and Wesleyans to share their faith, and encouraging churches to make evangelism a priority. He pioneered several new initiatives that were popular in United Methodist Church (UMC) congregations, and he helped American churches connect with fellow Wesleyans outside the United States, especially in formerly communist countries after the collapse of the Soviet Union.From 1989 to 2014, when Fox directed the world evangelism program, Methodists increased around the globe by about 1 million per year, even as the US membership of the UMC declined by about 2 million overall. Fox saw a direct link between the theology of the church and its vitality.“Wherever the church is faithful to the doctrine, the sound teaching, the Discipline, the way of life—which is the way you order your life—and the spirit, openness to the Holy Spirit, you'll find a church that's dynamic, contagious and alive,” he said when he retired. “And where that is not true, you’ll find a church to be a dead sect, having the form but not the power thereof. That’s been a focus of my ministry. It’s been a call we’ve stood on for many, many years.”Fox taught more Methodists how to share their faith than any one else in his lifetime, and became, for many, the evangelistic face of Methodism. He also taught at the Billy Graham School of Evangelism at Wheaton College for 15 years.“He was dynamic and alive with his passion for the gospel, especially evangelism,” ...Continue reading...
The disasters our world is facing today should remind us that our lives are no more certain than the lives of early Christians. With all our scientific advances, we cannot stop droughts or prevent wildfires. With all our medical expertise, we cannot yet end the present pandemic or forecast the next one. We may live longer on average, but none of us are guaranteed another day. Nonetheless, I do not sense true urgency among many Christians in America. We may believe theologically that Jesus could return tomorrow or we could die today, but we need to translate this belief into practice. The more urgent our faith, the more earnestly we will share the gospel, stand courageously for our Lord, and live ready to stand before him one day.
A wise mentor once told me, “Stay faithful to the last word you heard from God but open to the next.” Henry Blackaby, author of Experiencing God, said, “For you to do the will of God, you must adjust your life to him, his purposes, and his ways.”
In the conflict over racial issues, “just preach the gospel” misses the gospel.I remember the World War II stories I was told as a middle school student. Wearing secondhand clothes and sporting an unkempt fade, I sat in a hard wooden desk too small for my growing black body in a classroom full of distracted boys and girls. The air conditioning in Alabama classrooms was unreliable, which meant sweat was an ever-present companion to our education.The teachers told us impressionable youths that the traumas of both world wars revealed American and British grit. These great nations set aside petty concerns and turned to the needs of others. I was told at that unforgiving desk that nations and individuals discover themselves under pressure. When the fervency of belief encounters the unforgiving realities of suffering, our deepest convictions are unveiled. When cancer invades a human body and stresses a marriage, the true depth of love and commitment becomes clear.In more recent history, COVID-19 has been a similar pressure and a similar revelation for the United States and its churches. Just as there are tests that reveal a person’s character, there are national trials that make plain what a country is.What has the COVID-19 pandemic said about the American church? Who have we revealed ourselves to be under pressure? I am talking not about the virus itself. I am talking about the social crisis of the pandemic, which brought to light the ongoing experience of racism and injustice by ethnic minorities in this country.The church had an opportunity to lead in this area and show the world how our faith allows us to press for better treatment for all. Instead, some decided to litigate the validity of critical race theory. With Black and Asian blood drying on the concrete streets of American cities, some decided ...Continue reading...
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