Blog Heap o'Links
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Spiritual Matters

Displaying 91 - 120 of 216
Vincent Funaro, Christian Post • Mon 2015 Jun 29, 10:53pm

June 25, - A coalition of African-American pastors vowed this week that there will be massive civil disobedience if the U.S. Supreme Court legalizes same-sex marriage in a ruling on the matter expected this month.…

Richard Ostling, Patheos • Mon 2015 Jun 29, 10:35pm


I understand there is currently a debate between orthodox and progressive theologians on the doctrine of the atonement. I always considered this a cornerstone of Christian theology. Can you encapsulate the arguments?


A tough one, and this mere journalist has long pondered how to reply. Tough because the meaning of Jesus’ crucifixion stands right at the heart of the Christian faith — indeed the cross is its universal symbol — and so is vitally important, sensitive, a highly complex concern of many great minds the past 2,000 years, and ultimately beyond human comprehension. But here’s a rough attempt at an answer.…

Bookmarked for future reference to the question.

Mass blogging - I'm going to try to clear a lot of tabs, post a lot of links, with briefest of tidbits. Here goes…

Nickarama, Weasel Zippers • Tue 2015 Jun 23, 7:32pm

Why didn't [the Great Powers] drop bombs to stop Nazi concentration camp trains? … Arms manufactures who call themselves Christians hypocritical. [Paraphrased]

Nickarama's side-by-side comparison quotes
Mark Tapson, Truth Revolt • Sun 2015 Jun 21, 10:56pm

Christians who manufacture weapons or invest in weapons industries are being hypocritical, Pope Francis said today, according to Reuters. … Then he complained that the Allied powers didn't bomb concentration camp rail lines in WWII. …

I know the media can wildly mis-interpret the Pope's words, but this can't be just the media…
Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post • Sun 2015 Jun 21, 9:10pm

The Christian owners of a gift shop and bistro in Iowa, who were earlier charged with discrimination and had to pay for a settlement after refusing to hold a same-sex wedding at the venue, say they are now having to close down their business completely.… "Our faith hasn't changed, … Of course, it's kind of a crushing blow because that's a major part of our business and weddings are so absolutely gorgeous in that place." …

Star Bright
Nicola Menzie, Christian Post • Sat 2015 Jun 20, 7:07am

"He told this YWAM leader that he had begun having dreams of this man in white who came to him and said, 'You are killing my people.' And he started to feel really sick and uneasy about what he was doing.... The fighter said just before he killed one Christian, the man said, 'I know you will kill me, but I give to you my Bible.' The Christian was killed and this ISIS fighter actually took the Bible and began to read it. In another dream, Jesus asked him to follow him and he was now asking to become a follower of Christ and to be discipled."

Star Bright
Amy Miller, Legal Insurrection • Fri 2015 Jun 19, 7:52pm

…In this case, however, the victims have been brought into the process and allowed to speak out on behalf of those they lost at the hands of Dylann Roof. Today, David French at National Review said, “This is one of the most powerful Christian witnesses I’ve ever seen.” I agree with him.…

Mexico Flag
Patheos • Wed 2015 Jun 17, 9:36pm

Can a country with deep Christian roots like Mexico find itself at the mercy of demons? Some in the Church fear so.

And as a result, they called for a nation-wide exorcism of Mexico, carried out quietly last month in the cathedral of San Luis Potosí.…

Fr. Fortea said that “the exorcism performed in San Luís Potosí is the first ever carried out in Mexico in which the exorcists came from different parts of the country and gathered together to exorcise the powers of darkness, not from a person, but from the whole country.”

“This rite of exorcism, beautiful and liturgical, had never before taken place in any part of the world. Although it had taken place in a private manner as when Saint Francis (exorcised) the Italian city of Arezzo.…”

Dom the Conservative, Mad World News • Wed 2015 Jun 17, 9:28pm

…Showing incredible fortitude and faith in God, Kisa not only overcame his horrific injuries, but used the time in prison to minister to the Muslim officers rendering the beatings, astonishingly, leading them to Christ.

“I have always been warned against preaching on the streets of this community,” Kisa said faithfully. “I can’t help but to preach the Gospel and, for sure, the Lord has brought so many Muslims in this community to Christ.”

After being kept in prison for over a month, the pastor appeared in court, where he would learn his fate. Incredibly, the magistrate overseeing the case found no fault with him, and set him free.…

Star Bright
Michelle Malkin • Wed 2015 Jun 17, 9:21pm

…On her birthday week, I'm overwhelmed at the strength and grace that my fierce first-born child has shown. My husband and I named her after St. Veronica, a woman who displayed great courage in the face of adversity when she stepped forward from a jeering mob to comfort Jesus on the road to Calvary. Over the past month and a half, our teenage daughter has shown more resilience worthy of her namesake than I have witnessed in most adults. She is my hero.…

Blazing Cat Fur • Mon 2015 Jun 1, 8:53am

Support is growing within the Church of England to rewrite its official liturgy to refer to God as female following the selection of the first women bishops.…

Star Bright
Christian Classics Ethereal Library • Sun 2015 May 24, 12:29pm

…Child of God! give the Father time. He is long-suffering over you. He wants the blessing to be rich, and full, and sure; give Him time, while you cry day and night.…

Anastasia Tsioulcas, NPR • Sat 2015 May 23, 6:23pm

…I found an intriguing post by Joe Drew that posits the German-born 20th-century composer Karlheinz Stockhausen as the "one truly great composer" who managed to marry science fiction and classical music. … one of the grandfathers of electronic music, and an artist who directly influenced everyone from The Beatles (his face is in the Sgt. Pepper's cover menagerie) to Frank Zappa to Kraftwerk … Many of the scenes and names in Stockhausen's seven-opera cycle Light refer explicitly to The Urantia Book. The opera Mittwoch aus Light (the "Wednesday" portion of Light, and long thought to be unperformable in its entirety) was fully staged for the first time just last week in Birmingham, England by the Birmingham Opera Company — including its infamous section for string quartet, four helicopters, four pilots, four sound engineers and a moderator.

Bible Gateway • Sat 2015 May 23, 5:41pm

Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.
—John 8:42-45 KJV

Todd Starnes, Fox News • Sat 2015 May 23, 7:34am

Somerset Academy issued a formal written apology to 12-year-old Mackenzie Fraiser late Friday for denying her the right to use a Bible verse in a class assignment.

School officials have now agreed to allow the sixth-grader to resubmit her original project, this time with her favorite Bible verse -- John 3:16 -- included.…

Bright Star
Mike Vulpo, E! • Mon 2015 May 18, 11:49pm

Josiah Duncan thought he was going to enjoy a simple meal at the Waffle House in Prattville, Ala., with his mom Ava Faulk. But before enjoying any food of his own, the five-year-old boy immediately spotted a homeless man sitting by himself. … But with a little persuading from both Josiah and Ava, the hungry man felt comfortable to order anything he wanted. "Can I have bacon?" … Before taking a bite, Josiah had one last surprise that shocked the rest of the diners observing the random act of kindness. The young boy wanted to share his faith with the stranger he just met. "God our Father, God our Father, we thank you," Josiah sang in front of at least 11 customers. "We thank you, for our many blessings, for our many blessings, Amen, Amen."

Cutie-Pie O
B. Christopher Agee, Black Community View • Mon 2015 May 18, 7:35pm

…The 700 pastors who make up the Evangelical Alliance of Kenya recently released a statement decrying Obama’s defense of homosexuality during previous trips to Africa.

"President Barack Obama is welcome to visit Kenya this summer," the statement read, "—but please, leave the preaching to us." …

NorCalFoothillRich, Weasel Zippers • Fri 2015 May 15, 8:15am

[utterly swiped joke]

A priest dies and is waiting in line at the Pearly Gates. Ahead of him is a guy who's dressed in sunglasses, a loud shirt, leather jacket, and jeans.

Saint Peter addresses this cool guy, 'Who are you, so that I may know whether or not to admit you to the Kingdom of Heaven?'

The guy replies, ' I'm Bruce, retired airline pilot from Toronto.'

Saint Peter consults his list. He smiles and says to the pilot, 'Take this silken robe and golden staff and enter the Kingdom.' The pilot goes into Heaven with his robe and staff.

Next, it's the priest's turn. He stands erect and booms out, 'I am Father John, pastor of Saint Mary's for the last 43 years.'

Saint Peter consults his list. He says to the priest, 'Take this cotton robe and wooden staff and enter the Kingdom.

'Just a minute,' says the good father. 'That man was a pilot and he gets a silken robe and golden staff and I get only cotton and wood. How can this be?

'Up here - we go by results,' says Saint Peter. 'When you preached - people slept. When he flew, people prayed.'

Guardian UK / AFP • Thu 2015 May 14, 12:53pm

Pope Francis has warned “the powerful of the Earth” they will answer to God if they fail to protect the environment to ensure the world can feed its population.

“The planet has enough food for all, but it seems that there is a lack of willingness to share it with everyone,” Francis said…

ChiCom Flag
Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra, Christianity Today • Tue 2015 May 12, 10:55am

…Days after at least a dozen crosses were forcibly removed from churches, China formally protested a United States report on its lack of religious freedom. Now a proposal has surfaced to ban crosses entirely from the rooftops of churches in Zhejiang, one of China's most Christian provinces. … "A draft of rules on religious structures released by government agencies this week says the crosses should be wholly affixed to a building facade and be no more than one-tenth of the facade's height. The symbol also must fit with the facade and the surroundings…"

Star Bright
Penny Starr, CNS News • Wed 2015 Apr 29, 8:08pm

…After being clinically dead for 45 minutes, Stoneking’s heart started to beat. The paramedics – and the doctors who treated him afterwards - were amazed at his recovery. One doctor even told him that his DNA had been altered to strip heart disease from his genetic makeup. …

Then Stoneking told the U.N. General Assembly what he thought could be done to end the violence around the world. “The answer, your excellencies, to the violence of our day and to the human atrocities of our day is Jesus,” he said. “He is the prince of peace,” Stoneking said. “I give you Jesus. …

Bob Smietana, Christianity Today • Sat 2015 Apr 25, 1:43pm

…Carson, who will likely run for president, had been scheduled to appear in June at the annual Southern Baptist Pastors Conference in Columbus, Ohio. But a group of young ministers, known as Baptist21, raised concerns… mostly Calvinist preachers objected to the beliefs of Carson’s booming Seventh-day Adventist Church - including the claim that worshiping on Sunday is sin and the idea that sinners who are barred from heaven will be annihilated rather than sent to hell. They also objected to a statement made on Easter by Carson that Jews, Christians, and Muslims are all God’s children.…

KFOR • Mon 2015 Apr 13, 5:01pm

…Officials at the Islamic Society of Edmond [Oklahoma] say pieces of pork were left in the parking lot and at the entrance of the mosque on Sunday. … CAIR-OK wants authorities to investigate the incident as a possible hate crime….

Jeff Dunetz, Truth Revolt • Wed 2015 Apr 8, 6:32pm

Congregation Toras Chaim is a tiny Orthodox Jewish Synagogue which meets in a home in north Dallas. The City of Dallas is attempting to shut the synagogue down because they are meeting in a private home without the correct Certificate of Occupation (CO). However, the Synagogue's attorney says the city’s ordinance requiring the CO is invalid under the Texas Religious Freedom Restoration Act.…

Red Dawn, Chicks on the Right • Sun 2015 Apr 5, 5:35pm

…This is his Easter message from 1983. Easter’s a celebration of our faith and a reminder about the reality of hope. And without hope, what’s the point?…

[Video, 6:29, ReaganFoundation, YouTube]

Dianny, Patriot Retort • Sat 2015 Apr 4, 4:46pm

…a letter sent out from the Keller Independent School District in Keller, Texas. …they had a speaker who, while discussing ways to alleviate stress had the horrifying audacity to “use overt language asserting his own personal Christian beliefs.” …principal Michael Nasra sent out a letter of apology about this horror. …

Candice Lanier, Frontlines • Sun 2015 Mar 29, 7:25pm

[Oregon-based Presbyterian USA Minister John Shuck:] "We all have been trained to think that Christianity is about believing things," Shuck said in the article. "Its symbols and artifacts (God, Bible, Jesus, Heaven, etc) must be accepted in a certain way.

And when times change and these beliefs are no longer credible, the choices we are left with are either rejection or fundamentalism."

[Emphasis added. Sad. Confused. Dangerous to others. … You'll never hear about "a powerful man of faithlessness."]

AFP / Yahoo News • Fri 2015 Mar 13, 10:35pm

…"I have a feeling my pontificate will be brief," the 78-year-old told Mexico's Televisa channel.

"Four or five years, I don't know. Two years have already gone by.

"It is a vague feeling I have that the Lord chose me for a short mission. I am always open to that possibility."

Israel Flag
Daisy, Chicks on the Right • Fri 2015 Mar 6, 3:12pm

…I'm sure you have seen the video of the Jewish man who walked around Paris last month. The guy had to hire a bodyguard, for crying out loud. … There's a new video that shows a Christian walking… around the streets of Haifa with a big ol' cross around his neck, just struttin' his stuff… know what happens to him?

[Video, 1:32, Christian Empowerment Council, YouTube]