November-December 2016 Issue

 All November-December articles are provided below. Just scroll to see the list, and click to read any article.

 

Lesson for December 4, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Matthew 3:1-12 “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” – Matthew 3:2 Starving for Hope What does it take to get your attention during worship? Imagine that one Sunday morning, as the...

Lesson for December 11, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Matthew 11:2-11 “When John heard in prison what the Messiah was doing, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or are we to wait for another?’” – Matthew...

Lesson for December 18, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Matthew 1:18-25 “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he...

Lesson for December 25, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Titus 3:3-8a “He saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.” – Titus 3:5 Why...

BIONIC BLESSING

Modern miracle restores sight, reveals faith “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not...

Signs of the times: messages matter

As times change, so do the signs. Before Eisenhower brought the interstate expressway system to the U.S., traffic crisscrossed the country on more-narrow highways with traffic lights and cozy motels. Vying for business, these roadside motels would tout their offerings...

BOARD LEADERSHIP

Directors tapped, recognized by independent publishing ministry WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — The Board of Directors of Nurturing Faith/Baptists Today, Inc. elected Jack Glasgow of Zebulon, N.C., as its new chair. He is the longtime pastor of Zebulon Baptist Church and a former...

Bridges building support for Nurturing Faith/Baptists Today

MACON, Ga. — John F. Bridges of Kings Mountain, N.C., is now serving as director of development for Nurturing Faith, the publishing ministry of Baptists Today, Inc. He is also pastor of Green Hill Baptist Church in Rutherfordton, N.C. For 10 years he worked in...

Metaxas manipulates the past to serve his political agenda

Since the release of his wildly popular biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Eric Metaxas has been touted as one of conservative evangelicalism’s leading spokespersons and public intellectuals. His latest book, If You Can Keep It: The Forgotten Promise of American...

Converting Character

Columnist David Brooks calls for needed changes A review by John D. Pierce Many have detected a change in the writings of David Brooks, conservative columnist for The New York Times. His book, The Road to Character (2015, Random House), reveals his conversion. Brooks...

WIDER DOORS

Path to fuller inclusion of LGBT Christians challenges church leaders GREENVILLE, S.C. — Some churches and denominational groups have no confusion or conflict regarding persons with same-sex attraction or transgender identities. On one side or the other, the matter is...

Church shoppers look for strong preaching

After the long debate before gay marriage was made legal in 2015, a survey shows that since then Protestant pastors have rarely been asked to officiate same-sex weddings. More than 100,000 such weddings have occurred since the Supreme Court ruling. But only 11 percent...

Ethics group premieres documentary on Nigerian genocide

A new documentary from ethicsdaily.com, The Disturbances, tells the untold story from 1966 of Christian missionaries saving lives amid genocide in Nigeria. Robert Parham, head of the Nashville-based organization that produced the film, said research began with his own...

Georgetown University faces its slavery history

Georgetown University has decided to create a new institute to study slavery and will rename two of its buildings as it develops ways to address its past connections to the slave trade. The Roman Catholic school, which was founded by the Jesuit order in 1789,...

THEOLOGY IN THE PEWS: That all of them may be one

As the calendar moves into November and we come to the end of an especially contentious election season and begin to face its aftermath, it seems like a particularly important time to remember the witness of the New Testament concerning the unity of the church....

When it’s time to go home

We had just arrived at the Disney resort and my husband David had taken our young twins to the pool. I was listening to CNN while unpacking our bags. Cyclical drought in Malawi was threatening the lives of 500,000 people. The words stopped me in my tracks and brought...

THE LIGHTER SIDE: Me and Captain Morgan

In The Perfect Storm, George Clooney dies when the ship sinks. In Titanic, Leonardo DiCaprio dies when the ship sinks. When the ship sinks in All Is Lost — Spoiler alert! — Robert Redford makes it, but just barely. When I get on a boat I think about these movies,...

Lesson for November 6, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Psalm 145:1-5, 17-21 “The LORD is just in all his ways, and kind in all his doings.” – Psalm 145:17 Justice Always Counts Christians gather for worship on Sundays and at other times. Songs of...

Lesson for November 13, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Psalm 98 “O sing to the LORD a new song, for he has done marvelous things …” – Psalm 98:1 A New Song for a Lasting Love Do you know anyone who doesn’t enjoy at least some type of music? Music...

Lesson for November 20, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Psalm 46 “Be still, and know that I am God! I am exalted among the nations, I am exalted in the earth.” – Psalm 46:10 When All Else Fails The season we call “Thanks-giving” is appropriate for...

Lesson for November 27, 2016

with Tony W. Cartledge Teachers: Scroll down for teaching materials. Psalm 122 “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May they prosper who love you.” – Psalm 122:6 Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem If you had the power to bring peace to any one city in the world, what...

CLASSIFIEDS

Senior Pastor: Walnut Hills Baptist Church, a moderate Baptist church of 410 active members in the heart of historic Williamsburg, Va., is seeking a senior pastor. Submit inquiries and résumés to pastorsearch@whbconline.org by October 15. Information is available at...

RECOGNITION & REMEMBRANCE

Rick Bennett is the field coordinator for Tennessee Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, coming from the pastorate of First Baptist Church of Elkin, N.C. J. Harwood Cochrane of Richmond, Va., died July 26 at age 103. He was the founder of Overnite Transportation Co., a...

Myth and reality

Mormon narrative of persecution, religious liberty facing new light Public schools allow release time for students to attend classes of religious indoctrination. The legislature is dominated by one religion. Lawmakers consult with religious authorities systematically...

Exhausted but Exhilarated

Mercer professor gives heart, miles and years to serving Liberian church leaders When Rick Wilson is not in Liberia he is growing Liberian peppers at his Macon, Ga., home and turning them into hot sauce. He also fulfills his assignments as chair of the religion...

REBLOG: Six self-inflicting wounds of American evangelicals

Each day seems to bring another episode in the ongoing self-destructive saga of American evangelicalism. The dilemma is whether to ignore these abuses of the Christian gospel or to provide some alternative, though lesser, voice. When choosing the latter, it is for...

Being church in changing times

Transitioning from unhealthy to healthy systems A column provided in collaboration with the Center for Healthy Churches (chchurches.org) When asked about my church, I reply, “I have the privilege of serving as pastor of a healthy church.” For far too many people, this...

DIGGIN’ IT: New finds from an old geezer

Tel Gezer (pronounced “geh-zer,” not “geezer”) has been in the news lately. Though it has been excavated off and on (and sometimes poorly) since the early 1900s, recent excavations offer tantalizing evidence that seems to support biblical claims about the city. Gezer...

Religious Liberty Reflections

A conversation with J. Brent Walker, advocate for freedom WASHINGTON, D.C. — At yearend, J. Brent Walker retires as executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, a (mostly) welcomed and respected (by non-extremists) voice on Capitol Hill....

Good game, Brent

EDITOR’S NOTE: This tribute is adapted from a blog posted last June following Brent Walker’s address to the Religious Liberty Council luncheon. It might not have rivaled Lou Gehrig’s “luckiest man” speech in 1939, but neither was the situation so dire. However, J....

RELIGION AND THE AMERICAN PRESIDENTS: Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865)

“There is not much of me,” lawyer and aspiring presidential candidate Abraham Lincoln wrote to a friend in December 1859, continuing: “I was born Feb. 12, 1809, in Hardin County, Kentucky. My parents were both born in Virginia, of undistinguished families — second...

Questions Christians ask scientists

Why do scientists think their calculations for the age of the universe (almost 13.8 billion years) and the size of the universe (billions and billions of light years) are better than beliefs based on the Bible such as that creation occurred in 4,000 BC and that our...