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Resources and Leadership Advice for Pastors and Church Leaders

Would Your Religion Be Different If You Were Born In Another Culture?

Is your religion just a reflection of your culture? Are religious beliefs accidents of culture? Sean briefly responds to these Qs by reflecting on truth.

What’s Behind Culture’s New Obsession With Possession?

We've got 'The Exorcist, 'Preacher' and 'The Conjuring' franchise.

John Searle on Free Will

Evolution News and Views (ENV) provides original reporting and analysis about the debate over intelligent design and evolution.

Atheist Philosopher Thinks

Evolution News and Views (ENV) provides original reporting and analysis about the debate over intelligent design and evolution.

Jeremy Cowart's Social-Justice Focused 'Purpose Hotel' Looks Pretty Incredible

Jeremy Cowart has an idea to the change world. The celebrity photographer, philanthropist and activist has launched a Kickstarter campaign to build the first "Purpose Hotel," in Nashville, Tennessee. The Purpose Hotel is unique because every aspect of the room will be connected to a global need or cause. They hope every night's stay will elevate the lives of at least 100 people around the world. From the Kickstarter page: Imagine not just a hotel, but a global hotel chain, where every time you book a room: A child gets sponsored. The internet fee fights human trafficking. Every product (soap, shampoo, linens, furniture, curated art, specialty products) is purchased from partners who are making a difference. In the lobby, a clean water well symbolizes the flow of hope and life to everyone and everything connected to the hotel. The goal of the Kickstarter is to raise $2 million for the initial design and planning phase of the hotel. In just a few hours, the Kickstarter has already raised more than $30,000. Every backer of this project will receive something, with gifts ranging from inspirational e-books, to having your photo on a co-founder wall in every hotel built worldwide to the furniture that will be in the room and many more options. Back in February, Cowart released his “I’m Possible” video, which told his personal story of embracing his calling, and outlined his ambitious vision for the Purpose Hotel.

Culture of Death Brings Tyranny to Vermont

Evolution News and Views (ENV) provides original reporting and analysis about the debate over intelligent design and evolution.

Hear 15 National Anthems Mashed Up into One Inspirational Song

Even if you’re not a fan of the actual summer Olympic sporting events, the Olympics themselves remain a inspiring feat of global collaboration and unity. It’s that spirit of unity that is captured so well in this new commercial from Samsung, which features 15 national anthems mashed up into one “International Anthem.” It’s pretty great.

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Top News
1
CrossExamined Radio w/ Dr. Frank Turek

Listen to CrossExamined with Frank Turek on American Family Radio network Saturday, 10-11 am Eastern on AFR network streaming audio and FM radio Tune in to our weekly call-in radio program hosted by Frank Turek on American Family Radio network. Join Frank as he discusses challenging topics, takes calls from listeners, and interviews dynamic Christian apologists. Sponsored by CrossExamined.org, this apologetics program is both informative and entertaining!  It is also available in podcast at the iTunes link below.

2
Christians, You Don't Have to Speak Into Everything

Does it honor God? David had two opportunities to kill Saul and become king. David refused both times. He didn’t kill Saul because it wasn’t his place and it wouldn’t honor God to do so. Sometimes what looks like the right thing to do, what seems reasonable and justified in our minds is not the Godly thing to do. Our primary concern is honoring and obeying God. Don’t skip this step. Spend some time in prayer to figure out if God is convicting you to speak or to remain silent. Let Him guide you.

3 Ligonier Ministries

The mission, passion and purpose of Ligonier Ministries is to proclaim the holiness of God in all its fullness to as many people as possible. Your gift enables our worldwide outreach. Donate Now

4
Why Did Police Shoot This Unarmed Black Man With His Hands Up?

There is preliminary information that North Miami Police Officers were dispatched to the scene after a 911 call was received of an armed male suspect threatening suicide. Arriving officers attempted to negotiate with two men on the scene, one of whom was later identified as suffering from autism. The other man was later identified as an employee of an assisted living facility. At some point during the on-scene negotiation, one of the responding officers discharged his weapon, striking the employee.

5
No God But One Pre-Order

Both Muslims and Christians believe that there is no God but one, but is He Allah or is He Jesus? I can tell you from personal experience and in all sincerity: How we answer this question has the power to change who we are.

6
FREE Social Media Management Dashboard | Twitter/Facebook Marketing Tool | Commun.it

I started using Commun.it to be more efficient on the way I manage out Twitter communities. My favorite features? The prioritized feed to focus on the relevant members of the community - Orange

7
WORLD News Group on Twitter

When you tweet with a location, Twitter stores that location. You can switch location on/off before each Tweet and always have the option to delete your location history. Learn more

8
Crossway on Twitter

When you tweet with a location, Twitter stores that location. You can switch location on/off before each Tweet and always have the option to delete your location history. Learn more

9
Satan’s Favorite Weapon Against You

Ferocious battles with demonic unbelief are part of the normal Christian life. This is war. If the fighting doesn’t get fierce, we are likely not engaged or doing anything threatening to Satan. But if Satan is fighting us with the Kryptonite of unbelief, he perceives a threat. When you feel yourself wilting, take heart. Through the promises of Jesus, the Spirit of Jesus will help you overcome your enemy’s most lethal weapon (John 16:33).

10 A US Air Strike in Syria Killed 85 Civilians

This devastating event appears to have been caused by an accident. Apparently, those involved mistook citizens for ISIS militants.

11
The Myth of Maternal Bliss

But most days I feel more like a fish out of water. I love calm and quiet, reading and thinking. I often like ideas more than people. I like an ordered, methodical existence. I am not a great cook, nor am I motivated, in the least, to decorate or design. I will never have an Etsy shop because I have no marketable skills in the craft department.

12
Volunteers in India Planted Almost 50 Million Trees in Just One Day

In 24 hours on July 11, more than 80,000 volunteers planted 49.3 million tree saplings throughout Northern India on public land and along roads and railways. The tree saplings were from 80 different species of tree that are all native to local nurseries.

13
Let Leaders Lead | Catalyst One Day

Craig Groeschel demonstrates how important delegation is to building a team of leaders rather than an organization of followers. Click here to get the full talk in the "Leadership Essentials" DVD Set | http://store.catalystconference.com/l... We would like to invite you to join us for Catalyst One Day. One Day is a different type of Catalyst gathering designed to focus on answering the practical "how-to" and "what-about" questions we just aren't able to cover at a larger event. One Day is a can’t-miss opportunity to unpack the nuts and bolts of leadership with the two principal voices in leadership today. http://catalystconference.com/one-day/ Subscribe NOW to Catalyst: http://bit.ly/CatalystSubscribe http://www.catalystconference.com Keep up with Catalyst! Facebook | https://www.facebook.com/CatalystLeader Twitter | https://twitter.com/catalystleader Instagram | http://instagram.com/catalyst_leader Podcast | https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/c ... Catalyst App | http://catalystconference.com/catalys ... Catalyst unifies change makers — equipping you with impactful content and experiences that transform thinking, provoke action and cultivate community.

14
http://evidence4god.blogspot.com/2016/07/reasons-i-believe-in-jesus-christ-part-2.html

15 The Poached Egg Apologetics Daily

The Poached Egg Apologetics Daily, by Greg West: updated automatically with a curated selection of articles, blog posts, videos and photos.

16 Not So Smart Phones

Writing at the American Conservative, Rod Dreher describes a major challenge facing educators: getting students to put down smart phones. Even if not used to access pornography or bully, Rod writes, students “spend enormous. . . time on their smart phones, ignoring everyone around them. Some of them have trouble sustaining an actual conversation for more than a few minutes.”

17
ReThink Apologetics | reTHINK Orange County Conference

Jonathan Morrow (D.Min, M.Div., M.A.) is a sought after speaker and teacher who has a gift for explaining challenging topics in ways the rest of us can understand. He is the author of several books including Questioning the Bible and Welcome to College and is an adjunct professor of apologetics at Biola University. As the Director of Cultural Engagement for Impact 360 Institute Jonathan trains high school and college students in their 2-week summer Immersion experience and 9-month Gap Year. As the founder of ThinkChristianly.org, Jonathan speaks nationally on worldview, apologetics, and culture and is passionate about seeing a new generation of Christ-followers understand why they believe, what they believe.

18
Dobson Endorses Trump, While Evangelical Leaders Advise Voting for Lesser Evil

“In their comments, some evangelical leaders suggested that voting for a third party candidate or abstaining for that office was futile or a vote for the winning ticket,” noted the NAE on the “lesser of two evils” choice. “A minority, however, think these positions are worth considering.”

19
WORLD News Group on Twitter

Munich gunman a ‘classic mass shooter’: No evidence the attack was prompted by radical Islam https://world.wng.org/2016/07/german_police_hunting_shooters_after_mall_attack … pic.twitter.com/idCFgEG6fy

20
Premier Christian on Twitter

When you tweet with a location, Twitter stores that location. You can switch location on/off before each Tweet and always have the option to delete your location history. Learn more

21
Philippians 4:6–7: The Heart of Fearless Contentment

In this lab, Pastor John shows one way to go deeper into Philippians 4:6–7. Essentially, he takes the themes of Philippians 4:6–7 and traces them throughout the book. Where else in the letter does Paul discuss fearlessness, contentment, and prayer? Pastor John revisits Philippians 1:20, 27–28; 3:8; 4:10–11, 15–17 to deepen affections for the beloved truths of Philippians 4:6–7.

22 The Condom Conundrum

Now Buckles and Hungerman are quick to point out that they believe the effects of teen fertility would be less alarming if the condom-distribution programs were also accompanied by mandatory sex-ed counseling. But New says such education efforts would not totally offset the jump in teen fertility caused by condom distribution. There would still be more births to teenaged mothers, and presumably more teen STDs, than if there were no condoms in the schools in the first place.

23
Albert Mohler on Twitter

The soul of this nation is being revealed before our eyes. We are witnessing an unfolding self-inflicted tragedy. God help us. Only He can.

24
The Truth About Living with an Invisible Illness

This is just one scene from my invisible fight with the degenerative condition that rages in my body every day. When others see me, as my neurologist recently described, they see “a completely normal 27-year-old woman.” Every other person I run into at church tells me how cute I look; really, I often dress up to cope with how bad I feel inside. I guess it might be working.

25
President Obama and the Munich Mall Massacre (David Wood)

http://www.answeringmuslims.com Headline 1: President Barrack Obama insists that things aren't nearly as bad as Donald Trump claims. Headline 2: Another mass shooting, this time in Munich, Germany. Headlines are rarely this ironic. The world is a mess.

26
Dying by the Sword - R.C. Sproul Jr.

It’s common in our day where everybody gets to have a take, where we have our blogs and we have our posts and social media and podcasts, it’s common for us to all take our stand and make our affirmation about who’s guilty and who’s not guilty, and more often than not it usually follows political party lines. I’m convinced we don’t know who’s guilty, at least until there is a trial. And so what I’m about to say, what follows from those events is not my take on who the bad guys are. I want to talk about what happens when perception changes. It may be that this shooting or that shooting was or was not justified. I don’t know.

27 Bill Nye the Philosophy Shy

In Nye’s rambling response, he characterizes philosophy as a curiosity—a field that raises “cool” but mostly trivial questions like whether the universe is real and whether we can know we exist. Philosophy is “important for a while,” he says, but can quickly devolve into “arguing in a circle.” And unlike science, philosophy rarely gives “an answer that’s surprising.”

28 Mind Games

Is your brain playing mind games with you? For the Colson Center for Christian Worldview, I’m John Stonestreet with The Point.

29
How Self-Help Can Become Self-Hurt

So should we trash all self-improvement efforts? Surely not. We should absolutely learn as much as we can in an effort to better ourselves. Much practical advice is helpful. We should learn effective time management, goal-setting, and leadership tactics. These are good things. But we must not place our hope in them. Instead, we must anchor our hearts on the rock of Christ. We must not let self-help become a false gospel or a counterfeit god.

30
Intolerance in the Name of Tolerance

Even committed Christians feel the pull of living outside of God’s moral truth. But we also acknowledge that our greatest act of trust is to believe that God’s ways are best. The joy we experience in submitting to him makes it unsatisfying to live in ways that doesn’t bring him glory. This week, have a discussion with your kids. Where are they currently finding their moral compass? To what degree are they committed to God? How closely are they walking with him? Help them to understand that labels like “intolerant” hurt, but they’re tolerable when our hearts are committed to learning to know God.

31
Renewing Your Mind | How Should We Then Live? | July 22, 2016

Now, when we hear that as Christians, so often we think that all we have to do is to become obvious nonconformists. So if the world wears buttons and bows, we don’t wear buttons and bows, or if the world wears lipstick, we don’t wear lipstick. We try to show ways in which we are different from the world. But that’s not what the Bible is talking about. It’s not just a matter of being different from the world; we are to go beyond nonconformity to transformation. That fits with everything the Scripture tells us of being salt and light to the world. Something that is transformed is something that is changed. The prefix trans-means “above and beyond.” We are to be above and beyond the standards of this world, not in the sense that we are to elevate ourselves in lofty status above everybody else, but that we are called to a more excellent way of life.

32
Russia's Ban on Evangelism Is Now in Effect

“We don’t know yet how these laws will be implemented, but it is already clear that they are achieving their goal of creating an atmosphere of fear and suspicion within society, while allowing the government to restrict freedom in violation of the Constitution and international norms,” he wrote. “Believers will soon need to make a very important choice: whether to obey God or these new Russian ‘laws.’”

33
The Perfect Spouse Will Not Complete You

Don’t get me wrong, there is certainly room for differences of opinion in every relationship, even differences of priority — but this is about fundamental commitments and worldview. This is why Paul warns against being “unequally yoked” because it is so difficult to make a relationship work when we cannot agree what is right or wrong. As Christians, we should excel here. Our morality is not built upon our instincts but upon the unassailable word of God. We have an unshakeable foundation that clearly marks what is acceptable Christian behavior and what is not (Romans 13:8–10).

34
My Encounter with Ken Ham's Giant Ark

Ark Encounter has captivated my interest and curiosity since Answers in Genesis (AiG) announced the colossal project in 2010. AiG is the popular young-Earth creationist apologetics organization led by Ken Ham, well-known for the 2014 Bill Nye-Ken Ham debate . My interest in Ark Encounter stems not from the desire to see a particular worldview defended or rebuffed, but simply from the fact that I’m fascinated by some of the quirkier ways fellow Christians express their faith. On AiG’s website Ham described the opening of Ark Encounter as “a historic moment in Christendom.” I knew I had to see it for myself, and I was pleased when CT asked me to report on the opening. That is how, in the 24th year of my life, in the 7th month, on the 7th day of the month, I set out on a journey to visit Ark Encounter with one question in mind: What are we, evangelical Christians, to make of this?

35
The NBA Is the National Bullying Association

In reality, the NBA has sided against these very values, unless the words "diversity, inclusion, fairness and respect" have taken on a whole new meaning, since the NBA is showing zero tolerance for any diversity of views, absolute exclusion of all those who want to keep a biological boy out of a girl's shower room, complete unfairness towards young ladies who would now be forced to compete against young men in sports, and utter disrespect for the commonsense values of the clear majority of the residents of North Carolina.

36
How to Have the BEST SUMMER EVER

Have you always wanted to swim with dolphins? Then buddy, you save up your money and go swim with that dolphin until your heart is content. Now by no means am I saying you should live your life like a Katy Perry song. It’s easy to sing about spending your rent money on parties when YOU’RE A MILLIONAIRE! But if you start a little fund for yourself you’d be amazed how fast you can pull it off. You only get to live once, and there’s not a lot of time for you to do all the things you want to do, so why not just go for it? If that means you don’t get to eat out for a few weeks and cook meals at home, then whatever. Would you rather tell your kids stories of you swimming with dolphins or about all the mozzarella sticks you enjoyed at T.G.I. Friday’s?

37
“Star Trek: Beyond”- A Christian perspective- Humanism, Unity, and Fear of the Unknown

Star Trek: Beyond has just released, and it is garnering critical praise. Full of special effects, the film has more heart and humor than might be expected. I quite enjoyed the movie. Here, I will discuss the movie from a Christian perspective. There will be  SPOILERS  for the film in what follows.

38
David Wood on Twitter

When you tweet with a location, Twitter stores that location. You can switch location on/off before each Tweet and always have the option to delete your location history. Learn more

39 http://truthbomb.blogspot.com/2016/07/the-incarnation-could-god-become-man.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

The article below was taken from the Apologetics Study Bible . The answer to this question is yes. Not only is it possible, but it happened in time and space. Neo-orthodox theologians (twentieth-century thinkers strongly influenced by Karl Barth) have said that the question is logically unanswerable, because faith is an illogical paradox and can be seen only through the eyes of faith. In recent years liberal theologians have denied the reality of the incarnation on the grounds that it is a myth and not true in any objective sense. In the nineteenth century advocates of kenotic Christology (emphasizing the "emptying" of Christ in keeping with Php 2:7) argued that in the incarnation the divine Logos (Word) suspended the characteristics of deity because they were in principle incompatible with human attributes, thus making nonsense of the claim that Jesus Christ was fully God and fully man (as both the Bible and historic Christian confessions have claimed). Historical, Bible-based theology has argued that God is omniscient (all knowing), omnipotent (all powerful), sinless, and incorporeal (without a body) and that these attributes are essential and necessary to deity.

40
Five Sources of Our Racial Shame

We each have an inevitable racial bias, a cultural lens through which we see the world. My tenets unavoidably begin with a caucasian bent as I apply them to my own heart. But racist tendencies are underneath the skin, in the heart of who we are as human beings, just as surely as pride and its countless expressions. Whether our racism is directed toward whites, blacks, or other ethnicities, it flows from ignorance, apathy, fear, judgment, and self-righteousness.

41 The Question for Jehovah’s Witnesses: Who Is Jesus?

A host of issues can get you sidetracked with Jehovah’s Witnesses if you’re not careful—soul sleep, celebrating birthdays or Christmas, blood transfusions, Heaven, Hell, war, even the Holy Spirit. Don’t go there. None of these are the most important issue. The goal of your conversation is to answer only one question: Who is Jesus? How you answer this question changes everything.

42
Apologetics and Your Kids: The Price of Truth

We have all read the statistics of young people who flee the Faith in which they have been reared soon after hitting college. There is more than one reason for this defection. The first and most obvious issue is probably the state of the heart. Is this individual actually saved? I’m not asking, “did they think they were saved?” I’m asking “were they saved?”

43
The NBA is the National Bullying Association | The Stream

God will sort this out before we all find our final place in eternity. I don’t see the NBA any more bullying than others on other subjects and even this one. We need to love each other and pray for each other. I don’t like the idea of trans-genders in locker rooms or bathrooms, but I can use the door and lock it. I can use the family restroom where it is private. I have options and can stop going where I don’t have that option. I don’t feel discriminated against because I make a certain choice by not going to NBA ball games or Target or anywhere else that chooses to favor ideas that I don’t agree with. That is the American way – freedom of choice. I never agree to bullying someone to my ideas. The few percent that live outside the norm have to start understanding that by being outside the norm – not everything will go their way 100% of the time. We need to live together and respect each other.

44
“The Atheist Delusion” – Why Millions Deny the Obvious

By downloading “The Atheist Delusion” on July 29 for $19.99, you will help us to produce future Christian movies and get to watch “The Atheist Delusion” two months before its release on YouTube (and DVD)! As a token of our appreciation, you will also receive the following items:

45
Paul David Tripp on Twitter

In 2010 I started preaching through Mark. The first set of sermons are now available at http://www.paultripp.com/mark  pic.twitter.com/9P9aW00MQt

46
Pray for me, asks Christian man buried alive - premier

A Christian man is being buried alive in a coffin underground to draw attention towards those who feel suicidal.

47
http://fb.me/2gTOG94Ox

48
Crossway on Twitter

When you tweet with a location, Twitter stores that location. You can switch location on/off before each Tweet and always have the option to delete your location history. Learn more

49
http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/07/22/sports/basketball/nba-all-star-game-moves-charlotte-transgender-bathroom-law.html

“The state of North Carolina grossly overreached by passing the worst anti-L.G.B.T. bill in the nation, and they have cost us the N.B.A. All-Star Game,” Mr. Sgro said. “The blame for $100 million in economic loss and the impact that it has on the city of Charlotte and the entire state is squarely at the feet of the McCrory machine.”

50
Why Neither Candidate Has Hispanic Christians Convinced This Election

Hispanic Democrats—some 60 percent of registered Hispanic voters—are asking when their candidate will respond more fully to this 55 million person and growing minority. To begin with, when will the party’s leaders follow through on their lingering promise to reform our broken immigration system? Though we often hear that immigration ranks fourth among issues (after the economy, education, and health care) for Hispanic voters, it is clearly the “gateway issue” for many Hispanics, who are calling on Clinton to deliver what Obama did not. Clinton is saying all the right things. She will create “the first ever Office of Immigrant Affairs.” She is “committed to introducing comprehensive immigration reform and a path to legitimate citizenship within the first 100 days of [her] presidency.” She will “end family detention, close private immigrant detention centers, and help more eligible people become naturalized.” Instead of advocating for building a wall, she promises to “tear down barriers” that have kept Hispanics from succeeding more fully.

51 Mary Kate Cary on Twitter
52 Like the Republican Party, Is American Christianity Collapsing?
53 7 Ways to Deal with Doubt
54 The Most Ignored Commandment
55 Culture's Big Lie About Marriage
56 Yahweh Is the Sweetest Name I Know
57 Austin Police Are Investigating the Violent Arrest of a Black Woman Last Year
58 Here's the Problem With 'On-Again, Off-Again' Dating
59 http://truthbomb.blogspot.com/2016/07/stop-to-discover-meaning-of-biblical.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
60 Book Review: “The Earliest Christologies” by James L. Papandrea
61 Munich shooting: Gunman acted alone, say police - BBC News
62 http://rickwarren.org/devotional/english/don-t-just-get-rid-of-your-stuff.-sell-it!1
63 Case-Making 101: Five essentials in Christian Apologetics
64 J.P. Moreland Answers Three Important Questions
65 Preacher’s Toolkit: How Long Should My Sermons Be?
66 Justice Is at the Heart of the Gospel
67 What You Should Know About the Republican Party Platform
68 Trump’s ‘Greatest Contribution to Christianity’: Pastors Preaching Politics
69 What’s a Woman’s Place in the World?
70 Holiness and Cultural Apologetics
71 How Christians Should Engage this Election
72 When God Seems Silent
73 How to Raise an Alien Child
74 Donald Trump Tells Jake Tapper He Won't Denounce David Duke or The KKK
75 LifeNews.com on Twitter
76 Eric Metaxas on Twitter
77 What is the Leibnizian cosmological argument? | Dr. Travis Campbell
78 Pokemon Go at the Holocaust Museum
79 Why Does Sola Scriptura Still Matter?
80 http://chosenforgodspurpose.blogspot.com/2016/07/would-you-sink.html?spref=tw
81 Saint James Hartline on Twitter
82 Instagram photo by @russellmoore • Jul 22, 2016 at 4:40pm UTC
83 Is It Immoral to Believe in God? - Christian Research Institute
84 The Trinity: Prosopologically Speaking (Response to Some Comments) - Founders
85 Now There’s Going to Be a Live Action Pokemon Movie
86 Why Is My Delight in God So Short Lived?
87 http://christianaudio.com/on-guard-william-lane-craig-audiobook-download
88 Mormon Leader Opens RNC Evening By Praying That God ‘Will Bless Our Enemies’
89 Denny Burk on Twitter
90 Three Reasons Every Christian Should Attend A Christian Apologetics Conference Once A Year
91 How Donald Trump Divided and Conquered Evangelicals