The Implications of Meritocracy on the Church: Grace Erased for Incarcerated Individuals

Punishment devoid of grace is not justice, but vengeance. We gather weekly to worship God, giving honor, praise, and glory to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We declare the goodness of God through prayers, songs, and sermons. We thank God for the unceasing love, mercy, and grace that’s been extended to us, singing hymns Read More

One-on-One with Keith Getty on Congregational Singing in the Global Church

The very act of congregational worship is a symbol of unity Ed: Where do your ideas come from when you write? Keith Getty: What a wonderful question. Two things, and both are related to my Irish upbringing. First, my musical childhood was church music, classical music, and whatever influences of Irish “folk” music I imbibed. Read More

I Grew Up in a Ministry Family—and I Hated It

But as I poured out my anger on the world, Jesus was waiting to pour out his perfect love. I was born and raised in a Christian home. My great-great-grandfather was Louis Talbot, a famous author, one of the founders of Biola University’s Talbot School of Theology, and a preacher who worked closely alongside Billy Read More

New Research: Churchgoers Stick Around for Theology, Not Music or Preachers

Don’t mess with a church’s beliefs or there may be an exodus, according to a new study from Nashville-based LifeWay Research. I used to lead, and now work with, LifeWay Research. Here’s an interesting piece of research they just released. It’s a bit counterintuitive in ways, so it caught my interest and I decided to Read More

Four Ways to Put Preferences in Their Proper Place, Part 2

Giving up your preferences and reminding your congregation to do the same is not an easy road, but it is worth it for the sake of the gospel. Third, exegete the culture. If you are going to take the steps to walk through what it looks like to engage a culture wisely, then you need Read More

A Great and Terrible Nation

Understanding our history, and how that might frame our Fourth of July prayers. Many Christians want to believe that America is a Christian nation, and for the best of reasons. Many of the early founders were devout Christians. Much of America’s history has been shaped by Protestant and evangelical values. God has indeed blessed the Read More

Mideast Christians See Russia—not the US—as Defender of Their Faith

Perplexed by America on Syria, Russian evangelicals and Middle East Christians debate if Moscow really cares. War was swirling in Syria. Rebels were pressing. And Maan Bitar was the only hope for American help. “Because I am evangelical, everyone thinks I have channels of communication,” said the pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Mhardeh. “Syrians Read More

12 Podcasts for Your Summer Listening List

A dozen women weigh in with their favorite podcasts on practicing the Sabbath, the science of pianos, and other topics worth talking about this summer. Maybe you’ve missed it, but Christianity Today produces a podcast. I’m the co-host of Quick to Listen, a weekly current-events program that pushes back against the breathless and instant opinions Read More

Renewing Your Church: Church Revitalization as a Humbling Experience

God works through people and churches who depend on him. I accepted my first pastorate in 2004 at First Baptist Church in Castroville, TX as a 25-year-old recent seminary graduate. I had not given much thought to leading revitalization throughout my studies, but I found myself leading a church that was still in the process Read More

Interview: Will the ‘First Testament’ Grab Your Attention?

Scholar John Goldingay wants readers to rediscover the original feel of the Old Testament in his new translation. Many people struggle with Bible reading and engagement in general, but this is particularly true with the first part of the Bible. We know that those who do read tend to spend more time in the New Read More

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