Christian Press

#HoustonWeHaveAProblem Petition Demands City of Houston Cease Bullying Actions Against Pastors

#HoustonWeHaveAProblem Petition Demands City of Houston Cease Bullying Actions Against Pastors

Raleigh, NC |Christian News Service| — Faith Driven Consumer™, the group that emerged on the national stage last year with its #IStandWithPhil campaig...

Calif Churches File Complaint Against Imposed Abortion Coverage

Calif Churches File Complaint Against Imposed Abortion Coverage

WASHINGTON – Life Legal Defense Foundation and Alliance Defending Freedom filed a formal complaintThursday with the U.S. Department of Health and Huma...

Unearthing Magdala: Where History, Archaeology and Religious Traditions Meet

Unearthing Magdala: Where History, Archaeology and Religious Traditions Meet

Inaugural U.S. Interfaith Conference

New York, NY --- On October 20, 2014, Nyack College, in partnership with the Center for the Study of Ancient Juda...

Dr. Jim Denison

Pastors face jail time, fines for refusing gay weddings

Pastors face jail time, fines for refusing gay weddings

20 HOURS AGO  |  Dr. Jim Denison, Christian Press Columnist

Now that same-sex marriage is legal in more states than ever, will pastors be fo...

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  • New Happenings in the Bahamas

    ATLANTIS, PARADISE ISLAND

    Atlantis - Bahamas

    Atlantis, Paradise Island will welcome a new restaurant to its wide array of culinary offerings this year with the opening of Olives Atlantis. Renowned chef, restaurateur, author and television star Todd English will bring his internationally acclaimed interpretive Mediterranean cuisine to Atlantis in June 2013. Olives Atlantis will be located just off the casino and will be open daily for lunch and dinner, offering sumptuous pastas, brick-oven flatbreads, fresh fish, succulent meats and decadent desserts, served alongside award winning wines.

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  • Was Abraham Lincoln a Christian?

    Abraham Lincoln

    I was not surprised that Daniel Day-Lewis won the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role. When I saw Lincoln, I thought they should hand him the award on the spot. Interestingly he became the first to win an Oscar for playing a U.S. President. In accepting the award, the actor paid tribute to the "mysteriously beautiful mind, body and spirit of Abraham Lincoln." Let's think about Mr. Lincoln's "spirit" today, more specifically his spirituality.

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  • ‘Signed in Ice, Not Carved in Stone’

    Alan Baker

    The Middle East is burning. The façade of the Arab Spring has long since fallen away, and it has become apparent that this is simply another round of the type of turmoil that has long defined the region.

     

    “We have not experienced an Arab Spring or a March to Democracy or a Facebook Revolution,” former Israeli Ambassador Yoram Ettinger told Israel Today. “What we have experienced is typical, endemic intra-Arab violence in our region.”

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  • Tanzanian Attacks against Christians Leave Believers Wary over Future

    TanzaniaSANTA ANA, CA (ANS) -- Three incident of violence against Christian ministers in Tanzania have left believers in the Eastern African nation concerned over the future of religious freedom.


    According to a news release from Open Doors USA (www.OpenDoorsUSA.org), on Sunday, Feb. 17, gunmen shot and killed a Catholic priest on the island of Zanzibar.
    The gunman waited for Father Evaristus Mushi as he parked his car outside the St Joseph's parish, surrounded the car and killed him while he was still in the vehicle.

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  • Before Filing Your 2012 Tax Return, Note these Tax Benefits

    Congress enacted the American Tax Payer Relief Act of 2012 in order to avoid the 'fiscal cliff.' This act has two major features-an increase in the tax rates paid by the wealthiest Americans, and an extension of several tax benefits that were set to expire.
     

    Some of the tax benefits that have been extended include: lower income tax rates for most Americans; lower capital gains and income tax rates for most Americans; the enhanced child tax credit; marriage penalty relief; enhancements in the dependent care credit and earned income tax credit; the American Opportunity Tax Credit; and increased exemption amounts in computing the alternative minimum tax.

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  • Christians Respond to Blasphemous Video

    Jim DenisonSaturday Night Live recently aired a fictitious movie trailer for "DJesus Uncrossed," a spoof of the film, "Django Unchained." The skit was based on Jesus' return, stating that "he's risen from the dead . . . and he's preaching anything but forgiveness." It was one of the most blasphemous videos I've ever seen.

     

    Response from the Christian community has been swift. The American Family Association asked people to petition Kmart, Sears, and J.C. Penney, asking that they pull all advertising from Saturday Night Live. Televangelist Pat Robertson described SNL's skits as "anti-Christian bigotry that is just disgusting."
     

    Fox News contributor Todd Starnes wondered, "Does NBC hate Christians?" and noted that "offending Christians is apparently what passes for entertainment these days." He added, "I find it interesting that the networks always mock and ridicule Christianity—but they give other religions a pass. Why aren't the writers at SNL churning out weekly skits about Islam—or the Prophet Muhammad?"
     

    Mark Joseph, a movie producer who worked on such films as Ray and Amazing Grace, said that the Christian community needs to push back if it wants to prevent similar sketches in the future. "If Harvey Milk or Martin Luther King Jr. had been depicted like this, [the show's producers] would be undergoing sensitivity training this week," he predicted. "The Christian community has nobody to blame but itself since there is no price to pay for doing things like this. In our culture artists will push until they get pushback. Why should they stop when there is never any serious pushback from a respected leader or group in the faith community?"
     

    Is he right? How should Christians respond to attacks on our Lord?
     

    On one hand, Jesus taught us: "Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also" (Matthew 5:39). In the Garden of Gethsemane, he refused to call twelve legions of angels to his defense (Matt. 26:53) and told Peter to "put your sword back in its place" (v. 52). On the other hand, he drove moneychangers from the temple (Matt 21:12-16) and denounced the sinful religious authorities of his day (Matt. 23).
     

    What should believers do when Jesus is slandered by our culture? Please share your thoughts on our website's comments section. And join me in seeking to live today so that you honor your Lord. Jesus is not be surprised when lost people act like lost people. But he is grieved when his followers do.

  • In-laws and HARP

    Dave RamseyDear Dave,

    I’m 27 and married, and we have two kids. I make $90,000 a year, but we have $80,000 in consumer debt—$48,000 of which is in car loans. The rest is credit card debt. My wife’s parents have offered to let us move in with them so we can get out of debt faster. Do you think this is a good idea?

    Kevin
     

    Dear Kevin,

    If I were in your situation, I would not move in with the in-laws. You’ve got an absurd amount of money wrapped up in those cars. I’d sell the stupid things, start living on a budget and paying down debt, and keep my dignity.
     

    In my mind there are only two scenarios where you’d even consider taking the in-laws up on their offer. One is where they’re absolutely wonderful people and you have a great, non-toxic relationship with them, where everyone involved knows their boundaries. Even then, I’d only consider this if it were for a very short, agreed-upon amount of time.
     

    The second scenario would be if moving in with the in-laws were the only way to accomplish your goal. And you don’t pass that test. You guys can get out of debt pretty quickly if you’ll just lose these ridiculous cars! Think about it. If you had two little paid-for beaters, your lives would be so much different. You could even save a little money on the side while you were paying down debt and buy a better car as soon as the debt was gone.
     

    If you can’t tell, I’m pretty big on maintaining dignity. You might love your cars so much that you’re unwilling to make the sacrifice. Not me. The money going into your automobiles is insane, and that’s your biggest problem!

    —Dave

     

    Dave’s thought’s on HARP

     

    Dear Dave,

    What do you think about the HARP program, and what exactly is it?

    Ivy


    Dear Ivy,

    The Home Affordable Refinance Program is designed for people who have made their payments on time but are underwater on their mortgages. Being “underwater” means they owe more on their homes than the homes are worth. So basically it gives them the opportunity to refinance their home loans.
     

    The HARP program is the only part of the Making Home Affordable program that actually worked. And to be honest, it has worked well. In contrast, the recent Home Loan Modification program is a piece of junk and all about political posturing. About 93 percent of the people who applied for a home loan modification didn’t get one. It was just another case of the government pretending to do something.
     

    I’d advise looking into the HARP program if you’ve got a good credit history and you’re underwater on your current home. Lots of HARP program applications are being approved, and the deals are closing. That’s what really matters when you find yourself in a situation like this.
     

    —Dave 

     

    Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

  • Former Delirious Frontman Martin Smith Releases First Solo Album

    Set for release April 23, Martin Smith’s first full-length solo debut, God’s Great Dance Floor, Step 01, is a 12-song collection of personal revival songs born out of a reinvigorated season of living in community with everyday believers.  A welcoming invitation to prodigals and faithful alike, God’s Great Dance Floor, Step 01 (and Step 02, slated to release October 2013) is a reminder that God’s grace is for everyone. From the opening strains of “Awake My Soul,” longtime Delirious? fans will hear the clarion call of Martin’s voice, strong as ever, declaring a resurrection of his soul.

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  • Rascal Flats Endorses Group Who Creates Safe, Fun Music for Kids

    Rascal FlattsNashville, TN. – Country Music phenomenon, Rascal Flatts members Gary LeVox (vocals), Jay DeMarcus (bass, keyboard, piano & vocals) and Joe Don Rooney (lead guitar, vocals) met up with K5 Presents to reinforce their support of positive lyrics for children, of the Franklin, Tenn. based company. K5 Presents is a company determined to give parents safe, fun and powerful music that is age appropriate for Kindergarten through 5th grade. Rascal Flats showed their enthusiasm for the K5 Presents children’s CD’s in a recorded endorsement interview at Jay DeMarcus' studio in Nashville.

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  • Why I Am Disappointed In The Black Church

    Pastor GreenI have to admit that the last 4 or 5 years has been an eye opening experience. I have closely watched the events unravel nationally from a political and social standpoint. It is interesting when you examine things from a spiritually scriptural point of view. The more I study the Bible the more amazed I am at the specificity in which the Word of God reveals things to us. I am equally amazed at how much those in the household of faith miss it. There is a place in the scriptures in which Jesus literally wept over Jerusalem. He said that His people could identify the weather patterns by the signs in the sky but they could not identify the spiritual patterns by the signs of the times, this is most unfortunate.

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  • Mark Burnett's Bible TV Series: Epic Adventure

    Bible SeriesThink of it as Survivor: Earth

     

    As reality TV host Jeff Probst might say (cue theme music; roll panoramic video), "This … is the planet Earth.  A spectacular paradise that can become a perilous jungle.  Two people – a man and a woman – are about to begin the adventure of the ages." 

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  • Plans in Motion for First Cruise Ship to Haiti in 30 Years

    Cruise With a Cause to bring 3400 missionaries for citywide mission impact


    Cruise With a CauseLeaders from across the U.S. met in Tuscaloosa, Alabama Feb. 21 and 22 for a planning retreat that hopes to take the first Cruise ship to Port au Prince, Haiti in more than 30 years. The Tuscaloosa-based PraiseFest Ministries is working in colaboration with various ministries and government officials in Haiti. PraiseFest Ministries provides a platform for mission outreach through dynamic crusades and its “Cruise With A Cause." The cruise to Haiti is schedule for May 31 - June 5, 2014.


    Dr. Matthew Dunaway, president and founder of PraiseFest, maintains most Caribbean countries depend on tourism as a major source of revenue.

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  • Tim Tebow Cancels First Baptist Dallas event

    tim-tebow-2When did believing the Bible become a bad thing in America? Yesterday, Tim Tebow announced that "due to new information" brought to his attention, he could not longer speak at First Baptist Church in Dallas as part of the opening for the church's new $130 million campus. According to the church, Tebow notified their pastor that "for personal and professional reasons he needed to avoid controversy at this time, but would like to come to First Baptist Dallas to speak at a future date."

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  • Military Wives: Dealing With the Dilemma of Deployment

    Smart Family

    A veteran military wife says "battle fatigue" isn't limited to just those in the field. It also can take its toll on those on the home front who hold the family -- and the marriage -- together through long months of deployment.

    Bobbie Simpson's husband, Larry, served his country in the U.S. Air Force for 27 years, retiring as a colonel after numerous overseas deployments. Together, they now counsel and encourage active-duty military couples as family outreach facilitators for Officers Christian Fellowship in the Puget Sound-area in Washington State -- home to several U.S. military installations.

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  • Sudanese Government Detains Over 50 Christians

    SURREY, ENGLAND (ANS) -- A human rights organization has learned that at least 55 Christians have been detained without charge by the Sudanese government for about two weeks.
     

    According to a news release from Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW), its sources say the group, which has no political affiliations and includes church leaders, has been falsely accused of receiving money from foreign countries, including Israel.

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  • How Authentic Appreciation is Making a Difference in Everyday Work Settings

    We thought we would share some brief testimonials from a variety of individuals on how using The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace is making a difference in their work settings -- which is our goal.


    "These are times of limited resources for recognizing employees in traditional ways, like ceremonies, cash awards, and plaques. And we now know that those old-school ways of showing appreciation don't necessarily make recipients feel truly valued.

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  • Two Former Obama Advisors Join NBC

    Some wonder if the White House is running the network.


    Obama, Axelrod, GibbsNBC has hired two former senior advisors to Barack Obama's presidential campaigns. David Axelrod, former White House senior advisor and senior strategist for President Obama’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns, has joined NBC News and MSNBC as a senior political analyst. He joins former White House press secretary Robert Gibbs who has also joined the network. The move has some wondering 
    how much the White House is running the network.

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  • Church Repents For Attitudes Toward Former Pastors

    Madison Assembly of God Church


    When he applied for the job as lead pastor, Peter A. Joudry knew
     Madison (Indiana) Assembly of God (MAG) had a reputation for mistreating clergy during the past three decades. Nevertheless, Joudry soldiered on through a seven-month vetting process that included a dozen interviews before the congregation elected him in April 2011.

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  • Influential Christian Leader Howard Hendricks has passed away

    Howard HendricksASHEVILLE, N.C. (ANS) -- Howard Hendricks, longtime faculty member at Dallas Theological Seminary and prolific Christian author, passed away today (Wednesday, February 20, 2013).

    Despite authoring 18 books and preaching around the world in more than 80 countries, Hendricks was perhaps best known for his influence on other Christian leaders, as several counted him as their mentor, including Chuck Swindoll, Tony Evans, Joseph Stowell and David Jeremiah.According to a news release from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (www.bgea.org), Hendricks played an important role in the development of The Cove, a 1,200 acre getaway in Asheville, North Carolina where gifted Christian leaders, teachers, and speakers guide people in studying God's Word.

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  • Israel Arab Zionist Speaks Out

    Anet HaskiaA growing number of Israeli Arabs have been coming out and voicing support for Israel and rejecting charges that they live as an oppressed minority in the Jewish state. Israel Today reporter Ryan Jones spoke to Anet Haskia, an Arab Muslim from the northern city of Acre who has proudly sent her three children to the Israeli army and describes Israel as her beloved country.

    ISRAEL TODAY: What brought you to be so supportive of Israel?

     

     

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  • Sen. Marco Rubio Makes Middle East Trip - Will Meet With Netanyahu

    Sen. Marco Rubio - Jordan, Israel, Middle East VisitWashington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), a member of the Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence and Foreign Relation Committee, today met with Jordanian officials as part of an official trip to the Middle East that will include a stop in Israel later this week.

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  • Jerusalem's Historic Ottoman-Era Train Station To Re-Open As Entertainment Hot-Spot This April

    Jerusalem, Israel, OttomanJerusalem's historic Ottoman-era train station will reopen as a major entertainment hotspot this April, boasting restaurants, art galleries and concert spaces. 

    The 1.7-acre complex will include seven restaurants, four ice cream and coffee stands, an expansive art gallery, a farmers' market and a 2,000-person concert space. 

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  • University of Missouri Recognizes Pagan, Wiccan Holidays

    University of MissouriThe oldest university west of the Mississippi River has opted to recognize Wiccan holidays. Students at the University of Missouri can now miss class to celebrate the pagan holidays without being counted absent.


    The school’s recently released Guide to Religions: Major Holidays and Suggested Accommodations lists eight Pagan and Wiccan holidays. That's one more than the number of Christian holidays honored.

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  • What If the Resurrection Never Happened?

    Clint DeckerClay Center, Kansas – “A historical fact which involves a resurrection from the dead is utterly inconceivable” wrote the late Dr. Rudolph Bultmann, an influential New Testament German Theologian.  Presenting an opposing view is Dr. N.T. Wright.  Presently, he is a world’s leading Bible scholar having done extensive research on Jesus’ resurrection.  He says, “Because he is raised from the dead, he is Lord of the world, sovereign over the whole cosmos, the one before whom we bow the knee, believing that in the end every creature will come to do so as well.”

    From the day Jesus’ tomb was found empty until today, the debate over Jesus’ resurrection has been as divisive as ever among scholars.  For the sake of consideration, let us agree with the skeptics who say Jesus’ died but was never resurrected.  This presents at least three major problems.    

     

    Spiritual.  According to Christian teaching Jesus’ death provided the shedding of blood for the forgiveness of mankind’s sins.  His resurrection completed the work.  No resurrection would mean no forgiveness.  Humanity would be cursed to bear the guilt and shame of their sin forever.  All people would be destined to a vain life and fearful death because of no hope beyond ourselves. 

     

    Moral.  According to Christian teaching God declares He does not lie and listed it in the Ten Commandments to be obeyed by His followers.  If the resurrection never happened then God is a liar.  Jesus is a liar.  The Apostles are liars.  The whole Bible is a lie.  The billions of Christians for the last 2000 years (including this writer) are all liars.  The entire Christian religion would be humankind’s greatest conspiracy. 

     

    Theological.  According to Christian teaching, Jesus was not a mere man but divine and His resurrection was ultimate proof. If Jesus had not risen from the dead it would be legitimate to ask “How could God have died . . . and stayed dead?”  If there was no resurrection Jesus was not divine.  His miracles were a hoax.  His teachings are empty.  He is nothing more than an influential historical figure like Socrates, Gandhi or Martin Luther King. 

     

    What shall we say in response?  His tomb is empty.  His bones have never been found.   There were eye witnesses to His resurrection.  One early follower said, “This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses” (Acts 2:32).  For centuries billions of these witnesses have been transformed by Him.  Jesus is alive! He is our hope for today and forever!    

     

    Clint Decker is President & Evangelist with Great Awakenings, Inc. Since 1990, he has reached over two million people with his message of hope. Contact him at cdecker@greatawakenings.org or 785-632-5063.


     
  • Don't Move the Money

    headshot 2006_cropDear Dave,

    What do you think about the practice of credit card churning?

    Ethan

    Dear Ethan,

    I think it’s a pretty dumb idea. The concept is to run up the balance on one card as high as you can, then flip the balance from card to card in order to get perks like airline miles. But if you want to go through all the trouble and hassle over such a small amount of money, be my guest.

    I’ve met thousands of millionaires, and none of them have ever credited their success to credit card churning. Think about it: With all the time you’d spend, and risk you’re taking on a scheme like that, you could actually have made some money.

    If you want success, Ethan, you have to mimic what successful people do. This means living a detailed plan, saving, and investing!

    —Dave

     

    Dear Dave,

    Both of our daughters will start college next year. We have $25,000 set aside for each in their custodial accounts, but my financial advisor says we should take the money out because it will keep them from being awarded as much in scholarships and other assistance. What do you think?

    John

    Dear John,

    I disagree. It’s like saying you should quit your job to get food stamps. You guys obviously aren’t poor, and any financial advisor who says you need to fake being poor in order to get help is not a person whose advice I want to follow.

    When your kids apply for scholarships and assistance, your entire financial picture will be assessed. More funding goes to kids from poor families than rich ones, but that’s only fair. Chances are, you fall somewhere in the upper-middle portion of the scale.

    But no, I wouldn’t move the money or try to hide it. It’s just not honest to try and act like you’re poor when you’re not. I don’t believe in that kind of stuff.

    —Dave

     

    Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

  • The Kidnapping Lobby Is at It Again

    Robert KnightWhat's the real message behind Barack Obama's call in his State of the Union speech for taxpayer-funded "universal" preschool and his trip to a Georgia preschool last Thursday for photo ops?
     

    It's that the government wants to get its hands on our children even earlier.

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  • Second assault on Christian properties in province in less than five weeks.

    Fayoum EgyptCAIRO, Egypt --Morning StarNews – Muslim villagers in Egypt’s Fayoum Province attacked a church this weekend – pelting four Christians with rocks, setting parts of the church building on fire and tearing down a cross atop the structure, witnesses said.

     
    The second assault on property of the province’s Coptic Christians in a little over a month, the attack on the Church of Mar Girgis began Friday (Feb. 15) at 3 p.m., after the church’s worship services in the town of Tamiyyah, 64 miles (103 kilometers) southwest of Cairo.

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  • Pentecostal pastor beheaded in Tanzania

    Mathayo Kachili, a Pentecostal pastor of the Assemblies of God church in Buseresere, Tanzania (a church affiliated with the Pentecostal Assemblies of God of Canada), was beheaded when a group of religious extremists attacked Christians at the church on Monday, February 11.

    "Escalating hostility and violence toward Christians in various places in Africa causes us grave concern for our brothers and sisters, and especially for our pastors," states Mike McClaflin, AG World Missions regional director for Africa. "Our prayers are with the family of Pastor Mathayo Kachili as well as the other pastors of the Pentecostal Assemblies of God in Tanzania and missionaries from the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada laboring in East Africa."

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  • Two Dead and Dozens Injured in Major Car Crash on Texas Highway

     

    At least 140 cars were involved in a major accident that left 2 people dead and more than 80 people hospitalized. The accident occurred on Interstate 10 in Beaumont, Texas. The foggy weather conditions contributed to a massive car pileup on Thanksgiving morning. According to a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper, one accident occurred and it set off a chain reaction of multiple car accidents. Nearly 12 people involved in the crashes were classified as being in critical condition at the scene. 

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  • Presidents' Day and the Destiny of the Republic

    President's Day

    Ever since Congress created Presidents' Day in lieu of the two traditional February birthdays for Washington (22nd) and Lincoln (12th), there has been a controversy. Many point to the fact that this day is still the official observance for George Washington. Others seem to want us to honor Millard Fillmore and Franklin Pierce right up there with the greatest of our elected Chiefs of State. I think Washington and Lincoln should receive the highest honors. But that does not mean we cannot give due credit to some of our other worthy leaders.

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  • County Board Reverses Decision and Allows Church to Erect a Cross

    Port Charlotte, FL – After nearly six years of effort, culminating in a yearlong battle with Charlotte County’s zoning board, Lutheran Church of the Cross will now be able to build a 60-foot monument cross on its 11-acre property. Last week, the Charlotte County Board of Commissioners voted 4-0 to instruct zoning staff to reexamine whether the monument cross should be classified as a “sign” or as a “structure” and “work of art.”

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  • Are you being watched right now?

    Raytheon

    Is your technology tracking you? Raytheon, the fifth-largest defense contractor in the world, has developed a system that tracks people online through social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.

    Their Rapid Information Overlay Technology (RIOT) software uses location data embedded in your photos and other online postings to track your movements and personal activities. The more you check-in or post on social media sites, the more location data you leave for them to follow. Raytheon has not sold RIOT to any clients yet, but it has received permission from the U.S. government to export the software.

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  • The Family Blessing

    The Lord bless you and keep you... Those familiar words bring comfort, reassurance and peace as if covering you with the arms of a loving parent or an heirloom quilt. Have you stopped to consider, however, the power and legacy God ordained when He commissioned those words and others like them throughout the Bible for us to use? The biblical practice of blessing is a potent, yet simple way to help your children come to know and love God. This special edition is designed for parents of newborns or young children, introducing them to the practice of a daily blessing. A great gift for baby showers, dedications, baptisms or christenings that the whole family will enjoy and come to cherish.

  • Hagel Stalled in the Senate, For Now

    Senator HagelThe U.S. Senate yesterday failed to confirm the nomination of former Senator Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense. In the Senate, debate can only cease and a vote take place once “cloture” is invoked by 60 senators. Pro-Hagel forces could only muster 58 votes.  The nomination will now wait until after the Presidents’ Day recess.
     

    But, as of now, the likelihood is that Senator Hagel will be confirmed after the recess. Several Republican senators believe that, even if they don’t like the nominee, the President (regardless of party) deserves an up-or-down vote on his nominee. Stalling cloture – which is, technically, a filibuster, though GOP senators and staff were studiously avoiding the use of that word yesterday – prevents such a final, yes-or-no vote.

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  • Welcome to the Doctor's Office — Your Papers Please

    Cherylyn Harley LeBonCLICK HERE TO FOLLOW Cherylyn blog's.

    I recently took my daughter to our pediatric ophthalmologist — a physician she has seen for several years, and with whom we have a very good relationship.

    At this appointment, however, the receptionist gave me three new forms to fill out. These forms were not the usual update forms. This new paperwork required specific and personal demographic information.

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  • Study Reports on Most, Least Bible-Minded Cities

    Most, Least Bible-Minded Cities - Barna GroupThe Barna Group has released a list of the most and least “Bible-mined” cities in the nation. The new study looks at how 96 of the largest cities in America view the Bible. 

    More than 42,000 adults were polled. The maintain they have read the Bible within the past seven days and strongly agree that the Bible is accurate in all it teaches.
     

    "For the South I think it's the Bible belt," said Clint Jenkins, vice president of research for the Barna Group. "I think there are a lot of good churches there who refuse to give up and make it a norm for people to go to church and make it more accepting for people to live out their faith."

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  • Don't Let Obama Put Our Toddlers in Government Schools

     Cathy RuseIn his State of the Union speech, President Obama called for taxpayer-funded universal preschool for "every child in America." As a mom of a toddler, I reject that plan.
     

    Babies and toddlers have what experts call an "absorbent mind," in which they learn primarily by absorbing their environment and the movement and speech of those around them. It is no surprise that they are very attached to home and family in these years. They are not "social" beings yet; their only relationship need is to feel cared for by, and be in close proximity to, the people who love them the most.

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  • Living Without Eating Out

    Dave RamseyLiving without eating out

    Dear Dave,

    When it comes to taking control of your money and living on a budget, what's the biggest thing a family can live without?

    Will

    Dear Will,

    There are always the shiny things people can do without. Sometimes people sell a fancy car or boat and get rid of a $600-a-month payment right off the bat. But on a regular, day-to-day basis, I think maybe the biggest and best thing you can amputate from your life is eating out.

    I love a good restaurant, and I've got nothing against the industry. The problem, though, is that people are struggling to pay their bills or set aside something for retirement because they're eating out all the time. Most folks simply don't realize how much money they throw away by heading to the drive-through for lunch or going out to dinner "once in a while."

    I want people to enjoy life, and a great part of that can be going out and having a meal with your family and friends. Just don't do it when you're broke. If you're having financial issues, the only time you should see the inside of a restaurant is if you're working there!

    - Dave


    Payoff debt vs. down payment

    Dear Dave,

    We're expecting our second child next spring, and even though we have an extra bedroom, our place is pretty small for a growing family. We also have $40,000 in student loan debt hanging over our heads, but we can save up almost $50,000 by the time the baby's here. Should we use this money to buy a bigger home or pay off debt?

    Chris

    Dear Chris,

    If it were me, I'd make sure to knock out the student loan before buying a house. Trust me, if you buy a home with a ton of debt hanging over your heads, Murphy will move into your spare bedroom and make your lives miserable. If it can happen, it willhappen. And that's especially true when it comes to buying a house when you don't have much cash on hand.

    You're telling me you can save nearly $50,000 by next year. That means you guys are making pretty good money. So there's no reason you can't turn around and do the same thing next year, right? I mean, this is only a one- or two-year program we're talking about. In another year's time, you could save up for a huge down payment with some extra savings on the side. If you waited and saved for two years, there's a possibility you could pay cash for a bigger place outright. Imagine how cool it would be to have your own home with no mortgage payments!

    Just clean up the extra bedroom and fix it up as a nice nursery. Some new carpet or hardwood is always nice. Throw in a fresh coat of paint, and you're in business. Then, a year or two after the new baby arrives, you'll be ready to move from a financial and a family perspective. A baby can live just fine in a small bedroom. There's nothing in the world wrong with that!

    - Dave


    Dave Ramsey is America's trusted voice on money and business. He's authored four New York Times best-selling books: "Financial Peace," "More Than Enough,"" The Total Money Makeover" and "EntreLeadership." The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 5 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

     

    This column is printed with permission. Opinions expressed in Christian Press columns published by ChristianPress.com are the sole responsibility of the article's author(s), or of the person(s) or organization(s) quoted therein, and do not necessarily represent those of the staff or management of, or advertisers who support Christian Press News.

     

  • Authorized Users Don't Help Your Credit

    Dave RamseyAuthorized users don't help your credit

    Dear Dave,

    My brother asked me to put his name on my credit card as an authorized user. He said it will help improve his credit score. Is this true, and would it help my score in any way?

    Anna

    Dear Anna,

    Your brother is wrong. It will not improve his credit score at all. As an authorized user, he is not the owner of the debt. There's a high likelihood that it will affect your credit score in a negative way, though, because there's a good chance he'll do some dumb things with your card.

    Look at it this way. Why would someone give him credit, or raise his credit score, just for using your credit? It doesn't make sense. Your credit score is affected by things like whether or not you pay your bill on time. The card isn't in his name, so really all this amounts to is him having fun with your card, and you're the one who's liable for the damage. The truth is that authorized users shouldn't even show up on a credit report.

    It sounds like your brother has some financial problems. While I admire the fact that he wants to fix things, this is not the answer. Don't misunderstand what I'm saying, Anna. Chances are he's not trying to con you. He probably just got some bad information. But the hard truth is this: If you go along with his idea, it's not going to help him, and it's going to hurt you. Don't do it!

    - Dave


    Season tickets are a luxury

    Dear Dave,

    In terms of a family's financial plan, when is it okay to purchase something like NFL season tickets? Is this the kind of thing that should wait until you're debt-free and can afford to pay cash for them?

    Greg

    Dear Greg,

    Absolutely, you should wait until you're debt-free and can pay cash. That kind of thing is a prime example of an expensive, luxury purchase.

    I'm an NFL season ticket holder for the Tennessee Titans. But I've been debt-free for years, and my family's financial future is very secure. Whether the Titans win or lose, or whether I watch the games in person or in front of the television, has no impact on their security. However, if you're sitting there with credit card debt, a car payment and living paycheck to paycheck, you've got no business buying season tickets. Get yourself out of debt, build an emergency fund, and make sure your family is taken care of first. Then you can have some fun. Live like no one else so that later you can live like no one else. And then, if that includes season tickets to your favorite football, baseball or hockey team, have a blast!

    Remember, this kind of thing is entertainment. I know a lot of silly people out there act like whoever wins a football game is a matter of life and death, but it's just a game. Your life and your financial future are not games, and they're not things to be taken lightly. First things first, Greg. There will be plenty of time for that kind of fun when you can afford it!

    - Dave


    Dave Ramsey is America's trusted voice on money and business. He's authored four New York Times best-selling books: "Financial Peace," "More Than Enough," "The Total Money Makeover" and "EntreLeadership." The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 5 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

    This column is printed with permission. Opinions expressed in Christian Press columns published by ChristianPress.com are the sole responsibility of the article's author(s), or of the person(s) or organization(s) quoted therein, and do not necessarily represent those of the staff or management of, or advertisers who support Christian Press News.

  • Pope Benedict XVI: An Evangelical?

    YoussefThe media, including some in the Christian media, throw around the word evangelical with little understanding of its proper definition. Most recently, the media has done this in referring to Pope Benedict XVI as the “Evangelical Pope.”

     

    In an attempt to say he’s a missionary-minded Pope, or a proselytizing Pope, they impart a title that would probably make him most uncomfortable.

     

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  • Author Bo Stern Gives Perspective on Stepping Off the Battlefield in Victory

     

    No one enjoys struggles or suffering. However, as author Bo Stern writes in Beautiful Battlefields (NavPress), God uses our darkest moments to shape us into the people He wants us to be. "Though we would rather avoid battles and suffering, God does some of His most beautiful work through the hardest seasons in life. In fact, there are some things that can only be accomplished in us through battle." 


     

    Stern is convinced that everyone, at some point on the journey between here and eternity, will be called upon to face a "Really Big Battle," whether it be emotional, physical, spiritual or relational. Like any of us, Stern has faced numerous challenges in her life. However, in 2011, her family came face to face with their Goliath when her husband was diagnosed with ALS, (Lou Gehrig's Disease). The terminal diagnosis of a loved one can be enough to shake anyone's faith, but Stern trusts God is using this experience for something bigger. 

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  • Algerian Court Fines Christian for Proselytizing

    Algeria - Christian PersecutionWashington, D.C. (International Christian Concern) - International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that a Christian was given a hefty fine by an appellate court in Tindouf, Algeria yesterday for proselytizing.The verdict, viewed by advocates as an "attack" on religious freedom, raises concerns about the trial of a second Christian in Oran who may face five years in prison on similar charges.

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  • Longest Married Couple for 2013 Honored at Ceremony by Worldwide Marriage Encounter

    John and Ann BetarJohn and Ann Betar, the national winners of the 2013 Longest Married Couple Project, sponsored by Worldwide Marriage Encounter (WWME), were honored here this past weekend. The Betars are married over 80 years. 


    Photo: L to R -- John & Ann Betar, 2013 WWME Longest Married Couple national winners, honored by Diane & Dick Baumbach, coordinators of LMC project, at granddaughters' home in Fairfield, CT this past weekend. 

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  • POW Admiral Jeremiah Denton Released From Captivity Forty Years Ago Today

    Admiral DentonForty years ago today,  Navy Admiral Jeremiah Denton was freed from captivity as a POW by the North Vietnamese in Hanoi.  In May 2007, Admiral Denton agreed to serve as Chairman of the Thomas More Law Center's Citizens Advisory Board.

    Admiral Jeremiah Denton served as United States Naval Aviator during the Vietnam War and was the Commanding Officer of an Attack Squadron aboard the aircraft carrier USS Independence.  On 18 July 1965, then-Commander Denton, was leading twenty-eight planes flying an A-6A Intruder, off the Independence on a bombing mission. His jet was shot down over the city of Thanh Hoa in North Vietnam, and he was captured and taken prisoner by the North Vietnamese.

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  • Nineteen Christian Children Rescued from a Trafficker

    Nineteen Christian Children Rescued from a Trafficker Intending to Sell Them to Radical Islamic Centers
     

    Were children to be trained as suicide bombers in Bangladesh?


    International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that 19 children, who were to be sold to fundamentalist Islamic boarding schools (madrassas), have been rescued. Traffickers lied to the children's parents, saying they would take the children to Christian boarding schools in Dhaka, when in fact, they were intending to sell the children to various madrassas. Students from Dhaka University discovered the children and rescued them. This is not the first instance of Christian children being trafficked to madrassas, as upwards of 150 children have been rescued from similar situations since July 2012.

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  • Egypt’s Christians: A Poisoned and Endangered Population

    Egypt is again heating up, and possibly heading toward a second revolution. To better understand the situation, Israel Today reporter Ryan Jones spoke to Dr. Ashraf Ramelah, founder and director of Voice of the Copts, an organization that exists to combat the spread of Islamic supremacy by drawing attention to the suffering of Christians in Egypt.

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  • Most Fear The Federal Government

    Gary BauerRonald Reagan once said that the nine most terrifying words in the English language are: “I'm from the government and I'm here to help.” It turns out most Americans still agree with the Gipper.
     

    A recent Pew Research Center for the People and the Press poll found that 53% of Americans believe the federal government threatens their personal rights and freedoms. That’s up from 45% in 2003 and 36% in 1995.

    Distrust of the federal government is not felt by just conservative Republicans, 76% of whom feel threated by the government. Fifty-five percent of moderates feel the same way.

    Some establishment Republicans get nervous about the Tea Party. Big media has succeeded in marginalizing the movement to the point where even many conservatives are reluctant to associate with it. But there’s nothing to be afraid of. Distrust of the federal government is a core Tea Party belief, and it’s shared by most Americans.

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  • U.S.-Based Relief Org. Sends Emergency Supplies and Response Teams to Help Mozambique Flood Victims

    Samaritan's Purse is providing emergency supplies and relief for thousands of families displaced by floods in Mozambique. The international Christian relief organization is coordinating relief supplies coming from three countries - by planes and across land.

    Officials estimate that catastrophic flooding in Mozambique displaced more than 150,000 people and impacted 250,000. Many evacuees are now gathered in makeshift camps that lack access to clean water, food, shelter and sanitary conditions.

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  • Chicken Soup for the Soul to Release “Billy Graham & Me”

    Chicken Soup for the Soul has created a special hardcover anthology documenting the life and legacy of Evangelist Billy Graham.
     

    The authorized compilation, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Billy Graham & Me, will be released on February 12, and contains 101 personal and impactful stories from some of the most influential leaders in government, business, sports, entertainment, and religion as well as Rev. Graham’s friends and family.

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  • How can Christians influence the Boy Scouts?

    Jim DenisonThe Boy Scouts of America have excluded gays from membership or leadership since the inception of the organization in 1910. The Supreme Court ruled in 2000 that they have a legal right to continue this position. The Scouts reaffirmed this policy just last year.
     

    However, companies such as shipping giant UPS, drug manufacturer Merck, and the United Way have stopped or postponed donations as long as their no-gays policy is in force. A gay rights advocacy group gathered more than 1.2 million online signatures to protest the Scouts' position. Now the Scouts may give troop sponsors the authority to accept gays as scouts and leaders. This change could be announced next week.

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  • 2 Attacks Prompt Christians to Stop Meeting in Indian Church

    Angry Hindus restore access to water, back off threat to deny food rations


    New Delhi, (World Watch Monitor) — 
    An uneasy calm prevails 20 miles east of India’s largest city, in a rural village where Hindus recently have twice attacked Christians, who in turn have agreed to stop holding meetings in a prayer hall.

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  • Super Bowl Ads Reflect Contrast of Culture

    For good or bad, advertisements are a reflection and extension of the culture.

    So, what did the commercials during last night’s Super Bowl communicate?

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  • The Most Christian of American Presidents

    President's DaySWARTZ CREEK, MI (ANS) -- Presidents’ Day here in the US. A holiday one of whose aspects I abhor: its mush-brained attempt at “inclusiveness.” Beyond a thank-you for the time certain presidents served, and sacrifices they probably made – already covered by various grade schools named for them, and the pensions they received – simply doing one’s job should not be justification for a federal holiday.

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  • Uprising in the Middle East spreads to Libya

    Libya UprisingLibya (MNN) ― Libya's anti-government movement is stirring now.

    Protesters dubbed Thursday as a "day of rage" and called for nationwide protests. They wanted it to coincide with the anniversary of two bloody episodes that marked the regime's 40+ years in power. At the same time, supporters of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi gathered in the capital.

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  • What Happens during Mardi Gras is Recorded in Heaven

    Costumes, parades, fattened calves, masks and of course, beads.   They are all connected with Mardi Gras.  For the unfamiliar it is a gigantic party in New Orleans each year, but to the familiar it is a whole lot more.

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  • Former Chief Justice Travels to Iowa

    Judge MooreFormer Chief Justice Roy Moore, also known as “America’s Ten Commandments Judge” will travel to Iowa for the third time since summer of 2010. Moore first traveled to Sioux City, Iowa to speak at events along sides of two members of Congress, Representatives Steve King, and former Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave of Iowa.

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  • Christian Group Presents Top 100 Films List

    SEATTLE -- Just two weeks before the Oscars, ArtsandFaith.com, a lively online community, has released two lists: its popular Top 100 Films list and a special Top 25 Horror Films list. Showcasing classic films and directors from around the world and spanning cinematic history, both lists are the culmination of years of discussion and debate among the cinephiles of the A&F community.

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  • Preparing Your Child for the Job Market

    One of the most important jobs that we as parents have is to train our children to survive—and indeed, thrive—in the world that faces them. We try to give them a solid education, develop their character and work ethic, and impart core values that glorify God. These things are among the most important elements we can give our children. However, survival in this present world demands that they be able to provide for themselves and for the families that God gives them. As many of us know, that is not an easy task, especially in the current economy. So how do we prepare our children to enter an uncertain job market? How do we ourselves adapt to the vagaries of the current economy and provide for our families when jobs are scarce and careers unstable?

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  • A Chat With MercyMe's Jim Bryson

    MercyMeAs MercyMe is in the middle of its Rock and Worship Roadshow, the bands keyboardist Jim Bryson took a moment to chat with ChristianPress.com. Here’s what he had to say:

    Q: When did you begin playing with MercyMe? (Keyboardist)

    A: I’m one of the founding members. We started in ’94, so it’s been sixteen and half years. I think I was 26 when we started the band, and I’ve been doing that ever since. I never really imagined that it would take off the way it did or last that long.

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  • Head of International Broadcast Ministry Shares how Revolution in Egypt Affected his own Family

    CAIRO, EGYPT (ANS) -- International broadcaster SAT-7 continues to express concern about the unrest in Egypt -- and the ministry's CEO has shared how his son was shot while serving water to demonstrators in Tahrir or "Revolution Square."

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