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RELIGION, CURRENT EVENTS, TECHNOLOGY Subscribe to the breaking newsWhat is RSS?
FRONT PAGE  |  10/1/2014
SUNDAY, AUG 3, 2014  |  20 comments
Barna: Many pastors wary of raising 'controversy'

On Thursday, George Barna – research expert and founder of The Barna Group – shared with American Family Radio's "Today's Issues" about new information he's compiling at American Culture and Faith Institute over the last two years, gauging where theologically conservative pastors are at politically.

"What we're finding is that when we ask them about all the key issues of the day, [90 percent of them are] telling us, Yes, the Bible speaks to every one of these issues. Then we ask them: Well, are you teaching your people what the Bible says about those issues? – and the numbers drop ... to less than 10 percent of pastors who say they will speak to it."

When researchers ask those pastors what else they are willing to do to get their people active in the political process, Barna said "it's almost nothing." ...


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· Page 1 ·  Found: 20 user comment(s)
News Item8/7/14 1:06 PM
PursuitofTruth  Find all comments by PursuitofTruth
"What we're finding is that when we ask them about all the key issues of the day, [90 percent of them are] telling us, Yes, the Bible speaks to every one of these issues. Then we ask them: Well, are you teaching your people what the Bible says about those issues? – and the numbers drop ... to less than 10 percent of pastors who say they will speak to it."

Speak without fear!

20

News Item8/5/14 5:43 PM
pennned  Find all comments by pennned
Jim, thank you for making your points clearer. you say that Christians are to be obedient to authorities, and in a general sense that is true...

but

does a worker follow blindly? what if his manager is cheating, does he follow that blindly or do what is honest and right for the company? in my view, Christians are not followers, they are servants. These words mean something entirely different to me. Followers just do what the group is doing. I have been confronted throughout my life with decisions I must make, what I will go along with and not, and know that I must fear the Lord and that I must not do anything that conflicts with the Word of God, and this, in my mind, also includes concealing evil or the sin of omission. This is in no way forcing the world to believe as I do, but rather to serve my Lord, regardless of if it makes life more difficult for me. You seem to be saying you just check your faith at the door, and follow blindly, and I wonder about that, since you refer to it as "moralism" so often.... how are you able to turn off your faith when you walk through the door? Isn't Christ your identity?

Paul also spoke of bringing freedom to slaves, even if they must be slaves, that they serve as if they serving the Lord. I guess I don't understand.

19

News Item8/5/14 3:12 PM
Jim Lincoln | Nebraska  Find all comments by Jim Lincoln
Penny, I'm not saying that Christians are not suppose to not participate in secular activities, this means very few would have jobs, I'm saying that they are a light to the world by being obedient to authorities, etc., and doing their best job possible. This I have pointed out numerous times by pointing out Gil's sermons, e.g., http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?sermonID=723141352142(Responsibilities As Slaves) and not trying to be masters the Puritans did, http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/amr/puritan.htm(The Puritans' "Christian" Agenda?), which I will certainly work against

Penny, your primary goal as a Christian is not to try to change the practices of the unbeliever, as you should realize the http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=118121637304 (The Inadequacy of Moralism), The only possible way to change the world, is to put people on The Roman Road

18

News Item8/4/14 9:04 AM
pennned  Find all comments by pennned
Jim, you and I are saying the opposite things. What I am saying is that a Christian will be involved in politics, work, society, medicine, trading and selling, and all the other secular activities, and that their light should shine in all those areas. What you are talking about is checking your Christianity at the door, which goes back to the title here, pastors afraid of controversy. Living for Christ changes ones perspective and makes one able to bring Godly leadership, in which all those institutions are blessed, unless one voluntarily goes to a church who's constant message is "stand down", which I translate as "give up" or "be like the world", and then they can check their faith at the door and buy up evolution, eugenics and whatever all week, and build their secular coalitions for personal advancement.

THe ambassador for Christ is one 24 hours a day. That is wherever they go.

17

News Item8/3/14 10:08 PM
Jim Lincoln | Nebraska  Find all comments by Jim Lincoln
This sermon shows that mixing secular activities with Christian duties is not what the Bible says. And it is really pointed out throughout the sermon and not just the first 13 minutes. http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=723141352142 (Responsibilities As Slaves)

Mike, not all people are going to be saved. I would say the indications arethat the elect are small minority of the people of Earth, so are not going to have that big of effect on politics. It takes God, Jesus to do that.

16

News Item8/3/14 10:05 PM
Jim Lincoln | Nebraska  Find all comments by Jim Lincoln
Mike of New York, I guess I forgive you several references all in one message. First, http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/cath/ch-state.htm (Roman Catholicism: The Paganization of Christianity Constantine and the Catholic Church-State). A great example of when you mix religion and politics together. Even the Eastern Roman Empire or otherwise known a the Byzantine Empire finally was brought low by the Muslims, hardly a blessing from God.

Another example which all Presbyterians and Reformed Church members should remember since it didn't happen all that long ago, was the collapse the Puritans into the Unitarians . See either http://www25.uua.org/uuhs/duub/articles/unitariancontroversy.html (The Unitarian Controversy and Its Puritan Roots) and/or http://www.rapidnet.com/~jbeard/bdm/Psychology/amr/puritan.htm (The Puritans' "Christian" Agenda?) This again shows the foolishness of mixing Christianity and politics. After reading the article on the Puritans, the second one, one is going to ask the question were they actually Christian mess anyway?

This sermon shows tha

15

News Item8/3/14 8:30 PM
pennned  Find all comments by pennned
well, I can't say it better than the title. it is the cold hard truth. I think most pastors are waiting it out. I think a spirit of fear has taken many of our pastors fire already. And when they do speak out, its on things that have some kind of state or denominational support. Very few and I mean very very few are willing to go out on the limb for the truth...unless there is an institution or group to back them up. As for the health of the American church, I would say for the most part not healthy and in a state of fear and self regulation to preserve what is left of its stature. I also think this is why so many on SA speak of not being able to find a place to worship.

Brothers and sisters, we've mixed the profound things of God with the profane things of this world, and often we are not anymore able to navigate between the two to tell the difference. May the Lord have mercy on us to open our eyes that we remain in our testimony of Jesus Christ. I do believe over these years of silence from the American church regarding the genocides, just as the German church became watered down with their enlightenment, the Christian witness from America has suffered in an extreme sense. Praise God other nations have taken up the gospel.

14

News Item8/3/14 5:24 PM
Mi8ke | New York  Find all comments by Mi8ke
Jim Lincoln wrote:
Why Mike this is why pastors should all most urgently demand their congregations vote Democratic? I seem to have to remind you of a Bible verses not only applicable to Democrats but the Greedy Old Party as well,
1 Corinthians 6:9-10
The Church is not called to reform society You never saw any of the Apostles trying to do that Please note, Responsibilities As Slaves
Many are trying to take the easy way out by avoiding the Gospel and play politics, something the Methodists could tell them about.
You keep trying to make this and other posts about republicans and democrats, but to no avail.

The church is not called to reform society? What is it happens when disciples are made of all nations? Oh, society gets reformed in the image of Christ. But that's too political, and don't forget the inadequacy of moralism blah blah.

13

News Item8/3/14 5:12 PM
Same Olde Folderal | Isles of Langerhans, Pancreas  Find all comments by Same Olde Folderal
Nothing new here to me. Barna confirms what I have been seeing/reading/hearing for a long time.
In the day when many Baptist Churches have changed their name to rid themselves of that pesty "Baptist" label to attract more people, do you think for a second they will preach anything controversial?
They do not want to offend by entering a strong opinion on any hot issue of the day: Russia's involvement in the downing of the Malaysian airliner in the Ukraine, man-made climate change, immigration, gay marriage, etc.
I did see in my local newspaper some photos taken from a baptism ceremony held at a beach-front park by a large Baptist church that changed its name a few years back.
12

News Item8/3/14 5:11 PM
Jim Lincoln | Nebraska  Find all comments by Jim Lincoln
Mike wrote:
Jim, the issues of the day are called sin, not politics. Pastors who don't address these "political" issues aren't doing the work of the Lord, but instead are protecting their butts from the discomfort it brings
Matthew 10:34,35
"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law."
Why Mike this is why pastors should all most urgently demand their congregations vote Democratic? I seem to have to remind you of a Bible verses not only applicable to Democrats but the Greedy Old Party as well,

1 Corinthians 6:9-10

The Church is not called to reform society You never saw any of the Apostles trying to do that Please note, http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?sermonID=723141352142(Responsibilities As Slaves)

Many are trying to take the easy way out by avoiding the Gospel and play politics, something the Methodists could tell them about.

11

News Item8/3/14 4:56 PM
Philip Dean  Contact via emailFind all comments by Philip Dean
I didn't say it was every church. I do know from reading the pastor's newsletters from Lifeway it's a constant problem.
If it happens once, it's one too many times - and I know for a fact it's happened more than once.
10

News Item8/3/14 3:40 PM
JoBob | USA  Find all comments by JoBob
SBC is a diverse lot.... Be careful about labeling all boards as heavy handed. My experience has been much different with the Pastors running the church and the board always going along in whatever direction the Pastor directs.
9

News Item8/3/14 1:19 PM
Jessica Dawson | Canada  Find all comments by Jessica Dawson
Dolores wrote:
We have a baptism almost every few Sundays [...] People are hungry for the true word of God. Not this watered down preaching from most today.
Awesome!
8

News Item8/3/14 8:54 AM
Michael Hranek | Endicott, New York  Protected NameFind all comments by Michael Hranek
Philip Dean wrote:
A major issue here is... deacon boards. The congregation loves a strong, committed pastor... but Deacon boards are prone to fire the strong pastor.
So in Southern Baptist pulpits, the Pastor is treated like an employee... and the deacon board thinks of them as if they can be hired and fired like a janitor.
As a result, in many Southern Baptist churches, the Pastor has to tread lightly. "don't be controversial! Or we'll have to replace you."
It's no wonder many strong pastors have left the SBC to join Independent Baptist churches, at half the salary and no benefits.
Philip Dean
You would be so right to point people to the Reality Narrow is the Gate and Difficult is the Way that leads to life, and few are they that find it

Something far too many deacons, who do not fear God, in the Southern Baptist Convention have been hindering for a long time, especially those who are Masons (Masons not Mormons) where their loyalty is not to Christ and the Church they should be serving but first with ungodly favoritism to their brother Masons.

7

News Item8/3/14 8:32 AM
Philip Dean  Contact via emailFind all comments by Philip Dean
A major issue here is... deacon boards. The congregation loves a strong, committed pastor... but Deacon boards are prone to fire the strong pastor.

So in Southern Baptist pulpits, the Pastor is treated like an employee... and the deacon board thinks of them as if they can be hired and fired like a janitor.

As a result, in many Southern Baptist churches, the Pastor has to tread lightly. "don't be controversial! Or we'll have to replace you."

It's no wonder many strong pastors have left the SBC to join Independent Baptist churches, at half the salary and no benefits.

6

News Item8/3/14 8:26 AM
Mike | New York  Find all comments by Mike
Jim Lincoln wrote:
Apparently not enough pastors have not been trained in Guidelines for Using Our Liberties) or Doninion theology
The Christian Right Movement is a disaster for the mission of Christians! ' "The Reconstructionist movement and its allies and offshoots, by substituting political and cultural action for the proclamation of the Gospel, by substituting eschatology for soteriology, and by mangling the Gospel itself, have become tools of Romanist political action" (3/02, The Trinity Review).' excerpt from, Conservative Christians are overlooking The Inadequacy of Moralism and of political action. Dominion Theology/Kingdom Now/Reconstructionism is an anti-Biblical curse.
Jim, the issues of the day are called sin, not politics. Pastors who don't address these "political" issues aren't doing the work of the Lord, but instead are protecting their butts from the discomfort it brings

Matthew 10:34,35
"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law."

5

News Item8/3/14 7:45 AM
Dolores | Texas  Find all comments by Dolores
Our Pastor, thank God, still preaches God's truths even though it may be not be"politically correct". He preached last Sunday that the government is sending money to the wrong people, Hamas! Should be helping the Jews, Instead. We have a baptism almost every few Sundays. That says something to me. People are hungry for the true word of God. Not this watered down preaching from most today.
4

News Item8/3/14 6:15 AM
John UK | Wales  Find all comments by John UK
Michael Hranek wrote:
Behold, as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters, and as the eyes of a maiden unto the hand of her mistress; so our eyes wait upon the LORD our God, until that he have mercy upon us.
Psalm 123:2
Reminded me of that little song, "Turn your eyes upon Jesus......"
3

News Item8/3/14 5:04 AM
Michael Hranek | Endicott, New York  Protected NameFind all comments by Michael Hranek
Jim Lincoln wrote:
Apparently not enough pastors have not been trained in
Jim
What makes you think they are actually pastors?

John 10:12,13
12 But a hireling, he who is not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.
13 The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep.

Andrew Foster in his excellent 8 part series 'Protraits of a Pastor' leads with:
THE PASTOR AS A WATCHMAN

BTW
If memory serves me the Free Presbyterians somehow didn't seem to lack a growing attendence of committed pryaing, Bible reading, soul winners believers and visitors drawn to come to their services, when they were zealous for the Lord Jesus Christ and the Gospel in their earlier days

IMHO Penticton Free Presbyterian Church's Motto Text for 2014 reflects a church actually having a pastor more than what you might get with a hireling

Behold, as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters, and as the eyes of a maiden unto the hand of her mistress; so our eyes wait upon the LORD our God, until that he have mercy upon us.
Psalm 123:2

2

News Item8/3/14 1:22 AM
Jim Lincoln | Nebraska  Find all comments by Jim Lincoln
Apparently not enough pastors have not been trained in http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=92906103536 (Guidelines for Using Our Liberties) or Doninion theology

The Christian Right Movement is a disaster for the mission of Christians! ' "The Reconstructionist movement and its allies and offshoots, by substituting political and cultural action for the proclamation of the Gospel, by substituting eschatology for soteriology, and by mangling the Gospel itself, have become tools of Romanist political action" (3/02, The Trinity Review).' excerpt from, Notes on Reconstructionism. Conservative Christians are overlooking The Inadequacy of Moralism and of political action. Dominion Theology/Kingdom Now/Reconstructionism is an anti-Biblical curse.

1
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