Pastor Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill Church in Seattle, Wash., recently spoke on the gift of tongues as described in the New Testament as part of his "Acts: Empowered for Jesus' Mission" sermon series. The conservative Reformed, or New Calvinist, Christian minister laid out his arguments as to why he believes the gift of speaking in tongues did not end with Jesus' apostles in the first century.
Cessationists, such as influential pastor and traditional Calvinist John MacArthur, believe that 1 Corinthians 13:8 and other Biblical passages indicate that the divine ability to speak in other languages or an unknown tongue (glossolalia) ended with the apostles' deaths, as did prophetic revelations and faith-healings through individuals. Some Christians, however, believe that these Holy Spirit-inspired gifts will continue until Christ's return.
In the sermon excerpt shared online this week by Mars Hill Church, Pastor Driscoll tackles three "common questions about the gift of tongues," listed as: "Can every Christian have the gift of tongues? Does Mars Hill Church believe that the gift of tongues is for today? And what happens when the private use of tongues goes public?" more >>
YouVersion is asking the millions of people who already use its leading free Bible app to help it achieve 100 million downloads by July 10 to not only mark its five-year anniversary as a major player in the app market for smartphone and tablet users, but in hopes that achieving such a milestone might allow God to take the groundbreaking app even further.
In a live webcast on Tuesday, YouVersion announced its "100 Million Milestone" initiative and a new share screen just added to Android devices (with Apple devices next in line) that might take it across the 100 million installations threshold.
YouVersion.com, online since 2007, launched its Bible app in 2008, the same year Apple Inc. launched its App Store. The application was co-founded by LifeChurch.tv pastor and Innovation Leader Bobby Gruenewald and a team at the church's Edmond, Okla., campus. Both YouVersion.com and the Bible app allow users to engage Scripture (in more than 500 different translations and nearly 300 languages), watch related videos (such as clips from "The Bible" series recently aired on the History Channel), participate in reading groups, and more. more >>
Several prominent Christian ministers, including World Changers International Church Pastor Creflo Dollar and award-winning gospel singer Marvin Sapp, will be joining Pastor Bishop T.D. Jakes, and Joel and Victoria Osteen at this year's MegaFest gathering in Dallas, Texas, this summer.
MegaFest 2013, an annual multi-day family festival featuring faith, empowerment and entertainment activities, will also feature Pastor Sheryl Brady of The Potter's House of North Dallas, Dr. IV Hilliard of New Light Christian Center Church in Houston, Dr. Jasmin Sculark of the Shiloh Baptist Church in York, Pa., and Pastor E. Dewey Smith of The Greater Travelers Rest Baptist Church in Decatur, Ga. Speakers especially for youth attendees will include Kingdom Church founder and Senior Pastor Dharius Daniels of New Jersey, Chris Durso, Youth Pastor at Christ Tabernacle in NYC, and John Gray, who was named associate pastor at Lakewood Church earlier this year.
The 2013 MegaFest, which combines some of Bishop Jakes' most popular conferences (such as the Woman Thou Art Loosed and ManPower conferences), will also be the final stop on the McDonald's-sponsored Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour, which features recording artists Smokie and Ashton Norful, Tamela Mann, John P. Kee and New Life choir, Lecrae and tour host Vickie Winans. more >>
Being successful online is not easy, says Biola University's director of innovation, Dave Bourgeois. When it comes to churches, having at least a minimal digital strategy has become crucial in expanding Christian outreach even locally within their own communities.
It is for this reason that The Christian Post has come up with its first Top 5 Churches That Use Social Media Best list. With the help of DJ Chuang, founder of the resource ministry, Social Media Church, CP has picked five churches based on their successful use of Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and other platforms to build relationships with not only their own church members, but with active Internet users within the U.S. and internationally.
"Digital technologies are changing and evolving constantly," writes Bourgeois, who is author of the recently released book, Ministry in the Digital Age - Strategies and best practices for a post-website world. "Websites that were once useful and efficient are now outdated (remember MySpace?). Even the logos and colors we use must keep up with the latest styles; what previously looked cutting edge may now convey the message that your ministry doesn't 'get it' anymore." more >>
"My Dad is with the Lord. Love you forever LTrain. You finished strong. Take your rest, and do your dance. Let the wild hog eat. I'll make you proud," Elevation Church Pastor Steven Furtick wrote of his father Larry Furtick via social media Wednesday night after he passed away from ALS, or Lou Gehrig's Disease.
Just hours after announcing earlier Wednesday that his father was "holding up" despite being told by a hospice over the weekend that the elder Furtick "had just a few hours to live," the North Carolina megachurch pastor shared the sad news with supporters just before 10 p.m. ET.
Thousands have responded to the news of the elder Furtick's passing by writing to the pastor via social media simple messages like "love and prayers," as did LifeChurch.tv Pastor Craig Groeschel. Passion City Church Pastor Louie Giglio also tweeted at Pastor Furtick: "Lifting you up to Jesus and rejoicing in the hope that holds forever." more >>
Speaking out a month after insisting she was wrongly arrested over money owed to an entertainment promoter, Christian evangelist Juanita Bynum has reached out to supporters online, encouraging them to stay strong through "trials and tribulation."
"Greetings sons and daughters of the most (high) God," Bynum wrote to her supporters Thursday. "It's been a while, hope all has been keeping well.
"I've been busy with the work that I have been called for for [sic] so I could not post nor comment to anything on Facebook. But this day I just want to say don't doubt or question what's happening in your life cause thru trials and tribulations we gain strength so everything (surely) everything happens for a reason be blessed. To God all Glory and honor belongs to." more >>