THE BRIEFING | Meredith Flynn
Survey shines light on Scripture habits
A recent LifeWay Research study found few churchgoers are daily engaging in personal reading and study of Scripture. When asked how often they personally (not as part of a worship service) read the Bible, 19% of those surveyed said every day; 26% said a few times a week, 14% said once a week, 22% said once a month or a few times a month, and 18% said rarely/never.
“Bible engagement has an impact in just about every area of spiritual growth,” said Ed Stetzer, president of LifeWay Research. “You can follow Christ and see Christianity as your source of truth, but if that truth does not permeate your thoughts, aspirations and actions, you are not fully engaging the truth.
“God’s Word is truth, so it should come as no surprise that reading and studying the Bible are still the activities that have the most impact on growth in this attribute of spiritual maturity,” Stetzer said. “As basic as that is, there are still numerous churchgoers who are not reading the Bible regularly. You simply won’t grow if you don’t know God and spend time in God’s Word.”
Read more survey findings at LifeWayResearch.com.
Texas Baptists affirm marriage
The Southern Baptists of Texas Convention (SBTC) is promoting a petition that affirms the biblical definition of marriage and asks President Barack Obama to reconsider his support of gay marriage. In a recent chapel service at Southwestern Seminary, SBTC President Terry Turner urged professors and students to sign the petition, online at sbtexas.com/marriagepetition. Turner, an African American pastor, also rejected the notion that homosexuality is a civil rights issue.
“I saw what my ancestors went through, how they fought against the Jim Crow laws because of the color of their skin,” Turner said. “I saw how they fought to become citizens as black Americans through the civil rights movement. And it was about the color of the skin. It was about the way a person was really born. But I have got news for you today. God made us all male or female, regardless of the color of our skin. And when homosexuals try to jump on the civil rights movement, they are missing it. And it just burns me up, because sexual preference has never been a civil rights issue.” Read the Baptist Press story here.
Retailer files suit against mandate
Evangelical-owned Hobby Lobby has filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration’s contraceptive/abortion mandate, becoming the largest business yet to take action against the rule. Although Hobby Lobby’s insurance plans cover contraceptives that are preventative in nature, the company won’t cover anything that causes a chemical abortion, said founder and CEO David Green. “… We simply cannot abandon our religious beliefs to comply with this mandate.” Read the full story at Baptist Press.
Athletes share faith at iamsecond.com
NFL quarterbacks Sam Bradford and Colt McCoy speak candidly about their faith in Jesus Christ at iamsecond.com, a website that gives athletes, actors, musicians and non-celebrities a chance to say why they’re “second” in their lives (and why Christ is first). “The minute that you start to think that you’re first, and He’s second, and that what you think, and what you have planned in your mind, is more important than what He has planned for your life, that’s the minute your life starts to go the wrong way.” Watch more videos at iamsecond.com.