Archives For Tim Tebow

The Briefing

Greear: Catholic abuse report requires ‘bold steps’
A Pennsylvania grand jury’s report alleging unprecedented levels of sexual abuse and cover-up by Roman Catholic clergy has drawn reaction from Southern Baptist Convention President J.D. Greear, who said Southern Baptists should respond to the report by taking “bold steps” to eradicate sexual abuse “from within our community.”

Christian college drops sex standards in law school bid
Trinity Western University (TWU) dropped its controversial community covenant after Canada’s Supreme Court ruled against what would have been the country’s first Christian law school. TWU’s quest to open a law school stalled in court for years after several law societies refused to accredit would-be graduates due to TWU’s covenant prohibiting sex outside of traditional marriage. On August 16, TWU’s board of governors decided to drop the covenant altogether.

White House rejects trade offer to release Brunson
The Trump administration has rejected an offer by Turkey to release U.S. pastor, Andrew Brunson, in exchange for the United States’ forgiveness of billions of dollars of fines. Turkey offered to release Brunson if the U.S. drops its investigation in Halkbank (formerly known as Turkiye Halk Bankasi), which faces fines for violating U.S. sanctions against Iran.

Poll: Leave animals how God designed – except mosquitoes
A new survey released by the Pew Research Center finds seven in 10 Americans support genetically engineering mosquitoes to limit their reproduction. Evangelicals were equally supportive (69%). But when it came to using biotechnology on other animals, they were more reluctant than the general public.

Tim Tebow to produce upcoming film
Tim Tebow—the Heisman Trophy winner, football and baseball player, and television broadcaster—is now adding movie producer to his list of resumes. Tebow and his brother Robby are executive producers of an upcoming faith-based film, “Run the Race.” The fictional story tells of two brothers and high school athletes who see their relationship tested when they seek different paths. A release date has not yet been set for the film, which is in post-production.

Sources: Baptist Press (2), Christianity Today (2), Christian Post

THE BRIEFING | Meredith Flynn

In the wake of Saturday’s massive earthquake near Kathmandu, Nepal, Christian workers asked for prayer for the devastated country:

• Pray for basic shelter, water and food. These necessities are a high priority right now since no one is allowed back in their homes.

• Pray for God’s people to deeply know His comfort and peace during this time. Pray they will share Him with people around them.

• Pray for people in Nepal and surrounding areas during the continuing aftershocks and aftermath of this disaster. Southern Baptist assessment teams will began the damage Monday to find the best ways to respond.

Potential presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson will not address the Southern Baptist Pastors’ Conference this summer as scheduled, Baptist Press reports. Several Baptists, including the Baptist 21 group of younger SBC leaders and pastors, had expressed concern about Carson’s membership in a Seventh-day Adventist Church, and that his appearance at the conference could look like a political endorsement.

Three years after the death of Prison Fellowship founder Charles Colson, Russell Moore reflects on media coverage surrounding the Watergate conspirator’s life and eventual conversion to Christianity. For those who were cynical about Colson’s transformation, writes the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, “…we shouldn’t be angered by those who don’t get the full measure of the man. We should instead hear in some of this cynicism the cry of every human heart, a disbelief that there can be any such thing as final and total forgiveness of sin.”

Zondervan announced last week Charles Colson’s last book, “My Final Word: Holding Tight to the Issues that Matter Most,” will be released Aug. 4. Topics in the collection of writings will include “the rise of Islam, same-sex marriage, the persecution of Christians, crime and punishment, and natural law,” The Christian Post reports.

Atlanta-area pastor Andy Stanley says local churches should be the “safest place on the planet for students to talk about anything, including same-sex attraction.”

“We just need to decide, regardless of what you think about this topic–no more students are going to feel like they have to leave the local church because they’re same-sex attracted or because they’re gay,” said Stanley, pastor of North Point Community Church, at the Catalyst West conference April 17. Read the full story at

A controversial Houston ordinance is now in effect, following a judge’s ruling on a petition drive led in part by some pastors in the city. HERO, or Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, made headlines last year when the city subpoenaed the sermons and other communications of five pastors who were against the ordinance. (The subpoenas were later withdrawn.)

Religious leaders are encouraging President Barack Obama to appoint a special envoy to monitor religious freedom in the Middle East and parts of Asia. The special envoy position has been vacant since it was created last year in the Near East and South Central Asia Religious Freedom Act, Baptist Press reports.

Are you one of the many football fans bent out of shape since Tim Tebow’s exit from the NFL? Good news: A Philadelphia pretzel company has created a way to celebrate his return. The “Tebowing” pretzel, shaped like the quarterback kneeling in his famous praying pose, started as a publicity stunt but soon went viral. The New York Daily News reports the Philly Pretzel Factory plans to donate proceeds from the pretzels to a charity involving Tebow, who has signed a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles.


THE BRIEFING | Meredith Flynn

Members of the House Executive Committee will vote today on whether to send the same-sex marriage bill SB 10, officially known as the “Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act”, to a vote on the House floor. Approval by a majority of the House members would be the final step before Gov. Pat Quinn signs the law, making Illinois the tenth state to allow same-sex marriages.

The committee action today culminates two busy weeks in which the State Senate passed the legislation Valentine’s Day by a vote of 34 to 21, with two Senators voting present. Opponents of same-sex marriage, including some from IBSA churches, were present during the Senate vote, and later at a marriage rally and “lobby day” at the Capitol.

This is important for me today simply because it’s God’s will as Scripture tells us that marriage consists of one man and one woman,” said Don Full, pastor of Havana Southern Baptist Church. “I’m here to support that part of my faith and the doctrine that God has established for the home.”

Christian leaders are discussing their next steps before the House vote, and have expressed doubts that the religious liberties of churches will be protected, should Illinois legalize same-sex marriage. Some say the marriage bill could result in a “chilling effect” as churches seek to do effective ministry in their communities.

Check back here this evening for an update from the House Executive Committee hearing, or go to for the latest news.

Reported by Lisa Sergent

Other news:

Tebow cancels FBC Dallas appearance
NFL quarterback and outspoken Christian Tim Tebow withdrew from an April speaking engagement at First Baptist Church, Dallas, after some media outlets expressed outrage that he would speak at the church pastored by Robert Jeffress, who has made controversial comments about other religions and homosexuality.

Tebow faced immediate backlash from some Christian leaders, but Boyce College (Ky.) professor Denny Burk urged people to give him the benefit of the doubt. “…I don’t think this move should be interpreted as an expression of support for gay rights or some liberalized distortion of Christianity,” Burk wrote on his blog. “I have a hunch that he’s probably just trying not to get entangled in the culture war.” Burk also defended Jeffress’ views as “not the innovation of a single pastor but are the established consensus of the Christian Church.” Read more at

Warren advocates liberty for all
California pastor Rick Warren said American Christians should repent for no supporting the religious freedom of people of other faiths, during a recent forum hosted by Georgetown University. “Seventy-five percent of our world lives in societies in which there is no religious liberty,” Warren said, adding that freedom is religious doesn’t just concern worship, but the practice of beliefs and values, and the freedom to convert. Read more at

Christians at the movies
Evangelicals go to the movies more often than the average American adult, according to a new Barna survey. Respondents identifying as evangelical reported seeing 2.7 movies at the theater in 2012, one more movie than the national average. Their top five movies of 2012: The Avengers, The Hunger Games: Girl on Fire, Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax, The Hobbit, and Les Miserables. Go to for more.


THE BRIEFING | Posted by Meredith Flynn

Mitt Romney’s faith was on display at the August 27-30 Republican National Convention. In accepting the nomination to serve as the Republican Party’s candidate for president, Romney opened up and spoke about his Mormon faith, something he has been reluctant to do in the past.

“We were Mormons,” he said recalling moving to Michigan with his family while still a child. “And growing up in Michigan, that might have seemed unusual or out of place, but I do not remember it that way. My friends cared more about what sports we followed than what church we went to.”

Fellow Mormons also took to the podium to give testimony to Romney’s service through his church. Grant Bennett, the assistant pastor of the congregation Romney belonged to in Massachusetts, shared how he believes Romney lives his faith. “He found the definition of religion given by James in the New Testament to be a practical guide. ‘Pure religion is to visit the fatherless and the widows in their affliction.’ … Mitt taught faith in God, personal integrity, self-reliance, and service to our fellow men.”

Romney’s Mormonism was also a topic of non-Mormon speakers at the convention.  Southern Baptist and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, shared, “Let me clear the air about whether guys like me would only support an evangelical. I care far less as to where Mitt Romney takes his family to church than I do about where he takes this country.”

Paul Ryan, a Catholic and Romney’s pick for vice-president, weighed in on the subject during his speech.  “Mitt and I also go to different churches, but in any church, the best kind of preaching is done by example, and I’ve been watching the example … Our faiths come together in the same moral creed. We believe that in every life, there is goodness and for every person there is hope.  Each one of us was made for a reason, bearing the image and likeness of the Lord of life.”

What do you think? Do Mitt Romney remarks about his Mormon faith affect the way you feel about him as a candidate? Leave a comment below.

Lisa Sergent is contributing editor of the Illinois Baptist and reported this story for

Other news:

Seminary students face sky-high debt
Seminary graduates aren’t immune to the country’s $1 trillion student loan debt, according to the Association of Religious Date Archives. It’s not unusual for seminarians to graduate with up to $80,000 in debt, and the average starting salary for full-time clergy was $44,140 last year, the U.S. Labor Department estimated. Read more at Baptist Press.

Science Guy: Kids need evolution
Bill Nye
, a scientist, actor and author best known for his TV show “Bill Nye the Science Guy” released a YouTube video where he urged parents to let their children believe in evolution, “the fundamental idea in all of life science, in all of biology.” In the video, produced by The Big Think, Nye said denial of evolution is unique to the U.S., and the portion of the population who doesn’t hold to the theory “holds everybody back.” Watch the video.

Christian women weigh in on election
An extensive study of Christian women by Barna Research found that they will likely constitute 30% of likely voters this fall, the largest voting bloc in the presidential election. Of Christian women surveyed who plan to vote, 32% said they definitely plan to vote for Barack Obama, and 30% definitely plan to vote for Mitt Romney. However, a larger percentage (23%) of undecided Christian women are said they’re probably voting for Romney than for Obama (15%). Read more at

Tebow faces criticism with grace
The skin of New York Jets back-up quarterback Tim Tebow will no doubt thicken this season, now that he’s playing in one of the NFL’s most notoriously critical markets. Boomer Esiason, a former Jets quarterback and current sports analyst, got the ball rolling when he urged the team to cut Tebow because his presence does nothing to help them. Tebow, an outspoken Christian, responded with, “I’ve heard nothing but great things about Mr. Esiason. I know he was a great player here, and I just wish him nothing but the best in his announcing, and God bless him.” Read the full story at Baptist Press.