Over 1 million copies of the love story have been sold. Since its debut, now 20 years ago, Francine Rivers' Redeeming Love has inspired readers through a "life-changing story of God's unconditional, redemptive, all-consuming love." Rivers invites you to share your redeeming love story for a chance to win a trip for two to San Francisco. Watch today's daily interest video to join Charisma in celebrating the 20th anniversary of the biblical retelling of the book of Hosea.
Gas prices are finally starting to slowly climb back down in the U.S., and the costs are expected to continue their decline. Over the past few months oil prices have gone down, and yet shipping costs—which rose with the rise in oil costs over the last few years—remain high.
Oil prices are still higher than they were a year ago, which is part of the reason that shipping costs have remained higher as well. Even as oil prices go down, some shipping companies are playing catch-up.
Increased shipping costs have presented a significant dilemma for ministries attempting to send large amounts of aid or resources to far-away nations. Global Aid Network (GAiN), for example, has millions of meals prepared to send to East Africa where severe drought has thrown millions into levels of starvation. However, GAiN has had difficulty procuring the funds to actually send the food to Africa.
When Pathik Sharma showed a movie about Jesus to a people staunchly devoted to ancestor worship, Bishakha Gupta came to watch—and so did the demon that possessed her body.
As the movie ended, Bishakha's breathing became erratic. Her parents noticed her distress and decided to take her to a doctor the next day. But Pathik, a Gospel for Asia-supported missionary, asked if he could pray for the young girl instead.
When Pathik stepped toward Bishakha, the girl pushed him away and would not let the missionary touch her. She became violent. The people around her held her hands and feet so Pathik could pray.
God has something sobering to say to us through the death of this popular preacher.
Zachery Tims’ story had a great beginning. As a young man he met Jesus and was saved from a life of crime and drugs. He and his wife, Riva, moved from Baltimore to Orlando, Fla., in 1996 to launch a church that aimed to restore families and pull teens out of trouble. New Destiny Christian Center grew fast, mostly because of Tims’ passionate preaching. He was soon a regular on Christian television.
But things unraveled in 2009 when Tims was caught carrying on a yearlong affair with a stripper he met in France. He admitted to an “indiscretion” and got a few weeks of counseling, but he didn’t take serious time off for rehabilitation. Riva divorced him for his infidelity. The billboards that once featured photos of the happy couple were changed. By 2011 the roadside ads featured a shot of Tims by himself, with this slogan: “A Family Church Meeting Family Needs.”
Defying pouring rain and flooded streets, over two dozen people have gathered faithfully at the Putalisadak Church in the heart of capital city Kathmandu for the regular Thursday evening Bible study class, bringing a smile of satisfaction on the face of Pastor Dev Kumar Chetri.
The smile fades, however, when he talks about the problems that Nepal’s second-oldest church has faced due to government discrimination. Hundreds of other churches scattered through the former Hindu kingdom have faced the same problem.
A violent attack against indigenous minority Christians in the central highlands of Vietnam has left 16 men and women severely injured and one man still under arrest; his welfare remains unknown to date, according to a report from International Christian Concern.
To be sure, the systematic persecution of Degar Montagnard Christians continues, with this brutal attack as proof of the regime’s purposeful policing, harassment, and aggressive oppression of this indigenous people and minority religious group.
On July 7, at approximately 8 p.m., Vietnamese security forces and police descended upon a worship service in the village of Buon Kret Krot (H’Ra commune, Mang Yang district, Plei Ku city, in Gai Lai province), and began kicking and beating the attendees. Security forces threatened the villagers, stating: “If anyone worships like this way, we will return to arrest you all and put you in prison for five years.”
On June 26, the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. was the latest church to be used for the promotion of syncretism—the attempted union of different religions. The idea was that “Christian” ministers, Jewish Rabbis, and Muslim Imams would co-lead a service in “Christian” churches around America using a multi-faith liturgy.
Sadly, 70 other churches across America signed on to do the same thing. The event was organized by a group called Faith Shared. It comes as no shock that the service was designed to promote “religious tolerance.” This is indeed a major step forward in promoting what I believe to be America’s new god of tolerance.
Editor's Note: This article was originally published in Charisma magazine in June 2007. In the article Pastor Zachery Tims, who died on Aug. 12 in a New York City hotel room, exhorted Christians to pursue God's destiny for their lives. The article is characteristic of Tims' charismatic teaching that helped him build a megachurch with 8,000 members in Orlando, Fla.
Where you're going in life is more important than where you've been.
When you're driving a car, do you ever pay attention to how big the windshield is compared to the rearview mirror? Why do you think the rearview mirror is smaller? It's because where you're going is more important than where you've been.
Suspected Islamists were behind the burning of three homes used as churches on Sumatra Island’s Riau Province this month, though a political motive may also have played a role, Christian leaders said.
Muslim mobs burned the meeting places of a Batak Karo Protestant Church (GBKP) congregation and a Pentecostal Church in Indonesia (GPDI) group on Aug. 1, and that of a Methodist Church of Indonesia on Aug. 2, all in Kuantan Singingi district.
Provincial GBKP leader Sahat Tarigan reportedly said about 100 people on motorcycles arrived at the home at 11 p.m. on Aug. 1, throwing stones, threatening church members with knives and ultimately pouring gasoline and setting it on fire. A number of church members were inside painting at the time of the attack, but there were no casualties, Tarigan told Radio 68H News Agency.
When Krishna Maya Pariyar died last week, her fellow believers tried to carry out her wish to be buried on her own land. But this caused major problems for the people in Krishna's village.
They adhere to their traditional religion, which mandates cremation as the only proper ritual. The people in this village were upset that Krishna had turned her back on their traditional gods to worship Jesus, in both her life and in her death.
The people believed that if they could cremate, rather than bury Krishna, she would once again receive favor from her gods. So they confronted the Christians who were planning Krishna's burial.
Anne Graham Lotz, daughter of Billy and Ruth Graham, fervently believes the signs of Jesus’ return are being fulfilled and He will return during this generation.
In her book Expecting to See Jesus: A Wake-Up Call for God’s People, released in August, Lotz details the signs of Jesus’ return and the implications that He could return at any moment. She wants America to realize that Sept. 11 was a wake-up call from God, that as a country we have pushed him out of our government and schools, and it’s time to repent and invite him back.
“The signs that Jesus gave and the headlines in the news are coming together in a dramatically sobering way,” says Lotz, president and CEO of AnGeL Ministries, a nonprofit organization that undergirds her efforts to draw people into a life-changing relationship with God through his Word. “I have held the conviction with intense focus since I was in my early 20s that if I live out my natural lifetime, I will live to see the physical return of Jesus to earth!”
The remarkable story of a blind man and the guide dog that led him and dozens of others to safety just moments before the World Trade Center crumbled nearly 10 years ago, has become an instant best-seller. Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog & the Triumph of Trust at Ground Zero will make its debut on the vaunted New York Times Best-Seller List in its first week of release.
Co-authored by Susy Flory, readers follow Michael Hingson and his yellow Labrador Retriever, Roselle, in a firsthand, moment-by-moment account of not only what it was like to be inside the World Trade Center when Tower One was struck, but of each painstaking step between the 78th floor and survival on the streets below moments before tower collapsed just yards away.
"On one level, this is a book about the events of 9/11, but it is so much more than that," said Brian Hampton, Senior Vice President and Publisher at Nashville-based Thomas Nelson Publishers. "It's a beautiful story of trust and courage, an exploration of the unique bond between humans and animals. It leaves the reader inspired and full of hope. I believe that's why it has impacted people so quickly and powerfully and why they are telling their friends about it."
Although no one claimed the bloodiest day this year for Iraq, the attacks this week bore the hallmark of Al-Qaida.
Suicide bombers, car bombs and roadside explosives hit more than a dozen Iraqi cities and towns. The explosions killed roughly 70 people. Homes, business and houses of worship were targeted.
Todd Nettleton with Voice of the Martyrs says the group behind the Monday assault was sending a message.
"When you talk about more than 40 attacks coordinated all across the entire country, you're talking about: 'We're still here and we can make a lot of trouble.' I think the other message that they're sending is: 'You should be very afraid,'" he said.
As U.S. troops draw down and leave Iraq, the Christians there have a very real concern. Nettleton explains that they're wondering if the government can respond to the threats against them. Believers are asking, "Who will protect us? Who will make sure that our churches are not bombed, that our people are not attacked and killed?"
Starbucks Corp. CEO Howard Schultz at a ceremony marking the 10th anniversary of the first open Starbucks in Hong Kong on April 15, 2010. (AP Images/Kin Cheung)
As you’ve probably seen in the news recently, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz recently canceled his appearance at the Willow Creek Leadership Summit under pressure from a handful of members of the gay community.
Seven hundred people signed an online petition saying Willow Creek is anti-gay and that Schultz should refuse to speak at the summit. I wasn’t surprised, since we live today in a “cult of tolerance” that doesn’t allow any dissenting opinions from what’s deemed politically correct these days. That said, what interested me more was Pastor Bill Hybels’ attitude and response. Here’s a look. I would love to know your reaction:
Dr. William (Bill) W. Menzies—Assemblies of God pastor, educator, missionary and author—went to be with the Lord shortly past noon on Aug. 15.
Born on July 1, 1931, Menzies earned a B.A. at Central Bible College (Springfield, Mo.) and a M.A. at Wheaton College, where he met and married Doris Dresselhaus in 1955. He was ordained in 1956.
Menzies held teaching and administrative positions at Central Bible College, Evangel University, the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, California Theological Seminary, and Asia Pacific Theological Seminary.
Menzies completed his Ph.D. at the University of Iowa. His dissertation became the benchmark history of the Assemblies of God, "Anointed to Serve" He was a prolific author, authoring or editing standard textbooks such as Understanding the Times of Christ, Bible Doctrines: A Pentecostal Perspective and Spirit and Power.
Menzies is widely known in Pentecostal and evangelical circles as a statesman, building bridges across denominational and racial divides. He was one of the organizers of the Society for Pentecostal Studies and was the first editor of the society's journal, Pneuma. He was also one of the editors for the Full Life Study Bible and a consulting editor for Christianity Today.
The story of 9/11 survivors will be welcome in New York City after all.
The New York City's Department of Parks and Recreation has agreed to grant a request from the Christian Action Network to permit the showing of a film made about 9/11 survivors in a number of city parks leading up to the 10th anniversary of the tragic attacks of 9/11.
The decision came just two weeks after the American Center for Law and Justice sent a demand letter urgingc ity officials to permit the film to be shown or face a possible lawsuit.
We all fall in our faith. The ways of the world corrupt our hearts and eventually our steps, but the Lord continues to fight for us. He accepts us for who we are and shows us that His love is the only true thing that will provide us with hope, peace and life. Watch today's inspirational daily interest video to experience a visually moving and powerful display of this truth.
The following article was originally published in Charisma magazine in September 2006.
Marijuana and cocaine defined his young life.
He started by selling to addicts in a high crime area. Before long he sold drugs to classmates at the Roman Catholic high school he attended, to women willing to barter their bodies for crack cocaine, and later to supervisors wanting to get high on the job. Trafficking turned him on—until, like some of his customers, he got addicted to his product.
But all that changed for Zachery Tims one early morning in March 1989. It was close to 3 a.m., and the blackness of the night sky paled in comparison to the spiritual darkness that had blanketed Tims while he slept. Demons swarmed around him in his dream, trying to pull him into hell. It was the third straight night the hideous creatures seeking his life had invaded his sleep.
This time, Tims bolted from his bed and rushed for the door.
When rumors first emerged that megachurch Pastor Zachery Tims Jr. had passed away, believers took to Twitter and Facebook looking for the truth. Now, Tims’ followers are broadcasting video tributes on YouTube.
The 42-year-old Tims was found Friday at 6 p.m. in a W Hotel room in New York City. Despite rumors in the media world, the official cause of death is not yet known.
Tims pastored New Destiny Christian Center in the Orlando, Fla., area since 1996. The church has grown to more than 8,000 members, many of whom gathered together at the church on Monday night to pay their respects.
As the church world waits for the mystery of Tims' death to be resolved, some Christians are honoring the man who they will remember for building youth centers and helping people fight the good fight of faith. Here are a few of those videos: