The Resurrection of Christ and the Reality of the Gospel

The pattern of the Christian year is an exercise of the Church’s discipline. The annual celebrations of Christmas and Resurrection Day force the Church to ponder again the truths of Christ’s incarnation and resurrection. Christians understand that every Lord’s Day is Resurrection Day, but Easter Sunday is the festival which draws all Christians face to […]

Viewpoint: 24-Hour Surveillance

During a recent spin class I introduced myself to a new, unfamiliar instructor. “Hi, I’m Kathy.” Warmly she says, “You’re Kathy Litton aren’t you?” It’s a reminder that I am often known and observed by others. Not just in a relatively small community but on social media, in my business dealings and on airplanes. I […]

Viewpoint: Is the SBC relevant to a 21st-century world?

A good question and one worth asking: Does our SBC have anything significant to say to this 21st century? I ask the question here in response to the contemporary idea that the age of denominationalism is past. It does us no good — and actually does us harm — to dwell on our size, numerical […]

Guest Viewpoint: A Longing for Renewal

Throughout history Christianity has experienced seasons of magnificent renewal. By “renewal” I am referring broadly to periods when the faith experienced a renewed vitality, expansion, influence, or resurgence after a time of inactivity or decline. Examples of renewal include the rise of the Modern Missions Movement initiated by William Carey in the 1790s and the […]

Viewpoint: Baptists, ants & swarm intelligence

Perhaps a long-sought secret to the vitality of the Baptist movement is swarm intelligence, the “collective behavior of decentralized, self-organized systems.” The most useful metaphor for Southern Baptists’ cooperative work heretofore has been the “rope of sand” introduced by James L. Sullivan in his short book “Rope of Sand with Strength of Steel” in 1974. […]

Lessons from a Peruvian jungle

In August 2011, I saw the Amazon River for the first time. It was while I was traveling from Lima, Peru, to Iquitos, a city of approximately 700,000 people located in the Amazon Basin of Peru. The city is surrounded by rivers and is only accessible by air or boat. Little did I know that […]

Viewpoint: When ‘Hello’ Is Not Enough

Your God is awesome. Your church is wonderful. Yet some of the guests who visit your church don’t return. No true connection was made. A parking lot greeter in our church expressed that concern: “We’ve got to figure out how to actually connect every guest with another person. Our polite hellos or glad-you-cames just aren’t […]

Viewpoint: Marijuana’s Potency and What Churches Can Do

Editor’s note: Southern Baptist ethicist Barrett Duke offers guidance for churches after President Obama influenced the national drug debate by saying marijuana is no more dangerous than alcohol. Baptist Press covered Obama’s comments and surveyed the push toward marijuana legalization for medical and recreational use. President Obama’s recent comments about marijuana are very troubling. Having […]

Viewpoint: High-Definition Christian Living

“Unfortunately, you’re not getting justice today. You’re getting the end of injustice.” Those were the words spoken by Texas State District Judge Mark Stoltz to James Lee Woodard when he was released from prison after being locked up for 27 years and four months for crimes he didn’t commit. Advances in forensic science allowed for […]

Viewpoint: Winter Weather and Adventurous Faith

Looking out the window the first week of January, I watched as the snow and swirling wind around the house created an eerie scene. It was so cold that even the young at heart exercised caution. Some of our churches suspended Sunday worship. As a pastor, I always hated not having a scheduled service because […]