Mainline Protestantism, at least in its official curia, has been liberal for nearly 100 years. But for most of that century it was a thoughtful, dignified liberalism that still roughly adhered to historic Christianity’s moral architecture, even if it no longer upheld the core doctrine. But the yonder years of stately Protestantism, at least in the old Mainline, are largely over. And this week, the 1.7 million member PCUSA suffered a meltdown, authorizing clergy to conduct same sex unions, reaffirming its commitment to largely unrestricted abortion rights, and voting to divest from three firms doing business with Israel.
The church’s redefinition of marriage, by a 71-29 percent vote, got the most attention, although it was anticlimactic. Sexual liberalism captured the denomination in 2010, when the PCUSA voted to abandon its expectation of monogamy in marriage and celibacy in singleness for its clergy. Since then, hundreds of congregations have quit, organized conservative resistance largely stopped, and the 2012 General Assembly was expected to authorize same sex unions but fell short. In just the last two years, the PCUSA lost nearly 200,000 members, a rate, which if continued, would mean no more PCUSA in less than 20 years.
78 percent of the PCUSA General Assembly struck down a resolution condemning the killing of babies born alive during abortions, as occurred with notorious abortionist Kermit Gosnell. Initiated by the South Alabama presbytery, it called for inclusion of pro-life Presbyterians and an investigation into doctrinal and financial support of abortion. Dissenters cited pro-abortion stances, while others noted past affirmation of viable babies and reservations in commenting on criminal cases.
The twin brothers who lost their reality TV show when a website attacked their Christian beliefs say they’ll not only “stand up” to bullying intolerance but also keep a commitment to six families by selling their properties without taking a cent.
David and Jason Benham, who recently met and prayed with the six families scheduled to be on their canceled show, told Dana Loesch on her online show on TheBlaze TV that Christians in other countries face far worse than losing television deals.
“We are in a very dangerous place in America right now where we cannot separate someone’s ideas and the person himself,” David Benham told Loesch. Although the brothers “love all people because God is in us,” he said, “That does not mean we have to love all ideas. Certainly that should not be the case for any of us.”
The corporate moves against the North Carolina-based Benhams occurred after a website associated with the liberal political advocacy group People for the American Way labeled the brothers “anti-gay” and “anti-choice” because of their Bible-based stands for marriage as a man-woman union and against abortion on demand.
Read the full article at The Foundry.
Meriam Yehya Ibrahim, 27, whose Christian husband Daniel Wani holds American citizenship, has been held in a Sudanese prison along with her 20-month old son for more than three months.
Last week, in a decision that drew international condemnation, a judge in Khartoum sentenced her to death by hanging once she gives birth and nurses her child for two years, because she would not renounce her Christianity.
Wani said on “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren” that when his wife’s ordeal began he went to the U.S. embassy and tried to report the case. However, he said he was told to go to the UN because his wife is not an American.
U.S. lawmakers including GOP Sens. Marco Rubio and Kelly Ayotte have pressed the Obama administration to grant asylum to Ibrahim.
Read the full story at FoxNews.com.
In a statement provided first to TheDC on Friday, the Benham brothers confirmed that SunTrust Banks has pulled all of its listed properties with the Benham brothers’ bank-owned property business, which includes several franchisees across four states.
“We were caught off-guard with this one,” David Benham said of SunTrust’s actions. “Keeping us off television wasn’t enough, now this agenda to silence wants us out of the marketplace.”
The Benhams, in their statement, said the news came “without warning or explanation from SunTrust and took place over a 15 minute period” on Thursday. The Brothers said they have had a “mutually productive working relationship with SunTrust for many years” and hold a ”preferred broker” status with the bank.
…then the story went viral…
After an uproar from conservative customers, SunTrust Banks announced Friday afternoon that the decision to end its relationship with real estate entrepreneurs David and Jason Benham had been reversed.
By Friday afternoon, SunTrust released a statement saying the decision had been reversed. The bank didn’t go into detail about why they originally cut ties with the Benham brothers, though SunTrust said the decision was made by a third party vendor.
In an email to LifeNews, Faith Driven Consumer founder Chris Stone, who has been organizing social media support for the brothers during their controversy with HGTV, blasted the banking company for its decision.
“SunTrust Banks appears to have punished David and Jason Benham by taking action against their business purely based on their Christian beliefs. This sends a loud and clear message to people of faith in America, you’re not welcome at SunTrust, take your business somewhere else,” he said. “SunTrust’s actions have effectively put into place a belief-oriented litmus test for its business partners seeking to compete in the marketplace of goods, services, and ideas. This is discriminatory, intolerant, and in direct opposition everything that America is about.”
“Faith Driven Consumers, and all fair-minded Americans, are getting tired of this, they know it’s wrong, and they are not going to tolerate this kind of bullying. On behalf of our community of 46 million people who spend $1.75 trillion annually, we are actively seeking banks who will welcome them along with all of the other people that they serve,” he concluded.
By Scott Ott
At first blush, this looks like the classic man-bites-dog story.
A Washington lobbyist leads an NFL boycott against teams that draft avowedly homosexual players, but a Southern Baptist leader rebukes him. Jack Burkman (whose last name, oddly enough, has more than three letters and doesn’t start with “A”) is on a one-man campaign he claims is a nationwide movement, to punish teams that draft openly gay players. Enter the presumed baptist bumpkin bigot, who says…
“I’m adamantly opposed to such efforts,” said Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Evangelical Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina, and former president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission who is also the executive editor of [Christian Post]. “A person’s sexual preference should not be an impediment to their livelihood in the sports industry.
“I think it’s unwarranted, unjustified and unfair to try to intimidate NFL teams from drafting someone because of their sexual orientation.”
Were you surprised?
I wasn’t. Having been a Southern Baptist for a decade or so, I can tell you that Land’s comments aren’t peculiar in the church, even as evangelicals acknowledge what the Bible frankly says about homosexual behavior.
Read the full article at The PJ Tatler.
HGTV has pulled a home-flipping reality series after receiving pressure from the leftist Right Wing Watch. The Benham brothers were set to star in “Flip It Forward” until Right Wing Watch reported Tuesday that the Christian brothers opposed homosexuality and abortion.
David Benham had led a prayer rally outside of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, NC in 2012, in which he told conservative radio host Janet Mefferd that America’s Christian majority must repent for tolerating “homosexuality and its agenda that is attacking the nation” and “demonic ideologies tak[ing] our universities and our public school systems.” He also said his brother had joined him in the prayer protest. The group also claimed David leads protests outside of abortion clinics.
HGTV announced at its upfront presentation last month in Los Angeles that it had picked up the home-flipping series about brothers David and Jason Benham. The network’s description of the show at the time: “After a decade of flipping houses for profit, brothers David Benham and Jason Benham now help families buy the homes they never thought they could afford. In each episode, the guys help a deserving family find a fixer-upper and transform it into their forever home — with a healthy dose of sibling rivalry between the brothers along the way.”
Base officials confirmed to Fox News Monday that the entire Missing Man Table display had been removed from a dining hall because of the Bible. A press statement said the inclusion of the Bible ignited “controversy and division.”
Missing Man Tables are a long honored military tradition. The tables serve as a reminder of the plight of brave Americans who are missing in action or who are being held prisoner of war. The display includes a white table cloth setting with an inverted glass, a plate with lemon and salt, a single rose, a candle and a Bible.
Each item is an integral part of the Missing Man Table & Honors Ceremony, according to the National League of Families of American Prisoners and Missing in Southeast Asia.
“The Bible represents the strength gained through faith in our country, founded as one nation under god, to sustain those lost from our midst,” the official ceremony document states.
The following is the Air Force’s explanation of what happened:
“The 45th Space Wing deeply desires to honor America’s Prisoners and War (POW) and Missing in Action (MIA) personnel. Unfortunately, the Bible’s presence or absence on the table at the Riverside Dining Facility ignited controversy and division, distracting from the table’s primary purpose of honoring POWs/MIAs. Consequently, we temporarily replaced the table with the POW/MIA flag in an effort to show our continued support of these heroes while seeking an acceptable solution to the controversy. After consultation with several relevant organizations, we now intend to re-introduce the POW/MIA table in a manner inclusive of all POWs/MIAs as well as Americans everywhere.”
Read the full article at FoxNews.com.