September 2016

As it was in the days of Noah

September 19 2016 by K. Allan Blume, BR Editor

These sobering words from the lips of Jesus deserve our attention.
 
For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be” Matthew 24:37-39, NASB.
 
I believe our days are looking like Noah’s days. At that time God invoked judgment on the world, and apparently the people were not expecting it.
 
The sobering words read, “They did not understand until the flood came.” Oblivious to their own rebellion against God, either they did not know that a holy God existed, or they believed they were God, or they expected God to overlook their godless ways.
 
In the spirit of Noah’s day the governing boards of the ACC and NCAA appear to be oblivious to godly standards. They recently took action to exact their form of vengeance on the citizens of North Carolina for a law that protected the privacy rights of women and children. (See story on here.)

These organizations, not the citizens of North Carolina, are out of bounds. In an incredible display of raw hypocrisy and supreme arrogance, organizations that have responsibilities for athletic events have wrongly engaged in political battles.
 
Anyone can be inconsistent, but these days hypocrisy is clearly the dominant characteristic of the extreme worldview labeled “progressivism.”
 
The foolish actions of the ACC and NCAA has given enough evidence to conclude these organizations have embraced this worldview of a militant minority. They are not thinking rationally – something that their member institutions allegedly champion.
 
Franklin Graham, president of Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, wrote a letter to ACC Commissioner John D. Swafford to express his outrage over the ACC’s poor judgement.
 
“Ironically, the NCAA is more discriminatory towards transgender people than the public policy they apparently wish to see as law in America,” Graham wrote. “For example, opponents to legislation like NC House Bill 2 support permitting people to use the bathroom which corresponds to the sex they identify with on a given day ... even the NCAA doesn’t allow such casual gender identity for participation in collegiate athletics.”
 
He added, “I think I represent the views of millions who would rather preserve gender-specific public bathrooms – a mainstay for generations – than to attend a football game in my state to determine the champion of a conference governed by politically-correct, morally hypocritical academics.” Read the full text of the letter in the story here.

In a scathing commentary North Carolina Rep. Paul “Skip” Stam exposed the NCAA’s flawed argument. He said, “The hypocrisy of the NCAA’s ‘commitment’ is breathtaking. The organization selectively boycotts North Carolina for policies it claims are unique to our state – but actually are common throughout the nation – and for daring to disagree with a sweeping federal mandate by the Obama Administration – a mandate that is currently being challenged in court by 24 other states. The NCAA is in violation itself of the civil rights provision of Title IX as interpreted by the Obama Administration.”

Stam’s comments are long, but well worth reading here.

Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League wrote in a Facebook post, “Should it not be terribly disconcerting that the NCAA and the ACC represent the people who are teaching and training our children?
 
“Only the most misguided in life would insist men should be allowed to use a women’s bathroom, locker room or shower.
 
“Only those who hate religion or religious liberty, or at the least fail to understand its paramount importance to the culture, would insist North Carolinians should not have the right to live and work according to their peacefully held beliefs without being punished by the government – something the Charlotte ordinance took away and HB2 restored. Only a reprobate mind would insist these once cherished, absolute and immovable verities must now take a backseat to the purely subjective reasoning of transgenderism.”
 
I agree. We should be very concerned. It appears that academic freedom is dead in state-run universities and in many privately owned institutions of higher learning.
 
Fairness no longer exists. Tolerance is a one-sided joke.
 
We know there are many good, reasonable men and women on the faculty and staff of these schools.
 
Some of them are Christians. But many of them say they are being strategically marginalized.
 
It is obvious the views of good people are not welcomed.
 
At press time talk is swirling about the possibility that Charlotte’s City Council could repeal their egregious ordinance that launched this battle against N.C. Some are saying the state legislature may repeal HB2.
 
If Gov. Pat McCrory and the N.C. legislature repeal HB2 they will give license to the extreme level of hypocrisy these athletic organizations used in their political harangue against the citizens of North Carolina.
 
Some say HB2 has cost the state $200 million in lost revenue. The actual estimate is likely closer to 30 pieces of silver.
 
Make your voice known immediately to the state legislature and the governor. Otherwise the only voices they hear are the extreme radicals who do not represent your views.

Contact the governor at https://governor.nc.gov/contact/email-governor. Learn how to reach your state legislators at www.ncvalues.org/contact_your_legislator.


Related articles:
Graham issues protest letter to ACC over anti-HB 2 vote
The breathtaking hypocrisy of the NCAA
 

9/19/2016 2:33:17 PM by K. Allan Blume, BR Editor | with 0 comments



Appreciation is in order

September 6 2016 by K. Allan Blume, BR Editor

The Biblical Recorder gives a special word of appreciation to all North Carolina Baptist churches that have a group subscription plan with us. These churches are consistently providing their members with information that has a biblical worldview focusing on the Great Commission and seeking to glorify God. Special recognition is given to the top 20 churches (see chart below) that have a group plan or receive a bulk shipment of each printed issue of the Recorder. Group plans are the most economical and easiest way for churches to provide members with news.
 
These group plans are important to us, but the real value goes to these churches and their leaders.
 
When the pastor of these churches says something about the work of the Baptist Children’s Homes or N.C. Baptist Men (also known as Baptists on Mission), the church knows what he is talking about because they read about these ministries in the Biblical Recorder. When he mentions Fruitland Baptist Bible College, The College at Southeastern or Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, the people in these churches are familiar with these institutions of learning. Church members have read encouraging stories about church planting, church revitalization, international missions and North American missions. They know how their mission dollars are being used. These church members are informed.
 
People really need to know! Informed members are more likely to be involved members. They are more likely to be tithers and generous givers. The right information generates a connected membership. The right information gives birth to vision and a passion to serve.
 
I’m concerned that a large number of people in the churches of our state are not fully aware of the great things God is doing among Baptists or of the many critical issues that are challenging the normal expressions of our faith.
 
Some people get by with pieces of information drawn from Twitter feeds and Facebook posts. That’s like snacking on a piece of chocolate candy in the middle of the day – it’s good, but it does not have adequate nutrition to sustain the human body.
 
The Biblical Recorder adds value to the work of local churches in many ways. Although we use social media, our scope is much broader. We serve you with the printed Biblical Recorder, the matching digital edition, the BRnow.org website, the accompanying app for smartphones and the BRweekly e-newsletter.
 
Pastor, do you want the members of the church to know how mission dollars are being used to proclaim the gospel? Do you want church members that are informed about cultural challenges to their faith? You can address some of these matters in a sermon, but there’s much more than you can pack into a few sermons. That’s where the Biblical Recorder is your partner. Our responsibility is to support your preaching of the gospel by providing news that informs and motivates God’s people to be on mission for Christ in their neighborhood, across the state and around the world.
 
If you want to do something positive for church members, give them a steady stream of trustworthy information! Allow us to partner with you. Be sure the congregation uses the resources we provide.
Don’t believe the rumor that print is dead! According to a 2015 Pew Research report, 51 percent of adults get their news from “print only” sources while 5 percent get their news from “mobile only.” Another 5 percent get their news from “desktop only” and 15 percent depend on a combination of “print/desktop/mobile.” The remaining adults use other combinations of news sources.
 
If 51 percent of N.C. Baptists subscribed to the print edition of the Biblical Recorder in their homes, our circulation would increase 4,000 percent overnight. Even if only 10 percent of our members subscribed we would increase about 700 percent and exceed the highest number of subscriptions in the Recorder’s 183-year history.
 
There’s an extra advantage to your subscription. Whether you are part of a group plan or you have an individual subscription, you are entitled to a free subscription to the digital edition. This is a full PDF copy of the printed Recorder that you can access online. This is not the same as the website, which is free to the public. Your digital edition looks exactly like the printed issue.
 
If you’re traveling and want to look at a back issue of the Recorder, log on to your digital edition and read any issue of the Recorder for the past three years. It’s easy and very convenient.
 
If there are members of the church who prefer to read the digital edition exclusively, the church can have a group plan of digital edition subscriptions for only $5 annually. Ten subscriptions for 10 church leaders will cost $50 each year.
 
How can we serve you? Please contact our circulation manager, Liz Tablazon, to get started on a group plan for the printed issue, a group plan for the digital edition, or both! Contact her at (919) 459-5693 or liz@brnow.org.
 
Thank you for allowing us to partner with you as we fulfill the Great Commission and glorify God together.
 
For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.” Romans 11:36.
 
Top 20 BR group plans
Calvary Baptist Church, Reidsville
Jonesboro Heights Baptist Church, Sanford
Fruitland Baptist Church, Hendersonville
Mud Creek Baptist Church, Hendersonville
Trinity Baptist Church, Raleigh
Elizabeth Baptist Church, Shelby
Holly Springs Baptist Church, Broadway
First Baptist Church, Clayton
Mount Ruhama Baptist Church, Maiden
Western Prong Baptist Church, Whiteville
First Baptist Church, Shelby
Florence Baptist Church, Forest City
Galatia Baptist Church, Seaboard
Olive Branch Baptist Church, Marshville
Antioch Baptist Church, Mamers
First Baptist Church, Hickory
Woodlawn Baptist Church, Conover*
Westwood Baptist Church, Roxboro*
Clydes Chapel Baptist Church, Wendell
Faith Baptist Church, Faith
 
*These churches have bulk subscriptions to the Biblical Recorder, while the remaining list subscribe under BR’s family plan.
 
 

9/6/2016 9:59:51 AM by K. Allan Blume, BR Editor | with 0 comments