Digest

Stories of interest to Arkansas Baptists ...

Tuesday
Jan052016

Muslims protect Christians in terrorist attack

NORTHEAST Kenya (BP) – Islamic militants with Somalia's al-Shabaab are suspected of attacking a commuter bus in northeast Kenya. The attack killed two people and injured at least six others in late December.

A group of Islamist gunmen ambushed the bus, boarded it, and attempted to divide passengers into Muslim and Christian groups. But Muslim passengers refused to cooperate, Reuters reported.

Gov. Ali Roba told Kenya's Daily Nation they "told the attackers to kill all passengers or leave," and their courage prevented a repeat of a previous massacre.

One Muslim passenger, Abdi Mohamud Abdi, told Reuters more than 10 al-Shabaab fighters told them to separate from the Christians, but they did not comply.

"We even gave some non-Muslims our religious attire to wear in the bus so that they would not be identified easily. We stuck together tightly," Abdi said of the Dec. 21 attack. "The militants threatened to shoot us, but we still refused and protected our brothers and sisters. Finally they gave up and left but warned that they would be back."

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Tuesday
Jan052016

GOP front runner Donald Trump to speak at Liberty University convocation

LYNCHBURG, Va. – Liberty University – the country’s largest Christian school – will soon host GOP presidential hopeful Donald Trump, Relevant reported. Presidential candidates Ted Cruz, Bernie Sanders and Ben Carson have also spoken at the university in recent months. Trump will address the student body at a mandatory convocation meeting on Jan. 18.

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Tuesday
Jan052016

Southern Baptist missiologists respond to ‘dangerous’ views of ‘Insider Movements’ book

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Calling its views “theologically dangerous,” eight Southern Baptist missiologists published a lengthy rejoinder Jan. 5 to a recent book advocating the controversial ‘“Insider Movements.” The book’s authors claim converts to Christianity can continue identifying with their previous religious community while following Jesus, according to a press release from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Ayman S. Ibrahim, Bill and Connie Jenkins Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, coordinated the project with Ant Greenham, associate professor of missions and Islamic studies at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, to reject the various views presented in Understanding Insider Movements: Disciples of Jesus within Diverse Religious Communities. The authors say the idea was generated after they received copies of the highly-anticipated book, edited by (pen names) Harley Talman and John Jay Travis, from publisher William Carey Library.

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Tuesday
Jan052016

Christian bakers pay fine, but will continue appeal

Melissa and Aaron KleinGRESHAM, Ore. (BP) – Christian bakers Aaron and Melissa Klein have paid the state of Oregon a fine of nearly $137,000 after refusing to violate their religious beliefs by baking a wedding cake for a lesbian couple, the Oregonian newspaper reported.

The Kleins paid the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries $136,927.07 Dec. 28 with money contributed through a crowdfunding page after the Oregon labor commissioner seized just weeks before Christmas their personal bank accounts which totaled nearly $7,000, the Oregonian said. In total, the Kleins have paid nearly $144,000 and may be due a refund.

An Oregon administrative law judge fined the Kleins $135,000 in April 2015, accusing them of violating state law protecting the rights of homosexuals when the couple refused to bake a wedding cake for Laurel Bowman and Rachel Cryer in January 2013. The Kleins had asked the state to postpone collecting the fine, upheld on appeal in July 2015, while they continued the appeal process, but the request was twice denied.

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Monday
Jan042016

Americans are in the middle of the pack globally when it comes to importance of religion

More than half of Americans (53 percent) now say religion is very important in their lives, according to a recent Pew Research Center report. While this figure has declined somewhat in recent years – down from 56 percent in 2007 – Americans remain in the middle of the pack in terms of importance of religion when compared with people around the world.

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