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  • Oct 07 / 2017
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Commentary, Podcast

Can There Be a “Christian” Position On Gun Rights and Gun Control? (Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture #31)


Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #31.

This episode is titled, Can There Be a “Christian” Position On Gun Rights and Gun Control?

The mass shooting in Las Vegas left 59 people dead and over 580 injured. It also left Americans with yet another opportunity to do something — anything — that could prevent a similar event from happening in the future.

Statistics tell us that an event classified as a “mass shooting” occurs roughly twice a month in the U.S. Yet, in the aftermath of every incident, the same thing happens. One side rallies for passing gun control laws, and they are accused of “politicizing” a tragedy. The other side continues to claim that putting more guns in the hands of the “good guys” will actually save lives. New political initiatives begin, but as the weeks pass, the fires die down, and we settle into a comfortable stalemate… until the next senseless mass killing shocks us awake again.

And, to those who say the aftermath of a mass shooting is not the time to talk about what we can do to curb gun violence, they are wrong. Now is the right time to talk about it. If your home was burglarized, you wouldn’t wait till next month or next year to talk about getting a better home security system.

That said, can there be a “Christian” position on gun rights and gun control? While we have no “thus saith the Lord” on this issue, there should be a well-founded Christian ethic as it pertains to gun violence, gun control, and the second amendment. Continue Reading

  • Sep 08 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

Harvey Lays Bare the Flaw of the Prosperity Gospel (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast #30)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #30.

This episode is titled, Harvey Lays Bare the Flaw of the Prosperity Gospel

For any biblically-minded Christian, the prosperity gospel is not a belief system which should be regarded as any element of Christianity. It is not simply another take on the old, old story; it is an entirely new story — one that does not have any biblical foundations. In a perfect world in which man had never fallen, would God want all of His children to be healthy and wealthy? The answer is yes. But we don’t live in that world, and thus we must reject the prosperity Gospel out of hand. Unfortunately, though, we cannot ignore its influence. It is one of the major teachings that American preachers have preached for many years now, and have exported to the “global south” — Africa, South Asia, and South America, where Christianity is growing rapidly.

However, its flaws were most recently laid bare here at home. As Hurricane Harvey swamped Houston, in a manner never before seen, Lakewood Church — the largest church in the nation whose pastor, Joel Osteen, is one of the main purveyors of the prosperity gospel — indicated that it would not be open in the immediate aftermath of the hurricane’s landfall. Whether the church had legitimate concerns about their own building being flooded and posing a danger to others is neither here nor there. What matters is the perception: People who do not even claim to be Christians were criticizing and mocking Osteen and his church for the blatant incongruity of America’s most prosperous church and its most prosperous preacher not exiting their gilded quarters to help the needy literally floating by their front door. One popular meme that circulated on social media showed Osteen sailing through flooded Houston on a yacht while people swam for their lives around it.

Kate Bowler, author of Blessed: A History of the American Prosperity Gospel, wrote in the Washington Post that this scenario “made America’s prince of the prosperity positive gospel into an object of social media contempt.” She added that Osteen was “lambasted as being, at best, sluggish in providing emergency aid to those suffering from the disaster and, at worst, a hypocrite who cares more about people’s wealth than welfare.”

Hurricane Harvey washed away the veneer of positivity that the prosperity gospel lacquers on everything. Prosperity gospel preachers are adept at either finding a positive way to look at a negative situation or blaming those who are suffering in the situation. But this time, there was none of that. For the people of Houston, there was no positive way to look at Harvey. There was no blessing in it. There was no silver lining. The Associated Press reported that Harvey “raged through neighborhoods rich and poor, black and white, upscale and working class. Across Houston and surrounding communities, no group sidestepped its paralyzing deluges and apocalyptic floods.” Yes, the ‘blessed and highly favored’ were just as underwater as the ‘poor and needy.’ And, like a fish turned belly up, Osteen, Lakewood Church, and the prosperity gospel — metaphorically and literally — was laid bare and had nothing to offer.

In closing, let me leave you with some Scripture and a quote to think about.

Luke 12:15 says, “Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.”

John Piper said, “Prosperity cannot be a proof of God’s favor since it is what the devil promises to those who worship him… If God’s love for His children is to be measured by our health, wealth, and comfort in this life, then God hated the Apostle Paul.”

Francis Chan said, “It is not scientific doubt, not atheism, not pantheism, not agnosticism, that in our day and in this land is likely to quench the light of the gospel. It is a proud, selfish, luxurious, church-going, hollow-hearted prosperity.”

—PRAYER—

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Aug 22 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

Only Jesus Christ and the Church Can Deliver Us from the “Starless Midnight of Racism to the Bright Daybreak of Peace” (Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture #29)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #28.

This episode is titled, Only Jesus Christ and the Church Can Deliver Us from the “Starless Midnight of Racism to the Bright Daybreak of Peace”

Let’s get this out of the way and put this to bed: neither President Barack Obama or President Trump have a racist bone in their bodies, however, they have unwisely and foolishly played the political race card. Don’t be shocked at that, that is what lying politicians do, that is the game they play. They will use anything to try to gain an advantage over their opponent or over the other party. The point is stop getting mad and angry at lying politicians. They are doing what they do. A president has never saved us and never will. The real problem right now is the church. A church that is disobedient to God’s Word, refuses to pray, refuses to witness for the Lord, full of pride, racism, sin, foolishness, scandel, and is the butt-of-jokes to most of the world. To use the title of a book written by the Southern writer, Lewis Grizzard, “Martin Luther King Jr. is dead, Billy Graham is on his way to Heaven, and I don’t feel that well myself.” If you look throughout history, God has always used a man to bring about revival and make a difference in the world. Where are the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s today? Where are the Rev. Billy Graham’s today? men who have the moral courage and moral authority to change the direction of a nation with just their words sent by God? Stop saying stupid things like, “Trump needs to bring us together.” Quite frankly, if President Obama, a black man who is half white, raised by white people, can’t bring us together, how in the hell do you think President Trump can bring us together. He can’t. And he will not. And that is not his mission. That is the mission of the church by preaching the Gospel, by discipling new converts, by living a life that is obedient to God, and being a light in the starless midnight of America’s original sin. Some are still asking, “Where is the God of Elijah?”, when the question is “Where is the Elijah of God?” What America needs again is a Martin Luther King Jr. and a Billy Graham rolled in one to go across this country, as they did, and shake the gates of hell and get people’s focus back on God, on Jesus Christ, on prayer, on the Word of God, and everybody doing the right thing. Stop blaming, President Bush, President Obama, and President Trump for causing our problems. The truth of the matter is, generally speaking, pastors and churches have failed God, have failed Jesus, and have failed America.

Last weekend’s clash between white supremacists and anti-racist protesters, which resulted in the death of Heather Heyer and two law enforcement officials, again unplugged the dam of national consternation over the state of race relations in America. It seems we keep being lulled into thinking that it’s over; finally, we’ve addressed these issues, we’ve talked about our differences, and we can live in harmony. But, racism and hatred reared it’s ugly head in Charlottesville, reinforcing the unfortunate reality that it isn’t over.

It should be. But it isn’t.

We should be past this. But we aren’t.

While it goes without saying that racism, anti-semitism, and white supremacy are evil and wrong, another unfortunate reality is that, apparently, it still has to be said. And God’s people should never tire of saying it. While some — white and black, Jewish and Gentiles — live in conditions and locales where racial tension is not an everyday issue, we must remain restless until all of God’s children live in similar peace and harmony. To borrow the words of Martin Luther King Jr., who borrowed the words of the Prophet Amos, “We cannot be satisfied until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

The debate over Confederate monuments is fraught with peril. To borrow the words of our president, there are indeed “many sides” to this aspect of the current state of affairs. Those who say the monuments should remain as a matter of history have legitimate points. Those who say the monuments are symbols of oppression and ought to be removed also make legitimate points. Those who wonder how far a liberal campaign to eradicate all public mention of any (white, male) historical figures who ever wronged another human being can go are legitimately concerned. These questions will likely not be settled in a way that pleases all sides.

The larger spiritual concern for our Southern Christian brothers and sisters is that they honestly question whether or not these monuments are becoming idolatrous symbols. Is the defense of Confederate monuments a subliminal outward manifestation of racism and the belief in the superiority of whites?

Can racism be an idol? Jarvis Williams, associate professor of New Testament interpretation at Southern Seminary, answers in the affirmative: “We see the idolatry of race in certain white churches who assume that white cultural expressions of the Christian faith are biblical and normative. These are churches in which non-white expressions of the Christian faith are viewed as abnormal or ‘ethnic.’ We also see the idolatry of race when Christians listen to, espouse, [or remain silent about], the racist rhetoric of those within their own racial or ethnic group.”

Confederate statues and monuments are stone and granite. They have no power, no meaning — except the power and meaning that is ascribed to them. And it doesn’t matter whether the ascribing of meaning comes when one is marching around the statue, holding a torch, and shouting slogans, or whether it comes quietly in one’s heart as he sits in a church pew and deems himself and his family better than the black family that just walked in.

We applaud those white pastors and church leaders who have publicly condemned the violence in Charlottesville and all forms of racism, the KKK, white supremacy, and neo-Nazism. Many of them admit that elements of these ideologies are present in their own churches. Robert Wright Lee IV, a descendant of Robert E. Lee and the pastor of a church in North Carolina, told NPR that after his sermon the Sunday after Charlottesville, he realized that “what we have done as a white, downtown church was problematic because we have not spoken to our black neighbors. We have not spoken out for people of color, and we have to start doing that if we want to make a difference in this world and if we want to be relevant as a church in the 21st century.” It is our prayer that him and pastors like him will be emboldened to address these issues in their churches no matter how uncomfortable it may be.

If there ever is to be peace and harmony in America, the idol of racism and the comfortable position of hate has to be excised from all hearts.

In closing, let me leave you with some Scripture and a quote to think about.

James 2:8-9 says, “If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.”

1 John 2:11 says, “He that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.”

Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality. I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”

—PRAYER—

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Aug 04 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

Hearts of Darkness Exposed for All to See (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast #28)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #28.

This episode is titled, Hearts of Darkness Exposed for All to See

The last couple of years have seen the rise of a disturbing, horrifying trend: murders, rapes, bullying, and beatings being broadcast live on social media sites including Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat.

In France this year, an ISIS sympathizer broadcast himself murdering a police officer and his girlfriend — and then, standing over their dead bodies, he debated what to do with their three-year-old child.

In Ohio, an eighteen-year-old girl has been charged with broadcasting the rape of a friend on Periscope. The prosecutor said the girl was “caught up in the likes” on the video and was “giggling and laughing” throughout.

In England, a group of young people beat up a middle-aged woman and then took selfies with her battered body.

In Chicago, the sexual assault of a teenage girl by several teenage boys was broadcast on Facebook. Most chillingly, nearly forty people watched the live stream and not one of them called police.

Thankfully, the documentation of these crimes often helps police find and arrest the perpetrators. But law enforcement and social media providers are scrambling to figure out how to stop criminal acts from being casually broadcast to audiences of potentially millions.

For decent people everywhere, the rise of broadcast crime is repulsive and disheartening. We would prefer to look away and pretend it doesn’t exist — or that it happens only in rare instances. But we can’t. Such crimes happen far more frequently than we hear about in the media. And the rise of social media only gives diabolically-minded individuals a platform that exposes their hearts of darkness for all to see. Media psychologist Pamela Rutledge said, “Social media is the new way of bragging for those who commit crimes to gain a sense of self-power or self-importance. The audience is larger now and, perhaps, more seductive to those who are committing antisocial acts to fill personal needs of self-aggrandizement.”

While the secular culture would have us to believe that people are basically good, broadcast crime only reinforces the Bible’s teaching that all men are sinners and that our hearts are “deceitful above all things and desperately wicked.”

In the West, it is easy to be lulled into complacency over the human condition — especially if you live in a nice, quiet neighborhood where crime is indeed a rarity. But, behind the walls of every nice house is a desperately wicked sinner. This knowledge should spur us on to share the good news of the Saviour who came to rescue sinners from themselves and from eternal Hell. While Satan prowls the earth, inciting crime and violence, it is easy to wall ourselves in behind our churches and our circles of Christian friends. It is easy to look the other way and say, “That only happens to those other people.” It is easy to think that such sin is scarce. But it isn’t.

When he spoke about the desperate wickedness of the human heart, Jeremiah asked, “Who can know it?”

With crimes being broadcast on social media, now we can.

In closing, let me leave you with some Scripture and a quote to think about.

Psalm 140:1-3 says, “Deliver me, O Lord, from the evil man: preserve me from the violent man; Which imagine mischiefs in their heart; continually are they gathered together for war. They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent; adders’ poison is under their lips.“

Galatians 1:4 says, “Jesus Christ gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father.”

The British philosopher and political strategist John Stuart Mill said, “Let not any one pacify his conscience by the delusion that he can do no harm if he takes no part, and forms no opinion. Bad men need nothing more to accomplish their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing.”

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Jul 15 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

The Church in Tumult Can be a Church Triumphant (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast #27)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #27.

This episode is titled, The Church in Tumult Can be a Church Triumphant

A recent Gallup poll indicates that Americans’ trust in traditional institutions remains remarkably low. Overall, only 32% of Americans say they have a high level of confidence in 14 major institutions. Over the past two years, confidence has fallen in ten of those institutions, including the church, hospitals, the presidency, the Supreme Court, public schools, the financial system, and the media. For Christians, the good news (for now) is that the church ranks higher on the confidence index than many other institution, coming in third behind only the military and the police.

The bad news, however, is that confidence in the church is on the decline. According to Christianity Today, “Pastors represented the most-trusted profession when Gallup began surveying Americans on career ethics; after three years of record-lows, clergy now rank 8th on the list.” Gallup said, “Less than half of Americans think religious leaders have high ethical standards.”

Thanks to the political upheaval of 2016 and global uncertainty spurred by events such as Brexit, Russia’s aggressiveness toward Europe, and repeated terror attacks by Islamic extremists in places like England, France, and Belgium, many in the world have been left wondering who they can trust for guidance and direction. On TV there are, in the words of one writer, an abundance of “people who specialise in being very concerned about matters over which they have no control.” Those in government go on with their Very Important Meetings and emerge with plans for little viable action. It’s no wonder that trust in the national news media stands at 28% and trust in the government is at 38%.

This, incidentally, is a golden opportunity for the Church. Founded on the rock of Christ, the Church remains steady over the winds and waves of our tempestuous times. She has a clear vision and mission, one that is not influenced by current events — and that is to winning souls and “making disciples.” While members of the media wring their hands and go off on either witch hunts or sycophantic rants; while politicians twist and conspire and outright lie to advance their agendas; while activists on the right and the left throw up their hands in uncertainty and dismay; while governments appear impotent against threats to life, liberty, and national security, the Church has no such misgivings. Christ has given us our orders. And if we follow them, without getting waylaid by current affairs, we will come out of this seemingly perpetually tumultuous season stronger and better than before.

The tumult of the world does not have to affect the church. History has shown us that the Church has endured similar instances before — the conflicts of ancient Rome when emperors resolved “to tear down the churches to the foundations and to destroy the Sacred Scriptures by fire.” The Church survived the Dark Ages which threatened to wipe learning and literature from the faith of the earth. The Church survived the Enlightenment when its very foundations were being attacked intellectually and philosophically. And, the Church will survive this present age — whatever historians will decide to call it — because Jesus declared that “the gates of hell will not prevail against it.”

While the rest of the world reels with distrust and uncertainty, the Church should be the steady beacon of light, hope, truth, and guidance that the world so desperately needs.

In closing, let me leave you with some Scripture and a quote to think about.

Matthew 5:14-16 says, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

G.K. Chesterton said, “We do not want a church that will move with the world. We want a church that will move the world.”

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Jul 06 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

John Gray, Oprah, and the Call for Fair-Minded Americans to Recognize and Stand Against Intolerance (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast #26)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #26.

This episode is titled, John Gray, Oprah, and the Call for Fair-Minded Americans to Recognize and Stand Against Intolerance.

Recently, intolerance stuck its ugly head out of a new hole in the ground as John Gray, assistant pastor at the largest church in America, launched a new television show. This show happened to be on Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network. Oprah has previously praised Pastor Gray and featured him on her “SuperSoul Sunday” program. But no sooner had the first episode hit the airwaves when dissent from some quarters of the LGBT community and those who support the pro-homosexual agenda popped up online.

Tweets posted by Pastor Gray in 2013 were dug up: in those tweets, he called homosexuality a “sin” along with “fornication, adultery, and lying.” In 2015, he also shared his personal decision not to shop at Target anymore after the company decided to implement “gender-neutral” bathrooms at the cost of $20 million — a decision which Target CEO Brian Cornell admitted has backfired causing “self-inflicted” losses for the company. While calling the pastor a “bigot” and a “hater,” critics have demanded that Oprah cancel his show so as not to give a platform to “anti-gay” views. (These same critics have also condemned the media mogul for allying herself with such well-respected men as T.D. Jakes, Rick Warren, and Joel Osteen who have publicly stated that homosexuality is a sin according to God’s Word.)

This is not just a problem of how the world responds to the church, but often how people in the church respond to each other. Some Christians need to learn to be more tolerant of others. Recently, at an event for women during Mega-Fest, Pastor John Gray said some things about how a husband should treat his wife that I thought were normal. However, some people thought he had crossed a line and responded with harsh criticism, even questioning his motive for ministry. As Christians, we also must realize that there is an abundance of diversity and liberty in the body of Christ, and we have to respect that.

What we see in these incidents are examples of those who preach tolerance refusing to afford that benefit to those who disagree with them. Whenever someone expresses dissent toward “progressive” attitudes, the pitchforks come out and said dissenters are labeled haters, bigots, racists, and unloving extremists. They are painted as being on the margins of America. Typically, the so-called offender — no matter how biblical and justified their beliefs — equivocates and backtracks in order to save his or her reputation, pocketbook, or public standing.

Now, for the sake of our country and for the sake of future generations, we cannot let that continue to happen. America was founded on the principles of free speech, the right to public dissent without condemnation, and a respectful tolerance of other people’s views. A growing number of television networks prominently feature pro-homosexual perspectives. In a fair, just, and tolerant society, those who believe what the Bible says about homosexuality must be afforded the same public respect and public hearing. If we are interested in preserving America’s heritage, we must support people like Oprah Winfrey, John Gray, and others against the loud, intolerant sector of society. You can use social media to let Oprah and Pastor Gray know that they have your support. You can share with your family, friends, and neighbors the importance of tolerance in our country.

Don’t think that such simple things can’t make a difference. In December 2013, furor erupted after Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty fame told a magazine that Jesus could take away sins including homsexuality, adultery, and lying. The ‘tolerant’ crowd wanted A&E to cancel the show over this simple expression of his Christian beliefs. But people stood up and expressed their support for the Robertson family, and the show continued for three more years.

If the election of President Trump has taught us anything about America, it is that the “silent majority” is not a myth. If enough people stand up and make their voices heard, we can influence our culture for good and for God.

In closing, let me leave you with some Scripture and a quote to think about.

Isaiah 58:1 says, “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins.”

Dennis Prager said, “I have never written that there is a threat of fascism in America. I always considered the idea overwrought. But now I believe there really is such a threat — and it will come in the name of tolerance and health.”

Robert Green Ingersoll said, “Tolerance is giving to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself.”

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Apr 25 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

Fox News, Bill O’Reilly, the Church, Dressing Modestly, and the Culture of Sexual Harassment (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture #25)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #25.

This episode is titled, Fox News, Bill O’Reilly, the Church, Dressing Modestly, and the Culture of Sexual Harassment.

Over the past nine months, it would seem as though judgment day has come over at Fox News, the most-watched cable news network in America. Numerous women, some of them longtime contributors such as Gretchen Carlson and Megyn Kelly, alleged sexual harassment against the network’s founder and longtime head, Roger Ailes. He resigned in July 2016 after 20 years leading the network. His stepping down was followed this past week by the stunning ouster of Bill O’Reilly who has been with the network since its inception, with fifteen of those years being spent, unchallenged, at the top of primetime cable news ratings. He had been hit with similar allegations of sexual harassment by female co-workers, which prompted the network to pay out $13 million in settlements. In total, Fox News has paid $38 million to women who have worked at the network, which, according to one employee, “operates like a sex-fueled, Playboy Mansion-like cult, steeped in intimidation, indecency and misogyny.”

The downfall of Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly is just one facet of the growing public dissatisfaction regarding the way women are often treated by their male superiors in the workplace and the so-called “rape culture” on college campuses (even some Christian campuses such as Baylor University), in the military, in general in society, and, yes, even in the church. According to Christian Post, a quarter of Christian women who work in a ministry setting admit that they have experienced sexual harassment, including “demeaning comments, suggestive jokes, glances with sexual overtones, and unwanted touching or sexual contact.” and requests for sexual favors. (This does not count women who simply attend, but do not work, in a church or ministry.) Research conducted by the United Methodist Church found that “half of laywomen” reported experiencing sexual harassment in the church.

In order to keep their jobs or to keep from being shut out from leadership circles, women often feel as though they cannot speak up against this activity. The Christian Post report notes that ‘50 percent of women said they tried to avoid the perpetrator, 45 percent ignored it, 38 percent shrugged it off, and 31 percent prayed.’ Only one percent took legal action. What’s worse is that men, even Christian men, perpetrate the notion that ‘this is just the way it is’ and/or that ‘this is just the way men are.’ This outlook only serves to give men an excuse for unseemly behavior towards women while continuing to put women in the position of appearing as willing participants in order to not rock the boat or upset the powerful male leader(s).

The church must reject the mindset of the world regarding this issue. How can we begin to course-correct?

First, pastors, fathers, and older male and female leaders in the church must instill in young men that, just because they have sexual desires for women, that does not give them license to behave in an inappropriate way toward women in the church, in the classroom, or in the corporate world. Christian men must hold themselves to a higher standard than the world.

Second, pastors, fathers, mothers, and older female leaders in the church must inform young women that, yes, the culture often looks the other way when men make inappropriate sexual remarks or sexual advances toward women. The world says, “Boys (including grown-up boys) will be boys.” But just because this is the way things are does not mean that this is the way things should be. No woman should feel like she has to quietly go along with behavior or language that is sexually suggestive, inappropriate, or demeaning, just to keep a job, keep from being shamed, or climb the corporate ladder.

Third, all women need to be informed that they have an obligation to speak up when they are subjected to inappropriate remarks or behavior from men in leadership, whether it is coming from a pastor, ministry director, or boss. Things will not get better unless women begin refusing to abide by the culture of harassment. Will some women lose their jobs or be demoted in retaliation? Absolutely. Will some women get the cold shoulder from pastors and others in the church who feel like they should have just kept their mouths shut in order to avoid tarnishing the pastor’s reputation? Yes. But a little suffering now will go a long way toward making the world safer for future generations of women.

These things must be spoken about by pastors at their sacred desks, by mothers and fathers in the home, and by older men and women in the public square. That is the only way we can begin to change the church and the culture for the better.

In closing let me give young single ladies some advice. According to the Scriptures you have a responsibility to dress modestly. If you do not want the lustful attention of men, do not draw attention to yourself by dressing immodestly. One of the problems at Fox News is that women do not dress modestly and this is going to attract the attention of redblooded men. That does not justify them making innappropiate remarks, but it does draw their attention by what you’re showing such as cleavage and thighs. The Bible says in 1 Timothy 2:9-10, “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.”

Also if you’re a single woman and a single man asks you for a date, that is not sexual harassment, so don’t waste your time running down to the courthouse to sue.

In closing, let me leave you with a Scripture and a quote to think about.

In First Timothy 5:2 Paul writes, “Treat the elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity.”

And Genesis 1:27 reminds us that women, too, are image-bearers of God and ought to be treated as such: “God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

The Christian Reformed Church of North America published the anonymous testimony of a woman who experienced sexual harassment in the church. She concluded her article by saying, “To churches and ministries, I would say don’t wait for assault or sexual propositions before you take action. Follow up if you hear about or witness even one inappropriate comment or touch. Know that women might be afraid to report it even if you ask them directly, especially if they have family depending on their income. You may have to be very thorough and offer total anonymity to uncover what is quite possibly a whole pattern of inappropriate behavior. Finally, remember that our Christian witness is damaged more when we protect those who abuse power than when we deal with those people quickly, honestly, and justly.”

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Apr 17 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary

Tim Keller and the Offensiveness of Christianity: This New Age is Just Like the Old One (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast #24)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #24.

This episode is titled, Tim Keller and the Offensiveness of Christianity: This New Age is Just Like the Old One

Recently, Princeton Theological Seminary announced that it would be awarding Tim Keller, who has pastored Manhattan’s Redeemer Presbyterian Church for over 25 years, the Kuyper (Ki-per) Prize for Excellence in Reformed Theology and Public Life. The aftermath should have been predictable because we have seen it time and time again in recent years.

Cue shock and disgust over a Bible preacher actually preaching what the Bible says against homosexuality. Cue liberal horror over Keller’s traditional views regarding female preachers among other things. Cue Princeton therefore backing down from its intentions and compromising to assuage the outrage of those crying foul simply because a good pastor has preached the truth of the bible mainly regarding traditional marriage between a man and a woman and being against the abomination of homosexuality or sodomy. “We won’t give him the award,” they said, “but he can still speak at the annual Kuyper Conference at our school.”

It is worth noting that, according to Christianity Today, fifteen Kuyper Conference participants and presenters, including influential philosophers Nicholas Wolterstorff and Alvin Plantinga, released a statement expressing their disagreement with Princeton’s decision to rescind Keller’s award, saying the reversal ‘gives evidence of a policy unworthy of its history of free academic debate and diversity that characterizes this great institution.'”

That aside, what’s interesting is that some Christians still act like they are surprised by this outcome. They are offended that the world is offended by traditional Christian beliefs. We know that the Bible hasn’t changed in two millennia. Perhaps an even stranger truth is that the world hasn’t changed either. Both Jews and Gentiles found the Christian faith offensive. The Jews didn’t like Christian claims of Jesus’ divinity and how He did not honor and obey their traditions they added to the law. The Gentiles didn’t like the exclusivity of the Christian message and its requirement that believers turn away from worshiping traditional pagan gods and the Roman emperors.

We should not be surprised when the world is offended by the cross of Jesus Christ or our beliefs based upon the bible which dictates our lifestyle or how we live. Our purpose is not to offend, but when a person is told the truth about their standing before God — namely, that they are a sinner — because of the pride and rebellion in the human heart, the natural response is indignation. If we understand this, we do not have to be shocked when the world responds in clamorous negativity to the gospel message or any message that aligns with the Bible and traditional Christian doctrine. We ought to expect it.

Perhaps, in America, the notion of a “Christian nation” has been deeply ingrained and Christians have been coddled too much for our own good. We should not be discouraged when the world expresses disdain toward God, God’s word, or God’s people. We are of a different kingdom. We are not of this world. We are, in the words of C.S. Lewis, a part of “the invasion” into “hostile territory.” There is no way we can expect to be welcomed.

In closing, let me leave you with a Scripture and a quote to think about.

First Corinthians 1:18 says, “For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.”

And Jesus Christ said in Luke 12:51-53, “Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.”

John Piper said, “The gospel of Jesus Christ, as the Bible presents it, is offensive and it is extreme until God opens the eyes of the heart and calls people out of darkness, the darkness of rebellion into the light of faith. We need to settle it in our hearts that we are willing to be criticized and even persecuted by bringing the best news in all the world, and having it characterized as foolishness. That has happened everywhere the gospel has been preached for 2,000 years. Some believe and rejoice in the gospel as the greatest news in the world. Others do not see it, and regard it as the height of arrogance.”

In light of what we have discussed today, I want to remind you that in our ever-changing world, there is one Person who never changes. That person is Jesus Christ. The Bible says that He is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.” He is not subject to the whims of society or popular opinion. He has an unchanging, eternal love for you. If you do not know Him as your Savior, I encourage you to get to know Him today. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

Thank you for listening to this Torch Leadership Cross in Culture Podcast.

Visit us online at www.torchleadershipfoundation.com

Until we meet again, remember to keep Christ first in our ever-changing culture.


Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.

He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.

He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.

  • Mar 18 / 2017
  • 0
Commentary, Podcast

Both Russell Moore and Jack Graham Are Wrong: They Should Have Never Let a Stupid Election Cause a Stupid Rift Like This (The Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture #21)

Welcome to the Torch Leadership Foundation’s Cross in Culture Podcast where we consider different perspectives on what is happening in our culture and apply a biblical worldview. I am your host, Daniel Whyte III. This is episode #21.

This episode is titled, Both Russell Moore and Jack Graham Are Wrong: They Should Have Never Let a Stupid Election Cause a Stupid Rift Like This Continue Reading

  • Jul 30 / 2016
  • 0
Commentary, Podcast

Some of America’s Pastors are Waving the Wrong Flags (The Cross in Culture #20)

This episode is titled, Some of America’s Pastors are Waving the Wrong Flags

In recent decades, religion — particularly Christianity, has become entwined with the American political system. With the rise of the Moral Majority under the leadership of Jerry Falwell Sr. and other leaders such as E.V. Hill and D. James Kennedy speaking out boldly on political and social issues, politicians came to realize that the “faith vote” was very important. At first, this applied mostly to conservatives and the Republican party. But, soon, Democrats caught on and they have made increasing efforts to reach out to pastors and church-going voters as well.

Both the Republican National Convention last week and the Democratic National Convention this week featured several pastors and preachers speaking on behalf of and in support of presidential candidates and their party’s respective platforms. Both campaigns are relying heavily on Christian ministers to serve as surrogates in the media and to their congregations. Both sides wish to be seen as having a corner on the Christian vote. Continue Reading

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