Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.
In today's edition:
- Minister Sues Georgia over Gun Ban in Church
- Saudi Woman Sentenced to 10 Lashes for Driving
- Thou Shalt Not Post Ten Commandments
- Around the World, an 'Explosion of Evangelism'
Minister Sues Georgia over Gun Ban in Church
A legal battle is brewing in Georgia over whether licensed gun owners should be allowed to carry guns to church, the Religion News Service reports. GeorgiaCarry.org, a church and gun rights group, is suing the state on behalf of the Rev. Jonathan Wilkins of Thomaston, who wants to have a gun for protection while working in the church office but is not allowed because of a law passed last year by the state legislature banning guns in places of worship. GeorgiaCarry.org is arguing that the law violates religious freedom and that churches should not be treated as public buildings -- where guns are restricted -- but rather as private property. Only a handful of other states share a similar ban on firearms in church: Arkansas, Mississippi and North Dakota.
Saudi Woman Sentenced to 10 Lashes for Driving
A Saudi woman was convicted and sentenced to 10 lashes for defying the kingdom's ban on women driving, WORLD News Service reports. The ruling came just two days after Saudi King Abdullah announced that women, for the first time, would have the right to vote and run in the country's 2015 local elections. The verdict is the first of its kind in Saudi Arabia; other women have been detained for several days but not sentenced by a court. In most cases, women are stopped by police for driving, then held until a male guardian is summoned and the women sign a pledge not to drive again.
Thou Shalt Not Post Ten Commandments
The U.S. Supreme Court last week refused to hear the appeal of an Ohio judge wanting to display a poster of the Ten Commandments in his courtroom, WORLD News Service reports. Richland County judge James DeWeese, who has had the poster covered with a drape and the word "Censored" since a federal judge ordered him to remove it in 2009, expressed disappointment but knew his effort to get the Supreme Court to hear the case was a long shot. The poster had been hanging in his courtroom since 2006, when the Supreme Court let stand lower-court rulings that another Ten Commandments poster he hung in 2000 violated separation between church and state. The appeals judges rejected DeWeese's contention that the poster was private religious expression.
Around the World, an 'Explosion of Evangelism'
According to OneNewsNow.com, Christian apologist and commentator Dr. Jim Denison says statistics point to what some are calling a "Fifth Great Awakening," because Christianity is on the rise just about everywhere in the world -- with the exception of the United States and Britain. The global growth of Christianity has caused the largest "explosion of evangelism" in 20 centuries, he said, citing Korea, Nigeria and Cuba as just a few of the nations riding the wave of growth. In the last 10 years in Cuba, more than 1 million people have come to Christ. In contrast, in England, four times more Muslims go to mosque every week than Christians go to church; in the U.S., the number of atheists and agnostics has quadrupled in the past 20 years and only 1 percent of college students attend church any given Sunday. Denison said: "When [people] are making God their hobby, we're missing what God is doing in the nations. Where people are making God their king, they're joining the Fifth Great Awakening."
Publication date: October 10, 2011