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Religion Today Summaries - Apr. 10, 2008

Compiled & Edited by Crosswalk Editorial Staff

Religion Today Summaries - Apr. 10, 2008

Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.
In today's edition:

  • New Messianic Jewish Center in Jerusalem Drawing Angry Protests
  • Colson Diagnoses 'Heart' of Church Problem at Preaching Conference
  • Poll: Bible is America's Favorite Book
  • Conference Emphasizes 'Renewal' for Christian Doctors

New Messianic Jewish Center in Jerusalem Drawing Angry Protests

ASSIST News Service reports that a story from ICEJ News indicates Jerusalem planning authorities have approved the renovation of a house in the capital's secular Rehavia neighborhood to serve as a worship and activity center for the Messianic Jewish organization Netiviah. But some religious elements have vowed to stop the building project even if it means rioting or appealing the High Court of Justice. “This center will be erected over our dead bodies,” declared one opponent of the project. Another threatened “an all-out war” if the renovations start as planned. “We don’t care if a mosque or a church [is] built here, but we won't tolerate the presence of missionary Messianic Jews,” he said, reported Ynetnews.

Colson Diagnoses 'Heart' of Church Problem at Preaching Conference

The Christian Post reports that during Tuesday's session of the 19th Annual National Conference on Preaching, Prison Fellowship founder Chuck Colson said that while healthy churches breed a healthy culture, church problems can lead to social woes. Colson sought to identify the root of current church problems during his address on “Preaching and the Public Square.” “Of course we care about the world. Of course we care about everything happening in society, including politics, but we better get our own house in order because what we see in the cultural collapse of America around us today and in the Western world is exactly on our doorstep,” argued Colson. “I think that is at the heart of the problem of the church – we replaced truth with therapy. Most people are basically ignorant.” The three-day conference in Washington D.C., running under the theme “Where Do Pulpit and Culture Meet?” has been exploring the role of preaching in addressing cultural, social, and political issues. It concludes Wednesday.

Poll: Bible is America's Favorite Book

According to the results of a new survey reported by Reuters, when it comes to literary pursuits in the U.S., most people agree on at least one thing: the most popular book is the Bible. A Harris Poll of nearly 2,513 adults ranked the Bible number one, but the second choice was not as clear. "The Bible is number one among each of the different demographic groups," Harris said in a statement. The following demographics ranked these different books as their No. 2 favorite behind the Bible: men - J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings;" women - Margaret Mitchell's "Gone With the Wind;" 18-31-year-olds - J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series; 32-43-year-olds - Stephen King's "The Stand" and Dan Brown's "Angels and Demons."

Conference Emphasizes 'Renewal' for Christian Doctors

OneNewsNow reports that physicians will get help with "Balancing Faith, Family, and Practice" at a three-day conference in Colorado Springs that begins Thursday. Focus on the Family, which is sponsoring the conference, says it hopes to provide a spiritual retreat. The idea is that doctors of faith live a lifestyle filled with pressure without an outlet among their peers, neighbors, or even fellow churchgoers. "It is a valuable conference because it gives doctors a chance to come together with colleagues who have like interests, like stresses," says Dr. Gene Rudd, senior vice president of the Christian Medical & Dental Associations. Rudd says because of their situation in the community and the need to keep certain things confidential, doctors tend not to open up as much. "We need to come out from the world's paradigm right now in terms of how healthcare is given," Rudd emphasizes. "It's moving very much into just a business."