In a new report released Monday (Dec. 16), the Pew Research Center analyzed nearly 50,000 sermons posted online by 6,431 churches this year to find out how long Christian clergy preach and the words they use that distinguish them from one another.
Christians want our first loyalty to be to Jesus, not a particular institution or tradition. But does anyone follow Jesus in some pure, individual way, free of institutional ties or a larger and longer tradition?
Ministers are responsible for their actions as individuals, sometimes by civil authorities and ultimately by God. But what responsibility, if any, should the local church and the denomination bear for unethical behavior of their pastors and other church ministers?
Do Baptist annual meetings matter if denominations themselves are dying? Some leaders believe denominationalism isn’t dying, but rather is undergoing metamorphosis. Those willing and flexible enough to change still will need the community and networking annual meetings offer.