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The Immigration Debate

Thank you for the editorial about Christians and immigration policy (Fire in My Bones by J. Lee Grady, August). It’s a shame that evangelicals are mostly against immigration. 

When people visit my church in Texas from up North and observe the powerful exhortations from the Word of God given by these foreigners, they say their opinion of immigration has changed. I wish all the bigmouths that don’t understand could spend a week in the Rio Grande Valley and meet “those people.”
Elder Dino Tuttle
Alamo, Texas

U.S. immigration policies have been racist—in favor of Mexicans! How long can a nation retain its integrity when its laws are rewritten to serve illegal aliens?
Meanwhile Cubans, Haitians and Chinese immigrants who’ve ventured to our shores in search of freedom have been forcibly turned away. No other race on the planet has enjoyed the blind eye of the U.S. Immigration Service as have Mexicans—not Peruvians, Colombians and especially not whites.
Marilyn W. Lathrop
Hagerman, New Mexico

I am a school bus driver who has had personal experience with the children of Mexican illegal immigrants in the Chicago area. These kids are in gangs and they are very prejudiced against white children. They are abusive and rebellious. They carry knives and often get suspended from school.

They are a serious threat. If you have the courage you should do a report on this. I cannot give my name because of the sensitive situation I am in.
Name withheld
Bedford Park, Illinois

What would Jesus do with illegal aliens? He went into the temple and turned the tables upside down. Yes, he loved every sinner there, but He did not love the sin. Allowing illegal aliens to live without fear of reprisal or eviction is turning America into a den of thieves.
John Meaux
Crowley, Louisiana

Katrina’s Silver Lining

Thanks for the great article on the Gulf Coast recovery effort (“One Year After the Storm” by Joe Maxwell, August). One very fascinating fact is that God has used young people to transform cities in the region. The younger generation of students has rallied to meet the needs of those around them.

Campus Crusade for Christ helped send 15,000 students to the Gulf region by the end of April. The response greatly overwhelmed us, and we were humbled by how God massively mobilized His work force.
Shane Deike, National Director
Ethnic Student Ministries
Campus Crusade for Christ
Orlando, Florida

Jews and the Gospel

I read your article about the need to support the state of Israel (“Why Israel Matters” by Robert Stearns, May). When ministries make their main focus something other than the proclamation of the gospel, or they choose to ignore or even contradict the need for Jewish people to receive the gospel, they go against Scripture. We need to speak the message of truth unashamedly.
Harold Marsh
Akron, Ohio

When I see pictures of the horrors perpetrated by Israel against the innocent, defenseless people of Lebanon, I am appalled that many so-called Christians turn a blind eye to the suffering and death inflicted by Israel. Is there no crime Israel can commit that would remind you that you are followers of Christ?

I pray daily for the people of Lebanon. Israel’s aggression should be forthrightly condemned by all Christians.
Mike Stamper
Windsor, Connecticut

Inconsistencies in Charisma?

J. Lee Grady wrote a column called “Clouds Without Water” (Fire in My Bones, May) in which he criticized the “superstar syndrome” in many churches. It seems that his column was in the wrong magazine.

I agree with the column. However, many of these “superstars” and “wells without water” appear regularly in Charisma in their slick, catchy, superstar ads. Grady said that the superstars need a “brotherly kick” for tolerating unbiblical attitudes. It seems that the superstars who are appearing in Charisma might need to be kicked out of the magazine if you are serious.
Manning Strickland
Spartanburg, South Carolina

No to Christian Yoga?

I’m in total agreement with Laurette Willis and her take on the “Christian yoga” movement (News, July). We Christians today try to put the “Christian” label on things that are established institutions of the world. The Bible teaches us to be different, and to be separate from any influence of the world.
Zachary Mitchell
Fox Lake, Wisconsin

I strongly agree with Laurette Willis in her effort to discourage all forms of yoga. That’s why I am deeply concerned about Susan Bordenkircher’s promotion of so-called Christian yoga. It’s imperative that this matter not be treated simply as a disagreement between two equally sincere Christians. Much of the church is being overrun by Eastern paganism, idolatry and demonic religious teachings.
Del Yoda
Epworth, Georgia

More on Brownsville

With regard to J. Lee Grady’s article about the Brownsville Revival (Fire in My Bones, July), I believe Grady’s motive in writing this was pure. It served to be provocative in that it caused, or at least ought to cause, churches to examine what went awry so we learn from those mistakes.

We Christians have a propensity to remain quiet, and sometimes we even ignore failures or biblical discrepancies. God wants to teach us all.
Bob Windel
Hutchison, Minnesota

I find it ironic that Charisma celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Azusa Street Revival in April and then ran an article accusing the leaders of Brownsville Assembly of God of mishandling a move of God in our day. The fact is that more people came to the Brownsville revival than Azusa Street, and Brownsville lasted three times longer. What will people say about Brownsville 100 years from now?
Larry Bogenrief
Willowick, Ohio

George Barna’s Revolution

With regard to the debate over George Barna’s book Revolution and the debate over house churches, I agree that small-group meetings can become a setting for anarchy. But is that worse than the megachurches that treat all hurting souls with a quick prayer of deliverance? Both are horrible witnesses to God’s character.
Sandra J. Robb
Chesapeake, Virginia

I do not believe traditional churches should disband. No church is perfect. There is no justification for leaving the traditional way of meeting just because I do not want to be subject to anybody or because a church or leader offended me.

I pray the Lord will help us, and that He will open believers’ eyes to see that this is the enemy’s work against the church.
Sam A. Olanipekun
London, England

There is no way I could imagine a small group of unaccountable mavericks speaking to the spiritual issues that confront my family and me. Revolution sounds like old-fashioned “rebellion” to me.
Sam Crisp
via e-mail

Yes, George Barna did cross a line in his book Revolution. It was a line that needed to be crossed. His book is a wake-up call to the church.
Matthew Thompson
Rockingham, North Carolina

My fear is that house churches made up of family members or close friends with no oversight or accountability have the potential to cause just as much damage as large churches that have moral or financial failures. The church is not the problem. We are the problem because we are the church.
Karen Rogneby
St. Louis, Missouri

I see good points on both sides of the house-church debate. I think unity must first come from traditional pastors. It will take men and women of God who are strong in their walk with the Lord to sanction house churches with loose oversight.
Russell Miller
Statesville, North Carolina

There is nothing wrong with house churches if they are genuine New Testament churches. But “innovation” has become an American idol. If I have to choose, I’ll take the traditional approach, thank you, as long as it proclaims the resurrection of Christ and manifests signs of Holy Ghost power as recorded in the book of Acts.
Jerry Rodgers
University Park, Illinois

I don’t think the traditional church should disband. In my ministry on the streets I’ve found that people are very interested in receiving Christ, yet a lot of them are not that interested in being a member of a traditional church. The church must make changes so people will have a different impression of what it is about.
name withheld

My Turn

I always appreciate J. Lee Grady’s opinion, though I may not agree with everything he says. However, he gives an unfavorable impression of the way pastor John Kilpatrick, the Brownsville Assembly of God leadership and its members handled the revival (Fire in My Bones, July).

To say “the word ‘revival’ now has a hollow ring” and to imply that Brownsville leaders “dropped the ark” is unfair and fails to keep in proper perspective the amazing job Kilpatrick did in shepherding the revival from 1995 to 2003.

I am a practicing attorney in Pensacola, Florida. Before I started representing pastor Kilpatrick, I attended the revival off and on from August 1995 until February 1997. I would never have been willing to represent him and the church at no cost had I not seen and been completely convinced they were doing everything within their power to manage the revival above board and with a pure heart.

We must remember that pastor Kilpatrick, worship leader Lindell Cooley, evangelist Steve Hill and the church paid a massive price to host the revival. No one bore more responsibility than Kilpatrick. His steadfast leadership guided the revival longer than any church-centered revival in the history of this country! That fact alone is an amazing testimony to the quality of his leadership under very difficult and unique circumstances.
R. Larry Morris
Pensacola, Florida

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