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Friday’s religion wrap

The Journey team selects stories that got us talking this week. 

God to Trump: take out Kim Jong-un

USA Today covers the latest statements of pastor Robert Jeffress, an evangelical adviser to President Trump, who said God has given the American President full authority to take out Kim Jong-un. The Texan pastor cited the Book of Romans and a passage which says rulers have “full power to use whatever means necessary, including war, to stop evil”.

“In the case of North Korea, God has given Trump authority to take out Kim Jong-un,” said Jeffress. “I’m heartened to see that our president … will not tolerate any threat against the American people.”  

99 problems but Jay-Z ain’t one

Is Jay-Z rapping appropriate in the house of God? The Christian Post reports on a Californian Baptist church and its decision to host an avant-garde “praise dance” to the Jay-Z song “The Story of OJ” which has drawn some controversy due to the song’s explicit language.

While many have condemned the action, Rev Marcus Murchinson says there is nothing wrong with a few expletives in church and that “God can handle that”.

“What we wanted to do was to try to show that young folk can praise God with a conscious message that speaks empirical truth. Jay-Z’s message, whether you agree with his presentation, it didn’t matter, it was empirically true.”

Blessed or “lacking effort” are the poor?

The Christian Post reports on a latest study by The Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation which claims that American Christians in general are “much more likely than non-Christians to attribute poverty to individual failings”.

46 per cent of all Christians surveyed said that a “lack of effort is generally to blame for a person’s poverty” compared with 29 per cent of non-Christians polled.

Football loving church player still kicking on

The Daily Telegraph reports on a Uniting Church football club’s player who is 71-years-old and still playing regularly for his club, the Campbelltown Uniting Church Soccer Club. Radisa Cukic joined the team in 1988 and has played every season since.

“My knees are still very good,” said Radisa. “I play because I enjoy it, the young lads I play with are a good bunch of guys.”

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