Issues of theology, gender and race were among the most-read Baptist News Global analysis articles in 2022, with figures such as Beth Moore, Amy Grant, John MacArthur and Greg Locke generating much of the interest.
The effect of Russia’s Ukraine invasion on U.S. end times believers led the Top 10 list, followed by an examination of the clash of cultures at an American evangelical university. Other pieces covered, in whole or in part, issues of racial justice and the role and treatment of women and girls in religious spaces. Another looked at the development of the updated NRSV Bible translation.
Four articles making the top 10 were written in 2021, demonstrating a continuing strong interest in controversies surrounding Locke and COVID-19 vaccine and mask mandates and the 2020 presidential election.
Here are BNG’s 10 most-read analysis pieces of 2022:
- “Let’s Be Clear: Putin’s Invasion of Ukraine Is Not About the Rapture and Russia in Biblical Prophecy,” by Rodney Kennedy, March 2, 2022 — The premillennial, rapture, tribulation and Armageddon believers come out of the woodwork when the words “Russia” and “war” are mentioned in the same sentence, Kennedy says.
- “How A Student’s Fashion Design Project Upset The Created Order At Bob Jones University,” by Rick Pidcock, Jan. 18, 2022 — Blasting a student’s class project as sacrilegious, blasphemous and dishonoring to Jesus was natural given the university’s history and perspectives, Pidcock explains.
- “Pastor Greg Locke Is All Over the Internet Spreading Conspiracies; Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Believe Him, by Rick Pidcock, Aug. 2, 2021 — Retributive white males like Greg Locke have been given power far too long. It’s time to give peace and love a chance instead, the author contends.
- “What Has John Macarthur Actually Said About Race, Slavery And the Curse Of Ham?” by Rick Pidcock, June 20, 2022 — The conservative evangelical leader has constructed a theology glorifying genocide and slavery and demonstrated during the COVID-19 pandemic a belief that he is above the law, Pidcock asserts.
- Beth Moore Is Not the First Baptist to Journey to the Anglican Church,” by Rick Pidcock, Jan. 5, 2022 — The journey from Baptist to Anglican churches may be fraught with criticism but also rewards exiles with an experience of finding home.
- “After 30 Years, the NRSV Gets An Update: Here’s What that Means,” by Mark Wingfield, March 15, 2022 — The biblical translation presents a broad representation of mainline Christian ecumenism and theology but falls short in the racial diversity of its editors and does not solve a well-known problem on sexuality.
- “Looking for A Religious Exemption to A COVID Vaccine Mandate? Most Denominations Won’t Help You,” by Mark Wingfield, Sept. 16, 2021 — The mere threat of lawsuits against companies with vaccine mandates makes it unlikely to produce the sought-after religious exemptions, which most denominations are not offering.
- “Amy Grant Will Host A Same-Sex Wedding, Franklin Graham Objects, And Where Does that Leave Michael W. Smith?” by Rick Pidcock, Dec. 20, 2022 — Graham’s opposition to Grant put Smith in a bind because he has been friends with both since the early 1980s.
- Church ‘Religious Exemption’ Letters Against COVID Vaccination Mandates Likely Won’t Work, by Mark Wingfield, Aug. 18, 2021 —Religious exemptions from vaccinations or mask wearing were legally unsupported even with exemption forms issued by faith groups.
- “‘Jezebel’ Is One of Three Common Racial Slurs Against All Black Women And Girls,” by Yvonne McLean, Feb. 12, 2021 — Calling Vice President Kamala Harris a “Jezebel” is especially despicable coming from a church leader because it harms all Black women and girls, the author contends.