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Controversy Over Bishop Eddie Long 'Gospel' Cover

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The Nov/Dec issue of Gospel Today, a faith-based magazine, has caused quite a frenzy, with some of its subscribers upset with the choice of featuring Bishop Eddie Long on its cover. Readers are accusing the magazine of downplaying the allegations against Bishop Long, pastor of the New Birth Missionary Church in Lithonia, Georgia, who was accused in September of sexual coercion by four adult men from his church. The headline reads: "Bishop Eddie Long At The Center of The Scandal That Rocked The Church World," and readers have written into Gospel Today with many angry comments over the cover selection. Gospel Today publisher Teresa Hairston posted a letter in response to reader comments on the magazine's website. She wrote "Gospel Today did not explore the legalities or the issues; we presented a biblical perspective -- something no other outlet gave." She continued, "For those who don't want to 'deal' with or look at this situation; I encourage you to read this story so that you can have a BIBLICAL perspective to help you 'answer' the mainstream perspective. Yes you should pray and speak about the 'hope' that you have that God will turn this situation into something that will be used for His glory! Yes, you should respond! You should 'Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.' (1 Pet. 3:15)." Hairston also wrote, "The Word of God teaches us that God is love; and far too many times we have been unbalanced and unloving -- all in the name of a God who not only loves, but loves unconditionally and restores sinners-us included. Whether Bishop Long is guilty or not; whether the young men are guilty or not, the BODY OF CHRIST must handle this situation according to the Word of God! "The mainstream press has painted a hideous picture; some have even called for Bishop Long's resignation! They're not even members." Gospel Today magazine has been in business for more than 21 years.
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