Musings of a Recovering Lutheran: August 2012
O LORD, God of my salvation,
         I have cried out day and night before You.
Let my prayer come before You;
         Incline Your ear to my cry. 

Psalm 88:1-2 (NKJV)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Update on Asia Bibi



At VOM's Persecution Blog, Christians are urged to write a letter to Asia Bibi.

The online petition calling for mercy for Asia Bibi can still be found here.

For those who do not know who she is, here is the story about Asia Bibi's unjust imprisonment and death sentence for "blasphemy" against the Prophet Muhammad.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Today's verse

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.

Ephesians 2:8-9 (KJV)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

"Anti-blasphemy" insanity - Part II

Muslim leaders in Pakistan are demanding the release of Rimsha Masih, an 11-year-old girl with Downs Syndrome held for alleged blaspehmy.

Today's verse

Lord, in trouble have they visited thee, they poured out a prayer when thy chastening was upon them. Like as a woman with child, that draweth near the time of her delivery, is in pain, and crieth out in her pangs; so have we been in thy sight, O Lord.

Isaiah 26:16-17 (KJV)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Today's verse

The Lord is my strength and song, and is become my salvation.

Psalm 118:14 (KJV)

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Today's verse

For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

Romans 12:4-5 (KJV)

Saturday, August 25, 2012

RIP Neil Armstrong

The first man to set foot on the Moon has passed away.

Today's verse

In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

John 7:37-38 (KJV)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Curiosity takes a drive

Some video of Curiosity's first drive from NASA:

Today's verse

And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.

Matthew 19:29 (KJV)

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Reading list

In the Beginning and Other Essays on Intelligent Design, by Dr. Granville Sewell.

Today's verse

He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?

Romans 8:32 (KJV)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

"Anti-blasphemy" insanity

Rimsha Masih, a pre-teen girl, is being charged under Pakistan's anti-blasphemy laws.

Key quote:

The United States government needs to understand the dynamic of the blasphemy law and get its response right. This threat is spreading: Blasphemy charges are surfacing in Egypt and Tunisia along with the rise of Islamist rule, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation persistently presses for such laws within the United Nations.
Agreed. It is true that the Washington Post and the New York Times reported on this story. Yet they and the rest of the media still seem obsessed with a mythical "war on women" in the United States. To date the secular media's evidence seems to consist of stories like one about an over-sexed 30-year-old law student's demands that someone else pay for her birth control, or a blabbermouth Senate candidate in Missouri. This is war?

Go to Pakistan - or any Islamist country - if you want to witness a real war on women.

Update on Asia Bibi



It may be easy for the world to forget Asia Bibi. But God has not.

The online petition calling for mercy for Asia Bibi can still be found here.

For those who do not know who she is, here is the story about Asia Bibi's unjust imprisonment and death sentence for "blasphemy" against the Prophet Muhammad.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Today's verse

I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

John 8:12 (KJV)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Witness to the faith: Eva Abdullah

From the Voice of the Martyrs:
A teenager in Tanzania was sentenced to two years in prison recently after being accused of desecrating the Quran. Eva Abdullah, 17, converted from Islam to Christianity three years ago. Her parents disowned her after her conversion, and a group of radicals in her hometown of Bagamoyo tried to persuade her to renounce her Christian faith. When she refused, they falsely accused her of urinating on a Quran. Many Christian leaders were afraid to defend Eva because of Muslim dominance in the district. On July 26, Eva was sentenced to two years in prison by a judge who was allegedly bribed by the Islamic militants. Although Tanzania is not on VOM’s list of hostile and restricted areas, our contacts report increased hostility toward Christians because of radical Islamic influences. Pray that God will strengthen Eva’s faith no matter the circumstances.

Today's verse

Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.

Matthew 26:41 (KJV)

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Today's verse

But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.

Philippians 3:7 (KJV)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Kenneth Howard Mueller

Ken Mueller has passed away.

Rest in peace Ken.

Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. (I Corinthians 15:51-57)

Today's verse

Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.

Psalm 37:7 (KJV)

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Today's verse

I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels.

Psalm 22:14 (KJV)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Today's verse

For I spake not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices: but this thing commanded I them, saying, Obey my voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be my people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.

Jeremiah 7:22-23 (KJV)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Never admit...

...you are a virgin. That is what Lolo Jones learned when the NY Times ran a hit piece on her. Tim Groseclose has all of the details.

Key quote:

For many fans, the [NY Times article] came as a surprise. The editors at the sports website sbnation.com, for instance, described its harsh tone as “pretty ruthless.” But awareness of a few facts makes the tone less surprising. One is the Times’s political bias. The other is that Jones, over the last several months, has been coming out of the closet with some conservative tendencies. First, she’s a devout Christian and a fan of Tim Tebow. Second, and perhaps most irritating for liberal elites, she’s a 30-year-old virgin. As she recently Tweeted: “Yes, I’m a virgin. #1 reason I’m single bc guys deuce out when I won’t put out. I do so to honor God & future husband.”

Jones was clearly surprised at the Times’s harsh coverage. As she said on the Today show: “I thought it was crazy . . . the fact that it was from a U.S. media, like, I mean, they should be supporting our Olympic U.S. athletes, and instead they just ripped me to shreds.” Someone should explain to Jones that what she calls “supporting our Olympic U.S. athletes,” the typical Times reporter would consider “jingoism.” Someone might also point out that you can’t be a Christian virgin and expect fair coverage from the Paper of Record.

Indeed. It is hard to imaging the Times running a similar piece on her if she were (say) a Muslim or a lesbian.

Thank you, Lolo Jones, for standing up for what you believe in.

Today's verse

Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high, who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!

Psalm 113:5-6 (KJV)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Teaching mathematics in Tanzania

An opinion piece by Beniel Seka concerning the problem of finding quality mathematics teachers in Tanzania.

Key quote:

One of the greatest problems facing our schools is lack of teachers, especially science and mathematics ones. The problem is rooted in other problems such as low salaries, unsuitable teaching environment and inability to admit enough suitable students in the teachers' colleges.

Mathematics is feared by many pupils especially in secondary schools and records the highest failure rate for the Secondary O-level National examinations. This makes it very difficult to select students to train as mathematics teachers.

Today's verse

And it came to pass the day after, that [Jesus] went into a city called Nain; and many of his disciples went with him, and much people. Now when he came nigh to the gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow: and much people of the city was with her. And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not. And he came and touched the bier: and they that bare him stood still. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And he delivered him to his mother.

Luke 7:11-15 (KJV)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Today's verse

The Pharisees also came unto him, tempting him, and saying unto him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause? And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder. They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery.

Matthew 19:3-9 (KJV)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Today's verse

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.

Psalm 46:1 (KJV)

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Border war with Malawi?

There is an ongoing border dispute between Tanzania and Malawi.

Key quote:

All diplomatic channels should be exhausted in a quest to resolve the simmering border conflict with neighbouring Malawi but if need be, the country's armed forces are ready for any eventuality.

"We know the cost of war because of our experience in Uganda. We want to urge the government, as the Minister for Foreign Affairs said in Parliament, that let's exhaust all diplomatic channels but if need be, we are ready to defend our sovereignty at any cost," said Committee Chairman, Edward Lowassa.

Mr Lowassa said this after a briefing of the Committee made by senior Tanzania People's Defence Forces (TPDF) officers at Bunge offices here that the army is well prepared for any military confrontation, if diplomacy fails.

A war is exactly what both countries don't need.

The wider the hate, the better?

This seems to be the conclusion of at least one writer.

The recent shooting rampage at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin put the media spotlight on music groups that have hateful lyrics in their songs. The accused shooter, Wade Michael Page, had apparently played guitar for several music groups that have been accused of promoting neo-Nazi ideas.

The article concerned a certain music group that was apparently wrongly identified as white-supremacist. Key quote:

But if you really wanted to defend the group [Hatebreed], you had to put your lyrical criticism hat on, which, surprise!, didn't always reveal the most pleasant things about the band with songs like "A Call for Blood," "Kill and Addict" and "Destroy Everything," as the Houston Press's Craig Hlavaty wrote in his defense of the group:
Hatebreed is in fact not a Jew-hating, racist, Nazi, hate-filled act. Their hatred is more geared towards people in your everyday life, like ex-girlfriends, local politicians and law enforcement, and other meanies. Nowhere in the band's history have they ever called for racial cleansing.
Obviously, it's preferable to be an equal-opportunity hater than the type of hater that focuses exclusively on religious and ethnic minorities. Still, there's something ironic about excusing a band's reputation by explaining that they hate everybody just the same.
I am not sure what to make of the last two lines in the above article. It is possible that the author, John Hudson, was being tongue in cheek.

Nevertheless, the notion that some kinds of blind, unreasoning hate are better than others is pretty warped.

Reading list

Gamma, by Julian Havil.

Today's verse

The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth.

Proverbs 10:20 (KJV)

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Today's verse

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.

Psalm 19:14 (KJV)

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Confronting Adam Smith

The Chick-fil-A worker who was filmed and bullied by Adam Smith would like to meet him face to face.

Key quote:

“I appreciate that [Adam Smith] came forward, but I’m definitely interested in speaking with him,” the Tuscon, Ariz., drive-through worker--who would only give her first name, Rachel—told FoxNews.com. “I want to see if he was sincere and let him know why I handled it the way I did and not take legal action, which a lot of people told me I should do.”

“There’s no reason to drag him through the mud any more than he has been,” the polite 26-year-old added

Rachel was working the window last Wednesday when Adam Smith videotaped himself going through the drive-thru ordering only free water and espousing his disgust.

“Chick-fil-A is a hateful company,” Smith told Rachel on the video, which he originally posted on YouTube before removing it. "I don’t know how you sleep at night. This is a horrible corporation with horrible values.”

Rachel kept her composure throughout the odd exchange and wished Smith a nice day.

“I was just really concerned about him taping. I knew he was going to post it. That was my main fear,” Rachel said.

“I’m Christian and God tells us to love thy neighbor,” she added referring to how she kept the exchange polite on her end. “One of my friends saw they video and said, ‘Yep that’s Rachel and that’s the way she is.”

Thank you, Rachel, for the good example you set for us. I pray that I can always be as forgiving as you.

More Curiosity

Here is a video made up of 297 still photos showing the final two and a half minutes nof Curiosity's descent.

Today's verse

For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king; he will save us.

Isaiah 33:22 (KJV)

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Staring down the bullies - Part II

Yesterday's great counter-protest at Chick-fil-A apparently did not go very well. Judge for yourself at one such protest, where protestors berated and mocked a black man who was quietly reading the Bible (h/t: Anne Sorock at Legal Insurrection):

On Wednesday, there was this ugly incident by a same-sex marriage named Adam Smith who bullied a Chick-fil-A drive-through clerk:

I am trying to figure out when such blatant hatred, bigotry and intolerance became acceptable to so many. Or why so many in the secular media are either willing to ignore it or excuse it.

A note of thanks goes to Anne Sorock of Legal Insurrection, who showed great courage in the face of such ugly hate and bigotry.

Today's verse

Thus saith the LORD the maker thereof, the LORD that formed it, to establish it; the LORD is his name; Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

Jeremiah 33:2-3 (KJV)

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Update on Asia Bibi



Writing in the Pakistan Christian Post, Nasir Amanual calls for the repeal of Pakistan's blasphemy laws.

The online petition calling for mercy for Asia Bibi can still be found here.

For those who do not know who she is, here is the story about Asia Bibi's unjust imprisonment and death sentence for "blasphemy" against the Prophet Muhammad.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Curiosity

The landing of NASA's Curiosity is planned for Monday, August 6 at 1:31 AM EDT.

Today's verse

But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.

James 1:22 (KJV)

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Staring down the bullies

Glenn Reynolds over at Instapundit is a daily must-read for me. While I do not agree with everything he writes, I respect both his opinion and his blogging style.

Today he was up to his usual high standards concerning the nationwide Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day. Professor Reynolds is a strong supporter of same-sex marriage, so he is hardly a right-wing Christianist nut who cane be safely ignored by secular progressives. Reynolds pointed out that many who showed their support today for Chick-fil-A did not agree with the company president's stated opposition to same-sex marriage, but were angered by the bullying tactics and ugly threats from political leaders in Boston, San Francisco, and Chicago. I found that very encouraging.

Unlike some parts of the world, the USA is still a nation that (usually) protects religious freedom and the right to free speech. There are many in the secular media, entertainment industry, and academia who want to impost totalitarianism in the name of fighting "intolerance" (meaning banning any idea or opinion that disagrees with their own), but I believe they are at present a minority, albeit a powerful one. Whether the USA remains a free nation is very much in question, however.

I did not have the opportunity to participate in today’s “boycott”. I have heard that some supporters of same-sex marriage intend to stage their own demonstrations, presumably to intimidate employees and customers. If so, I plan to patronize Chick-fil-A on that day and enjoy crossing the picket lines. Bullying triumphs only by default. Stand up to the bullies and show them you are not afraid.

Today's verse

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.

I Peter 5:8 (KJV)