Musings of a Recovering Lutheran: March 2014
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)

Monday, March 31, 2014

Today's verse

A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth.

Isaiah 42:3 (KJV)

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Today's verse

Lord, thou hast been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men. For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.

Psalm 90:1-4 (KJV)

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Today's verse

I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it.

Psalm 81:10 (KJV)

Friday, March 28, 2014

Today's verse

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

1 Timothy 2:5-6 (KJV)

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Today's verse

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

Psalm 118:14 (KJV)

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Today's verse

Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

John 5:19 (KJV)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Today's verse

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

1 John 1:5-10 (KJV)

Monday, March 24, 2014

Today's verse

For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?

Mark 8:36 (KJV)

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Today's verse

And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.

Isaiah 58:11 (KJV)

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Today's verse

The Lord taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy.

Psalm 147:11 (KJV)

Friday, March 21, 2014

Back to the Moon

Gene Grush, the former propulsion and power division chief at NASA Johnson Space Center, has written a series of five articles is which he make the case for the US returning to the Moon.

  • It’s time to return

  • China’s moon rover a wake-up call

  • Return to the moon in four years

  • How America can lead the world back

  • Why now is the time for a moon base

    An interesting proposal. Unfortunately, there is little chance of any of it coming to pass. For better or worse it seems America's days of exploring space are drawing to a close.

    Perhaps that should not be surprising. Much of our nation's political leadership, academia, and media worship in the Holy Church of Settled Science. There the twin idols of Evolution and Global Warming reign supreme, and the heretics ("deniers") are warned to keep out. A nation with this kind of leadership is incapable of a sustained exploration of space, and will soon lose interest in even trying.

    But perhaps private companies like SpaceX can turn the tide, and help America recover its heritage of bold, independent thinking. We'll see.

  • Today's verse

    For the Lord God will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.

    Isaiah 50:7 (KJV)

    Thursday, March 20, 2014

    Today's verse

    And he arose from thence, and cometh into the coasts of Judaea by the farther side of Jordan: and the people resort unto him again; and, as he was wont, he taught them again. And the Pharisees came to him, and asked him, Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife? tempting him. And he answered and said unto them, What did Moses command you? And they said, Moses suffered to write a bill of divorcement, and to put her away. And Jesus answered and said unto them, For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this precept. But from the beginning of the creation God made them male and female. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; and they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.

    Mark 10:1-9 (KJV)

    Wednesday, March 19, 2014

    Today's verse

    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

    Galatians 5:22-23 (KJV)

    Tuesday, March 18, 2014

    Today's verse

    Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.

    Psalm 51:1-4 (KJV)

    Monday, March 17, 2014

    The pi-palooza rolls on unstoppable!

    Pi Day may be over, but not the celebrations! Here is an interesting history of the calculation of pi in ancient times.

    No one can get too much Pi!!

    Today's verse

    Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God: which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever: which executeth judgment for the oppressed: which giveth food to the hungry. The Lord looseth the prisoners: the Lord openeth the eyes of the blind: the Lord raiseth them that are bowed down: the Lord loveth the righteous: the Lord preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down.

    Psalm 146:5-9 (KJV)

    Sunday, March 16, 2014

    Today's verse

    For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

    John 3:16-17 (KJV)

    Friday, March 14, 2014

    More Pi Day celebrations!

    It's a Pi-palooza!

    A question of origins

    More about this video can be found here.

    Happy Pi Day!


    Today is 3/14 - Pi Day. And since no one can get enough pi, here is pi to one thousand digits (source):

    3.1415926535897932384626433832795028841971693993751058209749445923078164062862089986280348253421170679821480865132823066470938446095505822317253594081284811174502841027019385211055596446229489549303819644288109756659334461284756482337867831652712019091456485669234603486104543266482133936072602491412737245870066063155881748815209209628292540917153643678925903600113305305488204665213841469519415116094330572703657595919530921861173819326117931051185480744623799627495673518857527248912279381830119491298336733624406566430860213949463952247371907021798609437027705392171762931767523846748184676694051320005681271452635608277857713427577896091736371787214684409012249534301465495853710507922796892589235420199561121290219608640344181598136297747713099605187072113499999983729780499510597317328160963185950244594553469083026425223082533446850352619311881710100031378387528865875332083814206171776691473035982534904287554687311595628638823537875937519577818577805321712268066130019278766111959092164201989

    (Note: this is an annual repost.)

    Update on Asia Bibi



    Asia Bibi writes to Pope Francis.

    Key quote:

    The Catholic Pakistani mother sentenced to death for blasphemy, has written to Pope Francis saying that only God can liberate her.

    According to an article in the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines News Service (CBCP News), Asia Bibi said, "I also hope that every Christian has been able to celebrate the Christmas just past with joy. Like many other prisoners, I also celebrated the birth of the Lord in prison in Multan, here in Pakistan."

    She continued by saying that "only God will be able to free me" and made a point of thanking the Renaissance Education Foundation that helped make her "dream come true" to spend Christmas with her husband and children by bringing them to Multan.

    "I would have liked to be in St Peter's for Christmas to pray with you, but I trust in God's plan for me and hopefully it will be achieved next year," she told Pope Francis.

    Read Asia Bibi's own words.

    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 pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

    Today's verse

    But ask now the beasts, and they shall teach thee; and the fowls of the air, and they shall tell thee: or speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee: and the fishes of the sea shall declare unto thee. Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the Lord hath wrought this?

    Job 12:7-9 (KJV)

    Thursday, March 13, 2014

    Today's verse

    And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

    Romans 8:28 (KJV)

    Wednesday, March 12, 2014

    Today's verse

    I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.

    Psalm 121:1-2 (KJV)

    Tuesday, March 11, 2014

    Today's verse

    And [Jesus] entered again into the synagogue; and there was a man there which had a withered hand. And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the sabbath day; that they might accuse him. And he saith unto the man which had the withered hand, Stand forth. And he saith unto them, Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill? But they held their peace. And when he had looked round about on them with anger, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, he saith unto the man, Stretch forth thine hand. And he stretched it out: and his hand was restored whole as the other.

    Mark 3:1-5 (KJV)

    Sunday, March 09, 2014

    Bible study

    With All your Heart, by Ray Vander Laan.

    Today's verse

    Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

    Deuteronomy 6:4-5 (KJV)

    Saturday, March 08, 2014

    God of Wonders

    God of Wonders (2008).

    Today's verse

    When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?

    Psalm 8:3-4 (KJV)

    Friday, March 07, 2014

    Today's verse

    Then were there brought unto him little children, that he should put his hands on them, and pray: and the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.

    Matthew 19:13-14 (KJV)

    Thursday, March 06, 2014

    Today's verse

    O Lord, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.

    Isaiah 25:1 (KJV)

    Tuesday, March 04, 2014

    Today's verse

    Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

    Joshua 1:9 (KJV)

    Today's verse

    Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: so shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

    Isaiah 55:6-11 (KJV)

    Monday, March 03, 2014

    Today's verse

    The counsel of the Lord standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations.

    Psalm 33:11 (KJV)

    Sunday, March 02, 2014

    Reading list

    The Ionian Mission, by Patrick O'Brian.

    Today's verse

    Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country: and when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it. And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another. Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did unto them likewise. But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son. But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance. And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him. When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen? They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons. Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.

    Matthew 21:33-44 (KJV)

    Saturday, March 01, 2014

    Worship science? Not so fast!

    According to the online Merraim-Webster Dictionary there are two definitions of scientism. The first is "methods and attitudes typical of or attributed to the natural scientist". The second is "an exaggerated trust in the efficacy of the methods of natural science applied to all areas of investigation (as in philosophy, the social sciences, and the humanities)".

    It was the second definition that I was thinking of as I read this article about fraud in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

    Key quote from the article:

    Some 120 papers published in established scientific journals over the last few years have been found to be frauds, created by nothing more than an automated word generator that puts random, fancy-sounding words together in plausible sentence structures. As a result they have been pulled from the journals that originally published them.

    The rise of scientism in Western society - an outright worship of science, in some cases - is one of the most disturbing societal trends in human history. Science has become a religion to many secularists, and is in danger of ceasing to be science at all.

    Two examples of this scientism are the theories of evolution and global warming. Both are asserted to be "settled science" (read: holy scripture) by their more fanatical believers. Advocates of these theories in the scientific community are worshipped as priests or prophets. Dissenters, even if they are scientists, are smeared as heretics and enemies of the True Faith. Science is in danger of becoming a sacred priesthood in which only those who state a priori that everything must have a naturalistic explanation, or whose theories conform to what a handful say is real science, will be considered authentic scientists.

    I believe than most scientists are distressed by the fraud uncovered in the aforementioned article. One of the forces driving this fraud is the "publish or perish" mentality in most major universities, in which young faculty members seeking tenure must publish a certain number of articles in peer-reviewed journals. In those circumstances the temptation to cut corners is powerful. But despite what many scientists may have come to believe, publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal is not part of the scientific method. Perhaps it is time to reconsider the unusual emphasis many universities have on publication in journals.

    Yet the real problem posed by scientism is not from those in the scientific community, although hucksters and hotheads like Dr. Michael Mann and Dr. Richard Dawkins don't help science very much. Instead, it is non-scientists in politics and the media who pose a bigger danger. These individuals see science (or, to be more accurate, scientific-sounding jargon) as a weapon that can be used to squelch ideas and opinions they disagree with. The use of the phrase "settled science" is revealing, since it indicates the speaker knows little or nothing about actual science. If they did, they would know that outmoded scientific theories are abandoned because they no longer attract any defenders, and not because some talking head on TV says so. Evolution and global warming are on shaky ground because - contrary to their advocates most fervent beliefs - the scientific evidence for both is weak.

    Scientism asserts that science is supreme, the one human pursuit that holds the promise of being completely free of bias and error. The truth is exactly the opposite: science can be just as biased and inaccurate as any other human endeavor - and all the more dangerous because some of its advocates are bogus enough to claim otherwise.

    Today's verse

    Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

    Psalm 37:4 (KJV)