Musings of a Recovering Lutheran: November 2010
I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, 

Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?

Then said I, Here am I; send me.

Isaiah 6:8 (KJV)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

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)

Monday, November 29, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi

The Chief Justice of Lahore High Court is blocking President Asif Ali Zardari from pardoning Asia Bibi.

Keep in mind that in Pakistan radical Islam is very strong. Even if a judge wanted to free Asia Bibi he may be afraid to do so.

Please keep Asia Bibi and her family in your prayers.

Today's verse

Dear brothers and sisters, I want you to understand that the gospel message I preach is not based on mere human reasoning. I received my message from no human source, and no one taught me. Instead, I received it by direct revelation from Jesus Christ.

Galatians 1:11-12 (NLT)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Today's verse

How sweet are Your words to my taste,
Sweeter than honey to my mouth!

Psalm 119:103 (NKJV)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

"You can't possibly believe THAT!"

That is the reaction I sometimes get when I mention the fact that I am both a mathematician and a Christian. It is as if I have confessed to cannibalism or some other horrible social ill.

It is interesting to note that often the strongest proponents of the belief that science has disproven the existence of God are those whose own scientific knowledge is minimal or even non-existent. Often these individuals quote from Time, Newsweek, or - God spare us! - Scientific American without any apparent sense of irony that they are relying on people who may know less about science than they do. Talk about the blind leading the blind!

Here is an interesting list of famous scientists who believed in God.

Today's verse

Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.

Psalm 98:4 (KJV)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Are you legally married?

A million marriages in England might not be legal because of an error in the words used in the wedding ceremony.

This reminds me of the plot of the 1952 movie We're Not Married.

You might be a Christian if ...

... you are fat. At least, that is the conclusion reached by Tim Covell, the author of Born Atheist.

There is not much that can be said in response to Mr. Covell's "research", except that the secular media appears not to be particularly fussy about accuracy when it comes to Christians. Imagine the reaction by the secular media if some Christian made claims that research "proved" blacks smell funny, or Hispanics are dumb in school, or that homosexuals are ugly. At the very least, it is unlikely that the Denver Post would be willing to give them a platform the way they did for Mr. Covell to flog his book.

Atheism was once a well-reasoned, intellectual philosophy. Now it seems to be mostly concerned with "de-baptisms" and pushing crude stereotypes. If I were still an atheist, I would be embarrassed.

A prayer for my sister

Almighty and gracious Heavenly Father,

I come before You with thanksgiving. I thank you for my beautiful wife, and for our son. I thank You for my family in Tanzania and in the United States. I thank You for my students and colleagues, and for the chance to serve as a teacher.

Lord, You know that my sister will soon undergo surgery for cancer. I could see in her eyes and hear in her voice just how frightened she is. I ask that You heal her of this terrible affliction, and that You send an army of Your angels to surround her and comfort her. I ask that You restore her faith in You, and to once again call You Lord.

Lord, I also ask that You be with my sister's husband and their two children. I ask that You be with them and help to give my sister the strength she will need.


Sharia law - enforced by the West?

A fifteen-year-old British girl is arrested for allegedly burning a copy of the Koran and posting the incident of Facebook. She was arrested under the new British "religious hatred" law passed in 2006. No word yet on when Madonna, who mocks Christianity with vulgar sexual references, will also be arrested.

It appears that Western governments are now in the business of enforcing Islamic anti-desecration laws. Recall how the US government blew a gasket what a Florida pastor merely threatened to burn a Koran?

I believe that this blatant favoritism shown by Western governments towards Islam is not because these governments are chock-full of secret Muslims. Western governments tend to be run by secular progressives who disdain all religious beliefs. Rather, Islam is seen by secular progressives as a rival to Christianity and Judaism. Christianity and Judaism hold that God's laws are superior to man's laws, and this enrages the secular progressives who view government as god.

And - this has to be said, since it is true - the fact that Christians and Jews are routinely imprisoned, tortured and killed by Muslims in Islamic countries is actually considered a plus by secular progressives. Osama bin Laden and his followers do what many secular progressives long to do, but lack the courage to actually carry out.

Thus, in the name of "tolerance" citizens of Western countries are ordered to be silent by their government. Meanwhile, Muslims (which in many cases are openly seeking a worldwide theocracy) are given a pass. That's why a 15-year-old girl incurrs the wrath of the authorities while those guilty of "honor killings" go unpunished.

One final note. Consider this quote from the article linked above:

The group that published the English-language version of the Koran is believed to have visited the school this week, to talk to pupils and explain the significance of the book to Muslims, the BBC reports.

Just imagine the shrieks of "Christianist theocracy!" in this country if a Christian group came to a public school to explain the significance of the Bible. Even in Britain, that would not go down very well.

Witnesses to the faith: Tanzania

Two church buildings in Zanzibar have been torn down.

Please pray for Christians living in Tanzania.

Update on Asia Bibi

Pakistani Muslims threaten violence if Asia Bibi is pardoned.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Today's verse

That night the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream, and God said, “What do you want? Ask, and I will give it to you!”

Solomon replied, “You showed faithful love to your servant my father, David, because he was honest and true and faithful to you. And you have continued your faithful love to him today by giving him a son to sit on his throne.

“Now, O Lord my God, you have made me king instead of my father, David, but I am like a little child who doesn’t know his way around. And here I am in the midst of your own chosen people, a nation so great and numerous they cannot be counted! Give me an understanding heart so that I can govern your people well and know the difference between right and wrong. For who by himself is able to govern this great people of yours?”

1 Kings 3:5-9 (NLT)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

May everyone have a blessed Thanksgiving this year!

May the God of your father help you;
May the Almighty bless you
with the blessings of the heavens above,
and blessings of the watery depths below,
and blessings of the breasts and womb.

Genesis 49:25 (NLT)

Today's verse

Offer to God thanksgiving,
And pay your vows to the Most High.

Psalm 50:14 (NKJV)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Have you been denounced yet?

The Southern Poverty Law Center has released a new list of "hate groups" that includes many Christian organizations. Unfortunately, I did not make the list.

My failure to draw the SPLC's wrath is disturbing, and makes me wonder what I am doing wrong. What does a poor math teacher have to do to get on the SPLC's blacklist, anyway? Alas, for the time being I must continue to toil in utter obscurity*.

* - Unless one of my kind readers is willing to take pity on me and turn me in to the SPLC's Revolutionary Watch Committee to be lynched. It would make a swell Christmas present!

Update on Asia Bibi

The Christian Science Monitor is reporting that Farahnaz Ispahani, an aide to Pakistani President Zardari, has said, "President Zardari has followed the case of Aasia [Asia] Bibi closely, and will take appropriate action, if necessary, to issue a pardon or grant clemency to ensure that Aasia Bibi is neither incarcerated or harmed."

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Genetically-modified seeds are the Devil's work

...or so the ELCA seems to believe. There is an excellent post over at Farmer on a Mission about the ELCA's proposed social statement concerning genetics.

I know the ELCA is obsessed with secular politics, but ... wow!

God's law and "bound conscience"

An excellent post over at Common Sense for a Senseless World.

It should be pointed out that the whole "bound conscience" shtick employed by the ELCA is nothing but an effort to make the radical political gospel of the ELCA look brave and courageous instead of partisan and narrow-minded. If Luther were alive today, he would be nailing his 95 Thesis on the ELCA's door at 8765 W. Higgins Road in Chicago.

Today's verse

I have heard all about you, Lord.
I am filled with awe by your amazing works.
In this time of our deep need, help us again as you did in years gone by.
And in your anger, remember your mercy.

Habakkuk 3:2 (NLT)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi

CNN is reporting that Asia Bibi will be pardoned. The article does not say if she has been released yet, so I would assume she is still in prison.

Please continue to pray for our sister in Christ and her family.

UPDATE: This is an alarming post. The author is calling for the release of Asia Bibi, but had this to say as well:

I endorse capital punishment for those who bash Islam and its sacred symbols. And no one bashes Islam in Pakistan. Certainly not our Pakistani Christian brothers and sisters whose forefathers played a great role in Pakistan Independence Movement.

We own and defend our great religion and our great Prophet. But harassing a poor Pakistani Christian woman in the name of blasphemy is not justice. The great, fair-minded leaders of Islam, like Omar and Ali, would never endorse this. Shame on these half-educated mullahs who can't offer a word of support to a weak and poor woman being wrongly accused of blasphemy.

Sorry, but calling for the release of a Christian woman accused of "blasphemy" while endorsing "capital punishment for those who bash Islam and its sacred symbols" is nothing more than an effort by the author (Ahmed Qureshi) to work both sides of the street. In any event, this is the sort of article that does not do much to install confidence and trust in Islam.

Today's verse

“Behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord GOD,
“That I will send a famine on the land,
Not a famine of bread,
Nor a thirst for water,
But of hearing the words of the LORD.

They shall wander from sea to sea,
And from north to east;
They shall run to and fro, seeking the word of the LORD,
But shall not find it.

Amos 8:11-12 (NKJV)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi

The Pakistani Christian Conference (Holland Chapter) has filed a petition to the Secretary General EU to grant asylum to Asia Bibi, her husband and five children.

There are also conflicting reports about Asia Bibi being released. At this point it appears she is still in prison.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

UPDATE: The Christian Post is reporting that she has been pardoned by Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari and released.

Today's verse

Love means doing what God has commanded us, and he has commanded us to love one another, just as you heard from the beginning

2 John 1:6 (NLT)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi

Pakistan's president may pardon Asia Bibi.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

UPDATE: Here is a more detailed version of the Associated Press article.

Today's verse

Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, saying: “There was in a certain city a judge who did not fear God nor regard man. Now there was a widow in that city; and she came to him, saying, ‘Get justice for me from my adversary.’ And he would not for a while; but afterward he said within himself, ‘Though I do not fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.’”

Then the Lord said, “Hear what the unjust judge said. And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”

Luke 18:1-8 (NKJV)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi

Amnesty International calls for the release of Asia Bibi.

Also, the Punjab governor calls Bibi’s case “disgraceful” and an “embarrassment for Pakistan”.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Sweet Ps: A prayer of thanksgiving

Almighty and gracious Heavenly Father,

This Thanksgiving I come before You to praise Your Name. You remember the widows and the fatherless. You raise up the broken-hearted and the weary. You shower your blessing on everyone - even if they did not ask for it. You have given me so many gifts - a beautiful wife and child, a loving family, and the chance to do meaningful work. I thank you, Lord!

Lord, I have failed You in so many ways. I have not loved You with my whole heart. I have ignored Your wishes in order to pursue my own goals and desires. I have not loved my neighbor as much as I love myself. Forgive me for my sins, which have harmed You and others.

Lord, I ask a blessing on my family this Thanksgiving. I especially ask for you to be with my sister, who is facing the possibility of surgery for cancer. Fill her life with Your love, remind her that You are Lord of all, and that You will never abandon her.

Lord, teach me to always remember to thank You, to never forget that You love me as your child, that You sacrificed Your Son to pay for my sins. In the spirit of that love keep my lips from hasty, harsh replies. Remind me that everyone is loved by you. Keep Your Word before me every single day, that I will continue to study it and hear Your voice.


Update on Asia Bibi

Pakistan’s minister for minority affairs, Shahbaz Bhatti, calls for a thorough investigation of Asia Bibi's case.

Key quote:

“We have requested the Punjab government that the trial should be fair in the high court. She must also be provided security in jail,” he said.

Given the sway Islamic extremists have in the Pakistani government, this may not amount to much. However, it does seems to represent a break in the case.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Today's verse

So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do

Ephesians 5:15-17 (NLT)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Today's verse

Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.

Psalm 27:11 (KJV)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi: An appeal from her husband

Here is an appeal for prayers from Asia Bibi's husband (from Voice of the Martyrs):

Here is an appeal from the Pope:

Please keep Asia Bibi and her family in your prayers.

Today's verse

If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.

1 John 1:8-10 (NLT)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Update on Asia Bibi

Asia Bibi's lawyers are preparing to file an appeal in her case. It should be noted that even if she is found innocent and released she still faces danger from mobs being incited by Islamic extremists.

Please continue to pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Today's verse

How lovely is your dwelling place, LORD Almighty!

My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD;
my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.

Psalm 84:1-2 (NIV)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Respect for me, not for thee

That seems to be the attitude of many Western governments, journalists, and intellectuals that make up our self-anointed ruling class.

A recent editorial by the Calgary Herald expressed concern for this bizarre double standard. A key quote from the editorial:

When Florida pastor Terry Jones announced plans to burn the Qur'an on the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, he was roundly, and rightfully, condemned. Christian groups worldwide were at the forefront of the protests, denouncing Jones and calling on him to respect the dignity of Islam. In 2005, allegations that U.S. military personnel had desecrated copies of the Qur'an at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp sparked an internal investigation to ensure no repeat.

The recent murder of Christian aid workers in Afghanistan, the deaths of 58 Christians in Iraq, the continuing persecution of Christians worldwide has sparked little outcry among the ruling class. But any hint of "Islamophobia" (real or imagined) seems to provoke endless hand-wringing.

The editorial goes on to say:

Not one of these incidents has garnered even a fraction of the attention the proposed Qu'ran burning caused. This begs the question: Why?

Perhaps it's because Christians rarely riot in difficult circumstances. They should not have to. In an enlightened world forever preaching equality and justice, no group should have to resort to death and destruction to get injustices remedied.

I think the editorial writers are wrong here. It is my opinion that the largely secular ruling class is not motivated by sympathy for Islam, let alone being secretly Muslim itself. It is highly unlikely (for example) that President Obama is a closet Muslim seeking to impose sharia law. Nor is it fear of attacks by Muslim extremists that are behind this new "tolerance" for Islam. Rather, I believe that the antipathy of the ruling class towards Christianity and Judaism is fueled by the claims of both that God's law is superior to man's laws, that humanity is sinful by nature and needs a Savior that is not a mortal President or Prime Minister. Such a view conflicts with the ruling class's messianic desire to remake society in its own image.

The ruling class's tolerance for the actions of Muslims - a tolerance they would not in a million years extend towards Christians and Jews - is nothing but an old political strategy: the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Islam is seen as a rival to Christianity and Judaism, and thus benefits from the ruling class's desire to divide and conquer. If the ruling class ever came to believe that Islam could threaten their hold on the nation's government, universities, and media, they would attack Muslims just as savagely as they now go after Christians and Jews.

I think that it may come as a shock to many, but the secular ruling class tends to view Muslims the same way they view Christians and Jews - as a bunch of ignorant, reactionary Bible-thumpin' (or Koran-thumpin') bigots. But for now the ruling class seems to view Islam as a useful political weapon against those they hate, and therefore Muslims benefit accordingly.

Today's verse

The LORD is my strength and song,
And He has become my salvation;
He is my God, and I will praise Him;
My father’s God, and I will exalt Him.

Exodus 15:2 (NKJV)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Voice of the Martyrs: Asia Bibi

Here is a page about Asia Bibi maintained by Voice of the Martyrs.

Please pray for Asia Bibi and her family.

Today's verse

So think clearly and exercise self-control. Look forward to the gracious salvation that will come to you when Jesus Christ is revealed to the world. So you must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then. But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy. For the Scriptures say, “You must be holy because I am holy.”

1 Peter 1:13-16 (NLT)

Friday, November 12, 2010

North Dakota congregation leaves ELCA over social statement

No, this is not about the ELCA's decision to discard the Bible's clear teaching on homosexuality in favor of secular political activism. Anselm Trinity Lutheran, a congregation in North Dakota, is leaving the ELCA over a proposed social statement concerning agriculture.

The ELCA's target this time is farming and the use of genetically modified seeds. It would seem that the ELCA, in addition to finding the Bible's views on sexuality too square, is now turning up its nose at agricultural science. Like other extremist political parties, the ELCA seems increasingly isolated in its own alternate universe.

Key quote from the article:

[Church council president Jill] Bunn said the Anselm congregation feels the ELCA is making too many social statements that don’t have anything to do with the church.

Indeed. As the ELCA abandons any pretense of being anything except an extremist political party, we can expect even wackier social statement to be coughed up by the leadership. The ELCA's new god of secular politics demends constant sacrifices.

Sweet P's: A prayer for Asia Bibi

Almighty and gracious Heavenly Father, we come before you with thanksgiving.

Lord, today we lift up our sister Asia Bibi, who was unjustly convicted of blasphemy against the Prophet Mohammed and sentenced to death. We ask that You be with her, that You comfort her and remind her that You will never abandon her.

Lord, we ask that you be with Asia Bibi's family. We ask a special blessing on her husband and five children. For the sake of her family we ask that she be spared this unjust punishment and returned to them unharmed.

Lord, You were able to free Paul and Silas from prison and turn the heart of their jailer. We ask that You turn the hearts of the Pakistani government officials, to bring them to repeal this unjust sentence, and to respect the rights of all non-Muslims.

Lord, we know that You are able, that You know what is best. We ask that if it is possible let Asia Bibi be spared death, yet let it be according to Your will.


Today's verse

Let thy fountain be blessed: and rejoice with the wife of thy youth.

Proverbs 5:18 (KJV)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Christians in mathematics: Leonhard Euler

Leonhard Euler may have been the most famous mathematician of all times. He was certainly one of the most prolific writers. For nearly fifty years after his death the St. Petersburg Academy (where he had been the head of the mathematics department) continued to publish his unreleased works.

As a child Euler had shown an unusual amount of talent in the field of mathematics, a fact that was all the more remarkable since he had mostly studied the subject on his own or with private tutors. Euler's father, a minister, had wanted his son to enter the ministry and sent him to the University of Basel in Switzerland where in 1723 he completed his Master's degree in philosophy . However, Johann Bernoulli (another famous mathematician) eventually convinced the elder Euler to let his son study mathematics instead of theology.

Although he never became a minister Euler was a devout Christian all of his life. Once, while he was working in the court of Catherine the Great, Euler had a debate with the atheist French philosopher Denis Diderot over the existence of God. Euler claimed that he had a mathematical proof which he stated as follows:

Diderot, whose knowledge of mathematics was minimal, soon left St. Petersburg and returned to France.

Euler and his wife had 13 childern, although only five lived past infancy. Euler was devoted to his family, and later said that he made mathematical discoveries while holding an infant in one arm.

Euler's talents were not confined to mathematics. He also made contributions to the fields of physics, astronomy, cartography and music.

Today's verse

The works of the LORD are great,
Studied by all who have pleasure in them.

Psalm 111:2 (NKJV)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Witness to the faith: Pakistan

Asia Bibi, a 45-year-old Christian mother-of-five, has been sentenced to death for "defaming the Prophet Mohammed".

Please pray for Asia Bibi, her family, and Christians in Pakistan.

Today's verse

For the LORD takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with victory.

Psalm 149:4 (NIV)

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Today's verse

And he called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand:

Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.

Then came his disciples, and said unto him, Knowest thou that the Pharisees were offended, after they heard this saying?

But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up.

Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.

Matthew 15:10-14 (KJV)

Monday, November 08, 2010

Today's verse

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

1 Peter 5:7 (NIV)

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Don't even think about leaving.....

A convention in Pennsylvania is drawing fire for its stance that homosexuals can turn from their lifestyle.

Future historians are going to write on the strange inconsistency of "tolerance" advocates who will defend to the death your right to agree with them. But if you are a homosexual and want to leave that behind and follow Christ ... well ... it will be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah than it will be for you. Given the extreme intolerance of the homosexual movement towards those it regards as "traitors" one wonders: will former homosexuals wake up one morning to find a horse's head in their beds?

As a Christian with libertarian leanings I would be sympathetic to the calls for homosexuals to have the right to marry, so long as the Church is not forced to perform those marriages or recognize them. Homosexuality, prostitution, divorce, and pornography are all things that are bad for a society, but I do not believe that a government has the right to ban such things any more than a society should be forced to support the welfare state, "hate crime" laws, various "reform" proposals for immigration and campaign finance, or abortion. Each individual must choose whether to accept or reject Christ, and using the levers of government to force people to support some purely secular form of Christianity is evil.

But the ugly campaign of violence and intimidation that many homosexual advocates engaged in over California's Proposition 8, and the Big Brother monitoring of speech for "homophobia" has shaken many potential allies (including myself). The real issue, it seems, is the efforts of homosexuals to use government to force their belief on everyone else. Tammy Bruce, a lesbian who is also a libertarian, has commented on the cult-like aspects of what she terms the "gay elite". Here is an interesting quote from an interview:

I’ll give you an example when it comes to gay marriage. If Christians are against gay marriage, the gay elite don’t believe that’s because the Christian is concerned about tradition, concerned about the future of this nation, or has a series of issues (with it) surrounding their faith, instead, of course, the gay elite says, “Oh, they’re homophobes.”

They’ve made a decision because they hate me, that they’re thinking this way because of me, that they’re making that decision because they want to hurt me – as opposed to, that they may be against gay marriage because, again, of faith, because of the importance of the tradition of marriage. In fact, God forbid should they ever consider that it might not have anything to do with homosexuals at all, but it has everything to do with (people's) families, that kind of deeper thinking beyond one’s self, they’re incapable of.

That’s why on the abortion rights front there is no consideration that a pro-life individual is... really just a person of faith and really truly believes that (conception is) when life begins. Instead it’s about misogyny. It’s about hating women, it’s about controlling women, it’s about men’s jealousy of women, it’s all about us...

This captures perfectly not just the attitude of secular politicians who are pushing the homosexual agenda, but also the attitude of the ELCA and other post-Christian denominations who have rejected Christ in favor of secular politics. You are not merely wrong for opposing homosexual marriage and ordination of non-celibate homosexuals, you are some sort of sociopath or criminal for daring to question the prevailing beliefs of secular society. And if you are a person with homosexual tendencies who wants to reject that sin, then you are a self-hating gay or lesbian who is the Enemy (all of this is for your own good, of course).

Please pray for all who struggle with feelings of homosexuality.

Today's verse

The Scriptures say that God accepted Abraham because Abraham had faith. And so, you should understand that everyone who has faith is a child of Abraham. Long ago the Scriptures said that God would accept the Gentiles because of their faith. That's why God told Abraham the good news that all nations would be blessed because of him.

Galatians 3:6-8 (CEV)

Saturday, November 06, 2010

'Christian roommate' update

A few weeks ago I wrote about the case of a Michigan woman who was being investigated for "discrimination" for advertising for a Christian roommate on a church bulletin board. Now it appears that the government is backing off. Unfortunately, the law remains on the books even though it may be unconstitutional.

The fact that the government is now monitoring private bulletin boards is also troubling. Aside from the Big Brother feeling of it, are there really no other more important issues to occupy their time?

Please pray for Christians who are being persecuted for their faith.

Today's verse

I will praise thee with my whole heart: before the gods will I sing praise unto thee.

I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.

In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, and strengthenedst me with strength in my soul.

All the kings of the earth shall praise thee, O LORD, when they hear the words of thy mouth.

Psalm 138:1-4 (KJV)

Friday, November 05, 2010

Sweet Ps: A prayer for forgiveness

Almighty and gracious Heavenly Father, I come before you with thanksgiving. I thank you for my beautiful wife and our son. I thank you for our families, for the chance to work, and for the many wonderful friends we have.

Lord, help me to remember that it is against You and You alone that I have done wrong. I have not loved You with my whole heart. I have not loved those in my life as much as I have loved myself. I have pursued my own interests, neglected You, and in doing so broken Your heart.

Yet by the blood of Your innocent Son Jesus Christ I have been washed clean. My sins against You have been erased, and I have been reconciled to you. By Your love I am Your son again.

Lord, keep my lips from hasty and harsh words. Keep me focused on the duties Ypu have set before me. Show me the paths You want for me to walk in. Send an army of your angels to accompany me and protect me. Help me to focus and meditate on Your Word.


Preliminary election results: Tanzania

Some early election results are available. Thankfully there has not been the type of violence that occurred after the 2000 elections. Unlike America, election results in Tanzania can take many days or weeks to become public.

Nevertheless, there are a few disturbing things about this election. First, election fraud has not abated. Second, the number of seats won by opposition parties in the National Assembly of Tanzania is still a very small percentage of the overall total when compared to the ruling party (Chama cha Mapinduzi, or Revolutionary Party). Finally, the leading opposition party (Civic United Front, or Chama Cha Wananchi) has several officials with ties to al Qaeda.

All the more reason for Christians to remember: Do not put your faith in the princes of this world.

Martyrs: Iraq

Attack on church in Iraq kills at least 58.

Please pray for all Christians in Iraq.

Today's verse

Then He arose from there and came to the region of Judea by the other side of the Jordan. And multitudes gathered to Him again, and as He was accustomed, He taught them again. The Pharisees came and asked Him, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” testing Him. And He answered and said to them, “What did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce, and to dismiss her.” And Jesus answered and said to them, “Because of 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 reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’; so then they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”

Mark 10:1-9 (NKJV)

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Christians in mathematics: de Moivre

Abraham de Moivre (1667-1754) was a French mathematician and a contemporary of Sir Isaac Newton. De Moivre made great contributions to the fields of probability and analytic geometry. His most significant contribution may have been in the field of complex numbers, where he is credited with discovering what is now known as de Moivre's formula:

where i is the square root of -1.

In 1685 Louis XIV of France revoked the Edict of Nantes, which had granted religious freedom to Protestants. After being imprisoned for his Protestant faith de Moivre came to England seeking religious freedom, where he befriended Newton.

Near the end of his life De Moivre noted that he was sleeping 15 minutes longer each day, and predicted that he would die when his sleep reached 24 hours. He turned out to be correct. De Moivre died on November 27, 1754.

Today's verse

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.

Ephesians 3:20 (NLT)

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Today's verse

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people - for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all people. This has now been witnessed to at the proper time.

1 Timothy 2:1-6 (NIV)

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Today's verse

Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

James 3:13-18 (NKJV)

Monday, November 01, 2010

Today's verse

Then the Jewish leaders took Jesus from Caiaphas to the palace of the Roman governor. By now it was early morning, and to avoid ceremonial uncleanness they did not enter the palace, because they wanted to be able to eat the Passover. So Pilate came out to them and asked, “What charges are you bringing against this man?”

“If he were not a criminal,” they replied, “we would not have handed him over to you.”

Pilate said, “Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law.”

“But we have no right to execute anyone,” they objected.

This took place to fulfill what Jesus had said about the kind of death he was going to die.

Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?”

“Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?”

Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”

“You are a king, then!” said Pilate.

Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”

“What is truth?” retorted Pilate. With this he went out again to the Jews gathered there and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him. But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release ‘the king of the Jews’?”

They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.

John 18:28-40 (NIV)