Friday Church News Notes, Volume 16, Issue 5

The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature’s Fundamental Baptist Information Service. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, though this does not imply an endorsement.
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New Testament Papyri
FIRST CENTURY GOSPEL OF MARK FRAGMENT (Friday Church News Notes, January 30, 2015, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - It appears that a first century fragment from the Gospel of Mark has been recovered from an Egyptian mummy. The fragment was part of the mummy’s face mask, which was composed of papyrus sheets glued together in layers and painted. Scientists and scholars led by Craig Evans of Acadia Divinity College have discovered how to loosen the glue and extract individual sheets with the original ink writings intact (“Ancient Biblical text discovered in an Egyptian mummy mask,” Science Alert, Jan. 20, 2015). Evans told Live Science, “We’re recovering ancient documents from the first, second and third centuries. Not just Christian documents, not just biblical documents, but classical Greek texts, business papers, various mundane papers, personal letters. From a single mask, it’s not strange to recover a couple dozen or even more. We’re going to end up with many hundreds of papyri when the work is done, if not thousands.” The team has dated the Gospel of Mark fragment to about AD 90, by carbon-14, by handwriting analysis, and by the documents found with it. When the document is published, possibly later this year, more will be revealed, including what portion of Mark is written on the papyrus. The dating will then be critiqued by other scholars. This appears to be a major find. It could be the earliest fragment of the Gospels ever found, which would further authenticate the authenticity of the New Testament Scripture and provide yet more evidence to refute the old liberal theory that the Gospels were written long after the events. Currently, the oldest Gospel fragment is the Rylands Library P52 (P stands for papyrus), a portion of the Gospel of John dating to between AD 117 and 138. Previously, the oldest portion of Mark’s Gospel extant was P45, which is dated to AD 200-250.

NEWSBOYS CO-FOUNDER COMES OUT AS AN ATHEIST (Friday Church News Notes, January 23, 2015, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - George Perdikis, co-founder with Peter Furler of the Christian rock band Newsboys, has come out as an atheist. The band has always had at least one foot in the world. They were “influenced by everyone from the Police, Cure, and Rolling Stones to Keith Green and Jimmy Swaggart” (Jesus Rocks the World: The Definitive History of Contemporary Christian Music, vol. 2, p. 101), and, “Initially they played for the rowdy patrons of the local clubs and pubs, who threw beer bottles at them if they didn’t meet their standards” (Ibid., vol. 2, p. 100). In his testimony, Perdikis says that he was only ever really interested in rock & roll and living as he pleased. He says: “I always felt uncomfortable with the strict rules imposed by Christianity. All I wanted to do was create and play rock and roll... and yet most of the attention I received was focused on how well I maintained the impossible standards of religion. ... I left the band in 1990 and went back to Adelaide. ... As I carved out a life for myself..


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The Beatles

Updated January 29, 2015 (first published October 8, 2000) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org)

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The Beatles are the most popular and influential rock band of all time. Rolling Stone magazine ranked them number one in its list of 100 “Greatest Artists.” They have sold over one billion records internationally. This is in spite of the fact that none of the Beatles could read a note of music.

Paul McCartney said, “We felt like gods” (Bob Spitz,
The Beatles, p. 425).

They have been called “a revolution” and “a cultural earthquake.”

More than 8,000 books have been written about them. The Queen of England bestowed upon them the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 1965 and knighted Paul McCartney in 1997. In 2009, Liverpool Hope University began offering a Master of Arts degree in “The Beatles, Popular Music and Society.”

Their music was re-released in 1987 via compact disc and continues to sell well. It is played continuously on oldies radio stations. Their 2000 album, titled “1,” debuted at No. 1 on pop charts in the U.S.A. and 16 other countries and sold more than 3.6 million copies the first week. The album contains 27 of the Beatles No. 1 singles. A recent television special,
The Beatles Revolution, attracted 8.7 million viewers to its first showing on ABC and is being rebroadcast by cable networks.

Even Contemporary Christian musicians are Beatles fans. For example, Phil Keaggy pays “homage to the Beatles” on his 1993
Crimson and Blue album. Galactic Cowboys admits that their biggest influence is the Beatles. Caedmon’s Call often performs Beatles music. dc Talk opened its “Jesus Freak” concerts with the Beatles’ song “Help.” Jars of Clay names Jimmy Hendrix and the Beatles as their inspiration. The lead guitarist is said to be a “Beatles fanatic.”

We give many more examples of this in the article “The Beatles and Contemporary Christian Music,” which is available at the Way of Life web site.

The Beatles’ influence permeates Western society and can be felt throughout the world. Countless rock & rollers could give the same testimony as that of Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, who said: “Their arrival in America in 1964 was electrifying, one of the most exciting things that ever happened in my life, and their music has always and will always mean so much to me.”

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The Ostrich: The Fastest Thing on Two Legs

January 28, 2015 (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org)

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The ostrich and other non-flying birds are used by evolutionists as evidence of the doctrine of “vestigial organs.” The wings are said to be vestigial from a time when the bird could fly.

But apart from evolutionary assumptions, there is no evidence that the ostrich evolved. Every part of this amazing creature points to perfect design. The evidence shows that it is not a bird that evolved from a flying bird and “lost” the ability to fly. Rather, it is a bird that is designed from the ground up for land living.

With its massive body and huge neck, legs, and feet, it could never have flown! A male weighs an average of 250 pounds and stands seven to nine feet high.

It can’t fly, but it is a magnificent runner. It is the fastest creature on two legs. The ostrich can run 43 miles per hour in bursts and can maintain 31 miles per hour for a half hour. By then, it can be more than 15 miles away! A single stride is up to 16 feet when running. Even ostrich chicks can run at more than 3 miles per hour.

The ostrich’s design is obvious in that “its legs are perfectly placed so that the body’s center of gravity balances on top of its legs” (Livescience.com).

The ostrich foot is beautifully designed for running. It has only two toes rather than four as most birds have. Its long toe has a strong nail that is used for gripping the ground.

In a race between a female ostrich and Dennis Northcutt, a professional football player and one of the fastest men alive, the ostrich won hands down. “It was no contest. The ostrich left Dennis in the dust without even trying. Here’s why. Speed is a product of downforce in stride length. With each step, the ostrich produces an explosive 1900 pounds of force to propel it forward. That’s more than twice as much as the 900 pounds that a human can generate. David Sandler of strengthpro.com says, “The ostrich’s ability to produce force rapidly was remarkable. We’re talking the fastest numbers we have ever seen and over two times faster than the best athletes we have seen.”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2WcMRpozO4s

The ostrich wings are not like the wings of a flying bird. They are not made for flying but for other purposes.

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Darwin's Errors


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In the late 19th century, the evolutionary doctrine of Charles Darwin was thought to have disproven the Bible. This was a great turning point in history, and each quarter century since then has witnessed an increase in skepticism and open animosity toward God and His Word. Today it is widely assumed that the Bible is filled with myth and scientific blunders while Darwin has been authenticated.

The truth is quite the opposite. Scientific research since Darwin has authenticated the Bible and discredited Darwin. In reality, it is Darwin’s writings that are filled with myth and scientific blunders.

It can be argued that Darwin couldn’t have known scientific facts that weren’t yet discovered in his day and that he is not to be blamed for the blunders that appear in his writings, but that is not the point. The point is that Darwin’s writings are filled with scientific blunders, whereas the Bible,
which was written thousands of years earlier, has no such blunders. This is clear evidence of its divine inspiration.

Consider some of Darwin’s errors:

ABIOGENESIS

Charles Darwin and Thomas Huxley believed in abiogenesis or spontaneous generation, which is the idea that life can spring from non-life.

This was widely believed until the last half of the 19th century when it was disproven by the experiments of Louis Pasteur. He discovered that wine and milk do not ferment if they are sealed from the air, and he concluded that fermentation is caused by microorganisms. He developed what he called “the germ theory of fermentation” and “suggested a microbial etiology (cause) of disease” (Alan Gillen and Douglas Oliver, “Creation and the Germ Theory,”
Answers in Genesis, July 29, 2009). He called the souring of grape juice by microbes “the disease of wine.” By 1870, Pasteur had identified the microbe that causes silkworm disease. He invented the process of pasteurization to kill the germs in milk and other liquids by the process of heating. His understanding of germs led to the invention of life-saving vaccines and ultimately, to the invention of antibiotics. The entire field of modern medicine is based on the concept of germs as pioneered by Pasteur.

Building on Pasteur’s findings, Joseph Lister, a Quaker medical doctor, did further research into the germ cause of disease. His research into the souring of milk led him to the same conclusion that Pasteur had made. He considered milk spoilage a type of infectious disease. Concluding that microbes caused infection in his patients by entering wounds, Lister pioneered the use of antiseptics. His use of carbolic acid dressings and spray, sterilization of instruments, and asepsis (hand washing and maintaining a clean environment) significantly reduced gangrene. Prior to this, 50% of his amputation patients died of infection. By the end of his lifetime, 97% of amputees survived. Lister’s pioneering work led to the widespread application of these practices by the early 1870s. Lister is considered the co-founder of the germ theory with Pasteur. Both were creationists who believed in the God of the Bible and rejected Darwinism.

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Friday Church News Notes, Volume 16, Issue 4

The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature’s Fundamental Baptist Information Service. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, though this does not imply an endorsement.
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CONTEMPORARY MUSICIANS AND SOUTHERN BAPTIST CONVENTION STANDS UNITED WITH NEW AGE ROMAN CATHOLIC (Friday Church News Notes, January 23, 2015, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - This week, the Southern Baptist Convention and some of the most popular and influential contemporary Christian musicians joined hands with a New Age Roman Catholic in a unity performance. The January 21 “We Will Stand” concert, sponsored by LifeWay Christian Resources, Voice of the Martyrs, and Compassion International, among others, featured “33 of the greatest CCM artists in history” (“We Are United,” thefishomaha.com). These included Michael W. Smith, Amy Grant, Newsboys, Don Moen, Mark Schultz, Sandi Patti, Travis Cottrell (Beth Moore’s worship leader), Steven Curtis Chapman, Steve Green, Dallas Holm, Russ Taff, The Imperials, Don Francisco, First Call, Michael Omartian, Francesca Battistelli, Kari Jobe, Jaci Velasquez, Laura Story, Petra, 4Him, Point of Grace, Carman, and Nicole Mullen. The theme is unity: “CCM United: one message, many voices.” The concert title is from Russ Taff’s song “We Will Stand,” which says, “You’re my brother/ You’re my sister/ So take me by the hand/ together we will work until He comes.” We Are United is the brainchild of Stan Moser, one of the fathers of CCM. Board members of the Gospel Music Trust Fund, one of the major beneficiaries of the concert, include Bill Gaither and National Quartet Convention President Les Beasley. They are all peas in one pod, and Amos 3:3 tells us that they agree together in the terrible compromise. Billed as “the greatest night in the history of contemporary Christian music,” it demonstrates unequivocally the one-world church character of this movement. It’s not a biblical unity in truth and righteousness, but an abominable unity in diversity. Roma Downey played a prominent role in the concert. As we have reported in past issues of Friday Church News Notes, Downey is the Roman Catholic co-creator (with her husband) of the History Channel’s popular “The Bible” miniseries and The Son of God movie. She calls Pope Francis “a new pope of hope” (“Roma Downey,” Christian Post, April 4, 2013). She says, “I have prayed to Mary and loved her my whole life” (“The Bible: An Epic Mini-Series,” Catholiclane.com, Feb. 28, 2013). She promotes the use of the rosary as a meditation practice by which she prays to Mary as the Queen of Heaven and the Mother of God. The Catholic Mary is sinless and can hear and answer the prayers of every petitioner, thus having the divine attributes of mediatorship, omnipresence, and omnipotence. But Roma Downey’s heresies exceed Rome’s papacy, sacramental gospel, and communion with a demon masquerading as Mary. Roma graduated from the University of Santa Monica with a graduate degree in Spiritual Psychology, which is described at the school’s web site as “the study and practice of the art and science of human evolution in consciousness.” The benefits of Spiritual Psychology include “experiencing enhanced spiritual awareness through knowing yourself as a Divine Being” and “learning to relate to yourself with greater compassion and awareness of yourself as a Divine Being having a human experience.” Roma Downey’s false gospel, false christ, and false spirit are welcome within the broad tent of CCM, and Bible-believing churches that play around with contemporary worship music are building bridges to this most dangerous world.

THE HYPOCRISY OF JOINING HANDS WITH CATHOLICS BUT NOT MORMONS (Friday Church News Notes, January 23, 2015, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The hypocrisy and inconsistency of the ecumenical movement was on display recently in the Cairns Christian Ministers Network (Cairns, Queensland, Australia). (Cairns is pronounced “cans.”) On January 13, the CCMN sent out a statement that they are not supporting the local World Day of Prayer service in March because it is being held in the Mormon church. The announcement stated that “CCMN (corporately and individually) emphatically does not support the beliefs of the Mormon church in any way.” Two days later, the CCMN sent out an announcement promoting the ..

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