SUPREME COURT JUSTICES TO DECIDE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY ISSUE IN REGARD TO HOMOSEXUAL RIGHTS (Friday Church News Notes, June 1, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143) - It would be good for God’s people to be praying for the nation’s leaders at this time, as the Bible enjoins. The following is excerpted from “More LGBT Issues Loom as Justices Near Wedding Cake Decision,” Newsmax, May 27, 2018: “A flood of lawsuits over LGBT rights is making its way through courts and will continue, no matter the outcome in the Supreme Court’s highly anticipated decision in the case of a Colorado baker who would not create a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. Courts are engaged in two broad types of cases on this issue, weighing whether sex discrimination laws apply to LGBT people and also whether businesses can assert religious objections to avoid complying with anti-discrimination measures in serving customers, hiring and firing employees, providing health care and placing children with foster or adoptive parents. The outcome of baker Jack Phillips’ fight at the Supreme Court could indicate how willing the justices are to carve out exceptions to anti-discrimination laws; that’s something the court has refused to do in the areas of race and sex. The result was hard to predict based on arguments in December. But however the justices rule, it won’t be their last word on the topic. Religious conservatives have gotten a big boost from the Trump administration, which has taken a more restrictive view of LGBT rights and intervened on their side in several cases, including Phillips’. ... Several legal disputes are pending over wedding services, similar to the Phillips case. Video producers, graphic artists and florists are among business owners who say they oppose same-sex marriage on religious grounds and don’t want to participate in same-sex weddings. They live in the 21 states that have anti-discrimination laws that specifically include gay and lesbian people. ... Jim Campbell of the Christian public interest law firm Alliance Defending Freedom said the cases will determine whether ‘people like Jack Phillips who believe marriage is the union of a man and a woman, that they too have a legitimate place in public life. Or does he have to hide or ignore those beliefs when he’s participating in the public square?’ ADF represents Phillips at the Supreme Court.” “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour” (1 Timothy 2:1-3).
IRELAND VOTES TO OVERTURN BAN ON ABORTIONS (Friday Church News Notes, June 1, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, email@example.com, 866-295-4143) - In a referendum, voters in Ireland overwhelming supported repeal of a constitutional ban on abortions. Sixty-six percent favored the repeal. Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said, “The people have spoken. The people have said that we want a modern constitution for a modern country, that we trust women and we respect them to make the right decision and the right choices about their health care” (“Big Win for Abortion Rights in Ireland,” Newsmax, May 26, 2018). In fact, abortion is not strictly a “health care” issue. In most cases, it is about the life of a baby rather than the health of a mother. This age of “people’s power” is prophesied in Scripture, when the nations will shake their fists at God and His Christ and call for the “cords” of His holy laws to be removed from their lives. God will have the last word when He puts Christ on the throne of this world. “Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure. Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion ... Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth. Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him” (Psalm 2:1-6, 10-12).
CHINA’S NEW SILK ROAD (Friday Church News Notes, June 1, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143) - China has experienced mind-boggling development in the past few decades and is spending more annually on infrastructure than the United States and Western Europe combined. For example, 10 years ago China had no high speed trains, but today it has the world’s largest and fastest high speed train system. In fact, it has more high speed trains (12,000 miles) than the rest of the world combined, and it is on target to have 24,000 miles by 2025. The electric trains, traveling up to 350 mph, feature stewardesses and many comfort services. These trains, and new multi-billion-dollar highway systems, are connecting China’s far-flung mega cities, many of which are springing up newly formed in a matter of a few brief years. China aims to connect its new national transportation systems to five international railway systems that will imitate the old Silk Road (called Belt and Road). Its new rail hub in Khorgos in western China near Kazakhstan, costing $2 billion, already connects with cities across western Europe as far as London. It is intended to become the world’s largest inland port. Another highway system is envisioned to connect with Europe by a southern route crossing India and the Middle East. And another is proposed to travel north through Russia and crossing the Bering Strait to Alaska by the world’s longest underwater tunnel and then connecting to Canada and the continental United States. China is also renovating its sea-faring trade routes, including massive investment in a 10.5 square mile deep-water port 19 miles off the Shanghai coast. Though only a few years old and largely reclaimed from the sea (with 460 billion cubit feet of mud dredged from the sea bed), Yangshan has become the world’s busiest container port and is being prepared to be operated autonomously by artificial intelligence. Biblically and prophetically, what does this mean? China’s government control combined with socially invasive technology and antagonism toward Christianity is a preparation for and a little foretaste of the Antichrist’s kingdom. Also, China’s new transportation system will doubtless facilitate the movement of armies in the Tribulation. China’s leaders have long-range plans to control world commerce, but time is short and, like Israel, they are unwittingly preparing for the fulfillment of Bible prophecy and the rise of the Man of Sin. “And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared” (Revelation 16:12). (The facts in this report are gleaned from the documentary Future China 2049 - China on the Move.)
SEEKING GREAT THINGS FOR ONESELF (Friday Church News Notes, June 1, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, email@example.com, 866-295-4143) - “And seekest thou great things for thyself? seek them not...” (Jeremiah 45:5). Jeremiah’s scribe Baruch was of a prominent family. His grandfather Maaseiah was governor of Jerusalem in Josiah’s day (2 Ch. 34:8). Baruch grew up among self-seekers, but it is never wise to seek great things for oneself. The purpose of life is to love God and glorify Him and do His perfect will. To be rich is not wrong, if the riches are from God and are used wisely in God’s will, but to seek to be rich is wrong. Compare 1 Ti. 6:9 with 6:17. If God gives a man a great name, as he did to Abraham and David, that is wonderful, but those men did not seek a great name; they sought the glory of God, not their own glory. When God promised David an eternal house and throne, David responded by glorifying the greatness of God (2 Sa. 7:18-22). Jeremiah did not seek great things for himself, and in his day his name was mocked and hated by his own nation, but God has given him an everlasting name and inheritance. It is wise to leave “greatness” in God’s hands!
GREEN BLOOD, BLUE BLOOD, CLEAR BLOOD, YELLOW BLOOD, PURPLE BLOOD (Friday Church News Notes, June 1, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, firstname.lastname@example.org, 866-295-4143) - The great Creator made a bewildering variety of creatures with all sorts of life systems to fit their divine purpose and environment. Most animals with bones have RED BLOOD cells composed of hemoglobin, a biomolecule containing iron that binds with oxygen and is responsible for the red color. The cells are like little sacks of hemoglobin. New ones are manufactured in the bone marrow at the rate of about 2.4 million per second! They circulate through the body about once per minute for 100-120 days, performing their amazing, life-giving work of transporting oxygen from the lungs, then their components are efficiently recycled. The red blood cell is perfectly designed by shape to squeeze through the body’s tiny capillaries. The horseshoe crab, some mollusks, octopuses and squid have BLUE BLOOD due to the fact that their blood uses a different protein, hemocyanin, to bind oxygen. It uses an atom of copper, rather than of iron, for the process, which turns blue when oxygenated. The Prasinohaema skink, a lizard in New Guinea, has GREEN BLOOD. The green color comes from a poison called biliverdin, which is a bi-product of the recycling of red blood cells. Biliverdin, therefore, exists in humans, but the liver filters it out. In case of liver failure, even trace amounts of biliverdin causes jaundice. The amount of biliverdin in the New Guinea lizards would be fatal to a human, but the little lizards thrive on their toxic green blood. The ocellated icefish has CLEAR BLOOD. This odd little fish, which has no scales, lives at a depth of one kilometer (.62 miles) in the cold sea off Antarctica. Scientists don’t know how the fish survives without hemoglobin, but they speculate that its “unusually large heart might help move oxygen through its body using blood plasma instead of hemoglobin” (“Why Does This Fish Have Gin-Clear Blood?” Live Science, Apr. 5, 2013). Many insects have YELLOW BLOOD. The blood carries nutrients and hormones to their cells, but it doesn’t transport oxygen and doesn’t need hemoglobin. The oxygen is transported by a system of tubes directly between the outside air and the cells. The yellow (or green) color of insect blood comes from the pigments of the plants it eats (“Why Is Insect Blood Green or Yellow?” May 30, 2013, IndianaPublicMedia.org). In the sea squirt and sea cucumber, the yellow blood is caused by the concentration of the chemical vanabin. Sea squirts and brachiopods and some types of marine worms have PURPLE BLOOD due to the protein hemerytherin, that transports oxygen instead of hemoglobin. Because of the translucent skin of the peanut worm, its purple blood can be seen without cutting them open. While the evolutionary scientist tries in vain to figure out how such things evolved, the Bible believer sees the handiwork of an Almighty God.
CONCLUSION: 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, but this obviously does not imply an endorsement. We trust that our readers will not be discouraged. It is God’s will that we know the times (1 Ch. 12:32; Mat. 16:3) and that we be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves. The News Notes remind us that the hour is very late, and we need to be ready for the Lord’s coming. Are you sure that you are born again? Are you living for Christ? “And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof” (Rom. 13:11-14).
Distributed by Way of Life Literature., publisher of Bible Study Materials and reports for Fundamental Baptists and other fundamentalist, Bible-believing Christians. Established in 1974, Way of Life Literature is a fundamental Baptist preaching and publishing ministry based in Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. Brother Cloud lives in South Asia where he has been a church planting missionary since 1979. OUR GOAL IN THIS PARTICULAR ASPECT OF OUR MINISTRY (REPORTS AND FRIDAY NEWS) IS NOT DEVOTIONAL. IS TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO ASSIST PREACHERS IN THE PROTECTION OF THE CHURCHES IN THIS APOSTATE HOUR.
David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, email@example.com
The Way of Life Literature preaching and publishing ministry is based at Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. A mail stop is maintained in Port Huron, Michigan.
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