Friday Church News Notes
Volume 19, Issue 28 - July 13, 2018
Graphical Edition
The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature. 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.

IBM's Project Debater: Photo by Or Kaplan

IBM ROBOT DEBATES HUMANS (Friday Church News Notes, July 13, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - An IBM AI-powered robot is debating professional debaters with impressive results. The robot, dubbed Project Debater, was developed at IBM’s research center in Haifa, Israel. The first debate was held in June in San Francisco against two Israeli debate champions. The topics were “whether space exploration should be subsidized by the government” and “the value of telemedicine and whether it should be used more widely” (“Man vs. Machine,” NoCamels.com, Jul. 5, 2018). “The humans were said to have won, but by a close call.” Promoters of this type of AI (artificial intelligence) argue that “it is about recognizing important issues for society” and allowing “decision makers to make more informed decisions.” Creators of Project Debate say, “This is territory that is uncharted to some extent and this is where we are now.” Indeed. The line between human intelligence and artificial intelligence continues to blur, and man’s dependence on robots in every part of life increases dramatically each decade. The Bible believer knows how it all will end and has nothing to fear. Robots will not take over the world. The day of the Lord is coming when God will overthrow the age-old rebellion to His authority on this earth and set His Son Jesus Christ on its throne. Modern Israel looks to science as saviour, but it is a very poor saviour, indeed.

ANTHONY KENNEDY: AMERICA’S FIRST “GAY JUSTICE” (Friday Church News Notes, July 13, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “The First Gay Justice,” CBNNews, Jun. 28, 2018: “Washington is abuzz over the retirement of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy. While some have called him a moderate voice on the bench, his record shows he’s actually been a primary force for progressives, giving liberals numerous wins on the social issues that have discouraged many American Christians for decades. Kennedy was actually not Ronald Reagan’s first choice for the Supreme Court—he was his third. But Kennedy became a justice on the highest court in the land after the Senate rejected Judge Robert Bork—Reagan’s first choice—and after his second choice, Judge Douglas Ginsburg, withdrew his name in the wake of criticism over his personal and ethical conduct. But Reagan likely never anticipated the crucial tie-breaker role that Kennedy would come to fill on the court, or the way he would propel gay rights and abortion rights forward. Kennedy, 81, spent his last decade on the court as the key swing vote on an ideologically split court after Sandra Day O'Connor retired in 2006. He also went on to author the Supreme Court’s most significant gay rights cases including the biggest—2015’s Obergefell v. Hodges—which decreed that same-sex couples can marry anywhere in the United States. Kennedy wrote three other majority opinions favoring LGBT rights. … In 2003, he led the court in striking down state bans on gay sex; and in 2013, he wrote that legally married gay couples must receive the same federal benefits as other married couples. Michael Dorf, a Cornell University law professor, declared in 2013, ‘Kennedy has now firmly secured his place in history as the first gay justice.’ Kennedy also made a significant decision to uphold the country’s landmark abortion ruling, Roe v. Wade. In 1992, he was part of a majority that upheld Roe which declares a constitutional right to abortion. He initially was part of a group of justices that wanted to effectively overrule Roe. He also switched sides in 1992 to end up supporting a ban on prayer in public schools. … Kennedy’s retirement paves the way for the president to choose his second Supreme Court justice and shape the court for years to come. It’s a moment that both conservatives and liberals can agree upon with respect to its significance.”

SUPREME COURT RULES IN FAVOR OF PRO-LIFE CENTERS (Friday Church News Notes, July 13, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “Supreme Court,” Ken Ham’s Blog, Jul. 2, 2018: “It was recently announced that the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) ruled in favor of pro-life clinics in California, which means they will no longer be forced to promote abortion as an alternative—the murder of unborn children—to their clients. The California Reproductive Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care, and Transparency Act required pro-life centers to inform their clients that the state of California offers free or low-cost abortions. Essentially, the state was forcing pro-life centers to promote the very thing they oppose—the murder of children in the womb! You see, these clinics exist because they oppose abortion and want to provide real hope and help to women and men—help that doesn’t involve encouraging them to murder their child. This California law was clearly a violation of free speech and other First Amendment rights, and we’re thankful, in their 5–4 decision, that SCOTUS recognized this obvious fact. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra did not agree. He tweeted, ‘California women deserve access to unbiased & truthful information about their healthcare, we will continue working to make full healthcare access and awareness a reality.’ Becerra says women deserve ‘access and awareness,’ but he really wants to help silence those who would encourage women to keep their baby. He doesn’t want mothers and fathers to be aware of all their options—only one: abortion. Would Becerra be open to requiring Planned Parenthood and other abortion clinics to offer real counseling to women who come into their offices, including sharing options such as adoption or choosing to keep their baby? Should they be required to do what many pro-life centers do—provide parenting classes, baby and maternity items, and continued support for moms and dads? Of course he wouldn’t agree with such a measure because he doesn’t really want women to know all their options, just abortion (which he calls ‘healthcare,’ but murder is not healthcare).”

40 STRAIGHT GALLUP POLLS SHOW MOST AMERICANS OPPOSE ABORTION (Friday Church News Notes, July 13, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is excerpted from “40 Straight,” CNSNews.com, Jul. 3, 2018: “In 40 straight Gallup polls over a span of 24 years, a majority of Americans have said that they believe abortion should be illegal in all or most circumstances. In the latest Gallup survey examining the issue, which was conducted May 1-10, 53 percent said they believe abortion should be illegal in all or most circumstances. The Gallup survey asks this question: ‘Do you think abortion should be legal under any circumstances, legal only under certain circumstances, or illegal in all circumstances?’ If the respondent says they believe abortion should be ‘legal only under certain circumstances,’ Gallup asks this follow-up question: ‘Do you think abortion should be legal in most circumstances or only in a few circumstances?’ Since September 1994, Gallup has asked these questions in 40 polls. In every one of those 40 polls, the combined percentage of people who said they believe abortion should be ‘illegal in all circumstances’ or ‘legal only in a few circumstances’ has exceeded 50 percent.”

FIRST COMMERCIAL DNA DATA STORAGE DEVICE SET TO LAUNCH (Friday Church News Notes, July 13, 2018, www.wayoflife.org, fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - A start-up company called Catalog has announced that it will produce a DNA data storage device in 2019. The company, based at the Harvard Life Lab, says the method will store a terabyte of data in a tiny DNA pellet. “If kept cool and dry, DNA can reliably last for hundreds of years, so a vast data centre could be replaced by an ordinary refrigerator” (“First commercial DNA data storage device,” New Scientist, Jul. 4, 2018). Many researchers are working in this field, which is at its very dawn. IARPA, the research arm of the US intelligence community, has issued a challenge to develop new forms of molecular storage. Everything about this endeavor is evidence for an almighty, all-wise God. The mind-bogglingly complex living DNA itself is such evidence, and man’s great intelligence which allows him to study himself is another evidence. As Dr. David Berlinski says, “Simian social structures are often intricate. Chimpanzees, bonobos, and gorillas reason; they form plans; they have preferences; they are cunning; they have passions and desires; and they suffer. The same is true of cats, I might add. In much of this, we see ourselves. But beyond what we have in common with the apes, we have nothing in common, and while the similarities are interesting, the differences are profound” (The Devil’s Delusion, p. 156).

HOW THE AYE-AYE TAPS INTO LUNCH (Friday Church News Notes, July 13, 2018, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - The following is from CreationMoments.com, May 24, 2018: “The Aye-Aye is one of the strangest little monkeys on earth. Its peculiar features bear witness that it was specially designed and created to fill a unique niche in nature, not a chance development of evolution. The Aye-Aye lives in Madagascar. This small creature has huge ears and an extra long middle finger. It crawls on trees, tapping on them to find grubs. The Aye-Aye's ears are so sensitive that it can tell if there is a grub hole hidden beneath the surface of the wood. Not only can the Aye-Aye sense a grub hole an inch within the wood, it can even tell if there is a grub on the hole. When the Aye-Aye senses a grub, it chews into the wood with forward curving, incisor teeth. However, the Aye-Aye doesn't have to worry about wearing its teeth down chewing on the tough wood. Its special incisor teeth are unique among primates. They continue to grow throughout the Aye-Aye's life, just like a rodent’s teeth. Once down to the grub, it uses its elongated middle finger to fish the grub out for lunch. Researchers have noted that the Aye-Aye fills the same niche as the woodpecker in an environment where there are no woodpeckers. The Aye-Aye has clearly been specially designed with unique features so that it can make its living in a niche that is unfilled in its own environment. Our Creator God not only made the earth to be inhabited, He designed His creatures to make a living within it. [Notes: Science Frontiers, pp. 136-137, ‘The Aye-Aye, A Percussive Forager.’]”

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).

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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, fbns@wayoflife.org

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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