Archive for August, 2007

A Walk of Faith

Friday, August 31st, 2007

Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.

During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.

But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”

“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”

“Come,” he said.

Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”

Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

When troubles start to beset us from all sides, it so easy to forget that nothing is too hard for God. Our faith disappears so quickly and we start to have doubts about everything.
This Bible passage shows us that even when our faith fails us and we start to “sink”, God is always there to reach out His hand to us and pull us out of the water.
As troubles come at you, remember to quiet your mind and turn to the Lord in prayer. Although the answer you get may not be the one you are expecting, God will “lift you out of the water”.

“I believe that this representation of Jesus reaching out to a doubting Peter, also symbolizes Jesus reaching out to all who are sinking in a sea of sin.”
-Doug Westbrook, Artist of “Jesus Walks on Water” - A Bible Story Mural.

See Mr. Westbrook’s Bible Story Murals here.
Bible Story Murals
If your church is looking for a unique way to bring the Word of God to it’s children and young people, take a look at Doug Westbrook’s Bible Story Murals. Each wall sized mural is based on the hand painted originals Mr. Westbrook created at Central Baptist Church in Houston, Texas and represents a different well known Bible story.
They are available on durable vinyl wallpaper for easy installation.

Mainstream Media Biased Toward GOP Contenders

Friday, August 31st, 2007

This is no surprise to me.

Brent Bozell, President of the Media Research Center which runs NewsBusters, appeared Thursday night (August 30) on FNC’s Hannity & Colmes to discuss the MRC’s study, “Rise and Shine on Democrats: How the ABC, CBS and NBC Morning Shows Are Promoting Democrats on the Road to the White House” (Executive Summary). It found that, from January through July, the ABC, CBS and NBC morning shows devoted nearly twice the time to stories about, and interviews with, Democratic over Republican presidential candidates, avoided placing liberal labels on Democrats and also pushed candidates of both parties from the left: “Of the substantive questions that could be categorized as reflecting a political agenda, more than two-thirds (69%) of the questions to Democrats reflected a liberal premise, and more than four-fifths (82%) of the questions to Republicans came from the same perspective.”

Original Link.

Kindergarten Cops Rule: Witches In, Bibles Out

Friday, August 31st, 2007

In Texas we recently passed a law, that is due to take effect on September 1, that allows school children to express their religious beliefs. It’s a shame we had to pass a law to dictate what should have been common sense. It appears that Pennsylvania could use a similar law.

A court decision that opens the doors of Culbertson Elementary School in Pennsylvania to books about witches – but rejects the Bible as being too “proselytizing” – is being challenged.

The Arizona-based Alliance Defense Fund has submitted amicus briefs in a lawsuit filed when a kindergarten student, under an assignment in which parents were invited to read their child’s favorite book, was denied permission to have his mother read a Bible story.

A decision in U.S. District Court that sided with the school’s decision to ban the Bible reading, while allowing teachers to suggest reading books about “witches and Halloween,” effectively “sounds the death knell for religious freedom in public schools,” the ADF argues.

“By transmuting private religious speech into government speech, granting school officials carte blanche authority to determine what religious speech is ‘too religious,’ and holding that a school’s desire to avoid a perceived Establishment Clause violation justifies viewpoint discrimination, the lower court’s opinion permits a blatant violation of the Constitution,” the group said.

“The school’s decision to ban religious speech is nothing more than blatant viewpoint discrimination,” said ADF Legal Counsel Jeremy Tedesco. “This was not about proselytizing anyone,” continued ADF Senior Legal Counsel David Cortman. “It was about letting students tell the class about what things are important to them, and the Bible is important to this student.”

The brief noted that the school allowed discussion of religion in the “All About Me” assignment. “Because Wesley liked to go to church, he created a poster that included a picture of a church with the words, ‘I like to go to church’ below it. This poster was displayed on the wall.”

But the Bible reading Wesley requested was rejected because the Bible promotes “a specific religious point of view” and the teacher instead suggested Wesley’s mother “read a book ‘about witches and Halloween’ instead.”

Original Link.

Iowa County Judge: Same-Sex Couples Can “Wed” in Iowa

Friday, August 31st, 2007

A classic case of judicial abuse and activism.

DES MOINES, Iowa- A county judge struck down Iowa’s decade-old “gay marriage” ban as unconstitutional Thursday and ordered local officials to process marriage licenses for six gay couples.

Gay couples from anywhere in Iowa could apply for a marriage license from Polk County under Judge Robert Hanson’s ruling.

House Minority Leader Christopher Rants, R-Sioux City, said the ruling illustrates the need for a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.

“I can’t believe this is happening in Iowa,” he said. “I guarantee you there will be a vote on this issue come January,” when the Legislature convenes.

Original Link.

Nation of Islam Allowed to Review PBS Documentary on Moderate Muslims

Friday, August 31st, 2007

The effort this country is going to in order to commit suicide in the name of “political correctness” is ridiculous. It just keeps getting worse.

( - A conflict of interest involving the radical Nation of Islam and the Washington, D.C., affiliate of the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) is an example of unethical journalism that benefits extremist Muslims, according to a national security expert and a Hollywood filmmaker.

Martyn Burke, director of documentary films at ABG Films, and Frank Gaffney, president of the conservative Center for Security Policy, produced a documentary for a PBS series - “America at a Crossroads” - that focused on Muslims in America, Europe, and Canada who speak out against Islamist extremists.

Their documentary, “Islam versus Islamists: Voices from the Muslim Center,” was, after a protracted battle, rejected in April by WETA, the PBS affiliate in Washington, D.C.

The film is going to air on an Oregon PBS affiliate this month, and some other affiliates may run it as well. However, it is now known that PBS had an unedited version of the film reviewed by the radical Nation of Islam prior to PBS’s decision to cancel the documentary.

The Nation of Islam (NOI) and its long-time leader Rev. Louis Farrakhan have a history of espousing racism and anti-Semitism. Farrakhan stepped down as NOI’s leader in 2006 for health reasons.

PBS’s decision to pass the film to NOI for review was a serious “breach of journalistic ethics,” said Burke.

“Is there anyone who understands that no functioning journalist - or network, or publication can ever allow this kind of outrageous action?” Burke wrote in an e-mail to PBS officials.

“This utterly undermines any journalistic independence. … It virtually hands the story to the subject and allows them to become an active party in shaping it. That is advertising, not journalism. Is that not obvious?” he added.

Original Link.

Australian Christians Riot over Blasphemous Art

Friday, August 31st, 2007

Australian artists feared for their lives when Christians, after Wednesday night choir practice, took to the streets, burning cars and smashing windows in protest over their deeply blasphemous artwork.
Investigators are attempting to determine why the cars and windows were held responsible for the artist’s work.
The blasphemous art, a status of the Virgin Mary wearing a burqa and a photo of Jesus that changes into Osama bin Laden, were entries into the Blake Prize for religious art.
The rioting Christians…oh wait a minute…
Actually, no Christians rioted at all. As a matter of fact, there was actually little response to the blasphemous “art”.
You see, Christians don’t respond to affronts to God by rioting and killing people. Can you think of a group that does respond that way every time they even slightly suspect that their “god”, “prophet” or “holy book” is desecrated? I’ll give you hint: it starts with the letter “Islam”.

The head of Australia’s Islamic Council believes a statue of the Virgin Mary shrouded in a burqa is not offensive, because it shows a key female figure of Islam in the modest fashion required of all Muslim women.

Prime Minister John Howard yesterday described as “gratuitously offensive” the statue and another artwork depicting a holographic image of Osama bin Laden that morphed into an image of Jesus Christ.

The artworks were entries into the Blake Prize for religious art.

But Australian Federation of Islamic Councils president Ikebal Patel said the statue was “not at all offensive”, because both the Virgin Mary and Jesus were revered figures in Islam. “So [Mary wearing a burqa is] no different to how our mothers and sisters are expected to be modest in their dressing,” he said.

But Mr Patel said he was affronted by the image of bin Laden’s face blending into that of Jesus, who is deemed a prophet in Islam. “You have a revered prophet of Islam being equated to somebody like Osama bin Laden. “Also in Islam, we don’t have any paintings or drawings depicting any of our prophets, so I find it quite offensive.”

The Archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell, said: “As a person of faith and religious background I think it’s important to reflect on the icons of our faiths. Unfortunately, some contemporary art is tedious and trivial. These couple of works demonstrate this. Regrettably, attempts to insult Jesus and Mary have become common in recent years, even predictable. Too often it seems that the only quality which makes something art is the adolescent desire to shock. If this is the best the Blake Prize can do, it has probably outlived its usefulness.”

Did you happen to notice how the article was written. The so-called “unbiased” press started the article by quoting what a Muslim thought about art that is offensive to Christians. It wasn’t until the end that we actually learn what Christians think about the affront to our religious figures. Christians are insulted, so what does the press do? It runs out and interviews a Muslim. What kind of logic is that??

Original Link.

California Teacher Offended by NEA’s ‘Manipulative, Dishonest’ Tactics

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

I grew up in a house with teachers. I know that they never really liked having an association with the NEA.

Confidential strategy directives from the National Education Association urge the union’s field representatives involved in the collective bargaining process to “attack the chief school administrator” and “mislead” their own members.

NEA Block the BossOne strategy the NEA calls “Block the boss” calls on field reps to “Attack the chief school administrator. Charge him with poor mismanagement, poor working conditions and rotten personnel relations.” The objective is to remove the school’s chief from the bargaining process, giving the field rep “a clear shot at the [school] Board.” (Click here for an enlarged view of the image to the left.)

The directives urge NEA field reps to “mislead” their own membership during the collective bargaining process, the purpose being to “begin the process of dissatisfaction” — and to “continue to mislead” the member teachers “to start to personalize the conflict in the negotiations.”

Original Link.

Muslims Continue to Erase Existence of Jewish Temple

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

There are three religions who hold Temple Mount in Jerusalem as being sacred. The Jews, who had it first, the Christians and the Muslims. Of all these groups, the group with the most tenuous doctrinal reference to it is the Muslims.
All throughout the Old and New Testaments, numerous references to the temple are mentioned. This lends a great amount of credence to claims of ownership.
In Islam, Jerusalem is never mentioned. The temple in Jerusalem is never mentioned. There is a passage that tells of Mohammad having a dream where he is taken to the “furthest mosque”. Islam believes this to mean Jerusalem. Pretty shaky if you ask me.
Even after Israel took Jerusalem after the war in 1967, they allowed the Islamist to retain control of it.
Since that time, the Islamist have refused to allow any other religion to pray or worship there, even though both Jews and Christians have a much better claim to the area then the Muslims do. The Islamist have done massive construction work with no regard to the archaeological destruction they are causing.
I have noted on this blog before that I feel that the Islamist are doing everything possible to destroy any trace of the Jewish and Christian roots in the Mount.
Both the Torah and Bible teach that someday, God will restore the Temple. But until then, the Muslim desecration and destruction of Temple Mount continues.

Israeli archaeologists said on Wednesday they fear priceless relics could be damaged by a mechanical digger being used by Muslim caretakers to carve out a utility trench at one of Jerusalem’s holiest shrines.

The work is being carried out on the plaza revered by Muslims as al-Haram al-Sharif (Noble Sanctuary) and by Jews as the Temple Mount.

“It is appalling that in one of the most important archaeological sites in the country, heavy machinery is used in a barbaric way to dig a ditch 120 meters long and 1.5 meters deep,” said Gabriel Barkay, an archaeologist at Bar-Ilan University near Tel Aviv.

He and other members of the Israeli-based Committee Against the Destruction of Antiquities on the Temple Mount, have criticized Israel’s Antiquities Authority for allowing the Waqf, the Muslim caretakers of the site, to conduct the work.

Dalit Menzin, a spokeswoman for the Antiquities Authority, an Israeli government agency, declined to comment.

Sheikh Abdel al-Azeem Salhab, president of the Waqf Council, which is charged with day-to-day administration of the compound, denied the digging would cause any archaeological damage.

Barkay said earth from the trench contained pottery shards dating to the Byzantine period. He cautioned that more relics still underground could be harmed.

Christian, Muslim and Jewish heritage could “fall victim to this heinous act”, Barkay said.

The site is in East Jerusalem, which Israel annexed in a move that is not recognized internationally. Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the capital of the state they hope to establish in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

In Febuary, an Israeli dig intended to salvage ancient artifacts before construction of a new walkway leading to the holy complex sparked worldwide protests by Muslims who said they feared the two mosques would be damaged.

Israel’s Jerusalem municipality denied any harm would come to the shrines but scrapped its original construction plan and ordered a committee to prepare new blueprints and hold public hearings on the project.

Original Link.

The Investigative Project on Terrorism

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

I heard about this new website and was impressed by what I saw. Take a moment and browse the information they have.

The Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) is a non-profit research group founded by Steven Emerson in 1995. It is recognized as the world’s most comprehensive data center on radical Islamic terrorist groups. For more than a decade, the IPT has investigated the operations, funding, activities and front groups of Islamic terrorist and extremist groups in the United States and around the world. It has become a principal source of critical evidence to a wide variety of government offices and law enforcement agencies, as well as the U.S. Congress and numerous public policy forums. Research carried out by the IPT team has formed the basis for thousands of articles and television specials on the subject of radical Islamic involvement in terrorism, and has even led to successful government action against terrorists and financiers based in the United States.

Original Link.

Forced Abortion Victims in China Fight Back

Thursday, August 30th, 2007

It is unbelievable that this is the norm in China. These women need our prayers.

Yang Zhongchen, a small-town businessman, wined and dined three government officials for permission to become a father.

But the Peking duck and liquor weren’t enough. One night, a couple of weeks before her date for giving birth, Yang’s wife was dragged from her bed in a north China town and taken to a clinic, where, she says, her baby was killed by injection while still inside her.

“Several people held me down, they ripped my clothes aside and the doctor pushed a large syringe into my stomach,” says Jin Yani, a shy, petite woman with a long ponytail. “It was very painful.. It was all very rough.”

Some 30 years after China decreed a general limit of one child per family, resentment still brews over the state’s regular and sometimes brutal intrusion into intimate family matters. Not only are many second pregnancies aborted, but even to have one’s first child requires a license.

Seven years after the dead baby was pulled from her body with forceps, Jin remains traumatized and, the couple and a doctor say, unable to bear children. Yang and Jin have made the rounds of government offices pleading for restitution - to no avail.

This year, they took the unusual step of suing the family planning agency in court. The judges ruled against them, saying Yang and Jin conceived out of wedlock. Local family planning officials said Jin consented to the abortion. The couple’s appeal to a higher court is pending.

The one-child policy applies to most families in this nation of 1.3 billion people, and communist officials, often under pressure to meet birth quotas set by the government, can be coldly intolerant of violators.

But in the new China, economically powerful and more open to outside influences, ordinary citizens such as Yang and Jin increasingly are speaking out. Aiding them are social campaigners and lawyers who have documented cases of forced abortions in the seventh, eighth or ninth month.

Original Link

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