Archive for August 20th, 2007

Artificial Life in 3 to 10 Years?

Monday, August 20th, 2007

Things just keep getting stranger and stranger.

Around the world, a handful of scientists are trying to create life from scratch and they’re getting closer.
Experts expect an announcement within three to 10 years from someone in the now little-known field of “wet artificial life.”

“It’s going to be a big deal and everybody’s going to know about it,” said Mark Bedau, chief operating officer of ProtoLife of Venice, Italy, one of those in the race. “We’re talking about a technology that could change our world in pretty fundamental ways—in fact, in ways that are impossible to predict.”

That first cell of synthetic life—made from the basic chemicals in DNA—may not seem like much to non-scientists. For one thing, you’ll have to look in a microscope to see it.

“Creating protocells has the potential to shed new light on our place in the universe,” Bedau said. “This will remove one of the few fundamental mysteries about creation in the universe and our role.”

And several scientists believe man-made life forms will one day offer the potential for solving a variety of problems, from fighting diseases to locking up greenhouse gases to eating toxic waste.

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“Does God Care What He’s Called?” by Hal Lindsey

Monday, August 20th, 2007

The very first news story I read yesterday morning was about a Dutch Roman Catholic bishop who is advocating that Christians rename “God” to “Allah.”

Bishop Martinus Petrus Maria Muskens, (also known as “Tiny”) told Dutch TV: “Allah is a very beautiful word for God. Shouldn’t we all say that from now on we will call God ‘Allah’?”

My mouth was still hanging open when I read the last part of his statement: “God doesn’t care what we call Him.”

If one doesn’t believe that God is real, then it really doesn’t matter what name one chooses.

It’s like naming your 6-foot tall invisible white rabbit. You can call him “Harvey.” Or you can name him “Peter Cottontail.” He won’t object either way – since he isn’t real.

But if you try to rename your friend Fred from down the street, he may not be so pleased about being called George. Because Fred is a real person, you wouldn’t think about calling him George simply because somebody else likes that name better.

Because God is as real as you or I, it isn’t up to us to rename Him like He was a stray basset hound.

Original Link.

Conservative Leader Labels ELCA Decision on Homosexual Clergy as ‘Apostasy’

Monday, August 20th, 2007

An official with Concerned Women for America says the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America has trashed pages from the Bible with its recent approval of active homosexual clergy.

During its recent national assembly in Chicago, the ELCA approved a measure that said clergy in same-sex committed relationships can serve without threat of discipline from bishops. The 538-431 vote came on the last day of a weeklong meeting following emotion debate on how the denomination should interpret what the Bible says about homosexuality.

Matt Barber, however, has no problem interpreting what the ELCA is saying about homosexuality. Barber, the policy director for cultural issues with Concerned Women for America, says the denomination has unequivocally endorsed homosexuality.

“The word ‘apostasy’ is a strong word and … shouldn’t be used lightly,” he says. “Unfortunately, the ELCA’s decision to endorse the sin of homosexuality, which is called an ‘abomination to God’ in Scripture, represents nothing short of apostasy.”

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Gaza Christians Living Under Growing Islamic Threat

Monday, August 20th, 2007

It is just a matter of time before the Islamist “remove” all Christians from Gaza. One way or another, they will force convert, kill or “chase away” all the Christians living there.

Jerusalem (CNSNews.com) – The few reports emerging from Gaza regarding the area’s tiny Christian minority indicate that Palestinian followers of Jesus are under increasing pressure to either become Muslims, submit to Islamic law or leave the Gaza Strip.

Hamas, an Islamic terrorist group that won last year’s Palestinian parliamentary elections, completed a military takeover of the Gaza Strip in June, handily defeating its rivals in Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah movement.

Following the conquest, spokesmen and various local officials affiliated with Hamas announced that an era of strict Islamic rule had begun in Gaza.

According to a report in Middle East Newsline last week, Hamas and its followers are moving fast against non-believers in the area. Fatah officials who spoke to the news service on condition of anonymity said Hamas is pressing leaders of the 2,000-strong Christian community to either convert to Islam or emigrate.

Original Link.

Rescuers in Peru Quake Lose Hope

Monday, August 20th, 2007

We need to also keep all the victims of the Peru earthquake in our prayers too.

PISCO, Peru- Rescuers said there was “no hope” of finding anyone else alive in the rubble of this southern port city leveled by a magnitude-8 earthquake that left at least 540 people dead.

“We’ve stopped the rescue work,” said Jorge Vera, a firefighter who led the operation to find survivors at the San Clemente church in Pisco, on Sunday. “We’re now working to recover the bodies.”

Firefighter Guillermo Merino said 148 bodies had been removed from the debris of the church that came crashing down during Wednesday’s quake, in which 1,500 people also were injured. The church’s domed ceiling broke apart over some 300 congregants in shaking that lasted an agonizing two minutes.

Rafael Loza, a Peruvian rescuer who was using an infrared camera to find survivors in Pisco, said that “there’s no hope in finding anyone alive.” He said the dust generated when the flimsy adobe buildings crumbled would have choked anyone still stuck in the rubble.

Original Link.

Hope Extinguished at Utah Mine

Monday, August 20th, 2007

Please continue to pray for these people and their families.

HUNTINGTON, Utah- Officials said six trapped coal miners may never be found, outraging family members of the men who say their loved ones are being left for dead.

Searchers were grim Sunday after receiving air readings from a fourth hole drilled more than 1,500 feet into the mountainside. The readings detected insufficient oxygen to support life.

Repeated efforts to signal the men have been met with silence.

“It’s likely these miners may not be found,” said Rob Moore, vice president of Murray Energy Corp., co-owner of the Crandall Canyon Mine.

Original Link.