“No Grace”

The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger, and his glory is to overlook a transgression. —Proverbs 19:11

I have nicknamed our car “No Grace.” Sunday mornings are the worst. I load the car with all the stuff I need for church, get myself in my seat, close the door, and Jay starts backing out of the garage. While I am still getting settled, the seat belt warning starts buzzing. “Please,” I say to it, “all I need is another minute.” The answer, apparently, is no, because it continues buzzing until I am buckled in.

This minor annoyance is a good reminder of what life would be like if indeed there were no grace. Each of us would immediately be called to account for every indiscretion. There would be no time for repentance or change of behavior. There would be no forgiveness. No mercy. No hope.

Living in this world sometimes feels like falling into a no-grace sinkhole. When minor flaws are blown up into major indiscretions or when people refuse to overlook the faults and offenses of others, we end up burdened by the weight of guilt that we were never meant to carry. God, in His grace, sent Jesus to carry the burden for us. Those who receive God’s gift of grace have the privilege of offering it to others on Christ’s behalf: “Above all things have fervent love for one another, for ‘love will cover a multitude of sins’” (1 Peter 4:8).

Father God, the culture around us can seem so
harsh and hard on people when they fail. Help
me to show grace and patience, because You have
been gracious to me and have forgiven my sin.

When we gratefully acknowledge the grace we’ve received, we joyfully give it to those in need.

Oops! Evolutionists Disproving Evolution

Don’t look for this as a top story on the news.

For protozoa-to-person evolution to have worked over time, purely natural factors must have conceived, constructed, integrated, and implemented new proteins into old organisms. Brave researchers—already convinced that this somehow occurred—have been investigating this core issue, but their recent discovery refutes their own perspective.

If evolution works at all, it must work at the tiniest levels of life: proteins. Joe Thornton’s lab, the Institute of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Oregon, has been investigating this most fundamental aspect of evolution using quality experimental science instead of speculative stories like the ones Charles Darwin told.

In 2009, Thornton’s group ruled out evolution in reverse, discovering that once a protein supposedly arrives, no natural processes can morph it back to a prior version.1 That’s because the stepwise changes required to convert the current functional version of a protein back to its supposedly ancestral protein rendered the “transitional proteins” useless in the group’s lab experiments.

More familiar machines illustrate the reason why. Converting a Toyota Corolla into an already similar sedan, like a Hyundai Elantra, seems simple enough as long as we’re just telling general stories. Just swap one part out at a time, right? But the details show why it’s an impractical idea.

Incompatible parts simply won’t fit. For example, the Corolla wheels have holes for four lug nuts, but the Elantra’s wheels have five. The new Elantra wheel will not fit—and trying to use it would leave the “evolving” Corolla unfit for driving during the entire time it “waits” for a Corolla axle to develop a five-lug nut option. The problem is that the car must remain completely drive-able all throughout this hypothetical evolution.

Even with all other parts well-fitted and functioning fine, a car that needs four wheels to operate but only has three goes nowhere, illustrating why simply changing one protein can render an organism useless—even with other proteins working perfectly. The whole cell must remain functional while evolution upgrades one old protein at a time. The whole process is not practical at all.

When Thornton’s group discovered that downgrading proteins to a supposedly older version would never work, they should have been convinced that evolution could never have upgraded to the current protein in the first place.

Their research continued, however, leading to their recent publication in the journal Nature.2 Instead of questioning evolution, it speculates on imaginary intermediates between two particular proteins that mutations and natural selection may have produced. Out of thousands of possible intermediates—each one representing a potential evolutionary path from an ancestral to a modern version of this protein—they discovered that none would work except an exceedingly unlikely extraordinarily lucky set of specific changes.

In other words, it couldn’t just happen, and yet somehow it did. It looks like it happened entirely by design.

Biochemist Michael Behe, who was not involved in the study, wrote for Evolution News, “To the extent that a pre-existing system had to pass through improbable, unselected, or even detrimental states—unguided by natural selection or any other unintelligent factor—to reach a rare new function, then to that extent we can say Darwinian evolution does not explain life.”3 And if Darwinian evolution does not explain as small a step as evolving a new version of a single protein, then why would anyone expect it to explain the evolution of all the new proteins required to transform a protozoan into a person?

References

-Thomas, B. Irreversible Complexity—Evolution Loses Another Round. Creation Science Update. Posted on icr.org December 16, 2009, accessed July 2, 2014.
– Harms, M. J., and J. W. Thornton. Historical contingency and its biophysical basis in glucocorticoid receptor evolution. Nature. Published online before print, June 15, 2014.
– Behe, M. From Thornton’s Lab, More Strong Experimental Support for a Limit to Darwinian Evolution. Evolution News. Posted on evolutionnews.org June 23, 2014, accessed June 28, 2014.

by Brian Thomas, M.S. who is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on July 11, 2014.

Godless Religion

“Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:5)

Included in Paul’s graphic description of the “perilous” characteristics of the “last days” (not the church age, since the prophesied last days were still future when he wrote of them in his last epistle, 2 Timothy 3:1-3) is this warning concerning the religious leaders of the last days. They would observe the outward form (church buildings, sacraments, religious services, etc.) of “godliness” (that is, “religion”), but would reject its supernatural aspects. They would desire the trappings of religious professionalism since they would be “lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God” (v. 4).

Such specifications aptly describe the modern world of scientism and liberal theology, which pervades practically all religious denominations and overlaps with all kinds of liberal social movements (women’s liberation, gay rights, “New Age” pantheism, and others). Although these are widely diverse in structure and purpose, they all share one vital feature in common: They reject supernatural Christianity, especially literal creationism. Many liberal preachers give nominal allegiance to the teachings of Christ and the Bible, but they invariably deny the mighty power of God in special creation, as well as the great worldwide miracles of the Bible—the Flood, the dispersion, etc.

This prophecy is not given in Scripture simply as a matter of information. It contains a warning urgently needed by Bible-believing Christians who are under pressure today to compromise with humanistic liberals on this great doctrine of God’s creative power. Many have accepted the evolutionary system of “ages geology,” and this is tragic and dangerous. Instead of compromising with evolutionary naturalists and religious liberals, as many evangelicals today are inclined to do, Paul warns: “From such turn away!” HMM

The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord; and He delighteth in his way

The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord; and He delighteth in his way.—Psalm 37:23.

SO her life was full of sunshine, for in toiling for the Lord
She had found the hidden sweetness that in common things
lies stored,
He has strewn the earth with flowers, and each eye their
brightness sees,
But He filled their cups with honey for His humble working bees.
FRANCESCA ALEXANDER.

THE occupations of every day seem often trifling; we may do them without thinking as ordinary things, yet they are the scenes of our appointed lot— appointed by God for you and me. The ordering, the application of these ordinary occupations, is the appointing of the Diving purpose; it is for ourselves to carry them out. And secretly our character forms according as we handle
them. Give thy heart to God Eternal, since thou art thyself eternal. Join thy heart to what He has given thee to do. Join thy heart to His teaching, and thou becomest of a will like to His own will. Nothing comes by pure accident, not even the interruptions in our busy day! And such as follow on to know God’s will see in all events what may lead to good, and so trust grows into a habit, as habit
grows by perpetual use, till every circumstance may be seen to be but a fresh manifestation of the will of God working itself out in us. T. T. CARTER.

Seek ye out of the book of the Lord

Seek ye out of the book of the Lord. Isaiah 34:16

Ye shall lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes. — This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.

The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide. — By the word of thy lips I have kept me from the paths of the destroyer. — Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

We have … a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts. —That we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

Deuteronomy 11:18. Joshua 1:8. Psalm 37:31. Psalm 17:4. Psalm 119:11. 2 Peter 1:19. Romans 15:4.

I am my Beloved’s, and His desire is toward me

I am my Beloved’s, and His desire is toward me. Song of Songs 7:10

I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which

I have committed unto him against that day. — I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. — Those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of then is lost.

The LORD taketh pleasure in his people. — My delights were with the sons of men. —His great love wherewith he loved us. — Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in you body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. — Whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s.

2 Timothy 1:12. Romans 8:38,39. John 17:12. Psalm 149:4. Proverbs 8:31. Ephesians 2:4. John 15:13. 1 Corinthians 6:20. Romans 14:8.