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Giving the trumpet a certain sound

September 2003

Episcopals Choose Homosexual Bishop

The Washington Post reported on August 5 that:

Surmounting threats of a schism and eleventh-hour allegations of misconduct, the Rev. V. Gene Robinson won confirmation today as the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church and the worldwide Anglican Communion.

Senior bishops voted 62 to 43, with two abstentions, to approve Robinson's election by Episcopalians in New Hampshire, capping a roller coaster of emotional debate, soulful prayer and unexpected accusations at the General Convention here [Minneapolis]. . . .

Moments after the results of the confirmation vote were announced, 19 conservative bishops announced they would appeal to the heads of the 38 regional churches that make up the 75 million-member Anglican Communion. "With grief too deep for words, the bishops who stand before you must reject this action," they said in a statement read by Bishop Robert W. Duncan of Pittsburgh. "We are calling upon the primates of the Anglican Communion, under the presidency of the archbishop of Canterbury . . . to intervene in the pastoral emergency that has overtaken us." Because the Anglican Communion is a federation of autonomous churches, however, it is unclear what power its leaders have to intervene. ("Episcopal Church Confirms Gay Bishop," The Washington Post, Aug. 6, 2003, p. A01)

After the vote, Robinson commented:

"Just simply to say that it goes against tradition and the teaching of the church and Scripture does not necessarily make it wrong," he said. "We worship a living God, and that living God leads us into truth" (Ibid.)

Inspired Commentary

Some are endorsing the notion that the Bible injunctions against homosexuality refer not to acts in "committed relationships" but rather just to promiscuous acts. Another look at one of the Bible passages might be in order:

Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet [due] (Rom. 1:25-27).

Church members need to fast and pray, striving earnestly to overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony. Not one particle of Sodomitish impurity will escape the wrath of God at the execution of the judgment. Those who do not repent of and forsake all uncleanness will fall with the wicked. Those who become members of the royal family and form God's kingdom in the earth made new, will be saints, not sinners. Isaiah 30:1-3, 8-16 (Testimonies on Sexual Behavior, Adultery, and Divorce, p. 119).

The sins that destroyed the antediluvians and the cities of the plain exist today-not merely in heathen lands, not only among popular professors of Christianity, but with some who profess to be looking for the coming of the Son of man. If God should present these sins before you as they appear in His sight, you would be filled with shame and terror (Testimonies, v. 5, p. 218).

Human-Rabbit Embryo Created

The startling news about cloning and genetic manipulation continues:

Scientists in China have, for the first time, used cloning techniques to create hybrid embryos that contain a mix of DNA from both humans and rabbits, according to a report in a scientific journal that has reignited the smoldering ethics debate over cloning research.

More than 100 of the hybrids, made by fusing human skin cells with rabbit eggs, were allowed to develop in laboratory dishes for several days before the scientists destroyed them to retrieve so-called embryonic stem cells from their interiors. Although scientists in Massachusetts had previously mixed human cells and cow eggs in a similar attempt to make hybrid embryos as a source of stem cells, those experiments were not successful.

Researchers said yesterday they were hopeful that the rabbit work would lead to a new and plentiful source of embryonic stem cells for research and, eventually, for medical use. But theologians and others decried the work as unethical ("Cloning Yields Human-Rabbit Hybrid Embryo," The Washington Post, Aug. 14, 2003, p. A04).

Inspired Commentary

It appears that God has a certain regard for mankind just in the way He created us:

But if there was one sin above another which called for the destruction of the race by the flood, it was the base crime of amalgamation of man and beast which defaced the image of God, and caused confusion everywhere. God purposed to destroy by a flood that powerful, long-lived race that had corrupted their ways before him. He would not suffer them to live out the days of their natural life, which would be hundreds of years (Spiritual Gifts, v. 3, p. 64).

Antiaircraft Missile Threat

Last November, the Transportation Safety Administration summoned 25 airline executives to Washington for a secret briefing. They were told to prepare themselves for the unthinkable: There was growing evidence from intelligence agencies, including the CIA, that terrorists had plans to use shoulder-fired missiles against U.S. passenger planes.

"The atmosphere in the room was dead serious," says Admiral James Loy, who heads the Transportation Security Administration, part of the new Homeland Security Department. They even brought samples in for the executives to see and touch, says Loy, "and the rapt attention shown by every member of that airline executive group was a palpable thing in the room." ("Small, Cheap And Deadly," CBSNews.com, Aug. 17, 2003).

In the same news item, New York Senator Chuck Schumer is quoted as saying:

What we know is that 27 terrorist groups, including al Qaeda, have these weapons. We know they fit in the trunk of your car. And so, someone could drive, get on a rooftop near an airport, go into a woods near an airport, and fire one of these. If I were a terrorist, this would be probably the easiest way to scare - to kill hundreds of people and scare tens of millions" (Ibid.)

Inspired Commentary

And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory (Luke 21:25-27).

Surely the day of Christ's coming is not far away.

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