Mere Links 07.17.14
Thursday, July 17, 2014, 10:00 AM

Boko Haram Shows No Mercy in Nigeria, Wrecking Churches, Homes, Lives
Robyn Dixon, L.A. Times

When Boko Haram invaded her village last year, the Islamists extremists burned the churches, destroyed Bibles and photographs and forced Hamatu Juwanda to renounce Christianity.

Senate Considering Bill That Could Wipe Out Many State Pro-Life Laws
Sarah Torre, The Daily Signal

A sweeping bill that could eliminate many commonsense state laws protecting women from the harms of abortion was considered in a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Tuesday.

The Progressive Appeal to an Imaginary Calendar
Trevin Wax, The Gospel Coalition

There’s no reason to assume that the position we hold to is right because it’s Tuesday and not Monday. And yet, that’s the kind of ”appeal to the calendar” we often witness in popular progressive circles.

What You Should Know About the Border Crisis
Joe Carter, Acton Institute

In 2013 the federal government housed about 25,000 minors who were going through deportation proceedings. This year, that number is expected to rise to over 60,000. There has also been an increase in the number of UAC who are girls and the number of UAC who are under the age of 13



Mere Links 07.16.14
Wednesday, July 16, 2014, 9:00 AM

New Tests for Five-Day-Old Embryos Raise Pro-Life Concerns
John Burger, Aleteia

Will techniques lead to more discarding of IVF-created unborn children?

9 Things You Should Know About Mormonism
Joe Carter, The Gospel Coalition

Nine things you should know about the beliefs of one of America’s fastest growing religions.

The Difference Three Percent Makes
Betsy Childs, First Things

In the article“Women forced to travel as Deep South closes doors on abortion clinics,”Al Jazeera America draws attention to a trend that is either heartening or ominous depending on your side of the abortion divide.

Is There Growing Confusion over Church Teaching?
William Oddie, Crisis Magazine

What exactly is going on, when Bishops and parish priests can so radically differ about the most elementary issues of faith and morals—about teachings which are quite clearly explained in the Catechism of the Catholic Church—and when simultaneously one Cardinal describes such teachings as “crazy” and another simply expounds them as the immemorial teachings of the Church? Does nobody know what the Church believes any more?



Mere Links 07.15.14
Tuesday, July 15, 2014, 10:32 AM

Church of England Says Yes to Women Bishops
Associated Press

The Church of England ended one of its longest and most divisive disputes Monday with an overwhelming vote in favor of allowing women to become bishops.

Supreme Court: Government Can’t Make People Into Religious Hypocrites
Travis Weber, The Federalist

The Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision recognized that who people are can’t be separated into separate ‘work’ and ‘faith’ boxes.

Is Evangelical Morality Still Acceptable in America?
Alan Noble, The Atlantic

People who disagree with same-sex marriage and birth-control use have been met with accusations of bigotry. Are some Christians being unfairly shamed out of the public sphere?

Why the Culture Wars Are Nothing New
John Zmirak, Aleteia

Meet one medieval woman of faith who faced down church, state, and neighbor in defense of religious freedom.



Mere Links 07.14.14
Monday, July 14, 2014, 10:00 AM

China beachhead
June Cheng, WORLD

Pro-life efforts are growing in the nation with the most abortions. But saving lives in the womb is an enormous challenge—even within the church

We May Be Approaching Peak Porn
Brandon McGinley, The Federalist

Pornography is one vestige of sexual liberation that, despite wide use, people still aren’t willing to condone.

Romans 13 and the Immigration Crisis
Félix Cabrera, The Gospel Coalition

The principal New Testament text relating to government authorities is Romans 13. Does Romans 13 give unlimited power to the government to do what they want? History tells us that many notorious dictators and abusive governments have used Romans 13:1-5 out of context to abuse the power entrusted to them.

Senate Passes Special Envoy Bill to Prioritize State Department Engagement on Religious Liberty
Leanna Baumer, FRC Blog

The U.S. Senate took an encouraging step forward in the effort to force the State Department to prioritize the freedom of religion in diplomatic efforts globally. In a unanimous vote, the Senate cleared the Near East and South Central Asia Religious Freedom Act of 2014 (S. 653).



Mere Links 07.11.14
Friday, July 11, 2014, 10:00 AM

The Festival Where ‘Christianity’ Is Just Earth Worship
Alexander Griswold, The Federalist

Every year, Hot Springs, North Carolina hosts the Wild Goose Festival, a four-day musical and spiritual festival marketed towards Progressive Christians. This year, I made the trip to catalogue the more outrageous presentations, speeches, and goings-on.

When Christians killed & why Muslim violence continues
David Roach, Baptist Press

How the principle of religious liberty ended executions over doctrine.

How Evangelical Christians Do Money: On Tithing
Interview with Tara Leigh, The Billfold

I like nice things. I like new things. Tithing helps refocus me on things that matter, instead of those fleeting joys that will end up in a yard sale someday. In short, it demonstrates my faith while refocusing my desires around things that deepen my relationship with God.

Don’t Fall For These Six Myths About Monogamy
Amy Otto, The Federalist

Marriage and its necessary component, monogamy, are still the best game in town.



Mere Links 07.10.14
Thursday, July 10, 2014, 10:00 AM

A Sexual Revolution for Young Evangelicals? No.
Russell D. Moore & Andrew Walker, National Review

Defying the secular culture, churchgoing Christians are sticking to Biblical teaching.

Is there a Rational Legal Basis for Traditional Marriage?
Robert Kraynak, Crisis Magazine

The average person is naturally intimidated by the judges and feels pressured to agree. If only the public knew how these judicial decisions were made. The district-court rulings involve the “equal protection” and “due process” clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment of the US Constitution as they are applied to state marriage laws.

Justice Sotomayor Misses the Mark: Religious Non-Profits Should Prevail
Vincent Phillip Muñoz, Public Discourse

The contradictory reasoning of Justice Sotomayor’s Wheaton dissent exposes a glaring weakness in the legal argument requiring religious non-profits to comply with HHS’s regulatory scheme.

A Bit Of Religion Can Be Bad For Marriage
Charles E. Stokes, Amber Lapp, and David Lapp, The Federalist

Attending church regularly during young adulthood appears to significantly decrease the risk of divorce, even for early marriages.



Mere Links 07.09.14
Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 12:01 AM

9 Things You Should Know About Islam
Joe Carter, The Gospel Coalition

Throughout the world, Muslims are observing their annual observance of Ramadan. Christians need to become more aware of Ramadan as well as the other practices and tenets of this fast-growing global religion. As an aid in that effort, here are nine things you should know about Islam.

The Right to Be Wrong
Ryan T. Anderson, Public Discourse

The right to religious freedom is for everyone, not just those with the “right” beliefs.

Nonprofits’ contraceptive cases next for justices
Associated Press

How much distance from an immoral act is enough? That’s the difficult question behind the next legal dispute over religion, birth control and the health law that is likely to be resolved by the Supreme Court.

European Court Decides Church Autonomy Case
Mark Movsesian, First Things

Russian judge calls clerical celibacy a human rights violation.



Mere Links 07.08.14
Tuesday, July 8, 2014, 10:00 AM

Church, State, and Human Trafficking
John Goerke, Public Discourse

For the common good, we must remember the ways in which church and state can mutually benefit each other—and watch for the ways in which the state threatens that relationship.

The Hobby Lobby Case Is a Small Victory, But a Real One
Andrew Quinn, The Federalist

Some pessimists say the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling is not a significant victory. They’re too gloomy.

Praying with Incense and the Wrath of God
Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon, Preachers Institute

Having determined that repentant prayer alone turns away the divine wrath, we should also consider two ritual gestures in which such prayer may be expressed: the offering of incense and the devout raising of the hands. Since Holy Scripture regards both these elevations as symbols of the soul’s ascent to God. It is no wonder we sometime find them joined in a unified ritual.

Free Contraception v. the Constitution
Jonathan S. Tobin, Commentary

The decision that granted Wheaton College the right to avoid even the appearance of complicity in the use of such drugs provoked a particularly angry response from the court’s three female members.



Mere Links 07.07.14
Monday, July 7, 2014, 10:00 AM

A Perpetual Haven: Why the Religious Freedom Restoration Act Matters
Kim Colby, Public Discourse

Respect for religious conscience is not an afterthought or luxury, but the very essence of the American political and social compact. Adapted from testimony presented before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice.

Anglicans Set to Remove Satan from Baptismal Rite
Anne Hendershott, Crisis Magazine

Declaring that the devil has departed from the Church of England’s baptism service, the Guardian reported on June 20 that “a simplified baptism which omits mention of the devil” is now favored by the clergy who have test-marketed it throughout the United Kingdom.

Let Religious Freedom Ring
Timothy George, First Things

Why it’s one of the most pressing issues today.

This is Iraq’s darkest hour
Louis Raphaël I Sako and Oliver Maksan, Mercatornet

A bishop in Kurdish Iraq criticizes Western indifference to the future of Middle East Christianity.



Mere Links 07.03.14
Thursday, July 3, 2014, 10:00 AM

9 Things You Should Know About Independence Day and the Declaration of Independence
Joe Carter, The Gospel Coalition

July 4, 2013 will be America’s 238th Independence Day, the day Americans celebrate our Declaration of Independence from Great Britain. Here are nine things you should know about America’s founding document and the day set aside for its commemoration.

Faith Communities Are on the Front Line of Refugee Aid
Dale Hanson Bourke, OnFaith

The Abrahamic faiths share a command to welcome and care for the 45 million refugees around the world.

Church Bells Fall Silent in Mosul as Iraq’s Christians Flee
Andrew Doran and Drew Bowling, The Daily Beast

The advance of ISIS has ended over a thousand years of Christian worship in Mosul—the latest chapter in the long decline of Christianity in the Middle East.

The New Sins Of ‘Nonjudgmental’ Millennials
Daniel Payne, The Federalist

Millenials are like the Moral Majority, except genderqueer.


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