7/8/15

From Gary.... Bible Reading July 8

Bible Reading  

July 8

The World English Bible


July 8
2 Kings 10-12

2Ki 10:1 Now Ahab had seventy sons in Samaria. Jehu wrote letters, and sent to Samaria, to the rulers of Jezreel, even the elders, and to those who brought up the sons of Ahab, saying,
2Ki 10:2 Now as soon as this letter comes to you, seeing your master's sons are with you, and there are with you chariots and horses, a fortified city also, and armor.
2Ki 10:3 Select the best and fittest of your master's sons, set him on his father's throne, and fight for your master's house.
2Ki 10:4 But they were exceedingly afraid, and said, Behold, the two kings didn't stand before him: how then shall we stand?
2Ki 10:5 He who was over the household, and he who was over the city, the elders also, and those who brought up the children, sent to Jehu, saying, We are your servants, and will do all that you shall bid us; we will not make any man king: you do that which is good in your eyes.
2Ki 10:6 Then he wrote a letter the second time to them, saying, If you be on my side, and if you will listen to my voice, take the heads of the men your master's sons, and come to me to Jezreel by tomorrow this time. Now the king's sons, being seventy persons, were with the great men of the city, who brought them up.
2Ki 10:7 It happened, when the letter came to them, that they took the king's sons, and killed them, even seventy persons, and put their heads in baskets, and sent them to him to Jezreel.
2Ki 10:8 There came a messenger, and told him, saying, They have brought the heads of the king's sons. He said, Lay them in two heaps at the entrance of the gate until the morning.
2Ki 10:9 It happened in the morning, that he went out, and stood, and said to all the people, You are righteous: behold, I conspired against my master, and killed him; but who struck all these?
2Ki 10:10 Know now that there shall fall to the earth nothing of the word of Yahweh, which Yahweh spoke concerning the house of Ahab: for Yahweh has done that which he spoke by his servant Elijah.
2Ki 10:11 So Jehu struck all that remained of the house of Ahab in Jezreel, and all his great men, and his familiar friends, and his priests, until he left him none remaining.
2Ki 10:12 He arose and departed, and went to Samaria. As he was at the shearing house of the shepherds in the way,
2Ki 10:13 Jehu met with the brothers of Ahaziah king of Judah, and said, Who are you? They answered, We are the brothers of Ahaziah: and we go down to Greet the children of the king and the children of the queen.
2Ki 10:14 He said, Take them alive. They took them alive, and killed them at the pit of the shearing house, even two and forty men; neither left he any of them.
2Ki 10:15 When he was departed there, he lighted on Jehonadab the son of Rechab coming to meet him; and he greeted him, and said to him, Is your heart right, as my heart is with your heart? Jehonadab answered, It is. If it be, give me your hand. He gave him his hand; and he took him up to him into the chariot.
2Ki 10:16 He said, Come with me, and see my zeal for Yahweh. So they made him ride in his chariot.
2Ki 10:17 When he came to Samaria, he struck all who remained to Ahab in Samaria, until he had destroyed him, according to the word of Yahweh, which he spoke to Elijah.
2Ki 10:18 Jehu gathered all the people together, and said to them, Ahab served Baal a little; but Jehu will serve him much.
2Ki 10:19 Now therefore call to me all the prophets of Baal, all his worshippers, and all his priests; let none be wanting: for I have a great sacrifice to do to Baal; whoever shall be wanting, he shall not live. But Jehu did it in subtlety, to the intent that he might destroy the worshippers of Baal.
2Ki 10:20 Jehu said, Sanctify a solemn assembly for Baal. They proclaimed it.
2Ki 10:21 Jehu sent through all Israel: and all the worshippers of Baal came, so that there was not a man left that didn't come. They came into the house of Baal; and the house of Baal was filled from one end to another.
2Ki 10:22 He said to him who was over the vestry, Bring forth vestments for all the worshippers of Baal. He brought them forth vestments.
2Ki 10:23 Jehu went, and Jehonadab the son of Rechab, into the house of Baal; and he said to the worshippers of Baal, Search, and look that there are here with you none of the servants of Yahweh, but the worshippers of Baal only.
2Ki 10:24 They went in to offer sacrifices and burnt offerings. Now Jehu had appointed him eighty men outside, and said, If any of the men whom I bring into your hands escape, he who lets him go, his life shall be for the life of him.
2Ki 10:25 It happened, as soon as he had made an end of offering the burnt offering, that Jehu said to the guard and to the captains, Go in, and kill them; let none come forth. They struck them with the edge of the sword; and the guard and the captains cast them out, and went to the city of the house of Baal.
2Ki 10:26 They brought forth the pillars that were in the house of Baal, and burned them.
2Ki 10:27 They broke down the pillar of Baal, and broke down the house of Baal, and made it a latrine, to this day.
2Ki 10:28 Thus Jehu destroyed Baal out of Israel.
2Ki 10:29 However from the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, with which he made Israel to sin, Jehu didn't depart from after them, to wit, the golden calves that were in Bethel, and that were in Dan.
2Ki 10:30 Yahweh said to Jehu, Because you have done well in executing that which is right in my eyes, and have done to the house of Ahab according to all that was in my heart, your sons of the fourth generation shall sit on the throne of Israel.
2Ki 10:31 But Jehu took no heed to walk in the law of Yahweh, the God of Israel, with all his heart: he didn't depart from the sins of Jeroboam, with which he made Israel to sin.
2Ki 10:32 In those days Yahweh began to cut off from Israel: and Hazael struck them in all the borders of Israel;
2Ki 10:33 from the Jordan eastward, all the land of Gilead, the Gadites, and the Reubenites, and the Manassites, from Aroer, which is by the valley of the Arnon, even Gilead and Bashan.
2Ki 10:34 Now the rest of the acts of Jehu, and all that he did, and all his might, aren't they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?
2Ki 10:35 Jehu slept with his fathers; and they buried him in Samaria. Jehoahaz his son reigned in his place.
2Ki 10:36 The time that Jehu reigned over Israel in Samaria was twenty-eight years.
2Ki 11:1 Now when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the seed royal.
2Ki 11:2 But Jehosheba, the daughter of king Joram, sister of Ahaziah, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him away from among the king's sons who were slain, even him and his nurse, and put them in the bedchamber; and they hid him from Athaliah, so that he was not slain;
2Ki 11:3 He was with her hid in the house of Yahweh six years. Athaliah reigned over the land.
2Ki 11:4 In the seventh year Jehoiada sent and fetched the captains over hundreds of the Carites and of the guard, and brought them to him into the house of Yahweh; and he made a covenant with them, and took an oath of them in the house of Yahweh, and showed them the king's son.
2Ki 11:5 He commanded them, saying, This is the thing that you shall do: a third part of you, who come in on the Sabbath, shall be keepers of the watch of the king's house;
2Ki 11:6 A third part shall be at the gate Sur; and a third part at the gate behind the guard: so you shall keep the watch of the house, and be a barrier.
2Ki 11:7 The two companies of you, even all who go forth on the Sabbath, shall keep the watch of the house of Yahweh about the king.
2Ki 11:8 You shall surround the king, every man with his weapons in his hand; and he who comes within the ranks, let him be slain: and be with the king when he goes out, and when he comes in.
2Ki 11:9 The captains over hundreds did according to all that Jehoiada the priest commanded; and they took every man his men, those who were to come in on the Sabbath, with those who were to go out on the Sabbath, and came to Jehoiada the priest.
2Ki 11:10 The priest delivered to the captains over hundreds the spears and shields that had been king David's, which were in the house of Yahweh.
2Ki 11:11 The guard stood, every man with his weapons in his hand, from the right side of the house to the left side of the house, along by the altar and the house, around the king.
2Ki 11:12 Then he brought out the king's son, and put the crown on him, and gave him the testimony; and they made him king, and anointed him; and they clapped their hands, and said, Long live the king.
2Ki 11:13 When Athaliah heard the noise of the guard and of the people, she came to the people into the house of Yahweh:
2Ki 11:14 and she looked, and behold, the king stood by the pillar, as the manner was, and the captains and the trumpets by the king; and all the people of the land rejoiced, and blew trumpets. Then Athaliah tore her clothes, and cried, Treason! treason!
2Ki 11:15 Jehoiada the priest commanded the captains of hundreds who were set over the army, and said to them, Have her forth between the ranks; and him who follows her kill with the sword. For the priest said, Don't let her be slain in the house of Yahweh.
2Ki 11:16 So they made way for her; and she went by the way of the horses' entry to the king's house: and there was she slain.
2Ki 11:17 Jehoiada made a covenant between Yahweh and the king and the people, that they should be Yahweh's people; between the king also and the people.
2Ki 11:18 All the people of the land went to the house of Baal, and broke it down; his altars and his images broke they in pieces thoroughly, and killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars. The priest appointed officers over the house of Yahweh.
2Ki 11:19 He took the captains over hundreds, and the Carites, and the guard, and all the people of the land; and they brought down the king from the house of Yahweh, and came by the way of the gate of the guard to the king's house. He sat on the throne of the kings.
2Ki 11:20 So all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was quiet. Athaliah they had slain with the sword at the king's house.
2Ki 11:21 Jehoash was seven years old when he began to reign.
2Ki 12:1 In the seventh year of Jehu began Jehoash to reign; and he reigned forty years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Zibiah of Beersheba.
2Ki 12:2 Jehoash did that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh all his days in which Jehoiada the priest instructed him.
2Ki 12:3 However the high places were not taken away; the people still sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places.
2Ki 12:4 Jehoash said to the priests, All the money of the holy things that is brought into the house of Yahweh, in current money, the money of the persons for whom each man is rated, and all the money that it comes into any man's heart to bring into the house of Yahweh,
2Ki 12:5 let the priests take it to them, every man from his acquaintance; and they shall repair the breaches of the house, wherever any breach shall be found.
2Ki 12:6 But it was so, that in the three and twentieth year of king Jehoash the priests had not repaired the breaches of the house.
2Ki 12:7 Then king Jehoash called for Jehoiada the priest, and for the other priests, and said to them, Why don't you repair the breaches of the house? now therefore take no more money from your acquaintance, but deliver it for the breaches of the house.
2Ki 12:8 The priests consented that they should take no more money from the people, neither repair the breaches of the house.
2Ki 12:9 But Jehoiada the priest took a chest, and bored a hole in its lid, and set it beside the altar, on the right side as one comes into the house of Yahweh: and the priests who kept the threshold put therein all the money that was brought into the house of Yahweh.
2Ki 12:10 It was so, when they saw that there was much money in the chest, that the king's scribe and the high priest came up, and they put up in bags and counted the money that was found in the house of Yahweh.
2Ki 12:11 They gave the money that was weighed out into the hands of those who did the work, who had the oversight of the house of Yahweh: and they paid it out to the carpenters and the builders, who worked on the house of Yahweh,
2Ki 12:12 and to the masons and the stone cutters, and for buying timber and cut stone to repair the breaches of the house of Yahweh, and for all that was laid out for the house to repair it.
2Ki 12:13 But there were not made for the house of Yahweh cups of silver, snuffers, basins, trumpets, any vessels of gold, or vessels of silver, of the money that was brought into the house of Yahweh;
2Ki 12:14 for they gave that to those who did the work, and repaired therewith the house of Yahweh.
2Ki 12:15 Moreover they didn't demand an accounting from the men into whose hand they delivered the money to give to those who did the work; for they dealt faithfully.
2Ki 12:16 The money for the trespass offerings, and the money for the sin offerings, was not brought into the house of Yahweh: it was the priests'.
2Ki 12:17 Then Hazael king of Syria went up, and fought against Gath, and took it; and Hazael set his face to go up to Jerusalem.
2Ki 12:18 Jehoash king of Judah took all the holy things that Jehoshaphat and Jehoram and Ahaziah, his fathers, kings of Judah, had dedicated, and his own holy things, and all the gold that was found in the treasures of the house of Yahweh, and of the king's house, and sent it to Hazael king of Syria: and he went away from Jerusalem.
2Ki 12:19 Now the rest of the acts of Joash, and all that he did, aren't they written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?
2Ki 12:20 His servants arose, and made a conspiracy, and struck Joash at the house of Millo, on the way that goes down to Silla.
2Ki 12:21 For Jozacar the son of Shimeath, and Jehozabad the son of Shomer, his servants, struck him, and he died; and they buried him with his fathers in the city of David: and Amaziah his son reigned in his place.


Jul. 8, 9
Acts 7

Act 7:1 The high priest said, "Are these things so?"
Act 7:2 He said, "Brothers and fathers, listen. The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran,
Act 7:3 and said to him, 'Get out of your land, and from your relatives, and come into a land which I will show you.'
Act 7:4 Then he came out of the land of the Chaldaeans, and lived in Haran. From there, when his father was dead, God moved him into this land, where you are now living.
Act 7:5 He gave him no inheritance in it, no, not so much as to set his foot on. He promised that he would give it to him for a possession, and to his seed after him, when he still had no child.
Act 7:6 God spoke in this way: that his seed would live as aliens in a strange land, and that they would be enslaved and mistreated for four hundred years.
Act 7:7 'I will judge the nation to which they will be in bondage,' said God, 'and after that will they come out, and serve me in this place.'
Act 7:8 He gave him the covenant of circumcision. So Abraham became the father of Isaac, and circumcised him the eighth day. Isaac became the father of Jacob, and Jacob became the father of the twelve patriarchs.
Act 7:9 "The patriarchs, moved with jealousy against Joseph, sold him into Egypt. God was with him,
Act 7:10 and delivered him out of all his afflictions, and gave him favor and wisdom before Pharaoh, king of Egypt. He made him governor over Egypt and all his house.
Act 7:11 Now a famine came over all the land of Egypt and Canaan, and great affliction. Our fathers found no food.
Act 7:12 But when Jacob heard that there was grain in Egypt, he sent out our fathers the first time.
Act 7:13 On the second time Joseph was made known to his brothers, and Joseph's race was revealed to Pharaoh.
Act 7:14 Joseph sent, and summoned Jacob, his father, and all his relatives, seventy-five souls.
Act 7:15 Jacob went down into Egypt, and he died, himself and our fathers,
Act 7:16 and they were brought back to Shechem, and laid in the tomb that Abraham bought for a price in silver from the children of Hamor of Shechem.
Act 7:17 "But as the time of the promise came close which God had sworn to Abraham, the people grew and multiplied in Egypt,
Act 7:18 until there arose a different king, who didn't know Joseph.
Act 7:19 The same took advantage of our race, and mistreated our fathers, and forced them to throw out their babies, so that they wouldn't stay alive.
Act 7:20 At that time Moses was born, and was exceedingly handsome. He was nourished three months in his father's house.
Act 7:21 When he was thrown out, Pharaoh's daughter took him up, and reared him as her own son.
Act 7:22 Moses was instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians. He was mighty in his words and works.
Act 7:23 But when he was forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brothers, the children of Israel.
Act 7:24 Seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended him, and avenged him who was oppressed, striking the Egyptian.
Act 7:25 He supposed that his brothers understood that God, by his hand, was giving them deliverance; but they didn't understand.
Act 7:26 "The day following, he appeared to them as they fought, and urged them to be at peace again, saying, 'Sirs, you are brothers. Why do you wrong one another?'
Act 7:27 But he who did his neighbor wrong pushed him away, saying, 'Who made you a ruler and a judge over us?
Act 7:28 Do you want to kill me, as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?'
Act 7:29 Moses fled at this saying, and became a stranger in the land of Midian, where he became the father of two sons.
Act 7:30 "When forty years were fulfilled, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in the wilderness of Mount Sinai, in a flame of fire in a bush.
Act 7:31 When Moses saw it, he wondered at the sight. As he came close to see, a voice of the Lord came to him,
Act 7:32 'I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.' Moses trembled, and dared not look.
Act 7:33 The Lord said to him, 'Take your sandals off of your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.
Act 7:34 I have surely seen the affliction of my people that is in Egypt, and have heard their groaning. I have come down to deliver them. Now come, I will send you into Egypt.'
Act 7:35 "This Moses, whom they refused, saying, 'Who made you a ruler and a judge?'-God has sent him as both a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel who appeared to him in the bush.
Act 7:36 This man led them out, having worked wonders and signs in Egypt, in the Red Sea, and in the wilderness for forty years.
Act 7:37 This is that Moses, who said to the children of Israel, 'The Lord our God will raise up a prophet for you from among your brothers, like me.'
Act 7:38 This is he who was in the assembly in the wilderness with the angel that spoke to him on Mount Sinai, and with our fathers, who received living oracles to give to us,
Act 7:39 to whom our fathers wouldn't be obedient, but rejected him, and turned back in their hearts to Egypt,
Act 7:40 saying to Aaron, 'Make us gods that will go before us, for as for this Moses, who led us out of the land of Egypt, we don't know what has become of him.'
Act 7:41 They made a calf in those days, and brought a sacrifice to the idol, and rejoiced in the works of their hands.
Act 7:42 But God turned, and gave them up to serve the army of the sky, as it is written in the book of the prophets, 'Did you offer to me slain animals and sacrifices forty years in the wilderness, O house of Israel?
Act 7:43 You took up the tabernacle of Moloch, the star of your god Rephan, the figures which you made to worship. I will carry you away beyond Babylon.'
Act 7:44 "Our fathers had the tabernacle of the testimony in the wilderness, even as he who spoke to Moses commanded him to make it according to the pattern that he had seen;
Act 7:45 which also our fathers, in their turn, brought in with Joshua when they entered into the possession of the nations, whom God drove out before the face of our fathers, to the days of David,
Act 7:46 who found favor in the sight of God, and asked to find a habitation for the God of Jacob.
Act 7:47 But Solomon built him a house.
Act 7:48 However, the Most High doesn't dwell in temples made with hands, as the prophet says,
Act 7:49 'heaven is my throne, and the earth a footstool for my feet. What kind of house will you build me?' says the Lord; 'or what is the place of my rest?
Act 7:50 Didn't my hand make all these things?'
Act 7:51 "You stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy Spirit! As your fathers did, so you do.
Act 7:52 Which of the prophets didn't your fathers persecute? They killed those who foretold the coming of the Righteous One, of whom you have now become betrayers and murderers.
Act 7:53 You received the law as it was ordained by angels, and didn't keep it!"
Act 7:54 Now when they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed at him with their teeth.
Act 7:55 But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,
Act 7:56 and said, "Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!"
Act 7:57 But they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and rushed at him with one accord.
Act 7:58 They threw him out of the city, and stoned him. The witnesses placed their garments at the feet of a young man named Saul.
Act 7:59 They stoned Stephen as he called out, saying, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!"
Act 7:60 He kneeled down, and cried wStudy Questionsith a loud voice, "Lord, don't hold this sin against them!" When he had said this, he fell asleep.

From Jim McGuiggan... Pathetic little churches--Mighty empires


Pathetic little churches--Mighty empires

Revelation 1:12-20 describes the glorified Christ from numerous angles but it makes full use of the prophets and Daniel 7:9 and the description of God. This divine and priestly figure is the conqueror of death and reigns over the kings of the earth but what is especially significant in light of the whole book of Revelation is that he dwells in the church and holds the heart of the church in his hand.
Maybe it’s that that irritates and pleases us most about the sovereign Lord. He identifies not with the powerful empires, the successful governments, the solid economies or the military might of the Roman legions but with seven pathetic little churches. There are times when we know very well what Peter felt in John 13 and Matthew 16. Messiahs don’t wash feet and Lords don’t get crucified. Nowadays we are moved at the thought of him washing feet—"Ah, look, isn’t he so sweet and humble." Nowadays we praise him for being crucified. "Look, see how he loves us." But we still have a hard time accepting that he identifies with pathetic little congregations, numerically weak and with no social or political clout whatever.
But in Revelation when he finally speaks (chapters 2 and 3) he zeros in on seven little congregations in Asia. He dismisses the huge throne of Zeus as satanic; he disowns the vast worship of the Roman Empire and sets himself against the powers that set themselves against the vulnerable assemblies. It doesn’t seem to matter to him that the world can make no sense of how he goes about things. So there they are, for all their weaknesses and for all the wrongs they need to correct he still comes knocking on the heart’s door of each of those congregations.
And what do they stand for? What on earth do they reflect? What do we see as we watch them going about their lives, with their ordinances, liturgy and shared central convictions? As crazy as it might appear both to non-believer and some depressed believers these little churches bear witness on earth to the reality that chapters 4 and 5 proclaim. For those two chapters are one word: "You believe in God, believe also in me." The invisible truth that the throne that rules the world is in heaven and not in Rome, London or Washington or any other center of earthly power is proclaimed in chapter 4. But what is perhaps more difficult to believe is that at the center of the throne that rules the world is a Lamb that has been slain and is alive and well (chapter 5). At the heart of the throne that rules creation in that invisible realm is the Lamb that is making himself visible in the seven churches of Asia.
Yes, but that’s just the problem. Are we to keep on waiting before that Lord of life and death and the kings of the world—are we to wait forever before he makes a real difference in the world. Will he forever identify with the pathetic and the weak? Is evil always to be on top and goodness always barely hanging on? Hardly! But the question was raised in 6:10 and given a cryptic answer in 6:11.
The book as a whole proclaims the war between the mighty Roman Empire with its satanic power and agenda and the vulnerable little flock to whom it has pleased God to give the kingdom. As Revelation pictures it, Rome’s clash with the church comes to its head in the battle of Armageddon (16 and 19) and when the smoke clears the seven little representative churches are a holy City with walls fifteen hundred miles high and wide. When the smoke has cleared the seven little representative churches are a bride dressed in her finery with her triumphant husband by her side. The little churches outlived and out-suffered and outlived again the mighty Empire.
Setting aside the imagery in which this truth is presented, the reality is that the might of the Emperors is long gone and the "seven" little churches are still going about their business, still called to go about their business of resisting the world in the name of the Lamb of God until 6:11 finds its complete fulfillment in the obliteration of all that is evil.
We're not to forget that modern empires are to get the message that what is true of Rome is true of them. 21st century Christians are not to forget that their mission and their assurance is proclaimed in the book of Revelation—no peace or compromise with the world empires is possible!

Now that Same-Sex Unions Have Been Legalized by Melvin Otey, J.D., M.Div.

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=7&article=5177

Now that Same-Sex Unions Have Been Legalized

by  Melvin Otey, J.D., M.Div.

[NOTE: Auxiliary staff writer Melvin Otey served in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in Washington, D.C. as a Trial Attorney in the Review and Policy Unit of the Organized Crime and Gang Section, responsible for reviewing all RICO and VICAR prosecutions nationwide. He also taught at the University of the District of Columbia Law School. In addition to writing for Apologetics Press, Otey now serves as an Associate Professor of Law at the Faulkner University Jones School of Law in Montgomery and as an adjunct professor at Amridge University.]
There are watershed moments in the history of any nation, and America is no different in this regard. Critical turning points have included armed conflicts like the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. They have included speeches like Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death” address to Virginia’s delegates in 1775 and Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington in 1963. The course of affairs in America has also been decisively impacted by court rulings like Brown v. Board of Education and Roe v. Wade. On June 26, 2015, the United States Supreme Court reached a decision in Obergefell v. Hodges that will surely qualify as yet another watershed moment in American history.

WHAT THE COURT HAS DONE

With the Supreme Court’s mandate that all 50 states recognize homosexual “marriages,” American authorities have once again declined to restrain evil and decided instead to sanction what Jehovah clearly condemns (but see Romans 13:3-5). Make no mistake: whatever popular opinions may be in society today, whatever novel theories are bandied about in the halls of academia to explain homosexual conduct, and whatever laws are passed by men, this is sinful behavior. It is one of several behaviors for which unrepentant sinners will be eternally lost (1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
Jehovah, the Creator of mankind and marriage, is as clear on this matter as He is on any subject. “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination” (Leviticus 18:22, ESV). “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them” (Leviticus 20:13). While many today seemingly accept the notion that people are “born homosexual” (without any scientific support), homoerotic behavior is really a consequence of people turning away from Jehovah to worship themselves and lower aspects of His creation. In Romans 1, the apostle Paul explained:
For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committingshameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty fortheir error. And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done (emp. added).
Of course, in the first century when Paul wrote, homosexuality was common and accepted in the Roman Empire, just as it is becoming more common and more accepted in America and Western Civilization at-large. Remember, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Proverbs 14:34; cf. Ezekiel 16:49-50).
The Court’s decision is merely the latest in a line of critical markers for the accelerated and abysmal moral decline of the United States. It follows on the heels of the introduction of the theory of evolution into school curricula, the legalization of abortion on demand, and the proliferation of no-fault divorce. Our society is at war with our God, and the Court’s decision once again crystallizes the stark contrast between God’s law and man’s law. This decline in our national morality does not bode well for our national future: “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” (Isaiah 5:20).

WHAT CHRISTIANS MUST DO

More than ever before, it is absolutely vital that Christians in America grasp the reality of our circumstances. Whatever ideals one may hold about what America used to be, and whatever dreams one may have about what it will become, we must walk circumspectly in these evil and decadent days (Ephesians 5:15-16). We live in Sodom and Gomorrah. This is Babylon and Rome, and we must develop realistic expectations in order to prepare for what is forthcoming. All those who resist this latest ordinance of the State and speak against homosexuality as the Bible does should anticipate mounting aggression and increasingly overt hostility from his neighbors and the authorities. “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2 Timothy 3:12).
Of course, aggression and hostility and persecution have been evident for some time now (albeit at a relatively lower level). Those who have dared to voice concern with their employers’ “diversity” campaigns, designed largely to compel acceptance of homoerotic behavior, have been sent to “sensitivity training” or fired. Business owners who have declined to sell flowers or cakes for homosexual wedding ceremonies specifically because of their religious convictions have been sued, fined and driven out of business. People from all walks of life are publicly excoriated and harassed if they even suggest that this particular sin is unnatural and unhealthy for individuals, families, and society-at-large. Increasingly, everyone is thought to have freedom of speech in America except those who disagree with homosexuality, and the tide is unlikely to change in the near future.
There is room to lament and decry what is occurring, but Christians cannot expend inordinate energy in this regard because we cannot afford to be inert any longer. We must move forward. In light of what is occurring in American society, in general, and the Supreme Court’s recent decision regarding same-sex unions, in particular, Christians must consider how the church should proceed in the days to come.

Preach the Truth

We must preach and teach the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. It will make us unpopular, but we must obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29) and bear the consequences for preaching and teaching Christ (Acts 5:40-42). Canada’s Supreme Court ruled that Biblical speech opposing homosexual behavior is a “hate crime” in February 2013. It is seemingly only a matter of time before American courts do the same, and well-funded advocates of the homosexual agenda are aggressively marshaling their resources to ensure that they do.
Following their latest victory in the Supreme Court, these advocates will ramp up their focus on policing speech in the workplace, schools, businesses, and public squares across America. Consequently, the costs for teaching “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:27) on matters of marriage and sexuality will increase dramatically. People are going to be sued and convicted as criminals for merely saying what the Bible says; they will be fined and ultimately jailed. Still, we must not waver or compromise; rather, we must “preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching” (2 Timothy 4:2).

Protect the Church

Of course, being committed to speaking and living the truth does not mean Christians should be ignorant of or unprepared for the consequences. We are to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves (Matthew 10:16). Those promoting acceptance of homoeroticism are doing it largely through the courts, and this means they will continue suing people. Consequently, church sermons and Web sites will be scoured for statements disapproving of homosexuality. Also, preachers and churches will increasingly receive inquiries from litigious individuals concerning their willingness to perform same-sex weddings, and they must take proper precautions.
In anticipation of inquiries like this, preachers should strongly consider adopting an announced policy of refusing to officiate wedding ceremonies where he has not personally provided pre-marital, Bible-based, spiritual counseling to those wanting to exchange vows. This is advisable for several reasons, but a consistent practice in this regard will require those seeking the preacher’s assistance for a homosexual union to submit to several sessions of counseling on what the Bible teaches about marriage. Those who are not interested in entering a union guided by the Scriptures are unlikely to participate in such a series. However, even if two men or two women participated in the series (which would be great), a preacher could still decline to officiate the ceremony if the parties are unwilling to repent of their sin, just as he would decline to officiate if he discovered that the union would be adulterous (e.g., Matthew 5:31-32, 19:9). The basis for refusal, then, would be the parties’ express intention of entering into a union that does not conform to the teachings of Scripture, which he is duty-bound to uphold.
Congregations should also be proactive and adopt insulating language and policies before trouble of this kind darkens its doors. For instance, every church’s bylaws should include a statement of faith regarding marriage, gender, and sexuality and clearly identify the Bible as the final authority for all matters of faith and practice. A church might also adopt a policy limiting the use of its facilities and grounds to the religious purposes expressed in its bylaws. If its buildings and grounds are to be used for weddings, the church should amend its bylaws to expressly state that weddings conducted by church staff or on church grounds are “religious ceremonies” (because they involve acts of prayer, singing hymns, reading Scripture, and an exchange of vows in which a man and woman enter into a covenant with God and one another; see Matthew 19:6 and Malachi 2:14-15) and limit the use of church facilities to ceremonies involving “members in good standing” (and perhaps “their children” or “immediate family members”). As long as the limitation is not based on sexual orientation and is consistently applied, the congregation is likely to either avoid a lawsuit or successfully withstand a legal challenge if it comes.

CONCLUDING OBSERVATIONS

The Court’s decision in Obergefell v. Hodges will certainly lead to increased pressure on the church. Those who support the homosexual agenda will target conservative preachers and churches (they have already been targeted in other countries), and the ones saying “no gay marriages” are surely going to end up in litigation, whether civil or criminal. Of course, this does not change our responsibilities one iota; we must stand with the Lord in speaking and teaching the truth. Along the way, we must be prudent and wise in protecting the church because, even if churches successfully defend against lawsuits of this kind, the drain on resources that comes with being swept up in litigation would distract its members and significantly undermine its work.

Bacterial Antibiotic Resistance--Proof of Evolution? by Bert Thompson, Ph.D.


https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=572

Bacterial Antibiotic Resistance--Proof of Evolution?

by  Bert Thompson, Ph.D.

On November 24, 1859, Charles Darwin’s book, The Origin of Species, was published. As a result, the concept of organic evolution was popularized. The science of genetics, of course, was completely unknown at that time, and would not come into its own until approximately forty-one years later. Since around 1900, evolutionists have advocated “neo-Darwinism,” as opposed to “classical Darwinism.” In classical Darwinian thought, natural selection alone served as the mechanism of evolution. In neo-Darwinian thought, natural selection and genetic mutations work together as evolution’s mechanism.
Genetics has played an increasingly important role in evolution, especially in regard to mutations that alter the genetic code within each organism. That code is expressed biochemically in deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). Mutations are “errors” in DNA replication (Ayala, 1978, pp. 56-69). It is those errors that cause the genetic change necessary for evolution to occur. In 1957, George Gaylord Simpson wrote: “Mutations are the ultimate raw materials for evolution” (1957, p. 430). Twenty-six years later, nothing had changed when Douglas J. Futuyma remarked:
By far the most important way in which chance influences evolution is the process of mutation. Mutation is, ultimately, the source of new genetic variations, and without genetic variation there cannot be genetic change. Mutation is therefore necessary for evolution (1983, p. 136).
Mutations can occur in several different ways, and can affect individual genes or entire chromosomes (see Futuyma, 1983, p. 136). Further, mutations can be placed, theoretically, into at least three categories: (a) bad; (b) neutral; and (c) good.
Some mutations, therefore, can have profound effects. They can alter the structure of a critical protein so much that the organism becomes severely distorted and may not survive. Other mutations may cause changes in the protein that do not affect its function at all. Such mutations are adaptively neutral—they are neither better nor worse than the original form of the gene. Still other mutations are decidedly advantageous (Futuyma, 1983, p. 136).
Neither bad nor neutral mutations aid evolution, since the bad ones produce effects that are deleterious (and often lethal), and the neutral ones neither help nor hurt an organism. Neo-Darwinian evolution relies entirely on good mutations, since they not only alter the genetic material, but are, to use Futuyma’s words, “decidedly advantageous.” Evolutionary progress, then, is dependent upon nature “selecting” the good mutations, resulting in genetic change that ultimately produces new organisms.

BACTERIA AND RESISTANCE TO ANTIBIOTICS

What does all of this have to do with the resistance of bacteria to antibiotics? Over the past several years, the medical community has become increasingly concerned over the ability of certain bacteria to develop resistance to antibiotics. Undoubtedly this concern is justified. Antibiotics, which usually are substances naturally produced by certain microorganisms, inhibit the growth of other microorganisms. One of the first antibiotics to be discovered (in 1928) was penicillin, produced by the mold Penicillium chrysogenum. Since then, more than a thousand similar substances have been isolated. Most people recognize the tremendous impact antibiotics have had in the battle with pathogenic (disease-causing) organisms. Without antibiotics, the death toll from infections and diseases would be much higher than it is.
Today, however, there is compelling evidence that we are in danger of losing our battle against certain pathogens. Bacteria sometimes develop resistance to even powerful antibiotics. As a result, the number of antibiotics that can be used against certain diseases is dwindling rapidly. Both scientific and popular publications have addressed the seriousness of this issue. The cover story of the March 28, 1994 issue of Newsweek was titled, “Antibiotics: The End of Miracle Drugs?” (Begley, 1994). Articles in Scientific American (Beardsley, 1994), Science (Travis, 1994; Davies, 1994), Discover (Caldwell, 1994), and Natural History (Smith, 1994), have all called attention to the impact on our lives that bacterial resistance to antibiotics is causing.
The phenomenon of bacterial drug resistance was first documented around 1952 (see Lederberg and Lederberg, 1952). Interest in the phenomenon has increased as fewer antibiotics are effective against pathogens, and as deaths from bacterial infections increase. Scientific interest in this problem is both pragmatic and academic. In the pragmatic sense, those working in medical fields (doctors, nurses, pharmacists, researchers, etc.) are interested because lives are at stake. In an academic sense, this issue is of importance to evolutionists because they believe the mutations in bacteria responsible for drug resistance are, from the standpoint of the bacterial population, “good,” and thus offer significant proof of evolution. Their point is that the bacteria have adapted so as to “live to fight another day”—an example of “decidedly advantageous” mutations. Evolutionist Colin Patterson of Great Britain has commented: “The development of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria, and also of insects resistant to DDT and a host of other recently discovered insecticides, are genuine evolutionary changes (1978, p. 85, emp. added). But are these mutations sufficient to explain long-term, large-scale evolution (macroevolution)?

AN ALTERNATIVE EXPLANATION

Bacteria do not become resistant to antibiotics merely by experiencing genetic mutations. In fact, there are at least three genetic mechanisms by which resistance may be conferred. First, there are instances where mutations produce antibiotic-resistant strains of microorganisms. Second, there is the process of conjugation, during which two bacterial cells join and an exchange of genetic material occurs. Inside many bacteria there is a somewhat circular piece of self-replicating DNA known as a plasmid, which codes for enzymes necessary for the bacteria’s survival. Certain of these enzymes, coincidentally, assist in the breakdown of antibiotics, thus making the bacteria resistant to antibiotics. During conjugation, plasmids in one organism that are responsible for resistance to antibiotics may be transferred to an organism that previously did not possess such resistance.
 GERM WARFARE: During conjugation, one bacterial cell (A) can transfer any tiny DNA circle (plasmid) to another cell (B). This act can occur even between cells of different species. The transfer gives bacterium B a resistance to a drug that formerly was not present in its own DNA. In this example, the plasmid contains a gene (shown in red) to manufacture an enzyme that destroys the drug’s ability to interfere with bacterial cell division (as in the case of penicillin).
Third, bacteria can incorporate into their own genetic machinery foreign pieces of DNA by either of two types of DNA transposition. In transformation, DNA from the environment (perhaps from the death of another bacterium) is absorbed into the bacterial cell. In transduction, a piece of DNA is transported into the cell by a virus. As a result of incorporating new genetic material, an organism can become resistant to antibiotics. Commenting on these processes, Walter J. ReMine wrote:
Transformation and transduction occur extremely infrequently, but this rarity can be offset somewhat by the enormous population sizes that bacteria can achieve, especially under laboratory conditions. By those three methods bacteria can acquire DNA that alters their survival.... For example, DNA transposition can result in reduced permeability of the cell wall to certain substances, sometimes providing an increased resistance to antibiotics (1993, p. 404).
The issue is not whether bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics through alterations in their genetic material. They do. The issue is whether or not such resistance helps the evolutionists’ case. We suggest that it does not, for the following reasons.
First, the mutations responsible for antibiotic resistance in bacteria do not arise as a result of the “need” of the organisms. Futumya has noted: “...the adaptive ‘needs’ of the species do not increase the likelihood that an adaptive mutation will occur; mutations are not directed toward the adaptive needs of the moment.... Mutations have causes, but the species’ need to adapt isn’t one of them” (1983, pp. 137,138). What does this mean? Simply put, bacteria did not “mutate” after being exposed to antibiotics; the mutations conferring the resistance were present in the bacterial population even prior to the discovery or use of the antibiotics. The Lederbergs’ experiments in 1952 on streptomycin-resistant bacteria showed that bacteria which had never been exposed to the antibiotic already possessed the mutations responsible for the resistance. Malcolm Bowden has observed: “What is interesting is that bacterial cultures from bodies frozen 140 years ago were found to be resistant to antibiotics that were developed 100 years later. Thus the specific chemical needed for resistance was inherent in the bacteria” (1991, p. 56). These bacteria did not mutate to become resistant to antibiotics. Furthermore, the non-resistant varieties did not become resistant due to mutations.
Second, while pre-existing mutations may confer antibiotic resistance, such mutations may also decrease an organism’s viability. For example, “the surviving strains are usually less virulent, and have a reduced metabolism and so grow more slowly. This is hardly a recommendation for ‘improving the species by competition’ (i.e., survival of the fittest)” (Bowden, 1991, p. 56). Just because a mutation provides an organism with a certain trait does not mean that the organism as a whole has been helped. For example, in the disease known as sickle-cell anemia (caused by a mutation), people who are “carriers” of the disease do not die from it and are resistant to malaria, which at first would seem to be an excellent example of a good mutation. However, that is not the entire story. While resistant to malaria, these people do not possess the stamina of, and do not live as long as, their non-carrier counterparts. Bacteria may be resistant to a certain antibiotic, but that resistance comes at a price. Thus, in the grand scheme of things, acquiring resistance does not lead necessarily to new species or types of organisms.
Third, regardless of how bacteria acquired their antibiotic resistance (i.e., by mutation, conjugation, or by transposition), they are still exactly the same bacteria after receiving that trait as they were before receiving it. The “evolution” is not vertical macroevolution but horizontal microevolution (i.e., adaptation). In other words, these bacteria “...are still the same bacteria and of the same type, being only a variety that differs from the normal in its resistance to the antibiotic. No new ‘species’ have been produced” (Bowden, 1991, p. 56). In commenting on the changing, or sharing, of genetic material, ReMine has suggested: “It has not allowed bacteria to arbitrarily swap major innovations such as the use of chlorophyll or flagella. The major features of microorganisms fall into well-defined groups that seem to have a nested pattern like the rest of life” (1993, p. 404).
Microbiologists have studied extensively two genera of bacteria in their attempts to understand antibiotic resistance: Escherichia and Salmonella. In speaking about Escherichia in an evolutionary context, France’s renowned zoologist, Pierre-Paul Grassé, observed:
...bacteria, despite their great production of intraspecific varieties, exhibit a great fidelity to their species. The bacillus Escherichia coli, whose mutants have been studied very carefully, is the best example. The reader will agree that it is surprising, to say the least, to want to prove evolution and to discover its mechanisms and then to choose as a material for this study a being which practically stabilized a billion years ago (1977, p. 87).
Although E. coli allegedly has undergone a billion years’ worth of mutations, it still has remained “stabilized” in its “nested pattern.” While mutations and DNA transposition have caused change within the bacterial population, those changes have occurred within narrow limits. No long-term, large-scale evolution has occurred.

CONCLUSION

The suggestion that the development in bacteria of resistance to antibiotics as a result of genetic mutations or DNA transposition somehow “proves” organic evolution is flawed. Macroevolution requires change across phylogenetic boundaries. In the case of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, that has not occurred.

REFERENCES

Ayala, Francisco (1978), “The Mechanisms of Evolution,” Scientific American, 239[3]:56-69, September.
Beardsley, Tim (1994), “La Ronde,” Scientific American, 270[6]:26,29, June.
Begley, Sharon (1994), “The End of Antibiotics,” Newsweek, 123[13]:47-51, March 28.
Bowden, M. (1991), Science vs. Evolution (Bromley, Kent, England: Sovereign Publications).
Caldwell, Mark (1994), “Prokaryotes at the Gate,” Discover, 15[8]:45-50, August.
Davies, Julian (1994), “Inactivation of Antibiotics and the Dissemination of Resistance Genes,” Science, 264[5157]:375-382, April 15.
Futuyma, Douglas J. (1983), Science on Trial (New York: Pantheon Books).
Grass‚, Pierre-Paul (1977), The Evolution of Living Organisms (New York: Academic Press).
Lederberg, J. and E.M. Lederberg (1952), Journal of Bacteriology, 63:399.
Patterson, Colin (1978), Evolution (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press).
ReMine, Walter J. (1993), The Biotic Message (St. Paul, MN: St. Paul Science).
Simpson, George Gaylord, C.S. Pittendrigh, and L.H. Tiffany (1957), Life: An Introduction to Biology (New York: Harcourt, Brace and World).
Smith, John Maynard (1994), “Breaking the Antibiotic Bank,” Natural History, 103[6]:39-40, June.
Travis, John (1994), “Reviving the Antibiotic Miracle?,” Science, 264:360-362, April 15.

Evolutionists Want It Both Ways by Dave Miller, Ph.D.



https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=728

Evolutionists Want It Both Ways

by  Dave Miller, Ph.D.

Astronomers from more than 30 research institutions in 15 countries are working together to select a site for a giant telescope that they hope will read TV or radio signals from alien civilizations. Slated to cost one billion dollars, the Square Kilometer Array, or SKA, would be the world’s most powerful radio telescope. Speaking at a conference of the International Society for Optical Engineering in Orlando, Florida, project astronomers said they hope to find “immediate and direct evidence of life elsewhere in the Universe” (“Sites Under...,” 2006).
Despite this bold venture, the scientists admit that “such a search would have distinct limitations, to be sure.” “Distinct limitations”? Like what? For one, the scientists “aren’t sure how to recognize such signals, if they do turn up. The hope is that the signals would consist of organized patterns suggestive of intelligence, and not attributable to any known celestial sources” (“Sites Under...,” 2006, emp. added). Wait a minute. Evolutionary scientists are renowned for their condescending ridicule of creationists because those who believe in God assert that evidence of intelligent design in the Universe is proof of an Intelligent Designer. No, the evolutionists counter, the Universe got here by accident through random chance, mindless trial and error, and the blind, mechanistic forces of nature. They maintain that life on Earth owes its ultimate origin to dead, non-purposive, unconscious, non-intelligent matter. Yet they are perfectly willing to squander one billion dollars on a telescope with the speculative idea that solid proof—hard evidence—for the existence of alien life would reside in otherwise undecipherable radio or TV signals that convey “organized patterns suggestive of intelligence.” [NOTE: One is reminded of NASA’s Viking mission to Mars in the mid-seventies in which scientists eagerly declared evidence for life on Mars based on initial photos that appeared to show a “B” or even a face on a rock (cf. “‘Life’ on Mars,” 2006; Warren and Flew, 1976, pp. 112,156). Such judgments soon were deemed premature and incorrect.] Atheistic evolutionists want it both ways: organized patterns prove the existence of life and organized patterns do not prove the existence of God. Philosophers and logicians refer to such duplicitous posturing as irrational and “logical contradiction.” Apparently, evolutionists call it “science.”

REFERENCES

“‘Life’ on Mars” (2006), [On-line], URL: http://burro.astr.cwru.edu/stu/mars_life.html.
“Sites Under Review for Telescope that Could Detect Alien TV” (2006), World Science, July 10, [On-line], URL: http://www.world-science.net/exclusives/060711_ska.htm.
Warren, Thomas B. and Antony Flew (1976), The Warren-Flew Debate (Jonesboro, AR: National Christian Press).

How Big Is a Giant? by Kyle Butt, M.A.



https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=13&article=904

How Big Is a Giant?

by  Kyle Butt, M.A.

Who could ever forget the thrilling story of a youth named David who defeated the Philistine champion, Goliath? Touching the hearts of all “underdogs,” this story has become the battle cry for thousands who have found themselves up against a “giant.” But, due to Goliath’s status as a giant, some might view the tale of his defeat as a fable or myth. After all, don’t giants live at the top of huge beanstalks or under bridges waiting to grind bones into bread or gobble up passers-by? Surely, no reasonable adult is expected to believe that there is (or ever was) such a thing as a real giant.
The word “giant” conjures up all kinds of mental images. Probably the most common images are those of a huge, beastly fellow who stands at least 30 feet tall and makes monstrous imprints with his feet—imprints so impressive that they could be used as watering ponds for cattle. However, the biblical description of Goliath does not quite fit that mold. The text of 1 Samuel 17:4 states that Goliath’s height was “six cubits and a span.” Several suggestions as to the length of a cubit have been offered by Bible scholars. The most commonly accepted is the idea that a cubit was the measurement from the tip of the middle finger to the elbow, or about 18-21 inches. A span was the distance between the tip of the pinky finger and the thumb, about half a cubit, which equals about 9 inches (Elwell, 1988, p. 2136). Given these dimensions, Goliath was about 9 feet 9 inches tall. The text goes on to say that he had a coat of armor that weighed 5,000 shekels (1 Samuel 17:5). Referring again to Elwell’s Encyclopedia of the Bible, that armor would have weighed about 125 pounds. Also, the tip of his spear, which weighed 600 shekels, would have been about 15 pounds. The picture, then, that we are given is of a man about 9½ feet tall, who wore armor that weighed more that most fifth graders, and who carried a spear that had a tip which weighed as much as a trophy-sized large-mouth bass. This man was huge, but he was a far cry from the 30-feet-tall mythical characters we often envision.
In fact, documentation for other men reaching close to Goliath’s stature can be found in ancient writings, as well as modern records. The ancient historian, Herodotus, wrote about a man named Artachaees, who “was the biggest man in Persia—about 8 ft 2 ins. high—and had the loudest voice in the world” (1996, p. 408). Furthermore, most wrestling fans will recall the huge stature of “Andre the Giant,” who weighed in at about 500 pounds and reached a height of 7 feet 4 inches tall. The Guinness World Record group has something to say about large stature as well. Simply go to their Web site at www.guinnessworldrecords.com, type in the word “tallest,” do a little scrolling, and you will see all kinds of stature marvels. Take, for instance, one of the tallest NBA players in history, Gheorghe Muresan, who stands 7 feet 7 inches and can virtually dunk a basketball without jumping. Or consider the tallest man documented in modern times, Robert Pershing Wadlow, “for whom there is irrefutable evidence,” states the Guinness writer. On June 27, 1940, he was measured to be 2.72 meters or 8 feet 11.1 inches. Go to www.nightscribe.com/Sports_Recreation/tallest_folks.htm and see even more giants who hover around the 8 feet mark.
Granted, we have little documentation, besides Goliath, for any nine-footers, but Robert Wadlow surely opens the door of plausibility for the Philistine. In fact, after looking at just a few of the world’s tallest people, there is no legitimate reason to discount the Bible’s description of its most famous giant. When all the evidence is in, the story of David and Goliath remains a true victory for the “underdog”—one that cannot be relegated to the status of myth or legend. The story also reminds us that “if God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31).

REFERENCES

Elwell, Walter A., ed. (1988), Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker).
Herodotus (1996), The Histories, transl. Aubrey De Sẻlincourt (New York: Penguin Books).
“Tallest Famous Folks” (no date), [On-line], URL: http://www.nightscribe.com/Sports_Recreation/tallest_folks.htm.
“Guinness World Records” (no date), [On-line], URL: http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com.