News of Note: “Facebook Cracks Down on Hate Speech Posts”

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1. Facebook Cracking Down on Hate Speech Posts Under Mounting Pressure From Activists

“Facebook Says It Failed to Bar Posts With Hate Speech” (New York Times)

“In a blog post, Facebook said its “systems to identify and remove hate speech have failed to work as effectively as we would like, particularly around issues of gender-based hate.” The company said it would review how it dealt with such content, update training for its employees, increase accountability — including requiring that users use their real identities when creating content — and establish more direct lines of communication with women’s groups and other entities. Women’s groups have complained to Facebook about misogynous content in the past, but pressure on the company escalated last week when a collective led by Women, Action and the Media; Laura Bates of the Everyday Sexism Project; and Soraya Chemaly, a writer and activist, published an open letter asking Facebook executives to “ban gender-based hate speech on your site.” – Tanzina Vega

“Under pressure, Facebook targets sexist hate speech” (CNN)

“Under mounting pressure from activists and advertisers, Facebook is ramping up efforts to stamp out hate speech, particularly depictions of violence against women. The move, announced Tuesday, came after a weeklong campaign by women’s groups targeting pages that celebrated or made light of rape, domestic violence and sexual degradation of women. “In recent days, it has become clear that our systems to identify and remove hate speech have failed to work as effectively as we would like, particularly around issues of gender-based hate,” Marne Levine, a Facebook vice president in charge of public policy, wrote in a post on the site. “In some cases, content is not being removed as quickly as we want. In other cases, content that should be removed has not been or has been evaluated using outdated criteria. We have been working over the past several months to improve our systems to respond to reports of violations, but the guidelines used by these systems have failed to capture all the content that violates our standards. We need to do better — and we will.” – Doug Gross

“Facebook to Crack Down on Hate Speech Posts” (ABC News)

“Facebook and the outer limits of free speech” (Reuters)

2. “The New Purpose of Marriage” – The Atlantic claims that heterosexuals can learn from homosexual marriage relationships. Colin Hansen critiques Liza Mundy’s The Atlantic article on “The Gay Guide to Wedded Bliss”. (The Gospel Coalition)

3. “Understanding the Times: An Interview with Carl Trueman” – Table Talk’s interview with Carl Trueman (Ligonier Ministries)

“Lack of historic orthodoxy. The evangelical world seems obsessed with “engaging culture” even as the average Christian’s knowledge of the basics of the faith diminishes. You can go to heaven without being able to offer a Christian appreciation of film, art, or music; one cannot go to heaven without knowing who Jesus Christ is and what He has done.” – Carl Trueman’s answer to the question, “What is the real scandal of the evangelical mind?”

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Notable Quotable: “The Problem With Muslim Leadership” – Ayaan Hirsi Ali

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“In the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing and the Woolwich murder, it was good to hear expressions of horror and sympathy from Islamic spokesmen, but something more is desperately required: genuine recognition of the problem with Islam.

“Muslim leaders should ask themselves what exactly their relationship is to a political movement that encourages young men to kill and maim on religious grounds. Think of the Tsarnaev brothers and the way they justified the mayhem they caused in Boston. Ponder carefully the words last week of Michael Adebolajo, his hands splashed with blood: “We swear by almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you. The only reason we have done this is because Muslims are dying every day.”

“My friend, the Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh, was murdered in 2004 for having been insufficiently reverent toward Islam. In the courtroom, the killer looked at Theo’s mother and said to her: “I must confess honestly that I do not empathize with you. I do not feel your pain. . . . I cannot empathize with you because you are an unbeliever.”

“And yet, after nearly a decade of similar rhetoric from Islamists around the world, last week the Guardian newspaper could still run a headline quoting a Muslim Londoner: “These poor idiots have nothing to do with Islam.” Really? Nothing?

“Of course, the overwhelming majority of Muslims are not terrorists or sympathetic to terrorists. Equating all Muslims with terrorism is stupid and wrong. But acknowledging that there is a link between Islam and terror is appropriate and necessary.”

(Ayaan Hirsi Ali, “The Problem of Muslim Leadership”, The Wall Street Journal)

News of Note: Kentucky Mega Church Dropping Its Support of Boy Scouts; DOJ Asking Its Employees to Affirm Homosexuality; British Authorities Arresting Those Making Threats Against Muslims on Social Media (UPDATED: Reports that SBC Churches Will Drop Boy Scouts In Masse After June Convention; Roswell Street Baptist Church Drops Boy Scouts)

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1. Boy Scouts Fall Out (UPDATED June 4)

“Churches move to cut ties to Scouts after gay policy change” – More churches plan to cut ties with Boy Scouts after historic decision. (Religion News Service)

“We are not willing to compromise God’s word,” said Easley, pastor of the 2,300-member Roswell Street Baptist Church in Marietta, Ga., which has sponsored Boy Scout Troop 204 since 1945. (Ernest) Easley, chairman of the Southern Baptist Convention’s executive committee, said his church will shut down its troop at end of the year because of a recently adopted policy to allow openly gay scouts. He’s urging other Baptists to do the same. Roswell Street is one of the first churches to cut ties with the Scouts over the new policy. Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, a 23,000-member megachurch, has also announced plans to shut down its troop. Other critics of the new policy, which doesn’t take effect until January 2014, are taking a wait-and-see approach.” – Bob Smietana, Religion News Service/USA Today

“Baptists plan exodus from Boy Scouts” – CNN reports that Baptist churches will leave Boy Scouts after Southern Baptist Convention meeting after convention next week. (CNN)

“There’s a 100% chance that there will be a resolution about disaffiliation at the convention,” said Richard Land, the longtime head of the Southern Baptists’ Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, “and a 100% chance that 99% of people will vote for it.” “Southern Baptists are going to be leaving the Boy Scouts en masse,” Land continued. – Daniel Burke quoting SBC’s Richard Land, CNN

“The BSA Fallout Begins…” – Claire Healey on churches cutting ties with the Boy Scouts. (The American Spectator)

“California senators vote to strip Boy Scouts of tax-exempt status” – California senators pass bill stripping Boy Scouts of tax exempt status. (Washington Post)

“California senators introduced a bill on Thursday that would strip the Boy Scouts of America of its tax-exempt status in the state. They’re not happy with the group’s recent vote on gay membership, saying it didn’t go far enough.” – Cheryl Chumley, Washington Post

“After vote allowing gay kids to become Boy Scouts, some families call it quits” – Family quits Boy Scouts after BSA decision. (MSNBC)

“Aaron Butler, the leader of his 8-year-old son Evan’s Cub Scout Wolf den in Roseau, Minn., said he didn’t explain to his eldest son exactly why they were walking away from an organization they loved so much, but he told NBC News that it was because of last week’s controversial decision by the Boy Scouts of America to allow gay youth to participate. “It was a big disappointment. He cried for about 10 minutes because I told him that Boy Scouts were not honoring their own law,” (Aaron) Butler said, referring to the BSA oath that he interpreted as barring gay people. “They say it — ‘On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law; to help other people at all times; to keep [myself] physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight,’” he said. “If the BSA cannot honor its own law, then how can I stay with an organization that just does not care anymore?” he said. As many Scouts and families rejoiced over the BSA’s decision to partly end the membership guidelines that had drawn criticism from supporters of LGBT rights both inside and outside the organization, many others decried the move, with some BSA members making the tough choice to pull out of one of the nation’s most popular youth organizations. “I feel pretty bad about it,” Evan told NBC News, noting he liked the camp-outs, and archery and slingshot activities he enjoyed in Pack 56. He said that he understood there was a vote that led to his parents’ decision. He explained that he understood it as: “It was between honor and God, and not honoring God. And [not] honoring God got more votes.” – Miranda S. Leitsinger, MSNBC

“Alabama Churches Boycott Boy Scouts” – ABC News interview with Alabama pastor Greg Walker who asked boy scout troop to stop meeting at his church after BSA decision to allow openly gay members. (YouTube)

“Ala. Boy Scout Troop Gains Support After Being Booted Out by Church” – Alabama pastor asks boy scout troop to leave church over BSA decision. (Christian Post)

“Some Churches Say They’ll Cut Ties to Boy Scouts Following Its Lifting Ban on Gay Scouts” – Pastors state that some churches will cut ties with Boy Scouts. (ABC News)

“Leave Boy Scouts, pastor advises parents” – Atlanta SBC pastor tells congregation to leave Boy Scouts. Pastor’s church has been affiliated with BSA since 1945. (Baptist Press)

“Parents of Boy Scouts should remove their children from the organization, Atlanta-area pastor Ernest Easley advised in his Sunday sermon. Troop 204’s affiliation with Roswell Street Baptist Church also will end, Easley said. “I never dreamed I’d have to stand up publicly and say to parents: Pull your kids out of the Boy Scouts,” Easley told Baptist Press May 28. “If you would have asked me that five years ago, 10 years ago, I would have laughed,” Easley said. “And even as I was saying it Sunday morning, I thought, I cannot believe I’m having to address this and encourage parents to pull their children out of the Boy Scouts of America. “Unbelievable.” The tie between Roswell Street Baptist Church and Troop 204 dates back to 1945.” – Art Toalston

“Kentucky church is dropping its scouting program” – USA Today reports that Kentucky mega church is dropping Boy Scouts from its program. (USA Today)

“Megachurch Pastor Says Evangelicals Will Likely Turn to Boy Scout Alternatives” – Harry Reeder III of Briarwood Presbyterian Church states that evangelicals will look for Boy Scout alternatives. (Christian Post)

“When a church holds to a biblical social ethic of sex only between a man and a woman in monogamous marriage, it cannot support an organization that opposes that,” (Harry) Reeder said, according to al.com. “That would introduce sexual anarchy into the teaching of the church. There will be a significant response from evangelical churches.” – Stoyan Zaimov

“GLAAD Continues Push for Boy Scouts to Allow Openly Homosexual Leaders” – Homosexual group continues the push to allow open homosexual leaders. (Christian News)

“Advice to Christians and Churches Involved in Boy Scouts” – Richard Phillips on why Christians should not remain in the Boy Scouts. (Reformation 21)

“25 Differences Between the Boy Scouts and Christ’s Church” – Dan Delzell gives 25 differences between the Boy Scouts and Christ’s church. (Christian Post)

2. “DOJ Tells Employees to Verbally Affirm Homosexuality” – More on the Department of Justice asking its employees to affirm homosexuality. Todd Starnes of Fox News is reporting about the incident based on the DOJ internal memo and current testimony from a current DOJ employee. (Fox News)

“Mat Staver, founder of Liberty Counsel, said every American should be outraged by the DOJ orders (affirmation of homosexuality by its employees). “This administration is pushing the most radical, immoral agenda on the American people,” Staver said. “Christians are not merely required to ‘shut up,’ but now they are being coerced to embrace immorality that goes against their sincerely held religious beliefs.” Liberty Counsel is representing an unidentified female DOJ worker in Washington, D.C. who received the brochure. Staver said the woman is terrified she might lose her job unless she publicly affirms homosexuality – and she’s not the only one. “Christians are frightened and terrified of losing their jobs,” Staver told Fox News. “You just can’t keep you head down and do your job. Now you have to become an advocate for the LGBT agenda – and if you don’t – the DOJ will consider that to be intolerant.” – Todd Starnes

3. “Woolwich attack provokes anti-Muslim backlash across UK” – British authorities are arresting those that are making social media threats against Muslims. (Telegraph U.K.)

4. “The Problem of Muslim Leadership” – What is the problem with Muslim leadeship and its inconsistent views of linking Islam with terrorism? (Wall Street Journal)

“Muslim leaders should ask themselves what exactly their relationship is to a political movement that encourages young men to kill and maim on religious grounds. Think of the Tsarnaev brothers and the way they justified the mayhem they caused in Boston. Ponder carefully the words last week of Michael Adebolajo, his hands splashed with blood: “We swear by almighty Allah we will never stop fighting you. The only reason we have done this is because Muslims are dying every day. My friend, the Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh, was murdered in 2004 for having been insufficiently reverent toward Islam. In the courtroom, the killer looked at Theo’s mother and said to her: “I must confess honestly that I do not empathize with you. I do not feel your pain. . . . I cannot empathize with you because you are an unbeliever.” And yet, after nearly a decade of similar rhetoric from Islamists around the world, last week the Guardian newspaper could still run a headline quoting a Muslim Londoner: “These poor idiots have nothing to do with Islam.” Really? Nothing? Of course, the overwhelming majority of Muslims are not terrorists or sympathetic to terrorists. Equating all Muslims with terrorism is stupid and wrong. But acknowledging that there is a link between Islam and terror is appropriate and necessary.” – Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Notable Quotable: “Andy Stanley’s Pragmatism and His New Book on Church Growth” – Carl Trueman

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“(Andy) Stanley’s pragmatism, in a manner analogous to the soft relativism of certain evangelical postmoderns, looks attractively plausible; yet this is only because it operates within the framework of the likely possibilities determined by the polite pieties and tasteful transgressions of modern middle America. Safe, in other words, because Stanley assumes middle America is pretty much like him and therefore unlikely to confront him or his church with anything too tasteless. After all, what’s the worst that ‘culture’ might throw at them? Homosexuality? That is being rendered thoroughly respectable even as I write. Abortion? Out of sight, out of mind. Nice clean “clinics,” a powerful rhetoric built on claims about rape, incest and victimhood, and a euphemistic vocabulary of “women’s health,” “terminations” and “planned parenthood” help make child killing just one more private and merciful medical procedure.

“So far, so middle America. The final cause of personal felicity sanctifies all. But if Stanley had the imagination to set this pragmatism in Nazi Germany or in a country where female circumcision is de rigueur, some place where middle class American tastes and preferences do not apply, then the cost of such intellectual and moral laziness would immediately become apparent. If you cannot stop culture and should not spit in it, what happens when the culture tells you that happiness comes about by gassing Jews or lacerating young girls’ genitalia? That is somebody’s culture. No point trying to resist it for that would risk irrelevance, empty pews and an isolationist Pharisaism. And we couldn’t have that, could we?

“Of course, one can already hear the pat responses of ‘It could never happen here!’ or ‘But that stuff is obviously wrong!’ Touching in its innocence and predictable in its complacency, such mewling would yet betray a shockingly shallow understanding of both human nature and history. No one in 1900 would have predicted that the most technologically and culturally advanced nation in Europe would elect a man like Hitler and be the centre of previously unimaginable genocide. Interesting what national military defeat, adverse economic conditions, and concerted anti-Semitic propaganda can do to a nation, is it not?”

(Carl Trueman reviews Andy Stanley’s new book “Deep and Wide: Creating Churches Unchurched People Love to Attend”; “The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie” ; Reformation 21)

Notable Quotable: “Why Christians Should Not Remain in Boy Scouts” – Richard Phillps

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“For years, Boy Scouts have asserted that this oath (Boy Scouts’ oath to be morally straight) precludes homosexual perversion. Now, scouts must accept homosexuality as being in line with moral straightness. A Christian, however, can no more submit to this principle than to define adultery or drunkenness as morally straight (see 1 Cor. 6:9-10). The Bible defines homosexual behavior as “dishonorable, impure, unnatural, and shameless” (Rom. 1:24-27). Boy Scouts are now demanding that Christians tolerate not merely people who are tempted by homosexuality but also the principle of homosexuality itself. Disciples of Christ cannot do this without compromising our faithfulness to Him (see Rev. 2:20). . . . In conclusion, the change of moral policy by BSA involves a tragic failure at the levels of morality, character, and leadership. No doubt, the forces of moral barbarism have succeeded here in driving the followers of Christ farther to the margins of society. While this is lamentable, it is unavoidable, in my opinion. But Christians in places like China and Africa have been thriving without being able to participate in secularized youth programs. We must honor God and His Word, remember our calling, and prayerfully take action that will honor biblical principle and send a godly message to our youths. “The Lord declares… ‘Those who honor me, I will honor'” (1 Sam. 2:30).”

(Richard Phillips, “Advice to Christians and Churches Involved in Boy Scouts”, Reformation 21)

News of Note: Was The IRS Mass Audit of Adoptive Parents In 2011 A Result of Targeting Evangelical Christians and Conservatives Who Filed for Adoption Credit?

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Did the IRS target evangelicals and conservative parents filing for adoption credit?

“Nearly 70 percent of adoption credit claims were audited by IRS, report finds” – Fox News reports that IRS did mass audit of adoptive families in 2011. (Fox News)

“The Adoption Tax Credit was created by Congress in 1996 to encourage adoption and to help offset costs to low- and middle-income families, which are estimated to run as high as $40,000. At the time, lawmakers touted the promotion of adoption as “one of the most important things” to strengthen American families. But IRS officials selected 69 percent of returns claiming the credit in the 2012 filing season for audit, compared to just 1 percent of all tax returns. The payoff, however, was relatively small, the report found. “Of the $668.1 million in adoption credit claims in tax year 2011 as a result of adoption credit audits, the IRS only disallowed $11 million — or one and one-half percent — in adoption credit claims,” the report continued. “However, the IRS has also had to pay out $2.1 million in interest in TY 2011 to taxpayers whose refunds were held past the 45-day period allowed by law.” – Joshua Rhett Miller

“IRS Morality: Defend Planned Parenthood, Deluge Adoptive Families with Audits” – IRS deluge adoptive families with audits. (National Review)

“So Congress implemented a tax credit to facilitate adoption – a process that is so extraordinarily expensive that it is out of reach for many middle-class families — and the IRS responded by implementing an audit campaign that delayed much-needed tax refunds to the very families that needed them the most. Oh, and the return on its investment in this harassment? Slightly more than 1 percent.” – David French

“The Adoption Audits: No Rational Justification” – Why did the IRS audit 69% adoptive parents who filed for adoption credit in 2011? (National Review)

“Is the Left Launching an Attack on Evangelical Adoption?” – David French’s April 2013 response to a Salon article (Orphan Fever: The Evangelical Movement’s Adoption Obsession attacking the Christian adoption movement). (National Review)

“At any rate, these critics (attacking the Christian adoption movement) get it dead wrong: The Christian community at large isn’t just trying to adopt individuals (we certainly know that it makes very little difference to large-scale poverty); we are also the foremost supporters of the large-scale relief agencies such as World Vision, Compassion International, and others. For the Christian community, it’s both/and, not either/or. We try to impact individuals and nations. The suggestion that Christians care only for unborn kids is pure slander, and it’s always been pure slander — even before the advent of international adoption. As for the criticism that we adopt to evangelize — well, let me put it this way: I cannot imagine hating my own child so much that I wouldn’t introduce her to Jesus Christ, the Light of the world. When we adopt, our hearts our bound to that child just as it is to our biological children. Sharing our faith with our children, training them up in the way they should go (to paraphrase Proverbs), is every bit a part of parenting as food and shelter. It is the essence of our love for them. So, yes, we evangelize our children. But guess what? So does the radical Left. In fact, they indoctrinate their kids into their world view as thoroughly and often intolerantly as the most fire-breathing fundamentalist. So if they want to decry “evangelization,” then physician, heal thyself.” – David French

“IRS Audited 69% of Filers Who Claimed Adoption Tax Credit” – Joe Carter on why the IRS would do a mass audit of parents who filed for adoption credit. (The Gospel Coalition)

“But why should Christians care that the IRS gives special increased scrutiny to those who claim this exemption? Because it provides a disincentive to adopt a child and could potentially leave thousands of children without parents. No one chooses to adopt simply because they can deduct the expenses. And the tax credit likely doesn’t affect the decision of most adoptive parents. But as almost all economists would say, when considering a policy we have to think about the margins by considering the cases where the decision can be swayed by seemingly minor incentives. Some people can only afford the expenses of adopting a child because of the tax credit. Other people may be eager to adopt but are so fearful of an IRS audit that it changes their decision. Whether or not we agree with the way they weigh such economic considerations, the fact is that in making life-changing choices incentives and disincentives can have profound consequences. While Americans must be accountable to government authorities, we should also ensure that those authorities are being fair and just to all concerned. And one of the most significant ways we can give justice to the weak and the fatherless (Psalm 82:3) is by making it easier on prospective parents who want to give them a home.” – Joe Carter

News of Note: Boy Scouts of America Allow Gay Youths to Join; Ban on Adult Gay Leaders Remain; Groups Predict Mass Exodus From BSA Over New Policy (UPDATED)

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1. Boy Scouts of America Will Allow Gay Youth Into Membership (UPDATED)

“Groups Predict Mass Exodus From Boy Scouts Over Vote to Allow Openly Homosexual Members” – Conservative and Christian groups predict mass exodus from BSA over their new policy. (Christian News)

“I think there will be an immediate exodus,” said spokesman Roger “Sing” Oldham (Southern Baptist Convention). “I don’t know how large that immediate exodus will be, but then I think there’ll be a continual attrition over time.” “I think what we’re going to see in the next year or so is a mass exodus of adults and boys from the Boy Scouts of America program,” Randy Sharp of the American Family Association likewise told reporters. “Some of the estimates that I’ve heard are up to 400,000 to 500,000 boys and adults will resign their positions with the Boy Scouts of America.” – Heather Clark

“Boy Scouts Vote to Lift Ban on Openly Homosexual Members” (Christian News)

“The fallout from this is going to be tremendous,” Robert Schwarzwalder, senior vice president of the Family Research Council, told reporters. “I think there will be a loss of hundreds of thousands of boys and parents.” “This great institution is going to be vitiated by the intrusion of a political agenda,” he added. – Heather Clark

“Boy Scouts to allow gay youths to join” (CNN)

“Boy Scouts vote to allow gay members” (USA Today)

“Boy Scouts Decision to Accept Any Sexual Orientation a Rejection of Values, Says Christian Law Group” (Christian Post)

“Sadly, the Boy Scouts Executive National Council’s decision disregards not only the nearly 19,000 Americans who signed a petition urging BSA to ‘uphold the values that have defined the organization for over 100 years,’ but also the millions of Americans who have supported the program,” stated Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel David Cortman shortly after the decision. “Those promoting the agenda to change what the Boy Scouts have always been won’t rest until there is complete acceptance of any sexual preference for both leaders and members. With its decision today, BSA has rejected its freedom to promote and practice the values that have served to shape our nation’s boys into leaders for the last century,” Cortman said. – Alex Murashko

“Boy Scouts at the Brink — The Moment of Decision Arrives” – Al Mohler on the Boy Scouts of America’s pending decision. This article was posted prior to the BSA’s decision (AlbertMohler.com)

OnMyHonor.Net – Group comprised of Boy Scouts of America members, parents, and likeminded organizations are announcing a national coalition meeting to form a new character development organization for boys.

“Despite this setback (Boy Scouts of America accepting homosexual youth into its membership), we will look to the future. I am pleased to announce that OnMyHonor.Net along with other likeminded organizations, parents and BSA members, are announcing a coalition meeting that will take place next month in Louisville, Kentucky. There we will discuss the creation of a new character development organization for boys. While the meeting will be private, your voice is very important to us and will be represented there. We will host and facilitate a national coalition meeting of former BSA parents and other youth leaders who wish to return to truly timeless values that once made the BSA great. We welcome your comments as we develop our plans. Please share your thoughts with us at Contact@OnMyHonor.Net We grieve today, not because we are faced with leaving Scouting, but because the Boy Scouts of America has left us. Its leadership has turned its back on 103 years of abiding by a mission to prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices. Instead, it is embarking on a pathway of social experimentation that we believe will place at risk the very youth the organization is entrusted to serve, while rendering as hollow the tenets of the Scout Oath. Many of us find that unacceptable, and we have a desire to explore how we might serve families and young people at the highest standard originally intended by Scouting’s founder, Robert Baden-Powell.” OnMyHonor.Net is the nationwide coalition of concerned parents, Scout Leaders, Scouting Donors, Eagle Scouts and other members of the BSA who are united in their support of Scouting’s timeless values and in their opposition to open homosexuality in the Boy Scouts. More information at http://www.OnMyHonor.Net.” – OnMyHonor.Net

2. “Tim Bosma and Evil’s Smile” – Tim Challies’ post on the face of evil and the senseless murder of a neighbor. (TimChallies.com)

3. “Carson, Taylor, and DeYoung issue statement supporting Mahaney” – D.A. Carson, Justin Taylor, and Kevin DeYoung issue statement supporting C.J. Mahaney (DennyBurk.com); The entire statement from Carson, Taylor and Young can be found at the Gospel Coalition website: “Why We Have Been Silent about the SGM Lawsuit”

“We are not in a place to adjudicate all the charges leveled against Sovereign Grace Ministries or the specific individuals named in the lawsuit. The purpose of this statement is not to render a verdict on the charges, nor in any way to trivialize the sins alleged. We realize some will construe this post as confirmation of their worst suspicions, but we trust most of our brothers and sisters will be able to consider our explanation with an open heart and a fair mind. Our silence was not decided upon lightly; neither was our decision to break this silence. Our prayer is that one day—and please, Lord, soon—all who face injustice of any kind will see the Lord bring forth his righteousness as the light, and his justice as the noonday (Ps. 37:6).” – D.A. Carson, Justin Taylor, Kevin DeYoung

4. “Casting Calls Made for TD Jakes’ New BET Talk Show ‘Mind, Body & Soul'” – T.D. Jakes is going to have his own talk show? (Christian Post)

News of Note: Woolwich Murder Suspect Identified as Michael Adebolajo; Victim Identifed as Drummer Lee Rigby; The Guardian UK Reports That Police Have Arrested Two More Suspects in Connection with Murder of British Soldier (UPDATED)

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1. Police Arrest Two More Suspects In Connection With Murder of British Soldier Lee Rigby(UPDATED)

“London attack: police make two further arrests after Woolwich killing” (The Guardian)

2. Suspect and Victim Identified

“Woolwich attack: knife-wielding suspect named as Michael Adebolajo” (Telegraph U.K.)

“Born in the London borough of Lambeth, the suspect (Michael Adebolajo) is said to have gone to school in Romford, Essex, before studying at the University of Greenwich. He lived in two flats in the Greenwich area of London in 2004 and 2005, while his mother is believed to have moved to Lincolnshire at some stage. Adebolajo is known to have been a preacher on the streets of Woolwich and is understood to have run an occasional stall in the area, from which he distributed extremist literature condemning the involvement of British soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.” – Rosa Silverman

“Woolwich attack: latest” – Victim of Woolwich is identifed as Drummer Lee Rigby.

“The British soldier hacked to death has been named as Drummer Lee Rigby.” – Telegraph U.K.

“Alfie Swain, who said he had met the victim, told BBC News of his grief at the news. He said: “I can’t explain it, how much it hurts. It’s just disappointing. “I’d met him in and out of the Army base itself. Hearing that he’s gone is just destroying. He was a nice man. He was caring, loving. To hear that he’s gone is just disappointing. “I’m just terribly, terribly upset. I just want to burst into tears right now.” – Telegraph U.K.

“Drummer Lee Rigby: Victim Identified in London Terrorist Attack” (Christian Post)

“The British Ministry of Defense identified the victim early Thursday. Rigby belonged to the 2nd Battalion, The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, and was attached to the Regimental Recruiting Team in London, which he joined in 2011. A member of the British military since 2006, Rigby was described as an “extremely popular and witty soldier.” “Drummer Rigby was a larger than life personality within the Corps of Drums and was well known, liked and respected across the Second Fusiliers,” the government news site said. “A loving father to his son Jack, aged 2 years, he will be sorely missed by all who knew him.” – Brittney R. Villalva

“Woolwich attack: murdered soldier Drummer Lee Rigby ‘would do anything for anybody’” (Telegraph U.K.)

“A statement on behalf of his family said: “Lee was lovely. He would do anything for anybody, he always looked after his sisters and always protected them. He took a ‘big brother’ role with everyone. “All he wanted to do from when he was a little boy, was to be in the Army. He wanted to live life and enjoy himself. His family meant everything to him. He was a loving son, husband, father, brother, and uncle, and a friend to many.” – Steven Swinford

“Woolwich attack: suspects were known to security services” – Woolwich suspects were known by MI6 and possibly the police prior to the attack. (Telegraph U.K.)

“Sources told the BBC that one of the suspects was intercepted by police last year while leaving the country. He was reportedly heading to Somalia to join al Shabaab militants. MI5 had collected information on the two men before yesterday’s brutal attack took place in Woolwich, south east London. MI6 were also reported to have done so, and the suspects were known to police as well.” – Rosa Silverman

“Woolwich attack: Were the suspected killers influenced by Nigerian terrorists?” – Both suspects were orginally from Nigeria. Were they influenced by Nigerian terrorists? (Telegraph U.K.)

“And although the police have not confirmed any links between the killers and Nigerian jihadi groups, there remains the very real possibility that the men were influenced by terrorist rhetoric coming from their homeland. Boko Haram is strongest in the north of Nigeria, where it has launched a series of attacks on the government, UN and Christian targets. Established in 2002 as a non-violent Islamic splinter group, it mutated in 2009 into a jihadist organisation and has been blamed for 800 killings in Nigeria in the past year alone. It has scant hierarchical leadership and is a loose affiliation of jihadists, without one dominant ruler. But last week posters went up around the north east with ransom promises for a list of wanted men – including Abubakar Shekau, described as Boko Haram’s leader. Its most spectacular assault to date was the attack on the UN compound in the capital, Abuja, in August 2011 – one of the deadliest attacks on the UN in its history. Twenty three people were killed and 76 wounded following a car bomb explosion in the offices.” – Harriet Alexander

“Woolwich terror attack – eyewitness account” – Channel 4 News interview with eyewitness. (YouTube)

“Woolwich killing: eyewitness Ike Onwukah describes attackers charging at police” – Channel 4 News interview of eye witness who saw suspects charging police wielding machetes. (YouTube)

“Soldier Beheaded in London, Local Rapper Live Tweets Attack” – Local rapper tweets during attack of British soldier and capture of suspects. (Christian Post)

“Boya Dee, a local London rapper, was in the exact area when the gruesome attack transpired and was able to offer a glimpse to the horrendous actions of the perpetrators.” – Myles Collier