Reminder:  Canyonlands Tour

When:  September 13-17, 2004

Where: Grand Canyon  Bryce Canyon Lake Powell

Zion National Park Glen Canyon
Petrified Forest  Meteor Crater

See page 30 of March/April 2004 issue for details. To reserve a space, send $100 deposit per person to John N. Clayton, 1555 Echo Valley Dr., Niles, MI 49120, phone: 269-687-9426, FAX: 269-687-9431, e-mail:

Textbooks in Texas. Every year there is a major battle over textbooks in Texas. Texas is a major player in this situation because of the large number of books used. If the book is accepted in Texas, many other states will follow. In November 2003, the battle was over biology books and the usual problems came up. One of the groups that does a great deal of work in this area is a group titled "Educational Research Analysts." Over the years Mr. and Mrs. Mel Gabler have been pretty much anti-evolution in their input into textbooks, but in 2003 they were able to find massive factual errors in most of the major biology books. If you are interested in seeing what they have done, you can write them at PO Box 7518, Longview, TX 75607-7518, call them at 903-753-5993, or find them on the web at By the way, they rate Biology: The Dynamics of Life by Glencoe, 2004, the best and Holt Biology by Holt, 2004, the worst.

Ten Commandment Hypocrisy. Most of us have followed the situation in Alabama where a judge named Roy S. Moore placed a small monument of the Ten Commandments in the Alabama State Courthouse and it was removed by the Alabama Supreme Court on the grounds that it recognized "a special role for the God of Judaism and Christianity.and thus represents an establishment of religion, and thus violates the First Amendment." What is interesting about this case is that there are other religious symbols in other court buildings in Alabama and no one seems to mind. On the outside wall of the federal courthouse in Montgomery is a large statue of Artemis, the Greek goddess of justice.

--Source: "The Ten Commandments Controversy" by Michael Novak, Imprimis, December 2003.

Homeschooled numbers jump. As public schools continue to struggle, the number of children being homeschooled is skyrocketing. The latest numbers show that, at the present time, 850,000 American children are being schooled at home, which is up from 360,000 just ten years ago. In the same study is an interesting statement that says that 10% of self-identified Protestants say they do not believe in God, and 21% of self-identified Roman Catholics say the same. Lots of people remain identified with churches for social reasons, but really have no belief that God exists at all.

--Reference: Christianity Today, January 2004.

Genome facts get stranger. In the past ten years, mankind has learned an amazing amount about his own genetic makeup. As we add the genomes of other animals to our storehouse of knowledge, the comparisons continue to surprise and amaze us. When the final comparisons were made between humans and mice, researchers found that humans have only 300 genes that mice do not have. The single-celled amoeba called dubia has 200 times more DNA than humans do. Studies done of racial differences have shown that the greatest difference between the races genetically is 1/100 of one percent. The variations within each race can be as high as 1/10 of 1% or ten times larger. Racially we are more alike than any of us realize. You can knock out 40% of the genes in a mouse and it will still be able to live. Thirty five percent of all human DNA replicates, but does nothing. It is called junk DNA.

--Reference: Francis Collins. "The Human Genome," ASA Journal, September 2003.

Archeological possibility. The controversy about the burial box of James is still being debated, and now another biblical find is stirring things up. A tomb traditionally ascribed to David's third son Absalom is now claimed to have the name of Zachariah, the father of John the Baptist, carved on it. The problem in both of these finds is that there is so much political and professional interests involved that objectivity becomes a scarce commodity. The idea of Absalom actually having been buried in the tomb is dubious to begin with, but what we have is a Greek inscription in Absalom's pillar which says, "This is the tomb of Zachariah,pious priest, father of John." --Reference: Biblical Archaeology Review, November/December, 2003, page 19

Bible bread from Ezekiel 4:9. "Take thou also unto thee wheat, and barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and fitches (rye), and put them into one vessel, and make the bread,." This is a quote which we have seen skeptics maintain is unworkable, but an anonymous contributor just sent a recipe which you might want to try. (We have not tried it ourselves yet.)

8 C. wheat flour 4 C. barley flour
2 C. soy bean flour 1 C. lentils, cooked, mashed
1/2 C. millet flour 1/4 C. rye flour
1 1/2 C. warm water 1 Tbs. salt
5 Tbs. olive oil 2 pkts. yeast dissolved in 1/2 C. water
1 Tbs. honey

Dissolve the yeast in warm water and let it sit for 10 minutes. Mix the other dry ingredients in separate bowl. Blend lentils, oil, and small amount of water; place in large mixing bowl with remaining water. Stir in 2 cups of mixed flour. Add yeast mixture. Stir in remaining salt and flour. Knead on floured surface, then place in oiled bowl. Let rise until double in bulk. Knead again; shape and place in greased loaf pans. Let rise. Bake at 375° approximately one hour. Makes four loaves. A health food store is a source for several of these ingredients. This bread is not only said to taste great but supplies iron, calcium, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, vitamins A and C, thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin as well as protein.

Solar Magnetic Reversals. One of the interesting evidences of a long and complex history to the earth is the evidence of magnetic reversals in which the earth's north and south magnetic poles switch. It has now been shown that the sun flips its magnetic poles every 11 years, roughly in sync with rises and falls in sun spots. There seems to be a connection between activity on the sun and these flips, but they may give big clues as to the reason and function of the earth's magnetic pole changes.

--Reference: Science News, December 6, 2003, page 355.

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