1. According to The Associated Press, Alabama appeared set within hours to become the 37th state where gays can legally wed, prompting one couple to pitch a tent outside a courthouse even as the state’s chief justice made an 11th hour bid to keep the weddings on hold Monday. Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore sent a letter Sunday evening to probate judges ordering them to refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses when the courts opened Monday morning. Moore wrote that the judges weren’t bound by a federal judge’s ruling Jan. 23 that the marriage ban was unconstitutional.
2. According to Reuters, French police sealed off a housing estate in Marseille on Monday after hooded gunmen opened fire on a police car with Kalashnikov rifles in what a senior local official suggested was an incident related to drug crime. France has been on high alert following Islamist attacks in Paris last month that killed 17 people. Last week, two soldiers protecting a Jewish organization and radio station were wounded in a knife attack. There was no immediate information on whether there had been victims.
3. According to Fox News, The United Arab Emirates announced Saturday it is sending a squadron of F-16 fighter jets to Jordan, resuming its participation in U.S.-led airstrikes on The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. The announcement was made by UAE’s official government news agency, following the U.S. State Department’s announcement Friday that the Arab country had reaffirmed its commitment to the coalition and that suggested that “positive news” on the matter would be announced within the next few days. The UAE stopped flying airstrikes over Iraq shortly after a Jordanian pilot was shot down in a mission over Syria and captured by ISIS in December.
4. According to CBS Los Angeles, The senior pastor of a prominent Los Angeles church has issued an apology after controversial comments during a sermon delivered weeks ago. The apology by Pastor J. Edgar Boyd of the First AME Church may end weeks of tension over the remarks purportedly comparing law enforcement officers to the Ku Klux Klan. Boyd said: “My father taught me how to take responsibility and today I stand to take responsibility for those words. My apologies offered to anyone that those words may have offended or may have taken those words in terms that were not the way I intended them. For those, I apologize.” The LAPD has reacted by saying: “Pastor Boyd’s remarks speak for themselves. … The LAPD will continue to work with community leaders including Rev. Boyd, and any other community leaders that want to make Los Angeles a better, safer place.”
5. According to the AP, Residents say suspected Boko Haram fighters have kidnapped more than 30 people in northern Cameroon after attacking several towns. Bouba Kaina, a resident of where the first attacked took place, confirmed to The Associated Press on Monday that a bus was seized by the insurgents with 20 people aboard. The bus was then driven toward the border with Nigeria, about 11 miles away. Early Monday another group of fighters attacked the town of Kolofata, looting food and livestock. The renewed violence comes as legislators in Niger prepare to vote on a plan to send troops to a regional force seeking to dismantle the Islamic extremists.
6. According to Fox News, A previously scheduled Monday morning White House meeting between President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has taken on greater import as both leaders attempt to keep a united front in the midst of a dispute over whether to arm Ukrainian forces battling Russian-backed separatists in the country’s east. The Wall Street Journal reported late Sunday that Obama has held off on making a final decision on whether to provide lethal aid to Kiev until his meeting with Merkel. Support for weapons deliveries has grown in Washington as Russian-backed separatist rebels have made significant gains in eastern Ukraine in recent weeks.
7. According to The Daily Caller, Ben Carson is receiving a lot of attention as a potential presidential candidate, but he’s now also getting noticed as an apparent “anti-gay” extremist. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which considers itself a civil rights advocacy group, recently placed the famed neurosurgeon on its “Extremist Watch List” — a list that mainly includes neo-Nazis and other white supremacists. Carson was included for allegedly being “anti-gay.” The SPLC considers his opposition to gay marriage to be hateful and worthy of inclusion in the list.
8. According to Fox 5 KVVU TV, Friends of Bobbi Kristina Brown are inviting the public to a prayer vigil for Bobbi Kristina Brown, who remains on life support at Emory University Hospital. Brown was found face-down and unresponsive in the bathtub of her Roswell home Jan. 31. The vigil, called ‘Shining a Light of Healing for Bobbi Kriss’ is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 9, at the amphitheater in front of City Hall at the Riverdale Town Center. Community members are encouraged to bring signs, cellphones with lights, flashlights or any other type of artificial light source.
9. According to The Jerusalem Post, The Mideast Quartet principals met in Munich for the first time in a year on Sunday and came out against unilateral Palestinian efforts to get the international community to impose a solution on Israel. Without specifically mentioning the recent Palestinian efforts, including the failed effort at the end of December to pass a UN Security Council resolution that would have called for a full Israeli withdrawal to the 1967 lines within three years, a statement issued at the end of the meeting said that sustainable peace requires negotiations.
10. According to The Telegraph, At least 1,000 Muslim protesters gathered outside the gates of Downing Street to protest against the depictions of the Prophet Mohammed in Charlie Hebdo, the French satirical magazine. The protestors, many of whom were divided into groups of men and women, gathered just yards from the Cenotaph which remembers Britain’s war dead, and blocked half of Whitehall as they demonstrated. It comes weeks after two terrorists attacked the Paris-based satirical magazine which had published images of the Prophet Muhammad, killing 12 staff and wounding 11 others.
As you go throughout this day, keep this word in mind: 2 Thessalonians 1:3 says, “Dear brothers and sisters, we can’t help but thank God for you, because your faith is flourishing and your love for one another is growing.”
Mary Kay Ash said, “Don’t limit yourself. Many people limit themselves to what they think they can do. You can go as far as your mind lets you. What you believe, remember, you can achieve.”
God loves you. He always has and He always will. He loves you so much that the Bible says in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” If you don’t know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, why don’t you get to know Him today. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose by the power of God for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Thanks so much for listening. May God bless your day.