LISTEN: 6 Dead in Clashes in Israel (UCNN 07/22/17)

1. NYT – Six people were killed on Friday in an outbreak of violence that erupted over Israel’s placement of metal detectors at entrances to the sacred Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem and spread to the West Bank. Three Israelis were killed in what appeared to be a terrorist attack in a West Bank settlement hours after three Palestinians were killed in clashes with Israeli security forces. According to initial reports, a Palestinian entered a home in the Halamish settlement on Friday night, fatally stabbed three civilians — two men and a woman — and wounded another woman, before being shot at the scene.

2. RNS – At least half of Americans realize that churches feed and clothe the poor but far fewer are aware of other social services that congregations provide, a new study shows. LifeWay Research found that 60 percent of Americans know of churches that have fed the hungry in the last six months. Half knew of instances where they provided clothing to the poor. But scant percentages of the 1,000 Americans surveyed knew that church members teach job skills or help immigrants learn English (13 percent), volunteer to provide foster care (12 percent) or offer tax preparation assistance (8 percent).

3. CP – Eddie Hilburn, a married associate pastor and father of three at The Woodlands First Baptist Church in Texas, resigned from his position Friday, a day after he was arrested by a Harris County Sheriff’s deputy who he allegedly paid for sex. Early Friday morning, The Woodlands First Baptist Church still highlighted a profile of Hilburn, 52, and his family on their website stating that he had been with the church since July 2012. By Friday afternoon, however, his information was scrubbed from the website and the church released a statement that he had resigned.

4. Texas Tribune – As part of state lawmakers’ second attempt at passing a bathroom bill this year, a panel of Senate lawmakers voted Friday to advance a measure to restrict bathroom use for transgender Texans. The 8-1 vote came after almost 10 hours of emotional testimony — a large majority in opposition — by transgender Texans, their families and their allies, who pleaded with lawmakers to not endanger an already vulnerable population. For the third time this year, hundreds of people streamed through the halls of the Capitol and waited in line to testify on the divisive issue that has garnered Texas national attention.

5. WashPost – In a city of news junkies and scores of high-profile figures in politics and the media, the most-watched journalist in Washington may well have been Jim Vance. For more than 45 years at WRC-TV (Channel 4), he was the region’s longest-serving television news anchor. He presided over the area’s top-rated newscasts and became a public figure in his own right. He gained broad sympathy for his openness about his struggles with drugs and depression. Mr. Vance, who was 75, died July 22. The death was announced by WRC-TV, where had worked since 1969, but no further details were provided. He announced his diagnosis with cancer earlier this year.

6. Daily Beast – Actor John Heard was found dead Friday in a hotel in Palo Alto, TMZ reported Saturday, citing family sources. Heard, most well-known for his role as Kevin McAllister’s dad in the Home Alone movies, was 72. The cause of death was not immediately known, but Heard was reportedly recovering from “minor back surgery” that he underwent on Wednesday. Heard also featured in the iconic 80s films Big and Beaches, and had roles in Miami Vice and The Sopranos more recently.

7. Daily Caller – Iran has arrested 12 Christians in less than two months for practicing their faith over increased government fears of the spread of Christianity. The Center For Human Rights In Iran (CHRI) noted Thursday the arrest of 11 Christian converts and the leader Iran’s Assyrian Pentecostal Church as a “disturbing trend” in judicial persecution against Christians, according to Radio Free Europe. Iranian courts charged Christians with blasphemy, operating house churches, and blasphemy for drinking wine as part of the communion rite, despite the Iranian constitution’s recognition of the religion.

As you go throughout this day, keep this word in mind: Psalms 91:4 says, “He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.”

Joshua J. Marine said, “Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.”

God loves you. He always has and He always will. 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 Jesus as your Saviour, today is a good day to get to know Him. Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose from the dead for you. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart 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 and may God bless your day!