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Mailbag

Letters from our readers

Issue: "Coat of many dollars," May 3, 2014

‘Fleeing hell’

March 22  Thank you for the cover story on North Korea. My heart has been burdened for over a year to pray for the enslaved and oppressed victims of Kim Jung Un. I believe God wants us to support these people with our prayers and by our interest in the truth.
—Barb Roberts, Lynchburg, Va.

This story gripped my heart. The atrocities North Koreans must endure are incredible. May God work in their lives and bring even more people to know Him.
—Markus Beachy, Kisumu, Kenya

‘Permanent marker’

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March 22  Sophia Lee pointed out that Leviticus 19:28 prohibits tattoos, and 1 Corinthians says that we should glorify God with our bodies because they are temples of the Holy Spirit. Therefore we must not defile them with smoking, tattoos, or anything else harmful. Tattoos are like graffiti on a church.
—Adrian Noren, Marietta, Ga.

I appreciate Lee’s article about Christians communicating their faith through tattoos. I have seven tattoos that were for aligning my radiation oncology treatments 22 years ago. I thank the Spirit, who healed and later saved me, that the ink pinpricks form a connect-the-dots cross over my heart.
—Kyle Hanser, Edmond, Okla.

Tattoos and cremation are common practices in paganism and carry loads of theological freight. These aren’t fads; they are worldview expressions. Christians who get tattoos are culturally tone-deaf.
—Matthew Werner, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

I am a believer who has tattoos. One of them is the name of Jesus in the shape of the cross on my right arm. It has led to conversations about Christ, and it allows unbelievers to see that the Christian faith is not just about what “Thou shalt not.”
—Rebecca Foreman, Port Townsend, Wash.

One historian observed that ascending civilizations pattern themselves after those who are creative, intelligent, and promote advancement and accomplishment. Civilizations in descent mimic what was previously considered primitive and pagan. Are the markers of our culture (music, art, dress, language) moving toward wisdom and beauty or the base and barbaric?
—Daniel P. Gardinier, Wellington, Colo.

Dispatches

March 22  The president’s recommended defense budget indicates that he is refusing to carry out his principal constitutional responsibility: to defend this country. He is also abandoning the responsibility, ours since World War II, to employ military force abroad to protect our national interests and those of our allies.
—Medwyn Sloane, Denver, Colo.

Regarding the vetoing of Arizona’s religious liberty law: We need to think creatively about how to serve Him in the public square with what He’s given us. For example, wedding photographers might agree to work for same-sex couples but advise them that some profits go to organizations that oppose gay marriage laws. They might take their business elsewhere, or the photographer might have an opportunity to show the love of Christ to people opposed to Him. Politics is not our only weapon.
—Paige Buell, Dallas, Texas

‘Do you believe in magic?’

March 22  Professor Volokh’s premise that for a program to be counted as successful all participants should be surveyed, regardless of adherence to the protocol, is absurd. Should we apply the same standard to his university? Should the college’s statistics include all students who do not complete their programs?
—Robert Brendel, Palos Park, Ill.

I can’t believe Volokh. If I quit lifting weights after one session, do I still get the muscles?
—Judith Weber, Houston, Texas

‘Above the laws’

March 22  I am astounded that Janie B. Cheaney understands that “if we don’t recognize a higher authority, we end up with a government of legalities,” and yet does not see Judge Roy Moore as the champion of the rule of law. I would argue that the federal judge who ordered the Ten Commandments monument removed was wrong and that Judge Moore was upholding the rule of law.
—Pepper Bruce, Nashville, Tenn.

‘Walking through fire’

March 8  I have followed Elisabeth Elliot Gren since Jim Elliot and the other missionaries were killed in the jungles of Ecuador. Her illness breaks my heart; I too am a caregiver for a spouse with this difficult disease.
—Carol Shafer, Midland, Mich.

In the mid-1990s when I was a stay-at-home mother of young children, Elliot’s radio program was the cornerstone of my day. When my own beloved husband died suddenly in 2003 leaving me with young children, I remembered her example. Accepting my husband’s death and knowing that God is sovereign was the beginning of God healing my deep grief.
—Nancy Tiller, Spartanburg, S.C.

Ruth Graham, Edith Schaeffer, and Elisabeth Elliot taught us “biblical womanhood” in an era of feminist rage. I am very grateful for their faithfulness and sad to see them go.
—Mie McCaffrey, Forsyth, Mont.

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