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Here’s another edition of Doyle’s Half Dozen. This week’s edition features three “sneak previews” of the July 21 Baptist Messenger. I know that may not mean anything to the majority of readers, but I was rather impressed with a lot of the content featured in next week’s Messenger, so I thought I’d whet the appetite for those of you who read my DHD and take the Oklahoma Baptist news journal.

Let’s get to it!

  1. Trump stuff

Before I get to the Messenger topics, I’ll cover politics, sports and a great piece I read online.

Presumptive Republican Presidential Nominee Donald Trump is going to introduce Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate. If you are a frequent DHD reader, you know I’m not planning to vote for either Trump or Clinton in the November election. I shared in the May 13 DHD my reasons why I am not impressed with Trump. I even went so far to say that a conservative VP candidate may not sway me.

Just to clarify, though, I do not associate with the “Never Trump” people either. What this means is I’ve got all kinds of people who would disagree with me. I may be as unpopular as Kevin Durant.

Here’s how it works for me, dear friends. I am an issues voter. I consider the issues I believe reflect my obedience to God. In my lifetime, I do not believe there is a weightier yet clearer issue for the American Christian voter to consider than the Sanctity of Life, specifically how such should be honored in regards to opposing the excessively immoral practice of abortion.

Donald Trump has mentioned he is now “pro-life,” after many years saying he was the opposite. I have mentioned my skepticism in the past and will continue to be skeptical. But having Mike Pence as his running mate will give Trump a positive mark in my view, though it doesn’t completely convince me.

Pence has been a strong advocate for the Sanctity of Life and has been a loud voice against Planned Parenthood, the world’s largest abortion provider. Though it’s a positive mark, more needs to happen for Trump to gain my vote.

I’m curious to hear how Russell Moore, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission president and a Trump contrarian, views this selection. I also want to see an endorsement of the National Right to Life organization, the largest pro-life group in the country. I read a great article about NRL’s convention last week and how for the first time in a long time the presumptive Republican presidential candidate did not speak or provide a video message for the convention.

“The N.R.L.C. Convention reminds us that Donald Trump needs to improve his outreach to pro-life voters. His July meeting with social conservative leaders was a start, but more must be done. His official campaign website still contains nothing about his position on sanctity of life issues.”

Just like the article states, more must be done, but Trump did help himself with naming Pence as running mate.

  1. Russell rumors

Last week I talked about the Oklahoma City Thunder not likely to trade Russell Westbrook before the start of the season. This week, reports came out that the opposite may happen with the all-star guard, and it’s likely he will be traded to the Boston Celtics. The very next day, another report came out stating the Celtics may make a deal to get Blake Griffin. I assure you, Boston is unable to pick up both all-stars.

I believe these are just rumors coming out of Boston because the Celtics got a bad rap the night of the NBA draft. They tried their hardest to pick up a big NBA name and were unsuccessful.

Looking at this situation from the viewpoint of Sam Presti and the Thunder front office, the Thunder will not trade Westbrook unless they believe they can work out a deal that will benefit them both immediately and in the future. Apparently, the Celtics have a load of draft picks to offer, but looking at the roster, there are no current players worth swapping for Westbrook, in my opinion.

I still believe the Thunder will stay the course with Russell on the roster for the season opener. If the season doesn’t seem to be going favorably, the Thunder will consider trading Russ before the February trade deadline.

But don’t take my word for it. Check out Berry Tramel’s article “Why Trading Westbrook is Like Cannibalism.

  1. How Christians should comment online

I will try to be brief for the rest of this DHD.

Nothing stirs me up more than those comments on the bottom of an online article. It’s amazing how powerful people think they can be behind a keyboard.

Check out an article by Jon Bloom titled “How Should Christians Comment Online?” This piece provides some valuable wisdom.

“The Bible counsels us to restrain our lips (which in the twenty-first century includes thumbs) because a fool has many words (Ecclesiastes 5:3). We are wise to heed this counsel. It’s also helpful to remember that our sin nature gives us all an exaggerated sense of self-importance. But gospel humility leads us to esteem others higher than ourselves (Philippians 2:3). Perhaps our opinions aren’t needed after all.”

  1. First sneak peek: Walker Moore’s ‘Triple Blessing’

If you have read the Baptist Messenger before, you should be familiar with regular Messenger columnist Walker Moore.

In his “Rite of Passage” column next week, Walker offers his usual humor about visiting “Wilmart” in Panama while on one of his mission adventures. The main part of his piece talks about a young man named Isaac who was born with three feet. It’s a power presentation, and Walker concludes with an encouraging thought about Isaac: “If scripture calls my two feet ‘beautiful,’ then what do you call a man with three feet? A triple blessing!”

  1. Second sneak peek: Dr. Jordan’s column

My heart has been stirred many times after reading Anthony Jordan’s column, but the Oklahoma Baptist executive leader shared a strong message in regards to the recent racial disunity in our country. His column in the July 21 Messenger needs to be shared, and if you don’t receive the printed edition, be on the lookout on

“What does the example of the Good Samaritan story mean for the local church and for us as individual followers of Christ? I think it means we face our prejudices and set aside all hatred and disregard for people whose skin is darker or lighter than our own. We should move toward people who are unlike us and purposefully seek to develop personal relationships built upon mutual respect and genuine love for the person of a different race. We should also recognize each person as just a special creation of God, bearing His image as do you.”

That’s just a small snippet of this great, challenging message. It also may appear in an upcoming issue of The Oklahoman.

  1. Third sneak peek: Edmond couple ignites prayer for police

I had the opportunity to interview Jake Marple and his pastor Griff Henderson at Edmond, Waterloo Road. Jake and his wife Becky did a powerful thing earlier this week, as they orchestrated a prayer service in front of the Edmond Police Department.

This was in response to the Marples seeing the news reports of the Dallas shootings of five police officers, as well as the mayor of Dallas requesting for prayer. Next week’s Messenger shares how the couple started with the idea while sitting at their kitchen table, grew with the help of their Sunday School, then with their neighbors and through social media, and resulted in more than 100 people gathering to offer prayer for their city’s police force.

Though it may seem like a small observance in light of what is happening across the country, I believe prayer gatherings can be more powerful and much more effective than any political demonstrations.