Christmas – Holy Days?

 Christmas – The Mass of Christ?

As the holidays, or festive season, have once again arrived, we could perhaps ask ourselves what it is that people who call themselves Christians are actually celebrating during the Christmas and New Year period. If Christmas is one of the main Christian holidays why do so many non-Christians observe it?

This season has become totally focussed on consumerism and materialism on a grand scale – shopping sprees and the buying of gifts for people who do not need and in many cases do not want them. Many people delay paying bills and jump onto the debt train in order to finance the extravagances of the season. There are other people who deplore the excesses of Christmas and try to preserve what they believe to be the sacredness of Christmas. Yet others believe the religious aspect should be rejected and the focus should be on family and a time for giving to others who are less fortunate than themselves.

So what are we to believe about Christmas and its alleged connection to the Son of God?

The Scriptures reveal no record of a feast day on Jesus Christ’s birthday. If His birth-day was important to remember then surely the precise date would have been recorded along with a commandment to include it, and to observe it, in the list of annual Holy Days that are recorded? It was not instituted and celebrated by Jesus Christ, the apostles or the early Christian church. Christmas has no biblical authority.

The “Communion,” which is instituted by New Testament Bible authority, is a memorial of the death of Christ – not His birth.

Perhaps the Christmas observances allude to the traditions of men (and women of course) rather than the Holy Days of our Creator? (Mathew 15:8, 9)

The origins of Christmas are to be found in ancient so-called pagan practices. Not until the fourth century A.D. did the Roman Catholic Church give this longstanding ancient custom its Christian sounding name. It was not until the fifth century that the Roman Church ordered it to be celebrated as an official Christian festival!

The Catholic theologian Origen (A.D. 185-232) acknowledged that “in the Scriptures, sinners alone, not saints, celebrate their birthday” (Catholic Encyclopaedia). In the fifth century, the Western Church ordered it to be celebrated forever on the day of the old Roman feast of the birth of Sol, as no certain knowledge of the day of Jesus Christ’s birth existed. Even the year of His birth is open to conjecture!

Many other Christian churches have followed the Catholic church in following the traditions of man-kind.

Ancient Rome celebrated Brumalia – the re-birth of the sun after the winter solstice

..the birth of Christ was assigned the date of the winter solstice (December 25 in the Julian calendar, January 6 in the Egyptian), because on this day, as the sun began its return to northern skies, the pagan devotees of Mithra celebrated the dies natalis Solis Invicti (birthday of the Invincible Sun). On Dec. 25, 274, Aurelian had proclaimed the sun-god principal patron of the empire and dedicated a temple to him in the Campus Martius. Christmas originated at a time when the cult of the sun was particularly strong at Rome.

The New Catholic Encyclopedia, 1967

The date of December 25 to celebrate Jesus Christ’s birth was chosen to conform to the ancient Roman holidays called Saturnalia and Brumalia.

 Brumalia

Winter festivals of ancient Roman – winter solstice festival honouring Saturn/Cronus and Ceres/Demeter, and Bacchus in some cases. By the Byzantine era, celebrations commenced on 24 November and lasted for a month, until Saturnalia and the Waxing of the Light.

Saturnalia

People decorated their homes with wreaths and other greenery, and shed their traditional togas in favour of colourful clothes known as synthesis. Even slaves did not have to work during Saturnalia, but were allowed to participate in the festivities; in some cases, they sat at the head of the table while their masters served them.

The pagan celebration of Saturn, the Roman god of agriculture and time, began as a single day, but by the late Republic (133-31 B.C.) it had expanded to a week-long festival beginning December 17. (On the Julian calendar, which the Romans used at the time, the winter solstice fell on December 25.)

Gift-giving

The exchange of gifts between family and friends is a characteristic of the Christmas season. Some people argue that the Wise Men presented gifts to the new-born Jesus and therefore the custom has a Biblical foundation. However, it was the custom to present gifts to a king – Where is he that is born King of the Jews (Mathew 2:2). The wise men were aware of who the new-born child was and hence the presentation of gifts – gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. (v.11). They did not present or exchange gifts with anyone else.

The birth of Christ was not celebrated by the early New Testament church. Jesus Christ’s name has no Scriptural basis for being associated with the winter solstice, or, for celebration of this man-made festive season.

 The Christmas Tree

Jeremiah 10:1 Hear ye the word which the LORD (Yĕhovah) speaketh unto you, O house of Israel: 2 Thus saith the LORD (Yĕhovah), Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. 3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. 4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. 5 They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good. – 21 For the pastors are become brutish, and have not sought the LORD: therefore they shall not prosper, and all their flocks shall be scattered.

 1 Kings 14:23 For they also built them high places, and images, and groves, on every high hill, and under every green tree.

 Read also Deut.12:2, 2Kings16:4, 2Chronicles 28:4. – Plus even more ungodly references to the green tree for those willing to search. They are all associated with idolatry and false worship.

It will be noted that Yĕhovah is speaking to the House of Israel (Jeremiah 10:1) through His servant Jeremiah. This is a rather remarkable warning considering that Jeremiah lived among the house of Judah, while the house of Israel had long since been removed from their land by the Assyrians? – That, however, is another story!

From the above it can be ascertained that the tradition of the evergreen tree that sits centre-stage in many homes during the Christmas season has absolutely nothing in common with the Son of God, his birth, or any commandment to celebrate His birth. It has everything to do with non-Christian observance!

In Scandinavia it is quite common for people to dance around the Christmas tree – even bowing and curtsying to the tree – how idolatrous is that?

Santa Claus

 I am not going to devote much time to this mythological concept except to say that little, or no, historical and verifiable knowledge exists (except that of man-made Catholic and Orthodox tradition) to equate the life and works of Saint Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, to that of the myth of Santa Claus. There is absolutely no biblical connection to the birth of Jesus Christ, the man-made Christmas tradition, or to someone flying around the world on a gift-giving mission on one night of the year.

Conclusion:

The Scriptures do not reveal the date of Jesus Christ’s birth. There is no commandment to celebrate His birthday. His birthday is not mentioned among the annual Holy days that are to be observed. If Christians should celebrate His birthday then surely that date would have been clearly revealed in the Scriptures?

Christmas has absolutely nothing to do with the birth day of Jesus Christ – it is man-made.

Christians are required to assist the poor and needy, the widow and the orphan. There is no requirement to present gifts at Christmas, or any other day, to those who, in the majority of cases, have no need of them – especially if the giver is expecting to receive a gift in return.

The Christmas tree is an ancient symbol having absolutely no connection to the God of Israel. It is associated with idolatry and false worship.

Christmas is associated with an abundance of artificial lights – to drive away the darkness? Perhaps more closely connected to a certain Angel of Light? (2 Corinth. 11:14, 15)

The beginning of God’s New Year does not begin in the middle of darkest winter (in the North) – 1st January – it begins in the Spring, when natural light is driving the darkness away.

Shop yourself into debt – many people end the Christmas and New Year season in debt due to overindulgence.

If people wish to celebrate the darkest period (holidays) of the year with family and friends and freely give to those in need, they must surely do so with joy in their hearts – However, this holiday period is not, and never has been, Holy or associated with the birth of Yĕhovah.

Advertisements

Economics – Time for Change?

International trade in chemical products is not free. . . . Joint control of the market became the general rule; free competition, the exception.”
George W. Stocking, Cartels in Action: Case Studies in International Business Diplomacy

Just a few thoughts that may – or may not – be of interest to the reader!

There appears to be two main theories promoted by the self-proclaimed and so-called experts in the field of economics as to how a nation’s wealth should be measured.

  1. Consumerism – the financial ability of a nation’s citizens to consume (purchase) goods.
  2. Manufacturing – the ability of a nation to produce goods for sale.

Empire building

Arguably, the greatest global empire this planet has witnessed to date is the former British Empire. However, it was not the vision of empire that initially gave this small island nation the impetus to venture far and wide. Britain, formerly regarded as a nation of shopkeepers, spread its trading tentacles with a view to increasing its ever-increasing voracious appetite for consumer goods and established trading posts in far-flung areas around the globe. An island nation that wanted to develop required a merchant fleet to supply the raw materials that were not available at home. The industrial revolution in Britain required more and more raw materials to be shipped into the island nation. The raw materials were then processed and manufactured into saleable goods – for domestic consumption – and the surplus could be exported to other nations.

In order to keep the sea lanes open for the safe transport of these raw materials and manufactured goods an armed naval presence was required on a global basis. Thus, an empire was, over time, created.

Today, both the merchant and naval fleets are but a shadow of their former glory. Britannia no longer rules the waves. Britain still maintains a Commonwealth of Nations that continue to pay lip service to the throne.

By the 1850’s British manufacturing and the industrial base was in high gear. It was not until the 1870’s that Germany began to catch-up.

Free Trade

At its height the British Empire was completely self-supporting. Britain benefited from a policy of protectionism for the home market. Only imported goods from the dominions were allowed and foreign competition was almost non-existent. This changed in the last half of the 1800’s when liberal politicians decided to abandon protectionist policies on trade and opened-up the market to free-trade. Markets began to be flooded with cheaply produced, low-cost and inferior goods manufactured in countries outside of the Empire. Within 50 years Britain was manufacturing considerably less and by 1914 even Germany’s industrial economy was greater than that of Britain.

Foreign Ownership

Free trade has allowed, in the present, Britain’s trading empire of old to be but a distant memory – the source of its wealth in the past. Much of its former industrial base has been dismantled and what does remain is largely in the hands of foreign industrial conglomerates. Strategic services – the ones that for reasons of national security alone should be run and controlled by the sovereign nation – have been sold to foreign enterprises – many of which are based in countries that were former enemies of Britain. Water distribution, power generation and supply, postal services, telecommunications and many port facilities are in the hands of foreign nationals.

Customs Union

In the first half of the 1800’s, Germany created a customs union — Zollverein (1834). It was seen in retrospect as a strategic move by Germany in pursuit of its continual historical ambitions of Empire. Its foundations had been in development from 1818 with the creation of a variety of custom unions among the German states. By 1866, the Zollverein included most of the German states. The foundation of the Zollverein was the first instance in history in which independent states had consummated a full economic union without the simultaneous creation of a political federation or union. After the founding of the German Empire in 1871, the Empire assumed the control of the customs union. However, all states within the Empire were not part of the Zollverein until 1888. Conversely, although it was not a state in the German Reich, until 1919 Luxembourg remained in the Zollverein.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zollverein

German Expansionism

The Zollverein was one strategic step in building a German Empire. Otto von Bismarck, the first German chancellor, stated that Germany must be able to supply itself and equip its armies without reliance on imports from foreign countries. The primary purpose of the customs and trading union was, as stated above, a strategic move in preparing for German expansionism by military force – the rest is Hi(s)tory.

European Union (EU)

The present EU developed from a so-called common market of European trading nations. Initially a coal and steel union; it has relatively rapidly developed into a German dominated and self-sufficient union of trading nations. It has a global industrial base that enables it to produce wealth that places the union in the top echelon of federal economies. The EU is not a sovereign federal state – although that is the ultimate goal – despite the rhetoric one might hear to the contrary. The member states (each of which still maintains its own sovereignty (in name at least) could not agree on a constitution that would in effect establish the EU as a federal super state. A sovereign federal state requires a strong leader – a leader that has yet to appear on the European stage. There is, however, only one country within the present European membership that firmly believes in its almost divine right to lead. A country that 70 years ago lay in ruins after yet another attempt to rule Europe and beyond. Its industrial base destroyed and the country divided into two opposing regimes – never again to rise and threaten the peace of Europe and beyond! – Hmm!

The re-building of this country and the re-uniting of its two diverse parts into what is often called the power house of Europe over a relatively short time-span is nothing short of miraculous – what has destiny planned for the coming future?

Competition

So-called free trade is just another term for competition.

Competition is healthy. How many times do we hear that phrase rattled off by the business and political leaders of our day? We are continually bombarded with many apparently valid reasons as to why competition is viewed as a positive asset, whereas it may be that competition is a natural force invoked in an effort to curb Man’s GREED? – Sometimes called a monopoly. In the realms of computer technology it would appear that a small number of global conglomerates have managed to acquire a greater competitive advantage – attempting to monopolize?

We all possess this rather unpleasant trait of greed, some less so than others. Greed is a natural part of the make-up of carnal human nature. Few of us would admit publicly that we possess this greedy streak, but by taking a brutally honest look at ourselves it will reveal itself.

Competition often brings with it all the negative traits we normally try to avoid – insecurity, anxiety, envy, illness (mental and physical), violence, crime and war – to name but a few.

Competition is found in all areas of society – political, religious, financial, so-called recreational pursuits, between neighbours, school, work-place, between nations etc. – the list goes on.

The massive problems we have experienced in the past (and are continuing to experience in the present) in the global financial sector – with much worse to come – are a direct effect of competition (not to mention greed). The same is also true of the warring factions found in Iraq, Yemen, Syria and Afghanistan – So-called religions and nations competing for WHAT?

The best political ruling system Man has managed to devise, based on human reasoning, is based on democratic principles – Rule from the bottom up through the ballot box. The practice of democracy seldom achieves a spirit of co-operation. How much energy is expended by opposing political parties in a spirit of division (competition) rather than of co-operation?

Man-kind has also tried other forms of government – in the long-term they all have failings! Why has Man-kind failed here? Because we do not have a common set of Standards and Values (Laws) that all will agree upon and that would assist us in making the right decisions or choices

Man constantly makes wrong choices through false reasoning – a reasoning based on human natures selfish concern for itself. The choices made may appear to be right (Proverb 14:12; 16:25), but in the end are shown to be based on deception and vanity (Eccl.1). It would appear that a number of leaders within the financial industry suffer from vanity – excessively proud of oneself or one’s qualities or possessions – self-conceit.

Education!

One could be forgiven for questioning the quality of business schools that teach the budding leaders of business, finance and industry? There are a large number of such schools on a global basis – all claiming to be leaders in their field of education. A first class education in all fields of business and finance can be obtained – so they all claim. Various degrees of higher education can be pursued – from diploma to bachelor to master and even doctorates.

One may assume that many financial executives have graduated from one or more of these schools of excellence? So what happened between graduation and reaching a top position in the financial world? Is the theoretical world of school no longer compatible with the practical aspects of managing a financial institution? Or, is the mind of the graduate subjected to outside influences in the workplace that slowly but surely persuade (deceive) him/her into believing that there are other and more lucrative methods of doing business than that taught in school – at least in the short-term?

National and international assemblies make efforts to implement common sets of standards through laws and charters that are based on the frailties of human nature. The lawgivers try to implement them while the defenders of the lawbreakers make a lucrative living attempting to circumvent them.

The spirit of competition has become so ingrained in the human psyche that it is impossible to eradicate it. Genuine cooperation, instead of competition, at all levels of society would perhaps alleviate many of the grave problems that the world faces? Unfortunately, due to the frailties of human nature this is but a pipe dream – cooperation often turns into a cartel monopoly – until such times as the end of an aeon allows (forces) a new beginning.

Is the sun is setting on the Global Policeman?

The spirit of competition has destroyed more than one empire in the past and this same spirit appears to be working rather successfully in the present to destroy yet another global policeman –  economically, politically and socially through internal division and civil unrest.

The US is additionally faced with a grave problem – current Government debt. The present Federal Debt is about $21.8 trillion – and rising rapidly. The federal budget deficit has increased to $779 billion. The debt is expected to rise to $25.86 trillion by end of 2019 financial year! Interest payments on the debt and the increasing cost of entitlement programs are consuming ever more of the federal budget. The Trump administration wants a 5% cut  in federal budget spending spread across the board by 2020. For the defence department that would work out at ca. $33 billion. This at a time when the coming future will contain greater threats from those who are increasing their so-called defence budgets and modernising their own forces.

The above figure is the gross federal debt issued by the United States Department of the Treasury since 1790. It doesn’t include state and local debt, and it doesn’t include the so-called unfunded liabilities of entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare. — Source: http://www.usgovernmentdebt.us

In other words the US can not finance its own spending without continually borrowing from domestic and foreign investors. Debt held by the public was approximately 77% of GDP in 2017, ranked 43rd highest out of 207 countries. The Congressional Budget Office forecast in April 2018 that the ratio will rise to nearly 100% by 2028.

Trade wars are currently in vogue with the current US administration. Just how long will ‘America First’ be a catchphrase? The US has many enemies – even, it would appear, among its so-called friends – watch Europe!

Does free trade do to a nation what alcoholism does to a man: saps him first of his vitality, then his energy, then his independence, then his life?

Warnings from unexpected sources in the past?

“But, in general, the protective system of our day is conservative, while the free trade system is destructive. It breaks up old nationalities and pushes the antagonism of the proletariat and the bourgeoisie to the extreme point. In a word, the free trade system hastens the social revolution. It is in this revolutionary sense alone, gentlemen, that I vote in favour of free trade”. 
― Karl MarxOn the Question of Free Trade

“But suppose, for the sake of argument, free competition, without any sort of monopoly, would develop capitalism trade more rapidly. Is it not a fact that the more rapidly trade and capitalism develop, the greater is the concentration of production and capital which gives rise to monopoly” 
― Vladimir Ilyich LeninImperialism, the highest stage of capitalism: a    popular outline

 

The Man who moved a mountain

If you have not already read the following account about Dashrath Manjhi and his remarkable testament of service to the society of which he belonged – then follow this URL and be humbled: http://moralheroes.org/dashrath-manjhi

Dashrath Manjhi was a man unlike any other – After 22 years of missing hardly a day on the project, he had finished moving the mountain. He had broken through!

”The distance of their daily journeys were cut from over 35 miles to less than 2 miles, using Dashrath’s new road. The villagers call him ‘Baba’, meaning the revered man, and people around the world know him best as – The Mountain Man.

If more people would act on their love for others, as Dashrath Manjhi did, society would be more prosperous and more cheerful.

Unfortunately, human nature, of itself, appears to be more concerned with love of SELF rather than love for others!

Brexit

Eccl.1:9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

Big Ben, the iconic 157 year-old London timepiece is silenced for 4 years during restoration work on the clock tower.

Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, stated that the issue had been blown out of proportion and the silencing of the bell was “not a national disaster”.

Although it may well be a SIGN of a coming disaster?

Duality

Hosea 7:1 When I would have healed Israel, then the iniquity of Ephraim was discovered, and the wickedness of Samaria: for they commit falsehood; and the thief cometh in, and the troop of robbers spoileth without. 2 And they consider not in their hearts that I remember all their wickedness: now their own doings have beset them about; they are before my face.

Hosea 7:8 Ephraim, he hath mixed himself among the people; Ephraim is a cake not turned. 9 Strangers have devoured his strength, and he knoweth it not: yea, gray hairs are here and there upon him, yet he knoweth not.10 And the pride of Israel testifieth to his face: and they do not return to the LORD their God, nor seek him for all this.

The Throne of the House of Israel?

Isaiah 28:10 ‘..Here a little there a little…’

The following is an incomplete story that may, or may not, encourage the reader to consider whether the Throne on which Queen Elisabeth II was anointed in the sight of God to rule over His subjects is a symbol of future past!

Jeremiah 33:17 For thus saith the LORD; David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel; 18 Neither shall the priests the Levites want a man before me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice continually…20 Thus saith the LORD; If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; 21  [Then] may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers.

 There are two perpetual covenants mentioned in above named verses. No one has broken God’s covenant of the day or the night so we must agree that God’s covenant with David cannot have been broken either.

  1. There will always be someone of the physical lineage of David to sit on Israel’s throne.

The word son in verse 21 can also mean children (male/female – Strong’s H1121-ben)

  1. There will always be physical descendants of the Levitical priesthood.

As these two covenants are mentioned together then it would appear that David’s throne and the priesthood (God’s own true Church) are irrevocably linked in some form.

The English KJV rendering -”upon the throne of the house of Israel” – in which the word house is translated from the Hebrew – Strong’s #H1004 – bayith

a) House, dwelling habitation. b) shelter or abode of animals c) human bodies (figurative) d) Of Sheol. e) of abode of light and darkness f) of land of Ephraim

As no one has broken God’s Covenant of the day or the night, then we must accept that the two above named covenants are still valid.

There is no throne to be found in modern-day Israel (Judah), and the Jewish religious community in modern day Israel certainly do not recognize the New Testament (NT) Gospel of Jesus Christ. Once the NT era was established and the Holy Spirit became generally available to those chosen by God to receive it, then although salvation is of the Jews (John 4:22) i.e. through Jesus Christ – it is not necessary to be a physical Jew to inherit this gift.

However, it is necessary to become a Spiritual Jew– Rom. 2:29 But he [is] a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision [is that] of the heart, in the spirit, [and] not in the letter; whose praise [is] not of men, but of God.

If we take a look at Isaiah 22:22 And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.

This verse is talking about Eliakim, who was given a special mission by God (v.21)

Sustaining the government of God on his shoulders – figuratively speaking.

This Key of David is essential to enable the opening of the door to revealed knowledge – A key that many church ministers neglect to even mention.

The key to revealing this throne’s whereabouts is of paramount importance to us all because:  Luke 1:32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:

 Jesus did not receive this throne while he was here in physical form – born a Jew and a physical descendant of David – although He did qualify to sit upon it – but His kingdom is not of this present world ( John. 18:36)

Referring back to Isaiah 22.22 – Is there some clue in the wording that could lead us towards God’s Church today and also the whereabouts of David’s throne?

Revelation – is an end time Book, and if we take a look at Chpt.3 verse 7, we read an almost identical wording to that of Isaiah:  And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;

 In the Book of Revelation, the seven early NT churches in Asia Minor are all mentioned along with a brief description of their spiritual qualities (or lack of). As they are mentioned in the last book of the Bible, then is it possible that they also refer to the TYPES of churches that are to be found in the last days?

False Churches?

Satan has his own ministries and his own ministers who proclaim that they are apostles of Christ. They do not teach the Gospel of Christ , usually their gospel is about the person of Christ – of whom we really know very little – It is the WORD of Christ that should be taught and not the person. Christ Himself said that He did not speak His own words but those of the Father.

What is the synagogue of Satan –2 Corinth. 11:13 For such [are] false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. 14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light; 15 Therefore [it is] no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works..

Satan will do anything to prevent the true Gospel message and PLAN of God the Father, through His Son Jesus Christ, being preached to the world. The Key of David opens a door to revelation that most people reject because it is based on THE LAW OF GOD – and not the law of man.

Human nature, of itself, will reason its way around the Laws of God.

John 9:39  And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind.

 To be able to judge one requires a set of laws.

”they which see, might be made blind”. – Judicially incapable of apprehending and receiving the truth, to which they have wilfully shut their eyes. (Jamieson, Fausset, Brown)

 This does not mean that the many people who adhere to the teachings of the false apostles and false churches are evil or in any way inferior human beings – many of them certainly truly believe what they have been taught. Many of these people have not taken the opportunity to read, and study God’s Word for themselves – they are quite happy to believe their religious instructors interpretation of the Scriptures!

See Rev.12:9 – And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

This may also be one reason why the Word of God tells us that: And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come – Matt.24:14

The true Gospel is not to be preached in an effort to educate or save everyone now, or in the past, but as a witness that every Word of God is fast and true. People will realize in the coming future that they have been deceived.

ZADOK THE PRIEST

 Zadok the Priest is a coronation anthem composed by George Frideric Handel using texts from the King James Bible. It is one of the four Coronation Anthems that Handel composed for the Coronation of George II of Great Britain in 1727, and has been sung at every subsequent British coronation service. It is traditionally performed during the sovereign’s anointing.

This anthem was also played when Mary Elizabeth Donaldson (Scots descent) walked down the aisle to her wedding with Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark (Dan-mark) on 14 May 2004.

David sinned gravely while on this throne, and twice attempts were made to unseat him from it. Only his heartfelt repentance toward God saved him. Throughout his reign, Zadok faithfully served David because he knew that it was not the person who sat on the throne that was most important but that which the throne symbolizes – Luke 1:21, 22.

The following text is taken from the biblical account of the anointing of Solomon:

1 Kings 1:38 So Zadok the priest, and Nathan the prophet, and Benaiah the son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites, and the Pelethites, went down, and caused Solomon to ride upon king David’s mule, and brought him to Gihon. 39 And Zadok the priest took an horn of oil out of the tabernacle, and anointed Solomon. And they blew the trumpet; and all the people said, God save king Solomon. 40 And all the people came up after him, and the people piped with pipes, and rejoiced with great joy, so that the earth rent with the sound of them.

Text of Coronation Anthem (Zadok the Priest):

Zadok, the Priest, and Nathan, the Prophet, anointed Solomon King;
and all the people rejoiced, and said:
God save the King, long live the King, may the King live for ever!
Amen! Alleluja!

Retrieved from http://www1.cpdl.org/wiki/index.php/Zadok_the_Priest_(George_Frideric_Handel)

A little more on this here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zadok_the_Priest

Brief details of Coronation service of British Royalty

On the night before the coronation the Regalia is brought from the Tower of London to the Abbey and kept overnight in the Jerusalem Chamber.

In the first part of the service the Sovereign processes from the west end of the Abbey through the nave and choir to the Theatre. During the procession verses from Psalm 122 are sung:

  1. 1.[[A Song of degrees of David.]] I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.2 Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem. 3 Jerusalem is builded as a city that is compact together: 4 Whither the tribes go up, the tribes of the LORD, unto the testimony of Israel, to give thanks unto the name of the LORD. 5 For there are set thrones of judgment, the thrones of the house of David. 6 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee…

The Sovereign takes an oath, swearing to govern faithfully with justice and mercy, to uphold the Gospel, and to maintain the doctrine and worship of the Church of England. In 1953, for the first time, this part of the ceremony ended with the presentation of a Bible, ‘To keep your Majesty ever mindful of the Law and Gospel of God as the rule for the whole life and government of Christian princes’.

The Anglican Church would appear to be straying far from the Word of God in the present.

Those of you who keep yourselves informed on current events, will be aware that both the Anglican Church and the Royal Family – Not to mention the UK as a whole – are confronted with many problems. The Word of God relating to future prophetic events that were written down in the past are now beginning to reveal themselves to us in the present.

circularArrow

In the second part the Communion service proceeds. After the Creed the choir sings Veni, Creator Spiritus, the ancient hymn invoking the Holy Spirit. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veni_Creator_Spiritus

Four Knights of the Garter hold a canopy over the Chair and, concealed from view, the Archbishop anoints the Sovereign with holy oil on the hands, the breast and the head. This is the most solemn part of the coronation service – for by anointing the monarch is set apart or consecrated for the duties of a Sovereign. Meanwhile, the choir sings the anthem Zadok the Priest, the words of which (from the first Book of Kings) have been sung at every coronation since King Edgar’s in 973. Since the coronation of George II in 1727 the setting by Handel has always been used.

In the third part Some items, such as the Orb, are presented symbolically and then returned to the altar, but the Sovereign retains the Sceptre (symbolising kingly power) in one hand and the Rod with the Dove (symbolising justice and mercy) in the other.

In the fourth part the newly crowned Sovereign leaves the Coronation Chair and moves to the Throne in the main part of the Theatre between the sacrarium and the quire. Now visible to all and supported by the Archbishop and the great Officers of State, the Sovereign is placed in the Throne and at that moment takes possession of the kingdom. The Sovereign now receives the homage of the people, performed first by the Lords Spiritual (the bishops) and then the Lords Temporal.

More info: http://www.westminster-abbey.org/our-history/royals/coronations/guide-to-the-coronation-service

Jacob’s Pillow Stone or  Pillar Stone

One important point that I have not mentioned here is the Stone of Destiny – variously called Jacob’s Pillow Stone or Pillar Stone. The Coronation chair was built around it in 1300-1. It was stolen, supposedly by Scottish Nationals, in 1950 but found in 1951 and placed back in the chair in 1952. That the stone has now been removed to Edinburgh castle may well have prophetic consequences?

House of Israel and House of Judah

I have mentioned in other postings that it is vitally important to distinguish between the house of Israel and the house of Judah when studying the Scriptures – especially when studying prophecy – otherwise much of Biblical prophecy does not make any sense.

Heb. 8:8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

The above clearly distinguishes between the two houses in reference to the new pact to be made with both houses on Christ’s return (the days come).

People often become thoroughly confused and assume it is only the Jews (Judah) that are being referred to in many passages of Scripture when it is in fact the tribes of Israel (lost sheep).

We must however, be careful because in some Scriptural passages house of Israel can refer to God’s Church. The context of a passage in which the phrase appears must be ascertained.

Here is an important verse about in those days – Jeremiah 3:18 in those days, the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers.

Jeremiah 31:31 Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:

Almost the same, word for word, as in Heb.8:8

 Perhaps, some of the most important verses that help us along the way are the following:

Genesis 48:14 And Israel stretched out his right hand, and laid [it] upon Ephraim’s head, who [was] the younger, and his left hand upon Manasseh’s head, guiding his hands wittingly; for Manasseh [was] the firstborn. 15 And he blessed Joseph, and said, God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac did walk, the God which fed me all my life long unto this day, 16 The Angel which redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads; and let my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth. 17 And when Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand upon the head of Ephraim, it displeased him: and he held up his father’s hand, to remove it from Ephraim’s head unto Manasseh’s head. 18 And Joseph said unto his father, Not so, my father: for this [is] the firstborn; put thy right hand upon his head. 19 And his father refused, and said, I know [it], my son, I know [it]: he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great: but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations. 20 And he blessed them that day, saying, In thee shall Israel bless, saying, God make thee as Ephraim and as Manasseh: and he set Ephraim before Manasseh.

Ephraim and Manasseh were already children of Israel (descendants of Jacob) through Joseph. Jacob (Israel) blessed all of his sons but only the two sons of Joseph were blessed and specifically given the name ISRAEL. The descendants of these two sons were to ‘grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth’.

The final words of verse 16, ‘in the midst of the earth’, – in other words they were to be globally represented – Manasseh, a large nation, and Ephraim, many nations.

Jeremiah and the Throne

David’s throne and Israel are connected through the prophet Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 1:10 See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.

 Jeremiah was a very special prophet to God – Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, [and] I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

His mission – to root out the evil that filled Judah (Jeremiah. 44:19 And when we burned incense to the queen of heaven, and poured out drink offerings unto her, did we make her cakes to worship her, and pour out drink offerings unto her, without our men?) and to pull down the ruler of Judah as Zedekiah would not repent.

The city of Jerusalem was destroyed by the Babylonians – however, the most important part of Jeremiah’s mission was to BUILD and to PLANT – but what was he to plant?

After Jeremiah’s release from the captivity of the Babylonians (the first part of Jeremiah’s mission had already been accomplished) he journeyed to Mizpah – Jerusalem was in ruins)

The second part of his mission now needed to be performed.

Why go to Mizpah? –  Jeremiah. 41:10 Then Ishmael carried away captive all the residue of the people who [were] in Mizpah, [even] the king’s daughters, and all the people that remained in Mizpah, whom Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had committed to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam: and Ishmael the son of Nethaniah carried them away captive, and departed to go over to the Ammonites.

Jeremiah. 43:6 [Even] men, and women, and children, and the king’s daughters, and every person that Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had left with Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan, and Jeremiah the prophet, and Baruch the son of Neriah.

 The Royal lineage does not appear to have ended with Zedekiah!

 

 

Nailed to the Cross!

What was nailed to the cross?

This posting will briefly reflect over some rather contentious topics that have divided Christians in the New Testament (NT) era.

Col. 2:14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; 15 [And] having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.**

It is Christ’s resurrection and not His death that is the ‘life giving part’ of the crucifixion.

The interpretation of verses 13 thro’ 17 – have always been a matter of controversy between various Christian denominations. There would appear to be some disagreement as to what was actually nailed to the cross? They have also been used to prove that it is no longer necessary for NT Christians to adhere to Old Testament (OT) ordinances?

Paul greets the brethren in ColosseCol.1:2 To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse

The brethren in Colosse were Gentile converts to Christ living in a Gentile city and Paul warned them about the dangers present then, and also as a warning for us today!

Col.2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holy day, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath [days]:

 The brethren in Colosse had been taught to respect and hold all of God’s Holy Days; otherwise they would not have been ‘judged’, by their fellow non-converted citizens, for doing so. Paul’s message to those converts is not the same message that many Christian churches teach today? – Teachings after the traditions of men, based upon the rudiments of this world, would appear to take precedence?!

Let us attempt to understand what is actually being said in the above verses.

Col. 2:14 – ‘handwriting of ordinances’

Handwriting – Strong’s G5498 cheirographonA handwritten note of debt incurred

Ordinances – Strong’s G1378 ’dogma’ doctrine, decree, ordinance; the rules and requirements of the law of Moses; carrying a suggestion of severity and of threatened judgment; of certain decrees of the apostles relative to right living

These ordinances were, and are today, the Law’s of our Creator.

The Laws of God are contrary to us (human nature) – ‘that was against us’ (Col. 2:14)(Rom.8:7)

Not only was the law against us by its demands, but also an adversary to us by its accusations.

Rom.8:7 Because the carnal mind [is] enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. 8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. 9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

 The handwriting is part of that which was against us – for “the letter killeth” (2 Corinth 3:6)

Rom. 7:6 But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not [in] the oldness of the letter.

 Was it not the ‘letter of the Law’ that was nailed to the cross – not the law itself?

Many Christians today appear to be of the opinion that they are under grace and that the Law of God no longer applies to them – is that a correct or a deceptive opinion?

1 John 3:4  Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. This book was written around 90 A.D., during the last days of the apostolic times. Had the law been nailed to the cross, it is unlikely that sin would have been defined as breaking God’s Law?

The Letter and the Spirit of God’s Law

The question then arises – What is the difference between observing the letter of the law and observing the spirit of the law? That is not an easy question to answer and I am only going to touch on it here, as I do not pretend to have a definitive answer to it. It would appear, however, that we are dealing with yet another of the many dualities that flow throughout the biblical texts. It is apparent that OT Israelites observed the letter of the law by physical (practical) application of it – the spiritual symbolism of the law was more or less a closed book (except to a chosen few). It was not until NT times, and after the ascension of Jesus , that God’s Holy Spirit was made available to all those called to receive it (and even then many that have received it are in danger of losing it! – Math. 22:14). Knowledge was received and increased through study of the NT texts to enlighten the minds of those found worthy of that enlightenment. Let’s not forget that even the disciples found many of Jesus teachings difficult to understand during His time among them in the flesh. It would appear that it was not until they (disciples) received the gift of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost that an enlightened understanding of what the Word of God was actually revealing became clearer.

It would appear that if we as Christians freely choose (or are we chosen?) to accept Christ as our Saviour, then we too require the addition of God’s Holy Spirit IN us – just as it was in Jesus Christ. The human spirit is indeed a wonderful and creative source of inspiration – but it is would appear to be only capable of understanding worldly or physical concepts – the spiritual is a closed book, as Romans 8:7 reveals. Why our Creator should create humans with a natural mind (human spirit) that is ‘enmity against God’  is one of God’s many mysteries.

How do we know if we have God’s Holy Spirit dwelling in us?

1 John 4:13 Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.

1 John 3:24 And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.

 Let us remember that the letter of the law has now been nailed to the cross:

2 Corinth.3:3 [Forasmuch as ye are] manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.

1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:

 The gift of God’s Holy Spirit appears to be a pre-requisite to assisting a person in developing a character (over time) that allows a ‘lifting up’ and ‘quickening’  of our own carnal human spirit. A quickening that, potentially, will allow us entry into the forthcoming Kingdom of God on Earth

The above verses appear to give us a clear answer – but how does the infusion of God’s Spirit actually work alongside (or perhaps with, or intermingled) our own human spirit?

It would appear that we need the addition of God’s Holy Spirit to enable us to ‘communicate’  effectively with the God realm. The following four verses (there are others) of Scripture may give us a clue? – Angels are sometimes mentioned as guardian angels of individuals.

Guardian Angels

Acts 12:15 And they said unto her, Thou art mad. But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then said they, It is his angel.

 Math.18:10 Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.

 Jesus Christ Himself was under the charge of angels while in mortal form on this earth.

 Psalm 91:11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

Math.4:6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in [their] hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

 Opening of Direct Communication

 If Jesus Christ, in mortal form, and with God the Fathers Spirit IN Him, was given the assistance of angels to help Him in His mission – then perhaps mortal human NT Christians who have also been granted the gift of God’s Holy Spirit, have also been given an angels charge? A direct personal channel of communication to the God realm has been opened THROUGH the suffering, death and resurrection of our Saviour Jesus Christ as symbolized by the following events.

Math.27:50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the spirit. 51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;

 This channel could not have been open on a personal level to the general population of OT Israel, or any other peoples. Hence, there are a number of examples in OT texts that show that God (The Word) and His assistants or messengers (angels) revealed themselves in various physical manifestations (often human form) to certain of His own people when important laws or instruction needed to be given. These physical manifestations all but cease in NT texts after Christ’s ascension. The physical (visible) communication has now become the spiritual (invisible) – at least to the normal human senses. A direct personal communication medium became available when ‘the veil of the temple was rent’.

There are various methods that can be used to communicate with the spirit realm, but the one method that Christians are most often enjoined to use is that of prayer – Jesus prayed continually. Correct forms of fasting along with that of prayer are revealed to give extra ‘energy’ to the thought forms generated. Thought forms are invisible to the normal physical senses but no less powerful. The ‘wind’ is also invisible – but its force can be beneficial or most destructive.

There is much more that can be written, but will lay this subject to ‘rest’ for now, except to say that our carnal human spirit (of itself) appears to be more in tune with other types of ‘angels’ than those who have stayed committed to the Throne of God.  **Read Col. 2:15 once again.

Why did Jesus Christ take human form?

We can finish this posting by having a quick look at just why Jesus Christ found it necessary to be born as a mortal being.

What were Christ’s prime motives for appearing to the world in human form?

 1)  To fulfil Old Testament prophecy.

 2)  Although God the Father, through the Word, created this world and everything in it – including ourselves – it was originally given to a cherub to rule and administer this planet according to the Laws of God – long before we humans entered the picture – how long is not revealed. This archangel rebelled and persuaded (probably in much the same way we humans are often persuaded) a third of all the angels sent with this powerful being to rebel against their Creator. According to the Biblical narrative this being was not satisfied with having a throne on earth – but became obsessed with claiming the throne of the Creator. The resulting chaos and carnage resulted in a total destruction of the surface of this planet and probably many others – Genesis 1:2, appears to describe the renewal of the surface of this planet and not the initial creation? – See previous posting – Human Potential

When the surface of the earth was renewed, God created mankind in two stages as related in Genesis 1 &2. The first Adam was created to overcome the above mentioned appointed (by God) ruler of this planet – he failed. It would appear that only a God being would have the necessary character to overcome the Adversary. The second Adam (Jesus Christ – The Word in person)) took on human form and was subject to the same temptations as we are today.

He overcame and qualified to replace the originally appointed ruler of this world. However, although Jesus Christ qualified it was not apparently deemed appropriate for Him, according to God’s Plan, to claim the throne of the earth and reinstate God’s rule on the earth – YET! (‘my kingdom is not of this world’John 18:36

 3)  To proclaim God the Father – Jesus Christ was the Creator God of the OT (John  1:1,2) – Another contentious subject for those who lean toward monotheism.

 4)  To proclaim and preach about the forthcoming Kingdom of God (on Earth) – not in Heaven. The Lord’s Prayer makes this clear – ‘thy kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven’…

Isaiah also makes it clear where the future kingdom (government) of God will be in the coming future: Isaiah 9:7 Of the increase of [his] government and peace [there shall be] no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

 However, Jesus Christ has not yet returned to claim the throne of this earth.

5)  Through His torture and death by crucifixion, our actual Creator (John 1:3) paid the  penalty for our sins by his death on the cross—that humankind might be given ‘life’ to share in the coming future.

 6) To be resurrected from the dead, making possible eternal spirit life for the people of God; and after his Second Coming for all who are willing – of all humanity – past, present and future. However, each in their own ‘TIME’ (Math.19:30)(Rev.20)

For we are not saved by Christ’s death, or by the blood of Christ, but by His resurrection.

Romans 5:10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

 However, atheists, evolutionists, members of other religions and those that actually denounce Christ and the Word of God are not lost in eternal darkness – for we must remember why the Gospel is to be preached in all the world – Math.24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.

The end referred to in above verse is NOT the end of the world or the end of humankind – it is the end of one phase (6th) of God’s Plan for mankind – according to Scripture.

 7)  To establish God’s NT Church – which was actually not a new church. The NT church had as its foundation the OT congregation of Israel. There are many biblical examples of OT Israel being called a ‘congregation’. It should be noted that the ‘congregation of Israel’ included ALL the tribes of Israel– not just Judah (Jews).

Congregation – Strong’s H5712 – `edah example: Num. 27:16 Let the LORD, the God of the spirits of all flesh, set a man over the congregation, 17 Which may go out before them, and which may go in before them, and which may lead them out, and which may bring them in; that the congregation of the LORD be not as sheep which have no shepherd.

 `Edah is from the root word `edmeaning, witness, testimony, evidence (of things).

 Jesus Christ was a Jew

 Jesus Christ was born a Jew in the flesh and He observed the Jewish Holy days – as did His disciples – before and after His crucifixion and resurrection – and also after His ascension to the Heavenly Father. Nowhere in the Bible do we find evidence of the changing of any of God’s Holy Days. The early NT church observed exactly the same Holy days as Christ had done while on earth – There was no Christmas, Easter or a host of other days that have been added ‘after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world’.

It is clear that the priestly cast in Jesus days on earth had subverted some of the original teachings and added quite a few onerous teachings and ordinances of their own (‘after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world’). They were soundly denounced by Christ for so doing.

A new Christianity

The early church and its teachings eventually became hidden (but not lost) from world view and a new form of Roman Christianity took its place – often by physical force. The teachings of this Universal church have, and still do, form the foundation for many of what we may call mainstream Christian teachings today – albeit under numerous other names and a professed separation from the Church of Rome.

Here we will rest and perhaps contemplate over what has been written – or perhaps just click the mouse and go on to something else?

Thanks to all of you who have taken a small portion of the precious time allotted to you to read this posting.

 

Human Potential

“A man’s character and his garden both reflect the amount of weeding that was done during the growing season.”

All biblical quotes from KJV unless otherwise stated

The topics raised in this posting have given rise to many a debate throughout the generations. There are a number of questions asked that the interested reader may wish to consider – or not – dependant upon the individual’s satisfaction with their own interpretation, or the interpretation of their church?

Spirit IN Man-kind

It would appear, according to the biblical texts, that we humans were created in two stages? – Duality.

Genesis 1:26, 27 Created in the image and likeness – ‘let us make man’

make – Hebrew `asah – to do, fashion, accomplish, make. However, the same word `asah, can also mean prepare, depending on the context of the passage. 

Job 32:8 But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.

1 Corinth. 2:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

The next part (Creation) assumes (always dangerous to assume) that the Book of Genesis was written in the order in which events occurred? It will be rejected by many so we will call this part personal opinion!

Creation

The period between the creation of the spirit being and the next stage of physical creation is revealed in Genesis 1:26 thro’ 2:7. God blessed THEM (1:28). The majority of people believe that the physical creation of man-kind was accomplished as revealed in Gen. 1:27. Man-kind was then given instruction (prepared), Gen.1:28 thro’ 30, although only the briefest account of the instructions given are related in Genesis.

The heavens and the earth were finished(Gen.2:1). However, in Gen.2:5 it is revealed that God created ..’every plant of the field before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, and there was not a man to till the ground’. Can we therefore assume that man-kind was also created before being placed on the earth?        Genesis 2:7, would appear to answer that question?

Genesis 2:7The physical body – However, a third stage appears to be required – the BREATH (earth (beat) heart?) of life – and we became living souls – NOT immortal souls. Human-beings became created living mortal souls, NOT immortal souls. Stop breathing and one becomes very quickly a dead soul! However, not all is lost as Eccl. 3:21; 12:7 (among other scriptures) thankfully reveals to us.

The interested reader may find the above difficult to accept?

Does our Creator know us?

I have, until recently, always thought that at birth we started a new life without any prior knowledge (I do not mean reincarnation), but that may be false reasoning? However, if we look for a moment to the prophet Jeremiah we find the following verse in Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, [and] I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

 This one verse alone raises a number of questions. We could say that God ‘knows’ all of His creations. Through the Word of God we know that we can now in the NT era have a personal connection to God the Father through His Son Jesus Christ. We have to freely choose to make that connection, which appears to infer that on being born into the physical world that original spirit connection was temporarily broken for many people (John 6:44)? There was no spiritual connection for Old Testament (OT) generations, except for a chosen few (Jeremiah being one such). The God of the OT (who was actually Jesus Christ – John 1:1, 2) had a much more ‘hands-on’ physical contact with the human race – personally, or through His messengers. It was not until the veil in the temple was rent asunder that spiritual access to God was made generally available to all human-kind, through the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Is the grass greener on the other side of the fence?

Let us imagine God as a gardener – with this whole planet EARTH as the HEART of a research project. He always has an EAR to listen (H-EAR) to what is going on here. Much of what He sees and hears cause a T-EAR and sometimes (almost wrote often?) causes Him to loath what He sees and hears.

Jeremiah was a special being, known by God personally and sanctified to perform a special mission. He was a spiritual being; but according to Genesis 1:27 so are we. We, however, as far as I can determine, were not sanctified before birth  (although we were perhaps blessed – Gen. 1:28) God knows of course that we exist – for it was He that ordained our creation. The question being: Does He know of our existence in the same personal way in which He was aware of Jeremiah’s creation – and did Jeremiah know from birth that he had this special connection that the majority of people do not appear to have with their Creator? If we read the first few verses of Jeremiah 1 then it would appear that Jeremiah had no inkling of his prior (before physical birth) knowledge of God or his mission. In verse 6 of the same chapter it would appear that Jeremiah did not feel confident of being able to perform his mission, but at the same time he did not appear to be at all surprised at being contacted by the Word of the Lord?

If we go back to our gardening theme – for was it not in a garden our physical ancestors first appeared? If we imagine the 6 billion plus people who inhabit this planet today – not to mention those who have preceded us through the generations – then I wonder if a gardener would look upon billions of his created beings in much the same way as a human gardener in his little or large plot of land would view his grass lawn, for example, composed of billions of single blades.

1 Peter 1:24 For all flesh [is] as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:

It would have to be a meticulous gardener indeed that inspected each and every blade of grass on his (or her) lawn on a regular basis. It is the overall state of the lawn that the gardener will generally inspect on a regular basis. However, each single blade of grass contributes to the overall well-being and continuing life-cycle of the lawn as a whole.

I will leave the interested reader to consider this thought further, along with a couple of verses of Scripture.

 Job 5:25 Thou shalt know also that thy seed [shall be] great, and thine offspring as the grass of the earth.

Psalm 103:15 [As for] man, his days [are] as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.

 The End of the Mortal Path

Leaving a number of questions unanswered regarding birth; let us take a quick look at the final phase of our mortal lives – death.

In a previous posting – HERE – it was suggested that we do not return to heaven on death – as a number of Christian religions would have us believe. According to Scripture we ‘know nothing’ in the grave (Eccl.9:10). However, there appears to be an ever-increasing number of people who claim to be able to contact the dead and are able (for a fee) to relay messages from them to the living.

Development

I would suggest that we each, as spirit beings (spirit in man – Job 32:8), have been given a physical body and a certain amount of TIME to experience life on this planet? A period of time in which to develop (or not) and to learn lessons (or not) that  would otherwise be impossible anywhere else. When the breath of life is removed at death then our ability to experience or to influence events or people on this planet also ceases. I mean this in a personal sense of course as it is clearly apparent that many great people have walked this planet and have left lasting legacies of works of art or literature, world leaders, prime movers in organizations and charities etc., where the ‘spirit’ of their work continues to encourage and influence the living.

The invisible world:

The Bible warns us to have nothing whatsoever to do with witches, wizards, sorcerers or those who claim to contact the dead (Lev.19:31). Is this warning given because it is actually possible to contact the dead and is a practice prohibited by our Creator? Or, is the practice prohibited because it is not possible to contact the dead but very possible to contact other spirit beings or familiar spirits who are able to impersonate the dead?

An example that comes to mind is one given in Scripture and related in 1 Samuel Chpt. 28. – Samuel had died and it was Saul who now ruled. The Philistines were gathering their army to war against Saul and he was in need of some help from the Lord – ‘but the Lord answered him not'(v.6).

1 Samuel 28:3 Now Samuel was dead, and all Israel had lamented him, and buried him in Ramah, even in his own city. And Saul had put away those that had familiar spirits, and the wizards, out of the land.

As the Lord would not answer him, Saul decided to enlist the help of the dead? Saul sent his servants to find a woman who hath a familiar spirit (v.7). In v.10, Saul swears by the Lord that she will not be punished for performing the very task that the Lord expressly forbids any one of His people from doing. How big a risk was he taking – a king who had been anointed as King of God’s own people? As it turned out Saul’s days upon the earth were severely numbered, but not primarily as a consequence of this act.

Saul asked the woman to ‘bring up’ the deceased Samuel to him. According to v.12, the woman did so and recognized Samuel. The next two verses are a little ambiguous as we could assume that it was only the woman who saw Samuel: as in v.14, Saul asks the woman ‘what form is he of’. However, toward the end of v.14 Saul is said to ‘perceive’ that it was Samuel. Now, whether he actually ‘saw’ Samuel or just recognized him from the woman’s description is open to debate.

The word ‘perceive’, is translated from the Hebrew – yada`- This word has a number of meanings that are dependant on the context of the sentence or passage of writing.

It would appear that Samuel was not alone – In v.13 it is obvious that Saul can not see Samuel as he asks the woman ‘what she saw’, and she replies – I saw gods ascending out of the earth.

Note: These supposedly dead spirit beings did not come from above or from heaven – they ascended out of the earth. See above link: ‘Has anyone gone to heaven’.

However, the word ‘gods’, in above verse, is translated from the Hebrew – ‘elohiym – (note plural form). ‘Elohiym – rulers, judges, divine ones, angels, gods.

The same word however, can also have a plural intensive (singular meaning) – god, goddess, godlike one, works or special possessions of God, the (true) God, God.  

The context of a particular passage of Scripture giving an indication as to which meaning should be attached to a word – which is not always readily apparent if one has no translation tools available.

So the question must be: was it Samuel that appeared, or was it a familiar spirit?

It would appear that although the word ’gods’ is used in v.13 it is the plural intensive (singular meaning) that is indicated in the context of the passage?

Why would Saul ‘bow down’ (v.14) to something he could not see?

Samuel and Jeremiah were both prophets – special sending by God – known before birth, or, at least chosen from an early age as was the case with Samuel (1 Samuel 2:26).

Samuel = Hebrew – Shĕmuw’el – his name is El.

I do not want to delve too deeply into this topic, but the meaning of words have an important bearing on what is actually being revealed in the Scriptures and it is very easy to make an error – as I have found on a number of occasions. So, I would recommend that the interested reader check and double-check everything during their own study of Scripture.

Words that especially require studying are the words – God, god and gods

Examples:

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

 Word – Greek word – logos – what someone has said, its use as respect to the mind alone. Speaking and thinking.

A Greek philosopher named Heraclitus first used the term Logos around 600 B.C. to designate the divine reason or plan which coordinates a changing universe.

The universe changes but God does not change – the same today as he was yesterday and will be tomorrow. Malachi 3:6 For I [am] the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.

Isaiah 46:10 Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times [the things] that are not [yet] done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:

 The word God that is found in John 1:1,2 is a translation of the Greek word – Theos According to Strong’s Concordat meaning – Godhead, trinity, a god or goddess, a general name of deities or divinities, spoken of the only and true God, whatever can in any respect be likened unto God, or resembles him in any way, God’s representative or vice-regent.

The Greek word ‘Theos’ (God/god, gods) is fundamentally a descriptive word rather than a proper name. It would appear that John’s inspired gospel reveals to us what the true meaning of ‘Theos’  is, in the context of the verses – namely, the Word or Logos is not God or the God, but is the Son of God, and hence is a  God (part of the God family) That is why, in John 1:1,2, John refers to God as the God and to the Word or Logos as a God, to show the difference between the two.

Adam is also referred to as [the son] of God – Luke 3:38 Which was [the son] of Enos, which was [the son] of Seth, which was [the son] of Adam, which was [the son] of God.

 It will be noted that ‘the son’ is placed within brackets denoting that it has been added to the original text. However, we can appreciate the reasoning behind the decision to include it.

Acts 17:28, can reasonably be said to clarify one reason for inclusion – For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

So it could be said that the Father is God because of his authority. However, God the author also sends messengers with his authority, so when our Father anoints someone to speak His words, that person is given the title god whether he be an angel or a man. In addition, someone or something that takes the place of God is also called a god, or a false god.

 Example: 2 Corinth 4:4 – ‘god (theos) of this world’

YE ARE GODS

 The next example has caused a good deal of debate through the generations.

 John 10:33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God. 34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

The word ‘gods’ is again translated from the Greek – theosMeaning as above.

Now the words ‘Ye are’ are translated from the Greek – este. – Meaning, ‘you are’ in the second person plural of  – ‘To Be’.

In other words, mankind has the POTENTIAL, but not the automatic right, ‘To Be’ or to become ‘gods’ – The potential to become part of the God (Elohiym) Family – but not in this present age (aeon).

An indication of which is previously revealed in Genesis:

Gen. 1: 26 Let us make man in our image, after our likeness

 Image – Hebrew- tselem – masculine noun

LikenessHebrew- dĕmuwth adverb, feminine noun

 John 18:36 Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence. 37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.

 The word ‘heareth’ – Greek – akouōto understand, perceive the sense of what is said

We could go further with this but will leave the interested reader to consider the questions raised.