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https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-12-15-machiavelli-n-jesus.zip Machiavelli or Jesus? Cast the crown.
In this chapter we see God on the throne- and 24 leaders ruling with him- in ‘white robes’ and having crowns on their heads.
If you remember- these are the promises that were made to the believers who overcome [letters I covered already in chapters 2-3].
So- we see believers [24 could be representative of the Jewish people- 12 tribes- and the apostles- 12. Showing in Christ that God made out of 2 peoples- one new man [Ephesians].
The rulers/elders now have the authority promised to them- and what do they do with it?
They give it away [cast their crowns].
This theme I have been covering in the gospel of John- Jesus gave us the example himself- in Philippians we read he had the same authority and glory that the Father had-
Yet he laid it down [cast the crown] and became a man- and humbled himself unto the death of the Cross.
Because of this- he regained his authority- rose from the dead and is seated at the right hand of God.
So- as opposed to the world’s way of exercising power [that’s how I fit Machiavelli in] thru brute force and ruthlessness-
We gain authority in the kingdom thru serving- and not using our rights for our own welfare.
Paul wrote the Corinthians [who were taking each other to court] and said ‘take the wrong- don’t demand your rights’.
So when we exercise leadership in the church- we have to purposely avoid the slippery path of it all being about us.
It’s easy for believers to become enamored with gifted people [those who have crowns]-
And it is a temptation for the gifted people to ‘keep their crowns’ [draw attention to themselves].
But the crown /authority given to us- is for the benefit of others- and your gift will only benefit them- when in the end- you cast it down.
NOTE on Machiavelli- he was a political thinker during the time of the Renaissance- which I taught in the past.
He lived in the 15/16th centuries- and resided in Florence- the city where the Medici family ruled for years.
They were a political family with much influence- and very corrupt.
At this time in history the city states battled the Holy Roman Empire and the influence of the Pope- and wanted independence.
This led some political thinkers [Hobbes- Locke] to try and strike a balance between being ruled by Rome- or ruled by their own ‘sovereign’.
Some advocated for their own king to have complete control over their state- in both political and religious decisions.
The king should decide the religion of the people type thing.
Today we of course reject this thinking- but at the time there were actual wars fought over these things-
The Protestant Reformation caused states to have to take sides.
So- Machiavelli took a strong stand for a strong ruler [his famous work- The Prince talks about a ruthless type ruler] as a ‘safety’ measure against anarchy among the states that were breaking away from Rome.
I heard this quote from Machiavelli the other day while watching a course on Political Theory from a Yale professor-
I’ll paste it here- thought it was good.
When evening comes, I go back home, and go to my study. On the threshold, I take off my work clothes, covered in mud and filth, and I put on the clothes an ambassador would wear. Decently dressed, I enter the ancient courts of rulers who have long since died. There, I am warmly welcomed, and I feed on the only food I find nourishing and was born to savor. I am not ashamed to talk to them and ask them to explain their actions and they, out of kindness, answer me. Four hours go by without my feeling any anxiety. I forget every worry. I am no longer afraid of poverty or frightened of death. I live entirely through them.[7]
He lived in a day where it was hard to obtain good books for your own personal study- yet many of the great thinkers managed to develop their own studies/libraries.
We live in a day where you can access all of it- in a moment- thru the Web-
Yet we often don’t see the value of the good stuff all around us [like the free Yale courses I’m viewing thru the internet].
Proverbs says wisdom is on every corner- calling to the simple ones- yet they pass by-
He taught that ‘the ends justify the means’ and that leaders at times should act unjustly- in order to establish rule.
He was critical of the ‘ideal’ society that former political theorists spoke about [Aristotle- Plato] and he did not believe that morality and religion were a foundation for rule.
In some ways he was a realist- he rejected the underlying ideas of ethics and said we should simply look at ‘reality’ and do what it takes to get the job done.
In the Yale course- the teacher gave a list of other rulers that Machiavelli admired- he had Moses on the list- but not Jesus.
I found it interesting that the teacher- who is not teaching a course on religion- said that Jesus established a rule- based on non-violence and ethics- and it worked.

Revelation 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
Revelation 4:2 And immediately I was in the spirit: and, behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne.
Revelation 4:3 And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.
Revelation 4:4 And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold.
Revelation 4:5 And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
Revelation 4:6 And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal: and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four beasts full of eyes before and behind.
Revelation 4:7 And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle.
Revelation 4:8 And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, LORD God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.
Revelation 4:9 And when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever,
Revelation 4:10 The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
Revelation 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

In the morning I usually read a Psalm for the day- I thought this one fit well with today’s teaching. There are many scriptures that talk about Just rule- this is a theme all thru out the bible.
Rulers/governments that stray away from ethics- biblical morals- eventually collapse.
There’s a verse that says ‘if the foundations are destroyed what will the people do’ [something like that].
We live in a day where we see the TV preachers railing against things- and we laugh- and become desensitized. The latest Planned Parenthood video talked about frozen babies [they refer to ‘it’ as specimens].
We think these things are simply ‘right/left’ issues on the political spectrum. But in a very real way- societies that do stuff like this will indeed collapse- over time.
God allows us- believers- to have rule/authority in the kingdom- when we have ‘White robes’ [walking in righteousness].
And when we use it for the benefit of others- not for self-glory.
Psalm 15:1 Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? who shall dwell in thy holy hill?
Psalm 15:2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart.
Psalm 15:3 He that backbiteth not with his tongue, nor doeth evil to his neighbour, nor taketh up a reproach against his neighbour.
Psalm 15:4 In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honoureth them that fear the LORD. He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not.
Psalm 15:5 He that putteth not out his money to usury, nor taketh reward against the innocent. He that doeth these things shall never be moved.

JOHN 15 https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-14-15-i-am-the-true-vine.zip [on the video- did he molest the girls?]
UPDATE- As some of you know- my friend Pops was diagnosed with liver cancer.
I’ve been taking him to the VA and other doctors- yet they did not start his treatment yet [which worried him by the way].
So- when I got back from N.J. I’ve been helping Pops and stuff.
Then when we went back to his apt. Christine [his roommate] says ‘Yeah- Pops got checked- and the cancer is gone’.
I thought it was funny in a way- I mean I’ve been with him for a few weeks and he told me nothing.
Christine says he’s been telling everyone ‘it’s because John prayed for me’.
Yet he never told me!
Funny.
I did pray for Pops and anointed him with oil [which by the way I got from Jerusalem a while back- I bought it a few years ago at the Cathedral church I attend- they had Christians from Israel who sold it- doesn’t make a big difference- any oil will do].
So- that’s a good testimony.
I also wanted to mention that the things I have been posting this year- about global economic problems- are indeed coming to pass.
This past week China devalued its currency- which might lead to a currency war.
We have criticized them for this- yet in the past few years we [the U.S.] have printed around 4 trillion dollars- which is basically the same thing.
So overall things are indeed playing out- and will just to have to wait and see.
John 15:1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.
John 15:2 Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.
John 15:3 Now ye are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
John 15:4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.
John 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
John 15:6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.
John 15:7 If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.
John 15:8 Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.
John 15:9 As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
John 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
John 15:11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
John 15:12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 15:14 Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.
John 15:15 Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you.
John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
John 15:17 These things I command you, that ye love one another.
John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.
John 15:19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
John 15:20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.
John 15:21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.
John 15:22 If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.
John 15:23 He that hateth me hateth my Father also.
John 15:24 If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.
John 15:25 But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.
John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:
John 15:27 And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.
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LION OF JUDAH https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-16-15-lion-of-judah.zip Revelation 5:1 And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals.
Revelation 5:2 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?
Revelation 5:3 And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon.
Revelation 5:4 And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon.
Revelation 5:5 And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.
Revelation 5:6 And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.
Revelation 5:7 And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne.
Revelation 5:8 And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints.
Revelation 5:9 And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;
Revelation 5:10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
Revelation 5:11 And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands;
Revelation 5:12 Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.
Revelation 5:13 And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.
Revelation 5:14 And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever.
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Genesis 49:8 Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be in the neck of thine enemies; thy father’s children shall bow down before thee.
Genesis 49:9 Judah is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?
Genesis 49:10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.
Genesis 49:11 Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes:
Genesis 49:12 His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

PLOTINUS AND JESUS https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-19-15-plotinus-n-jesus.zip [Notes on Plotinus at the bottom]
John 17:1 These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:
John 17:2 As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.
John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
John 17:4 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.
John 17:5 And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.
John 17:6 I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.
John 17:7 Now they have known that all things whatsoever thou hast given me are of thee.
John 17:8 For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.
John 17:9 I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.
John 17:10 And all mine are thine, and thine are mine; and I am glorified in them.
John 17:11 And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.
John 17:12 While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
John 17:13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
John 17:14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
John 17:15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
John 17:16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
John 17:18 As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
John 17:19 And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
John 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
John 17:22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
John 17:23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.
John 17:24 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.
John 17:25 O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me.
John 17:26 And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
Notes- Jesus knew he finished his mission and was going back to God.
The men he revealed God to- were given to him by God.
He spoke the words that the Father gave him- he did not speak ‘of himself’- meaning not just ‘good teaching’- but he communicated the Father to his men.
Many good preachers- who speak good things- might be missing the mark in the end- if they did not communicate the Father to people.
For instance- you might teach people how to live a positive life [which is good] but Jesus taught that the true riches were not simply living a successful life on earth [measured by material stuff].
He prayed for unity among believers- that when Christians live in harmony- then the world would know- see- God in us.
For the past 2 thousand years- many good men- churches- movements- have seen truth-
And in many cases this divides us. [We can even use this chapter as an example- Jesus clearly teaches the sovereignty of God- the only ones he prays for are the believers. There are aspects of Predestination taught here- which is a good doctrine. Yet- taken to the extreme- it has also been a source of division among many believers].
So- read the chapter for yourself- see the heart- intent- of Jesus.
He is going back to the Father- yet the believer will ‘be with him’ even now.
How?
In John’s gospel he explains it- because if a man loves him he will keep his word- and the Father and the Son will manifest themselves to us.
His leaving them- physically- will not mean they are alone.
But we will continue to have active communion with God- thru the Spirt- and yes-
When we die we will also be with him.
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Plotinus- a philosopher from the 3rd century- 3 main ideas-
1- The ONE
2- The soul
3- The intellect
Called a Neoplatonist [by later thinkers] because he reintroduced Platonism [Plato] with some new ideas.
Why?
Although Christianity falls under the category of Theology- yet- in the 1st few centuries of the Common Era it was also seen as a ‘threat’ to some classical ideas.
It did indeed become the major ‘philosophy’ of the time.
His view of God?
The ONE- in Plotinus thought- was a ‘non being’ and ‘non existing’ [tough stuff- and in a way- nonsense]. Yet later he talks about this One as existing- but not in the way we understand it.
He talks about The One as potentiality [dynamis] but not as the way Christians define God.
Some of his ideas had Christian aspects-
True happiness cannot be found in material things [money- etc.].
But he also taught what many of the Eastern religions teach.
That you attain happiness when becoming one with the universe.
Christianity teaches a personal- real God.
Yes- he is Spirit [non matter] but real- with mind and consciousness.
Some see God as a divine principle- not a real being.
The Greek thinkers saw all matter as evil- and felt when one gets in tune with the immaterial realm- then he finds peace.
In Christianity- we do practice a form of contemplation- meditation on the things of God.
We focus our thoughts on a higher realm-
But when we do this- we are not simply ‘connecting’ to the universe-
But entering into contemplation of God and the things he has done for us.
There is a debate about how much Plotinus influenced Christianity.
Some of the early Christian leaders had a past in philosophy [St. Augustine being one of them].
And some think that the historic/orthodox church got off track by allowing the philosophers to have too much influence on their ideas.
In the end- Plotinus resurrected- in a sense- the teachings of Plato-
Not as a ‘help’ to Christian thinkers- but as a counter world view.
Though many of the philosophers had an ‘idea’ of God- and used terms theologians use [transcendence].
Yet they do not hold the view of most Christians when they use these terms.
Plotinus taught that existence emanates from all 3- The One, The Intelligence and the soul- a sort of Pantheism [God is everything].
Contemplation was not simply a passive act- but productive- in a sense- it is the act of creation [the bible says the Logos- God speaking- is the act. Yet scripture does say God founded the heavens and earth- thru wisdom and knowledge. But the biblical teaching is different from Plotinus idea. God is an actual being- who uses these things to create].
And like others after him- he taught that the perception of a thing actually can shape- or effect the thing perceived [if a tree falls in the forest- and no one is there to hear it- does it still make a sound type thing].

REVELATION 6. [Update- just dropped Pop’s off- some girl was involved in a hit n run- I stopped to help her. I’ll talk about it on the next video]
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-25-15-revelation-6.zip

On the video I talk about an interesting thing that happened the other day- I also posted those scriptures at the end.
Revelation 6:1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see.
Revelation 6:2 And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.
[I’m trying to keep this study simple- and let you see the whole picture. I have many friends who adamantly believe the rider on the white horse to be the antichrist. Some of these friends are indeed smart- and have various reasons they see it this way. I have always [far as I can remember] seen this rider as Christ. Why? Besides the fact that in chapter 19- Jesus is the rider on a white horse- but what see in this chapter is not the WRATH OF THE DEVIL [though later we will see an aspect of this] but we see the WRATH OF THE LAMB.
So- even though the other horses/riders that follow speak of judgments [some see this as meaning the rider on the white horse is the antichrist- because what follows is bad stuff].
In context- these are the judgments of God- being released- by Jesus [remember the last chapter/ Jesus is the only one with the right to open the seals- which are the beginning of these judgments].
We- the church- are spared from the wrath of the lamb- but yet do endure tribulation on the earth.
Jesus indeed is the victor- who rides the white horse- and carries out the judgment of God.
Revelation 19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
Revelation 19:12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
Revelation 19:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.] “Who raised up the righteous man from the east, called him to his foot, gave the nations before him, and made him rule over kings? he gave them as the dust to his sword, and as driven stubble to his bow.” Isaiah 41. I mention this verse because some see this rider as the antichrist because they see the bow as not being a symbol that God uses- yet- there are many scriptures that depict Godly uses of a bow.

Revelation 6:3 And when he had opened the second seal, I heard the second beast say, Come and see.
Revelation 6:4 And there went out another horse that was red: and power was given to him that sat thereon to take peace from the earth, and that they should kill one another: and there was given unto him a great sword.
Revelation 6:5 And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand.
Revelation 6:6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.
Revelation 6:7 And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, Come and see.
Revelation 6:8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.
Revelation 6:9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
Revelation 6:10 And they cried with a loud voice, SAYING ‘ How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth’?
Note- I added the parentheses here- another key to this book [to me] is when we read what the angels/people say- praises- songs- etc.- we too should say these things in prayer- confession- etc.
There are a few of these ‘sayings’ in this book that I use regularly [one daily] and it releases heavenly power to engage in spiritual warfare.

Revelation 6:11 And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.
Revelation 6:12 And I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;
Revelation 6:13 And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. [Stars falling can refer to the overthrow of wicked leaders- we read of things like God shaking the heavens- and sometimes it means authorities. Either way- in the following verses it speaks of this explicitly- here’s just one verse from Daniel that talks about stars- meaning men- Daniel 8:10 And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them].
Revelation 6:14 And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
Revelation 6:15 And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains;
Revelation 6:16 And said to the mountains and rocks, Fall on us, and hide us from the face of him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb:
Revelation 6:17 For the great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?
[Note- HIS WRATH- one of the main themes we see in Revelation is the wrath/judgment of God on sin- sinful systems- leaders- governments- etc. We also see the people of God [righteous people] who suffer from oppression- meaning there are those who oppress- and those who are oppressed.
So- how do humans oppress one another? One of the main ways is thru wicked government- rule- authority [Hitler would be a good example- he carried out atrocities that as one person- would have been impossible.
But as the leader of Germany- he had power to act out his wickedness in a greater way.

So- how does God avenge injustices?
His wrath upon not only personal sin [in all of us] but upon wicked systems/nations.
Keep this key in mind as we continue thru this study]

Ok- the verses below are an extra-
Huh?
Yes- ‘behold- I will show you a mystery’.
‘What in the heck are you talking about John’.

Ahh- you’ll have to watch the video! [watch me forget to mention it on the video- I do stuff like this]

John 21:9 As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread.
John 21:10 Jesus saith unto them, Bring of the fish which ye have now caught.
John 21:11 Simon Peter went up, and drew the net to land full of great fishes, an hundred and fifty and three: and for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken.
John 21:12 Jesus saith unto them, Come and dine. And none of the disciples durst ask him, Who art thou? knowing that it was the Lord.
John 21:13 Jesus then cometh, and taketh bread, and giveth them, and fish likewise.
Psalm 23:4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
Psalm 23:5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

________________________________________

WHO IS ANTI CHRIST? https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-28-15-who-is-anti-christ.zip
John 2:22 Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
2John 1:7 For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.
Revelation 13:11 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.
Revelation 13:12 And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.
Revelation 13:13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,
Revelation 13:14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.
Revelation 13:15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.
Revelation 13:16 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:
Revelation 13:17 And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.
Revelation 13:18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six [666].
Gematria- a common use at the time John wrote- which gives each letter of the Hebrew alphabet a numerical value.
Nero Caesar[ 1st century emperor] equals 666.
STUFF HE DID;
1-Made people worship him- as God [2Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2Thessalonians 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.]

2-Castrated a boy- named Sporus- then married him.
3-Put tar on Christians- set them on fire and used them as human torches.
Nero ruled as emperor and persecuted the early church- his rule led up to the destruction of the Jewish temple in a.d. 70.
The predictions Jesus gave to his apostles about the destruction of Jerusalem and a great time of wrath [or tribulation] can indeed be seen as having happened during the 1st century.
Many people believed Nero to be the fulfillment of the anti-Christ that the New Testament speaks of.
John the apostle wrote that ‘anti-Christ’ were those who denied Jesus- at the time of his writing [1st century].
John- who wrote Revelation- said ‘the mind that has wisdom’ will figure out who he is talking about.
John sent this letter to actual Christians living in the 1st century.
You would expect that the readers of the letter would have some clue to who he was talking about.
As we go thru Revelation- my intent is not to cover [and debate] all the various views on all the verses in this book.
I simply show you this view [which I think is about the best one out there] Because we live in a day where many of the ‘end times’ teachings seemed to be consumed with a future leader [a famous preacher just prophesied ‘the anti-Christ is here’ the other day] who is still to come-
And that this will set off a cascade of events [most see these events as prophesied in Revelation- and sort of see it as a play book].
So- it is quite possible that the anti-Christ was Nero-
And yes- we live in a wicked world- and sure- we might/will continue to see men ‘rise’ and do wicked things.
But when Paul and John wrote- in the first century- warning the believers about a wicked ruler who would do bad things-
I think it would have been a disservice if he were speaking about a leader- who would not show up- until at least 2 thousand years later.

BELOW- I pasted some various views here- just to give you a flavor of the different ways Christians view some of these things.
At the end I also added some of the passages I talk about on the video.

Here’s a quote from St. Augustine- an early Christian leader- referring to the verse I pasted from 2nd Thessalonians-
“Some think that the Apostle Paul referred to the Roman empire, and that he was unwilling to use language more explicit, lest he should incur the calumnious charge of wishing ill to the empire which it was hoped would be eternal; so that in saying, ‘For the mystery of iniquity doth already work,’ he alluded to Nero, whose deeds already seemed to be as the deeds of Antichrist. And hence some suppose that he shall rise again and be Antichrist. Others, again, suppose that he is not even dead, but that he was concealed that he might be supposed to have been killed, and that he now lives in concealment in the vigor of that same age which he had reached when he was believed to have perished, and will live until he is revealed in his own time and restored to his kingdom. But I wonder that men can be so audacious in their conjectures” (De Civitate Dei, XX.19.3).

I pasted this from another site-
In both ancient Greek and Hebrew, letters also represented numerals (as they do in Latin), their values assigned according to the order of the alphabet, alpha and aelph, for example, having the numerical value of 1. By adding these values, words could be represented as the sum of their numbers. This literation of numbers and numeration of letters was known as isopsephism by the Greeks and gematria by the Jews (which, in cabalistic practice, has been used to interpret Hebrew scripture). If the Greek spelling of Nero Caesar (Neron Kaisar) is transliterated into Hebrew (nrwn qsr), the numerical equivalent is 666.
What is curious, however, is not so much that 666 can be decoded to signify Nero but that the name of the emperor is encoded in this particular number, especially since it could have been represented more readily in other ways. If “Nero” is retained in Greek, for example, the numeration would be 955 or, if “Neron,” 1005; in Hebrew, then 256 or 306, respectively. It only is when the words are transliterated into Hebrew that the numeration adds up to 666 (nrwn qsr, 50 + 200 + 6 + 50 + 100 + 60 + 200). Even so, this is an alternate spelling, a letter in “Neron” being transliterated (nrwn instead of nrw) but not in “Caesar” (qsr instead of qysr), although these forms do appear in both the Talmud and a contemporary Aramaic scroll from Qumran. It is intriguing, therefore, that 666 encodes the name of Nero in Hebrew when Revelation, itself, was written in Greek.
One should appreciate, too, that there were no numbers in Greek or Hebrew and that the “the number of the beast” was not presented as a figure but as letters of the alphabet or written in full. That is to say, it was not expressed as “666” (indeed, discrete Arabic numerals would not be invented for another five hundred years) but as the numerical values of the three letters representing 600, 60, and 6.
For Watt, the significance of 666 is that its expression in Latin is the sequential Roman numerals DCLXVI, which parallels but is the antithesis of the “Alpha and Omega” that John uses to characterize both Christ (22:13) and God (1:8, 21:6). As the Deity represents the beginning and end, so the Antichrist is a reversal of the first and last, D (500) preceding I (1). To phrase this another way, 666 (or rather DCLXVI) signifies the Antichrist because that number signifies Nero, and Nero—who was a matricide, proclaimed his divinity on Egyptian coins as the “Savior and Benefactor of the World,” and the first emperor to persecute the Christians—signifies the Antichrist. Indeed, the procurator of Judea (c. AD 60) refers to Nero as “my lord” (kyrios), the same title applied to Jesus (Acts 25:26).
If the Latin (rather than the Greek) spelling “Nero Caesar” (above) is transliterated into Hebrew (nrw qsr), the final “n” in Neron being omitted (and its corresponding value of 50), the name computes as 616, which is the number indicated in the oldest surviving copy of the New Testament (the fragment illustrated below). If, instead, “Neron Caesar” is correct, it may be that the Latin was transcribed incorrectly, perhaps because the copyist realized that this transliteration did not equate to 666 and so omitted the letter, which changed the sum to 616.
Still, each digit of 666 is one less than seven, the perfect number, and such mathematical play may have tended to establish 666, rather than 616. Regardless of the number, Nero is the only name that can account for both 666 and 616, which is the most compelling argument that he, and not some other emperor, such as Caligula or Domitian, was intended. Too, for the number to have any significance for a reader of the first century AD, it would have to refer to a contemporary historical figure.
Writing a century later, Irenaeus is the first church father to comment on the number of the beast, although he apparently was ignorant of what the number actually encoded. Nor is he correct in assuming that John’s vision occurred “almost in our day, towards the end of Domitian’s reign” (Adversus Haereses, V.30.3; a tradition repeated by Eusebius in his Ecclesiastical History, III.18.3, and by the church fathers), which is to say sometime before AD 96, when the emperor was assassinated and just a few years before John himself died of old age. Rather, his presumed banishment to Patmos (where Revelation was written) seems to have occurred almost thirty years earlier, toward the end of Nero’s reign and before the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70, which John otherwise would have mentioned.
For Irenaeus, 666 was correct. The Antichrist “sums up in his own person all the commixture of wickedness which took place previous to the deluge….and also sums up every error of devised idols since the flood” (V.29.2). The flood came in the six hundredth year of Noah and the golden image set up by Nebuchadnezzar (who Shadrach, Meshach, and Bednego refused to worship) was sixty cubits high and six cubits wide (Daniel 3:1ff). This being the case and “this number being found in all the most approved and ancient copies….I do not know how it is that some have erred following the ordinary mode of speech, and have vitiated the middle number [L] in the name, deducting the amount of fifty from it, so that instead of six decads they will have it that there is but one” (V.30.1).
Nero, too, was the sixth emperor, counting from Julius Caesar (as did Suetonius, for example, and Josephus, cf. Antiquities of the Jews, XVIII.2.2, where Tiberius is identified as the third). “And here is the mind which hath wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains, on which the woman sitteth. And there are seven kings: five are fallen, and one is, and the other is not yet come” (Revelation 17:9-10). Of these emperors, it is Nero who had been “wounded to death” but “his deadly wound was healed” and he still lived (13:3)—Nero redivivus.
St. Jerome-“As for the Antichrist, there is no question but what he is going to fight against the holy covenant, and that when he first makes war against the king of Egypt, he shall straightway be frightened off by the assistance of the Romans. But these events were typically prefigured under Antiochus Epiphanes, so that this abominable king who persecuted God’s people foreshadows the Antichrist, who is to persecute the people of Christ. And so there are many of our viewpoint who think that Domitius Nero was the Antichrist because of his outstanding savagery and depravity.” (St. Jerome – Commentary on Daniel; notes on Daniel 11:27-30, — BAKER BOOK HOUSE Grand Rapids 6, Michigan 1958)

Some will suggest that the book of Revelation was written only for those living at the time, and that 666 most probably applies to Cæsar Nero, who ruled Rome from 54 to 68 A.D., rather than someone from latter centuries. This point of view, which suggests Revelation had an immediate application to the first century, is known as preterism. So, just how is Nero linked to 666?
Preterists take Nero’s name, Nero Cæsar and transliterates the Latin into Hebrew. An “n” is added to conform with the Hebrew spelling and usage of Nero’s name, in a manner similar to the Greek adding an “s” (i.e., Jeremias, Jonas, etc.). Other names in scripture where the adding of an “n” may be seen are Abaddon, Apollyon, and Armageddon. Once Hebraicized, the Latin Nero Caesar becomes “nrwn qsr,” which when using the numeric equivalent of the letters, then adds up to 666 as follows:
Nun = 50
Resh = 200
Waw = 6
Nun = 50

Qoph = 100
Samech = 60
Resh = 200
An example of this spelling has been recently discovered in one of the Dead Sea scrolls. If you use the same process, but without the added “n” the result is 616. Interestingly, some early manuscripts have 616 rather than 666, but even scholars such as Irenæus [A.D. 120-202] attribute the 616 to only a copyist error (Against Heresies: V, xxx) “this number [666] being found in all the most approved and ancient copies” [of the Apocalypse] and asserts that “men who saw John face to face bearing their testimony” [to it – 666].

The Seventy Weeks of Daniel Nine
by Prof. David J. Engelsma
I. The Premillennial Interpretation

A. Who they are
1. They are those who teach that in the near future Jesus will return to set up an earthly kingdom in Palestine for a thousand years.
2. They teach that the literal nation of Israel will then accept Him and be His special people as they were in the Old Testament.
3. They derive their name, premillennialists, from their doctrine of a literal millennium, before which the Lord returns (pre means “before;” millennium means “1,000 years” and is taken from Revelation 20).
B. They hold that the 70 weeks of Daniel 9, the whole prophecy, is exclusively for national Israel, the Jews
1. Nothing here for the church at all.
2. They appeal to the fact that it is “my people Israel” and literal Jerusalem that Daniel has been praying for.
3. They point to verse 24, where “thy people” is literal Judah and “thy holy city” is Jerusalem.
C. They explain the 70 weeks as a definite period of time
1. Not literal, for a literal interpretation would take the period as 490 days—a little more than a year.
2. A week, in the prophecy, is a week of years, they say.
3. 70 weeks, therefore, is 70 periods of 7 years, or 490 years.
D. Their breakdown of the 70 weeks, taken as 490 years
1. The starting–point, according to the text, is the “going forth of the word to restore and to build Jerusalem” (v. 25).

a. Premillennialists differ as to when this is.

b. Some say that it is Cyrus’ decree that Judah could return to Canaan; others refer to Darius’ permission to build the temple (cf. Ezra 6); others refer to Artaxerxes’ letter of Nehemiah 2:8.

c. It is important to them to establish the starting–point exactly, so that their definite period of 490 years comes correctly.
2. There are 69 weeks from that date to Messiah Prince (v. 25): “seven weeks and threescore and two weeks” = 69 weeks).

a. On the basis of 1 week = 7 years, a period of 483 years.

1) At this point, premillennialism has a problem and its attempt to solve the problem has resulted in many huge books of dates and numbers.

2) The problem is that it is difficult to get 483 years between a command to rebuild Jerusalem and “Messiah.”

a) Cyrus decreed Israel’s return in 537 B.C.—this is the best date for the going forth of a command to build Jerusalem, but it leaves too many years intervening before Messiah, and is therefore unacceptable to the premill.

b) So, many date the period from 445 B.C., the date of the letter of Artaxerxes of Nehemiah 2; they then carry the 69 week-period (483 years, on their view) to some late (arbitrary) date in the life of Christ.

c). This 69-week (or 483-year) period is divided into two parts, 7 weeks and 62 weeks (v. 25).

1) The 7 weeks, or 49 years, is the time of the actual rebuilding of Jerusalem, ending, roughly, at the time of the conclusion of the Old Testament Bible.

2) The 62 weeks, or 434 years, is the long period between the Testaments, up to some point in Christ’s life. (Some say His baptism; others, His triumphal entry.)

3) It is their view of the 70th week, however, that is the most important aspect of the premill interpretation of the passage and that lies at the very heart of the premill doctrine of the last days.

c. The last week, a definite period of 7 years, is still future.

1) It does not follow the 69 weeks.

2) Between the 69th week and the 70th week lies the nearly 2,000 years of our present age.

3) In the future (from our standpoint), the 70th week of verse 27 will occur.

a) At the end of the present age, the church will be raptured out of this world into the air and Antichrist will arise. (The “he” of verse 27 is supposed to refer to the Antichrist of the future.)

b) For 3? years, or ? of the 70th week, he will make a covenant with Israel, restored to the “Holy Land” of Palestine.

c) Suddenly, “in the midst of the week” (v. 27) he will begin persecuting Israel.

d) For 3? years, national Israel is persecuted—this is supposed to be “the great tribulation” of the Bible.

e) At the end of the 70th week, Jesus will return to destroy Antichrist, save Israel, and set up the millennial kingdom for 1,000 years, during which He reigns with national Israel from Palestine.

f) The importance of this interpretation of the seventy weeks and especially, of the 70th week for premillennialism is evident: this gives them the huge gap (or parenthesis) between the first advent of Christ and the supposed period in the future when Christ shall deal again with national Israel, the gap during which Christ gathers a church.
II. The Correct, Scriptural Interpretation
A. In opposition to the premill view, there are two basic objections as a whole
1. First, they can give no proof that the weeks are definite periods of 7 years each.

a. Often, the premill is quite dogmatic about this, but wrongly.

b. The fact is that nowhere in Scripture does the term week mean “7 years.”
2. Secondly, the passage does not indicate in any way that the 70th week is separated from the preceding 69 by a huge span of time.

a. If you think of it, this is a very bold bit of eisegesis (reading into a passage something that is not by any stretch of the imagination there).

b. To be sure, the 70th week follows the 69th, but at once.
B. Positively, what the 70 weeks are
1. Gabriel tells Daniel of one period of 70 weeks. Literally, it is 70 “sevens” (the Hebrew word for week). 70 is a symbolical number.
a. The premill will object to our taking the number symbolically; he will insist that it be taken literally.

1) Our reply to the premill is: “Do that. Take it literally. Then you have a period of 490 days.” But the premill does not want to take it literally, for he wants to make it 490 years.

2) In addition, we point out that prophecy of the 70 weeks is given to Daniel as a vision (v. 23: “consider the vision”). A vision is characterised by symbolism.
b. Seven is the number of the covenant of God with His people; 10 is the number of fullness. 70, therefore, symbolizes the fulfilment of the covenant of Jehovah, the covenant with Abraham and his seed.
c. The 70 weeks are the period of time from the command to rebuild Jerusalem to Jesus Christ, as the period of the fulfilment of the covenant. In this period, the covenant (7) will be fulfilled (10).

1) Understanding the70 weeks is not a matter of computing dates and figures.

2) We are basically uninterested in juggling dates and figuring calendar years.

3) That it happens to be about 575 years is irrelevant.
2. This one period of 70 weeks ends in an event in which, according to verse 24, six things are realized, the finishing of transgression, etc.
. All of these occur during the first advent of Christ Jesus (from His Incarnation through His resurrection and ascension).
a. The 70-week period terminates in the first advent of Christ, so that the whole period is from our standpoint past, not at all future.
3. The breakdown of the 70 weeks in detail:
. The period begins with the going forth of a command to build Jerusalem (v. 25).

1) This is the decree of Cyrus that Judah may return to Canaan in 537 B.C.

2) See Isaiah 44:28 and Isaiah 45:13.

3) This was a crucial juncture in Israel’s history and a wonderful manifestation of God’s faithfulness.

a) Israel is desolate, doomed.

b) God then, amazingly, orders Cyrus to give Israel deliverance, life from the dead.
a. 69 weeks takes us to Christ Jesus, “Messiah Prince” (v. 25).

1) This period is divided into two parts: 7 weeks and 62 weeks.

2) The 7 weeks are the period of the troublous building of Jerusalem.

a) Under Zerubbabel, Ezra, Nehemiah.

b) This takes us to about the time of the end of the Old Testament canon.

3) The 62 weeks are the period between the testaments.

4) The 69 weeks takes us up to “Messiah Prince.”

a) The premills argue over which event in the life of Christ is meant.

b) It is natural to understand verse 25 to refer to the coming of Messiah, that is, His birth.

(1) When Jesus was born, “Messiah Prince” appeared.

(2) “Where is he that is born King of the Jews?” the wise men asked, at the occasion of Jesus’ birth.

c) The 69 weeks, therefore, extend from Cyrus’ decree to the birth of Jesus.
b. Then, the 70th week follows, the “one week” of verse 27.

1) It is the period of the life and work of Jesus Christ that belongs to His first advent, inclusive of the resurrection, ascension, and perhaps, the outpouring of the Spirit.

2) The period of Jesus’ ministry was the 70th week, the period of the fulfilment of the covenant (7×10).
4. Objections against this interpretation of the 70th week by the premill.
. Basically, there are two objections; both concern verses 26-27.
a. First, the premill points out that Messiah is cut off after the 69th week (v. 26) and before the 70th week (v. 27): the same thing, he says, is true of the destruction of the city by the people of the prince.

1) The latter, all agree, refers to the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans under the general, Titus, in A.D. 70.

2) The premill argues that both the death of Jesus and the destruction of Jerusalem occur before the 70th week, not in it, according to the passage.
b. In close connection with this first objection, the premill maintains that verse 27 (“he shall confirm the covenant”) refers to the Antichrist and to a covenant which he will make with Israel at the end of the world, when the 70th week will finally come.
c. Our answer to these objections:

1) It is true that the death of Messiah comes after the 69th week (v.26); it is not the case however, that the text says that it occurred before the 70th week.

2) The one who confirms the covenant in verse 27 is not Antichrist, but Christ: He does this, not in the future, but in the past (from our present standpoint).
5. The truth of verses 26-27:
. The cutting off of Messiah and His having nothing (as it is in the original Hebrew) is the crucifixion of Jesus.
a. This occurred in the 70th week, which 70th week is the “one week” of verse 27; it is exactly the death of Messiah that makes that week the 70th week, that is, the week of the fulfilment of God’s covenant.
b. The first part of verse 27 refers to the Messiah, Jesus:

1) The meaning of verse 27 will be clearer from a more faithful translation than that given in the King James version: “And he shall confirm the covenant with many, one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and upon the wing of abominations [is] the one making desolate and unto completion and it is determined it shall be poured out on the desolate.”

2) It is Jesus the Messiah who confirms God’s covenant, “one week.”

3) It is Jesus the Messiah who puts an end to all Old Testament sacrifices and oblations by His one sacrifice of Himself on the cross in the midst of the 70th week (cf. Heb. 10).

4) If one asks concerning the rest of the 70th week, it is that which belongs to the first advent of Jesus following His death, namely, the period of His resurrection, ascension, and the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost. One could make a good case, on the basis of the passage, for the contention that the end of the 70th week is the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. It was then that the new covenant as the fulfilment of the old covenant was definitively manifested.
c. Proof of this interpretation, as opposed to that of the premill:

1) It is exegetically incorrect to make “he” in verse 27a to refer back to “prince” in verse 26, and thus to come to the conclusion that the reference is to Antichrist.

a) The fact is that the subject of the phrase in verse 26 is not “the prince,” but “the people of the prince,” that is, the Romans who destroyed Jerusalem in A.D. 70.

b) The one, main subject of the entire prophecy is “Messiah Prince” and it is, therefore, to Him that “he” refers in verse 27a.

2) Verse 27 speaks of someone confirming a covenant.

a) The premill explains this to mean that the Antichrist will, in the future, make a covenant with the nation Israel.

b) But as the King James Version shows, verse 27 does not use the Hebrew word that means “make;” rather, it uses a word that means “to confirm;” the reference is not at all to the making of a new covenant but to the confirming of an already existing covenant.

(1) Jesus, “Messiah Prince,” did exactly this by His first advent: He confirmed the covenant with many.

(2) The covenant is God’s covenant with Abraham and Israel, the covenant Israel violated, as Daniel bitterly lamented in his prayer, the covenant which Daniel nevertheless besought God to keep.

(3) Jesus did confirm this covenant by His death and in the conformation revealed it in its full reality as including not only the elect of the Jews but also of the Gentiles.
6. In conclusion:
. The 70 weeks are fulfilled in the first advent of Jesus.
a. The covenant of Jehovah has been confirmed—for the many elect of all nations.
b. All of the blessings of the covenant, the benefits mentioned in verse 24, have been obtained by Messiah and are now freely dispensed to God’s people.
c. We and all believers live in the enjoyment of that fulfilled covenant and its spiritual blessings, in the new dispensation.
III. Another Interpretation
Another interpretation of the 70 weeks given by some Reformed amillennialists is the following. The 70 weeks are the entire period from the command to build Jerusalem to the second advent of Christ, including the present age. From Cyrus’ decree to the first advent is 7 weeks; from the first advent to the appearance of Antichrist in the future is 62 weeks; the 70th week is the brief period in the future during which Antichrist will reign and which ends with Christ’s return. The interpretation is possible because of another possible reading of the last part of verse 25. It is possible to translate the last part of verse 25 as follows: “… unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks; and threescore and two weeks the street shall be built again” etc. According to this translation, the building of the street and the wall, during the 62 weeks, is symbolic of the gathering of the church in the new dispensation.

This interpretation is wrong for the following reasons:
1. Like the view of the premills, this interpretation supposes that verse 27a (“he shall confirm the covenant”) refers to the Antichrist. Everything said above against the premill explanation of verse 27 holds against this explanation.
2. It does injustice to the plain meaning of the last part of verse 25. By the building the street and the wall of Jerusalem in troubled times, Gabriel does not refer to the gathering of the church but to the literal rebuilding of Jerusalem after the return of Judah from captivity.
3. The most serious and obvious error of this interpretation is its distortion of the statement in verse 26 that Messiah shall be cut off and have nothing. According to this interpretation, this has to be the destruction of the church by Antichrist at the end of the world (“after threescore and two weeks …”). In fact, the text is speaking of the cutting off of the Messiah personally, that is, Jesus’ death on the cross.
4. The translation of verse 25 is correct as we have it in the King James Version. Contents:
I. The Premillennial Interpretation
II. The Correct, Scriptural Interpretation
III. Another Interpretation

Related Issues
1. The term “Amillennialism” by T. Miersma
2. Antichrist – by Prof. B. Gritters
3. Antichrist – by H. Hoeksema
4. The Great Tribulation – by Prof. D. Engelsma
5. The Millennium Period -by H. Hoeksema
6. The Mark of the Beast

An Exposition of Revelation
by H. Hoeskema
go to: Behold He Cometh

2Thessalonians 2:1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him,
2Thessalonians 2:2 That ye be not s2Thessalonians n shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand.
2Thessalonians 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2Thessalonians 2:4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
2Thessalonians 2:5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?
2Thessalonians 2:6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
2Thessalonians 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
2Thessalonians 2:8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming:
2Thessalonians 2:9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,
2Thessalonians 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
Matthew 24:1 And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
Matthew 24:2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
Matthew 24:3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
Matthew 24:4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
Matthew 24:5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
Matthew 24:6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
Matthew 24:7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
Matthew 24:8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
Matthew 24:9 Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake.
Matthew 24:10 And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
Matthew 24:11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
Matthew 24:13 But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
Matthew 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.
Matthew 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Matthew 24:16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
Matthew 24:17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
Matthew 24:18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
Matthew 24:19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
Matthew 24:20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
Matthew 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
Matthew 24:22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
Matthew 24:23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
Matthew 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
Matthew 24:25 Behold, I have told you before.
Matthew 24:26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.
Matthew 24:27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
Matthew 24:28 For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
Matthew 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
Matthew 24:30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
Matthew 24:31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
Daniel 9:20 And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God;
Daniel 9:21 Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation.
Daniel 9:22 And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding.
Daniel 9:23 At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to shew thee; for thou art greatly beloved therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision.
Daniel 9:24 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.
Daniel 9:25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.
Daniel 9:26 And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.
Daniel 9:27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

TIMES UP [week in review] https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/8-30-15-times-up.zip
Revelation 10:5 And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven,
Revelation 10:6 And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time no longer:

22 The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.- Psalms 118
42 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected , the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing , and it is marvellous in our eyes? Matthew 21
7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient , the stone which the builders disallowed , the same is made the head of the corner, 1st Peter 2

REVELATION 11 – BAPTISM. I have 2 videos for this post- the 2nd one was off the cuff- but it fit. https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-2-15-revelation-11.zip https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-2-15-bonus-video.zip
These are the scriptures I use on the video.
Revelation 11 Revelation 11:1 And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.
Revelation 11:2 But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.
Revelation 11:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.
Revelation 11:4 These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.
Revelation 11:5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.
Revelation 11:6 These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.
Revelation 11:7 And when they shall have finished their testimony, the beast that ascendeth out of the bottomless pit shall make war against them, and shall overcome them, and kill them.
Revelation 11:8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.
Revelation 11:9 And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and an half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves.
Revelation 11:10 And they that dwell upon the earth shall rejoice over them, and make merry, and shall send gifts one to another; because these two prophets tormented them that dwelt on the earth.
Revelation 11:11 And after three days and an half the spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them.
Revelation 11:12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.
Revelation 11:13 And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven.
Revelation 11:14 The second woe is past; and, behold, the third woe cometh quickly.
Revelation 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
Revelation 11:16 And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God,
Revelation 11:17 Saying, We give thee thanks, O LORD God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.
Revelation 11:18 And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.
Revelation 11:19 And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.
2 But when we are judged , we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. 1st Corintnians 11
1Peter 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?
1Peter 4:18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

I mentioned this on the video.
An Alabama police officer has been indicted on one charge of using unreasonable force against an Indian man in February.
A federal grand jury decided there was enough evidence to bring charges against Officer Eric Parker.
i
Sureshbhai Patel lies in a bed at Huntsville Hospital in Huntsville, Ala., on Feb. 7. Patel was severely injured when police threw him to the ground.
Chirag Patel/AP
“Parker’s actions deprived the man in Madison of his right under the U.S. Constitution to be secure from unreasonable seizures, which includes the right to be free from unreasonable force by someone acting under color of law,” the Justice Department said in a press release.
A video showed Parker arresting Sureshbhai Patel, 57, and then, suddenly, slamming him into the ground. As we reported:
“Patel had recently come from India to help care for his infant grandson; he was stopped by police on the morning of Feb. 6, after a neighbor called to report what they saw as a suspicious figure. When police approached Patel, who speaks little English, he was unable to answer their questions about what he was doing in the area.”
Patel suffered severe injuries. The incident led to international outcry and culminated with Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley apologizing to the government of India.
“Please accept our sincere apology to your government, Mr. Patel and the citizens of India who reside and work in our state,” the governor wrote.
I cut n paste this from an older post- talked about this too.
There was a famous thinker- Pythagoras [his followers were the Pythagoreans] who taught a concept called the Transmigration of the Soul [a sort of Reincarnation].
They believed that the soul of man went thru various stages- and existed independently of the body.

In Greek thought the soul is immortal- it exists before the body.
In Christian teaching the Soul [mind- Spirit] comes into existence when God creates man [the bible says ‘and man BECAME a living soul’- referring to the creation of Adam].

The Greeks saw the soul as preexisting before the natural life.

COP SHOT- BLACK LIVES MATTER TO BLAME?
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-4-15-cop-shot-black-lives-matter.zip
-Below I added some old posts I wrote a while back.
-The scriptures I mention on the video.
-I also make a note on yesterday’s finding about the death of Chief Simpson at the end.

Matthew 3:1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
Matthew 3:2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Matthew 3:3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
Matthew 3:4 And the same John had his raiment of camel’s hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
Matthew 3:5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
Matthew 3:6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?
Matthew 3:8 Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance:
Matthew 3:9 And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham.
Matthew 3:10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Matthew 3:11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
Matthew 3:12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
Matthew 3:13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
Matthew 3:14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
Matthew 3:15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.
Matthew 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
Matthew 3:17 And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

I COPIED THIS FROM A PREVIOUS POST- talked about this on the video
In the Greek world you had some very influential philosophers; Socrates most famous student was Plato- Plato’s most famous student was Aristotle- and his most famous student was Alexander the Great.

Alexander sought to implement the ideals of his teacher- he wanted to unify the known world under one people/culture- a belief that Aristotle held- a sort of ‘unified theory’ [Einstein] that would seek to bring all learning/knowledge together under one supreme [Divine] principle.

Alexander’s experiment was called Hellenization- which was the Greek worlds attempt to impose Greek culture/language on all their conquered enemies- and at the same time allow them to hold on to the their own culture too. Alexander did amazingly well at this experiment- at the young age of around 24 he had accomplished most of his mission. The cities were a sort of composite of Greek culture mixed in with their own culture- this is where we get the modern term Cosmopolitan.

Alexander died young and his kingdom was divided between 4 generals- one of them- Ptolemy- would himself make it into the history books because of his keen intellect.

The system of cosmology developed under him would last [and work!] until some 17-18 hundred years later when it was overthrown by the Copernican revolution during the time of Copernicus and Galileo.

Alexander’s generals would do their best to carry on the system of Hellenization- and other nation’s generals would keep the system going even after Greece fell. One of them- Octavian [Roman general] makes it into the history books by another famous name- Julius Caesar.

Alexander established a great library in the Egyptian city of Alexandria [named after him] and many of the great writings were preserved during this time.

The writings of Aristotle would be discovered again during the time of Thomas Aquinas [13th century Catholic genius/scholar] and this would lead to Scholasticism [a peculiar school of thought developed/revived under Aquinas] and give rise to the Renaissance.

Okay- before the birth of Christ- the Jewish people resisted the imposing of Greek culture upon them- you had the very famous resistance under the Jewish Maccabean revolt- where the Jews rose up and fought the wicked ruler Antiochus Epiphanies- and till this day the Jewish people celebrate this victory at Hanukah.

Eventually Rome would conquer the Greek kingdom and the Jewish people were allowed to keep their culture and temple- yet they were still a people oppressed. Hassidism [getting back to the beginning] developed during this attempt to not lose their Jewish roots- the Pharisees of Jesus day came from this movement.

Alexander was pretty successful in his attempt to unify language- even though the bible [New Testament] was written by Jewish writers- living under Roman rule- yet the original bible is written in the Greek language.

Bible scholars till this day study the Greek language to find the truest meaning of the actual words in the bible [I have a Greek Lexicon sitting right in front of me].

It would take a few centuries before a Latin version appeared on the scene [the great church father- Jerome- would produce the Latin Vulgate].

Yet it would be the re- discovery and learning of the Greek texts [under men like Erasmus- and the Protestant Reformers] that would lead to the Reformation [16th century] and other movements in church history.

The Jews had various responses to the empires that ruled over them during various times.
Alexander the Great instituted Hellenization- a sort of cultural compromise over the people he conquered.
They could keep their religious/cultural roots- but would be subservient to Alexander and Greek rule.
Some Jewish people rejected any compromise- we call them the Essenes- they moved out of town- so to speak, and lived in what we refer to as the Qumran community.
This was a few centuries before the time of Christ- and this was where the Dead Seas Scrolls were found in the 20th century.
A Bedouin boy was looking for his goats- threw a rock in a cave right off the Dead Sea- and that’s how we found the scrolls.
The scrolls might have been hidden there by the Essenes-
Now- when my friends asked me about them- I told them that it’s been a while since I read up on any of this- but to the best of my memory the thing that made them significant was the fact that they were very old manuscripts- from the bible- and they backed up what we had had all along.
I did read up this week- and basically had it right.
The earliest Hebrew manuscripts of the Old Testament we had previously dated back to around 900- 1000 A.D.
These manuscripts went back about 1000 years earlier- and they contained portions from almost every book of the Old testament- and some complete books.
The only book missing was Esther.
So- this was indeed a very significant find for scholars.
But the Scrolls also contain some of the writings from the Essenes themselves- things we never had before- so this too was significant.
There were Jews at the time of the first century who tried to ‘get along’ with Rome- and with the person in charge of their region [one of the sons of Herod the Great at the time of Christ].
These are referred to as Herodian’s in the bible.
Some wanted a revolution to rid Rome from Jerusalem- these were the Zealots [one of Jesus disciples was in this group].
Some thought if they returned to a legalistic obeisance of the law- that this would bring in a deliverer- like the stories we read about in the Old testament- these were the Pharisees.
And some took more of a political compromise- these were the Sadducees.
Eventually a war with Rome would be fought [By the way- Josephus- the famous 1st century historian- fought on the side of the Jews in the war- and after Jerusalem was sacked in A.D. 70- he went to Rome and wrote his great works- thinking he would make a case for the Jewish people with the Romans. This is why we have his works today- which are very valuable to scholars].
But the Scrolls also contain some of the writings from the Essenes themselves- things we never had before- so this too was significant.
There were Jews at the time of the first century who tried to ‘get along’ with Rome- and with the person in charge of their region [one of the sons of Herod the Great at the time of Christ].
These are referred to as Herodian’s in the bible.
Some wanted a revolution to rid Rome from Jerusalem- these were the Zealots [one of Jesus disciples was in this group].
Some thought if they returned to a legalistic obeisance of the law- that this would bring in a deliverer- like the stories we read about in the Old testament- these were the Pharisees.
And some took more of a political compromise- these were the Sadducees.
Eventually a war with Rome would be fought [By the way- Josephus- the famous 1st century historian- fought on the side of the Jews in the war- and after Jerusalem was sacked in A.D. 70- he went to Rome and wrote his great works- thinking he would make a case for the Jewish people with the Romans. This is why we have his works today- which are very valuable to scholars].

THIS IS AN OLD POST I WROTE A WHILE AGO- IT DEALS WITH HANUKKAH.

CANDLE- DON’T GO OUT!
The chapter for the week is Luke 11.

Jesus says ‘which of you- if a friend came to you on a journey and you had nothing to give him- would go to another friend and say ‘a friend of mine has come and I have no food for him- can you spare some stuff’- and this friend would give you something for your friend who came to you on his journey’.

I always liked this story- Jesus relates it to our own life.

He then goes on to say ‘so- if you ask God for the Holy Spirit- he too would give you what you ask’.

Often times we ‘come to the table’ with what we think others need- that is we have preconceived ideas about what we want to share- talk about.

But in reality- we- like the man in the story- have nothing to give others who come to us ‘on their journey’.

We need to go ‘to our friend’ [God] – and say ‘we have nothing- in and of ourselves to give- can you give me some bread for these travelers’.

Its interesting- Jesus does give us the Lords prayer in this chapter too- which says ‘give us this day our daily bread’.

The other day one of my sister’s friends came over to help clean up the downstairs apt. where Laura lived.

She’s a nice girl- I have met her before.
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She is also an Atheist.

I have never had any problems with people of our faiths- or even atheists.

I of course have studied/taught the Christian view for years- and am aware of the basic ‘arguments’ that defend the ‘belief in God’ view.

But that was not my job this day- I was just helping her clean the apt.

When I moved back to N.J. from Texas- I only took a few things with me- one of them was a small Menorah [Jewish candlestick] that I used as a desk item.

As we were cleaning my sister’s room- we found 2 boxes of Hanukkah candles.

Of course my sister was not Jewish- so it was a strange find.

I told my sister’s friend ‘you know- I actually brought a little Menorah with me- I bet these fit it’.

Sure enough- they did.

I have already lit about 15 of them the past few days [If I remember- I’ll post a picture].

It was an opportunity to talk about the history of Hanukkah- so I did.

Hanukkah is the Jewish celebration of the re-dedication of the 2nd Temple of the Jews [we read about the second temple and the rebuilding of the city and the temple in the Old Testament books of Nehemiah- Ezra].

In the 2nd century- B.C.- the Jews rose up against their oppressors [the Greek/Syrian empire] and fought against the wicked Seleucid ruler- Antiochus Epiphanies- who desecrated their temple by offering pigs blood upon the altar.

There was a priest named Mattathias who had 5 sons- they launched a guerilla type fight against Antiochus- and took the temple back.

After the death of the priest- his son Judah Maccabee [The Hammer] took over- he finished the fight with his brothers and after they rededicated the temple back to God- they Lit the Menorah- and according to Jewish tradition- the lamp [candlesticks were not like we think today- they were made out of pipes- and lamp oil flowed thru the pipes] only had enough oil for one day- but miraculously burned for 8 days.

This story is found in the Talmud- a scared book for Jews.

In the Christian bible [the Catholic version- called the book of Maccabee’s] the story is a little different- but it does record this event.

So- till this day the Jewish people celebrate Hanukkah with the lighting of the Menorah [they use 9 candles today- the original one had 7].

And it dates back to this event- called the Maccabean Revolt.

In Luke 11- Jesus also speaks about the candle stick.

He says when you light a candle you don’t put it where no one can see it- but you put it on a table so when people come into the room they can see.

Jesus says the church is like this- we are a ‘city on a hill that cannot be hid’.

The Apostle John says in the book of Revelation ‘I saw a man standing in the middle of 7 golden candles- he had 7 stars in his right hand’.

The book goes on to interpret this image- it says this was a prophetic image of Jesus standing in the middle of the 7 churches that the letter was written to [these were the 7 churches of Asia Minor].

The 7 stars in Jesus right hand were ‘the angels of the 7 churches’.

So the menorah plays a role in both Jewish and Christian art/writing.

In the story I mentioned above- when people come to us ‘on their journey’- where they are at in life- we really don’t know what to say- what to give them.

Because we too are on ‘our journey’ dealing with our own stuff too.

Earlier this year I re-read the Bob Dylan book ‘Chronicles’.

It was highly acclaimed- his first auto biography- and it was a really good book.

Dylan gives a quote from his grandmother;

‘Remember- when you run across people in life- try to be nice- because we are all going thru stuff’ [my paraphrase].

Yeah- at times I can be mean- just like the rest.

I really had no plans on ‘witnessing’ to my sisters friend this day.

But the candles were a way to simply talk about the history of Hanukkah [this friend likes to study and learn- she is somewhat of an intellectual- which is good].

Jesus also says in this chapter ‘the light of the body is the eye- if you look at bad stuff- it will affect you’.

He relates this to the candle imagery- what we see- hear- read- etc, – these things do indeed effect us- for good or ill.

Yeah- the candle stick imagery is used a lot in the bible.

According to the Talmud- God did a miracle- he let the Menorah burn for 8 days [that’s why the modern celebration is 8 days].

Yet- they only had one day of oil.

Hey- that fits in with the story ‘A friend has come to us- we don’t have enough to give them- can you multiply the resources’.

Sure- God sees we are trying- why not?

NOTE- The past couple of weeks the Pope made his trip to Brazil- has made a few off the cuff remarks- and there has been talk in the media about this stuff.

One of the remarks he made I did like a lot;

“At times we loose people because we they don’t understand what we are saying, because we have forgotten the language of simplicity and import an intellectualism foreign to our people”- “ Without the grammar of simplicity, the church loses the very conditions which make it possible to fish for God in the deep waters of his mystery”.

I went to the Wal Mart eye doctor the other day.

I am supposed to wear glasses- but have not had an eye exam in about 20 years.

At work- at the fire house- I used to bring an old junky pair- that I fixed with super glue- because I can not read street signs without prescriptions.

I new most of the city by heart [I drove fire trucks for Kingsville for 25 years- and was a firefighter].

Yet- when it came to reading the actual addresses- forget it.

But- after I retired I would just ‘wing it’.

Yeah- at times I would actually have to stop- right under a sign- to read it.

But- driving in New Jersey [which I’m trying not to do- I want to just start using buses and stuff] is different.

Even when walking New York city- sometimes I walk an extra block- and find out the corner is the wrong street.

So- at Wal mart I got the exam and ordered 2 pairs of glasses.

The Eye doc. asked me about my reading and all- how good can I read/see the page.

I told him my reading has gone down some- and I can judge it well because I’m a big reader of books- for many years.

He asked me about what I red and all.

Somehow I got into the web site- and started talking about ministry and stuff.

He was interested- and even asked me a few questions.

He of course is an accomplished person- yet had questions about his former faith- and the church he now belongs to.

He was raised Methodist- and married a fine Catholic lady- and is now Catholic.

As my habit is- sometimes I get too deep into stuff- and I lose people [the Popes above quote].

But this time- ‘deep’ was good- he asked some good questions about the church- and I shared with him this web site.

In this weeks bible chapter Jesus gave us the story about the people who come to us on ‘their journey’.

They too have all types of stuff they are dealing with.

Some- like my eye doctor- might have simple questions [simple for someone who has studied this stuff for years- maybe tough for those who never put the time in- for instance I talked about the debate between the Methodists and the Calvinists- and how his former church was Arminian [ a term that comes from Jacob Arminius- a person who was once a believer in Predestination/Election- and came to doubt it- and became a defender of Free Will] and how they did not teach Predestination- John Wesley- the founder of the Methodist church disagreed with other great revivalist preachers- like Spurgeon- over this issue].

So- on my eye doctors ‘journey’ this was important to him- to learn some stuff about his former church- as well as his present one [I also talked about the Catholic church Fathers- and the early centuries of the church].

Yet to some of the other people I have met in the last few weeks- this is not ‘the bread’ they need [or would even understand].

What’s most important- at these junctures on the journey- is to ‘hear’ God- to listen to what the friend of yours might be dealing with- or even asking you a specific question.

It’s hard to practice this- because most of the times we want to talk about a subject that we like.

Stephen Covey said ‘seek first to understand- then to be understood’.

Let’s end with a few verses I have read the past day or so.

‘Woe to those who obey the rules- but pass over the judgment and love of God’

“The Lord will perfect [accomplish] that which concerns you”

“Strengthen O God- that which you have done for us”

Let God establish the thing he started in you- don’t get too caught up in the process right now [rules versus the Love of God]- let God lead- be a good follower.

Obey him in simple acts of service.

The prophet Isaiah said God was done with the famous- the big shots- and he was using the humble- the poor- the down trodden to build his kingdom [read chapters 3-4].

God honors the contrite heart- the Meek ones who are to inherit the earth.

He puts down those who are in pride.

As the Pope so eloquently said- God fishes in this world- but he uses the language of simplicity to catch men.

UPDATE ON CHIEF SIMPSONS DEATH-
I read the news yesterday- about the passing of Chief Simpson.
The chief had alcohol in his system at the time of his death [he was killed while riding his motorcycle].
The 16 year old boy who was driving the truck had no alcohol- or drugs in him.
The alcohol in the chief was 0.078- the legal limit in Texas is 0.08.
I in NO WAY demean the chief here-
The final investigation said it was determined that the alcohol played no role in the chief’s death.
To be honest- I don’t know how we can determine that a certain amount [varies in states] can play a role.
Are we slower to respond in a vehicle with 07?
Probably- alcohol affects how we respond.
The point I want to make is it would be better to have no alcohol in us- while driving.
The Chief broke no law- and it was not wrong for him to have drank.
I continue to pray for his family till this day- and ask for you to do the same [as well as the families of the officers who died in the past few weeks].

SUNDAY RAMBLING
– Here are a few verses I quoted today. I figured I’d give you the links and put them all together.
Proverbs 16:33 The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD.
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-6-15-mayor-n-council-liable-for-criminal-cop.zip
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-6-15-false-testimony-prison-time.zip
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-6-15-9-6-15-armed-robbery-n-other-unsolved-crimes.zip
Jeremiah 45:1 The word that Jeremiah the prophet spake unto Baruch the son of Neriah, when he had written these words in a book at the mouth of Jeremiah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah, saying,
Jeremiah 45:2 Thus saith the LORD, the God of Israel, unto thee, O Baruch:
Jeremiah 45:3 Thou didst say, Woe is me now! for the LORD hath added grief to my sorrow; I fainted in my sighing, and I find no rest.
Jeremiah 45:4 Thus shalt thou say unto him, The LORD saith thus; Behold, that which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up, even this whole land.
Jeremiah 45:5 And seekest thou great things for thyself? seek them not: for, behold, I will bring evil upon all flesh, saith the LORD: but thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places whither thou goest.
Colossians 2:15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.

Matthew 24:1 And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
Matthew 24:2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
Revelation 11:1 And there was given me a reed like unto a rod: and the angel stood, saying, Rise, and measure the temple of God, and the altar, and them that worship therein.
Revelation 11:2 But the court which is without the temple leave out, and measure it not; for it is given unto the Gentiles: and the holy city shall they tread under foot forty and two months.
Revelation 11:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.
Revelation 11:4 These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.
Revelation 11:5 And if any man will hurt them, fire proceedeth out of their mouth, and devoureth their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.

THE FLOOD https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-8-15-the-flood.zip
On this video-
.Nazi sword my uncle [P.O.W.] brought back- and how he died in plane crash in the Hackensack river.
.The stolen pencils [yes- dad cried].
.media lies- again. [talked about unemployment rate- created only 170,000 jobs- yet miraculously rate went down!- need around 230,000 for it to come down]
Note- right after I made the video I listened to NPR radio news [liberal bias]- because the jobs added were low/bad- they did a report on how the next time the numbers come out- they are ‘expected’ to be the highest since 2008! Sad- but true [they manipulate public opinion all the time].
.They followed him thru 3 states- and shot him [Black man- cop]- they killed the wrong guy.
.Will Brian Williams go to prison!
.Insights from movie ‘Jaws’.
.Is relapse a part of recovery?
.Will we be married in heaven?

Below are the scriptures I talk about on the video.
James 1:22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
James 1:23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:
James 1:24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
James 1:25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

Revelation 12:15 And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.
Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 5:20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Jeremiah 46:1 The word of the LORD which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Gentiles;
Jeremiah 46:2 Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, which was by the river Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah.
Jeremiah 46:3 Order ye the buckler and shield, and draw near to battle.
Jeremiah 46:4 Harness the horses; and get up, ye horsemen, and stand forth with your helmets; furbish the spears, and put on the brigandines.
Jeremiah 46:5 Wherefore have I seen them dismayed and turned away back? and their mighty ones are beaten down, and are fled apace, and look not back: for fear was round about, saith the LORD.
Jeremiah 46:6 Let not the swift flee away, nor the mighty man escape; they shall stumble, and fall toward the north by the river Euphrates.
Jeremiah 46:7 Who is this that cometh up as a flood, whose waters are moved as the rivers?
Jeremiah 46:10 For this is the day of the Lord GOD of hosts, a day of vengeance, that he may avenge him of his adversaries: and the sword shall devour, and it shall be satiate and made drunk with their blood: for the Lord GOD of hosts hath a sacrifice in the north country by the river Euphrates.
Jeremiah 46:15 Why are thy valiant men swept away? they stood not, because the LORD did drive them.
Jeremiah 46:16 He made many to fall, yea, one fell upon another: and they said, Arise, and let us go again to our own people, and to the land of our nativity, from the oppressing sword.
Jeremiah 46:24 The daughter of Egypt shall be confounded; she shall be delivered into the hand of the people of the north.
Jeremiah 46:27 But fear not thou, O my servant Jacob, and be not dismayed, O Israel: for, behold, I will save thee from afar off, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and be in rest and at ease, and none shall make him afraid.
Jeremiah 46:28 Fear thou not, O Jacob my servant, saith the LORD: for I am with thee; for I will make a full end of all the nations whither I have driven thee: but I will not make a full end of thee, but correct thee in measure; yet will I not leave thee wholly unpunished.
So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.- Isaiah
Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song unto the LORD, and spake, saying, I will sing unto the LORD, for he hath triumphed gloriously: the horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea.- Exodus 15

THE ROOF [5 fold ministry] https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-9-15-the-roof.zip
These are some of the verses I mention on the video-
Plus I talk about ‘shark bait’.
Huh?
You’ll have to watch.
. Ephesians 4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
Ephesians 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
Ephesians 4:9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
Ephesians 4:10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
Ephesians 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Ephesians 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
Ephesians 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
Ephesians 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
Ephesians 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
Ephesians 4:16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails fastened by the masters of assemblies, which are given from one shepherd. Ecc. 12
Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
Galatians 5:23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
Galatians 5:24 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
Galatians 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wisemasterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. 1st Cor. 3
They are like unto children sitting in the marketplace, and calling one to another, and saying, We have piped unto you, and ye have not danced; we have mourned to you, and ye have not wept. Luke 7

.
[the post is too big- might post 2] THE BOYS https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-10-15-the-boys.zip [note- you’ll see midway thru the teaching- Jimmy wants to hold the camera- I say ‘don’t shut it off’- he says ‘I wont’. That’s where the video stops- LOL]
Below are a few notes/scriptures we talk about on the video.
I added lots of old posts I did over the years that talk about the Gifts of the Spirit and the 5-fold ministry. The complete studies are on the blog.
Acts 6:1 And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.
Acts 6:2 Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.
Acts 6:3 Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business.
Acts 6:4 But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.
Acts 6:5 And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch:
Acts 6:6 Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed, they laid their hands on them.
Acts 6:7 And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.
Acts 6:8 And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people.
Acts 6:9 Then there arose certain of the synagogue, which is called the synagogue of the Libertines, and Cyrenians, and Alexandrians, and of them of Cilicia and of Asia, disputing with Stephen.
Acts 6:10 And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.
Acts 6:11 Then they suborned men, which said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses, and against God.
Acts 6:12 And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and came upon him, and caught him, and brought him to the council,
Acts 6:13 And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place, and the law:
Acts 6:14 For we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place, and shall change the customs which Moses delivered us.
Acts 6:15 And all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.
________________________________________

[This is from Wikipedia]The wager is described in Pensées this way:
If there is a God, He is infinitely incomprehensible, since, having neither parts nor limits, He has no affinity to us. We are then incapable of knowing either what He is or if He is….
…”God is, or He is not.” But to which side shall we incline? Reason can decide nothing here. There is an infinite chaos which separated us. A game is being played at the extremity of this infinite distance where heads or tails will turn up. What will you wager? According to reason, you can do neither the one thing nor the other; according to reason, you can defend neither of the propositions.
Do not, then, reprove for error those who have made a choice; for you know nothing about it. “No, but I blame them for having made, not this choice, but a choice; for again both he who chooses heads and he who chooses tails are equally at fault, they are both in the wrong. The true course is not to wager at all.”
Yes; but you must wager. It is not optional. You are embarked. Which will you choose then? Let us see. Since you must choose, let us see which interests you least. You have two things to lose, the true and the good; and two things to stake, your reason and your will, your knowledge and your happiness; and your nature has two things to shun, error and misery. Your reason is no more shocked in choosing one rather than the other, since you must of necessity choose. This is one point settled. But your happiness? Let us weigh the gain and the loss in wagering that God is. Let us estimate these two chances. If you gain, you gain all; if you lose, you lose nothing. Wager, then, without hesitation that He is.
“That is very fine. Yes, I must wager; but I may perhaps wager too much.” Let us see. Since there is an equal risk of gain and of loss, if you had only to gain two lives, instead of one, you might still wager. But if there were three lives to gain, you would have to play (since you are under the necessity of playing), and you would be imprudent, when you are forced to play, not to chance your life to gain three at a game where there is an equal risk of loss and gain. But there is an eternity of life and happiness. And this being so, if there were an infinity of chances, of which one only would be for you, you would still be right in wagering one to win two, and you would act stupidly, being obliged to play, by refusing to stake one life against three at a game in which out of an infinity of chances there is one for you, if there were an infinity of an infinitely happy life to gain. But there is here an infinity of an infinitely happy life to gain, a chance of gain against a finite number of chances of loss, and what you stake is finite.

I mentioned Pascal- helenization in these posts I wrote a while back- figured I’d add them here.

(944)1ST CORINTHIANS 1:18-31 Paul declares the actual preaching of the Cross to be the power of God. The Jews sought for a sign [remember the sign of Jonas?] and the Greeks prided themselves in wisdom. Paul declares that Jesus IS the wisdom and power of God. In Christ is contained all the wisdom and power [signs] in the universe! Paul says God destroyed the wisdom of unregenerate man and that Gods foolishness is wiser than men’s greatest achievements apart from God. Wow, what an indictment on enlightenment philosophy. Man goes thru stages of learning and knowledge [renaissance, enlightenment. Industrial, scientific revolution] these are not bad achievements in and of themselves. Many of the greatest scientists and scientific discoveries were made by men of faith [Newton, Pascal, Faraday, etc] the problem arises when men think that sheer humanistic reasoning, apart from God, is the answer. Right now there is a movement [11-08] going on where some atheists bought ad space on the sides of buses that say ‘why believe in a god? Do good for goodness sake’. So they had both sides [Christian /Atheist] debate it. The simple fact is, sheer humanism cannot even define ‘what good is’. ‘Good’ becomes a matter of what serves me best at the time of my decision. Without God and special revelation [scripture-10 commandments] good can be defined by Hitler’s regime as exterminating one class of society for the benefit of the whole. Only Christian [or Deist, Jewish, Muslim] beliefs place special value and dignity on human life. It is a common misconception to think that all the enlightenment philosophers were atheists; this was not the case at all. Locke, Hume and others simply believed that thru human logic and reason people could arrive at a sort of naturalistic belief in God. This would form the basis of Deism, the system of belief in God but a rejection of classic Christian theology. Benjamin Franklin and other founding fathers of our country were influenced by this style of belief. Now, getting back to the Greeks. Paul says ‘God destroyed the wisdom of this world’. What wisdom is Paul talking about? The enlightenment philosophers of the 18th century had nothing on the Greek philosophers going all the way back to a few centuries B.C. Plato, the Greek wrestler turned philosopher, had one of the most famous schools of Greek philosophy. At the entrance of the school the words were written ‘let non but geometers enter here’. Kind of strange. Geometry simply meant ‘form’ in this use. Most of the great theoretical physicists were also great mathematicians [Einstein]. The Greek philosophers were seeking a sort of ‘unified theory’ that would explain all other theories and bring all learning together under one intellectual ‘roof’. Sort of like Einstein’s last great obsession. The Greeks actually referred to this great unknown future ‘unifier’ as ‘the Logos’. Now, some atheists will use this truth to undercut the New Testament. They will take the common use of these words ‘The Logos’ and say that Johns writings [Gospel, letters] were simply stolen ideas from Greek philosophy. This is why believers need to have a better understanding of the inspiration of scripture. John’s writings were no doubt inspired, he of course calls Jesus the ‘Logos’ [word] of God. But he was simply saying to the Greek/Gnostic mind ‘look, you guys have been waiting for centuries for the one special ‘Word/Logos’ that would be the answer to all learning, I declare unto you that Jesus is this Logos’! So eventually you would have ‘the wisdom of the world’ [both Greek and enlightenment and all other types] falling short of the ultimate answer. They could only go so far in their journey for truth, and ultimately they either wind up at the foot of the Cross [the wisdom of God] or the ‘tree of the knowledge of good and evil’. God said this ‘tree’ [sources of wisdom and knowledge apart from God] would ultimately lead to death if not submitted to ‘the tree of life’ [the Cross]. You would have some of the enlightenment philosophers eat from this tree all the way to the ‘death of God’ movement. Man in his wisdom would come to the conclusion that ‘God is dead’. If this is true, then the slaughter of millions of Jews is no moral dilemma. If God is dead then man is not created in his image, he is just this piece of flesh that you can dispose of at will. To all you intellectual types, it’s Okay to have a mind, but you must love God with it. If all your doing is feeding from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you will surely die.
(1142) MAN, GODS UNIQUE CREATION- Okay, we already saw how God made the animals and fish and birds, but when he describes mans creation he shows us that it is unique. Out of all the other created things, man alone is in ‘Gods image’ and bears his likeness. Man is a moral being with a built in conscience, he has the capacity to know God and live with him forever. This is the basis of the Judeao Christian value on human life. Those religions who believe in the Genesis account of creation, see man as having special value. The Darwinian worldview [social Darwinism] sees man as a simple blob of meaningless flesh, no different than the other life forms along the line. I always found the atheists reasoning to be a little illogical; they will argue that they are the real intellectuals, the so called ‘brights’ [a recent term they have come up with to describe their group] they will then explain to you how their view of their mind and brain is purely naturalistic, their brains are simply these jumbled masses of cells that are the result of thousands of years of meaningless process. Their whole being started as an accident, they have no initial purpose or final end. They see themselves, and along with it, all their reasoning and education and knowledge as being the result of years and years of luck and chance, and then they want you to trust in their conclusions! Ah, the utter foolishness of mans wisdom. God formed man from the dust of the earth and breathed into him his own breath and man became a living soul. Though the basic material of man is the same as the other material things God made, yet he only breathed his own image into man. The great 17th century philosopher/mathematician Blaise Pascal was reading the gospel of John one night, he was meditating on John 17 and had an awakening, he began to see that God was ‘the God of Jesus’ not the God of the philosophers. He saw that having a real relationship with God was different than simply knowing the things about him. God built into man the capacity to know him, while all other creatures are valuable and special to him [Jesus said not even a little sparrow dies without God caring about it!] yet man alone has the capacity to know and be in true communion with his creator, man was created in Gods image.

(1284) FOR A LAW SHALL PROCEED FROM ME AND I WILL MAKE MY JUDGMENT TO REST FOR A LIGHT OF THE PEOPLE Isaiah 51:5 I found out last week that one of my friends converted to Islam, he spent some time in New Jersey jails and rehabs and the Muslim influence is strong in Jersey. He explained to a friend how ‘God doesn’t share his glory’ and that he was taught that the Christian view of Jesus violates this truth. First, it would take too much time to overview the entire history of various beliefs and questions on different expressions of the Trinity, suffice it to say that there have been Christian groups from the first century up until today who have had difficulties with the Orthodox expression of the Trinity. I am Trinitarian, but understand how these various groups have had difficulty. Just to name a few; the Ethiopian Orthodox churches reject Trinitarian language. The Oriental Christian churches in general reject the language. The invading barbarians who attacked the Roman Empire were eventually converted to a form of Christianity that would reject Trinitarian language. The great Blasé Pascal thought it to have been a false teaching. I could go on and on with many groups who believed in God and Jesus but did not accept strong Trinitarian language. The point being, if someone thinks that all Christians hold the same views on the language, they are mistaken. I wrote a letter to my friend who converted to Islam, I simply shared the main difference between Christianity and Islam [and all religions], that Christianity teaches forgiveness and acceptance with God as a gift that comes thru the Atonement of Christ. Jesus died for men’s sins and rose again as a sacrificial atonement for man, Islam has some well meaning teachings in it but at the end of the day it is a religion that is legalistic. People attempt to gain Gods favor thru their own efforts; this is opposed to the Christian view of grace. I basically think it to be a red herring to use the language of the Trinity as a reason to reject Christianity and become Muslim, as I already stated there are many Christian groups who would agree with some of the issues that Muslims raise; this does not deal with the fact that man cannot atone for his own sins, man is unable thru any religious works to make himself right with God. The ‘law that proceeds from God’ to the nations is a law based on grace, not works. Paul calls it ‘the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus’ [Romans] he contrasts it with the law of works. Now the whole history of Justification by faith and how different Christian groups see it is another intramural war that rages within the church, N.T. Wright recently put out a book on it, John Piper wrote one in defense of the historic Reformation view- Wright’s view has some excellent points, but would be considered New Perspective. So there are differences in the way Justification by Faith is seen, but all groups agree that man is accepted by God based on the free gift of Grace that comes thru the Cross. Yes, Catholics and Protestants agree with this language, though there are other differences. The point today is I believe we as believers need to make clear the differences between law based religions and Christianity, Jesus offers free forgiveness based on his death burial and resurrection. Law based religions might seem noble at the start, but at the end of the day they lead to condemnation and frustration, they are a vain attempt by man to make himself pleasing to God- an impossible task.

NOTE- Christianity in the first century was not born in a vacuum.

Of course the major World View was Judaism- but the second- very strong influence/philosophy of the day was Greek wisdom [thus my quote in the last post ‘The Greeks seek wisdom’].

In the letter to the Colossians- the Apostle refutes Asceticism- which was indeed a belief of the Greek philosophers.

Greek wisdom taught that the material realm was evil.

Way back about 6 centuries before Christ- you had the famous Philosopher Socrates.

His most famous student was Plato.

And Plato’s most famous student was Aristotle.

When Socrates was put to death- because of his supposed bad influence on the youth of his time [he taught them to questions stuff!].

It is reported that he calmly drank the Cyanide- because he believed that when he would die- be released from his body [the so called evil realm of matter] that he would finally ‘be free’.

Now- do Christians believe this?

Yes and no.

Because our bibles were written in Greek [which shows you how strong the Greek influence effected the early church- our first New Testaments were written in Greek- though the Roman Empire was the world Empire of the day.

But Alexander the Great- the famed Greek conqueror who came a few centuries before Christ- he instituted what we refer to as Helenization.

A form of conquering where you let the people you conquer keep their culture- but you also use parts of your culture [in this case the Greek language] to permeate the vanquished.

So- the Roman Empire of Jesus day [who at one time were under the rule of the Greek Empire] continued to write in Greek.

It wasn’t until around a few centuries after the time of Christ that the first Latin bible was written [by Saint Jerome].

But even his bible [the Latin Vulgate] used the Greek Old Testament [called the Septuagint] instead of the Hebrew- for his Latin translation.

Ok- the point being- the Greek world did indeed have a strong influence on the early church.

And the church had to refute the belief that all matter was evil.

The Christian doctrine of creation [developed under saint Augustine- the 4th-5th century bishop of Hippo- North Africa].

Was the teaching that matter was good- that God created the material realm- so it is not inherently evil.

But- after the fall of man [Genesis 1-3] a curse did indeed come upon the earth [some times when the bible says ‘the world’ it is speaking of the earth- but other times it is speaking of the fallen order- the sinful realm of man. That’s why there is some confusion- till this day- among Christians. They might read verses like this- and think the bible is saying the earth itself- the planet- is wicked. Actually in those verses it is speaking about the fallen order of sinful men. See? ‘For all that is in THE WORLD- the lust of the flesh- the lust of the eyes and the pride of life- is not of the father- but is of the WORLD- and the WORLD is passing away’- this is one example from the epistle of John- here the World is not saying the planet- but the world of sinful man- a fallen ‘world’ order.]

So- in conclusion [if I ever get there!] we- as believers- reject the belief that all matter is evil.

No- man was created in the image of God- and God is the creator of all things- both visible [earth- man- etc] and invisible [mentioned in the above chapter].

The evil we see in the ‘world’ today is simply a result of mans sin- mans choice to live in rebellion against God.

We can’t escape ‘this world of sin’ by simply denying ourselves [though that is one aspect of the Christian life].

But God sent his Son into the world to redeem man- Christ died for all men- and this is the Divine act of Salvation.

When we as humans partake of this Salvation- we are then free- free to enjoy this life- that God gave us- and we don’t have to have the mindset of a Socrates- who saw this natural life as evil.

The apostle Paul says in his letter to the Romans;

‘Present your bodies as a living sacrifice- HOLY and acceptable to God’.

See?

Our bodies- the actual flesh we live in- can be Holy- sanctified- when submitted to the will of God.

This is from my Romans teaching I did a few years ago- ROMANS 11-13
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/03/3-12-15-romans-11-13.zip
[note- there’s much more on the video than the post]
.ROMANS 11
.ROMANS 12
.ROMANS 13

END NOTES-
.What effect did the Renaissance have on the Reformation?
.How did Erasmus differ from Luther?
.Do Catholics exalt Tradition over Scripture?
.Renaissance artists.
.Do Catholics believe in Justification by Faith?
.Catholic teaching on Civil Authorities [Romans 13].
.What does ‘AdFontes’ mean- and how does it relate to the Renaissance/Reformation?

Romans 11
.Was Paul a full time preacher- paid?
.Is he teaching universalism here?
.Elijah was not alone.
(861)Romans 11:13- ‘For I speak to you Gentiles, in as much as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify my office’. Let me just make a few comments today. How is Paul ‘exercising’ his apostolic authority over the Gentiles in Rome? We know he hasn’t been there yet [since becoming a follower of Jesus]. He did not have some type of relationship with them where they contributed to him. He was holding no ‘church services’. He exercised it by speaking into their lives and caring for their welfare. He did this by WRITING THIS LETTER! Recently there has been some discussion on ‘Gods government’ and the apostles ‘bringing things into alignment’ [dealing with the mistakes at Lakeland]. Lots of talk that I am familiar with. What is Gods government? In the world we have 2 competing ‘world views’- systems or modes of operation. You have God’s kingdom, and then the worlds system. When the apostle John said ‘love not the world, neither the things that are in the world’ he was referring to this system of lies and pride and sin. In Gods kingdom you operate under his laws ‘love the Lord thy God with all thy heart… and your neighbor as yourself’. In this family [children of God] you have different types of ‘gifts’. Some are apostles, others prophets, etc. All these gifted ones are given for the singular purpose of building you up so you can have a mature faith grounded in Christ and be the ‘glorious temple’ of God in the earth. Paul was playing his part by communicating Jesus to these Roman Gentiles. He did not have some type of a corporate relationship with them where he said ‘commit to my authority over you. Either I will be your ‘covering’ or someone else!’ These are mans ideas. Now, we often say ‘Paul didn’t receive money from the Corinthians, but he did from the other churches’. I have said this myself. Paul did receive support from the Philippians, but that was support for his traveling ministry. To get him to the next place. If you read carefully you will see Paul telling the Thessalonians ‘when I was with you I did not eat, or take stuff for free. My hands ministered to both me and those that were with me’ I think he even said he worked night and day. When he spoke to the Ephesians elders in the book of Acts, he also said ‘I labored when I was with you, I did not take support from you when I was there. I did this to leave you ELDERS an example’. Now, the point I want to make is it seems as if Paul did not take money when he was actually living among the saints. It seems he took it only for traveling expenses [and of course for his ministry to the poor saints at Jerusalem]. Now, I believe and teach that it is scriptural to meet the needs, financially, of laboring elders. The reason I mention this is to show you that being an ‘apostle’ or any other gifted minister in the church simply means you bear extra responsibility to bring Gods people to maturity. It was not some type of office where you were a ‘professional minister’. When I hear all the talk of ‘Gods apostles are bringing Gods government back into alignment’ for the most part these are men’s ideas being applied to an American corporate 501c3 ministry. Gods ‘government’ operates along different lines. So in this example Paul said ‘I magnify my office’ he was simply imparting some truth to them for the purpose of their own edification. Paul did not see them coming under ‘his covering’.

(862)ROMANS 11- let me make a note on the previous entry. Over the last few years, as well as many years of experience with ‘ministry/church’, I have seen how easy it is to fall into the well meaning mindset of ‘I am going into the ministry, this is my career choice. My responsibility is to do ‘Christian stuff’ and the people’s role is to support me’[ I am not taking a shot at well meaning Pastors, I am basically speaking of the many friends I have met over the years who seemed to think ministry was a way to get financial support]. In the previous entry I mentioned how Paul seemed to have a mode of operation that said ‘when I am residing with a community of believers, I refuse to allow them to support me. I will work with my own hands to give them an example, not only to the general saints, but also to the elders. I am showing you that leadership is not a means to get gain’. It does seem ‘strange’ for us to see this. Of course we know Paul also taught the churches that it was proper and right to support those who ‘labor among you’. I have taught all this in the past and I don’t want to ‘re-teach’ it all again. The point I want to make is we ‘in ministry’ really need to rethink what we do. How many web-sites have I gone to that actually have icons that say ‘pay me here’. The average person going to these sites must think ‘pay you for what’? Paul did not teach the mindset of ‘pay me here, now’. Also in this letter to the Romans we are reading Paul’s correspondence to the believers at Rome. He often used this mode of ‘authority’ [writing letters] to exercise his apostolic office. Of course he also traveled to these areas [Acts] and spent time with them. And as I just showed you he supported himself on purpose when he was with the saints. Basically Paul is carrying out the single most effective apostolic ministry of all time [except for Jesus] and he is doing it without all the modern techniques of getting paid. He actually is doing all this writing and laboring at his own expense. He told the Corinthians ‘the fathers [apostles] spend for the children, not the children for the fathers’. So in todays talk on ‘apostles’ being restored. God ‘bringing back into alignment apostolic government’ we need to tone down all the quoting of verses [even the things Paul said!] that seem to say to the average saint ‘how do you expect us to reach the world if you do not ‘bring all the tithes into the storehouse’! When we put this guilt trip on the people of God we are violating very fundamental principles of scripture. Now, let’s try and finish up chapter 11. Paul is basically telling Israel and the Gentiles that God’s dealings are beyond our understanding [last few verses]. God is using the ‘unbelief’ of Israel as an open door to the Gentiles. He is also using the mercy that he is showing to the Gentiles as an ‘open door’ to Israel! He will ‘provoke them to jealousy’. There are a few difficult verses that would be unfair for me to skip over. ‘All Israel shall be saved’. Paul uses this to show that God’s dealings with natural Israel as a nation are not finished. Who are ‘all Israel’? Some say ‘the Israel of God’ [the church]. I don’t think this fits the text. Some say ‘all Israel that will be alive at the second coming’ I think this is closer. To be honest I think this can simply mean ‘all Israel’ all those who are alive and also raised at the return of the Lord. Now, this would be a form of universalism [all people eventually being saved]. I am not a Universalist, but I don’t want any ‘preconceived’ mindset [even my own!] to taint the text. I think God has the ability to reveal himself to the whole nation of Israel in such a way that ‘they all will be saved’. If I were a Jewish person I wouldn’t wait for this to happen! Just like the Calvinists argument of ‘why witness’? Because God commands it. So even though you can make an argument here for a type of universal redemption at Christ’s revealing of himself to Israel at the second coming [which is in keeping with this chapter, as well as other areas in scripture; ‘they will look upon him whom they have pierced’ ‘God will pour out the spirit of mourning and supplication on Israel at his appearing’. Which by the way would fit in with ‘whoever calls on the Lord will be saved’ which I taught in chapter 10. This is a futurist text implying a time of future judgment and wrath’]. So God’s dealings with Israel are not finished. Paul also warns the Gentiles ‘don’t boast, if God cut out the true branches [Israel] to graft you in. He can just as quickly cut you out too’! It would be dishonest for me [a Calvinist] to simply not comment on this. You certainly can take this verse in an Arminian way. Or you can see Paul speaking in a ‘nationalistic sense’. Sort of like saying ‘if Germany walks away from the faith, they will be ‘cut out’. [France would have been a better example! Speaking of the so called ‘enlightenment’ and the French Revolution]. In essence ‘you Gentiles, don’t think “wow, look at us. God left Israel and we are now special!”’ Paul is saying ‘you Gentiles [as a whole group] stand by faith. God could just as quickly ‘cut you out’ and replace you with another group’. I also think the Arminians could use this type of argument for the previous predestination chapter [9]. But to be honest I needed to give you my view. One more thing, Paul quotes Elijah ‘lord, I am the only one left’. He uses this in context of God having a remnant from Israel who remained faithful to the true God. God told Elijah ‘there are 7 thousand that have not bowed the knee to baal’. Paul uses this to show that even in his day there were a remnant Of Jews [himself included] who received the Messiah. An interesting side note. The prophetic ministry [Elijah] seems to function at a ‘popular level’. Now, I don’t mean ‘fame’, but Elijah was giving voice to a large undercurrent that was running thru the nation. If you read the story of Elijah you would have never known that there were ‘7 thousand’ who never bowed the knee! Often times God will use prophetic people to ‘give voice’ or popularize a general truth that is presently existing in the ‘underground church’ at large. Sort of like if Elijah had a web site, the 7 thousand would have been secretly reading it and saying ‘right on brother, that’s exactly what we believe too’!

ROMANS 12
.ARE SOME GIFTS BETTER THAN OTHERS?
.HOW SHOULD THEY FUNCTION IN THE ‘BODY’?
. HOW SHOUD WE GIVE OFFERINGS- DID PAUL TEAHC TITHING?
.HOT COALS ON THEIR HEADS- HUH?

(864)ROMANS 12:1-8 ‘I beseech you by the mercies of God to present your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service [spiritual worship]’. Most times we see ‘by the mercies of God’ as a recap of all that Paul has taught from chapters 1 thru 12. This is true to a degree. I think Paul is honing in on the previous chapters that dealt with the purpose of God specifically seen in the resurrection of the body. As we read earlier ‘for we are saved by hope’ [the hope of the resurrection]. Basically I see Paul saying ‘because of what I showed you concerning Gods redemptive purpose for your body, therefore present your body now, in anticipation of it’s future glorious purpose, as a living sacrifice ‘holy and acceptable unto God’. Why? Because you are going to have that thing [body] forever! [in a new glorified state] Paul exhorts us to be changed by the renewing of our mind, the way we think. I have mentioned in the past that this renewing is not some type of legalistic function of ‘memorizing, muttering the do’s and don’ts all day long’. But a reorganizing of our thoughts according to this new covenant of grace. Seeing things thru this ‘new world’ perspective. A kingdom view based upon grace and the resurrection of Jesus. This resurrection that is assured to us because we have the deposit of the Spirit which is our guarantee that God will complete the work that he has begun in us. And Paul will jump into one of his ‘Body of Christ’ analogies which he uses often to describe the people of God. Because we are all one body, we should think soberly about our different gifts and purposes. God gave some ‘better’ [or more noticeable] gifts for the overall edifying of the body. So don’t boast about it. All have varying gifts, freely given. Administrate them with much grace. Do it with humility and cheerfulness. We are simply children thru whom Gods Spirit manifests himself in different ways. Don’t boast that ‘Wow, daddy gave me a bike’. Or look, I got a more expensive Christmas present than you. Daddy distributes the gifts freely as he wills. They are for everyone’s benefit. Don’t use this grace gift as a means of self importance or prestige. It would be like ‘prostituting’ a gift for self-aggrandizement. People have done it, but it displeases the giver of the gift.

(865)ROMANS 12: 13 Paul continues to give some basic guidelines on practical Christian living. Notice his teaching on financial giving ‘distribute to the necessity of the saints’. This basic Christian doctrine from Jesus teachings has become the premier act of giving for the New Testament saint. The reason I have stressed this teaching as opposed to the more popular view of tithing, is because the scriptures place such a high priority on Christian charity. As I have mentioned before, Jesus even uses this basic description to describe those who ‘are righteous’ or ‘unrighteous’. He teaches the final judgment will be based on this outward identifier of ‘what we did to the least of these’. If you read carefully the New Testament epistles you will see a picture of ‘local church’ as a caring community of people who show their love for one another thru these acts of kindness and compassion. None of the New Testament letters teach a type of financial giving that focuses on ‘support the ministry/institution’ as being ‘the new testament church’ that replaced the ‘old testament temple’. For example a tithe system that supports the ‘pastor/priest’ in the same way the Levitical priests were supported under the law. It’s so vital for us to see and understand this. Because the average believer is taught thru out his life that his primary expression of giving is to ‘bring the tithe into the storehouse’ in such a way that it violates the actual primacy of giving as taught in the New Testament. Which is to regularly give to meet the needs of those around you. The fact that there were instances in the book of Acts or the letter to the Corinthians where believers gave an offering in a corporate way [the collection for the poor saints- 1st Cor. 15, or the laying of the money at the apostles feet in Acts] does not excuse the believer from the teaching that we should all regularly give to meet the needs of those around us. This is flatly taught as a regular part of the Christian experience. The other fact that Paul never once teaches the tithe as a function of giving for the Gentile churches should cause us all to take another look at the way we teach giving in the church today.

(866)ROMANS 12:14-21 Notice how Paul puts such a high priority on the principles of Jesus. He exhorts the saints to live by the precepts of the great ‘sermon on the mount’. Often times believers try and make a division between Paul’s revelation of justification by faith and the ‘liberal moral teachings of Jesus’. I see no division here. Paul actually quotes Jesus ‘if you’re treated badly, respond in love. By not getting even you heap “coals of fire on your enemies head”’. Actually, I remember how a few years back, when everybody was coming up with their ‘new revelation knowledge’ ideas on scripture. Things like ‘the camel going thru the eye of the needle’. Some taught Jesus was not really rebuking wealth, he was simply talking about a ‘low gate’ thru the wall of the city that was called the ‘eye of the needle’ and the camels had to crouch a little to get thru, true silliness! This verse ‘coals on the head’ was taught as saying Jesus was simply saying you were helping your enemy on cold nights by ‘keeping his head warm’! Sad. Jesus said don’t avenge yourselves, God will avenge you. Doesn’t sound like the lord is talking about ‘head warmers’! Look at these verses carefully. Paul incorporates the teachings of Christ as having a very high priority for the believer. We are often inundated with modern concepts of ministry. How to raise funds [or amass wealth]. Paul ‘locates’ the important thing as being centered on Christ. He knew if the churches [believing communities] of the first few centuries would follow this idea, that they would truly turn their world upside down for the cause.

ROMANS 13
.SHOULD WE OBEY WICKED RULERS?
.IS IT EVER RIGHT TO ‘NOT OBEY’ [Civil Disobedience].
.TAXES AND THE TITHE.

(867)ROMANS 13:1-6 Paul teaches that believers should ‘be subject’ unto human government. He shows us that ‘the powers that be are ordained of God’. All human leaders are given their position of authority, ultimately, from God. What about Hitler? Or evil Pharaoh? Did God ‘put them there’? If God is sovereign [which he is!] then he permits all things to transpire, that actually transpire! He does not ‘ordain evil’ in the sense that he initiates unrighteous things. But because he has the power to prevent anything from happening, if ‘it happens’ that a wicked ruler is in authority, then he in that sense ‘ordained it’. Understand Paul is writing this at a time in Roman history where the leaders were quite wicked. They worshipped false gods, and even claimed to themselves the title of ‘a god’. For Paul to use this language in this chapter, he even says ‘they are the ministers [servants] of God to thee for good’ is strong. Paul is also not teaching that there is never a cause for civil disobedience, in the sense of ‘whatever the government says, we will do’. In the New Testament we have Peter resisting the order to ‘not teach or preach in Jesus name’ [Acts]. He even says ‘should we obey God or man’ in his defense. Of course today we have legalized abortion, and in the case of later term abortions, the practice is equal to infanticide. We should do all that is in our legal power to stop the murder of unborn children. This law violates Gods law, from whom all human government is derived.

(868)ROMANS 13:7-14 ‘For this cause pay your taxes also, for they are Gods ministers’ I noted earlier how Paul taught ‘give to those around you that are in need’ [chapter 12] and here he teaches the importance of ‘paying taxes’. Where is the exhortation to ‘pay tithes’? In the ecclesiology of Paul, the ‘corporate community of people’ are the ‘new testament temple of God’. Therefore you see the need to ‘pay tribute’ to only two ‘institutions’. One being the ‘local church’ [as seen in simple giving to the needs of the community around you] and the other being ‘the government’. Paul sees no 3rd ‘institution’ that is called ‘the local church’ to which the tribute of the tithe belongs. To correctly apply the verse in Malachi [if you were going to use it at all. It is obvious that the prophet is directing the rebuke towards natural Israel] you would simply see the ‘bring all the tithes into the storehouse’ as ‘give to meet the needs of the community [Gods new testament storehouse] around you’. Now Paul teaches the primacy of the law of love for the believer. If we walk in Jesus command to love, we fulfill the law. And again Paul uses the language of ‘fluent soteriology’ [salvation]. He says ‘now is our salvation nearer than when we believed’. Paul comfortably jumps in and out of ‘being saved’ and ‘will be saved’. It is this free use of the term that we need to become familiar with. The New Testament clearly teaches a future salvation. And it is not as simple as ‘My spirit is saved, my mind [soul- which is really a very weak translation for soul. The soul is much more than the mind, emotions and intellect!] is ‘being saved’ and my body will be saved’. It is not this cut and dry. Your spirit is saved, your spirit will be saved and is being saved [he ever lives to make intercession to God for us- this ongoing intercession deals with all aspects of the humans salvation. Not just the body!]. All 3 modes of salvation [past, present and future] can apply to ‘all of you’ [spirit, soul and body]. Don’t think future salvation only deals with the ‘salvation of the body’.

END NOTES- I’m adding portions of the Catechism at the bottom to show my Catholic [and Protestant] friends the official teaching of the church.
Some of my Catholic readers who are following along in this study- I want you to know that these doctrines are indeed in line with your faith.

RENAISSANCE STUFF –
The renaissance was the 13-14th century revival of culture and learning that was lost for centuries- It began in Florence Italy.
The catch phrase for it was ‘Ad Fontes’ meaning ‘back to the sources’- both in philosophy- as well as in Christian learning.
This began a revival of studying the Greek New testament again from its original language.
The Catholic Humanist- Desiderius Erasmus [15-16th century] – re introduced the New Testament in the Greek version [He was referred to as a Dutch renaissance Humanist- as well as a Catholic Priest and scholar]
Now- Erasmus was a critic of the Church- like Luther- but chose a ‘middle road’- he did not join the breakaway Protestant Reformers- but chose to stay within the fold of Rome- while speaking out against the abuses he saw.
But his first Greek translation of the New Testament did indeed set a spark- because it allowed the Priests to see the bible in its original language.
And Luther was actually teaching this book of Romans to his students in Germany when the Reformation began.
Today the Catholic Church [as you can see in the official Catechism that I have been posting] does indeed teach the bible as God’s Word.
The divisions between Protestants and Catholics are many- but they did agree that the bible was the Word of God.
Some Protestants do not know this- they think the church holds Tradition higher than the bible.
No- the church does believe that God speaks both thru tradition- and scripture.
They see the tradition of the church as simply another means by which God uses the church [Magisterium] to explain scripture- but the Catholic Church does not elevate tradition over the bible.
And indeed- it was a catholic scholar- Erasmus- who introduced the first Geek version of the New Testament.
NOTE- Erasmus disagreed with Luther on the doctrine of Predestination- which I covered in the last video. Luther was for it- Erasmus was what we would call ‘Free Will’.
In his writings- which were very influential- he wrote in Greek and Latin- the language of the elites.
He did this on purpose- for his target was the influential leaders of the Church.
He rejected offers of money- because he did not want to align himself with any particular movement- so he could be an independent writer with no strings attached.
He had many criticisms of the Catholic Church- and was very influential for the later reforms- those we see at the Council of Trent [Though the church criticized him- they said he ‘Laid the egg that hatched the Reformation’].
He taught that the church/priests/popes should be the servants of the people-
He rejected the idea that the Priests/leaders made up the ‘whole of the church’- but he believed all believers made up the true church.
Erasmus was a firebrand in his own way- rejecting the language that Luther and some of the reformers used [they were vulgar at times]-
Luther respected the works of Erasmus- he thanked Erasmus for debating with him on the nature of Justification by Faith-
He disagreed in the end- but said this debate was at the heart of the gospel- and was glad that Erasmus was willing to engage.

RENAISSANCE ARTISTS-
The famous renaissance artists- DaVinci- Michelangelo- Raphael- used their artwork as a form of knowledge- the images taught things- they were not just paintings.
DaVinci’s most famous work was his painting on the ceiling of the Sistine chapel in the Vatican.
It took him 4 years to complete.
The renaissance period- from about the 13/14th century to the 17th- [though there was a sort of Renaissance that took place- yes- in the Islamic world before the European Renaissance] was marked by what we term Humanism.
Today we associate this term with ‘secular Humanism’ which often has a bad connotation- especially among Christians.
But it meant something different back then.
It was a new focus on breaking the limits off of man- and for man to excel in knowledge and skill- and to see man as having value.
There was somewhat of a break away from the church in a sense- in that the church and its teachings were not the only source of wisdom for man.
But- Jesus himself taught that ‘the Sabbath was made for man- not man for the Sabbath’- so- the Humanist spirit- elevating the value of man- does have a Christian basis in my view.
Leonardo daVinci [15/16th century] was what we refer to as a true Renaissance man- meaning his knowledge was in many fields- not just art.
He actually considered himself a sculptor first- then an artist- though he is most famous for his Fresco mentioned above.
1989 The first work of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conversion, effecting justification in accordance with Jesus’ proclamation at the beginning of the Gospel: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”38 Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high. “Justification is not only the remission of sins, but also the sanctification and renewal of the interior man.”39 (1427)
1990 Justification detaches man from sin which contradicts the love of God, and purifies his heart of sin. Justification follows upon God’s merciful initiative of offering forgiveness. It reconciles man with God. It frees from the enslavement to sin, and it heals. (1446, 1733)
1991 Justification is at the same time the acceptance of God’s righteousness through faith in Jesus Christ. Righteousness (or “justice”) here means the rectitude of divine love. With justification, faith, hope, and charity are poured into our hearts, and obedience to the divine will is granted us. (1812)
1992 Justification has been merited for us by the Passion of Christ who offered himself on the cross as a living victim, holy and pleasing to God, and whose blood has become the instrument of atonement for the sins of all men. Justification is conferred in Baptism, the sacrament of faith. It conforms us to the righteousness of God, who makes us inwardly just by the power of his mercy. Its purpose is the glory of God and of Christ, and the gift of eternal life:40 (617, 1266, 294)
But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from law, although the law and the prophets bear witness to it, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, they are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as an expiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins; it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies him who has faith in Jesus.41
1993 Justification establishes cooperation between God’s grace and man’s freedom. On man’s part it is expressed by the assent of faith to the Word of God, which invites him to conversion, and in the cooperation of charity with the prompting of the Holy Spirit who precedes and preserves his assent: (2008, 2068)
When God touches man’s heart through the illumination of the Holy Spirit, man himself is not inactive while receiving that inspiration, since he could reject it; and yet, without God’s grace, he cannot by his own free will move himself toward justice in God’s sight.42
1994 Justification is the most excellent work of God’s love made manifest in Christ Jesus and granted by the Holy Spirit. It is the opinion of St. Augustine that “the justification of the wicked is a greater work than the creation of heaven and earth,” because “heaven and earth will pass away but the salvation and justification of the elect… will not pass away.”43 He holds also that the justification of sinners surpasses the creation of the angels in justice, in that it bears witness to a greater mercy. (312, 412)
1995 The Holy Spirit is the master of the interior life. By giving birth to the “inner man,”44 justification entails the sanctification of his whole being: (741)
Just as you once yielded your members to impurity and to greater and greater iniquity, so now yield your members to righteousness for sanctification…. But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the return you get is sanctification and its end, eternal life.45
II. Grace
1996 Our justification comes from the grace of God. Grace is favor, the free and undeserved help that God gives us to respond to his call to become children of God, adoptive sons, partakers of the divine nature and of eternal life.46 (153)
1997 Grace is a participation in the life of God. It introduces us into the intimacy of Trinitarian life: by Baptism the Christian participates in the grace of Christ, the Head of his Body. As an “adopted son” he can henceforth call God “Father,” in union with the only Son. He receives the life of the Spirit who breathes charity into him and who forms the Church. (375, 260)
1998 This vocation to eternal life is supernatural. It depends entirely on God’s gratuitous initiative, for he alone can reveal and give himself. It surpasses the power of human intellect and will, as that of every other creature.47 (1719)
I added these below for commentary on Romans 13- Civil authorities. In our world today- there are many governmental authorities- and some are changing ‘overnight’- with much instability in the world. So you have cases where one group- government- is in charge- to be ‘obeyed’- but yet- that group is ousted some times in a day. Then do you view the new government- and all the new courts- judges- etc. – as illegitimate? Because they did not submit to the former group?
I find lots of confusion among Christians about our right relationship to civil government- many do not seem to understand that when we in the U.S. rebelled against British/English rule- we too were not ‘obeying’ the authority. We formed a new government- with courts- judges- etc.
So- this portion below shows us that there are indeed times when government loses the authority to govern- given to them by God.
1902 Authority does not derive its moral legitimacy from itself. It must not behave in a despotic manner, but must act for the common good as a “moral force based on freedom and a sense of responsibility”:21
A human law has the character of law to the extent that it accords with right reason, and thus derives from the eternal law. Insofar as it falls short of right reason it is said to be an unjust law, and thus has not so much the nature of law as of a kind of violence.22
1903 Authority is exercised legitimately only when it seeks the common good of the group concerned and if it employs morally licit means to attain it. If rulers were to enact unjust laws or take measures contrary to the moral order, such arrangements would not be binding in conscience. In such a case, “authority breaks down completely and results in shameful abuse.”23

ROMANS 14-16
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/03/3-28-15-rom14-16.zip

CHAPTER 14
.CAN WE WEAR SHORT, SHORTS?
.THE ATHEIST KNEW

I taught on the book of Corinthians in the past- here’s my view on the gifts of the Spirit-(943)1ST CORINTHIANS 1:1-17 Paul greets them as an apostle called by God, he affirms his authority and ‘fathering ability’ as coming from God. He tells them he thanks God all the time for the fruit that he sees in their lives, the thing that made Paul rejoice was the work God was doing in the communities he was establishing as an apostle. Today ministers have a tendency to ‘rejoice’ over the Christian enterprise that we oversee. Whether its’ how well the budget went this year and stuff like that. Paul’s joy wasn’t in the fact that God called him to some great personal ministry where he would find self fulfillment. His joy was in the actual growth and freedom that ‘his churches’ [communities of people] were experiencing. He also defines them as ‘those that call upon the name of the Lord like all the others’. Remember what we said when studying Romans chapter 10? One of the signs of the believer is ‘they call upon Jesus name’. They are believing communities of ‘Christ callers’. Not so much a one time evangelical altar call, but a lifestyle. Jesus said we are ‘a house of prayer’. A spiritual community/house who intercedes for all nations. It’s in our very DNA! Paul also commends them as being enriched by God in all ‘knowledge and utterance’ [speech]. It seems funny that he would say they were blessed and enriched in speech. Paul will give some of his strongest rebukes over speaking gifts [tongues, prophesy] to this community. Yet he does not approach it from the strong anti charismatic view. He doesn’t say ‘your speech is demonic’ he says it is enriched by God! We will deal with the gifts later on. Now for the first real rebuke. Paul says he has heard reports that there are divisions and strivings among them. They are already dividing up into various sects. Some follow Paul, others follow Cephas, some say ‘we are the true Christ followers’. Paul rebukes them sharply over these divisions, he does not want the early church to identify with individual personalities and gifts at the expense of true unity. Was this the early development of denominationalism? To a degree yes. But I also don’t think we should view the various Christian denominations as deceived or ‘lost’. The modern church has become what we are thru many struggles and difficulties over a 2 thousand year history. My personal view is we should strive for unity, not by trying to dissolve all the various ‘tribes’ that exist in Christ’s church, but by growing into a more mature view of all who name the name of Christ as being fellow believers who partake of a common grace. I applaud all the efforts being made by various Christian churches today to come to a greater outward unity [for example the Catholic and Orthodox dialogue] but I also believe as we see each other as fellow believers and learn to appreciate our different emphasis, that this approach can also lead to greater unity among believers today. Paul saw the beginnings of division in the early Corinthian community, he did his best to quell the coming storm.

(944)1ST CORINTHIANS 1:18-31 Paul declares the actual preaching of the Cross to be the power of God. The Jews sought for a sign [remember the sign of Jonas?] and the Greeks prided themselves in wisdom. Paul declares that Jesus IS the wisdom and power of God. In Christ is contained all the wisdom and power [signs]
HEBREWS commentary copyright 2007 John Chiarello http://www.copruschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com P.O. box 181256 C.C. Tx. 78480
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CHAPTER 1:

‘God, who at sundry times and in diverse manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the Prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds’ Many years ago when I was going to a fundamental Baptist Church, they would interpret this passage in a ‘cessationist’ way. They would say because God says in the past he spoke by prophets, but now by his Son. That this means he doesn’t speak thru Prophets any more. The Prophets here are Old Testament voices. In Ephesians it says after Jesus ascended up on high he gave gifts unto men, some Apostles, some Prophets, etc. The fact that Jesus made Prophets after the ascension teaches us that there were to be a whole new class of New Testament Prophets that were different from the old. I find it strange to believe that Jesus would create a whole new class of gifts, and then take them away as soon as the Bible is complete. Why would Paul give instruction in the New Testament on how Prophets would operate [Corinthians] and then to say ‘as soon as this letter is canonized with the others, all this instruction will be useless’ it just doesn’t seem right.

The reason Paul is saying in the past God used Prophets, but today his Son. Paul is showing that the Jewish Old testament was a real communication from God to man. But in this dispensation of Grace, God is speaking the realities that the Prophets were looking to. Paul is saying ‘thank God for the Old Jewish books and law, they point to something, his name is Jesus’! The Prophets [Old Testament] served a purpose; they brought us from the shadows to the present time [1st century] now lets move on into the reality. Now you must see and hear the Son in these last days. ‘Who being the brightness of his glory and the express image of his person…when he by himself purged our sins SAT DOWN on the right hand of the majesty on high’ here we are at the beginning stages of themes that we will see later in the letter. The significance of Jesus ‘sitting down’ will be contrasted with the Old testament priests ‘standing up’. Paul [for the record I think Paul wrote this letter, from here on I will probably just refer to the writer as Paul] will teach that the ‘standing up’ of the Levitical Priests represented an ‘incomplete priesthood’ the reason Jesus sat down was because there would be no more sacrifice, and no more priesthood made up of many priests who would die year after year. This doesn’t mean there would be no more New Testament priests as believers, but that there would be no more Old Testament system. Paul will find spiritual truths like this all thru out the Old Testament.

Some theologians feel that Paul is a little too loose with these free comparisons that he seems to ‘pull out of the hat’, for the believer who holds to the canon of scripture, it is the Word of God. ‘Being made so much better than the angels…but unto the Son he saith “thy throne O God is forever and ever, a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy Kingdom”. Here Paul introduces another theme that will be seen thru out this letter. The superiority of Jesus over angels. Why is this important? Most believers know that Jesus is greater than angels, don’t they? Here we see why context is important to understand this letter. In Jewish tradition it is believed that the law was given to Moses by God thru the mediation of angels. Some say ‘well, we don’t use Jewish tradition, we use scripture’. First, Paul used anything he could to win the argument. Second, if we believe Hebrews is an inspired book, then when we read later on that the law given thru angels received a recompense if broken, then right here you have scripture [Hebrews] testifying that God did use angels to ‘transmit’ the law to some degree. Now, why is it important for gentiles to see this? Well it really isn’t! But it is vital for a first century Jew to see it. If Paul can show that Jesus is greater than the angels, then he is beginning to make the argument that the New Covenant is greater than the Old.

Here is the context. Moses law is highly revered in the first century Jewish community, so here Paul says ‘how much better is the law/word given to us from Gods Son’. Since Jesus is much better than the angels, therefore pay closer attention to the words spoken thru Gods Son, he is greater than the angels! ‘But to which of the angels said he “sit at my right hand until I make thy enemies thy footstool” we end chapter one with the theme of Jesus being better than the angels, yet in chapter 2 something funny happens, Paul will make the argument of Jesus being “a little lower than the angels” lets see what this means.

(947) 1ST CORINTHIANS 3:11-23 Paul teaches that once the foundation of Jesus is laid, that no other foundation can come in and replace it. Remember, Paul is speaking about a spiritual foundation. He is not building ‘a literal building’! I know we know this, but for some reason modern church planters can’t seem to break the mindset of having a building ‘to do church’. Now we begin to get into some doctrine. I believe Paul begins a New Testament doctrine here that could be called ‘the sin unto natural death’ or the judgment of a believer when he falls into open sin and rebellion and refuses to repent. Now, I have looked at this doctrine from different views over the years. I try not to allow my own leaning towards reformed theology to effect me. But I have come down on the side of ‘eternal security’ in viewing these verses. Paul teaches that even though the foundation of Jesus is laid, it’s still possible to build a life of worthless things upon it. He says ‘if any man defiles Gods temple, him will God destroy’. This same language will be used in chapter 5 ‘deliver the sinning brother to satan for the destruction of the flesh so the spirit may be saved’. Paul also uses the term again here in chapter 3 ‘yet he will be saved as by fire’. Also in chapter 11 ‘for this cause many sleep [physical death] and are sick among you’ he uses this as a judgment that came upon them for their abuse of the Lords table. So reading this in context it sure seems that Paul is saying ‘if you, as a believer, allow yourself to fall into sin in such a way that you are doing permanent harm to the temple [which he describes as their bodies, both individually and corporately] then God will destroy you’. This seems to fit all these other verses. The apostle John also speaks on the ‘sin unto death’ [which I see as physical death] in his letter. He says ‘if any
(986)CORINTHIANS 12: 8-10 this section deals with the various gifts of the Spirit. The list is not exhaustive, Paul speaks in Romans and Ephesians about other ones as well. Instead of diving into a definition for each gift, lets look a little at the various ‘modes’ and characteristics of the Spirit of God. In revelation we have a scripture that many seem to stumble over, it says ‘the 7 spirits of God that are before his throne’. Some associate Isaiah 11 with this. In Isaiah 11 you can find 6 distinct characteristics of the Spirit of God, some see 7. Or you could say ‘God has 7 actual Spirits’. Does God have 7 spirits? Or 25 or 10,000? God is the creator of all spirits. He is the Father of lights! In revelation you have Jesus holding the ‘7 stars’ in his hand, which are said to be angels. Then you have the ‘7 angels of the 7 churches’. I showed you before why these angels are not ‘Pastors’ they are angels! [You can find the post somewhere under END TIMES STUFF]. Revelation has 7 seals, bowls, candlesticks. The book is a prophetic book that has angels revealing and operating and functioning. The 7 spirits before God’s throne are probably the 7 angels spoken about in the book. Hebrews says the angels are ‘ministering spirits’. Well let’s get off the rabbit trail. In Isaiah 61 we have the famous verses that Jesus read and applied to himself in the New Testament [Luke 4]. Jesus opens the scroll and reads about the Spirit of God upon him, the eyes of everyone in that place were fixated on him. Notice how both in Isaiah 11 and 61, one of the main purposes of the anointing was to administer justice to the poor and oppressed. Much of Evangelicalism has opted out of this responsibility. There was an overreaction to the social gospel of the late 19th, early 20th century. The social gospel had a tendency to overemphasize good deeds, without focusing on conversion. But the Fundamentalist movement of the 20th century neglected the social justice aspect of the kingdom, thank God for the Catholics who picked up the torch. The point today is the purpose of the gifts, which we will get into tomorrow, is not simply for self glory and edification. Or should I say the purpose of the anointing. Jesus made it very clear that his mission involved justice for the poor and oppressed, he did not limit his ministry to ‘the church’.

(991)1ST CORINTHIANS 12: 8-11 Instead of giving you my definition for each one of the gifts of the Spirit, let me just give you a sense of where I’m coming from. Over the years I have learned the normal Pentecostal understanding of these gifts. I also have learned the ‘anti-Pentecostal’ view. I take a little from each camp. The strong Pentecostal view usually sees all the gifts as ‘supernatural’ I do too! But to them this means the gifts of Wisdom and Knowledge can’t be ‘regular wisdom or knowledge’. Okay, so what are they? Some teach that the ‘word of wisdom’ is simply a prophetic word about future stuff. The ‘word of knowledge’ is simply prophetic insight into ‘past stuff’. To be honest I have no idea how people come up with stuff like this [well, actually I do have an idea]. I see Paul as operating in a strong gift of knowledge, though Paul was trained and had a good education, the Spirit took all of his ‘head knowledge’ and quickened it. I see James as having a strong gift of wisdom, his epistle is the only New Testament work considered to be part of the corpus of wisdom literature. Of course the gifts of healing[s] and prophecy are supernatural, but wisdom and knowledge can be ‘supernatural’ without having to fall into some prophetic type category. If it’s wisdom and knowledge from God, then it is supernatural! I have known Pastors who had the gift of wisdom, sometimes they would come to the same conclusions as me, but they took a different route to get there! They might not have ‘seen’ all the knowledge portions of scripture that I saw, but the wisdom they operated in caused them to arrive at the same place. Some teach that after the Spirit fell on the church at Pentecost [Acts 2] that you no loner had miracles, dreams and visions or angelic visitations. Why is this wrong? The book that records more miracles and angels and visions than any other book [except for the gospels] is the book of Acts. In essence, one of the major New Testament books on these manifestations shows them to be a result of the Spirits outpouring! The point being these things didn’t end after Pentecost. I realize both camps [Pentecostal- non Pentecostal] have had their wars over this stuff. I find that both sides can be just as legalistic and judgmental in their views. I think one of the major ‘signs’ of being ‘Spirit filled’ is a life based on free grace. When people grasp the gospel and are filled with the Spirit, they should be free from living their lives out of a state of condemnation and guilt. Many ‘Spirit filled’ churches operate in the gifts [their view of them] but are just as legalistic as the non Pentecostals. To me this is not what it means to be ‘Spirit filled’. Overall we should be open to the working of the Spirit in supernatural ways. We should avoid making this the goal or identity of our Christian walk, but we should not reject or despise prophetic/supernatural things. They are available and necessary at times for completion of the mission.

(994)1ST CORINTHIANS 12: 12-26 Paul uses the analogy of a body to describe the church. Keep in mind that the ‘church’ in Paul’s writings mean ‘all Gods people in the region/city’. Not just the gathered assembly! It’s important to make this distinction because much of the talk on the restoration of the organic church versus the institutional church focuses too much on the way believers meet. Here Paul is saying ‘you are all individual distinct members in the local community, you express Christ in various ways, though you have unique gifts you also are part of one corporate expression of Christ in your city’. The distinct gifts function in your community, not just in the meeting! [Whether it be the Sunday building type thing or the living room!] Paul also tells them to be on the guard for the ‘one member dominating the group’ expression of church. If everyone is centered on one particular gift then the corporate expression of the Body of Christ is diminished. Or if everyone saw ‘full time ministry’ as being a modern Pastor then you would have too many sincere believers all seeking to serve God in a limited way ‘if all were an eye, ear, mouth [speaking gift]’ then where would the Body be? I find this chapter to be a key chapter in the current reformation of modern church practices. As Gods people strive for a more scriptural expression of ‘being the church’ we need to keep this chapter in mind. Now, a word for the strong organic church brothers. The fact that Paul encourages a corporate expression in the church does not mean the gatherings of Gods people must be leaderless. Paul includes the concept of Elders in his writings. To be sure these men were not to dominate the meetings, or be the weekly speaker on an ongoing basis. But some hold to a type of idea that the way the church is supposed to testify of the ‘headship of Christ’ is by demonstrating a human leaderless church. That is God ordained the local bodies of believers to have no functioning human leaders in order to show forth Christ’s headship. To be honest I don’t see this in scripture. I see leaders in plurality [never a one man show] and Paul was not afraid to tell Titus and Timothy to ‘ordain’ [recognize!] Elders in the church. But the overall instruction in this chapter is God wants all of his people to function on a regular basis in the Body of Christ. This of course includes the gatherings, but it is not limited to them. The primary way we ‘show’ the world the Lordship of Jesus is by the selfless love we have one for another. When we daily live charitable, sacrificial lives, this demonstrates the ‘headship of Jesus’ over the church. The way believers meet has some effect on this, but most of Jesus instructions to the disciples was on how they would go out into the world and bring the great message of the kingdom to society. The primary ‘battlefield’ of the church militant is the world, not the meeting place!

(996)1ST CORINTHIANS 12:27-31 Lets talk about ‘the fivefold ministry’ [some say four]. In the 90’s there was a real interest in this subject. It comes from this portion of scripture [and Ephesians 4]. The basic teaching is/was that God was restoring all these ministries [Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors and Teachers- some see this as one combined gift] and that this restoration was one of the final things to happen before Christ’s return. I read and bought lots of books on church planting and how Apostles are gifted to ‘plant churches’. This teaching really wasn’t a new thing. Back in the 1800’s you had Edward Irving head up an apostolic movement called ‘the apostolic catholic church’ [Irvingites]. You had interesting folk like John Alexander Dowie who would start a modern city of God called ‘Zion’ in Illinois. Brother Dowie saw himself as an apostle and felt the Lord led him to start an apostolic city. You can still visit the city today. It was also common for many ‘up and coming’ preachers to begin seeing themselves as ‘apostles/prophets’ and actually advertise their callings in this way. Well of course the old time brothers who reject the gifts all together, saw this as another sign of the end time apostasy. You also had a strange phenomenon take place. It was common for ‘apostolic/prophetic’ people to be taught ‘the missing ingredient is covering and authority’- the churches are weak because they are under pastoral authority, they don’t have apostles ‘covering them’ [ouch!]. So it was not uncommon to have respected men kind of stepping over the normal boundaries of relating to churches and to say things like ‘you need to do this’ ‘you over there, be quiet. I don’t give you permission to speak’ and stuff like this. These sincere men thought it their responsibility to act this way. They felt this was a part of the restoration of apostles. Now, do apostles exist today [and prophets]? To be honest with you, yes. If you read this section along with Ephesians chapter 4, it is next to impossible to teach that they passed away in the first century. These scriptures make it clear that after Jesus ascended he gave ‘some apostles, others prophets’ they are included in the list of evangelists, pastors and teachers. If you lose one gift, then you lose them all. Also the timing of their ministries is given ‘till we all come to the unity of the faith unto a perfect man’. These gifts are all given to build Gods people up until we come to fall maturity. We aint there yet! So it’s pretty obvious that these gifts exist. Those who believe they don’t exist usually refer to the fact that the apostles of the Lamb [a category unto itself] did pass away. They will show you the truth of these apostles having to have been witnesses of Jesus actual resurrection. But these are a different category of apostles. The ones in this chapter were not even ‘made’ until after Jesus ascended on high. The same for the prophets. So, what do these strange fellows do? In all the books and stuff I have read on these movements, I feel some have been too limited in their definitions. Some taught that they were primarily itinerant men [traveling church planters]. Of course Paul was the master at this. But you find James as a stable pillar of the church at Jerusalem. Peter did travel, but he was no Gentile church planter like Paul! And Timothy in the New Testament had an apostolic type gifting, yet he was a protégée under Paul. So for the most part apostles do carry a special ability to ground Gods people in truth. Those who are called to ‘plant churches’ need to be more in tune with the example of Paul. Many modern day ‘apostles’ see church planting as going to a region and organizing Christians to meet in certain ways. I have heard it said ‘I have planted an organic church’ ‘I have planted a home group’ or of course the standard ‘I have planted a building based church’. The main ‘church planting’ of Paul was bringing the gospel to UNREACHED PEOPLE GROUPS and evangelizing those groups. Now of course he did give instructions to them on ‘how to meet’ [like in this book we are reading!] But don’t confuse ‘church planting’ with organizing believers around a new way to meet. All in all God gave us these gifts to build each other up and bring us to maturity, a place where we are no longer dependent on these gifts to function. I feel one of the greatest dangers was the strong authoritarian mindset that some of the apostolic brothers had, they meant well, but they stepped over their boundaries at times.

(998)CORINTHIANS ‘DO ALL SPEAK WITH TONGUES’? – Before we leave chapter 12, let me overview a little. Paul mentions ‘do all speak with tongues’ and the presumed answer is ‘no’. I love my Pentecostal brothers, but some have developed an interesting doctrine that says ‘God wants all to speak with tongues’ though here it is obvious that all don’t! I am familiar with the classic defense of this. It says that in the beginning of the chapter the gifts are individual gifts that all believers can have [true enough] but that later in the chapter the ‘tongues’ that all don’t operate in is speaking of some sort of ministry gift of tongues. That Paul is basically saying ‘you can all prophesy, speak with tongues, etc..’ but you are not all going to have public ‘ministry gifts’ in these things. Okay, I got it. What’s the problem with this defense? Simply that when your done making the case, the brothers usually wind up saying ‘therefore, we should all speak with tongues’! Any argument [case] made from scripture, needs to use the plain language/thought flow to interpret that which is not plain. I believe all the gifts are for today [though I would disagree on certain Pentecostal definitions of them] but I also believe we violate the New Testament when we teach that certain gifts are supposed to operate in every person. Sure, you can find tongues and other gifts as signs in the book of Acts that believers were filled with the Spirit. But this doesn’t mean that those who don’t speak in tongues are not filled with the Spirit. Paul’s teaching here is that we are all baptized into Christ by the Spirit and we are all ‘drinking in the one Spirit’ but yet he empathically says ‘you all will not have the same gifts operating’. I think it is a violation of scripture to develop a doctrine that says ‘unless you function in a certain gift, you are not Spirit filled’. I do not see the classic Pentecostal division between ‘public tongues’ [that everyone doesn’t do] and ‘private tongues’ that you must have in order to have proof of being baptized in the Spirit. I do see the division to a degree, but I feel the Pentecostal brothers are being legalistic when they make this case.

(999)1ST CORINTHIANS 13:1 ‘THOUGH I SPEAK WITH THE TONGUES OF MEN AND OF ANGELS, AND HAVE NOT LOVE, I AM BECOME AS SOUNDING BRASS OR A TINKLING SYMBOL’ Over the years I have seen how the church can ‘have a voice-make noise’ without actually effecting change.

SECRET PLACE- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-12-15-secret-place.zip
Some stuff on the video-
.Bill O’reilly- Gray and Bland
.Tennis star busted- NYC
.Daughter philosophers
.My success tips
.Car won’t start? Pray!
.Notes from a dead friend

Here are a few of the verses I mention on the video-
Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern shewed to thee in the mount. Hebrews 8
Ponder the path of thy feet, and let all thy ways be established. Prov.
John 14:19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
John 14:20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
John 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
John 14:22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?
John 14:23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.

Matthew 6:1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.
Matthew 6:2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Matthew 6:3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:
Matthew 6:4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly.
Matthew 6:5 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
Numbers 7:89 And when Moses was gone into the tabernacle of the congregation to speak with him, then he heard the voice of one speaking unto him from off the mercy seat that was upon the ark of testimony, from between the two cherubims: and he spake unto him.
Psalm 35:1 Plead my cause, O LORD, with them that strive with me: fight against them that fight against me.
Psalm 35:2 Take hold of shield and buckler, and stand up for mine help.
Psalm 35:3 Draw out also the spear, and stop the way against them that persecute me: say unto my soul, I am thy salvation.
Psalm 35:4 Let them be confounded and put to shame that seek after my soul: let them be turned back and brought to confusion that devise my hurt.
Psalm 35:5 Let them be as chaff before the wind: and let the angel of the LORD chase them.
Psalm 35:6 Let their way be dark and slippery: and let the angel of the LORD persecute them.
Psalm 35:7 For without cause have they hid for me their net in a pit, which without cause they have digged for my soul.
Psalm 35:8 Let destruction come upon him at unawares; and let his net that he hath hid catch himself: into that very destruction let him fall.
Psalm 35:9 And my soul shall be joyful in the LORD: it shall rejoice in his salvation.
Psalm 35:10 All my bones shall say, LORD, who is like unto thee, which deliverest the poor from him that is too strong for him, yea, the poor and the needy from him that spoileth him?
Psalm 35:11 False witnesses did rise up; they laid to my charge things that I knew not.
Psalm 35:12 They rewarded me evil for good to the spoiling of my soul.
Psalm 35:13 But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth: I humbled my soul with fasting; and my prayer returned into mine own bosom.
Psalm 35:14 I behaved myself as though he had been my friend or brother: I bowed down heavily, as one that mourneth for his mother.
Psalm 35:15 But in mine adversity they rejoiced, and gathered themselves together: yea, the abjects gathered themselves together against me, and I knew it not; they did tear me, and ceased not:
Psalm 35:16 With hypocritical mockers in feasts, they gnashed upon me with their teeth.
Psalm 35:17 Lord, how long wilt thou look on? rescue my soul from their destructions, my darling from the lions.
Psalm 35:18 I will give thee thanks in the great congregation: I will praise thee among much people.
Psalm 35:19 Let not them that are mine enemies wrongfully rejoice over me: neither let them wink with the eye that hate me without a cause.
Psalm 35:20 For they speak not peace: but they devise deceitful matters against them that are quiet in the land.
Psalm 35:21 Yea, they opened their mouth wide against me, and said, Aha, aha, our eye hath seen it.
Psalm 35:22 This thou hast seen, O LORD: keep not silence: O Lord, be not far from me.
Psalm 35:23 Stir up thyself, and awake to my judgment, even unto my cause, my God and my Lord.
Psalm 35:24 Judge me, O LORD my God, according to thy righteousness; and let them not rejoice over me.
Psalm 35:25 Let them not say in their hearts, Ah, so would we have it: let them not say, We have swallowed him up.
Psalm 35:26 Let them be ashamed and brought to confusion together that rejoice at mine hurt: let them be clothed with shame and dishonour that magnify themselves against me.
Psalm 35:27 Let them shout for joy, and be glad, that favour my righteous cause: yea, let them say continually, Let the LORD be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant.
Psalm 35:28 And my tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long.
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1Chronicles 28:10 Take heed now; for the LORD hath chosen thee to build an house for the sanctuary: be strong, and do it.
Psalm 91:1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
Ephesians 5:15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,
Ephesians 5:16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

I cut the cable. https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-15-15-i-cut-the-cable.zip
On this video-
. Angels obey God’s word
.The Banana tree- and cable
.Oil- 20.00 a barrel?
.Stock bubble?
Verses-
. Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation? Heb. 1
. Bless the LORD, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that dohis commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word. Psalms
. Revelation 14:14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and upon the cloud one sat like unto the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle.
Revelation 14:15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe.
Revelation 14:16 And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped.
Revelation 14:17 And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.
Revelation 14:18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in thy sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe.
Revelation 14:19 And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great winepress of the wrath of God.

. Let no man beguile you of your reward in a voluntary humility and worshipping of angels, intruding into those things which he hath not seen, vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind, Col. 2
. Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
Matthew 6:26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
Matthew 6:27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
Matthew 6:28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:
Matthew 6:29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.
Matthew 6:30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?
Matthew 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
Matthew 6:32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.
Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Matthew 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.
These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers andpilgrims on the earth. Heb. 11
Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Peter
For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. Heb. 13
Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Peter

DON’T FEAR THE REAPER https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-17-15-dont-fear-the-reaper.zip
Some stuff I talk about on the video-
MY OLD POSTS-
The Iliad and Odyssey [Homer]
I want to cover some of the classics of Western Literature- when I do the philosophy and science stuff- the purpose is to show how God- and ‘religion’ are an inescapable thread that we see all thru out history- and in fact- the rise of what we call ‘intellectualism’ did indeed come from the Judaic/Christian tradition [for instance- the modern day university system did come from the Church].

Ok- lets start with what most believe to be the greatest work from antiquity- outside of the bible.

These are 2 poems by Homer- the Iliad and Odyssey.

These poems were written in the 8th century BCE- and cover the Trojan war- which most believe was a real war- that took place in the 12th-13th century BCE.

In Homers works we read about this epic battle.

The war starts with- once again- a ‘woman’ issue.

Prince Paris of Troy steals Helen of Greece- from her husband King Menelaus [king of Sparta].

The Greeks- led by Achilles- lay siege to Troy.

In Homers telling of the event- the Greeks are actually defending the honor of marriage- and are carrying out a just retribution against an unjust act.
Sort of the same themes we read in scripture- when the sons of Jacob defended the honor of their sister Dinah- when she was treated unjustly by the pagan nation that took her- forcefully- to be the wife of a kings son.

The brothers meted out justice- by tricking these pagans to get circumcised- then- while recovering ‘from surgery’- the sons went in and wiped out the city- to their fathers dismay!

In the story- Achilles is a warrior- who displays extreme violence- and also the human traits of a man who acts out of selfish motives.

At one point in the war- he removes himself from battle- because he feels his honor was betrayed.

The only thing that brings him back is the killing of his close friend Patroclus- by Hector.
Achilles leads the Greeks to victory- and reflects the struggle between living a long life- or dying young- yet dying for a just cause.
One of the more famous quotes form Homer’s Poems- attributed to Achilles- is ‘I carry 2 sorts of destiny to the day of my death. Either, if I stay here and fight beside the city of the Trojans, my return home is gone, but my glory shall be everlasting; but if I return home to the beloved land of my fathers, the excellence of my glory is gone, but there will be a long life- left for me, and my end in death will not come to me quickly.’

There has been some debate over the historicity of the war itself.

Some scholars believe it was Myth [I’ll get to this in a moment].
That is- they believe the war itself was not true- but a sort of Oral Tradition- that encompasses the reality of the human condition- and that Homers Poems are simply mythological ways to reveal the true condition of man.

Yet- much like the debate that took place in the 19th century German universities- over the ‘Myth’ of the bible- later on- the rise of what we now call Archaeology [because of the Industrial revolution- a new field arose- men started digging up the ground- for the primary purpose of extracting materials from the earth- and at this time we also discovered ‘lost worlds’- that is we could actually trace cities and lands that were once deemed fake].

So- as with Homers Troy- and bible lands- these archaeologists did indeed find Cities that matched the stories.

In 1870 the German Archaeologist Schliemann discovered remains that seemed to find the city of Troy- the area is known today as modern day Turkey.

This same thing happened with the bible- we did indeed find historical evidence that seemed to back up the historicity of the stories we find in the bible.

As a matter of fact- a famous doubter of the bible embarked on a search- to prove the bible was ‘myth’ yet- after researching carefully the historical names and places we read about in the book of Acts- he came to believe that the book of Acts- written by both an historian and doctor [Luke] was the most historically accurate writing that came from the first century [Acts has lots of names of political figures- court proceedings- stuff like that- and when doing research like this- it is quite easy to debunk the historical reality of a fake work- but- when these names and places were researched- from actual historical records dating back to the first century- it was amazing how the pieces fit].

The Trojan War is found in many works of Greek literature- and art.

But the most comprehensive account comes from Homer’s 2 poems.

Now- in Homer’s poems there are obvious references to Mythology- Goddesses- Golden apples- the Greek gods intervening in the affairs of men.

So yeah- we see that there are obvious mythological aspects to the work.
Yet- the ancient Geeks did indeed believe the war itself was a real war that took place at around the 12th century BCE.

Some believe that Homer never actually wrote the poems- but that he told the stories- like Oral Tradition- and they were later written down by others.

Sort of like the classic- Paradise Lost- by John Milton. Milton was blind- and told the story to his daughters [oral tradition] and the actual work was penned by those who heard it.

Jesus himself used this method- he never wrote a book- or letter in the New Testament- yet the gospels were compiled by his men after his death.

We read about this when Luke [who I mentioned above] gives the reason for his documenting stuff in the book of Acts [read Acts chapter one].

Luke also wrote his gospel a few years after the death and resurrection of Christ.

So- some believe the same thing happened with Homer- those who heard him tell the story multiple times- simply put it together later on.

Most scholars believe that Homer did indeed write the poems- and that the famous Trojan War was a real historical event.

Last year- when in North Bergen- my atheist friend Daniel said he watched a PBS show- and he said ‘even a priest said the bible was Myth’.

I explained to Daniel that when the more liberal scholars use this term [like in the writings of Bultman] that they do not mean ‘fake’- like Greek Mythology.

But they mean that some of the stories in the gospels might be a compilation of the many Oral teachings of Jesus- and they were put together as one story [some think the Sermon on the Mount was actually multiple teachings Jesus did- and they were compiled into one event].

Now- when I explained this to Daniel- he said ‘see- even you believe it was Myth’.

I told Daniel that no- I do not hold to this theory [not 100%] but that I was simply telling him that even those who use the term Myth- when talking about Theology- they do not mean Myth- as in fake.

So- I find it interesting that both the New testament- and Homers poems- got the same scrutiny.

In these poems we do indeed see the condition of man- which Homer depicts as one of constant war- not peace.

The letter of James in the New Testament says- James 4:1 From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?
James 4:2 Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
James 4:3 Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.

Homers poems are considered by some to be the beginning of the great works of Western literature- of which there are many.

The great writer C.S. Lewis- who rejected Christianity for many years- later became a believer.

He attributed his conversion to the fact that he could not escape the reality of the Church- or Christian themes- found in all the fields of study.

Whether it was the classics- or history- philosophy.

He said every were he read- studied- he could not escape this scarlet thread that ran thru out all the fields of knowledge.

Yeah- in the end- his thirst for knowledge- his intellectual search- led him to the Cross.

Jesus- in a way- was a 1st century Achilles- he battled the forces of darkness- for the honor of a woman- the Bride- the church.

He- Like Achilles- chose a just death- for a just cause.

There’s a prophecy in the Old Testament- it speaks of Christ ‘the zeal of thine house has eaten me up’.

Jesus was a righteous warrior- a prophet, priest and king- and he had a zeal for the church- that far exceeded anything we find in Homers poems.

.
Verses quoted on the video-
Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. Isaiah
Zechariah 3:1 And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him.
Zechariah 3:2 And the LORD said unto Satan, The LORD rebuke thee, O Satan; even the LORD that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?
Zechariah 3:3 Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel.
Zechariah 3:4 And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment.
Zechariah 3:5 And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the LORD stood by.
Zechariah 3:6 And the angel of the LORD protested unto Joshua, saying,
Zechariah 3:7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house, and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by.
Zechariah 3:8 Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH.
Zechariah 3:9 For behold the stone that I have laid before Joshua; upon one stone shall be seven eyes: behold, I will engrave the graving thereof, saith the LORD of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day.
Zechariah 3:10 In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, shall ye call every man his neighbour under the vine and under the fig tree.
Isaiah 6:1 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the LORD sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.
Isaiah 6:2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
Isaiah 6:3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.
Isaiah 6:4 And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.
Isaiah 6:5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.
Isaiah 6:6 Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar:
Isaiah 6:7 And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged.
Isaiah 6:8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
Isaiah 6:9 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.
Isaiah 6:10 Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.
Isaiah 6:11 Then said I, Lord, how long? And he answered, Until the cities be wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land be utterly desolate,
Isaiah 6:12 And the LORD have removed men far away, and there be a great forsaking in the midst of the land.
Isaiah 6:13 But yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten: as a teil tree, and as an oak, whose substance is in them, when they cast their leaves: so the holy seed shall be the substance thereof.
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and oflove, and of a sound mind. Tim. 1:7
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. Jn. 14:27
So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. ! Cor. 15
And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the firstbegotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, Rev. 1:5
Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
Hebrews 2:15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

RESTORED FAN- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-20-15-restored-fan.zip
On video-
.Snakes n chains
.News bias
.Edited videos?
.Harvest brain!
.Syria crisis
.Russia is right
.U.S. manipulates ISIS success

Verses on video [then some old posts below]
. Daniel 12:8 And I heard, but I understood not then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things?
Daniel 12:9 And he said, Go thy way, Daniel for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
Daniel 12:10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand.
Daniel 12:11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.
Daniel 12:12 Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.
Daniel 12:13 But go thou thy way till the end be for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days.
. And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and makeit plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. Hab. 2
. Matthew 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Matthew 24:16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:
Matthew 24:17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:
Matthew 24:18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.
Matthew 24:19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
Matthew 24:20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
Matthew 24:21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
Matthew 24:22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.
. Numbers 10:1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Numbers 10:2 Make thee two trumpets of silver; of a whole piece shalt thou make them: that thou mayest use them for the calling of the assembly, and for the journeying of the camps.
Numbers 10:3 And when they shall blow with them, all the assembly shall assemble themselves to thee at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Numbers 10:4 And if they blow but with one trumpet, then the princes, which are heads of the thousands of Israel, shall gather themselves unto thee.
Numbers 10:5 When ye blow an alarm, then the camps that lie on the east parts shall go forward.
Numbers 10:6 When ye blow an alarm the second time, then the camps that lie on the south side shall take their journey: they shall blow an alarm for their journeys.
Numbers 10:7 But when the congregation is to be gathered together, ye shall blow, but ye shall not sound an alarm.
Numbers 10:8 And the sons of Aaron, the priests, shall blow with the trumpets; and they shall be to you for an ordinance for ever throughout your generations.
Numbers 10:9 And if ye go to war in your land against the enemy that oppresseth you, then ye shall blow an alarm with the trumpets; and ye shall be remembered before the LORD your God, and ye shall be saved from your enemies.
Numbers 10:33 And they departed from the mount of the LORD three days’ journey: and the ark of the covenant of the LORD went before them in the three days’ journey, to search out a resting place for them.
Numbers 10:34 And the cloud of the LORD was upon them by day, when they went out of the camp.
Numbers 10:35 And it came to pass, when the ark set forward, that Moses said, Rise up, LORD, and let thine enemies be scattered; and let them that hate thee flee before thee.
Numbers 10:36 And when it rested, he said, Return, O LORD, unto the many thousands of Israel.
Numbers 6:24 The LORD bless thee, and keep thee:
Numbers 6:25 The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee:
Numbers 6:26 The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.
Numbers 6:27 And they shall put my name upon the children of Israel, and I will bless them.
. Also I will make him my firstborn, higher than the kings of the earth. Psalms 89
. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by theword of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. Rev. 12
. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being thefirstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. Rev

Some old posts I wrote that cover stuff I mentioned on the video-
In the last video I spoke about what happened to the Jews after the letter to the Hebrews was written.
In a way- the Jewish people made a transition- though forcibly- into some of the exhortations we read about in this letter-
They no longer offered animal sacrifices- why?
The Jews saw the destruction of their city and temple in AD 70 under the Roman leader Titus-
Some continued to resist Rome- they took over the fortress of Masada- a great fortress built by the late King Herod- Herod the Great.
They held the fort for around 3 years- until the Romans built a rampart to invade it.
The fortress was built high on a cliff by the Dead Sea-
The only way to get to it was from a narrow road- called the snake.
It had no ‘hand rails’ or walls to protect you- it was built this way on purpose.
So when the Roman soldiers tried to capture the Jews in the fortress- a small group could easily fight back- and hold the fort.
So the Romans built this rampart- it took about 2 years- and right before they reached the fort- the Jews holed up inside killed themselves.
They chose 10 men by lot- who would kill all inside the fort [women and kids too].
Out of the 10- they drew lots for one of them to kill the other 9- then he killed himself.
Elazar ben Yair was the leader of the Jewish resistance- we read the account in the writings of Josephus Flavius- the great historian who too fought against the Romans.
Here’s a quote from Elazar ben Yair “Since we long ago resolved never to be servants to the Romans, nor to any other than to God Himself, Who alone is the true and just Lord of mankind, the time is now come that obliges us to make that resolution true in practice …We were the very first that revolted, and we are the last to fight against them; and I cannot but esteem it as a favor that God has granted us, that it is still in our power to die bravely, and in a state of freedom.”
Flavius wrote 4 great works [we read about this account in Jewish Wars] – after the rebellion was over- Josephus was brought to Rome- and he began writing his historical works in order to show the Romans that the Jewish people were a great people- with a great history.
Many scholars refer to Josephus works [mostly Antiquities] because they give us history that we don’t find in the bible- it sort of fills in the gaps- and gives us historical context.
The Bar Kokhba Revolt-
The Jews had their last revolt against Rome around 130-132 AD-
Under the leadership of Shimon Bar Kokhba they resisted Rome- Emperor Hadrian would eventually prevail- and ban the Jews from their land- and make laws outlawing Jewish religious practice.
Over time the Jewish people learned/adapted to practice their religion- without Temple/Priest or sacrifice.
The Seder meal became the memorial of Gods deliverance from Egypt- they use the bone of a lamb- but they do not actually have the Passover sacrifice [which the letter to the Hebrews exhorts them to do- to not practice animal sacrifices any more].
The priests were no more- but the people had Rabbis- one in particular tried to help the people transition after such a cultural loss.
He taught them that the ‘new way’ of sacrifice and worship would be thru acts of charity- and prayer ‘sacrifice and offering I do not want’ a quote from the Old testament Prophets.
So- in a way- the Jewish people did ‘move on’ from the Old sacrificial system- and embraced a ‘more Christian’ view of religion.
Of course there are Jews today who fully embrace Jesus as the messiah- but over all- as a people- their Old Law system was done away-
Today you have various forms of Judaism- ranking form the most strict- to the most liberal [we see this in Christianity as well].
But none of them practice ritual sacrifice any more-
Some Christians [and Jews] actually believe the Temple will be restored- and at that time the sacrifices will be re-instituted.
I actually do not hold to this end time view-
But for now- that system has been done away with [or put on hold- if that’s your view].
And the ‘new works’ of religion- are charity and prayer and Mercy-
The same theme we read in this letter to the Hebrews-
5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith , Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: Hebrews 10:5
By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is , the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. Hebrews 13:15

JOHN LOCKE- JESUS- AND MONEY.
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/5-22-15-john-locke-political-theory-and-jesus.zip
Today’s video [and post] is one of those ‘spur of the moment’ ones-
I made the video/post yesterday- ‘off the cuff’-
I’m at the ranch as I write- and have no WiFi out here- or I’d post it now- I also don’t have my on-line concordance- so I’ll try and remember exactly where some of the verses are and add them in [I do have
SOME OLD POSTS- I went back and tried to pull up some old teaching I did over the years- I felt they fit in with some of the videos I did recently. These posts have been on my blog for years-
[Old posts below]
In the Greek world you had some very influential philosophers; Socrates most famous student was Plato- Plato’s most famous student was Aristotle- and his most famous student was Alexander the Great.

Alexander sought to implement the ideals of his teacher- he wanted to unify the known world under one people/culture- a belief that Aristotle held- a sort of ‘unified theory’ [Einstein] that would seek to bring all learning/knowledge together under one supreme [Divine] principle.

Alexander’s experiment was called Hellenization- which was the Greek worlds attempt to impose Greek culture/language on all their conquered enemies- and at the same time allow them to hold on to the their own culture too. Alexander did amazingly well at this experiment- at the young age of around 24 he had accomplished most of his mission. The cities were a sort of composite of Greek culture mixed in with their own culture- this is where we get the modern term Cosmopolitan.

Alexander died young and his kingdom was divided between 4 generals- one of them- Ptolemy- would himself make it into the history books because of his keen intellect.

The system of cosmology developed under him would last [and work!] until some 17-18 hundred years later when it was overthrown by the Copernican revolution during the time of Copernicus and Galileo.

Alexander’s generals would do their best to carry on the system of Hellenization- and other nation’s generals would keep the system going even after Greece fell. One of them- Octavian [Roman general] makes it into the history books by another famous name- Julius Caesar.

Alexander established a great library in the Egyptian city of Alexandria [named after him] and many of the great writings were preserved during this time.

The writings of Aristotle would be discovered again during the time of Thomas Aquinas [13th century Catholic genius/scholar] and this would lead to Scholasticism [a peculiar school of thought developed/revived under Aquinas] and give rise to the Renaissance.

Okay- before the birth of Christ- the Jewish people resisted the imposing of Greek culture upon them- you had the very famous resistance under the Jewish Maccabean revolt- where the Jews rose up and fought the wicked ruler Antiochus Epiphanies- and till this day the Jewish people celebrate this victory at Hanukah.

Eventually Rome would conquer the Greek kingdom and the Jewish people were allowed to keep their culture and temple- yet they were still a people oppressed. Hassidism [getting back to the beginning] developed during this attempt to not lose their Jewish roots- the Pharisees of Jesus day came from this movement.

Alexander was pretty successful in his attempt to unify language- even though the bible [New Testament] was written by Jewish writers- living under Roman rule- yet the original bible is written in the Greek language.

Bible scholars till this day study the Greek language to find the truest meaning of the actual words in the bible [I have a Greek Lexicon sitting right in front of me].

It would take a few centuries before a Latin version appeared on the scene [the great church father- Jerome- would produce the Latin Vulgate].

Yet it would be the re- discovery and learning of the Greek texts [under men like Erasmus- and the Protestant Reformers] that would lead to the Reformation [16th century] and other movements in church history.

[1587] OVERVIEW- Lets over view a little today- in the last post I mentioned how we will be getting into Marx, Freud and Nietzsche in the coming months- yet I have so many things going on at this time that just in case I never get to them I want to lay out some stuff. First, most challenges to the Christian faith/God- have come from the point of view that said ‘yes- we believe that there is some being out there- God- but we challenge the purveyors of religion and how man has used religion to control- manipulate the masses’. It was not until the rise of these men that the popular approach of ‘no God’ would take a foothold in the minds of many unsuspecting ‘masses’. Before we delve into the ideas and contradictions of these men- let me explain why most thinkers of the Enlightenment did not take the atheistic approach- and instead opted for some form of Deism/Theism. The original debate of ‘where did everything come from’ did not start during the Enlightenment- it dates back as far as 4-5 centuries before Christ- the question is obviously older- but you can read the debate taking place in the great minds of the Greek philosophers; Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. Though the idea of God in the minds of these Greek thinkers was not the same definition that Christianity would hold to- yet they did believe in some type of being who for the most part was what we would think of as God- they referred to him as
THALES AND THE PRE-SOCRATICS
Ok- let me do a little teaching- maybe finish it tonight.

Christianity is not simply ‘made up stories’ from some bible.

No- the history of Western Thought- Philosophy- ideas- all of the various World Views are imbedded with God- our concepts of God- and ask the ultimate question ‘where did all this come from- and why are we here’.

We usually trace the beginning of Ancient Philosophy to the 6th century BCE.

A thinker by the name of Thales sought to find ways to describe natural phenomena without the use of Greek Mythology.

Even though Philosophy deals with Metaphysics [things beyond the natural- physical realm- Physics] yet Thales wanted to find explanations for existence- without leaning on Myth.

He is considered a ‘Pre Socratic’ thinker [before Socrates] and espoused an idea that water was the key source of all things.

These guys were looking for a singular thing to explain stuff.
Sometimes referred to as a unified theory- the same thing that Einstein was seeking to find some 2 Millennia later.

So- Thales surmised that water was the key thing.

There are various ideas of why he came to this conclusion- but one reason might have been the idea of motion.

Many Geek thinkers were looking for the source of motion- where did it come from?

And to the natural eye- if you observe the ocean- rivers- etc. – there does seem to be no cause for the moving of water- so to these guys it seemed like water itself was the source- motion came from water.

Now- there were other religions who taught a sort of idea along these lines.

Some pagan religions said that the ‘god’s’ moved upon the water- and life came that way.

If you read the Christian account of creation in Genesis- you will notice that God did move upon the waters- and the account in Genesis does indeed say that he brought forth life from the water.

Thales came from for Miletus- in Asia Minor.

He was famous for the prediction of a Solar Eclipse that occurred on May 28th- 585 BCE.

The earliest account of this is found in the writings of Herodotus.
Thales is considered one of the 7 sages of the time.

Christianity was born at a time where Greek thought/ideas were a big part of society.

We do find the early apostles using the language/ideas of the Greek philosophers when describing the reality of Christ.

The apostle John refers to Christ as THE LOGOS- The word Logos- is a Greek word for ‘word’.

Jesus is called ‘the word of God’.

Now- the Greek thinkers were in fact seeking for the Logos- they used this term to describe the ultimate answer to all tings.
They were on a search for some Divine principle that could explain things.

So- the writers of the New Testament were in a way saying ‘look- we have found the Logos- the thing that you guys are looking for- it is Christ- the Divine Logos’.

We also see the apostle Paul debating with the Greek thinkers in the city of Athens [the seat of Geek philosophy- the city/state where Socrates was forced to drink cyanide].

In Acts chapter 17 he is preaching to these guys on Mar’s Hill- he says ‘In him we live AND MOVE and have our being’.
Now- today as we read this- we don’t get the full import of what he was doing.

But- to the Greek mind- the source of motion was a big thing.

Paul was a smart guy- and he was saying ‘in him we move’ showing that yes- the ‘source of motion’ [Thales water] is not found in the natural world [Physics] but the source comes from the Metaphysical world [God].

He also says ‘when I was walking thru your town- I saw one of your altars- to the unknown god’.

At the time many believed in a Pantheon of gods- and to cover their bases- they had an altar for any god they might have missed- smart thinking!

So Paul says ‘him I declare unto you’.
Notice how Paul was able to debate- converse with them- and at the end actually use their own ideas- to present the gospel.
In this chapter- Acts 17- we read of the only 2 groups of philosophers mentioned in the bible.

THIS IS THE DAY https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-22-15-this-is-the-day.zip
On video-
.Acts- book of sermons
.Power to get rich?
.David’s Son
.What’s the sign of Jonah?
.Rich man- Poor man
.Why do I help Pops?
.What are the last words of Jesus?
Some past teaching [below are the verses]-
(835)ROMANS 7:1-4 Paul uses the analogy of a married woman ‘don’t you know that the law has dominion over a person as long as he is alive’? If a married woman leaves her husband and marries another man she is guilty of breaking the law of adultery. Now, if her husband dies, she is free to marry another man. The act that freed her from sin and guilt was death! Every thing else in the scenario stayed the same. She still married another, she still consummated the new marriage. But because her first husband died, she has no guilt. I always loved this analogy. For years I wondered why these themes in scripture are for the most part not ‘imbedded’ in the collective psyche of the people of God. We have spent so much time ‘proof texting’ the verses on success and wealth, that we have overlooked the really good stuff! Now Paul teaches that we have been made free from the law by the ‘death of our husband’ [Jesus] so we can ‘re-marry’. Who do we marry? Christ! He has not only died to free us from the law, he also rose from the dead to become our ‘husband’ [we are called the bride of Christ]. Paul connects the death and resurrection of Jesus in this analogy. Both are needed for the true gospel to be preached [1st Corinthians 15]. Notice how in this passage Paul emphasizes ‘the death of Christ’s body’. The New Testament doesn’t always make this distinction, but here it does. In the early centuries of Christianity you had various debates over the nature and ‘substance’ of God and Christ. The church hammered out various decrees and creeds that would become the Orthodoxy of the day. Many of these are what you would call the ‘Ecumenical councils’. These are the early councils [many centuries!] that both the eastern [Orthodox church] and western [Catholic] churches would all accept. Some feel that the early church fathers and Latin theologians [Tertullian, Augustine and others] had too much prior influence from philosophy and the ‘forensic’ thinking of their time. They had a tendency to describe things in highly technical ways. Ways that were prominent in the legal and philosophical thinking of the West. Some of the eastern thinkers [Origen] had more of a Greek ‘flavor’ to their theologizing [Alexandria, named after Alexander the great, was a city of philosophy many years prior to Christ. This city was at one time the center of thinking in the East. That’s why Paul would face the thinkers at Athens, they had a history in the east of Greek philosophy]. Well any way the result was highly technical debates over the nature of God and Christ. The historic church would finally decree that Christ had 2 natures, Human and Divine. And that at the Cross the ‘humanity of Jesus’ died, but his ‘Deity’ did not. I think Paul agreed by saying ‘we are free from the law by the death of Christ’s Body’ here Paul distinguishes between the physical death of Jesus and his Deity. Note- actually, Augustine would be in the same school as Origen. Alexandrian.

Okay- let’s start a brief overview of some church history. Over the next few weeks I want to hit on the 16th century Protestant reformation and try and cover some of the key figures of the movement.

Martin Luther- the German reformer who had the most influence in the movement was born and raised in Germany.

As a boy his parents were peasant farmers and eventually his dad became a miner and became a very successful businessman- he would go on and eventually own 6 foundries.

He sent his son to law school- and young Luther excelled. At the age of 21 he accomplished more than many of his peers. One day on his way home from the university a thunderstorm broke out and Luther was almost struck by a bolt of lightning.

In fear he cried out to Saint Ann [the mother of Mary] and said ‘Saint Ann- if you save me I will become a monk’ [Ann was the patron Saint for miners- thus Luther was familiar with her].

He was spared and off to the monastery he went. Luther eventually became an ordained priest and even though his dad initially was upset that his son became a priest- yet he was proud of his boy later on.

Luther would eventually make a Pilgrimage to Rome- on foot [a few month walk from Germany to Rome!] and what he saw devastated him. Rome- and the Vatican- were in bad shape. Many of the priests lived in open sin- and the city that he saw as his headquarters for the faith- well it was a mess.

Luther made the famous penitent walk/crawl up the stairs of the Lateran church [this church was the most famous church before the construction of St. Peters. The actual stairs of the church are the same stairs that Christ walked up during his trial under Pontius Pilate. Yes- you hear many ‘stories’ while studying church history- things like the relics or left over pieces of the Cross- well these stories are usually fake. But the stairs of the Lateran church are indeed the same stairs that Christ walked on- the early ‘church’ builders dismantled the stairs at Pilate’s court in Jerusalem and installed them at this church building in Rome].

When Luther got to the top of the stairs- it is reported that he questioned the faith- he had a crisis of faith and thought that maybe the whole thing was a sham.

Okay- as we do a few more posts over the coming weeks- I want you guys to see that the main players of the Reformation were sincere Catholic men who had many questions about what they saw as corrupt in their own church. These men did not want to start a breakaway church- they simply wanted to reform the church they loved.

Keep in mind that Luther excelled during his legal studies- he had a keen legal mind- this will be important later on when we see the debates he has with Rome over the doctrine of Justification by faith- the letters of the apostle Paul [Romans- Galatians] use lots of legal language- and his early education will help him in these debates.

Okay- that’s it for today. Maybe do a Google search on Luther and familiarize yourself a little with the history.

The ‘readings’ for this week are 2nd Samuel 6-7 and Psalms 89. See what they have in common.

[1768] LUTHER- THE TOWER EXPERIENCE

Let’s start with some church history. In the last post I covered the early years of Martin Luther- probably the most significant figure of the Protestant Reformation.

Luther studied for the priesthood in Erfurt, Germany. He would eventually wind up in Wittenberg- one of the major university cities of the Reformation. Wittenberg was actually a small insignificant town- but the political leader over the region- Frederick the Wise- sought to put it on the map.

He wanted to turn Wittenberg into a German ‘Rome’. He wanted it to become a major Pilgrimage city where Christians would see Wittenberg as a destination- just like they saw Rome.

So Frederick embarked on this plan and he searched thru all the Catholic learning centers of the time and finally recruited 3 top scholars to teach out of the university at Wittenberg- Luther was one of the 3.

Just as a side note- Frederick would succeed at making Wittenberg a major catholic center. He would eventually obtain over 19,000 Relics for the Cathedral church there [Relics were used in the ancient system of buying indulgences and making special pilgrimage trips to important Churches. If the church/city that your making the Pilgrimage to has a lot of Relics- bones or other famous material objects from church history- then the value of the Pilgrimage was high. In theory Frederick collected so many that if you added up all the ‘time off’ from Purgatory- you would get 1 million, 900 thousand years off! Some of the famous relics at Wittenberg were a hair from the beard of Jesus- straw from the manger Jesus was born in- and even a branch from the famous burning bush of Moses! As you can see- there was a lot of commercializing going on- even back then].

When Luther arrived in Wittenberg- he made a name for himself as a top scholar. Many protestants- who revere Luther- usually are not aware that he was a master Linguist [sort of like Rick Perry!]

Yes Luther mastered language- and he showed it in his teaching on the book of Psalms.

In 1515 he began his famous study on the book of Romans and as he went thru the very first chapter- something shook him. He came across the passage that says the Just shall live by faith. This verse first appears in the O.T. book of Habakkuk- and is quoted 3 more times in the N.T.

Luther was very aware of the concept of the righteousness of God- he struggled for many years trying to reconcile his own sinful nature with Gods holiness- but he never really ‘saw’ the biblical concept of righteousness as a free gift that God ‘imputes’ to the sinner.

Yes- for the 1st time in Luther’s life- after his years training for the priesthood- the pilgrimage he made to Rome- the thousands of hours he spent confessing his sins while a monk in Erfurt- he never really understood that the righteousness of God was a free gift given to those who have faith.

It was a giant weight lifted from his shoulders- Luther did not need to try any more to live up to the standards of God- in a way that would earn for him forgiveness- but he would simply believe- and the righteousness of God would be counted to him as a gift.

Luther would go on to call this an Alien Righteousness- that is it is not found within the person who tries to do all the church works he can- or buying all the indulgences- or any other of the many religious actions he was practicing- but this free gift of being right with God- it came to those who had faith- the Just shall live by Faith- this was indeed good news for the scholar.

As time went on- Germany would get embroiled in the political machinations of the day- Luther’s top political cover was Frederick the Wise- hardly a Protestant Reformer! He spent lots of time trying to make Wittenberg the major Catholic center in Germany.

But at the time there was a political fight raging between Rome and some of the other nation/states. There was a figure head office called the Holy Roman Emperor. This office was really in name only- but it rose up during the first Millennium of Christian history and sought to replace the influence that Rome was losing.

So you had France, Spain and England all vying for the title. Eventually it would go to King Charles of Spain- but the Pope- who played a major role in nominating the person- he did not want any of these top 3 to get the position. Henry the Eighth was the king of England at the time- and these ‘3 kings’ were sort of in competition with Rome- so the Pope tried to get Fredrick the Wise to throw his hat into the ring.

Frederick just happened to be one of the Electors of this position.

His actual title was The Elector of Saxony.

So Fredrick had lots of influence- and as Rome would eventually but heads with the stubborn bull of Wittenberg [Luther] Frederick would become the major protector of Luther.

Okay- I think we’ll stop here for today. The experience that Luther had- the enlightenment that came to him while teaching the book of Romans- this is often called The Tower experience of Luther- it took place in the year 1515.

[1770] TREASURY OF MERIT

Let’s pick up where we left off 2 posts back. We were talking about Martin Luther and the events that led up to the Protestant Reformation.

In order to understand the key act that caused the protest- we will have to teach some Catholic history/doctrine.

In the 16th century Pope Julius began the effort to build St. Peters basilica in Rome. He got as far as laying the foundation and died. Pope Leo the 10th would pick up after him.

The church needed to raise money for the project- and the German prince- Albert- would play a major role.

It should be noted that both Catholic and Protestant scholars agree that the Popes of the day were pretty corrupt. They came from what we call the Medici line of Popes.

If you remember last month I wrote a post on the Renaissance- I talked about the Medici family and how they played a major role in supporting the Renaissance that took place in the 13th century in Florence Italy that would spread to the region.

Well this very influential family also played a big role in who would get top positions in the church.

At the time of Luther and prince Albert- if you had the right connections and the money- you could literally buy a position in the church.

Albert already held 2 Bishop seats- and there was an opening for an Archbishops seat in Mainz [Germany] and he wanted that one too.

It should be noted that official Canon law [church law] said you could only hold one seat at a time- Albert was bidding on his 3rd one! And he was too young for all of them.

So even the Pope and the officials held little respect for what the church actually taught at the time.

So Albert opens up negotiations with Leo- and the bidding starts AT 12,000 Duckets [money] Albert counters with 7,000- and they agree on 10,000. How did they justify the numbers? 12- The number of Apostles. 7- The 7 deadly sins. 10- The 10 commandments.

Yes- the church was pretty corrupt at the time.

So Albert works out a plan with Leo- he will borrow the money from the German banks- and pay the banks off by the Pope giving Albert the right to sell Indulgences.

What’s an Indulgence?

Okay- this is where it gets tricky.

The ancient church taught a system called The Treasury of Merit. This was a sort of spiritual bank account that ‘stored up’ the good deeds of others over the years.

You had the good deeds of Jesus at the top- but you also had Mary and Joseph- the 12 Apostles- and other various saints thru out time.

The way the ‘bank’ worked was you could tap into the account by getting a Papal indulgence- a sort of I.O.U. that had the Popes guarantee that it would get so much time out of Purgatory for a loved one.

The actual sacrament that accesses the account is called Penance [confession].

When a penitent does penance- he confesses his sin to the priest- and he is absolved by the authority of the church that the priest has. The priest usually tells the person ‘say so many Hail Mary’s- Our Father’s’ and that’s a form of penance.

One of the other things the church practiced was called Alms Deeds. This term is found in the bible and it means giving your money to the poor- it is a noble act that Jesus himself taught.

In theory- part of the sacrament of penance was tied into Alms Deeds- you can access the account thru the practice of giving to the poor- which also meant giving to the church that helps the poor- and in the hands of the Medici line of Popes- meant outright giving money to the Pope.

So now you see how the abuse worked its way into the pockets of the faithful.

Albert now had the permission from Leo to sell these indulgences in Germany- and he would pick a certain corrupt priest to sell them in a place called Saxony- the region where Luther operated out of.

It should be noted that the Catholic Church never taught the crass act of ‘buying your way out of Purgatory’. The practice of including giving money as a part of the sacrament of penance was tied into the biblical principle of giving to the poor- a good thing.

But Tetzel and others abused the official meaning of the indulgence- and did make it sound like you could by your way out of Purgatory [in theory- a loved one might be in Purgatory for so many years- and through the indulgence you are actually getting time off for them- because the good deeds of others are now applied to the account].

The money Albert would raise- half would go to Rome for the building of St. peters- and half would go to pay off the banks in Germany- it was a sad system- and a sad time for the church as a whole.

It would be wrong to judge the entire church at the time as being corrupt- you did have many sincere Priests and Catholic men and women who saw the abuses and did not take part in them.

But there was corruption at the top- and this would eventually lead to the breakup of the church- and the launching of what we now call the Protestant Movement.

As a side note- it should be said that many Catholics and Protestants are not aware of the whole treasury of merit system- and the church never officially changed her position on the doctrine.

There were 3 Church councils since the time [Trent- 1500’s, Vatican 1- 1800’s and Vatican 2- 1962-65]. The Treasury of Merit never came up for change.

Obviously Protestants don’t believe in Purgatory- and it’s not my purpose in these posts to change Catholics into Protestants or vice versa- but to give all sides a clear view of the issues that divided us- and to try and be honest- and respectful during the process.

Does the bible teach anything like a Treasury of Merit? Well actually it does. The bible teaches that the righteousness of Christ is the treasury that people can access- by faith- and become righteous in the sight if God.

The idea- applied to Christ- is good.

But in the hands of the Medici Popes- and the ambitious prince of Germany- it would lead to disaster.

http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John

[1773] LUTHER CLASHES WITH ROME

Let’s do another post on the Protestant Reformation. I’ll probably only do a few more before I transition into another study.

By the way- all the studies I do thru out the year are posted in the February posts of the following year.

Okay- last we left off Luther was just beginning to butt heads with the church [Tetzel] over the abuse of the sale of indulgences that was going on in Germany.

In a previous post I mentioned how the priest- Tetzel- was selling these ‘get out of Purgatory’ type coupons in the area where Luther operated out- Saxony.

Actually- Tetzel never entered Saxony itself- but was selling these out of a bordering city- and many of Luther’s students/parishioners were being hoodwinked into spending their money to rescue a loved one out of Purgatory.

Tetzel is known for a jingle he started in connection with the sale of the indulgence- it goes ‘as soon as a coin in the coffer rings- a soul in Purgatory springs’- ouch!

Like I said before- the church never taught this- they did teach the Treasury of Merit [previous post] but the way Tetzel used it was a real abuse of the teaching of the church at the time.

Now- Luther responds to the abuse by writing the famous 95 thesis. This is the act that is often associated with the launching of the Reformation- the act that got the ball rolling.

The 95 thesis were simply 95 questions challenging the whole practice of the sale of indulgences- there was no mention of the doctrine of Justification by Faith- which will become the trumpet sound that springs out of the Protestant Reformation.

Luther takes these questions- written in Latin- and nails them to the university church door at Wittenberg. Sometimes while reading church history this ‘nailing to the door’ is seen as a sort of vandalism – you know- ‘he nailed them to the door!’

In actuality Luther was simply using the system of the day that one scholar would use in order to bring up an official point of contention with the church- Luther wrote the Thesis in Latin- which was the scholars language- not the language of the common man.

But Luther’s students quickly translated the Thesis into the vernacular [German] and it was said that in 2 weeks the paper made it into every village of Germany.

The challenge was a spark in the lives of many Christians who also believed the church was off track and that someone needed to rebuke her- and they picked Luther as the man for the job.

Now- the Catholic church wanted Luther to go to Rome and discuss the situation there- Luther’s friends warned him not to go- so they agreed to meet- a few times- in Germany.

The first meeting was in 1518 at Heidelberg- Luther actually gave a great defense of his argument and convinced some other top Catholic scholars that he was right [as a side note- the church had already scheduled this meeting because of a controversy that rose up between the Augustinian order of monks and the Dominicans. They were debating over which philosophy was more consistent with church teaching- Nominalism or Realism- for those of you who have read the posts this past year- I taught this when doing our posts on philosophy].

One man- Martin Bucer- wrote a stirring account of Luther- Bucer would later influence another young Swiss priest with Reformation teachings- his name is John Calvin.

As a side not Calvin will become one of the 3 big heavy hitters of the 16th century Reformation [Ulrich Zwingli is the 3rd].

Luther will meet again in Augsburg- and debate the leading Catholic scholar of the day- Cardinal Cajetan.

Then he goes to the city of Leipzig- and debates the leading German scholar- Johann Eck.

And his last meeting with the church will be at the famous Diet of Worms [pronounced- Vurmtz] and it will be here that Luther makes his last stand and officially will break with the church and launch the Protestant Reformation.

It should be noted that Luther held what we call a High Church position for most of this time- he still saw the church at Rome- and the Pope- as a legitimate expression of true Christianity- his beef was what he saw as an abuse of the system- by the priest Tetzel.

As time progressed- the other beliefs of Luther- founded upon the bible- did come into contention with Rome.

The main disagreement eventually became the teaching in the bible called Justification by faith. I have written a study on the topic on the blog- I have also written a bible study on the book of Romans and Galatians.

For those of you who can- try and read Romans chapters 2-4 and Galatians 2-3- these are the key chapters that cover the teaching.

Down the road I will cover the official teaching of both the Protestants and the Catholics on the doctrine of justification- the Catholic Council of Trent- referred to as the Counter Reformation- spells out the official teaching of Rome- and there are a few papers put out by the Reformers that explain their belief.

Since the 16th century Reformation there have been efforts made by Protestants and Catholics to bridge the gap as much as possible- to try to come to some common language since the historic split.

I like some of the efforts that have been made- and recently both groups put out a statement that jointly said we all believe that we are saved by Gods grace thru Christ- that’s good.

But as we get into some of the actual discussion- you will see the points at which the 2 sides disagreed- and the main one was on the act- the actual thing that happens- when a person is declared just- the Reformers said it takes place when a person has faith- believes- the Catholic church said it takes place at baptism- water baptism.

This- as well as a few other things- will be a defining distinction between the 2.
[this is part of my study on the Protestant reformation- the complete study is on my blog]
More past teaching-
(1235) 2ND CORINTHIANS 12- Before I get into a long history discussion with you guys, let’s hit a few verses. Paul says ‘when I was with you, did I gain a profit from you, take advantage of you?’ or ‘when I sent Titus, did he gain a profit from you?’ He then goes on and says the fathers lay up money for the kids, not the other way around. He says he has spent out of his own pocket for them, and he will continue to do so. He says he does all this so people won’t have the excuse ‘he’s just in it for the money’. Notice, Paul himself did not have the common mindset we see in ministry today. Often times financial appeals are made from Paul’s writings in Corinthians, these appeals often say ‘we are not asking for ourselves, but for you’ it is put in a way that says it would be wrong to not take money from people. That in some way not taking an offering would violate scripture. Paul flatly said he did not take money from them for personal use, nor would he. When the modern church uses Paul’s other sayings in this letter to appeal to giving, we need to share ‘the whole counsel of God’ not just a few verses that fit in with what we practice. Now, Paul speaks about being caught up into ‘heaven’ [Gods realm-Paradise] and hearing truths from God that were not lawful for men to speak. He states that God gave him truth that came from Divine revelation. If you skip a few pages over in your bible, you will hit Galatians. In the first chapter he says how after he was converted he did not confer with the other leaders at Jerusalem, but received teaching straight from God. Let’s discuss what revelation is, how we come to know things. The last few centuries of the first millennium of Christian history you had the ‘Holy Roman Empire’ which was a political/religious union of church and state. Under the emperor Charlemagne the territories of the empire were vast. Those who came after him did not have the same control over the regions that were vast. Eventually you had a form of rule arise that was called Feudalism; the sections of the empire that were too far to benefit directly from Rome would simply come under the authority of the local strongman [much like the present dilemma in Afghanistan, I think it’s time to get our boys out of that mess]. People would come under the authority of a ruler and he would lease out land to the citizens and they would benefit from his protection. The citizens were called Vassals and the land was called a Fief. At one point king John of England would do public penance in a disagreement he had with the Pope and all of England would become a Fief under the rule of the Pope. Now, this would eventually lead up to the development of the strong nation states, an independent identifying with your state/region as opposed to being under Rome and the papacy. This type of independence would allow for the 16th century reformation to happen under Luther. If it were not for Frederick the Wise, the regional authority in Germany where Luther lived, he would have never had the protection or freedom to launch his reformation. Luther also had the influence of being a scholar at Wittenberg. Around the 12th-13th centuries you had the first university pop up at the great cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris. The word university simply meant a co-operative effort from two or more people. It applied to many things besides learning. It was also during this time that the church began to develop a system of harmonizing Christian doctrine; she began to do systematic theology. The writings of the Greek philosophers [Aristotle] were rediscovered after centuries of them being hidden, and the great intellectual Saint Thomas Aquinas would wed Aristotle’s ideas with Christian truth. This became known as Scholasticism. Aquinas believed that men could arrive at a true knowledge of God from pure reason and logic. But man could not know all the truths about God and his nature without ‘special revelation’ [the bible and church tradition]. All Christians did not agree with Aquinas new approach to Christian truth, the very influential bishop Bernard would initially condemn Aquinas over this. Bernard said ‘the faith that believes unto righteousness, believes! It does not doubt’. The Scholastic school taught that the way you arrive at knowledge was thru the continuous questioning and doubting of things until you come to some basic conclusions. These issues would be debated for centuries, and even in the present hour many argue over the issue of Divine revelation versus natural logical reasoning. Tertullian, an early North Afrcian church father, said ‘I believe because it is preposterous, illogical’ he became famous for his saying ‘what does Jerusalem have to do with Athens’ meaning he did not believe that Greek philosophy should have any part with Christian truth. Origen, his contemporary, believed the other way. So the debate rages on. Why talk about this here? Some believers ‘believe’ in a type of knowledge called ‘revelation knowledge’ they mean something different than the historic use of the term. Historically ‘revelation’ meant that which God revealed to us THRU THE BIBLE, not something outside of the bible. For instance, the first canon of scripture put together was by a man called Marcion. His ‘bible’ contained the letters of Paul and parts of :Luke. He believed the revelation God gave Paul was for us today, not the Old Testament or the historical gospels. He was condemned by the church as a heretic. The point being some took Paul’s writings about receiving knowledge from God as an indicator that what God showed Paul was different than what the church got thru the other apostles. In point of fact the things that God revealed to Paul, or to you or me; all truth is consistent, it will not contradict any other part of Gods truth. Paul’s letters are consistent with the gospels, not in contradiction. When believers cling to an idea that their teachers are sharing ‘special revelation’ or a Rhema word that is somehow above the scrutiny of scripture, then they are in dangerous territory. Paul did appeal to his experience with God as a defense of his gospel, but he backed up everything he said with Old Testament scripture. God wasn’t ‘revealing’ things to Paul that were outside of the realm of true knowable ‘truth’. You could examine and test the things Paul was saying, he wasn’t saying ‘because God showed it to me, that’s why I’m correct’. So in today’s church world, we want all the things we learn and believe to be consistent with what the church has believed thru out the centuries. Sure there are always things that are going to be questioned and true reform entails this, but beware of teachers who come to you with ‘revelation knowledge’ or a ‘Rhema word’ that goes against the already revealed word of truth.

(1236) 2ND CORINTHIANS 13- Okay, it took 13 days to do this brief study. Paul finished up his letter by telling them that God gave him authority to build them up, not tear them down. The message bible says ‘to not tear them apart’. Why say this? Because after 13 chapters [yes, I know the chapters are not in the original!] it sure felt like he wrung them thru a wringer. In Jeremiah 1:10 God gives him power to root out, tear down, uproot and also build up. If you read the exact wording Jeremiah does 4 ‘deconstructing acts’ and 2 constructing ones. It is part of leadership to spend more time dealing with the problems than doing the good stuff. Dealing with the problems is actually part of ‘the good stuff’. We spent a few weeks simply trying to look at the context of Paul and his relating [whole study on my blog]
VERSES I mentioned on video-
Acts 2:25 For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved:
Acts 2:26 Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope:
Acts 2:27 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
Acts 2:28 Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.
Acts 2:29 Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.
Acts 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;
Acts 2:31 He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.
Acts 2:32 This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.
Acts 2:33 Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.
Acts 2:34 For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
Acts 2:35 Until I make thy foes thy footstool.
Acts 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day. Duet. 8:18
For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in theheart of the earth. Matt. 12
Luke 16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
Luke 16:20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
Luke 16:21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
Luke 16:22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
Luke 16:23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
Luke 16:24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
Luke 16:25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
Luke 16:26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
Luke 16:27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father’s house:
Luke 16:28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
Luke 16:29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
Luke 16:30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
Luke 16:31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
Revelation 22:16 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.
Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
3John 1:1 The elder unto the wellbeloved Gaius, whom I love in the truth.
3John 1:2 Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.
1Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
1Timothy 6:7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
1Timothy 6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
1Timothy 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
1Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, Thestone which the builders rejected, the same is become the headof the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? Matt 21
This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Acts 4
Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed,the same is made the head of the corner, 1st Peter 2
Psalm 118:22 The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.
Psalm 118:23 This is the LORD’s doing; it is marvellous in our eyes.
Psalm 118:24 This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.

Pops, Bear and the Pope https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-24-15-pops-bear-n-the-pope.zip
On video-
.Bear on Pope
.Corporate- ism
.Tree huggers?
.Pops on Castro

Some past teaching I did here [verses below]
(1235) 2ND CORINTHIANS 12- Before I get into a long history discussion with you guys, let’s hit a few verses. Paul says ‘when I was with you, did I gain a profit from you, take advantage of you?’ or ‘when I sent Titus, did he gain a profit from you?’ He then goes on and says the fathers lay up money for the kids, not the other way around. He says he has spent out of his own pocket for them, and he will continue to do so. He says he does all this so people won’t have the excuse ‘he’s just in it for the money’. Notice, Paul himself did not have the common mindset we see in ministry today. Often times financial appeals are made from Paul’s writings in Corinthians, these appeals often say ‘we are not asking for ourselves, but for you’ it is put in a way that says it would be wrong to not take money from people. That in some way not taking an offering would violate scripture. Paul flatly said he did not take money from them for personal use, nor would he. When the modern church uses Paul’s other sayings in this letter to appeal to giving, we need to share ‘the whole counsel of God’ not just a few verses that fit in with what we practice. Now, Paul speaks about being caught up into ‘heaven’ [Gods realm-Paradise] and hearing truths from God that were not lawful for men to speak. He states that God gave him truth that came from Divine revelation. If you skip a few pages over in your bible, you will hit Galatians. In the first chapter he says how after he was converted he did not confer with the other leaders at Jerusalem, but received teaching straight from God. Let’s discuss what revelation is, how we come to know things. The last few centuries of the first millennium of Christian history you had the ‘Holy Roman Empire’ which was a political/religious union of church and state. Under the emperor Charlemagne the territories of the empire were vast. Those who came after him did not have the same control over the regions that were vast. Eventually you had a form of rule arise that was called Feudalism; the sections of the empire that were too far to benefit directly from Rome would simply come under the authority of the local strongman [much like the present dilemma in Afghanistan, I think it’s time to get our boys out of that mess]. People would come under the authority of a ruler and he would lease out land to the citizens and they would benefit from his protection. The citizens were called Vassals and the land was called a Fief. At one point king John of England would do public penance in a disagreement he had with the Pope and all of England would become a Fief under the rule of the Pope. Now, this would eventually lead up to the development of the strong nation states, an independent identifying with your state/region as opposed to being under Rome and the papacy. This type of independence would allow for the 16th century reformation to happen under Luther. If it were not for Frederick the Wise, the regional authority in Germany where Luther lived, he would have never had the protection or freedom to launch his reformation. Luther also had the influence of being a scholar at Wittenberg. Around the 12th-13th centuries you had the first university pop up at the great cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris. The word university simply meant a co-operative effort from two or more people. It applied to many things besides learning. It was also during this time that the church began to develop a system of harmonizing Christian doctrine; she began to do systematic theology. The writings of the Greek philosophers [Aristotle] were rediscovered after centuries of them being hidden, and the great intellectual Saint Thomas Aquinas would wed Aristotle’s ideas with Christian truth. This became known as Scholasticism. Aquinas believed that men could arrive at a true knowledge of God from pure reason and logic. But man could not know all the truths about God and his nature without ‘special revelation’ [the bible and church tradition]. All Christians did not agree with Aquinas new approach to Christian truth, the very influential bishop Bernard would initially condemn Aquinas over this. Bernard said ‘the faith that believes unto righteousness, believes! It does not doubt’. The Scholastic school taught that the way you arrive at knowledge was thru the continuous questioning and doubting of things until you come to some basic conclusions. These issues would be debated for centuries, and even in the present hour many argue over the issue of Divine revelation versus natural logical reasoning. Tertullian, an early North Afrcian church father, said ‘I believe because it is preposterous, illogical’ he became famous for his saying ‘what does Jerusalem have to do with Athens’ meaning he did not believe that Greek philosophy should have any part with Christian truth. Origen, his contemporary, believed the other way. So the debate rages on. Why talk about this here? Some believers ‘believe’ in a type of knowledge called ‘revelation knowledge’ they mean something different than the historic use of the term. Historically ‘revelation’ meant that which God revealed to us THRU THE BIBLE, not something outside of the bible. For instance, the first canon of scripture put together was by a man called Marcion. His ‘bible’ contained the letters of Paul and parts of :Luke. He believed the revelation God gave Paul was for us today, not the Old Testament or the historical gospels. He was condemned by the church as a heretic. The point being some took Paul’s writings about receiving knowledge from God as an indicator that what God showed Paul was different than what the church got thru the other apostles. In point of fact the things that God revealed to Paul, or to you or me; all truth is consistent, it will not contradict any other part of Gods truth. Paul’s letters are consistent with the gospels, not in contradiction. When believers cling to an idea that their teachers are sharing ‘special revelation’ or a Rhema word that is somehow above the scrutiny of scripture, then they are in dangerous territory. Paul did appeal to his experience with God as a defense of his gospel, but he backed up everything he said with Old Testament scripture. God wasn’t ‘revealing’ things to Paul that were outside of the realm of true knowable ‘truth’. You could examine and test the things Paul was saying, he wasn’t saying ‘because God showed it to me, that’s why I’m correct’. So in today’s church world, we want all the things we learn and believe to be consistent with what the church has believed thru out the centuries. Sure there are always things that are going to be questioned and true reform entails this, but beware of teachers who come to you with ‘revelation knowledge’ or a ‘Rhema word’ that goes against the already revealed word of truth.

(1236) 2ND CORINTHIANS 13- Okay, it took 13 days to do this brief study. Paul finished up his letter by telling them that God gave him authority to build them up, not tear them down. The message bible says ‘to not tear them apart’. Why say this? Because after 13 chapters [yes, I know the chapters are not in the original!] it sure felt like he wrung them thru a wringer. In Jeremiah 1:10 God gives [complete study on my blog]
1906 CHE

I watched another documentary this weekend.

It was the story of Che Guevara.

Che is well known today as a sort of symbol of the revolutionary youth movement.

He embodies the persona of those who defy ‘Imperialism/Colonialism’.

Che was an Argentinean doctor- who at a young age took a motorcycle journey thru Latin America [South- Central America] and he saw the extreme poverty of the people.

He would see one of the main factors of this poverty being the influence that the U.S. held over these nations thru corporate agreements with the ‘puppet’ leaders of these nations.

For instance- many of the poor of these nations were peasant farmers- they worked the land for rich land owners- and they subsisted on a few dollars a day wages.

Yet the owners of the land- they were rich.

Likewise- Che believed that the leaders of the nations were ‘in bed’ with the U.S. – and they allowed U.S. corporations to rake their countries of wealth- at the expense of the people.

Now- I am not saying I totally agree with Che.

He has many critics- as well as supporters [he’s dead of course].

Jean Paul Sartre [remember our philosophy posts?] supported him- others did not.

The point being- Che saw a system- the U.S. govt and American corporations- as an all powerful system that polluted the nations to her south.

He felt the influence of greed and corruption were the main causes of the plight of the Latin American people.

His revolution- Che literally left his duties as a doctor and led an armed rebellion against the U.S. – would eventually lead to his execution by Bolivian forces [Bolivia is just north of Argentina- Che’s homeland] backed by the CIA.

Che was a key factor in the Cuban revolution that deposed Batista- the U.S. backed leader of Cuba- and installed Castro.

Che’s influence lives on today in many of the leaders of south/central America.
[another post]
In the early days of the church- in the 4th century- we had the rise of the Roman emperor/military ruler- Constantine.

Part of the achievements of Constantine was his development of the eastern half of the Roman empire- whose capitol was named after him- Constantinople.

Over a period of years the early Roman church fought over whose bishop would have more influence- the bishop of Rome [Pope] or the bishop in the east.

Many bishops in the Catholic Church have disagreed over the influence of one bishop being greater than the others [the idea that all the bishops should have an equal voice at the church councils is called Collegiality].

This has caused splits within the Catholic Church thru the centuries [the last big one in the 19th century].

Eventually the early church split- and the Eastern Church separated from Rome.

The eastern empire [called Byzantium- the seat of the Eastern Orthodox Church] officially split in the year 1054.

Now- in church history we call this the Great Schism- even though the Protestant split which took place in the 16th century was greater in effect.

Okay- the Protestant reformers split over various issues- I have an entire study on the blog about this.

But the main issue became what we call justification by faith.

Over the centuries many good men- and average church goers- lost the main message of the New Testament- which was a message of being saved by the grace of God.

Many well meaning Christians were struggling to do penance in a way that sort of earned them their salvation thru works.

The Protestant reformer Martin Luther was teaching the book of Romans [he was a scholar and a Catholic leader in intellectual circles at the time].

During his teaching on the epistle of Paul [Romans- in our bible] he came across a verse that said THE JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.

As he mediated on the passage- and the other themes in Romans that speak about being saved by faith and not by works- he started a sort of mini revolution amongst the students and he became a sort of favorite teacher in the area of Germany where he was teaching.

Over a period of time- thru all sorts of religious and political machinations- he launched what we now call the Protestant Reformation.

Okay- Hebrews 4.

How does this fit in?

In Hebrews 4- the writer is appealing to a first century Jewish audience who were steeped in a legalistic mindset.

That is- in many ways- they were like the Christians of the 16th century who lost the idea of grace- and were seeking to please God thru the works of the law.
[parts of posts]
[1626] PILLARS 1-2.

As the Libya story unfolds- you have some sincere critics of the president [Dick Lugar] and others who just want to find fault. Now- one of the debates going on is who will eventually take over the command of the ‘no fly zone’ [war]. The Arab league- though initially in support of the action, has since said what they signed up for [protect innocent civilians] is not what happened [bombing the country]. Vladimir Putin [Russian P.M.] said ‘it’s a crusade’ Yikes! The Russian president [who I thought was supposed to be a puppet] Medvedev rebuked the words publicly. Before we hit Libya- I started asking a few questions- things like ‘look- I know the leader seems like a nut, but I’m beginning to wonder if there might be some truth to his charge that the Rebels are Al Qaeda’. Sure enough there have been lots of reports that do say the radical element in these protests are larger than what we saw in the other nations [Tunisia, Egypt]. Richard Engel- a top NBC [NOT FOX!] reporter said that 1 in 5 of the rebels are fighting because they want to kill Gadhafi ‘the Jew’. So as we debate when/where the U.S. should take action- we need to also keep in mind that the alternatives to the toppling of leaders might be just as bad- or worse- than the actual leader. Okay- why was the word ‘crusade’ so charged? It plays into the world history of the western nations fighting against the Muslim world. Many in the Arab league are not comfortable with NATO taking charge because of this history. The last few weeks the song ‘from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli’ have gone thru my mind. I remember the old Abbot and Costello shows on the foreign legion and stuff like that. What war is the song describing? It speaks about the wars that the U.S. engaged in- yes- with Libya- many years ago. After the American colonies broke away from England we continued to conduct world trade by the use of ships. At one point [1800’s] the Mediterranean became a flash point [like today] you had pirates and countries who retaliated by disrupting the water ways. America of course fought back- and the Libyans were actually called ‘the Mujahedeen’ yes- the same term used for the Rebels who we supported in toppling the Russian influence in Afghanistan. These were the Barbary wars- Barbary Coast. So- we need to be careful that our actions don’t play into the idea that the U.S. is actually waging a 21st century crusade [this is also why it was unbelievable that Bush actually used the term crusade during his term].

Okay- let me do a little more on Islam [the teaching series I started in the last post]. Islam has 5 Pillars- basic tenets that all Muslims hold to;

1- The declaration of their faith ‘There is no god but God [Allah] and Muhammad is the messenger of God’. To become a Muslim- one simply has to accept/confess this statement. Muslims believe that the final/complete revelation of God to man has come thru the prophet- by way of the Quran. As Christians accept Jesus as God’s final prophet/Messiah to mankind- so Muslims see Muhammad as the final and complete authority.

2- The second Pillar is Salat [prayer]. Muslims pray 5 times a day while facing Mecca- the holy city where the Kabba is [Kabba- the house of God believed to have been built by Abraham and his son Ishmael]. Once a week on Friday Muslims pray corporately at noon in the local mosque or Islamic center.

The next few days I’ll try and cover the other 3 pillars- I actually think the 3rd pillar is more in keeping with the teachings of Jesus and the bible than what most Christians practice- it deals with the Muslim practice of giving to meet the needs of the poor. For today that should cover it- remember- the reason we are covering Islam as a religion is so we can have a better grasp on what Muslims believe. Too many of us are only familiar with the more radical elements that the media focus on when an attack takes place. At the same time there are also prejudices in Islam as well- many young Muslims are taught a radical hatred for the Jew- these wrong ideas are formed in their minds as young people- and they too need to reject these anti- Semitic ideas. As the U.S. begins engaging in the 3rd Muslim country in the last 11 years- we need to be very careful that we are not playing into the hands of those who embrace radicalism- there is a very real extreme element in Libya. Al Qaeda has operated out of the nation for many years- we need to be careful that we are not being ‘useful idiots’.

http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com

[1629] MUSLIM IN AMERICA- THE PRESIDENTS SPEECH AND OTHER MUSINGS.

Last night the president finally spoke to the nation in defense of our military action in Libya. He made the case that there are times when the U.S. can/should act if we feel we can avert a humanitarian disaster- he also said we can’t always intervene in every conflict. I guess for the most part this makes some sense- it’s just the way he handled it [going on vacation- congress in recess]. There are still lots of questions to be asked/answered. Today the rebels are on the outskirts of a western city that is ‘pro Gadhafi’. The city is called Sirte and like other cities in the west they favor Gadhafi more so than the rebels. The question is; how do we justify the bombing of Gadhafi’s military- in order to protect civilians- while the rebels are getting ready to overthrow a civilian population- with force- against the majority of the will of the people? We have indeed enabled the rebels to advance this far west, and we are basically on the side of the rebels- in this case- against the populace.

The other night I watched a CNN special on Muslim discrimination in America- most of you who read my posts [blog] know I try and take the more moderate position of not branding all Muslims as radical. I do think there are times when Muslims are discriminated against wrongfully because of their faith. Yet at the same time the media often show their bias. The show did a good job at revealing how Muslims face discrimination in America- the host- Soledad O’Brien- kind of showed the ‘ignorant’ Christians versus the moderate Muslims. The town was Murphysboro Tenn. [yes- they picked a spot that would be a little more redneck than usual] and they interviewed a few American Muslim women whose sole experience of Islam comes from an American perspective. These women, as sympathetic as their causes are- do not even begin to breech the absolute discrimination and oppression that many Muslim women experience around the globe on a daily basis- it was just unfair for CNN to portray Muslim women as victims of Christian discrimination while overlooking the real problem- expressed by many women who have chosen to speak out- against the oppression women face when living in countries that have Sharia law as the law of the land.

As I continue to teach the study on Islam [so far have only done 1 post on it] I want to try and approach the strained relationship that exists between Western society and Islam- yet I don’t want to be an apologist for Islam. I’m currently going thru a course on Islam that is taught by the official govt. teacher on the subject. I believe he was sitting in the second row of the president’s speech last night. Over the years I have studied on lots of subjects- years of utilizing the public library system, buying university level books [not pop culture Christian stuff on how to ‘get what you want’] and I have also ordered courses [C.D. and book] from the top professors of the universities of the world. These course are not cheap- yet they are cheaper than actually getting credits for the courses [you can take the same courses as extension courses from the universities and get credit- but that’s way too expensive- especially if done thru the elite universities- Harvard, etc.] So instead I simply purchase the courses and do them on my own. Now- the reason I say this is to explain a ‘funny thing’ that happened on my study of Islam. When I first ordered the course I noticed the ratings were not that great. Most courses are rated in the 80-90 percentile- from others who have done the course- this one was in the 60’s. I hesitated to get it- but the other courses that dealt with Islam also dealt with other religions- and I didn’t want to do an entire comparative religion study at this time. So these courses are taught by the top tier professors in the world [these professors are peer reviewed and deemed to be in the top 10 %]. This one on Islam is taught by the person who teaches Islam to the incoming govt. employees under president Obama. As I’m going thru the course- there are times where I feel like the teacher is too defensive of Islam- sort of like the CNN special. At one point the professor defends Muhammad as a religious leader who freed women from oppression and instituted an open and liberal society for all people- especially women. Geez- stuff like this is very problematic- I know enough about the current world nations that have Islam as the official religion of the nation- these nations are without a doubt very oppressive to women.

Like many things in life- we all try and do our best to give people the benefit of the doubt- and as someone who has disagreed with the president and been openly critical of him- yet I try not to be so biased that I find fault with everything he does. The media has far left defenders- who never find anything wrong with the man- and far right critics who never find anything right. At this time- the revolts in North Africa and the Middle East are really getting out of hand- the Christians in Egypt- an ancient Christian church [Coptic] have lived there since the early days of Christianity- they have just voted in Egypt to recognize Sharia law as the official law of the land- this referendum was passed by 70 % of the population- and the Muslim Brotherhood showed their organizational abilities by gaining a majority of the vote for the things they wanted. So now the Christians in Egypt might face the same fate as those in Pakistan- being put to death for blaspheming Islam [which often means witnessing for Christ]. The rebels who we are fighting for in Libya are much more radical than Gadhafi- yes Gadhafi was/is a madman- yet the rebels have more Al Qaeda influence than Gadhafi- they have been enemies in Libya for years. Do we really want our people dying for the Rebels?

There are still lots of questions to be answered- I am uncomfortable that the course I’m going thru on Islam is so skewed to the point of defending Islam as a great liberator of women and their rights- I was even more troubled to have seen ‘my instructor’ sitting in the 2nd row at the president’s speech.

http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com

[1630] EPISTEMOLOGY- Lets do a little more on how we learn- know stuff. The actual ‘study’ of how we know things is called Epistemology. Today’s popular movement is called Post Modernism- a challenge to the classical idea of Modernism. The classical way of looking at knowledge said there are things that are ‘really true’ and things that are not- this is called Objective Truth. The Post Moderns say words are limited [true to a degree] and because words are simply vehicles that transmit ideas that are not really ‘true’ in the classical sense, then it is wrong for one group [like Christians] to say to another group [non- Christians] that Jesus is the Way- Truth and Life [Johns gospel]. So the battle lines are drawn. It should be noted that a growing number of believers are describing themselves as Post Modern and they argue that it is possible to be Christian and Post Modern at the same time. Okay- as more of the classical type- I believe it is possible to get to objective truth- that the pursuit of what’s true is not a vain pursuit- and yes- though we are all limited in our understanding, yet to even have this conversation requires an element of Absolute Truth. If the Post Modernist says ‘words have no objective truth- only relative truth- they only convey what the hearer decides they convey’ then I can say ‘Oh- so if I take your words to mean there is such a thing as objective truth- that’s okay’? O know you idiot- you’re not hearing what I’m saying! So you see that the Post modernist needs his words to mean something- to convey a specific thing to the hearer- if the hearer can make the words mean whatever he wants- then you can’t even engage in the discussion- got it? So anyway- as I’m thinking about scrapping my Islam course [and just teaching it from stuff I learned myself- in the immortal words of defense secy. Bob Gates ‘on the fly’] I do want to utilize whatever objective truth I can pick up along the way- while at the same time realizing all people have their own biases and we need to listen with a careful skepticism. I ordered a course on Physics a while back- good course- but the instructor- though smart- made a classic mistake in Logic as he taught the course. He often said ‘the universe was created BY CHANCE’. Now- as a purely grammatical- logical argument- this incorrect [a fallacy]. Why? What he really means to say is ‘there are unknown causes in the universe that created the effect of existence- we do not know what these causes are- but we believe that thru a series of actions- which have no particular direction [chance] these unknown causes have caused the effect of the universe’. Okay- I don’t want to be nitpicky- but when I hear an intelligent person say ‘everything was made BY CHANCE’ and for him to get away with this without a rigorous challenge- then the Christian thinker has failed in his task to challenge the skeptic on his own terms- to show that even though the person may be an expert in his field [Physics] yet this does not mean he can get away with fallacious arguments- arguments that are invalid from the get go. So as we progress over the coming weeks/months on the various fields of study- we want to be open to learn from others who have specialized in their particular fields of study- we want to be open minded enough to learn from people who reject the faith- yes atheists can teach us things- there are areas of knowledge that all people have that can benefit the rest of us. And we want to weigh all things that we hear- we all make mistakes- and are susceptible to error. Just because my Physics ‘teacher’ screwed up in a classic way- a way that most apologists recognize right off the bat- I mean you have to be an amateur ‘arguer’ of truth to make this type of mistake- yet I didn’t reject the entire course- I still learned valuable insights from the man. So I think this is the best approach to take- listen to all sides of a matter- doubt the things that seem a little off- do some research- check into it yourself- and at the end of the day let a variety of sources be your pool of knowledge- don’t just rely on one source. Proverbs says ‘In the multitude of counselors there is safety’. Be sure you’re listening/hearing from the multitude [broad range of thought and learning] because often times single sources can be right in one area- and off in another.

[1632] 3rd PILLAR- ZAKAT.

As I was debating whether or not to continue my study on Islam [today] the spot I stopped at last was the 3rd pillar. Sure enough yesterday [and the rerun at 1 a.m.] Beck did an interesting show on Zakat. He had on a few experts- who are known to not be sympathetic to Islam- and they covered the subject of non violent Jihad- those who advocate for an Islamic society thru non violent means. Now- I know some Beck supporters have been upset with me in the past because I criticize Beck- it’s not that I don’t think he actually brings up things that other networks don’t- sometimes he does reveal stuff that the other networks don’t because they are so ‘in the tank’ for the president. I never thought I’d see the day where a news host actually would describe his ‘feelings’ that come over him when he hears the president speak- he actually used sexual connotations to describe it [a tingle goes up my leg]. Now- I’m not saying this to be cute [okay- maybe a little] but to say I have never in my life seen the media- the so called 4th estate- so one sided. So Beck [Fox] does serve a purpose. Now- Beck covered the groups that raise money under the banner of ‘charity’ and yet they have ties to radical Islam, and they discussed the ancient Islamic practice of Zakat [or Tithe].

In the Muslim community Zakat is giving a portion [2.5%] of both goods and finances for the sole purpose of providing for the poor. In Muslim communities the Zakat is like social security. The word literally means purification. The word itself is not a terrorist term- nor the practice. It is important for Beck and others to cover stories about the use of Zakat given to charitable groups for radical purposes- yet most Americans have probably not heard of the term before- and their first introduction to it was seen thru an association to terror.

Years ago I had a chance meeting with a Muslim- I’m sure he didn’t realize he ran into some nut who studies just about everything a person can study [I was working at the fire house and on duty]. He was a devout Muslim- dressed in Muslim garb an all. As we talked I gave him the biblical history of Abraham and his 2 sons Isaac and Ishmael. I traced the lineage of Christians and Jews from Isaacs’s line, and the genealogy of Muslims [Arabs] thru Ishmael. I spoke about the coming of Jesus in the 1st century of the Common Era as the promised offspring that God originally told Abraham about. I explained the purpose of the Messiah [Jesus] as being the predestined one sent by God to unite all people and tribes under one new nation- the Kingdom of God. I explained to my friend that Christianity teaches that Jesus was not simply a prophet- but one who died for the sins of the world and rose again as the final sacrifice that would ever need to be made for the sins of men. I was surprised to see my Muslim friend hearing the whole story- for the 1st time. He told me he was not familiar at all with the history [even though it is both biblical history and Islamic- the part about Ishmael which is found in the book of Genesis]. He seemed so grateful to have heard it thru ‘this angle’ not from the angle of the Crusades- or of Western Colonialism- but from the angle of the grace of God that has come to all tribes and races thru Jesus Christ.

As I watch the media day after day- seeing more unrest in the Middle East than I have ever witnessed in my lifetime. Seeing the growing strain between Christians and Muslims and Jews [the Fla. Pastor went and burned a Koran and Muslim demonstrators in Afghanistan attacked the U.N. building and killed and beheaded some workers]. As I see the lines being drawn in the sand- I come back to the story of my Muslim friend- who obviously was dedicated to his faith [wearing the robe and all] yet he never clearly heard the gospel- which actually means Good News. The bible commands us [Christians] to live in peace with ALL MEN- to love our neighbor as our self- to even love those who hate us- to pray for those who persecute us and to do good [a type of Zakat] to our fellow man. While I make no excuses for the killing and beheading of the U.N. people- yet to burn the holy book of another religion is also not living peaceably with all men.

I believe the Islamic practice of Zakat is closer to actual biblical teaching than what most Christians practice today. The majority of Christian giving- often wrongfully referred to as the Tithe- goes to the function of media ministry- church buildings- salaries- etc. under 10 percent goes to meeting the needs of the poor. Yet in the teachings of Jesus and in the New Testament the majority teaching on giving is in context of giving to meet the needs of the poor [go read my books under the Feb- 2010 posts- and also the study called ‘what in the world is the church’ under the Feb posts]. So in a very real way I do think the Islamic Zakat is closer to the biblical practice than what most 21st century Christians practice.

I will obviously have many things I will not embrace about Islam in future posts- I will try and cover those differences as respectfully as I possibly can- without being a biased defender of Islam [as my current instructor on the course seems to be]. And I will make the case for Christ as well. At the end of the day hopefully we can learn more about our various beliefs- try and have respect for those who differ- and root for the moderates among us. I reject the Koran burning pastor in Fla. And I hope most Muslims will also reject the radical elements within their ranks. The history of the 3rd Pillar of Islam is a good one- a practice that centers around the teachings of Christ- it’s a shame that some in the Muslim community have hijacked it for violent Jihad.

[1642] LESSON FROM A MUSLIM-

I read a story in my local paper yesterday- there was an ecumenical dinner held this week between Christians, Jews and Muslims. The Christian staff writer who attended shared how it helped her to overcome previous prejudices that she had. She told what the various speakers discussed and I was particularly impressed with what the Muslim speaker said- she talked about how true religion is not performance, putting on a show- but is expressed in reaching out to those in need- the poor and hurting.

In fact she was basically quoting the New Testament book of James- James says ‘pure religion is to visit the fatherless and widows and to stay clean from the world’. A few weeks back one of my homeless buddies stopped by- he’s basically a genius when it comes to the bible- I mean it’s sort of an autistic thing to be honest- he knows- by memory- much more than the average preacher. As I visited with Henry I gave him the latest bible studies that were sent to me over the last few months. Years ago I heard a N.J. Jewish preacher- who pastors a Messianic congregation in Lodi, N.J.- he had a short radio show on the same station I’m on- and as a courtesy I sent him some of my books and told him hi and all- being I’m a former Jersey brother and all. Ever since he has sent me these really great bible studies every month.

The studies are really in depth- and he usually only sends them to partners [those who support his ministry with money]. But I guess he appreciated my sending him a nice note and he forever put me on the list. Now- I’m an avid reader- I’ve read just about everything you can get your hands on- but these past few years I’m trying to stick with scholarly stuff- not that I’m ‘too good’ for the basic stuff- It’s just I really don’t have the time to just read tons of stuff that’s in the category of ‘devotional’ material- stuff that just kind of talks about Christian things.

So I hate to throw the stuff out- I mean they’re great bible studies. I don’t want to write Jonathan [the pastor] and say ‘take me off your list’- so I save them up and give them to Henry- he devours them and even quotes them back to me the next time I see him. So anyway we had a good talk. Somehow we got into discussing the book of James [the verse I quoted above] and I told Henry how it’s funny that James [we believe this letter in the New Testament- called James- was written by the James who was Jesus’ brother- mentioned about in the bible. He was the same James mentioned as one of the leaders in the church at Jerusalem in the book of Acts, chapter 15. To my Catholic friends- it might sound strange ‘Jesus had a brother?’ these words are found in the New Testament. Catholic teachers don’t deny this- they just interpret it to mean ‘cousin’ or near relative- some say its speaking of ‘Christian brother’. Don’t want to debate it- just thought I should mention it].

Anyway- I told Henry how it’s strange that one of the key leaders in the early church- who was closer to Jesus than all the other disciples [he lived in the same house] that he would write such a scathing indictment against the rich- and he would defend the poor so strongly. James’ letter is one of the strongest rebukes against the rich that you will find in the bible. Anyway Henry agreed with me- of course Henry’s poor- homeless- but he knows his stuff. He said ‘you know John- as true as you are- you never hear this from the famous pulpits in America’. He was agreeing with what the Muslim lady said at the dinner- that true religion is not fame and glory- but serving those in need.

I liked the spirit of the article I read- It does not mean I will not continue to advocate for the exclusivity of the gospel of Jesus- that Jesus is truly the only way to God. Pope Benedict has also come under some heat for saying the Catholic Church teaches that Jesus is the only way of salvation- to which I agree.

Yet at the same time- as we make our case to our Muslim and Jewish friends- we can also sit down with them- live as citizens of the same community with them- and even learn something from them every now and then.

NOTE- To any of my friends who might be ‘rich’. The early church did have certain individuals who were rich- and it was oaky. The person who gave his grave spot to Jesus- Joseph of Arimathea- was rich. Also in the books of Acts there were believers who sold their real estate and dedicated the money to the church. So the bible doesn’t just outright condemn those who are rich- but there are many warnings against being rich in ‘this world’ while forgetting to build riches in the kingdom [works of love and charity]. That’s the main theme of James’ letter.

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[1644] THE ARAB SPRING-

This week the president took some criticism for identifying the struggle going on in the Arab/Muslim world with the struggle for freedom that the Jewish people experienced- and commemorate during this Passover season. The president- who celebrates the Passover meal- said that the present Arab struggle for freedom- what is sometimes referred to as The Arab Spring, is much like what the Jews went thru when they too felt oppressed by their leaders many years ago. I actually just did an entire study along these same lines [Insights from a Revolution].

The president’s critics tore into him ‘how dare he compare a radical Muslim terror campaign with the honest struggle of the Jewish people’. Beck had John Hagee [the famous Pastor out of San Antonio] on his show- as well as a Rabbi and another Israeli official- they discussed the subject of God being on the side of the geopolitical decisions of Israel- and how the Arab/Muslim world just want to ‘kill everybody else’.

Hagee offered his friendship to the Rabbi- stating ‘though we disagree on who the Messiah is [no small disagreement!] yet we can still overlook our differences and work together’. Now- I would simply ask- why not take this position with the Muslim/Arab world too? The difference that Hagee was willing to ‘gloss over’ with his Jewish friends is quite a leap- though I too agree with it- that is even though our Jewish friends do not embrace Jesus as the Messiah- yet we should love them as Jesus commanded- and fight for their rights as a people.

We should also extend this hand of friendship- as much as possible- to the Arab world. ‘What- are you nuts- don’t you know the Koran has verses in it that are incompatible with Christian doctrine’- actually I do know this- but that ‘incompatibility’ is just as severe- doctrinally- as saying Jesus is not the Messiah. According to the Apostle John- this denial is the worst doctrinal denial one can make [Johns 1st letter found in the New Testament ‘if anyone denies that Jesus Christ is the Messiah- come in the flesh- he is anti Christ’].

Okay- the point? Why couldn’t Beck, Hagee, and the other multitudes simply give this same benefit of the doubt to the Muslim world? In Genesis chapter 16 we read the actual history of the Arab/Muslim world- yes it’s in our bibles. Sarah [Abraham’s wife] tells her husband to sleep with her maid Hagar and have a son. Sarah was barren and this was an acceptable thing at the time to do- sort of like a surrogate mother type thing. After the maid gets pregnant there arises tension and jealousy in the home and Abraham says ‘look- she’s your maid- do what you want’ and Sarah kicks her out and the maid winds up crying in the wilderness..

God sends an angel to talk with her and God promises her that her son- Ishmael [the father of the Arab/Muslim people- who is also the son of Abraham- the father of the Jewish people!] will become a great people and that the son- Ishmael- will be a wild man and he will be at war with all the nations around him and all the nations will fight with him. Now- does this history sound accurate to you? Does the Christian bible say God is the one who multiplied this group of people? If these things are true- and recorded in our Christian bibles- why not at least give them the same chance as our Jewish brothers?

Look- I am not advocating glossing over the serious doctrinal differences between Islam and Christianity- but the Evangelical community- for the most part- has managed to ‘gloss over’ a pretty major doctrinal difference with our Jewish friends- why not with Muslims? I mean as people who live together on the same planet- as people whom God said ‘I am the one who increased them’ surely we can take these same verses and use them as a bridge- to bridge some serious gaps for sure- but a possible bridge that God has given us- in our bibles- that states that God himself is concerned with the Arab world and the present ‘war’ between Ishmael and all the nations around him- well that too was recorded in God’s plan.

[1656] ANTI COLONIAL REDO

Let me try to cover a few current events. This week we had a few presidential hopefuls drop out of the race- and a few announce. Newt Gingrich did his first Sunday news interview since officially getting into the race.

David Gregory- Tim Russert’s replacement on NBC- did an okay interview- but he did raise the question of racism [so soon!]. Yes- he questioned Newt’s speech where he mentioned that Obama is the ‘food stamp president’. That is Newt criticized the economic policies of this administration and said how we have over 40 million people on food stamps. That the lack of the president’s ability to create jobs is seen in the food stamp [and welfare] rates rising.

Gregory questioned whether or not this played into the race game. Now- MSNBC and one of the most biased news people in the media today [Chris Matthews] had on 2 liberal minded men. He got right into the race card- he played it hard and long. To my surprise- both of the liberals he interviewed disagreed with him. They distanced themselves from the race card.

One of the men- Richard Wolfe- is an Obama insider. He has lots of access to the inner workings of the White House. He has written books on the president and he is close to the real sources. I had to ask myself why both of these liberal minded men agreed with me- that to use the race card on something like this is shameful.

I realized that as ‘true insiders’ they know that this type of accusation surely does not play well in Rio Linda. That is the majority of voters- especially white independents- they might not say it- but this stuff does not gain votes.

As smart politicos- these Obama supporters knew this- and for the welfare of the president, whom they support- they did the right thing. Matthews- well he’s a lost cause.

One of the things that gets raised with the Newt debate is the accusation that our president is ‘anti- colonial’ or that he is an ‘anti colonial Kenyan’. In the past I have defended the president against this accusation- yet at the same time others who have defended the president against this accusation have seemed to not know what they are talking about [Matthews again].

These last few years Newt Gingrich has positioned himself for a possible run for the White House. One of the things he has done is he has converted to Catholicism. Now- I do not question his conversion- as a matter of fact if you realize that Newt is an intellectual- than the conversion to a Christian denomination that has the greatest intellectual heritage of them all- well that just makes sense.

As a new convert Newt is obviously going to read the books of other Catholic intellectuals. And a top seller during this time was a book by Dinesh Desouza. A Catholic intellectual himself. The book critiqued the development of the political/social thought of the president. It covered the presidents own journey as he grew up and later learned more about his father’s struggle- and the black mans struggle in general. The president wrote about this in his book Dreams of my Father.

Part of the critique that Dinesh mentioned is that the presidents father- like many Kenyans and other foreign ethnic groups- had what you would describe as an ‘anti colonial’ mindset. What’s that? Our world has gone thru many stages of growth and development. Some stages were good- other times bad [the Hitler stage!] After the great breakthroughs in science and technology that occurred during the 18th-19th centuries- you had European [western] world powers colonizing other parts of the world. Africa [Kenya] as well as other Arab nations became colonies of the west.

The famous struggle of Gandhi was all about India breaking away from Britain’s rule over them. They indeed were ‘anti colonial’. Now- in this conversation many can’t believe [Matthews] that anyone would
[this was from my study on Islam- the whole teaching is on my blog]
VERSES I MENTION ON VIDEO-
And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroythem which destroy the earth. Rev. 11:18
Numbers 11:24 And Moses went out, and told the people the words of the LORD, and gathered the seventy men of the elders of the people, and set them round about the tabernacle.
Numbers 11:25 And the LORD came down in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took of the spirit that was upon him, and gave it unto the seventy elders: and it came to pass, that, when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied, and did not cease.
Numbers 11:26 But there remained two of the men in the camp, the name of the one was Eldad, and the name of the other Medad: and the spirit rested upon them; and they were of them that were written, but went not out unto the tabernacle: and they prophesied in the camp.
Numbers 11:27 And there ran a young man, and told Moses, and said, Eldad and Medad do prophesy in the camp.
Numbers 11:28 And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of Moses, one of his young men, answered and said, My lord Moses, forbid them.
Numbers 11:29 And Moses said unto him, Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the LORD’s people were prophets, and that the LORD would put his spirit upon them!
Luke 9:49 And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us.
Luke 9:50 And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.

FAT BOTTOM GIRLS N THE POPE-
ON VIDEO- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-25-15-fat-bottom-girls-n-the-pope.zip
. Ask Jesus into your heart?
. All traditions bad?
. More on the Pope

MY PAST TEACHING [verses at end]
THE BREAKING IN OF THE KINGDOM- BEHOLD THE LAMB
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/12-3-14-teaching-in-san-antonio.zip
I taught yesterday in San Antonio- BEHOLD THE LAMB

http://wp.me/a4V5qQ-7X Radio show
Ok- I am going to try and segue into the fulfilment of the promises that we have been covering for the last few months

The appearing of Christ- what we call The Advent- which we celebrate at this time of the year [December 25th].
Jesus comes into the world- thru a Virgin- Mary.

If you read the Prophetic Praise/prayer of Mary- found in Luke- you see the Hope of Israel- for the coming of a deliverer who would save the people of God from their oppressors [remember what I said- in the videos- about Christ/Messiah- like the judges of the Old Testament- they came to deliver the people from oppressive rule].

We call this prayer of Mary- ‘Mary’s Magnificat’ [Latin for ‘my soul magnifies the Lord’]- she is the chosen one- to have the promised child.

The prophet Malachi spoke about a Forerunner- one who would come before Christ-

The bible refers to him as Elijah- who would prepare the way for Christ.

Jesus tells us that John the Baptist was the fulfillment of this prophecy.

John makes the great declaration ‘Behold- the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world’.

REPENT- AND BE BAPTIZED- ALL OF YOU

John’s ministry was- well- rough.
Jesus said ‘what did you go out to see- some timid guy dressed in expensive clothes? No- but a prophet- and more than a prophet- this is the one spoken about who would prepare the way’ [these are my own paraphrases- I’m writing them ‘on the fly’- when I do this I’ll try and copy the exact verse at the bottom].

It’s significant that John- In his first prophetic announcement of Christ- ‘sees’ a LAMB.

Remember what I said when teaching the book of Revelation- that the apostle John [not the same John] also saw a LAMB [They were both functioning in a prophetic/apostolic role when they made these proclamations- remember what I said in our videos? How the church is a spiritual temple- built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets- meaning their teaching- the things God revealed to them- so they SEE Jesus as the Lamb- because this kingdom will be established on the Death and resurrection of Christ- note in the scriptures I pasted at the bottom- How the Lamb is ‘the light’ of this city- how the revelation [understanding] of Jesus as the final Lamb sacrifice is indeed the foundation that the Apostles/Prophets built the church upon]

Luke 1:46 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord
Luke 1:47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
Luke 1:48 For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
Luke 1:49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name.
Luke 1:50 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.
Luke 1:51 He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
Luke 1:52 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.
Luke 1:53 He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away
[just a note here- this becomes one of the major themes in the ministry of Jesus- and the Apostles- especially James letter[ not the apostle- but the brother of Jesus- who was the main leader at the Jerusalem church- read about him in Acts 15]. The rich are often contrasted with the poor- and in a negative light. I could give many scriptures on this. The point being that in today’s Protestant world- there is a focus on wealth- the obtaining of it- yet- a careful reading of the New Testament does not follow this very popular line of thought- and we already see this in this prophetic proclamation of Mary].
Luke 1:54 He hath holpen his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;
Luke 1:55 As he spake to our fathers, to Abraham, and to his seed for ever.

5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: 6And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. Malachi 4:5-6

Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see ? A reed shaken with the wind? 8 But what went ye out for to see ? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold , they that wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses. 9 But what went ye out for to see ? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet. 10 For this is he, of whom it is written , Behold , I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee. 11 Verily I say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 12 And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence , and the violent take it by force . 13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. 14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come . 15 He that hath ears to hear , let him hear Matthew 11

The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith , Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. John 1:29
And looking upon Jesus as he walked , he saith , Behold the Lamb of God! John 1:36
And I beheld , and, lo , in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain , having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. Revelation 5:6
And they sing the song of Moses the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying , Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints
And he saith unto me, Write , Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of theLamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.
And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. Rev 21:23

NOTE- The proclamation of John ‘Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world’- In Latin the term is Agnus Dei- as a boy we sung this hymn in Catholic church ‘Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world- have mercy on us’.
[Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis.- this is the full phrase in the Latin – taken from John’s declaration- where the Christian song/chant comes from]

(377) A few entries back I spoke on not judging God or others based on our own experiences. I have noticed over the years how a lot of believers who might have had a Catholic background became very ‘anti catholic’ after being ‘born again’. I do believe in the New Birth. I believe all who believe in Jesus Christ are Born Again. In 1st John it does say ‘whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God’. Some times we associate ‘being born again’ with our own evangelical experience. ‘Have you asked Jesus into your heart?’ If not, then you’re not BORN AGAIN! This is what you would call ‘reductionism’ reducing everything to a simple ‘me and Jesus’ format. You know none of the Apostles ‘asked Jesus into their heart’ [the original 12]. It would sure seem like an awkward thing. ‘Jesus’ ‘yes Peter’ ‘would you come into my heart’ ‘I have been with you from the start, you will soon believe in my death and resurrection. You will be one of the key figures in the founding of my church’ ‘I know all this Jesus, but if I don’t get saved I cant go to heaven’. The point is simply, all the Apostles and every other believer since has had one thing in common. They have all believed in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. They believe ‘he is the Son of God’. Don’t use your own personal experience to exclude others who might not have come to the Cross the same way. We all come by faith, the peculiar aspects surrounding the event are not what saved you, it was Jesus who saved you. Also it is a common hobby for the more extreme fundamentalists to question whether or not ‘you are really saved’. They often use verses like ‘you should know whether you are in the faith or not’ [Corinthians]. But they use them in a way that’s not really in context. Paul uses these verses to question Christians who are doubting the physical resurrection. He is not using these verses to ‘micro examine’ every little detail of their conversion experience! God gave his son to save the world; it would sure be strange to find out that the majority of people who believe in Jesus didn’t make it because of some technicality! God wants to save people, people need Jesus to be saved. Don’t make it harder than this! NOTE; Now that I mentioned ‘reductionism’ let me say a few things. In the world of ‘theology’ reductionism refers to the ‘reducing’ of Gods greater corporate and societal purposes [the Kingdom of God] to the simple act of ‘getting saved’. There are whole churches and movements whose entire ‘thought life’ is centered on ‘am I saved? If so I will find a church that tells me this every Sunday, and often these same churches will convince the ‘saved’ that they really didn’t get it the first time. And there you have it ‘they get saved for real this time’ and then the whole cycle repeats. The more ‘communal’ churches see salvation in a broader way. They often quote St. Augustine’s famous words ‘there is no salvation outside of the church’. Many good theologians hold to this. I believe this is true to a degree. In Paul’s teachings ‘the church’ are all the communities of people who have come to Christ. Paul does teach a form of ‘corporate salvation’. That is ‘if you’re in the church you are saved’. It’s just there is a tendency [Augustine] to see ‘church’ in an evolving way that restricts ‘church’ to the specific community that YOU personally relate to. So in Augustine’s mind [as well as other great Catholic theologians] to be ‘church’ is to be Catholic. Now after Vatican 2 [1962-65; The year I was born] the Catholic Church officially acknowledged the Protestants as ‘separated brethren’. A big step for them to have made. Some more liberal Catholic thinkers see ‘all religions’ [Muslims included] as being ‘saved’ thru the grace that is resident in society thru the Catholic Church. Sort of like ‘Gods grace to reveal God to people is activated by Gods Son. The only ‘true’ church that is ‘transmitting this grace’ is the Catholic Church. The fact that all Muslims are believers in God is a divine sacramental act that is taking place in society thru the Catholic Church. Therefore the fact that Muslims [or any one else] are truly in communion with God is a real work of grace that has been generated thru the one true church’. Now I don’t hold to this. All Catholics don’t either. This is to show you the broad range from ‘me and Jesus’ to that which borders on ‘universalism’ [the doctrine that says eventually everyone gets saved. Some very intelligent church fathers believed this. Origen was one of them. Though Origen is not considered ‘Orthodox’. He was a very influential teacher and figure in the early church. He actually taught that satan would ultimately be saved. He was a real Universalist. Some Universalists don’t deny the blood of Jesus, contrary to popular opinion. They actually believe the blood is so powerful, that it will ultimately ‘save all people’. There are very smart Christians who do believe this. I personally do not believe this. But I find it interesting that modern evangelicals do not for the most part see ‘universalists’ as other Christians. There are different types of them, the ones who believe in Jesus are Christians, even if they believe all people will ultimately be saved. The other types who reject Jesus are not Christians] NOTE; I remember hearing a story about one of these evangelists that preached one of these ‘you think you are saved, I’ll show you you are not!’ type sermons. The sermon was so ‘convicting’ at the end of the meeting he went down to the altar and had the Pastor ‘lead him to the Lord’, that’s strange. If his own sermon that he preached got him ‘saved’ then that means he ‘got saved’ from a lost mans message. That would mean ‘he’s not really saved’ wouldn’t it? This stuff gets ridiculous after a while.

I felt like the Lord wanted me to share some things, I do not ‘feel’ like doing this at all. These last few days have been real difficult for me. This is an example of ‘doing what God says despite your feelings’. I want to speak on the Kingdom of God. The Christian church has had various ways to ‘see’ the Kingdom of God. For many centuries [19 of them to be exact!] the church for the most part taught ‘amillennialism’ a type of view that saw the work of the Cross as the significant event that ‘triggered’ Gods Kingdom. In effect believers saw the fact that Jesus died and was resurrected to be seated at Gods right hand as Gods Kingdom already being in effect thru this event. The giving of the Spirit to the church was Gods ‘program’ of expanding the Kingdom in the earth thru the growth of Christianity down thru the centuries. Some who held to this view
(820) ROMANS 6- Lets talk about baptism. To start off I believe that the baptism spoken about in this chapter is primarily referring to ‘the baptism of the Spirit’, that is the work of the Holy Spirit placing a believer in the Body of Christ. The Catholic and Orthodox [and Reformed!] brothers believe that Paul is speaking about water baptism. The MAJORITY VIEW of Christians today believe this chapter is referring to water baptism. Why? First, the text itself does not indicate either way. You could take this baptism and see it either way! You are not a heretic if you believe in it referring to Spirit or water. You are not a heretic if you believe in Paedo baptism [infant baptism]. ‘What are you saying? Now you lost me.’ Infant baptism developed as a Christian rite over the course of church history. The church struggled with how to ‘dedicate’ new babies to Christ. Though the scriptures give no examples of infant baptism, some felt that the reason was because the scriptures primarily show us the conversion of the first century believers. There really aren’t a whole lot of stories of ‘generations’ of believers passing on the faith to other generations. So some felt that the idea of dedicating babies to the Lord through infant baptism was all right. The examples they used were the circumcision of babies in the Old Testament. Infants were circumcised [a rite that placed you under the terms of the Old Covenant] though they weren’t old enough to really understand what they were doing! This example was carried over into the Christian church and applied to infant baptism. Now, I do not believe in infant baptism. But I can certainly understand this line of reasoning. As Christian theology developed thru the early centuries, particularly thru the patristic period, you had very intellectual scholars grapple with many different themes and ideas. Some that we just studied in chapter 5. Some theologians came to see infant baptism as dealing with original sin. They applied the concept of infant baptism as a rite that washes away original sin. The church did not teach that this meant you did not have to later believe and follow Christ. They simply developed a way of seeing baptism as ‘sanctifying’ the new members of Christian households. This basic belief made it all the way to the Reformation. The Reformers themselves still practiced infant baptism. It was the Anabaptists [re-baptizers] who saw the truth of adult baptism and suffered for it, at the hands of the reformers! Ulrich Zwingli, the Swiss reformer, would have them drowned for their belief. Some Protestants stuck with the infant rite, while others [the Restorationists] would reject it. Today most Evangelicals do not practice infant baptism, the majority of Christians world wide do. Now, the reason I did a little history is because Evangelicals [of which I am one] have a tendency to simply look at other believers who practice this rite as ‘deceived’. Many are unaware of the history I just showed you. The reasons the historic church developed this doctrine are not heretical! They used scripture and tradition to pass it down to future generations. I do not believe or practice infant baptism, many good believers do.

(821) ROMANS 6: 1-11 ‘shall we continue to sin, so grace may abound? God forbid! How shall we, who are dead to sin, live any longer therein?’ Now begins the ‘actual part’ the result, if you will, of being ‘made righteous by faith’. One of the main accusations against Paul, by the Jewish believers, was that he taught ‘sin a lot, because you are no longer under the law’. Paul spends time defending himself against this accusation thru out the New Testament. Here Paul teaches that the believer has been joined unto Christ [baptized, immersed into him] and this ‘joining’ identifies him with Christ’s death. So how can ‘we, who are dead to sin, live any longer in sin’? Paul’s argument for righteous living comes from the fact that we have died with Christ unto sin. ‘We have died with him, and we have also been raised with him to new life’. In Ephesians chapter 2, Paul says we who were dead in sins have been made alive in Christ. Now, we live a new life, free from sin [practically speaking- not absolute sinless-ness!] because we are identified with Jesus in his new life, we are ‘alive with and in him’. ‘Since we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection’! Jesus died once, and now he lives forever unto God ‘likewise count yourselves dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God thru Jesus Christ our Lord’. Paul’s basis for the transformed life is Grace and being ‘in him’. Paul does not appeal to the law to try and effect holiness in the believer, he appeals to Christ ‘in him you have died to legalistic practices, trying to earn salvation and acceptance; and now because of this new position [placement] you too have died to the old man [lifestyle] and are alive unto God’. Paul obviously did not teach ‘sin hardily’ to the contrary he taught ‘live unto God’.

(834)Romans 6:12-23 ‘Let not sin therefore rule in your mortal body’ if we have died with Jesus, we are ‘dead with him to sin’. If we are risen with Jesus ‘we are alive unto God thru him’ for this reason don’t sin! Paul makes sure his readers understand him, he in no way was teaching a sinful gospel. He encourages the believers to renew their minds to this truth. ‘For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under the law, but under grace’ Paul clearly saw the dangers of legalism [living under strict ‘do this, don’t do this’ guidelines] he saw that the law actually quickens the fleshly nature and brings to the surface mans sin. Now, because we are under grace, does this mean we get to keep on sinning? ‘God forbid!’ Paul launches into the explanation of sin and bondage. Remember, sin was in the world before the law. Men were dying ever since Adam sinned. So for Paul, this means even though we are not under the restraints of law, yet the reality of sin, bondage and punishment still exist. Paul says ‘if you yield to sin and allow it to rule you, you will become its slave’. There will be a penalty and price to pay ‘the wages of sin is death’. But because you are identified with Jesus ‘sin shall not have dominion over you… you have been made free from sin’. Paul teaches the victorious Christian life. He does not deny the struggle [next chapter!] but he shows the reality of redemption. He obviously never taught the concept of ‘sin more, so grace can abound’. He understood the dangers of preaching ‘we are not under the law’ but he also understood the reality of ‘being under grace’ he figured it was worth the risk of being misunderstood if he could truly imbed the gospel into the believing community.
Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
Romans 6:2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
Romans 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
[complete Romans study is on my blog]
Now- I think Francis might become my favorite in recent history.

Why?

Francis [the name he took- from Francis of Assisi- also speaks about his character. St. Francis forsook family wealth to work in Gods field- he believed God called him to help restore the church to her original design].

So- Pope Francis lived the same type of calling.

He’s the first Pope from America [albeit Latin America].

He’s the first from the Jesuit order to hold the office- the Jesuits are my favorite Catholic order.

If you remember my church history section- I covered the Jesuits- and complimented them a lot.

The Jesuits are the intellectuals of the church- now- the Catholic Church as a whole is of course very intellectual.

But the Jesuits were very influential in the development of the scientific method.

As a percentage- there were more Jesuit leaders in science than any other group.

They also were missionary minded.

When I covered them in the past I showed how after the 16th century Protestant Reformation the Jesuits did a sort of Counter Reformation and evangelized Asia- an area where the Protestants fell short.

So- as you can see- I’m a fan of the Jesuits.

Francis- from Buenos Aires Argentina- lived among the poor- he cooked his own meals and rejected the perks that Cardinals/Arch Bishops get.

Yet- he was a ‘conservative’ in doctrine.

Huh?

How could he be a sort of Liberation theologian- and yet hold to conservative views?

Here’s where our modern news shows mess stuff up.

As an avid news watcher- the last few years one of the critiques I gave was the mistake of men like Glenn beck and others- who associated Liberation Theology with heresy.

Now- Beck and others meant well- they just made the mistake of demonizing people they don’t understand [remember the rampage against Van Jones?]

But that’s why we need to get our info from better informed folk.

Anyway- Liberation Theology is a form of Christian teaching that associates the ministry of Jesus to the poor- and seeks to impellent that- sometimes too far- with government programs.

So- in Latin America- you have had Catholic champions of the poor and down trodden- who advocated for the poor- and at the same time believed in the historic positions of the doctrines of the church.

For instance- some ‘liberal’ scholars reject the resurrection of Jesus- and other key teachings of the church.

These men [both Catholic and Protestant] are referred to as Liberal scholars.

Francis is not one of them- he’s ‘conservative’ when it comes to the historic faith.

Yet- in his actions [Orthopraxy] he is ‘liberal’ [that is if you think identifying with the poor is liberal].

So- Francis is a lot like me in my belief [I too am conservative in doctrine] and practice- I have lived with the poor and down and out for years.

So- he just might be my favorite.

Let’s wait and see.

http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John. Don’t forget to scroll down on the timeline [Facebook] – I have posted lots.

ROMANS 8-10

https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/2-24-15-romans-8-10.zip

VIDEO- [I cover stuff on the videos that are not in the post- here are a few]
.Council of Trent- what did the Church say?
.Do we get the final say- at the Judgment?
.What are the Catholic virtues- did Paul teach them?
.Augustine, Calvin, Whitfield and Wesley.
.Infusion or Imputation? How bout both!
At the bottom I added some quotes from the Catechism of the Catholic church- to show that the official teaching of the church DOES NOT TEACH SALVATION BY THE LAW- BUT BY CHRIST.

. REMINDER- This is a commentary I wrote years ago- the videos are new.
.CHAPTER 8- FEW POINTS;
1- Did God choose us to believe- or did we choose him?
2- When Paul says ‘he makes our bodies alive’ is he only speaking about resurrection?
3- Does God use difficulty- or is it to be rebuked?
4- Was Paul a ‘hyper- Calvinist’?
(839)ROMAN 8:1-4 ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh [sinful nature] but after the Spirit [new nature]’. Now, having proved the reality of sin and guilt [chapter 7] Paul teaches that those who ‘are in Christ’ are free from condemnation. Why? Because they ‘walk according to the Spirit’ the ‘righteousness of the law is being fulfilled in them’. Having no condemnation isn’t simply a ‘legal function’ of declared righteousness, and Paul didn’t teach it that way! Paul is saying ‘all those who have believed in Jesus and have been legally justified [earlier arguments in chapters 3-4] are now walking [actually acting out] this new nature. Therefore [because you no longer walk according to the flesh] there is no condemnation’! This argument helps bridge the gap between Catholic and Protestant theology, part of the reason for the ongoing schism is over this understanding. After the Reformation the Catholic Church had a Counter Reformation council, the council of Trent. They dealt with a lot of the abuses of the Catholic Church, things that many Catholic leaders were complaining about before the Reformation. They did deal with some issues and reformed somewhat. To the dismay of the more ‘reform minded’ Catholics [with Protestant leanings] they still came down strong on most pre reform doctrines. This made it next to impossible for the schism to be healed. But one area of disagreement was over ‘legal’ versus ‘actual/experiential’ justification. The Catholic position was ‘God can’t declare/say a person is justified until they actually are’ [experientially]. The Protestant side [Luther] said ‘God does justify [legal declaration] a person by faith alone’. Like I taught before, both of these are true. The Catholic view of ‘justification’ is looking ahead towards a future reality [The same way James speaks of justification in a future sense- He uses the example from Genesis 22, when Abraham does a righteous act] while the Protestant view is focusing on the initial legal act of justification [Genesis 15]. Here Paul agrees with both views, he says ‘those who walk after the Spirit [actually living the changed life] have no condemnation’.

(840)ROMANS 8:5-13 Paul will teach the impossibility of the ‘carnal minds’ ability to submit to Gods law. Those who are ‘in the flesh’ [the unregenerate nature- not simply ‘in the body’. We will get into these distinctions in a minute] can’t submit to God. Society spends so much time and effort trying to get the ‘lost man’ to do what’s right. The prohibition movement [outlawing liquor], the increase in the severity of punishment for crimes dealing with drugs. Making the child kidnappers crime punishable by death. While all these laws are necessary and good [though some debate the wisdom of the kidnapper one, they think the kidnapper might just go ahead and kill the victim if the same punishment applies to both crimes] they have little effect on getting ‘the carnal man to submit’. Paul also says ‘if the Spirit of him who raised up Christ from the dead dwells in you, then he that raised up Christ from the dead shall quicken [make alive] your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwells in you’. Let’s do a little teaching here. Most commentators see this as speaking of the promise of the resurrection ‘your mortal bodies’. I see this more in line with the context of chapter 7. The discussion of ‘mortal bodies’ [your actual body, the flesh- which is different than ‘the fleshly nature’ which refers to the sinful nature] speaks of your actual life now ‘let not sin therefore reign in your mortal bodies’. Also in verse 13 of this chapter the same theme is seen ‘if ye thru the Spirit mortify the deeds of the body ye shall live’. I believe Paul is primarily saying ‘if you are in the Spirit [born of God] the Spirit of life will make alive your physical life in such a way that you will glorify God in your body and spirit, which are Gods’ [Corinthians]. Chapter 12 says your bodies are living sacrifices, holy and acceptable to God. Now later on in this chapter [8] we do see the resurrection, which is called ‘the redemption of the body’ [verse 23] so these two concepts work together. The fact that the believer is ‘training his mortal body’ for God [thru obedience] is sort of a precursor to the resurrection! Now, some believers confuse the resurrection of the body and the work of regeneration in ‘making you alive’ [Ephesians 2]. The work of regeneration brings your dead spirit back to life [born again] when you believe [which is a Divine imputation of faith at the moment of conversion, a sovereign act]. This ‘coming alive’ is purely spiritual. This qualifies you for the future physical resurrection of the body [Ephesians calls this the ‘down payment’, the ‘earnest of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession’. The word ‘earnest’ here is used in the same way as ‘earnest money’ in a real estate transaction. The fact that we have been ‘sealed’ with the Holy Spirit is our ‘guarantee of future bodily resurrection’]. Bishop N.T. Wright, the bishop of Durham [the church of England- Durham is the 3rd most influential post in the Church of England. Canterbury is at the top] has recently written on the truths of the resurrection of the body. He is an excellent scholar, way way above my league. He has been instrumental in ‘re introducing’ the reality of Christ’s resurrection as well as our future resurrection as a very real Christian belief [and historic truth as well]. I have read some of Wrights stuff and am a little surprised at some of the ideas on ‘soul sleep’ and the immortality of the soul. Bishop Wright seems to side with some of the ideas that certain restorationist groups [7th day Adventists] espouse, that the Catholic Church kind of corrupted the ideas of heaven and the soul by being overly influenced by Greek thought. While it is possible for Bishop Wright to have come to his understanding entirely thru scripture and history, yet I felt it a little strange to see him make these arguments. For the most part I like brother Wright and totally agree with his stance on the future ‘new heavens and new earth’ as the final place of rest [as opposed to dying and going to heaven now, which is a temporary place] but there is the biblical reality of a present ‘heaven’ and this doesn’t only come from Greek thought. I have often used the Christian doctrine of the new heavens and new earth while speaking with the Jehovah’s witnesses, I always agree on the reality of a future kingdom on earth. I simply steer the conversation back to ‘who qualifies for it’ and get straight to the gospel. Well anyway we have a promise of a future resurrection, and also a ‘quickening of the body now’ [God actually using our physical life to glorify him]. These are both great truths!

(841)ROMANS 8: 14-18 ‘For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the Sons of God’. Many of us are familiar with this verse [I hope!]. We often see it as saying ‘Gods direction in our lives is proof that we are Christians’ true enough. But in context ‘being led by Gods Spirit’ means living the

VERSES ON VIDEO-
Malachi 3:1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the LORD, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.
Malachi 3:2 But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap:
Malachi 3:3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.
Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
Malachi 4:6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceedthe righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no caseenter into the kingdom of heaven. Matt. 5:20
Mark 7:1 Then came together unto him the Pharisees, and certain of the scribes, which came from Jerusalem.
Mark 7:2 And when they saw some of his disciples eat bread with defiled, that is to say, with unwashen, hands, they found fault.
Mark 7:3 For the Pharisees, and all the Jews, except they wash their hands oft, eat not, holding the tradition of the elders.
Mark 7:4 And when they come from the market, except they wash, they eat not. And many other things there be, which they have received to hold, as the washing of cups, and pots, brasen vessels, and of tables.
Mark 7:5 Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, Why walk not thy disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands?
Mark 7:6 He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me.
Mark 7:7 Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.
Mark 7:8 For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do.
Mark 7:9 And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.
Mark 7:10 For Moses said, Honour thy father and thy mother; and, Whoso curseth father or mother, let him die the death:
Mark 7:11 But ye say, If a man shall say to his father or mother, It is Corban, that is to say, a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me; he shall be free.
Mark 7:12 And ye suffer him no more to do ought for his father or his mother;
Mark 7:13 Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye.
Revelation 10:9 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.
Revelation 10:10 And I took the little book out of the angel’s hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.
Revelation 18:3 For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.
Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Eph. 2:2

DID COP KILL HIMSELF? https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-27-15-did-cop-kill-himself.zip
ON VIDEO-
.Ran into street guy
.Did he shoot himself?
.Moses Black wife
VERSES-
Numbers 12:1 And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.
Numbers 12:2 And they said, Hath the LORD indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the LORD heard it.
Numbers 12:3 (Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)
Numbers 12:4 And the LORD spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out.
Numbers 12:5 And the LORD came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth.
Numbers 12:6 And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.
Numbers 12:7 My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.
Numbers 12:8 With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the LORD shall he behold: wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?
Numbers 12:9 And the anger of the LORD was kindled against them; and he departed.
Numbers 12:10 And the cloud departed from off the tabernacle; and, behold, Miriam became leprous, white as snow: and Aaron looked upon Miriam, and, behold, she was leprous.
Numbers 12:11 And Aaron said unto Moses, Alas, my lord, I beseech thee, lay not the sin upon us, wherein we have done foolishly, and wherein we have sinned.
Numbers 12:12 Let her not be as one dead, of whom the flesh is half consumed when he cometh out of his mother’s womb.
Numbers 12:13 And Moses cried unto the LORD, saying, Heal her now, O God, I beseech thee.
Numbers 12:14 And the LORD said unto Moses, If her father had but spit in her face, should she not be ashamed seven days? let her be shut out from the camp seven days, and after that let her be received in again.
Numbers 12:15 And Miriam was shut out from the camp seven days: and the people journeyed not till Miriam was brought in again.
Numbers 12:16 And afterward the people removed from Hazeroth, and pitched in the wilderness of Paran.
Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Hebrews 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Hebrews 12:3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
Hebrews 12:4 Ye have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin.
Hebrews 12:5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Hebrews 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Hebrews 12:8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into. 1st Peter 1
Revelation 19:6 And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

FAKE CLOCK? https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/9-29-15-fake-clock.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Was it a fake clock?
.Joan of Arc
.Montanism
.Russia, Syria and U.S.
.Eugenics
.Agincourt
.Planned parenthood

JOAN OF ARC- I mentioned her on the video- and did a document search of my past teaching- and realized I never wrote about her.
So- Joan was part of what we call the mystics- these were Christians who had supernatural experiences with God.
The common life movement was big into this- the most famous being Thomas A Kempis.
I have his famous book ‘the Imitation of Christ’- a classic.
So- Joan was a young Catholic girl who had visions and related some of the things I’m teaching in revelation to what she felt God showed her.
She claimed Michael the archangel appeared to her.
She convinced a prince from France that God told her to fight the English [they raided northern France].
And to everyone’s surprise- she won!
She actually dressed in White armor and road a White horse into battle [all images we see in the book of Revelation].
Joan was tried for witchcraft and heresy and burned at the stake in 1431- at the age of 19.
Yet she remained a popular figure- and the Catholic Church canonized her as a saint in 1920.
BATTLE OF ANGICOURT- One of the more famous battles of the 100 years’ war- Henry the 5th defeated the French in Northern France against great odds.
The use of the Longbow by the English played a major factor giving the reality that the French outnumbered the English.
Yet when it was all said and done England took ground from the French and France lost around 6,000 men- English troops about 400.
The battle took place on October 25th- 1415.

PAST POSTS [verses below]-
(1375) SOCIAL EVOLUTION- As I have been doing some blogging on other sites over the science of evolution, I thought it would be good to do a little on the philosophical ideas that spawned from it. Many sincere people do not realize the bias that comes along with a full embrace of a purely materialistic approach to life. There once was a woman named Margaret Sanger, she was a strong believer in Evolution and its sister science, Eugenics. Eugenics was an idea espoused by a relative of Darwin that taught that if you ‘quickened’ evolution by eliminating the so called ‘inferior races’ by human action, that this would advance the purer races faster and man would arrive at his Utopian state quicker. Darwin himself used the Black Aborigines tribes as an example of the inferiority of the ‘lesser races’. He looked at them as an in between race of people who were not fully human [like the white race] but were sort of a mix between man and ape. Anyway Sanger developed this idea to the point we she set up an organization that would assist the inferior races in the rush to eliminating their offspring; less child bearing, the quicker the more noble whites would advance. She received praise from another man who believed in the same principle, Adolph Hitler. After WW2 it became quite unpopular to continue to associate her organization with a megalomaniac who also carried out the same plan with the Jews, so she renamed her organization- today we know it as Planned Parenthood. Now as hard as this is to believe, the facts on this have been out there for many years. This is also why many advocates for minorities are upset that the planned parenthood clinics are located in poor minority areas, they see this as an attempt to get rid of minorities. The point today is the social construct of evolutionary theory has had disastrous effects; from biblical theology [documentary theory advanced by Wellhausen- he taught that the bible followed the ‘evolutionary model’ of mans advance from primitive religions to Monotheism, an idea espoused by the philosopher Hegel] to the public school systems embrace of evolution as the answer to all things from biology to cosmology. When Christians advocate a progressive-theistic evolutionary model, and when they do a worldwide ‘Darwin week’ [like we just did!] we need to also recognize the social effects of Darwinism as well as the scientific advances that some believe have been made thru the theory.

(1344) THE WEEK IN REVIEW- Okay, we had lots happening this past week; the tragic earthquake in Haiti, estimates are that there might be around 100,000 deaths, tragic indeed. The firestorm from MSNBC over the comments made by Pat Robertson, he said Haiti made a deal with the devil to get free from French rule and that all has gone bad since, not to smart of a statement. And there is a possible upset for the democratically held seat of former senator Ted Kennedy, the Republican [Scott] might beat the Democrat [Coakley] this would be a major disaster for the Democrats. First, Haiti is a
[these are all parts of posts from the past]
Yes- the Ottoman Turks did slaughter many Armenians- Christians- at the time. And getting Turkey to officially admit this has been a problem for years. But France passing a law to make it a crime to deny it- while they just finished committing ‘crimes against humanity’ themselves- by killing all the Libyan civilians- it’s just too much.

Okay- let’s start a brief overview of some church history. Over the next few weeks I want to hit on the 16th century Protestant reformation and try and cover some of the key figures of the movement.

Martin Luther- the German reformer who had the most influence in the movement was born and raised in Germany.

As a boy his parents were peasant farmers and eventually his dad became a miner and became a very successful businessman- he would go on and eventually own 6 foundries.

He sent his son to law school- and young Luther excelled. At the age of 21 he accomplished more than many of his peers. One day on his way home from the university a thunderstorm broke out and Luther was almost struck by a bolt of lightning.

In fear he cried out to Saint Ann [the mother of Mary] and said ‘Saint Ann- if you save me I will become a monk’ [Ann was the patron Saint for miners- thus Luther was familiar with her].

He was spared and off to the monastery he went. Luther eventually became an ordained priest and even though his dad initially was upset that his son became a priest- yet he was proud of his boy later on.

Luther would eventually make a Pilgrimage to Rome- on foot [a few month walk from Germany to Rome!] and what he saw devastated him. Rome- and the Vatican- were in bad shape. Many of the priests lived in open sin- and the city that he saw as his headquarters for the faith- well it was a mess.

Luther made the famous penitent walk/crawl up the stairs of the Lateran church [this church was the most famous church before the construction of St. Peters. The actual stairs of the church are the same stairs that Christ walked up during his trial under Pontius Pilate. Yes- you hear many ‘stories’ while studying church history- things like the relics or left over pieces of the Cross- well these stories are usually fake. But the stairs of the Lateran church are indeed the same stairs that Christ walked on- the early ‘church’ builders dismantled the stairs at Pilate’s court in Jerusalem and installed them at this church building in Rome].

When Luther got to the top of the stairs- it is reported that he questioned the faith- he had a crisis of faith and thought that maybe the whole thing was a sham.

Okay- as we do a few more posts over the coming weeks- I want you guys to see that the main players of the Reformation were sincere Catholic men who had many questions about what they saw as corrupt in their own church. These men did not want to start a breakaway church- they simply wanted to reform the church they loved.

Keep in mind that Luther excelled during his legal studies- he had a keen legal mind- this will be important later on when we see the debates he has with Rome over the doctrine of Justification by faith- the letters of the apostle Paul [Romans- Galatians] use lots of legal language- and his early education will help him in these debates.

Okay- that’s it for today. Maybe do a Google search on Luther and familiarize yourself a little with the history.

The ‘readings’ for this week are 2nd Samuel 6-7 and Psalms 89. See what they have in common.

Because our bibles were written in Greek [which shows you how strong the Greek influence effected the early church- our first New Testaments were written in Greek- though the Roman Empire was the world Empire of the day.

But Alexander the Great- the famed Greek conqueror who came a few centuries before Christ- he instituted what we refer to as Helenization.

A form of conquering where you let the people you conquer keep their culture- but you also use parts of your culture [in this case the Greek language] to permeate the vanquished.

So- the Roman Empire of Jesus day [who at one time were under the rule of the Greek Empire] continued to write in Greek.

It wasn’t until around a few centuries after the time of Christ that the first Latin bible was written [by Saint Jerome].

But even his bible [the Latin Vulgate] used the Greek Old Testament [called the Septuagint] instead of the Hebrew- for his Latin translation.

Ok- the point being- the Greek world did indeed have a strong influence on the early church.

And the church had to refute the belief that all matter was evil.

The Christian doctrine of creation [developed under saint Augustine- the 4th-5th century bishop of Hippo- North Africa].

Was the teaching that matter was good- that God created the material realm- so it is not inherently evil.

But- after the fall of man [Genesis 1-3] a curse did indeed come upon the earth [some times when the bible says ‘the world’ it is speaking of the earth- but other times it is speaking of the fallen order- the sinful realm of man. That’s why there is some confusion- till this day- among Christians. They might read verses like this- and think the bible is saying the earth itself- the planet- is wicked. Actually in those verses it is speaking about the fallen order of sinful men. See? ‘For all that is in THE WORLD- the lust of the flesh- the lust of the eyes and the pride of life- is not of the father- but is of the WORLD- and the WORLD is passing away’- this is one example from the epistle of John- here the World is not saying the planet- but the world of sinful man- a fallen ‘world’ order.]

So- in conclusion [if I ever get there!] we- as believers- reject the belief that all matter is evil.

No- man was created in the image of God- and God is the creator of all things- both visible [earth- man- etc] and invisible [mentioned in the above chapter].

The evil we see in the ‘world’ today is simply a result of mans sin- mans choice to live in rebellion against God.

Renaissance means ‘re-birth’. It was a rebirth of the ancient Poets and philosophers of days gone by. Men like Cicero and Aristotle were once again brought to the fore front of many thinkers and lovers of culture.

The catch phrase for the Renaissance was Ad Fontes- which meant ‘back to the sources’ [source- Fountain- Fontes]. In the 14th century a famous and influential Catholic family- the Medici’s- were a catalyst for mixing this cultural movement in with the church.

The Renaissance sort of challenged the historic view of education- up until this time most learning was done thru the prism of the church. In the universities of the day Theology [study of God] was called the Queen of the sciences- and philosophy was referred to as her Handmaiden.

Well the Renaissance thinkers said they wanted to study things for what they are- they did not want to see everything thru the lens of the church.

Eventually the theme of the movement [back to the original sources] would play a major role in the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century. Men like Erasmus [the famous 16th century Catholic Humanist] would re discover the original Greek New testament- and it was thru the study of the Greek text that many of the Reformers made their case to get ‘back to the bible’ and eventually break from Rome.

This was also the beginning period of modern capitalism. Recently when Libya had her ‘civil war’ and the new leaders started talking about a new constitution- one of the interesting things that came up was they wanted to do away with interest on loans.

Why? Well Muslims teach that interest itself is a bad thing. ‘Gee- wonder where they get that idea from John’ Oh- from a little book- called the bible.

Yes- to the surprise of some- this is very much taught in the Old Testament. Now- it was God’s law governing the nation of Israel- but they were forbidden to charge interest.

‘So John- is it wrong for us today to make interest’? Not really- Jesus used interest [usury] as an example in some of his parables- and overall- we as believers are not under the Old Testament laws that govern natural Israel.

But- for many centuries- the world did not see interest on money as a legitimate way to earn a living. So during the Renaissance you also had the rise of exploration- and explorers like Columbus would go on their voyages with the financial backing of investors.

The normal rate for these voyages was a 75/25% cut. When the explorer returned- the investor [Spain- or whoever] got 75% of the goods- and the explorer kept 25.

So there were a lot of changes taking place in the world at the time- and the rise of modern capitalism was one of them- money of course existed way before this time- but as a commodity- this was a new way of viewing the world.

Okay- just thought I would throw in a little history along with the current events of the day. As we see the current turmoil in the Italian markets [the original renaissance started in Florence- Italy] maybe seeing money/interest as a commodity- and ‘usury’ as a major way to increase ones wealth- well maybe that’s not such a smart way to do things after all.

When Jon Corzine’s global investment firm went bust the other day- it was a direct result of taking a gamble on the ‘gullibility’ of the common man.

What his firm did was they took a huge risk by investing in European bonds- bonds from Greece that everyone knew was a terrible ‘bet’. Then why did he do it?

RENAISSANCE STUFF –
The renaissance was the 13-14th century revival of culture and learning that was lost for centuries- It began in Florence Italy.
The catch phrase for it was ‘Ad Fontes’ meaning ‘back to the sources’- both in philosophy- as well as in Christian learning.
This began a revival of studying the Greek New testament again from its original language.
The Catholic Humanist- Desiderius Erasmus [15-16th century] – re introduced the New Testament in the Greek version [He was referred to as a Dutch renaissance Humanist- as well as a Catholic Priest and scholar]
Now- Erasmus was a critic of the Church- like Luther- but chose a ‘middle road’- he did not join the breakaway Protestant Reformers- but chose to stay within the fold of Rome- while speaking out against the abuses he saw.
But his first Greek translation of the New Testament did indeed set a spark- because it allowed the Priests to see the bible in its original language.
And Luther was actually teaching this book of Romans to his students in Germany when the Reformation began.
Today the Catholic Church [as you can see in the official Catechism that I have been posting] does indeed teach the bible as God’s Word.
The divisions between Protestants and Catholics are many- but they did agree that the bible was the Word of God.
Some Protestants do not know this- they think the church holds Tradition higher than the bible.
No- the church does believe that God speaks both thru tradition- and scripture.
They see the tradition of the church as simply another means by which God uses the church [Magisterium] to explain scripture- but the Catholic Church does not elevate tradition over the bible.
And indeed- it was a catholic scholar- Erasmus- who introduced the first Geek version of the New Testament.
NOTE- Erasmus disagreed with Luther on the doctrine of Predestination- which I covered in the last video. Luther was for it- Erasmus was what we would call ‘Free Will’.
In his writings- which were very influential- he wrote in Greek and Latin- the language of the elites.
He did this on purpose- for his target was the influential leaders of the Church.
He rejected offers of money- because he did not want to align himself with any particular movement- so he could be an independent writer with no strings attached.
He had many criticisms of the Catholic Church- and was very influential for the later reforms- those we see at the Council of Trent [Though the church criticized him- they said he ‘Laid the egg that hatched the Reformation’].
He taught that the church/priests/popes should be the servants of the people-
He rejected the idea that the Priests/leaders made up the ‘whole of the church’- but he believed all believers made up the true church.
Erasmus was a firebrand in his own way- rejecting the language that Luther and some of the reformers used [they were vulgar at times]-
Luther respected the works of Erasmus- he thanked Erasmus for debating with him on the nature of Justification by Faith-
He disagreed in the end- but said this debate was at the heart of the gospel- and was glad that Erasmus was willing to engage.

RENAISSANCE ARTISTS-
The famous renaissance artists- DaVinci- Michelangelo- Raphael- used their artwork as a form of knowledge- the images taught things- they were not just paintings.
DaVinci’s most famous work was his painting on the ceiling of the Sistine chapel in the Vatican.
It took him 4 years to complete.
The renaissance period- from about the 13/14th century to the 17th- [though there was a sort of Renaissance that took place- yes- in the Islamic world before the European Renaissance] was marked by what we term Humanism.
Today we associate this term with ‘secular Humanism’ which often has a bad connotation- especially among Christians.
But it meant something different back then.
It was a new focus on breaking the limits off of man- and for man to excel in knowledge and skill- and to see man as having value.
There was somewhat of a break away from the church in a sense- in that the church and its teachings were not the only source of wisdom for man.
But- Jesus himself taught that ‘the Sabbath was made for man- not man for the Sabbath’- so- the Humanist spirit- elevating the value of man- does have a Christian basis in my view.
Leonardo daVinci [15/16th century] was what we refer to as a true Renaissance man- meaning his knowledge was in many fields- not just art.
He actually considered himself a sculptor first- then an artist- though he is most famous for his Fresco mentioned above.
1989 The first work of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conversion, effecting justification in accordance with Jesus’ proclamation at the beginning of the Gospel: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”38 Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high. “Justification is not only the remission of sins, but also the sanctification and renewal of the interior man.”39 (1427)
1990 Justification detaches man from sin which contradicts the love of God, and purifies his heart of sin. Justification follows upon God’s merciful initiative of offering forgiveness. It reconciles man with God. It frees from the enslavement to sin, and it heals. (1446, 1733)
1991 Justification is at the same time the acceptance of God’s righteousness through faith in Jesus Christ. Righteousness (or “justice”) here means the rectitude of divine love. With justification, faith, hope, and charity are poured into our hearts, and obedience to the divine will is granted us. (1812)
1992 Justification has been merited for us by the Passion of Christ who offered himself on the cross as a living victim, holy and pleasing to God, and whose blood has become the instrument of atonement for the sins of all men. Justification is conferred in Baptism, the sacrament of faith. It conforms us to the righteousness of God, who makes us inwardly just by the power of his mercy. Its purpose is the glory of God and of Christ, and the gift of eternal life:40 (617, 1266, 294)
But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from law, although the law and the prophets bear witness to it, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, they are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as an expiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins; it was to prove at the present time that he himself is righteous and that he justifies him who has faith in Jesus.41
1993 Justification establishes cooperation between God’s grace and man’s freedom. On man’s part it is expressed by the assent of faith to the Word of God, which invites him to conversion, and in the cooperation of charity with the prompting of the Holy Spirit who precedes and preserves his assent: (2008, 2068)
When God touches man’s heart through the illumination of the Holy Spirit, man himself is not inactive while receiving that inspiration, since he could reject it; and yet, without God’s grace, he cannot by his own free will move himself toward justice in God’s sight.42
1994 Justification is the most excellent work of God’s love made manifest in Christ Jesus and granted by the Holy Spirit. It is the opinion of St. Augustine that “the justification of the wicked is a greater work than the creation of heaven and earth,” because “heaven and earth will pass away but the salvation and justification of the elect… will not pass away.”43 He holds also that the justification of sinners surpasses the creation of the angels in justice, in that it bears witness to a greater mercy. (312, 412)
1995 The Holy Spirit is the master of the interior life. By giving birth to the “inner man,”44 justification entails the sanctification of his whole being: (741)
Just as you once yielded your members to impurity and to greater and greater iniquity, so now yield your members to righteousness for sanctification…. But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the return you get is sanctification and its end, eternal life.45
Eventually Rome would conquer the Greek kingdom and the Jewish people were allowed to keep their culture and temple- yet they were still a people oppressed. Hassidism [getting back to the beginning] developed during this attempt to not lose their Jewish roots- the Pharisees of Jesus day came from this movement.

Alexander was pretty successful in his attempt to unify language- even though the bible [New Testament] was written by Jewish writers- living under Roman rule- yet the original bible is written in the Greek language.

Bible scholars till this day study the Greek language to find the truest meaning of the actual words in the bible [I have a Greek Lexicon sitting right in front of me].

It would take a few centuries before a Latin version appeared on the scene [the great church father- Jerome- would produce the Latin Vulgate].

Yet it would be the re- discovery and learning of the Greek texts [under men like Erasmus- and the Protestant Reformers] that would lead to the Reformation [16th century] and other movements in church history.

[1587] OVERVIEW- Lets over view a little today- in the last post I mentioned how we will be getting into Marx, Freud and Nietzsche in the coming months- yet I have so many things going on at this time that just in case I never get to them I want to lay out some stuff. First, most challenges to the Christian faith/God- have come from the point of view that said ‘yes- we believe that there is some being out there- God- but we challenge the purveyors of religion and how man has used religion to control- manipulate the masses’. It was not until the rise of these men that the popular approach of ‘no God’ would take a foothold in the minds of many unsuspecting ‘masses’. Before we delve into the ideas and contradictions of these men- let me explain why most thinkers of the Enlightenment did not take the atheistic approach- and instead opted for some form of Deism/Theism. The original debate of ‘where did everything come from’ did not start during the Enlightenment- it dates back as far as 4-5 centuries before Christ- the question is obviously older- but you can read the debate taking place in the great minds of the Greek philosophers; Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. Though the idea of God in the minds of these Greek thinkers was not the same definition that Christianity would hold to- yet they did believe in some type of being who for the most part was what we would think of as God- they referred to him as The Prime Mover- a term that the great Catholic thinker Thomas Aquinas would use in the 13th century as he too argued for the existence of God. Okay- the Greeks taught that the universe/cosmos always existed- and there was an initiator who started the ball rolling [motion]. Their ideas about how the solar system worked were primitive- the famous idea espoused by Ptolemy had a sort of crystalline sphere

VERSES-
Arise, O LORD, disappoint him, cast him down: deliver my soul from the wicked, which is thy sword: Pslams 17:13
Revelation 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
Revelation 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
Ephesians 2:5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
Ephesians 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
Jeremiah 51:63 And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of Euphrates:
Jeremiah 51:64 And thou shalt say, Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her: and they shall be weary. Thus far are the words of Jeremiah.
Matthew 12:1 At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn and to eat.
Matthew 12:2 But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day.
Matthew 12:3 But he said unto them, Have ye not read what David did, when he was an hungred, and they that were with him;
Matthew 12:4 How he entered into the house of God, and did eat the shewbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests?
Matthew 12:5 Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?
Matthew 12:6 But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.
Matthew 12:7 But if ye had known what this meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.
Matthew 12:8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.
For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood. Heb. 7:14
Proverbs 4:7 Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.

WAS HE TWEEKIN’? https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-3-15-was-he-tweekin.zip

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VERSES-
Numbers 16:1 Now Korah, the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, and Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On, the son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, took men:
Numbers 16:2 And they rose up before Moses, with certain of the children of Israel, two hundred and fifty princes of the assembly, famous in the congregation, men of renown:
Numbers 16:3 And they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron, and said unto them, Ye take too much upon you, seeing all the congregation are holy, every one of them, and the LORD is among them: wherefore then lift ye up yourselves above the congregation of the LORD?
Numbers 16:4 And when Moses heard it, he fell upon his face:
Numbers 16:5 And he spake unto Korah and unto all his company, saying, Even to morrow the LORD will shew who are his, and who is holy; and will cause him to come near unto him: even him whom he hath chosen will he cause to come near unto him.
Numbers 16:6 This do; Take you censers, Korah, and all his company;
Numbers 16:7 And put fire therein, and put incense in them before the LORD to morrow: and it shall be that the man whom the LORD doth choose, he shall be holy: ye take too much upon you, ye sons of Levi.
Numbers 16:8 And Moses said unto Korah, Hear, I pray you, ye sons of Levi:
Numbers 16:9 Seemeth it but a small thing unto you, that the God of Israel hath separated you from the congregation of Israel, to bring you near to himself to do the service of the tabernacle of the LORD, and to stand before the congregation to minister unto them?
Numbers 16:10 And he hath brought thee near to him, and all thy brethren the sons of Levi with thee: and seek ye the priesthood also?
Numbers 16:11 For which cause both thou and all thy company are gathered together against the LORD: and what is Aaron, that ye murmur against him?
Numbers 16:12 And Moses sent to call Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab: which said, We will not come up:
Numbers 16:13 Is it a small thing that thou hast brought us up out of a land that floweth with milk and honey, to kill us in the wilderness, except thou make thyself altogether a prince over us?
Numbers 16:14 Moreover thou hast not brought us into a land that floweth with milk and honey, or given us inheritance of fields and vineyards: wilt thou put out the eyes of these men? we will not come up.
Numbers 16:15 And Moses was very wroth, and said unto the LORD, Respect not thou their offering: I have not taken one ass from them, neither have I hurt one of them.
Numbers 16:16 And Moses said unto Korah, Be thou and all thy company before the LORD, thou, and they, and Aaron, to morrow:
Numbers 16:17 And take every man his censer, and put incense in them, and bring ye before the LORD every man his censer, two hundred and fifty censers; thou also, and Aaron, each of you his censer.
Numbers 16:18 And they took every man his censer, and put fire in them, and laid incense thereon, and stood in the door of the tabernacle of the congregation with Moses and Aaron.
Numbers 16:19 And Korah gathered all the congregation against them unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto all the congregation.
Numbers 16:20 And the LORD spake unto Moses and unto Aaron, saying,
Numbers 16:21 Separate yourselves from among this congregation, that I may consume them in a moment.
Numbers 16:22 And they fell upon their faces, and said, O God, the God of the spirits of all flesh, shall one man sin, and wilt thou be wroth with all the congregation?
Numbers 16:23 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Numbers 16:24 Speak unto the congregation, saying, Get you up from about the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram.
Numbers 16:25 And Moses rose up and went unto Dathan and Abiram; and the elders of Israel followed him.
Numbers 16:26 And he spake unto the congregation, saying, Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of their’s, lest ye be consumed in all their sins.
Numbers 16:27 So they gat up from the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram, on every side: and Dathan and Abiram came out, and stood in the door of their tents, and their wives, and their sons, and their little children.
Numbers 16:28 And Moses said, Hereby ye shall know that the LORD hath sent me to do all these works; for I have not done them of mine own mind.
Numbers 16:29 If these men die the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men; then the LORD hath not sent me.
Numbers 16:30 But if the LORD make a new thing, and the earth open her mouth, and swallow them up, with all that appertain unto them, and they go down quick into the pit; then ye shall understand that these men have provoked the LORD.
Numbers 16:31 And it came to pass, as he had made an end of speaking all these words, that the ground clave asunder that was under them:
Numbers 16:32 And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up, and their houses, and all the men that appertained unto Korah, and all their goods.
Numbers 16:33 They, and all that appertained to them, went down alive into the pit, and the earth closed upon them: and they perished from among the congregation.
Numbers 16:34 And all Israel that were round about them fled at the cry of them: for they said, Lest the earth swallow us up also.
Numbers 16:35 And there came out a fire from the LORD, and consumed the two hundred and fifty men that offered incense.
Matthew 13:24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
Matthew 13:25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
Matthew 13:26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
Matthew 13:27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
Matthew 13:28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
Matthew 13:29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
Matthew 13:30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
Psalm 1:1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
Psalm 1:2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
Psalm 1:3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
Psalm 1:4 The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
Psalm 1:5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
Psalm 1:6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.
Matthew 22:1 And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,
Matthew 22:2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
Matthew 22:3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
Matthew 22:4 Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
Matthew 22:5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:
Matthew 22:6 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.
Matthew 22:7 But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.
Matthew 22:8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.
Matthew 22:9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.
Matthew 22:10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.
Matthew 22:11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
Matthew 22:12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
Matthew 22:13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
He will surely violently turn and toss thee like a ball into a large country: there shalt thou die, and there the chariots of thy gloryshall be the shame of thy lord’s house. Isa. 22
Zechariah 12:6 In that day will I make the governors of Judah like an hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they shall devour all the people round about, on the right hand and on the left: and Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even in Jerusalem.
Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel. Exo. 17

ACTS 1 https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-6-15-acts-1.zip

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PAST POSTS- [verses below]
[added this because I talked about Hanukkah]
Alexander established a great library in the Egyptian city of Alexandria [named after him] and many of the great writings were preserved during this time.

The writings of Aristotle would be discovered again during the time of Thomas Aquinas [13th century Catholic genius/scholar] and this would lead to Scholasticism [a peculiar school of thought developed/revived under Aquinas] and give rise to the Renaissance.

Okay- before the birth of Christ- the Jewish people resisted the imposing of Greek culture upon them- you had the very famous resistance under the Jewish Maccabean revolt- where the Jews rose up and fought the wicked ruler Antiochus Epiphanies- and till this day the Jewish people celebrate this victory at Hanukah.

Eventually Rome would conquer the Greek kingdom and the Jewish people were allowed to keep their culture and temple- yet they were still a people oppressed. Hassidism [getting back to the beginning] developed during this attempt to not lose their Jewish roots- the Pharisees of Jesus day came from this movement.

Alexander was pretty successful in his attempt to unify language- even though the bible [New Testament] was written by Jewish writers- living under Roman rule- yet the original bible is written in the Greek language.

Bible scholars till this day study the Greek language to find the truest meaning of the actual words in the bible [I have a Greek Lexicon sitting right in front of me].

It would take a few centuries before a Latin version appeared on the scene [the great church father- Jerome- would produce the Latin Vulgate].

Yet it would be the re- discovery and learning of the Greek texts [under men like Erasmus- and the Protestant Reformers] that would lead to the Reformation [16th century] and other movements in church history.
[partial posts]
[added this because I talked about end time stuff]
Paul is correcting them about some fundamental Christian beliefs- and for him to be ‘introducing’ a 2 staged ‘2nd coming’ – well- that’s just doesn’t make sense to me.
As a student of Theology- I am familiar with both sides of this issue [Dispensationalism versus Historic view].
In this post I’m giving you the view that the early church held- and the view that most Christians hold today.
In the past I covered how the Rapture view came about [1800’s- John Darby- few others].
And I could go over all that again.
But- for this short study- I just want you- yourself- to read these chapters.
Does it sound like the Apostle Paul is speaking about 2 different events to you?
Below I’m pasting some of the main sections [not all] that talk about the 2nd Coming-
I want you to see the context.
Over the years as I simply read these passages- it was obvious to me that some who teach these verses- are actually missing the main reason why Paul brings up the 2nd coming- and the resurrection of the dead.
In the Thessalonians portion- some say Paul is speaking about 2 different events [the Rapture- a secret coming- 1 Thess. chapter 4. Then the ‘day of the Lord’ and the 2nd coming- a whole other event].
If you simply read it- he is saying ‘the Second coming- the Day of the Lord- it is still yet to come- and your loved ones will not be forgotten’ [1st Thessalonians].
Then- in 2nd Thessalonians- it seems as there might have been a fake letter- written to them- claiming to be from Paul.
H says ‘don’t be disturbed- either by word- OR A SO CALLED LETTER FROM US’.
Don’t be disturbed that the Day of the Lord [or the Second coming] ‘is at hand’- or already happened.
Then in chapter 2 he goes on to talk about the Wicked one being revealed 1st [antichrist- which we have much to say about in the future].
Paul is basically covering the same ground in 1st and 2nd Thessalonians.
He taught them that Jesus will come back- and our dead loved ones will not miss out on the future kingdom- they too will be raised from the dead- and we will all be together with the Lord.
Then in 2nd Thessalonians he is saying ‘wait- don’t get fooled- again. Jesus did not come back yet- some stuff must happen first’.
Those who teach the Rapture have Paul talking about 2 different events here.
One- a secret Rapture- then- the 2nd coming.
Remember- this church was obviously having some serious doctrinal problems.
And it would make no sense for them to have received these 2 letters [not in a book form- like the bible we have today].
And to ‘figure out’ that Paul is talking about 2 different events- using the same basic language that he uses in his letters to the other churches- about the 2nd coming of Christ.
And for them to have discerned that this was a whole new ‘secret’ thing God revealed to Paul-
Well- it simply makes no sense to me.
As you read the passages below- see the language Jesus himself uses ‘after the days of the tribulation- THEN shall the sign of the coming of the son of man be’-
Jesus says the angels will be sent forth- gather together God’s elect-
All the language about the 2nd coming seems to be speaking about one event in the New Testament [trumpets- etc.].
Those who each the Rapture- as a secret 2nd coming- they ‘see’ the trumpet language [which is used about all the events- even those who say they are 2 different ones].
As ‘another trumpet’ and so on.
There are pro and con verses that both sides use in this debate.
I think the main point is- the language used about the 2nd coming- or ‘the Rapture’ is obviously speaking about the same thing.
So- we start from there- then- if you develop an End Time view of things- no matter how you see all the other future events to come-
You don’t ‘add’ another- secret- 2nd coming in there-
To me- that’s going too far.
1Thessalonians 4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

VERSES-
Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you. Lk. 17:21
Acts 1:1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,
Acts 1:2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen:
Acts 1:3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:
Acts 1:4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.
Acts 1:5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
Acts 1:6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
Acts 1:7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
Acts 1:8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
Acts 1:9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
Acts 1:10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
Acts 1:11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
Acts 1:12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day’s journey.
Acts 1:13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.
Acts 1:14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
Acts 1:15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
Acts 1:16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.
Acts 1:17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.
Acts 1:18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.
Acts 1:19 And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
Acts 1:20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.
Acts 1:21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
Acts 1:22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.
Acts 1:23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.
Acts 1:24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,
Acts 1:25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.
Acts 1:26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
Peter saw this Psalm being fulfilled by the betrayal of Judas- and because it said ‘let another take his office’ they chose someone to take the office Judas had-
Psalm 109:1 Hold not thy peace, O God of my praise;
Psalm 109:2 For the mouth of the wicked and the mouth of the deceitful are opened against me: they have spoken against me with a lying tongue.
Psalm 109:3 They compassed me about also with words of hatred; and fought against me without a cause.
Psalm 109:4 For my love they are my adversaries: but I give myself unto prayer.
Psalm 109:5 And they have rewarded me evil for good, and hatred for my love.
Psalm 109:6 Set thou a wicked man over him: and let Satan stand at his right hand.
Psalm 109:7 When he shall be judged, let him be condemned: and let his prayer become sin.
Psalm 109:8 Let his days be few; and let another take his office.
This is the first of many prophecies that the Apostles see as finding fulfillment thru Christ and the actual things that took place among them while he was with them- and after he left.

ACTS 2
0N VIDEO- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-10-15-acts-2-russia-syria.zip
https://youtu.be/tEvhnzSd7OY [posts and verses below]
. Voltaire and Marx
. Are the ‘last days’ here?
. U.S. changes course
. Christian music?
. Should they eat?
. U.S. planes divert course
.What attracts ISIS fighters?
NOTE [I wrote this a few days ago as I started working on the post. The next day the U.S. changed strategy in Syria and will stop its support of the Rebels.]
Russia is preparing for war with the West-[ NATO and the U.S.]
Why?
The history of U.S./NATO involvement over many years has destabilized that part of the world [Libya- Iraq- now Syria- on and on].
How?
We have used so called ‘international norms’ to justify our actions.
Then we go in [with air power- or ground offensive] and we back the assassination of various leaders [Saddam Hussein- Gadhafi- etc.].
Then- when we are done- these countries are a complete mess.
So- a few years back there were protests on the streets of Russia- I remember a U.S. official saying things to the effect ‘maybe it’s time for Putin to go’-
Now- how does he read a statement like this?
It means he might get shot- his family too [that’s the history of us making these statements] and in the end- his country would be a complete disaster [that’s the history of this- see?].
So- he does see NATO and the West as a real threat- to his country- and his life!
Ok- then we made a statement a few years back ‘Assad must go’.
Now- many leaders [including Democrats in the U.S. congress] – do not think this is a smart move.
But- we simply violated Syria’s air space- and started a bombing campaign.
‘John- if we didn’t get the permission of the country’s leader- isn’t it wrong’.
Yes.
‘Then how could we do it’?
Along with the cover of NATO- and a so called 60 nation alliance- we simply did it- because we can.
Both Ukraine and Syria are areas where we make decisions- we base them on so called ‘international norms’ and the we ‘violate’ air space- human rights [bombing of hospital in Afghanistan] and no one can stop us.
So- Russia is going to back up Assad- and when they get strong enough ‘THEY’ will declare a ‘no fly zone’ over Syria [saying that the U.S. and NATO are the ones violating airspace] and they will give a demand for us to stop flying in Syria.
At that point the U.S. will either say ‘well- Syria is a mess- thanks to Putin’s support of Assad- and we are leaving’ [which would be us blinking].
Or- Russia and Syria will begin using the Russian surface to air missiles that they installed in the last few weeks- and shoot down our planes.
Putin is not joking.
So- why is he flying over Turkey’s borders?
Turkey is a member of NATO- And he’s saying ‘you guys not only violate ‘air space’ but you carry out actual wars- without the consent of the leaders of these nations’.
He is letting the U.S. and NATO know ‘ENOUGH IS ENOUGH’.

As I’m reading our responses- they are laughable.
We are saying ‘if Putin keeps this up- he’s making a mistake- because ISIS will now see him-Russia- as a target’.
This official was responding to Putin in Syria like saying ‘yeah- he will be supporting Assad [true] and that will get ISIS MAD’.
PUTIN is actually killing ISIS [as well as others]- Don’t you think this will also get them mad?

PARTS OF OLD POSTS THAT RELATE TO VIDEO-
So God’s dealings with Israel are not finished. Paul also warns the Gentiles ‘don’t boast, if God cut out the true branches [Israel] to graft you in. He can just as quickly cut you out too’! It would be dishonest for me [a Calvinist] to simply not comment on this. You certainly can take this verse in an Arminian way. Or you can see Paul speaking in a ‘nationalistic sense’. Sort of like saying ‘if Germany walks away from the faith, they will be ‘cut out’. [France would have been a better example! Speaking of the so called ‘enlightenment’ and the French Revolution]. In essence ‘you Gentiles, don’t think “wow, look at us. God left Israel and we are now special!”’ Paul is saying ‘you Gentiles [as a whole group] stand by faith. God could just as quickly ‘cut you out’ and replace you with another group’. I also think the Arminians could use this type of argument for the previous predestination chapter [9]. But to be honest I needed to give you my view. One more thing, Paul quotes Elijah ‘lord, I am the only one left’. He uses this in context of God having a remnant from Israel who remained faithful to the true God. God told Elijah ‘there are 7 thousand that have not bowed the knee to baal’. Paul uses this to show that even in his day there were a remnant Of Jews [himself included] who received the Messiah. An interesting side note. The prophetic ministry [Elijah] seems to function at a ‘popular level’. Now, I don’t mean ‘fame’, but Elijah was giving voice to a large undercurrent that was running thru the nation. If you read the story of Elijah you would have never known that there were ‘7 thousand’ who never bowed the knee! Often times God will use prophetic people to ‘give voice’ or popularize a general truth that is presently existing in the ‘underground church’ at large. Sort of like if Elijah had a web site, the 7 thousand would have been secretly reading it and saying ‘right on brother, that’s exactly what we believe too’!

ROMANS 12
.ARE SOME GIFTS BETTER THAN OTHERS?
.HOW SHOULD THEY FUNCTION IN THE ‘BODY’?
. HOW SHOUD WE GIVE OFFERINGS- DID PAUL TEAHC TITHING?
.HOT COALS ON THEIR HEADS- HUH?

(864)ROMANS 12:1-8 ‘I beseech you by the mercies of God to present your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service [spiritual worship]’. Most times we see ‘by the mercies of God’ as a recap of all that Paul has taught from chapters 1 thru 12. This is true to a degree. I think Paul is honing in on the previous chapters that dealt with the purpose of God specifically seen in the resurrection of the body. As we read earlier ‘for we are saved by hope’ [the hope of the resurrection]. Basically I see Paul saying ‘because of what I showed you concerning Gods redemptive purpose for your body, therefore present your body now, in anticipation of it’s future glorious purpose, as a living sacrifice ‘holy and acceptable unto God’. Why? Because you are going to have that thing [body] forever! [in a new glorified state] Paul exhorts us to be changed by the renewing of our mind, the way we think. I have mentioned in the past that this renewing is not some type of legalistic function of ‘memorizing, muttering the do’s and don’ts all day long’. But a reorganizing of our thoughts according to this new covenant of grace. Seeing things thru this ‘new world’ perspective. A kingdom view based upon grace and the resurrection of Jesus. This resurrection that is assured to us b

TELOS [What’s your purpose?]
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/07/7-3-15-telos-or-jack-nichols-n-the-3-dollar-tip.zip
A telos (from the Greek τέλος for “end”, “purpose”, or “goal”) is an end or purpose, in a fairly constrained sense used by philosophers such as Aristotle. It is the root of the term “teleology,” roughly the study of purposiveness, or the study of objects with a view to their aims, purposes, or intentions. Teleology figures centrally in Aristotle’s biology and in his theory of causes. It is central to nearly all philosophical theories of history, such as those of Hegel and Marx. One running debate in contemporary philosophy of biology is to what extent teleological language (as in the “purposes” of various organs or life-processes) is unavoidable, or is simply a shorthand for ideas that can ultimately be spelled out nonteleologically. Philosophy of action also makes essential use of teleological vocabulary: on Davidson’s account, an action is just something an agent does with an intention–that is, looking forward to some end to be achieved by the action.
In contrast to telos, techne is the rational method involved in producing an object or accomplishing a goal or objective; however, the two methods are not mutually exclusive in principle.
Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.[2]
1Peter 2:1 Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, all evil speakings,
1Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
1Peter 2:3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
1Peter 2:4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,
1Peter 2:5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
1Peter 2:6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.
1Peter 2:7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,
1Peter 2:8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
1Peter 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;
1Peter 2:10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
1Peter 2:11 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
1Peter 2:12 Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.
1Peter 2:13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;
1Peter 2:14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.
1Peter 2:15 For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:
1Peter 2:16 As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.
1Peter 2:17 Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.
1Peter 2:18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.
1Peter 2:19 For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.
1Peter 2:20 For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.
1Peter 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
1Peter 2:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
1Peter 2:23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
1Peter 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
1Peter 2:25 For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.
________________________________________

I mention this on todays video
(View as Adobe Acrobat .pdf)
ORATION, DELIVERED IN CORINTHIAN HALL, ROCHESTER, BY FREDERICK DOUGLASS, JULY 5TH, 1852.
Published by Request
ROCHESTER: PRINTED BY LEE, MANN & CO., AMERICAN BUILDING.
1852.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS ESQ.:

Dear Sir-The Ladies of the “Rochester Anti Slavery Sewing Society,” desire me to return you their most sincere thanks for the eloquent and able address delivered in Corinthian Hall, on the 5th of July. Anticipating its speedy publication in Pamphlet form, they request that you will furnish them with one hundred copies for distribution:
In behalf of the Society,
SUSAN F. PORTER, President.

ORATION.
Mr. President, Friends and Fellow Citizens :
HE who could address this audience without a quailing sensation, has stronger nerves than I have. I do not remember ever to have appeared as a speaker before any assembly more shrinkingly, nor with greater distrust of my ability, than I do this day. A feeling has crept over me, quite unfavorable to the exercise of my limited powers of speech. The task before me is one which requires much previous thought and study for its proper performance. I know that apologies of this sort are generally considered flat and unmeaning. I trust, however, that mine will not be so considered. Should I seem at ease, my appearance would much misrepresent me. The little experience I have had in addressing public meetings, in country school houses, avails me nothing on the present occasion.
The papers and placards say, that I am to deliver a 4th July oration. This certainly, sounds large, and out of the common way, for me. It is true that I have often had the privilege to speak in this beautiful Hall, and to address many who now honor me with their presence. But neither their familiar faces, nor the perfect gage I think I have of Corinthian Hall, seems to free me from embarrassment.
The fact is, ladies and gentlemen, the distance between this platform and the slave plantation, from which I escaped, is considerable – and the difficulties to be overcome in getting from the latter to the former, are by no means slight. That I am here today, is, to me, a matter of astonishment as well as of gratitude. You will not, therefore, be surprised, if in what I have to say, I evince no elaborate preparation, nor grace my speech with any high sounding exordium. With little experience and with less learning, I have been able to throw my thoughts hastily and imperfectly together; and trusting to your patient and generous indulgence, I will proceed to lay them before you.
This, for the purpose of this celebration, is the 4th of July. It is the birthday of your National Independence, and of your political freedom. This, to you, is what the Passover was to the emancipated people of God. It carries your minds back to the clay, and to the act of your great deliverance; and to the signs, and to the wonders, associated with that act that day. This celebration also marks the beginning of another year of your national life; and reminds you that the Republic of America is now 76 years old. I am glad, fellow-citizens, that your nation is so young. Seventy-six years, though a good old age for a man, is but a mere speck in the life of a nation. ‘Three score years and ten is the allotted time for individual men; but nations number their years by thousands. According to this fact, you are, even now only in the beginning of you national career, still ling ering in the period of childhood. I repeat, I am glad this is so. There is hope in the thought, and hope is much needed, under the dark clouds which lower above the horizon. The eye of the reformer is met with angry flashes, portending disastrous times; but his heart may well beat lighter at the thought that America is young, and that she is still in the impressible stage of her existence. May he not hope that high lessons of wisdom, of justice and of truth, will yet give direction to her destiny? Were the nation older, the patriot’s heart might be sadder, and the reformer’s brow heavier. Its future might be shrouded in gloom, and the hope of its prophets go out in sorrow. There is consolation in the thought, that America is young.-Great streams are not easily turned from channels, worn deep in the course of ages. They may sometimes rise in quiet and stately majesty, and inundate the land, refreshing and fertilizing the earth with their mysterious properties. They may also rise in wrath and fury, and bear away, on their angry waves, the accumulated wealth of years of toil and hardship. They, however, gradually flow back to the same old channel, and flow on as serenely as ever. But, while the river may not be turned aside, it may dry up, and leave nothing behind but the withered branch, and the unsightly rock, to howl in the abyss-sweeping wind, the sad tale of departed glory. As with rivers so with nations.
Fellow-citizens, I shall not presume to dwell at length on the associations that cluster about this day. The simple story of it is, that, 76 years ago, the people of this country were British subjects. The style and title of your “sovereign people” (in which you now glory) was not then born. You were under the British Crown. Your fathers esteemed the English Government as the home government and England as the fatherland. This home government, you know, although a considerable distance from your home, did, in the exercise of its parental prerogatives, impose upon its colonial children, such restraints, burdens and limitations, as, in its mature judgment, it deemed wise, right and proper.
But, your fathers, who had not adopted the fashionable idea of this day, of the infallibility of government, and the absolute character of its acts, presumed to differ from the home government in respect to the wisdom and the justice of some of those burdens and restraints. They went so far in their excitement as to pronounce the measures of government unjust, unreasonable, and oppressive, and altogether such as ought not to be quietly submitted to. I scarcely need say, fellow-citizens, that my opinion of those measures fully accords with that of your fathers. Such a declaration of agreement on my part, would not be worth much to anybody. It would, certainly, prove nothing, as to what part I might have taken, had I lived during the great controversy of 1776. To say now that America was right, and England wrong, is exceedingly easy. Everybody can say it; the dastard, not less than the noble brave, can flippantly discant on the tyranny of England towards the American Colonies. It is fashionable to do so; but there was a time when, to pronounce against England, and in favor of the cause of the colonies, tried men’s souls. They who did so were accounted in their day, plotters of mischief, agitators and rebels, dangerous men. To side with the right, against the wrong, with the weak against the strong, and with the oppressed against the oppressor! here lies the merit, and the one which, of all others, seems un fashionable in our day. The cause of liberty may be stabbed by the men who glory in the deeds of your fathers. But, to proceed.
Feeling themselves harshly and unjustly treated, by the home government, your fathers, like men of honesty, and men of spirit, earnestly sought redress. They petitioned and remonstrated; they did so in a decorous, respectful, and loyal manner. Their conduct was wholly unexceptionable. This, however, did not answer the purpose. They saw themselves treated with sovereign indifference, coldness and scorn. Yet they persevered. They were not the men to look back.
As the sheet anchor takes a firmer hold, when the ship is tossed by the storm, so did the cause of your fathers grow stronger, as it breasted the chilling blasts of kingly displeasure. The greatest and best of British statesmen admitted its justice, and the loftiest eloquence of the British Senate came to its support. But, with that blindness which seems to be the unvarying characteristic of tyrants, since Pharoah and his hosts were drowned in the Red sea, the British Government persisted in the exactions complained of.
The madness of this course, we believe, is admitted now, even by England; but , we fear the lesson is wholly lost on our present rulers.
Oppression makes a wise man mad. Your fathers were wise men, and if they did not go mad, they became restive under this treatment. They felt themselves the victims of grievous wrongs, wholly incurable in their colonial capacity. With brave men there is always a remedy for oppression. Just here, the idea of a total separation of the colonies from the crown was born! It was a startling idea, much more so, than we, at this distance of time, regard it. The timid and the prudent (as has been intimated) of that day, were, of course, shocked and alarmed by it.
Such people lived then, had lived before, and will, probably, ever have a place on this planet; and their course, in respect to any great change, (no matter how great the good to be attained, or the wrong to be redressed by it,) may be calculated with as much precision as can be the course of the stars. They hate all changes, but silver, gold and copper change! Of this sort of change they are always strongly in favor.
These people were called tories in the days of your fathers; and the appellation, probably, conveyed the same idea that is meant by a more modern, though a somewhat less euphonious term, which we often find in our papers, applied to some of our old politicians.
Their opposition to the then dangerous thought was earnest and powerful; but, amid all their terror and affrighted vociferations against it, the alarming and revolutionary idea moved on, and the country with it.
On the 2d of July, 1776, the old Continental Congress, to the dismay of the lovers of ease, and the worshippers of property, clothed that dreadful idea with all the authority of national sanction. They did so in the form of a resolution; and as we seldom hit upon resolutions, drawn up in our day, whose transparency is at all equal to this, it may refresh your minds and help my story if I read it.
Resolved, That these united colonies are, and of right, ought to be free and Independent States; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown; and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain is, and ought to be, dissolved.
Citizens, your fathers Made good that resolution. They succeeded; and today you reap the fruits of their success. The freedom gained is yours; and you, therefore, may properly celebrate this anniversary. The 4th of July is the first great fact in your nation’s history-the very ring-bolt in the chain of your yet undeveloped destiny.
Pride and patriotism, not less than gratitude, prompt you to celebrate and to hold it in perpetual remembrance. I have said that the Declaration of Independence is the RINGBOLT to the chain of your nation’s destiny; so, indeed, I regard it. The principles contained in that instrument are saving principles. Stand by those principles, be true to them on all occasions, in. all places, against all foes, and at whatever cost.
From the round top of your ship of state, dark and threatening clouds may be seen. Heavy billows, like mountains in the distance, disclose to the leeward huge forms of flinty rocks! That boltdrawn, that chain, broken, and all is lost. Cling to this day-cling to it, and to its principles, with the grasp of a storm-tossed mariner to a spar at midnight.
The coining into being of a nation, in any circumstances, is an interesting event. But, besides general considerations, there were peculiar circumstances which make the advent of this republic an event of special attractiveness.
The whole scene, as I look back to it, was simple, dignified and sublime.
The population of the country, at the time, stood at the insignificant number of three millions. The country was poor in the munitions of war. The population was weak and scattered, and the country a wilderness unsubdued. There were then no means of concert and combination, such as exist now. Neither steam nor lightning had then been reduced to order and discipline. From the Potomac to the Delaware was a journey of many days. Under these, and innumerable other disadvantages, your fathers declared for liberty and independence and triumphed.
Fellow Citizens, I am not wanting in respect for the fathers of this republic. The signers of the Declaration of Independence were brave men. They were great men too-great enough to give fame to a great age. It does not often happen to a nation to raise, at one time, such a number of truly great men. The point from which I am compelled to view them is not, certainly the most favorable; and yet I cannot contemplate their great deeds with less than admiration. They were statesmen, patriots and heroes, and for the good they did, and the principles they contended for, I will unite with you to honor their memory.
They loved their country better than their own private interests; and, though this is not the highest form of human excellence, all will concede that it is a rare virtue, and that when it is exhibited, it ought to command respect. He who will, intelligently, lay down his life for his country, is a man whom it is not in human nature to despise. Your fathers staked their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor, on the cause of their country. In their admiration of liberty, they lost sight of all other interests.
They were peace men; but they preferred revolution to peaceful submission to bondage. They were quiet men; but they did not shrink from agitating against oppression. They showed forbearance; but that they knew its limits. They believed in order; but not in the order of tyranny. With them, nothing was “settled” that was not right. With them, justice, liberty and humanity were “final;” not slavery and oppression. You may well cherish the memory of such men. They were great in their day and generation. Their solid manhood stands out the more as we contrast it with these degenerate times.
. R. R. Raymond.

[1586] FREUD-NIETZSCHE AND MARX- Today I need to do a little more on our study of Modernity [the thinkers who have influenced Western culture/thought from the 1700’s- 2000’s]. At this time I have 3 separate studies I have started on-line; Classics of literature, Great Christian thinkers of history, and Modernity. As time rolls on- I will gradually post all new studies once a year in a monthly post [most of the time it will be February] and as I update them you can read the most recent ones from the most recent years.

Okay- I am skipping a bunch of stuff to jump into the thinkers who represent the most popular forms of atheism- Marx, Nietzsche and Freud. But first we need to take a look at Ludwig Feuerbach. L.F. [Ludwig Feuerbach] laid the groundwork for these other more famous rejecters of God and Christianity. During the enlightenment period it was rare for the critics of religion to hold an outright atheistic view- men like Hume and Voltaire- though true critics of the church- did not come out openly and deny the existence of God. It was also difficult [impossible?] to hold professorships in the universities if you were a doubter of God. Both Hume and Voltaire did not hold positions. F.S. was Hegelian in a way [he followed Hegel’s idea that ‘God’ comes to self consciousness thru the development of humanity] but F.S. was a Materialist- Hegel was an Idealist. Remember- idealism is the philosophical system that sees reality existing in forms/ideas first- then later comes the material thing. The great ancient philosophers- Socrates, Plato and Aristotle were all Idealists. F.S. espoused the idea that reality starts with the material existence of man first- and thru religion man ‘projects’ the idea of God/spirit into society- and as man and Christianity develop [all good things for F.S.] that the ultimate truth that we learn on this journey is that man is really all there is- his ‘phase’ of God and religion were simply necessary stages for man to arrive at this self conscious state in which he finally realizes that man is all there is- God was a ‘crutch’- a needed one- but never the less simply a projection of mans mind until he came to full maturity. For F.S. ‘theology [the study of God] is anthropology’ [the study of man]. So in this sense he follows Hegel- the development of man and society is the development of God- but Hegel starts with spirit projecting ‘himself’ into creation- and F.S. starts with man/matter first- and man projects this idea of God/spirit as a secondary reality. The philosopher Paul Ricoeur describes F.S. and his disciples as holding to a system of belief called ‘the hermeneutics of suspicion’. This meaning that religion and God are not just things that seem to be irrational [according to certain enlightenment critics] but that religion itself is a mask that adds to the suffering of man- that man is under the dominion of false ideas- ideas that have been developed by those who want power over others- and these taskmasters use religion as a tool to oppress the ignorant masses. This idea will come to full bloom in the mind of Marx. Marx referred to religion as a ‘false consciousness’ that kept man in servitude to others who ruled over them- and religion itself was the tool that kept these ignorant masses in check. Nietzsche thought religion had its roots in weakness and sickness- and that the most decadent used it to control those who were actually more moral than the leaders. Freud saw religion as an effect of repression and the actual cause of mental conflict and guilt- he blamed religion for all the psychosis that man is afflicted with in life. The next few posts in this study [whenever I get to them?] I will try and develop all 3 of these famous thinkers ideas- show the errors in their own thinking- and the aftermath of generations who have tried/fleshed out their philosophies- and have found them dreadfully lacking in the end.

[1623] CHRIST CHURCH? A few weeks back I was going to write a post from the words of St. Peter found in the New Testament ‘The time has come that judgment must begin at the house of God [Christ’s church= house of God] and if it starts there- what will the outcome be for the rest of the world?’ [paraphrased it]. Right after the ‘thought’ the major events off the coast of Japan hit and we have this trilogy of disasters to deal with [Earthquake, Tsunami, Nuclear meltdown]. I did find it ‘strange’ that the recent events started with Christ Church New Zealand- and seemed to spread from there. I heard a Geologist the other night- he had previously predicted the earthquake that hit Ca. during the World Series a few years ago. He said the sign of the dead fish recently washing up in Ca. was not a coincidence- he said the fish can sense a change in the earth’s magnetic field [prior to an earthquake] and that in Japan these fish kills are actually called ‘earthquake fish’. Wow. You do hear lots of talking heads during these types of events- yet it would be nice to know the truth on these types of things. The last year or 2 we had earthquakes along the Pacific Rim; Chile, New Zealand and of course Japan. If you look on a map you see the Pacific Ocean and you can draw a circle around the perimeter- the part that affects us is the West coast- so they already have a run on Iodide pills [fear of the radiation crossing the Pacific from Japan] and some are predicting an earthquake. The other night I caught a quick news flash of Saudi Arabia sending troops into Bahrain to fight back against the protestors- as it flashed by quickly- I said ‘geez- this is a major event- and it’s getting lost in the media frenzy’. Then O’Reilly spent 15 minutes on a real important life changing story- a stripper who works with a snake- the snake bit the woman on her breast- the snake died from the silicone from the breast implant. Another news show spent almost the whole hour on sports- even the president did another March madness prediction- at a time when the world has protestors in the streets- who thought we would help them [Libya] and they are actually saying ‘Obama- where are you- where’s Bush?’ Now- whatever your view is on intervening [no fly zone- etc.] the fact is if the feeling around the globe is that we are not taking these things seriously enough- then the image of the president doing March Madness picks does not look good. So what do we make of it all? When Peter said ‘judgment must 1st start at Gods house’ he of course was not directly talking about the city of Christ Church, New Zealand. Yet in a prophetic sort of way- these types of things can be signs of what’s to come. One of the important developments has been the fact that the Arab/Persian nations have indeed chosen to ignore the pleas from the U.S. to go easy on the protestors- and they simply have said ‘screw you- look at what you did to Egypt- we are gonna go the Gadhafi route’ [to a degree]. Saudi Arabia crossing into Bahrain- a small Persian Gulf nation where we have lot of troops stationed [and the 5th fleet docked] is a major development. The markets [both Asian and U.S.] have fallen over the fears that the Nuke disaster is already as bad as Chernobyl- and the unrest in the Middle East and Africa is not getting better. So we pray- we show the world that we don’t just throw our hands up and say ‘the end of the world is here’ but we also recognize it is in mans nature to deny the reality of judgment- the reality that mankind faces times where things build up and the planet suffers for it. In the 19th century there was a movement in Christian theology called ‘Liberal theology’- not liberal in politics- but a whole genre of teaching/thought that challenged a lot of the ‘old time’ beliefs [like original sin] and focused on the ability of modern man to rise above the ignorance of the past [even in religious thought] and man was on the road to a true Utopian society that would never fail. This belief was strong- both in the universities of Germany as well as in the politics of the Western world. Then you had the world wars- 8 million people killed in the first one- and 50 million in the 2nd one. Men like Karl Barth [a Swiss theologian- teacher] would challenge the liberal view of mans ‘inner divinity’ and he would blast the Christian world with his famous ‘the epistle to the Romans’ his commentary on Paul’s famous treatise- released in 1918. Though Barth is what some describe as ‘Neo- Orthodox’ [the strong Reformed teachers don’t appreciate Barth very much] yet he did bring the church back to the biblical doctrines of original sin and mans inability to ‘save himself’. Barth saw the reality of the WW1 and rejected the Utopian belief that man was so advanced that he would reach for the sky- and grab it! Today we see lots of shaking in the world- some are focused on March madness- some find it profitable to do a story on a stripper- we need to keep our eyes [and bibles] open- mankind is in need of God- man has gone thru stages where he thought the ‘old belief’ in God would fall away- to the contrary- the govt’s of man [apart from God] seem to be the thing that’s falling away.

They were a true warrior nation- trained to fight from their youth- and this defeat sent the people of Athens into a time of disillusionment.

They questioned the power of their gods- and a sort of malaise fell over Athens after the defeat.

This was when Socrates entered the fray- when the people had many questions about life.

He was called the Gadfly of Athens- a title that would also be given to the 19th century Danish father of existentialism- Soren Kierkegaard.

They were called Gadfly’s- because they were like flies that would pester you- and elicit a response.

The leadership of Athens saw Socrates as one that was stirring up the youth of his day- and creating discontent among the populace.

He rejected the many god’s of the day- but did have a belief in a single deity- he- like the Christians 4 centuries later- would be accused of atheism- because of his rejection of multiple god’s.

He was sentenced to death in 399 BCE- and his form of execution was drinking Hemlock.

His most famous student- Plato- spoke with him before his death.

Many were surprised at how willingly Socrates faced his demise- and this willingness had a great impact on those who witnessed it.

Socrates never wrote anything- but most of what we do know about him comes from the writing of others- most notably from Plato’s Dialogues.
Plato wrote down what Socrates taught- In his writings we see Socrates engaging in this method with various people- thus the name of Plato’s works- Dialogues.

There is a debate about how much of what was written about him was actually true- Plato did add his own ideas into these debates- and the controversy about this is so strong that we actually have a name for it- the ‘Socratic Problem’.
During the time of the disillusionment of the Athenians- there were a group of philosophers known as the Sophists.

The word comes from Sophia- meaning wisdom.

Philosophy itself means The Love of Wisdom.
In our day the words Sophomore- Sophistry and Sophisticated are derived from this root word.

The Sophists were the original Pragmatists.

Pragmatism is a form of belief that says ‘do what works- regardless of the ethical implications’.
We will get to Pragmatism at the end of this whole series on Philosophy.

But for now- we see the division between what Socrates taught- and the
Now- I do not ‘spiritualize’ everything in the book of Revelation- and over time I might teach the various views on the book [historic- future- a mix of both- etc.]But what I want you to see in this post is the primary ‘enemy’ that Christ wars against- is Satan’s tactic to deceive man- thru sin- and the way sin effects the mind.
I read a book on addiction a few years ago [read a few] – and one of them was quite interesting.
It was a book on addiction recovery- from those who left AA.
The new program they started [and have good results] was based solely on recognizing the ‘addictive voice’.
Over time- thru many personal stories- they learned that sin/addiction starts in the mind- many testified to the fact that before they sinned- they actually found themselves ‘mouthing’ words like ‘I can’t believe I’m going to do this’
They taught- at that point- reject [rebuke] the voice.
[ that the image of the beast should both speak ,]
Many spoke about images of sin in their ‘mind’s eye’- Jesus warned against sin- saying ‘if your eye is evil- your whole body will be full of darkness’.
As you read these references I posted from revelation- you see an aspect of this
‘Those who worship the beast- and his image’ ‘those MARKED in their minds/hands’.
At the end of the book we read of those who overcame the beast- they ‘stood on a sea of glass- mingled with fire’.
Those who come up out of the waters of baptism [our identification with Christ] ‘stand on a sea’ in a sense-
Yet- it was fire too- I taught this year on the Baptism of Fire
So- the great victory over the beast and his image- is thru the work of the Cross- Jesus- thru his Word- kills this beast.
We are then raised to walk in newness of life- and have authority in the kingdom with him [sit on the throne too- this is actually not the teaching for the week- but I just wanted to give you a flavor of what’s to come].
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame , and am set down with my Father in his throne.
[1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; 2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind;and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. 4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved 😉 6 And hath raised us up together , and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: Ephesians- Note ‘the spirit that now works IN THE CHILDREN of disobedience’- the primary spiritual warfare takes place inside people- Jesus ‘wars’ against the sinful nature of man- the ‘spirit’ working IN sinful/lost man].
And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them [Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life? Corinthians]: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image , neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands;
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame , and am set down with my Father in his throne.
1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away ; and there was no more sea. 2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband [This is us- THE CHURCH- THE BRIDE]. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying , Behold , the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow,nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away [Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away ; behold , all things are become new. Corinthians] . 5 And he that sat upon the throne said , Behold , I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write : for these words are true and faithful. 6 And he said unto me, It is done . I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable , and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers,and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone:which is the second death.For others- it might be time to leave former sins in the past- Ephesians 2:2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:
Ephesians 2:3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
Romans 6:2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?
Romans 6:3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?
Romans 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
Romans 6:5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
Romans 6:6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the1802- THE HARVARD PROFESSOR

Caught an interesting show the other night- a Harvard economist [liberal] gave a lecture on economics.

Now- when I say ‘liberal’ I do not use the term in a derogatory way- no- he was the type of economist that would fit into the category of a Paul Krugman.

Krugman writes for the N.Y. Times and often [always?] gives you the Keynesian view.

So anyway this Harvard prof. made some good points.

But he blundered somewhat in his defense of Socialism/communism.

He talked about Karl Marx [the ‘founder’ of the system] and said that what happened in the Silicon Valley boom [the Dot.com businesses] was a type of Marxism.

The internet boom companies had a different view of the business structure- instead of the ‘bosses’ being over the working class stiff- you would have the actual employees run the show.

Yeah- when you watch the documentaries on Facebook [and other Companies like it] you do see an environment where all these young ‘hipsters’ are calling the shots- and they do have a sense of freedom that you don’t see in the standard business model.

But the Harvard Prof. went a step too far when he compared this to Marx.

Marx was raised in Germany- he was a Jew.

His father had to re-locate his business and join the Lutheran church in order to fit in with the people he needed to do business with.

Marx would eventually go to ‘university’ in England- and he developed his ideas in an environment where the industrial revolution took off.

He witnessed the plight of the working class man [proletariat] and how he became a victim of the factory system.

In England you did see many hopeless workers fall prey to a lifestyle that had you going to work at the factory all day- often in a dark and dingy environment.

You would come home to a gloomy existence and often drink yourself to sleep.

Marx saw the working class as victims of the Ownership class [the original 99 versus the 1%].

Marx saw that those who ran the system- and ‘owned the tools’ had the true influence in society- and according to Marx- they used two primary means of controlling the masses.

Law and Religion.

So Marx advocated for a violent overthrow of the system- thru Revolutionary means- in order to free the working class slave from the power of the few.

Now- where the Harvard Prof missed it is he compared Marx’s idea to the Dotcom business model.

Facebook and other internet businesses- they tried to empower the worker by making him part owner.

When Facebook went public this last month [Initial public offering] it was said to have made many millionaires overnight.

Why?

Because those who got in at the start [even the kid who painted the Graffiti on the walls of the building] were offered the option of cash or stock.

Those who took the stock became rich when the company went public [it actually will go into effect if a couple of more months].

So- this model empowers the working class person by making him part owner.

Okay- Marx wanted to ‘level the field’ by putting the State in charge.

He felt like if you took the power away from the private owner [capitalism] then you could even out the scales by making the state decide how much pay was fair- and the state would literally own ‘the tools’ of the system.
Most of us know by now that his system failed pretty badly [Soviet Union].

Though he meant well- trying to defend the hopeless worker- yet he created a Monster State- and the state would become the new oppressor of the people- and take away the incentive that the private ownership model gave.

So all in all- the Harvard prof had some truth to what he said- but he went a step too far.

In today’s political climate- we all have a tendency to hear one side- and if we lineup with that side- we very rarely question those who advocate the way we believe.

It’s important to hear both sides- to give credit to the ideas that are good- and then reject the ideas that are bad.

Marx had some very legitimate concerns- the founder of the Salvation Army- William Booth- began his ministry to the same class of people that Marx saw.

Marx rejected religion because he believed the ownership class used it to keep the masses under.

Any truth to this?

Some.

Many of the Black slaves were encouraged to attend church and keep singing their Black spiritual songs.

Why?

Many of the themes of these great songs did indeed encourage the suffering servant to just hold on until he/she gets to the Promised Land.

VERSES-
. Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
Acts 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
Acts 2:3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
Acts 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
Acts 2:5 And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.
Acts 2:6 Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.
Acts 2:7 And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans?
Acts 2:8 And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?
Acts 2:9 Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia,
Acts 2:10 Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes,
Acts 2:11 Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.
Acts 2:12 And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?
Acts 2:13 Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.
Acts 2:14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:
Acts 2:15 For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.
Acts 2:16 But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;
Acts 2:17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:
Acts 2:18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:
Acts 2:19 And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:
Acts 2:20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and notable day of the Lord come:
Acts 2:21 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Acts 2:22 Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:
Acts 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
Acts 2:24 Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.
Acts 2:25 For David speaketh concerning him, I foresaw the Lord always before my face, for he is on my right hand, that I should not be moved:
Acts 2:26 Therefore did my heart rejoice, and my tongue was glad; moreover also my flesh shall rest in hope:
Acts 2:27 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
Acts 2:28 Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.
Acts 2:29 Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.
Acts 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne;
Acts 2:31 He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.
Acts 2:32 This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.
Acts 2:33 Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.
Acts 2:34 For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
Acts 2:35 Until I make thy foes thy footstool.
Acts 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made the same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Acts 2:37 Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Acts 2:39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the LORD our God shall call.
Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
Acts 2:41 Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.
Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
Acts 2:43 And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.
Acts 2:44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
Acts 2:45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.
Acts 2:46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
Acts 2:47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.
. Joel 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:
Joel 2:29 And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.
Joel 2:30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
Joel 2:31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and terrible day of the LORD come.
Joel 2:32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.

BETHLEHEM CHRISTIANS- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-11-15-bethlehem-christians.zip

I shot this video on after Sunday Church- Enjoy.
An interesting thing happened when I went to get the cards out of the car [you see me on the video getting the ministry cards].
I opened the glove compartment to get the cards- and a bunch of stuff fell out.
After the video I got in the car- and one of the things that fell out was my missing passport.
Even though it’s expired- I went to the passport place a while back here in Corpus to renew it.
They said it would be easier if I brought the old one.
I looked everywhere and couldn’t find it.
As I talked to the kid on video- he asked [after I stopped videoing I think- or before] if I have ever been to Israel.
I told him not yet- but have been to Europe.
As I get ready to ‘hit the road’ [car packed and all] I’ve also been wanting to go back to Europe.
So I thought that was interesting.
NOTE- You’ll see on the video that the main guy- who is offering the items- didn’t want the younger kid to be on video [not sure why- they are openly selling the items- they come every year. But when I went back the kid asked if I could edit a little out. I told him I will try- I’m doing that right now. If it works it works- if not I’ll just post it. If I thought it was a ‘danger’ to them- I would not. I think there might have been some other reason [maybe it has to do with the items they are selling?] So- I tried. I had a good talk with kid- he attends [openly] a Christian university in Israel- and is studying theology.
ON VIDEO-
.Christians from the Holy Land
.Vow of poverty?
.Jesuits
.Nagasaki crucifixions
.Contradiction or Paradox?
PAST POSTS I DID THAT RELATE TO VIDEO-
(1211) LIFT UP YOUR HEADS, O YE GATES; AND BE YE LIFT UP YE EVERLASTING DOORS; AND THE KING OF GLORY SHALL COME IN. Psalms 24:7 God sees us as his temple, his city, his vineyard. We all have ‘gates’- doors, areas where we have been ordained to function; people groups who make up our parameters. God put Adam in a specific setting, he placed him in the garden and told him to take care of it, watch over it. Many animals would come and go and dwell within its borders, there was even a 4 lane river that flowed out of it. There was much activity in the garden; Adams job was to maintain the garden. The other aspects would basically take care of themselves. Over the course of Christian history there have been times when Gods garden has lost her focus, become haphazard and full of weeds. At these times he raises up people/movements to help bring her back into shape. Around the 7th century you had a man named Benedict start the first monastic order, the Benedictines. He would establish the famous abbey at Monte Casino; these monasteries would eventually become centers of learning and wisdom for the people of the time. In the 13th century you had the Dominicans and the Franciscans. Around the time of the Reformation you had the Jesuits, a brother named Ignatius left his wealth and former life as a soldier to found these ‘soldiers for God’. The Jesuits would play a major role in the scientific revolution, the percentage of leading scientists who were Jesuits was very high compared to their numbers. They would send missionaries into Japan and make the first inroads for the gospel. They would be persecuted and martyred in a famous city, they were crucified on the sides of the road as a witness for their faith. The name of the city where this happened was Nagasaki, sometimes the previous acts of violence that a society permits opens up the door for all types of future bloodshed. These movements arose out of a sense of the people of God losing her way, the church becoming rich in goods, but not in spirit. So God raises up people/movements to tell his people ‘lift up your heads o ye gates- look to me again and I will come in’ there are times when the garden lost her luster, the Lord didn’t simply plow it under, he allowed those who were tilling her time to get her back in shape. I think it’s time for all of us to ‘lift up our heads/gates’ so the king of glory can come in, he is a strong king, mighty in battle. When he comes in [thru our praise] then a banner of war is lifted up against the enemy, victory will not be far behind.

(1210) SAVE THY PEOPLE AND BLESS THINE INHERITANCE. FEED THEM ALSO AND LIFT THEM UP FOREVER- Psalms 28:9 I guess I will hit a few scattered Psalms, these last few weeks I have been reading the Psalms and trying to add a verse to memory every day or so. Sort of praying/meditating on them like the famous ‘Jesus prayer’. The Jesus prayer is an ancient simple prayer that says ‘Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on
Governor Brown- a smart guy- he once studied to be a Jesuit priest- they are top of the line intellectuals among Catholic priests.

[just as a side note- this order rose up during the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century. A soldier by the name of Ignatius Loyola was wounded and recovering in the hospital.

He read about the life of Christ and dedicated himself to the Lord.

The Jesuits were the order he founded.

They evangelized all the way into Asia- an area that the Protestant missionaries avoided.

The Jesuits played a major role in the scientific revolution- as a percentage of how few Jesuits there were- they had a huge impact on the development of modern science.]

So governor Brown said his state has lived beyond it’s means for too long- they spent money they did not have- and now the chickens have come home to roost.

Brown is a liberal Democrat.

The governor of N.Y. said the same thing a few months back.

When he got elected he actually worked with the unions in the state and worked out a deal where they were going to cut the huge expenses that the retirees managed to bargain for over the years.

Cuomo- another Democrat- said it was impossible for the state to continue to pay out these lavish benefits.

After the union leaders made the deal- the rank and file rose up [like Greece] and simply elected new leaders who would fight the changes.

I heard a clip from Cuomo- he was yelling ‘we can’t keep making the rich/businesses pay- they are all leaving the state’- just like Cali.
these areas will ‘abide forever’ that is your impact will affect many generations to come. Right after the 16th century Reformation you had what is referred to as the Enlightenment, or the ‘age of reason’. Many thinkers began to challenge the institutional church [and institutions in general] and believed that reason and rationality would lead the way. In France [1700’s] Paris became a center of thinking for these Deists. These men were smart enough to realize that the total denial of God was too ridiculous to accept, they instead embraced Deism. Deism is a type of belief that said God started the ball rolling, but he left the rest on auto pilot; the same belief that the Greek philosophers embraced. Now, one of the famous ‘Philosphes’ [sic] was a man by the name of Voltaire, he is well-known as an infamous atheist today, but he did not totally reject God. These men did have tremendous influence and they produced the French Encyclopedias which backed up their cause. Eventually they would overthrow the Catholic Church and kill the king in their mad rush towards ‘reason’. They were wrong on their basic understanding of reason and rationality as they applied it to the church. They believed that rational thought meant ‘naturalistic thought’ that is in order for things to be rational, they could not be supernatural. They were wrong, in fact those who would later take the next step into full atheism would deny the laws of reason and logic all together. I saw Richard Dawkins do an interview the other day, he is one of the popular atheists of our day. These men who reject God accept a view of creation that violates the laws of logic; they teach/believe that all things came from ‘no-thing’ a scientific impossibility. This idea violates the law of ‘reason’ known as the law of ‘non contradiction’. This law states that a thing cannot be and ‘not be’ at the same time and in the same relationship. For all things to have come from nothing [self creation] would mean that all things created itself. It would have to ‘have been’ before it was. This common system of belief is absolutely irrational, even though the atheist believes it to be rational. To believe that God is a self existent being who created all things does not violate the laws of logic, you might think it does, but it doesn’t. For someone to have existed forever does not violate the classic laws of logic. So these thinkers who thought that their rejection of God was ‘rational’ were in fact wrong. Their ideas led to effects that were horrendous, they in effect ‘planted seed’ [bad doctrines] that would outlast them and their generation, their bad ideas had bad consequences. But the truth of God and his kingdom have also been ‘planted’ in the world, these seeds will last forever. If you want to effect society for good, then plant the seeds that will have an eternal impact, for ‘he that does the will of God will abide forever’ [1st John].

I have a catalog sitting here- from the company that I order courses from. A few years ago I got on their mailing list [How- ?] and ever since I have been bombarded with monthly catalogs.

I mean every month- a bit much. Then I realized that one month out of the year they put a bunch of courses ‘on sale’ for around 70% off the regular price- and that’s probably where they do their best business [I now only buy from the discounted monthly catalog].

Anyway- I read the intro to their course on Dark Matter/Energy- these teachers are really good- they are professors from the premiere universities of the world [Oxford, Harvard, etc.] and to get the courses at this price- well it’s really a bargain.

But over the years- studying various disciplines [Theology, Apologetics] it’s easy to see when some smart men- make really bad mistakes.

Especially when dealing with the whole ‘proof for/against God’ type stuff.

In this short intro to the Dark Matter course [Physics- these courses cover everything- history- science- religion- the whole 9 yards] they start out okay- they explain that according to the standard theory of modern physics- that there is about 95 % [wow- that number has jumped these last few years!] of matter ‘missing’ in the universe.

What do they mean by ‘missing’? They go on to explain that the effects that we see in the universe- the gravity and function of the universe- well according to standard theory- there is simply not enough matter to explain how all this is held together- how everything actually works.

Okay- so they admit that there are a whole bunch of phenomena- that we see taking place- that modern science has no idea how it’s taking place.

Now- as the intro continues- they say in order to ‘fill the gap’ they have come up with the idea of Dark Matter.

Dark Matter is simply a name given to nothing- that is nothing that we can detect thru the means of modern science.

Okay- by definition- it is a Metaphysical reality- something that science has espoused as a possible cause for the effects we see in the universe- and by their own definition- its invisible- undetectable and unseen- it is metaphysical [just like the argument for the existence of God].

So they go on to say ‘we know that this matter exists- because how else could you explain how everything works’- now- to those who get into these debates- the guy who wrote the intro- I’m sure he means well- but his whole argument is a materialistic one.

He is saying that there is no chance that some type of ‘non matter’ can be making this happen.

So he then says ‘because WE KNOW that there has to be a material explanation for this- no ‘God stuff’ here- therefore its Dark Matter.’

Okay- and what is Dark Matter again? O- it’s this non detectable- unseen matter- that just happens to make up 95 % of the universe.

Okay- Mr. smart guy- you don’t go for those Intelligent Design guys- the ones who argue that some non material force might be behind this- you rejected their argument because you say they are arguing from a non material realm [called metaphysical].

So how again have you proven that your idea- all this missing matter- exists? O- easy- because we see the effects OF IT all around us.

Actually- no we don’t. We see the effects of SOMETHING- that is- modern science has this huge gap- there are effects taking place in the known universe- that have no materialistic explanation for- we can’t find a material, observable cause for these effects.

The Christian says ‘Okay- I stick God in that gap’ [which many materialists accuse us of doing- they call it the ‘God of the Gaps’ approach].

But the materialistic scientist [one who says there can only be a detectable- material cause to things- in order to classify it as science] he then comes up with the whole Dark Matter argument- an argument based on non detectable- unseen- unproven matter.

And he then says ‘it must be there- because how else can you explain how everything is functioning?’.

[1582] HITCHENS-PIRATES AND M THEORY- Let’s talk a little more about Christopher Hitchens book- God is not great. As I’m reading thru the book- and also doing some studying on Modernity- it’s obvious for me to see the errors in the arguments Hitchens is making in trying to refute the existence of God. Instead of attempting to refute each argument he makes [and to be honest- he does make many classic mistakes- things that are not really hard to show as false]. Let me give you just a few points- Hitchens comes at you from all angles- history, science, historical criticism [a view of the bible that tries to undermine the historical accuracy of the faith] politics- he basically covers all the angles that I too like to engage in. He is smart- no doubt about it- and he mocks Christians, Jews, Muslims- and he does it in a way that says ‘you are all idiots’. So that’s why when attempting to refute him- when I see him doing something stupid- I try and bring that out. Okay- one of the major mistakes Hitchens makes [a common mistake in the field of apologists versus atheists] is he appeals to the basic idea ‘we- as intellectual people do not accept things based on faith- we only believe things that can be scientifically proven to be true’ now- how many times have you heard this? This argument is only made by those who are ‘novices’ in this debate. Why? Because at face value it is very easy to refute. Hitchens, Dawkins, Harris- and all the other famous atheists believe in all types of historical events- things that happened in the past- without a single shred of ‘scientific proof’. Let’s see- Do you believe Lincoln was shot? Have you personally done DNA tests on the remains? Have you even seen the remains? Let’s see- what about Aristotle and Socrates and Plato- surely as refined as these men are- they most certainly believe that these great Greek philosophers lived 4 centuries before Christ. Again- what scientific proof can you show me- you know- the standard that you’re using to judge whether or not Jesus ever lived? Basically the argument that says ‘faith and Jesus and God are not real truth- not like science’ is a totally illogical argument- unless these men would have us believe that they reject all of the above historical figures I just mentioned. So how does the bible- Jesus- God- hold up to the historical test [not the scientific test!]? Point of fact- there is no other historical person- in the history of the world- with more historical proofs of his existence. There are no other ancient documents- dating back to the time of Christ- that have the historical accuracy that we find in the New Testament- Luke- the writer of both the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts- from a purely historical point of view- is considered the best- most accurate- first century historian to have ever lived [I explained it all before under the Evolution/Cosmology section- I think it’s in the 8-2010 posts]. Basically the argument Hitchens is making is dishonest at its core. Then- he gets into M Theory [geez- didn’t really want to go there] Okay- I love studying science, history, Physics. And to be honest- Physics is really not my ‘field’ that is I prefer to show you the mistakes Hitchens is making when he pretends to be a bible student [he makes statements that he is a regular reader of the bible- who goes thru it often- I seriously doubt that claim- he seems to be familiar with certain critical scholars of scripture- theories that have long been rejected- documentary theory by Wellhausen- and you can kinda tell he simply reads the critics and incorporates their ideas into his own- heck- if there is no God- then what’s wrong with plagiarism?] Okay- Hitchens seems to be enamored with Stephen Hawking- I wrote about Hawking a month or so ago- in his recent book- Grand Design- he made some ‘Grand mistakes’ and I refuted these errors. Now Hitchens seems fascinated by certain theories of Hawking- and his worship of the man’s theories goes to the extreme. Hitchens speaks of the famous idea in theoretical physics called M Theory- modern physics [standard theory] says our universe is made up of Pixels- fine points of matter that are unseen by the naked eye- but exist as the basic fabric of the universe. Now- we all accept this- Atoms- Neutrons- etc. all little ‘dots’ if you will, that make up our universe. So M theory [a theory that expands upon String theory] says ‘no- maybe the universe is made up of these strings- these vibrating strings that form into circles- and under these hoops- there are buckets that make up the matter of the universe’ Okay- just think in your head of a piece of string- make a loop- under the loop stick a basketball net. Walla- that’s the theory. Now- does this sound stupid to you? Well you’re in good company- it also sounds stupid to a growing number of very able physicists! Yes- many brilliant- non religious scientists- will tell you that doing science like this- just making stuff up- is loony. So to be honest- as interesting as theoretical physics is- there are many things that simply do not meet the standard of ‘solid science’. So- why mention this. Hitchens uses this theory as proof against the existence of God [in a weird- tortured way] and at the same time says ‘I don’t accept things that can’t be scientifically proven’ yet the whole M theory field is very doubtful- some think the whole thing is simply not true. So it’s stuff like this- obvious mistakes- that are sprinkled all thru out his book. I mean he even makes mistakes that novices make- he mistakenly refers to the establishing of the state of Israel as having occurred in the 19th century- I mean I can’t believe he doesn’t know the actual date- 1948- I have to think that he simply made the common mistake of thinking the years 1900-1999 are the ‘19th century- a common mistake made by people who are just beginning the journey of learning [obviously the 1900’s are the 20th century]. But at the same time he lambasts Christians as idiots and does stuff like this. It reminds me of the time I was watching MSNBC- now this cable channel is filled with nonstop mocking of the political right- one morning the host [Scarborough] was doing his show- and he reads the upcoming story to come on after the commercial- but you can see he’s confused- he asks someone off screen ‘does that say Pirates’? And they tell him yes- he then says ‘folks- your not gonna believe this- but when we get back- yes- we will cover the developing story of Pirates- yes I know it sounds unbelievable- Pirates attacked a ship off the coast of Somalia’. Now- no one ever said anything- he came back and simply reported the story. What’s wrong? He obviously thought Pirates meant ‘Pirates’ you know- Johnny Depp and the Caribbean. I’m sure someone informed him during the commercial ‘Piracy is the official term for robbery on the high seas- you dummy’! Can you imagine the mocking they would have done if Sarah Palin had done this? So I see in Hitchens a mocking of religion and at the same time a conceited view of his own intellect- and the intellect of other atheists- he engages in a sort of debate that says ‘look- you religionists are idiots- we are not’ and he makes such obvious mistakes- things that ‘uneducated’ people do all the time- not bad people- just common mistakes like the ‘19th century’ thing. And if people make mistakes like this [Pirates- etc.] fine- we don’t want to beat people up- but if the entire premise of your book [or cable channel] is ‘look at all the Christian idiots’ and then you make the same mistakes your criticizing the Christians for- well then yes- you look as silly as Joe Scarborough thinking Johnny Depp and his crew were out robbing ships!

ARISTOTLE

Born in Northern Greece- in 384 BC.
The most famous student of Plato- attended Plato’s Academy for around 20 years.

His main disagreement with Plato was on his theory of Forms.
Plato believed that the ‘idea’ world contained the forms of all things we see in the physical realm.

Aristotle taught that substance itself was the main thing- that the forms of what we see in the natural realm come from matter itself.

He spoke about Potentiality and Actuality- that is the material things have in ‘seed’ form the final product.

The acorn has the Potential of becoming a tree- the fetus has the Potential of becoming a man- etc.
The form is already embedded in the thing itself- it does not exist in the ‘idea’ world of Plato.

Aristotle loved and admired his teacher- yet Plato had somewhat of a disdain for his most famous student.
Plato passed over Aristotle to head up the Academy- twice.

As things go- Aristotle went and started his own school- called the Lyceum.

Aristotle did not just teach Philosophy- but Biology- Logic- Ethics- Rhetoric.
Some refer to him as the first real scientist.

His development of the laws of Logic- Cause and Effect- play a key role in the Scientific Method till this day.

Aristotle taught that the main way we gain knowledge is thru sense perception and experiment.

As we study the natural order of things themselves- we gain understanding from them.

What we refer to as the Empirical method- knowledge gained thru the observation and experimentation of things.

He referred to God as the Final Cause- not the First Cause.
Why?

He believed in God [some debate this- Aristotle himself called him God in his work on Metaphysics] and called him the Prime Mover.

As I said before- a big thing with the early thinkers was the origin of Motion- who started the ball rolling- so to speak.

Aristotle credited the source of all motion to an ‘un- moved Mover’.

He gave the attributes of God to his Mover- said he had no beginning- was not material- an eternal and imperishable substance.

So- why the Final Cause?
He said God attracts all things to himself- so in his mind- motion started by attraction- not by a ‘push’ so to speak.

This is interesting indeed- in modern physics we see that the universe is undergoing a continual expansion- heading somewhere- of course we believe this somewhere is God himself- the source of all things.

Isaac Newton agreed with Aristotle on this point- he referred to it in his 3rd law of Physics.

The medieval Muslim thinkers called him ‘The First Teacher’- and Kant [who we will get to later in this study] credits him with the bulk of what we know today as the Laws of Logic.

Aristotle taught that the main activity of God was thought.
The bible says that thru Wisdom and Understanding God made things [‘Wisdom builds the house- Understanding establishes it- and thru Knowledge it’s rooms are filled with all pleasant and precious riches- Wisdom is profitable to direct- the words of the wise are like nails fastened by the masters of assemblies- as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation’- various bible verses found in Proverbs- Ecclesiastes and Paul’s letter to the church at Corinth] – in a way Aristotle was right.

One of his key contributions was the Syllogism- you start with a Logical argument- you engage in Deductive reasoning- and come to a Conclusion.

A famous example would be ‘All men are mortal- Plato is a man- Plato is mortal’.

Aristotle did not believe that something comes from nothing- a phrase that will come up a lot as we progress in this study is ‘ex nihilo nihil fit’- meaning Nothing comes from Nothing.

He was also what we refer to as a Teleolologist- he believed that there was design and purpose in the created order of things.

He saw design in the universe- world.

Many today embrace an idea that there is no purpose or design- that the design we see in the material world is by accident- and furthermore some say all that we see- CAME FROM NOTHING.

I can’t stress enough that this is simply not possible- I don’t say this from the Christian view point alone- but from a scientific one.

Science deals with the observation and testing of things- we look into the material world and come to certain conclusions based on what we see- observe.

One of the most fundamental observations that science SEES- is what I quoted above- NOTHING COMES FROM NOTHING.

That is- every effect has a cause.

This is important for our day- because many have capitulated to the view that all things CAME FROM CHANCE.

Not only is this statement illogical [chance is simply a word- this statement ascribes Ontological status to a word- which is impossible].

But it is scientifically not true.

Why?

Because science shows us that things do not ‘pop into existence’ without a cause- from nothing.

True science in no way contradicts belief in God- no- it backs it up.

Aristotle- as well as most of the great thinkers we shall cover- came to the conclusion that there had to be some immaterial thing [being] that was the cause of all other things.

Now- why did he argue for a PRIME MOVER?

Because he believed that the universe was eternal- if there ever came a time when science showed us that the universe had a beginning point- then the argument would be over.

The Theists [those that believe in God] would win.

Sure enough- in the 20th century that’s exactly what happened.

Today Physics teaches us that time- space- matter did indeed have a beginning point- what we refer to as the Big Bang Theory.

If the early thinkers had this knowledge- then the argument for a Prime Mover would be moot- because instead we would have a Prime Starter- see?

Aristotle is credited with writing the second greatest work on Ethics from the ancient period- called Ethics [the first one being Plato’s Republic].

He wrote on political theory- believed that Aristocracy [rule by the excellent] was the best form of government [sort of like Socrates Philosopher Kings].
Aristotle’s most famous student was Alexander the Great.

During Alexander’s conquests- he took a huge team of scientists with him- they collected all types of specimens from these conquests- and Alexander brought them back to Athens and they were used at the Lyceum for further study.

It has been said that this was the most expensive scientific enterprise up to the day of the modern space program.

He taught that the intellectual virtues can be taught directly- but the moral ones HAD TO BE LIVED FIRST.

The bible says ‘the fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom’.

I agree.

Proverbs 3:19 The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens.
Proverbs 3:20 By his knowledge the depths are broken up, and the clouds drop

VERSES-
Luke 18:18 And a certain ruler asked him, saying, Good Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?
Luke 18:19 And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God.
Luke 18:20 Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honour thy father and thy mother.
Luke 18:21 And he said, All these have I kept from my youth up.
Luke 18:22 Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me.
Luke 18:23 And when he heard this, he was very sorrowful: for he was very rich.
Luke 18:24 And when Jesus saw that he was very sorrowful, he said, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!
Luke 18:25 For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
Luke 18:26 And they that heard it said, Who then can be saved?
Luke 18:27 And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.
1Timothy 6:1 Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his doctrine be not blasphemed.
1Timothy 6:2 And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.
1Timothy 6:3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
1Timothy 6:4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
1Timothy 6:5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
1Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
1Timothy 6:7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
1Timothy 6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
1Timothy 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
1Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Jesus said this [Mammon is money by the way]

ACTS 3 https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-13-15-acts-3.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Last till N.J.?
.Columbus day
.I got frisked!
.Fundamentalism
.Fly the sign
.What’s holding Jesus back
.The Moses prophet
.Peter or Paul?
MY POSTS- [verses below]
Now- Liberal and Conservative- in the field of Theology- are not political matters.

Liberals are those who hold to the critical view of the bible that was developed in the 19th century- primarily out of the German universities- men like Rudolph Bultman were leaders in the field.

This ‘way’ of interpreting the bible- called Higher Criticism- had some good points to it- but at the end of the day they came to reject the historical accuracy of scripture- and said that the Gospels were written by unknown men who wanted to simply convey spiritual truths that Jesus taught.

Conservative teachers [like me] hold to the belief that the bible is indeed historically accurate- and the ‘Inspired Word of God’.

Okay- as I went thru the course- I honestly expected Bart to make a better case for his side.

I really learned nothing knew- I was already familiar with the critic’s points- and he made the same ones that the conservative side has already refuted.

Now- let me give you a few examples.

When I first started reading thru the bible as a new believer- I did find some of these ‘discrepancies’ myself.

I noticed that in Matthews’s gospel the story about the denial of Jesus says Peter will deny Jesus 3 times before the ‘rooster crows’.

In Marks gospel it says ‘before the rooster crows twice’.

When I first saw this- it really wasn’t that big of a deal to me- and one time I mentioned it to my Pastor- a good Baptist man who was trained in a Fundamentalist school- and to my surprise he was not aware of this.

I also noticed a few more things like this over the years- and my pastor simply was never trained in these areas.

Now- I mention this only to point out that if you get a well rounded education- it really should include some of these so called discrepancies.

Some of the Higher Criticism is helpful- some not.

But to avoid these textual problems- simply because you’re a Fundamentalist- does more harm than good- especially when your parishioners are learning the stuff on their own!

Okay- I ‘solved’ the problem of the denials by simply seeing that even though one gospel says ‘before the rooster crows’ and the other ‘twice’- that at the end of the day one writer is simply giving you more detail.

It really is not a contradiction- if Matthew said ‘before the roster crows once’ then yes- that would be a problem.

But he simply gave less detail than the other writer.

Okay- after becoming familiar with Ehrman- and knowing that he is famous in the field of liberal scholarship- I thought for sure he would come up with something better than this.

But in actuality- this was one of his main examples of why the bible is not historically accurate.

[parts of posts]
Psalms 8, 22. Isaiah 8- Notice how the author freely quotes from Psalms and Isaiah- just like we saw in the book of Romans-
Notice how the writer applies the quotes to Jesus himself ‘I will sing praises to you in the midst of the congregation’ ‘made a little lower than the angels’ etc.
I just finished another course- by a Yale university scholar-
He taught from the ‘historical criticism’ view of scripture.
This type of reading of the bible arose out of the German universities in the late19th- early 20th centuries.
It had some good aspects to it- but in many ways it was an unfair criticism [taking apart] of the biblical authors.
I mention that to say when we see the New Testament writers interpreting these Old Testament scriptures in this way- Those of us who believe the bible to be the inspired Word of God.
Then we don’t see it as a ‘miss-reading’. For instance- critics say that some of these verses are not speaking of Christ- now- that may be true in the general sense- when the Jews first read these verses from the Old Testament.
But we- Christians- see it as God revealing the true fulfillment of these prophecies- in Psalms and Isaiah.
So- the critics will note that these verses applied in a general way- and not to Christ.
But the believer sees it as God using the writers of the New Testament- under inspiration- as revealing to us how the Old Testament is now being fully revealed thru Christ.
Psalm 8:4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
Psalm 8:5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast
[more parts]
And I have read/heard statements from non Christian scientists who say this very thing. They can’t get heard- even though the most basic plank of Evolution [common ancestry] has basically been shown to never happen.

See the dilemma? Yet around the turn of the century many fine scholars- men like B.B. Warfield from Princeton- they embraced evolution because they thought the Genesis account left room for various interpretations. And they thought that Darwin was proven to be right- all the way.

So today we have the problem of biased science- that is science that has gotten to a point we they can’t really admit that after 150 years- it does seem that Darwin’s initial idea- which came at a primitive time- was just wrong.

Now- does this mean the ‘God’ idea is right? Well for me- and others- sure. But I can float another scenario- which would still not explain the actual origin of life- but it would fit better than common ancestry.

That idea would be instead of thinking that one original life form arose from the Primordial Soup- you say many arose.

That’s it- you have solved a huge problem by just adjusting the theory- so why don’t they adjust it? Well Darwin’s theory has become more of a religious belief than anything else- to challenge it is considered scientific heresy.

Okay- what about Genesis? Yesterday I gave you some ideas on how different people view it. At the same time that Evolution was being hyped- you also had what’s called ‘higher criticism’ arise out of the universities of Germany. These were the scholars [Butlmann- etc.] that kind of thought the new scientific age was on the rise- humanism was the future- and if there was any chance to ‘save religion’ then ‘religion’ had to adapt.

These guys meant well- but they threw out too much. They embraced an idea called ‘The Demythification of religion’. They thought that the bible still had valuable moral stories in it [Sermon on the Mount] but when it came to science and stuff like that- well a lot of that was told as Myth- not Myth life a fairy Tale- but Myth meant it really was unreliable in these areas.

Many fine men embraced an idea that challenged the historical accuracy of the first 11 chapters of Genesis- stories like a talking Serpent in the Garden- Noah’s Flood- the Tower of Babel- all of these ‘stories’ are found in the first 11 chapters- and it was easy for these scholars to say ‘see- these are not ‘real’ stories- they are Myth’.

Okay- what’s the problem? Well- when you look at various portions of the bible- it is true that some parts are poetry- others are historical narrative- others are Prophetic- and it is helpful to know these types of distinctions.

But if you view Adam and Eve- or Noah’s Flood [you know- the whole world being saved by a man and his family on a boat!] If you read the New Testament Jesus says ‘as it was in the days of Noah’ or ‘in the beginning God created them male and female’ now you have Jesus referring to these first 11 chapters- and he is speaking about them in a way that sure sounds like true history.

See? So these types of debates do rage at times- but overall the bible has stood up to the test of time. Many of the critics will use some of these things to challenge the church- and in a noble effort some good scholars jumped a little too quickly onto the Darwin bandwagon- especially at a time when some scientists are looking for a way to get off!

Even though Philosophy deals with Metaphysics [things beyond the natural- physical realm- Physics] yet Thales wanted to find explanations for existence- without leaning on Myth.

He is considered a ‘Pre Socratic’ thinker [before Socrates] and espoused an idea that water was the key source of all things.

These guys were looking for a singular thing to explain stuff.
Sometimes referred to as a unified theory- the same thing that Einstein was seeking to find some 2 Millennia later.

So- Thales surmised that water was the key thing.

There are various ideas of why he came to this conclusion- but one reason might have been the idea of motion.

Many Geek thinkers were looking for the source of motion- where did it come from?

And to the natural eye- if you observe the ocean- rivers- etc. – there does seem to be no cause for the moving of water- so to these guys it seemed like water itself was the source- motion came from water.

Now- there were other religions who taught a sort of idea along these lines.

Some pagan religions said that the ‘god’s’ moved upon the water- and life came
(820) ROMANS 1:21-32 the scripture says that all creation ‘knew God’. The indictment is ‘there is no excuse’. The previous verses proved that God not only made man, but that because man was made in Gods image, he therefore had an ‘inner imprint’ of his maker inside him. Now man chose to ‘change the image of God into that of animals’. Man could not escape this inert desire to worship, this thing in him that said ‘there’s more to life than simple flesh’. So he didn’t just become an atheist [though that’s what they would have you believe] but they became ‘changers of Gods image’. They came up with an alternative ‘religion’. Scripture says they changed God’s image into that of an animal [idolatry] and worshipped and served the creature more than the creator. Evolution was Darwin’s feeble attempt at ‘changing the image of God into that of animals’. How so? Modern man was too enlightened [after all we had the enlightenment!] to actually go out and make an image of an animal and bow to it. Instead he bought into the idea that he evolved from animals. Scripture says we are made in Gods image, evolution says ‘we are made in the image of an animal’. Men did not ‘like to retain God in their knowledge’. They had to have some controlling worldview, they came up with one. Now Romans says God gave them up to become like that which they chose to worship. Man was designed to worship God, in seeking and going after God they would become more like him. When man chooses to empty his mind from the creator, God allows him to fill it with what he wants. He receives a ‘reprobate mind’. He fixates on the animal instincts that are a natural result of ‘worshipping four footed beasts’. Now man has no choice but to be formed into the thing that he worships. Paul is here telling us that man became immoral as a result of his own choice to eradicate God from his thoughts. Man received the just recompense of his choice. At the end of the chapter Paul closes with ‘they know that those who do these things are worthy of death’. Once again the idea of judgment ‘the wrath of God is revealed from heaven’. Paul’s summary; Man is unrighteous. God is righteous in punishing man. Man chose to become like this. The only way to escape an inevitable meeting with wrath is to ‘become righteous’. This is accomplished thru believing the gospel. When you believe you become righteous and are no longer on Gods radar screen for judgment.
[One note on Evolution- In the future I hope to cover various views on Evolution- and explain some of the objections that Christian’s have- are actually not good arguments. For instance- in the creation account- Genesis 1- we read that the ‘waters brought forth life’- we see that in the creation account itself- there are progressive acts- God ‘made man’ from the dust- do Christians object to ‘the dirt’? No. We don’t argue ‘no- we weren’t made from dirt! – God made us’! True- but God can use progressive acts- and materials- that are ‘base’ in his creative acts- see?]

ROMANS 2:1-13 ‘Therefore thou art inexcusable, o man, whosoever thou art that judgest’. Now, this chapter will run with the theme ‘who do you think you are to judge, you do the things that you say are wrong’. Yikes, this type of preaching convicts us all. But we need to understand that Paul is saying a little more [well, a lot more!] than this. Here’s where we need to do some history. This letter is addressed to believers in Rome, those ‘called to be saints’. Paul is also giving one of his strongest defenses of his theology, he realizes that a large Jewish population are also at Rome [Acts 28]. By the time of this letter the lines are being drawn between ‘Paul’s gospel’ [the true gospel] and the ‘Jewish law gospel’ coming from the

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VERSES-
Acts 3:1 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.
Acts 3:2 And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple;
Acts 3:3 Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms.
Acts 3:4 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us.
Acts 3:5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.
Acts 3:6 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
Acts 3:7 And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.
Acts 3:8 And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.
Acts 3:9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God:
Acts 3:10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.
Acts 3:11 And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s, greatly wondering.
Acts 3:12 And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk?
Acts 3:13 The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go.
Acts 3:14 But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you;
Acts 3:15 And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.
Acts 3:16 And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
Acts 3:17 And now, brethren, I wot that through ignorance ye did it, as did also your rulers.
Acts 3:18 But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.
Acts 3:19 Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.
Acts 3:20 And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:
Acts 3:21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.
Acts 3:22 For Moses truly said unto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
Acts 3:23 And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.
Acts 3:24 Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.
Acts 3:25 Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed.
Acts 3:26 Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.
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Acts 7:20 In which time Moses was born, and was exceeding fair, and nourished up in his father’s house three months:
Acts 7:21 And when he was cast out, Pharaoh’s daughter took him up, and nourished him for her own son.
Acts 7:22 And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds.
Acts 7:23 And when he was full forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren the children of Israel.
Acts 7:24 And seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended him, and avenged him that was oppressed, and smote the Egyptian:
Acts 7:25 For he supposed his brethren would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them: but they understood not.
Acts 7:26 And the next day he shewed himself unto them as they strove, and would have set them at one again, saying, Sirs, ye are brethren; why do ye wrong one to another?
Acts 7:27 But he that did his neighbour wrong thrust him away, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge over us?
Acts 7:28 Wilt thou kill me, as thou diddest the Egyptian yesterday?
Acts 7:29 Then fled Moses at this saying, and was a stranger in the land of Madian, where he begat two sons.
Acts 7:30 And when forty years were expired, there appeared to him in the wilderness of mount Sina an angel of the Lord in a flame of fire in a bush.
Acts 7:31 When Moses saw it, he wondered at the sight: and as he drew near to behold it, the voice of the LORD came unto him,
Acts 7:32 Saying, I am the God of thy fathers, the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. Then Moses trembled, and durst not behold.
Acts 7:33 Then said the Lord to him, Put off thy shoes from thy feet: for the place where thou standest is holy ground.
Acts 7:34 I have seen, I have seen the affliction of my people which is in Egypt, and I have heard their groaning, and am come down to deliver them. And now come, I will send thee into Egypt.
Acts 7:35 This Moses whom they refused, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge? the same did God send to be a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel which appeared to him in the bush.
Acts 7:36 He brought them out, after that he had shewed wonders and signs in the land of Egypt, and in the Red sea, and in the wilderness forty years.
Acts 7:37 This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear.
Matthew 16:13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
Matthew 16:14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.
Matthew 16:15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
Matthew 16:16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
Matthew 16:17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.
Matthew 16:18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
Matthew 16:19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

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THE CARNIVAL https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-15-15-the-carnival.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Jeremy’s baseball
.Stick in a park
.Sons are for signs
.Some bad- some good music
.Confessing church

PARTS OF PAST POSTS-
[1611] EXODUS 20- God gives the people his law- the famous ’10 commandments’. In Greek it is Decalogue [meaning 10 words] and these laws are actually in the form of an ancient treaty type document- in essence God was not just saying ‘do this- don’t do that’ but he was telling them if they wanted to survive as a people, a society- then they needed law, just principles from which to govern themselves by- and also to hold each other accountable to their government and God.

As I continue to write and post about current world affairs- I also do lots of actual scholarly studying- I try and ‘mix’ world events in with historical perspective and keep my thinking in line with others who have gone on before us- stable thinkers, people who represent a broad range of thought. It’s too easy [and dangerous!] to view all things from a limited perspective- and then to see your view confirmed by your limited reading of the events. I saw a minister on one of the history channel shows speaking about his view of the ‘end of the world’. It was obvious that the program was allowing him to share his view- not because they thought it to be accurate- but because they wanted to show how people can see their beliefs confirmed by world events- if that’s what they want to see. Now- let me give you an example; during WW2 the church in Germany was divided- some wanted to work in accord with the state [Hitler] and others said they wanted no type of ungodly alliances with the state. Men like Dietrich Bonheoffer would reject Hitler’s ideals and be part of ‘the confessing church’ [those evangelicals who would not work with Hitler]. Another very famous theologian [scholar] would sign his name to an important document that stated the same idea of not condoning Hitler’s regime- his name was Karl Barth [considered by many to be the most influential theologian of the 20th century] the document was called The Barmen Declaration. In these cases the church felt she needed to speak out about world events- to side with those who were being oppressed- and to condemn those who were oppressing.

As I write this morning- we come off a day where our forces accidentally killed 9 Afghan boys who were out collecting wood for fire. Gen. Petraeus publicly apologized. Hamid Karzai is livid [rightfully so] and we are rapidly losing the support of the people [and I don’t blame them]. Yemen’s president gave a very revealing speech- he told his country that he was going to ‘reveal a secret’. He said there is a secret operations room in Tel Aviv [Israel] and the purpose for it is to conspire against the Arab world and that the U.S. and Israel regularly meet to plan the overthrow of the Arab world. He obviously feels the heat [like all these other nations- he has protestors in the streets] but the fact that these leaders are actually speaking like this openly- our ties to these Arab nations are over. At the airport in Germany- a Muslim employee opened fire on 4 people- killing 2 American soldiers. Reports are he shouted ‘Allah Akbar’ [God is great] while firing his weapon.
(1022)ECCLESIASTES Solomon said there was nothing new under the sun. During the 16th century reformation you had a number of ‘offshoot’ movements that sprouted. Some define these as the radical reformers. Groups like the Anabaptists [re-baptizers] and others. As you read the writings of many of these groups you find that they were definitely seeing truth for their day. George Fox, the founder of the Quakers, was hitting the nail on the head when it came to ‘church as the building’ he exposed the limited mindset that many believers embraced. He would refer to the churches as ‘steeple houses’. Many of these groups were deemed heretical for a myriad of reasons. The Quakers would embrace a belief that emphasizes the truth from the Spirit versus the letter of the law. Some would carry this to an extreme and associate all ‘head knowledge’ faith as wrong. Any doctrinal correction from the more reformed brothers was seen as ‘dead knowledge’ coming against Spirit truth. So they would get branded with the heretic title by some. The same goes for the Anabaptists and many others. The sad thing is many of these movements were partial ‘reformers’ in their own right. They had good things to add to the debate. If you read some of their writings you would think they were a few hundred years before their time. I have read scholarly works from Catholic theologians on the Ecclesia [church] and what she is. These works were right on! Even though the average Catholic might not be aware of them. So you find real treasure in many of these groups. Their really is ‘nothing new under the sun’. You should avoid a mindset that begins seeing ‘my group’ or ‘my way of seeing things’ as the true group, and the majority of other Christian groups as false. While it is easy to see whole mindsets of limited understanding that exist in the church at large, I feel it’s dangerous to grasp hold of an idea that says ‘90% of all Christianity is dead wrong, they have all been duped until now’. This is sort of like the teenager saying to dad ‘you’re so behind the times, my new way of seeing things is better than yours’. Most times the teenager later realizes that this was an overreaction. I think we all need to read the great writers of days gone by, Bonhoeffer wrote excellently on the communion of the saints. Our Church of Christ brothers had real truth on the church as the people. The Catholic mystics new that there was more to the Christian way than simple knowledge, they sought a real experience with God. As you enter into this glorious communion of the saints, there will be obvious blind spots that you can find in many of these writers, but maturity allows us to by pass the faults of others [love covers a multitude of sin] while receiving the valuable stuff. Avoid the strong ‘they are all wrong’ spirit, remember ‘there is nothing new under the sun’.
{1208} yesterday I went to my daughter’s ranch house to work on her A.C., it was over 100 degrees in the direct sun. I thought I threw my tee shirt in the car, but couldn’t find it. I worked in a long sleeve black shirt, wound up taking the whole darn thing apart [in direct sun at noon!] and felt like I got some heat exhaustion. So, it was in this environment that I finished [almost finished] the book ‘why we love the church’, boy do I have some major disagreements with Deyoung’s fundamental view of church. I think his view is very limited, I think it’s unbiblical and I almost don’t want to recommend the book at this stage [contrary to my earlier endorsement]. I was not sure if I should try and go thru some quotes and refute them, this mode often turns into a ‘he said, you say’ type of argument and usually does not convince either side. Let me simply hit a few things; page 110 ‘I do appreciate church as staged drama’ [quoting someone else] page 164 ‘the Body of Christ becomes visible to the world in the congregation gathered around word and sacrament’ [quoting the great martyr Bonhoeffer] 166 ‘you and your buddies who never ‘go to worship services’ are under no ecclesiastical authority’ 168 ‘the office itself [pastor] is not to blame’ then quotes Ephesians 4:11 to justify the modern office of ‘the pastor’, and on pages 132-135 his overall view of the crusades, well I simply wrote ‘unbelievable!’ on the margins. I always found it untenable when someone quotes the actual interaction between Paul and his first century ‘organic, communal, mystical, house churches’ in order to justify the institutional church against the ‘out of church’ church. Many learned scholars have looked at the term ‘pastor’ in Ephesians 4 and none of them [learned!] believe that this term defines the later development of pastor as the head of a local congregation who ‘administers the sacraments to the people in the building on Sunday, the Lords day’. Which reminds me of Deyoung’s use of John ‘on the Lords day’ in the book of Revelation. He believes John was speaking of Sunday ‘the Lords day’, this term more than likely is speaking of the great dramatic view of revelation and of course Jesus future coming as well as the whole period of conflicting kingdoms and Jesus final great victory. ‘His day’ simply speaking of Jesus victorious time period. Some see a set period of wrath as ‘the Lords day,’ to see an early ‘Lords day’ as Sunday as church day from this verse is ridiculous. And the overall argument that Deyoung makes about Christians ‘leaving church’ and trying to be Christians ‘without church’ is simply a huge blind spot of Deyoung. He tries to say [or says] that because the word ‘church’ [ecclesia] means assembly [true enough] that those groups who practice community without ‘church building, liturgy, offices, etc..’ are trying to ‘be the church without the church’. Yet every single New Testament church in the bible, according to Deyoung’s view, would be ‘the church without the church’. Needless to say I disagree almost 100 percent with his view of what the Ecclesia is. This will probably be my last entry on the book [unless the last chapter has some major things that need to be addressed] Deyoung’s view of church is important for all to see [emergents, out of church believers, etc.] it is probably the basic view that most well meaning men would use to defend the traditional view. I believe this view to be very limited and fundamentally disconnected from scripture and the first century churches described in the bible. For the record, in a few hours I will be ‘attending church’ at the mega church I attend here in Corpus. I also appreciate the historic church tremendously, I agree with Deyoung [and Kluck] on the bad attitude that many in the ‘out of church’ movement have towards the historic church. I just think Deyoung went way over board in trying to say that ‘the Sunday church meeting, in the church building, with the liturgical sacraments being administered by the ecclesiastical authorities’ is what church really is. I see this view to be extremely limited and disconnected from the Ecclesia’s spoken about in scripture. I simply believe Deyoung has got it wrong. [If you think this review was too tough, just imagine if I wrote it yesterday with the heat exhaustion!] Note- To be fair Deyoung does say that you can ‘have church’ without the building, as long as you have the offices, liturgy, etc. Sort of like saying if you move the entire Sunday liturgical drama into the basement, then yes you can ‘have church’ without the building. I simply disagree with his entire view of ‘having church’.

(1206) CASH FOR KLUNKERS AND KLUCK- Okay, I mentioned a few weeks back about the cash for klunkers program, I thought it was a bad idea. A day ago the govt. officially scrapped the plan. Dealers all over the country were decrying the red tape and bureaucratic hoops that they needed to jump thru to get their money, they started dropping out. I also read a story in the paper how many used car dealers were losing their normal used vehicle flow; some actually went out of business. One guy said ‘what about all my customers that needed the $3,ooo dollar cars? Where can they go for the cars, the govt. is crushing them at their expense’ in essence the people who were smart enough to trade in their $1,ooo dollar cars for $4,500 were not the ones who were really struggling financially, these folks had enough to finance new cars at the publics expense, the public tax payers were footing the bill, and losing the used cars that they needed to meet their needs. Wow, and you want the govt. to run your healthcare. Okay, I read a few more chapters of ‘why we love the church’ Deyoung [Pastor] and Kluck [sheep- he attends Deyoung’s church] take turns writing their own chapters, just like their first book. Kluck shares a story about being at a Pastors convention, all the good preaching and a few top notch evangelicals. He shares from a sincere perspective how all these men are sincere, how they were encouraged to get back to expository preaching in ‘their churches’ and he gives a few examples how ‘at his church’ they have a time when everyone gets a chance to talk every few months, you know a service of testimonies. And how it usually is not the most edifying thing in the world, but he appreciates it when his Pastor [Deyoung] is prepared and teaches a good old expository message. Okay, I think I too would appreciate attending a theologically reformed church [I don’t] and probably would like hearing good in depth stuff, but these examples show me that Kluck and Deyoung are dealing with a different type of thing than the organic church movement is trying to address. They are basically saying the ‘churches’ on every corner
[1568] ALEXANDRIA- EGYPT. Last night I was watching the news coverage of the demonstators in the streets of Egypt- they were protesting the government’s response [or lack] to the bombing of the church in Alexandria, the second largest city in Egypt [around 4 million people live in the city]. As I watched the sad story- in my mind I recalled all the times I have run across Alexandria in my studies of history. The city was founded by Alexander the great in the 4th century b.c.e. It had the largest library of the ancient world and was Egypt’s capitol for around 900 years. When the Muslims took over in the 7th century Cairo became the new capitol [under another name at the time]. Alexandria was one of the great centers of Christian learning during the first few centuries of the 1st millennium of Christianity. I remember reading about the great church father Origen- he lived in the 3rd century and eventually would head up the school out of Alexandria- one of the first Christian schools of the day. The famous philosopher Plotinus also had a lot of influence in the city. It was sad to see the destruction on the news- so many years later. This morning I read Revelation chapter 13. The apostle John writes about the persecution of ‘the beast’ against the Christians- the apostle says he makes war against Gods people and overcomes them. We often neglect to see this aspect of scripture- I mean how many songs have you heard that say ‘the beast overcame us and killed us’. We like to sing stuff like ‘we overcome by the Blood of the Lamb’ [another verse from Revelation]. Yet the apostle foresees a time of persecution of the church that will include the deaths of many believers. Those who think the book of Revelation was written early [before a.d. 70] see Nero as the one who bares the mark of the beast- yes the popular 666 is in this chapter. Others who date the book later [around a.d. 90] see the emperor Domitian as the beast- either way John was speaking about a future ruler who would severely persecute the saints [and of course the most popular view today among evangelicals is the anti Christ is yet to come]. In verse 10 of the chapter John says those who kill with the sword, must die the same way- this is the patience of the saints. John is communicating to the 7 churches that he is writing to that they should not retaliate against their oppressors- they should patiently endure- knowing that the persecutors will eventually ‘hang themselves’ with their own rope. Of course the great empire of Rome would finally fall- and for those who see Nero as the 666 guy [my view] he eventually dies a shameful death as well [he killed himself].

As I watch the various responses from Muslims and Christians [and Jews] to these types of events- we all have a tendency to view things most favorably to our own particular viewpoint. While some Muslims are of course outraged over the church bombing- yet the Christian
. In the 19th century there was a movement in Christian theology called ‘Liberal theology’- not liberal in politics- but a whole genre of teaching/thought that challenged a lot of the ‘old time’ beliefs [like original sin] and focused on the ability of modern man to rise above the ignorance of the past [even in religious thought] and man was on the road to a true Utopian society that would never fail. This belief was strong- both in the universities of Germany as well as in the politics of the Western world. Then you had the world wars- 8 million people killed in the first one- and 50 million in the 2nd one. Men like Karl Barth [a Swiss theologian- teacher] would challenge the liberal view of mans ‘inner divinity’ and he would blast the Christian world with his famous ‘the epistle to the Romans’ his commentary on Paul’s famous treatise- released in 1918. Though Barth is what some describe as ‘Neo- Orthodox’ [the strong Reformed teachers don’t appreciate Barth very much] yet he did bring the church back to the biblical doctrines of original sin and mans inability to ‘save himself’. Barth saw the reality of the WW1 and rejected the Utopian belief that man was so advanced that he would reach for the sky- and grab it! Today we see lots of shaking in the world- some are focused on March madness- some find it profitable to do a story on a stripper- we need to keep our eyes [and bibles] open- mankind is in need of God- man has gone thru stages where he thought the ‘old belief’ in God would fall away- to the contrary- the govt’s of man [apart from God] seem to be the thing that’s falling away.

VERSES-
Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion. Isa. 8:18
Isaiah 53:1 Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?
Isaiah 53:2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.
Isaiah 53:3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Isaiah 53:4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
Isaiah 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Isaiah 53:7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
Isaiah 53:8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
Isaiah 53:9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.
Isaiah 53:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
Isaiah 53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
Isaiah 53:12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Numbers 18:1 And the LORD said unto Aaron, Thou and thy sons and thy father’s house with thee shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary: and thou and thy sons with thee shall bear the iniquity of your priesthood.
Numbers 18:2 And thy brethren also of the tribe of Levi, the tribe of thy father, bring thou with thee, that they may be joined unto thee, and minister unto thee: but thou and thy sons with thee shall minister before the tabernacle of witness.
Numbers 18:3 And they shall keep thy charge, and the charge of all the tabernacle: only they shall not come nigh the vessels of the sanctuary and the altar, that neither they, nor ye also, die.
Numbers 18:4 And they shall be joined unto thee, and keep the charge of the tabernacle of the congregation, for all the service of the tabernacle: and a stranger shall not come nigh unto you.
Numbers 18:5 And ye shall keep the charge of the sanctuary, and the charge of the altar: that there be no wrath any more upon the children of Israel.
Numbers 18:6 And I, behold, I have taken your brethren the Levites from among the children of Israel: to you they are given as a gift for the LORD, to do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Numbers 18:7 Therefore thou and thy sons with thee shall keep your priest’s office for everything of the altar, and within the vail; and ye shall serve: I have given your priest’s office unto you as a service of gift: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.
Numbers 20:1 Then came the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, into the desert of Zin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miriam died there, and was buried there.
Numbers 20:2 And there was no water for the congregation: and they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron.
Numbers 20:3 And the people chode with Moses, and spake, saying, Would God that we had died when our brethren died before the LORD!
Numbers 20:4 And why have ye brought up the congregation of the LORD into this wilderness, that we and our cattle should die there?
Numbers 20:5 And wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in unto this evil place? it is no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink.
Numbers 20:6 And Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they fell upon their faces: and the glory of the LORD appeared unto them.
Numbers 20:7 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Numbers 20:8 Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink.
Numbers 20:9 And Moses took the rod from before the LORD, as he commanded him.
Numbers 20:10 And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock?
Numbers 20:11 And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts also.
Numbers 20:12 And the LORD spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.
Matthew 27:33 And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a place of a skull,
Matthew 27:34 They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.
Matthew 27:35 And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.
Matthew 27:36 And sitting down they watched him there;
Matthew 27:37 And set up over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.
Matthew 27:38 Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.
Matthew 27:39 And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads,
Matthew 27:40 And saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days, save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross.
Matthew 27:41 Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said,
Matthew 27:42 He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him.
Matthew 27:43 He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him: for he said, I am the Son of God.
John 3:26 And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him.
John 3:27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven.
A gift is as a precious stone in the eyes of him that hath it: whithersoever it turneth, it prospereth. Pro. 17:8
But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever,sat down on the right hand of God; Heb. 10:12

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Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John.

NIETZSCHE’S ‘Twilight of the idols’. https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-18-15-nietzsches-twilight-of-the-idols.zip

https://youtu.be/u8mortvncDc Cop video
ON VIDEO-
.Cop kills boy who flashed high beams
.Nietzsche
.Streets too!
.Why did ‘Arab Spring’ start?
.Who got the Nobel Prize?
.Hey- look at the snipe I found
.Marx

NOTES ON COP VIDEO- I read the CNN story-
The cop had a new SUV- and obviously the vehicle ‘seemed’ like it had high beams on.
Why?
Because this was the 3rd time innocent citizens ‘flashed’ their beams at the SUV.
Now- this cop obviously was pissed off that people did this- because it happened on at least 2 other occasions.
The 17 year old boy dropped his brother off at CHURCH [note- not some gang kid- or drug deal] and was on his way to his girlfriend’s house.
The cop already pulled at least 2 other people over- for doing the same thing.
So- he’s out- has the ‘power’ to pull you over- not for a crime- but for pissing him off.
The kid was stunned with a stun gun- this could have caused him to jump up and act aggressive- because the stun gun was too close and simply ‘shocked the hell out of him’.
The cop states in his report that he thought the kid might have been ‘calling in local militia to help him’.
Why lie like this [besides the fact that criminal cops have a long history of this].
He’s making it look like he was in fear for his life [another lie].
The cop does have bruises on him- yet the video does not show this part- why?
He might have beat the hell out of himself.
So- he shoots the kid – 7 times mind you- in the back [couldn’t 1- or 2 bullets have done the job?]
The fact that he unloaded his weapon- into the kid’s back- shows you he was raging.
The judge who reviewed the case and sided with the cop.
What’s the problem here?
There are actually real criminals you could be getting- but instead he was on a ‘mission’ to pull everyone over that had problems with his new SUV that was blinding everyone he drove past.
Instead of reporting the problem to his supervisor- about the vehicle- he used his authority to harass the people who innocently notified him that they thought his high beams were on.
This was an unjustified use of force- and he should be fired- and go to prison.

NEW TEACHING- [past posts and verses below]
I mention on the video Nietzsche’s book ‘Twilight of the idols’.
It is considered a classic of Western Literature- though he espouses anti-Christian themes- to say the least.
I don’t think I’ve written on Nietzsche before- so I’ll do a quick teaching.
He was a German philosopher/thinker that challenged traditional ideas of morality and truth.
He believed classical philosophy [Socrates] made a mistake in teaching that man was to strive be moral-
Nietzsche believed that truth did not really exist- that ‘truth’ was simply words that the powerfully use to impose ‘standards’ on people.
He was initially a philologist- one who studied language- Greek and Roman textual criticism.
He later turned to Philosophy.
Nietzsche believed in ‘the death of God’- and rejected right or wrong.
To him these were simply ‘artistic expressions’ that the powerful foisted upon man.
Now- in the field of philosophy- those who reject ultimate truth- are called relativists.
And relativists- who reject objective truth- and God [not all do] are usually categorized as Nihilists.
Meaning if there is no real purpose to our existence- than in the end- we are without- well- ‘purpose’.
Some believe Nietzsche tried to create a purpose in his denying of God and ultimate truth-
His idea of ‘Affirmation’ and Becoming- taught that man should strive- without moral constraint [meaning if you have to- step on your fellow man- after all- to ‘love they neighbor’ is simply some false ‘truth’ that Christianity- and God [which to him are not true] have tricked man into a false value system].
So in Nietzsche’s world- the true purpose of man is to become the powerful one [the superman] who now has the right- thru language- to determine what ‘truth ‘ is.
I still think- in the end- this worldview is Nihilistic [no hope] and foolish. But- being his works have had a great influence on western Thought- that’s why I covered him on the video.
The book I mentioned [Twilight of the idols] had the sub-heading ‘How to philosophize with a hammer’.
He went all out- in a sort of fury- to challenge the Christian world view- and God himself.
The ‘idols’ he was smashing were God- and the upper class.
Like Marx- some of the thinkers who challenged Christianity- at times saw the church as a great hindrance to man.
Nietzsche was one of these men.
In the book mentioned above he said ‘morality is anti-nature’.
In actuality- that’s what Christianity teaches.
That man has a sinful nature- and he can only be free from this bondage- thru the redemption in Jesus Christ.
Nietzsche went insane later in life- he had contracted Syphilis- world views do indeed have consequences.

In the book he saw art as an expression of ‘the human will to power’. He said all language is an expression of art.
So- relationships of language to reality are established by acts of violence and power.
If you have the upper hand- and the power to impose your reality on others- then the words/morals you choose to impose- become the standards-
And there is really no other ‘outside’ truth or reality.
His ideas were insightful—but simply not true.
Since Nietzsche many thinkers have advocated a view that language has no real meaning- that truth does not exist.
Yet- all of them live their lives by some ‘objective reality’.
And they use language- all the time- to defend their views [if language is simply a form of art- that the hearer can put his own interpretation to- then it would be impossible to teach anything- even Nietzsche’s own views].

Nietzsche said ‘Christian morality is a command- it possesses truth only if God is truth’.
Actually- I agree with him on this.
PARTS OF PAST POSTS- [verses below]
In one of the Masses from Rome- the English interpreter used a word I though was strange.

I’m not sure if she was using the right word- even though it ‘fit’.

The new Pope- Francis- was speaking Latin.

And the interpreter was saying ‘immolation’.

Talking about Christ’s passion.

Now- the word immolation means burning- if you remember my political posts of a couple years back.

When I covered the Arab Spring- the first nation to rebel was Tunisia.

In the streets of Tunis a merchant ‘self immolated’- burned himself to death- as a sign of protest against oppressive govt.

This sparked the Arab Spring.

So- how cold this fit in with the Passion of Christ?

In the Old Testament we have a system of sacrifices- animals being sacrificed- as a sign of the future sacrifice of Christ.

One of the notable ones is the Burnt Offering.

Jesus- according to the book of Hebrews- fulfilled the sacrificial system by his death on the Cross.

During his earthly ministry he spoke about fire- baptism.

He says to the disciples one time ‘can you be baptized with my baptism’?

They answer yes.

Jesus says they will indeed be baptized with it- but not in the way they think.

He was talking about the ‘baptism of fire’.

The suffering they would have to face in the coming days.

He in essence was saying ‘you too must pass thru the fire- like me’.

Jesus said at one time ‘I have come to set fire on the earth- and how I wish it were already started’.

Huh?

Fire?

Self immolation- what’s your point.

Jesus was talking about himself- he was going to be the ‘brunt offering’ the ‘self immolation’ that would spark the ‘Kingdom spring’- see?

In Zechariah 12 it speaks about those who fight- war against Jerusalem- Gods people.

One of the images is those who set themselves against it will get burned.

That the governors of Judah [the elders]- they are like ‘sheaf’s of fire’ In the midst of the wood- all who lay hold of it get burned.

Yes- Jesus was the ultimate sheaf- they lit he torch- so to speak- at Calvary.

They did not realize what they were doing.

They started a fire that they could not put out.

2009- ALL THINGS?

Today is really my first day back- real time [I’m posting this right after I write it].

I have been journaling for the past 3 months- but that’s a little different.

Okay- out of all the news events- Boston marathon bombing- Ricin letters [by the way- last I saw they seem to have arrested the wrong guy].

(1332) Been doing some reading on church history/philosophy, it’s interesting to see the role that theology/Christianity played in the universities. Theology is referred to as ‘the queen of the sciences’ and philosophy was her ‘handmaid’. They saw the root of all learning as originating with the study ‘of God’. Many modern universities have dropped the term ‘theology’ and call it ‘the study of religion’. The study of religion is really the study of how man relates to God, his view of God; this would fit under anthropology/sociology, not under theology. Modern learning has lost the importance of the study of God and the role it plays in all the other sciences. The classic work of Homer [8th century BC] called the Iliad, has Achilles debating whether or not he should ‘stay and fight along the city of the Trojans’ and attain the legacy of a warrior; or to go ‘back to my homeland and live a long life’. He chooses to fight and lay his life on the line. The themes of the classics [courage, heroism, etc.] are biblical themes, even if God is not directly mentioned. The point being to try and exclude God from learning is silly, you can’t do it. Around the 17-18th century you had the philosophy of Existentialism rise up, as an ‘ism’ it really is a misnomer; ‘ism’ is a suffix that you add to the end of a word that makes it a system- ‘humanism’ ‘secularism’ etc. but existentialism is a word that means ‘anti-system’. Nevertheless the person who popularized this belief was a Christian, Soren Kierkegaard. The system he was rebelling against was the dead institutionalism of the Danish church, he felt that Christianity devolved into dead orthodoxy and lost all of its passion for true living and experiencing God. Nietzsche would pick up on this philosophy and apply it to atheism, and in the 20th century men like Albert Camus and John Paul Sartre would also embrace it from an atheistic worldview. They would say things like ‘man is a useless passion’ or write books titled ‘Nausea’ summing up the human condition. Though the 19th century atheistic humanists tried to give value and exalt the state of man, in their rejection of God and Christianity they were taking away the foundation for mans value. If you tell society that they arrived on the scene by some cosmic accident of evolution, and when you die you dissipate into nothingness, then how do you at the same time glory in his natural abilities to reach some point of Utopia? As the late Frances Schaeffer said ‘they were philosophers who had both feet planted firmly in mid air’. The point being when you neglect the reality and role that God and Christianity play in every sphere of life, you are then removing the foundation that these spheres were built on, true science and learning derive their basis from God. The greatest scientific minds of the past were either Christians or Deists, they were too smart to try and reject the reality of an eternal being.

[1586] FREUD-NIETZSCHE AND MARX- Today I need to do a little more on our study of Modernity [the thinkers who have influenced Western culture/thought from the 1700’s- 2000’s]. At this time I have 3 separate studies I have started on-line; Classics of literature, Great Christian thinkers of history, and Modernity. As time rolls on- I will gradually post all new studies once a year in a monthly post [most of the time it will be February] and as I update them you can read the most recent ones from the most recent years.

Okay- I am skipping a bunch of stuff to jump into the thinkers who represent the most popular forms of atheism- Marx, Nietzsche and Freud. But first we need to take a look at Ludwig Feuerbach. L.F. [Ludwig Feuerbach] laid the groundwork for these other more famous rejecters of God and Christianity. During the enlightenment period it was rare for the critics of religion to hold an outright atheistic view- men like Hume and Voltaire- though true critics of the church- did not come out openly and deny the existence of God. It was also difficult [impossible?] to hold professorships in the universities if you were a doubter of God. Both Hume and Voltaire did not hold positions. F.S. was Hegelian in a way [he followed Hegel’s idea that ‘God’ comes to self consciousness thru the development of humanity] but F.S. was a Materialist- Hegel was an Idealist. Remember- idealism is the philosophical system that sees reality existing in forms/ideas first- then later comes the material thing. The great ancient philosophers- Socrates, Plato and Aristotle were all Idealists. F.S. espoused the idea that reality starts with the material existence of man first- and thru religion man ‘projects’ the idea of God/spirit into society- and as man and Christianity develop [all good things for F.S.] that the ultimate truth that we learn on this journey is that man is really all there is- his ‘phase’ of God and religion were simply necessary stages for man to arrive at this self conscious state in which he finally realizes that man is all there is- God was a ‘crutch’- a needed one- but never the less simply a projection of mans mind until he came to full maturity. For F.S. ‘theology [the study of God] is anthropology’ [the study of man]. So in this sense he follows Hegel- the development of man and society is the development of God- but Hegel starts with spirit projecting ‘himself’ into creation- and F.S. starts with man/matter first- and man projects this idea of God/spirit as a secondary reality. The philosopher Paul Ricoeur describes F.S. and his disciples as holding to a system of belief called ‘the hermeneutics of suspicion’. This meaning that religion and God are not just things that seem to be irrational [according to certain enlightenment critics] but that religion itself is a mask that adds to the suffering of man- that man is under the dominion of false ideas- ideas that have been developed by those who want power over others- and these taskmasters use religion as a tool to oppress the ignorant masses. This idea will come to full bloom in the mind of Marx. Marx referred to religion as a ‘false consciousness’ that kept man in servitude to others who ruled over them- and religion itself was the tool that kept these ignorant masses in check. Nietzsche thought religion had its roots in weakness and sickness- and that the most decadent used it to control those who were actually more moral than the leaders. Freud saw religion as an effect of repression and the actual cause of mental conflict and guilt- he blamed religion for all the psychosis that man is afflicted with in life. The next few posts in this study [whenever I get to them?] I will try and develop all 3 of these famous thinkers ideas- show the errors in their own thinking- and the aftermath of generations who have tried/fleshed out their philosophies- and have found them dreadfully lacking in the end.

[1623] CHRIST CHURCH? A few weeks back I was going to write a post from the words of St. Peter found in the New Testament ‘The time has come that judgment must begin at the house of God [Christ’s church= house of God] and if it starts there- what will the outcome be for the rest of the world?’ [paraphrased it]. Right after the ‘thought’ the major events off the coast of Japan hit and we have this trilogy of disasters to deal with [Earthquake, Tsunami, Nuclear meltdown]. I did find it ‘strange’ that the recent events started with Christ Church New Zealand- and seemed to spread from there. I heard a Geologist the other night- he had previously predicted the earthquake that hit Ca. during the World Series a few years ago. He said the sign of the dead fish recently washing up in Ca. was not a coincidence- he said the fish can sense a change in the earth’s magnetic field [prior to an earthquake] and that in Japan these fish kills are actually called ‘earthquake fish’. Wow. You do hear lots of talking heads during these types of events- yet it would be nice to know the truth on these types of things. The last year or 2 we had earthquakes along the Pacific Rim; Chile, New Zealand and of course Japan. If you look on a map you see the Pacific Ocean and you can draw a circle around the perimeter- the part that affects us is the West coast- so they already have a run on Iodide pills [fear of the radiation crossing the Pacific from Japan] and some are predicting an earthquake. The other night I caught a quick news flash of Saudi Arabia sending troops into Bahrain to fight back against the protestors- as it flashed by quickly- I said ‘geez- this is a major event- and it’s getting lost in the media frenzy’. Then O’Reilly spent 15 minutes on a real important life changing story- a stripper who works with a snake- the snake bit the woman on her breast- the snake died from the silicone from the breast implant. Another news show spent almost the whole hour on sports- even the president did another March madness prediction- at a time when the world has protestors in the streets- who thought we would help them [Libya] and they are actually saying ‘Obama- where are you- where’s Bush?’ Now- whatever your view is on intervening [no fly zone- etc.] the fact is if the feeling around the globe is that we are not taking these things seriously enough- then the image of the president doing March Madness picks does not look good. So what do we make of it all? When Peter said ‘judgment must 1st start at Gods house’ he of course was not directly talking about the city of Christ Church, New Zealand. Yet in a prophetic sort of way- these types of things can be signs of what’s to come. One of the important developments has been the fact that the Arab/Persian nations have indeed chosen to ignore the pleas from the U.S. to go easy on the protestors- and they simply have said ‘screw you- look at what you did to Egypt- we are gonna go the Gadhafi route’ [to a degree]. Saudi Arabia crossing into Bahrain- a small Persian Gulf nation where we have lot of troops stationed [and the 5th fleet docked] is a major development. The markets [both Asian and U.S.] have fallen over the fears that the Nuke disaster is already as bad as Chernobyl- and the unrest in the Middle East and Africa is not getting better. So we pray- we show the world that we don’t just throw our hands up and say ‘the end of the world is here’ but we also recognize it is in mans nature to deny the reality of judgment- the reality that mankind faces times where things build up and the planet suffers for it. In the 19th century there was a movement in Christian theology called ‘Liberal theology’- not liberal in politics- but a whole genre of teaching/thought that challenged a lot of the ‘old time’ beliefs [like original sin] and focused on the ability of modern man to rise above the ignorance of the past [even in religious thought] and man was on the road to a true Utopian society that would never fail. This belief was strong- both in the universities of Germany as well as in the politics of the Western world. Then you had the world wars- 8 million people killed in the first one- and 50 million in the 2nd one. Men like Karl Barth [a Swiss theologian- teacher] would challenge the liberal view of mans ‘inner divinity’ and he would blast the Christian world with his famous ‘the epistle to the Romans’ his commentary on Paul’s famous treatise- released in 1918. Though Barth is what some describe as ‘Neo- Orthodox’ [the strong Reformed teachers don’t appreciate Barth very much] yet he did bring the church back to the biblical doctrines of original sin and mans inability to ‘save himself’. Barth saw the reality of the WW1 and rejected the Utopian belief that man was so advanced that he would reach for the sky- and grab it! Today we see lots of shaking in the world- some are focused on March madness- some find it profitable to do a story on a stripper- we need to keep our eyes [and bibles] open- mankind is in need of God- man has gone thru stages where he thought the ‘old belief’ in God would fall away- to the contrary- the govt’s of man [apart from God] seem to be the thing that’s falling away.

I covered this years ago in our apologetics posts- it was interesting to have re –read this from this author [Isaacson].

He is a good author- and explains stuff well.

Okay what was the other stuff that some objected to?

Some associated- wrongly- the theory of Relativity- with the modernist philosophy called Relativism.

Relativism [remember the philosophy stuff?] said that there was really nothing as objective truth- that what you see might be just as true as what someone else sees.

You might both be looking at the same thing [morally- murder- etc.] yet to one it might be wrong- to the other- right.

This idea- Relativism- was strongly rejected by many philosophers- especially those with a Christians/Theist background.

Even today this is one of the major debates going on in the world of the philosophy.

But- some confused what Einstein was saying- and they thought [or used it] to back up the ‘moral’ philosophy of Relativism.

This was a mistake.

Einstein himself- as I mentioned in an earlier post- was not a relativist at all- that is when speaking about moral absolutes.

So some began to associate him- as one of the new ‘Jew’ scientists- who were introducing dangerous doctrines to the world.

Yes- some of the objectors to Einstein objected on the basis of this new ‘Jewish science’ that was breaking away from the moors of Christian science- whose father was Isaac Newton.

See how both anti Semitism- and religious belief played a role in this?

I’ll end with a quote from a famous man of the time- an up and coming politician- I mean he could awe his audience like no other.

Obama- Clinton- even the great communicator- Reagan- were no match for this man when it came to giving a speech.

He said ‘Science- once our greatest pride- is today being taught by Hebrews’.

Who said this?

The future leader of Germany- Adolph Hitler.

.
VERSES- Hebrews 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession.
Hebrews 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Mark 10:35 And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, come unto him, saying, Master, we would that thou shouldest do for us whatsoever we shall desire.
Mark 10:36 And he said unto them, What would ye that I should do for you?
Mark 10:37 They said unto him, Grant unto us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left hand, in thy glory.
Mark 10:38 But Jesus said unto them, Ye know not what ye ask: can ye drink of the cup that I drink of? and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?
Mark 10:39 And they said unto him, We can. And Jesus said unto them, Ye shall indeed drink of the cup that I drink of; and with the baptism that I am baptized withal shall ye be baptized:
Mark 10:40 But to sit on my right hand and on my left hand is not mine to give; but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared.
Mark 10:41 And when the ten heard it, they began to be much displeased with James and John.
Mark 10:42 But Jesus called them to him, and saith unto them, Ye know that they which are accounted to rule over the Gentiles exercise lordship over them; and their great ones exercise authority upon them.
Mark 10:43 But so shall it not be among you: but whosoever will be great among you, shall be your minister:
Mark 10:44 And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all.
Mark 10:45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
Isaiah 53:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
Isaiah 53:11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

[too big for facebook- can read the whole post on the blog- sorry]
SOREN KIERKEGAARD ‘FEAR AND TREMBLING’- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-22-15-soren-kierkegaards-fear-and-trembling.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Why study the classics?
.C.S. Lewis too
.Was he depressed?
.Why write in the dirt?
.Leave by faith
.The 3 stages of life
.Sproul liked him!
.What was the city?
[PAST POSTS AND VERSES BELOW]
NOTE- I just walked outside from one of the spots where I work on my laptop- and sure enough there is a homeless guy- originally from NYC.
I also have become friends with another new ‘street guy’ named Vince [in another new spot where I go- to be alone].
I gave Vince the ministry card- so he could check out the site [I always tell these guys I do a homeless ministry- but at first they see me – often dressed in black- and they are suspicious].
So- I went to one of the new spots the other day- sure enough Vince says ‘Hi John’ [I forgot his name- had to ask for it again].
It seemed like he checked out the site- and saw I was telling the truth [Vince is homeless- but I could tell he is organized to a degree- able to survive pretty well- Like my friend Tim you saw on the last video].
I always find it ‘strange’ when I run into these guys [like just now] because these are areas where you normally do not see the homeless.
So- just wanted to mention this.
NEW NOTES-
Kierkegaard was a 19th century Danish philosopher- thinker- theologian and social critic [poet too!].
I’ve done philosophy posts in the past- and think I might have covered him before-
But these recent posts [Nietzsche] are simply covering the classics of literature-
So we will talk about his best known work ‘fear and Trembling’.
He covers different perspectives on the story of Abraham found in genesis 22- when God told him to offer his son Isaac as a sacrifice.
He gives different scenarios of how Abraham might have struggled deeply with this command.
Kierkegaard wrote at a time when many scholars were defending the Christian faith from the standpoint of reason and proofs for the existence of God.
Many defenders of the faith were trying to give an intellectual defense for the reality of God.
They sought to show that truth is objective [which it is by the way] and they gave very strong cases for the argument of the existence of God thru reason and history [for instance- faith is not ‘blind faith’ where you reject the mind- and simply believe in God as some blind act of a leap into the dark].
But- Kierkegaard responded to these intellectuals [Hegel- etc.] and said that faith is the 3rd stage of the journey of life.
The first stage people are spectators- they enjoy the arts- poets- even the study of deep theological truths [the so called Ivory Tower intellectuals].
But to him- this was not actually engaging in the reality of life- and God.
The 2nd stage was the Ethical stage- where you see the reality of right and wrong [natural law] the truth about the ‘fatherhood of God and brotherhood of man’ [some scholars reduced the faith to this].
But to Kierkegaard- this too was not ‘true faith’.
The 3rd stage he saw as ‘the religious stage’ of man- but to him religion was indeed a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ [sounds very evangelical for his day].
He criticized organized religion [the church state of Denmark] and stressed the need for the individual to experience God- even beyond the point of reason.
Now- in the scholarly debates that have raged over the centuries- a big one is whether truth is objective- or relative [or subjective].
Kierkegaard does seem to teach – at least in part- that truth [and our relationship with God] can be subjective.
I think he was not trying to embrace what some Relativists do- that there is no ‘real truth’.
But more in the line of showing us that we can’t reduce ‘religion’ to simple ethical standards- or reasoning-
Because- like in the story of Abraham- he was asked- by God- to do something that did indeed violate ethics- and the actual command of God to not kill.
So in fear and trembling he shows that Abrahams faith went beyond a simple head knowledge of right and wrong- but he had heard the voice of God- who by a lifetime of walking with him- he understood because he had a relationship with God.
In genesis 22 we read that Abraham went to offer his son- and told the servants ‘we will be back’.
In Hebrews 11 we read that Abraham simply convinced himself that if he offered Isaac on the altar- that God would raise him up.
Why?
Because Isaac was the child that God promised would be the father of many generations- God made this promise to Abraham.
Then how could Isaac be this promised child- and yet at the same time- be the child that God said to ‘kill’.
See- to Kierkegaard- the faith of Abraham was not reduced to an intellectual reality of right and wrong- but it was a passionate embrace of God- even to the point where others would never understand it.
In the end- God told Abraham it was simply a test- and he did not let Abraham go thru with the act.
Kierkegaard tried to show the struggles of man-
He also used the example of Job- where he was in great stress- to the point of seeking death- and yet he would still serve God.
He spoke about severe loneliness- and depression- the example he gave was solitary confinement- where even if the prisoner wanted to die- he could not ‘find death’.
Why was he so ‘negative’?
Some think the book fear and Trembling’ was actually his own experience.
He broke off the engagement to the love of his life- Regine Olson- because he felt God wanted him to ‘sacrifice’ this love- for a higher calling.
Much like Abraham being willing to give up his son- though he loved him so much.
Kierkegaard probably suffered from depression most of his life- and he died at the young age of 42.
TEACHING I DID IN THE PAST THAT RELATES TO VIDEO-

(821) . ROMANS 3:19-31 ‘Now we know that what things the law says, it says to those who are under the law… that every mouth may be stopped and all the world becomes guilty before God’. One of the questions that arise as a response to Paul’s gospel is ‘if the law cannot make us righteous, then why even have it’? Paul will consistently teach the concept that Gods intention for the law was simply to reveal mans sin to him. Man would have this ‘form’ of the law written on stone tablets and as he tried to live up to God’s standards he would come to the proper diagnosis that all men are sinners. This diagnosis would then lead him to a place of faith in Jesus. After he believes in Jesus he then fulfills the law naturally, out of having a new nature ‘yea, we establish the law’ [3:31]. I have found it interesting over the years to teach people this. To explain to sincere people, church goers. To say ‘did you know the bible says that no man can be saved by trying to obey Gods Ten Commandments’? I will always explain that this doesn’t mean that God wants us to break them! But when we come to the Cross we by nature keep them. These verses lay down the foundation of ‘justification by faith’. He that believes is righteous. To declare Jesus righteousness for the remission of sins that are past. Having faith ‘in His Blood’. Both Jews and Gentiles need to be made righteous thru faith/belief in Jesus. I want to establish this fact in your mind. Paul without a doubt describes this experience as being ‘justified by faith’. This is the same as saying ‘believing with the heart unto righteousness’. Later on [chapter 10] this needs to be understood when parsing the verses that say ‘with the heart a man believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation’ many are confused about this, to get it right you need to see that Paul spends much time early on establishing the fact that ‘those who believe unto righteousness’ are justified by faith already!

Below are just a few clips from Romans 1-3- I hope to hit on these in the video.

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Romans 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Romans 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
Romans 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
Romans 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Romans 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)
Romans 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
Romans 3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Romans 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Romans 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Romans 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
Romans 3:27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
Romans 3:28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

ROMANS 4-7
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/2-11-15-romans-4-7.zip
Video
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/700-galatians.wav?_=1 This is an old radio show I made years ago- thought it fit well with what I’m teaching now- you’ll need to use Internet Explorer browser to hear it.

The apostle Paul quotes a lot of Old Testament scriptures in this letter- I hope to cover some of them on the video- but as you read these chapters- it would be helpful to read Genesis 12- 13- 15-and 17- these are the main chapters Paul uses in the life of Abraham to show Abrahams faith- and how he was justified by faith- before he was circumcised [Gen 15].
He will describe the faith of Abraham by using the story of Abraham and Sarah having a son in their old age [Gen. 17] – and talk about how the heirs of the promise- that Abraham would be ‘heir of the world’ was made to ALL THE SEED- meaning not just to his Jewish brothers who would believe- but also to the Gentiles- who were never granted the ‘right of the covenant’ [circumcision].
Paul explains that Abraham was justified BEFORE he was circumcised- so- he is the father of all the kids- even the Gentile believers who were never circumcised- but had the faith of Abraham.
Now- there’s’ a lot I am trying to cover in this Romans study- for those who watch the videos- you will see that I’m also covering the divisions within Christianity- primarily those that arose out of the 16th century Protestant Reformation. I quote the book of James- and show how James says ‘was not Abraham our father JUSTIFIED BY WORKS when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar’. It’s important to see- that these words JUSTIFIED BY WORKS- are indeed used in our New Testament- in the videos I’m explaining this- but the point I’m making is James uses the account of Abraham- in Genesis 22- and shows us that the progressive work of ‘Justification’ can- and is- applied to the act of Abrahams obedience- and when God saw Abraham DO A JUST THING [a work] James says ‘he was then justified’- the same word used in the initial act of our Justification- seen in Genesis 15- ok- this might be a bit much to take in now- but over time when we get a better grasp on this- I believe it will help to foster unity in the Body of Christ.

James 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
James 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
James 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
James 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
NOTE- As I do this study- I’m copying/pasting an old commentary I wrote years ago- I guess I should read the commentary first- after I penned the above- I read it- I basically covered the same thing- at least I’m consistent!

ROMANS 4: 1-12 Now, Paul will use one of his most frequent arguments to prove that all men, both Jews and Gentiles, need to be justified by faith and not ‘by works’. The most famous singular figure that natural Israel looked to as the ‘identifier’ of them being a special people was ‘Father Abraham’. Paul does a masterful job at showing how Abraham was indeed justified by faith and not by works. The ‘work’ of circumcision came before the law. It would later become synonymous with law keeping [Ten Commandments] and Paul can certainly use it here as implying ‘the whole law’. But to be accurate this work of circumcision was a national identifying factor that Israel looked to as saying ‘we are better than you [Gentiles]’. Paul is showing Israel that God in fact ‘made Abraham righteous’ before he circumcised him! [Gen. 15] And the sign of this righteousness was circumcision. This meaning that Abrahams faith in Gods promise [a purely ‘passive’ act! This is very important to see. Later on as we deal with the famous ‘conversion texts’ we need to keep this in mind] justified him without respect to the law. God simply took Abraham outside and said ‘look at the stars, your children will be this abundant’ and Abraham simply believed this promise to be true. Much like the passive belief of Cornelius house at their conversion [Acts 10]. The simple belief in the promise of Jesus justifies the sinner! Now this fact of Abraham believing and being made righteous, before being circumcised, is proof [according to Paul] that Abraham is the father of ‘many nations’ not just natural Israel. All ethnic groups who HAVE THE SAME FAITH AS ABRAHAM are qualified to be ‘sons of Abraham/ heirs of God’. The fact that Abraham carried this justification along with him as he became circumcised, shows that all Jewish people as well can partake of this ‘righteousness by faith’ if they have the same faith as Abraham had. Jesus did say ‘Abraham rejoiced to see my day’[ John’s gospel]. In Gods promise to Abraham of a future dynasty of children, this included the promised Messiah. So indirectly Abraham’s belief in the promise of being the father of ‘many nations’ included belief in the coming Messiah. So according to Paul, all ethnic groups who have faith in Jesus are justified/made righteous. The very example Israel used to justify ‘ethnic/national pride’ [Father Abraham] was taught in a way that showed the truth of the gospel and how God is no respecter of persons.

(822) ROMANS 4:13-14 ‘Now the promise that Abraham would become the inheritor of the world was not going to be fulfilled thru the law [natural Israel] but thru faith [all who believe, both Jew and Gentile]’. I have spoken on this before [see note at bottom] and will hit on it a little now. The historic church can be defined for the most part as ‘a-millennial’, that is they interpreted the parables on the Kingdom of God and the promise of ‘inheriting the world [which includes the Promised Land]’ as being fulfilled thru the church. That Jesus established Gods kingdom and the church basically fulfills these promises by expanding Christ’s ‘rule’ thru the earth. Some historians saw the 4th century ‘marriage’ of Rome and Christianity as a fulfillment of this. During the 19th and 20th century you had the rise of Dispensationalism, a ‘new/different’ way of interpreting these land promises. Many good men showed the reality of Christ’s literal coming and pointed to a future time where Jesus literally sits on a throne in Jerusalem and rules all nations. These brothers are called ‘Pre-millennial’, they believe that Jesus comes back first [pre] and then establishes his ‘millennial rule’ on earth. The Premillennialists would see the Amillennialists as ‘replacement theologians’. They said that these brothers were taking the actual promises that God made to Israel and ‘replacing’ Israel with the church. In essence they accused the Amillennialists of spiritualizing the promises to Israel and saying the church would be the recipients of the promises. Now, both sides have truth to them, I personally believe the Amillennialists have a lot more truth! But I do see some of the good points that the Premillenialists made. I want you to simply read these verses [Romans 4:13-14, Galatians 3:18] and see for yourself how Paul does teach the reality that the promises to Abraham are to be fulfilled thru the church [spiritual Israel]. This does not mean that there is no future physical return of Jesus. But the body of scripture leans heavily on the Amillinnialists side. [see entry 703] NOTE- To be fair, some historic thinkers held to the Premillennial position. The majority were Amillennial.

(823) ROMANS 4:15-25 ‘For the law worketh wrath, for where there is no law there is no transgression’. I simply want to touch on the concept of ‘wrath’ being a very real part of judgment. One of the ways the gospel ‘saves us’ is by promising a future [and present!] deliverance from wrath. While death ‘reigned’ before the law was given, it wasn’t until the law where you had a clear picture of transgression and atonement. We will deal with this later in Romans. Now Paul once again hits on the theme of Abraham being the ‘spiritual father’ of many nations [all who believe] and how the promises of God to Abraham were to be fulfilled thru this ‘new race of people’ [the church]. Paul is careful to not demean Israel; he couches his terms in a way that says ‘God will fulfill these things thru the circumcision who believes [Jews] and the un-circumcision who believe’ [Gentiles]. I want to stress the very plain language Paul uses to show us that we should not be seeing Gods ‘covenant promises’ thru a natural lens. Christians need to be careful when they support [exalt!] natural Israel in a way that the New Testament doesn’t do. ‘To the end that the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is the faith of Abraham’. Now Paul tells us that when God made promises to Abraham that Abraham believed against hope. When all things looked really bad, he still believed. When he was 100 years old and Sarah around 90, he held to the promise [read my commentaries on Genesis 15-18 and Hebrews 11] and therefore God imputed righteousness to him. How closely are you paying attention to Paul’s free use of Abraham and Genesis? If you carefully read this chapter you see Paul ‘intermingle’ the story of Abraham being ‘made righteous upon initial belief’ [Gen. 15] and the later story of Sarah having Isaac [Gen. 17]. I think Paul was simply using the description of Abrahams faith, as seen in the Gen. 17 [and 22!] accounts of his life, to show the type of faith he initially ‘exercised’ [I don’t like using this term to be honest. God actually imputes faith to the believer at the initial act of regeneration]. The important chapters from Genesis that we all need to have a ‘working knowledge’ of are Chapters 12 [the initial promise], 15 [the oft mentioned ‘imputed righteousness’ verse], 17 [the receiving of the promised seed- Isaac], and 22 [the ultimate act of obedience that Abraham showed in offering up Isaac. This will be described in James epistle as ‘righteousness being fulfilled’. James, who is concerned about ‘works’, will say that when Abraham offered Isaac he was fulfilling the ‘imputed righteousness’ that God gave him earlier. James actually describes this as ‘being justified by works’{James 2:21} and James says ‘the scripture was fulfilled that saith Abraham believed God and it was imputed to him for righteousness’… ‘see how that by works a man is justified and not by faith only’. The classic view taken by many confuses the ‘justified’ part with the initial act of justification that Paul centers on. James uses ‘see how he was justified by works’ in a future ‘judicial decree’ sense; that is God having the ongoing ‘freedom’ to continually say ‘good job son, you did well’. The word justification is used in a fluid sense much like salvation. Christians need to be more ‘secure’ in their own assurance to be able to see these truths. When we approach all these seemingly ‘difficult passages’ in a defensive mode, then we never arrive at the actual meaning]. When we see the overall work of God in Abraham’s life we see the purpose of God in ‘declaring people just’ [initially ‘getting saved’]. The purpose is for them to eventually ‘act just’ [obey!] ‘Jesus was delivered for our offenses and raised again for our justification’ thank God that this process is dependant on the work of the Cross! [see # 758]

Romans 5:1-9 ‘Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God thru our Lord Jesus Christ’. There are certain benefits ‘results’ of being ‘made righteous by faith’, peace being one of them. Paul goes on and says we glory in hope and also trials, because we realize that thru the difficulties we gain experience and patience. Things that are needed for the journey, we can’t substitute talent and motivation and ‘success principles’ for them. We need maturity and God produces it this way. Those who teach otherwise have a ‘self inflicted wound’ their teachings are very immature! That is there was a ‘strain’ of teaching in the church that said ‘we don’t learn thru difficulty and suffering, we learn only thru Gods word!’ [that is reading it]. Those who grasped onto this false idea have produced some of the most unbalanced teaching in the church, stuff that even the younger generation is saying ‘what in the heck are these guys preaching’? If you by pass the difficult road, you will be shallow. Now Paul says ‘God commended his love toward us, that when we were sinners Christ died for us’ ‘being now justified by his death, we shall be saved thru his life’ [saved from wrath thru him]. Once again this theme pops up; ‘since we are justified, made righteous by believing with the heart, we shall be saved [continual, future deliverance] from wrath thru him’. I don’t know if you ever realized what a major theme this is in Romans? The ongoing, future ‘being saved’ is a result of ‘being made righteous’. Later on in chapter 10, when we read that the righteous call for salvation, we need to understand this context. Remember, when the two are linked together
CHAPTER 11: [see commentary on Acts 21]
END NOTES-
JUSTIFIED BY FAITH.
TORTURED- BY FAITH?
REJECTED MONEY- BY FAITH?
THEY ALL WAITED FOR THE CITY- THE CHURCH.

‘Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen, FOR BY IT THE ELDERS OBTAINED A GOOD REPORT [JUSTIFIED]’ This is the key verse to the chapter. Paul will go on to prove that all the Old Testament figures that ‘pleased God’ did it by faith, and not by works! ‘Through faith WE UNDERSTAND that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear’ Faith is not ‘blind’. It informs and gives understanding. This understanding is real! Let me show you what I mean. All of the universe and creation had a beginning point. Science did not always know or believe this. Today science teaches this. It is called ‘the point of singularity/density’. Science has traced back the origins of all things and has found scientific evidence to prove that all things had a ‘beginning point’. Now if you were to ask science ‘what did you have right before the beginning point’? They are stumped. Some of course believe in God and will boldly proclaim him at this point. To the others they can not answer this question. Why? Because they realize, thru science, that matter is not infinite.

Some have theorized that either all things always existed [which science has now disproved] or that at one point nothing existed [which science also teaches that if this were true then you would have nothing today. You can not get something from nothing!] So all true science has gone back to this ‘point of singularity’ and can not see what is right before ‘the point’. The Christian ‘sees’ God at this point! He ‘understands’ that by necessity there has to have been something that existed before creation, science teaches this. This something can not have been created also, because then where did the ‘being’ who created ‘it’ come from? So science teaches us that whoever got the ball rolling [Saint Thomas Aquinas calls this the ‘prime mover’] had to have been preexistent/ self existent in order to have done it. And we know that creation couldn’t have done it by itself, so therefore all reasoning and understanding leave us at the philosophical point of ‘there had to have been something/someone who existed forever in order for anything to be today’. So now you see how ‘by faith we understand that all things that now exist were brought into existence by someone who we can not see’. FAITH UNDERSTANDS!

As we go thru the rest of this chapter I want you to focus in on all the references of justification by faith. You will be surprised [I think?] on how many examples Paul gives to Israel from their own history [his too!] on God justifying people by faith. I will also try and show you [if I remember] how this chapter links the division between Paul’s epistles to the gentiles [Romans, Galatians] with James letter to the Jews. James was one of the lead Apostles at Jerusalem [Acts 15] and the Judaizers who were always accusing Paul of preaching grace in a way that justified sin, they came out of Jerusalem. James and Paul were rivals in a sense. James had the difficult job of overseeing the Church at Jerusalem, who had all the Pharisees who believed, while Paul was preaching this radical message of grace. This is why James’s letter [book of James] focused so much on faith and works. James was seeing the Genesis 22 account of Abraham’s justification when he offered Isaac on the altar. James will say ‘see how Abraham was justified by his works’. While in Paul’s letters he focuses on the Genesis 15 account of Abraham believing God and being made righteous. James was not contradicting Paul; he was showing the actual outcome of the life of a person who was previously justified by faith. James was saying ‘When God made Abraham righteous [Gen 15] he later actually became what God made him!’ [Gen. 22].

Now when Abraham would later do righteous things, he only did them because he previously had faith in Gods promise. But the fact still remains that when Abraham did a righteous act, God still justified him [in a sense, God has the prerogative to say ‘good job son, I am pleased with you’ so this can be described as an act/function of justification]. Well, now that I already showed you all this, I guess I wont have to remember telling it to you later. The point is in this chapter Paul will go down and show all these examples of Jewish leaders acting by faith and doing righteous deeds. This sort of bridges the gap between the strong emphasis on faith in Paul’s letters, with the strong emphasis on works in James letter. Paul is telling Israel ‘yes, all the old saints did do good works that pleased God, but they did them by faith!’ ‘Faith without works is dead’ [James]. So in a sense this single chapter bridges one of the key divisions in the early church between Jerusalem and Antioch [Acts 13 and 15]. Note; I believe all the chapter references above are correct, I write all this from memory so you might want to go back and double check the references. I know all the stories are right.

‘By FAITH Able offered …by which he obtained witness that he was RIGHTEOUS…by FAITH Enoch was translated…he had this testimony that he PLEASED GOD…without FAITH it is impossible to PLEASE HIM [all these ‘please him’ references are like saying ‘being justified’ when a person is justified by God, God sees him as acceptable, pleasing. ‘Thou art my beloved son in whom I am well PLEASED’ God to Jesus!] By faith Noah… prepared an ark to the SAVING of his house…and became heir to the RIGHTEOUSNESS WHICH IS BY FAITH [wow, he makes this one real plain] By faith Abraham…went out into a strange land…and sojourned’ interesting, both the aspect of ‘going out to a new land’ and ‘staying in it when you get there’ are both functions of faith. Let me throw in some practical stuff here. Over the years of ‘doing ministry’ I have seen and been a partaker of both of these experiences. Sometimes it takes an act of faith to uproot us from familiar territory and move on to the next level. And do you know what can happen next? The enemy will try to intimidate you once you get in the land of promise, and tell you ‘you cant stay here, look at all the people who hate you. Look at all the mistakes you made’ and it often takes an act of faith to STAY IN THE LAND. Don’t leave the land of your destiny; all true leaders will go thru both of these dealings.

‘For he looked for a city which hath foundations [Jesus is the foundation of this city!] whose builder and maker is God’ All of these great heroes of the faith were looking forward towards a future promise of being in Gods true church, the ‘City of God’ the Bride, the Lambs wife. Paul shows Israel that this 1st century appearing of Messiah was for the purpose of Israel coming into the ‘new land’ the Body of Christ. It is important to see this. There are many preachers today who are treating natural Israel as in if everything is just fine. It isn’t! They need Christ as much as the Muslim does. God was telling Israel ‘come into this new city’ [New Jerusalem versus Old Jerusalem] he wasn’t appealing for them to stay in ‘old Jerusalem’ and be a ‘completed Jew’. [I know this sounds harsh, but I want to emphasize to all my evangelical friends that Jews need Jesus, they play a special role in Gods plan, but ultimately they need Christ!]

‘Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed’ it takes faith to produce spiritual offspring! It might look impossible, but with God all things are possible. ‘Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead, so many as the stars of the sky and the sand by the shore’ sometimes God will allow you to bring forth one ‘seed’ [person or act of ministry] and you will be surprised how much fruit can come forth from this singular effort. This is why it’s so important to simply hear and obey God. Often times in ministry we do tons of ‘leg work’ which is OK. But when God gives you an idea or mode of function that you weren’t even thinking of, go with it. These are usually the ‘little seeds’ that produce the great harvest! ‘THESE ALL DIED IN FAITH, NOT HAVING RECEIVED THE PROMISES’ I want to emphasize here that it is possible to live your whole life in faith without actually seeing the fulfillment of all that God has told you.

Now faith does obtain promises [verse 33] but sometimes we also see things many years down the road and we must realize that the measurement of faith is not whether or not you are currently getting the actual promise. In the above [and below] verse’s we see Abraham and Sara being told that their offspring would number in the millions. They believed these promises, but it is obvious that they didn’t live to see it fulfilled, but they sure knew that after they were gone it would come to pass. So I want to exhort you to believe to see certain things fulfilled in your life time, but have some greater goals that you initiate while here on earth, knowing that after you depart they will be fulfilled. ‘And truly if they had been MINDFUL of the country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned’ what is Paul saying here? The greatest threat to the gospel taking root in the Hebrew community was the desire to go back to old law and culture. How many believers ‘revert’ back to an older form of church simply because they missed the old culture and ‘feelings’ that they had when they were younger? Many of the Jews would not go all the way with the gospel because they were ‘mindful’ of the good old days of law and sacrifice.

I just watched a show the other day that told how even some gentile believers began celebrating certain feasts of Israel with their Jewish neighbors. While it is good to understand and see the significance of the feasts, yet we know Paul wrote the early believers and said ‘you observe days and times and feasts, and I am concerned about it’. So when we [or 1st century Israel] are ‘mindful’ of the ‘good old days’ then there is always a danger of going back! ‘By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac…of whom it was said in Isaac shall thy seed be called. Accounting that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead; from whence also he received him in a figure’ Abraham exhibited characteristics of the Father [God] as well as Isaac being a type of the Son [Jesus]. It’s interesting that these verses show that Abraham knew for a fact that God was going to give Isaac millions of children, Abraham also knew the voice of God so well that when he ‘thought’ he heard God say ‘offer up this boy’ that in the mind of Abraham, the only way these 2 things could be reconciled, is he came to the conclusion ‘I guess God will have to raise him up, being he has told me this boy will have millions of children, plus he is telling me to kill him’. Most of us would not have come to this conclusion! We would have doubted either the original promise, or said ‘surely this can’t be God telling me to offer Isaac’ [most likely we would have doubted the latter!].

There is a real important reason for Abraham to have been a real man of faith. God wanted this ‘picture’ of the offering up of Isaac for a type of the Cross and Resurrection. The only way he could have shown this example was to have had someone so radically filled with faith, that he would have come to this conclusion of ‘well, I guess God will just raise him’. It was necessary for the figure to have been truly fulfilled. It took Abraham many years of hearing and believing God before he would get to this stage. The part of Abraham’s mind that said ‘God will just have to raise him up’ was important for the figure to truly work. God knew he could only bring someone to this conclusion by arranging the whole scenario around a person of faith. It truly took a real person of faith to have come to the conclusion of resurrection as being inevitable! [For Abraham to fulfill the type of God, he had to have been convinced beyond all doubt that after he offered up his son, that he would be raised again. This is exactly what the Father [God] believed and knew about his own Sons death. So not only did Isaac fulfill the type of Jesus in this story, but Abraham also fulfilled a type of God!] [NOTE; Today is September 22, 2007. Israel’s Day of Atonement. I just heard a brother preach on the feasts of the Lord [I have done this also] but he preached it in a way that said ‘because God said you were to observe these feasts perpetually, therefore all gentile believers need to start observing these days’ he added ‘I know Paul taught the law passed and all, but these feasts are supposed to be forever because God said so’.

How are the feasts ‘perpetual’? Thru the fulfilling of them in Christ! Paul makes this plain all thru the New Testament [as well as this letter!] I was surprised to hear the brother preach that the first 2 feasts [out of the 3 main ones] were fulfilled and memorialized, but the 3rd one [Atonement/tabernacles] has yet to be fulfilled! What? Jesus fulfilled Passover and Pentecost for sure, and they are still being ‘fulfilled’ God is still bringing people in thru the blood of Christ and the Spirit is continually being poured out on people, and of course the ultimate reality of our atonement thru our high priest is a daily reality [he ever lives to make intercession] that is ‘fulfilled’ all the time[ I understand what the brother meant, that both Passover and Pentecost were fulfilled at the Cross and the day of Pentecost, and Tabernacles still has a future fulfillment. That Jesus will ‘ingather’ all peoples to himself at the end. The way he said it was in a way that he said Atonement, the beginning of Tabernacles/booths, still has to be fulfilled. It really came out badly!] I just thought it worth noting that today is natural Israel’s feast day, and we hold this feast in reality 24/7!]

‘By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of pharaohs daughter; choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, then to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season; esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt; for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward…by faith the harlot Rahab perished not…’ I want you to see that faith in Moses situation caused him to forsake great riches and leave a successful future. This is in keeping with all the times Jesus called people in the Gospels ‘forsake all and follow me’ mentality. We too often equate the ‘treasures of Egypt’ with following Jesus; the scripture puts a different spin on it! Also Rahab ‘perished not’ because she ‘believed’. Paul teaches in Corinthians that those who believe are ‘being saved’ and those who don’t believe are ‘perishing’. I want you to see that Paul is really making a theological argument for ‘being saved by faith’ in this chapter. Even a harlot can be saved! Wow. The law seemed to have no mercy on someone like that!

‘Who thru faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, stopped the mouths of lions…women received their dead raised to life…others were TORTURED not accepting deliverance…others had mocking and scourging and bonds and imprisonment, they were stoned, cut in half, were slain with the sword… being destitute, afflicted, tormented…they wandered in deserts and mountains and dens and caves of the earth, ALL THESE [both the ones who shut the mouths of lions as well as the one’s who were tortured without deliverance] OBTAINED A GOOD REPORT THRU FAITH, AND RECEIVED NOT THE PROMISE’ Faith does not always cause you to be better off in this life. I am very familiar with all the verses of God blessing us and providing for us ‘the blessing of the Lord it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow to it’. I believe and claim these verses just like the next guy. I also don’t want to tell people ‘give your life to Christ and all will go well’ did it go well for the ones who were tortured not getting delivered? Sure did. It went well the moment they saw the face of God. The same for those who were cut in half. It also went well for the women who received their dead raised to life. The point is ‘going well’ is not always defined by your outward circumstance.

We must see the overall biblical worldview of all things here being temporary, while all true spiritual riches are eternal. Moses actually was ‘less rich’ by the choice to follow Christ. But he was ‘more rich’ in that he fulfilled Gods purpose. It is important to see that many of these great heroes of the faith died without fully seeing the promise in this life. Now the last verse does say ‘that they without us should not be made perfect’ and this does show that the promise is now fulfilled thru Christ. We have all become recipients of eternal salvation thru Christ. The Old Testament patriarchs have ‘found that city’ in that we are all now members of the great ‘City that comes down from God out of heaven’ we are all in Christ today, even our Old Testament brothers who had faith. The point is don’t always measure a persons faith by their outward wealth and condition. James rebuked this idea in his epistle, he taught us not to show partiality to people who were rich while despising the poor.

When believers see faith only from the standpoint of outward things, they are missing the true riches. Jesus taught that all these outward things were not the true riches; I am surprised how many believers spend so much time hoarding and storing things that will all pass away some day. Let’s close this chapter on a good note. Paul has offered Israel all of their Old Testament heroes as an example of being justified by faith. He is saying ‘look, all the great fathers of the faith pleased God, just like you have said and taught for ages. I am declaring unto you they were all ‘justified/pleasing to God’ by faith, not law’. Therefore if you want to follow the example of Abraham and Moses and all the other wonderful fathers, then you too MUST BELIEVE!
END NOTES-
JUSTIFIED BY FAITH.
TORTURED- BY FAITH?
REJECTED MONEY- BY FAITH?
THEY ALL WAITED FOR THE CITY- THE CHURCH.
This chapter is loaded with the history of the Jewish people-
I could teach on each story- but that would be a bit much-
So I pasted the verses below to show that the writer is saying ‘see- all of our forefathers were justified- received a GOOD REPORT- by faith’.
Wait a minute- they DID THINGS- in these stories-
Isn’t that WORKS?
If you read the letter of James- and the letters of Paul- some scholars says there is a disagreement-
Paul says a man is justified by faith- and not by works.
James says ‘see how a man is justified by works- and not faith only’.
If this letter [Hebrews] was written by Paul- then it’s a true masterpiece- because he is combining the examples that James uses [Rahab- and Abrahams Genesis 22 experience- which James uses to say ‘see how works justifies’].
So- to me- Paul would be saying ‘no- I’m not contradicting James- we both believe/teach the same thing’.
If the letter was written by Barnabus- then it also is a masterpiece- because Barnabus might be trying to bridge the gap between Paul and James.
We read about this tension in Acts chapters 13 and 15.
This chapter is certainly not showing us how to obtain stuff [money- etc.] thru faith- because look at the examples- ‘Moses chose to suffer- and reject the wealth of Egypt- BY FAITH’-
‘SOME WERE TORTURED- SUFFERED- CUT IN HALF- by faith’- ‘CHOOSING TO not be delivered- because they had faith’.
We also see the heavenly city- as the goal of the patriarchs- they were all waiting for THE CHURCH- the city that the apostle John spoke about in the book of revelation.
The writer says ‘if they were mindful of the city they came out of [a reference to the law covenant- meaning if the Jews kept clinging to the law- the ‘city they came out from’- they will have a hard time moving on- into the New Covenant revelation of Messiah].
I didn’t quote verse 2- but we could teach modern physics from that one [the bible says all things were made from something invisible- modern physics has come to that reality in the 20th century- yet this verse was penned 2 millennia ago]!
By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.
So yeah- lots of good stuff in this chapter- but the main point is these ancients were justified by faith- the example of Noah and Abraham actually use that very language- salvation/righteousness [it’s a bit clearer in the King James Version- the above verses are from the NIV].
Yes- the writer is saying ‘everything is based on faith- and even our ancestors were justified by faith- they did all these things because they believed God- and God saw their faith- in action- and they too were made righteous- by faith’.
By faith Abel brought God a better offering than Cain did. By faith he was commended as righteous, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith Abel still speaks, even though he is dead.
By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that is in keeping with faith.
All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. 14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them
By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25 He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward.
By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient.
And what more shall I say? I do not have time to tell about Gideon, Barak, Samson and Jephthah, about David and Samuel and the prophets, 33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, administered justice, and gained what was promised; who shut the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the fury of the flames, and escaped the edge of the sword; whose weakness was turned to strength; and who became powerful in battle and routed foreign armies.35 Women received back their dead, raised to life again. There were others who were tortured, refusing to be released so that they might gain an even better resurrection. 36 Some faced jeers and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 37 They were put to death by stoning;[e] they were sawed in two; they were killed by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— 38 the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, living in caves and in holes in the ground.
39 These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, 40 since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

CHAPTER 12:
END NOTES-
A HEAVENLY CITY.
DON’T BE SAD, HE’S TREATING YOU LIKE A SON.
NO REPENTANCE- OUTSIDE OF CHRIST THAT IS.
CULTURE SHOCK IS HARD ON US ALL.

JAMES 2-
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/5-29-15-james-2.zip
END NOTES
Genesis 15, 22.
Romans 4.
Galatians 3.
My view on Justification by Works.

________________________________________
James 2:1 My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons.
James 2:2 For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment;
James 2:3 And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool:
James 2:4 Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts?
James 2:5 Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?
James 2:6 But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats?
James 2:7 Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called?
James 2:8 If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:
James 2:9 But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.
James 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.
James 2:11 For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law.
James 2:12 So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty.
James 2:13 For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.
James 2:14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him?
James 2:15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,
James 2:16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?
James 2:17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.
James 2:18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.
James 2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
James 2:20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?
James 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
James 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
James 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
James 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
James 2:25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?
James 2:26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

END NOTES
Genesis 15, 22.
Romans 4.
Galatians 3.
My view on Justification by Works.
Genesis 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.
Genesis 15:2 And Abram said, LORD God, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?
Genesis 15:3 And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir.
Genesis 15:4 And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.
Genesis 15:5 And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.
Genesis 15:6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.
Genesis 22:1 And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.
Genesis 22:2 And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.
Genesis 22:3 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him.
Genesis 22:4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off.
Genesis 22:5 And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.
Genesis 22:6 And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together.
Genesis 22:7 And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son. And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?
Genesis 22:8 And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.
Genesis 22:9 And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood.
Genesis 22:10 And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son.
Genesis 22:11 And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.
Genesis 22:12 And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.
Romans 4:1 What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?
Romans 4:2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.
Romans 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Galatians 3:1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
Galatians 3:2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Galatians 3:3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
Galatians 3:4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
Galatians 3:5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Galatians 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
Galatians 3:7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
Galatians 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Galatians 3:9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
Galatians 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
Galatians 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
Galatians 3:12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
Galatians 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
Galatians 3:14 That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.
MY VIEW ON JUSTIFICATION BY WORKS-
Understand that the letters of Paul were circulating among the early believers- and without a doubt his writings were the most influential in the early church.
Both critics of Paul- as well as other believers [including Peter] were reading his stuff.
Now- seeing the controversy that was taking place- especially that the people Paul was writing against- these were believing Jews- under the ministry of James [he was the leader at the church of Jerusalem- where the Judiazers worshipped].
With this in mind- knowing how Paul was using the story of Abraham [quoted above- Romans and Galatians] to teach Justification by Faith.
When James finally enters the fray with his own letter- to the Jewish believers.
And reading James saying ‘do you not see how Abraham was JUSTIFIED BY WORKS when he offered his son on the altar’!
It’s in a way a strong rebuke- not of the reality of what Paul taught- per se- but of the confusion going on between the Jewish believers and the gentile ones.
In the first 2 chapters of Galatians- which I posted last-
We see Paul rebuking Peter- and saying ‘when some came- FROM JAMES- Peter stopped eating with the gentiles’.
These guys are not teaching different theologies [Paul and James]-
But it’s easy to see that James is making a bold statement- and setting the record straight [for those who were misreading Paul].
Because he uses the same person- Father Abraham- to teach Justification by works.
Now- Many attempts have been made to harmonize James’ statement ‘see how a man is JUSITFIED BY WORKS’ and Paul ‘A man is justified by faith- not works’.
These attempts are noble and have a degree of truth to them.
But when they are done trying to reconcile these verses- they say ‘works does not justify- only faith’.
The problem with that explanation is the actual verse says ‘see how a man is justified by works’.
I think the best way to explain it is like this-
Paul uses- primarily- the example from Genesis 15- when Abraham simply believed God- and God declared him righteous.
James uses the example from Genesis 22- many years after Abraham was ‘initially justified’ by faith.
And James says when Abraham obeyed- did a work of obedience- God then ‘justified him’.
James says ‘see how the scripture was fulfilled- which said he believed God and was justified’ [Genesis 15].
You can say the actual obedient deeds we do- after the initial act of Justification by faith- can be looked upon as works being produced in the believer- as a result of the initial justification by faith.
Now- I’m not saying ‘we get saved by faith- then sanctified by works’.
Paul refuted this in Galatians 3.
But- James is indeed saying this act of obedience- in Genesis 22- is the fulfillment of the act of believing- in Genesis 15.
And he does describe this as being JUSTIFIED BY WORKS.
The terms ‘Justification- Salvation- Born of God’.
All these words are both static [they describe one time events- like the initial salvation of a believer].
And fluent- they also describe the progressive Acts of God thru out the life of the believer.
So- in short- When God looks down from heaven- and sees us doing a just act- he can say ‘good job- I’m pleased with you’.
And James simply applies the term ‘Justification’ to this response of God.
It’s the same term [in the Greek] that Paul uses when speaking about the initial act of justification upon belief.
But it’s the context that shows us the difference.
James is not saying that Abraham was not justified by faith in Genesis 15- but he is saying that he ‘too’ was declared just- by God- when he did the work of obedience in offering up his son.
And this work- in the bible- is called ‘justification by works’.
The language is in there- and James also uses it to describe Rahab receiving the spies with peace.
So- instead of rejecting the letter of James- like the Reformer Martin Luther did in a way when he called it ‘an epistle of straw’.
We simply need to see that the debate revolves around the use of language-
When James says Abraham- and Rahab- were justified by works- he is simply saying that God was pleased with the acts they did [by faith mind you- Hebrews 11].
And when he saw them do these acts of obedience- he ‘justified them’- meaning- he said ‘you are righteous- you are doing a right act- I still continue to make decrees of acceptance over you- many years after I made the initial decree- when you first believed’-
See?
NOTE- Remember a few things-
James actually uses the phrase ‘justified by works’.
Over the years I have read many good scholars try and explain this verse- and some of their ideas have merit- like ‘James is saying the faith that saves is a real faith’.
All of these things are true- and James even says that in this chapter.
Problem?
These explanations are referring to the initial act of justification- like saying ‘when Abraham believed God [Genesis 15] he had real/ working faith’.
Ok- I get it.
But- these explanations – in the end- still leave the ‘justified by works’ verse without a clear understanding.
In these other explanations [by Protestants] they are ‘stuck’ on the initial act of justification- and are unable to see that this term- like salvation- and righteousness- can- and does speak not only to the initial ‘getting saved’ but also speaks about things that we do- and ways God responds to those things- thru out our lives.
And God himself is not ‘limited’ to the ‘original Greek’- meaning if he wants to declare us righteous- or just- all thru out our lives- yes- even when we ‘do right things’ he can!
After all- he is God.
TAKE A SECOND LOOK AT THE ACTUAL WORDS-
James 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
James 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
James 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
James 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
James 2:25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way?
James 2:26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
Romans 4:1 What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?
Romans 4:2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.
Romans 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Romans 4:4 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
Galatians 2:21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.
Galatians 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
Galatians 3:7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
Galatians 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Galatians 3:9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.
Galatians 3:10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.
Galatians 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
Galatians 3:12 And the law is not of faith: but, The man that doeth them shall live in them.
Note- It’s important to understand when Paul says ‘the works of the law do not save’-
He is not saying we can break the 10 commandments- live a sinful life- and still be saved.
The works of the law entail circumcision- and coming under the Old Covenant.
This was the big debate we read about in these chapters I have been posting.
You’ll notice that James himself- at the Jerusalem council- agreed that the gentiles did not need to ‘become Jews’- that is- to convert into Judaism to become saved.
So part of the problem is we read Paul say ‘you are not saved by works’- and we tend to associate that with ‘all good works’.
Then we read James say ‘see how a man is justified by works- and not faith only’.
And this too [not understanding Paul’s full meaning of ‘works/law’] adds to the confusion.
NOTE- If you carefully read the letters of Paul- even some of the above quotes- you will see that he also taught a ‘justification’ – that was sort of an ongoing process.
The words ‘salvation- righteousness- justification’ are also used by Paul to describe things God is doing in us- in a progressive way.
It’s funny- but when you come across these verses- and read the various study notes in good reference bibles- you see a sort of preoccupation in trying- at times- to make them fit the reductionist idea that focuses too much on the initial conversion experience- to the point where believers [yes- even scholars who wrote the notes!] try to make the verses that show a sort of progressive salvation- they try to ‘explain’ them away.
In scripture- justification is God’s declaration over us- ‘not guilty’- that does indeed take place when we believe in Jesus.
But it is also a progressive work [often called sanctification- but not limited to this word].
So- when we read Paul saying ‘while we seek to be justified’. Galatians 2:17 But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid.

Or- Philipians 3:7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
Philipians 3:8 Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,
Philipians 3:9 And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:
We tend to want to make these verses fit the one time act of justification that took place upon belief [initial conversion- yes this word too is fluent!]
So- some of the problems with interpreting these verses are actually a language problem [down the road I will discuss the philosophy of Gilbert Ryle- an Ordinary language philosopher from the 20th century- he thought the whole field of philosophy and the debates were simply a problem of language! I don’t agree with him by the way].
Note verse 13- Paul said this in the letter to the Romans. Here he is talking about a future justification that comes to those who DO THE LAW- see- he and James agree.
Romans 2:12 For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;
Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law SHALL BE JUSTIFIED.
Romans 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Romans 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)
By the way- did you notice the view of James about money? How he speaks about the poor and the rich? I did not comment on all the good verses in this chapter- I want you guys to simply read thru the chapter- it’s really self-explanatory.

________________________________________

JAMES 3-5 [I’ll be in New Jersey June 19th-21- with my daughters- won’t have
VERSES- [I usually add verses here- but as I reposted past posts above- I realized most of the verses are already there].

JEAN PAUL SARTRE- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/10-28-15-jean-paul-sartre.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Sartre’s unique atheism
.Telos
.Objects or subjects?
.Useless passion?
.Hemingway

MY OLD POSTS [below]
VERSES [below]
NEW STUFF- Sartre is one of the most famous 20th century philosophers- also described as the father of existentialism.
I say ‘also’ because when we covered Kierkegaard- I said the same of him.
How can this be?
Well- Kierkegaard was a Christian- Sartre an atheist.
So you can divide existentialism between ‘Christian existentialists- and atheistic’.
Ok- it would be a lot to try and cover all of his ideas- but what I want to do is sort of contrast the thinkers who trended away from God with those who continued to believe in a creator- while at the same time engage in the intellectual world [many I could name- Descartes- Kant- etc.].
Though Sartre- like Camus- was indeed an intelligent man- when they tried to develop philosophies- ways to explain man- his purpose- what ‘it’s’ all about.
They have difficulty giving any real purpose or meaning to man.
Why?
Because if you believe [and teach] that man is really some sort of a cosmic accident- with no creator who made him- then how do you teach ‘that man’ that he has a purpose?
This would apply to all the great thinkers- who rejected God.
In the end- if you were born without a preceding purpose [which Christians teach is to glorify God] and when you die- there is no after life- then it’s common sense to see your life ‘without purpose’.
Sartre’s most famous work ‘being and nothingness’ says it all in the title.
Some of his most famous ideas are ‘no essence before existence’.
Now- Christians usually criticize him for this [which I just did in a way].
But he sort of tried to apply this idea- and say ‘because we are not predetermined- then we are indeed responsible for our actions- we are ‘left alone- without excuse’.
When you study Philosophy- along with Theology [the study of God]. A big thing that is debated is predestination.
Many misunderstand the historic reformation doctrine of Predestination –and they see it as a form of fatalism- meaning ‘whatever will be- was meant to be’.
You can do a whole debate on this subject- in studying theology alone.
Yet it also ‘bleeds’ into philosophy- because many thinkers were trying to figure out the problems of man- and some thought the doctrine of original sin taught a form of fatalism.
Actually- it does not.
But that’s why you see these ideas pop up – that we can act without our past having power over us.
So- in a sense- though Sartre was an atheist- this was an attempt [I think] to try and give man the ‘freedom’ to act on his own will.
But without belief in God- there really is no grounding authority to values- ethics.
Where would they come from? [that’s a long debate- but if in effect ethics- right and wrong- were simply some sort of value system that was majority rule- then when the majority gets it wrong- slavery- abortion- etc.- then these values do not really ‘mean’ anything].
From the Christian view [they do debate between predestination by the way] Values- worth- purpose- do indeed ‘precede’ existence.
God had a purpose for us before we were born- and values are the revealed ‘rules’ that God gave to man.
The Nihilistic thinkers [those who admit that there really is no purpose] in the end have a hard time teaching their ideas- and at the same time instilling self-worth in people.
Camus summed it up when he said-“There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide” (MS, 3).Oct 27, 2011
Sartre [like Kierkegaard] wrote plays- poetry- etc.
One of Sartre’s dramas was called ‘NO EXIT’
He depicted Hell as a place where people are forever ‘observing’ one another- with no way out [obviously he did not really believe in Hell].
But why would he see it this way?
Sartre had a unique insight [though an atheist- he was indeed smart].
One of the things that Sartre believed- was subjectivity- he taught that if man were to be truly Free- he could not be an Object [lots has been said in the last few years on objectifying people- seeing them as objects degrades them].
So in Sartre’s mind- belief in God objectifies people.
How?
If there is an ‘all seeing’ creator who is always looking/seeing into people’s lives [and intents- hearts] then they are not truly free.
All the thinkers who rejected God- did not do so for the same reasons.
Freud- and those who taught Hedonism- said it was the moral constraints on man [from God and the church] that was the problem.
So in Freud’s mind- we should deny God- and man should live out all of his most base desires.
It was a failed idea for sure- but that was the Hedonists view.
Sartre did not espouse unrestrained passion- actually even though he was an atheist- he believed that men should live with some type of ethic.
So his rejection of God was based on the idea that God is always ‘watching you’ and a man cannot truly be free- if someone is always watching him. It was an interesting idea [and yes- God is always watching- but from the Christian view he is not watching as some type of cosmic voyeur- but as a Father watches over his children.
Or- as the bible says ‘as a mother hen watches over her chicks’. So Sartre was right about God always seeing us- but he disagreed with the Christian view of omniscience [all knowing God] and said this ‘constant watching’ makes us an object- and to Sartre- the basic attribute of human character is subjectivity- if he is not a subject- with no previous ‘essence’ [remember- his other famous idea was ‘existence precedes essence’] he is not truly free.
So to Sartre- man and reality are simply things- and we develop life from this materialistic view.
He rejected universals- there is not a universal category of ‘mankind’ but simply individual people.
Another famous atheist thinker was Camus [‘there is only one really serious question left- suicide’].
Even though some of the atheistic thinkers ‘meant well’ yet- in the end- as Kant said- if there is no God- then society cannot function without the basic understanding that we are all accountable- and will someday give an account.
In Kant’s view- he rejected the classical idea that you could ‘prove God’ from reason and nature.
But some said he ‘let God in the back door’.
Because for Kant- if you reject God outright- then society cannot function.
For instance- if there is some type of injustice- maybe framed for murder and you sit in jail your whole life- never being vindicated.
For Kant- the person can survive- because he knows- in the end- the truth will come out [if there is a God].
And not only will it come out- but those who wronged the man will give an account.
So Kant saw the need for there not only to be an ‘all seeing God/judge’.
But that Judge had to also have all power- so he could carry out justice in the end.
But for Sartre- and Camus- and the other atheists- they grappled with the problem of where moral laws come from [or if there is even such a thing].
How can we really define ethics if there is no real meaning to our existence?
If ‘nothing matters’ [no essence before existence] then in the end- WE don’t matter.
And you come to the same conclusion as Camus.
The question of suicide has been pondered for centuries- it has made it into the plays of Shakespeare [below]
Many are familiar with this famous line- but read it carefully- it’s Hamlet’s struggle- whether it’s nobler to ‘go thru stuff’ or- end it.
That’s why I think the Camus’ and Sartres of the world don’t help- in the end.

To be, or not to be, that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And by opposing end them. To die—to sleep,
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to: ’tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish’d. To die, to sleep;
To sleep, perchance to dream—ay, there’s the rub:
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause—there’s the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
Th’oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s contumely,
The pangs of dispriz’d love, the law’s delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th’unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovere’d country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprises of great pitch and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry
And lose the name of action.
Hamlet
PAST POSTS I WROTE THAT RELATE-
.
TELOS [What’s your purpose?]
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/07/7-3-15-telos-or-jack-nichols-n-the-3-dollar-tip.zip
A telos (from the Greek τέλος for “end”, “purpose”, or “goal”) is an end or purpose, in a fairly constrained sense used by philosophers such as Aristotle. It is the root of the term “teleology,” roughly the study of purposiveness, or the study of objects with a view to their aims, purposes, or intentions. Teleology figures centrally in Aristotle’s biology and in his theory of causes. It is central to nearly all philosophical theories of history, such as those of Hegel and Marx. One running debate in contemporary philosophy of biology is to what extent teleological language (as in the “purposes” of various organs or life-processes) is unavoidable, or is simply a shorthand for ideas that can ultimately be spelled out nonteleologically. Philosophy of action also makes essential use of teleological vocabulary: on Davidson’s account, an action is just something an agent does with an intention–that is, looking forward to some end to be achieved by the action.
In contrast to telos, techne is the rational method involved in producing an object or accomplishing a goal or objective; however, the two methods are not mutually exclusive in principle.
Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.[2]
1Peter 2:1 Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, all evil speakings,
1Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
1Peter 2:3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
1Peter 2:4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,
1Peter 2:5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
1Peter 2:6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.
1Peter 2:7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,
1Peter 2:8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which

Stuff I mention on the video
(1360) Lets do a little Catholic/Protestant stuff. First, those of you who have read this site for any period of time know that as a Protestant I am ‘pro Catholic’ that is I read and study Catholic scholars, believe in the ECT statement [Evangelicals and Catholics together] and for the most part am pro Catholic in that sense. I have offended more Protestants because of this stance than Catholics. But sometimes I need to state the differences and be honest about them, true ecumenical unity should never be achieved on the altar of doctrine, we should not sacrifice sincerely held beliefs while seeking unity for Christ’s church. Last night I caught the journey home show with Marcus Grodi as well as Catholic scholar Scott Hahn [EWTN- the Catholic network]. Scott was doing a teaching on the sacraments of the church and shared a common belief in the ‘incarnational’ aspect of matter. Some theologians believe [both Catholic and Protestant] that since God became man in Jesus, that this united/sanctified matter in a way that never occurred before. They will carry this thought into sacramental theology and teach a kind of ‘connection’ with God thru material things; both Baptism and the Eucharist would be major examples. I believe the historic church was well intended when they developed this idea, they were combating the popular Greek/Gnostic belief that matter is inherently evil, not a biblical doctrine. As Scott Hahn made the argument I simply felt that he gave too much weight to the idea that because of the incarnation [God becoming man] that now there is a special ‘sanctity’ to material things when connected with the sacraments. Does the bible teach that there are actual physical things in this world that carry out the truth of the incarnation in a material way? Actually it does, the bible teaches that the bodies of believers have this special aspect because Gods Spirit lives in us. In essence the idea of ‘special matter’ that is often taught by well meaning scholars can be applied to the physical church in the earth, all who believe. I do not totally dismiss sacramental theology, many Protestants who dismiss it out of hand are not aware of the strong beliefs that the reformers held too in these areas. Luther is often misunderstood when it comes to his disagreement with Calvin, many teach and think that he split with Calvin over the doctrine of Predestination, he did not- Luther’s written views on the doctrine were just as strong [if not stronger] on the subject. Calvin never wrote a book dedicated solely to the doctrine, Luther did [bondage of the will]. But they did split on the sacrament of the Eucharist, Luther’s view [consubstantiation] was much closer to the Catholic view than Calvin, and Zwingli [the Swiss reformer] was further away than both Calvin and Luther. Lutheranism would eventually be developed by a protégé of Luther, Philip Melanchthon, and the Lutheran church would bear the image of Melanchthon more than Luther. The point being many good men have held to very strong views on these matters. I believe the biblical doctrine leans more heavily on the ‘material body’ of the believer as being the major material change since the incarnation, I do not hold to the idea that ‘God becoming man’ fundamentally changed the nature of matter when dealing with the sacraments. Matter is not [nor ever was] intrinsically evil, Greek dualism got it wrong from the start- we do not need a strong sacramental theology to refute this, scripture itself will do.

. He had a few theological battles in his day. With Pelagianism and Donatism- these were early Christian movements that broke away from the standard teaching of the church- they derive their names form the Bishops/priests who espoused these ideas.

Pelagius denied the doctrine of original sin- and he taught that men were indeed capable of obeying Gods law- out of their own moral integrity- and thus ‘save themselves’. Augustine rejected this view and taught that men were saved only by the grace of God- that men were indeed sinful and corrupt- and if left to their own designs would end up in hell.

There were various adherents to Pelagius’ view- and his ideas have carried down thru the centuries to varying degrees- sometimes you will hear [read] the term ‘Semi- Pelagian’ this refers to those who have various ideas about man’s ability to save himself through good works.

Some in the Reformed church [the original Protestant belief system that came out from the 16th century Reformation] accuse the Catholic Church of this very thing- yet the Catholic Church has made it clear that they do reject Pelagianism- and they agree with Augustine on the matter.

The Donatists taught that the Sacraments were dependent upon the ‘holiness’ of the Priest who ministers them. That if you were in a Parish where the priests were bad- lived in sin- rejected a holy life- then if you were Baptized by these men- that the Baptism didn’t ‘stick’.

The Donatists formed there own break away church in the 3rd century- and a few very influential men would join the group. A well respected early church father- Tertullian- eventually joined their ranks.

Augustine argued against the Donatists teaching- and taught that Gods grace- and the grace given to believers thru the sacraments were not derived from the holiness of any priest or preacher- but if a believer in good conscience received the sacraments- that that’s what really counted.

Saint Augustine is one of the titans of church history- he is loved by Protestants and Catholics alike. He is famous for his belief in the doctrine of Predestination [that those who are saved were chosen by God before they were born] and for this reason he is loved by the original protestant theologians [Luther, Calvin, etc.]

He also taught a very ‘Catholic’ form of Ecclesiology [church govt.] and is well loved by many Catholics as well.

The Catholic Church refers to him as the Doctor of Grace- later on in the 13th century we will meet Saint Thomas Aquinas- who the church refers to as the Angelic Doctor.

Both of these men played a major role in the development of western thought and Augustine made an effort to distinguish true Christian thought from the philosophy of Neo Platonism which was very strong in his day.

When reading Augustine [he wrote a lot] you need to be careful to distinguish some of his earlier writings from his later ones.

Early on you still see forms of Platonic thought in Augustine- but as the years rolled by his thinking
. HEBREWS 10-13
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/5-20-15-hebrews-10-13-kant-john-mill-moral-theory.zip
There’s more on the video- Kant, John Mill- Moral Theory- Utilitarianism, Kantianism. Dead Sea Scroll-s ‘Lost Books’ of the bible- Septuagint- Jerome- Alexander the Great- Ptolemy- Seleucids- Essenes- Qumran community- Ecclesiology- Local Church etc.
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/5-17-15-aristotle-and-the-city-of-god-real-windy.zip

END NOTES OF POST-
Masada.
Hadrian.
Judaism in transition.
Did they ‘move on’ ?
Who was Elazar ben Yair?

End notes of chapter-
IS THERE MEANING TO THE ACTUAL ORDER OF BIBLE VERSES?
HOW DID THE SPIRIT ‘TESTIFY’ TO THE FINAL SACRIFICE?
WHY DOES THE WRITER CONTINUE TO SAY THE NEW COVENANT IS HARSHER?

CHAPTER 10:

‘For the law having a SHADOW of good things to come, AND NOT the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect. For then would they not have ceased to be offered? Because that the worshipers once purged should have no more conscience of sins. But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year’. Paul shows how the simple fact of ongoing sacrifices in and of itself testifies of the insufficiency of the law. The on going sacrifices were a reminder that the peoples sins were still there. If the sacrifices really worked, then why do it over and over again every year? He will contrast this with the singular sacrifice of Christ. The fact that Jesus did it once shows the superiority of his sacrifice over the law.

‘Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: in burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. THEN SAID HE, lo, I come to do thy will O God. ABOVE WHEN HE SAID sacrifice and offering…THEN HE SAID, lo, I come to do thy will O God. He taketh away the first that he may establish the second’ Here Paul uses the actual order of the verses in Psalms to prove that the Old law will pass away and a New covenant will replace it. The fact that David [Psalms] says ‘sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared for me’ in this order shows that God always planned on taking away the sacrificial system and replacing it with Christ [or fulfilling it!] So even in the simple prophetic order of these statements Paul sees the Old law passing away and a new one being instituted. Wow again!

‘By the which will we are sanctified thru the offering of the Body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every high priest STANDETH daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: but this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, SAT DOWN on the right hand of God’ The comparison here is that the priests under the law stood, showing their sacrifices were never sufficient, they could never say ‘it is finished’. The fact that they stood while offering sacrifices showed the incompleteness of the system. Jesus sat down. This showed that his sacrifice was once and for all. Now, no where does scripture teach this concept between ‘sitting and standing’. Where does Paul get this stuff from? From ‘revelation’, that is God is supernaturally showing this stuff to Paul as he writes. This is the prophetic element of scripture. While we don’t ‘write scripture’ any more today, there are still lots of hidden meanings that we don’t fully see yet. It is the job of the Holy Spirit to ‘bring to our remembrance all the things that Jesus taught us’ [also all the things about Jesus!] So when you read the Old Testament, look for Jesus! He is there in more ways than you realize.

‘For by ONE offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us [of what? Of the singularity of Christ’s offering. The fact that the Holy Spirit thru Jeremiah prophesied that God would never remember our sins any more speaks to the truth of the one offering of Christ, we will read ‘if there is no more remembrance, then there is no more sacrifice’] this is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more.
. Both of the above books/movies became favorites of mine- till this day I’ll watch them when they pop up on the classic channel. I actually have the Grapes of Wrath book sitting right here.

But the movie- Old man and the Sea- enthralled me. The struggle of the old man- his fight with the great fish- his arm wrestling bouts with the younger guys- the whole mystique was my thing.

The author- Hemingway- was himself a ‘mans man’ he lived large- took in all the experiences of life- and embraced a philosophy of life called Nihilism. This world view was popularized by men like Sartre, Camus and Freud. It basically is atheistic and says ‘there is no real meaning to life- man is a ‘useless passion’- he exists, only for the purpose of experiencing life- when the pain exceeds the pleasure- that the responsible thing to do is check out’. Yes- this philosophy advocates suicide.

Sartre [John Paul Sartre] actually said that the only philosophical question left is suicide- that we need to ask ourselves- as a society- should we allow ourselves to check out- for the good of the whole- when the pain exceeds the pleasure.

Another great work of Hemingway is titled ‘the Sun also rises’. He took the title from the biblical book of Ecclesiastes- written by Solomon [you know- to everything there is a season]. Solomon also embraces a sort of nihilistic view in this book- though it is in the bible- it is a form of literature called ‘pessimistic wisdom literature’. Sort of the philosophy Hemingway embraced.

Hemingway spoke about this view all thru out his life- though he was a brilliant writer- he had no hope ‘in the world’ [Apostle Paul]. One night, after he went to bed with his wife- he woke up- went downstairs and rigged up his favorite hunting rifle- and blew his head off. His daughter followed him a few years later.

I don’t know what’s down the road for our world right now- there are many people feeling hopeless today because they have lost- yes once again- a big portion of their wealth. As Christians we can say ‘yes- life is hard- we struggle at times- but in the end our struggles are working out a higher purpose- we have meaning in life’ but the atheist/nihilist- to them there is no redemptive purpose to the struggle- when the pain exceeds the pleasure- well yes- they check out.

Over the next few weeks- wherever you are at- think for yourself. If all the professional investors take their money out of stocks- and at the same time they advise you different- then stop listening to them. If your mad at the right [or left] then don’t keep watching people who are coming up with diagnosis’ that say the country is being run by actual Oslo killers- that’s just not true- no matter how much you might hate their point of view.

And at the end of the day- we as believers- we do have hope in the world. Mr. Steinberg wore that star of David- proudly. And in a recent post [Last?] I spoke about the promise that God made to king David- that he would raise up one of his sons and this Son would rule on the throne for ever. Yes- today this promise has been fulfilled through Christ- who sits at the right hand of God.

I don’t know- maybe I’ll rent the Old man and the Sea later [I tried in the past but couldn’t find it] and I’ll see the struggle of the old man [played excellently by Spencer Tracy] but instead of embracing his creators view [that is his earthly creator- Hemingway] I’ll ‘give’ my sufferings up- as the Catholics say- I’ll offer them to the Lord. Hemingway took the cowards way out- at the end of the day- he wasn’t the man we thought he was- he copped out.

. For Aristotle- knowledge is more A-Posteriori- that is we obtain knowledge about a thing- from the very thing itself. We see/touch and experience that thing- and by our senses interacting with the substance- we get knowledge- after the fact.

Okay- to Aristotle all substance has both Form and Matter. Then what he called substance- had 2 categories as well. The ‘substance’ [actual thing it is] and the Accidens [not accidents- not a typo].

The Accidens was simply the outward appearance- what we see on the outside. It might not be what the substance really is- or it might.

This teaching would eventually become a major way that our Catholic friends would come to define the doctrine of Transubstantiation- during the 13the century the great thinker Thomas Aquinas would re-discover [and introduce] Aristotle’s teaching back into the church.

In his theological works [Summa Theologica] he would use Aristotelian thought to explain how the Bread and Wine become the actual Flesh and Blood of Christ. Thomas explained that the actual substance of the thing was Flesh and Blood- but the Accidens- what you’re seeing on the outside- looks like Bread and Wine.

Catholic scholars have debated for centuries on whether or not they should stick to the hard line teaching from Thomas on this. They are not challenging the belief in the Real Presence [that Jesus is really there at the Eucharist] they simply wonder whether or not explaining it this way is right.

Finally- after many years of certain Catholic scholars asking this question- in 1965 the Pope [I think it was Paul the 6th?] put out a Papal Encyclical [an official Vatican teaching] and he stated clearly that the way Aquinas taught it is the official doctrine of the church- so that settled that.

Okay- Plato was an Idealist [Dualist] and Aristotle was a Realist. That’s the major difference.

I will note that Aristotle’s most famous student was Alexander the Great. And during the great conquests of Alexander he took with him a whole team of scientists who brought back all types of specimens of things and he gave them to his famous teacher Aristotle- to advance the cause of learning at the Lyceum school.

It has been said that Alexander’s efforts at collecting and bringing these things back after their victories- that this was probably the most expensive scientific endeavor of all time- right up until the modern space Era.

Note- I try to avoid too many ‘big words’ in these posts. Not because people don’t understand them- but because I forget how to spell them! And in this post- there are around 10 words that my spell check has no idea how to spell- so just a warning- there might be a few misspelled words in this one.

. (846)ROMANS 8:29-30 ‘for whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed into the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: whom he justified, them he also glorified’. Let’s talk a little. When I first became a Christian I began a lifelong study of scripture, where I continually read a certain amount of scripture every day for many years. Over the years I have varied on how fast I should read [that is how many chapters per day and so forth]. But during the early stages I always took these verses to teach predestination in the classical sense. Simply put, that God ‘pre chose’ me [and all whom come to him] before we ‘chose him’. The Fundamental Baptist church I began to attend [a great church with great people!] taught that ‘classic Calvinism’ [predestination] was false doctrine, and they labeled it ‘Hyper Calvinism’. I simply accepted this as fact. But I never forgot the early understanding that I first gleaned thru my own study. I also was very limited in my other readings outside of the scripture. I did study the Great awakenings and Charles Finney. I read some biographies on John Wesley and other great men of God. These men were not Calvinistic in their doctrine [which is fine], as a matter of fact Wesley would eventually disassociate from George Whitefield over this issue. Whitefield was a staunch Calvinist! Over time I came to believe the doctrine again, simply as I focused on the scriptures that teach it. Eventually I picked up some books on church history and realized that Calvinism was [and is] a mainstream belief among many great believers. I personally believe that most of the great theologians in history have accepted this doctrine. Now, for those who reject it, they honestly struggle with these portions of scripture. Just like there are portions of scripture that Calvinists struggle with. To deny this is to be less than honest. The Arminians [Those who deny classic predestination- the term comes from Jacob Arminias, a Calvinist who was writing and studying on the ‘errors’ of ‘arminianism’ and came to embrace the doctrine of free will/choice] usually approach the verses that say ‘he predestined us’ by teaching that Gods predestination speaks only of his foreknowledge of those who would choose him. This is an honest effort to come to terms with the doctrine. To be ‘more honest’ I think this doesn’t adequately deal with the issue. In the above text, as well as many other places in scripture, the idea of ‘Gods foreknowledge and pre choosing’ speak specifically about Gods choice to save us, as opposed to him simply knowing that we would ‘choose right’. The texts that teach predestination teach it in this context. Now the passage above does say ‘those whom he foreknew, he also did predestinate to be conformed into the image of Christ’ here this passage actually does say ‘God predestinated us to be like his Son’. If you left the ‘foreknowledge’ part out, you could read this passage in an Arminian way. But we do have the ‘foreknowledge’ part. So I believe Paul is saying ‘God chose us before we were born, he ‘knew’ ahead of time that he would bring us into his Kingdom. Those whom he foreknew he also predestinated to become like his Son.’ Why? So his Son would be the firstborn among many. God wanted a whole new race of ‘children of God’. Those he predestinated he ‘called’. He drew them to himself. Jesus said ‘all that the Father give to me will come to me, and him that cometh to me I will in no way cast out’. Those who ‘come’ are justified, those who are justified are [present tense] glorified. Gods design and sovereignty speak of it as a ‘finished task’ like it already happened. God lives outside of the dimension of time. I believe in the doctrine of predestination. Many others do as well. You don’t have to believe it if you don’t want to, but I believe scripture teaches it.

(847)ROMANS 8: 31-39 ‘What shall we say then to these things? [what things? The fact that God predestined us and has guaranteed completion of the purpose he has designed us for!] If God be for us, who can be against us?’ Paul teaches that Christ is the only one with the ‘right’ or authority to pass judgment. If the only person in existence who can ‘officially’ condemn and pass legal judgment has actually died for us for the purpose of ‘freeing us from a state of condemnation’, then who ‘gives a rip’ about others opinions and views of us? Most of us struggle with how others view us.
VERSES-
. Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. Prvb. 4:3
. Then I commended mirth, because a man hath no better thing under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry: for that shall abide with him of his labour the days of his life, which God giveth him under the sun. Ecc. 8
. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. Jesus
. Acts 10:42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
Acts 10:43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.
Acts 10:44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.
Acts 10:45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Acts 10:46 For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,
Acts 10:47 Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?
Acts 10:48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.
. Galatians 3:1 O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ hath been evidently set forth, crucified among you?
Galatians 3:2 This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Galatians 3:3 Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?
Galatians 3:4 Have ye suffered so many things in vain? if it be yet in vain.
Galatians 3:5 He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
Galatians 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
Galatians 3:7 Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
Galatians 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
. Ephesians 2:4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
Ephesians 2:5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
Ephesians 2:6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
Ephesians 2:7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Ephesians 2:9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
. John 3:15 That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
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.
John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
John 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
John 3:20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
. Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that isbegotten of him. 1st John 5

IN THE IMAGE OF GOD- https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/10-31-15-in-the-image-of-god.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Officer ‘Slam’?
.Einstein
.Logos
.Just God
.Point of Singularity
.Just math?
.Kant n Hume
.Ptolemy
.Sense Perception
.Objective truth
.Natural Theology

NEW STUFF [Old posts and Verses below]
Georges Lemaitre- I’ve mentioned him a lot over the years- and usually get his name wrong! [Lamarck- etc.].
So- being I mentioned him again on the video, I figured I’d get it right- now.
This priest/astronomer/physicist is responsible for what we now call the Big Bang Theory [responsible- not that he ‘did it’ but was the first to espouse the idea- often attributed to Hubbell- and Einstein].
I usually talk about Einstein’s Big Bang Theory- because he indeed showed us much of the proof that we have for it, but it was this Catholic Jesuit that first came up with the idea- and yes- Hubble too contributed to more proofs for it.
At first- Einstein did not accept the idea of an expanding universe.
Primeval Atom was the term Lemaitre used for what we now call the Point of Singularity.
He applied Einstein’s Theory of general relativity to cosmology- and Eisenstein of course would eventually accept- and praise Lemaitre’s breakthrough idea.
‘Why was this a big breakthrough for Christian thinkers?’
Good question.
For years science believed that the universe was eternal- it had no beginning point.
But in the 20th century- thru the men I mentioned above- science showed us that there was indeed a ‘starting point’ to everything [accept God].
So- this was scientific proof that the entire universe was ‘an effect’ [meaning- there had to be a cause behind it].
So- what could the cause be?
It had to be non-material- because all matter had a starting point.
It had to be powerful- intelligent [because unintelligence cannot beget intelligence].
And it had to have had no beginning itself- because if this creator had a beginning- then who made him?
So- for the Christian apologist- he now had scientific proof on his side- in a much bigger way than before-
See?
PAST POSTS THAT RELATE [verses below]-
Okay- I am skipping a bunch of stuff to jump into the thinkers who represent the most popular forms of atheism- Marx, Nietzsche and Freud. But first we need to take a look at Ludwig Feuerbach. L.F. [Ludwig Feuerbach] laid the groundwork for these other more famous rejecters of God and Christianity. During the enlightenment period it was rare for the critics of religion to hold an outright atheistic view- men like Hume and Voltaire- though true critics of the church- did not come out openly and deny the existence of God. It was also difficult [impossible?] to hold professorships in the universities if you were a doubter of God. Both Hume and Voltaire did not hold positions. F.S. was Hegelian in a way [he followed Hegel’s idea that ‘God’ comes to self consciousness thru the development of humanity] but F.S. was a Materialist- Hegel was an Idealist. Remember- idealism is the philosophical system that sees reality existing in forms/ideas first- then later comes the material thing. The great ancient philosopher Plato was an idealist. F.S. espoused the idea that reality starts with the material existence of man first- and thru religion man ‘projects’ the idea of God/spirit into society- and as man and Christianity develop [all good things for F.S.] that the ultimate truth that we learn on this journey is that man is really all there is- his ‘phase’ of God and religion were simply necessary stages for man to arrive at this self conscious state in which he finally realizes that man is all there is- God was a ‘crutch’- a needed one- but never the less simply a projection of mans mind until he came to full maturity. For F.S. ‘theology [the study of God] is anthropology’ [the study of man]. So in this sense he follows Hegel- the development of man and society is the development of God- but…..[ didn’t mean to paste this part- but left it on- can’t hurt- I’m not a great ‘cut and paste’ person!]

Okay- let’s try and transition a bit.
[parts]
ARISTOTLE

Born in Northern Greece- in 384 BC.
The most famous student of Plato- attended Plato’s Academy for around 20 years.

His main disagreement with Plato was on his theory of Forms.
Plato believed that the ‘idea’ world contained the forms of all things we see in the physical realm.

Aristotle taught that substance itself was the main thing- that the forms of what we see in the natural realm come from matter itself.

He spoke about Potentiality and Actuality- that is the material things have in ‘seed’ form the final product.

The acorn has the Potential of becoming a tree- the fetus has the Potential of becoming a man- etc.
The form is already embedded in the thing itself- it does not exist in the ‘idea’ world of Plato.

Aristotle loved and admired his teacher- yet Plato had somewhat of a disdain for his most famous student.
Plato passed over Aristotle to head up the Academy- twice.

As things go- Aristotle went and started his own school- called the Lyceum.

Aristotle did not just teach Philosophy- but Biology- Logic- Ethics- Rhetoric.
Some refer to him as the first real scientist.

His development of the laws of Logic- Cause and Effect- play a key role in the Scientific Method till this day.

Aristotle taught that the main way we gain knowledge is thru sense perception and experiment.

As we study the natural order of things themselves- we gain understanding from them.

What we refer to as the Empirical method- knowledge gained thru the observation and experimentation of things.

He referred to God as the Final Cause- not the First Cause.
Why?

He believed in God [some debate this- Aristotle himself called him God in his work on Metaphysics] and called him the Prime Mover.

As I said before- a big thing with the early thinkers was the origin of Motion- who started the ball rolling- so to speak.

Aristotle credited the source of all motion to an ‘un- moved Mover’.

He gave the attributes of God to his Mover- said he had no beginning- was not material- an eternal and imperishable substance.

So- why the Final Cause?
He said God attracts all things to himself- so in his mind- motion started by attraction- not by a ‘push’ so to speak.

This is interesting indeed- in modern physics we see that the universe is undergoing a continual expansion- heading somewhere- of course we believe this somewhere is God himself- the source of all things.

Isaac Newton agreed with Aristotle on this point- he referred to it in his 3rd law of Physics.

The medieval Muslim thinkers called him ‘The First Teacher’- and Kant [who we will get to later in this study] credits him with the bulk of what we know today as the Laws of Logic.

Aristotle taught that the main activity of God was thought.
The bible says that thru Wisdom and Understanding God made things [‘Wisdom builds the house- Understanding establishes it- and thru Knowledge it’s rooms are filled with all pleasant and precious riches- Wisdom is profitable to direct- the words of the wise are like nails fastened by the masters of assemblies- as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation’- various bible verses found in Proverbs- Ecclesiastes and Paul’s letter to the church at Corinth] – in a way Aristotle was right.

One of his key contributions was the Syllogism- you start with a Logical argument- you engage in Deductive reasoning- and come to a Conclusion.

A famous example would be ‘All men are mortal- Plato is a man- Plato is mortal’.

Aristotle did not believe that something comes from nothing- a phrase that will come up a lot as we progress in this study is ‘ex nihilo nihil fit’- meaning Nothing comes from Nothing.

He was also what we refer to as a Teleolologist- he believed that there was design and purpose in the created order of things.

[parts]
Okay- we made it all the way to Plato and his famous school that he founded at Athens [Greece]. Though Socrates was his teacher- yet Socrates never founded an actual school.

Like I said earlier- Plato had a view of Reality that was a bit strange. He was an Idealist- not in the way we use the term today [mostly] but he believed that Ideas themselves were the real world- and what we see/experience in the material world are not ‘as real’.

Plato believed that knowledge was A Priori- which means the actual knowledge about a thing exists before the thing comes into being.

The famous example he used was a Chair. He would ask ‘what is that’ pointing to a chair. The student would respond ‘a chair’ Plato would say ‘and how do you know this- how did you obtain that knowledge’ and he argued that in the Idea realm- there is a perfect form of Chairness that exists- and that’s why we can identify ‘the chair’ in the material realm.

Now- Plato’s most famous student was a man named Aristotle. He actually respected his teacher a lot- but there was some tension between the 2. Plato was more of a down to earth type guy- liked to wear plain clothes- did lots of his teaching by walking around the classroom- interacting with people.

Aristotle was more of a ‘Fancy Pants’ type guy. He had a little bit of the elitist thing going on. He was more of a book worm than Plato- and he would eventually start his own school to compete with Plato’s Academy.

Aristotle’s school was named the Lyceum. Aristotle was more of a Realist than an Idealist. He believed that this material world was more than just a copy of the Idea world. He taught that Substance and matter were very real- and that contained within the thing is the actual form and future potential of ‘that thing’.

For instance- the Acorn has within it the actual form of the Oak Tree. This form did not come from an Idea world- it came from the thing itself- the Acorn.

So matter has within it both the potential of its future form- as well as eventually becoming that thing.

For Aristotle- knowledge is more A-Posteriori- that is we obtain knowledge about a thing- from the very thing itself. We see/touch and experience that thing- and by our senses interacting with the substance- we get knowledge- after the fact.

Okay- to Aristotle all substance has both Form and Matter. Then what he called substance- had 2 categories as well. The ‘substance’ [actual thing it is] and the Accidens [not accidents- not a typo].

The Accidens was simply the outward appearance- what we see on the outside. It might not be what the substance really is- or it might.

This teaching would eventually become a major way that our Catholic friends would come to define the doctrine of Transubstantiation- during the 13the century the great thinker Thomas Aquinas would re-discover [and introduce] Aristotle’s teaching back into the church.

In his theological works [Summa Theologica] he would use Aristotelian thought to explain how the Bread and Wine become the actual Flesh and Blood of Christ. Thomas explained that the actual substance of the thing was Flesh and Blood- but the Accidens- what you’re seeing on the outside- looks like Bread and Wine.

Catholic scholars have debated for centuries on whether or not they should stick to the hard line teaching from Thomas on this. They are not challenging the belief in the Real Presence [that Jesus is really there at the Eucharist] they simply wonder whether or not explaining it this way is right.

Finally- after many years of certain Catholic scholars asking this question- in 1965 the Pope [I think it was Paul the 6th?] put out a Papal Encyclical [an official Vatican teaching] and he stated clearly that the way Aquinas taught it is the official doctrine of the church- so that settled that.

Okay- Plato was an Idealist [Dualist] and Aristotle was a Realist. That’s the major difference.

I will note that Aristotle’s most famous student was Alexander the Great. And during the great conquests of Alexander he took with him a whole team of scientists who brought back all types of specimens of things and he gave them to his famous teacher Aristotle- to advance the cause of learning at the Lyceum school.

It has been said that Alexander’s efforts at collecting and bringing these things back after their victories- that this was probably the most expensive scientific endeavor of all time- right up until the modern space Era.

Note- I try to avoid too many ‘big words’ in these posts. Not because people don’t understand them- but because I forget how to spell them! And in this post- there are around 10 words that my spell check has no idea how to spell- so just a warning- there might be a few misspelled words in this one.

[parts] (1312) THE INCARNATION- The most influential philosopher on Western thought is probably the philosopher Immanuel Kant. Kant wrote the influential work ‘In critique of pure reason’ at the close of the 18th century in response to the pure rationalists [David Hume] of the Enlightenment. Kant read Hume’s works and was said to have been ‘aroused out of his dogmatic slumber’ and dispatched his response. Kant espoused that you had the physical and metaphysical worlds, and the 2 are completely separate. He refuted the argument for God made by the apologists and said it was impossible for man to ‘know God’ thru rational/physical means. Kant did not totally reject ‘the idea’ of God; he simply said the efforts of the Christian philosophers to prove God were futile. Was Kant right? Yes and no. In the 13th century you had another great Christian thinker by the name of Thomas Aquinas, Thomas is considered one of the greatest [if not greatest] thinkers of the Catholic tradition, Thomas wrote extensively and re-introduced the Greek philosophers back into Christian theology. Sometimes referred to as ‘Aristotelianism’ [Aristotle]. Thomas taught that it was possible to obtain true knowledge of the existence of God from the natural world, but that to have particular revelation from God you needed the church and tradition [revelation]. Some feel that Thomas was teaching a ‘secular/sacred’ division that hurt the work of the church. But if you read Aquinas in the context of his time he really was not doing this. Thomas ‘rescued’ apologetics [proof for God] from the philosophers of Islam who were teaching that you could have 2 types of truth- religious and scientific. They taught that religious truth could ‘be true’ by faith, but that it could be false by science, and vice versa. Thomas was refuting this idea and was showing us that real truth, whether from the natural sciences or from ‘revelation’ never contradict, it’s just science can only go so far in arguing for the existence of God. But the influence of Immanuel Kant on western thinking has many believing that God and ‘religion’ are okay things for people to believe, but that ‘real truth’ is found in the natural sciences and God is excluded from this ‘secular’ realm. This is a false view. God can be ‘proved’ by studying the natural sciences, like Aquinas said. Now this doesn’t get you all the way to the God of Christian theology, but it can take you up to the point where God’s existence is proven to be reality. The main point is it is wrong to think Christianity is relegated to the realm of faith while ‘real truth’ is in the realm of science. The Incarnation was God’s divine act of breaking into the physical world thru the birth of his Son. God became man and dwelt among us, you can study all the history of the time and find many historical proofs of the reality of Jesus and the fact that he died and rose again, these ‘truths’ are not only religious in nature, they are factual in history. So while I appreciate the work that Kant put into his book, I will stick with the other ‘Emanuel’ the God who is with us.

(1307) CHRISTMAS- being I mentioned Christmas the other day, let’s talk a little. First, does the bible give us [in the New Testament] any special memorials to celebrate? Yes, the New Testament teaches us that when believers celebrate the Lords supper that we ‘show the Lords death’ until he comes back. This is the only explicit memorial given to New Testament believers. Does this mean it’s wrong to celebrate other days? Not really. The early church, contrary to popular opinion, did celebrate ‘Christmas’ before the days of Constantine in the 4th century. They celebrated Christ’s ‘birthday’ on January 6th. But they also celebrated ‘Easter’ as well, and Easter played a more significant role in the church. But in the 4th century the church was grappling with different issues, one of the main ones was the nature of Christ [Christology] some questioned his true humanity. So as a result the celebration of the Incarnation [Jesus being born and taking on real human flesh] took on special importance, the church wanted to stress the ‘birthday’ of Jesus as a theological event. Now the story of Constantine and his conversion to
[parts]
The point being we need to tell people the truth about what is in the bible- and what the church [predominantly] teaches- and then avoid ‘going to war’ with people.

As I’m continuing to read different works on philosophy and modernity- I recently came across Daniel Dennet- a contemporary atheist/thinker. Dennet questions the ‘morality’ of teaching morals [religion] to kids. He espouses the question of the whole idea of religious teaching/tradition. Is it ‘right’ to teach ‘what’s right’?

Okay- I’m sure he is a smart man [they tell me so] but he of course is falling into the classic mistake of thinking he can argue from a foundation of ‘oughtness’ while claiming we should not have these types of foundations.

Basically you can’t argue a moral position [is something right- wrong] if you reject the reality of morality itself. This mistake is easily refuted in the field of apologetics. Sam Harris [another contemporary atheist] makes these same arguments.

I found it interesting to hear Governor Cuomo and other supporters of the law- they were oozing with moral language ‘we are proud to be part of the struggle for the rights of all people’ and other language like this. I’m sure these well meaning folk don’t realize they are contradicting their core argument ‘who is society- the church- to say what’s right or wrong!’ And then they say ‘it’s wrong for them to think that way’.

Okay- I hope you see the point. Immanuel Kant saw this some 300 years ago when the ‘age of reason’ was just taking off. Many thinkers of his day began questioning the wisdom of having religion/morality as part of the fabric of society. Kant recognized the need for the basic idea of right and wrong [What he called ‘oughtness’ you know what you ought to do] and even though he disagreed with Descartes’- he did not believe you could ultimately prove God through reason- yet he saw the need for ‘God’ to exist in the fabric of human society- in his mind there had to be an ultimate judge who could carry out justice- and there had to exist a basic idea of what you should and should not do.

These debates are long and can go on forever.

In Matthew 13 Jesus gave us a story about Gods kingdom. He said it’s like a field. A farmer goes out and plants good seed. Then when everyone was sleeping- an enemy went out and planted ‘bad seed’.

When the plants came up- his workers asked if they should go out and pull all the bad crop out. The boss said no- just leave them alone- in the final harvest he will deal with them- but it wasn’t their job to go pull them out prematurely.

Sometimes we [the church] are like the workers- we see ‘bad seed’ things that we recognize are not healthy for the field- we think ‘let’s go dig them out’. But God says ‘I’ll deal with the bad seed in my time- if you think it’s your job to go around pulling up all the bad weeds- you might hurt some good wheat too’.

I in no way ‘rejoice’ over the N.Y. vote- but I feel no urge to go ‘pull the bad seed out’ some of what we think is bad- might turn out to be good in the end.

http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com

[1672] IN DEFENSE OF LIBERATION THEOLOGY

I’ve been wanting to get back to some of our studies- but the news cycle has been hot these last few weeks [not just Weiner!] and I have been sidetracked somewhat. One of the other important news stories was the going away speech by defense secy. Gates.

He tore into NATO and raked them over the coals for their willingness to vote Yes on intervention- then letting the U.S. do the majority of the work. There are 28 nations that make up the alliance [North Atlantic Treaty Organization]. Yet in Afghanistan there are a total of around 140 thousand troops. The media constantly report ‘NATO troops were killed- or accidently hit a civilian house’. We get desensitized- we think these are actually troops from NATO- like these other 28 nations are doing this stuff. Out of the 140,000 troops- 100 thousand are U.S. troops. I mean 28 other nations?

In Libya- once again the entire alliance voted to go in [or abstain- though ‘going in’ meant different things to different nations] and after a few weeks of ‘going in’ once again we are
[parts of posts] [1586] FREUD-NIETZSCHE AND MARX- Today I need to do a little more on our study of Modernity [the thinkers who have influenced Western culture/thought from the 1700’s- 2000’s]. At this time I have 3 separate studies I have started on-line; Classics of literature, Great Christian thinkers of history, and Modernity. As time rolls on- I will gradually post all new studies once a year in a monthly post [most of the time it will be February] and as I update them you can read the most recent ones from the most recent years.

Okay- I am skipping a bunch of stuff to jump into the thinkers who represent the most popular forms of atheism- Marx, Nietzsche and Freud. But first we need to take a look at Ludwig Feuerbach. L.F. [Ludwig Feuerbach] laid the groundwork for these other more famous rejecters of God and Christianity. During the enlightenment period it was rare for the critics of religion to hold an outright atheistic view- men like Hume and Voltaire- though true critics of the church- did not come out openly and deny the existence of God. It was also difficult [impossible?] to hold professorships in the universities if you were a doubter of God. Both Hume and Voltaire did not hold positions. F.S. was Hegelian in a way [he followed Hegel’s idea that ‘God’ comes to self consciousness thru the development of humanity] but F.S. was a Materialist- Hegel was an Idealist. Remember- idealism is the philosophical system that sees reality existing in forms/ideas first- then later comes the material thing. The great ancient philosophers- Socrates, Plato and Aristotle were all Idealists. F.S. espoused the idea that reality starts with the material existence of man first- and thru religion man ‘projects’ the idea of God/spirit into society- and as man and Christianity develop [all good things for F.S.] that the ultimate truth that we learn on this journey is that man is really all there is- his ‘phase’ of God and religion were simply necessary stages for man to arrive at this self conscious state in which he finally realizes that man is all there is- God was a ‘crutch’- a needed one- but never the less simply a projection of mans mind until he came to full maturity. For F.S. ‘theology [the study of God] is anthropology’ [the study of man]. So in this sense he follows Hegel- the development of man and society is the development of God- but Hegel starts with spirit projecting ‘himself’ into creation- and F.S. starts with man/matter first- and man projects this idea of God/spirit as a secondary reality. The philosopher Paul Ricoeur describes F.S. and his disciples as holding to a system of belief called ‘the hermeneutics of suspicion’. This meaning that religion and God are not just things that seem to be irrational [according to certain enlightenment critics] but that religion itself is a mask that adds to the suffering of man- that man is under the dominion of false ideas- ideas that have been developed by those who want power over others- and these taskmasters use religion as a tool to oppress the ignorant masses. This idea will come to full bloom in the mind of Marx. Marx referred to religion as a ‘false consciousness’ that kept man in servitude to others who ruled over them- and religion itself was the tool that kept these ignorant masses in check. Nietzsche thought religion had its roots in weakness and sickness- and that the most decadent used it to control those who were actually more moral than the leaders. Freud saw religion as an effect of repression and the actual cause of mental conflict and guilt- he blamed religion for all the psychosis that man is afflicted with in life. The next few posts in this study [whenever I get to them?] I will try and develop all 3 of these famous thinkers ideas- show the errors in their own thinking- and the aftermath of generations who have tried/fleshed out their philosophies- and have found them dreadfully lacking in the end.

[1623] CHRIST CHURCH? A few weeks back I was going to write a post from the words of St. Peter found in the New Testament ‘The time has come that judgment must begin at the house of God [Christ’s church= house of God] and if it starts there- what will the outcome be for the rest of the world?’ [paraphrased it]. Right after the ‘thought’ the major events off the coast of Japan hit and we have this trilogy of disasters to deal with [Earthquake, Tsunami, Nuclear meltdown]. I did find it ‘strange’ that the recent events started with Christ Church New Zealand- and seemed to spread from there. I heard a Geologist the other night- he had previously predicted the earthquake that hit Ca. during the World Series a few years ago. He said the sign of the dead fish recently washing up in Ca. was not a coincidence- he said the fish can sense a change in the earth’s magnetic field [prior to an earthquake] and that in Japan these fish kills are actually called ‘earthquake fish’. Wow. You do hear lots of talking heads during these types of events- yet it would be nice to know the truth on these types of things. The last year or 2 we had earthquakes along the Pacific Rim; Chile, New Zealand and of course Japan. If you look on a map you see the Pacific Ocean and you can draw a circle around the perimeter- the part that
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VERSES-
. Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
. Genesis 1:26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; Rev. 3:14
John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

WHAT BALLS!
Watch the upcoming video- it took some ‘balls’ to do this [besides it being illegal].
‘John- why do you think they did this to your daughter’?
2 ideas-
1- The deputy could have been seeking a confrontation- like ‘I was checking the place out and they pulled a gun on me!’ And I had to murder her.
2- To piss me off- and get me to drive out there [on the deserted highway] and ‘oops’ we had to shoot this guy’.

SIMONY AND CHEAP TRICK-

ON VIDEO-
.A.P. article review
.Simony
.Peter/Simon- showdown
PAST POSTS-
Simony (pron. [ˈsaɪ.mə.ni] or [ˈsɪ.mə.ni]) is the act of selling church offices and roles. The practice is named after Simon Magus,[1] who is described in the Acts of the Apostles 8:9–24 as having offered two disciples of Jesus, Peter and John, payment in exchange for their empowering him to impart the power of the Holy Spirit to anyone on whom he would place his hands. The term also extends to other forms of trafficking for money in “spiritual things”.[2][3] Simony was also one of the important issues during the Investiture Controversy. Wikipedia
. [1770] TREASURY OF MERIT

Let’s pick up where we left off 2 posts back. We were talking about Martin Luther and the events that led up to the Protestant Reformation.

In order to understand the key act that caused the protest- we will have to teach some Catholic history/doctrine.

In the 16th century Pope Julius began the effort to build St. Peters basilica in Rome. He got as far as laying the foundation and died. Pope Leo the 10th would pick up after him.

The church needed to raise money for the project- and the German prince- Albert- would play a major role.

It should be noted that both Catholic and Protestant scholars agree that the Popes of the day were pretty corrupt. They came from what we call the Medici line of Popes.

If you remember last month I wrote a post on the Renaissance- I talked about the Medici family and how they played a major role in supporting the Renaissance that took place in the 13th century in Florence Italy that would spread to the region.

Well this very influential family also played a big role in who would get top positions in the church.

At the time of Luther and prince Albert- if you had the right connections and the money- you could literally buy a position in the church.

Albert already held 2 Bishop seats- and there was an opening for an Archbishops seat in Mainz [Germany] and he wanted that one too.

It should be noted that official Canon law [church law] said you could only hold one seat at a time- Albert was bidding on his 3rd one! And he was too young for all of them.

So even the Pope and the officials held little respect for what the church actually taught at the time.

So Albert opens up negotiations with Leo- and the bidding starts AT 12,000 Duckets [money] Albert counters with 7,000- and they agree on 10,000. How did they justify the numbers? 12- The number of Apostles. 7- The 7 deadly sins. 10- The 10 commandments.

Yes- the church was pretty corrupt at the time.

So Albert works out a plan with Leo- he will borrow the money from the German banks- and pay the banks off by the Pope giving Albert the right to sell Indulgences.

What’s an Indulgence?

Okay- this is where it gets tricky.

The ancient church taught a system called The Treasury of Merit. This was a sort of spiritual bank account that ‘stored up’ the good deeds of others over the years.

You had the good deeds of Jesus at the top- but you also had Mary and Joseph- the 12 Apostles- and other various saints thru out time.

The way the ‘bank’ worked was you could tap into the account by getting a Papal indulgence- a sort of I.O.U. that had the Popes guarantee that it would get so much time out of Purgatory for a loved one.

The actual sacrament that accesses the account is called Penance [confession].

When a penitent does penance- he confesses his sin to the priest- and he is absolved by the authority of the church that the priest has. The priest usually tells the person ‘say so many Hail Mary’s- Our Father’s’ and that’s a form of penance.

One of the other things the church practiced was called Alms Deeds. This term is found in the bible and it means giving your money to the poor- it is a noble act that Jesus himself taught.

In theory- part of the sacrament of penance was tied into Alms Deeds- you can access the account thru the practice of giving to the poor- which also meant giving to the church that helps the poor- and in the hands of the Medici line of Popes- meant outright giving money to the Pope.

So now you see how the abuse worked its way into the pockets of the faithful.

Albert now had the permission from Leo to sell these indulgences in Germany- and he would pick a certain corrupt priest to sell them in a place called Saxony- the region where Luther operated out of.

It should be noted that the Catholic Church never taught the crass act of ‘buying your way out of Purgatory’. The practice of including giving money as a part of the sacrament of penance was tied into the biblical principle of giving to the poor- a good thing.

But Tetzel and others abused the official meaning of the indulgence- and did make it sound like you could by your way out of Purgatory [in theory- a loved one might be in Purgatory for so many years- and through the indulgence you are actually getting time off for them- because the good deeds of others are now applied to the account].

The money Albert would raise- half would go to Rome for the building of St. peters- and half would go to pay off the banks in Germany- it was a sad system- and a sad time for the church as a whole.

It would be wrong to judge the entire church at the time as being corrupt- you did have many sincere Priests and Catholic men and women who saw the abuses and did not take part in them.

But there was corruption at the top- and this would eventually lead to the breakup of the church- and the launching of what we now call the Protestant Movement.

As a side note- it should be said that many Catholics and Protestants are not aware of the whole treasury of merit system- and the church never officially changed her position on the doctrine.

There were 3 Church councils since the time [Trent- 1500’s, Vatican 1- 1800’s and Vatican 2- 1962-65]. The Treasury of Merit never came up for change.

Obviously Protestants don’t believe in Purgatory- and it’s not my purpose in these posts to change Catholics into Protestants or vice versa- but to give all sides a clear view of the issues that divided us- and to try and be honest- and respectful during the process.

Does the bible teach anything like a Treasury of Merit? Well actually it does. The bible teaches that the righteousness of Christ is the treasury that people can access- by faith- and become righteous in the sight if God.

The idea- applied to Christ- is good.

But in the hands of the Medici Popes- and the ambitious prince of Germany- it would lead to disaster.

[parts]
The writings of Aristotle would be discovered again during the time of Thomas Aquinas [13th century Catholic genius/scholar] and this would lead to Scholasticism [a peculiar school of thought developed/revived under Aquinas] and give rise to the Renaissance.

Okay- before the birth of Christ- the Jewish people resisted the imposing of Greek culture upon them- you had the very famous resistance under the Jewish Maccabean revolt- where the Jews rose up and fought the wicked ruler Antiochus Epiphanies- and till this day the Jewish people celebrate this victory at Hanukah.

Eventually Rome would conquer the Greek kingdom and the Jewish people were allowed to keep their culture and temple- yet they were still a people oppressed. Hassidism [getting back to the beginning] developed during this attempt to not lose their Jewish roots- the Pharisees of Jesus day came from this movement.

Alexander was pretty successful in his attempt to unify language- even though the bible [New Testament] was written by Jewish writers- living under Roman rule- yet the original bible is written in the Greek language.

Bible scholars till this day study the Greek language to find the truest meaning of the actual words in the bible [I have a Greek Lexicon sitting right in front of me].

It would take a few centuries before a Latin version appeared on the scene [the great church father- Jerome- would produce the Latin Vulgate].

Yet it would be the re- discovery and learning of the Greek texts [under men like Erasmus- and the Protestant Reformers] that would lead to the Reformation [16th century] and other movements in church history.

[1587] OVERVIEW- Lets over view a little today- in the last post I mentioned how we will be getting into Marx, Freud and Nietzsche in the coming months- yet I have so many things going on at this time that just in case I never get to them I want to lay out some stuff. First, most challenges to the Christian faith/God- have come from the point of view that said ‘yes- we believe that there is some being out there- God- but we challenge the purveyors of religion and how man has used religion to control- manipulate the masses’. It was not until the rise of these men that the popular approach of ‘no God’ would take a foothold in the minds of many unsuspecting ‘masses’. Before we delve into the ideas and contradictions of these men- let me explain why most thinkers of the Enlightenment did not take the atheistic approach- and instead opted for some form of Deism/Theism. The original debate of ‘where did everything come from’ did not start during the Enlightenment- it dates back as far as 4-5 centuries before Christ- the question is obviously older- but you can read the debate taking place in the great minds of the Greek philosophers; Socrates, Plato and Aristotle. Though the idea of God in the minds of these Greek thinkers was not the same definition that Christianity would hold to- yet they did believe in some type of being who for the most part was what we would think of as God- they referred to him as The Prime Mover- a term that the great Catholic thinker Thomas Aquinas would use in the 13th century
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VERSES- [note- I also added some of the verses I talked about on this week’s videos below]
. Acts 8:9 But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one:
Acts 8:10 To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, This man is the great power of God.
Acts 8:11 And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries.
Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.
Acts 8:13 Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done.
Acts 8:14 Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:
Acts 8:15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:
Acts 8:16 (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)
Acts 8:17 Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.
Acts 8:18 And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money,
Acts 8:19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.
Acts 8:20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.
Acts 8:21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.
Acts 8:22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.
Acts 8:23 For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.
Acts 8:24 Then answered Simon, and said, Pray ye to the LORD for me, that none of these things which ye have spoken come upon me.

. Acts 13:1 Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
Acts 13:2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.
Acts 13:3 And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.
Acts 13:4 So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus.
Acts 13:5 And when they were at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John to their minister.
Acts 13:6 And when they had gone through the isle unto Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was Barjesus:
Acts 13:7 Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God.
Acts 13:8 But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.
Acts 13:9 Then Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him.
Acts 13:10 And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?
Acts 13:11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand.
Acts 13:12 Then the deputy, when he saw what was done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.
Numbers 22:1 And the children of Israel set forward, and pitched in the plains of Moab on this side Jordan by Jericho.
Numbers 22:2 And Balak the son of Zippor saw all that Israel had done to the Amorites.
Numbers 22:3 And Moab was sore afraid of the people, because they were many: and Moab was distressed because of the children of Israel.
Numbers 22:4 And Moab said unto the elders of Midian, Now shall this company lick up all that are round about us, as the ox licketh up the grass of the field. And Balak the son of Zippor was king of the Moabites at that time.
Numbers 22:5 He sent messengers therefore unto Balaam the son of Beor to Pethor, which is by the river of the land of the children of his people, to call him, saying, Behold, there is a people come out from Egypt: behold, they cover the face of the earth, and they abide over against me:
Numbers 22:6 Come now therefore, I pray thee, curse me this people; for they are too mighty for me: peradventure I shall prevail, that we may smite them, and that I may drive them out of the land: for I wot that he whom thou blessest is blessed, and he whom thou cursest is cursed.
Numbers 22:7 And the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian departed with the rewards of divination in their hand; and they came unto Balaam, and spake unto him the words of Balak.
Numbers 22:8 And he said unto them, Lodge here this night, and I will bring you word again, as the LORD shall speak unto me: and the princes of Moab abode with Balaam.
Numbers 22:9 And God came unto Balaam, and said, What men are these with thee?
Numbers 22:10 And Balaam said unto God, Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab, hath sent unto me, saying,
Numbers 22:11 Behold, there is a people come out of Egypt, which covereth the face of the earth: come now, curse me them; peradventure I shall be able to overcome them, and drive them out.
Numbers 22:12 And God said unto Balaam, Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people: for they are blessed.
Numbers 22:13 And Balaam rose up in the morning, and said unto the princes of Balak, Get you into your land: for the LORD refuseth to give me leave to go with you.
Numbers 22:14 And the princes of Moab rose up, and they went unto Balak, and said, Balaam refuseth to come with us.
Numbers 22:15 And Balak sent yet again princes, more, and more honourable than they.
Numbers 22:16 And they came to Balaam, and said to him, Thus saith Balak the son of Zippor, Let nothing, I pray thee, hinder thee from coming unto me:
Numbers 22:17 For I will promote thee unto very great honour, and I will do whatsoever thou sayest unto me: come therefore, I pray thee, curse me this people.
Numbers 22:18 And Balaam answered and said unto the servants of Balak, If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the word of the LORD my God, to do less or more.
Numbers 22:19 Now therefore, I pray you, tarry ye also here this night, that I may know what the LORD will say unto me more.
Numbers 22:20 And God came unto Balaam at night, and said unto him, If the men come to call thee, rise up, and go with them; but yet the word which I shall say unto thee, that shalt thou do.
Numbers 22:21 And Balaam rose up in the morning, and saddled his ass, and went with the princes of Moab.
Numbers 22:22 And God’s anger was kindled because he went: and the angel of the LORD stood in the way for an adversary against him. Now he was riding upon his ass, and his two servants were with him.
Numbers 22:23 And the ass saw the angel of the LORD standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand: and the ass turned aside out of the way, and went into the field: and Balaam smote the ass, to turn her into the way.
Numbers 22:24 But the angel of the LORD stood in a path of the vineyards, a wall being on this side, and a wall on that side.
Numbers 22:25 And when the ass saw the angel of the LORD, she thrust herself unto the wall, and crushed Balaam’s foot against the wall: and he smote her again.
Numbers 22:26 And the angel of the LORD went further, and stood in a narrow place, where was no way to turn either to the right hand or to the left.
Numbers 22:27 And when the ass saw the angel of the LORD, she fell down under Balaam: and Balaam’s anger was kindled, and he smote the ass with a staff.
Numbers 22:28 And the LORD opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times?
Numbers 22:29 And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me: I would there were a sword in mine hand, for now would I kill thee.
Numbers 22:30 And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden ever since I was thine unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? And he said, Nay.
Numbers 22:31 Then the LORD opened the eyes of Balaam, and he saw the angel of the LORD standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand: and he bowed down his head, and fell flat on his face.
Numbers 22:32 And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Wherefore hast thou smitten thine ass these three times? behold, I went out to withstand thee, because thy way is perverse before me:
Numbers 22:33 And the ass saw me, and turned from me these three times: unless she had turned from me, surely now also I had slain thee, and saved her alive.
Numbers 22:34 And Balaam said unto the angel of the LORD, I have sinned; for I knew not that thou stoodest in the way against me: now therefore, if it displease thee, I will get me back again.
Numbers 22:35 And the angel of the LORD said unto Balaam, Go with the men: but only the word that I shall speak unto thee, that thou shalt speak. So Balaam went with the princes of Balak.
Numbers 22:36 And when Balak heard that Balaam was come, he went out to meet him unto a city of Moab, which is in the border of Arnon, which is in the utmost coast.
Numbers 22:37 And Balak said unto Balaam, Did I not earnestly send unto thee to call thee? wherefore camest thou not unto me? am I not able indeed to promote thee to honour?
Numbers 22:38 And Balaam said unto Balak, Lo, I am come unto thee: have I now any power at all to say any thing? the word that God putteth in my mouth, that shall I speak.
Numbers 22:39 And Balaam went with Balak, and they came unto Kirjathhuzoth.
Numbers 22:40 And Balak offered oxen and sheep, and sent to Balaam, and to the princes that were with him.
Numbers 22:41 And it came to pass on the morrow, that Balak took Balaam, and brought him up into the high places of Baal, that thence he might see the utmost part of the people.
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Numbers 23:1 And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven oxen and seven rams.
Numbers 23:2 And Balak did as Balaam had spoken; and Balak and Balaam offered on every altar a bullock and a ram.
Numbers 23:3 And Balaam said unto Balak, Stand by thy burnt offering, and I will go: peradventure the LORD will come to meet me: and whatsoever he sheweth me I will tell thee. And he went to an high place.
Numbers 23:4 And God met Balaam: and he said unto him, I have prepared seven altars, and I have offered upon every altar a bullock and a ram.
Numbers 23:5 And the LORD put a word in Balaam’s mouth, and said, Return unto Balak, and thus thou shalt speak.
Numbers 23:6 And he returned unto him, and, lo, he stood by his burnt sacrifice, he, and all the princes of Moab.
Numbers 23:7 And he took up his parable, and said, Balak the king of Moab hath brought me from Aram, out of the mountains of the east, saying, Come, curse me Jacob, and come, defy Israel.
Numbers 23:8 How shall I curse, whom God hath not cursed? or how shall I defy, whom the LORD hath not defied?
Numbers 23:9 For from the top of the rocks I see him, and from the hills I behold him: lo, the people shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations.
Numbers 23:10 Who can count the dust of Jacob, and the number of the fourth part of Israel? Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his!
Numbers 23:11 And Balak said unto Balaam, What hast thou done unto me? I took thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast blessed them altogether.
Numbers 23:12 And he answered and said, Must I not take heed to speak that which the LORD hath put in my mouth?
Numbers 23:13 And Balak said unto him, Come, I pray thee, with me unto another place, from whence thou mayest see them: thou shalt see but the utmost part of them, and shalt not see them all: and curse me them from thence.
Numbers 23:14 And he brought him into the field of Zophim, to the top of Pisgah, and built seven altars, and offered a bullock and a ram on every altar.
Numbers 23:15 And he said unto Balak, Stand here by thy burnt offering, while I meet the LORD yonder.
Numbers 23:16 And the LORD met Balaam, and put a word in his mouth, and said, Go again unto Balak, and say thus.
Numbers 23:17 And when he came to him, behold, he stood by his burnt offering, and the princes of Moab with him. And Balak said unto him, What hath the LORD spoken?
Numbers 23:18 And he took up his parable, and said, Rise up, Balak, and hear; hearken unto me, thou son of Zippor:
Numbers 23:19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
Numbers 23:20 Behold, I have received commandment to bless: and he hath blessed; and I cannot reverse it.
Numbers 23:21 He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob, neither hath he seen perverseness in Israel: the LORD his God is with him, and the shout of a king is among them.
Numbers 23:22 God brought them out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn.
Numbers 23:23 Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, neither is there any divination against Israel: according to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What hath God wrought!
Numbers 23:24 Behold, the people shall rise up as a great lion, and lift up himself as a young lion: he shall not lie down until he eat of the prey, and drink the blood of the slain.
Numbers 23:25 And Balak said unto Balaam, Neither curse them at all, nor bless them at all.
Numbers 23:26 But Balaam answered and said unto Balak, Told not I thee, saying, All that the LORD speaketh, that I must do?
Numbers 23:27 And Balak said unto Balaam, Come, I pray thee, I will bring thee unto another place; peradventure it will please God that thou mayest curse me them from thence.
Numbers 23:28 And Balak brought Balaam unto the top of Peor, that looketh toward Jeshimon.
Numbers 23:29 And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven bullocks and seven rams.
Numbers 23:30 And Balak did as Balaam had said, and offered a bullock and a ram on every altar.
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Numbers 24:1 And when Balaam saw that it pleased the LORD to bless Israel, he went not, as at other times, to seek for enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness.
Numbers 24:2 And Balaam lifted up his eyes, and he saw Israel abiding in his tents according to their tribes; and the spirit of God came upon him.
Numbers 24:3 And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said:
Numbers 24:4 He hath said, which heard the words of God, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open:
Numbers 24:5 How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, and thy tabernacles, O Israel!
Numbers 24:6 As the valleys are they spread forth, as gardens by the river’s side, as the trees of lign aloes which the LORD hath planted, and as cedar trees beside the waters.
Numbers 24:7 He shall pour the water out of his buckets, and his seed shall be in many waters, and his king shall be higher than Agag, and his kingdom shall be exalted.
Numbers 24:8 God brought him forth out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn: he shall eat up the nations his enemies, and shall break their bones, and pierce them through with his arrows.
Numbers 24:9 He couched, he lay down as a lion, and as a great lion: who shall stir him up? Blessed is he that blesseth thee, and cursed is he that curseth thee.
Numbers 24:10 And Balak’s anger was kindled against Balaam, and he smote his hands together: and Balak said unto Balaam, I called thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast altogether blessed them these three times.
Numbers 24:11 Therefore now flee thou to thy place: I thought to promote thee unto great honour; but, lo, the LORD hath kept thee back from honour.
Numbers 24:12 And Balaam said unto Balak, Spake I not also to thy messengers which thou sentest unto me, saying,
Numbers 24:13 If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the commandment of the LORD, to do either good or bad of mine own mind; but what the LORD saith, that will I speak?
Numbers 24:14 And now, behold, I go unto my people: come therefore, and I will advertise thee what this people shall do to thy people in the latter days.
Numbers 24:15 And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said:
Numbers 24:16 He hath said, which heard the words of God, and knew the knowledge of the most High, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open:
Numbers 24:17 I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth.
Numbers 24:18 And Edom shall be a possession, Seir also shall be a possession for his enemies; and Israel shall do valiantly.
Numbers 24:19 Out of Jacob shall come he that shall have dominion, and shall destroy him that remaineth of the city.
Numbers 24:20 And when he looked on Amalek, he took up his parable, and said, Amalek was the first of the nations; but his latter end shall be that he perish for ever.
Numbers 24:21 And he looked on the Kenites, and took up his parable, and said, Strong is thy dwellingplace, and thou puttest thy nest in a rock.
Numbers 24:22 Nevertheless the Kenite shall be wasted, until Asshur shall carry thee away captive.
Numbers 24:23 And he took up his parable, and said, Alas, who shall live when God doeth this!
Numbers 24:24 And ships shall come from the coast of Chittim, and shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber, and he also shall perish for ever.
Numbers 24:25 And Balaam rose up, and went and returned to his place: and Balak also went his way.
2Peter 2:1 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
2Peter 2:2 And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
2Peter 2:3 And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.
2Peter 2:4 For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;
2Peter 2:5 And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly;
2Peter 2:6 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
2Peter 2:7 And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:
2Peter 2:8 (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;)
2Peter 2:9 The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:
2Peter 2:10 But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.
2Peter 2:11 Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord.
2Peter 2:12 But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption;
2Peter 2:13 And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you;
2Peter 2:14 Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
2Peter 2:15 Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness;
2Peter 2:16 But was rebuked for his iniquity: the dumb ass speaking with man’s voice forbad the madness of the prophet.

THE CROSS- 1
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-6-15-the-cross-1.zip

On video-
.Alone in a crowd
.Marcion
.Tertullian
.Uncle Joe
.Did we chase God into a book?
.Law v Grace
.What was the leaven?
Past posts [verses below]
. (835)ROMANS 7:1-4 Paul uses the analogy of a married woman ‘don’t you know that the law has dominion over a person as long as he is alive’? If a married woman leaves her husband and marries another man she is guilty of breaking the law of adultery. Now, if her husband dies, she is free to marry another man. The act that freed her from sin and guilt was death! Every thing else in the scenario stayed the same. She still married another, she still consummated the new marriage. But because her first husband died, she has no guilt. I always loved this analogy. For years I wondered why these themes in scripture are for the most part not ‘imbedded’ in the collective psyche of the people of God. We have spent so much time ‘proof texting’ the verses on success and wealth, that we have overlooked the really good stuff! Now Paul teaches that we have been made free from the law by the ‘death of our husband’ [Jesus] so we can ‘re-marry’. Who do we marry? Christ! He has not only died to free us from the law, he also rose from the dead to become our ‘husband’ [we are called the bride of Christ]. Paul connects the death and resurrection of Jesus in this analogy. Both are needed for the true gospel to be preached [1st Corinthians 15]. Notice how in this passage Paul emphasizes ‘the death of Christ’s body’. The New Testament doesn’t always make this distinction, but here it does. In the early centuries of Christianity you had various debates over the nature and ‘substance’ of God and Christ. The church hammered out various decrees and creeds that would become the Orthodoxy of the day. Many of these are what you would call the ‘Ecumenical councils’. These are the early councils [many centuries!] that both the eastern [Orthodox church] and western [Catholic] churches would all accept. Some feel that the early church fathers and Latin theologians [Tertullian, Augustine and others] had too much prior influence from philosophy and the ‘forensic’ thinking of their time. They had a tendency to describe things in highly technical ways. Ways that were prominent in the legal and philosophical thinking of the West. Some of the eastern thinkers [Origen] had more of a Greek ‘flavor’ to their theologizing [Alexandria, named after Alexander the great, was a city of philosophy many years prior to Christ. This city was at one time the center of thinking in the East. That’s why Paul would face the thinkers at Athens, they had a history in the east of Greek philosophy]. Well any way the result was highly technical debates over the nature of God and Christ. The historic church would finally decree that Christ had 2 natures, Human and Divine. And that at the Cross the ‘humanity of Jesus’ died, but his ‘Deity’ did not. I think Paul agreed by saying ‘we are free from the law by the death of Christ’s Body’ here Paul distinguishes between the physical death of Jesus and his Deity. Note- actually, Augustine would be in the same school as Origen. Alexandrian.

(836)ROMANS 7: 5-13 ‘But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were
At one point he questioned whether Paul wrote the middle chapter of one of the letters attributed to Paul.
Yet he did believe the first- and last chapters were by Paul.
For the most part- we believe that the letters in the bible- that say in them ‘written by Paul’ are from Paul [or Peter, James, Etc.].
But- Hebrews leaves the authors name out- so some debate who wrote it.
Tertullian- an early church father [2/3rd century] attributed it to Barnabus- Paul’s companion that we read about in the book of Acts-
For about 1500 years- till the time of the Reformation- most Christian scholars attributed it to Paul.
Hebrews is written in a high form of Greek [which is another way we determine who wrote the letters- tough this is not always accurate.
Many say John the apostle did not write Revelation- because the form of Greek used is much lower than the other writings of John- yet- there is internal witness that John [the apostle] wrote it.
In John’s writings [gospel- 1st, 2nd and 3rd John] he speaks about Jesus as the Word [Logos] and this theme is seen in Revelation too].
So- while we don’t know for sure- I personally stick with the authorship of Paul the apostle.

‘Wherefore we receiving a Kingdom that can not be moved, let us HAVE GRACE, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: for our God is a consuming fire’ Though Paul doesn’t say it [I think he should have!] but this alludes to the ‘God’ of Moses day, who did not consume the burning bush, compared to the ‘God’ of today [new covenant] who will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire! This fits in with the theme of a harsher punishment for those who reject the covenant of grace as opposed to those who rejected the covenant of law. I know these themes are not popular, but this is clearly the way Paul is presenting them. I also am not saying the ‘God’ of the Old Testament is different from the ‘God’ of the new [this is the heresy of Marcion! I think that was his name. He was an early Christian heretic who comprised the first canon of scripture for a ‘new testament’ it included basically Paul’s letters, and he taught that The God of the new testament was different from the God in the old] but Paul is presenting the new covenant in a way that says ‘don’t neglect this new way of salvation, those who do will receive a harsher judgment than those who rejected the law’.
END NOTES-
A HEAVENLY CITY.
DON’T BE SAD, HE’S TREATING YOU LIKE A SON.
NO REPENTANCE- OUTSIDE OF CHRIST THAT IS.
CULTURE SHOCK IS HARD ON US ALL.
Once again we see the contrast between ‘he that spoke from earth’ [Moses- the law]- and he that ‘speaks from heaven’ [Jesus covenant is more strict- to those outside of it and reject it- because he has heavenly authority- Moses had earthly]. Hebrews 12:25 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:

The writer says ‘don’t be sad- God disciplines every son who he receives’- though this certainly applies to Christians- Hebrews 12:5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Hebrews 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Hebrews 12:8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.

Remember this- though the message of grace and Jesus as the Messiah is wonderful- especially to us Gentile believers-
Yet- it was indeed a cultural shock to the 1st century Jew-
He believed that the material world was an imperfect copy of the Idea world.
That is he believed that Ideas exist apart from the construct of the human mind- that they were the perfect forms of the things we see in the material realm.

He could also be referred to as a Realist- because he believed these Ideas actually existed [for real]. Where did he get this from?
As we study Philosophy- each one that comes down the line has been influenced in some way by those that preceded them.

There was a famous thinker- Pythagoras [his followers were the Pythagoreans] who taught a concept called the Transmigration of the Soul [a sort of Reincarnation].
They believed that the soul of man went thru various stages- and existed independently of the body.

In Greek thought the soul is immortal- it exists before the body.
In Christian teaching the Soul [mind- Spirit] comes into existence when God creates man [the bible says ‘and man BECAME a living soul’- referring to the creation of Adam].

The Greeks saw the soul as preexisting before the natural life.

In the mind of Plato- the body was a receptacle- in this life we recollect the knowledge that comes from the Idea world.

He ascribed Ontological status to ideas themselves.

In Philosophy there are 2 basic ways knowledge comes [we study this in Epistemology- an offshoot of Philosophy- which deals with how we know things].

A Priori knowledge is knowledge obtained independent of experience.
A Posteriori is knowledge obtained thru the senses- what we call Empirical evidence.

In Plato’s schema he believed that the knowledge that comes to us from the Formal world [ideas- forms] was A Priori knowledge- that the human mind recalls- and in the present material world- knowledge comes to us from the perfect idea world.

The Greeks believed that all matter was flawed- that the Body was an imperfect vessel- and after death we are released into the perfect world- and free from the material realm.

Christian Tradition does not hold to this view.
The Church teaches that the created world is good- not evil.
Among Christians there is some confusion about this- because the older versions of the bible [King James] seem to teach that matter [world, flesh] is evil.

Why?

Paul the apostle talks about no good thing being in The Flesh- he talks about the Carnal mind- the apostle John says ‘all that is in the World- the lust of the flesh- the pride of life- is not of the Father but is of the world’.

There are many references like this in the bible- but they are speaking about the sinful nature of man [the flesh] and not about the human body itself [For instance Paul says in Romans ‘present your BODIES as living sacrifices unto God- Holy and acceptable’ in Corinthians ‘your BODY is the temple of the Holy Spirit’- there are many references in scripture that speak of the Body as Holy.

When the bible says ‘satan is the god of this world’ it is not speaking of the earth- which God created- and calls GOOD- but it is speaking of the ‘world’ system- an age of wickedness.

So- at times Christians have confused this- and have held a sort of Dualistic view of matter- that is not the biblical view- but a Gnostic view- that all matter is evil.

Plato saw the unseen world of Ideas as the perfect- pure world.

He taught that in this life we obtain the knowledge of the pure- by reason of recollection- that these pure ideas come to us ‘are recalled’ in this life.

He is famous for founding the first Philosophical school- it was called The Academy- named after a man by the name of Academus.

The land was donated for the school- it was previously used as an Olive Grove- and in honor of the donation- Plato named the school after the donor.

This is why we use the phrase ‘The Groves of Academia’ today.

Plato was actually a nick name- he wrestled in Athens- in a sort of precursor to what would later become the Olympic games- and he was broad shouldered- that’s where his name comes from- Plato means broad shouldered.

So- to sum up- Plato believed that Forms [ideas] were eternal, the cause of all that is.
He believed we are born with innate ideas- these are not learned thru sense experience- but exist independently of the mind- and in this bodily life we retrieve [the body is a receptacle] these ideas.

Does the bible teach anything along these lines?

CHAPTER 6:

NEW NOTES-
CAN CHRISTIANS BE FORGIVEN- IF THEY FALL?
CAN THEY CRUCIFY CHRICT- AGAIN?
WHO ARE THE LAPSY?

‘Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ [in Colossians Paul teaches that the ‘principles/ elementary teachings’ are the law. The law contained all the elementary doctrines of Christ, it held all the ‘shadows’ but not the reality! Here the principles are not Christian doctrine, but law], let us go on unto perfection’ Now, it is commonly taught that Paul is exhorting believers to move on to maturity. While it is true that Paul teaches this elsewhere, here he is not teaching it. Here he is telling Israel ‘leave the basics of the law and move on to Christ’. Why is this important to see? Because if you don’t see it this way, then you will have a doctrine that says to believers ‘you must move on from the Cross’ many well meaning preachers have done this, this is why context is so important. When you see it in context, Paul is not saying ‘move on FROM the Cross’ but ‘move on INTO the Cross’!

‘Not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works [law], and of faith towards God, of the doctrine of baptisms [washings- Israel had all types of doctrines of baptisms [plural] this is why when John the Baptist came baptizing people in the Jordan, they didn’t say ‘what in the world is this guy doing’ they had the ‘doctrine of baptisms’ engrained in their law! The whole sacrificial system and the tabernacle had all types of lavers {wash basins} and things] ‘and of the laying on of hands [Moses ‘ordained’ 70, you had the ‘laying on of hands’ taught in the law] and of the resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment’ Now, all these verses without a doubt describe the law. It is easy to read these verses as applying to the New Covenant, but they really aren’t. In context why would Paul be telling young believers [who these are not! They are Jews on the verge of transition] to leave all the fundamental teachings of Christianity? But he is telling Israel to move on from the basic elements of the law into the reality of what the law was foreshadowing. That is Christ! ‘For it is IMPOSSIBLE for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost’ Israel had Gods Spirit anointing her Kings for thousands of years before the Spirit ever came on the day of Pentecost. They had ‘exclusive rights’ to the things of God pre-Cross. They were made partakers of the Holy Ghost! They were enlightened in a way that no other nation was, they had prophets and priests administrating the things of God all thru out their history.

In context Paul is saying ‘if you Jews, who have had this favorable position all thru out your history, if you ‘fall away’ from God at this point by not continuing with his revelation of Messiah, then it is impossible to renew you AGAIN unto repentance’ Part of their system of law was repentance. All the animal sacrifices and works of humility were for this purpose. Paul is warning Israel ‘if you miss this opportunity to believe, don’t think that you can keep bringing your animal sacrifices of repentance anymore, it is impossible to renew that’ Now do you see? No more arguments over whether these are Christians who lose their salvation, or whether these were those who professed but didn’t possess, that’s silly! In context you now know what this means. That’s why I said in the introduction of this commentary that you can’t read a book on mechanics and apply it directly to the human body. But you can glean principles from it that will benefit you. So we see here the great finality of the sacrifice of Jesus. We see its sufficiency to cover and REMOVE all our sins. We see the great doctrine of redemption thru the offering of Jesus. What we don’t see is Christians losing their salvation and being told ‘you can never re dedicate [renew] yourself back again!’ ‘And have tasted the good word of God [Israel was reading scripture thousands of years before Gentiles even knew their was scripture!], and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance, seeing they CRUCIFY UNTO THEMSELVES THE SON OF GOD AFRESH, and put him to an open shame’ Here it is real important to understand context. How many believers who have struggled with sin have been told ‘you are crucifying Jesus afresh’? Paul never dealt with believers using this language. He told the Corinthians that because they were God’s dwelling place, and the Spirit of God lived in them, that God would judge those who were in unrepentant sin. But he never used this type of language. So why use it here?

If Israel rejects Messiah and continues to ‘keep open’ the sacrificial system post Cross, in essence she would be saying ‘we want the sacrifice to continue’ or ‘let’s keep crucifying the Son of God afresh’. In Israel’s mind this would be what they were saying. Paul says ‘don’t do this’ in essence this is an argument, once again, to move on from the law and its sacrifices unto Christ. ‘For the earth that drinketh in the rain that cometh oft upon it, and bringeth forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, recieveth blessing from God, but that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing, whose end is to be burned’ In the parables one of the main themes is Israel not bringing forth fruit to God. The parable of the vineyard, the cursing of the fig tree.

In John 15 the branches not bearing fruit are cut off and burned. In all of this imagery Jesus is saying to Israel ‘the time has come for you to produce fruit, the only way a branch can do it is if it is connected to the vine[Jesus], if you reject me you will never produce fruit and your ultimate destiny is judgment’ Paul reiterates that theme here! ‘But we are persuaded better things of you, that which speaks of salvation… for God will not forget your work and labor of love that you have showed towards believers’ Many of the recipients of this letter were those who Paul had preached to in various cities. He would often preach to the Jews on a Sabbath day. After his departure some believed, others were in transition. They still treated the believers well and sort of shared a common fellowship. To these who were not fully converted yet, Paul says ‘God won’t forget how you treated his children, I am persuaded that you will go all the way and show fruits of salvation in Messiah’. ‘Be followers of those who thru faith and patience inherited the promises’ Paul will go thru the rest of this chapter showing how Abraham received promises from God and after many years of waiting he would get the promise.

Paul is telling Israel ‘you have waited many years for the promise [Messiah] do like the fathers did, inherit it thru faith and patience’ Paul is showing Israel that the patient waiting for their Messiah was part of the plan. When the promise shows up all you have to do is recognize the time and believe in the promise. Israel was at a dangerous transition time, she could [and did] miss the fulfillment of the promise! ‘Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which entereth into that within the veil: wither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest forever after the order of Melchisedek’ we are going to get into Melchisedek again in chapter 7. Paul lays the groundwork, he is telling Israel ‘we have a great high priest who has entered into Gods presence for us, he is from another tribe [Judah] and therefore you must come out from the ‘law tribe’ [Levi] and into the grace tribe [Judah] and you must leave the Aronic priesthood [law] and enter in to the Melchisedek priesthood [New Covenant]. Everything Paul points to is for the purpose of getting his Jewish brothers to embrace Messiah and the New Covenant, Paul sees everything thru this lens. He is persuaded that Jesus is the only way!

NEW NOTES-
In this study I’m trying to make the case that the writer is appealing to the 1st century Jew- and when we read ‘there remains a rest to THE PEOPLE OF GOD’ OR ‘those who were once enlightened- and tasted of the heavenly gift and were partakers of the Holy Spirit’- that in context- these are indeed references to the Jewish person- in the 1st century.
How can that be?
Because all of these covenant blessings- were indeed aspects of the 1st covenant [law] and were unique to Israel.
Then- when we read things like ‘if these shall fall away- repentance is impossible’-
Why?
If the Jewish person- at the time of Christ in the 1st century ‘falls away’- meaning he does not continue in the covenant promises of God- thru the law and prophets- which find fulfillment in Christ-Then yes- he ‘fell away’.
Then- if he continues in the old sacrificial system of the law- he in a way ‘crucifies Christ again’.
How?
The animal sacrifices were a type/symbol of Christ to come.
And if you reject Christ as the Messiah- the last and final sacrifice- then in a theological way- you ‘crucify Christ again’.
In Hebrews this is a theme- we read things like ‘there is no future repentance’.
The church has struggled over these verses for centuries- in the early days of Christianity there were those who ‘re-lapsed’ [called the Lapsy].
They denied the faith- in order to save themselves from death.
Then later- the question was asked ‘can they be received back into the church’.
Well- these verses in Hebrews- were an obstacle- because they seemed to say there was no future repentance for those who ‘fell away’.
Yet- that seems to contradict the concept of Grace and Mercy- which are indeed part of the new Covenant.
We read of the Apostle Peters’ denial of Christ- and yet Jesus did forgive him.
So- does the bible contradict?
No- not if you read it in the context I’m showing you.
In the New Testament-there is no ‘repentance’ for those who reject Christ- who ‘blaspheme the Holy Spirit’-
Meaning they resist the revelation of God [the Spirts witness] about his Son.
And yes- that indeed is the only sin that cannot be forgiven- because it rejects the only solution to sin- which is the final sacrifice of Christ.
See?
Hebrews 6:1 Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God,
Hebrews 6:2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
Hebrews 6:3 And this will we do, if God permit.
Hebrews 6:4 For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,
Hebrews 6:5 And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,
Hebrews 6:6 If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.

HEBREWS 7-9
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/5-7-15-hebrews-7-9.zip
[note- some of the posts are too long to post on facebook-so if you just see the video- you can go to the blog and read the post- thanks].
END NOTES OF POST BELOW-
WHAT ARE THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS?
OCTAVIAN- A GOD?
CICERO- MARK ANTONY [or Anthony if you like].
WHO WERE THE ESSENES?

Verses that relate-
Galatians 1:11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.
Galatians 1:12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Galatians 1:13 For ye have heard of my conversation in time past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it:
Galatians 1:14 And profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.
Galatians 1:15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace,
Galatians 1:16 To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood:
Galatians 1:17 Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus.
Galatians 1:18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days.
Galatians 1:19 But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother.
Galatians 1:20 Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not.
Galatians 2:7 But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter;
Galatians 2:8 (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles:)
Galatians 2:9 And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.
Galatians 2:10 Only they would that we should remember the poor; the same which I also was forward to do.
Galatians 2:11 But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.
Galatians 2:12 For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
Galatians 2:13 And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.
Galatians 2:14 But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?
Galatians 2:15 We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles,
Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
Galatians 2:17 But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid.
Galatians 2:18 For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.
Galatians 2:19 For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God.
Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: neverthless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Galatians 2:21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.
17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
6 Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.
7 And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have taken no bread.
8 Which when Jesus perceived, he said unto them, O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have brought no bread?
9 Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up?
10 Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets ye took up?
11 How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees?
12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.

Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
Ephesians 1:4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:
Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
Acts 13:38 Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:
Acts 13:39 And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.
Acts 10:1 There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of the band called the Italian band,
Acts 10:2 A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway.
Acts 10:3 He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius.
Acts 10:4 And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.
Acts 10:5 And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter:
Acts 10:6 He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by the sea side: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do.
Acts 10:7 And when the angel which spake unto Cornelius was departed, he called two of his household servants, and a devout soldier of them that waited on him continually;
Acts 10:8 And when he had declared all these things unto them, he sent them to Joppa.
Acts 10:9 On the morrow, as they went on their journey, and drew nigh unto the city, Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour:
Acts 10:10 And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance,
Acts 10:11 And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending upon him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth:
Acts 10:12 Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.
Acts 10:13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.
Acts 10:14 But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.
Acts 10:15 And the voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
Acts 10:16 This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.
Acts 10:17 Now while Peter doubted in himself what this vision which he had seen should mean, behold, the men which were sent from Cornelius had made enquiry for Simon’s house, and stood before the gate,
Acts 10:18 And called, and asked whether Simon, which was surnamed Peter, were lodged there.
Acts 10:19 While Peter thought on the vision, the Spirit said unto him, Behold, three men seek thee.
Acts 10:20 Arise therefore, and get thee down, and go with them, doubting nothing: for I have sent them.
Acts 10:21 Then Peter went down to the men which were sent unto him from Cornelius; and said, Behold, I am he whom ye seek: what is the cause wherefore ye are come?
Acts 10:22 And they said, Cornelius the centurion, a just man, and one that feareth God, and of good report among all the nation of the Jews, was warned from God by an holy angel to send for thee into his house, and to hear words of thee.
Acts 10:23 Then called he them in, and lodged them. And on the morrow Peter went away with them, and certain brethren from Joppa accompanied him.
Acts 10:24 And the morrow after they entered into Caesarea. And Cornelius waited for them, and he had called together his kinsmen and near friends.
Acts 10:25 And as Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped him.
Acts 10:26 But Peter took him up, saying, Stand up; I myself also am a man.
Acts 10:27 And as he talked with him, he went in, and found many that were come together.
Acts 10:28 And he said unto them, Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shewed me that I should not call any man common or unclean.
Acts 10:29 Therefore came I unto you without gainsaying, as soon as I was sent for: I ask therefore for what intent ye have sent for me?
Acts 10:30 And Cornelius said, Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and, behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,
Acts 10:31 And said, Cornelius, thy prayer is heard, and thine alms are had in remembrance in the sight of God.
Acts 10:32 Send therefore to Joppa, and call hither Simon, whose surname is Peter; he is lodged in the house of one Simon a tanner by the sea side: who, when he cometh, shall speak unto thee.
Acts 10:33 Immediately therefore I sent to thee; and thou hast well done that thou art come. Now therefore are we all here present before God, to hear all things that are commanded thee of God.
Acts 10:34 Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:
Acts 10:35 But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him.
Acts 10:36 The word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (he is Lord of all:)
Acts 10:37 That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
Acts 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
Acts 10:39 And we are witnesses of all things which he did both in the land of the Jews, and in Jerusalem; whom they slew and hanged on a tree:
Acts 10:40 Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;
Acts 10:41 Not to all the people, but unto witnesses chosen before God, even to us, who did eat and drink with him after he rose from the dead.
Acts 10:42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
Acts 10:43 To him give all the prophets witness, that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.
Acts 10:44 While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word.
Acts 10:45 And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Acts 10:46 For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,
Acts 10:47 Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we?
Acts 10:48 And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.
________________________________________
Acts 11:1 And the apostles and brethren that were in Judaea heard that the Gentiles had also received the word of God.
Acts 11:2 And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him,
Acts 11:3 Saying, Thou wentest in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them.
Acts 11:4 But Peter rehearsed the matter from the beginning, and expounded it by order unto them, saying,
Acts 11:5 I was in the city of Joppa praying: and in a trance I saw a vision, A certain vessel descend, as it had been a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came even to me:
Acts 11:6 Upon the which when I had fastened mine eyes, I considered, and saw fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air.
Acts 11:7 And I heard a voice saying unto me, Arise, Peter; slay and eat.
Acts 11:8 But I said, Not so, Lord: for nothing common or unclean hath at any time entered into my mouth.
Acts 11:9 But the voice answered me again from heaven, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.
Acts 11:10 And this was done three times: and all were drawn up again into heaven.
Acts 11:11 And, behold, immediately there were three men already come unto the house where I was, sent from Caesarea unto me.
Acts 11:12 And the Spirit bade me go with them, nothing doubting. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered into the man’s house:
Acts 11:13 And he shewed us how he had seen an angel in his house, which stood and said unto him, Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon, whose surname is Peter;
Acts 11:14 Who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.
Acts 11:15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Ghost fell on them, as on us at the beginning.
Acts 11:16 Then remembered I the word of the Lord, how that he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost.
Acts 11:17 Forasmuch then as God gave them the like gift as he did unto us, who believed on the Lord Jesus Christ; what was I, that I could withstand God?
Acts 11:18 When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, Then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life.
Acts 15:1 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.
Acts 15:2 When therefore Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and disputation with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas, and certain other of them, should go up to Jerusalem unto the apostles and elders about this question.
Acts 15:3 And being brought on their way by the church, they passed through Phenice and Samaria, declaring the conversion of the Gentiles: and they caused great joy unto all the brethren.
Acts 15:4 And when they were come to Jerusalem, they were received of the church, and of the apostles and elders, and they declared all things that God had done with them.
Acts 15:5 But there rose up certain of the sect of the Pharisees which believed, saying, That it was needful to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses.
Acts 15:6 And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter.
Acts 15:7 And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, Men and brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and believe.
Acts 15:8 And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us;
Acts 15:9 And put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith.
Acts 15:10 Now therefore why tempt ye God, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we were able to bear?
Acts 15:11 But we believe that through the grace of the LORD Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.
Acts 15:12 Then all the multitude kept silence, and gave audience to Barnabas and Paul, declaring what miracles and wonders God had wrought among the Gentiles by them.
Acts 15:13 And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men and brethren, hearken unto me:
Acts 15:14 Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name.
Acts 15:15 And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written,
Acts 15:16 After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up:
Acts 15:17 That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things.
Acts 15:18 Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world.
Acts 15:19 Wherefore my sentence is, that we trouble not them, which from among the Gentiles are turned to God:
Acts 15:20 But that we write unto them, that they abstain from pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.
Acts 15:21 For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every sabbath day.
Acts 15:22 Then pleased it the apostles and elders with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas and Silas, chief men among the brethren:
Acts 15:23 And they wrote letters by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia.
Acts 15:24 Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment:
Acts 15:25 It seemed good unto us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen men unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,
align=top> Acts 15:26 Men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Acts 15:27 We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who shall also tell you the same things by mouth.
Acts 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;
Acts 15:29 That ye abstain from meats offered to idols, and from blood, and from things strangled, and from fornication: from which if ye keep yourselves, ye shall do well. Fare ye well.
6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:
7 Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.
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 Christ.
9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.
10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
12 Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.
13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;
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;

. Psalm 62:1 Truly my soul waiteth upon God: from him cometh my salvation.
Psalm 62:2 He only is my rock and my salvation; he is my defence; I shall not be greatly moved.
Psalm 62:3 How long will ye imagine mischief against a man? ye shall be slain all of you: as a bowing wall shall ye be, and as a tottering fence.
Psalm 62:4 They only consult to cast him down from his excellency: they delight in lies: they bless with their mouth, but they curse inwardly. Selah.
Psalm 62:5 My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.
Psalm 62:6 He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved.
Psalm 62:7 In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.
Psalm 62:8 Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.
Psalm 62:9 Surely men of low degree are vanity, and men of high degree are a lie: to be laid in the balance, they are altogether lighter than vanity.
Psalm 62:10 Trust not in oppression, and become not vain in robbery: if riches increase, set not your heart upon them.
Psalm 62:11 God hath spoken once; twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God.
Psalm 62:12 Also unto thee, O Lord, belongeth mercy: for thou renderest to every man according to his work.
. Psalm 91:1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
Psalm 91:2 I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.
Psalm 91:3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
Psalm 91:4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
Psalm 91:5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
Psalm 91:6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.
Psalm 91:7 A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.
Psalm 91:8 Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.
Psalm 91:9 Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;
Psalm 91:10 There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
Psalm 91:11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
Psalm 91:12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Psalm 91:13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.
Psalm 91:14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.
Psalm 91:15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.
Psalm 91:16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.

THE CROSS- 2 https://youtu.be/uWcGl9nPYsE
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-7-15-the-cross-2.zip
ONVIDEO-
.Baby
.Did just the ceremonial law pass away?
.What was the purpose of the law?
.Doctor law and doctor grace
.Water baptism and faith
.They got paid the same!
.2nd mile
PAST POSTS [verses below]
(822) . ROMANS 3:19-31 ‘Now we know that what things the law says, it says to those who are under the law… that every mouth may be stopped and all the world becomes guilty before God’. One of the questions that arise as a response to Paul’s gospel is ‘if the law cannot make us righteous, then why even have it’? Paul will consistently teach the concept that Gods intention for the law was simply to reveal mans sin to him. Man would have this ‘form’ of the law written on stone tablets and as he tried to live up to God’s standards he would come to the proper diagnosis that all men are sinners. This diagnosis would then lead him to a place of faith in Jesus. After he believes in Jesus he then fulfills the law naturally, out of having a new nature ‘yea, we establish the law’ [3:31]. I have found it interesting over the years to teach people this. To explain to sincere people, church goers. To say ‘did you know the bible says that no man can be saved by trying to obey Gods Ten Commandments’? I will always explain that this doesn’t mean that God wants us to break them! But when we come to the Cross we by nature keep them. These verses lay down the foundation of ‘justification by faith’. He that believes is righteous. To declare Jesus righteousness for the remission of sins that are past. Having faith ‘in His Blood’. Both Jews and Gentiles need to be made righteous thru faith/belief in Jesus. I want to establish this fact in your mind. Paul without a doubt describes this experience as being ‘justified by faith’. This is the same as saying ‘believing with the heart unto righteousness’. Later on [chapter 10] this needs to be understood when parsing the verses that say ‘with the heart a man believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation’ many are confused about this, to get it right you need to see that Paul spends much time early on establishing the fact that ‘those who believe unto righteousness’ are justified by faith already!

Below are just a few clips from Romans 1-3- I hope to hit on these in the video.

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Romans 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Romans 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
Romans 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
Romans 2:13 (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
Romans 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Romans 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)
Romans 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
Romans 3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.
Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
Romans 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Romans 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Romans 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Romans 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
Romans 3:27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
Romans 3:28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.

ROMANS 4-7
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/2-11-15-romans-4-7.zip
Video
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/700-galatians.wav?_=1 This is an old radio show I made years ago- thought it fit well with what I’m teaching now- you’ll need to use Internet Explorer browser to hear it.

The apostle Paul quotes a lot of Old Testament scriptures in this letter- I hope to cover some of them on the video- but as you read these chapters- it would be helpful to read Genesis 12- 13- 15-and 17- these are the main chapters Paul uses in the life of Abraham to show Abrahams faith- and how he was justified by faith- before he was circumcised [Gen 15].
He will describe the faith of Abraham by using the story of Abraham and Sarah having a son in their old age [Gen. 17] – and talk about how the heirs of the promise- that Abraham would be ‘heir of the world’ was made to ALL THE SEED- meaning not just to his Jewish brothers who would believe- but also to the Gentiles- who were never granted the ‘right of the covenant’ [circumcision].
Paul explains that Abraham was justified BEFORE he was circumcised- so- he is the father of all the kids- even the Gentile believers who were never circumcised- but had the faith of Abraham.
Now- there’s’ a lot I am trying to cover in this Romans study- for those who watch the videos- you will see that I’m also covering the divisions within Christianity- primarily those that arose out of the 16th century Protestant Reformation. I quote the book of James- and show how James says ‘was not Abraham our father JUSTIFIED BY WORKS when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar’. It’s important to see- that these words JUSTIFIED BY WORKS- are indeed used in our New Testament- in the videos I’m explaining this- but the point I’m making is James uses the account of Abraham- in Genesis 22- and shows us that the progressive work of ‘Justification’ can- and is- applied to the act of Abrahams obedience- and when God saw Abraham DO A JUST THING [a work] James says ‘he was then justified’- the same word used in the initial act of our Justification- seen in Genesis 15- ok- this might be a bit much to take in now- but over time when we get a better grasp on this- I believe it will help to foster unity in the Body of Christ.

James 2:21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar?
James 2:22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect?
James 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
James 2:24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.
NOTE- As I do this study- I’m copying/pasting an old commentary I wrote years ago- I guess I should read the commentary first- after I penned the above- I read it- I basically covered the same thing- at least I’m consistent!

ROMANS 4: 1-12 Now, Paul will use one of his most frequent arguments to prove that all men, both Jews and Gentiles, need to be justified by faith and not ‘by works’. The most famous singular figure that natural Israel looked to as the ‘identifier’ of them being a special people was ‘Father Abraham’. Paul does a masterful job at showing how Abraham was indeed justified by faith and not by works. The ‘work’ of circumcision came before the law. It would later become synonymous with law keeping [Ten Commandments] and Paul can certainly use it here as implying ‘the whole law’. But to be accurate this work of circumcision was a national identifying factor that Israel looked to as saying ‘we are better than you [Gentiles]’. Paul is showing Israel that God in fact ‘made Abraham righteous’ before he circumcised him! [Gen. 15] And the sign of this righteousness was circumcision. This meaning that Abrahams faith in Gods promise [a purely ‘passive’ act! This is very important to see. Later on as we deal with the famous ‘conversion texts’ we need to keep this in mind] justified him without respect to the law. God simply took Abraham outside and said ‘look at the stars, your children will be this abundant’ and Abraham simply believed this promise to be true. Much like the passive belief of Cornelius house at their conversion [Acts 10]. The simple belief in the promise of Jesus justifies the sinner! Now this fact of Abraham believing and being made righteous, before being circumcised, is proof [according to Paul] that Abraham is the father of ‘many nations’ not just natural Israel. All ethnic groups who HAVE THE SAME FAITH AS ABRAHAM are qualified to be ‘sons of Abraham/ heirs of God’. The fact that Abraham carried this justification along with him as he became circumcised, shows that all Jewish people as well can partake of this ‘righteousness by faith’ if they have the same faith as Abraham had. Jesus did say ‘Abraham rejoiced to see my day’[ John’s gospel]. In Gods promise to Abraham of a future dynasty of children, this included the promised Messiah. So indirectly Abraham’s belief in the promise of being the father of ‘many nations’ included belief in the coming Messiah. So according to Paul, all ethnic groups who have faith in Jesus are justified/made righteous. The very example Israel used to justify ‘ethnic/national pride’ [Father Abraham] was taught in a way that showed the truth of the gospel and how God is no respecter of persons.

(824) ROMANS 4:13-14 ‘Now the promise that Abraham would become the inheritor of the world was not going to be fulfilled thru the law [natural Israel] but thru faith [all who believe, both Jew and Gentile]’. I have spoken on this before [see note at bottom] and will hit on it a little now. The historic church can be defined for the most part as ‘a-millennial’, that is they interpreted the parables on the Kingdom of God and the promise of ‘inheriting the world [which includes the Promised Land]’ as being fulfilled thru the church. That Jesus established Gods kingdom and the church basically fulfills these promises by expanding Christ’s ‘rule’ thru the earth. Some historians saw the 4th century ‘marriage’ of Rome and Christianity as a fulfillment of this. During the 19th and 20th century you had the rise of Dispensationalism, a ‘new/different’ way of interpreting these land promises. Many good men showed the reality of Christ’s literal coming and pointed to a future time where Jesus literally sits on a throne in Jerusalem and rules all nations. These brothers are called ‘Pre-millennial’, they believe that Jesus comes back first [pre] and then establishes his ‘millennial rule’ on earth. The Premillennialists would see the Amillennialists as ‘replacement theologians’. They said that these brothers were taking the actual promises that God made to Israel and ‘replacing’ Israel with the church. In essence they accused the Amillennialists of spiritualizing the promises to Israel and saying the church would be the recipients of the promises. Now, both sides have truth to them, I personally believe the Amillennialists have a lot more truth! But I do see some of the good points that the Premillenialists made. I want you to simply read these verses [Romans 4:13-14, Galatians 3:18] and see for yourself how Paul does teach the reality that the promises to Abraham are to be fulfilled thru the church [spiritual Israel]. This does not mean that there is no future physical return of Jesus. But the body of scripture leans heavily on the Amillinnialists side. [see entry 703] NOTE- To be fair, some historic thinkers held to the Premillennial position. The majority were Amillennial.

(825) ROMANS 4:15-25 ‘For the law worketh wrath, for where there is no law there is no transgression’. I simply want to touch on the concept of ‘wrath’ being a very real part of judgment. One of the ways the gospel ‘saves us’ is by promising a future [and present!] deliverance from wrath. While death ‘reigned’ before the law was given, it wasn’t until the law where you had a clear picture of transgression and atonement. We will deal with this later in Romans. Now Paul once again hits on the theme of Abraham being the ‘spiritual father’ of many nations [all who believe] and how the promises of God to Abraham were to be fulfilled thru this ‘new race of people’ [the church]. Paul is careful to not demean Israel; he couches his terms in a way that says ‘God will fulfill these things thru the circumcision who believes [Jews] and the un-circumcision who believe’ [Gentiles]. I want to stress the very plain language Paul uses to show us that we should not be seeing Gods ‘covenant promises’ thru a natural lens. Christians need to be careful when they support [exalt!] natural Israel in a way that the New Testament doesn’t do. ‘To the end that the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is the faith of Abraham’. Now Paul tells us that when God made promises to Abraham that Abraham believed against hope. When all things looked really bad, he still believed. When he was 100 years old and Sarah around 90, he held to the promise [read my commentaries on Genesis 15-18 and Hebrews 11] and therefore God imputed righteousness to him. How closely are you paying attention to Paul’s free use of Abraham and Genesis? If you carefully read this chapter you see Paul ‘intermingle’ the story of Abraham being ‘made righteous upon initial belief’ [Gen. 15] and the later story of Sarah having Isaac [Gen. 17]. I think Paul was simply using the description of Abrahams faith, as seen in the Gen. 17 [and 22!] accounts of his life, to show the type of faith he initially ‘exercised’ [I don’t like using this term to be honest. God actually imputes faith to the believer at the initial act of regeneration]. The important chapters from Genesis that we all need to have a ‘working knowledge’ of are Chapters 12 [the initial promise], 15 [the oft mentioned ‘imputed righteousness’ verse], 17 [the receiving of the promised seed- Isaac], and 22 [the ultimate act of obedience that Abraham showed in offering up Isaac. This will be described in James epistle as ‘righteousness being fulfilled’. James, who is concerned about ‘works’, will say that when Abraham offered Isaac he was fulfilling the ‘imputed righteousness’ that God gave him earlier. James actually describes this as ‘being justified by works’{James 2:21} and James says ‘the scripture was fulfilled that saith Abraham believed God and it was imputed to him for righteousness’… ‘see how that by works a man is justified and not by faith only’. The classic view taken by many confuses the ‘justified’ part with the initial act of justification that Paul centers on. James uses ‘see how he was justified by works’ in a future ‘judicial decree’ sense; that is God having the ongoing ‘freedom’ to continually say ‘good job son, you did well’. The word justification is used in a fluid sense much like salvation. Christians need to be more ‘secure’ in their own assurance to be able to see these truths. When we approach all these seemingly ‘difficult passages’ in a defensive mode, then we never arrive at the actual meaning]. When we see the overall work of God in Abraham’s life we see the purpose of God in ‘declaring people just’ [initially ‘getting saved’]. The purpose is for them to eventually ‘act just’ [obey!] ‘Jesus was delivered for our offenses and raised again for our justification’ thank God that this process is dependant on the work of the Cross! [see # 758]

(1329) GALATIANS 2- Paul recounts his meeting with the apostles at Jerusalem; some feel he is talking about his first visit [Acts 11- before AD 50] others think he is discussing his Acts 15 meeting [right at around AD 50] I’m in the latter camp. Paul is basically telling the churches of Galatia that he already went thru this whole discussion with the main apostles at Jerusalem [Peter, James and John] and that they had already agreed that the Gentile believers did not need to get circumcised and come under the law in order to be saved. I do find it interesting that out of the 4 decrees that were made [read Acts 15] that the only one Paul recounts here is ‘to remember the poor’. The only decree worthy enough for Paul to recount is the one on charitable giving; those of you who have followed this blog for a while know how much I emphasize this point. If the early church was teaching tithing to the Gentile churches, surely it would have come up at the Jerusalem meeting, but it didn’t. This chapter has some important verses that all believers should commit to memory ‘if righteousness come by the law, then Christ died in vain’ ‘the life that I now live I live by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me’ etc. I really want all my Catholic/Protestant readers to pay attention to the verse’s that I just quoted; the bible clearly teaches that if men could ‘be saved’ by keeping Gods law, then Christ died in vain. Paul will go on to teach [chapter 3] that if there had been a law given that could have given men eternal life, then ‘being saved’ would come that way; but he then goes on to say that there never was a law given that men could keep in order to be saved. Paul always gives the caveat ‘does this mean we go out and break the 10 commandments’? And his answer is always a big NO! The point of this chapter is we as believers are saved because Jesus died to pay the penalty for our sin; the proof that the penalty was completely paid is in the fact that Jesus rose again [Romans 5]. All who believe in this reality are now the children of God, indeed ‘we are all the children of God by faith in Jesus Christ’.

(1330) GALATIANS 3- The main point of this chapter is God made a promise to Abraham that he would ‘bless’ all nations thru one of his kids someday [Genesis 12). This promise was given to Abraham 430 years before God gave the 10 commandments to Moses. Therefore the promise that men would be justified/saved by faith cannot be ‘undone’ by a later act of giving the law to Moses. The point being that Paul is arguing with the Galatians that their new view that they need to keep the law in order to ‘be saved’ [the blessing of Abraham IN CONTEXT!] is false because God already told Abraham it would be by faith in the coming Messiah. Paul then asks ‘is the law then against Gods promise’? No, it was given to man [Israel] until the time came for the promised child to be born [1st century], but now that the promised child is here we are no longer under the ‘schoolmaster’. The schoolmaster term can be confusing; the word in Greek means the person who walked the kids to school [truth] and then dropped them off AND LEFT. Paul is saying the law period served its purpose; it revealed mans sinful nature to him and then ‘dropped him off at the Cross’. Paul is saying the law fulfilled its purpose and we are now under grace. As new creatures in Christ we walk in love and fulfill the righteousness of the law by our new nature, it’s not a legalistic thing. There is some confusion today on this chapter; some were taught that ‘the blessing of Abraham’ was speaking of the promises in Deuteronomy on financial blessings. And that the curse is speaking about the curse of ‘poverty’. Though it is true that the bible does speak about this in the Old Testament, in context Paul is not saying this here. Paul explains what he means about the ‘curse of the law’. He says it’s the curse of never being able to do enough to appease God, the man that is under the law puts himself under this mindset of perfectionism and lives under this constant feeling of never being able to do enough. This was Paul’s previous experience as a Pharisee. When Paul teaches that we are delivered from ‘the curse’ so the ‘blessing of Abraham might come on the gentiles, that we might receive THE PROMISE OF THE SPIRIT BY FAITH’ he is not saying Jesus died to make us financially rich, he is saying Jesus delivered us from the old law mindset of legalism and we now have forgiveness and acceptance as a free gift- ‘being now justified by faith we have peace with God thru our Lord Jesus Christ’ [Romans 5].

This post deals with the faulty understanding expounded by many Evangelical/Protestant ministers [end times scenarios, Tim Lahaye type books] that exalt ethnic/racial elements into the gospel, and contribute to the many present tensions between Muslims/Jews/Christians.

(1331) GALATIANS 4- Paul says there was a time period before the promise would be fulfilled thru Christ; that time has come to an end [the law] and we are now in ‘the fullness of times’. When we were under the law we were no different than servants, but now in grace we are mature sons, people able to inherit the promise. Paul says why do you desire to go back under the ‘restraint’ phase, the time of discipline and legalism, we are now in a fullness stage thru the New Covenant and we don’t need the old mentality anymore. Once again Paul really ‘spiritualizes’ the Old Testament in his teaching, he says that the law [Old Testament] taught this difference between law and grace. He uses the story of Abraham having 2 sons [Ishmael, Isaac] and he says ‘cant you hear what the law is saying’? One son was born by promise [Isaac] the other thru the works of the flesh [law]. And just like it was back then, the one born after the flesh persecuted the one born after the Spirit, so today [1st century] those after the flesh/law are persecuting those born after the Spirit. It’s important to see that Paul DOES NOT use this analogy to describe Jewish/Muslim [Arab] relations; he actually refers to natural Israel as ‘Ishmael’! He says the Judaisers [Jews zealous of the law] were fulfilling the type/symbol by persecuting Gentile believers. We need to keep these distinctions in our minds, because when we don’t rightfully discern the truth we do damage to the non ethnic testimony of the gospel. Paul says the law relates to natural Israel/Jerusalem who is under bondage with her children, but the ‘New Jerusalem’ which is above is the mother of us all, and this Jerusalem relates to the church. The New Jerusalem is not referring to a physical city that will ‘hover over the earth during the millennium rule’ [EEK!] But it refers to the new community people of God, the church. I have written on this before and these references in the New Testament [Revelation, Hebrews- us being the new Zion, etc.] are speaking of the church, the people of God. Paul once again speaks of ‘natural Jerusalem’ in a negative light, in the sense that he teaches those who are under the law are not walking in the fullness of the promises of God as come in the Messiah. The New Testament spends no time engaging in the glorying of any ethnic group [whether it be Israel, Gentile, etc.] It’s not that the apostles were being anti Semitic, it’s just the emphasis is on the new kingdom of God and the new people of God [the church made up of both Jew and Gentile]. Its striking to compare the writings of the first Jewish believers to the current trends amongst many evangelical preachers, the two don’t mesh well.

(835)ROMANS 7:1-4 Paul uses the analogy of a married woman ‘don’t you know that the law has dominion over a person as long as he is alive’? If a married woman leaves her husband and marries another man she is guilty of breaking the law of adultery. Now, if her husband dies, she is free to marry another man. The act that freed her from sin and guilt was death! Every thing else in the scenario stayed the same. She still married another, she still consummated the new marriage. But because her first husband died, she has no guilt. I always loved this analogy. For years I wondered why these themes in scripture are for the most part not ‘imbedded’ in the collective psyche of the people of God. We have spent so much time ‘proof texting’ the verses on success and wealth, that we have overlooked the really good stuff! Now Paul teaches that we have been made free from the law by the ‘death of our husband’ [Jesus] so we can ‘re-marry’. Who do we marry? Christ! He has not only died to free us from the law, he also rose from the dead to become our ‘husband’ [we are called the bride of Christ]. Paul connects the death and resurrection of Jesus in this analogy. Both are needed for the true gospel to be preached [1st Corinthians 15]. Notice how in this passage Paul emphasizes ‘the death of Christ’s body’. The New Testament doesn’t always make this distinction, but here it does. In the early centuries of Christianity you had various debates over the nature and ‘substance’ of God and Christ. The church hammered out various decrees and creeds that would become the Orthodoxy of the day. Many of these are what you would call the ‘Ecumenical councils’. These are the early councils [many centuries!] that both the eastern [Orthodox church] and western [Catholic] churches would all accept. Some feel that the early church fathers and Latin theologians [Tertullian, Augustine and others] had too much prior influence from philosophy and the ‘forensic’ thinking of their time. They had a tendency to describe things in highly technical ways. Ways that were prominent in the legal and philosophical thinking of the West. Some of the eastern thinkers [Origen] had more of a Greek ‘flavor’ to their theologizing [Alexandria, named after Alexander the great, was a city of philosophy many years prior to Christ. This city was at one time the center of thinking in the East. That’s why Paul would face the thinkers at Athens, they had a history in the east of Greek philosophy]. Well any way the result was highly technical debates over the nature of God and Christ. The historic church would finally decree that Christ had 2 natures, Human and Divine. And that at the Cross the ‘humanity of Jesus’ died, but his ‘Deity’ did not. I think Paul agreed by saying ‘we are free from the law by the death of Christ’s Body’ here Paul distinguishes between the physical death of Jesus and his Deity. Note- actually, Augustine would be in the same school as Origen. Alexandrian.

(836)ROMANS 7: 5-13 ‘But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of the Spirit, not in the oldness of the letter’. This is such a powerful statement! WE ARE DELIVERED FROM THE LAW, surely Paul must mean ‘the fleshly law [carnal nature] in our members’? No, he means ‘the law’, the actual moral code that was contained in the Ten Commandments. He writes to the Colossians ‘Jesus took the handwriting of ordinances that were against us [the real law, not the sinful nature!] and nailed it to his Cross’. He tells the Ephesians ‘the middle wall of partition [law] has come down in Christ’. I know it’s easy to develop ideas that justify this radical grace concept in our minds, it’s just part of mans nature to want to be able to do something, contribute some way to our salvation. ‘Surely the law helps me stay in line’? No it doesn’t! You are ‘dead to the law by the Body of Christ’. We now live and are regulated by the ‘Spirit of life in Christ Jesus’. It is the fact that we have been raised to life in Christ that frees us, not the law. Paul goes on and explains that there was a time when ‘he was alive without the law’ but when the commandment came ‘sin revived, and I died’. Paul was a strict Pharisee, the further he advanced in law, the more he found himself to be ‘exceeding sinful’. The more he learned, the worse he got! It’s sort of a catch 22, you see and hear the ‘do not do this’ portions of law, and it stirs up the sinful nature to ‘do it’. Now Paul recaps an earlier theme of the law serving the function of revealing sin to man. He defends the law by saying ‘was that which is good [law] death unto me’? No, but the law simply ‘awakened’ the sin that was always there, hiding under the covers. It brought to a head the ‘disease’. The law revealed the underlying problem of sin, and made it ‘exceeding sinful’. The law is good, we are bad! [apart from Christ and the Spirit of life].

(837)ROMANS 7:14-25 Paul now shows us the reality of Gods law and its effect on man. ‘When I do something that I DON’T WANT TO DO, then I consent unto the law that it is good’. Did you ever think of this? The fact that you [or even the atheist!] have done things that ‘you don’t want to do’ proves the existence of God and natural law [which the 10 commandments were only a glimpse, they reveal a small part of Gods character and nature]. So if you, or anybody else, have ever struggled with ‘I am doing something that I hate’. Then why do it? Or better, why hate it? You yourself are an actual living testimony of ‘the law of God’. Your own conscience testifies that there are ‘good things’ and ‘bad things’. You also testify of the fact of sin ‘why do you keep doing the bad things’? Alas, that thing called ‘sin’ does exist! Paul shows us that the experience of every human member on the planet testifies to both the righteousness of God and the sinfulness of man. Freud [the father of modern Psychology] saw this war rage in the psyche of man, he came up with an idea that we need to ‘free man’ from this inner moral struggle. He espoused the idea that in mans ‘head’ he has this preconceived image of ‘God’ and right or wrong. Being Freud was a child of the Enlightenment, as well as a student of Existentialism [though the Father of Existentialism was a Christian, the Danish theologian/ philosopher Soren Kierkegaard] he taught that if we could just eliminate this ‘God idea’ and ‘church moral code’ from mans mind, then all would be well! Geez, I could hardly think of a more destructive thing than to tell man ‘if it feels right, do it’! Paul taught ‘if you can’t stop doing something that ‘feels right’ then you are sinning!’[if that which ‘feels right’ is making you miserable!] And the very fact that you can’t escape the guilt, proves that God exists and that his law is this unstoppable force that invades all human consciences. Paul knew the struggle, he testifies thru out scripture that he tried to become right with God over and over again, but the ‘law of sin’ [the sinful nature. Here ‘law’ is speaking of the ‘principle of sin’ and the fleshly nature] prevented him from keeping the ‘law of God’ [doing what’s right], he then found the ‘righteousness of God that comes thru faith in Christ’. Paul ends the chapter ‘O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death’? ‘I thank God thru Jesus Christ my Lord’. Paul found the answer, his name was Jesus.
Romans 7:1 Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?
Romans 7:2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.
Romans 7:3 So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.
Romans 7:4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
Romans 7:5 For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.
Romans 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.
Romans 7:7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.
Romans 7:8 But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead.
Romans 7:9 For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.
Romans 7:10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
Romans 7:11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.
Romans 7:12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.
Romans 7:13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.
Romans 7:14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.
Romans 7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.
Romans 7:16 If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.
Romans 7:17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
Romans 7:19 For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.
Romans 7:20 Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
Romans 7:21 I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.
Romans 7:22 For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:
Romans 7:23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
Romans 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
Romans 7:25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
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ROMANS 8-10

https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/2-24-15-romans-8-10.zip

VIDEO- [I cover stuff on the videos that are not in the post- here are a few]
.Council of Trent- what did the Church say?
.Do we get the final say- at the Judgment?
.What are the Catholic virtues- did Paul teach them?
.Augustine, Calvin, Whitfield and Wesley.
.Infusion or Imputation? How bout both!
At the bottom I added some quotes from the Catechism of the Catholic church- to show that the official teaching of the church DOES NOT TEACH SALVATION BY THE LAW- BUT BY CHRIST.

. REMINDER- This is a commentary I wrote years ago- the videos are new.
.CHAPTER 8- FEW POINTS;
5- Did God choose us to believe- or did we choose him?
6- When Paul says ‘he makes our bodies alive’ is he only speaking about resurrection?
7- Does God use difficulty- or is it to be rebuked?
8- Was Paul a ‘hyper- Calvinist’?
(839)ROMAN 8:1-4 ‘There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh [sinful nature] but after the Spirit [new nature]’. Now, having proved the reality of sin and guilt [chapter 7] Paul teaches that those who ‘are in Christ’ are free from condemnation. Why? Because they ‘walk according to the Spirit’ the ‘righteousness of the law is being fulfilled in them’. Having no condemnation isn’t simply a ‘legal function’ of declared righteousness, and Paul didn’t teach it that way! Paul is saying ‘all those who have believed in Jesus and have been legally justified [earlier arguments in chapters 3-4] are now walking [actually acting out] this new nature. Therefore [because you no longer walk according to the flesh] there is no condemnation’! This argument helps bridge the gap between Catholic and Protestant theology, part of the reason for the ongoing schism is over this understanding. After the Reformation the Catholic Church had a Counter Reformation council, the council of Trent. They dealt with a lot of the abuses of the Catholic Church, things that many Catholic leaders were complaining about before the Reformation. They did deal with some issues and reformed somewhat. To the dismay of the more ‘reform minded’ Catholics [with Protestant leanings] they still came down strong on most pre reform doctrines. This made it next to impossible for the schism to be healed. But one area of disagreement was over ‘legal’ versus ‘actual/experiential’ justification. The Catholic position was ‘God can’t declare/say a person is justified until they actually are’ [experientially]. The Protestant side [Luther] said ‘God does justify [legal declaration] a person by faith alone’. Like I taught before, both of these are true. The Catholic view of ‘justification’ is looking ahead towards a future reality [The same way James speaks of justification in a future sense- He uses the example from Genesis 22, when Abraham does a righteous act] while the Protestant view is focusing on the initial legal act of justification [Genesis 15]. Here Paul agrees with both views, he says ‘those who walk after the Spirit [actually living the changed life] have no condemnation’.

(840)ROMANS 8:5-13 Paul will teach the impossibility of the ‘carnal minds’ ability to submit to Gods law. Those who are ‘in the flesh’ [the unregenerate nature- not simply ‘in the body’. We will get into these distinctions in a minute] can’t submit to God. Society spends so much time and effort trying to get the ‘lost man’ to do what’s right. The prohibition movement [outlawing liquor], the increase in the severity of punishment for crimes dealing with drugs. Making the child kidnappers crime punishable by death. While all these laws are necessary and good [though some debate the wisdom of the kidnapper one, they think the kidnapper might just go ahead and kill the victim if the same punishment applies to both crimes] they have little effect on getting ‘the carnal man to submit’. Paul also says ‘if the Spirit of him who raised up Christ from the dead dwells in you, then he that raised up Christ from the dead shall quicken [make alive] your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwells in you’. Let’s do a little teaching here. Most commentators see this as speaking of the promise of the resurrection ‘your mortal bodies’. I see this more in line with the context of chapter 7. The discussion of ‘mortal bodies’ [your actual body, the flesh- which is different than ‘the fleshly nature’ which refers to the sinful nature] speaks of your actual life now ‘let not sin therefore reign in your mortal bodies’. Also in verse 13 of this chapter the same theme is seen ‘if ye thru the Spirit mortify the deeds of the body ye shall live’. I believe Paul is primarily saying ‘if you are in the Spirit [born of God] the Spirit of life will make alive your physical life in such a way that you will glorify God in your body and spirit, which are Gods’ [Corinthians]. Chapter 12 says your bodies are living sacrifices, holy and acceptable to God. Now later on in this chapter [8] we do see the resurrection, which is called ‘the redemption of the body’ [verse 23] so these two concepts work together. The fact that the believer is ‘training his mortal body’ for God [thru obedience] is sort of a precursor to the resurrection! Now, some believers confuse the resurrection of the body and the work of regeneration in ‘making you alive’ [Ephesians 2]. The work of regeneration brings your dead spirit back to life [born again] when you believe [which is a Divine imputation of faith at the moment of conversion, a sovereign act]. This ‘coming alive’ is purely spiritual. This qualifies you for the future physical resurrection of the body [Ephesians calls this the ‘down payment’, the ‘earnest of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession’. The word ‘earnest’ here is used in the same way as ‘earnest money’ in a real estate transaction. The fact that we have been ‘sealed’ with the Holy Spirit is our ‘guarantee of future bodily resurrection’]. Bishop N.T. Wright, the bishop of Durham [the church of England- Durham is the 3rd most influential post in the Church of England. Canterbury is at the top] has recently written on the truths of the resurrection of the body. He is an excellent scholar, way way above my league. He has been instrumental in ‘re introducing’ the reality of Christ’s resurrection as well as our future resurrection as a very real Christian belief [and historic truth as well]. I have read some of Wrights stuff and am a little surprised at some of the ideas on ‘soul sleep’ and the immortality of the soul. Bishop Wright seems to side with some of the ideas that certain restorationist groups [7th day Adventists] espouse, that the Catholic Church kind of corrupted the ideas of heaven and the soul by being overly influenced by Greek thought. While it is possible for Bishop Wright to have come to his understanding entirely thru scripture and history, yet I felt it a little strange to see him make these arguments. For the most part I like brother Wright and totally agree with his stance on the future ‘new heavens and new earth’ as the final place of rest [as opposed to dying and going to heaven now, which is a temporary place] but there is the biblical reality of a present ‘heaven’ and this doesn’t only come from Greek thought. I have often used the Christian doctrine of the new heavens and new earth while speaking with the Jehovah’s witnesses, I always agree on the reality of a future kingdom on earth. I simply steer the conversation back to ‘who qualifies for it’ and get straight to the gospel. Well anyway we have a promise of a future resurrection, and also a ‘quickening of the body now’ [God actually using our physical life to glorify him]. These are both great truths!

(841)ROMANS 8: 14-18 ‘For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the Sons of God’. Many of us are familiar with this verse [I hope!]. We often see it as saying ‘Gods direction in our lives is proof that we are Christians’ true enough. But in context ‘being led by Gods Spirit’ means living the new life thru Christ. The putting to death of the old man and being ‘made alive’ thru Christ is what this is saying. Paul agrees with John [1st John] ‘those that do what is right [led by the Spirit] are of God’. Paul says ‘we have received the Spirit and a natural result of this is crying “Abba, Father”. I don’t want to do too much here, but Paul sees the ‘confession’ and heart cry of the believer as proof, a result of being ‘a habitation of the Spirit’. A sign, if you will, of being born of God is confessing/ praying to the Father. Paul quoted David in chapter 4 ‘for this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee in a time when thou mayest be found’ [Psalms 32- actually Paul quotes a different section from the Psalm, but this theme is consistent with Paul’s view]. Paul knew the reality of ‘the godly calling upon God’ they have an inner cry of ‘Abba, father’. ‘We are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ’. For many years this has been a popular verse among many believers, often times it is used to say ‘God owns the cattle on a thousand hills’ [which he does] therefore if we are heirs ‘give me some cattle’! [stuff]. Here Paul uses this term in speaking of our identification with Christ’s sufferings. ‘If we suffer with him, we too shall share [joint heir!] in his glory’ [future glorification at the resurrection- we shall see him and be changed in a moment, at the twinkling of an eye. This mortal shall put on immortality]. It’s a symptom of modern American Christianity to view all these scriptures thru a materialistic lens, Paul held to the promise of a future reward [at the resurrection] that enabled him to go thru great difficulty and suffering in this present life. He counted the suffering as a privilege that he shared with Christ.

(843)ROMANS 8: 19-25 ‘the sufferings of this present time [are you ‘presently’ suffering?] are not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed in us’. Paul compares the difficulty to the reward. The reward here is the future resurrection. Paul did not see suffering as ‘from the devil’ or the reward as something material [monetary stuff! The resurrection body will be ‘material’ – real]. Paul teaches that the whole creation is waiting for this day. Not only will we get a ‘makeover’ but there will be a new heaven and a new earth! The creation itself longs for this [almost as much as Al Gore!] This resurrection is called ‘the redemption of our body’. The next verse says ‘we are saved by hope’. John also says [1st John] that the future reality of the resurrection ‘causes us to be pure in this life’ [every one that has this hope in him purifies himself, even as he is pure]. Why? Because we know God has a purpose for our bodies as well as our spirits! The ‘getting saved by hope’ simply means the future hope of the resurrection ‘encourages’ us to live clean now. Once again ‘saved’ is a neutral term. In can apply to all sorts of things. I always found it funny how when you read certain commentaries, that you see the difficulty Christians have when coming across these types of verses. There’s a verse that says ‘the woman will be saved thru childbearing’ geez, you wouldn’t believe the difficulty some writers have when they come across this stuff. Some teach ‘she will be ‘saved’ thru the birth of a child [Jesus]’ and all sorts of stuff. I think if we simply changed the word ‘saved’ for ‘delivered’ [which are basically the same thing] that maybe this would help. But thank God that we have a future resurrection to look forward to, let this truth ‘deliver’ you from the temptation to think ‘what’s all this suffering worth, why even go thru it?’ Because we have a great promise at the other end!

(845)ROMANS 8:26-28 ‘Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities’ why does Paul say ‘likewise’? He is saying ‘not only does the future hope of the resurrection sustain us, but also Gods Spirit helps us’! He knows how to make intercession for us in ways that we cannot. I just finished an hour prayer time, not an ‘official’ intercession time [which I do a few times a week now]. But an ‘unofficial’ time where I try and hear what the Spirit is speaking. When you are ‘praying in the Spirit’ [which can include the charismatic expression of tongues] you are depending upon the Spirit to transcend your limited ability to articulate what needs to be said. ‘All things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are ‘the called’ according to his purpose’. A very famous verse indeed. What does it mean? It means what it says! Over the years I have heard so many excuses for trying to get around difficult things. Why do the righteous suffer? Some taught it was because of their ignorance of scripture. Why did the things that happened to Job happen? Some said it was because he ‘feared’ that the things would happen [this group seems to miss the whole underlying reason for the book. Job’s friends are continually looking for a reason thru out the book. The point is, sometimes there is no reasonable explanation. I realize you can pick apart certain statements from Job and come up with ‘reasons’, but the meaning of the book is God is sovereign and we shouldn’t always think we can figure him out or ‘work the system’]. Here Paul says ‘whatever is happening to you right now [even very bad stuff!] will eventually work out for you benefit’. What about Hitler? Did he love God? I don’t believe so. This scripture says ‘to them that love God’. Your only responsibility thru the difficulty is to ‘love God’.

(846)ROMANS 8:29-30 ‘for whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed into the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: whom he justified, them he also glorified’. Let’s talk a little. When I first became a Christian I began a lifelong study of scripture, where I continually read a certain amount of scripture every day for many years. Over the years I have varied on how fast I should read [that is how many chapters per day and so forth]. But during the early stages I always took these verses to teach predestination in the classical sense. Simply put, that God ‘pre chose’ me [and all whom come to him] before we ‘chose him’. The Fundamental Baptist church I began to attend [a great church with great people!] taught that ‘classic Calvinism’ [predestination] was false doctrine, and they labeled it ‘Hyper Calvinism’. I simply accepted this as fact. But I never forgot the early understanding that I first gleaned thru my own study. I also was very limited in my other readings outside of the scripture. I did study the Great awakenings and Charles Finney. I read some biographies on John Wesley and other great men of God. These men were not Calvinistic in their doctrine [which is fine], as a matter of fact Wesley would eventually disassociate from George Whitefield over this issue. Whitefield was a staunch Calvinist! Over time I came to believe the doctrine again, simply as I focused on the scriptures that teach it. Eventually I picked up some books on church history and realized that Calvinism was [and is] a mainstream belief among many great believers. I personally believe that most of the great theologians in history have accepted this doctrine. Now, for those who reject it, they honestly struggle with these portions of scripture. Just like there are portions of scripture that Calvinists struggle with. To deny this is to be less than honest. The Arminians [Those who deny classic predestination- the term comes from Jacob Arminias, a Calvinist who was writing and studying on the ‘errors’ of ‘arminianism’ and came to embrace the doctrine of free will/choice] usually approach the verses that say ‘he predestined us’ by teaching that Gods predestination speaks only of his foreknowledge of those who would choose him. This is an honest effort to come to terms with the doctrine. To be ‘more honest’ I think this doesn’t adequately deal with the issue. In the above text, as well as many other places in scripture, the idea of ‘Gods foreknowledge and pre choosing’ speak specifically about Gods choice to save us, as opposed to him simply knowing that we would ‘choose right’. The texts that teach predestination teach it in this context. Now the passage above does say ‘those whom he foreknew, he also did predestinate to be conformed into the image of Christ’ here this passage actually does say ‘God predestinated us to be like his Son’. If you left the ‘foreknowledge’ part out, you could read this passage in an Arminian way. But we do have the ‘foreknowledge’ part. So I believe Paul is saying ‘God chose us before we were born, he ‘knew’ ahead of time that he would bring us into his Kingdom. Those whom he foreknew he also predestinated to become like his Son.’ Why? So his Son would be the firstborn among many. God wanted a whole new race of ‘children of God’. Those he predestinated he ‘called’. He drew them to himself. Jesus said ‘all that the Father give to me will come to me, and him that cometh to me I will in no way cast out’. Those who ‘come’ are justified, those who are justified are [present tense] glorified. Gods design and sovereignty speak of it as a ‘finished task’ like it already happened. God lives outside of the dimension of time. I believe in the doctrine of predestination. Many others do as well. You don’t have to believe it if you don’t want to, but I believe scripture teaches it.

(847)ROMANS 8: 31-39 ‘What shall we say then to these things? [what things? The fact that God predestined us and has guaranteed completion of the purpose he has designed us for!] If God be for us, who can be against us?’ Paul teaches that Christ is the only one with the ‘right’ or authority to pass judgment. If the only person in existence who can ‘officially’ condemn and pass legal judgment has actually died for us for the purpose of ‘freeing us from a state of condemnation’, then who ‘gives a rip’ about others opinions and views of us? Most of us struggle with how others view us. Paul did teach that Elders should have good character and a fine reputation in the community. But there is another type of ‘persona’ that preachers can fall into. A sort of ‘concern’ about what the critics are saying. In this context Paul says ‘If the opinion of the only person in existence whose opinion really matters, is one of “I accept you unconditionally, I declare you free from what others think, you are my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. Ever since I have known you, you have been pleasing in my sight” [all true scriptures by the way] Then who cares what others think! Paul also teaches that nothing can separate us from Christ’s love ‘not tribulation or distress or famine or persecution’ IN all these things we are more than conquerors thru him who loved us. Most times we view this passage from a ‘Calvinistic’ lens. I want you to see the impact of this statement thru a different lens. In the American church we have taught people ‘would a good father not pay the bills of his kids? Would a good father allow his kids to suffer? If you were really partaking of the New Covenant you would have it made’. While I do realize that many well meaning ministers have taught these viewpoints with honest and sincere hearts, I also have seen how this mindset accuses the saints. It basically tells the struggling believer ‘what kind of father do you have? If he really loved you would you be going thru these things’? In essence we are saying ‘tribulation and distress and persecution’ are all signs that ‘you have been separated from Gods love’! Paul blows this false [materialistic] mindset out of the water. He says it is thru these things that we are more than conquerors. It is the ability to look into the face of Pontius Pilate and say ‘you have no power over me, my father has permitted these things to take place. I am here to lay my life down for his glory’. Paul said all these things we are suffering are opportunities to glorify our father. To look into the face of society and say ‘nay, we are more than conqueror’s thru him that loved us’. The early church set the world on fire when they were laying their lives down for the cause, refusing to deny their Lord even at the point of death. They were ‘more than conquerors’.

ROMANS 9-
.PAUL- SPURGEON- AND DAVE HUNT- DID THEY BELIEVE IN PREDESTINATION?
.HOW DOES PAUL DEFEND AGAINST THE SEEMING ‘UNFAIRNESS’ OF IT?
(630) JOHN 19 (radio # 602) The reality of redemption! I want to stress the fact that Jesus actually dieing on the Cross and really shedding his Blood for us is what saves us. No spiritualizing here! Over the years I have seen and read how believers in an attempt to ‘see’ the deep truths of God will sometimes fudge on the real Blood of Christ redeeming us. Let’s make it clear, the New Testament teaches that it was the real Blood of Jesus and his death on the Cross that saves man. Now, were there spiritual aspects to it? Sure. But don’t ‘spiritualize’ the death and real shedding of Blood. Like the recent reproof we did on some who taught that Jesus was not the Messiah, so here we warn that his Blood really saves. I remember reading one of the founders of the Word of faith movement, E.W. Kenyon. He would eventually teach that the ‘death of Jesus [physically] didn’t touch the sin issue’ he would then teach that it was the ‘spiritual death’ that saved us. Then teach that Jesus was the ‘first born again man’ who was separated from God and ‘born again’. The New Testament teaches Jesus was ‘the first begotten from the dead’ meaning the first to rise from the dead to never die again. Not the first person to ‘be born again’! Later on you would have another famous Word of Faith brother teach the same thing. I don’t know why we have to always ‘see deeper’ than the plain truth? I guess it offends the natural mind to believe that Jesus physical death and separation from the father actually redeems man. I do believe Jesus ‘went to hell’ I don’t teach the ‘hell’ being a separate place called ‘paradise’ that was really like heaven. It would seem strange for David in Psalms to say ‘thou wilt not leave my soul in hell [paradise] nor suffer thy Holy one to see corruption’. It just seems to fit as being ‘hell’, not ‘paradise. But I also believe it was the real death of Jesus on the cross that saves us. He really died and really shed his Blood and it was really finished when he said ‘it is finished’. Jesus will also say to John ‘behold your mother’ and tell Mary to go home and live with John after his death. Catholic apologists use this to defend their belief in the perpetual virginity of Mary. They say ‘if Mary had other natural kids, then it would have been offensive in Jewish culture for Mary to not have gone and lived with them’ good point. But heck, I defend our Catholic brothers an awful lot. Let me defend the Protestants a little. It is also possible that Jesus strong teaching on putting the spiritual family before the natural one might have played a role here. This could be the beginnings of the strong family mindset that you will see playing out later in the book of Acts. True believers living and sharing as strong [or even stronger!] than natural families. Also we already taught how Jesus knew that John would outlive the others. Even Jesus brother James, one of the lead apostles at Jerusalem will be martyred. Maybe Jesus knew [maybe!] that committing Mary over to Johns care was a more long term thing than handing her over to his brothers? We also see Nicodemus openly follow Jesus in this chapter. He is the first of the Pharisees to confess Christ openly. Later in the book of Acts we will see ‘Pharisees who believe’ but most times leaders are the last to repent and change positions. Why? Well some of it has to do with the whole persona of leadership. With this calling comes a type of character that says ‘I preached it, any one who disagrees is simply persecution’. While there are times when this is true, there are also times where God calls leadership to new levels. Some get it on it early [Nicodemus] others later! [some never!] Be part of the early group. I forgot to mention we also see the Jews appeal to ‘King Caesar’ as opposed to King Jesus. They will tell Pilate ‘we have no King but Caesar’. They hated Caesar. The whole Jewish nation were treated like 2nd class citizens under Roman rule, sure they benefited from ‘Pax Romana’ [the peace of Rome] but they hated to be living under an occupying govt. Jesus told them earlier in this gospel ‘you refuse my testimony of who I am, yet you will accept the testimony of another’s name’ some feel this is a reference to anti Christ. I think it fits in good right here!

VERSES-
. 20 For the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into his vineyard.
2 And when he had agreed with the labourers for a penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard.
3 And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace,
4 And said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way.
5 Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise.
6 And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle?
7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard; and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive.
8 So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first.
9 And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a penny.
10 But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a penny.
11 And when they had received it, they murmured against the goodman of the house,
12 Saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of the day.
13 But he answered one of them, and said, Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with me for a penny?
14 Take that thine is, and go thy way: I will give unto this last, even as unto thee.
15 Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?
16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called, but few chosen.
Matt 20
41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.
Matt 5:41
19 Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged him.
2 And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and they put on him a purple robe,
3 And said, Hail, King of the Jews! and they smote him with their hands.
4 Pilate therefore went forth again, and saith unto them, Behold, I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in him.
5 Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, Behold the man!
6 When the chief priests therefore and officers saw him, they cried out, saying, Crucify him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Take ye him, and crucify him: for I find no fault in him.
7 The Jews answered him, We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.
8 When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid;
9 And went again into the judgment hall, and saith unto Jesus, Whence art thou? But Jesus gave him no answer.
10 Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?
11 Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.
12 And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar’s friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.
13 When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called the Pavement, but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha.
14 And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, Behold your King!
15 But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, Shall I crucify your King? The chief priests answered, We have no king but Caesar.
16 Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him away.
17 And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha:
18 Where they crucified him, and two other with him, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst.
19 And Pilate wrote a title, and put it on the cross. And the writing was JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS.
20 This title then read many of the Jews: for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, and Greek, and Latin.
21 Then said the chief priests of the Jews to Pilate, Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am King of the Jews.
22 Pilate answered, What I have written I have written.

. Genesis 15:1 After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.
Genesis 15:2 And Abram said, LORD God, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?
Genesis 15:3 And Abram said, Behold, to me thou hast given no seed: and, lo, one born in my house is mine heir.
Genesis 15:4 And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.
Genesis 15:5 And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.
Genesis 15:6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.
For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew nosin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2nd Cor. 5:21
For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truthcame by Jesus Christ. Jn. 1:17

UNCLE TOM
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-10-15-uncle-tom.zip

On video
.Systematic theology
.Flew
.Patriarchs
.How did you get here?
.Cameras- not guns
.Hospital bombing
.Baby’s grave
.See my roller coaster
Verses
. Matthew 22King James Version (KJV)
22 And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,
2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
4 Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:
6 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.
7 But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.
8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.
9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.
10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.
11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and torestore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth. Isa. 49:6
Ezekiel 9:1 He cried also in mine ears with a loud voice, saying, Cause them that have charge over the city to draw near, even every man with his destroying weapon in his hand.
Ezekiel 9:2 And, behold, six men came from the way of the higher gate, which lieth toward the north, and every man a slaughter weapon in his hand; and one man among them was clothed with linen, with a writer’s inkhorn by his side: and they went in, and stood beside the brasen altar.
Ezekiel 9:3 And the glory of the God of Israel was gone up from the cherub, whereupon he was, to the threshold of the house. And he called to the man clothed with linen, which had the writer’s inkhorn by his side;
Ezekiel 9:4 And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.
Ezekiel 9:5 And to the others he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity:
Ezekiel 9:6 Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.
Ezekiel 9:7 And he said unto them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain: go ye forth. And they went forth, and slew in the city.
Ezekiel 9:8 And it came to pass, while they were slaying them, and I was left, that I fell upon my face, and cried, and said, Ah Lord GOD! wilt thou destroy all the residue of Israel in thy pouring out of thy fury upon Jerusalem?
Ezekiel 9:9 Then said he unto me, The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceeding great, and the land is full of blood, and the city full of perverseness: for they say, The LORD hath forsaken the earth, and the LORD seeth not.
Ezekiel 9:10 And as for me also, mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity, but I will recompense their way upon their head.
Ezekiel 9:11 And, behold, the man clothed with linen, which had the inkhorn by his side, reported the matter, saying, I have done as thou hast commanded me.

FATHER OF LIES [and spooky stuff!] https://youtu.be/lQPOCWOBXEk
https://youtu.be/G6XHiXZPK9g [spooky stuff]
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-11-15-the-father-of-lies.zip
ON VIDEO-
.Occult danger
.Warning
.satan a created being
.Dualism
.Rams horn found!

VERSES-
. 17 And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.
18 And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.
19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
20 Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.
And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lakeof fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Rev. 20:10
. Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
16 They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;
Isa. 14
. Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee. Jude 9
. Matthew 4:1 Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
Matthew 4:2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.
Matthew 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.
Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Matthew 4:5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
Matthew 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.
Matthew 4:7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
Matthew 4:8 Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
Matthew 4:9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
Matthew 4:10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
Matthew 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
Ephesians 6:11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Ephesians 6:13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Ephesians 6:14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;
Ephesians 6:15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
Ephesians 6:16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.
Ephesians 6:17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:
Ephesians 6:18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
. But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. Lk. 11:20
4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.
9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:
10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;
11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Phil. 2
. And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, chooseyou this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land yedwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve theLORD. Josh. 24:15

TOWER 7
NOTE- There are many ‘conspiracies’ about 911- and many videos you can watch on the subject.
Actually- I don’t consider myself a ‘truther’.
But I do talk about it on my video- and added actual footage of the collapse of tower 7.
We know tower 7 was on fire- the question is could a structure fire alone cause a collapse like this?
Tower 7 was not hit by a plane on 911.

I added a few videos below- besides mine. I don’t agree with all the stuff- but figured I’d add them because I talked about it on the post.
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-14-15-update-benghazi-clinton-carson-paris-bombings-etc.zip

https://youtu.be/MW0ZdaU6vC0 [UPDATE]
https://youtu.be/aoNy7AzSVAU [collapse of tower 7]
https://youtu.be/aoNy7AzSVAU [tower 7]


https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-12-15-the-collapse-of-tower-7.zip
ON VIDEOS
.Altar better than gift
.Conspiracy?
.Don’t flatter me
.Should we pay taxes?
.Why so mad Jesus?
.What is truth?
.Married in heaven?
.I have one question- FOR YOU!

VERSES [posts below]
. Matthew 22:1 And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said,
Matthew 22:2 The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,
Matthew 22:3 And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come.
Matthew 22:4 Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage.
Matthew 22:5 But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise:
Matthew 22:6 And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them.
Matthew 22:7 But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.
Matthew 22:8 Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy.
Matthew 22:9 Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage.
Matthew 22:10 So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests.
Matthew 22:11 And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
Matthew 22:12 And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
Matthew 22:13 Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness, there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Matthew 22:14 For many are called, but few are chosen.
Matthew 22:15 Then went the Pharisees, and took counsel how they might entangle him in his talk.
Matthew 22:16 And they sent out unto him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, Master, we know that thou art true, and teachest the way of God in truth, neither carest thou for any man: for thou regardest not the person of men.
Matthew 22:17 Tell us therefore, What thinkest thou? Is it lawful to give tribute unto Caesar, or not?
Matthew 22:18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, Why tempt ye me, ye hypocrites?
Matthew 22:19 Shew me the tribute money. And they brought unto him a penny.
Matthew 22:20 And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription?
Matthew 22:21 They say unto him, Caesar’s. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.
Matthew 22:22 When they had heard these words, they marvelled, and left him, and went their way.
Matthew 22:23 The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him,
Matthew 22:24 Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.
Matthew 22:25 Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother:
Matthew 22:26 Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh.
Matthew 22:27 And last of all the woman died also.
Matthew 22:28 Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her.
Matthew 22:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.
Matthew 22:30 For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.
Matthew 22:31 But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying,
Matthew 22:32 I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.
Matthew 22:33 And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine.
Matthew 22:34 But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together.
Matthew 22:35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying,
Matthew 22:36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
Matthew 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Matthew 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.
Matthew 22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Matthew 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Matthew 22:41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them,
Matthew 22:42 Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The son of David.
Matthew 22:43 He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying,
Matthew 22:44 The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool?
Matthew 22:45 If David then call him Lord, how is he his son?
Matthew 22:46 And no man was able to answer him a word, neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.
________________________________________
Matthew 23:1 Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples,
Matthew 23:2 Saying The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat:
Matthew 23:3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not.
Matthew 23:4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers.
Matthew 23:5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments,
Matthew 23:6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues,
Matthew 23:7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi.
Matthew 23:8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
Matthew 23:9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
Matthew 23:10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
Matthew 23:11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
Matthew 23:12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
Matthew 23:13 But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
Matthew 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
Matthew 23:15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
Matthew 23:16 Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor!
Matthew 23:17 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold?
Matthew 23:18 And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty.
Matthew 23:19 Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift?
Matthew 23:20 Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon.
Matthew 23:21 And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein.
Matthew 23:22 And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon.
Matthew 23:23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
Matthew 23:24 Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
Matthew 23:25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
Matthew 23:26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
Matthew 23:27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.
Matthew 23:28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Matthew 23:29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
Matthew 23:30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
Matthew 23:31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.
Matthew 23:32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
Matthew 23:33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
Matthew 23:34 Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:
Matthew 23:35 That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.
Matthew 23:36 Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.
Matthew 23:37 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
Matthew 23:38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
Matthew 23:39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

PAST POSTS
. Many were surprised at how willingly Socrates faced his demise- and this willingness had a great impact on those who witnessed it.

Socrates never wrote anything- but most of what we do know about him comes from the writing of others- most notably from Plato’s Dialogues.
Plato wrote down what Socrates taught- In his writings we see Socrates engaging in this method with various people- thus the name of Plato’s works- Dialogues.

There is a debate about how much of what was written about him was actually true- Plato did add his own ideas into these debates- and the controversy about this is so strong that we actually have a name for it- the ‘Socratic Problem’.
During the time of the disillusionment of the Athenians- there were a group of philosophers known as the Sophists.

The word comes from Sophia- meaning wisdom.

Philosophy itself means The Love of Wisdom.
In our day the words Sophomore- Sophistry and Sophisticated are derived from this root word.

The Sophists were the original Pragmatists.

Pragmatism is a form of belief that says ‘do what works- regardless of the ethical implications’.
We will get to Pragmatism at the end of this whole series on Philosophy.

But for now- we see the division between what Socrates taught- and the Sophists.

Socrates did indeed teach a form of Ethics- which contrasted with the Sophists.
He said that the pursuit of virtue was better than the pursuit of wealth- much like the words of Jesus ‘what does it profit a man if he gain the world- and lose his soul’.

His most famous saying is ‘The unexamined life is not worth living’.

He emphasized the importance of mind over body- which inspired Plato’s philosophy of dividing reality into 2 separate realms- the world of senses and the world of ideas.

Socrates actually challenged the Democratic process- he believed it better for the wise men- the Philosopher Kings- to run the show.
Athens did have a form of Democracy at the time- and because of the rise of the Sophists- and the itinerant teachers- you had sort of an election process- much like in our day- where those who would attain office were those who spoke the best- and made the best public argument.

We elect judges and stuff in our day- and even presidents- not because they are the most capable- but because they ran the best campaign.

So- in a way I agree with Socrates- at times I think we need a better process of electing those to higher office- then the one we have now.

It’s important to note that even though we started this study with Thales- and in the study of Western philosophy it’s commonly understood to have started with Thales.

Yet- Socrates seems to be the Father of philosophy in many ways.
He probably has had the most influence in the field philosophy- and the 2 great philosophers that we’ll get to next come right out from the heels of Socrates [Plato and Aristotle].

Why is this important to note?
As we progress in this study- and get closer to the 19th/20th century philosophers- we will see a trend- away from the idea that there are actually any ethical values- moral virtues- or ‘right or wrong’.

These philosophers dabbled with the idea that values themselves are the cause of man’s problems [Freud].

So- keep in mind- one of the main streams of thought in the early stages of philosophy was that values were indeed the main thing- Socrates challenged the Sophists of his day- he said that moral virtue was very important- that to live life with the values of courage- honesty- self-denial- these were the things that made men good- noble.
[parts]
1825- PHILOSOPHY [conclusion]

Today let’s wrap up the last philosophy post for now.

Over the last 6 months or so I have posted around 25 posts- covering the pre Socratic thinkers [800 B.C.] and we made it all the way up to the 19th century.

The main philosophical thought of the 20th century was called Logical Positivism.

This idea said there were 3 stages to Western thought/culture;

First- Infancy [religious/myth]

Second- adolescence [philosophy]

Third- adult [science/empirical]

This idea said that man in the 20th century has finally advanced beyond the silly stages of religion and has now moved into a stage where the only true things are empirical in nature.

That is- for something to be true- you must be able to show it scientifically [or mathematically].

It did not take too long before the critics figured out the major flaw with this idea.

This philosophy states ‘the only truth is empirical’ this statement in itself [as well as all the books written on it] is not an empirically proven statement.

Therefore- according to its own criterion- it is false.

This particular aspect of the philosophy was called The Verification Principle [had to be proven/verified scientifically to be valid].

Pragmatism- this is the only home grown philosophy that had its roots in the U.S.

Founded by Dewey and Peirce- this thought denied objective reality and states that ‘whatever works- use it’.

Of course being ‘pragmatic’ in a practical way is fine- we do want things to work.

But at its core Pragmatism says there are no real ethics- no right or wrong- just things people do.

In the beginning of the 20th century you had the British thinker/mathematician Bertrand Russell.

Russell was a good man- raised as a Christian.

But as a young man he read a book by John Stuart Mill [19th century] that questioned one of the classic arguments for the existence of God [the argument from first cause].

Mill said ‘if everything has to have a cause- then why not God- who caused him’.

Russell accepted Mills claim- and became an influential atheist/agnostic.

The main flaw with this argument- that everything ‘has a cause’ is that it’s false.

The law of Cause and Effect [Causality] does not state that everything has a cause- it says that ‘every effect has a cause’.

That is- there is nothing in existence- an effect- that came from nothing.

Some argued that there was no initial cause- but an infinite series of ‘little’ cause and effects that go on forever.

This too is wrong- it leads to another problem called the Infinite Regress.

If there is no First cause- then logically you can never arrive at ‘Now’

There had to have been a starting point somewhere [Einstein has since proved this] and the starting point [Big Bang] could not have come from nothing.

This too is a very common belief among many well meaning people- that somehow science has taught us that all things came from nothing.

This could not be further from the truth- this is referred to as Creation Ex Nihilo- which too is scientifically false.

The only other option- beside the Infinite Regress- and the creation out of nothing- is there had to have been some type of first cause- who is not limited to the material realm.

By nature this being would have to be Metaphysical [outside the physical realm] and would have to be self existent- having no beginning.

To have a First cause- who himself is infinite- is indeed consistent with the principals of logic- and at the end of the day is the only reasonable explanation for the existence of all other things.

Okay- as we end our posts on philosophy for now- why did I cover this?

Thru out the history of the church Christians have grappled and challenged the other world views- and have done a good job at it.

The Christian perspective is not some silly religious way of life that has no real proof.

To the contrary- the church has had the upper hand in all these debates down thru the centuries.

But in today’s ‘media market’ Christianity- the proliferation of self help books [everyday day a Friday?]

The nonstop talk about becoming rich- or sending your money to ‘my ministry’ as a ‘seed faith’ to become rich.

In this environment- many outsiders see the church as an irrelevant- never ending drum beat that they can’t wait to switch to another channel.

This is not the history of the church- and the church has historically won the debate on the reality of God.

It’s just the average person does not know it.

So- for the Christian to be learned in these fields- to have a working knowledge of the opposing world views- is a good thing.

Why do so many believers avoid a field like philosophy?

The apostle Paul warned the Colossians ‘beware of the philosophies of men’.

He also wrote to his protégé Timothy ‘beware of the oppositions of science- falsely so called’.

The word for science in this text is Gnosis- the Greek work for knowledge.

In the early days of the church there was a Christian cult that rose up- called Gnosticism.

More than likely- Paul was not saying that all science- as we use the term today- is bad- but he was warning against a particular from of science- called Gnosticism.

The same with the warning on philosophy- while you could apply it to all philosophy- that is to say that we should be careful when people try to give us opposing ways of thought- yet in context it seems like the apostle is dealing with the philosophies that oppose Christian thought.

For the first 1500 years of the Christian church the study of Theology and Philosophy went hand and hand.

After the Protestant Reformation [15th century] many Protestants avoided the field- which I think was a mistake.

So- as we close up this subject for now- maybe review a few of the posts on the blog that I did these last few months- become more familiar with the apologetic arguments for the existence of God.

Christians do not have to argue- or oppose atheists- or other religions that hold a different view than we do.

But we should be able to give a defense for the faith- to explain to society around us why we believe the things we do.

At the end of the day- we really do have the winning argument.

FRANCE RESPONDS [will it work?]
HUMANIZING VICTIMS[on all sides]
https://youtu.be/tfs7W2lHxJY [France responds]
https://youtu.be/xVgWS7LrZho [Humanizing victims]
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-16-15-isis-1-france-responds-will-it-work-can-you-kill-an-ideology.zip
ON VIDEOS-
1- Can you kill an ideology?
2- France strikes back
3- When are you [Jesus] ‘coming back’?
4- Iraq Christians
5- More troops?
6- Read the whole bible
7- Pray too!
8- Monks
9- Visigoths [Alaric?]
10- At war with Islam?
PAST POSTS [verses below]-

Masada.
Hadrian.
Judaism in transition.
Did they ‘move on’ ?
Who was Elazar ben Yair?

In the last video I spoke about what happened to the Jews after the letter to the Hebrews was written.
In a way- the Jewish people made a transition- though forcibly- into some of the exhortations we read about in this letter-
They no longer offered animal sacrifices- why?
The Jews saw the destruction of their city and temple in AD 70 under the Roman leader Titus-
Some continued to resist Rome- they took over the fortress of Masada- a great fortress built by the late King Herod- Herod the Great.
They held the fort for around 3 years- until the Romans built a rampart to invade it.
The fortress was built high on a cliff by the Dead Sea-
The only way to get to it was from a narrow road- called the snake.
It had no ‘hand rails’ or walls to protect you- it was built this way on purpose.
So when the Roman soldiers tried to capture the Jews in the fortress- a small group could easily fight back- and hold the fort.
So the Romans built this rampart- it took about 2 years- and right before they reached the fort- the Jews holed up inside killed themselves.
They chose 10 men by lot- who would kill all inside the fort [women and kids too].
Out of the 10- they drew lots for one of them to kill the other 9- then he killed himself.
Elazar ben Yair was the leader of the Jewish resistance- we read the account in the writings of Josephus Flavius- the great historian who too fought against the Romans.
Here’s a quote from Elazar ben Yair “Since we long ago resolved never to be servants to the Romans, nor to any other than to God Himself, Who alone is the true and just Lord of mankind, the time is now come that obliges us to make that resolution true in practice …We were the very first that revolted, and we are the last to fight against them; and I cannot but esteem it as a favor that God has granted us, that it is still in our power to die bravely, and in a state of freedom.”
Flavius wrote 4 great works [we read about this account in Jewish Wars] – after the rebellion was over- Josephus was brought to Rome- and he began writing his historical works in order to show the Romans that the Jewish people were a great people- with a great history.
Many scholars refer to Josephus works [mostly Antiquities] because they give us history that we don’t find in the bible- it sort of fills in the gaps- and gives us historical context.
The Bar Kokhba Revolt-
The Jews had their last revolt against Rome around 130-132 AD-
Under the leadership of Shimon Bar Kokhba they resisted Rome- Emperor Hadrian would eventually prevail- and ban the Jews from their land- and make laws outlawing Jewish religious practice.
Over time the Jewish people learned/adapted to practice their religion- without Temple/Priest or sacrifice.
The Seder meal became the memorial of Gods deliverance from Egypt- they use the bone of a lamb- but they do not actually have the Passover sacrifice [which the letter to the Hebrews exhorts them to do- to not practice animal sacrifices any more].
The priests were no more- but the people had Rabbis- one in particular tried to help the people transition after such a cultural loss.
He taught them that the ‘new way’ of sacrifice and worship would be thru acts of charity- and prayer ‘sacrifice and offering I do not want’ a quote from the Old testament Prophets.
So- in a way- the Jewish people did ‘move on’ from the Old sacrificial system- and embraced a ‘more Christian’ view of religion.
Of course there are Jews today who fully embrace Jesus as the messiah- but over all- as a people- their Old Law system was done away-
Today you have various forms of Judaism- ranking form the most strict- to the most liberal [we see this in Christianity as well].
But none of them practice ritual sacrifice any more-
Some Christians [and Jews] actually believe the Temple will be restored- and at that time the sacrifices will be re-instituted.
I actually do not hold to this end time view-
But for now- that system has been done away with [or put on hold- if that’s your view].
And the ‘new works’ of religion- are charity and prayer and Mercy-
The same theme we read in this letter to the Hebrews-
5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith , Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: Hebrews 10:5
By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is , the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. Hebrews 13:15

JOHN LOCKE- JESUS- AND MONEY.
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/5-22-15-john-locke-political-theory-and-jesus.zip
Today’s video [and post] is one of those ‘spur of the moment’ ones-
I made the video/post yesterday- ‘off the cuff’-
I’m at the ranch as I write- and have no WiFi out here- or I’d post it now- I also don’t have my on-line concordance- so I’ll try and remember exactly where some of the verses are and add them in [I do have my on-line bible saved to the drive!]
This video/post is in keeping with some of the stuff I’ve been recently teaching.
As Christians- we often look for the things we are supposed to do.
Which is fine- but what I have learned in my experience of doing ministry for many years- is many Pastors/ministers- learn a certain pattern/form- early on-
And as well-meaning as these men are- they often unconsciously do not realize they are violating scripture in their efforts to do the right thing.
When people feel God has called them ‘to preach’ [ called into ministry] most of the times they are taught that this means ‘starting a local church’.
In the American mindset- this means starting a nonprofit 501 c3- either renting or building some type of structure to meet in-
And then teaching a form of giving- usually called ‘the tithe’ [meaning 10 percent]-
And then saying ‘the local church is this place/501c3- the storehouse- and you will be cursed if you do not tithe to the storehouse’.
And without realizing it- in the more extreme cases- actually teaching people that they will fall under the curse of God- if they do not put 10% of their income into the ‘local church’.
This verse from Malachi is often used- Malachi 3:8 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.
Malachi 3:9 Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.
Malachi 3:10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.

And this basic idea of ‘church government’ is then propagated thru out the land.
I’ve discussed this recently- and for these short videos- I just want to note that the New Testament churches we read about in the bible- are talking about communities of believers living in your city/area.
The early Christians met in homes- and later on in church buildings-
I am not against any of these formats- but we need to be careful that we are not unconsciously telling people they will be under the curse of God if they do not ‘tithe to the storehouse’ [then applying the ‘storehouse’ to the building- and it’s 501c3 status- as- quote ‘the local church’].
The tithe was actually an income tax for the nation of Israel in the Old Testament- and it entailed more than simply putting goods/money into an ‘offering’ plate-
No- it was a system that supported 3 main things in the Jewish economy-
The Priests [who were forbidden to own property].
The poor [meeting their needs].
And for banquets-
So- in short- the churches we read about in the bible were communities of people who supported one another- and this included- yes- financial support for the minsters too-
That’s all ok-
But the balance about money in the New Testament is it is a tool to be used to help others-
And is never something we should seek after- sort of like ‘God has called me to become rich so I can fund ministries’ type thing. No- that ‘calling’ would violate many actual teachings in the bible- that warn against seeking to be rich- even for noble causes-
I’ve copied some of those verses the last few days-
So- as we continue to teach thru the bible in the next year- look at the relationship we see in these New Testament letters between giving and receiving-
How the early Christians viewed their roles in the church-
How the ministers related to the people-
The bible does give us guidelines about all of this- it actually makes it quite clear-
Ok- enjoy the video/post- talk to you soon.
1To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: 2 Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; 3 not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. 4 And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.
Acts 20:17 And from Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called the elders of the church.
Acts 20:18 And when they were come to him, he said unto them, Ye know, from the first day that I came into Asia, after what manner I have been with you at all seasons,
Acts 20:19 Serving the LORD with all humility of mind, and with many tears, and temptations, which befell me by the lying in wait of the Jews:
Acts 20:20 And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publickly, and from house to house,
Acts 20:21 Testifying both to the Jews, and also to the Greeks, repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
Acts 20:22 And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there:
Acts 20:23 Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me.
Acts 20:24 But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.
Acts 20:25 And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more.
Acts 20:26 Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men.
Acts 20:27 For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.
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(594) Yesterday morning I got up early and prayed a weekly prayer that includes the nations. Part of this time goes like this ‘Lord I pray for all religions outside of the covenant of your Son. All Jewish people, that they would see Jesus their messiah. All Muslim people, that you would give them signs and prophetic visions and dreams to show them Jesus is the way’. Then this morning I had a dream that family members were converting to Islam. That they were being ‘attacked’ or influenced by the ‘spirit of Islam’. In the dream I felt helpless against this force. We went to sleep [in the dream!] and I awoke [still dreaming this] with a radical spirit of intercession. I began praying and breaking the power of Islam off of the family members that just a few hours earlier seemed to be fully lost to Islam. I felt this dream spoke to the effectiveness we have been having recently with Muslims. These last few weeks have given opportunity to share with a homeless Muslim Iraq war veteran. Good friend. Then a Muslim friend from England started conversing with me and asking how to become Christian. He is reading this site! It never dawned on me that these were fruits from the prayer time! Like I said before, I can be dense at times. Let me cover some church history. I have had someone argue with me about the history of Islam. Not a Muslim, but a Christian who was saying ‘why do you say Islam started in the 7th century, it started around the 11th’. My answer was ‘Muhammad lived in the 7th century’. Not to hard to see this. So I thought I should cover some history. During the time of the rise of Islam, the Christian church was already dividing from east and west. After Constantine [4th century Roman emperor] consolidated the Roman Empire in the 4th century he set up the capital city of the eastern empire, Constantinople [named after him]. As time progressed the western church would take on the form of Roman Catholicism, the eastern [Constantinople area. Modern day Turkey-Istanbul] would be known as ‘Orthodox’. Though the official split of eastern and western [Catholic-Rome!] churches occurred in 1054 AD, yet the division started years before. The official split is called ‘the great schism’ of the 11th century; it would not be until 500 years later that the church would have her ‘reformation’. The official reason for this split was over a rather silly thing. For centuries the Catholic church had an expression that said ‘the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father’ than they included ‘he proceeds from the father and the Son’. Well the eastern brothers didn’t like Rome telling them what to believe and used this as the official reason to ‘have the schism’. To be honest the divisions were coming for years. After the Roman Empire consolidated under Constantine, he tried to strengthen the eastern territories of his empire and for centuries you had the struggle for which region would be the most influential. At first you had 5 major areas that were divided under 5 main Bishops. As time went on the argument would be ‘which bishop has the most say so’ and it was really a power struggle. Finally Rome said ‘the bishop of Rome is the FIRST AMONG EQUALS [a term that many in the Protestant strain of the discipling movement would later embrace] he holds Peters seat’ and this is really where the divisions started. Eventually Muhammad would rise and Islam would take control of the eastern capital. This later became the reason for the crusades. The Catholic church wanted to regain the territories that she lost in the east. The eastern churches are very much Catholic in many ways. They also hold to a view of Christianity that sees man being ‘joined’ with God and becoming pleasing to God thru Christ’s grace uniting with us and making us like him. A perfectly scriptural view, but a different emphasis from the strong intellectual power that you read about from the western fathers of the church. The Catholic church is noted for her social action in ways that the eastern church is not. So both of these communions have good things to bring to the table. The Orthodox [eastern] churches would not be affected by the major social and political upheavals that took place in the west. The Renaissance, the Reformation and the Enlightenment had major impacts on western Christianity, while not affecting the eastern church in the same way. During the 13th- 15th centuries you would have ‘pre reformers’ rise up in the western church. John Wycliffe, the great Catholic Priest who was at the center of learning in France would become known for his translating the scriptures into the common language. Then you have John Huss and John Knox [3 Johns, scripture says 3 fold cords are not easily broken!] who would have their own influence in western Christianity. At this time you had whole movements of believers who would be seen as neither ‘western or eastern’ but restorationist [the restoring of the early practices and beliefs of the church] Peter Waldo would be the Father of the Waldensians and in the 12th century you would have the Albigenses in the south of France. These groups would be looked upon as ‘cults’ [though the term was not used yet] by the traditional church. So you can see how the church has been growing and reforming ever since the first century. Even though we see many divisions that exist till this day, there are strides being made for unity. The eastern and western church are very close to‘re uniting’ once again. While I do not personally hold to the doctrine of the Pope being the occupier of Peter’s seat, I also see him as a Christian man who is striving for unity in Christ’s church. Some believe the whole attempt for outward unity is futile. The more ardent Protestants see it as ‘the one world church of the anti christ’ I reject that language out of hand. Well I hope you got something out of this short overview of world history [real short!].

(595) Recently saw an appeal to give. The teaching [TV] was well meaning. They were showing how the scripture is loaded with the doctrine of ‘first fruits’. All good stuff on the ‘secret’ of first fruits. The teacher was being hailed as an authority on Jewish history and why ‘first fruits’ is so important. The main problem with this whole mindset is they ALWAYS seem to see giving in the context of sending money to ministries. Jesus taught THEE NUMBER ONE priority of GIVING TO GOD was to be expressed by meeting the real needs of people. Now, you do find the woman giving into ‘the offerings of God’ by giving into the Temple offering. Or giving into Jesus ministry, but the overall main doctrine on giving and how it relates at the final judgment of mankind is ALWAYS based on our treatment of our fellow man. ALWAYS! So, no matter how elaborate we get in finding the real ‘hidden truths’ of money in the Old testament, we do a grave disservice to the Christian community when we equate GIVNG TO GOD with giving money to my ministry! The world sees this and mocks us because of it. Do you not see how foolish we look when we teach GIVE TO GOD and than at the end of the teaching we equate it with GIVE TO MY MINSTRY? Do you not see that the STOREHOUSE OF GOD are the corporate people of God dwelling in the earth? The storehouse IS NOT THE CHURCH BUILDING YOU MEET IN ON SUNDAY! So no human should ever teach ‘if you don’t put 10% of your money in this basket you are under a curse’. Sorry about being riled up, but I get so tired of ministries teaching on the importance of giving to God and then equating that with sending money to them, this is outrageous!

Now that I cooled down a little, let me explain some stuff. Recently I posted our blog on another site of ‘ex Christians’ who left a cult. Good kids, very burned by cultic expressions of Christianity. One of the initial reactions was getting ‘cussed out’ [I used to say ‘cursed’ but in Texas this gives you away as a Yankee!] The kids also accused me of being a money hungry preacher who equates ‘giving to God’ with ‘giving to ME’. I realized how really offensive we are to the world when we do and teach ‘giving to God, test God in this [what?] and he will pour out a blessing’. If you rightfully interpret this verse from Malachi [the only Italian prophet in scripture! Kidding!] The ‘test me’ that God is talking about is testing him in bringing tithes and offerings into the ‘storehouse’. A room in the Old Testament tabernacle/temple where the money went. Now in the New Testament the corporate people of God are the spiritual ‘storehouse’ temple of God. This is a very basic truth. So ‘giving to God’ is really not ‘giving to your ‘church’ or my ministry [though it can include this!] But ‘giving to God’ would be giving directly to meet the real needs of humanity, whether believers or unbelievers. There are tons of verses on this. I have quoted them all over this site! So when we see a TV ministry spend an hour on
[parts] (1359) ‘Now go, write it before them on a tablet [in a table] and note it in a book, that it may be for the time to come, forever and ever’ Isaiah 30:8 ‘Take a large scroll and write on it with the pen of a man’ ‘Write the vision and make it plain upon tables [tablets] that he may run that reads it’ ‘all these sayings were noised abroad, and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts’ [Jesus in the gospels]. Last night I caught an interesting movie ‘the book of Eli’ with Denzel Washington. If you haven’t seen it yet then don’t read the rest of this post. Eli lives in this future apocalyptic world [Mad Max] and is on this mission to travel west, he encounters all types of obstacles on the way [lots of blood and guts] and finally arrives at his destination, it’s a publishing house stuck on Alcatraz where these survivors spend all their time copying any books they can get their hands on for the future world; Eli announces ‘I have a King James Bible’ and he gets in. The book of Eli was the bible. In the above verses God shows us how important it is in the history of Salvation for people to write and record his words. In the middle ages you had the Monastic movement [Monks, monasteries] and these Catholic brothers separated themselves from the corruption of the world and became spiritual hermits. They were experts at 2 things; farming and the copying of important manuscripts. In the middle ages secular society learned farming thru the monks. The art of copying ancient books not only preserved theological works, but also secular ones. It was their dedication to saving these works that led to the Renaissance and rediscovery of the ancient works of philosophy and Greek thought. They were like the scribes of Jesus day. Do you value the ability to have and access great treasures? Even the bible, as history, is incredibly valuable. I mean how many other First century [and earlier] documents are lying all over the place and are being read and quoted by 1st graders as well as professors? With the great library system of our day [which I used extensively over a 15 year period] as well as the internet we have the ability to truly learn stuff that past generations would have given anything to have learned. Proverbs says wisdom is lying in the streets, at the crossroads of every city- yet fools have no appetite for it. I want to challenge you guys today, especially all our Pastors and leaders, take time to acquaint yourself with the great classics of western literature, read the great Christian [and non Christian] works of the centuries, don’t spend all your time reading/learning from one group or movement [especially if it’s one of these isolated Christian denominations] God [and men] have gone to too much trouble to get these valuable words copied and distributed to the world, take some time to read them.

(1357) I WILL UNCOVER THINGS THAT HAVE BEEN HIDDEN SINCE THE WORLDS FIRST DAY- [Jesus]. Yesterday I read an article in the paper that talked about an amazing dinosaur find in China; they found around 15 thousand fossils in a cave area. The amazing thing was the fact that so many dinosaurs would have been in one place right when they died. I immediately saw this as proof that would back up the creationist cataclysmic view of a worldwide flood destroying all life on the planet. As I read thru the article they explained how much of ‘fossil science’ has been done thru finds in the U.S., but over the last few years China [and the eastern world in general] have undergone their own industrial revolution and this has led to the unearthing of new ground for the purpose of construction and these new projects are unearthing these fossils. Much like what took place in the 19th century when many archaeologists were discovering ‘hidden things’ that seemed to be buried ‘since the foundation of the world’. In the 19th century it was popular for the intellectuals in theology to embrace the ‘historical/critical’ method of bible learning. Many began to reject the early dating of the New Testament [early- a.d. 50-70]
[parts] Being I’m in the middle of getting rid of lots of stuff- and doing some final repairs on cars and the house- I haven’t really had time to comment on many big news events.

This week there have been some important things that I feel I should mention.

Bradley Manning has been in court for the leaking of thousands of ‘secret’ memos to Wikileaks.

Most of you should be familiar with the case.

He has been held in solitary confinement for a few years and the govt. has charged him thru the espionage act.

Now- even though most of the stuff leaked really amounted to embarrassing details- how the U.S. govt. has done behind the scenes talks with other nations- kind of deceived folk- or the biggest leak was the video now famously referred to as Collateral Damage.

This video showed a terrible incident where our guys fired [helicopter] on a bunch of civilian reporters- by accident- thinking they were the enemy- but were later found out to be reporters.

It looked bad- really bad.

So- the question is should we view the leaking of this stuff as espionage [spy type charges] or more like a whistle blower.

That’s the debate- I personally think what he leaked does not rise to the level of life in prison- which is what the govt. is seeking.

Now- we also had the nomination of John Brennan to head the CIA.

During the hearings- he [and Holder- US attorney] were asked questions about killing US citizens- without due process.

As most of you know we killed a US citizen a few years back with a drone [in Yemen].

He was indeed a full blown Al-Qaida leader- and had influence with others.

Now- what most don’t know is a few weeks later we also killed his US born son- 16 years old.

His son was born in Detroit- living in Yemen.

By all accounts- his son was not an Al-Qaida operative- he of course was probably influenced by his dad’s radical views.

But he was a minor- a US citizen- and he was traveling to see his dad.

We killed him with a drone strike while he was sitting at an outdoor restaurant.

When the US govt. was asked why we killed him- one of the responses was he should have picked a better father.

Now- whatever side of the aisle you fall on- this stuff has to stop.

All this is going on at the same time we just read the Miranda rights to the son in law of Osama Bin Laden- and are putting him on civilian trial in NYC.

So- we executed a 16 year old US citizen- because his dad was a bad guy- yet we read the rights to a non citizen- who may have some type of involvement with the 9-11 attacks.

[Note- the US govt. has said the killing of the boy was a mistake- but we still killed him]

This is bad- very bad.

As the US seeks to imprison Manning- for life.

And is also attempting to get Julian Assange- the founder of WikiLeaks.

We need to ask ourselves what role the on-line media outlets play.

For instance- the NY times printed some of the same material that Manning leaked- yet the print media are considered ‘media’ and the printing of ‘secret’ stuff is considered noble- like Florida’s sunshine laws.

Yet if an on-line publisher posts the same stuff- he can be tried for espionage.

During one debate when this question came up- the pundit simply said if it’s in print- then it’s legal.

But if it’s on line- its not.

Is that really the criteria we want to use to decide that what one organization published is noble- but for the other it merits the possible death penalty [which is the level of crime Manning is charged with]?

Yes- these questions are important to answer- they should not be seen as ‘left or right’ questions [the Repub senator Rand Paul did a stand up job- literally- by doing an old fashioned filibuster on the drone issue the other day].

So yeah- if a nominee for the CIA- or the US attorney general can not say that a US president has no right to kill a citizen- in our country- without due process- then he should not be up for that position.

We as a country have gone thru many struggles since the tragic 9-11 attack.

And we [first under Bush] did give up too many rights as we overreacted- by loosening our rules on the privacy of US citizens.

But if we cant clearly say that no US president- whether Repub or Dem- has the right to kill a US citizen without due process- then we are all falling off the deep end-

As Kansas put it TO THE POINT OF NO RETURN.

http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com
Note- Do me a favor, those who read/like the posts- re-post them on other sites as well as the site you read them on. Thanks- John. Don’t forget to scroll down on the timeline [Facebook] – I have posted lots.

1968 7 PRINCES TO THE RESCUE

I want to try and comment on Micah chapter 5- an Old Testament prophet.

But first a few other things.

Last night I was watching Fox news- and Greta mentioned the top stories of the year.

Lots of the news shows do this every year.

I thought- in general- that it’s harmful to re-tell the school shootings- over and over again- right at this time.

In our media world there is a sort of voyeurism that takes place- we want to see- hear- the actual events- over and over again.

Sometimes after a tragic event- maybe it’s already a few days old.

2- I have sitting here a bunch of new teaching series from various scholars. I’m going thru one on the origins of the church- taught by an ex Benedictine Monk [Luke Timothy Johnson] who is an accredited scholar. Has lots of degrees and teaches at Harvard. The other series is an entire overview of the bible- with all the historical and theological data mixed in.

This series is also taught by a scholar- R.C. Sproul. Why mention this? One of my homeless buddies was over a few days ago- he loves learning- he walks thru my study [we usually hang out in the yard] and he says ‘who needs a university- you have everything right here’. Well- I have lots of great stuff- but a university I’m not.

The point is- we should try and do our best to learn from people who know stuff- people who are educated. Way too much of what is produced today from the ‘church’ is really at a low level. Now- I know I have been hard on ‘preachers’ in the past- and have criticized the abundance of TV/radio stuff that is simply ‘God is the answer’ which of course is true- but must we spend billions of dollars every year- for the simple exercise of having ‘our pastor’ say the same thing- that everyone else is saying- at a charge of millions of dollars?

We need to re think this stuff.

I had a talk with a friend the other day- I was discussing some of this with him. I told him how we [Christians] have taught people ‘if you don’t give 10 % of your money into the basket on Sunday- you are cursed- you are robbing God’. This teaching comes from the Old Testament Tithe- primarily taken from a proof text in the book of Malachi.

I said ‘now- when we use this verse- this way- we are usually telling the people that this teaching is mandated by God- to support his work’. Okay- I have been taught this over the years- but the part we usually leave out- is the actual teaching- from the bible- on the Tithe.

In the Old Testament the Jewish people were required to Tithe- it was more like an income tax than an offering [like the way we think of offering]. This tax was used for 3 things. A third was used to support the Levitical priests, a third was used for banquets and feasts [and wine!] and a third was used to meet the needs of the poor [a welfare system].

Now- the part that went to the priests- none of it could be used for personal wealth growth. The priests were not permitted to have personal wealth. They were taken from the tribe of Levi [one of the 12 tribes of Israel] and they were forbidden to own their own land/inheritance.

So if we taught the ‘biblical’ tithe- it would be using a third for the poor- a third for parties, and the rest went to ‘the preachers’ who were forbidden to own real estate [have personal wealth].

Now- after all the years of people teaching the Tithe- all the many hours of telling believers ‘you are robbing God if you don’t Tithe’ how hard can it be to simply do one teaching on the actual Tithe?

I mean I just taught the whole thing- and it took a few minutes.

But the contemporary church is consumed with practical stuff- and to many- it’s not practical to say ‘oh- and by the way- the preachers/pastors- according to the Tithe system- are not permitted to own stuff’ that lifestyle just doesn’t fit the modern picture.

Okay- my point today is not to condemn giving money to churches- but it’s to nudge us towards a more ‘enlightened’ Christianity- a church that asks- and seeks for truth.

A literate people- who read!

So today I think we can commend Rowling for re introducing a lost art- the art of learning. Though we as Christians do have difficulty with ‘sorcerer’s stones’ yet the fact that kids are reading again- well that’s a good thing in my book
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[1691] GREAT EXPECTATIONS? Warning- this post is graphic

The other week we celebrated Fathers day. I was getting ready to buy a new computer and figured- wait- let me just tell my daughters [4] that instead of getting me different stuff I don’t need, just by me the PC.

They kinda scoffed at the idea- my wife said ‘John- computers are expensive’ I said ‘Okay- I’ll pay the balance- whatever they want- they can put down- I’ll cover the rest’. I really wasn’t expecting a free computer- I just thought it was a good idea. I even told them ‘hey- my birthdays coming up- just count this as a combination present’ look- I tried my best.

So as the week wore on- I would drop hints- you know- trying to see if they made the purchase. I am notorious at this kind of stuff. Every year around Christmas time I would always trick my girls into
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1- China shakes
– This weekend the Chinese markets were rocked- and financial advisors are trying to say it’s an isolated incident-
– They are wrong- in the beginning of the year many advisers put their hopes on the Asian economies.
– Yet the signs showed that China was in a bubble- all the data pointed to this.
– Yet- many simply tried to paint a picture that we are in a recovery- and we are not.
– True unemployment for the U.S. is closer to 30 percent- yet we have ways to make it look like it’s around 5 percent.
– You can fudge these numbers for so long- but eventually it will catch up.
4- ISIS is not going away-
These past few days we saw Isis attacks in 3 different countries-
It is only a matter of time before we see something happen again in the U.S.
Now- as Christians we are not to fear- but we are also supposed to be able to see the ‘signs of the times’.
Many do not want to see the writing on the wall- because their hopes are in ‘this world’.
I have not said these things based on any ‘bible prophecy’ type view- but to be honest- there are many ‘prophecy’ type people who are saying these things as well.
I’m simply giving you the real time view of where we are at.
I have said from the start of the year that I think we are going to be rocked this year-
If I am wrong- great.
But I can’t see how all of these things happening at once cannot have a very bad outcome.
The U.S. has been trying to put the best face as possible on these things- and in some cases has manipulated numbers to give a false view of security.
It is obvious- many have said this for a long time now.
These past few days were simply the inevitable showing up- things that some have said were indeed going to happen.
Let’s see what the next few weeks/days will show us.
But even in the best case scenario- we are in a global downturn- and we should be aware of it.

These are just a few verses I mention in todays video- enjoy.
John 1:5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
John 1:6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
John 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in
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VERSES-
Matthew 24:1 And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
Matthew 24:2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
Matthew 24:3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
Ezekiel 12:1 The word of the LORD also came unto me, saying,
Ezekiel 12:2 Son of man, thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house, which have eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not: for they are a rebellious house.
Ezekiel 12:3 Therefore, thou son of man, prepare thee stuff for removing, and remove by day in their sight; and thou shalt remove from thy place to another place in their sight: it may be they will consider, though they be a rebellious house.
Ezekiel 12:4 Then shalt thou bring forth thy stuff by day in their sight, as stuff for removing: and thou shalt go forth at even in their sight, as they that go forth into captivity.
Ezekiel 12:5 Dig thou through the wall in their sight, and carry out thereby.
Ezekiel 12:6 In their sight shalt thou bear it upon thy shoulders, and carry it forth in the twilight: thou shalt cover thy face, that thou see not the ground: for I have set thee for a sign unto the house of Israel.
Ezekiel 12:7 And I did so as I was commanded: I brought forth my stuff by day, as stuff for captivity, and in the even I digged through the wall with mine hand; I brought it forth in the twilight, and I bare it upon my shoulder in their sight.
Ezekiel 12:8 And in the morning came the word of the LORD unto me, saying,
Ezekiel 12:9 Son of man, hath not the house of Israel, the rebellious house, said unto thee, What doest thou?
Ezekiel 12:10 Say thou unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; This burden concerneth the prince in Jerusalem, and all the house of Israel that are among them.
Ezekiel 12:11 Say, I am your sign: like as I have done, so shall it be done unto them: they shall remove and go into captivity.
Ezekiel 12:12 And the prince that is among them shall bear upon his shoulder in the twilight, and shall go forth: they shall dig through the wall to carry out thereby: he shall cover his face, that he see not the ground with his eyes.
Ezekiel 12:13 My net also will I spread upon him, and he shall be taken in my snare: and I will bring him to Babylon to the land of the Chaldeans; yet shall he not see it, though he shall die there.
Ezekiel 12:14 And I will scatter toward every wind all that are about him to help him, and all his bands; and I will draw out the sword after them.
Ezekiel 12:15 And they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall scatter them among the nations, and disperse them in the countries.
Ezekiel 12:16 But I will leave a few men of them from the sword, from the famine, and from the pestilence; that they may declare all their abominations among the heathen whither they come; and they shall know that I am the LORD.
Ezekiel 12:17 Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
Ezekiel 12:18 Son of man, eat thy bread with quaking, and drink thy water with trembling and with carefulness;
Ezekiel 12:19 And say unto the people of the land, Thus saith the Lord GOD of the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and of the land of Israel; They shall eat their bread with carefulness, and drink their water with astonishment, that her land may be desolate from all that is therein, because of the violence of all them that dwell therein.
Ezekiel 12:20 And the cities that are inhabited shall be laid waste, and the land shall be desolate; and ye shall know that I am the LORD.
Ezekiel 12:21 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Ezekiel 12:22 Son of man, what is that proverb that ye have in the land of Israel, saying, The days are prolonged, and every vision faileth?
Ezekiel 12:23 Tell them therefore, Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will make this proverb to cease, and they shall no more use it as a proverb in Israel; but say unto them, The days are at hand, and the effect of every vision.
Ezekiel 12:24 For there shall be no more any vain vision nor flattering divination within the house of Israel.
Ezekiel 12:25 For I am the LORD: I will speak, and the word that I shall speak shall come to pass; it shall be no more prolonged: for in your days, O rebellious house, will I say the word, and will perform it, saith the Lord GOD.
Ezekiel 12:26 Again the word of the LORD came to me, saying.
Ezekiel 12:27 Son of man, behold, they of the house of Israel say, The vision that he seeth is for many days to come, and he prophesieth of the times that are far off.
Ezekiel 12:28 Therefore say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; There shall none of my words be prolonged any more, but the word which I have spoken shall be done, saith the Lord GOD.
________________________________________
THE UNKNOWN GOD

https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-17-15-the-unknown-god.zip
ON VIDEO-
.What is the tithe?
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.Isis threat

PAST POSTS [verses below]-
. THALES AND THE PRE-SOCRATICS
Ok- let me do a little teaching- maybe finish it tonight.

Christianity is not simply ‘made up stories’ from some bible.

No- the history of Western Thought- Philosophy- ideas- all of the various World Views are imbedded with God- our concepts of God- and ask the ultimate question ‘where did all this come from- and why are we here’.

We usually trace the beginning of Ancient Philosophy to the 6th century BCE.

A thinker by the name of Thales sought to find ways to describe natural phenomena without the use of Greek Mythology.

Even though Philosophy deals with Metaphysics [things beyond the natural- physical realm- Physics] yet Thales wanted to find explanations for existence- without leaning on Myth.

He is considered a ‘Pre Socratic’ thinker [before Socrates] and espoused an idea that water was the key source of all things.

These guys were looking for a singular thing to explain stuff.
Sometimes referred to as a unified theory- the same thing that Einstein was seeking to find some 2 Millennia later.

So- Thales surmised that water was the key thing.

There are various ideas of why he came to this conclusion- but one reason might have been the idea of motion.

Many Geek thinkers were looking for the source of motion- where did it come from?

And to the natural eye- if you observe the ocean- rivers- etc. – there does seem to be no cause for the moving of water- so to these guys it seemed like water itself was the source- motion came from water.

Now- there were other religions who taught a sort of idea along these lines.

Some pagan religions said that the ‘god’s’ moved upon the water- and life came that way.

If you read the Christian account of creation in Genesis- you will notice that God did move upon the waters- and the account in Genesis does indeed say that he brought forth life from the water.

Thales came from for Miletus- in Asia Minor.

He was famous for the prediction of a Solar Eclipse that occurred on May 28th- 585 BCE.

The earliest account of this is found in the writings of Herodotus.
Thales is considered one of the 7 sages of the time.

Christianity was born at a time where Greek thought/ideas were a big part of society.

We do find the early apostles using the language/ideas of the Greek philosophers when describing the reality of Christ.

The apostle John refers to Christ as THE LOGOS- The word Logos- is a Greek word for ‘word’.

Jesus is called ‘the word of God’.

Now- the Greek thinkers were in fact seeking for the Logos- they used this term to describe the ultimate answer to all tings.
They were on a search for some Divine principle that could explain things.

So- the writers of the New Testament were in a way saying ‘look- we have found the Logos- the thing that you guys are looking for- it is Christ- the Divine Logos’.

We also see the apostle Paul debating with the Greek thinkers in the city of Athens [the seat of Geek philosophy- the city/state where Socrates was forced to drink cyanide].

In Acts chapter 17 he is preaching to these guys on Mar’s Hill- he says ‘In him we live AND MOVE and have our being’.
Now- today as we read this- we don’t get the full import of what he was doing.

But- to the Greek mind- the source of motion was a big thing.

Paul was a smart guy- and he was saying ‘in him we move’ showing that yes- the ‘source of motion’ [Thales water] is not found in the natural world [Physics] but the source comes from the Metaphysical world [God].

He also says ‘when I was walking thru your town- I saw one of your altars- to the unknown god’.

At the time many believed in a Pantheon of gods- and to cover their bases- they had an altar for any god they might have missed- smart thinking!

So Paul says ‘him I declare unto you’.
Notice how Paul was able to debate- converse with them- and at the end actually use their own ideas- to present the gospel.
In this chapter- Acts 17- we read of the only 2 groups of philosophers mentioned in the bible.

The Epicureans and the Stoics.

The Epicureans were an early form of what we call Hedonism today- the idea that pleasure is the principle purpose of man.

The Stoics believed in ‘stoicism’ that man should have no emotional response to pain or pleasure- that’s why we call people today ‘Stoics’- when they seem to not be moved by anything.

Ok- that’s it for now- might make some comments tonight- but I’m getting ready to fly out soon- and trying to wind down before I leave.
If I don’t write tonight- I’ll talk again when in North Bergen- God bless you all.

1Corinthians 1:18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.
1Corinthians 1:19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
1Corinthians 1:20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
1Corinthians 1:21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
1Corinthians 1:22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
[parts of a book I wrote a while back]
‘HOUSE OF PRAYER, OR DEN OF THIEVES’
a critical look at the modern prosperity gospel.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

CHAPTER 1 ‘YOU CANNOT SERVE GOD AND MAMMON’

CHAPTER 2 ‘TWISTING THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER’

CHAPTER 3 ‘WHAT IS THE ABRAHAMIC BLESSING ?’

CHAPTER 4 ‘WHAT DID JAMES SAY ?’

CHAPTER 5 ‘WHOSE MINISTRY, JESUS OR OURS ?’

CHAPTER 6 ‘1 TIMOTHY 6’

CHAPTER 7 ‘WERE JESUS AND THE DISCIPLES RICH ?’

CHAPTER 8 ‘COVENANT THEOLOGY’

CHAPTER 9 ‘SOWING INTO GOOD SOIL’

CHAPTER 10 ‘IS THERE HOPE FOR FALSE PROPHETS ?’

INTRODUCTION

It all started a few years back when I was regularly listening to certain ministries who taught the prosperity gospel. Over the years I subscribed to a few of these ministry magazines and truly enjoyed their teaching, but every now and then while reading through the bible I would come across certain passages of scripture that seemed to contradict the themes of the prosperity movement. I also found it strange the way they interpreted certain passages of scripture, it was almost as if when they were done explaining them, that these passages meant the exact opposite of what they were plainly teaching.

During this season of learning, while the Lord was dealing with me about these various doctrines, I would find myself at times saying ‘something needs to be done about the extreme teaching coming from this camp’. I would also deal with some of the unbalanced teaching through the small avenues of influence I had through a local radio program and various speaking opportunities. I would even go through stages where I was so upset over some of the more extreme elements of this teaching, that I would avoid dealing with it at all because of the emotional baggage that comes with having to disagree with a brother in Christ.

Then why write this book? Each time I would determine to drop the whole matter and never deal with this issue again, something would happen, or be said on Christian television or radio, or be written in a new book, that was so off base that I would ask the Lord again if He wanted me to do more in bringing about a more balanced view of biblical prosperity. The most recent incident was while watching Christian TV one night, the preacher who was speaking is a well-known prosperity preacher. Before he preached he invited another prosperity preacher to share a ‘special’ revelatory word the Lord had given him, as the preacher came to the pulpit he began to lead the people in a series of confessions/actions that he told the audience to imitate in order for them to experience breakthrough in their finances. As he stood on the stage he then went through the motions of pulling down an imaginary lever on a slot machine while confessing in a very loud voice the words ‘MONEY COMING’. He did this three times while the audience followed. When they got to the last shout, the preacher emphasized the importance of this last shout, and as he led them in the pulling down of the lever they all shouted at the top of their lungs ‘MONEY COMING TO ME’

Well to say the least this was another one of those ‘incidents’ that caused me to ask the Lord if I should do more about such obvious abuse in the church. A few days later, while driving to work one morning, I remembered this incident and asked the Lord if he wanted me to write a book on this subject. Later on in the day during a lunch break, while reading through the bible during a regular devotional time, I just happened to be reading through the book of revelation, and when I came to revelation 1:19 where Jesus tells John to ‘write the things which thou hast seen’, it hit me like a ton of bricks. So here I am today, believing that this book will serve a definite purpose in the Body of Christ and cause us to return to a more balanced view of the ‘things of this world’.

CHAPTER 1 ‘YOU CANNOT SERVE GOD AND MAMMON’

It has been said that the best way to spot a counterfeit is to know the real. So let’s begin with a biblical look at true prosperity. In the past, while trying to deal with this subject, I would often find people responding in defense of the prosperity gospel by saying things like ‘oh, but you don’t know how good the Lord is’ or ‘you don’t know how much God wants to meet our needs’ or, ‘the bible doesn’t say money is evil, but the love of money’. To which I would reply ‘AMEN’, I agree with you. But the bible also gives us many warnings against materialism, seeking to be rich, and living for material things.

So while trying to deal with the false prosperity gospel, I would like first of all to establish the truth that God is good, he does want to meet our needs and give us the desires of our heart, and yes, he even wants to bless us financially and materially. God promises not only ‘heavenly’ or ‘spiritual’ blessings, but also earthly or material blessings as well. If you go through the bible from Genesis to Revelation you will find instances of Gods people being rich, prosperous and blessed in every way. You will find many promises of Gods provisions for us, not only spiritual but also financial and material. There is no doubt that God can, and does bless His children in all areas of life if they are obedient to Him.

We also know that there are many warnings in the N.T. against seeking to be rich, living for material wealth, and the like. So how do we harmonize these two truths?

Let’s look at the overall purpose of God for his church. We are commissioned by Jesus to tell the whole world about His love for us, so we can make disciples of all nations. The message from our lips, [and hearts] is to overflow with who Jesus is and what He’s done for us. As a matter of fact, Jesus tells us that as we proclaim and talk about Him, and seek first His kingdom, that He will take care of all the other less important things. MATHEW 6:19-24 ‘ LAY NOT UP FOR YOURSELVES TREASURES UPON EARTH, WHERE MOTH AND RUST DOTH CORRUPT, AND WHERE THIEVES BREAK THROUGH AND STEAL: BUT LAY UP FOR YOURSELVES TREASURES IN HEAVEN, WHERE NIETHER MOTH NOR RUST DOTH CORRUPT, AND WHERE THIEVES DO NOT BREAK THROUGH AND STEAL: FOR WHERE YOUR TREASURE IS THERE WILL YOUR HEART BE ALSO…….. NO MAN CAN SERVE TWO MASTERS: FOR EITHER HE WILL HATE THE ONE, AND LOVE THE OTHER; OR ELSE HE WILL HOLD TO THE ONE AND DESPISE THE OTHER. YOU CANNOT SERVE GOD AND MAMMON. THEREFORE I SAY UNTO YOU, TAKE NO THOUGHT FOR YOUR LIFE, WHAT YE SHALL EAT, OR WHAT YE SHALL DRINK; NOR YET FOR YOUR BODY, WHAT YE SHALL PUT ON. IS NOT THE LIFE MORE THAN MEAT, AND THE BODY MORE THAN RAIMENT? BEHOLD THE FOWLS OF THE AIR: FOR THEY SOW NOT, NIETHER DO THEY REAP, NOR GATHER INTO BARNS; YET YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER FEEDETH THEM. ARE YE NOT MUCH BETTER THAN THEY? …… THEREFORE TAKE NO THOUGHT, SAYING WHAT SHALL WE EAT? OR, WHAT SHALL WE DRINK? OR, WHEREWITHALL SHALL WE BE CLOTHED? [FOR AFTER ALL THESE THINGS DO THE GENTILES SEEK;] FOR YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER KHNOWETH THAT YE HAVE NEED OF ALL THESE THINGS. BUT SEEK YE FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS; AND ALL THES THINGS SHALL BE ADDED UNTO YOU. TAKE THEREFORE NO THOUGHT FOR THE MORROW: FOR THE MORROW SHALL TAKE THOUGHT FOR THE THINGS OF ITSELF. SUFFICIENT UNTO THE DAY IS THE EVIL THEREOF’ Jesus is making a distinction between material things and the kingdom of God. He is saying if we seek first His kingdom, then all these material needs will be met. If the kingdom is about material things, then Jesus contradicted himself. The plain meaning and thought of this passage is that if we put God first, He will take care of us. Now say if the disciples took this to mean that the primary message of the gospel was ‘God will add all these things unto you’. And say if they went around teaching all nations to quote ‘all these things shall be added unto you’. And then all over Jerusalem and Judaea and unto the uttermost parts of the earth they had people quoting ‘all these things shall be added unto you’. And after a lifetime of ministry they taught the people how God would give them things if they kept quoting and meditating on the passages of scripture that speak about material wealth. What do you suppose Jesus would say when He comes back? First of all the plain teaching of Jesus in this passage is to get their focus [meditation, confession] off of material things. He plainly says that the ‘gentiles seek these things’, and that the disciples are not to be thinking about these things all the time like the gentiles. He tells us to focus on the kingdom as opposed to focusing on material things. He tells us that as we go forth by faith to proclaim his gospel, that he in turn will meet our needs. After all, the disciples left their jobs in order to follow Christ, and he was reassuring them that they would be taken care of materially if they forsook all to follow him.

I find it troubling that some teachers use this very passage in order to justify materialism, while the plain meaning of Jesus words are the opposite. Jesus says you cannot serve God and money. So we must take our minds and thoughts and meditations and focus them on God, not worldly things!

So true prosperity can be defined as God meeting all the needs of his children as they proclaim him in all nations. True prosperity is God meeting our needs while our focus is on him [not on our needs being met!]. True prosperity is being able to preach the word of God without a covetous motive [1 PETER:5:2].

I should make note that there are some who teach that this passage of scripture [MATT. 6:19-24] actually teaches that we have a bank account in heaven with real money credited to our account! And every time we sow [give into] the kingdom of God, that we are actually building a fund in this account. And that by faith you can claim a withdrawal on your account and receive your financial harvest now. But if this is what Jesus was teaching then the entire passage is twisted into turning our attention towards money once again! Jesus plainly warned us against focusing our thoughts on the material things in life, he told us not to be like the unbelievers who have all their possessions in this life only. Jesus told us to build up treasures in heaven, which meant a life lived for eternal purposes as opposed to temporary rewards. I believe that if we get our priorities right, that God will meet our needs, and we will be so excited about God and his kingdom that we wont even have time to think about serving mammon!

CHAPTER 2 ‘TWISTING THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER’

While a new Christian, enjoying that early honeymoon period with the Lord, I’ll never forget the joy I experienced while learning the bible for the first time. The clarity, pureness and unity of scripture were a sure foundation for a long road ahead. While working as a house painter and listening to Christian radio all day long, it was an early introduction to the various ‘streams’ of teaching that were being produced in the church. One day my job foreman, who often heard me listening to Christian radio, thought I would enjoy listening to a new tape series that he had just been given. So I popped the cassettes into my radio and listened with the excitement of a new believer in Christ. The cassettes were a new teaching on the parable of the sower. MATTHEW 13:1-9, 18-23 ‘ THE SAME DAY WENT JESUS OUT OF THE HOUSE, AND SAT BY THE SEASIDE. AND GREAT MULTITUDES WERE GATHERED TOGETHER UNTO HIM, SO THAT HE WENT INTO A SHIP, AND SAT; AND THE WHOLE MULTITUDE STOOD ON THE SHORE. AND HE SPAKE MANY THINGS UNTO THEM IN PARABLES, SAYING, BEHOLD, A SOWER WENT FORTH TO SOW; AND WHEN HE SOWED, SOME SEEDS FELL BY THE WAY SIDE, AND THE FOWLS CAME AND DEVOURED THEM UP: SOME FELL UPON STONY PLACES, WHERE THEY HAD NOT MUCH EARTH: AND FORTHWITH THEY SPRUNG UP, BECAUSE THEY HAD NO DEEPNESS OF EARTH: AND WHEN THE SUN WAS UP THEY WERE SCORCHED; AND BECAUSE THEY HAD NO ROOT THEY WITHERED AWAY. AND SOME FELL AMONG THORNS; AND THE THORNS SPRUNG UP, AND CHOKED THEM; BUT OTHER FELL INTO GOOD GROUND, AND BROUGHT FORTH FRUIT, SOME AN HUNDREDFOLD, SOME SIXTYFOLD, SOME THIRTYFOLD. WHO HATH EARS TO HEAR LET HIM HEAR………HEAR YE THEREFORE THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER. WHEN ANYONE HEARETH THE WORD OF THE KINGDOM, AND UNDERSTANDETH IT NOT, THEN COMETH THE WICKED ONE, AND CATCHETH AWAY THAT WHICH WAS SOWN IN HIS HEART. THIS IS HE WHICH RECIEVED SEED BY THE WAYSIDE. BUT HE THAT RECIEVED THE SEED INTO STONY PLACES, THE SAME IS HE THAT HEARETH THE WORD, AND ANON WITH JOY RECIEVETH IT; YET HATH HE NOT ROOT IN HIMSELF, BUT DURETH FOR A WHILE: FOR WHEN TRIBULATION OR PERSECUTION ARISETH BECAUSE OF THE WORD, BY AND BY HE IS OFFENDED. HE ALSO THAT RECIEVED SEED AMONG THE THORNS IS HE THAT HEARETH THE WORD; AND THE CARE OF THIS WORLD, AND THE DECEITFULLNESS OF RICHES, CHOKE THE WORD AND HE BECOMETH UNFRUITFULL. BUT HE THAT RECIEVED SEED INTO GOOD GROUND IS HE THAT HEARETH THE WORD, AND UNDERSTANDETH IT; WHICH ALSO BEARETH FRUIT, AND BRINGETH FORTH, SOME AN HUNDREDFOLD SOME SIXTY SND SOME THIRTY’. As the teacher taught through the parable he explained how Jesus was teaching us how to plant [sow] the word [scriptures] in our hearts [through confession, meditation, etc.] in order to receive a thirty, sixty, or hundredfold return. He then applied the entire teaching to reaping an hundredfold return of MONEY! He taught how that at each stage of the parable the devil tries to steal the word so we don’t receive our harvest. He then got to the part where Jesus says ‘THE DECIETFULLNESS OF RICHES CHOKE THE WORD’, I couldn’t understand how Jesus could be teaching us about reaping a financial harvest, and then say this! It almost seemed like a contradiction. Well the teacher then began to sound uncomfortable as he explained how the deceitfulness of riches was actually that old traditional teaching that says you cant be rich [or something to that effect]! Even as a new believer in Christ I just couldn’t accept this explanation, it was almost as if the teacher was trying to make Jesus words say the opposite of what he meant.

The basic plain meaning of the parable is self-explanatory. There are always obstacles and enemies of the gospel. Ultimately those who overcome these obstacles will bear good Christian fruit in varying degrees [30,60 or 100 fold]. The various hindrances to the word of God include the ‘cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches’. If you want to produce fruit for God you cant get caught up in the materialistic pursuits of the world [2 TIMOTHY 2:4].

Many times in connection with this parable is the doctrine of sowing for a harvest taught. Jesus often uses planting [sowing] and harvesting [reaping] illustrations in his teachings. The main focus is usually dealing with the spreading of the kingdom of God and the message of Christ to the nations. Sometimes the seed refers to believers themselves, and other times the actual message preached [MATT. 13: 20,38]. Sowing and reaping also refer to the works we do, as well as the money we give into the kingdom [1COR. 9:11, GAL. 6:8]. While there are many ways you can apply sowing for a harvest, I find it disturbing that some in the church have focused the entire teaching towards financial and material gain. This type of preoccupation with money is in direct opposition to the warning that Jesus gave in this parable, he told us that the deceitfulness of riches could derail us from being fruitful, and the distorted teaching that applies this entire parable to money is in itself a fulfillment of the warning that ‘the deceitfulness of riches’ can deceive you, because it denies the very warning of Christ and makes him say something that he never said!

CHAPTER 3 ‘WHAT IS THE ABRAHAMIC BLESSING’

I must admit that out of all the various portions of scripture used to teach a false prosperity gospel, this is one of the most deceptive. In order for us to fully grasp the concept of the abrahamic blessing, we must do a little history.

In GALATIANS 3, the apostle Paul makes one of the greatest N.T. arguments for justification by faith versus law. I personally believe this doctrine to be one of the
[parts]

VERSES-
And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
1Timothy 6:5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
1Timothy 6:6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
1Timothy 6:7 For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
1Timothy 6:8 And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
1Timothy 6:9 But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
1Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Corinthians 9:14 Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.
1Corinthians 9:15 But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done unto me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.
1Corinthians 9:16 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!
1Corinthians 9:17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.
1Corinthians 9:18 What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.

Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let himlabour, working with his hands the thing which is good,that he may have to give to him that needeth. Eph 4
. 1Corinthians 16:1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so do ye.
1Corinthians 16:2 Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.
1Corinthians 16:3 And when I come, whomsoever ye shall approve by your letters, them will I send to bring your liberality unto Jerusalem.
1Corinthians 16:4 And if it be meet that I go also, they shall go with me.

WAL MART AND CREATION
http://www.corpuschristioutreachministries.blogspot.com

https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-21-15-wal-mart-and-creation.zip
ONVIDEO-
.Profiling me?
.Pops don’t like that store?
.How old is the earth?
.Did they make encyclopedias?
.The flood
.Evolution
.Punctuated Equilibrium
.Kerry’s tongue?

PAST POSTS- [verses below]
(949) . ECCLESIASTES 3:11 ‘No man can find out the work that God has made, from the beginning to the end’. No man can completely find out Gods works from beginning to end. A few weeks ago as I was praying/meditating I had a thought; I said to myself ‘what in the world are the evolutionists going to say when science ultimately overthrows their theory’ and in a moment of clarity, I kinda heard ‘they will slowly develop ideas that will make it look like they were right all along, even when these ideas themselves are contrary to evolution’. I realized that mans inability to admit he was wrong will cause him to lie. Sure enough, a few days later I caught an interview on the P.B.S. news that had 2 scientists who were speaking on Darwin. It just so happens that both Darwin and Lincoln celebrated their 200 year anniversaries on the same day. During the interview these men reveled in the wonder and amazement of Darwin, they were falling over themselves in worshipping the man. They explained how evolution is this reality that is the basis of all types of scientific advances. They went on and on. The interviewer then asked about all the science and opponents on the other side. How there were most certainly proofs that seemed to debunk Darwin’s theory. They responded by saying ‘Evolution has opened the door for all sorts of understanding and theories, one of them is called ‘punctuated equilibrium’, evolution has made this idea possible. Therefore thanks to evolution we have these other truths to look to for answers’. These men were doing the exact thing I ‘thought about’ a few days earlier. They were taking the scientific data that disproves evolution, and saying ‘evolution made this possible’! Punctuated Equilibrium [or Equilibria] is a theory that was espoused to explain how things really did not slowly evolve over millions of years. In effect the scientific evidence shows us no slow evolving of one species into another. As this reality began to settle in, the scientists realized that they needed to begin floating alternative theories to Darwin. They knew that if they religiously stuck with Darwin, that someday they would be disproved. So they floated this competing theory. The theory basically says that since the fossil record shows no data that things slowly evolved, how do we answer this? They said ‘maybe things changed so fast [what!] that the fossil record didn’t catch it’. In essence this theory says things did not slowly evolve! This theory does not back up evolution at all, it denies it. In essence the evolutionists in the interview were contradicting themselves, they were taking proofs against evolution and saying ‘see, the wonderful knowledge of evolution has lead us to this point in human history where we now know species DID NOT slowly evolve’. Are you guys kidding or what?

GREAT AWAKENING- In between studies I have been reading the ‘shelf of books’ I bought a few months ago. I bought about 70 dollars worth of books at the half price book store, they are worth a few hundred at least. The last three I just went thru were published by universities; Oxford, Princeton, etc. I have learned over the years that your time is well spent in the ‘higher education’ category. You can spend a lifetime reading the popular Christian culture stuff and never really get educated. The book I
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(1421) THE FOOL HAS SAID IN HIS HEART, THERE IS NO GOD- Psalms. Caught an interesting special last night on evolution; they got into many of the fallacies and false things that have been foisted upon the general population over the years. They went to a famous natural history museum and interviewed the scientist responsible for teaching one of the most popular missing links for whales. Darwin believed that whales came from swimming bears who after many years evolved into whales- stuff that today would put you into the intellectual category of believing in a flat earth! Darwin held to many primitive beliefs that are disproven today, many of these beliefs were central to his theory. He believed in spontaneous generation, that living cells can self generate from dead matter. His proof? Well look at the piece of meat that is left out and rots, sure enough over time maggots ‘self generate’. This man believed this! It took a simple test to prove this theory false; they put cheesecloth over the meat, which prevented flies from landing on the meat and laying their eggs in the meat, and Walla- no maggots. This silly belief of Darwin cannot be written off as ‘well he wasn’t perfect’ no, this belief is central to the idea of evolution; it has been proven false beyond all doubt. So back to the whale fossil, as they interviewed the famous scientist responsible for the whale fossil, they also spoke to other scientists who fully held to the belief that science has proven the missing link of the whale. They pointed to the famous specimen of a 4 legged animal with this elongated nose and, well yes, the tail of a whale! All the men interviewed used this as proof of evolution, many school text books taught it, surely it must be true! As they looked at the actual fossil [not just the pictures in the books] they discovered that the famous fossil actually has no tail. They then asked the scientist where he came up with the tail. He said he had to speculate at that point. What! The most famous evidence for the evolution of the whale, the fossil that all the other experts noted as absolute proof for evolution- it was a creation in the mind of an evolutionist. The history of fossil hunting is shot thru with these types of examples; there is actually an entire cottage industry of ‘fossil hunters’ who have been caught time and again fabricating missing links. Why so much effort? They know that many would pay much money for these fossils. Why? Because they do not exist for real. If you were finding tons of these transitional fossils, which Darwin said we would have to eventually find if his theory were true, then there would be no market for the fake ones. And the history of fake ones is quite large; they have caught people doing this a lot. Chinese fossil hunters presented to national geographic 2 so called fossils that were supposedly proof that dinosaurs turned into birds. They hired a top team of researchers to look at the fossils. The team determined that the Chinese fossils were frauds. The first fossil was shown to have been fabricated with modern day materials. Then the Chinese finders found another one- hey there’s much money in this field. The second fossil was also proven to have been ‘fixed’ by the finders. To the surprise of the researchers, national geographic went with the fossil anyway [hey they need to pay the bills too!] and it was presented as absolute proof for evolution. When the true researchers, the ones who proved the fossils fake, confronted the scientists who were on the payroll of national geographic, they responded that yes- all the fossils coming from china have these types of problems. In essence they said the standard practice of faking it was to be expected. These types of things are usually not known by the general public at large, hey we’re taught things in school, we see the pictures, and who has time to do the research? The apostle Paul said men chose to reject the knowledge of God; they have made a conscience choice to do stuff like this. There actually is a psychology to atheism. Believers need to be aware of these so called belief systems and contend for the truth. In the end many of the opponents have reprobate minds; they don’t want to really see the truth, and they will fabricate stuff to prove their points.

(1414) A SMASHING SUCCESS- This week we had the first successful test of the Hadron Collider. This is an underground tunnel/chamber like device that stretches 17 miles around in a circle and is used to smash atoms. It was built in Switzerland at much cost and when they first tried it out around 6 months ago it failed. Well this week they did a test and it worked great. They shot 2 protons at each other at 99% the speed of light and
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THE 5TH ELEMENT.

Ok- let’s talk philosophy today- the last post on this subject I traced what we normally refer to as the beginning of Greek philosophy- a man by the name of Thales- 6th century BCE.

We said that Thales had an idea that water was the principle element- water seemed to have the ability to move [motion] by itself- so Walla- maybe water is the principle thing.

He was what we refer to as a Monist.

Monists believed that there was one principle element- responsible for all other things.

Now- the pre Socratic philosophers debated about this- some said it was air- others earth- some said fire- as a matter of fact- some said all 4 of these elements were responsible for existence.

Now- some sought a 5th element- some yet to be discovered thing that would explain it all.

A man by the name of Anaximander described it as ‘the boundless’- something that has no origin- he said it was ‘both unborn- and immortal’ ahh- you can already see the attributes of God in this [boundless- what Theologians call omnipresent- God having no limits- he is everywhere [but not everything- get to that in a moment] and ‘unborn’ that is he himself has no beginning].

Ok- this 5th element [some called it Ether- or Aether- a sort of wave theory- that light travels along this ether- this idea lasted till the day of Einstein- who showed us that Ether does not exist [in this way] but that light itself is made up of particles- photons- this was one of the major breakthroughs of modern physics].

A few years ago the movie ‘the 5th Element’- Bruce Willis- hit on this theme- sort of like the ‘God particle’- that is they were in search for some type of being that was eternal – self existent.

The term Quintessence [quint- 5] came to be defined as this 5th element- and today we use the word Quintessential to describe the pure essence of a thing- the perfect embodiment of something.

Over time the Greek thinkers would arrive at the idea that yes indeed- there was one main thing- Monism- that could be the source of all other things.
It is interesting to note that the Jewish prophets- and wisdom literature- which predates these guys- already started from the standpoint of Monotheism- one God.

Now- Monism is not Monotheism.

Monism is really a form of what we call Pantheism [in the study of religion].

Pantheism says that God is ‘everything’- some eastern religions hold to this concept.

The Christian view is that God is separate from creation- that he is indeed the original source of creation- but not the creation itself.

The Geek philosophers even described this 5th element as ‘The One’- see- they were getting close.

In today’s debates- some espouse an idea that there was no beginning point- that the universe is either eternal [something Einstein disproved with the Big Bang theory] or that there is a sort of infinite regress- that there is no one starting point- but that there have been a never ending [or beginning] series of ‘big bangs’ that go on forever.

This defies the laws of logic- and math.

Math?
Yeah- many of the great physicists were also great mathematicians [like Einstein- and Max Plank- who was first a mathematician].

If there was no beginning point- mathematically it doesn’t ‘work’.

You would never be able to arrive at the present time- if there was no starting point to measure from [I know this might sound strange- but this is indeed a proof- that there had to be a starting point].

What these thinkers show us is that even thru the ancient field of Philosophy- you still arrive at some type of ‘thing’ that is responsible for all other things.

Some Christians reject the Big Bang theory- but in my view it gave the Christian apologist the greatest tool to argue for the existence of God.

For many centuries it was believed that the universe was eternal- and if that was true- then indeed you did not have to have an outside source that was responsible for it.

But Einstein showed us that there was a beginning point- that the universe is in a continual expansion mode- and if it is getting ‘bigger’ by the second- then yes- it did have a starting point.

Many today think that it ‘popped’ into existence on its own- this is both scientifically and logically impossible- it violates the law of Cause and Effect [every effect has to have a cause also ‘out of nothing- nothing comes’].

There was a famous Christian who abandoned the faith- Bertrand Russell- he said ‘if everything has to have a cause- then God must have one too- and if God needs a cause- then why not see the universe as the cause’.
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[1582] HITCHENS-PIRATES AND M THEORY- Let’s talk a little more about Christopher Hitchens book- God is not great. As I’m reading thru the book- and also doing some studying on Modernity- it’s obvious for me to see the errors in the arguments Hitchens is making in trying to refute the existence of God. Instead of attempting to refute each argument he makes [and to be honest- he does make many classic mistakes- things that are not really hard to show as false]. Let me give you just a few points- Hitchens comes at you from all angles- history, science, historical criticism [a view of the bible that tries to undermine the historical accuracy of the faith] politics- he basically covers all the angles that I too like to engage in. He is smart- no doubt about it- and he mocks Christians, Jews, Muslims- and he does it in a way that says ‘you are all idiots’. So that’s why when attempting to refute him- when I see him doing something stupid- I try and bring that out. Okay- one of the major mistakes Hitchens makes [a common mistake in the field of apologists versus atheists] is he appeals to the basic idea ‘we- as intellectual people do not accept things based on faith- we only believe things that can be scientifically proven to be true’ now- how many times have you heard this? This argument is only made by those who are ‘novices’ in this debate. Why? Because at face value it is very easy to refute. Hitchens, Dawkins, Harris- and all the other famous atheists believe in all types of historical events- things that happened in the past- without a single shred of ‘scientific proof’. Let’s see- Do you believe Lincoln was shot? Have you personally done DNA tests on the remains? Have you even seen the remains? Let’s see- what about Aristotle and Socrates and Plato- surely as refined as these men are- they most certainly believe that these great Greek philosophers lived 4 centuries before Christ. Again- what scientific proof can you show me- you know- the standard that you’re using to judge whether or not Jesus ever lived? Basically the argument that says ‘faith and Jesus and God are not real truth- not like science’ is a totally illogical argument- unless these men would have us believe that they reject all of the above historical figures I just mentioned. So how does the bible- Jesus- God- hold up to the historical test [not the scientific test!]? Point of fact- there is no other historical person- in the history of the world- with more historical proofs of his existence. There are no other ancient documents- dating back to the time of Christ- that have the historical accuracy that we find in the New Testament- Luke- the writer of both the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts- from a purely historical point of view- is considered the best- most accurate- first century historian to have ever lived [I explained it all before under the Evolution/Cosmology section- I think it’s in the 8-2010 posts]. Basically the argument Hitchens is making is dishonest at its core. Then- he gets into M Theory [geez- didn’t really want to go there] Okay- I love studying science, history, Physics. And to be honest- Physics is really not my ‘field’ that is I prefer to show you the mistakes Hitchens is making when he pretends to be a bible student [he makes statements that he is a regular reader of the bible- who goes thru it often- I seriously doubt that claim- he seems to be familiar with certain critical scholars of scripture- theories that have long been rejected- documentary theory by Wellhausen- and you can kinda tell he simply reads the critics and incorporates their ideas into his own- heck- if there is no God- then what’s wrong with plagiarism?] Okay- Hitchens seems to be enamored with Stephen Hawking- I wrote about Hawking a month or so ago- in his recent book- Grand Design- he made some ‘Grand mistakes’ and I refuted these errors. Now Hitchens seems fascinated by certain theories of Hawking- and his worship of the man’s theories goes to the extreme. Hitchens speaks of the famous idea in theoretical physics called M Theory- modern physics [standard theory] says our universe is made up of Pixels- fine points of matter that are unseen by the naked eye- but exist as the basic fabric of the universe. Now- we all accept this- Atoms- Neutrons- etc. all little ‘dots’ if you will, that make up our universe. So M theory [a theory that expands upon String theory] says ‘no- maybe the universe is made up of these strings- these vibrating strings that form into circles- and under these hoops- there are buckets that make up the matter of the universe’ Okay- just think in your head of a piece of string- make a loop- under the loop stick a basketball net. Walla- that’s the theory. Now- does this sound stupid to you? Well you’re in good company- it also sounds stupid to a growing number of very able physicists! Yes- many brilliant- non religious scientists- will tell you that doing science like this- just making stuff up- is loony. So to be honest- as interesting as theoretical physics is- there are many things that simply do not meet the standard of ‘solid science’. So- why mention this. Hitchens uses this theory as proof against the existence of God [in a weird- tortured way] and at the same time says ‘I don’t accept things that can’t be scientifically proven’ yet the whole M theory field is very doubtful- some think the whole thing is simply not true. So it’s stuff like this- obvious mistakes- that are sprinkled all thru out his book. I mean he even makes mistakes that novices make- he mistakenly refers to the establishing of the state of Israel as having occurred in the 19th century- I mean I can’t believe he doesn’t know the actual date- 1948- I have to think that he simply made the common mistake of thinking the years 1900-1999 are the ‘19th century- a common mistake made by people who are just beginning the journey of learning [obviously the 1900’s are the 20th century]. But at the same time he lambasts Christians as idiots and does stuff like this. It reminds me of the time I was watching MSNBC- now this cable channel is filled with nonstop mocking of the political right- one morning the host [Scarborough] was doing his show- and he reads the upcoming story to come on after the commercial- but you can see he’s confused- he asks someone off screen ‘does that say Pirates’? And they tell him yes- he then says ‘folks- your not gonna believe this- but when we get back- yes- we will cover the developing story of Pirates- yes I know it sounds unbelievable- Pirates attacked a ship off the coast of Somalia’. Now- no one ever said anything- he came back and simply reported the story. What’s wrong? He obviously thought Pirates meant ‘Pirates’ you know- Johnny Depp and the Caribbean. I’m sure someone informed him during the commercial ‘Piracy is the official term for robbery on the high seas- you dummy’! Can you imagine the mocking they would have done if Sarah Palin had done this? So I see in Hitchens a mocking of religion and at the same time a conceited view of his own intellect- and the intellect of other atheists- he engages in a sort of debate that says ‘look- you religionists are idiots- we are not’ and he makes such obvious mistakes- things that ‘uneducated’ people do all the time- not bad people- just common mistakes like the ‘19th century’ thing. And if people make mistakes like this [Pirates- etc.] fine- we don’t want to beat people up- but if the entire premise of your book [or cable channel] is ‘look at all the Christian idiots’ and then you make the same mistakes your criticizing the Christians for- well then yes- you look as silly as Joe Scarborough thinking Johnny Depp and his crew were out robbing ships!

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(1132) Nehemiah 9- as the people repent, they stand, fast, confess their sins and read from God’s law for a quarter of the day! There is a real renewal that takes place thru the reading of the word. In the last chapter we saw the emphasis on the teaching of Gods word, the bible says the Levites not only taught/read, but also gave the sense, the meaning of it. Jesus rebuked the religious leaders of his day, not because they weren’t ‘reading/quoting’ bible verses, they were doing it all the time! But because they weren’t really grasping the principles behind the word. In this chapter the people were not only hearing, but also understanding. Now they also do an historical remembrance of Gods great past works. They recount his promise to Abraham, the story of Egypt and Gods great deliverance. The giving of the law to Moses and the rebellion of their fathers during the time of the judges. It’s a great retelling of their history, sort of like Stephen in Acts 7. They also praise and worship God as the creator of all things. I have been reading a good book on the current debate between ‘young earth’ and ‘old earth’ creationists. Though I personally lean towards the old earth idea, yet the book brings out very good arguments for a young earth. They show the historical development of the geologic table [the levels of earth and the dating of these levels] and the book also brings out the fact that though many of the church fathers spiritualized the days of creation, this did not mean they were old earth creationists! Augustine believed in ‘instantaneous creation’ in a moment. So his idea was really young earth, even though he did not take the creation days as literal. One of the points brought out is the basic belief in God as creator, man seems to have a difficult time simply believing in the fact that God made all things out of nothing [Ex-Nihilo] whether you are an old earth or young earth advocate, the fact is God made it all by his word! The people in Nehemiah’s day praised him for his great works as seen in creation. It’s important to see the role that the reading of the law played in this national revival. We see this happen a few times in Israel’s history. Times where they rediscover the law after many years and repent as they return to Gods precepts. Recently I have been reading/studying from around 11:00 am to 3-4 pm. Not every day, but a few days a week. I found it interesting that the people were giving one fourth of their day to reading the law; God saw it as vital for the restoration of his city and people. I want to encourage all my Pastor friends, as you build Gods people, don’t underestimate the importance of good bible teaching. Don’t just give people verses to memorize/hear [what the Pharisees were good at] but give them the understanding too. God used his law [word] to revive the people after the walls were built.

1936 EINSTEIN THE DETERMINIST.

In keeping with the last post [propaganda] I read an interesting AP article on Syria.

As most of you know Syria has been in a civil war for many months- they are the 1st ‘Arab spring’ nation that has not ‘fallen’ to the rebels.

Now- there are lots of political things going on in the region [Russia and China not supporting a Libyan style NATO action] that are sustaining Assad’s regime.

But I found it funny how the western media have chosen to portray the war.

In order for the media to side with those who want to depose Assad- they must ‘side’ with the ‘deposers’.

So- the article spoke about the outside Al Qaeda groups who are coming in to assist the rebels.

It used terms like ‘heroism’ ‘valor’ ‘experienced fighters who know what they are doing’.

These terms were used to describe Al Qaeda fighters- in contrast to Assad- a ‘crimes against humanity’ description.

Wow- I never thought the media would actually try and honor Al Qaeda fighters- in order to accomplish their agenda.

That my friends is the ultimate in propaganda.

Okay- I read some more on Einstein over the weekend- and wanted to cover a few things.

Over the years as you read various sources about famous folk- you need to be aware of the source.

For instance- Christian writers [writing from that perspective] often portray the religious tendencies of a figure in a more favorable light then an atheist writer would.

So you have to be careful that the author is not writing his own story into the person he is covering.

But the biography I’m reading was not written from a religious view.

Yet- the author does share the various positions Einstein has taken about God over the years.

One thing to note is Einstein was a lover of philosophy- he admired men like Hume, Kant and Spinoza.

If you remember- a few years ago I covered the history of philosophy and how much of it dealt with what the causes of things are.

The law of Cause and Effect [also referred to as causality].

As a Physicist- Einstein had a great interest in these subjects.

At the end of the day- Einstein fell into a camp of thinkers called Determinists.

That means he believed that that the universe was ruled by definite principles- even though we did not have the answers to all the puzzles- yet he was convinced that if we searched long enough- we would find order to it.

This belief is in keeping with Theistic thinkers- not with those who ascribe chance and disorder to the creation.

I might have bitten off a little much here- but the point is- at the end of the day Einstein rejected the commonly held belief that there is no real cause to the things we see.

Many thinkers who argue against the existence of God argue form a perspective that chance is behind the ‘perceived’ design we see in nature.

Dawkins [the famous atheist] calls it ‘the appearance of design’.

Einstein did not simply believe in the ‘appearance’ of design- but he believed that the Cosmos was indeed a product of some type of cause that gave it design.

Now- I’m not saying Einstein was a Christian [or observant Jew]- but the point is- in his thinking- he rejects the most commonly held arguments that are made against the Theistic world view [in Cosmology- science] and sides with the Christian thinkers of our day.

Einstein famously said ‘God does not roll dice’ meaning he did not believe in the atheistic argument that things just happen without any cause.

No- Einstein seems to agree with one of his favorite thinkers- Spinoza said ‘All things are determined by the necessity of Divine nature’.

Yes- Einstein was a Determinist in his thinking- he did indeed side with the Theists at the end of the day.

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. (1258) WHAT LASTS? – These past few weeks while praying early in the mornings, I have been meditating on verses like ‘the steps/paths of a good man are ordered by the Lord and he delights in his way’. David said he desired to always dwell in Gods ‘tabernacle’, while thinking on these verses I felt like the Lord was speaking to me about the effects we have, the planting of his word in regions. I even began thinking about the fact that we will die, and the people we minister to will pass away, but in some sense the words we taught will remain. In essence the thing that will last is the gospel and truth that is sown, not the institutions, or even the people, but the word. Now John says because we have the word in us we will abide forever, that is the word of God will raise the dead up some day and they will endure forever; but it’s the word of truth that is lasting. So anyway I felt like the Lord was directing me to read Isaiah, I read the first 10 verses of chapter 40 and the theme goes like this ‘all flesh is like grass, it will pass away; but the word of God endures forever’ basically exactly what God was speaking to me. This section also speaks of John the Baptist ‘prepare the way of the Lord, make a straight highway/path for him in the desert’ this was along the lines of ‘creating a path/ place for God’s word to flow’. Isaiah also has the famous verse ‘you will be called the restorer of paths to dwell in’. I felt like God was telling us to lay down some paths, have consistent areas where you faithfully teach and speak truth and these areas will ‘abide forever’ that is your impact will affect many generations to come. Right after the 16th century Reformation you had what is referred to as the Enlightenment, or the ‘age of reason’. Many thinkers began to challenge the institutional church [and institutions in general] and believed that reason and rationality would lead the way. In France [1700’s] Paris became a center of thinking for these Deists. These men were smart enough to realize that the total denial of God was too ridiculous to accept, they instead embraced Deism. Deism is a type of belief that said God started the ball rolling, but he left the rest on auto pilot; the same belief that the Greek philosophers embraced. Now, one of the famous ‘Philosphes’ [sic] was a man by the name of Voltaire, he is well-known as an infamous atheist today, but he did not totally reject God. These men did have tremendous influence and they produced the French Encyclopedias which backed up their cause. Eventually they would overthrow the Catholic Church and kill the king in their mad rush towards ‘reason’. They were wrong on their basic understanding of reason and rationality as they applied it to the church. They believed that rational thought meant ‘naturalistic thought’ that is in order for things to be rational, they could not be supernatural. They were wrong, in fact those who would later take the next step into full atheism would deny the laws of reason and logic all together. I saw Richard Dawkins do an interview the other day, he is one of the popular atheists of our day. These men who reject God accept a view of creation that violates the laws of logic; they teach/believe that all things came from ‘no-thing’ a scientific impossibility. This idea violates the law of ‘reason’ known as the law of ‘non contradiction’. This law states that a thing cannot be and ‘not be’ at the same time and in the same relationship. For all things to have come from nothing [self creation] would mean that all things created itself. It would have to ‘have been’ before it was. This common system of belief is absolutely irrational, even though the atheist believes it to be rational. To believe that God is a self existent being who created all things does not violate the laws of logic, you might think it does, but it doesn’t. For someone to have existed forever does not violate the classic laws of logic. So these thinkers who thought that their rejection of God was ‘rational’ were in fact wrong. Their ideas led to effects that were horrendous, they in effect ‘planted seed’ [bad doctrines] that would outlast them and their generation, their bad ideas had bad consequences. But the truth of God and his kingdom have also been ‘planted’ in the world, these seeds will last forever. If you want to effect society for good, then plant the seeds that will have an eternal impact, for ‘he that does the will of God will abide forever’ [1st John].

(1255) 2ND KINGS 8:7-29 Elisha goes to Damascus and the king of Syria hears about it, he sends his servant to inquire ‘of the prophet’ whether or not he will get well from some sickness. The servant goes and finds Elisha and Elisha says ‘yes, he would recover. But instead he will die’. What ? Elisha sees that the sickness would not be fatal, but that the king will be assassinated! The servant in front of him will be the killer. So Hazael goes back to the king and says ‘he said you would get well’ true enough, but he left out the part where he was going to kill him! So the
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principles of scripture. Now, let’s try and finish up chapter 11. Paul is basically telling Israel and the Gentiles that God’s dealings are beyond our understanding [last few verses]. God is using the ‘unbelief’ of Israel as an open door to the Gentiles. He is also using the mercy that he is showing to the Gentiles as an ‘open door’ to Israel! He will ‘provoke them to jealousy’. There are a few difficult verses that would be unfair for me to skip over. ‘All Israel shall be saved’. Paul uses this to show that God’s dealings with natural Israel as a nation are not finished. Who are ‘all Israel’? Some say ‘the Israel of God’ [the church]. I don’t think this fits the text. Some say ‘all Israel that will be alive at the second coming’ I think this is closer. To be honest I think this can simply mean ‘all Israel’ all those who are alive and also raised at the return of the Lord. Now, this would be a form of universalism [all people eventually being saved]. I am not a Universalist, but I don’t want any ‘preconceived’ mindset [even my own!] to taint the text. I think God has the ability to reveal himself to the whole nation of Israel in such a way that ‘they all will be saved’. If I were a Jewish person I wouldn’t wait for this to happen! Just like the Calvinists argument of ‘why witness’? Because God commands it. So even though you can make an argument here for a type of universal redemption at Christ’s revealing of himself to Israel at the second coming [which is in keeping with this chapter, as well as other areas in scripture; ‘they will look upon him whom they have pierced’ ‘God will pour out the spirit of mourning and supplication on Israel at his appearing’. Which by the way would fit in with ‘whoever calls on the Lord will be saved’ which I taught in chapter 10. This is a futurist text implying a time of future judgment and wrath’]. So God’s dealings with Israel are not finished. Paul also warns the Gentiles ‘don’t boast, if God cut out the true branches [Israel] to graft you in. He can just as quickly cut you out too’! It would be dishonest for me [a Calvinist] to simply not comment on this. You certainly can take this verse in an Arminian way. Or you can see Paul speaking in a ‘nationalistic sense’. Sort of like saying ‘if Germany walks away from the faith, they will be ‘cut out’. [France would have been a better example! Speaking of the so called ‘enlightenment’ and the French Revolution]. In essence ‘you Gentiles, don’t think “wow, look at us. God left Israel and we are now special!”’ Paul is saying ‘you Gentiles [as a whole group] stand by faith. God could just as quickly ‘cut you out’ and replace you with another group’. I also think the Arminians could use this type of argument for the previous predestination chapter [9]. But to be honest I needed to give you my view. One more thing, Paul quotes Elijah ‘lord, I am the only one left’. He uses this in context of God having a remnant from Israel who remained faithful to the true God. God told Elijah ‘there are 7 thousand that have not bowed the knee to baal’. Paul uses this to show that even in his day there were a remnant Of Jews [himself included] who received the Messiah. An interesting side note. The prophetic ministry [Elijah] seems to function at a ‘popular level’. Now, I don’t mean ‘fame’, but Elijah was giving voice to a large undercurrent that was running thru the nation. If you read the story of Elijah you would have never known that there were ‘7 thousand’ who never bowed the knee! Often times God will use prophetic people to ‘give voice’ or popularize a general truth that is presently existing in the ‘underground church’ at large. Sort of like if Elijah had a web site, the 7 thousand would have been secretly reading it and saying ‘right on brother, that’s exactly what we believe too’!

ROMANS 12
.ARE SOME GIFTS BETTER THAN OTHERS?
.HOW SHOULD THEY FUNCTION IN THE ‘BODY’?
. HOW SHOUD WE GIVE OFFERINGS- DID PAUL TEAHC TITHING?
.HOT COALS ON THEIR HEADS- HUH?

(864)ROMANS 12:1-8 ‘I beseech you by the mercies of God to present your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service [spiritual worship]’. Most times we see ‘by the mercies of God’ as a recap of all that Paul has taught from chapters 1 thru 12. This is true to a degree. I think Paul is honing in on the previous chapters that dealt with the purpose of God specifically seen in the resurrection of the body. As we read earlier ‘for we are saved by hope’ [the hope of the resurrection]. Basically I see Paul saying ‘because of what I showed you concerning Gods redemptive purpose for your body, therefore present your body now, in anticipation of it’s future glorious purpose, as a living sacrifice ‘holy and acceptable unto God’. Why? Because you are going to have that thing [body] forever! [in a new glorified state] Paul exhorts us to be changed by the renewing of our mind, the way we think. I have mentioned in the past that this renewing is not some type of legalistic function of ‘memorizing, muttering the do’s and don’ts all day long’. But a reorganizing of our thoughts according to this new covenant of grace. Seeing things thru this ‘new world’ perspective. A kingdom view based upon grace and the resurrection of Jesus. This resurrection that is assured to us because we have the deposit of the
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VERSES-
. Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
. John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.
John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
. The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good. Ps. 14:1
In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened. Gen.

ELI’S BOOK
https://ccoutreach87.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/11-24-15-elis-book.zip

ON VIDEO-
.Why did Paul work to support himself and others?
.Did I relapse?
.Will you pray for me?
.Baptist- Catholic- Orthodox
.House church?
.Should we tithe?
.Law or Christ?
.Bishops
.Church history
.Russia goes Orthodox
.Moscow the new Rome?
.The Papacy
.John of Damascus
.Icons

NOTE- It just so happened that I mentioned Istanbul Turkey- and Moscow on this teaching- a day or 2 before the recent events. I posted a short video yesterday about the downing of the Russian plane by Turkey. https://youtu.be/LLmMWnq8uQY
Brief overview- we [U.S.] are ‘in’ Syria because we are supposed to be fighting terrorists- and nations that support them. Russia is also in Syria to fight terrorists.
Russia is fighting all of them [including the ones that Turkey supports- and backs- also called ‘rebels’- some of these groups we too support- because even though they are similar to ISIS- yet we overlook it- because they are fighting Assad [strange- I know].
Now- Turkey is also a member of NATO- meaning we will ‘back them up- like one of our own’.
So- in our war against terror- we will also theoretically ‘go to war’ against any nation that threatens nations in the NATO alliance [meaning we will defend nations that support terrorism].
Ok- Turkey shoots down a Russian plane [in Syrian airspace- an act of war- which president Obama defended] because the Russians are also bombing the terrorists that Turkey supports.
They shot down a Russian plane because the Russians are killing terrorists [though the ones Turkey backs don’t have the title of ISIS].
Now- after the plane was shot down- the Russians sent in a rescue helicopter- which too was shot at- by ‘rebels’ on the ground [who were the terrorists Russia was bombing].
These so called rebels- shot at the helicopter- using U.S. weapons- provided to them- wit U.S. backing [in theory- we supplied the terrorists that killed the Russian rescue team].
Now- Russia is mad- and we are supposed to support Turkey- even if it means war- because Turkey shot down a Russian plane- who were targeting terrorists.
Utterly amazing to me.
PAST POSTS [verses below]
I told him ‘did you know that Muhammad- the founder of Islam in the 7th century- had many of the same protests that other Christian groups would later voice too’.

I explained that Muhammad’s rise in defense of the poor and down cast [by the way- that’s actually a biblical characteristic of prophets- in the bible] were similar to Christian movements that would rise later on- like the Salvation Army.

I went on to show that he also felt like the growing use of statues in Christian worship was a violation of the commandment that says you should not make images/idols.

Now- to my Catholic friends- I have taught the entire history of the use of art- and yes- statues- in Christian worship.

I have also taught against the Iconoclasts- those Protestants who destroyed the statues in the Catholic churches- during the times of the Reformation [16th century].

So- I’m not ‘Catholic bashing’ at all.

The point is- Muhammad had some of the same objections- based on the bible- that later Protestants would have.

Gee John- I never knew this? That’s why I teach it- it helps to have less of a negative view of Muslims as a whole.

So- after I try to look at some of the good things that Islam has done [Hamas- in the Palestinian area. Why do they garnish so much support among the populace? Because they start hospitals- they feed the poor- they start welfare programs for the kids. Do they do this as some sort of trick- a way to gain the hearts and minds of people? No- they do this because it’s a basic tenet of their faith].

Okay- then what do I say to any Al-Qaida on the site?

I say that the historic divisions- the things that divide the East from the West- many of them are actual misunderstandings.

Yes- some of the religious objections were misunderstandings.

The classic one.

Muhammad believed that the Christians worshipped 3 Gods- what we call the Trinity.

But he thought the believers worshipped God- Jesus- and Mary-the mother of Jesus.

That’s of course not the trinity- this is simply a misunderstanding.

Christians believe that there is one God- in 3 persons.

Those persons being the Father- Son and Holy Spirit.

But the biggest thing I like to show my Muslim friends- my friends form other faiths- is that the message of the Cross- it’s one of grace.

Christians believe that Jesus kept all the commandments of God- then he died to pay the price for our sins.

As Christians- we don’t teach against the 10 commandants- but we don’t use them to gain acceptance with God- the acceptance we have with God comes because of the death of his Son on our behalf.

In actuality- this message is a great relief for all people who live ‘under the law’.

That is- if your Muslim- if your Al-Qaida- you too can take this.

Yes- Jesus died for you too.

That’s the appeal I make- I’m not asking my friends from other faiths to convert- if they want to- fine.

But that’s not my appeal.

I’m saying to all my friends- this message of the Cross- this is for all people.

Heck- if you want to stay Muslim- stay- but just accept the reality of this post.

Yes- Jesus is spoken about much in the Quran.

The prophet Muhammad respected Jesus.

[parts]
(635) Yesterday morning I got up early and prayed a weekly prayer that includes the nations. Part of this time goes like this ‘Lord I pray for all religions outside of the covenant of your Son. All Jewish people, that they would see Jesus their messiah. All Muslim people, that you would give them signs and prophetic visions and dreams to show them Jesus is the way’. Then this morning I had a dream that family members were converting to Islam. That they were being ‘attacked’ or influenced by the ‘spirit of Islam’. In the dream I felt helpless against this force. We went to sleep [in the dream!] and I awoke [still dreaming this] with a radical spirit of intercession. I began praying and breaking the power of Islam off of the family members that just a few hours earlier seemed to be fully lost to Islam. I felt this dream spoke to the effectiveness we have been having recently with Muslims. These last few weeks have given opportunity to share with a homeless Muslim Iraq war veteran. Good friend. Then a Muslim friend from England started conversing with me and asking how to become Christian. He is reading this site! It never dawned on me that these were fruits from the prayer time! Like I said before, I can be dense at times. Let me cover some church history. I have had someone argue with me about the history of Islam. Not a Muslim, but a Christian who was saying ‘why do you say Islam started in the 7th century, it started around the 11th’. My answer was ‘Muhammad lived in the 7th century’. Not to hard to see this. So I thought I should cover some history. During the time of the rise of Islam, the Christian church was already dividing from east and west. After Constantine [4th century Roman emperor] consolidated the Roman Empire in the 4th century he set up the capital city of the eastern empire, Constantinople [named after him]. As time progressed the western church would take on the form of Roman Catholicism, the eastern [Constantinople area. Modern day Turkey-Istanbul] would be known as ‘Orthodox’. Though the official split of eastern and western [Catholic-Rome!] churches occurred in 1054 AD, yet the division started years before. The official split is called ‘the great schism’ of the 11th century; it would not be until 500 years later that the church would have her ‘reformation’. The official reason for this split was over a rather silly thing. For centuries the Catholic church had an expression that said ‘the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father’ than they included ‘he proceeds from the father and the Son’. Well the eastern brothers didn’t like Rome telling them what to believe and used this as the official reason to ‘have the schism’. To be honest the divisions were coming for years. After the Roman Empire consolidated under Constantine, he tried to strengthen the eastern territories of his empire and for centuries you had the struggle for which region would be the most influential. At first you had 5 major areas that were divided under 5 main Bishops. As time went on the argument would be ‘which bishop has the most say so’ and it was really a power struggle. Finally Rome said ‘the bishop of Rome is the FIRST AMONG EQUALS [a term that many in the Protestant strain of the discipling movement would later embrace] he holds Peters seat’ and this is really where the divisions started. Eventually Muhammad would rise and Islam would take control of the eastern capital. This later became the reason for the crusades. The Catholic church wanted to regain the territories that she lost in the east. The eastern churches are very much Catholic in many ways. They also hold to a view of Christianity that sees man being ‘joined’ with God and becoming pleasing to God thru Christ’s grace unitin