Tuesday, December 20, 2016

The Bible and Private Property

Conservatives/Republicans, and Christians who advocate an Anachro-Capitalist form of Libertarianism, like to claim The Bible is firmly for the concept of Private Property.

I would agree that the Bible is against Governments owning all Property, and hence against Socialism.  Simply taking moral commands to give to the Poor as calling for Socialism is basically asking the Government to enforce Morality.

However I am among many who reject the idea that Communism is compatible with Socialism, because true Communism is Anarchistic.  If I have a political ideology at all, it is a form of Libertarian-Communism or Anarchist-Communism.  To us Socialism is not an alternative to Capitalism, Socialism is Capitalism where the State is the Capitalist, that goes for the USSR, China, North Korea and Cuba.

Many Libertarian Communists make a distinction between Private Property and Personal Property.  But the key issue is we believe that the means of production should be shared.

The Bible depicts the ultimate owner of all Land as God who Created everything.  But He gave the Earth to Adam, to Mankind as a whole.  Then later He specifically gave the Near East to Abraham, and Israel to Jacob.  But it is for the Israeli people as a collective, not just for those rich enough to be able to buy everything.

Yes there is much emphasis on Inheritance for Families.  But the Torah includes many regulations for that, some of which were linked to The Jubilee.  But most importantly is the right of the Poor to glean what they need to live off Farm Land regardless of who owned it.  That is utterly incompatible with a modern Conservative or Anachro-Captialist understanding of Private Property.

Much has been said about how the Early Church in Acts practiced a form of Communism.  I've seen many Conservative Christians say this was the Jerusalem Church and why that Church failed.  I would say there is plenty of evidence all the Churches Paul founded and wrote to were doing the same thing.  And I see no evidence the Jerusalem Church failed, it existed at least until the Bar-Kockhba revolt.

A notable Christian who's views on politics may be similar to mine was Gerrard Winstanley.  He's been called both one of the first Communists and one of the first Christian Anarchists.  He was contemporary with the English Civil War of the mid 17th Century.  He cited Samuel's speech against Monarchy in I Samuel after Israel called for a King as being against the idea of Government in general.  He interprets Israel's system under the Judges as being a form of Anarchism, and emphasized the Communism practiced by the Early Church.

Other contemporaries of his that are of interest were John Liburne, who was similar but less Radical, Henry Vane and Roger Williams the founder of Rhode Island and true innovator of American Religious Freedom.  Vane was allied with Cromwell at first but quickly came into conflict with him when Cromwell started showing his true Proto-Fascist colors.

During the French Revolution, many people were descendants of the above men's Political views, but not men I'd agree with Spiritually being mostly Atheists and Deists.  They were members of the Society of the Friends of Truth, founded by Nicholas Bonnevile who had previously been in England (where he was friends with John Oswald).  And included men like Condorcet and his wife Sophie, Sylvian Marchel, Francois "Gracchus" Babeuf, and Olympe de Gouges.  Their contemporary kin in the English speaking world included Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine.  But in Germany strangely enough included some members of the controversial Bavarian Illuminati, chiefly Kingge.  I'm still a conspiracy theorist, but one who's come largely to view the hype around the Bavarian Illuminati as a distraction.

Marco di Luchetti has made an English Translation of one of Bonneville's books.  And in the introduction talks at length about the ideology and politics of the group. on things like Property and Taxation.  He is wrong in how he massively overstates Bonneville's connection to the Illuminati, and in confusing Iluminism with the Illuminati, Terry Melanson is a better historian on The Illuminati.  Bonneville like Jefferson publicly defended the Illuminati but there is no evidence he was a member, if he'd been recruited by Bode it would be mentioned in Bode's memoirs of his trip to France which we still have.  But he's very good at describing the different political factions of the Revolution.  And it talks about how Kingge even though not a Believer modeled his Communist Utopia after the Judges system in The Bible.

Upon reading Marco di Luchetti's book, I definitely still have areas of disagreement with Bonneville and Brissiot, chiefly their Preemptive War policy.

Robespierre was a Demagogue and a Statist.  In truth he was more a Monarchist then the Royalists, but wanted himself to be the Dictator.  The marriage of Communism and Socialism began with Buonarroti.  He was a follower of Robespierre, and has also been claimed to be an Illuminati member though there is no documentation that he was.   He was an important figure in the history of the Carbonari and Italian Freemasonry.  Mazzini then carried on his mantle in a more militant and Nationalist form leading to Italian Fascism. And at the same time Bounarroti influenced Karl Marx and Engels.

Larken Rose is also an Unbeliever, and follows a somewhat Anachro-Captialist form of Libertarianism.  But he has this video which I find good to cross reference with my posts about Patriotic Idolatry.

So I don't have an exact model of how I feel Libertarian-Communism should look.  But this is all stuff I feel Christians need to start rethinking our assumptions on.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Morally I absolutely believe in Free Healthcare

It's just that I believe it should be provided by The Church not The State.

In The New Testament believers are instructed to care for the sick and the poor.  And there is no qualification that it applies only to fellow believers.  We see this in Acts 5:15-16.

There is a reason many Hospitals are named the same way Catholic Churches are.  Because in medieval Times the Churches were the Hospitals.  The Hospital the Knights Hospilitar were named after was a Hospital in Jerusalem that was also a Church, all those Crusader orders were linked to specific Churches in their founding.  The Knights of Lazarus were also linked to a Hospital.

Now in the first Century we were not yet numerous or wealthy enough to succeed in caring for all the sick and injured of the entire world.

But today the Roman Catholic Church is wealthy enough to provide universal Healthcare to every Nation where they are the majority and/or the state religion.  Plus help a great deal in caring for the sick and poor of the U.S. and Japan where they have a significant presence.  It'd be nice if the modern descendants of the Knights Hospiliatars, the Knights of Malta, spent less money funding Islamaphobia and Neo-Con foreign polices and more money funding Hospitals.

The Anglican Church can likewise afford to do the same for every Common Wealth Nation, plus help in the U.S. where many American Christians still favor Anglican style Protestantism.

But even without the help of Rome or London, the Mega Churches and largest home grown denominations of the U.S. can afford to provide Universal Healthcare to the entire Nation if they worked together to do so.

Now many Churches are making an effort to still follow this mandate.  But the wealthiest ones aren't doing nearly enough.  Some Hospitals are still technically run by Catholics, I think it's shameful that any Catholic Hospital has to charge money to provide healthcare.

Since I'm an English Speaker who was raised Catholic, I'm going to limit my comments on the moral responsibility of well known churches to just the Catholic and English Speaking denominations.

This is perhaps also a good time for me to address those sects that teach seeking secular Medical help is somehow a lack of Faith in God.  That you should Pray for a miraculous healing and nothing else.  By misusing passages like James 5:14-15.

One of the human authors of the New Testament was a physician, in fact it's said that besides maybe Paul, Luke wrote more of it then any other author.  And no this was not his job only before being Saved, he was Saved already when Paul met him at Troy.  He served as Paul's personal physician.

In 1 Timothy 5:23 Paul gives Medical advice, alluding to the Health benefits that Wine can sometimes have.

The Bible even acknowledges the existence of Mental Illness, contrary to popular assumption.  Matthew 4:24 clearly refers to the Demon possessed and "those which were lunatic" as separate, not the same thing.  But demons may sometimes take advantage of mental illnesses hence Luke 17:15-18.  Today Lunatic is not the politically correct term, but it was a proper medical term back then.

The strongest Biblical argument advocates of this dangerous doctrine have is the KJV rendering of 1 Chronicles 16:12.
"And Asa in the thirty and ninth year of his reign was diseased in his feet, until his disease was exceeding great: yet in his disease he sought not to the LORD, but to the physicians."
Which is clearly a negative tone.

The word translated "physicians" here should more literally be translated "healers".  And given the words this word is related to (like Rapha and Raphaim) I think it's clear it sometimes refers to occult healers.  In fact I think this situation is meant to parallel Ahaziah in 2 Kings 1 seeking after Baalzebub when he was sick.  The condemnation here is turning to a god other then Yahuah.

Going back to the initial topic.  My view is The Church should be providing Free Healthcare itself, if The State has to do it then The Church is failing.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Song of Solomon, typology and symbolism

This is a follow up of sorts to Song of Solomon, Who's Who.

I argued that The Beloved isn't Solomon, and that Shulamith, the female lead of the story, is Shelomith, Rheoboam's daughter and Solomon's Granddaughter.

It has occurred to me since that some might see Chapter 3 Verses 6 through 11 as evidence against that argument.  Solomon is definitely in view there, and that section is often chapter titled "The Wedding Procession".  But I feel that can fit with Solomon being in the role of the father of the Bride, "giving her away" in modern wedding terminology.

An interesting side note is how this section saying Solomon built a Royal Chariot could lend further support to the idea that Salmoneus of Greek mythology was a corrupted memory of Solomon.  In the Septuagint Solomon is spelled Salomon, as opposed to how The New Testament spelled the name.

Another Greek myth that may be a corrupt memory of a Biblical Truth is the Garden of the Hesperides possibly reflecting the Garden of Eden.  In fact this possible connection is the reason it became popular to view the Fruit of the Tree of Knowledge as an Apple even though The Bible never says that.  I lean towards agreeing with the argument for that fruit actually being something Grape like, and may post on that in the future.

What I noticed recently though is how what is attributed to the Apples of the Hesperides actually fits the Tree of Life not of Knowledge, it gives eternal life.  I decided then to check for every reference to Apples in the King James Bible.  And it is mainly the references in the Song of Solomon that I felt could give poetic typological support to the Fruit of Life being represented as Apples.  Though verses calling Jerusalem the Apple of God's eye would be fitting if you think Zion is where the Garden was.  And Proverbs 25:11 could be the source of the Apples being depicted as Golden.

What I mainly want to talk about in this post however is the typology.

Again, I'm not against a typological interpretation, only against using that as an excuse to dismiss how it positively portrays pre-martial non reproductive sexual intimacy.  Even if you think the narrative is a Parable or work of fiction and not events that actually happened, it's still absurd to think the book wasn't written consistent with the sexual morality of it's author.  And we believe The Bible's ultimate Author is God.  When an Author depicts sex he disapproves of, it usually has negative consequences, the sex in the Song of Songs does not.

What I am going to do here is question the traditional typological interpretation.  Not fully rejecting it, just considering another possibility.

Traditionally, The Beloved is Jesus/Yahuah and Shulamith is The Church and/or Israel.  Even others before me who separated Solomon from The Beloved see it that way.  Those making Solomon a villain of the narrative say he's a type of The Antichrist.  While my suggestion could fit giving him the Father of the Bride role, which Laban functions as in Genesis 24, and I often see as ultimately representing Adam.

While the majority of the time Jesus is Masculine and The Church is Feminine.  I have shown that The Church is the Man-Child of Revelation 12.  And noted how The Desire of Nations of Haggai is a feminine noun.  And "Yeshua" used as a word for Salvation is often in it's feminine form, Yeshuah.  Chuck Missler thinks the Wisdom of Proverbs is Jesus even though that's consistently Feminine, in both pronouns and the grammar of the Hebrew words translated Wisdom.  So The Holy Spirit does mix things up in terms of the gender representation sometimes.

The word Beloved is used a lot in the New Testament of The Church, and of presumably Jerusalem in Revelation 20:9.  Thrice Daniel is called Beloved.  Deuteronomy 33 uses Beloved this way talking about Benjamin, clearly using it Prophetically of Jerusalem which is in the territory of Benjamin.  Jeremiah also used it of Jerusalem.

Only times Jesus is called Beloved is when it's God speaking, at Jesus Baptism.  It's not used of Jesus in describing Jesus relationship with The Church.

Shulamith actually is the much more central and active character of the Song's narrative then the Beloved is.  That fascinates me as a Christian Feminist.  But given how I define The Gospel it makes me uncomfortable with seeing her as The Church.

She not the male is more then once described as having Hair like Goat's hair.  That can fit Jesus description in Revelation 1, and how The Goats of Yom Kippur represent Jesus.

But the smoking gun to this controversial suggestion that the Woman not the Man of the Song is the Type of Christ, is Chapter 5 Verse 7, which in context is clearly The Bride talking.  I think this may well be the most overlooked detail of the book.
"The watchmen that went about the city found me, they smote me, they wounded me; the keepers of the walls took away my veil from me."
Tell me, in Christian Theology, does this happen to The Church or to Jesus?

In this context, Solomon becomes a Type of God The Father, like Abraham in Genesis 22&24.

When did it become Liberal to Hate people?

Much of this blog has been dedicated to me arguing that The Bible supports Liberal views over Conservative ones far more often then most Conservatives are willing to face.

However lately my greatest obstacle to showing that The Bible is a Liberal book hasn't been one of the issues you might expect.  But rather it has become that a very loud portion of the American Left has decided to reject the most unambiguously Liberal thing Jesus said "Love your Enemies".

I've been noticing this problem for awhile.  In how it used to be conservatives who complained about sympathetic villains in movies and TV, and so on. But now many Feminist websites view redemption for a male villain as problematic.

However it is the reaction to Trump's election that has really boiled this over.  I didn't vote for Trump or for Clinton, I don't want to say whether it was Johnson or Stein I voted for because I don't enthusiastically support either.

I've seen lately TheMarySue and various Tumblr blogs get all outraged at John Stewart and Jennifer Lawrence for saying we shouldn't condemn all Trump voters as Racists.

The people talking about the Popular vote count love to keep saying he got less votes then Romney, clearly so they can convince themselves they aren't condemning anyone who helped elect Obama when they say all Trump voters are irredeemable.  However it's clear to me Trump's deficit compared to Romney's votes is far smaller then the Romney votes he didn't get, considering how Romney himself was one of his harshest critics.  That Utah independent probably only got Romney voters, Johnson I'm sure got many.  And I know at least one person in my family who voted Republican in both Obama's elections but for Clinton this time.

90% of the the Bigots who voted for Trump were gonna vote Republican no matter what, they were just more enthusiastic about Trump then past ones.  And almost none were ever eligible Democratic voters, they would have not voted or gone Third Party.  The very few that will vote Democrat no matter how illogical that is to their views, didn't change this time, one random KKK leader did endorse Clinton, and with far less qualifications then David Duke's Trump support had.

Trump's victories in Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania.  And maybe to a lesser extend North Carolina and Florida.  Was dependent on a huge segment of the Urban poor, who voted solely on Trump's promise to end Free Trade Agreements and financially punish those who ship factory Jobs overseas.  At least half of these people voted for Bernie Sanders in the primaries, and probably for Obama back when neither major candidate addressed that issue.

I personally voted Sanders in the primary based on this issue.  But it wasn't gonna make me vote for Trump since I suspect he's gonna betray those who voted on that.  But regardless to many others who also didn't trust him he was the only option even paying them lip service.

Saying "whether or not they voted because of Racism it's still Racist that they didn't consider that a disqualifying factor" is easy to say when you're financially fortunate enough to even have Internet access.

I don't deny White Privilege or Male Privilege, or Straight Privilege of Cis Privilege.  But those aren't the only privileges, and there are plenty of White people financially unfortunate enough to make them less privileged then many non-whites.

I suppose most of us engaging in Social Media are blind to the fact that people poor enough to not even have regular access to the internet still exist.  But they do, I know a few in my family.  They are either unemployed, or employed but barely making enough to get buy.  Some who are struggling to even feed their children.  Some who wanted to be retired by the time they reached their current age but weren't able to.  And other pressured to retire before they were fully prepared.

And before any Democrat starts calling poor people who voted based on their own persona financial interests Selfish.  I should remind you that in every past election the perception has been that the Poor people voting solely on their personal financial interests were voting Democrat, because they support Welfare and Food Stamps and Obama Care.  And for that Conservatives called them Selfish constantly.

I know many people who had consistently voted Democrat in every Election in my lifetime except maybe this one since I haven't generally been asking people.  Even though they are Anti-Gun Control, and Pro-Life and pretty annoyingly Conservative on Social and Foreign policy issues.  Who's view of Black Lives Matter has resembled Giuliani's more then Obama's.  Heck the most Liberal state in the country just voted again to keep the damn Death Penalty.

Every past Democratic victory in my lifetime including Gore getting the Popular vote in 2000 has been dependent on the poor, many but not all of whom were minorities, who voted Democrat on financial issues only.  So every Social Justice Warrior calling those people Selfish now have become exactly what they hate.

That's the only thing truly different about this Election.  Trump had more support from the Poor then any past Republican in my lifetime.  And that is why my sympathy for Trump voters is actually greater then my sympathy for Bush voters.

And yes I'd have a similar message to people who'd have been outraged if Trump lost.  Most Trump voters can't possibly understand the situation of the people most hostile to voting for Trump.  This goes both ways.

And while most of the Trump voters I'm talking about may were White, they did include African Americans and Mexican Americans and Muslims.  In fact I remember reports on how Trump did better then expected among Hispanics and Millennials.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Islam and Socialism

 Can my fellow Liberals please stop making encouraging Bigoted assumption when attacking Bigotry

What I mean today is mainly sarcastically calling Obama a "Muslim Socialist" as if those two things can't go together.  Obama is not a Muslim (he wouldn't be bragging about his Hamuman Idol if he was).  His ideology is a form of Socalism, but to mild to satisfy members of the actual Socialist party or even most Bernie Sanders diehards. But regardless of what Obama isn't the two can and do go to gather.

Islamic Socialism on Wikipedia.
Islamic socialism is a term coined by various Muslim leaders to describe a more spiritual form of socialism. Muslim socialists believe that the teachings of the Qur'an and Muhammad—especially zakāt—are compatible with principles of economic and social equality. They draw inspiration from the early Medinan welfare state established by Muhammad. Muslim socialists found their roots in anti-imperialism. Muslim socialist leaders believe in democracy and the derivation of legitimacy from the public.
I actually think their interpretation of the Koran is pretty solid.  I feel now that the main political difference between The Bible and The Koran is that The Koran is Socialist while The Bible is Communist.  As usual The Bible is the side I take, but Biblical Communism I shall address more in the future.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

I'm a Univeralist, an Evangelical Universalist to be exact

I've been hesitant till today (November 9th 2016, Central Time Zone) to go fully Public with this.  Because until I was a Universalist I had no view you could label Theologically Liberal, I was a Theologically Conservative Social Liberal and Political Libertarian with Communist leanings.

The most important project on this Blog to me has been advocating for rethinking the traditional views on Sexual Morality especially Homosexuality.  And in the sense that that message is for Christians skeptical of the idea I was afraid of someone going "He's a Univeralist so of course he says anything goes", even though the main dissertation and the vital post on Plato and Augustine were all made before I became a Universalist.

However, I have decided that in terms of it as a message for LGBT people.  I decided it helps the Gospel to open with that you are not going to Burn for Eternity.  Regardless of if you agree with my theology or not.  I'm just asking that if you are open to being a Christian and an assumption about what The Bible says about Homosexuality is one of the main things holding you back.  To give my dissertation a read, others have made the argument before, but my argument is different, I never result to not taking The Bible literally.

I will be making more posts on the subject of Unviersalism.  Talking about ways my own take on it may differ from others.

I shall chronicle all posts relevant to this topic on the Universalism page.

Here is my message to Donald Trump

As someone who didn't vote for you but is from the region chiefly responsible for your victory (Racine Wisconsin to be specific) my message is this.

If you are only going to keep only one of your campaign promises.  It better be ending the Free Trade Agreements, like NAFTA and CAFTA and the TPP, and stuff directly related to that.  Your strong turn out in Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota was chiefly because of people who voted for Bernie in the Primary (I voted for Bernie) and you in the general because they voted chiefly on that issue.  Because we are the most hurt the ramifications of those agreements.

They don't care if you build the Wall or even necessarily want that.  Or about your Muslim Ban, or defeating ISIS.  And certainly not any of the typical Republican positions you espoused.

I was unwilling to vote for because I didn't trust you on this, given how your businesses have themselves benefited from those agreements.  And because I was offended by the Xenophobia you appealed to.

IF however you actually do keep this promise, and the fears Mexicans and Muslims have of your turns out to be unfounded.  You might, just maybe might win my vote for 2020.

But if not, you don't keep that promise, you will lose the people who chiefly gave this victory and have no hope of reelection.

The second promise I personally care about (in the sense of would like you to keep it) is legalizing Marijuana.  But for that I see no evidence many people voted on that.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

The Law of Moses and Christianity

There are two extremes on the issue of keeping the Law of Moses in the Church.  There is the "God never changes" so keeping the Law is just as Important as ever crowd.  Some may even argue it's stricter now.  And then there is the full on it is BAD for Christians to keep the Law, even the Holy Days, camp.

The latter is absurd, to suggest it's bad to follow Jesus example by keeping the Feast of Tabernacles.  The only way it would ever become bad is if you try to force it on others.

The extremists of the former camp come in varieties.  I have said already about all I care to regarding those who want to reject Paul as a false Prophet.  Or anyone else who will deny Faith Alone and Eternal Security.

To those like Rob Skiba, who I greatly respect.  The key issue I want to ask is, did Paul mean what he said when he said "all things are lawful to be, but not all things are beneficial" in Corinthians?  All the issues you can point out about the health benefits of not eating Pork are relevant to the beneficial part of that statement, but they do not undermine the lawful part.

I believe in Eternal Security.  I believe there are different judgments for Believers and Unbelievers.  I believe only Believers will receive rewards and only Unbelievers will receive punishments.  But some Believers will get no rewards as the Bema account in Corinthians shows.  There are five different Crowns we can win, I don't want to go in depth on them here.  But the point here is that one is a reward for not sinning, maybe one or two others are also relevant to the law.  But Martyrs have a guaranteed crown no matter how they lived their Christian life up to that point.

One of the arguments for suggesting the Law is now stricter for Christians is to say that because now all Believers are "Kings and Priests" that laws unique to the Priests and Kings in the Torah now apply to all Believers.

Leaving aside the issue that the Priesthood in question here is not the Aaronic one, but of Melchizedek (it may surprise you to learn that even Rabbis have taught that the Priesthood of Melchizedek in a sense includes all believers).  What the New Testament actually teaches is that we all have the opportunity to be Kings and Priests.

Apostates, as I have argued before, lose their citizenship in the Kingdom (but not their Salvation).  So they certainly won't become Kings of it.

I would hesitate to argue you are a King by winning any Crown, since there are two different Greek words for Crown used in the NT.  But I would advise that if you want to be a King in the Kingdom then it would help to follow the instructions God gave the King (which Solomon failed to follow) in Deuteronomy.  But that does not make it a Sin to not follow those instructions.

My point is keeping the Law is good, as long as you're not doing it thinking it contributes to your Salvation.  My objection to much of what I hear from the Torah observing community lies only in my opposition to making other Christians feel obligated to do anything.

Rob Skiba complains about strawmen he's accused of.  But he's engaging in one when he says things like "I'm just saying it's a good idea to obey God".  I believe we should obey God, but I believe God's commands are different for each of us, we are to be lead by The Holy Spirit.  When Jesus said "Those who love Me obey My commandments" in John it's right before he talks abut sending the Comforter, that is not a coincidence.

I feel the most important command God has given me personally is to never tell other people what to do, and to politely and respectfully as I can oppose those who do tell others what to do.  That is why I spend so much time on the Homosexuality issue even though I'm mostly Straight myself, and why regardless of economic disagreements I tend to vote Libertarian.  But on the Homosexuality issue  I show it's not condemned in the Torah either, practicing Homosexuals can keep perfectly Kosher.

And yes I know Rob insists he's not telling anyone what to do.  But so much of the what he says in context easily comes off that way, intentionally or not.

I know it is popular now to suggest every use of the word Sin should be defined by 1 John 3:4 "Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law."  But I say perhaps the word "Law" should be defined by Galatians 5:14 "For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.".  Which I have a second witness for in how Jesus defined the two greatest commandments.  As well as James 2:8.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Using the Internet on The Sabbath

I've noticed a few example of Torah observing Christians saying they don't go on The Internet on The Sabbath.  I find that strange.

Any argument that going on the Internet qualifies as servile work would be as absurd as the Rabbis saying it would violate the Sabbath to push the button on an Elevator.

The Sabbath is also a day of Assembly, part of it's purpose is for God's People to come together.  In the modern world The Internet is a vital part of how we do that.  If you know other believers in your area you should feel free to consider communing with them more important.

But we should never neglect using part of The Sabbath Day to check whatever online groups and communities we are members of.  And so on.  Cause some of us lack local like minded Believers we can fellowship with in person.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Sabbath posts

The Sabbath is considered a morality dispute to many Christians.  But for various reasons I tend to wind up discussing it on my Prophecy Blog, because anything about The Calendar is potentially Prophetic.  So I figured I'd share some posts here.

In which I argue against the notion that The New Testament calls for Sunday Worship.

In which I address the SDA desire to connect it to The Mark.

In which I argue against those saying Jesus rose on The Sabbath not Sunday.

In which I address the Lunar Sabbath theory.

In which I revisit my view on The Sabbath's role in the Passion narrative.

In which I discus The Sabbath's connection to The Manna.

The last half of those I made within the last week.  They may be subject to some editing in the near future.

Update October 28th 2016:  And now I have made on on this Blog.

 Using The Interne ton The Sabbath.

Update April 2016: And I did a follow up on the Lunar Sabbath issue.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Using The Cross as a symbol of our Faith

There are lots of Christians out there today who want to reject it.  Not all advocating for some other symbol in it's place, many arguing that using Symbols is itself inherently Occult and so not something Christians should do.

The thing about Occult Symbolism is, it involves a belief the symbol itself has Magical power.  I have said firmly that things like the mere sight of a Cross repelling Vampires is an inherently pagan philosophy, so I find it funny when I see Christians complain about the Cross losing it's power in much modern Vampire fiction.

And the thing with Secret Societies who may not always take the supernatural seriously.  Is that the symbols are meant to conceal not reveal, only those in the know should recognize it.  What The Cross means to a Christian is not hidden, we seek to make it common knowledge.

A Christian wearing a Cross is just a way to communicate that we're Christians as soon as we're seen.

Symbolism can be used in a purely text format.  And Paul does use The Cross as a symbol of the Gospel in passages like 1 Corinthians 1:17-18.
"For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.  For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God."
And Galatians 5:11 and 6:12-14.
"As many as desire to make a fair show in the flesh, they constrain you to be circumcised; only lest they should suffer persecution for the cross of Christ.  For neither they themselves who are circumcised keep the law; but desire to have you circumcised, that they may glory in your flesh.  But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world."
And Ephesians 2:16.

And Philippians 2:8 and 3:18-19.
"For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things."
And Colossians 1:20 and 2:14.
"Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;"
Hebrews 12:2 is arguably being literal not Symbolic.

And all that is why I favor The Cross over the other two symbols that are sufficiently Ancient, The Chi-Rho Sign and the Ichys Fish.  Because Paul himself used it as a symbol of the Gospel he preached repeatedly.

But what about the question of if we depict The Cross accurately?  Regardless of if The Cross Jesus was on actually looked like the common symbol we use (The argument that it looked more like an X is compelling), that that shape resembles the original Paleo-Hebrew design of the Tav, the last letter of the Hebrew Alphabet, I consider a valid Judeo-Christian basis for it.  In a Paleo-Hebrew text of Genesis 1:1 three Tavs appear, the middle one being the untranslated Aleth-Tav in the exact middle of the verse.

Then there is the theory that the Israelites encampment in The Wilderness would have had a similar shape.

I sometimes hear from Torah Observant Christians, "Why would I use a symbol of suffering and death?"  That happens to resemble how Muslims and sometimes Mormons criticize The Gospel.  And frankly that attitude is exactly what 1 Corinthians 1:17-18 is directed against.

Like many things certain groups don't like, there is a desire to blame it on Constantine.  Constantine didn't use it however, he used the Chi-Rho sign, that's what he saw in his supposed vision.   As far as state sponsored Christianity goes the first King to put Crosses on their coins was King Ezana of the Kingdom of Aksum in Africa, the same people who claim to have The Ark, makes you wonder doesn't it?

Carvings of Crosses go back before that however.

None of this is an argument you HAVE to go around using The Cross as a symbol, I am not a Legalist.  This is simply saying symbolism isn't bad, and refuting those who would go around shaming Christians for using a Cross.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

What does being Worldly actually mean?

In the Christians community today we love to quote verses like 1 John 2:15.
"If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him."
2 Timothy 4:10
"For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world"
And 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."
But the perception seems to have become that these verses are primarily about enjoying Secular entertainment media, and such things.  While those can be a factor, they are not the point.

The word for World in the verses from John is Kosmos.  The Greek etymology of that word implies order, it has been taken to mean "the ordered system of the world".

This is the same word where Satan is called the Ruler of the World.  And when Jesus old Pilate that His Kingdom is not of this World.  These are about how Satan owns all the nations of the World.

So when you read "Love not the World" remember that The United States of America is part of that world.

For more elaboration read my earlier posts.  Patriotic Idolatry and Standing for The National Anthem is Idolatry.

Believes are not Citizens of The World or any Earthly Nation, but of The Kingdom that is NOT of This World.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Standing for the National Anthem is Idolatry.

This whole outrage over Kaepernick just further proves the point I was trying to make in my Patriotic Idolatry post.

Regardless of Kapernick's political motivation to protest it (which I am very sympathetic towards, I support Black Lives Matter).   The very fact that so many supposed Christians are so offended by the idea of someone not doing it is what proves the Flag is an Idol to them.

So NO, I will NEVER again stand for the National Anthem or say the Pledge of Allegiance or do any other such acts of worship that makes the Nation State itself a god.

And when someone tries to guilt you about how it's disrespectful to Solders or 9/11 victims, you should ask them if they're Catholic and think we're supposed to pray for the dead?  Because that's literally the same superstitious thinking they're using.  None of these rituals can bring the dead back.

I feel guilty about all the election related posts I made this year.  I got suckered in again when the truth is for a while now I've felt that Christians should not even think of themselves as citizens of any Earthly Nation.  That the Anabaptists had it right, we should obey the law so long as it doesn't conflict with following our Faith, but should also always remember that all Nations are ruled by Satan till the Second Coming, without exception.

We're supposed to be Citizens of God's Kingdom which is currently not of this world.  So being Patriotic and being a good Bible Believing Christian are mutually exclusive.  We should never Pledge Allegiance to any piece of cloth.

And we love to cite Biblical commands against swearing oaths when we talk about Freemasonry, but forget that being an elected official, or a Solider, or testifying in Court also requires swearing an Oath.  I think maybe we should consider those things just as wrong for a Christian to do as Freemasonry.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Paul said there is neither Male nor Female in The Church

Galatians 3:28.
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
I've mentioned this verse before discussing The Bible on Traditional Gender Roles.  And maybe this post risks retreading that same ground.

But I want to rant on how I'm tired of "Traditionalists" saying this is only about how anyone can get Saved.  No, it's not, the context of verses 25-27 are clear, this is about after we're Saved.

But the hypocrisy is that this isn't how anyone applies the references in the same verse to "Jew nor Greek(Gentile)" or "Bond nor Free".

Dispensationists like Chuck Missler are all about how The Church is a new entity and when you're in it you're neither Jew or Gentile, and so no one regardless of ancestry has to follow The Law.  While Hebrew Roots style Christians like Rob Skiba are all about how Gentiles are grafted into Israel and so everyone regardless of ancestry has to follow The Torah.

Neither supports saying believers can be distinguished between Jew and Gentile.  I don't fully fit into either of those camps but sympathize with aspects of both.

But plenty in both of those camps want to cling to separate laws for men and women regarding how to dress and so on.

It is interesting that Chapter 4 keeps using the word "Son" and male pronouns, in-spite of just making clear females are included.  But remember the last verse of chapter 3 is about how we are all made spiritually Abraham's Seed, like what Roman 9-11 is about.

Yes the world into which they (and us still) were born was a patriarchal one.  And those norms influenced the Hebrew Bible, but in Hebrews Paul calls The Law of Moses imperfect and says The Law is now written on our Hearts.  And I've talked before about how gender issues show those imperfections.

So just as Gentiles can now have the Blessings promised to Abraham, (which was always the plan in Genesis 12) so now has Christ allowed Women the Freedoms that only Men could have before.  Now also for both of those one could argue that comes with increased responsibilities, but that's for a separate debate about The Law under The New Covenant.

 I've also talked about how the marriage of Genesis 2 was equal unlike Genesis 3.

There are New Testament verses that get used to support patriarchal norms also, how do I address those?

A lot of what's said about Marriage is in the context of discussing The Church as The Bride of Christ, using an Old Testament custom as an illustration of a New Testament doctrine.  Others may be there just because they were living in a world that is patriarchal still.  And we also need to remember that there are words translated "Man" that are meant to be gender neutral.

I believe The Bible is consistent with itself, and Galatians 3:28 is the most unambiguous statement on this issue.  And I think it ties in with how there were no separate courts for Women or Gentiles in Ezekiel's Temple.

Others have also blogged on this subject, the details often differing from my views but the gist being the same.  Here is one example, and another from the same blog.  And I read this interesting post on naming conventions.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

The Libertarian Party seems to be the only third party making any effort to do more then just Presidential election

That is something I've noticed as I try to look into state and local elections.

The Green Party seems to naturally want the President to solve everything on their own.  But it's funny that the Constitution Party is the one that most preaches the value of states rights, based on their Paleo-Conservative interpretation of the 10th Amendment, but they are making no no effort to win State elections.

I happen to live in Paul Ryan's congressional district,  So this November I'll have the opportunity to vote for Jason Lebeck for Ryan's Congressional seat, and Phil Anderson for Senate.

August 9th (this Tuesday) will be the Primary for those elections.  And I'm considering voting for Paul Nehlen just to further stick it to Ryan.  If by some chance Ryan lost the primary, the chaos that would create would further open the door for Lebeck.  Wisconsin is an open Primary, so if you're going to vote for a not Republican no mater what, take the opportunity to stick it to Ryan.

For the Senate primary however, Ron Johnson has no Republican opposition, and the not establishment pick Democrat is Scott Harbach, who is frankly what I call a Trump Democrat.  So don't vote for him, make your Protest vote a write in, Incitatus always works for Senate.

Returning to Third Parties.  When Third Parties became major parties in the 1800s, it was from gaining ground up success and support in Congress first.  The desire to put all efforts into just the Presidency is part of what current ones are doing wrong.  Even the Libertarian Party to an extent.

Vote Third Party for President, but support any Third Party running locally too.  We need to break this system.

In places where the Libertarians are the only Third Option.  I know my Liberal friends despise the Economic and Gun policy of Libertarians, but they are the true Pacifists on Foreign Policy, and do not compromise on individual Liberty, things like LGBT rights and ending the Drug War, and they can be trusted more on those issues then Democrats.  So yes vote Green Party if you're a progressive and it's an option, but if not vote Libertarian, you have much to gain and nothing to lose.

Immigration and Abortion are the two most notable issues Libertarians are divided on.  And sadly it seems the above mentioned Wisconsin candidates seem to lean to the right on those (while Gary Johnson and Weld themselves are Liberals on those issues).  But they will still be much more reasonable on those issues then a Republican party lead by Trump.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

The Soul and Spirit Biblically

1 Thessalonians 5:23 "And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Hebrews 4:12 "For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart."

These verses tell us they are different things.  Some word studies of the words have lead people to conclude that animals have souls but not spirits.  I haven't gone too deep into that yet.  If that is true though, it would probably mean that Biblically speaking every use of the word "Soul" in the Buffyverse should be Spirit.

The doctrines of Soul Sleep and Annihilation often go together.  I've seen people argue "Soul" just means a living thing and the idea of an immortal Soul with Conciseness when separated from the Body isn't Biblical.

Often this view is built using verses from Ecclesiastes, that book is not for building doctrine, it is mostly describing how things appear to be to Man's perspective in order to refute all that at the end.

Now I believe the Belief in a literal Bodily Resurrection is vital.  Some have suggested that "what is the point of the Resurrection if the Soul and Spirit are immortal and aware?"  My answer is, because you lack something vital when separated from the Body.

Demons are spirits that lack a body, and they are desperately trying to steal one.  I used to believe they were the disembodied spirits of Angel-Human hybrids who died in the Flood.  But I no longer believe in Angel-Human hybrids.[[I've changed my mind on that even more since.]]

People often argue we see Angels have physical Bodies in a sense so Demons can't be fallen Angels.  But Jude 1:6 tells us the Genesis 6 angels gave up their Oketerion.  I believe that means they lost their Angelic bodies and become evil spirits/demons.  The only reason for assuming the ones imprisoned in the Abyss were imprisoned there before The Flood is the apocryphal First Enoch.  I now believe they were chained there by Jesus in Nisan of 30 AD, Paul tells us the Abyss was one of the places Jesus went, Romans 10:7 and Ephesians 4:7-10.  And more demons get added when we do proper Spiritual Warfare.

While I agree the account of Lazarus and the Rich Man in Luke 16 is a parable we shouldn't build doctrine on.  Ezekiel 32 clearly describes those dwelling in Sheol as having conciseness.  1 Peter 3:19-20 and 4:6 says Jesus preached the Gospel to the Spirits in Hades when he descended there between his Death and Resurrection (also implied in Philippians 2:9-11).  And Revelation 6 tells us when the 5th Seal is opened that the Souls of the Martyrs are under the Altar in Heaven and very aware.  Revelation 7 further describes these Souls in Heaven pre-Resurrection, the Resurrection/Rapture doesn't happen till the 7th Trumpet is sounded.

Jesus promised us that we will NEVER die, John 11:26.

So the Doctrine of Soul Sleep isn't supportable.

Anihaliationism is refuted by that we see The Beast and False Prophet clearly described as still being in the Lake of Fire over 1000 years later.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

The Greek words for "Damnation".

Neither "Damnation" or any other word form of Damn appears in the King James translation of the Old Testament, but it does appear in the New Testament.

Mostly it's two words translated "Damnation" Krima(2917) and Krisis(2920).  Both are elsewhere in the KJV translated Judgment and Condemnation.

Krino(2919), another form of Krima is translated "Damned" in 2 Thessalonians 2:12, it is usually translated things like judge, condemn, decree ect.

The other two occurrences of "Damned" are Katakrino(2632), which means "to judge against" or "Sentence".

In 1 Peter 2:1&3, Apoleia(684) is translated Damnable and Damnation.  This word also gets translated Destruction and Perdition, like in the phrase "Son of Perdition" or "Goeth into Perdition" in Revelation about The Beast.

It is only Apoleia that comes close to meaning what most Christians today casually mean by "Damnation".  But even then it could mean destruction in a mortal or physical sense and not necessarily an eternal sense.

The K words that all mainly mean judgment are the ones clearly used in direct connection to the concept of going to Gehenna or the Lake of Fire.

Apoleia is rare in the Gospels, used by Judas in Matthew 26:8 and Mark 14:4, the KJV renders it "waste" there.  And by Jesus only twice, in Matthew 7:13, the verse about the broad way and the narrow way.  And in John 17:12 where he calls Judas the Son of Perdition.

The form of the word used in Revelation is the form that ends with an N.  Further backing up in my view that it's similarity to Apollyon is intentional.

Apoleia has also sometimes been translated "Ruin", between that and the "Waste" translation I feel confident that it doesn't inherently mean complete annihilation.

So when you stumble upon this word reading The Bible.  Be aware that it might not mean what you assume it means.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Hades, Gehenna and the Lake of Fire

I want to start by stating that the typical casual understanding of the "Christian" Afterlife is not based on The Bible at all but on Zoroastrianism, which influenced Manicheans like Augustine.

That some preachers continue to play ignorant of how Revelation even in English clearly depicts Hell and the Lake of Fire as distinct really annoys me, but there is no helping them.

The worth discussing issue is of Hades and Gehenna.

A total of three Greek words are translated "Hell" in the KJV translation of the New Testament.  Tartaros is a word used only once in 2 Peter so not worth much of an in-depth discussion here.

Hades is the word that is clearly the synonym for the Hebrew Bible's Sheol (every OT usage of Hell is Sheol, but it also gets translated Grave and Pit, which also have other Hebrew words).

It's also the only of the three words used in Revelation.  Paul also used the word in 1 Corinthians 15:55 once where the KJV renders it Grave rather then Hell.

So on a practical level what Hades refers to is the least disputable.

Etymology wise it is the most justifiable one to translate Hell as the origin of Hell is the equivalent concept from Germanic/Norse languages and mythologies.  (Sheol, Hades and Hell were also used by the Pagans of their respective languages to refer to an Underworld abode of the Dead that has a god and/or goddess ruling over it that was sometimes called by that same name.)  Hel and Hella are alternate forms of the original Norse name.

But in terms of what your typical Preacher means by Hell in modern America, The Lake of Fire is clearly what they mean, and their understanding even of that concept is of disputable accuracy.

The third word is Gehenna.  Gehenna is never by the KJV at least translated anything other then Hell.  It is used 12 times, 11 of them are in the Synoptic Gospels and the only remaining one is in James Epistle.

I have for a long time and mainly still do view Gehenna as referring to the same thing as the Lake of Fire, but I'll get more into that later.

Many radical KJV onliers continue to insist Gehenna and Hades must be the same thing if the KJV used the same term for both.  Though frankly I suspect the Latin translations of The Bible are the origin of both being translated the same way, the Vulgate doesn't use an expected Latin equivalent of Hades (like Orcus or Dispater) but rather Inferus, related to a word for fire.

Revelation 20 makes clear Hades is emptied and then thrown into the Lake of Fire before the New Heaven and New Earth are created and New Jerusalem descends.

The only passage using Gehenna that seems to be quoting or paraphrasing an Old Testament passage is Mark 9: 43-48 which is drawing on Isaiah 66:24.  Isaiah 66 is still the same Prophecy as 65, which is clearly what Revelation 21 is drawing on, so this is contemporary with when the New Heaven and New Earth will be created.  So it can't be describing Hades (Also Sheol is not used in the verse) but could fit the Lake of Fire.

Now many who have no trouble with Gehenna and Hades referring to different things may still desire to see the Lake of Fire as distinct from either.  But the timing of Isaiah 66:24, as well the affiliation of Fire with Gehenna (at least one Gehenna passage also uses a Greek word for Fire, the verses in Matthew referring to the "Hell Fire"), as well as Gehenna being linked to the word "Damnation" all tell me Gehenna is probably the Lake of Fire.

Luke 16's parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus is the only passage linking Torment or a Flame to Hell where Hades rather then Gehenna is used.

Deuteronomy 32:22 is the only passage linking fire to Sheol.  KJV onliers will often call this the first reference to "Hell" in The Bible since Sheol's appearances in Genesis are all translated Grave in the KJV.  But this verse does not attribute this Fire to tormenting the currently dead but does possibly connect it to future Judgment.  The only difference between Sheol and NT Hades is Sheol might be a broader term that includes more of the depths of the Earth then just where the dead is/was.  And thus may include Tartaros/The Abyss.  And also could include the very center of The Earth, which modern Scientists believe is hotter then the surface of the Sun.

But more importantly, this verse of Deuteronomy says God is the source of the Fire, that it comes from Him and consumed the whole Earth Burning it's way down to the lowest Sheol. So this is really a Prophecy of the Great Conflagration of 2 Peter 3:7-12.

Ezekiel 32 describes Sheol, it describes the Dead being there, seems to imply they are awake there and thus contradicting the Soul Sleep view.  But no references to torment or torture or burning.

So since Luke 16 is the only basis for Hades being a place of torture or burning torment with no second witness, you can't build doctrine on it.

The arguments against it being a Parable I find unconvincing.  The main one is an assumption that Parables don't name names.  But many view Job as a parable.  But also Lazarus has been viewed as a nickname and not a proper name.

What is possible is that the Parable of Lazarus and the Rich Man was Jesus using the Pharisees own beliefs rhetorically against them, and not exactly meant to tell us the true nature of the After Life.

Gehenna is also the name of a real location outside Jerusalem.  The place known in the Hebrew Scriptures as the valley of Hinnom, a place often linked to Child Sacrifice and burnt offerings to Molech.  I've also seen it claimed that in Jesus time it was basically a garbage dump where garbage was burned.

Some think using that name for the place of Aionos punishment is merely a figurative or symbolic analogy.  Others see this clear earthly location being linked as an argument against it being the Lake of Fire.  I think it's possible where ever the Lake of Fire is cosmologically, it will at the White Throne Judgment be opened in the valley of Hinnom.

I think the possibility of Jeremiah 7:31-32 and 19:6 corresponding to Isaiah 66:24 would make a lot of sense.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Gerrard Winstanley was a Universalist.

His The Mysterie of God is apparently the first English language book on Universalism.


His political views also interest me, I'll be writing more on him in the future.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Right now there is a war between Two Enemies of Freedom

One side wanting to take our Second Amendment rights and the other First Amendment rights.

One side taking advantage of irrational fear of guns and the other of irrational fear of Muslims.

Make no mistake that both sides are equally wrong.

Just say no to giving up Liberty for Safety and Security.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Deutercanonical books

A claim often made to undermine the logic of Sola Sciptura, especially towards KJV proponents, is that the KJV "originally had 12 extra books".

Leaving aside that the KJV translators and publishers clearly didn't intend to endorse them as canonical since they were put in a separate section titled "The Apocrypha", not Canon is what "Apocrypha" means.  They were the 1611 equivalent to DVD bonus features.

It is not the KJV itself I consider God's inspired word but the Masoretic Text for the Hebrew Bible and Textus Receptus for the Greek New Testament.  The Deutercanonical books are part of neither of those but are preserved for us mainly via Septuagint manuscripts, which I don't trust.

The desire to make it sound like Protestants and Evangelicals are the ones picking and choosing I find annoying because the Catholic Bibles do NOT keep all 12 of those books, only some of them.

The first time one of them was quoted by a Catholic while debating Martin Luther, he responded "since when is that in The Bible?"  While these books were around, they were never considered of equal authority.  It was in response to the Reformation some started being propped up more.

The Catholic Church choose to keep in their Bible ones that they could take as supporting their positions on issues like Prayer for the Dead, but rejected ones that contradicted their views on those issues.  If Protestants were also picking and choosing you'd think they'd have kept the ones the Catholic Church rejected.

While the books of Maccabees are most interesting to us today for being our oldest historical source on the origins of Hanukkah, and the Hasmonean revolt.  I suspect the Catholic Church kept them because of parts like First Maccabees chapter 8 that really praised Rome.  I personally think chapter 8 is where the Hasmoneans starting going wrong.

2 Esdras (also called 4th Esdras by languages that call the Canonical Ezra and Nehemiah 1 and 2 Esdras).  Is infamous for the Prophecies it gives, some of which I have and will in the future mention for the sake of curiosity on my Prophecy Blog.  But the book is dangerous because of a strong Anti-Semitic tone it has.

Judith and Tobit are interesting historical oddities that often come up in talks on Revised Chronology and also Lost Tribes speculation (which one of the 2nd Esdras Prophecies is also a part of).  If they ever were reliable histories the versions we have are clearly corrupt, being filled with confusing geographical contradictions and historical anachronisms.

There are three more books also grouped with the Deutrcanonical books though they are not among the 12 included in the 1611 KJV, or in any Catholic Bibles, but they are popular in the Eastern Churches.

They are 3 Maccabees, 4 Maccabees and Psalm 151.

Psalm 151 doesn't seem to say anything particularly interesting.  But it's amusing to me that it makes the Psalms like the original Pokemon.  150 are all you need, but there is also an extra.

4 Maccabees is a poetic elaboration on a story found in 2 Maccabees.

3 Maccabees however is not about the history it's title would make you think.  It is clearly a work of Prose Fiction written by Alexandrian Jews during the time of Caligula about Alexandrian Jews during the time of Ptolemy IV Philopater.

It has an attempt to do an Abomination of Desolation qualifying event but gets thwarted.  Then later Ptolemy tries to massacre the Alexandrian Jews with drunk elephants.

Something similar to the latter is mentioned by Josephus in Against Apion as being tried by Ptolemy VIII Psycon.  I find it amusing how Ussher and many others since think Josephus must be mistaken on which Ptolemy did this, since 3 Maccabees is clearly a literary narrative, and Jospehus goal in Against Apion was documenting things the Greek Alexandrians could verify from their own (now lost to us) historical records.  Now it's possible similar incidents could have been tried by both Kings since History does repeat itself, but if only one is true it's Ptolemy VIII.

So those are my thoughts on this collection of Apocrypha.  They're interesting sources of information, but not Inspired Scripture.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Was the Name of Yahuah unknown before the Burning Bush?

It is a common assumption that the implication of what Exodus 3 says, and the seemingly more blatant 6:3, is The Holy Name wasn't known before, and therefore everything in Genesis taken as showing it being known is viewed as a contradiction.  These alleged contradictions are taken advantage of by both Atheists, and by believers with weird fringe theories trying to say YHWH is actually the name of a Pagan god added to the text and never originally part of Scripture at all.

I however feel the greater testimony of Scripture is that it was known from the beginning.

Now where it's used in the narrative voice of Genesis one could easily say that's just Moses giving the text it's final form.  But Abraham in Genesis 22 names a location Yahuahjirah, it's not just an editorial note, it says Abraham gave it that name.

The end of Genesis 4 says in the days of Enosh men began to call upon the name of Yahuah.  While this is irrelevant to it's relevance to this issue, I want to state my disagreement that "call upon" should be translated Profane here which I see asserted often.  This is the exact same terminology used when Genesis latter tells us Abraham "called upon" the name of Yahuah, in Genesis 12:8 and Isaac in 26:25.

Some quotes.
     There is no hint in Exodus that Yahweh was a new name revealed first to Moses. On the contrary, the success of his mission depended on the use of the familiar name for validation by the Israelites—The Sentence in Biblical Hebrew (1974:102).
     [The] texts of Genesis show that Yahweh had appeared to the patriarchs (Gen 12:1, 17:1, 18:1, 26:2, 26:24, 26:12, 35:1, 48:3), and that he spoke to each one of them (Gen 12:7, 15:1, 26:2, 28:13, 31:3). The name “Yahweh” occurs 162 times in Genesis, 34 of those times on the lips of speakers in Genesis (W. C. Kaiser, Jr., “Exodus,” EBC 2:340-41). They also made proclamation of Yahweh by name (4:26, 12:8), and they named places with the name (22:14). These passages should not be ignored or passed off as later interpretation.
Exodus 6:3 has been addressed on this issue in a few ways.  One is that "name" here is being used in the sense of character.  Many are discussed here from a Karaite Jewish perspective, some things he mentioned being not fulfilled yet we believe are.  Another is that the "not" part is meant to be Rhetorical.  Taken form this page quoting a user named Frank Luke.
W. J. Martin has suggested this translation.
"I am YHWH. I allowed myself to appear to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as El Shaddai. My name is YHWH. Did I not make myself known to them?"
Martin argues that the translation of the key clause as a question is demanded by verse 4 beginning with "And also I established my covenant." That would seem to imply that the preceding clause ought to be taken in a positive sense and not a negative sense, such as "by YHWH I was not known to them."
As for Exodus 3.  What happens there can be taken many ways too.  In fact the implication can absolutely be read as implying it's a name already known.  The scene is also believed to reflect Moses entering this on an erroneous Pagan notion that knowing a god's name gives you power over them, he grew up a Prince of Egypt remember.

As for the desire to allege the name is Pagan.  Attempts to find it in Canaanite or Arabic texts or inscriptions that clearly predate Moses or even Solomon are all lacking.  Especially since I believe in Revised Chronology.

The best argument for a Pagan origin for Yah is the Egyptian moon god Iah.  How exactly to pronounce Egyptian names has been lost, Iah is the default you see on Wikipedia, but it also states other alternatives like Yah, Jah, Joh or Aah.  They become less similar to the Hebrew Yah as we go down the list.  Other equally likely possibilities could include Ieh, Yeh, or Jeh, which will prove ironic later.  That the Iah theophoric name Ahmose is rendered in Greek texts like Hedotus and Manetho as Amasis or something similar, I consider support for something like Aah being correct pronunciation.

Aah could be etymologically related to Ajah/Aiah, which is not a Yah theophoric name but can easily be confused for one, it comes from the Hebrew word for Hawk or Kite or Vulture.  The Egyptian moon god Khonsu's name is spelled with Hieroglyphics that resemble similar kinds of birds.

Iah isn't even the main Egyptian Moon god.  There were two for the Moon just as there were for the Sun (all four were male unlike in many other cultures).  The main Sun deity was Ra, while Aten was a lesser one, more like the name for the visible Solar disc itself.  For the moon Iah was equivalent to Aten not Ra, the main Moon deity was Khonsu.  Still Akhnetan choose Aten over Ra for his Henotheistic Sun cult, so hypothetically someone could have done the same with Iah for a Moon cult.

I'm curious what the oldest Egyptian references to Iah are.  I'm wondering if it could have come from in some way the influence of Joseph and later got corrupted.

Fringe theorists will suggest that the Hebrew name for the Moon, Yerech/Yerikh often transliterated into English as Jerah/Jereh, was originally identical to Yahweh but that the scribes changed the spelling of one or the other to obscure it.  But Yerach is the same spelling non monotheistic Semites used in the texts we have for them.

The words only have in common beginning with the same letter, as do many other not related Hebrew words.  The two letters for "h" are different, Yah uses Heh and Yerach uses Heth/Cheth.

Another thing people might use to support a Yahweh as a Moon God theory is the fact that the Torah uses a Lunar calendar.  Mostly I think God wanted that to be contrary to the Solar Calendar as the standard of their Canaanite neighbors.  But many other Calendars have been Lunar including the Attic Greeks without it meaning they favored Moon worship over other gods.

Also I've seen the theory out there that the name of Sinai comes from Sin the Akkadian Moon god, and Horeb means shining (a meaning linked to lunar deities like Phoebe).  I consider neither of those the most likely etymology.  Horeb is spelled identically to the Hebrew word for Sword, and is also related to Cherub, Cherub's similarity to Sword is part of the wordplay of Genesis 3:24.  The name Sinai first occurs in Exodus 16:1, which also refers to a place called Sin, the Hebrew spelling implies they come from the same root as the Sinite tribe of the Canaanites.  It was probably populated by Sinites first then the Midianites and/or Kenites drove them out.  Now it may be the Akadian deity's name comes from the Sinites, who knows.

To show I'm not a hypocrite I want to say I no longer agree with labeling Allah a moon god.  The main Idol of the Pre-Islamic Kaaba was Hubal, who was not a Moon god but the Nabatean form of Baal.  There are many theories as to the origin of the Crescent Moon being a Muslim Symbol, nothing in the Koran actually calls for it to my knowledge.  The theory I favor is it being connected to them using a Lunar calendar.  Some Pre-Islamic Arabian Jews are known to have used a similar symbol for that reason, the Muslims might have copied them.

The argument for the name being a foreign insertion into the Hebrew texts has two basis really, but a third implication from that is that all Yah theophoric names as well as the expression halleluyah should replace the Yah part with Ye or Yeh.

The first basis is a supposed inconsistency between YHWH and the I AM statement that we assume was when the name was revealed.

The Hebrew says "Ehyeh asher Ehyeh" which gets translated "I AM that I AM".  The Hebrew word for I AM is Hayah, but Ehyeh is the first person form.  Someone saying it to refer to someone else would say Hayah.

An interesting fact is that Hebrew and many ancient languages unlike English will use their definite article before a personal name.  The Hebrew definite article is just the letter Heh added to a word as a prefix and pronounced Ha.  So really every occurrence of Yah is really HaYah.

So really the I AM statement is more like a pun on an existing name, not the origin of one.

The second Basis is arguably more then one but all from how the Greek New Testament renders things.  But the New Testament passage that works against them they say is corrupt.  So they're selective.

Now this theory doesn't necessarily assert Ehyeh was the original everywhere you see YHWH.  Based on the common assumptions about Exodus 6:3 they would probably say it should be El Shaddai everywhere it occurs in Genesis.

And they may use the Septuagint and New Testament quotations of the Hebrew Bible to support saying Adonai (Lord) was in the original.  The Septuagint which I have expressed my problems with before was the product of developing Jewish superstition that you shouldn't pronounce the name, that came from a misunderstanding of the 4th Commandment.  The Hebrew Bible is against that idea however, it record the name being spoken in dialogue by humans often.

New Testament quotations I think happen to also do this because for the New Covenant Yeshua/Iesous/Jesus has replaced Yahuah as the personal name of God.

And they use the Greek spelling of Jesus to support their replacing of Yah with Ye/Yeh.  Problem is Eta following the Iota is a common practice of Greek transliteration that does not necessarily tell us how it was pronounced in the original language, we see it with many names that started with a Yot.  Though in this case I think the Holy Spirit might have been playing with how Eta has an ambiguous relationship to the "h" sound.

Revelation 19 verifies that Hallelujah should be pronounced ending with an A sound rather then an E.  So they allege that word wasn't originally in the text at all.  They don't even say it's absent from any old texts, which it could very well be from the Alexandrian corpus.  Their main argument is that Revelation 19:1-6 is a repeat of part of Revelation 7.  There may be thematic or poetic parallels there, but they were blatantly arguing for a non Chronological view of Revelation.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Cannabis in The Bible

I've already mentioned how The Bible proclaims no Plant Life unclean.  Thing is the Cannabis plant is mentioned in The Hebrew Bible as a plant used in the Worship of Yahuah.

The common view is that the word Cannabis is Scythian in origin, but it seems the Scythians had a decent amount of contact with Ancient Israel and Judah, they are refereed to in The Bible as Magog after all, and a Hebrew artifact was once found in the grave of a Scythian warrior woman.

Cannabis comes from combing the Hebrew words Qaneh (Strong number 7070) three times rendered in the KJV Calamus, and Bosem (Strong number 1314).  Qaneh on it's own could also be a reference to the plant in question, but Bosem just means sweet smelling or fragrance.  The actual Calamus plant does not have the qualities The Bible describes this plant as having.  Two other KJV occurrences render it Cane.

The usually cited first appearance is Exodus 30:23.
Take thou also unto thee principal spices, of pure myrrh five hundred shekels, and of sweet cinnamon half so much, even two hundred and fifty shekels, and of sweet calamus two hundred and fifty shekels,
This is from the instructions for The Tabernacle given by Yahuah himself.  This is probably one of the incense refereed to in Exodus 30:8-10.

Then there is the Song of Solomon 4:14.
Spikenard and saffron; calamus and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense; myrrh and aloes, with all the chief spices:
Definitely not a negative reference.

Next is Isaiah 43:24
Thou hast bought me no sweet cane with money, neither hast thou filled me with the fat of thy sacrifices: but thou hast made me to serve with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities.
Another clear reference to it being an incense offered to Yahuah.

After that is Jeremiah 6:20.
To what purpose cometh there to me incense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices sweet unto me.
A negative passage, but still clearly consistent with it being an incense used in The Worship of Yahuah.

Finally is Ezekial 27:19.
Dan also and Javan going to and fro occupied in thy fairs: bright iron, cassia, and calamus, were in thy market.
It's part of the Prophecy of Tyre's destruction, referring to it as a plant Tyre traded.  Remember much of what was used in Solomon's Temple was available via his trade partnership with Tyre.

And this is the Dan and Javan verse I so often refer to.  Perhaps Dan is a factor in how the Scythians came to use the same term for the plant.

Most others discussing this topic think these five are the only verses.  Basically directly correlating to when the KJV renders Qaneh either Calamus or Cane.  Now the Strongs does have a tendency to classify things as the same word when they're really different forms of the same root, so it can be complicated, clearly many uses of 7070 seemingly are not a plant or herb.  Like when it's used of the Branches of the Menorah in Exodus 25.

Only three of the five also use Bosem ("Sweet" in the KJV).

It's actual first occurrence is in Genesis 41 where it is twice translated "stalk", in reference to Corn Stalks.  The Canibus plant also grows on stalks.

There is also 7071, a river in Israel called Kanah.  Mentioned in Joshua 16:8, 17:9 and 19:28, in the land allotted to Ephraim.

Now a lot of religions out there want to use these Biblical references to the plant for their own agenda.  It's important to note none of these references seem to refer to recreational drug use.

The point is, don't let anyone convince you Cannabis is an evil plant.

There are also possibly references to Hemp.
(Cannabis sativa, Linn.)
“Thy raiment was of fine linen.”—EZEK. 16:13.

THE Hebrew word shesh or sheshi, translated “fine linen,” occurs, according to Royle, twenty-eight times in EXODUS, once in Genesis, once in Proverbs, and three times in Ezekiel. This fine linen was spun by women, as mentioned in Exodus 35:25, where it is said, “All the women that were wise hearted did spin with their hands, and brought that which they had spun, both of blue, and of purple, and of scarlet, and of fine linen.” Ezekiel says of Tyrus, “Fine linen with broidered work from Egypt was that which thou spreadest forth to be thy sail” (Ezek. 27:7). The material of which this fine linen was wrought is considered by many to have been the produce of the hemp plant. This is rendered probable also by the similarity between shesh and the Arabic word haschesch, which is applied to hemp. Hemp consists of the fibres of Cannabis sativa, a plant belonging to the natural order Urticaceæ or nettleworts. It is a native of Persia, and is now extensively cultivated in Europe as well as in India. The variety cultivated in India is sometimes called Cannabis indica, and is remarkable for its narcotic qualities. The dried flowering tops of the female plant from which the resin has been removed are used to form a medicinal extract and tincture. The resinous matter covering the leaves is called churrus; and the names bhang, gunjah, and haschesch, are given to the dried plant in different states. It seems likely that the hemp plant was cultivated in Egypt in ancient times as well as the flax plant; but accurate information on the subject is still wanting. The Hebrew word bad is also translated “linen.” Thus it occurs in Exodus 39:28, where it is said that they made for Aaron and his sons “a mitre of fine linen, and goodly bonnets of fine linen, and linen breeches of fine twined linen.” The Hebrew word butz or buz is also translated “fine linen” and “white linen,” as in 1 Chronicles 4:21; Esther 1:6; Ezekiel 27:16, etc. In the New Testament the Greek word byssus is translated “fine linen,” as in Luke 16:19; Rev. 18:12, 16, and 19:8, 14. (See also Flax.)

Balfour, John Hutton. The Plants of the Bible. London; Edinburgh; New York: T. Nelson and Sons, 1885. Print.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Is there a correlation between being Levitically Unclean and biologically Unhealthy?

The perception that there is is a popular argument of people who want to argue Christians are still required to follow the Dietary Laws.  And generally conceded by Christians who don't just so they can say "isn't the Bible's scientific knowledge awesome!".  And the latter fits my own personal bias.

And it's easy to make it seem that way when you single out Pigs/Swine/Pork among all Unclean animals.  And singling them out became popular during the Inter-testamental period.  But The Bible doesn't support it, neither Leviticus 11 or Deuteronomy 14 lists pigs first when giving examples of unclean land mammals.  And they're by definition not the most unclean since they do fit one of the two requirements, but failing to have either is enough to be unclean.  And the story about Antiochus Epiphanes offering a Pig on the Altar is not in 1st or 2nd Maccabees, it shows up by Josephus giving it more antiquity then the Menorah legend, but Josephus was not above referring to urban legends as if they were facts.

But the thing is the Hare is one of the unclean animals listed before Pigs.  And Rabbit meat is considered healthy to eat.  My searches on the subject found the only disparaging thing said about it being that it's to lean to live off only Rabbit meat for very long.

Now there is some dispute about if Arnebeth being translated Hare is accurate, but Rabbits and Hares definitely fit the definition of chewing the Cud but not being Cloven Hoofed, no matter what a skeptic may try to tell you.

I could see the logic in Chewing the Cud having a correlation to being healthy or not, but I don't see how having Cloven Hoofs could mean anything in that department.

Meanwhile there are NO restrictions on eating plant life.  It's not just that the Torah never takes the time to forbid any, Yahuah specifically said all plant life we are allowed to consume, (including the ones used to make illegal narcotics).  Yet some are poisonous, like poison ivy.

You know what's interesting, Humans fit neither requirement for being clean, I wonder if that might be significant?

Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Song of Solomon, who's who?

Well the first thing I'll mention on the subject of potential imperfections of the KJV translation of the Song of Solomon is that I think "undefiled" is a bad translation in 5:2 and 6:9, those are the only verses that Hebrew word is translated that way, it's usually translated "perfect".

But what I mainly want to discus here is what I heard about recently of an alternate reading of the Song where Solomon and The Beloved are not the same person.  And with that usually making Solomon a villain, maybe even a type of the Antichrist (1 Kings 10:14 does link him to the number 666).

One discussion of that possibly is called Solomon as the Antichrist.  Another is one called The Shulamite Woman.  The former has Solomon as only a small presence in the narrative, the latter has Solomon not The Beloved as the male voice talking throughout it, and thus manages to use that to demonize much of the Sexuality in the Song.  The latter view is totally illogical, clearly the male voice of the song is the Beloved.  The former is an interesting theory.

Another site mentioning it is this one.

So I went over the Song with this in mind, trying to pay attention to things that might often be missed.

First I concluded that absolutely The Beloved isn't Solomon.  In chapter 3 our Heroine is looking for her Beloved in the city, if the Beloved is the King the idea that he'd be so difficult to find is odd.  Also in chapter 7 verse 5 the Beloved is talking and refers to the King as a clearly separate person.  Likewise chapter 1 verse 12 has the woman talking about her Beloved and refers to the King it seems as separate.

What I'm not so convinced of however is that Solomon is a villain in the story, or in any way an alternate love interest.  Chapter 1 verse 4 is what gives the impression that she was added to his harem, but it could mean something else, like a Princess becoming part of the court now that's she's of marriageable age.  And the books of Kings and Chronicles seem to say Solomon only married foreign wives and concubines, while this heroine is clearly an Israelite.

Overall I feel the references to the King/Solomon just tell us the woman is living in Solomon's house, and leaves at the end, seemingly receiving a dowry, the vineyards of Baalhamon.

It is often assumed the heroine of the Song has a humble background, often specifically a Shepherdess.  There are Shepherding references, but none that prove that's the protagonist's background.  It is equally likely the Beloved is the Shepherd.

In chapter 7 verse 1 the Beloved calls her a Prince's Daughter.

Chapter 6 verse 13 twice calls the heroine in the KJV "Shulamite".  This is a bad translation, the actual -ites in the Hehrew text have no T, this ends with a Hebrew letter for "th", the one that like Heh usually makes a word or name feminine when used at the end.  Don't be confused that "the" is used in the verse, in Hebrew and Greek the definite article is often used before personal names, it's just in English that it's considered grammatically incorrect to do that.  This translation issue has caused people to imagine a location named Shulam that appears no where else in Scripture.

Her name is Shulamith.  It's a feminine form of Solomon/Shlomo, which is why when assuming Solomon is the husband the name is sometimes taken as just poetically reflecting her as his wife.

Normally the feminine form of Solomon becomes in the KJV Shelomith (some males did have the name it seems, but it's first appearance in Leviticus 24 is clearly a Woman).  In the Hebrew the only difference between how Shulamith and Shelomith are spelled is Shulamith has a Vav between the shin and lamed.

Vav is a letter that in time came to often be used like a vowel, and so many scholars think after the captivity when the scribes became more concerned with representing vowel sounds that Vav and Yot started being used a lot more then they originally were.  So I feel confident in concluding that Shulamith and Shelomith were the same name.

In 2 Chronicles 11:20 a Shelomith is the daughter of Rehoboam son of Solomon and Maachah daughter of Absalom.  Rehoboam was 41 when Solomon's 40 year reign ended, and Solomon probably had Rehoboam at as young as 14 or 15.  So Rehoboam's daughter could easily not only have been born but reached adulthood while Solomon was still alive.

Maachah, wife of Rehoboam, is also called Michaiah daughter of Uriel of Gilead.  The Hebrew word for daughter can mean granddaughter, in all likelihood she was Absalom's granddaughter, since Absalom died before Reboboam was born.  And 2 Samuel 14:17 tells us Absalom had one daughter named Tamar (probably after his sister).  This Tamar may have been the wife of Uriel of Gilead, which seems to be what Josephus implies in Antiquities 8:10:1.  But we're also told Absalom had 3 sons but the sons aren't named.

Abijah also called Abijam, the full brother of Shelomith, died (seemingly of natural causes) after reigning only 3 years as King, and Rehoboam reigned only 17 years.  We're not told how old he was, but I think it's safe to say he could have been 20-25 when Solomon died.

Shulamith speaks of having brothers in the Song, Shelomith likewise had three brothers by the same mother, and numerous others.  She would seem to be her mother's only daughter though, but not her father's, Rehoboam we're told had 60 daughters.

So I think it's possible that the protagonist of the Song of Solomon was Solomon's granddaughter, the daughter of prince Rehoboam, Shelomith.

Update November 2016:  I've now done a follow up post on Typology and Symbolism.