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Monday, March 31, 2008

Clay tablet points to 'Sodom and Gomorrah' asteroid


A Cuneiform clay tablet which for over 150 years defied attempts at interpretation has now been revealed to describe an asteroid impact which in 3123 BC hit Köfels, Austria, leaving in its wake a trail of destruction which may acccount for the biblical (account) of Sodom and Gomorrah.

Related:
Actually Sodom and Gomorrah have been found and documented! But the secular press would never tell you this...

VISITATION ON GOOD FRIDAY


Sometime in the early 90’s a friend of mine talked me into a five-day fast. I was reluctant at first, but wound up agreeing. It was a five-day fast which would end at noon on Good Friday. Early Friday morning, God spoke eleven words to me. He began with five, "Do you want to travel?" I felt myself leaving my body.

Years earlier, I had a similar experience, although fear gripped me and it cancelled the encounter completely. I wanted to be sure that I could come back to my body, if I left. This time I was not about to let fear rob me. I just lay there for a moment and then answered, "Yes." You cannot go wrong with God when your answer is yes.

I rose from my body: beginning at my feet, until I was hovering above myself, but not at a standstill. "So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away…" (Ezekiel 3:14). I was slowly moving with God in the direction of the Holy Land. We began to pick up speed until I was traveling with the sensation of incredible speed. When we began to slow down, we were slightly curving to the left as we made our descent.
It was then that I began to read big bold letters written across the land, as on a map__E T H I O P I A. Then off to the right I began to read the word Somalia, but it seemed insignificant to the vision, so I looked straight ahead and said, "What is this big white area?" God didn’t answer that question, but said six more words, "This is the tip of Ethiopia." With that, I was instantly back home in my body and fully awake. I drew a map of what I saw, and went to the Good Friday service.

When I arrived home, my wife and son could hardly wait to show me how accurate the lines of my drawing matched up to a world map. For the next several weeks, that map of "The tip of Ethiopia" appeared on all the major news networks. They were reporting on the events taking place in Somalia, but I knew it was a smoke screen for something of much greater magnitude.

That vision, for lack of a better word, had to do with temple treasure. I believe the Ark of the Covenant was being airlifted by helicopter, out of Ethiopia into Israel, or perhaps remains at what God called, "The tip of Ethiopia."

Prior to that, I fasted alone in Israel on and off for twenty-one days and spent a few nights in a cave on the Mount of Temptation, alone. My hair grew thicker and my eyesight became crystal clear. We are told that understanding comes with age, yet to this day I still do not understand why I seemed to be getting younger on that trip. However, I do know that I had nothing to do with arranging the five-day fast that led to my vision of Ethiopia.

Yesterday, the Lord said, "I am changing the look in your eyes." I thought of it as a spiritual thing but also knew it had to do with a look of being dialed in or focused. Later that night I noticed that God had removed scar tissue that had formed on my eye from about the time of my Ethiopia vision many years ago.
Just last week I decide it was time to have it scraped off. It looked like a jelly fish stuck to my eye and for the last few years several of my friends have said it’s gotten really big and that I should see about having it removed. Last week I finally started calling some eye doctors but became discouraged with all the stuff they put you through with appointments and insurance talk, so I said to a friend," I’m just going to start asking God to remove it."

Now only a few days later it’s gone, completely gone. Today my wife and I could not see any trace of a raised blob. It was flattened out and all you could see was an outline of where it once was. That thing has been there for well over fifteen years and within a week of asking God to remove it, it’s gone! That is no coincidence. But I wonder is it also tied in with the timing of my vision of Ethiopia when God said, "Do you want to travel."

On my birthday, March 7th, a man and woman who I just met a few days earlier took me to lunch for my birthday. The next day they called and said, "We want to invite you to travel with us to Africa for two weeks and we will pay for everything." A few days later they invited both my wife and I to join them on a ministry trip to China, Asia and Laos. "Do you want to travel?" YES!

What is God about to do in Africa?

Pastor Tilson

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Could Noah build his ark today?



If Noah had lived in the United States today the story may have gone something like this:

And the Lord spoke to Noah and said, "In one year, I am going to make it rain and cover the whole earth with water until all flesh is destroyed. But I want you to save the righteous people and two of every kind of living thing on earth. Therefore, I am commanding you to build an Ark."
In a flash of lightning, God delivered the specifications for an Ark. In fear and trembling, Noah took the plans and agreed to build the ark. "Remember," said the Lord, "you must complete the Ark and bring everything aboard in one year."

Exactly one year later, fierce storm clouds covered the earth and all the seas of the earth went into a tumult. The Lord saw that Noah was sitting in his front yard weeping. "Noah!" He shouted. "Where is the Ark?"

"Lord, please forgive me," cried Noah. "I did my best, but there were big problems.

"First, I had to get a permit for construction, and your plans did not meet the building codes. I had to hire an engineering firm and redraw the plans. Then I got into a fight with OSHA over whether or not the Ark needed a sprinkler system and approved floatation devices. Then, my neighbor objected, claiming I was violating zoning ordinances by building the Ark in my front yard, so I had to get a variance from the city planning commission.

"Then, I had problems getting enough wood for the Ark, because there was a ban on cutting trees to protect the Spotted Owl. I finally convinced the U.S. Forest Service that I really needed the wood to save the owls. However, the Fish and Wildlife Service won't let me take the 2 owls.

"The carpenters formed a union and went on strike. I had to negotiate a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board before anyone would pick up a saw or hammer. Now, I have 16 carpenters on the Ark, but still no owls.

"When I started rounding up the other animals, an animal rights group sued me. They objected to me taking only two of each kind aboard. This suit is pending.

"Meanwhile, the EPA notified me that I could not complete the Ark without filing an environmental impact statement on your proposed flood. They didn't take very kindly to the idea that they had no jurisdiction over the conduct of the Creator of the Universe.

"Then, the Army Corps of Engineers demanded a map of the proposed flood plain. I sent them a globe.

"Right now, I am trying to resolve a complaint filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that I am practicing discrimination by not taking atheists aboard.

"The IRS has seized my assets, claiming that I'm building the Ark in preparation to flee the country to avoid paying taxes. I just got a notice from the state that I owe them some kind of user tax and failed to register the Ark as a 'recreational water craft'.

"And finally, the ACLU got the courts to issue an injunction against further construction of the Ark, saying that since God is flooding the earth, it's a religious event, and, therefore unconstitutional.


"I really don't think I can finish the Ark for another five or six years if all goes well."

The Cave


If you like cave stories, this one will satisfy...

"I was a little over half way through when something bizarre happened. I was laying there taking a brief break when I heard a sound deep within the cave. It was the faint, but distinct sound of rock sliding on rock. My blood froze in its veins. I couldn’t move. I just lay there straining to hear the sound again. Nothing. I quickly began to scoot toward the exit. I didn’t mention the sound to B, but I did recall one of our earlier trips when B said he heard the same thing."
http://www.storylog.com/mystery-cave/

Food for thought


Soaring prices for products like rice and wheat are causing headaches for aid agencies and politicians
http://www.economist.com/world/international/displaystory.cfm?story_id=10926579

Dismal as all this sounds, there are some grounds for hope. Today's woes may lead to fundamental changes for the better in the world's approach to hunger and food shortages. And not before time, in the view of experts who see something crazy about the way many food-aid efforts are now conceived and executed.





















The Christian Gene

Gay scientists have isolated the gene they believe makes people Christian. This is nutts!!!!!!!


Former The A-Team star Mr. T once stunned a sick child's family by bringing him out of a coma - after doctors begged the actor for help.

The poorly kid fell unconscious in Detroit, Michigan in the mid-1980s - and the only physical movement he made was in response to hearing Mr. T's name.
And when the mohawked star was in town, he stopped by the hospital to visit the ill boy - with miraculous results.
He tells Empire magazine, "His family put toys around him and one of them was a Mr. T doll. And whenever my name came up, the boy moved his arm.
"Somebody told the doctors I was in town, so they called me down there. I closed the curtains and prayed. Then, as I was walking down the hall, the kid suddenly came out of the coma and hollered out.
"That was my supernatural moment."
http://uk.news.yahoo.com/wenn/20080329/ten-mr-t-brought-boy-out-of-coma-c60bd6d.html

Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Holy Spirit


The Holy Spirit! The power of the Highest. He is with us. He guides us. He shows us things to come. Join Bayless Conley as he shares how we can be born of the Spirit and filled with the Spirit.

Video:

Friday, March 28, 2008

Not Good


U.S. seeks enhanced financial authority for Fed
A private company 'The Federal Reserve' might be given broad authority to require information from all participants in financial markets and a right to collaborate with other regulators in writing the rules that companies and institutions must follow.

Related:
Fed Official: U.S. Slipping Into Recession

Jesus Principle At Work


Coercion is the practice of compelling a person to behave in an involuntary way (whether through action or inaction) by use of threats, intimidation or some other form of pressure or force. Coercion may typically involve the actual infliction of physical or psychological harm in order to enhance the credibility of a threat. The threat of further harm may then lead to the cooperation or obedience of the person being coerced.
The term is often associated with circumstances which involve the unethical use of threats or harm to achieve some objective.
Definitely NOT the way of our Lord Jesus Christ!
No torture, no coercion, just human kindness...
Check it out...
Here you see a mugger treated with the 'Jesus Principle.' With great results...
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=89164759
Luke 6:29And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy coat also.
Matthew 5:40And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also.
We need to take a long look at what Almighty God (Jesus Christ) expects of us. Especially in light of our top 'Christian' representative to the world making allowances and condoning waterboarding.
With the help of the church that Barnabus originally planted, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, let's look at the Sermon on the Mount:
The Sermon on the Mount begins with the utterance of "moving lyrical strains of the Beatitudes." They constitute "the string of pearls" which adorn the crowning of Christian ethics. The Beatitudes are independent exhortations of blessedness to mold the character of the Christian believer.

Blessed is the translation of the original Greek word, makarios, which means much more than happy or fortunate. "Blessedness implies a feeling of being highly favored, especially by the Supreme Being, and often a deep joy arising from the present domestic, benevolent or religious affection"
The Beatitudes provide the specifications for the architecture of Christian character. Accepted as a whole, they provide the ingredients for the upright Christian character:

Blessed is the man who is poor in spirit, that is, one who feels so-the humble one, because humbleness is the gate which leads to the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are the mourners, who long to enter the kingdom of God, but who face many difficulties, such as sin and other impediments which block the way to the kingdom of God. Our merciful God will comfort them.

Blessed are the meek, the people who are not disturbed by their own desires, but trust in the Lord . Their attitude will be rewarded with the inheritance of the earth, which means through their convictions and trust in God they will inherit the age to come.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness. They feel the impulse and desire to fulfill the Will of God by their worship of and obedience to God.

Blessed are the merciful not only for giving alms, but especially for giving of themselves in helping others, who in turn obtain mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart, the upright, the sincere, the honest in every thought and activity (Ps. 24:4). They will feel the abiding companionship of God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, between neighbors and between nations, who have a peaceful mind to resolve human discrepancies. They should be the treasurers of divine peace from above in order to provide this peace for others who shall be sons of God.

Blessed are those persecuted for righteousness' sake. People who are armed with virtues of the previous beatitudes are well shielded to face persecutions for the establishment of divine principles of life. The kingdom of God is expanded to their hearts.

Blessed are ye (my Disciples) who resist evil and undergo persecutions by words and acts for My sake.

The blessedness of God is the source of men's rejoicing and gladness not only in themselves but also for the reward in heaven, as it happened to the persecuted prophets.
Salt and Light, 5:13-16
"Ye are the salt of the earth; but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick, and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let you light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

Four terms are used to illustrate the Christian character: salt, light, lamp, and lamp-stand. Salt was used by the Jewish people to sprinkle on oil to give brightness to the lamps. Salt also was used to purify and preserve food. Jesus Christ used these illustrations to show the function of the Christian character, to give brightness to life and to preserve society from the forces of decay. The lamp and lamp-stand were used as an illustration for everyday life of the Jewish people. The significance is that the disciples of Christ and all Christians are obliged to present the light of the Gospel to the world. Jesus named Himself the Light to illuminate the Apostles and disciples as they present the Light of the Gospel to the world, shining before man to show God's good works and to guide man in glorifying the True God.
The Fulfillment of the Ancient Law,
The Attitude of Jesus Toward the Law,
"Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one title shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. 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. 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."

The law of the Old Testament was inspired by God through the prophets in order to guide the people to accomplish the Will of God. Jesus Christ was not to abolish the old law, but to fulfill it and to give it the right interpretation. The fulfillment of the law was attained not only through the new interpretation of the intention of the believers, but especially through the Person of Jesus Christ as Savior in all ages. The old law - the Old Testament in general - is the "custodian" to Christ. What the Old Testament needs is a new interpretation in the light of the teaching of the New Testament and in the function of Jesus for the attainment of salvation. The disciples of Christ should teach the law and practice it in order to be worthy of their mission. It is necessary to add the Christian view to the righteousness of scribes and pharisees, showing that they should sacrifice much of their pleasures and riches in order to win believers in Christ. The new interpretation of the Law is "destined to set Christianity free from Judaism" (F. C. Grant).
The Law On Murder,

"Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, 'Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgement.' But I say unto you that whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgement; and whosoever shall say to his brother, 'Raca', shall be in danger of the council; but whosoever shall say, 'Thou fool', shall be in danger of hell-fire."

The new interpretation of the law is not merely to correct the wrongdoer, but more to prevent him even from thinking of doing wrong. It is the evil thought and intention which is sin, and which needs cure. It is not only the killer who violates the law, but the person who intends to kill, or who is angry with his brother also violates the new meaning given the law by Jesus Christ. Even words which insult another person are considered a violation of the new interpretation of the Gospel.
Reconciliation With Friends, and Enemies,

"Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother halt aught against thee, leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift. Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him, lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison. Verily I say unto thee, thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou has paid the uttermost farthing."

Throughout the New Testament, the right relation of one man to another is stressed and guided not only in its external function but especially from within the heart and mind of the Christian. Any degree of hostility, any hidden thought of envy would be the great separator between the believer and God. The Christian should learn that with the grace of God he should build more bridges of communication with his neighbor, rather than construct fences of protection. A Christian is not expected to be a saint without mar of sin, but he is one who is struggling with himself to avoid the violations of God's Will and striving to overflow with the quality of Christian love which is attainable by sacrifice of pleasures, pride and riches. The Christian has no enemies; does not seek revenge; does not stop praying for people whose hearts are not yet cultivated and watered by the grace of God.
Law On Adultery,

"Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, 'Thou shalt not commit adultery.' But I say unto you that whosoever looketh on a women to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out and cast it from thee; for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. And if thy right hand offend thee; for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell."

Adultery was a weakness of the people of the past and still remains as such among the people of the Christian era. In the past, customs and laws legalized adultery and fornication through polygamy. Solomon with many "wives" was not committing adultery. Jesus stated that adultery is sinful, not only through the actual sexual act, but even through the thought of lust.
Jesus condemns adultery in the heart. The illustration of plucking the eye is not to be taken literally; neither the illustration of cutting off the right hand. These illustrations suggest the uprooting of evil thoughts from one's heart. In Christian ethics, the only legal and sacred relation between man and women is their union in wedlock. Every other sex relation and practice is against the principles of the Gospel.
The Law On Divorce,
"It hath been said, 'Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement.' But I say unto you that whosoever shall put away his wife, saying for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery; and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced cometh of evil."

Jewish men at the beginning of the Christian era had the right to divorce their wives and marry again. Jesus Christ forbids divorce save for the cause of fornication.
Law On Oaths,

"Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, 'Thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths.' But I say unto you, Swear not at all: neither by heaven, for it is God's throne; nor by the earth, for it is his footstool; neither by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. Neither shalt thou swear by the head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black. But let your communication be, 'Yea, yea'; Nay, nay'; for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil."

Jesus stresses that truthfulness of speech is indispensable for the maintenance of a healthy community. James 5:12 reads,"Let your yea be yea, and your nay, nay". The Christian. has no right to swear either by heaven or "by your head". Jesus Christ commands, "Swear not at all" (5:34) in private life and enterprises. An oath is required in a court of law. But an individual who takes the oath to tell the truth invokes God to help him to state the truth and aid the court to pronounce justice.
Law On Revenge,

"Ye have heard that it hath been said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.' "But I say unto you that ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man will sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also. And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away."

Revenge is forbidden because it multiplies evils a hundredfold. The Christian should "overcome evil with good". Jesus condemns the legalized Jewish custom of "an eye for an eye" (which probably means only an eye for an eye), and commands the Christian to tolerate the insult if his enemy smites his right cheek. The Christian should tolerate such humiliation because of his firm faith in God's command; he sacrifices his ego and pride with the intention of winning his enemy to Christ, making him his friend and creating in him a belief in Christ on whose commandment he is a servant.
Love For One's Enemies,

"Ye have heard that it hath been said, 'Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy.' "But I say unto you, 'Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and them which despitefully use you, persecute you, that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven; for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.' For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? Do no even the publicans the same? And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? Do not even the publicans so? Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."

Christian love is unique in the Gospel. Its root is absolute dedication to God's Will, from which the believer receives the power and grace not to forget his enemy but to forgive him and remember hope that some day he will win his enemy to Christ. This needs a deep understanding of sacrifice enriched and nourished ceaselessly by the grace of God. In fact, it is not the faithful one alone who forgives and loves his enemy, but also God Almighty Who has shielded His servant to convey His love and sacrifice for his enemy. Love of intimate friends and relatives is commonplace. What God expects from His believers is love for people who are either opposed to them or who are without qualities of attraction.
Pious Works and Their Practice,

"Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to he seen of them; otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven."

The Christian who has been taught the principles is ready to serve the Will of God toward his fellow man. The Christian is confronted with the difficulty of choosing the proper way to help his fellow man. Jesus admonishes the Christian that everything should be done "not before men to be seen of them". The Christian is urged to put to work his faith. His good works should not be done before men to gain him recognition, but in such a kind and gentle way as to make more steadfast their hope in the providence of God. The Christian should not practice good works for the sake of good works, but in the name of Jesus Christ; he is His steward of the riches and blessings of God. Almsgiving, prayer and fasting are included in the good works which apply, respectively, to one's neighbor, to God and to one's self.
Almsgiving,

"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. But when thou doest alms let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth, that thine alms may be in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly."

The practice of giving alms was mentioned to guide the intentions of the giver and to sanctify his offering in the name of God. Secrecy in giving alms is imperative to eliminate the arrogance of the giver and to make him only God's steward and servant. The true meaning of the art of almsgiving is not the anonymous gift, but the humble gesture of the donor through the deep feeling of serving God's will. The Christian donor should not advertise his generosity to immortalize his name, but should pray for God's blessing to be in a position to further contribute to a good cause in God's name.
Prayer,

"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. 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. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions as the heathen do; for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. But not ye therefore like unto them; for your Father knowest what things ye have need of, before ye ask him."

Prayer also should be offered in privacy; but does not eliminate corporate worship. Prayer should be sincere, concise, ritualistic or extemporaneous, constituting a sacred conversation with Almighty God and offered in repentance and obedience.
The Lord's Prayer,

"After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; but if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

The Lord's Prayer was taught to the disciples by Jesus Christ not as the only prayer, but as an example for other prayers in various circumstances and needs to reach communion with God. In the Lord's Prayer the Christian invokes God the Father for his tenderness and mercy, and at the same time he confesses the brotherhood of mankind in order to sanctify His Name, to obey His Will and to thank God for his daily bread. The Christian pledges to forgive his debtors and invokes God to deliver him from evil.
Fasting,

"Moreover when ye fast be not as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance for they disfigure their faces that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head and was thy face, that thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly."

Fasting in itself is not a virtue, but it helps the pious Christian behave himself, to give alms and to pray. Fasting once was the practice of abstention from everything but bread and water. For the Christian today fasting is instead a certain selection of foods. Spiritual fasting is the abstention from sin, exemplifying love and charity for the needy and accomplishing God's Will toward one's neighbor.
TRUE DEVOTION, AND TRUST IN GOD,
Treasures In Heaven,

"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 yourself treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

Riches and treasures on earth are corrupted by moth and worm in the hands of an owner who has made them his goal on earth. In their desires to gather wealth for the sake of wealth, as an objective of life, many men have made wealth an idol. Treasures and riches can be handled by a Christian as a steward, as an instrument for progress and work, for charity and help, transferring earthly wealth into treasures in heaven. The human heart belongs either to earthly wealth or to treasures in heaven.
Clear Sight,

"The light of the body is the eye. If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light; but if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!"

What the lamp is to the house, the eye is to the body. If the eye is sound and healthy, it provides happiness; if the eye is diseased (evil), it is blind and brings darkness to human life. By obeying the principles of the Gospel, the Christian clarifies his sight and insight in order to serve his mission in bringing the Light to the world.
True Loyalty,

"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."

There is no neutral position for the Christian. He is exhorted to oust evil from his heart and at the same time act ceaselessly for the development of his Christian character. God and mammon (wealth, property, possessions, etc.) should not be placed on the same level by compromising and exchanging their influence. Mammon should always serve God's Will so the Christian may keep his loyalty to God undefiled.
Faith In God - Against Anxiety,

"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 the meat, and the body than raiment? 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? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin. And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today and tomorrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? "Therefore take no thought, saying, 'What shall we eat? or, 'What shall we drink? or, 'What withal shall we be clothed?' For after all these things do the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father Knoweth that ye have need of all these things. "But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these 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."

Verses 6:25 to 34 (cf. Lk. 12:22-31) are an analysis of verse 24, which deals with the overwhelming feeling of anxiety. Men of every generation, regardless of the progress of civilization, feel anxiety if they are not careful to trust in God. The desire for security for the future is very strong, not only in the underprivileged one, but to anyone, regardless of wealth.
The only way to overcome anxiety ("anguish or fear coupled with uncertainty, or of the anticipation of impending misfortune, disaster or the like") is to dedicate oneself without any reservation to the providence of God and His loving care. Here our Lord Jesus Christ presents God acting and caring for the individual believer and for the betterment of mankind. God shapes the history of human activities for the benefit and salvation of the individual and the world.
The Christian is urged to have confidence in himself, working and acting according to the principles of the Gospel, and to entrust his future to Almighty and Loving God, Whom he praises and worships. The opening sentence of this paragraph starts with the admonition, "Take no thought for your life" (v. 25), and ends, "Take therefore no thought for the morrow". Our Lord summarized His utterances saying, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you." Whoever shall seek it "first" will search for it, and only it - the Kingdom of God.
Judgement Of Others,

"Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, 'Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye,' and behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye."

The devout Christian is aware of the final judgment which will take place at the second coming of the Lord. This judgment will consider the activities of the Christian, especially in relation to his neighbor. "Judge not", is both a warning for the Christian not to exercise judgment against his neighbor and also an indication that by not judging others he may not be severely judged by God. The Christian is urged not to compromise evil doings with the moral principles of the Gospel; he as a Christian is appointed a guardian of the Christian moral code to function in the everyday life of his society.

The Christian has no right to condemn his neighbor; on the contrary, he should show kindness and sympathy. But he does have the right to judge the wrong activity in itself. He does not have the right to judge the thief, but has the right to pronounce stealing a crime against society and a sin toward God's Will. By judging the wrong activity as such, the Christian includes himself, because he is responsible for the poor education of the people which afflicts the members of society at large. The Christian is advised to "cast out the beam from thine own eye", which means to provide means for greater education and sound guidance for all peoples, young and old, so that all people respect the law and follow the sphere of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
THE RIGHT WAY OF PRESENTING THE GOSPEL,

"Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you."

The christian is an ambassador of the Will of God and the Gospel; his mission is to present the Message of Christ wherever he is and with whatever he has at his disposal. His example, his manner, his words and sympathy, according to his position and responsibilities, are to be used for the expansion of the kingdom of God. The Christian should be careful of how to approach people who are disrespectful and impure; he is advised to use his friendship and acquaintance in order to encourage these people to follow the Christian way of life and then to show them the holiness of God and the pearls of His Gospel.
THE ANSWER OF A TRUE PRAYER,

"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? "If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him"'

Ask, seek, knock. These words emphasize the persistence that a faithful Christian should use to invoke God's mercy and enlightenment. God knows what the faithful man needs, but the persistence of the faithful one to invoke God's mercy is for his own benefit, making him vigilant and bringing him nearer to God by keeping the channel of communion open and clear. The Christian is urged to watch and pray ceaselessly with the immutable confidence and conviction that God Almighty, his Father, will answer those petitions which are for his benefit, not only for this life but also for the eternal life.
THE GOLDEN RULE,

"Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them; for this is the law and the prophets."

Provided that faith in the true God is firm and life-giving, the Christian must apply the fruits of his faith toward the benefit of his neighbor. If, for instance, his neighbor is crippled, the Christian should do those things for him which he himself would need were he the crippled one. In these plain and practical words our Lord summarized the commandments of the "law and the prophets". The technology of today provides ways to cultivate the vast energy of the earth and the universe, and has the potential to provide goods for everyone on earth to enjoy a decent life. Technology is a blessing in the hands of men and nations who are inspired to produce and share the goods of life for all people on earth and to establish brotherhood under the blessings of God, the Father. This deep conception of responsibility is the only ground on which to establish peace on earth, which is the goal of the Golden Rule of Christ.
TRUE DISCIPLESHIP,
The Narrow Way,

"Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat; "because strait is the gate and narrow is the way which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."

The Christian faithful should bear in mind that the undertaking of Christianity should be exemplified through Jesus Christ as an inspired member of the Church in love and sacrifice. The gate of the kingdom of God is straight and narrow leading to salvation, unlike the gate of destruction, which is broad. The privilege of choice should be evaluated for the Christian to select rather the narrow gate which demands sacrifice and humility, kindness and sympathy to enter "unto life". The picture of the two roads and ways of life was known and exemplified by the pre-Christian world, as well as the Christian.
The Test Of Goodness,

"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit, but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. "A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. "Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."

"False prophets" of Christianity are dressed with the mantle of hypocrisy and cleverness; they seek to exploit the simplicity of kind people and replace the Gospel of Christ and Christ Himself with temporary manifestations of glory and human accomplishment. They are false prophets who endeavor to forge with shrewdness untruth from the true message of Christ. We should beware of them. The Orthodox Church is the guide to the true meaning of the Gospel and the true mission of Christ by preaching the same Gospel and the same Lord from the dawn of Christianity to today, without deviation or innovation. The believer is urged to be firmly the member of the sacred body of Christ - the Church - to gain nourishment and sanctification. To distinguish the true prophet from the false, Christians should be well informed and alert, learning the meaning of the Gospel, worshipping the True God and helping each other in faith in the realm of the Church Whose Head is Christ.
Judgement And Its Criterion,

"Not every one that saith unto me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy name done many wonderful works?' And then will I profess unto them, 'I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity."

Hypocrisy and false prophecy can be hidden from the eye of the believer by pretending to exercise good works and "casting out demons" in the name of the Lord. False prophets can deceive their fellow man; but they cannot deceive the judgment of God. Who will declare to them, "I never knew you; depart from me, you evil-doers".
Arrogance, hypocrisy and false-witness of God are the weaknesses of humans. Therefore, the believer without a strong foundation of Christian knowledge and humility, may become the prey of evil ones. External gestures and words are not always the sign of the inner spiritual condition and intention. Therefore, the Christian is urged to look into himself with the light of the Gospel to illuminate his conscience in order to pave the wax of obedience and humbleness which leads to communion with God.
Hearers and Doers of the Sayings,

"Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house, upon a rock: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house, and it fell not; for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them not shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand; and the rain descended, and the floods came and the winds blew, and beat upon that house, and it fell; and great was the fall of it."

The believer faces in life many difficulties, disappointments, misfortunes. Therefore, he should be armed with courage and faith in God to overcome the sorrowful moments of his life, as well as the moments of reluctant faith. The Christian witnesses the rain fall, the floods come and the winds blow; his house-his heart and faith-will overcome their destructive power if his house is built upon the rock, upon a solid and unshakeable rock of knowledge and true worship of God. The wise man lays such a foundation and cornerstone as a strong protector against all destructive and evil powers that threaten him, his house, his faith, his virtuous life. The foolish man builds his house on sand, following the easy-going life without foundation, without solid faith. His house cannot stand the power of destructive forces. The Christian is called to build his house of faith and moral life on the rock which is Christ and His Gospel. His house is a fortress for protection and defense, and for the expansion of the kingdom of God.
ASTONISHMENT OF JESUS'S HEARERS,

"And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine, "for he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes."

On top of the blessed hill, surrounded by trees and birds, in the tranquility of the environment which mother nature provided for this moment, the disciples of Christ breathlessly listened to the Lord. They accepted His words as precious pearls, from beginning to end. They "were astonished at His teaching", and exclaimed, "that he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes". With this treasure in their hearts, the disciples armed themselves with convictions and courage to immortalize Christ and His Gospel throughout the world so that we today share this inheritance which has shaped the destiny of civilization. The Sermon on the Mount, an advanced companion of the Ten Commandments, is perpetuated in the hearts and activities of inspired and dedicated people who bold the banner of Christ's kingship from generation to generation, heralding the living message of Christ to a living society.
Related:

A Man Walks From Alaska to Russia Part 2


Remember how I told you about the dude who actually walked to Russia from the USA?
Well...soon you can drive instead of walk.
A billionaire will dig a 4 lane tunnel linking Russia & US.
Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich has fuelled talk of a massive tunnel between Europe and America by forking out $160 million on the world’s largest drill. The 19-metre giant will be the first drill capable of boring a four-lane tunnel.
The project would link Russia’s far eastern Chutoka region, which Abramovich governs, with America’s Alaska.

Some Friday Genesis



Genesis 1
1In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
Genesis 1:2
2And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

There is what some of us call "The gap theory" in Gen1:2. In 1814, Thomas Chalmers noticed something interesting in the terms for "without form and void, "tohu v'bohu. Isaiah 45:18 reads:

18For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.

This verse seems to indicate that the earth was not originally created "without form and void" but subsequently became that way. In fact, the verb in that sentence translated "was"-haya- means "became," it ia a transitive verb implying action. Lot's wife became (haya) a pilliar of salt- same verb.
So verse two could be translated, "But the earth became without form and void." The word for "but" here is an adversative in both the Septuagint (Greek) and the Vulgate (Latin). One suggestion is that from this hint in verse 2, possibly there is a gap, an interval of time (maybe billions of years), between verses 1 and 2. Some people dismiss this "Gap Theory," but it could be a hint of a precedent catastrophe, possibly associated with the rebellion of Satan prior to the events of chapter 3.

Satan was originally the number one angel in charge of everything. Through pride, he rebelled and took one third of the angels with him. His seat was not in heaven; it was on the earth. The earth was his domain. The "Gap Theory" suggests that God judged the earth and it became without form and void- ruined and uninhabitable. Verse 2 and forward may describe a re-creation, a reconstruction of the earth after eons of helplessness where Satan couldn't repair his mess. "And the Spirit of God moved on the face of the water's"- and rather than wipe ot the earth, God chose to undertake a plan of redemption. Although not a certainty or a doctrine, the Gap Theory is something to consider.

The literal wording of Genesis 1:2 states that a ruined Earth and cosmos already existed BEFORE the creative work of the seven days began. The literal wording of the verse below states that Adam and Eve were created to replace the previous inhabitants of the Earth.
And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.(Genesis 1:28 KJV)

This is most interesting. French scientist have discovered six Ancient Zones of Depleted Uranium with Plutonium Products. Of course modern scientist have written it off as some sort of a 'natural' event. What if ancient man had gotten to the point of being able to use nuclear fusion for power. Read the entire article to get the drift...
http://s8int.com/atomic2.html

Can a plausible and convincing case be constructed for highly advanced civilization on Earth thousands of years
earlier than that which is typically taught in formal education? Is it possible to demonstrate that knowledge
commensurate with space travel might well have been possible back then? That line of thinking is so foreign as to
be impossible for many people, because it doesn’t fit current paradigms, requires an open mind to explore, takes
time to dig out supportive evidence, and requires perseverance to survive the onslaught of peer pressure leveled at
anyone who seriously entertains such thoughts as not only possible but probable. Our scientific institutions and
training tend to deny such possibilities by relegating supportive evidence to the status of myth, superstition, or
religious practice. Our religious institutions and training tend to insist upon belief in ideas which are unverifiable
scientifically. A short while ago, historically speaking, religious conviction supported as facts that the Earth was
flat and that it was the center of all that we survey (because that was the accepted perspective at the time). When
men discovered truth to supplant those beliefs, they were persecuted and sometimes executed for heresy to
prevent spread of that knowledge.

Many scientists deny the existence of a creator, but others have been awestruck
while contemplating our surroundings (from the immensity of the universe to the minuteness of sub-atomic
particles). Some wonder what type of Creator Over All might have been responsible for creating from nothing all
that we perceive, and probably much that we cannot yet perceive. Scientists are trained to trust only the verifiable
and repeatable while the religious faithful are more attuned to exorcising demons, life after death, faith healing
and a host of other things for the most part scientifically unverifiable or unrepeatable. This is not to say that either
is right or wrong but only to establish the fact that both can benefit from solid evidence with extrapolation via
sound logic toward plausible explanations, even when not absolutely verifiable nor required to be accepted totally
upon faith. In short, there should be an acceptable position between the concrete and the ethereal (pending further
discovery) which could prevent some of the "death struggle among factions" for the benefit of all civilization on
Earth. Closed minds often contain more misinformation than truth. Teaching openness to new ideas should be a
goal of formal education yet the opposite is often the result. That said, I dare you to explore some new ideas, test
them, then decide whether to keep them, but please don’t dismiss them without examining the evidence.
http://www.lloydpye.com/DamonPathArticle.pdf

Question:Could a civilization really destroy itself by nuclear weapons?The atomic bomb that obliterated the Japanese city of Hiroshima in 1945 had a payload of 13 kilotons (13 thousand tons of TNT). The largest publicly known individual nuclear weapons in existence today have yields rated at approximately 50 megatons. There are now several countries that have nuclear weapons.Should all those weapons go off one day, there would be a sequence of events on this planet.Colossal booms would be heard. Shock waves would be triggered. Flashes of super bright light would be sent forth. There would be ripples in the land as the shock energy causes the earths surface to buckle and heave resulting in major earth quakes which toss everything in the air. Tsunami's would be sent forth, covering islands and coastal regions. The tidal waves would destroy everything in their paths. Hundreds of millions of people would be wiped out in minutes.
Soon the world would fall into a "nuclear winter" as dust and smoke hefted up into the atmosphere by the nuclear explosions and by the fires, blotting out the sun for several months. The land would become so dark you will not be able to see your hand in front of your face. A long period of freezing shadowy gloom would follow, during which many of the living that had survived the initial effects of the explosions would have perished from cold, hunger, and exposure. Photosynthesis would be suppressed and all over the earth the food chain would be interrupted.
The pall of smoke would mix with the floating ash and dust thrown into the upper atmosphere by the explosions. With the loss of sunlight, land temperatures would plummet to Siberian winter levels, thick ice would form over rivers and lakes, animal and plant life would be devastated, all farming would cease. There would be chemical changes in the atmosphere. The explosions would fuse atmospheric nitrogen and oxygen to form nitrogen oxides, which would later react with water to form nitric acid. Similarly sulphuric acid might be produced from burning plant material. Such reactions would completely remove the protective layer of stratospheric ozone. As the sky gradually cleared of smoke, ash and dust, therefore, any surviving creatures on Earth would be exposed to ultraviolet radiation of germicidal intensity along with nuclear fall~out radiation.The consequences for humanity would be unspeakably dreadful. And the earth would be left "without form and an empty waste, and darkness would be upon the face of the very great deep...(Genesis 1:2)

Possible Reconstruction...It is undeniable, from the geological point of view, that earth reflects a long history of chaos and upheavel, and of conditions that are distinctly harmful to life rather than perfectly suited for it. It can be shown quite easily, from geology, that earliest record of the rocks fits the description of Gensis 1:2.The six days that followed (1:3-2:1) are generally regarded, by those who hold the reconstruction view, as 24-hour days during which God placed His ruined creation back in order and made it suitable once again for human habitation.Geologists have considerable difficulty in finding evidence for such a "reconstruction" immediately prior to the advent of the human race. It is conceivable, of course, that the brief period of the Garden of Eden would not be recorded in geological formations.There is no universal agreement on the accuracy of the reconstruction interpretation, but it has been taught by some Christian geologists. It offers a plausible way of accounting for the vast span of geologic time, and of harmonizing that time with the Bible record, particularly as it relates to the fall of Satan and the possible cursing of the earth.We read that the Spirit of God, who is the Holy Spirit, moved or brooded upon the face of the waters (1:2). Perhaps this was in preparation for the coming work of God upon the earth.God caused, first of all, light to emerge. This was not the creation of the sun or moon, but probably the clearing away of the heavy blanket of foggy atmosphere which had covered the earth.The work of the other days followed: the vapor was divided, with part remaining in the firmament-space-and part collecting as hugh seas. The dry land was raised; the earth brough forth its floral offerings; the sun and moon appeared; fish, birds, and animals were created; and finally, all was in readiness for man's habitation.After God brought into existence all the creatures (uncounted as yet), He surveyed His work and pronounced it "very good" (1:31).One more matter remained to be accomplished. The triune God held a conference (1:26) to plan for the creation of a person who was to have dominion over all the earth and its creatures-man himself.

Albert Einstein once remarked that there seemed to be a missing planet. Somehow he figured out the gravatational effects and balance of the heavenly planets and their precession, and by his calculations there was a missing planet. As strange as it sounds, there is evidence that perhaps a planet had exploded. We see the astroid pelted moon and we see the astroid belt of debris. The main asteroid belt in our solar system lies between Mars and Jupiter, but some cross Earth's orbit and even collide with the Earth. The discovery of 'impact rings' at the Yucatan peninsula (lending credit to the theory that an asteroid killed the dinosaurs 65 million years ago), the Shoemaker-Levy 9 incident of the mid-1990s, and movies such as 'Deep Impact' and 'Armageddon', have recently increased our awareness of this floating, dangerous, rocky debris. Most planets have evidence of having been pelted by astroid debris.

Seems like the missing planet exploded in some type of a heavenly warfare.
Satan always has sought to hide under a cloak of anonymity. His strategy is to hide his true identity. First, he suggests to susceptible men that he does not exist at all; that the idea of a devil is but a figment of imagination. Surprisingly enough, multitudes of people accept this lie. For them, evil is but the absence of good, and people do wrong simply because they do not do right. The conception of a wicked spirit who lures them to evil is unthinkable. Satan does not want man to know what he has been doing and is doing.

Satan likes people to think of him as a leering, tempting joker. Dressed in a bright red suit, equipped with horns and a tail and carrying a pitchfork, he is pictured as the monarch of hell, surrounded by inmates enjoying a rollicking good time. This is the image gleefully seized upon and exploited by the press and comedians and tatoo artist etc... Nothing pleases Satan more than this unbelievable characterization of himself.

Lucifer's Sin...Admittedly, there are matters in the Scriptures difficult to understand. One of these, certainly, is the reason for the sin of Lucifer. Doubtless, both he and the angelic host were endowed with a free will ( Free moral agency). Yet, how it is possible for him, a being "full of wisdom" and "perfect in his ways" to sin so grievously against God is one of the major mysteries of all time.A striking passage in Isaiah 14:12-17 seems to suggest the sinfulness of Satan and the enormity of his rebellion against God:"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!"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;"I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High."Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit."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;"That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof, that opened not the house of his prisoners?"
The beginning of Isaiah 14 has to do with the restoration and blessing of Israel and the world. Suddenly, however, the spotlight is turned upon the underlying cause of sin and suffering, which is embodied in the person of Satan. He is addressed as "Lucifer," meaning bright and shining one.Some Bible scholars believe that this Isaiah passage is prophetic, from the point of view of that coming time when Satan will come to know the full punishment of the wrath of God for his rebellion and transgression against His throne.The particular interest of this passage lies in the minute examination of the innermost heart of Satan. Here is the key to his sin. Here exposed are the motivating forces which caused his mutiny against God.We must bear in mind that this rebellion occured long before the time of Adam and Eve, apparently long prior to the period when the earth lay "without form and void" (Gen. 1:2).
Open conflict raged between Satan and God, in heavenly places.The character of the sin of Lucifer may be divided into five parts, all progressing from the lesser to the greater. Essentially, the nature of the sin was the desire for self-will. Lucifer wanted his own way instead of the way of God. Essentially, this is the root of all sin.In striking contrast to this was the will of the Lord Jesus Christ when He came into this earth. During His ministry here, He declared His desire for the Father's will rather than His own.The diffrence is sharply outlined when we note that Lucifer five times used the declarative statement, "I will." Against this we note our Saviour's earnest words, "Not as I will, but as Thou wilt"; "I come...to do Thy will, O God" (Matt. 26:39; Heb. 10:7 ).It seems evident that the commission of Lucifer had been to direct the angelic hosts in their various tasks over the universe.
His was also the high honor of guarding the throne of God. Yet, this did not satisfy him. As the scripture outlines Lucifer's sin, the desire of his heart seemed to be to rise to ever greater achievements, even to displacing God from His throne. (Sounds like "Suvivor" huh? You know with all of the competition and deceit stuff...)Note that the first "I will" suggests that Lucifer coveted permanent residence in Heaven ( Isa. 14:13). The next "I will" indicates that he wanted precedence above all of God's creation. The term "stars of God" evidently refers to similar mighty angelic creatures, such as the archangle Michael and the might friend of Israel, Gabriel.
The third "I will" of the devil reveals that this creature sought even further recognition and exaltation in a particular part of heaven known as the "mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north." Perhaps it was in this place that the very high throne of God was located.All of this wickedness led on to its inevitable conclusion. Lucifer, so generously endowed with beauty and wisdom, would not be satisfied with anything but the highest honor. He wanted to "ascend above the heights of the clouds." In fact, he plotted to be like the Most High. In this aspiration lay a naked desire to dethrone God, for no one can be like the Most High without displacing Him.
Although hidden in the heart of Lucifer, these virulent ambitions were known to God, before whose eyes all things are "naked and opened" ( Heb. 4:13). Swift judgement followed. Lucifer was cast down from his high position to become Satan, the deceiver, the adversary, the archenemy of God and the people of God. His final doom is sealed, but the execution of that eternal sentence awaits the time and place appointed by God.

Judgment...All that was involved in the judgment of Satan is not stated in Scripture. We do know that he was relieved of his high position; that he lost his nobility, privileges, and glory; that his character became unspeakably despicable, so that he was spoken of by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself as " a liar and the father of it" ( John 8:44). However, he retained access to heaven as an accuser of believers ( Job 1:6; Luke 22:31,32).
It seems evident that in the fall of Satan, many other angels were involved as well. These are described as "the angels which kept not their first estate" ( Jude 6). Many Bible teachers believe it is these who are referred to as "the third part of the stars of heaven" ( Rev.12:4). This would mean that when Satan was driven from his high position, a third of the angelic host followed him in his rebellion against God and His authority.Some Bible teachers think that these fallen angels are what are known as demons, who are still under the control of Satan, who do his will and war against the power and authority of God. Others seem to be mentioned as " the angels that sinned...delivered...into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment" ( II Pet. 2:4 ).
Three expressions are used to describe the evil spirit beings who are some of Satan's main agents in his warfare against humanity. First, demon ( Greek, diamonion ). This is the primary expression. The second expression used in the New Testament to describe an evil spirit is unclean spirit. The third expression is evil spirit.There are many demons but only one "devil". The original King James Version regularly translates daimonion as "devil". Diamonion is a derivative of daimon. The refrence to the original Greek indicates that there are two distinct entities: diamon, which is primary, and daimonion which is derivative. The english word devil is actually derived from the Greek word diabolos, which has no direct relationship with diamonion. Diabolos means "slanderer".
In all but three occurrences in the New Testament, it is a title of Satan himself. In this sense it is used only in singular form. There are many demons but only one devil.Satan is given this title because his primary activity is to slander- that is, to defame a person's character. First and foremost, Satan defames the character of God Himself. He did this in the Garden of Eden, when he suggested to Adam and Eve that God was not treating them fairly by withholding from them the knowledge of good and evil. Second, Satan defames the character of all those who in any way represent God. This is his primary weapon against the servants of God.Demons influence people.Jesus expeled demons from people:At evening, when the sun had set, they brought to Him all who were sick and those who were demonized. And the whole city was gathered together at the door. Then He healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons, and He did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew Him. ( Mark 1:32-34 )
Believers expeled demons from people:And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed [demonized]; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. ( Acts 8:6-7 )This is New Testament evangelism: The Gospel is preached and the multitudes hear; they see the miracles and casting out of demons and they believe; they are baptized and the Church is established. A central element is the expelling of demons, which is often accompanied by noisy and disorderly manifestations. Other features of evangelism vary, but this element is central to evangelism as practiced in the New Testament, first by Jesus, then by His disciples.What are demons? Demons are disembodied spirit beings that have an intense craving to occupy physical bodies.
Apparently their first choice is a human body.Some Bible teachers believe:1. They are some of the fallen angels associated with Satan in his rebellion against God.2. They are disembodied spirits of a pre-adamic race that perished under some judgment of God not recorded in detail in Scripture.Scripture does not provide us with sufficient evidence to say which is correct.It is believed that the earth was the scene of Lucifers first activity, being, as it were, his headquarters. So, say some scholars, as a result of God's judgment upon the sin of Lucifer, the earth was cursed, too. Those who hold this belief say that this is intimated in the opening statements of the Bible where, after it is told that, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth," it is declared that the earth was "without form, and void" ( Gen. 1:1,2 )It is unthinkable that God would create anything that was imperfect, formless, a desolate waste. His very nature is system and order. He is not the author of confusion. The difficulty is solved in the "substitution of "became" for "was" ( as allowed by the Hebrew), in Genesis 1:2. The thought is thereby conveyed that while the earth originally was created with all the beauty, precision, and perfection characteristic of God, something happened to it. Later, it was changed, possibly due to the fall of Satan.Let us suppose for a moment that daimonions are spirits that once occupied the bodies of members of some pre-Adamic race who led ungodly and sinful lives.
In their present condition, however, they have no way to give expression to the various lusts and passions and emotions they developed in their former bodies. It is conceivable that they could find some kind of vicarious release by acting out their lusts or passions or emotions through human bodies.This would explain one dominant characteristic of demons: their intense craving to inhabit and work through human flesh.Jesus tells us:"Now when the unclean spirit goes out of a man, it passes through waterless places, seeking rest, and does not find it. Then it says, "I will return to my house from which I came", and when it comes, it finds it unoccupied, swept and put in order." ( Matthew 12:43-44 )We need to remember that the Bible records only the history of the race descended from Adam. In this connection it uses the phrase sons ( or descendants ) of Adam. It was to redeem the members of this race that Jesus came as "the last Adam" (Corinthinans 15:45). If other races existed before Adam, the Bible makes no explicit reference to them.It may be that neither of the two theories about demons is correct- that they are neither fallen angels nor disembodied spirits from an earlier race of beings. However demons do exist and they do exert influence over people.
Demons manifest themselves through humanity under many diffrent names.Although the problem of sin is universal, the problem with demons is not. Many members of the human race have come under the power of demons, but not all. There is a close connection between sin and demons. If mankind had never sinned, we would never have been vulnerable to demons.And the remedy? Expel them. Jesus Christ is the answer!
There may have been a great heavenly battle between angelic beings when Satan was cast down from heaven. The earth possibly was damaged along with the complete destruction of the missing planet.

Jeremiah 4:23I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.
Genesis 1:3And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
Isaiah 45:7I form the light...

Almighty God spoke, The universe, earth matter, light, day and night.
"Let there be light"God creates light and separates light from darkness, and day from night, on the first day. Yet he didn't make the light producing objects (the sun and the stars) until the fourth day (1:14-19).

Genesis 1:14And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years:
There seems to be "Light" and "Lights."

Psalm 74:16The day is thine, the night also is thine: thou hast prepared the light and the sun.
We know that the moon does not produce it's own light, it only reflects the sun's light.
The Psalmist tells us that God clothes Himself in light:
Psalm 104:2Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain.
Habakkuk 3:4And his brightness was as the light; he had light beams (rays) coming out of his hand: and there was the hiding of his power.
Matthew 4:16The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.
Matthew 17:2And (Jesus) was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.
Acts 22:6And it came to pass, that, as I (Paul) made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me.
Acts 22:9And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid; but they heard not the voice of him that spake to me.
Acts 22:11And when I could not see for the glory of that light, being led by the hand of them that were with me, I came into Damascus.Acts 26:13At midday, O king, I saw in the way a light from heaven, above the brightness of the sun, shining round about me and them which journeyed with me.1 Timothy 6:15-17
15Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;
16Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto.
1 John 1:5This 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.
Revelation 22:5And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.

Adam and Eve...The account of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden is factual. It is neither a myth nor an allegory. God planted the Garden, and then, taking the dust of earth, He formed the body of Adam, breathed into his nostrils the breath of life (God's life) and man became a living soul ( Gen. 2:7). After this, God made Eve from a rib of Adam. Thus, the first family began.One of the distinguishing characteristics of mankind is free will. Man is a creature with power of choice. He may choose the will of God or his own way.To emphasize this, God placed a special tree in the Garden, there were other trees too. But this one tree was forbidden. It is called the tree of knowledge of good and evil.The necessity for such a tree is clearly seen. Adam and Eve were to be called upon to choose for God. But there would be no choice if there was not a possibility to choose against God.

But God did everything to make obedience wholly desirable. He created Adam and Eve with strong mental faculties. They were neither beasts nor barbarians. Their minds were keen, discerning, and they must have known instinctively what it takes years of schooling to accuire of the knowledge of the universe today.

God provided abundantly for man's needs. Food was in generous supply; the climate was ideal. Adam lacked nothing. The climax of God's gifts to him was a companion, Eve.Futhur, God warned of the consequences of disobedience. He solemnly set forth the penalty which would accompany any deviation from His revealed, perfect will.God gave Adam work to do. Far too often lives are wrecked from idelness. It was not so much with our first parents. "And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it" (Gen. 2:15). God entered into fellowship with man, and they talked together in the cool of the day (Gen. 3:8).

Then came the test. Satan, smarting under God's judgement, sought to wreck the Lord's new program. Man had been given dominion over that which formerly had been Satan's domain. How would the enemy of God proceed?

This was far from any isolated incident. As it were, all heaven held its breath. The test was not simply whether Adam and Eve would eat the fruit of the tree, but whether the authority of Almighty God would prevail against determined Satanic attack.

The first act of religion is recorded in Gen 3. Remember what Adam and Eve did when they first discovered they had sinned? Gen 3:7: "And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves aprons." The word for 'aprons' actually means 'covering' or 'armor.' We think of them being just nude but it may mean much more than that; they were no longer sheathed in light. This has far more profound implications than we can know. The first thing they tried to do was to cover themselves, to cover over their sin by the work of their hands. "Religion" is always man's attempt to cover himself. But the central message of the Bible is that God Himself has taken care of it as only He can- if we but accept it.
David

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The anti-Christian fundamentalist phenomenon


When we first began investigating the anti-Christian fundamentalist phenomenon in contemporary America, it quickly became apparent that there was probably more to the pattern of hostility expressed toward this group than we initially thought. We knew some segments of the public did not think highly of Christian conservatives.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Trippiest Twilight Zone Episode Becomes A Movie

Having grown up with this stuff, I am always interested to see when someone else mentions it. I hit the goldmine...

A classic Twilight Zone episode written by Richard (I Am Legend) Matheson is getting a big-screen update called Countdown. The original episode, "Death Ship," is about three astronauts who arrive on an alien planet, only to find their own dead bodies, in a crashed version of their own ship. The movie version will be written and directed by Michael Brandt, co-writer of 3:10 To Yuma and the upcoming Wanted.

"Death Ship" was a short story by Matheson before he adapted it into a TV episode. In the famous TV version, after the astronauts discover their own wrecked ship and corpses, they reason that they've jumped forward in time and all they have to do is change their actions to avoid this fate. (Which could be the "predestination" stuff Brandt is talking about.) But there's also a lot of other stuff, including the astronauts seeing visions of their dead friends, and it's hinted that they may actually be dead already, and just seeing weird afterlife visions. Original episode:

Check Brain AT Door Church Fruit


An 11-year-old girl died after her parents prayed for healing rather than seek medical help for a treatable form of diabetes, police said Tuesday.
http://stargoss.co.uk/badhomeopathy/modules/news/article.php?storyid=25
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They believed the key to healing "was it was better to keep praying. Call more people to help pray," he said.The mother believes the girl could still be resurrected, the police chief said.
"As a member of a hospital ethics committee in a city with a very large Christian Science population, I have seen firsthand the stalemate between Christian Scientists and physicians, especially concerning the treatment of Christian Science children. Physicians claim that it is a violation of their professional duties to allow suffering that could be prevented by medical treatment. Christian Scientists claim that it contravenes their religious freedom to be forced to subject their children to medical treatment in violation of their religious beliefs. The stalemate is made more tragic since neither physicians nor Christian Scientists want children to suffer or die, yet Christian Scientists refuse even to have their sick children diagnosed for fear that the physicians will try to force them to accept medical treatment."

From the medical perspective, the Christian Science community simply cannot be respected. What Christian Scientists understand as doing what is best for their children physicians perceive as serious threats to the fundamental rights of those children.

In 1977, Matthew Swan died of bacterial meningitis. This infection is easily treated with antibiotics, but his parents, both Christian Scientists, relied on prayer from Christian Science Practitioners. They did not bring Matthew to the hospital until he had been severely ill for two weeks. His death was severely painful and unnecessary. His parents were not charged in his death.

In March of 2005, Terri Schaivo died of dehydration after her feeding tube was removed. Terri’s husband, her legal next-of-kin, made the decision to withhold medical care. Our view of people as image-bearers of God who are intrinsically valuable led many Christians to vocally support Terri’s parents as they made repeated appeals to courts to have Terri’s feeding reinstated.

Medical technology has advanced rapidly in the past century. A hundred years ago, it was common for a person to die of complications arising from something as simple as a broken leg. Antibiotic drugs and vaccines were unknown.But medical gains are not the answer to all problems. Some medicines – thalidomide, for example – hailed as breakthroughs, have come with tragic and unforeseen side effects. And medical intervention, while useful, can be abused by people seeking easy remedies to circumstances best dealt with in other ways.
So how can Christians make good ethical decisions concerning medical treatment?

For some, seeking medical treatment implies a lack of faith. A young man I know was advised by people in his house church that God would heal him of his illness, leading him to refuse medical care. As a result, he nearly died. Before accepting the medication that would have cured him, he suffered irreversible damage from what was a serious, but very treatable, disease.

Scripture reveals that in many cases, a believer’s faith has led to healing (Matthew 15:28, Mark 5:34). Faith does not, however, guarantee physical healing (as noted from the life of Paul). Nor does it dictate how a person should seek healing; Scripture simply affirms that believers should supplicate in faith.For example, the Roman centurion in Luke 7 humbly asked Jesus to "say the word" so that his servant might be healed. In the very next chapter, Luke records how a woman with a discharge of blood sought healing by touching the fringe of Jesus’ clothing. Jesus healed a man born blind by instructing him to go to the pool of Siloam to wash a mud poultice from his eyes.
The variety of circumstances in which people sought and received healing reinforces the truth that there is no prescribed way to seek healing. Help may very well come through medication, surgery, or a doctor’s advice. The Bible simply affirms that Christ is the source of all healing.

It would be presumptuous to present hard and fast rules about when or when not to seek medical treatment, or about what kind of treatment to seek. But there is biblical guidance to help us make decisions.Christians are called to respect life. We’re called to ground our hope in the resurrection of Christ and in the life to come (1 Corinthians 15:19).

we must remember there are many wonderful advances in drug and surgical treatments that can help people recover from injury and disease. God can use these advances to bring about physical healing. And, through the healing process, God can use us as agents of his reconciliation and restoration in the world (2 Corinthians 5:19–20).

Christians can joyfully take advantage of much that the medical establishment has to offer because, as temples of the Holy Spirit, our bodies are instruments by which we exercise stewardship and glorify God. Often, seeking medical help and advice, keeping our bodies healthy and strong, and preventing disease is the best way to honour God.Ultimately, our aim is to glorify God in every medical choice we make.

Religious Exemption Laws Lead to the Cruel and Unnecessary Deaths of Helpless Children; These Laws also Falsely Mislead Parents Regarding their Legal Duty to Provide Necessary Medical Care for their Seriously Ill Children The deadly consequences of religious exemption laws are apparent nationwide: over the past 25 years there have been over 150 reported deaths of children whose parents chose to rely on faith healing rather than medicine. There are at least 20 different sects and religious groups in the U.S. whose teachings deny the use of medical care. These groups include: Faith Assembly, Christian Science, The Believer's Fellowship, Faith Tabernacle, Church of the First Born, Church of God of the Union Assembly, Church of God Chapel, Faith Temple Doctoral Church of Christ in God, Jesus through John and Judy, Christ Miracle Healing Center, NE Kingdom Community Church, Christ Assembly, The Source, True Followers of Christ, "No Name" Fellowship, End Time Ministries, Faith Cathedral Fellowship, Living Word Assembly of God, Traveling Ministries Everyday Church.

Christian Science is the largest and most prominent of these groupings. Church membership is estimated at 100,000 - 200,000 persons. The church estimates it has 1,800 churches and societies active in all parts of the United States. Since the 1970's there have been at least 18 deaths of Christian Science children; these deaths occurred when the parents denied their children medical care in favor of purely "spiritual healing." Of these deaths: three were from juvenile onset diabetes, an illness which can be controlled by insulin but which is otherwise invariably fatal; four from bacterial meningitis, a deadly illness which, with proper administration of antibiotics, is 90 percent curable; one from a ruptured appendix; one from pneumonia, and one from diphtheria (due to lack of vaccination).

Children have rights too, and parents have certain rights which end when they intrude too far into a child's right to live…the parent's right to bring up the child in the way the parent thinks best-an important right…ends at the point at which the parents' actions endanger the lives of kids…there cannot be in our view a religious exemption no matter how sincere a parent's belief…
No one is trying to outlaw prayer. Doctors are willing for people of any denomination to pray for their patient. Religious exemptions appear to make prayer a legal substitute for the medical care needed by a sick child.
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