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About sami

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  1. In Jeremiah 19:2-6 we see Jehovah deprecating "hell" (that is, denouncing it as a thing which never came up in his mind or heart). That's right. "Hell" was never an idea or concept of Jehovah. Specifically, Jehovah commands Jeremiah to organize a field trip of sorts by purchasing a potters jug (or flask) and escorting a few of the elders of the people and some of the senior priests to the deep valley just outside of Jerusalem – destination – "Valley of the Sons of Hinnom" - that's geh'hinnom in Hebrew. Here, Jeremiah is to present those attending the field trip a few additional charges aside from those already covered in earlier Chapters of Jeremiah - such as; failure to abstain from idol worship; solicitation and participation in religious prostitution; general adultery; institutional corruption and unjust gain; reluctance to keep the Sabbath; encouraging general and institutionalized apostasy; bloodguilt; grafting themselves to foreign political parties; basking in the blanket of amnesia towards God; and producing and honoring false prophets (all originally forbidden in Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, and Numbers). As though these charges were not enough to make even the most reluctant district attorney giddy, there were a few other charges leveled – building altars and images in honor of Ba'al and Molech at Topheth in the Valley of the Sons of Hinnom and sacrificing their children (sons and daughters) by burning them alive in fire as encouraged by Ahaz and Manasseh. To prevent its use again for such religious purposes, King Josiah had the valley polluted, particularly the part called Topheth (2 Kings 23:10). The Jewish commentator David Kimhi (1160 C.E) writes about this valley:"It is a place in the land adjoining Jerusalem, and it is a loathsome place, and they throw there unclean things and carcasses. Also, there was a continual fire there to burn the unclean things and the bones of carcasses. Hence the judgment of the wicked ones is parabolically called Gehinnom." The Valley became the dumping place and incinerator for the filth of Jerusalem. The bodies of dead animals were thrown in to be consumed in the fires to which sulpher or brimstone was added to assist in the fires – and bodies of executed criminals, and others, who were considered undeserving of a decent burial in a memorial tomb mnêmeion. The really cool part is, we can even go along, of sorts, on this filed trip, as the Hebrew Bible provides some rough coordinates of the Valley of the Sons of Hinnom references are made in Johsua 15:8, and Joshua 18:16 - and if you are of the more visually oriented, you can even view photos of geh'hinnom on the internet. In addition to the images and altars and child sacrifice, at Topheth there was practiced sorcery, magic, soothsaying and augury, often employing mediums, and wizards – and these things too Jehovah found disgusting and in specific violation with the commands previously given. But it is not the sorcery, magic, soothsaying and augury which is so emotionally confronted to the field-tripping elders and priests – no, it is the burning of people, alive, in fire that seems to most disturb Jehovah about the atrocities performed in the Valley. Imagine that. Jehovah is disturbed about the thought of burning people alive with fire. In Jeremiah 32:35 it states, "They built the high places of Baal in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to offer up their sons and daughters to Molech, though I did not command them, nor did it enter my mind that they should do this abomination". And in Jeremiah 7:30-32 it states nearly the same, "For the people of Judah have done evil in my sight, says yhwh; they have set their abominations in the house that is called by my name, defiling it. And they go on building the high place of Topheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire—which I did not command, nor did it come into my mind". In both Jeremiah 32:35, and 7:30-32, the word rendered by the NRVS above for "mind", is the Hebrew word lev, which literally means heart. The burning of people, alive, in torturous fire – is not a thing which came up unto Jehovah's heart. But it gets worse. Christians who have adopted the Zoroastrism belief in an endless, conscious, torturous punishment in a fiery "hell" in the 4th century C.E. for all non-believers and other assorted sinners following death, appear to be in direct conflict with the very heart of God. Seems God's heart is not inclined to burning of people alive in fire. What does the Valley of the Sons of Hinnom have to do with Jesus and Christianity? In the Greek form of the Hebrew word "geh'hinnom, it is simply "gehenna". In Joshua 18:16, where Valley of Hinnon occurs, the Septuagint reads "Gehenna". This very same Greek word occurs 12 times in Christian Greek Scriptures, first appearing in Matthew 5:22, then in Matthew 5:22, 29, 30, 10:28, 18:9, 23:15, 23:33, and in Mark 9:43, 9:45, 9:47; and in Luke 12:5; and James 3:6. If you are a Christian - these should sound familiar to you. Yes indeed. Jesus often used this place (geh Hinnom) in his warnings of where one would not wish to be sent upon one's death, as culturally, it was a loathsome place, a place for executed criminals, and basic ones rejected – those not fit to be buried in a memorial tomb (John 5:28-29, ironically renders mnêmeion – a memorial, or memorial tomb). And his Father, Jehovah, did not care for it much either. Those not deemed worthy Jews were tossed into Gehenna following death – and their dead bodies were consumed, and they had no memorial tomb – hence they would not be "remembered" by their God when the time for resurrection came about. Jehovah did not much care for the Valley of the Sons of Hinnon, and it even became a cursed place, in Jeremiah 7:32, it is stated, "Therefore, the days are surely coming, says the LORD, when it will no more be called Topheth, or the valley of the son of Hinnom, but the valley of Slaughter: for they will bury in Topheth until there is no more room". If you were a Jew, this would not be where you would want to end up. Jesus was a Jew, and so his figurative use of Gehenna did not indicate the "hell" so well known by the Pagan and especially the Zoroasters – for after all, Jesus also knew the scriptures, and knew death meant non-existence, the opposite of life, knowing nothing, nothing at all (Ecclesiastes 9:5).
  2. sami


    BREATH OF LIFE "nismath" (from neshamah chaiyim) Genesis 2:7 "And Jehovah God went on to form the man out of dust from the ground and to blow into his nostrils the breath of life,(nishmath) and the man BECAME a living person." (living soul, "breathing creature") (Hebrew, lenephesh chai yah); (Greek, psykhen zosan) ; (Latin, animam viventem) According to scripture, Jehovah God animated the formed dust by the blowing of breath into its nostrils. At that point man became/came to be, a living/animated creature. Was the man/human creature the only form of life created and animated by the breath of life? NO, Genesis 7:22 tells us "Everything on dry land that had the BREATH OF LIFE in its nostrils died." Therefore, everything that needed breath and was outside the ark died and everything inside the ark that needed continued animation by the act of breathing lived. It is interesting to note that in the first chapter of Genesis animals are also referred to as "living souls" nephesh chai yah. Genesis 1:30 " And to every wild animal of the earth and to every flying creature of the heavens and to everything moving on the earth in which there is life,(Or “life as a soul; a living soul.”) I have given all green vegetation for food.” And it was so." King Solomon gives this insight "18 I also said in my heart about the sons of men that the true God will test them and show them that they are like animals, 19 for there is an outcome for humans and an outcome for animals; they all have the same outcome. As the one dies, so the other dies; and they all have but one spirit. So man has no superiority over animals, for everything is futile. 20 All are going to the same place. They all come from the dust, and they all are returning to the dust." Ecclesiastes 3:18-20 So in the grand scheme of things, man is not superior to animals in the matter of created beings. They all have been formed of dust and have the same breath of life ...when they die there is nothing that lives on. Solomon said: 10 All that your hand finds to do, do with your very power, for there is no work nor devising nor knowledge nor wisdom in Sheʹol, the place to which you are going." Ecclesiastes 6:10 But the yearning of mankind is to live, we all plan for tomorrow ... there never seems to be enough time to do what we want to do, see what we want to see, enjoy family and friends. Time passes so quickly and we are gone. Our yearning for all the happy and pleasant things of life have been put in our hearts by Jehovah God - so says Solomon: "10 I have seen the occupation that God has given to the sons of men to keep them occupied. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. HE HAS EVEN PUT ETERNITY IN THEIR HEART....." Ecclesiastes 3:10,11 Ahhh! There it is, this is why we yearn for life, all the pleasures of family, friends and seeing and experiencing all the wonders of creation. Being with loved ones without the fear of sickness or death hanging over us like a cloud. Yes, Jehovah has put eternity in our hearts, mankind was supposed to live not die. Death, as explained to Adam, would be as a consequence of disobedience to their Sovereign which is an act of treason. ( lese majesté, from Latin laesa majestas, literally, injured) "a crime committed against a sovereign power." Genesis 2:16 "Jehovah God also gave this COMMAND to the man: “From every tree of the garden you may eat to satisfaction. 17 But as for the tree of the knowledge of good and bad, YOU MUST NOT eat from it, FOR IN THE DAY YOU EAT FROM IT YOU WILL CERTAINLY DIE." The longing for eternity is still within our hearts and like Adam, obedience is the requirement for life everlasting on a paradise earth. If we die before the earth is cleansed, we will wait in our grave until we hear the voice of Jesus Christ calling ", for the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out,..." John 5:28b,29a Amen
  3. sami


    (Luke 22:44) "But he was in such AGONY that he kept praying more earnestly; and his sweat became as drops of blood falling to the ground. Why does the scripture use the word AGONY to describe Jesus inward struggle that produced outward manifestations? Jesus was suffering what is described in the Koine Greek as, an AGONIA. that is a (heightened) severe mental struggle, anxienty, anguish....it was a personal struggle from the pressure he felt about what he was to suffer on behalf of mankind..... betrayal, severe physical abuse and death as a criminal, in order to reconcile the human race (offspring of Adam) to Jehovah God from whom we had been alienated. Christ's act of love and mercy made us acceptable to Jehovah allowing communication (prayer) through the mediation and reconciliation of Christ's sacrifice. What was Christ's response to such agony? The scripture informs us of his actions "HE KEPT PRAYING MORE EARNESTLY" This sort of intense prayer is a SUPPLICATION and as we know...ALL SUPPLICATION IS PRAYER BUT NOT ALL PRAYER IS SUPPLICATION. Jesus supplicated so intensely until his perspiration mixed with blood fell to the ground. Yes, a mediator that had such intense love for mankind that he was willing to suffer the humiliation of being put to death as a criminal and enduring the most painful and sadistic physical torture in order to reconcile men to God. A perfect and righteous mediator indeed! A mediator is one who interposes between two parties at variance to RECONCILE them; an intercessor; an intermediary agent, or go-between. In the Scriptures the term is applied (ONLY) to Moses and Jesus, the mediators respectively of the Law Covenant and the New Covenant. Galatians 3:19; THE SCRIPTURE EXCLUDES ANY IDEA OF MEDIATRIX, SAINTS, RELATIVES, ETC. "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus,"1Timothy 2:5 To reconcile means to bring back into harmony or cause to be friendly again; also to adjust or settle, as in reconciling differences. In Greek, the words related to reconciliation are derived from the verb ALLASSO which, basically, means “change or alter.”Acts 6:14; Galatians 4:20, The compound form KATALLASSO, while meaning, basically, “exchange,” came to have the meaning “reconcile" Romans 5:10 In Paul’s letter to the Romans and in several other letters, he uses ka·tal·lasʹso and a·po·ka·tal·lasʹso (an intensified form) in dealing with man’s being reconciled to God by means of the sacrifice of Christ Jesus. This reconciliation was necessary because an alienation has existed, a separation, a lack of harmony and of friendly relations and more than that, a state of enmity. This came through the first man Adam’s sin and the resultant sinfulness and imperfection inherited by all his descendants. (Romans 5:12; compare Isaiah 43:27.) Paul could therefore say that “the minding of the flesh means enmity with God, for it is not under subjection to the law of God, nor, in fact, can it be [due to its inherited imperfect, sinful nature]. Enmity exists because God’s perfect standards do not allow for his approving or condoning wrongdoing. (Psalm 5:4; 89:14) Of his Son, who reflected his Father’s perfect qualities, it is written: “You loved righteousness, and you hated lawlessness.” (Hebrews 1:9) Hence, even though “God is love” and even though “God loved the world [of mankind] so much that he gave his only-begotten Son” on mankind’s behalf, the fact remains that mankind as a whole has been in a state of enmity toward God and that God’s love toward the world of mankind was love toward enemies, a love guided by principle (Gr., a·gaʹpe) rather than affection or friendship (Gr., phi·liʹa). 1John 4:16; John 3:16; compare James 4:4. Since God’s standard is one of perfect righteousness, he cannot countenance, or view with favor, sin, which is the violation of his express will. He is “gracious and merciful” and “rich in mercy” (Psalm145:8, 9; Ephesians 2:4); but he does not disregard justice in order to display mercy. As correctly observed in M’Clintock and Strong’s Cyclopædia (1894, Vol. VIII, p. 958), the relation between God and sinful man is thus “a legal one, as that of a sovereign, in his judicial capacity, and a criminal who has violated his laws and risen up against his authority, and who is therefore treated as an enemy.” This is the situation into which mankind was brought because of the inheritance of sin from their first father, Adam.
  4. sami


    The apostle Paul wrote at Hebrews 11.1 "Estin de pistis elpizomenôn hupostasis pragmatôn elenchos ou blepomenôn: en tautêi gar emarturêthêsan hoi presbuteroi" Pistis means to trust or a trust, often meaning position of trust such as a trustee, a pledge or act of good faith, a guarantee given, an entrustment, often used in the Greek commercial world to account one credit [e.g., tosouton chrematon esti tini para tisi - eis pistin didonai - he has credit for so much money with them] - the Hebrew noun corresponding to emunah, rendered pistis, in the Septuagint - from the root aman means firm, something that is supported or secure - as used in Isaiah 22:23 for a nail that is fastened to a "secure" place - the Hebrew emunah is a firm action - hence the specific examples given in Hebrews 11 of what faith "is". This idea of support for the word emunah can be seen in Exodus 17:12, "But Moses' hands grew weary; so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat upon it, and Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side; so his hands were steady (emunah) until the going down of the sun." It is the support/emunah of Aaron and Hur that held up Moses' arms, not the support/emunah of Moses - "I have faith in God", should be more accurately saying according to Hebrew application, "I will do what I can to support God". Elpizomenôn [form of elpizô] which refers to one's expectations, looking forward to something, even to look for in wait for that which you know exists. Hupostasis refers to that which settles at the bottom, the sediment [even the lower part of a crenellated wall], the substantial nature of a thing, its true foundation, its true support upon immovable confidence can be placed, its true purpose, its underlying plan - used quite often in antiquities in specific reference to what we would call today, a title deed - which is the underlying and foundational official document for property ownership. Pragmatôn [from pragma] meaning that which has been done, an act, or a deed. Eenchos - a cross examining, or testing. Bepomenôn [from blepô] meaning to see, to have the power of sight. Earturêthêsan [aortist passive form of martureo] meaning to be a witness, the bear witness, give evidence, or bear testimony. Pesbuteroi [from presbus], lierally, an old man, or elderly one. Faith is the assured expectation of things hoped for, the evident demonstration of realities [foundational] though not beheld - for by means of this the men of old times had witness borne to them. In other words, as stated in 11:3, by faith we perceive that the systems of things were put in order by God’s word, so that what is beheld has come to be out of things that do not appear. Hebrews 11:4-40 then proceeds to provide many examples of pistis. "Certain of what we do not see" - no, certain of the foundational things not now seen on the immediate surface for the reality of them must be observed through examination and testing of the true foundation underlying them. A person invoking “faith” could be compared to a person who steps from the shore of a murky lake onto a lily pad but his weight does not collapse the pad and so he does not fall into the water – he performed this act not in a blind belief [a trust with no underlying basis] that a “miracle” would be the cause for his weight not collapsing the lily pad – but because he was able to observe that the pad rested upon a column of concrete lying under the waters surface – and he long ago tested the reality of that observation and was provided comprehension through examination that what he observed was real – and so he knew, or “came to know” that when he left the solid ground to step on the lily pad, that it would hold his weight, and he would not fall into the water. He had an assured expectation of that which he longed or hoped for because of the evident demonstration of realities [foundational] though not beheld from simply the surface of the murky water which appeared to present only a lily pad which floated upon water – he therefore, had witness borne to him.
  5. sami

    When God speaks to you ... are you nuts?

    God speaks to us through His inspired Word.
  6. sami

    The Holy Spirit

    **Scripture shows that when a person dies their spirit does not cease to exist but leaves the body (Psalm 146:4). ______________ sami said: The Hebrew word here is RUACH 7307 [e] rū·ḥōw ר֭וּחוֹ its meaning is (breath). At death, the breath goes out and if a person is not revived with the administration of oxygen to prevent cell destruction, those cells die, the life force is gone. There is a limited time that one can be revived because cell destruction takes place which cannot be healed. ______________ **In Luke 8:55 we read that the spirit of Jairus’ daughter returned to her body and she rose up immediately. ______________ sami said: Here is the Koine Greek word 4151 [e] pneuma πνεῦμα spirit/ Like its Hebrew counterpart (rûach) it has the same range of meaning 4151 (pneúma), i.e. it likewise can refer to spirit/Spirit, wind, or breath.] Jesus was not gifted with immortality until his resurrection to heaven. So what lived on? Why would he need a resurrection if he had never died? In the account of Jarius' daughter a person from his home came and told him his daughter was dead and not to bother the teacher (Jesus) anymore, it was too late. There is only one designation for dead....that is the absence of life. It's the same with Lazarus and he had been dead for four days his flesh having begun to deteriorate. When man was created Jehovah used two things to make a living creature, that being dust and breath. If it could possibly be something more than that then God would have lied when he told Adam that the punishment for disobedience would be death. Adam and Eve are not living are they? And all their generations of offspring die as their inheritance. Paul points this out very clearly "Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin - thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned." Romans 5:12 We are mortal - we are living human beings which are subject to death. Nothing lives on after death. IMMORTALITY (deathlessness - the inability to die) WHAT IS IT? For centuries, the fleeting and highly subjective world of feelings, emotion, and thought was the purview of philosophers and theologians. But during the past 30 years, Antonio R. Damasio has striven to show that feelings are what arise as the brain interprets emotions, which are themselves purely physical signals of the body reacting to external stimuli through use of small levels of electricity and chemical manipulation. Damasio's efforts presented some obvious and significant questions for the aforementioned philosophers and theologians For example, is there really a difference between 'body' and 'mind? And if the suspicions turn proof that there is no difference, what exactly does that mean? Does it mean that we have no souls, no personal spirit, which can escape our death by separation from the body? It may very well be that science soon proves that our bodies and our "minds" are one in the same biological unit – functioning as a whole – even providing us with our own sense of self. And this 'sense' itself may prove to be rooted in pure biology rather than theosophy or philosophy. Man's "consciousness" may simply prove to be no more than biological man himself. Christian de Duve states in his recent publication "Life Evolving: Molecules, Mind, and Meaning" from the Oxford University Press (2002, p.108) that: "The proofs are there, indisputable, that no manifestation of consciousness is possible without the normal functioning of cerebral neurons. Let this functioning be impaired by lack of oxygen, or by a drug or trauma, and loss of consciousness inevitably follows." According to the scientists – it is looking more and more like we are nothing more than the sum of our biological parts – and when these biological parts eventually quit functioning, we as a person - being a single biological entity, including our minds, thoughts, emotions, feelings, memories, and all the elements of who we are – cease to exist. Death, it appears, is not only inevitable, it appears it may also be final. It is a matter of debate whether animals have an awareness of mortality or not, but it is certain that man alone among all living creatures knows that he has to die. This we all seem to understand – yet – as Martin Heidegger shrewdly observed that the proposition, "all men are mortal" usually involves the deeply personal tacit reservation "but not I. Even as Freud, and Schopenhauer before him pointed out, "deep down" even contemporary man does not "really" believe in his own death. This internal inconsistency is certainly not new – it is seen manifest in the earliest pages of the Hebrew Bereshit (Genesis) as Eve juggles between the two choices placed in front of her: Genesis 3:3, "God has said, 'YOU must not eat from it, no, YOU must not touch it that YOU do not die.' Or as Satan told Eve…Genesis 3:4, "You positively will not die. The implication here is quite simple – in whom do you demonstrate faith by virtue of action - either God was lying and she was immortal and could not die by definition (i.e., continued existence did not necessarily depend on obeying God), or he was not lying, and death was very much "reality" (i.e., continued existence does necessarily depend on obeying God). Not long after choosing a mark for herself - her husband, Adam, was faced with a similar choice. Outside of the writings in the Hebrew Scriptures, it cannot be determined with any degree of accuracy the time nor the historical sequence of mankind's discovery of the two elements of death — its inevitability as well as its finality. But there was surely some point in time when someone first contemplated death as being inevitable and final (the natural observation) - and likewise there was also some point in time when someone imagined that what they observed was not reality – saying as suggested by Heidegger, "but not I. Likely the two discoveries were closely associated. While the Hebrew Scriptures never assign "immortality" as a trait to earthly man or woman in any literal, figurative, or symbolic sense (except perhaps for the unrecorded thoughts which may have occurred to both Adam and Eve as they determined their choice)– the Mesopotamian Gilgamesh Epic does. It offers us the first written record of mankind's thoughts regarding his immortality. It is in the Gilgamesh Epics (a written account reflecting in part long held Babylonian/Chaldean/Sumerian religious thoughts) that the realization of the inevitability of death as well as its possible finality seem to have occurred simultaneously. If this is so, it is pointless to ask which of the two produced the greater shock. But again on the basis of the Mesopotamian Gilgamesh legend, there can be no doubt about its severity. It may have been this very severity which eventually gave birth to the thought of immortality. While King Gilgamesh strongly suspects that death may well be total extinction, or a state of nonexistence, the predominant view of death of his contemporaries was that the dead somehow continue to exist (i.e., immortality of man). But one cannot help but be impressed by the somber and frightening nature of the afterlife as it appears in the Babylonian and the later related early Greek mythologies. Typical is Achilles' complaint in the Odyssey that it is better to be a slave on earth than a king in the realm of phantoms – but nonetheless – the immortality of mortal man took firm root and began to grow. The after-life existence eventually evolved into more pleasant concepts for the good (or those pleasing to the gods), and worse concepts for the bad (or those rejected by the gods). Undoubtedly, Adam and Eve, having chosen to believe their creator a liar, likely began to entertain similar thoughts much earlier in denial of the absolute reality of death, in the hope that life would continue in some form or other after the physical body has proven its mortality by falling into the article of death and corruption. It is, after-all, what the serpent was selling, and that product which they choose to invest. Nevertheless, such entertaining thoughts of immortality easily and quickly spread outward from earliest Mesopotamia through later Egypt, India, China, and Europe – just as man spread out across the land – his pleasurable ideas of immorality went with him. There was one notable exception. The path of immortality was basically ignored, in fact rejected, by a lesser known, lesser prominent, ancient Semitic peoples – the Hebrew. Though being of the same Semitic roots as those so eagerly embracing thoughts of immortality – history records a clear philosophical and theological separation - distancing the ancient Hebrew from the Mesopotamians in regards to thoughts on life and man's mortality. The only real difference between the two emerging cultures being their gods – the Hebrew god claiming origin over Adam and Eve (a god who we saw earlier told of death), and the Chaldeans and Sumerian gods, who offered comforting ideas of immortality. As reflected in the Hebrew Scriptures, the God of the Hebrews further explained exactly what death was. The majority of the ancient Hebrew people denied thoughts that man was immortal. Such thoughts being based on what they were taught by their God – thoughts which were reflected ultimately in their historical religious texts. For the ancient Hebrew, death was a reality in every sense of the word. It is a condition or state in which the "breath of life" (ruach) the life giving force from God has been withdrawn, and the living-breathing creature (ne'phesh) dies as a result and no longer has any existence whatsoever. It means a complete and total cessation of life. For the ancient Hebrew it was clear, death was nothing more than the opposite of life – an absence of life. This is clearly reflected in a plethora of passages from Hebrew Scripture (e.g., "For dust you are and to dust you will return." (Genesis 3:19); "The dead know nothing . . . There is no pursuit, no plan, no knowledge or intelligence, within the grave." (Eccl 9:5, 10), The soul that sinneth, it shall die" (Ezek. 18:4). "his spirit (ruach – God life giving force) goes out, he goes back to his ground; in that day his thoughts do perish" (Psalm 146:4)). Two out of every three occurrences of ne'phesh (that which man is – a living breathing creature) in the Hebrew Scriptures refers soberly to the mortality of the ne'phesh and ultimate liability to death. According to the ancient Hebrew, the dead no longer existed, knew nothing, had no thoughts, could not see, hear, or speak. The ne'phesh dies, and the ru'ach (what we call spirit today in English) was merely God's unseen life giving force which enacted upon the ne'phesh, it itself returned to God – leaving the living breathing creature called man with nothing more. He was dead. The ancient Hebrew held these thoughts for hundreds of years before being reintroduced to immortality in Mesopotamia likely as a result of the Babylonian exile, combined with eventual Hellenistic and Zoroastrism influences. Many diverted away from the mortality of man concept, but many also held fast – recognizing that although death was a state of nonexistence a hope for resurrection or being remembered by God was hinted at in their same Scriptures. One of the most well written and famous proponents of the immortality of man was Plato - a thinker, who was strongly influenced himself by much earlier Babylonian religious traditions. Plato, who lived about 427-347BC, and has been regarded as one of the most important thinkers and writers in the history of Western culture, expanded on the concept of man's immortality. He was a philosopher and an educator, but all his so -called "wisdom" was the product of his own mind, supported by ideas and philosophies adopted from the teachings of others. His influence on both religious and philosophical thought was considerable and widespread, even today. Plato's concept of the immortal soul built upon the earlier foundations established in Mesopotamia – he taught that the soul left the body and migrated to what he termed the "realm of the pure forms" from which, after a time, the soul may even return to the earth in another form. By now, nearly all the world's religious organizations subscribed to the concept of an immortal man – something which transcends the death of the man. It was these Hellenistic, Zoroastrism, and Platonic concepts which were adopted by the greater majority of the world's religious organizations. They, like Adam and Eve, choose to believe that they "would positively not die". By this point, there was no longer a single religious system which had not been infiltrated with the idea of man's immortality. But the immortality doctrine monopoly was short lived. Shortly following Plato, came Epicurus. According to Epicurus the fear of death is one of the two major afflictions of mankind, the other being the fear of the gods. Accordingly, he did away with both, and is proven to have given birth to the more modern secular movements (Rationalists, Freethinkers, Agnostics, Atheists, Secularists, Humanists, et al). According to Epicurus, man fears death because he erroneously believes that he will experience pain and suffer after he has died (the concept originating in Mesopotamia). But, says Epicurus, death is deprivation of sensation. As to the soul it too does not survive death because, as Democritus has taught, like all things, it too consists of atoms (albeit particularly fine ones) which will disperse at death. Consequently "Death, the most terrifying of all ills, is nothing to us, since as long as we exist, death is not with us, and when death comes, then we do not exist". God was dismissed, and immortality executed. The period spanning the time from Gassendi to Jefferson is called "the Enlightenment", an appropriate title for the era where political authoritarianism, faith-mongering and claims of a divinely-ordered cosmos, and the mystical doctrines of astrology and alchemy, were abandoned in favor of modern science and intellectual and political freedom. With the exception of Jefferson, Epicurus's role in providing the philosophical foundations for the Enlightenment was largely unacknowledged, as there was still considerable prejudice against non-Christians that kept Epicurus in the closet, or at least dressed up with suitably Christianized or Deistic doctrines – but it cannot be denied today, that much of our secular, scientific based communities are established in part due to Epicurus. Though adequate recognition is given to the various shades of grey from a former art student, our world today consists largely of two groups - .those descendents of Mesopotamia who hold man to be immortal in one sense or another, and those descendants of Epicurus, who typically do not. And it is to that end, that, as quoted above, that Christian de Duve in his recent publication states, "The proofs are there, indisputable, that no manifestation of consciousness is possible without the normal functioning of cerebral neurons. Let this functioning be impaired by lack of oxygen, or by a drug or trauma, and loss of consciousness inevitably follows" becomes most significant. It appears as though the Epicurean children may win out after all. Man is not immortal, and probably is nothing more than flesh, blood, and bone, just as the ancient Hebrew once believed. It appears it may very well be quite true as modern neurologists are empirically proving - . What we "are" is "us" – a living breathing creature fully contained in flesh, and blood, and bone (i.e., ne'phesh). There is life, and there is death, and death itself may simply be just as the earliest Hebrews informed us by the Word of their God - the dead no longer exist, know nothing, have no thoughts, cannot see, hear, or speak. But what I personally find so irresistibly ironic in all of this (or perhaps it is poetic justice of some sort), as a proclaimed follower of Jehovah and his son, Jesus, is that those secular and scientific communities - the offspring in part of the Epicureans - who would now be the first to deny the existence of Jehovah (or any god or gods) are the very ones who are now providing evidence in support of the truth of His original statement "You must not eat from it, no, you must not touch it that You do not die" and that man is not immortal. While on the other hand – Those religious systems which on the whole include the majority of Christendom, Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, the Great Mystery Religions, et al, who would be the first to proclaim the existence of an eternal superior being or force, are in fact the ones being proved false through their own acceptance of the words of the serpent – "You shall not positively die" – those who to this day imply by their very thought Jehovah to be a liar. The godless are ultimately proving the truth spoken by a god they do not believe exists, while those claiming to be god-fearing have chosen to believe the lie made against the very god they claim to believe.
  7. sami

    yad hey waw hey

    There is wide confusion as to whether Jehovah is the Father, the Only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ or both.Jehovah alone possessed and has always possessed immortality [the inability to die]. This is something that the angels, even though they have spirit bodies and not those of a carnal nature, do not have. Angelic mortality is evident in view of the judgment of death entered against the spirit son who became God’s Adversary, or Satan, and also against those other angels who followed that satanic course and “did not keep their original position but forsook their own proper dwelling place.” (Jude 6; Mt 25:41; Re 20:10, 14) The Greek word a·tha·na·si´a is formed by the negative prefix (a) followed by a form of the word for “death” (tha´na·tos). Has the basic meaning of “deathlessness,” and refers to the quality of life that is enjoyed, its endlessness and indestructibility. (1Co 15:53, 54, ; 1Ti 6:16, The Greek word a·phthar·si´a, meaning “incorruption,” refers to that which cannot decay or be corrupted, that which is imperishable.—Ro 2:7; 1Co 15:42, 50, 53; Eph 6:24; 2Ti 1:10. The expressions “immortal” or “immortality” do not occur in the Hebrew Scriptures, which do show, however, that Jehovah God, as the Source of all life, is not subject to death, therefore, is immortal. (Ps 36:7, 9; 90:1, 2; Hab 1:12) This fact is also emphatically stated by the Christian apostle Paul in referring to God as “the King of eternity, incorruptible.”—1Ti 1:17. The first one described in the Bible as rewarded with the gift of immortality is Jesus Christ. That he did not possess immortality before his resurrection by God is seen through observation. HE DIED. Then consider the words of the inspired apostle at Romans 6:9: “Christ, now that he has been raised up from the dead, dies no more; death is master over him no more.” (Compare Re 1:17, 18.) For this reason, when describing him as “the King of those who rule as kings and Lord of those who rule as lords,” 1 Timothy 6:15, 16 shows that Jesus is distinct from all such other kings and lords in that he is “the one alone having immortality.” The other kings and lords, because of being mortal, die, even as did also the high priests of Israel. The glorified Jesus, God’s appointed High Priest, has “an indestructible life.”—Heb 7:15-17, 23-25. The name Jehovah can be translated as "The Becoming One". The changeless God, who will become that which His people have need. I SHALL PROVE TO BE WHAT I SHALL PROVE TO BE.” Heb., אֶהְיֶֽה אֲשֶֽׁר אֶהְיֶֽה (ʼEh·yehʹ ʼAsherʹ ʼEh·yehʹ), God’s own self-designation; Leeser, “I WILL BE THAT I WILL BE”; Rotherham, “I Will Become whatsoever I please.” Gr., E·goʹ ei·mi ho on, “I am The Being,” or, “I am The Existing One”; Lat., eʹgo sum qui sum, “I am Who I am.” ʼEh·yehʹ comes from the Heb. verb ha·yahʹ, “become; prove to be.” Here ʼEh·yehʹ is in the imperfect state, first person sing., meaning “I shall become”; or, “I shall prove to be.” The reference here is not to God’s self-existence but to what he has in mind to become toward others. Compare Ge 2:4 ftn, “Jehovah,” where the kindred, but different, Heb. verb ha·wahʹ appears in the divine name Who is Jesus? The connotation put to the name of the Supreme One IS NOT a correct understanding, but one of convenience, trying to infer a father who becomes a son and then a reverts back to a father. The ancient Hebrew pictographs tell a different story. In Hebrew thought, that which exists has breath, and the breath was the character of someone. Hawah comes from the primary root, hah, or heh [HH] – which if you open your mouth wide and blow the air from your lungs, you will have pronounced this ancient root word. There are many derivatives which come from HH – hawah [to become or exist]; hayah [to breath, was, come to pass]; chayah [live, life, exist]; neshamah [to blow, or wind from the lungs]; yihyeh [he exists] and so on. HH in the paleo is made up of two “hey”, and the pictograph letter for hey, was the little man, standing with his arms raised out, which singularly, means to “behold” as when looking at a great sight [one might throw their arms up or out in amazement or wonderment], and when beholding a great sight, one often takes in a deep breath, or even “sigh”, with the extended meaning then of “reveal” as well – with the two hey, you have both – a great sight or wonderment itself being the very revealing of life’s breath. The Waw was the picture of the tent peg, meaning just that, a peg or hook, used to secure something, fixed it in place, even “add” – as the waw is often used and a prefix to words to mean “and” in the sense of adding things together, or bringing together. The Yad was the side-view of the arm and hand meaning to work, make, throw – all the functions of the hand and arm working together. The Modern Hebrew name “yud” is a derivative of the two letter word “yad” meaning "hand", the original name for the letter, or secure. The word, yhwh, from a literal academic perspective means “he exists” or as in Genesis 15:6, “b’yhwh“ meaning the “fully existent one” yhwh is derived from the root Hh [see above] by placing the Yad in the beginning, or in front of the Hh, and is completed by inserting the waw between the Hh. By his very own action, his own hand’s work [yad], he is the one to which all life’s breath, wonderment, and revelation [hey hey] are secured and brought together [waw]. He is the very cause and securing factor, of all that exists – that which we call the wonderment or revelation of life through every breath we take.
  8. In his book " An Essay On The Development Of Christian Doctrine " says this: Confiding then in the power of Christianity to resist the infection of evil, and to transmute the very instruments {372} and appendages of demon-worship to an evangelical use, and feeling also that these usages had originally come from primitive revelations and from the instinct of nature, though they had been corrupted; and that they must invent what they needed, if they did not use what they found; and that they were moreover possessed of the very archetypes, of which paganism attempted the shadows; the rulers of the Church from early times were prepared, should the occasion arise, to adopt, or imitate, or sanction the existing rites and customs of the populace, as well as the philosophy of the educated class........ In the course of the fourth century two movements or developments spread over the face of Christendom, with a rapidity characteristic of the Church; the one ascetic, the other ritual or ceremonial. We are told in various ways by Eusebius [Note 16], that Constantine, in order to recommend the new religion to the heathen, transferred into it the outward ornaments to which they had been accustomed in their own. It is not necessary to go into a subject which the diligence of Protestant writers has made familiar to most of us. The use of temples, and these dedicated to particular saints, and ornamented on occasions with branches of trees; incense, lamps, and candles; votive offerings on recovery from illness; holy water; asylums; holydays and seasons, use of calendars, processions, blessings on the fields; sacerdotal vestments, the tonsure, the ring in marriage, turning to the East, images at a later date, perhaps the ecclesiastical chant, and the Kyrie Eleison [Note 17], are all of pagan origin, and sanctified by their adoption into the Church ( REALLY??) What man is amid the brute creation, such is the Church among the schools of the world; and as Adam gave names to the animals about him, so has the Church from the first looked round upon the earth, noting and visiting the doctrines she found there. She began in Chaldea, and then sojourned among the Canaanites, and went down into Egypt, and thence passed into Arabia, till she rested in her own land. Next she encountered the merchants of Tyre, and the wisdom of the East country, and the luxury of Sheba. Then she was carried away to Babylon, and wandered to the schools of Greece. And wherever she went, in trouble or in triumph, still she was a living spirit, the mind and voice of the Most High; 'sitting in the midst of the doctors, both hearing them and asking them questions;' claiming to herself what they said rightly, correcting their errors, supplying their defects, completing their beginnings, expanding their surmises, and thus gradually by means of them enlarging the range and refining the sense of her own teaching. So far then from her creed being of doubtful credit because it resembles foreign theologies, we even hold that one special way in which Providence has imparted divine knowledge to us has been by enabling her to draw and collect it together out of the world, and, in this sense, as in others, to 'suck the milk of the Gentiles and to suck the breast of kings.' "Jesus and those whom he sent out, preached conversion FROM paganism TO Christianity. However, when the apostasy began to occur, the hierarchy of the apostate church began welcoming pagan teachings because they were familiar to those who were filling the pews."
  9. lev (heart) Because in their heart, they do not want to obey - it often becomes a measure of one's heart condition - to place obedience before personal want, need, or desire, especially when the two choices are in direct conflict with each other, is often a test of where one's true priorities indeed are. The Hebrew paleo underlying the word lev [or leb, if you choose that transliteration schema] evidences the concrete meaning of the word most often translated as "heart" - it pictures the "authority within". In the biblical texts, Jehovah informs the nation of Judah that "The heart is more treacherous than anything else and is desperate" [Jeremiah 17:9] - what constituted a serious warning that those "seeking to please God" must give attention not merely to what other humans see but to the kind of person they really are - the inner man, the lev, the authority within. So the biblical texts indeed counsel, "More than all else that is to be guarded, safeguard your heart [the whole inner man], for out of it are the sources of life" [Proverbs 4:23]. It appears, that it is not merely outward appearances as to what counts with Jehovah, but what a person really is inside - he is, after all, called the "examiner of hearts" [Proverbs 17:3; also 24:12; and Ps 17:3, as a few examples]. What evidences the condition of one's lev, and the personal motivation behind it, is not necessarily the instance of failure [Genesis 8:21; James 1:14-15; Psalm 51:5; and so forth], but how one recognizes the failure, and how they move forward [Psalms 32:5; Psalms 51:4; 1 John 1:8; 2 Co 7:8-11; Matthew 5:23-24] - in short, the biblical text advise that a person must acknowledge the khate, [sin] recognize that it is an offense against God, confess it unqualifiedly, have a deep heartfelt sorrow for the wrong doing, and have an actual and real determination to turn away completely from such course or practice - and he or she must do what they can to right the wrong or damage done. One must also then ask or request God's forgiveness on the basis of Christ's ransom sacrifice as stated in part in Eph 1:7. Then begins repentance. The other option available is, of course, development, and application of, rationalizations and extended apologetics, as a way of providing self-justification for one's acts. Which way one takes serves as a witness to the condition of one's heart.
  10. How do we know that death is THE dreaded enemy of mankind? The Apostle Paul leaves no room for a different interpretation when he wrote: “ And the last enemy, death is to be brought to nothing.”(1 Corinthians 15:26 ) It takes parents from children or children from parents, it separates mates and siblings from one another, causing untold distresses, pain, sorrow and loss. Could this have been the purpose of a loving God? Let’s examine that query in the light of scripture. God looked at all he had created and pronounced it tov – good. That Hebrew word (tov) also means functional. What is at the center or core of that definition? In the case of his human creation, he gave Adam a body that was made from the earth and perfectly suited for dwelling in earth’s environment. This human needed oxygen to breath, food to eat and water to drink, in order to sustain life. Jehovah gave him eyes to see the beauty that surrounded him, the faces of his mate and children, when that time came. He fashioned ears, to hear the sounds of rippling streams or songs of birds and the lovely voices of children at play. A nose so he would be able to smell all of earth’s beautiful fragrances and a mouth to sing praises to his creator, to communicate with family and friends and enjoy the innumerable sumptuous flavors designed just for him. A body that was able to rejuvenate forever so families would never be torn apart by death. God’s stated purpose to his human creation is found at Genesis 1:28 “God blessed them and God said to them: “Be fruitful and become many and fill the earth and subdue it, and have in subjection the fish of the sea and the flying creatures of the heavens and every living creature that is moving upon the earth.” Adam was to be a caretaker of God’s other creative works – earth, animals, plant life, water and air. In order for man to continue on being blessed, his worship had to be pure and undefiled. Adam and his wife had to be obedient and loyal to their Creator and if they followed this simple order of things they would continue living in this paradise, happily, throughout all eternity. If death was not God’s purpose for mankind, then how did death come to be? Scripture states that yod hey waw hey (yhwh, Jehovah or Yahweh) laid a command upon His human creation. He commanded that they not eat of the fruit of a tree which he designated to be his own. After all, paradise was a large place and there were many of the same kind of trees growing there – there was no hardship or deprivation contained in his command. Genesis 2:16,17 “ And Jehovah God also laid this command upon the man: “From every tree of the garden you may eat to satisfaction. 17 But as for the tree of the knowledge of good and bad you must not eat from it, for in the day you eat from it you will positively die.” This literally means: “dying (the process) you will die. (finality of the process)” The Hebrew phrase is mohth ta·muth′ and is the first reference to death in the Bible. It is the eventuality brought on as a direct result of disobedience (sin) against their Sovereign. Notice also, that death is a process, mohth ta muth – ‘dying you will die’. Adam did not die immediately after sinning, but over the course of his life span of 930 years, his body grew old, he became sick and eventually he succumbed to the ravages of time beginning the moment he sinned. So, “death” was the consequence (or result) of sin and dying was the process by which he got there. The apostle Peter, in 2 Peter 3:8, states that Adam died within the period of time referred to as a DAY (yom). “ However, let this one fact not be escaping YOUR notice, beloved ones, that one day is with Jehovah as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.” The Apostle Paul clearly points to why all offspring of Adam, follow that same pattern – Romans 5:12 “ That is why, just as through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned” Was the sin ours? No. Nevertheless, our inheritance from our forefather is death. When Adam and Eve sinned, they became genetically defective, this they passed on to their offspring through procreation. God has not deviated from his original purpose for his human creation. He does not change his mind. Our inheritance, of an earthly, paradisiac dwelling place, remains the purpose for which humans were created. Almighty God purposed a time, during Christ’s millennial reign, when there will be a resurrection of the righteous and the unrighteous. John 5:28,29 )” Do not marvel at this, because the hour is coming in which all those in the memorial tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who did good things to a resurrection of life, those who practiced vile things to a resurrection of judgment.” Because of God’s perfect righteousness, he will resurrect the unrighteous (not wicked) for the purpose of learning righteousness, this will be a judgment period for them. ” How do we know this? By analyzing the Greek word translated “memorial tombs.” Notice that the plural form of taphos [grave, an individual burial place] or haides [gravedom, the common grave of dead mankind] are not used but, the plural dative form of mne·mei′on [remembrance, memorial tomb] IS used. This lays stress on preserving memory of the deceased person. Not those whose memory was blotted out in Gehenna because of unforgivable sins but persons remembered by God will be resurrected with the opportunity to live forever.—Matt. 10:28; Mark 3:29; Heb. 10:26; Mal. 3:16.) What Jesus said here, at John 5:28,29, must be understood in the light of the later revelation that he gave to John in Revelation 20:12, 13 Both those who formerly did good things and those who formerly practiced bad things will be “judged individually according to their deeds.” What deeds? If we were to take the view that people were going to be condemned on the basis of deeds in their past life, that would be inconsistent with Romans 6:7: “He who has died has been acquitted from his sin.” It would also be unreasonable to resurrect people simply for them to be destroyed. So, at John 5:28, 29a, Jesus was pointing ahead to the resurrection; then, in the remainder of verse 29, he was expressing the outcome after they had been uplifted to human perfection and been put on judgment. The apostle John, in Revelation chapter 21 vs.4 states: 4 And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.” This text is in agreement with the previously mentioned text in 1Corinthians 15:26. Scripturally, a thrice repeated statement establishes a matter. This stated promise guarantees that death will be abolished forever. It is a promise, one that was known, believed, and taught by the ancient Hebrew. Further, we have this fact clearly stated by the prophet in Isaiah chapter 25 vs.8 He will actually swallow up death forever, and the Sovereign Lord Jehovah will certainly wipe the tears from all faces. And the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth for Jehovah himself has spoken [it]. This statement comes with the aforementioned guarantee “Jehovah himself has spoken [it].”What hope do we then have? The hope we enjoy and put full faith, is the same hope believed in and expressed by Job and contained in the question posed by him. Job 14:14 states: “ If an able-bodied man dies can he live again?” He then makes a statement reiterating his belief in an earthly resurrection, in these words: “All the days of my compulsory service I shall wait, Until my relief comes.” His prayer expresses his belief in the promise of being raised up from sheol, the grave. This is made clear in verse 13 “ O that in Sheol you would conceal me, That you would keep me secret until your anger turns back, That you would set a time limit for me and remember me! Verse 15 leaves absolutely no room for ambiguity “ You will call, and I myself shall answer you. For the work of your hands you will have a yearning.” The resurrection hope, offered in scripture, is sure. Hosea 13:14 puts it this way: “ “From the hand of Sheol I shall redeem them; from death I shall recover them. Where are your stings, O Death? Where is your destructiveness, O Sheol?…” The Hebrew word “Sheol” and the Greek word “Hades” are the common grave of mankind from which humans can be recovered, just as the above texts indicate. When on earth, Jesus told his disciples, as recorded by his apostle, John “No man has ascended into heaven but he that descended from heaven, the Son of man.” John 3:13 Here, Jesus clarifies the mistaken teaching that any human was taken to heaven prior to Christ’s ascension. Is there more evidence to establish the matter? Indeed there is, Matthew recorded Jesus words in this way: “Truly I say to YOU people, Among those born of women there has not been raised up a greater than John the Baptist; but a person that is a lesser one in the kingdom of the heavens is greater than he is.” The third declaration, uttered by Jesus, is found at Acts 2:34 “Actually David did not ascend to the heavens.” Heavenly life is a gift by invitation (calling) ONLY as stated by Paul:“Consequently, holy brothers, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the apostle and high priest whom we confess—Jesus.” Hebrews 3:1 “Now we know that God makes all his works cooperate together for the good of those who love God, those who are the ones called according to his purpose; 29 because those whom he gave his first recognition he also foreordained to be patterned after the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 Moreover, those whom he foreordained are the ones he also called; and those whom he called are the ones he also declared to be righteous. Finally those whom he declared righteous are the ones he also glorified.” Romans 8:28-30 “God is faithful, by whom YOU were called into a sharing with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.” 1Corinthians 1:9 “ I am pursuing down toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God by means of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:14 “ For this reason, brothers, all the more do YOUR utmost to make the calling and choosing of YOU sure for yourselves; for if YOU keep on doing these things YOU will by no means ever fail.” 2 Peter 1:10 2 Timothy 1:9 He saved us and called us with a holy calling, not by reason of our works, but by reason of his own purpose and undeserved kindness. This was given us in connection with Christ Jesus before times long lasting, Those called and chosen (invited) are a small group, also known as the bride of Christ and the New Jerusalem who will reign with Christ from the heavens - Revelation 5:10 “and you made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.” Revelation 14:1,3 reveals that this HEAVENLY CALLING is also limited in number “And I saw, and, look! the Lamb standing upon the Mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand having his name and the name of his Father written on their foreheads. 3 And they are singing as if a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one was able to master that song but the hundred and forty-four thousand, who have been bought from the earth.” Revelation 20:4 And I saw thrones, and there were those who sat down on them, and power of judging was given them. Yes, I saw the souls of those executed with the ax for the witness they bore to Jesus and for speaking about God, and those who had worshiped neither the wild beast nor its image and who had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand. And they came to life and ruled as kings with the Christ for a thousand years. Revelation 20:6 Happy and holy is anyone having part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no authority, but they will be priests of God and of the Christ, and will rule as kings with him for the thousand years. Revelation 7:4 “And I heard the number of those who were sealed, a hundred and forty-four thousand…” Pay attention to Revelation 7:4, quoted above, which calls our attention to those with the heavenly “calling or invitation. Scroll down a bit farther to vs. 9 where John’s vision focuses on another group, he notes: “ After these things I saw, and, look! a great crowd, which no man was able to number, out of all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes; and there were palm branches in their hands. 10 And they keep on crying with a loud voice, saying: “Salvation [we owe] to our God, who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb.”11 And all the angels were standing around the throne and the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell upon their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying: “Amen! The blessing and the glory and the wisdom and the thanksgiving and the honor and the power and the strength [be] to our God forever and ever. Amen.”13 And in response one of the elders said to me: “These who are dressed in the white robes, who are they and where did they come from?” 14 So right away I said to him: “My lord, you are the one that knows.” And he said to me: “These are the ones that come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” This is the time that we wait for, the time when death, sickness, defects and sorrow will be things of the past and Jehovah wipes the tears from all faces - as the prophet Isaiah foretold - 5 At that time the eyes of the blind ones will be opened, and the very ears of the deaf ones will be unstopped. 6 At that time the lame one will climb up just as a stag does, and the tongue of the speechless one will cry out in gladness. For in the wilderness waters will have burst out, and torrents in the desert plain. 7 And the heat-parched ground will have become as a reedy pool, and the thirsty ground as springs of water. In the abiding place of jackals, a resting-place for [them], there will be green grass with reeds and papyrus plants. 8 And there will certainly come to be a highway there, even a way; and the Way of Holiness it will be called. The unclean one will not pass over it. And it will be for the one walking on the way, and no foolish ones will wander about [on it].9 No lion will prove to be there, and the rapacious sort of wild beasts will not come up on it. None will be found there; and the repurchased ones must walk [there]. 10 And the very ones redeemed by Jehovah will return and certainly come to Zion with a joyful cry; and rejoicing to time indefinite will be upon their head. To exultation and rejoicing they will attain, and grief and sighing must flee away .Isaiah 35:5-10 Isaiah 11: 6 And the wolf will actually reside for a while with the male lamb, and with the kid the leopard itself will lie down, and the calf and the maned young lion and the well-fed animal all together; and a mere little boy will be leader over them. 7 And the cow and the bear themselves will feed; together their young ones will lie down. And even the lion will eat straw just like the bull. 8 And the sucking child will certainly play upon the hole of the cobra; and upon the light aperture of a poisonous snake will a weaned child actually put his own hand. 9 They will not do any harm or cause any ruin in all my holy mountain; because the earth will certainly be filled with the knowledge of Jehovah as the waters are covering the very sea. So sleep awhile, my beautiful sons, and soon you will hear the voice of the Son of God calling you forth from the dead, then we will forevermore, live, breath and fellowship - just as Jehovah promised – life for eternity on a cleansed earth (paradise).
  11. Good (טוב) tov, Strong's #2896😞 What is good? From our modern western perspective this would be something that is pleasing to us but, from an Hebraic perspective the Hebrew word tov, usually translated as good, means something that is functional. A complex set of gears in a watch that functions together properly is tov. However, if the gears are not functioning properly then they are ra [str:7451], usually translated as evil or bad but the more Hebraic meaning is dysfunctional. And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good (tov). And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. When God saw his creation it is not that it was "pleasing" to him rather, he saw that it functioned properly. What does "good" mean? The first use of this word is in Genesis chapter one where God calls his handiwork "good". It should always be remembered that the Hebrews often relate descriptions to functionality. The word tov would best be translated with the word "functional". When looked at his handiwork he did not see that it was "good", he saw that it was functional, kind of like a well - oiled and tuned machine. In contrast to this word is the Hebrew word "ra". These two words, tov and ra are used for the tree of the knowledge of "good" and "evil". While "ra" is often translated as evil it is best translated as "dysfunctional". Strong’s 3966 exceedingly (meod) - Strong’s 2896 good (tov) Genesis 1:31 God saw all that he had made, and behold it was very excellent. **The word "perfect" that we knock around so much is often misunderstood. We tend to apply an unqualified philosophical meaning to it and have it mean "without flaw" or "without error" or put it into other absolute categories. It then becomes easy to say that Jesus' command in the Sermon on the Mount (Matt 5:48), "Be therefore perfect, even as your heavenly Father is perfect," is a laudable goal, but one that is impossible for human beings to achieve. That is even easier to do from certain doctrinal or theological positions that assume human beings cannot ever respond to God beyond their contaminated sinful nature. The problem in this thinking is that the Hebrew word (tam or tamim) does not carry the meaning of "without flaw" as does the term "perfect" in English. It normally means complete or mature or healthy (for example, Lev 22:21). That meaning of mature dominates most use of the equivalent Greek term in the New Testament (telos). Something, or someone, can be complete or mature yet not be "without flaw." In fact, it is much easier to be mature and still have flaws, than it is to be without error or without flaw. Many people are mature, but few if any are "without flaw." A six year old can be mature, and still have a lot of growing to do, just like a person can be "holy" and have a lot to learn about spiritual maturity. John Wesley used the term "perfect" frequently and argued that it was a biblical term. But, the term is only "biblical" in English. That is what creates our problems since the word has a different range of meaning in English than the biblical words it translates. I would certainly not discount Wesley’s ability in biblical language, since he wrote grammars for both Greek and Hebrew. On the other hand, in the past 250 years we have come to understand a lot more about the biblical languages, especially the thought world and culture that lay behind Hebrew. It is not that Wesley was wrong. "Perfect" may have been the best choice for 1740. But perhaps if he had the command of Hebrew and knowledge of Hebraic culture that we do today, or if he were communicating in our culture, he would have chosen a different way to express the idea. The term "perfect" is associated with too many metaphysical connotations in our culture, and describes something different than do the biblical terms in either Hebrew or Greek. Most people in our western culture outside of the church no longer use categories of thought that speak of ultimate absolutes like perfection, especially applied to people, or if they do they reject them as impossible. We quickly admit that such things are rare, especially among human beings. We are much more inclined to think existentially in terms of how we function in the world at any given time. That is why I think a more existential term will communicate better to people for whom the term "perfect" identifies something that is impossible to achieve. Both Hebrew and Greek terms carry much more that existential dimension of meaning anyway than they do the absolute overtones that we have come to associate with the term perfect. From the biblical perspective, "perfect" describes something that functions as it was intended to function or of someone who acts appropriately (note that in Romans 12:2, the Greek term "perfect," teleion, is used with "good" and "acceptable"). And of course for Wesley, perfect was always qualified with the category of love, so that any perfection of which he spoke was in the context of loving God and neighbor. That is why the true Wesleyan concept is perfect love, never perfection as a general category. Wesley himself fought against the concept of perfectionism, and the accusation leveled at him by many Calvinists that he promoted it. Wesley did not promote any form of perfectionism. Yet sadly, that strand of thinking entered the American Holiness tradition later and heirs of that tradition have been struggling with a tendency toward perfectionism ever since. Modern Wesleyans do not believe in a perfectionism that translates into "without error." But they do believe in being perfected in love in which human beings are transformed as a result of God’s grace into mature, growing, and healthy Christians governed by love rather than self-interest. That is all Wesley ever meant by "perfect," and I am convinced that is the meaning in Scripture, most especially in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew (5:48). That is why I think Jesus' command is more than an impossible goal for which we struggle in vain strive. It is the very achievable goal of all Christian living, as God enables us with his strength (cf. Phil 4:13).
  12. sami

    The Holy Spirit

    Our purpose is to present the truth. Whether they believe or accept is their responsibility, that is according to the disposition of their heart/lev.
  13. FRIENDS:  If a person is disfellowshipped our contact and communication with that person is to be cut off. If you would not fellowship with them at the Kingdom Hall, we should not have fellowship with them on social media.

    We wait until when and if they are reinstated. We are answerable to Jehovah for our conduct and actions. Would you want to knowingly be disobedient to the Law of Jehovah? There are consequences. Do not let the serpent entice you through his fruitage. "GOD KNOWS THAT IN THE DAY YOU EAT FROM IT......"


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