and God said "Let there be Lights in the Firmament"
This collection is the top ten articles of interest. Digest a few or read all top ten. We will rotate articles in and out of this curated list so check back often. Have a question about God’s Word? Ask in the “Contact Us” form and your question topic could become the next article!
Lot is most well known for escaping from the city of Sodom just before God burned it to the ground with fire. The Apostle Peter wrote in 2 Peter 2:4-6 that Sodom and Gomorrah were turned to ashes to make them an example for those who live ungodly. Jesus recalls this destruction of Sodom in Luke 17:28-29, and says that in the days of Lot they ate, drank, bought, sold, planted and built.
Sodom and Gomorrah are identified as an example of the ungodly throughout the Bible, from Genesis and Deuteronomy to Jude and Revelations. Many think it has something to do with your sex life, but that didn’t make the list given by Jesus in Luke 17. What was the ungodliness in the days of Lot? Is it like that today?
This past week was the traditional “State of the Union” speech given by the US president. The purpose of the speech is to give an overview of exactly how the US is fairing these days and lay out an agenda for the future. Trump matched past presidents by touting a great economy, the “military might” of the US and sighted his personally perceived achievements. His facts on these issues are clearly from one perspective, his. He mostly ignored what is really going on in the world and issues that affect the majority of Americans. Trump was sure to end the speech with “God Bless America!” So the question is, “Is God blessing America?”
The words devil, satan, and demons are found throughout God’s Word. All these names conjure up vivid images of a red creature with horns and a tail. However, the translation of these words will paint a much clearer picture of the entities addressed.
The Religious section of the News used to tell of services provided and charitable deeds of congregants. But now, nothing but scandal, war stories, child abuse/rape, suicide bombings, financial embezzlement, money laundering, idolatry, LGBT parades, protests, disputes, intolerance, discrimination, deception, death and the general ‘moral failure’ of the leaders of all religious institutions. None do good, no not one!
The Wages of Sin…
“Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” Rom 1:32
Many articles begin by pointing out that the Vatican is “reeling” from all the scandalous behavior being revealed by their clergy in years past. Deception: The hierarchy has said all along they didn’t know anything about it, but the fact is that it has been common knowledge among the hierarchy who has covered it all up and shuffled pedophile priests around the globe. You can only sweep so much under the carpet before the lumps become visible or you can smell the stink. Now stories of the highly placed Theodore Cardinal McCarrick’s (of Washington DC) sexual abuse is “sending waves of horror through the Church.” The pope knew all about it! He happens to be a fellow Jesuit with the pope who once said proudly that his colleagues in the church are “word-smiths.” What did he mean by that?
This year marks the 242nd anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The founding fathers were fed up with King George of England and his tyrannical way of governing the English colonies from “across the pond.” To declare independence was a treasonous act against George but it proved to be a courageous act for the benefit of America and Liberty and Justice was proclaimed to the captives!
High Cost of Celebration
Since then, the country goes into overdrive to celebrate this day in history with parades, band concerts, bar-b-ques and fireworks. According to the National Retail Federation, Americans will spend more than $7 billion on cookouts and other celebrations. All done without a thought to those who risked their lives for the freedom to do so.
The Jewish people have a custom to leave a vacant seat and a place set at the Passover table for the Prophet Elijah. With the sound of a knock, the children run to the door and say, “Elijah, is that you?” When he comes, they expect him to be a herald of the coming of the Messiah, to resolve all unanswered questions concerning the Law of Moses, and to deliver God’s people into that Land promised by God to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and to their offspring. This includes all twelve tribes of the House of Israel.
The Arthurian Legend
Similarly, in the Arthurian Legend of the Round Table, there is an empty seat awaiting the rightful king, being the Messiah, the Branch of David, aka King Arthur. He, in pulling the sword from the stone, will thus become the High King over all the House of Israel (Gen 49:8-10). This legend is tied to the story of the Holy Grail, the Last Supper and Joseph of Arimathea, who founded Glastonbury in Britain after the death of Christ.
But how are two Legends tied together?
“Mene, Mene, Tikel Upharsin.” These were the Hebrew words written on the wall in the Biblical Book of Daniel. The only one who could interpret them for Belshazzar, King of Babylon, was Daniel, a Jewish man who had been taken into captivity from Judea by Nebuchadnezzar. Before interpreting the words, Daniel reprimanded Belshazzar for not humbling himself before the God of Heaven. He had in fact exalted himself against God, stolen the vessels from the Temple in Judea and was using them in his own temple to drink wine and party with his friends. Belshazzar worshiped gods/idols of gold and silver which “neither see, nor hear, nor know” anything. Therefore, God sent a hand to write on the wall before the king: “Mene. Mene, tekel, upharsin.” When the king’s “wise” men, magicians, and priests couldn’t tell him what it meant, he finally called Daniel.
The ‘Beatitudes’ address those who are: “poor, in spirit; they that mourn; the meek; those who hunger and thirst for righteousness; the merciful; pure in heart; the peacemakers; persecuted for righteousness’ sake.” Y’hoshua said to those people, “Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so did they persecute the prophets who were before you… You are the Light of the world, a city set on a mountain… to give light to all that are in the house… Let your Light shine before the people, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in Heaven. That’s in Matthew chapter 5. It sounds like he’s talking to the children of God who are the “Lights of the world.” In fact in Romans 8:19 Paul says, “For the earnest expectation of the whole creation waits for the manifestation of the children of God!” Now that’s amazing! Where can these people be? Who is expecting them?
Many people think that Jesus is coming back to save them, and they make prayers to “Jesus” daily. It might come as a surprise to these people that Jesus wouldn’t even know “Jesus.” If he were to return in the flesh, he would not even respond to the name “Jesus.” His name was, in fact, Y’hoshua, pronounced Ya-ho’-shua, and the changing of his name to Jesus was a very unrighteous act.
Some might respond to this fact by saying that he is called Jesus merely because of transliteration from Greek to English. However, this type of argument is in complete error. The Greek name, Iesous, or Jesus, was assigned to Y’hoshua by those who translated the New Testament into Greek. The words of Y’hoshua and the Apostles were originally spoken and written in Aramaic, a language much more similar to Hebrew than Greek. In his day, Jesus Christ would have been referred to as Y’hoshua HaMashiyach (meaning simply “Y’hoshua the Messiah/Anointed”) rather than Iesous Christos, as the Greeks would have him called. So, why “Jesus” then? The answer lies in Greek mythology… Continue reading “Jesus wouldn’t know “Jesus”!”
If we look to the Nelson’s Bible Dictionary to find out about the Firmament, it tells us it is an “expanse of sky and space in which the stars and planets are set.” Genesis tells us that God made the Firmament on the second day of creation to divide the waters above from the waters below (Gen 1:6).” and “…on the fourth day of creation God placed the stars, the sun, and the moon in the “Firmament of the heavens.” (Gen 1:15-18).
The Seed of Abraham
The Firmament reflects the greatness of God who created it. God made a Covenant many years ago with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and his seed that keep His Commandments.
“The Firmament shows forth His handiwork.” (Ps 19:1).
In the Day of Tribulation, a time such as there never has been, God’s people will be delivered from evil, and “those who are wise, shall shine as the brightness of the Firmament and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever.” (Dan 12:1-3).
“After this manner you pray, ‘My Father, who is in Heaven, Holy is Your Name; Your kingdom come, Your Will be done, upon earth as it is in heaven… and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil…” -Jesus, Mat 6:9