Hold These Thoughts
Hello; and welcome to a collection of odds and ends from the Bible that come in
handy now and then for just about everybody that's just starting out.
The Difference Between The Old Testament And The New
The Everlasting Gospel
The Length Of A Creation Day
Infinity And Beyond
Day And Night
The Image And Likeness Of God
Why Adam Didn't Drop Dead
Why Everyone Has To Die At Least Once
Why Cain Was Rejected
Why God Didn't Execute Cain For Murder
From Whence Cain Got A Wife
How The Critters Got To Noah
The Fate Of Noah's Ark
Abraham And Hagar
Abraham And Ex Post Facto
Who/What The Firstborn Is
David's Little Boy
The Meaning Of "Under The Law"
What/Who The Schoolmaster Is
The Brazen Serpent
When People Obtain Eternal Life
The Difference Between The Old Testament And The New
This major division in the Bible is primarily editorial; viz: it's man-made
instead of God-made; but the division is pretty harmless and actually quite
1• The simplest difference is chronological, i.e. the Old Testament focuses
upon the Jews' religious history prior to Christ's birth, while the New focuses
upon the world's introduction to Christianity in connection with Christ's
crucifixion and resurrection.
2• "Old Testament" refers to the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon
with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
3• "New Testament" refers to the covenant that Yhvh's people will eventually
agree upon with God as per Jeremiah 31:31-34.
The Everlasting Gospel
This particular gospel is a bounce from the first chapter of Genesis.
● Rev 14:6-7 . . And I saw another angel
flying through the sky, carrying the everlasting gospel to preach to the people
who dwell on the earth— to every nation, tribe, language, and people. Fear God!
he shouted. Give glory to Him! For the time has come when He will sit as judge.
Worship Him who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all the springs of water!
It's easy to mistake the everlasting gospel for the gospel of Christ but neither
Christ's name nor his crucifixion and resurrection are anywhere in the angel's message.
gospel is very elementary. Pretty much all it says is:
is a supreme being.
There's a frightful reckoning looming on the horizon, and
cosmos— all of its forms of life, matter, and energy —is the product of
● Gen 1:3 . . Then God said
there be light" and there was light.
The creation of light was a very, very intricate process.
First God had to create particulate matter, and along with those particles
their specific properties, including mass. Then He had to invent the laws of
nature to govern how matter behaves in combination with and/or in the
presence of, other kinds of matter in order to generate electromagnetic
Light's properties are a bit curious. It exists as waves in a variety of
lengths and frequencies, and also as theoretical particles called photons.
And though light has no mass; it's influenced by gravity. Light is also
quite invisible. For example: you can see the Sun when you look at it, and
you can see the Moon when sunlight reflects from its surface. But none of
the Sun's light is visible in the void between them and that's because light
isn't matter; it's energy.
The same laws that make it possible for matter to generate
electromagnetic radiation also make other conditions possible too; e.g.
fire, wind, water, ice, soil, rain, life, centrifugal force, thermodynamics,
fusion, dark energy, gravity, atoms, organic molecules, magnetism, color,
radiation, refraction, reflection, high energy X-rays and gamma rays,
temperature, pressure, force, inertia, sound, friction, and electricity; et
al. So the creation of light was a pretty big deal; yet Genesis scarcely
gives its origin passing mention.
Gen 1:1-2 . .The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the
surface of the deep
That statement reveals the planet's condition prior to the
creation of light; and no mystery there because sans the natural laws that
make light possible, the earth's particulate matter would never have
coalesced into something coherent.
2Cor 4:6 verifies that light wasn't introduced into the
cosmos from outside in order to dispel the darkness and brighten things up a
bit; but rather, it radiated out of the cosmos from inside— from itself
—indicating that the cosmos was created to be self-illuminating by means of
the various interactions of the matter that God made for it; including, but
not limited to, the Higgs Boson.
It's curious to me that most people have no trouble readily
conceding that everything else in the first chapter of Genesis is natural,
e.g. the cosmos, the earth, water, sky, dry land, the Sun, the Moon, the
stars, aqua life, winged life, terra life, flora life, and human life.
But when it comes to creation's light they choke; finding it
impossible within themselves to believe that Genesis just might be
consistent in its description of the creative process. I mean, if all those
other things are natural, why wouldn't creation's light be natural too? In
point of fact, without natural light, planet Earth would become a cold dead
world right quick.
1Tim 6:16 mentions a light that no man has seen, nor can see.
Back in that day, the only light that people knew much about
was visible light. We today know of several kinds of light invisible to the
human eye: radio, infrared, ultraviolet, X-ray and gamma-ray. However, those
are all natural forms of light. The light spoken on in 1Tim 6:16 is a
supernatural kind of light for which humans have no means of detection thus
That light is further described by the Greek word
aprositos (ap-ros'-ee-tos) which means: inaccessible. In contrast; all
natural light is accessible in one way or another.
The Length Of A Creation Day
● Gen 1:5b . . And there
was evening and there was morning, a first Day.
According to Gen 1:24-31, God created humans and all land
animals on the sixth day; which has to include dinosaurs because on no other
day did God create land animals but the sixth.
Hard-core Bible thumpers insist the days of creation were
24-hour calendar days in length; but scientific dating methods have easily
proven that dinosaurs preceded human life by several million years. So then,
in my estimation, the days of creation should be taken to represent epochs
of indeterminable length rather than 24-hour calendar days.
That's not an unreasonable estimation; for example:
"These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth
when they were created, in the day that Jehovah God made earth and heaven."
The Hebrew word for "day" in that verse is yowm (yome)
which is the very same word for each of the six days of God's creation
labors. Since yowm in Gen 2:4 refers to a period of time obviously much
longer than a 24-hour calendar day; it justifies suggesting that each of the
six days of creation were longer than 24 hours apiece too. In other words:
yowm is ambiguous and not all that easy to interpret sometimes.
Another useful hint as to the length of the days of creation
is located in the sixth chapter of Genesis where Noah is instructed to coat
the interior and exterior of his ark with a substance the Bible calls
"pitch". The Hebrew word is kopher (ko'-fer) which indicates a
material called bitumen: a naturally occurring kind of asphalt formed from
the remains of ancient, microscopic algae (diatoms) and other once-living
things. In order for bitumen to be available in Noah's day, the organisms
from whence it was formed had to have existed on the earth several thousands
of years before him.
The discovery of fossilized sea lilies near the summit of Mt
Everest proves that the Himalayan land mass has not always been mountainous;
but at one time was the floor of an ancient sea bed. This is confirmed by
the "yellow band" below Everest's summit consisting of limestone: a type of
rock made from calcite sediments containing the skeletal remains of
countless trillions of organisms who lived, not on dry land, but in an
ocean. The tectonic forces that pushed the Himalayans up from below sea
level to their current height work very slowly and require untold eons to
accomplish their task.
So then, why can't Bible thumpers accept a six-epoch
explanation? Because they're hung up on the expression "evening and morning"
The interesting thing is: there were no physical evenings and
mornings till the fourth day when the Sun was created and brought on line.
So I suggest that the expression "evening and morning" is simply a
convenient way to indicate the simultaneous wrap of one epoch and the
beginning of another.
Anyway; this "day" thing has been a chronic problem for just
about everybody who takes Genesis seriously. It's typically assumed that the
days of creation consisted of twenty-four hours apiece; so we end up stumped
when trying to figure out how to cope with the estimated 4.5
billion-year age of the earth, and factor in the various eras, e.g.
Triassic, Jurassic, Mesozoic, Cenozoic, Cretaceous, etc, plus the ice ages
and the mass extinction events.
It just never seems to occur to us that it might be okay in
some cases to go ahead and think outside the box. When we do that— when we
allow ourselves to think outside the box —that's when we begin to really
appreciate the contributions science has made towards providing modern men a
window into the Earth's amazing past.
Galileo believed that science and religion are allies rather
than enemies— two different languages telling the same story. In other
words: science and religion compliment each other— science answers
questions that religion doesn't answer, and religion answers questions that
science cannot answer; viz: science and religion are not enemies; no, to the
contrary, science and religion assist each other in their respective quests
to get to the bottom of some of the cosmos' greatest mysteries.
To Infinity And Beyond
● Gen 1:16 . .
He also made the stars.
Celestial objects require some special consideration because
of their apparent distances and the apparent time it takes for their light
to reach the Earth.
For example: last decade, an analysis of the light that
Hubble telescope detected coming from a distant galaxy named A1689-zD1
suggested it's apparent distance at approximately 12.8 billion light years.
Chronologically; the cosmos' creator began constructing the
Earth before He began constructing the stars; which indicates that as a
physical structure, the Earth should be older than A1689-zD1. But geologists
have pretty good reason to believe the Earth to be only something like 4.5
billion years old; while A1689-zD1 appears to be a minimum 12.8 billion
So then, it seems reasonable to conclude that A1689-zD1 is
Earth's senior by at least 8.3 billion years. But there's a rub. Light's journey through space is complicated by some curious
1• The available data suggests that the universe is expanding
in all directions. And not only is it expanding; but the velocity of its
expansion isn't steady, nor is it slowing down as might be expected; but
rather, contrary to common sense and Newton's standard laws of gravity; the
velocity of the cosmos' expansion is accelerating due to a mysterious force
which, for convenience sake, has been labeled dark energy.
Plus, the expansion isn't uniform. Galaxies farthest from our
own appear to be moving away faster than those closer in; which means of
course that viewed from those farthest galaxies; our own would appear to be
moving away faster than those closer in because the expansion is moving us
Ergo: many of the galaxies seen by powerful telescopes are
quite a bit more spread out now than when they were born. How much more I
don't know; but if the age of the Earth is really and truly 4.5 billion
years, then it's my guess the difference is significant.
2• Light has no detectable mass, yet is effected by
gravity; so that light's path through the cosmos is not always the shortest
distance between two points; which suggests to me that A1689-zD1 is nearer than
its estimated 12.8 billion light years.
3• Although the speed of light is constant in a vacuum, the
void is a bit more complicated due to the fact that it's state isn't steady.
There are forces in space influencing not only light's path, but also its
velocity. There was a time when scientists sincerely believed that although
light could be slowed down, it could not be sped up; now they're not so
4• Light doesn't decay. In other words: there is no
detectable difference in age between the cosmos' first light, and the light
emitted by the screen of an iPhone.
5• The more that scientists study the cosmos, the more things
they discover about it that cause them to question what they believed in the
past. Today's scientific truth is only valid until another truth comes along
to cancel it.
All the above suggests to me that A1689-zD1's apparent
distance has no bearing upon its age; viz: the estimated age of the cosmos
is only loosely theoretical rather than actual. In other words: current
dating methods are unreliable and subject to revision. It's very possibly
true that the Earth really did precede the stars just as the Bible says.
Now; a consideration that shouldn't be overlooked is that Gen
1:16 refers only to stars visible to the author's naked eye, which would
limit the category to those of the Milky Way. In point of fact, as recent as
the beginning of the last century, most astronomers sincerely believed that
the Milky Way contained the sum total of all the stars in the universe; up
until Edwin Hubble showed that the Milky Way is just one of many galaxies—
now estimated to number as many as 200 billion in the observable universe.
God challenged Abraham to count the stars (Gen 15:5). But of
course without optical assistance, Abraham was limited to the stars of the
Milky Way; whose apparent diameter is estimated to be a mere 100-150,000
The final say of course is the Bible. According to Gen 1:15,
stars illuminated the earth on the day that God made them, which was prior
to His creation of humanity. In other words: it's not unreasonable to
believe that God didn't wait till starlight reached the earth on its own,
but punched it straight through in order to begin illuminating the earth
But what's the point of putting all those objects out there
in space? Well, for one thing, they're not only brain teasers; but they're
actually quite pretty. Celestial objects decorate the night sky like the
ornamentation people put up during holidays. The night sky would sure be a
bore if it was totally black. Decorated with stars; the night sky is like a
beautiful tapestry, or a celestial Sistine Chapel.
"The heavens declare the glory of God, the sky proclaims His
handiwork." (Ps 19:2)
Stars makes better sense that way than to try and find some
other meaning for them. I believe the universe is simply a magnificent work
of art— just as intriguing, if not more so, than the works of Picasso,
Rembrandt, Michelangelo, Monet, Vermeer, and da Vinci —testifying to the
genius of an engineer-artist without peer.
"For what can be known about God is evident to them, because
God made it evident to them. Ever since the creation of the world, His
invisible attributes of eternal power and divinity have been able to be
understood and perceived in what He has made." (Rom 1:19-20)
Day And Night
● Gen 1:4b-5a . . God separated the light
from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night.
Day and Night simply label two distinct, and opposite,
conditions— the absence of light, and/or the absence of darkness. Defining
those conditions may seem like a superfluous detail, but when analyzing the
chronology of Christ's crucifixion and resurrection, it's essential to keep days
and nights separate. When people attempt to define "day" as a twenty-four hour
amalgam of light and darkness, they invariably come up with some rather
convoluted interpretations of Matt 12:40.
● Gen 1:14 . . God
said: Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to distinguish Day from
On the first day; God defined Day as a condition of light;
and defined Night as a condition of darkness. Here, it's further defined
that Day, as pertains to life on Earth, is when the sun is up; and Night is
when the sun is down.
These definitions occur so early in the Bible that they
easily escape the memories of Bible students as they slip into the reflexive
habit of always thinking of Days as 24-hour events. That's okay for
calendars but can lead to gross misunderstandings when interpreting biblical
schedules, predictions, and/or chronologies.
● Gen 1:15-18a . .
God made the two great lights, the greater light to dominate the day and the
lesser light to dominate the night, and the stars. And God set them in the
expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth, to dominate the day and the
night, and to distinguish light from darkness.
That passage not only defines "day" as when the sun is up,
and "night" as when the sun is down; but it further defines night as when
the stars are out; and yet people still don't think God means it.
Christ defined Day and Night as they were practiced when he was
● John 11:9 . .
Jesus answered: are there not twelve hours in the day? A man who walks by
day will not stumble, for he sees by this world's light.
"this world's light" is the sun; which Christ defined as "by
day". So if Christ's "day" was defined as when the sun was up; then Christ's
"night" had to be defined as when the sun was down.
So then, when Christ predicted his death to last for three
days and three nights, he obviously meant the hours of daytime and nighttime
as they were understood when he was here rather than some other era
otherwise the people in his own time wouldn't have known when to expect his
crucified body to come back to life.
Daytimes divided into twelve divisions were regulated by what's known as
temporal hours; which vary in length in accordance with the time of year.
There are times of the year at Jerusalem's latitude when daytime consists of
less than 12 normal hours of sunlight, and sometimes more; but when Christ
was here; the official number of daytime hours was always 12 regardless.
I don't know exactly why the Jews of that era divided their
daytimes into twelve divisions regardless of the seasons, but I suspect it
was just a convenient way to operate the government and conduct civil
affairs; including the Temple's activities (e.g. the daily morning and
Image And Likeness Of God
● Gen 1:26a . . And God said:
Let us make Man in our image, after our likeness.
Because of the terms "image and likeness" there are some who
believe that man's creator is a human being; or at least resembles one. But
according to Christ, creation's God is non physical.
"God is spirit" (John 4:24)
Spirit isn't solid. (Luke 24:36-39)
Moses warned Yhvh's people to avoid making any kind of
mannequin, figurine, totem pole, or statue representing God since no one has
any true concept of what creation's God actually looks like in person. (Ex
There exists absolutely nothing in nature physically
resembling its creator; except maybe the air in front of your face-- neither
Man, nor beast, nor plant, nor bird, nor bug, nor reptile nor anything out
in the void (Rom 1:21-23). Concepts that portray creation's God as a human
being are purely fantasy. (Rom 1:25)
● Gen 1:26b . . let them rule
over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over
all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.
Humanity's right to dominate the earth is where we find its
image and likeness of God. In other words: Man's image and likeness of God
is all about sovereignty, power, control, and authority. (cf. Gen 44:18)
The word for
"rule" is from radah (raw-daw') and means: to tread down, i.e.
subjugate; specifically: to crumble off.
I saw a pretty interesting bumper sticker some time ago that
went like this:
We are not above the Earth;
We are of the Earth.
Well . . I respect the Native American cultural feelings
behind that statement; and must admit that I agree with it whole-heartedly.
But creation's creator decreed that though Man is of the earth; he is very
definitely above it too, and has the God-given right to subjugate every
living thing on the planet including its forests, its grasses, its rivers,
its seas, its soil, its rocks, its air, its minerals, its mountains, its
valleys, and even its tectonic plates and the earth's very atmosphere
itself. And that's not the end of it. According to Heb 2:8, humanity is on
track to take control of even more.
The Phylogenetic Tree Of Life is an interesting scientific diagram that traces
all forms of life back to a singular genetic heritage regardless of species. In
other words; if you started with a raccoon, and followed it's branch down the
tree far enough, you'd eventually intersect with another branch that you could
then trace to mushrooms. The tree is sort of the equivalent of a Big Bang of
The branch on that tree that interests me the most is the one that traces human
life. According to the diagram; any two people you might select— no matter what
their age, race, or gender —if traced back far enough, can eventually be linked
to a common ancestor; which of course is no surprise to Bible students.
● Gen 2:21-23 . .Yhvh God caused a deep
sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; then He took one of his ribs, and closed
up the flesh at that place. And the God fashioned into a woman the rib which He
had taken from the man, and brought her to the man. And the man said: This is
now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because
she was taken out of Man.
The Hebrew for "rib" in that passage is tsela' (tsay-law') and Gen
2:21-23 contains the only two places in the entire Old Testament where it's
translated with an English word representing a skeletal bone. In the other
twenty-nine places, it's translated "side"
In other words: Eve wasn't constructed directly from the dust of the earth as
was Adam. She was constructed from a human tissue sample amputated from Adam's
body; ergo: Eve's flesh was derived from Adam's; consequently any and all human
life produced by Eve's flesh is biologically traceable to Adam's flesh.
● Gen 3:20 . . Adam named his wife Eve,
because she would be the mother of all people everywhere.
● Acts 17:26 . . He made from one man every
variety of mankind to live on all the face of the earth
It was apparently the creator's deliberate design that all human life be
biologically related to a sole source of human life— the one and only human
life that God created directly from the earth's dust; viz: Adam.
Why Adam Didn't Drop Dead
● Gen 2:15-17 . .The Lord God took the man
and placed him in the garden of Eden, to till it and tend it. And the Lord God
commanded the man, saying: Of every tree of the garden you are free to eat; but
as for the tree of knowledge of good and bad, you must not eat of it; for in the
day you eat of it, you shall die.
That passage has always been an embarrassment for Bible thumpers because Adam
didn't drop dead the instant he tasted the forbidden fruit. In point of fact, he
continued to live outside the garden of Eden for another 800 years after the
birth of his son Seth. (Gen 5:4)
is there a reasonable explanation for this apparent discrepancy?
Well; first off let me point out that in order for the threat to resonate in
Adam's thinking; it had to be related to death as Adam understood death in his
day, rather than death as the Bible thumpers understand it in their day. In
other words: Adam didn't expect to die spiritually. No, he expected to die
normally; viz: physically; like as in pass away.
How can I be so sure that God meant normal death instead of spiritual death?
Because according to Gen 3:19 that's how it worked out; and to make sure Adam
stayed normally dead, God blocked his access to the tree of life. (Gen 3:22-24)
Anyway; the trick is: Adam wasn't told he would die the instant he tasted the
fruit. God's exact words were "in the day"
Well; according to Gen 2:4, the Hebrew word for "day" is a bit ambiguous. It can
easily indicate a period of time much, much longer than 24 hours' viz; the "day"
of Adam's death began the moment he ate the fruit.
That was a milestone in human history. Up till Adam tasted the fruit, the only
days on record were the six of creation, and the one when God ceased creating.
Adam inaugurated a new day by tasting the fruit— the day of death.
"Sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way
death came to all men" (Rom 5:12)
Well; like Jack Palance's character Curly in the movie City Slickers said: "The
day ain't over yet"
● Ecc 7:2 . . It is better to go to a house
of mourning than to go to a house of gaiety, for death is the destiny of every
man; the living should take this seriously.
Why Everyone Has To Die At Least Once
Prior to Moses an official code of divine law, containing lethal consequences,
had yet to be issued.
● Rom 5:13-14 . . Before the law was given, sin was
in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law.
Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even
over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam.
The answer is: they all had to die not because of breaking an official code of
divine law; but because of Adam breaking just one rule (Gen 2:16-17). His
disobedience in the matter of the forbidden fruit effected his entire posterity:
both the good and the bad; the young and the old.
This is really difficult for some people to get their heads around.
Nevertheless, it's very important to accept it whether one understands it or not
because Paul applies this principle in his effort to explain why it is that
believers never have to worry about being condemned for their sins. (Rom
Opponents are often quick to point out that Ezek 18:20 says that children don't
share their father's guilt. But hey, which came first? Adam or Ezekiel? So then,
since Adam's incident came along many years before Ezekiel's prophecy, then God
was at liberty back then to reckon Adam's posterity as joint principals in his
act of disobedience.
● Rom 5:12 . . Sin entered the world through
one man, and death through sin; and in this way death came to all men, because
"all sinned" has no reference to all's own personal sins; just Adam's, i.e. his
sin became everyone's sin, even everyone yet to be born.
Why Cain Was Rejected
● Gen 4:2b . . Abel
became a keeper of sheep, and Cain became a tiller of the soil.
Both men worked at honorable professions and their skills
were essential to the Adams' survival. Humans at this time were vegetarians
so Cain farmed and raised the family's food; while Abel kept them clothed
and shod by tending flocks for leather; and possibly fleece too.
● Gen 4:3-4a . . In the
course of time, Cain brought an offering to The Lord from the fruit of the
soil; and Abel, for his part, brought the choicest of the firstlings of his
There's no indication in this scene suggesting that the items
they brought were sacrifices for sin. The Hebrew word for "offering" is from
minchah (min-khaw') and means: to apportion, i.e. bestow; a donation;
euphemistically, tribute; specifically a sacrificial offering (usually
bloodless and voluntary).
Since the offerings were minchah type offerings— which are
essentially gifts rather than atonements —it would be wrong to insist Abel
slew his firstling and/or burned it to ashes. In point of fact, holocaust
offerings are indicated by the word 'olah (o-law') instead of minchah;
for example Gen 8:20 and Gen 22:2.
Ancient rabbis understood the brothers' offerings to be a
"first fruits" kind of oblation.
T. And it was at the end
of days, on the fourteenth of Nisan, that Kain brought of the produce of the
earth, the seed of cotton (or line), an oblation of first things before the
Lord; and Habel brought of the firstlings of the flock. (Targum Jonathan)
Seeing as how Cain was a farmer, then in his case, an amount
of produce was the appropriate first fruits offering, and seeing as how Abel
was an animal husbandman, then in his case a head of livestock was the
appropriate first fruits offering.
I think it's safe to assume the brothers were no longer boys,
but rather, responsible men in this particular scene because God treated
them that way. This incident is not said to be the very first time they
brought gifts to God. The brothers (and very likely their parents too),
probably had been bringing gifts for many years; ever since they were of
age. And up to this point, apparently both men were doing everything right
and God was just as much pleased with Cain and his gifts as He was with Abel
and his gifts.
But where did they get this religion of theirs? Well; wasn't
Abel a prophet?
"Therefore this generation will be held responsible for the
blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the beginning of the
world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed
between the altar and the sanctuary." (Luke 11:50-51a)
It's evident then that the offerings were a legitimate part
of a God-given religion rather than a pagan ritual. (cf. Heb 11:4)
● Gen 4:4b-5a . .The
Lord paid heed to Abel and his offering, but to Cain and his offering He
paid no heed.
The language and grammar of that verse indicate that God not
only snubbed Cain's offering; but also Cain himself; so that his offering
wasn't the only issue: Cain himself was an issue too.
Cain was of a good family. He wasn't the product of poverty
or an inner city barrio or dilapidated public housing. His mother wasn't
cruel and/or thoughtless, nor did she neglect or abandon him. He wasn't in a
gang, didn't carry a church key, a shank, an ice pick, or a gun; didn't
smoke weed, drink, snort coke, take meth, gamble or chase women.
Cain worked for a living in an honest profession. He wasn't a
thief, wasn't a predatory lender, wasn't a Wall Street barracuda, a
dishonest investment banker, or an unscrupulous social network mogul. He
wasn't a cheap politician, wasn't a terrorist, wasn't on the take, wasn't
lazy, nor did he associate with the wrong crowd. He was very religious and
worshipped the exact same God that his brother worshipped, and the rituals
he practiced were correct and timely.
The man did everything a model citizen is supposed to do; yet
he, and subsequently his gift, were soundly rejected. What?
Well; for one thing; at this point in his life, in spite of
appearances; Cain was actually impious. (1John 3:12)
In what way was he impious? Well, my first guess would be
friction between him and his brother. It is unacceptable to worship God
while the worshipper's relationship with their brother is dysfunctional.
"Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there
remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there
before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and
then come and offer your gift." (Matt 5:23-24)
● Gen 4:5b-7a . . Cain
was much distressed and his face fell. And the Lord said to Cain: Why are
you distressed, and why is your face fallen? If you do what is right, will
you not be accepted?
Cain knew the drill; viz: it's conduct first and worship
second. That can be readily seen played out in the first chapter of Isaiah
where Yhvh's people are depicted practicing their God-given worship to
perfection. They were attending Temple on a timely basis, praying up a
storm, offering all the correct sacrifices and offerings, observing the
Sabbath, and all the holy days of obligation. But God soundly rejected all of that
because their conduct was unbecoming.
Bottom line is: Abel and his offering were acceptable because
Abel's conduct was acceptable; while Cain and his offering were unacceptable
because Cain's conduct was unacceptable. So then, from Cain and Abel we
learn that the key to acceptable worship is acceptable conduct. The two are
joined at the hip; so to speak. And that being the case; I'd have to say
that there are a number of Christians attending church every Sunday morning
who really ought to stay home and not come back until they clean up the
things in their lives that they know very well are rubbing God the wrong
1John 1:5-6 . . This then is the message which we have heard of him, and
declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we
say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do
not the truth
God Didn't Execute Cain For Murder
● Gen 4:12-13 . . If you till the soil, it
shall no longer yield its strength to you. You shall become a ceaseless wanderer
on earth. Cain said to the Lord: My punishment is too great to bear!
Cain's punishment was relatively lenient. In point of fact, it wasn't punishment
at all, it was discipline. It's true that Cain would struggle to survive; but at
least he was allowed to live. His kid brother was dead. How is that fair?
Q: How did Cain get off with only a slap on the wrist? Why wasn't he
executed for murder since God himself mandates capital punishment for murderers
as per Gen 9:5-6, Ex 21:12-14, Lev 24:17, Lev 24:21, and Num 35:31-34? Does God
practice a double standard?
A: Murder is intrinsically wrong, yes; and it's intrinsically a sin, yes; however;
it hasn't always been a capital sin. According to Deut 5:2-4,
Rom 4:15, Rom 5:13, and Gal 3:17, law enacted ex post facto is too late; viz:
law can't be enforced until after it's enacted, not even divine law; which is
precisely why God didn't have to execute Cain for murder.
From Whence Cain Got A Wife
Adam was created directly from the dust of the earth. Not so
Eve. She was constructed from a human tissue sample amputated from Adam's
body. In other words: Eve's flesh was biologically just as much Adam's flesh
as Adam's except for gender; viz: Eve wasn't a discrete species of human
life, rather; she was the flip side of the same coin.
After God created Adam and Eve, He wrapped the work and has
been on a creation sabbatical every since.
According to the Bible, all human life thereafter came from
● Gen 3:20 . .
Adam named his wife Eve, because she would become the mother of all the
It was apparently the creator's deliberate design that all
human life descend from a solo specimen.
● Acts 17:26 .
. From one man He made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the
The Greek word for "nation of men" is ethnos (eth'-nos) which
pertains to racial diversity.
Bottom line: The flesh of Cain's wife descended from his
An even more convincing example of prehistoric incest is Noah
and his three sons and their wives. Nobody else survived the Flood; ergo:
Shem's, Ham's, and Japheth's children all married amongst themselves.
● Gen 9:18-19 . . Now
the sons of Noah who came out of the ark were Shem and Ham and Japheth.
These three were the sons of Noah; and from these the whole earth was
Obviously the human genome was very pure back in those days.
The proof of it is pre-historic human life's amazing longevity— Adam lived
to be 930, and Noah to 950.
Now as to the "sin" of incest; according to Deut 5:2-4, Rom
4:15, Rom 5:13, and Gal 3:17; God doesn't enforce His laws ex post facto: viz: they are not retroactive. So then, it would be a gross miscarriage of
justice to prosecute pre-historic people for incest because it wasn't
prohibited in their day; and wouldn't be until later in Moses'.
The Critters Got To Noah
● Gen 6:3 . . And Yhvh said: My Spirit
shall not strive with man forever. Yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty
Some feel that God set the limits of human longevity in that verse. But people
still continued to live long lives for a great number of years afterwards. Even
Abraham, who lived many, many years after the Flood, didn't die till he was 175
years old. No; it's far more reasonable to conclude that God was announcing a
deadline; viz: the antediluvians had 120 years left to get ready to meet their
maker. But you think that alarmed anybody? Heck no. They went right on; business
"And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of
Man: They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage,
until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the Flood came and destroyed them
all." (Luke 17:26-27)
The time of God's patience is sometimes long; but never unlimited; viz:
reprieves are not acquittals— though God bear a great while, He never bears
● Gen 6:12-14 . . God saw how corrupt the
earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. So God
said to Noah: I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled
with violence because of them. I am about to destroy them with the earth. Make
yourself an ark
● Gen 6:17 . . For My part, I am about to
bring the Flood— waters upon the earth —to destroy all flesh under the sky in
which there is breath of life; everything on earth shall perish.
● Gen 6:19-20 . . And of all that lives, of
all flesh, you shall take two of each into the ark to keep alive with you; they
shall be male and female. From birds of every kind, cattle of every kind, every
kind of creeping thing on earth, two of each shall come to you to stay alive.
Fortunately Noah didn't have to go on safari to round up his passengers. God
said two of each "shall come to you" (cf. Gen 7:9, Gen 7:15) which implies of
course that species who failed to come got left behind and went extinct in the
Flood. There was plenty of time for them to make it because Noah was 120 years
building the ark and getting it ready.
A man named Dave Kunst walked across today's world in just a little over 4 years
from June 1970 to October 1974. Kunst walked a total of 14,450 miles, crossing
four continents and thirteen countries, wearing out 21 pair of shoes, and
walking more than 20 million steps. That was an odd thing to do, but does prove
it can be done in a relatively short time; so 120 years was plenty enough for
all the critters to make it on over to Noah's place in time for the Folly's
If the ark were to launch in 2015, critters would have been on the move towards
it since 1895— eight years before the Wright Brothers historical flight, and
seventeen years before the Titanic foundered —and
probably reproduced many times along the way since there are not all that many
species that live to see 120 years of age.
But how did they cross oceans? In the past that was doubtless a thorny
theological problem. But with today's knowledge of the geological science of
plate tectonics, the answer is as simple as two plus two. Scientists now know
that continental land masses can be shifted, and in point of fact the dry parts
brought so close together as to form one single super continent.
Scientists also know about subduction and magma hot spots and pressure points
that can raise and lower the earth's crust like a service elevator; for example
according to Gen 14:3, the area now known as the Dead Sea was once known as the
Vale of Siddim. Sometime in the distant past the earth's crust rose in that
region, blocking the Jordan River's natural drainage into the gulf of Aqaba;
thus trapping it's waters in a huge basin from which they cannot escape.
Subduction causes the earth to wrinkle, bulge, and form mountain ranges and hill
"He established the earth upon its foundations, so that it will not totter
forever and ever. Thou didst cover it with the deep as with a garment; the
waters were standing above the mountains. At Thy rebuke they fled; at the sound
of Thy thunder they hurried away. The mountains rose; the valleys sank down to
the place which Thou didst establish for them. Thou didst set a boundary that
they may not pass over; that they may not return to cover the earth." (Ps
That portion of Psalm 104 is probably speaking of Gen 1:9-10. It's handy for
showing that God is capable of molding the Earth's lithosphere into any
geological configuration He pleases to push sea beds up and form land bridges;
thus expediting migrations from all over the world over to Noah's diggings.
This idea is by no means novel. For example: in 2014, a 9,000 year-old stone
structure utilized to capture caribou was discovered 120 feet below the surface
of Lake Huron; and is the most complex structure of its kind in the Great Lakes
The structure consists of two parallel lanes of stones leading to a cul-de-sac.
Within the lanes are three circular hunting blinds where prehistoric hunters hid
while taking aim at caribou. The structure's size and design suggest that
hunting was probably a group effort, with one group driving caribou down the
lanes towards the blinds while another group waited to attack.
The site— discovered by using sonar technology on the Alpena-Amberley Ridge, 35
miles southeast of Alpena Michigan —was once a dry land corridor connecting
northeastern Michigan to southern Ontario.
Ten miles off the coast of Alabama in 60 feet of water in the Gulf of Mexico,
are the remains of a Bald Cypress grove that's estimated to be eight to fourteen
thousand years old; testifying that the earth's topography was quite a bit
different in the ancient past.
Actually the Earth's mantle is one continuous (albeit fractured) shell anyway,
although its profile is so irregular that dry land sticks up above sea level at
various high spots; which is a good thing because if the mantle were smooth, the
world would be quite flooded all the time. In point of fact, if the Earth's
mantle were perfectly smooth, like a billiard ball, there's enough indigenous
water on it to cover the crust to a depth of 9,000 feet of water. That would be
equivalent to a global ocean approximately 1.7 miles deep.
Geological processes normally take thousands of years to accomplish, but those
processes can be sped up considerably by the cosmos' creator, who has absolute
control over everything— not just the earth's geological processes; but all the
rest of nature's processes too.
The Fate Of Noah's Ark
● Gen 8:3b . . At the end of one hundred
and fifty days the waters diminished, so that in the seventh month, on the
seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat.
The precise topographic location, where the ark went aground, was not really up
on a specific mountain by the name of Ararat nor up on any other mountain for
that matter. The Hebrew word for "mountains" in Gen 8:4 is haareey which
is the plural of har (har). It doesn't always mean prominent land masses
like Everest or McKinley; especially when it's plural. Har can also mean a range
of mountains like the Pyrenees bordering Spain and France and/or a range of
hills or highlands; like the region of Israel where Miriam's cousin Elizabeth
"At that time Mary got ready and hurried to a town in the hill country of Judea,
where she entered Zechariah's home and greeted Elizabeth." (Luke 1:39-40)
In California, where I lived as a kid, the local elevation 35 miles east of San
Diego, in the town of Alpine, was about 2,000 feet above sea level. There were
plenty of meadows with pasture and good soil. In fact much of it was very good
ranchland and quite a few people in that area raised horses and cows. We
ourselves kept about five hundred chickens, and a few goats and calves. We lived
in the mountains of San Diego; but we didn't live up on top of one of its
mountains like Viejas, Lyon's, or Cuyamaca.
Another inhabited region in the continental U.S. that's elevated is the area of
Denver Colorado; which is located on the western edge of the Great Plains near
the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. Denver is a whole mile above sea level—
5,280 feet. However, Denver, even though so high above sea level, isn't located
on the tippy top of a mountain, nor even on the side of one; it's just located
up on high ground.
The ark contained the only surviving souls of man and animal on the entire
planet. Does it really make good sense to strand them up on a mountain peak
where they might risk death and injury descending it?
When my wife and I visited the San Diego zoo together back in the early 1980's,
we noticed that the Giraffes' area had no fence around it. The tour guide told
us the Giraffes' enclosure doesn't need a fence because their area is up on a
plateau 3 feet high. The Giraffes don't try to escape because they're afraid of
heights. There's just no way Giraffes could've climbed down off of Turkey's
Mount Ararat. It's way too steep and rugged. Those poor timid creatures would've
been stranded up there and died; and so would hippos, elephants, and flightless
The Hebrew word for "Ararat" is from 'Ararat (ar-aw-rat') which appears
three more times in the Bible: one at 2Kgs 19:36-37, one at Isa 37:36-38, and
one at Jer 51:27. Ararat is always the country of Armenia: never a specific peak
by the same name.
So; where is the ark now? Well; according to the dimensions given at Gen 6:15,
the ark was shaped like what the whiz kids call a right rectangular prism; which
is nothing in the world but the shape of a common shoe box. So most of the
lumber and/or logs used in its construction would've been nice and straight; which
is perfect for putting together cabins, sheds, fences, barns, corrals, stables, gates,
hog troughs, mangers, and outhouses.
I think it's very safe to assume Noah and his kin gradually
dismantled the ark over time and used the wood for many other purposes,
including fires. Nobody cooked or heated their homes or their bath and
laundry water using refined fossil fuels and/or electricity and steam in
those days, so everybody needed to keep on hand a pretty fair-sized wood
pile for their daily needs. There was probably plenty of driftwood left
behind by the Flood, but most of that would be water-soaked at first. But
according to Gen 6:14 the ark's lumber was treated. So underneath the pitch
it was still in pretty good shape and should have been preserved for many
years to come.
● Gen 9:1-4 . . Then God blessed Noah and
his sons, saying to them: Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth.
The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the
birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all
the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands.
. . . Everything that lives and
moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you
everything. But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it.
Blessings should never be construed as commandments and/or laws and edicts. In
other words: God gave Noah and his sons the green light to eat meat, but He
didn't say they had to.
● Rom 14:2-3 . . One man's faith allows him
to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables.
The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man
who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has
Prior to the Flood, humans were vegans. Afterwards; they were given
permission to become omnivorous. People are often curious about that.
According to an article in the Dec 10, 2013 Science section of the New York
Times, scientists believe that the early human body was able to manufacture all
of its own essential vitamins; but over time gradually lost the ability to
manufacture all but K and D.
That seems plausible to me seeing as how Noah lived to be 950 years old, but by
the time of Abraham, the human life span had decreased considerably to 175;
which the Bible describes as a ripe old age (Gen 25:7 8). Well, Noah at 175 was
about equivalent to Abraham at 32; so the human body was obviously a whole lot
stronger back in Noah's day than it was in Abraham's.
Apparently the inclusion of meat in Man's diet after the Flood was intended
primarily as a source of natural supplements to make up for the human body's
gradually lessening ability to manufacture all it's own essential nutrients;
much the same reason that modern vegans resort to synthetic supplements in order
to avoid contracting deficiency diseases.
People subsisting on vegan diets, such as many of the people of India, often eat
lots of minute insect eggs along with their fruits and vegetables without
knowing it, thus providing themselves with a number of essential nutrients that
most everyone else obtains by deliberately eating animal products. It's kind of
humorous that in their care to avoid meat they end up eating bugs.
Abraham And Hagar
● Gen 21:10-12 . . Sarah said to Abraham:
Cast out that slave-woman and her son, for the son of that slave shall not share
in the inheritance with my son Isaac.
The common laws of Abraham's day (e.g. the Code of Hammurabi and the laws of
Lipit-Ishtar) entitled Ishmael to the lion's share of Abraham's estate because
he was Abraham's firstborn biological son. However, there was a clause in the
laws stipulating that if a slave-owner emancipated his child's in-slavery
biological mother; then the mother and the child would lose any and all claims
to a paternal property settlement with the slave-owner.
The trick is: Abraham couldn't just send Hagar packing, nor sell her, for the
clause to take effect; no, he had to emancipate her; which he did.
● Gen 21:14 . . Early the next morning
Abraham took some food and a skin of water and gave them to Hagar. He set them
on her shoulders and then sent her off with the boy.
The "boy" at this moment in time was near 18 years old if he was circumcised at
fourteen and Isaac was weaned at three. (cf. Gen 16:16, Gen 21:5, Gen 21:8)
The phrase "sent her off" is from the Hebrew word shalach (shaw-lakh')
which is a versatile word that speaks of divorce as well as the emancipation of
slaves. In other words: Hagar wasn't banished as is commonly assumed; no, she
was set free; and it's very important to nail that down in our thinking because
if Abraham had merely banished Hagar, then her son Ishmael would have retained
his legal status as Abraham's eldest son.
Later, when Abraham was ordered to sacrifice Isaac; God referred to him as the
patriarch's only son.
● Gen 22:2 . .Take
now your son, your only son, whom you love, Isaac, and go to the land of Moriah;
and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will
● Gen 22:12 . . Do
not stretch out your hand against the lad, and do nothing to him; for now I know
that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.
Biologically, Ishmael retained his status as one of Abraham's sons (Gen 25:9)
but not legally; no, his legal association with Abraham was dissolved when the
old boy emancipated Ishmael's mother; and I sincerely believe that is precisely
how Gen 22:2, Gen 22:12, and Heb 11:17 ought to be understood.
Who/What The Firstborn Is
● Col 1:15 . . He is the image of the
invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.
Christ wasn't even the one born first in the human family let alone the entire
creation so what gives here?
Well; firstborn is just as much a rank as it is a birth order; and though the
latter is set in biological concrete; the title, and it's advantages, are
transferable to a younger sibling; e.g. from Esau to Jacob (Gen 25:23) from
Reuben to Joseph (Gen 49:3-4, 1Chr 5:1) and from Manasseh to Ephraim (Gen
48:13-14). This situation can lead to some interesting ramifications; for
● Matt 22:41-46 . . Now while the Pharisees
were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question; saying: What do you think
about the Christ, whose son is He? They said to Him: The son of David. He said
to them: Then how does David in the Spirit call Him "Lord" saying: The Lord said
to my Lord: Sit at My right hand until I put thine enemies beneath thy feet. If
David then calls Him "Lord" how is He his son?
Jesus referenced Psalm 110:1, where there are two distinct
Hebrew words for "lord". The first is yhvh, a name reserved exclusively for
God. The second is 'adown, which is a very common word in the Old Testament
used to simply indicate a superior. Sarah labeled Abraham her 'adown (Gen
18:12) Rachel addressed her dad by 'adown (Gen 31:5) and Jacob addressed his
brother Esau by 'adown (Gen 33:8).
So then; Psalm 110:1 could be translated like this:
"Yhvh said unto my superior: Sit thou at my right hand, until
I make thine enemies thy footstool."
Anybody who knew the Old Testament in Jesus' day knew good
and well from Ps 89:27 that David has no superiors but God because he holds
the rank of God's firstborn; viz: no king that you might name is David's
superior other than Yhvh: the king of all kings.
So Psalm 110:1 suggests that David's rank— and subsequently
its advantages —as God's firstborn has been transferred to another man; and
seeing as how Jesus' opponents agreed that the other man is David's son,
then the position has been transferred not to one of David's siblings; but to
one of his own posterity; so that now David has to bow and scrape to one of
his own grandchildren, which up to that time was not only unheard of; but
just wasn't done.
● Matt 22:46 . .
And no one was able to answer him a word
Well; no surprise there. This was something not only strange
to their Jewish way of thinking; but entirely new, yet there it was in black
and white in their own scriptures; and they had somehow failed to catch its
significance until Jesus drew their attention to it.
Now; here's something else that I'm 110% positive crossed the
minds of Jesus' learned opposition. To their way of thinking, David's
position as God's firstborn as per Ps 89:27 is irrevocable. Well; seeing as
how there is no intermediate rank sandwiched in between the firstborn
position and the paterfamilias position, that means David's son, about whom
he spoke in Ps 110:1, is equal in rank to God; which is a blasphemous
suggestion to say the least. (chuckle) Those poor know-it-all Pharisees were
utterly baffled beyond words.
"Your throne O God is forever and ever; a scepter of
uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness,
and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil
of joy more than your fellows." (Ps 45:6-7)
If that passage has been translated correctly, it says one of
two things. Either God is speaking to Himself, or He is speaking to a king
of the Davidic dynasty that has been promoted to a level of dignity and
authority equal to His own; which of course outranks David by a pretty large
amount; and in point of fact: is superior to the entire cosmos— all of its
forms of life, matter, and energy —no contest.
David's Little Boy
Long story short: David breached the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon
with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy by committing the
capital crimes of premeditated murder and adultery (2Sam 11:1-2Sam 12:23). As
bad as those two breaches are; what really rattled heaven's cage was that
David's conduct was an embarrassment.
● 2Sam 12:14a . . Because by this deed you
have given occasion to the enemies of The Lord to blaspheme,
What might the nature of that blasphemy be? Well; you probably already know
because it's very popular: "How can God call David a man after His own heart
when he was nothing but a premeditated murderer and adulterer?"
Behavior like David's also causes
the world to question the wisdom of Yhvh's choice of a people for His name. That
too is a very common form of blaspheme: it goes on all the time. (e.g. Isa 62:5,
● 2Sam 12:14b-18 . . the child also that is
born to you shall surely die . . .The Lord struck the child that Uriah's widow
bore to David, so that he was very sick . . .Then it happened on the seventh day
that the child died.
How was that fair? Well; it wasn't meant to be fair to the boy; it was meant to
be fair to David. His little boy was just collateral damage.
● Ex 34:6-7 . . Then Yhvh passed by in
front of Moses and proclaimed: Yhvh, Yhvh God, compassionate and gracious, slow
to anger, and abounding in loving-kindness and truth; who keeps loving-kindness
for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no
means leave the guilty unpunished: visiting the iniquity of fathers on the
children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations.
It is apparently God's prerogative to get back at people by going after their
posterity and/or the people they govern.
There's a horrific example of collateral damage located at Num 16:25-34. Another
is the Flood. No doubt quite a few underage children drowned in that event due
to their parents' wickedness. The same happened to the children in Sodom and
Gomorrah, and Ham's punishment for humiliating Noah was a curse upon his son
Canaan, and during Moses' face-off with Pharaoh, God moved against the man's
firstborn son along with all those of his subjects.
The grand-daddy of all collateral damages is everybody has to die because the
human race's progenitor disobeyed God in the very beginning. (Rom 5:12-18)
Interesting isn't it? There are times when Heaven's anger seems to come out of
the blue; but if truth be known; sometimes it actually comes out of the past;
● 2Sam 21:1 . . Now there was a famine in
the days of David for three years, year after year; and David sought the
presence of the Lord. And the Lord said: It is for Saul and his bloody house,
because he put the Gibeonites to death.
Joshua agreed to a non-aggression pact with the Gibeonites during the conquest
of Canaan (Josh 9:3-16). Saul, when king, dishonored the pact. He apparently got
away with it; but not his countrymen, no; God slammed them for what Saul did;
and that posthumously.
Moral of the story: The sins of today, jeopardize the lives of tomorrow; and
sometimes those lives are very large in number.
The Meaning Of "Under The Law"
● Rom 6:14 . .
Sin is not to have any power over you, since you are not under the law but under
The apostle Paul was a well-trained Jew (Acts 22:3, Php 3:5).
He and his fellow Pharisees generally understood the law as that of Moses',
a.k.a. the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Exodus,
Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
The important thing to note about the covenant is that it's a
legally binding contract. So then the term "under the law" refers to
Seeing as how Christ's followers are not contracted with God
to comply with the Jews' covenant, then neither is God contractually
obligated to penalize Christ's followers for breaching it.
God has to lower the boom on Yhvh's people with any and/or
all of the curses listed at Lev 26:3-38, Deut 27:15-26, and Deut 28:1-69 for
breaching the covenant, but He doesn't have to lower the boom on Christ's
followers with those curses because He isn't contracted with them to do so.
This is a very important aspect of Christianity.
In a nutshell: where there is no contract, there is no
contract to breach; and where there is no law, there is no law to break; and
where there is no law to break, there are no indictments. (Rom 4:15, Rom
This principle applies in a really big way to people who have
undergone the baptism described at Rom 6:3-11 because it essentially means
that they cannot be sent to hell for breaking the Ten Commandments, or any
of the other covenanted commandments for that matter.
● Luke 2:8-11 . . And in the same region there
were some shepherds staying out in the fields, and keeping watch over their
flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the
glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened.
. . .
And the angel said to them: Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good
news of a great joy which shall be for all the people; for today in the city
of David there has been born for you a savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Well; I have
to say that if people's path to heaven incorporates compliance with the Ten
Commandments, then their religion contains no good news at all, nor do they
have any reason to be joyful; rather, they have plenty of cause for
● Gal 3:10 . . All who
rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: Cursed is
everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the book of the
law. (cf. Deut 27;26)
Abraham And Ex Post Facto
● Gen 26:5 . . Abraham obeyed Me and kept My charge: My commandments, My laws, and My
Some construe God's statement to indicate that Abraham was included in the
covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus,
Numbers, and Deuteronomy. But Moses' statement below excludes him.
"The Lord our God made a covenant with us in Horeb. Not with our forefathers did
the Lord make this covenant, but with us, we, all of whom are here alive today."
Were Abraham included in the Jews' covenant; God would have placed Himself in a
problem is: Abraham was married to a half sister (Gen 20:12)
covenant prohibits marrying, and/or sleeping with, one's half sister. (Lev 18:9,
Under the terms and conditions of the Jews' covenant; men who sleep with their
sisters are cursed the moment they do so because "cursed be he" is grammatically
present tense; no delay and no waiting period; viz: the curse is immediate.
"Cursed be he who lies with his sister, his father's daughter or his mother's
daughter." (Deut 27:22)
Well; were God to slam Abraham with a curse for sleeping with his sister, then
God would be obligated to slam Himself with a curse in return.
"The one who curses you I will curse" (Gen 12:3)
Abraham enjoyed quite an advantage. He had a certain kind of immunity. In other
words, seeing as how Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy were instituted
long after Abraham passed away; then none of the curses listed at Lev 26:3-38,
Deut 27:15-26, and Deut 28:1-69 applied to him.
Abraham complied with God's requirements; His commands, His decrees and His laws
voluntarily rather than by compulsion because he wasn't in a covenant with God
that demanded him to do so like his posterity would be in the days of Moses.
The promises God made to Abraham as per Gen 12:2-3 and Gen 17:8 were not
sustained by Abraham's piety. In other words: once God made those promises,
neither Abraham nor his posterity can ever lose them because they are
"The law, introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously
established by God and thus do away with the promise. For if the inheritance is
based on law, it is no longer based on a promise; but God has granted it to
Abraham by means of a promise." (Gal 3:17-18)
"promise" in question reads like this:
"And I will give you and your seed after you the land of your sojournings, the
entire land of Canaan for an everlasting possession, and I will be to them for a
god." (Gen 17:8)
That should be really good news to Abraham's posterity because although the law
has a marked effect upon their occupation of the land, it has no effect upon
their entitlement to it.
19:3 . . Lot prepared a feast for
them and baked unleavened bread, and they ate.
The Hebrew word for "unleavened" is matstsah (mats-tsaw') which essentially
refers to an unfermented cake or loaf; in other words: bread made with sweet
dough rather than sour dough.
In this day and age of cultured yeast it's not easy to explain what the Bible
means by leavened and unleavened. Well; the primary difference between the two
terms isn't ingredients; rather, the primary difference is age; for example:
"Let us therefore celebrate the feast, not with old leaven" (1Cor 5:8)
there is an old leaven, then there must be a new leaven; just as there is an old
wine and a new wine.
Old leaven can refer to a batch of dough that's going bad, i.e. fermenting;
which, given time, dough will do on its own without the addition of yeast
because all flour, no matter how carefully it's milled and packaged, contains a
percentage of naturally-occurring fungi. New leaven, then, would refer to a time
in the life of the dough before the flour's naturally-occurring fungi has time
to spoil the product; for example:
12:34 . . So the people took their dough before it was leavened, with their
kneading bowls bound up in the clothes on their shoulders.
That gives an
idea of how quickly God moved the people out of Egypt after slaying all the
firstborn. They had made bread with unfermented dough for that night's meal in accord with
the law of the Passover instituted in the 12th chapter of Exodus.
Anyway, point being; Lot served his guests fresh bread made
with fresh dough rather than with bread made with dough that's been sitting
around for a while. Bread made with sour dough is reasonably safe to eat, we
know that, so serving his guests bread made with aged dough wouldn't have
been a health issue. I like to think that Lot served his honored guests
unleavened bread as an act of courtesy rather than necessity. Giving people
your best, rather than your less than best, shows that you think highly of
● Matt 5:27-28 . .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 woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her
already in his heart.
Before we can even begin to apply what Christ said about
adultery; we first have to categorize the "woman" about whom he spoke. Well;
she's obviously somebody's wife because adultery is defined as voluntary
carnal activity between a married man and someone other than his wife, or
between a married woman and someone other than her husband. In other words;
in order for an incident to qualify as adultery, at least one of the
participants has to be married.
The koiné Greek word for "lust" is epithumeo (ep-ee-thoo-meh'-o)
which means: to set the heart upon.
Setting one's heart upon something is a whole lot different
than merely liking something and wanting it. The one whose heart is set upon
something is in the process of finding a way to get it; and as such comes
under the ruling of covetousness; which reads:
Ex 20:17 . .Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet
thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox,
nor his burro, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's.
Coveting, per se, isn't a sin. Paul encouraged the Corinthian
Christians to "covet earnestly" the best spiritual gifts (1Cor 12:31) and to
covet prophesy (1Cor 14:39). To "covet earnestly" means you go after
something with the full intention of possessing it.
Ex 20:17 doesn't condemn erotic fantasies nor a healthy male
libido, no, it condemns scheming to take something of your neighbor's
instead of getting your own.
Rom 13:14 . . But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision
for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.
The emphasis there is not upon human nature's desires, but
rather, upon taking steps to fulfill them; which has the distinction of
being the correct interpretation of Matt 5:27-28.
So then, are Ex 20:17 and Matt 5:27-28 saying that a man
can't look across the street at his neighbor's Harley and drool over it,
turning green with envy? Or that a man can't gape at his neighbor's buxom
wife, undressing her with his eyes, and having erotic fantasies about her?
No, the kind of lust we're talking about here doesn't imply that at all. It
implies a man going after the neighbor's Harley, and the buxom wife instead
of getting his own.
Coming at this from the opposite direction: in the movie
The Bridges Of Madison County, there's a precise moment when a married
Francesca Johnson makes a definite decision to initiate an affair with
free-lance photographer Robert Kincaid. Francesca was okay with Robert up
till the moment of her decision; but from that moment on, Mrs. Johnson was
an adulteress before she and Robert even slept together because it was in
her heart to make it happen.
Supposing a Catholic man sincerely believes it really and
truly is adultery to entertain thoughts about women— any woman, whether
somebody's wife or single? Well; too bad because if that's the way he feels,
then whenever he does, he's an adulterer.
Rom 14:14 . . To him who thinks anything to be unclean, to him it is
Rom 14:23 . . If you do anything you believe is not right, you are sinning.
That is indeed tragic because there are perfectly decent
Catholic men out and about stacking up piles of unnecessary sins against
themselves due to their perfectly normal, God-given feelings about women.
Who/What The Schoolmaster Is
● Gal 3:24 . .The law was our
schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be acquitted by faith.
The koiné Greek word for "schoolmaster" is paidagogos (pahee-dag-o-gos')
which defines not a headmaster, nor a teacher, nor a tutor. It essentially
defines a servant whose responsibility it was to get their master's children to
school. In other words: a sort of chaperone who made sure the kids got there;
even if the servant had to take them by the hand to do it.
The "law" to which the writer refers is the covenant that
Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and
Deuteronomy. Although Gentiles aren't contracted with God to comply with the
covenant, it's useful for revealing God's feelings about certain kinds of
behavior; for example:
● Lev 19:11 . .
You shall not deal falsely, nor lie to one another.
Once a Gentile is made aware that their maker disapproves of
dishonesty, henceforth they get in hot water every time they lie because God is
lenient with uninformed liars but has little patience with scofflaws.
● Num 15:30-31 . .The
person, be he citizen or stranger, who acts defiantly reviles the Lord; that
person shall be cut off from among his people. Because he has spurned the
word of the Lord and violated His commandment, that person shall be cut
off— he bears his guilt.
So; what might "cut off" amount to? Well; for one: no liar will be allowed entrance to the holy
● Rev 21:27 . . No one
who practices lying shall ever come into it
● Rev 22:14-15 . .
Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to
the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city. But outside
are whoever loves and practices a lie.
The law's task then; is to instill fear in dishonesty, and
make liars aware that if they opt to take their chances, and stand before
God to be judged on their own merits; that they haven't the slightest,
slimmest possibility of coming away unscathed. It's a 110% forgone
conclusion that they will come away dead.
● Rev 21:8 . . All liars
shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which
is the second death.
I am willing to bet that nobody can get through the day
without dishonesty— we need dishonesty, we have to have dishonesty or
interactions with our friends, with strangers, with associates, with
superiors and loved ones would be very strained indeed. It is just humanly
impossible to be honest all the time. I would even go so far as to say that
in the world in which we live; it's not smart to be 110% honest all the
time; viz: "Honesty is the best policy" just isn't true; not in the world we
live in anyway; which is a bit of a
Q: Why does everyone find it so easy to lie?
A: Because human beings are natural-born liars.
● Ps 58:3 . .
The wicked are estranged from the womb; these who speak lies go astray from
That's an interesting statement. It's saying— in so many
words —that although infants are too young to lie; they are born with a
proclivity to lie, and that's what makes them wicked because that proclivity
to lie is in them and will eventually have its way with them.
Q: How are people supposed to obey that commandment
seeing as how we're all natural-born liars?
A: Nobody can, it's impossible.
● Jer 13:23 . .
Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Then you also
can do good who are accustomed to doing evil.
Well; the Schoolmaster's goal is not just to frighten liars
and make them nervous; but also to show them the God-given way out of their
● Gal 3:24 . .The
law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be acquitted by
The cross' first and foremost purpose was to satisfy justice
for all kinds of sin, including dishonesty. That right there should make liars breathe a little easier in
respect to the sum of all fears.
● 1John 2:1-2 .
. If anyone sins, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the
righteous; and he himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours
only, but also for those of the whole world.
● Isa 53:6 . .
All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way;
but the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all to fall on him.
FYI: The June 2017 issue of
National Geographic magazine contains a very interesting article titled:
Why We Lie. There's actually been studies done about this.
The Brazen Serpent
● John 3:14-17 . . As
Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man
be lifted up; that whoever believes may in him have eternal life. For God so
loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whoever believes
in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
The incident to which Christ referred is located at Num
21:5-9. Long story short: Yhvh's people became weary of eating manna all the
time at every meal. But instead of courteously, and diplomatically,
petitioning their divine benefactor for a different diet, they became
hostile and confrontational; angrily demanding tastier food.
In response to their insolence, and their ingratitude for His
providence; Yhvh sent a swarm of deadly poisonous vipers among them; which
began striking people; and every strike was 100% fatal, no exceptions.
After a number of people died, the rest came to their senses
and begged Moses to intercede. In reply; The Lord instructed Moses to
fashion an image of the vipers and hoist it up on a pole in plain view so
that everyone dying from venom could look to the image for relief.
The key issue here is that the image was the only God-given
remedy for the people's bites— not sacrifices and offerings, not tithing,
not church attendance, not scapulars, not confession, not holy days of
obligation, not the Sabbath, not the golden rule, not charity, not Bible
study and/or Sunday school, not self denial, not vows of poverty, not the
Ten Commandments, not one's religion of choice, no; not even prayers. The
image was it; nothing else would suffice to save their lives.
In other words then: Christ's crucifixion for the sins of the
world is the only God-given rescue from the wrath of God; and when people
accept it, then according to John 3:14-17 and John 5:24, they qualify for a
transfer from death into life. Those who reject his crucifixion for the sins
of the worlds as the only God-given rescue from the sum of all fears are
already on the docket to face it.
● John 3:18 . .Whoever
believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands
condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and
His son's "name" in this case is relative to the fiery serpent
Rom 8:13 . . For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the
Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
The koiné Greek word for flesh is sarx (sarx); which
basically indicates the meaty parts of either man or beast. The meat of the
human body would of course include the 3-pound lump of flabby organic tissue
housed within its bony little skull sufficing for a mind; and it's not all
that difficult to tamper with a brain and make its owner quite mindless.
The meaty parts of the human body are the source of a human
being's human nature and it isn't all that difficult to define. Webster's
says its (1) the ways of thinking, feeling, and acting that are common to
most people, and (2) the nature of humans; especially the fundamental
dispositions and traits of humans.
In a nutshell then: the flesh, as per Rom 8:13, can be
concisely defined as that which comes natural to an organic species of life.
Ironically, when God finished assembling the cosmos with its
various forms of life, matter, and energy; He pronounced it all not just
good; but "very" good. In other words, God was satisfied that the human body
came out just exactly as He designed it to come out; but it didn't stay that
● Rom 7:18 . . I know
that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is
present with me
When people do something contrary to their own better
judgment; it's very common to hear them complain "I don't know what came
over me." Well; thing that came over them was their fundamental dispositions
Eternal life is often mistaken for immortality. The two are not the same.
Immortality is a material kind of life that has to do with a superhuman body
impervious to age, death, and putrefaction.
Eternal life, on the other hand, isn't a material kind of life; it's a spirit
kind of life; which is why it's possible for people to obtain eternal life
before they obtain immortality.
For example: Christ had eternal life when he was here (John 5:26, 1John 1:1-2)
but according to Rom 6:9 and Rev 1:18, he didn't obtain immortality till he rose
from the dead.
Likewise Christ's believing followers have eternal life while they're here (John
5:24) but according to Rom 8:23-25 and 1Cor 15:51-53, they won't obtain
immortality until their resurrections.
then; I think we can safely conclude that immortality is something that can be
seen, while eternal life is something that cannot be seen.
The properties of eternal life are a little easier to understand
when juxtaposed with human life.
Human life's primary characteristic is human nature; roughly defined as the
fundamental dispositions and traits of the human being.
Eternal life's primary characteristic is divine nature, roughly defined as the
fundamental dispositions and traits of the supreme being.
When People Obtain Eternal Life
In the passages below, note the grammatical tense of the "have" verbs. They're
in the present tense; not future, indicating that believers have eternal life
right now— no delay, and no waiting period.
● John 3:36 . . He who believes in the Son has eternal life
● John 6:47 . .Truly, truly, I say
to you, he who believes has eternal life.
● John 5:24 . .I assure you, those
who heed my message, and trust in God who sent me, have eternal life.
They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have already passed
from Death into Life.
● 1John 5:13 . .I write these
things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know
that you have eternal life.
The possession of eternal life is very crucial because according to God's
testimony, as an expert witness; people currently lacking eternal life are also
lacking His son; i.e. they are currently quite christless.
● 1John 5:11-12 . . This is what God has
testified: He has given us eternal life, and this life is in His son. So whoever
has God's son has this life; and whosoever does not have this life, does not
have His son.
should think that it goes without saying that christless Christians are in grave
danger of the sum of all fears.
● Rom 8:9 . . If anyone does not have the
Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.
How many christless Christians are there? Well; for starters:
Roman Catholicism— known everywhere as the largest single denomination in
the world —currently consists of approximately 1.226 billion followers
who all, to a man, including the Pope, insist that no one obtains eternal
life before they die and cross over to the other side.
Well; that can mean but one thing, and one thing only: seeing
as how those 1.226 billion souls are currently lacking eternal life,
then according to God's expert testimony they are currently quite christless.
And you can safely apply that rule to any, and all, denominations insisting
that nobody obtains eternal life before they die and cross over to the other
It ain't what you know that gets you into trouble.
It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.
FYI: Failure to accept God's testimony is all the same
as insinuating that He's a dishonest person of marginal integrity who can't be trusted
to tell the truth.
How Christ Is Related To Adam
I was taught in catechism that seeing as how Jesus Christ's
mother was a virgin when he was conceived, then he didn't have a human
father. Well; that all depends on how we go about defining "father".
According to the book of Genesis; God created Adam's flesh
from the earth's dust. Not so Eve.
She was constructed from a human tissue sample amputated from
Adam's side. Thus Eve's flesh wasn't the flesh of a second species of
h.sapiens. Her flesh was biologically just as much Adam's flesh as Adam's
except for gender. In other words: Eve was the flip side of the same
biological coin. In point of fact, the Bible refers to Eve as Adam just as
it refers to Adam as Adam. (Gen 5:22)
From that point on; any human flesh biologically produced
from Eve's flesh— whether virgin conceived or naturally conceived —would be
biologically just as much Adam's flesh as Adam's because the source of its
mother's flesh was Adam's flesh.
So then; unless somebody can prove— clearly, conclusively,
and without ambiguity; air tight and iron clad— that Jesus Christ's mother
wasn't biologically related to either Adam or Eve; then it's a foregone
conclusion that Adam was the first in Jesus Christ's long line of biological
male ancestors; the final one of course being his biological mom's father.
It's commonly objected that women cannot provide the Y chromosome necessary
for producing a male child. And that's right; they usually can't. However,
seeing as how God constructed an entire woman from a sample of man flesh;
then I do not see how it would be any more difficult for God to construct a
dinky little Y chromosome from a sample of woman flesh. And seeing as how
woman flesh is just as much Adam's flesh, then any Y chromosome that God
might construct from woman flesh would be produced from Adam's flesh seeing
as how Eve's flesh was actually his.
Jesus Christ And The Original Sin
Some folk posit that Mary was, in some manner, a sort of surrogate mother, i.e.
Jesus' embryo was an implant. Others sincerely believe that Mary's baby was an
alternate species of human life totally unrelated to her own, i.e. another Adam,
so to speak; basing their posit on 1Cor 15:45.
the Bible testifies that Jesus Christ was Mary's honest to gosh, bona fide
biological human progeny.
Q: How can you be so sure that Jesus Christ was produced from his mother's
human egg, viz: her ovum?
A: Not only the Bible; but also the science of Biology bears that out.
Christ is stated to be born of David's seed— not spiritual seed, rather, human
● Acts 13:22-23 . . "I have found David the son of
Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall fulfill all my will". Of this
man's seed hath God, according to His promise, raised unto Israel a savior,
● Rom 1:1-3 . . Jesus Christ our Lord, which was
made of the seed of David according to the flesh
The koiné Greek word for "seed" in those two passages is sperma (sper'
mah) which in males typically refers to their reproductive stuff and/or their
Bear in mind that we're talking about flesh here; not spirit; viz: an honest to
gosh human being rather than a spirit being; nor— God forbid —an avatar.
Now, in order for Christ to descend from David's flesh, one of his biological
descendants had to be involved. So then, seeing as how Jesus was virgin
conceived, then his mother became the default progenitor, i.e. Mary was one of
● Luke 1:31 . . You
will conceive in your womb and bear a son; the Lord God will give him the throne
of his father David
implanted embryo isn't a conceived embryo. Conception takes place in a woman's
womb when her ovum is involved in the process.
● Heb 7:14 . . It is clear that our Lord arose from
Q: If Jesus Christ really was David's biological progeny; then wouldn't his
mom have passed the guilt of Adam's sin to him?
A: Yes; absolutely, because the whole entirety of Adam's posterity—
regardless of age, race, or gender —is automatically condemned for tasting the
Note the grammatical tense of the passage below— it's past tense; indicating
that the moment Adam tasted the forbidden fruit, he and his posterity became
guilty of tasting it— in real time —including those of his family yet to be
● Rom 5:12 . . Sin entered the world through one
man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all
● Rom 5:19 . .Through the disobedience of the one
man, the many were made sinners.
Well; the trick is: though Adam's disobedience made his posterity sinners; it
didn't make them sinful: that's something else altogether. We're not talking
about the so-called "fallen nature" here, we're just talking about joint
principals in Adam's act of disobedience.
The good news is: Adam's sin is not a sin unto hell. No; it's very simple to
clear his sin off the books seeing as how life's end is the proper satisfaction
of justice for what he did (Gen 2:16-17). The satisfaction of justice for his
posterity's own personal sins is another matter.
Q: If Jesus Christ was made a joint principal in Adam's slip-up, then how
can it be honestly said that Christ was a lamb without blemish or spot?
A: Adam's slip made Christ culpable right along with his fellow men, yes;
but it didn't make him sinful. In point of fact; Christ committed no personal
sins of his own. (John 8:29, 2Cor 5:21, Heb 4:15, 1Pet 2:22)
Q: What was the secret to his success?
A: Jesus Christ is a mysterious amalgam of human and divine. Not only did
he descend from David according to the flesh, but Christ also descended from God
according to the Spirit. (Luke 1:32-35). That is quite an advantage because
according to 1John 3:9, that which is born of God not only doesn't sin, but
How Christ Became Solomon's Progeny
Q: Seeing as how Christ was virgin conceived; how did
he get into Joseph's genealogy as per the first chapter of Matthew?
A: At Gen 48:5-7, Jacob adopted his own two biological
grandsons Manasseh and Ephraim; thus installing them in positions equal in
rank, honor, and power to his twelve original sons, which had the effect of
adding additional children to Rachel's brood just as effectively as the
children born of her maid Bilhah— Dan, and Naphtali.
Jacob's motive for adopting his son Joseph's two sons was in
sympathy for his deceased wife being cut off during her child-bearing years,
which subsequently prevented her from having any more children of her own.
Ephraim and Manasseh bring Rachel's total up to six: two of her own, two by
her maid Bilhah, and two by Joseph's wife Asenath.
Now, fast-forward to the New Testament where the angel of The
Lord spoke to Joseph in a dream and ordered him to take part in naming
Mary's out-of-wedlock baby.
"She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the
name Jesus" (Matt 1:21)
"And he gave him the name Jesus." (Matt 1:25)
So Christ went in the books as Joseph's son; because that's
how it worked in those days when a man stood with a woman to name her child.
In other words: Christ became Joseph's son by means of adoption, just as
Ephraim and Manasseh became Jacob's sons by means of adoption.
Q: But wouldn't it be more accurate to say that Jesus
was Joseph's foster child rather than adopted child?
A: Webster's defines "foster" as affording, receiving,
or sharing nurture or parental care though not related by blood or legal
ties. In other words: foster children have no inheritance rights nor a
legitimate place in their foster father's genealogy. Foster children are
In contrast; Webster's defines "adopt" as to take voluntarily
(a child of other parents) as one's own child. In other words: adopted
children have inheritance rights and a legitimate place in their adopted
father's genealogy. Adopted children are permanent.
Jesus' adoption was essential because even though he was born
a biological candidate for David's throne, he wasn't born a legitimate
candidate. The reason being that the throne passed to Solomon rather than
his brother Nathan. Plus, the throne never passes down through women, only
men. Mary provided Jesus a biological right to David's throne, but she could
not provide him a legal right to it.
John Q and Jane Doe pew warmer are often unaware of the
strict biblical conditions that dictate ascendance to David's throne and so
are easily led to believe that Joseph was Jesus' foster father instead of
his adopted father.
Just in case there's a man looking in on this thinking about adopting his
wife's children from a previous marriage; should the two of you later
divorce; she can legally make you pay child support for another man's kids
because when you adopt them, the law and the courts regard their status as
your own biological progeny.
12:39-40 . . As Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of a huge
fish, so the Son of Man will be three days and three nights in the heart of the
The Lord paralleled his journey with Jonah's. Well, seeing as how Christ was
dead for most of the time that he was in the tomb, then I think it's valid to
conclude that Jonah was dead for most of the time that he was in the fish.
According to Jonah's second chapter, there were moments during his nautical
adventure when he was in two places at once: the fish's belly and the bottoms of
Seeing as how the Lord paralleled his own journey with Jonah's, then I believe
it is valid to conclude that there were moments in Christ's adventure when he
was in two places at once too: the tomb's belly and also the bottoms of the
mountains; i.e. the heart of the earth.
doesn't take much education to know that the bottoms of the mountains are
situated in neither a fish's tummy, nor a tomb.)
Jesus appropriated the story of Jonah to predict his resurrection. Unfortunately
people are typically distracted by the time element; consequently totally
missing the parallel's purpose. The average rank and file pew warmer is
convinced that Jonah was alive the whole time he was in the fish. Well, had he
been, then Jesus would had to been alive the whole time he was in the tomb;
otherwise the parallel fails.
Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites and also a sign to Jesus' generation (Matt
13:39-40, Luke 11:29-30). The word "sign" is translated from a koiné Greek word
that's sometimes used in the gospels to indicate miracles. Now, had Jonah merely
survived the fish's tummy, that would not be the kind of sign that Jesus had in
mind. He needed a miraculous event that would adequately depict his own; the
reason being that Jesus wasn't on track to be resuscitated, no, Jesus was on
track to be resurrected because he would be quite dead from crucifixion. (John
According to Jonah 2:6, the prophet was spared putrefaction. Well; according to
Ps 16:8-10 and Acts 2:25-31, Jesus too was spared putrefaction. Thus it all came
to pass just as the Lord said: As Jonah, so the Son of Man.
Commentators smarter and better educated than I posit that Jonah 2:3-7 recounts
Jonah's demise via drowning. In other words: Jonah was dead before he was laid
to rest in the fish's tummy just as Jesus was dead before he was laid to rest in
(A Second Version)
● Jonah 1:17 . . Yhvh provided a
great fish to swallow Jonah, and Jonah was inside the fish three days and
Jonah's nautical adventure provokes quite a bit of scoffing
and ridicule because people are so sure that it's impossible for someone to
exist inside a fish's tummy for very long before suffocation would take its
toll. Well; the scoffing and ridicule are misplaced because according to the
Bible; there were some moments when the prophet was actually quite dead in
Q: Well; was Jonah ever alive in the fish?
A: Yes (Jonah 2:1).
Q: But not the whole time?
A: That's correct.
At some point in Jonah's adventure he went to a place called
sheol (Jonah 2:2) which he sited at the bottoms of the mountains.
The bottoms of the mountains aren't located in the tummies of
fish, no; they're located down deep in the earth. So in order for Jonah to
be in the fish and in the earth simultaneously; he had to die so that he and
his body could part company.
One more thing. Just before being cast ashore, Jonah prayed
● Jonah 2:6 . .To the bottoms of
the mountains I went down. As for the earth, its bars were upon me for time
indefinite. But out of the pit you proceeded to bring up my life, O Jehovah
The Hebrew word for "pit" in that verse is the very same word
for "pit" in Ps 16:8-10; which Acts 2:25-31 verifies is speaking of
putrefaction; viz: Jonah 2:6 is the language of resurrection.
● Jonah 2:10-3:3 . . Yhvh
commanded the fish, and it vomited Jonah onto dry land. Then the word of
Yhvh came to Jonah a second time: Go to the great city of Nineveh and
proclaim to it the message I give you. Jonah obeyed the word of Yhvh and
went to Nineveh.
Hell vs Common Sense
I watched an educational series on NetFlix in September of
2014 called "The Inexplicable Universe: Unsolved Mysteries" hosted by Neil
deGrasse Tyson Ph.D. director of the Hayden Planetarium. Mr. Tyson said, in
so many words; that in the study of Physics, one must sometimes abandon
sense and accept discoveries as they are no matter how contrary to logic
they may seem.
The NASA teams that sent Pioneers, Voyagers and Mariners out
to explore the planets came to the very same conclusion: they learned to
abandon their logical expectations and instead expect the unexpected; and
they encountered plenty.
The discovery of the cosmos' accelerating expansion was very
discouraging for cosmologist Alan Sandage— once a proponent of the theory
that the universe would eventually run out of explosive energy from the Big
Bang and gradually pull itself back together —and called the discovery of the
ever increasing velocity of the expanding universe a terrible surprise. And
of course it is because the known laws of gravity, combined with common
sense, demand that the ballooning universe eventually slow down, stop
expanding, and shrink rather than picking up speed.
In the field of Christianity, as in the fields of Physics and
planetary exploration, faith believes what's revealed to it rather than only
what makes sense to it.
admit that the idea of people existing in an altered state, consciously
suffering to time indefinite, makes no sense at all to my human mind's way
of thinking, and seems to totally contradict the nature of a divine patron
reputed to be kind, caring, and sympathetic. But just as science admits to
many unsolved mysteries; so does Christianity. And there's no shame in that.
The shame is in pretending to have complete understanding of a supernatural
entity that by its very nature defies reason and common sense.
2:13-14 . . A natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God;
for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they
are spiritually appraised.
Ways To Describe Grace
● 1Cor 1:3 . . Grace to you, and peace from
God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
I seriously doubt that John Q and Jane Doe pew warmer have an adequate concept
I suspect that most are under the impression that grace is somehow a
quantifiable substance like butter and gasoline; but in regards to God, grace is
an abstract noun that expresses personal qualities apart from substance.
New Testament Greek word for "grace" is charis (khar'-ece); which means:
Webster's defines graciousness as: kind, courteous, inclined to good will,
generous, charitable, merciful, altruistic, compassionate, thoughtful, cordial,
affable, genial, sociable, cheerful, warm, sensitive, considerate, and tactful.
stresses warmth and heartiness
Affable implies easy approachability and readiness to respond pleasantly to
conversation or requests or proposals
Genial stresses cheerfulness and even joviality
Sociable suggests a genuine liking for the companionship of others
Generous is characterized by a noble or forbearing spirit; viz: magnanimous,
kindly, and liberal in giving
Charitable means full of love for, and goodwill toward, others; viz:
benevolent, tolerant, and lenient.
Altruistic means unselfish regard for, or devotion to, the welfare of
others; viz: a desire to be of service to others for no other reason than it
just feels good to do so.
Tactful indicates a keen sense of what to do, or say, in order to
maintain good relations with others in order to resolve and/or avoid unnecessary
Compassion defines a sympathetic awareness of others' distress, coupled with
a desire to alleviate it.
Old Testament Hebrew word for grace is chen (khane); and means the same
as charis (e.g. Gen 6:8).
When you put all those lovely attributes together, you get a pretty good picture
of the bright side of God's personality. There's a dark side too; but
grace doesn't go there.
Knowing Your Religion is Right
"Faith is believin' what you know ain't so."
Every so often I get asked how I know that my beliefs are
true. My answer is: I don't know if they're true. Then of course they follow
up with: Then why do you believe your beliefs are true when you have no way
of knowing they're true?
Most of the people who ask me those kinds of questions are
genuine; they're not trying to trip me up and make a fool out of me. They
really are curious about it. So I tell them that though I don't know if my
beliefs are true, my instincts tell me they are; in other words: I cannot
shake the gnawing conviction that they're true.
"I have never seen what to me seemed an atom of truth that
there is a future life... and yet--
I am strongly inclined to expect one."
Twain logically concluded that there is no afterlife, but his
instincts did not agree with his thinking; and I dare not criticize him for
that because even my own religion requires that I believe in my heart rather
then only in my head.
Why does any believer believe what they believe? Buddhist,
Muslim, Hindu, Bahá'í, Hare Krishna, Jehovah's Witness, Mormon, Catholic,
Baptist, Judaism, Voodoo, Wiccan, Jain, Druze, Native American, etc, etc,
etc. The answer? It appeals to them.
It's a known fact that quite a few voters do their voting not
with their head but with their gut. In other words, they settle on a
candidate based upon how they feel about him, and then argue their decision.
Take for instance President Barack Hussein Obama. A large
block of Americans voted for him solely on the basis of the color of his
skin rather than his executive ability. (Ironically Mr. Obama isn't even
Black. He's what used to be called Mulatto prior to the era of political correctness,
but now called Mixed Race; viz: his father was Black, but his mother was
White. Lucky for Mr. Obama that his skin turned out dark or he may never
have been nominated for US President, let alone elected.)
"It ain't what you know that gets you into trouble.
It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
Bigotry is rampant in the world of religions; and it's not
uncommon for someone to shriek; "That's a lie!" and/or "You're wrong!" I
like to tell bigots that they really ought to be a bit more circumspect with
their choice of words lest the hapless day arrives when they are forced to
It is of course impossible that all religions are right;
that's pretty much a given. But on the other hand, it's very possible that
none are right. So I would say that when settling upon a religion, don't
worry so much about picking the one that's right; instead pick the one
that's right for you; and if none are right for you, then in my estimation;
you're just as well off because if your heart's not in it; then let's face
it; your choice is no less arbitrary than randomly selecting cookies out of
a jar of 100.
The Rich Man, Lazarus, And Abraham
Fiction can be defined as stories about people, places, and events that, though untrue;
are plausible; viz: realistic.
Fantasy can be defined as stories about people, places, and events that are not only
untrue; but implausible; viz: unrealistic.
For example: a story about a wooden boy like Pinocchio is unrealistic; while a story
about a boy with autism is realistic. The difference between Pinocchio and the
autistic boy is that the one is compatible with normal reality; while the other
is far removed from normal reality.
I have yet to read even one of Jesus Christ's parables that could not possibly
be a real-life story. They're all actually quite believable— banquets,
stewards, weddings, farmers sowing seed, pearls, lost sheep, fish nets, women
losing coins, sons leaving home, wineskins bursting, tares among the wheat,
leavened bread, barren fig trees, the blind leading the blind, et al.
Now; if Christ had told one that alleged the moon was made of green cheese; we
would have good reason to believe that at least that one was fantasy; but none
of them are like that. No; there's nothing out of the ordinary in his parables.
At best; Christ's parables might qualify as fiction; but never fantasy because
none of them are so far removed from the normal round of human experience that
they have no basis in reality whatsoever.
Luke 16:19-31 is commonly alleged to be a parable; which of course implies that
the story is fiction; and some would even say fantasy. But the parable theory
has a fatal flaw. Abraham is not a fictional character: he's a real-life man;
the father of the Hebrew people, held in very high esteem by at least three of
the world's prominent religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. And he's also
the friend of God (Isa 41:8). I simply cannot believe that Jesus Christ— a man
famous among normal Christians for his honesty and integrity —would say
something untrue about a famous real-life man; especially about one of his
And on top of that, the story quotes Abraham a number of times. Well; if the
story is fiction, then Jesus Christ is on record testifying that Abraham said
things that he didn't really say; which is a clear violation of the commandment
that prohibits bearing false witness.
There is something else to consider.
The story of the rich man and Lazarus didn't originate with Jesus Christ. No, it
originated with his Father. In other words: Jesus Christ was micro-managed.
● John 3:34 . . He is sent by God. He speaks God's
● John 8:26 . . He that sent me is true; and I
speak to the world those things which I have heard of Him.
● John 8:28 . . I do nothing on my own initiative,
but I speak these things as the Father taught me.
● John 12:49 . . I have not spoken of myself; but
the Father which sent me, He gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what
I should speak.
● John 14:24 . .The word which you hear is not
mine, but the Father's who sent me.
So, by alleging that Luke 16:19-31 is fiction/fantasy, the parable theory
slanders God by insinuating that He's a person of marginal integrity who can't
be trusted to tell the truth about people, not even about His own friends, which
is ridiculous seeing as how Titus 1:2 and Heb 6:18 testify that God cannot lie.
God's impeccable character is what makes that narrative all the more disturbing.
Unless somebody can prove, beyond a shadow of sensible doubt, that Christ's Father is a
tale-spinner; I pretty much have to assume the narrative was drawn from
real-life; and if not drawn from real life, then at least based upon real life.
In other words: there really is an afterlife place of
conscious suffering where people endure unbearable anxiety worrying their
loved ones are on a road to where they are and there is no way to warn them;
which brings to mind the survivors of the Titanic watching their loved ones
go to Davy Jones while utterly helpless to do anything about it.
People for whom I feel the most pity are parents that brought
up their children to walk in mom and dad's ideological footsteps and the
ideology turned out to be mistaken. How do
people in hell bear up under something like that on their conscience?
The God Begotten Of God
Q: One translation of John 1:18 speaks of the
only begotten god; while another translation of John 1:18 speaks of the only
begotten son. Which translation is correct?
A: Either one will do because, biologically speaking, they're both saying
the very same thing.
God has lots of sons; but only one is His son by means of
The Greek word for "only begotten" in John 1:14, John 1:18,
John 3:16, John 3:18, is monogenes (mon-og-en-ace') which is a
combination of two words.
The first is mono, which music buffs recognize as a
single channel rather than two or four in surround-sound stereo. Mono is
very common; e.g. monogamy, monofilament, monotonous, mononucleotide,
monochrome, monogram, monolith, monologue, monomial, et al.
The other word is genes; from whence we get the
English word gene; which Webster's defines as a biological term indicating a
part of a cell that controls or influences the appearance, growth, etc., of
a living thing.
In other words: monogenes refers to one biological gene set
rather than many.
Monogenes always, and without exception, refers to a parent's
sole biological child. If a parent has two or three biological children,
none of them qualify as monogenes because in order to qualify as a monogenes
child, the child has to be an only child. Obviously then, an adopted child
can never be monogenes in the home because it wouldn't be the home's
biological child. Examples of monogenes children are located at Luke 7:12,
Luke 8:42, and Luke 9:38.
Now if God's monogenes son is really and truly His biological
offspring, so to speak, then we are going to have to admit that His son is a
chip off the old block; which in fact the Bible declares.
● Col 2:9 . . In him all
the fullness of divinity dwells in bodily form.
Webster's defines "divinity" as the quality, or the state, of
being a god.
According to the Greek version, "divinity" is modified by a
definite article; so that what we're looking at here isn't nondescript
divinity; rather, the divinity; viz: the quality, or the
state, of being Almighty God. (cf. Rev 1:7-18)
People have difficulty with the literal meaning of "only
begotten" because it's unthinkable to them that God is somehow able to
reproduce. Well; I don't know how God goes about it; but if single cell
organisms like amoeba can reproduce by means of a process called binary
fission; then we shouldn't be all that aghast at the prospect of God
multiplying Himself in a similar way. And if God actually did reproduce;
then His offspring is more of Himself; viz: God would produce God just as
humans produce humans.
Koran's Christ didn't pass away on the cross.
"And their saying: Surely we have killed the Messiah, Isa son of Marium, the
apostle of Allah; and they did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but it
appeared to them so (like Isa) and most surely those who differ therein are only
in a doubt about it; they have no knowledge respecting it, but only follow a
conjecture, and they killed him not for sure." (The Women 4.157)
Bible's Christ fully expired.
"And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said: Father, into Thy hands I commit
my spirit. And having said this, he breathed his last." (Luke 23:46)
"When they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break
his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side with a spear,
bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. The man who saw it has given
testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he
testifies so that you also may believe." (John 19:31-35)
Since Jesus was somewhat elevated, (it's not stated exactly how high) the spear
point would have entered his body at an upward angle. The text doesn't say which
side was penetrated, but from John's description, and judging from the intent of
the soldier to leave no doubt about Jesus' death, the heart side was very likely
the side they cut into and the spear point would've entered just under his rib
The heart is surrounded by a membrane called the pericardium; which serves to
contain a serous material resembling water to prevent the surface of the heart
from becoming dry and/or chafed by its continual motion. It was very likely this
which was pierced and from which the water flowed. The point of the spear also
seems to have reached one of the ventricles of the heart, and the blood, yet
warm, rushed forth, either mingled with, or followed by, the liquor of the
pericardium, so as to appear to John to be blood and water flowing together.
Though not medically accurate in our day, John's calling the serous fluid
"water" was accurate enough in his own day.
Had Christ managed to survive the spear he most certainly would have died of
suffocation. According to the records, his friends covered his face with a
towel, wrapped him with strips of cloth like a mummy, and coated him with a
paste consisting of 75 pounds of myrrh and aloes: all of which served to not
only put him in a straight jacket, but also sealed him in an air-tight cocoon of
"And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but
wrapped together in a place by itself." (John 20:7)
The koiné Greek word translated "napkin" is soudarion (soo-dar'-ee-on)
which defines a sweat-cloth; viz: a towel for wiping the perspiration from the
face, or binding the face of a corpse.
"Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes" (John 19:40)
"And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but
wrapped together in a place by itself." (John 20:7)
Greek word translated "wound" is deo (deh'-o) which means to bind
Greek word translated "linen cloths" is othonion (oth-on'-ee-on) which
"And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and
brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight. Then took
they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the
manner of the Jews is to bury." (John 19:39-40)
Myrrh is a gum
resin. The aloe of that day was a thick liquid taken from an aromatic tree and
used in medicines and cosmetics, etc. Blending those two ingredients together
produced a nice sticky goo that could be slathered and plastered all over the
deceased to seal the body and retard putrefaction and/or seal in odors and
thwart vermin. This was likely the final step just prior to wrapping the whole
affair in a shroud (Matt 27:59).
So all told— the crucifixion, the spear, the face towel, the wrappings, and the
gooey paste —I think it's pretty safe to conclude that Christ, as he is
depicted in the Bible, was quite deceased.
There lacks a universal consensus regarding the nature of
Christ's resurrection. Some say his crucified body came back to life. Some
say that his crucified body was exchanged for a glorified body. Still others
say that Christ's crucified body not only didn't recover, but he came back
with a spirit body; and his post resurrection physical appearances were done
as an angel disguised in a fully-functioning human avatar.
It's evident that Christ has a glorified body at present (Php
3:20-21). But I really don't think such was the case out at the cemetery.
John 2:19-22 . . Jesus answered them: Destroy this temple, and I will raise
it again in three days. The Jews replied: It has taken forty-six years to
build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days? But the
temple he had spoken of was his body. After he was raised from the dead, his
disciples recalled what he had said.
Had not Christ's crucified body revived, then his prediction
would be easily proven false because the temple he spoke of was "this
temple" viz: the body he was standing in as he spoke with the Jews.
Q: If Christ didn't come back from death with the
glorified body spoken of in Php 3:20-21, then how and when did he obtain it?
A: Some day the bodies of all Christ's believing
followers will be raised from the dead and taken up to meet the Lord in the
air (1Thes 3:14-17). On the way up, the bodies will undergo a sudden and
miraculous transformation. (1Cor 15:51-53). I think it's pretty safe to
assume that Christ's body underwent a similar transformation while on the
way up to heaven as per Acts 1:9 so that today his body is no longer a
normal human body; but instead a superhuman body to which all his believing
followers' bodies will one day conform.
Q: What about the fact that he was able to pass
through a locked door? (John 20:19). Surely a normal human body could never
do such a thing.
A: Jesus Christ was virgin-conceived, walked on water,
calmed storms, restored withered limbs, put the lame up on their feet,
healed blindness and leprosy, multiplied loaves and fishes, converted water
into wine, raised the dead, withered a fig tree, levitated into the sky,
etc. Come on now; what's one more miracle more or less for a man like that?
Q: Why make a big deal out of the nature of Christ's
A1: Were I
the Devil, I would do my utmost best to disprove Jesus' bodily resurrection because
his bodily crucifixion is only half enough to protect people from the wrath of God.
Though his bodily crucifixion obtains forgiveness for people's sins, it does not
gain people an acquittal; i.e. a verdict of innocence.
● Rom 4:25 . . He was
delivered over to death for our sins, and was raised to life for our
The Greek word translated "justification" is dikaiosis
(dik-ah'-yo-sis) which means acquittal; i.e. a verdict of innocence; viz:
People merely forgiven still carry a load of guilt; viz: they
have a criminal record. Christ's bodily resurrection expunges their record so that
on the books, it's as though they've never done anything bad.
This clearing of one's record that I'm talking about is
obtained via the kindness and generosity of God through belief in the
resurrection of Christ's crucified body. If the Devil can succeed in convincing people that
Jesus' crucified body is still dead or, even better yet, make them question
whether the man even
existed at all; then they will
fail to obtain an acquittal, and consequently end up put to death in
brimstone because records are to be reviewed when people stand to face
justice at the Great White Throne event depicted at Rev 20:11-15.
A2: Belief in Christ's bodily resurrection is one of
the essential elements of the gospel that must be accepted if one is to have
any hope at all of escaping the lake of brimstone.
● 1Cor 15:1-4 . . Now I make
known to you, brothers, the good news which I declared to you, which you
also received, in which you also stand, through which you are also being
saved, with the speech with which I declared the good news to you, if you
are holding it fast, unless, in fact, you became believers to no purpose.
. . . For I handed on to you, among the first things,
that which I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the
Scriptures; and that he was buried, yes, that he has been raised up the
third day according to the Scriptures.
Paul goes on to say that if Christ's crucified body did not
revive, then his followers haven't a prayer of escaping the sum of all
1Cor 15:17 . . If Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you
are still in your sins.
What and/or where are the scriptures about which Paul spoke? There's at
least two. One is the story of Jonah; which Christ appropriated as a "sign"
of his own resurrection. (Jonah 1:17, Matt 12:40). Another is in the book of
Psalms at 16:8-10 (cf. Acts 2:22-36)
● 2Tim 3:16 . . All
Scripture is inspired by God
The Greek word for "inspired" is theopneustos (theh-op'-nyoo-stos)
which is a combination of theo which means God, and pneustos
which means to inflate: as in blowing up a balloon or a soccer ball and/or
filling a boat's sails with wind.
Theopneustos is probably about as close as you'll get for a
Greek word corresponding to Gen 2:7 where it's stated:
"Then Yhvh God formed man of dust from the ground, and
breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living
"breathed into" is pretty much what theopneustos says. But
the breath of life isn't artificial respiration. Pumping air into a corpse
doesn't work. It's been tried. The breath of life is a mysterious energy
with enough power to even make solid rock sentient. (Luke 3:8)
What all this means is: scripture is more than just text— God
has willed scripture to have a peculiar kind of life all its own.
● Heb 4:12-13 . . For
the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword,
and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and
marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And
there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid
bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.
Scripture, then, is a divine agent: it speaks about God, it
speaks for God, and it speaks as God. In a manner of speaking then:
scripture can be thought of as a close encounter.
"In its pages we recognize His voice, we hear a message of
deep significance for every one of us. Through the spiritual dynamism and
prophetic force of the Bible, the Holy Spirit spreads His light and His
warmth over all men, in whatever historical or sociological situation they
find themselves." (Paulus PP VI, from the Vatican, September 18, 1970)
Paulus PP VI said it well. So then: when people listen to the
Bible, they listen to God; and when they mock and ridicule the Bible, they
mock and ridicule God.
The voice of God is set to be called as a witness in the
prosecution's case against certain individuals.
John 12:48-49 . . He who rejects me, and does not receive my sayings, has
one who judges him: the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last day.
For I did not speak on my own initiative, but the Father himself who sent me
has given me commandment, what to say, and what to speak.
"Knowing this first, that no
prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation."
KJV's obsolete language is misleading. Here's that same passage in updated
● 2Pet 1:20-21 . . Above
all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the
prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of
man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
That passage isn't talking about one's own personal understanding of prophecy,
rather, the origin of prophecy. In other words: the sayings of the prophets
didn't arise from human reasoning and a fertile imagination. No, they got their
sayings directly from God.
Now, the sayings they got from God are not quite the same as the sayings that
you see in print. No, the sayings you see in print are the prophets'
interpretations of the sayings they got from God; viz: they translated God's
language and grammar into common language and grammar that you and I can
understand. That's pretty amazing when you think about it.
For example: Jesus once said that his words are spirit (John 6:63). Well that
right there is a bit of a problem because I don't have in my possession an
Enigma machine designed to decode spirit words; so were I not blessed with the
anointing as per 1John 2:26-27, I'd be sort of like a blind man in a dark room
looking for a black cat that isn't there when it comes to spirit words.
● 1Cor 2:12-13 . .We have
not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may
understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words
taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing
spiritual truths in spiritual words.
● Deut 21:18-21 . . If a man has a stubborn and
rebellious son who does not obey his father and mother and will not listen to
them when they discipline him, his father and mother shall take hold of him and
bring him to the elders at the gate of his town. They shall say to the elders,
"This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious. He will not obey us. He is a
profligate and a drunkard." Then all the men of his town shall stone him to
death. You must purge the evil from among you.
koinë Greek word for "profligate" is zalal (zaw-lal') which, among other
things, means to be morally loose and/or worthless
koinë word for drunkard refers to heavy drinking; which could refer to wild
parties and such.
Those words don't describe minor children, rather, of-age children, i.e. legally
adults still living at home and mooching off their parents instead of out on
their own, working for a living to support themselves.
There's a rule of thumb that says "When you live in our house, you'll live by
our rules". Well; the bum described in Deut 21:18-21 not only mooches off his
parents, but does whatever he pleases in their home, not caring how mom and dad
might feel about anything.
These days that's becoming more and more common when 26 is the new 21. Kids are
staying home longer than they used to. Well; there's nothing intrinsically wrong
with kids staying home longer, but when their lifestyle becomes intolerable for
their parents, it's time for them to move out.
is the punishment so severe for bums? Well for starters; it violates one of the
● Ex 20:12a . . Honor your father and your mother,
Failure to comply with that command merits dying before one's time.
● Ex 20:12b . . that your days
may be prolonged in the land which Yhvh your God gives you. (cf. Eph 6:1-3)
● Judg 11:30-32 . . And Jephthah made a vow
to Yhvh and said: If you will indeed give the sons of Ammon into my hand, then
it shall be that whatever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me when I
return in peace from the sons of Ammon, it shall be the Lord's, and I will offer
it up as a burnt offering.
Some of the "houses" back in that day were constructed as an enclosed compound;
which included a courtyard. Around the periphery of the courtyard were the
family's living quarters and sometimes accommodations for certain of the
family's animals. The "door" of the house served not as an entry to the family's
living quarters, rather, as a gate to the courtyard.
Something very similar to that description is depicted in the Charlton Heston
movie Ben Hur. I rather suspect that at least of few of the animals were allowed
to freely roam the courtyard and were Jephthah's intended sacrifice rather than
his kin. That would help explain the bitter disappointment he expressed when his
daughter met him first.
As for giving his daughter to the priests
for a burnt offering; that just wasn't done. Human sacrifice isn't specified in
the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus,
Numbers, and Deuteronomy; so offering a human on the Altar would have been a
Deut 4:2 …You shall not add anything to what I command you or take anything away
from it, but keep the commandments of the Lord your God that I enjoin upon you.
Deut 5:29-30 …Be careful, then, to do as the Lord your God has commanded you. Do
not turn aside to the right or to the left: follow only the path that the Lord
your God has enjoined upon you
In the end, Jephthah's daughter didn't bewail the loss of her
life; rather, the loss of any hope of having a family of her own. I've a feeling
she joined other women of Israel dedicated to assisting with things in and
around the Temple vicinity (cf. 1Sam 2:22). According to 1Cor 7:34, that
vocation is better suited to unencumbered single women than married.
Spiritual Body vs
● 1 Cor 15:44 . . It is sown a natural
body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a
Watch as I revise that passage because the difference is significant.
is sown a natural body, it is raised up a spirit body. If there is a natural
body, there is also a spirit body."
it doesn't say spirit body but nevertheless that's what some people have decided
it ought to say.
The Greek word translated "spiritual" is ambiguous. It doesn't necessarily refer
to spirit. Below is a list of spiritual things that bear absolutely no
resemblance whatsoever to the body chemistry of an angel or a demon.
Spiritual gifts (Rom 1:11)
Spiritual law (Rom 7:14)
Spiritual things (Rom 15:27)
Spiritual people (1Cor 2:15)
Spiritual nourishment (1Cor 10:3)
Spiritual water (1Cor 10:4)
Spiritual rock (1Cor 10:4)
Spiritual blessings (Eph 1:3)
Spiritual music (Eph 5:19)
Spiritual understanding (Col 1:9)
Spiritual housing (1Pet 2:5)
Spiritual sacrifices (1Pet 2:5)
The spiritual body spoken of at 1Cor 15:44 is in no way composed of spirit. Of
what material it is composed I don't know; but I do know at least three things about it.
The spiritual body is patterned after Christ's body.
"Our citizenship is in
heaven. And we eagerly await a savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by
the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform
our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body." (Php 3:20-21)
The spiritual body is capable of dining upon ordinary foods and beverages.
"I have eagerly desired
to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you: I will not eat it
again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God." (Luke 22:15-16)
"I tell you: I will not
drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew
with you in my Father's kingdom." (Matt 26:29)
"You are those who have stood by me in my trials. And I confer on you a
kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, so that you may eat and drink at my table
in my kingdom." (Luke 22:28-30)
The spiritual body is capable of being seen by the naked eye.
"Men of Galilee, why do you
stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into
heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched him go into heaven."
"Behold, he is coming with the
clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him." (Rev 1:7)
God's Good Faith
Eph 1:13-14 . . Having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of
promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the
Eph 4:30 . . Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for
the day of redemption.
The Holy Spirit of God is the seal; which is from the koiné Greek word
sphragizo (sfrag-id'-zo). The word has no reference whatsoever to a zip lock
bag, or a strip of tape, or a gasket, or that little widget that the power
company clips onto electric meters, or a cork, or a bar code, or a bottle cap, or a label, or a
tag, or the lid on a jar, or glue, or the ring of bee's wax that goes in between
the base of a toilet and the flange of the soil pipe it drains into.
Sphragizo refers to the impression that's made upon wax with a signet ring. In
other words: the Holy Spirit is God's own personal signature on the dotted line;
and it serves a very important purpose.
Holy Spirit is also the "guarantee" of a believer's inheritance. Let me explain.
The koiné Greek word is arrhabon (ar-hrab-ohn') which refers to a pledge;
viz: part of the purchase-money or property given in advance as security for the
When we bought our home, I had to submit, along with the escrow papers, an amount
of money called a "good-faith" deposit. In the event that my wife and I backed
out of the deal, for any reason at all; we would've forfeited the deposit.
That's no doubt an incentive to make sure people mean business about buying a
Eph 1:13-14 explains a difficult spiritual truth by putting it into a context
easy to understand by anyone familiar with the process of buying a home. Another
context, also easy to understand, is located in the 38th chapter of Genesis.
Long story short, Judah left his staff and signet with Tamar as a pledge that he
would pay her with a young goat as compensation for sleeping with him (Gen
38:18). The Hebrew word for Judah's pledge is 'arabown (ar-aw-bone')
which is equivalent to the Greek word for guarantee.
Well; Judah was unable to make good on his promise because Tamar took a powder.
So his response was:
"Let her keep what she has or we will become a disgrace." (Gen 38:23)
You bet your bippy they would have been a disgrace because until such a time as
Judah paid Tamar what he promised; she had a legitimate right to keep his staff
and his signet because that's the way an 'arabown works.
Bottom line is: at this point in the plan of salvation, should God not spare a
believer's soul from the sum of all fears; then He has to forfeit the Holy
Spirit. In other words: should a believer end up in hell, they get to keep the
Holy Spirit and take Him down there with them because that's the way the
arrhabon and the 'arabown work; and believers have God's signature holding Him
How People Stay In Heaven
I should think that producing enough piety during one's
lifetime in order to get to heaven would be difficult enough. But people who
make it to heaven don't face a lifetime; no, they're facing eternity.
Producing piety for that long has to be even harder.
According to Rom 2:6-11, people's piety has to be consistent.
In other words: there's no reward for complying with some of God's wishes
some of the time, nor even most of His wishes most of the time. No, people
have to comply with all of His wishes all the time in order to stay in
heaven; no slacking off-- people are expected to give it everything they've
● Mark 12:30 . . You
shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul,
and with all your mind, and with all your strength.
Christ is the lucky one. Piety is second nature to him.
Christ doesn't even have to work at it because he was born with the nature
of God rather than only the nature of a human. That's quite an advantage
over the rest of us.
● 1John 3:8 . .Whoever
has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he
cannot sin, because he has been born of God.
According to Rom 6:23, the wages of sin is death. Well; if
the wages of sin is death down here, wouldn't the wages of sin be death up
there too? I can't imagine why not. So then, it seems to me that people in
heaven are living under a sword of Damocles, hanging by a slender thread
easily broken by the slightest impiety; and thus finding themselves booted
out of heaven right quick.
Human nature being what it is, the obvious solution to this
dilemma is to take people right back to square #1 and route them through
birth all over again. Only the second time, instead of born the normal way;
they'd be born by the hand of God in such a way that piety would be second
nature to them just like it is for Christ; because unless God can say about
ordinary people "this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased" like He
says about Christ; they are not going to survive in heaven for very long.
Is what I'm talking about a possibility? Yes; it certainly
● 2Pet 1:3-5 . . His
divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness,
through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and
excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent
promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine
Routing through another birth all over again in order to
obtain the divine nature isn't optional. No; it's a must.
● John 3:3 . .
Jesus declared: I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God
unless he is born from above.
● John 3:7 . . Do
not wonder that I said to you: You must be born from above.
Female Pastors, Preachers, and Teachers
The comments below pertain specifically to Christians within a Christian
congregation, rather than to people in general throughout the
Christ's apostles speak for Christ; and obeying them is a
walk pleasing to God.
● 1Cor 14:37 . . If any
man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that
the things that I write unto you are the commandments of The Lord.
● 1Ths 4:1-2 . .We
beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have
received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound
more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus.
Seeing as how the apostles' commandments are Christ's
commandments, then refusal to obey an apostle is all the same as refusal to
obey Christ. It's a domino effect all the way to the top.
● Luke 10:16 . .Whoever
listens to you; listens to me. Whoever rejects you; rejects me. And whoever
rejects me; rejects the one who sent me.
Therefore, these next commandments are not just one man's
opinion; but are Christ's wishes, and being so, are God's too.
● 1Cor 11:3 . . But I
would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of
the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.
● 1Cor 14:34-35 . . Let
your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them
to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the
law. And if they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home:
for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.
● 1Tim 2:11-12 . . Let
the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to
teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.
People who refuse to obey those commandments are no better
than pagans practicing dark arts and/or worshipping Shiva and Vishnu.
● 1Sam 15:23 . .
Rebellion is as the sin of divination, and insubordination is as iniquity
They're Christ's enemies.
● John 15:14 . .You are
my friends if you do as I wish.
And they're disloyal too.
● John 14:15 . . If you
love me, you will comply with what I command.
● John 14:21 . .Whoever
has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me.
● John 14:23-24 . . If
anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching . . He who does not love me will
not obey my teaching.
Their insubordination insinuates that God's wisdom is absurd.
● 2Pet 3:15-16 . . Paul
also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him.
Q: What about Deborah? God appointed her to lead men.
A: Rebels are fond of pointing to Old Testament
female luminaries like Deborah to justify Christian women leading Christian
men. But they need to wake up and get their bearings. Deborah wasn't a
Christian; and besides: she lived in the Old Testament era.
That ship has sailed and we today live in the New Testament
era— an era where Christ's wishes reign supreme. Male leadership may not be
ideal; but the bottom line is: males are Christ's gender of choice; and it
is his Father's wishes that people follow His son's lead.
● Matt 17:5 . .Behold, a
bright cloud overshadowed them; and behold, a voice out of the cloud,
saying: This is My beloved son, with whom I am well pleased. Listen to him!
● John 3:36 . . He who
does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on
You know why the issue of Christian women leading Christian
men is so controversial? It's because far more Christians are worldly than
heavenly; they're living the Christian life according to the standards of
their culture, and according to their feelings, instead of according to
Christ's wishes; viz: they're carnal instead of spiritual; and apparently
content to be that way.
● Rom 8:5-8 . .Those who
live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature
desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds
set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the
mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace; the sinful mind is hostile
to God. It does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so. Those controlled
by the sinful nature cannot please God.
Christianity isn't everyone's cup of tea. If people find
Christ's rules too strict, too old fashioned and/or too contrary to their
culture, then maybe they ought to take up something else, like maybe
Buddhism or Yoga meditation. But one thing no one should do is follow Christ
with the thought of setting him straight or bringing him up to date. You
see, that would be the sin of heresy, which is a sin that merits
● Rom 16:17 . .Watch out
for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are
contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them.
Stubborn cases of heresy require excommunication.
● Titus 3:10-11 . .
Reject a divisive person after the first and second admonition, knowing that
such a person is warped and sinning, being self condemned.
Some Christian churches are so insubordinate that they mirror
the church of Laodicea where Christ is depicted outside the building at Rev
3:14-22 banging on the door trying to get someone's attention to let him in.
A Christian church without Christ at the helm is really an odd duck. For all
intents and purposes, it's little more than a religious social club.
● 1John 1:6 . .
If we claim to have fellowship with him, yet walk in the darkness; we lie
and do not live by the truth.
Christ And The Melchizedek Priesthood
Melchizedek was a priest of the Most High God in the
book of Genesis contemporary with Abraham. (Gen 14:18-20)
Mel, along with Abraham, existed prior to the covenanted law
that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers,
and Deuteronomy. This is very important seeing as how according to the
Bible, law enacted ex post facto isn't retroactive.
● Deut 5:2-4 . .Yhvh our
God made a covenant with us at Horeb. Yhvh did not make this covenant with
our fathers, but with us, with all those of us alive here today.
● Rom 4:15 . . Law
brings wrath. And where there is no law there is no transgression.
● Rom 5:13 . . Sin is
not imputed when there is no law.
● Gal 3:17. .The Law,
which came four hundred and thirty years later, does not invalidate a
covenant previously ratified by God.
That being the case, then Melchizedek's constituents— among
whom was Abraham —were immune to the consequences specified for breaking
the covenant's law as per Ex 34:6-7, Lev 26:3-38, Deut 27:15-26, and Deut
Christ's priesthood is patterned after Melchizedek's (Ps
110:4, Heb 5:5-6). So then, seeing as how Melchizedek and his constituents—
which included Abraham —were immune to the curses specified for breaking
the covenant's law, then Christ and his constituents are immune to the
curses too. In a nutshell: neither Christ nor his followers can be sent to
hell for breaking the Ten Commandments.
● John 5:24 . . I assure
you: those who listen to my message, and believe in God who sent me, have
eternal life. They will never be condemned for their sins, but they have
already passed from death into life.
Another advantage of Christ's priesthood is its continuity.
Take for example Judaism's priesthood. No one has benefited
from its services since Titus destroyed Jerusalem in 70ad. Which means of
course that 1,945 years worth of Yom Kippurs have been merely for show
because the Day Of Atonement cannot be observed properly and effectively
without a fully functioning priesthood.
In contrast: Christ's priesthood isn't effected by wars,
and/or geopolitics. He officiates in heaven where nothing happening on earth
can reach to either interfere with, or interrupt, his services (Heb 8:1-4).
And seeing as how Christ rose from the dead immortal (Rom 6:9, Heb 7:3, Rev
1:18) then old age and death will never be a factor in either the length or
the effectiveness of his priesthood tenure.
● Heb 7:24-25 . . He, on
the other hand, because he abides forever, holds his priesthood permanently.
Hence, also, he is able to save forever those who draw near to God through
him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.
Melchizedek's office is a high priest's position (Heb 5:10, Heb 6:20). Well;
the Bible limits the number of high priests in office to just one at a time;
and the man stays in place till he's dead before being replaced—
which of course won't happen with Christ seeing as how he's currently immortal.
Point being: Mormonism's over-crowded order of Melchizedek is
unbiblical: and so, for that matter, is Mormonism's order of Aaron seeing as
how his is the office of a high priest too.
Hope For Pedophiles And LGBT, et al.
Everybody has problems with proclivities; which Webster's defines as
inclinations or predispositions toward something; especially strong inherent
inclinations toward something objectionable.
Everybody also has problems with predilections too; which Webster's defines as a
natural liking for something; viz: a natural tendency to do or to be attracted
Those definitions are keyed to the words "natural" and "inherent". So then what
we're talking about here are not conditioned responses, nor acquired tastes.
the passage below; Paul's pronoun "we" included himself as someone with
natural-born longings and desires for bad things.
● Eph 2:2-4 . .We too all formerly lived in
the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and
were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.
Paul's pronoun "all" torpedoes every Christian claiming to be born free of one
or more sinful predilections.
The point is: unless something were done to remedy human nature's sinful
proclivities and predilections, nobody would qualify for citizenship in either
the new cosmos or the holy city depicted in the 21st chapter of Revelation.
Everybody, no exceptions, even Christ's apostles, would be barred entry even
though Christ gave his life as a ransom to rescue their souls from the wrath of
The problem is: forgiveness isn't a cure; viz: forgiven pedophiles and LGBT go
right on as pedophiles and LGBT just like always and were they to attempt to
suppress their desires throughout eternity, I think they would eventually go mad
with a nervous breakdown because they would be fighting against nature; which
everybody instinctively knows is a fight that can't be won without suffering
serious psychological consequences.
So then, it's futile to tell pedophiles and LGBT to stop giving in to their
desires if they want to get to heaven and stay in heaven because that's not a
viable, long-range solution to their problem. The problem is not their conduct;
no, their conduct is merely a symptom; and as every informed person knows: you
don't treat an illness by treating its symptoms— that method has been proven
God's remedy for pedophiles and LGBT is radical, to say the least; but it's the
only way He can get them into heaven so they can stay in heaven.
First off: He doesn't remove their longings and desires; instead God regards
their natural-born condition as so far gone that it can't be treated. In other
words: God throws the baby out with the bath water, so to speak, and starts from
scratch with a new baby.
● John 3:3 . . I tell you the truth: no one
can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.
birth about which Christ spoke isn't an option; no, it's a must.
● John 3:7 . .You must be born again.
That goes for everybody, not just pedophiles and LGBT, because Christ said "no
one" can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again; which of course has to
include all the holy people in the Old Testament too or otherwise the words "no
one" are just hot air and serve no useful purpose.
Acts 11:26 . . in Antioch the disciples were for the first time called
Webster's defines a Christian as somebody who professes
belief in the teachings of Jesus Christ.
According to that definition; it isn't necessary to actually
believe in Christ's teachings in order to qualify as a Christian; it's only
necessary to say you do.
People don't even have to know what Christ's teachings are;
they only have to say they believe in them.
Nor is it necessary to put Christ's teachings into practice
in order to qualify as a Christian; it's only necessary to say you believe
Webster's is a very broad definition, but if all
denominations complied with it, I think they'd all be a whole lots more
tolerant; and get along a whole lots better too.
● Matt 8:23-25 . . And when he got into the
boat, his disciples followed him. And behold, there arose a great storm in the
sea, so that the boat was covered with the waves; but he himself was asleep. And
they came to him, and awoke him, saying: Save us, Lord; we are perishing!
koiné Greek word for "save" in that verse is sozo (sode'-zo) which means to
rescue and/or protect.
● Luke 2:8-11 . . And in the same region there
were some shepherds staying out in the fields, and keeping watch over their
flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the
glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened.
. . . And the angel said to them: Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring
you good news of a great joy which shall be for all the people; for today in the
city of David there has been born for you a savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Greek word for "savior" in that verse is soter (so-tare') which means: a
Rescuers typically help people who are in grave distress and/or imminent danger
of death and/or serious injury, and helpless to do anything about it; e.g. Red
Cross, Firemen, Emergency Medical teams, snow patrols, mountain units, and the
Coast Guard and National Guard.
Wouldn't it be awful if those agencies refused to assist
desperate folk until they first proved themselves deserving? Well lucky for
everyone that those agencies work on the basis of need rather than merit or
many of us would end up thrown back to the wolves.
I think quite a few people are under the impression that
Christ is some sort of probation officer; viz: if people "endure to the end"
as they say; then he grants them a clearance for heaven. But God forbid they
should fail to satisfy the conditions of their probation, because then
they're out the door.
Probation can be likened to a sword of Damocles hanging over
people's heads by a slender thread easily broken by conduct unbecoming. How
dare the angel of Luke 2:8-11 describe his announcement as "good news of
great joy" if probation were actually what's meant by sozo instead of to
rescue and/or to protect.
On the other hand; if Christ is in the business of rescuing
and protecting people from the wrath of God in accordance with the humane
principles underlying normal emergency services; then yes, I fully agree
with the angel that the birth of Christ is something to get excited about.
The Good Shepherd
of Christ's characteristics, in which I have complete confidence, is that he's
conscientious about doing what he's told.
"The one who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, because I always do
what is pleasing to Him." (John 8:29)
Were Christ to fail in any way, any way at all, pleasing the one who sent him.
then it would be dishonest of Christ to claim to "always" please Him. Christ
might be able to claim pleasing the one who sent him a high percentage of the
time, but certainly not always.
Here is one of the things that God wants from His son.
"This is the will of the one who sent me; that I should not lose anything of
what He gave me." (John 6:39)
The one who sent Christ has given him sheep (John 10:27-30). Were Jesus to lose
one single head of those sheep— even just one —he would fail to always please
the one who sent him.
Regarding those sheep, Jesus stated:
"I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them
out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one
can snatch them out of my Father's hand." (John 10:28-29)
It has actually been posited that the sheep are an exception. In other words;
it's been posited that the sheep of their own free will can take themselves out
of Jesus' hand. But of course they can't because the Father's free will trumps the
sheep's free will.
"This is the will of the one who sent me; that I should not lose anything of
what He gave me." (John 6:39)
The posit is a vote of no-confidence in the good shepherd's determination to
succeed at pleasing the one who sent him; and reveals a belief that the sheep
have enough strength and cunning to overpower their shepherd and run off.
Were the good shepherd only human, then I would be inclined to agree with the
posit that his sheep might get past him and run off. But the Bible teaches that
Christ is not only human, but also the divine architect of the entire cosmos
with all of its forms of life, matter, and energy. So then, the good shepherd
has at his disposal all the powers and abilities of the supreme being to utilize
in keeping the sheep right where he wants them to be.
Surely no one in a right mind would dare to suggest that sheep have sufficient
powers and abilities of their own at their disposal to overcome Christ. Were
that the case, the sheep would have no need of his services; the sheep could
But even were the sheep to somehow manage to escape Christ's hand, they would
still have his Father's hand to contend with; and good luck getting away from
Now, seeing as how the good shepherd has all the powers of the supreme being at
his disposal to keep the sheep, then it shouldn't take too much more to persuade
the sheep that it's okay to fully trust in this next statement of his.
am the gate; whoever enters through me shall be saved." (John 10:9)
Were Christ a so-so shepherd; then he wouldn't dare say "shall be" saved; no,
he'd have to tone it down a bit and say "can be" saved. That would leave him
some room for error. But when Christ says "shall be" he's claiming a 0.0%
failure rate. That's how confident Christ is that he will lose nothing of what
his Father has given him.
The New Man
The term "in Christ" is widely misunderstood. In a nutshell;
everyone starts out born in Adam; in order to get one's self in Christ; it's
necessary to undergo yet another birth as per John 3:3-8.
John 3:7 . . Don't be surprised at my statement that you must be
Note that another birth isn't optional; it's a must.
● 2Cor 5:17 . .Therefore, if anyone is in
Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.
koiné Greek word for "creation" is ktisis (ktis'-is).
Ktisis makes its first appearance in the New Testament at Mark 10:6 where it
refers to intelligent design and the source of the current cosmos with all of
its forms of life, matter, and energy.
Ktisis is a subtle word. It implies that the current cosmos is an original
rather than a copy; viz: the creation spoken of in 2Cor 5:17 is an original too,
i.e. the first ever of its kind; unique. In other words: the new h.sapiens
isn't a renovation of the first version.
"old" is from the koiné Greek word archaios (ar-khah'-yos) which
basically means the first and/or primeval. In other words: the old man is the
Adam version of h.sapiens, i.e. a terrestrial human race as per Gen 2:7.
Natural born humans are classified as "in Adam" which makes sense seeing as how
Adam is their progenitor.
Just as Adam was
the progenitor of the now-obsolete human race; so Christ is the progenitor of
the never to be obsolete human race; viz: the new Man; which is a race of
heavenly people that has some pretty amazing advantages.
Adam all are reckoned joint principals in his disobedience.
In Christ all
are reckoned joint principals in his obedience.
Adam all are adjudged unrighteous.
Christ all are adjudged righteous.
Adam all are capable of sin.
Christ all are incapable of sin.
Adam all have the human nature.
Christ all have the divine nature.
Adam all have natural life.
Christ all have eternal life.
Adam all are made to die.
Christ, all are made to live.
James Taylor / Country Roads