The Apple Of God's Eye

March 9, 2009

Are The Jews God's Chosen People?

The Bible makes it clear that God chose Israel — not just Judah — to be His nation (Deut. 7:6). He made a covenant with them when He brought them out of bondage in Egypt. See chapters 9 through 24 of Exodus. Israel was to be an example to all nations of the blessings brought by obedience to the laws of God. They were His chosen people — not His favorite. God has no favorites (Acts 10:34).

Yet, Israel failed. They rebelled constantly and sinned. They split into two nations — the house of Israel and the house of Judah. God sent Israel into Assyrian captivity about 720 B.C. They became lost in history. He later sent Judah into Babylonian captivity, starting about 604 B.C. Their territory was occupied and the people transplanted en masse to Babylon in 587 B.C.

Seventy years later Judah began to return, and the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the temple was begun. However, the Jews again misapplied God’s commandments. They added many of their own laws under the influence of the Pharisees (Matt. 15:1-9; Mark 7:1-13).

Jesus said the Kingdom would be taken from them and given to others — to spiritual Israel, that is, to the Church (Matt. 21:43). The Church now comprises God’s chosen people (I Pet. 2:9). All who are converted are reckoned to be children of Abraham (Gal. 3:29). The Church is to marry Christ as His chosen bride at His return from heaven in this generation (Rev. 19:7-9).

Nonetheless, God has not given up on national Israel! Prophecies in Hosea 2, Ezekiel 36, and Zechariah 12-14 show that the people of Judah and Israel will repent and reunite and again become God’s people. They will be the leading nation in the world tomorrow (Zech. 8). Of course, the Church will then be immortal and under Christ will rule the physical nations (Rev. 2:26; 3:21; 5:10; 20:4-6).

In summary, Israel, that is, the house of Israel and the house of Judah united, will again be God’s chosen nation. In the world tomorrow they will fulfill the job God called them to do 3500 years ago.

Killing In The Name Of God?

I happened across some information the other day gleaned from “Free Inquiry, 1993, which was also printed in Freethought Today, 1993 and eventually distributed by The New York Times syndicate. Let me state, it was an eye opener, to say the least. It related some headlines from various newspapers and wires over the years:

1. 2,oo0 DIE IN RIOTS AFTER HINDUS SMASH MUSLIM MOSQUE
2. ULSTER CATHOLIC, PROTESTANT SQUADS TRADE MURDERS
3. OHIO CULT LEADER ‘SACRIFICES’ FAMILY OF FIVE
4. ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN SERBS RAPE MUSLIM WOMEN
5. SHIITES IN IRAN HANG BAHAIS WHO WON’T CONVERT
6. CHRISTIAN ARMENIANS, MUSLIM AZERBAIJANIS RESUME WAR
7. FUNDAMENTALIST PICKET KILLS CLINIC DOCTOR
8. BUDDHISTS AND HINDU TAMILS BATTLE IN SRI LANKA
9. EGYPTIAN FUNDAMENTALISTS KILL PRESIDENT SADAT
10. SIKH MILITANTS ASSASSINATE INDIRA GANDHI
11. 900 TAKE CYANIDE AT JONESTOWN
12. CHRISTIAN-MUSLIM WAR IN SUDAN CAUSES FAMINE
13. WACO CULTISTS DIE IN SUICIDE PYRE

All headlines show religion in its worst form – in the hands of extremists. Shirley Maclaine was once quoted as saying:

“In the name of God, a ‘fatwa’ against Salman Rushdie. In the name of God, murder in the Balkans. In the name of God, the bombing of the World Trade Center. In the name of God, the siege at Waco, Texas…. In the name of God, Shiites and Sunnis are at each other’s throats in Iraq and Iran, as are Arabs and Jews in the Middle East…. In the name of God, what is going on?”

Yes, there are good aspects of religion, where kind and caring people serve others in the name of God.  But what can explain the opposite result, when evil is perpetrated in the name of God — holy wars between ethnic groups, terrorism, hatred between denominations, faiths and beliefs across cultural, political and economical grounds — all supposedly in the name of God?All because various parties pray to a different God?

Catholic against Protestant, Christian Crusaders against Islamic hordes, inquisitions resulting in the burning, torture and barbaric slaughter of millions, Puritans and Anglicans in mortal combat, ethnic cleansing in Bosnia, the Taiping Rebellion in China, which killed an estimated 20 million, the Nazi’s slaughter of 6 million Jews, the Khmer Rouge killing 1.7 million of their fellow Cambodians, Rwandan Hutus killing 800,000 ethnic Tutsis, the Armenians of Turkey enduring mass slaughter at the hands of the Ottoman Turks, Sikhs gunning down Hindus and so on and so on. It never stops!

Aren’t we all the off-spring of Adam and Eve? Except for skin colour and speech, are we not the same mankind? Yes we are and generally we can behave pretty good -EXCEPT – when religion becomes the chief dividing element. It is the “beast behind the shadows of human conflict – of religious tribalism.

It is irrational, and few can explain it. God only knows, and he says that the human heart is rotten at its very core (Jer. 17:9). Without the true God guiding man (and He isn’t doing so during all this barbarianism, is He?), there is no hope of ever solving humanities woes. Religion without God (and driven by the human heart without the Holy Spirit), is nothing less than barbaric. But the imminent return of Christ is near – despite the naysayers, critics and anti-God pundits. Personally, I can’t wait!

What Is The Origin Of April Fool's Day?

blog.redfin.com/sfbay/2008/03

blog.redfin.com/sfbay/2008/03

April Fool’s Day or All Fool’s Day is of ancient origin. The custom of playing practical jokes on friends or sending them on fools’ errands on a particular day was practiced from earliest times.

The “Concise Dictionary of Holidays” says, “The tradition of setting aside some special day for making a fool out of other people has its roots in antiquity” (page 5).

The Book of Days says, “To find the practice so widely prevalent over the earth, and with so near a coincidence of day, seems to indicate that it has had a very early origin amongst mankind” (page 462).

The “Encyclopaedia Britannica” says this: “What seems certain is that it [April Fool’s Day] is in some way or other a relic of those once universal festivities held at the vernal equinox, which, beginning on old New Year’s Day, the 25th of March, ended on the 1st of April. This view gains support from the fact that the exact counterpart of April-fooling is found to have been an immemorial custom in India. The festival of the spring equinox is there termed the feast of Huli, the last of which is the 31st of March, upon which the chief amusement is the befooling of people by sending them on fruitless errands.”

Even though the roots of April Fool’s Day are not known precisely, the evidence clearly indicates that it is of pagan origin. That alone should tell us what God thinks of it.

April Fool’s Day is not mentioned in the Bible, but its foundation and instructions regarding it are. Foolish jesting is condemned in God’s Word (Eph. 5:4). And, as with any worldly custom taken from pagan tradition, God warns, “Learn not the way of the heathen” (Jer. 10:2) and, “Come out from among them and be separate” (II Cor. 6:17, RAV). Clearly, the followers of Jesus Christ should have nothing to do with April Fool’s Day.

Is The Apostles' Creed Authentic?

Filed under: Catholic Church,Churches Of The World,Doctrinal Error — melchia @ 4:37 am
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There exists a so-called “Apostles’ Creed,” which is commonly recited in many churches. While the title implies that this creed was written or approved by the apostles and the early Church of God, that idea is completely false. This document is one of many religious frauds, and is a mixture of truth and error. It was composed in its final form about the fifth century A.D.

“Smith’s Bible Dictionary” admits: “The Apostles’ Creed is not their (the apostles’) own making.”

“Bingham’s Antiquities of the Christian Church” reports: “The creed, as it stands in its present form, could not be composed in any manner as it is pretended, by the Apostles. The silence of the Acts of the Apostles about any such composition is [an] evidence against it.”

Bingham’s also says that it was originally called the “Roman Creed” because of the statement “I believe in … the Holy Catholic Church.”

Apparently, the creed was created in an attempt to give apostolic authority for accepting the many pagan doctrines and customs which were being brought into the professing Christian church in the western Roman Empire.

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