The Apple Of God's Eye

April 20, 2009

What Is The Land Sabbath And The Jubilee Year?

pictopia.com

pictopia.com

God said, “When you come into the land which I give you, then the land shall keep a sabbath to the Lord” (Lev. 25:2, NKJV). Following verses explain that each seventh year was to be a land Sabbath, during which no crops were to be sown or harvested. But whatever produce grew by itself could be used for daily food by the farmer and the poor of the land (verse 6). See Exodus 23:10-11 also. Debts incurred by the poor during the previous six years, and that had come due, were also to be canceled at the end of the seventh year (Deut. 15:1-11). 

After seven cycles of sabbatical years (49 years), the fiftieth year was proclaimed a jubilee (Lev. 25:8-12). Again the land was to rest from cultivation (verse 11) and all families that had become poor and had mortgaged their land could return to their possession (verse 13). 

These were major economic laws given by God. They were meant to prevent undue wealth gotten through acquisition of farm land from accumulating in the hands of the rich while the poor become further impoverished. God emphasizes over and over that people are not to oppress one another (Lev. 25:14, 17). Deuteronomy 15 states emphatically that following these economic laws would bring God’s blessing (verses 4, 6, and 10). God wants people to learn to be generous and compassionate — to have the “give” attitude rather than the “get” attitude. 

Today’s world, however, is characterized by materialism and greed. Farmers driven by economics try to milk the last bit of production from their tired soil and livestock. Economies collapse in wrenching depressions — or major recessions — and great hardship affects the world’s economy approximately every fifty years. People practice selfishness and oppression of others. 

God’s land Sabbath and jubilee were intended to prevent this hard-hearted attitude and the economic curses that naturally result. Man was to willingly forego his crop in the sabbatical year and the jubilee by letting the land rest. He was to acknowledge God as the true owner of the land and be thankful for God’s generosity. And he was to share the good things of the earth with others. The rest from tilling the land provided opportunities for education, travel, community service, and spiritual reflection. 

God promised to perform a miracle in granting abundant crops in the sixth year of the cycle so that the bounty would suffice until a new crop came in two or three years later (Lev. 25:20-22). This would be a continuing witness of God’s power as Provider, just as the manna in the wilderness had been. 

The question naturally arises, then, how can a Christian apply these laws of God now? Obviously, an individual cannot observe all the details of these laws, since that would require national legislation. An individual cannot release his own debts, and there is no divinely appointed inheritance for each family today. But these laws are all for man’s good, so we ought to observe them to the extent that this can be done in the present system. Even where a law cannot be practiced in the letter, it should be kept in the spirit. 

We must not oppress anyone in our dealings, and we must strive to be generous, kindhearted, patient, and forgiving. A farmer who owes money to banks probably cannot let all his land rest every seven years, since he owes mortgage and other loan payments that must be made each year. In such a case, it is suggested that the land be rested in rotation so that each field receives its rest sometime during a seven-year period. If one is able to rest the whole farm at once, so much the better. He can reckon his seventh year from the time of his baptism or from the time that the knowledge comes to him regarding the land rest.

(Note that the Jews in the state of Israel observe their sabbatical years in the sequence 1993-1994, 2000-2001, 2007-2008 and so on.) God does want us to take care of the soil and to recognize that we are merely tenants on His land, responsible for maintaining its fertility. Virtually all agricultural colleges know the benefits of crop rotations and of “resting” land by putting it in pasture or cover crops periodically. Good soil conservation measures should also be practiced. 

God is concerned with how we use the resources He allows us to manage. He is judging each of us by how we deal with and treat our fellowman (I Pet. 4). Thus, His laws and instructions are not archaic or quaint customs! They are living laws to be observed by God’s people!

March 18, 2009

From The Liberal Mindset: Methane Madness

From: Trumpet.com

March 2, 2009, by Ron Fraser

Unbelievable! Where will the liberal set lead us next?

First it was methane-producing cows that were endangering the planet through their gaseous contributions to “global warming.” Now, believe it or not, it’s belching lambs! What next—burping bandicoots?

Reporting from Palmerston North in New Zealand, Patrick Barta wrote in a Wall Street Journal front-page report, “On a typical day, researchers in this college town coax hungry sheep into metal carts. They wheel the fluffy beasts into sealed chambers and feed them grass, then wait for them to burp.

“The exercise is part of a global effort to keep sheep, deer, cows and other livestock from belching methane when they eat and regurgitate grass” (February 26).

And the reason for this marvel of scientific experimentation? “Methane is among the most potent greenhouse gases, and researchers now believe livestock industries are a major contributor to climate change, responsible for more greenhouse-gas emissions than cars are, according to the United Nations.”

Can you really believe this? Or do you think according to the common sense of many a farmer, as the Journal muses, that “the problem of sheep burps is so much hot air”?

Believe it or not, the greenies are pushing for a “burp tax” on all bovines, and “some activists are urging consumers to stop buying meat and thus slow climate change” (ibid.).

If this does not reveal a streak of madness prevalent in the liberal mind, then I’m a monkey’s uncle. Unbelievably, these folk, who on the one hand wave placards touting “animal rights,” ostensibly despairing of the slaughter of animals for human consumption, on the other try to stop the normal functioning of a live animal via experiments where “they have even tried feeding the animals chloroform, which can stymie the production of gas if it doesn’t kill the animal” (ibid.).

What reveals the mentally aberrant liberal agenda behind all this is the UN’s attachment to the hilarious claim that livestock bear a responsibility for the warming of the planet.

Come on!

Any decent researcher worth his salt knows that the UN handed its collective mind over to liberal madness decades ago. What’s really behind the UN anti-animal farming agenda is the liberal push to eliminate animal husbandry from the planet and convert us all into a feminist, politically correct, multicultural, neuter-gender conglomerate of godless, evolutionist herb-eating vegetarians!

The global warming push has even bred a new profession, “livestock emissions research,” which one scientist admits would be but a fringe science if it was not for “all the interest in climate change” (ibid.). In other words, it will quickly fade away if the fashion changes back to “global cooling” as it did some 30 years ago!

The whole thing is utterly ridiculous and defies logic, at least the logic of a two-feet-planted-squarely-on-the-ground realist!

What makes this all the more ludicrous is that, increasingly, the global warmists are finding themselves out on a limb as more and more scientists declare their hand as viewing climate change being founded on plain bad science! One of the latest reports comes from a U.S. Environment and Public Works full committee hearing last Wednesday. Marc Morano reports that during the hearing, titled “Update on the Latest Global Warming Science,” “Award-winning Princeton University physicist Dr. Will Happer declared man-made global warming fears ‘mistaken’ and noted that the Earth was currently in a ‘CO2 famine now.’ Happer … has published over 200 peer-reviewed scientific papers …. Happer was reportedly fired by former Vice President Al Gore in 1993 for failing to adhere to Gore’s scientific views” (U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, February 25).

Veteran psychiatrist Dr. Lyle Rossiter opines that the mindset behind much of liberal thinking is very like a kind of psychological disorder. “A social scientist who understands human nature will not dismiss the vital roles of free choice, voluntary cooperation and moral integrity—as liberals do.” Of the few remaining political realists, he states, “[A] legislator who understands human nature will not create an environment of rules which over-regulates and over-taxes the nation’s citizens, corrupts their character and reduces them to wards of the state—as liberals do” (The Liberal Mind: The Psychological Causes of Political Madness).

Yet such a crazy approach is behind the global-warmist-anti-bovine-burping element within society that has been given carte blanche by our liberal mass media to brainwash us into caving in to such mad rules as those designed to limit our “carbon footprint,” or be taxed if we don’t.

Dr. Rossiter declares that “When the modern liberal mind whines about imaginary victims, rages against imaginary villains and seeks above all else to run the lives of persons competent to run their own lives, the neurosis of the liberal mind becomes painfully obvious.”

Well, what more could we expect than that which we got in the U.S., the UK, Australia and New Zealand as the political pendulum swung left? Truly it is all so pathetic, but in reality it is all so PROPHETIC! After all, the Eternal God declared millennia ago that if His people rebelled against Him, as their civilization teetered on the brink, it would be in a time when those who ruled over us would have the mentality of feminized babes, which would ultimately lead many to just plain madness (Isaiah 3:4; Deuteronomy 28:28).

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