Saturday, October 30, 2010


In the arts, history, archaeology, the study of antiques, and similar fields involving unique or scarce artifacts from the past, and, with regard to documents in law, authenticity (Greek: ἀρχηγός from 'archēgos'='author')

1. the chief leader, prince
* of Christ
2. one that takes the lead in any thing and thus affords an example, a predecessor in a matter, pioneer
3. the author

Strong's Number: 747 Greek: archegos
translated "Prince" in Act 3:15 (marg., "Author") and Acts 5:31, but "Author" in Hebrews 2:10, RV, "Captain," RV marg., and AV, and "Author" in Hebrews 12:2, primarily signifies "one who takes a lead in, or provides the first occasion of,anything." In the Septuagint it is used of the chief of a tribe or family, Numbers 13:2 (RV, prince); of the "heads" of the children of Israel, Numbers 13:3; a captain of the whole people, Numbers 14:4; in Micah 1:13, of Lachish as the leader of the sin of the daughter of Sion: there, as in Hebrews 2:10, the word suggest a combination of the meaning of leader with that of the source from whence a thing proceeds. That Christ is the Prince of life signifies, as Chrysostom says, that "the life He had was not from another; the Prince or Author of life must be He who has life from Himself." But the word does not necessarily combine the idea of the source or originating cause with that of leader. In Hebrews 12:2 where Christ is called the "Author and Perfecter of faith," He is represented as the one who takes precedence in faith and is thus the perfect Exemplar of it. The pronoun "our" does not correspond to anything in the original, and may well be omitted. Christ in the days of His flesh trod never deviating the path of faith, and as the Perfecter has brought it to a perfect end in His own person. Thus He is the leader of all others who tread that path.


Friday, October 29, 2010

John Piper

John Stephen Piper (born January 11, 1946, Chattanooga, Tennessee) is a Reformed Baptist minister, author, and theologian, currently serving as senior pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He oversees the evangelical organization Desiring God, which is named after his book Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist (1986).

Piper was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, to Bill and Ruth Piper. When he and his older sister were still young, the Pipers moved to Greenville, South Carolina, where he spent the rest of his youth and graduated from Wade Hampton High School.

His father was an itinerant evangelist who actively ministered through international radio and Bible courses until his death in March 6, 2007. Of the fifteen counsels called, Things I Have Learned, of which some go back to his college days, John says:
My father was totally persuaded that wrong means do not lead to right ends. Or, more positively, he was persuaded that living in the right way—that is, doing the right things—are means that inevitably lead to where God wants us to be. This is why he told me, when I asked about God’s leading in my life, “Son, keep the room clean where you are, and in God’s time, the door to the next room will open.”

On January 11, 2006, Piper announced that the month beforehand, he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. According to a letter sent to his church, he and his doctors believe that the cancer is fully treatable. Piper's reaction to his diagnosis was:
"This news has, of course, been good for me. The most dangerous thing in the world is the sin of self-reliance and the stupor of worldliness. The news of cancer has a wonderfully blasting effect on both. I thank God for that. The times with Christ in these days have been unusually sweet."


Thursday, October 28, 2010

The chronology of Jesus

The chronology of Jesus depicts the traditional chronology established for the events of the life of Jesus by the four canonical gospels (which allude to various dates for several events). Among historians who are Christian Biblical scholars, the literature suggests the following detailed timeline for Jesus. The timeline records Jesus as Christ and Messiah from biblical and historical accounts of his life.

According to common interpretations of the four canonical gospels, Jesus was born between 8 BC and AD 6 and was baptised by John the Baptist at the start of His ministry, about 30 years later. His ministry lasted one year (synoptic gospels, Matthew, Mark, and Luke) or three years (Gospel of John), and he was executed under Pontius Pilate between AD 26 and 37. He rose from the dead three days later, appeared to the disciples and others, and then ascended to heaven.

The chronology of Jesus is uncertain, disputed, and perhaps impossible to ascertain definitively based on available evidence. The texts used in chronological reconstruction, the four canonical gospels, provide few clear dates — including the year of Jesus's birth, death, and age at death. (Dates for rulers and high priests are known from other sources). Moreover, the material unique to each gospel further complicates the discernment of one, harmonized chronology. Lastly, some commentators have questioned their historicity.

More...Chuck Messler: chronological and geographical ministry of our lord Jesus Christ in the gospels

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Heaven (Hebrew שמים shamayim) "heaven, heavens, sky, stars, as the visible universe," Heaven (as the abode of God). Also (Hebrew: רָקִיעַ raqiya`) "extended surface (solid), expanse, firmament," firmament (of vault of heaven supporting waters above), considered by Hebrews as solid and supporting 'waters' above.

And God called the firmament Heaven. And the evening and the morning were the second day. –Gen 1:8

Those who believe in heaven, especially those of the Judeo-Christian faith, generally hold that it (or Hell) is one of the two possible afterlife destinations all humans. In unusual instances, humans have had, according to many testimonies and traditions, personal knowledge of Heaven. They assert this is for the purpose of teaching the rest of humanity about life, Heaven, and God.

While there are abundant and varied sources for conceptions of Heaven, the typical believer's view appears to depend largely on his particular religious tradition. Various religions have described Heaven as being populated by angels, demons, gods and goddesses, and/or heroes (especially in Greek mythology). Heaven is generally thought of as a place of eternal happiness.

In old and new testament biblical religions, the belief in heaven appears to have supplanted the earlier concept of Sheol (mentioned in Isaiah 38:18, Psalms 6:5 and Job 7:7-10). Jewish converts to this concept of heaven and hell included the group known as the Pharisees. The larger, dogmatically conservative Sadducees maintained their belief in Sheol. While it was the Sadducees that represented the Jewish religious majority it was the Pharisees who best weathered Roman occupation, and their belief in Zoroaster's heaven and hell was passed on to both Christianity and Islam (in which heaven is referred to as Jannah (Arabic: جنّة‎), the Islamic conception of paradise).


Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Calvary (Golgotha, of Aramaic origin גֻּלְגֹּלֶת gulgoleth "head, poll, skull" referring to a hill or plateau containing a pile of skulls or to a geographic feature resembling a skull) so-called from its round form root (גָּלַל galal, "to roll, roll away, roll down, roll together" of 2 Kings 9:35–and the story of Jezebel.) is the English-language name given to the hill outside Jerusalem on which Jesus was crucified. Calvaria in Latin, Κρανιου Τοπος (Kraniou Topos) in Greek.

Calvary is mentioned in all four of the accounts of Jesus' crucifixion in the Christian canonical Gospels:
  1. And they came to a place called Golgotha, which is called the Place of the Skull. –Matthew 27:33
  2. And they took him up to the place Golgotha, which is translated Place of the Skull. –Mark 15:22
  3. Then they came up to the place called Skull. –Luke 23:33
  4. And carrying his cross by himself, he went out to the so-called Place of the Skull, which is called in 'Hebrew' Golgotha. –John 19:17

Includes Episode 1: The Garden Tomb of Jesus Documentary

Monday, October 25, 2010

The Communist Manifesto

The Communist Manifesto, originally titled Manifesto of the Communist Party (German: Manifest der Kommunistischen Partei), was first published on February 21, 1848. Commissioned by the Communist League and written by communist theorists Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, it presented the League's objectives and plan of action. It presents an expository approach to the class struggle and the problems of capitalism, rather than a vaticination of Communism's potential future contrivances.

Although the names of both Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx appear on the title page alongside the "persistent assumption of joint-authorship", Engels, in the preface introduction to the 1883 German edition of the Manifesto, said that the Manifesto was "essentially Marx's work" and that "the basic thought... belongs solely and exclusively to Marx."

There is evidence to suggest that Engels composed an earlier draft statement for a manifesto, which was then used as the basis for this later published document, the direct authorship of which can be attributed primarily to Marx. It is claimed in the text itself to have been sketched by a group of Communists from various countries that gathered together in London.

The Bloody History of Communism (Part 1 of 14)
Monster: A portrait of Stalin in Blood
Barack Obama & Marxism

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Census of Quirinius

The Census of Quirinius refers to the enrollment of the Roman Provinces of Syria and Iudaea for the purpose of taxation taken during the reign of the Roman Emperor Augustus Caesar when Publius Sulpicius Quirinius was appointed governor of Syria. An account of the census was given by the historian Josephus, who associated it with the beginning of the Zealot movement. The Gospel of Luke associates the birth of Jesus with this census, but appears to date it a decade earlier. Most scholars regard this as an error, but some have suggested ways of reconciling the two.
This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria. –Luke 2:2
Before becoming too "theologically preoccupied" with the doubts on Luke's accuracy regarding the Census of Quirinius, there are several things to consider:
  1. Christian's believe in the accuracy of the Bible because:
    • the biblical writers themselves held and taught this view
    • if the bible is not accurate on this point, if may not be accurate in other areas as well.
  2. 3 Therefore, since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, it seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, 4 so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught. –Luke 1:3-4
  3. Regardless of what Luke's reference to Quirinius is, the birth of Jesus is still a complete fulfillment of Isaiah 7:13-14:
13 Then Isaiah said, "Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of men? Will you try the patience of my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

Includes Youtube: Zeitgeist Refuted

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Christian Worldview

Christian worldview refers to a collection of distinctively Christian philosophical and religious beliefs. The term is typically used in one of three ways:

1. A set of worldviews voiced by those identifying themselves as Christian;
2. Common elements of worldviews predominant among those identifying themselves as Christian;
3. The concept of a single "Christian worldview" on a range of issues.

There are some rather startling statistics, based upon the following definition of "worldview," including a firm belief in six specific religious views.


Must Hear Video: Brannon Howse Interviews Gerald Celente from "...We are being Robbed..."

Friday, October 22, 2010

Albrecht Dürer

Albrecht Dürer (German pronunciation: [ˈalbʀɛçt ˈdyʀɐ]) (21 May 1471 – 6 April 1528) was a German painter, printmaker and theorist from Nuremberg. His prints established his reputation across Europe when he was still in his twenties, and he has been conventionally regarded as the greatest artist of the Northern Renaissance ever since. His well-known works include the Apocalypse woodcuts, Knight, Death, and the Devil (1513), Saint Jerome in his Study (1514) and Melencolia I (1514), which has been the subject of extensive analysis and interpretation. His watercolours mark him as one of the first European landscape artists, while his ambitious woodcuts revolutionized the potential of that medium. Dürer's introduction of classical motifs into Northern art, through his knowledge of Italian artists and German humanists, have secured his reputation as one of the most important figures of the Northern Renaissance. This is reinforced by his theoretical treatise which involve principles of mathematics, perspective and ideal proportions.

Dürer was born on 21 May 1471, third child and second son of his parents, who had between fourteen and eighteen children. His father was a successful goldsmith, originally named Ajtósi, who in 1455 had moved to Nuremberg from Ajtós, near Gyula in Hungary. The German name "Dürer" is derived from the Hungarian, "Ajtósi". Initially, it was "Thürer," meaning doormaker, which is "ajtós" in Hungarian (from "ajtó", meaning door). A door is featured in the coat-of-arms the family acquired. Albrecht Dürer the Elder married Barbara Holper, the daughter of his master, when he himself became a master in 1467.

Dürer's godfather was Anton Koberger, who left goldsmithing to become a printer and publisher in the year of Dürer's birth. He quickly became the most successful publisher in Germany, eventually owning twenty-four printing-presses and having many offices in Germany and abroad. His most famous publication was the Nuremberg Chronicle, published in 1493 in German and Latin editions. It contained an unprecedented 1,809 woodcut illustrations (with many repeated uses of the same block) by the Wolgemut workshop. Dürer may well have worked on some of these, as the work on the project began while he was with Wolgemut.


Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Names of God

God is the term for the Supreme Being believed by the majority to be the creator, ruler and/or the sum total of, existence. Conceptions of God can vary widely, despite the common use of the same term for them all.

The God of monotheism, or the supreme deity in the pantheist, panentheist and henotheistic religions, is not always thought of by believers in the same terms as are deities in many other religions — as a powerful, human-like, supernatural being — but rather, becomes esoteric, the deification of a philosophical category — the Ultimate, the Absolute Infinite, the Transcendent, the One, the All, Existence or Being itself, the ground of being, the monistic substrate, etc.

Theologians and philosophers have studied countless conceptions of God since the dawn of civilization. The question of the existence of God classically falls under the branch of philosophy known as metaphysics, but is also one of the key discussions taking place within the field of the philosophy of religion.

The development of English orthography was dominated by Christian texts. Capitalized "God" was first used to refer to the Judeo-Christian concept, and may now signify any monotheistic conception of God, including the translations of the Arabic Allāh and the African Masai Engai.

  • Adonay YHWH as "Lord God"
  • YHWH Elohim as "Lord God"
  • κυριος ο θεος as "Lord God" (in the New Testament)
The use of capitalization, as for a proper noun, has persisted to disambiguate the concept of a singular God from pagan deities for which lower case god has continued to be applied, mirroring the use of Latin deus.

includes "El Shaddai" by Amy Grant

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Belshazzar (1. בלשאצר or 2. בלשאצר Belsha'tstsar Aramaic, or Baltasar; Akkadian Bel-sarra-usur, "Bel protect the king," king of Babylon at the time of its fall; he to whom Daniel interpreted the writing on the wall) was a prince of Babylon, the son of Nabonidus (see below), the last king of Babylon, not to be confused with Daniel's Babylonian name "Belteshazzar." In the Book of Daniel (chapters 5 and 8) of the Jewish Tanakh or Christian Old Testament, Belshazzar is the King of Babylon before the advent of the Medes and Persians.

Belshazzar was the son of Nabonidus, who after ruling only three years, went to the oasis of Tayma and devoted himself to the worship of the moon god, Sin. He made Belshazzar co-regent in 553 B.C, leaving him in charge of Babylon's defense.

In the year 540 B.C. Nabonidus returned from Tayma, hoping to defend his kingdom from the Persians who were planning to advance on Babylon. In 539 B.C. Belshazzar was positioned in the city of Babylon to hold the capital, while Nabonidus, marched his troops north to meet Cyrus. On October 10, 539 B.C. Nabonidus surrendered and fled from Cyrus. Two days later, October 12, 539 B.C., the Persian armies overthrew the city of Babylon.

Includes Handel: Belshazzar Zerstörnder Krieg (Destructive war)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Paul of Tarsus

Paul of Tarsus, also known as Paul, Paulus, and Saint Paul the Apostle, (AD 3-67) is widely considered to be central to the early development and spread of Christianity, particularly westward from Judea. Many Christians view him as an important interpreter of the teachings of Jesus. Paul is described in the New Testament as a Hellenized Jew and Roman citizen from Tarsus (present-day Turkey), and as a persistent persecutor of early Christians, almost all of whom were Jewish, prior to his "Road to Damascus" experience, which brought about his conversion to faith in Jesus as Messiah, not only for Jews, but for all, regardless of ethnic background.

Paul made the first great effort, through his Epistles to Gentile Christian communities, to show that the God of Abraham is for all people, rather than for Jews only, though he did not originate the idea, for example see Isaiah 56:6-8 or proselyte or Great Commission, or Simon Peter's vision of the sheet descending from Heaven in Acts 10:9-23a.

Paul is venerated as a Saint by all the churches that honor saints, including those of the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and Anglican traditions, and some Lutheran sects.


Includes Youtube video  Paul the Apostle

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Mount Sinai

11 and be ready for the third day. For on the third day the LORD will come down on Mount Sinai in the sight of all the people. –Exodus 19:11 ESV

Mount Sinai (Hebrew: סיני Ciynay, "thorny") has an Etymology of uncertain derivation , also known as "Gebel Musa" or "Jabal Musa" by the Bedouins, is the name of a mountain in the Sinai Peninsula, or rather a mountainous region in the Arabian peninsula between the two gulfs of the of the Red Sea (the Heroöpolitan and the Ælanite). It is 2,629 m meters high. The mountain known as Sinia is near a protruding lower bluff known as the Ras Sasafeh (Sufsafeh), and rises almost perpendicularly from the plain, the tallest peak on the Sinai peninsula.

The Biblical Mount Sinai is an ambiguously located mountain at which the Hebrew bible states that the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God. In certain biblical passages these events are described as having transpired at Mount Horeb, but though there is a small body of opinion that Sinai and Horeb were different locations, they are generally considered to have been different names for the same place.


Monday, October 11, 2010

William Whiston

William Whiston (December 9, 1667 - August 22, 1752), English divine and mathematician, was born at Norton in Leicestershire, of which village his father was rector. He is probably best known for his translation of the Antiquities of the Jews by Flavius Josephus, his A New Theory of the Earth, and his Arianism.

He was educated privately, partly on account of the delicacy of his health, and partly that he might act as amanuensis (One employed to take dictation, or copy manuscripts; A clerk, secretary or stenographer, or scribe) to his father, who had lost his sight. After his father's death, he entered at Clare College, Cambridge, where he applied himself to mathematical study, and obtained a fellowship in 1693[1]. He next became chaplain to John Moore (1646-1714), the learned bishop of Ely, from whom he received the living of Lowestoft in 1698.

His A New Theory of the Earth (1696), an articulation of Creationism and flood geology which held that the global flood of Noah had been caused by a comet, obtained the praise of both Sir Isaac Newton and John Locke, the latter of whom classed the author among those who, if not adding much to our knowledge, "At least bring some new things to our thoughts." In 1701 he resigned his living to become deputy at Cambridge to Newton, whom two years later he succeeded as Lucasian professor of mathematics[2]. Here he engaged in joint research with his junior colleague Roger Cotes, appointed with Whiston's patronage to the Plumian chair of Astronomy in 1706.


includes Youtube: Creflo Dollar on "Importance Of Character"

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Queen of Sheba

The Queen of Sheba (Hebrew שְׁבָא Shĕba', nm. "seven" or "an oath"), referred to in the Bible books of 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles, the New Testament, the Qur'an, and Ethiopian history, was the ruler of Sheba, an ancient kingdom which modern archaeology speculates was located in present-day Ethiopia or Yemen.

1 When the queen of Sheba heard of Solomon's fame, she came to Jerusalem to test him with hard questions. Arriving with a very great caravan—with camels carrying spices, large quantities of gold, and precious stones—she came to Solomon and talked with him about all she had on her mind. 2 Solomon answered all her questions; nothing was too hard for him to explain to her. 3 When the queen of Sheba saw the wisdom of Solomon, as well as the palace he had built. –2 Chronicles 9:1-3

Unnamed in the biblical text, she is called Makeda (possibly meaning "not this way/not thus") in the Ethiopian tradition, and in Islamic tradition her name is Bilqis. Alternative names given for her have been Nikaule or Nicaula.

According to the Hebrew Bible, the (unnamed) queen of the land of Sheba heard of the great wisdom of King Solomon of Israel and journeyed there with gifts of spices, gold and precious stones, as recorded in First Kings 10:1-13 (largely copied in 2 Chronicles 9:1-12). The queen was awed by Solomon's wisdom and wealth, and pronounced a blessing on Solomon's God. Solomon reciprocated with gifts and "everything she desired," whereupon the queen returned to her country. The queen was apparently quite rich herself, as she brought 4.5 tons of gold (more than 4,000 kilograms) with her to give to Solomon (1 Kings 10:10).


Saturday, October 09, 2010


In religion, folklore, and mythology a demon or demoness is a supernatural being that has generally been described as a malevolent spirit, daemon (Greek: daimonion) and djinn (Genie (Arabic: جني jinnī; variant spelling djinni) or jinn is a supernatural creature in Arab folklore and Islamic teachings which occupies a parallel world to that of mankind). A demon is frequently depicted as a force that may be conjured and insecurely controlled. The "good" demon in recent use is largely a literary device (eg: Maxwell's demon). In common language, "demonizing" one's opponent is an aspersion.

The Greek conception of a daemon (δαίμων) appears in the works of Plato and many other ancient authors, but without the evil connotations which are apparent in the Septuagint translation of the Hebrew Bible and in the Greek originals of the New Testament. The medieval and neo-medieval conception of a "demon" in Western civilization derives seamlessly from the ambient popular culture of Late (Roman) Antiquity: Greco-Roman concepts of daemons that passed into Christian culture are discussed in the entry daemon. The Hellenistic (see Hellenistic civilization) "Demon" eventually came to include many Semitic and Near Eastern gods as evaluated by Christianity.

The Greek δαιμονίζομαι daimonizomai (Mat. 8:28, Mat. 8:33, Mat. 9:32, Mar. 5:15, Luke 8:36, etc.) means, "to be under the power of a demon." The Greek word δαιμόνιον daimonion means, "evil spirits or the messengers and ministers of the devil"

According to a Jewish opinion which passed over to Christians, the demons are the gods of the gentiles and the authors of idolatry, hence:
17 They sacrificed to demons that were no gods, to gods they had never known, to new gods that had come recently, whom your fathers had never dreaded. –Deut. 32:17


Friday, October 08, 2010

Seven churches of Asia

The seven churches of Asia (properly Asia Minor) are seven major churches of the early Christianity, as mentioned in the New Testament Book of Revelation. All sites are in modern-day Turkey. In Revelation, Jesus Christ instructs John the Apostle to:
"Write in a book what you see and send it to the seven churches, to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamum, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea." (Revelation 1:11)

19 "Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later.

20 The mystery of the seven stars that you saw in my right hand and of the seven golden lampstands is this: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands are the seven churches. (Revelation 1:19-20)
It should be understood that "churches," in this context, refers to the community of Christians living in each city, and not merely to the building or buildings in which they gathered for worship. This letter should also apply to the community of Christians today (the Christian Church, the Body of Christ).


Thursday, October 07, 2010


Aaron (אַהֲרֹן, a word meaning "bearer of martyrs" in Hebrew (perhaps also, or instead, related to the Egyptian "Aha Rw," "Warrior Lion"), was one of two brothers who play a unique part in the history of the Hebrew people. He was the elder son (and second child) of Amram and Jochebed of the tribe of Levi; Moses, the other son, being three years younger, and Miriam, their sister, several years older. Aaron was the great-grandson of Levi and represented the priestly functions of his tribe, becoming the first High Priest. While Moses was receiving his education at the Egyptian court and during his exile among the Midianites, Aaron and his sister remained with their kinsmen in the eastern border-land of Egypt.

Here he gained a name for eloquent and persuasive speech; so that when the time came for the demand upon Pharaoh to release Israel from captivity, Aaron became his brother’s Nabi, (in this case "spokesman" sometimes also referred to as a prophet), to his own people and, after their unwillingness to hear, to Pharaoh himself.

Moses' brother and born into the Tribe of Levi, first mentioned in the bible in Exodus 4:14. Spoke on behalf of Moses in front of Pharaoh when trying to persuade him to let the Israelites go free from Egypt. Became the first of the Levite priests and the first high priest of Israel. He died while Israel was still on the exodus (deuteronomy 10:4).


includes Arnold Schoenberg: "Moses Und Aron" Music from Act Two. Scene Three: The Golden Calf and the Altar

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Secular humanism

Secular humanism is a humanist philosophy that upholds reason, ethics, and justice and specifically rejects rituals and ceremonies as a means to affirm a life stance. The term was coined in the 20th century to make a clear distinction from "religious humanism". A perhaps less confrontational synonym is scientific humanism, which the biologist Edward O. Wilson claimed to be "the only worldview compatible with science's growing knowledge of the real world and the laws of nature.

When humanists use the phrase secular humanism it is typically to emphasize differences relative to religion or religious humanism. There are a number of ways in which secular and religious humanism can differ:
  • Religious humanists may value rituals and ceremonies as means of affirming their life stance. Secular humanists are typically not interested in using rituals and ceremonies.
  • Some religious humanists may seek profound "religious" experiences, such as those that others would associate with the presence of God, despite interpreting these experiences differently. Secular humanists would generally not pursue such experiences.
  • Some varieties of nontheistic religious humanism may conceive of the word divine as more than metaphoric even in the absence of a belief in a traditional God; they may believe in ideals that transcend physical reality; or they may conceive of some experiences as "numinous" or uniquely religious. Secular humanism regards all such terms as, at best, metaphors for truths rooted in the material world.
  • Some varieties of religious humanism, such as Christian humanism include belief in God, traditionally defined. Secular humanism is skeptical about God and the supernatural and believes that these are not useful concepts for addressing human problems.
While some humanists embrace calling themselves secular humanists, others prefer the term Humanist, capitalized and without any qualifying adjective. The terms secular humanism and Humanism overlap, but have different connotations. The term secular humanism emphasizes a non-religious focus, whereas the term Humanism de-emphasizes this and may even encompass some non-theistic varieties of religious humanism. The term Humanism also emphasizes considering one's humanism to be a life stance. Secular humanism advocates secularism but is a broader concept. Secularism has a number of usages but generally emphasize limits on the role of religious or supernatural considerations in the affairs of society or government. Secular humanism adds to these positions a comprehensive perspective on life, including affirmation of human dignity and the importance of ethics.

 ...includes Julie Andrews singing "something good" and "your crowning glory"

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egypt was a civilization located along the Lower Nile, reaching from the Nile Delta in the north to as far south as Jebel Barkal at the time of its greatest extension (15th century BC). It lasted for three millennia, from circa 3200 BC to 343 BC, ending when Artaxerxes III conquered Egypt. As a civilization based on irrigation it is the quintessential example of an "hydraulic empire."

Egypt was a transcontinental nation located mostly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula lying in Asia.

There are several words used in the bible that refer to Egypt, 2 are Hebrew/Aramaic and 2 are Greek.

Hebrew/Aramaic (Old Testament)
Strongs # Hebrew Transliteration Pronunciation English
H4714 מִצְרַיִם dual for מָצוֹר Mitsrayim mits·rah'·yim Egypt, Egyptian, Mizraim, Egyptians
H4713 מִצְרִי Mitsriy mits·rē' Egyptian, Egyptian, Egypt, Egyptian women

Greek (New Testament)
Strongs # Greek Transliteration Pronunciation English
G125 Αἴγυπτος Aigyptos ī'-güp-tos Egypt
G124 Αἰγύπτιος Aigyptios ī-gü'p-tē-os Egyptian, Egyptians


Sunday, October 03, 2010

Pontius Pilate

Pontius Pilate (Latin: Pontius Pilatus') was the governor of the Roman Iudaea Province from 26 until 36. In modern times he is best known as the man who, according to the canonical Christian Gospels, presided over the trial of Jesus and ordered his crucifixion, instigating the Passion.

Pilate's biographical details before and after his appointment to Iudaea are unknown, but have been supplied by tradition, which include the detail that his wife's name was Procula (she is canonized as a saint in Orthodox Christianity) and competing legends of his birthplace.

1 Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. 2 And Jesus said to them, "Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans because they suffered this fate? 3 "I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. 4 "Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem? 5 "I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish." Luke 13:1-5 (NASB)

The famous Pilate Inscription found at Caesarea Palaestina refers to Pilate as prefect, while Tacitus speaks of him as procurator of the province. The explanation of the differences in title is fairly straightforward.

In the first historical period in which the setting of the New Testament became the Roman Iudaea Province (a compound of Samaria, Judea and Idumea), from 6 to the outbreak of the Great Jewish Revolt in 66, officials of the equestrian order (the lower rank of governors) governed. They held the Roman title of prefect until Herod Agrippa I was named King of the Jews by Claudius.


Saturday, October 02, 2010


Goliath גלית Golyath "exile, an exile") the Philistine giant who is famous for his battle in the 11th century BC where he was killed in single combat by David, using one of five smooth stones taken from from the brook, the young Israelite boy who would later be chosen by God and anointed by Samuel to become King of Israel following Saul, Israel's first King. Goliath was from Gath, one of five ancient city states in Philistia.

3 The Philistines stood on the mountain on one side while Israel stood on the mountain on the other side, with the valley between them. 4 Then a champion came out from the armies of the Philistines named Goliath, from Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. 5 He had a bronze helmet on his head, and he was clothed with scale-armor which weighed five thousand shekels of bronze. 6 He also had bronze greaves on his legs and a bronze javelin slung between his shoulders. 7 The shaft of his spear was like a weaver's beam, and the head of his spear weighed six hundred shekels of iron; his shield-carrier also walked before him. 8 He stood and shouted to the ranks of Israel and said to them, "Why do you come out to draw up in battle array? Am I not the Philistine and you servants of Saul? Choose a man for yourselves and let him come down to me. 9 "If he is able to fight with me and kill me, then we will become your servants; but if I prevail against him and kill him, then you shall become our servants and serve us." 10 Again the Philistine said, "I defy the ranks of Israel this day; give me a man that we may fight together."11 When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed and greatly afraid. 1 Samuel 17:3-11 NASB

According to the First Book of Samuel in the Hebrew Bible, the Philistine army marched into southern Israel to make war on the Israelites, but instead of immediately engaging in battle, went into camp in the Valley of Elah. The Israelites under King Saul made camp nearby. Goliath, who is described as a "champion" in the Biblical text, positioned himself between the two armies and challenged the Israelites to send out a warrior to challenge him. If that man won, the Philistines would become the subjects of Saul's army. If Goliath won, the converse would occur. For forty days, in both the morning and evening, Goliath issued his challenge. However, no man came forward to accept it.


cosmological argument

The cosmological argument is a metaphysical argument for the existence of God, or a first mover of the cosmos. It is traditionally known as an "argument from universal causation," an "argument from first cause," and also as an "uncaused cause" argument and sometimes referred to as the Kalam cosmological argument. Whichever term is used, there are three basic variants of this argument, each with subtle but important distinctions: the argument from causation in esse, the argument from causation in fieri, and the argument from contingency. The cosmological argument does not attempt to prove anything about the first cause or about God, except to argue that such a cause must exist. This cause is known in Latin as "causa sui."

Origins of the argument
Plato and Aristotle both posited first cause arguments, though each had certain notable caveats. Plato (c. 427–c. 347 BCE) posited a basic cosmological argument in The Laws (Book X).


Plus: "Irrational Youtube Users on the Cosmological Argument"



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