Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Achaemenid Empire

(Old Persian: Hakhāmanishiya) (ca. 550-330 BCE) was a dynasty in the ancient Persian Empire with eminent cultural and economical achievements during its highest power [After Achaemenes, legendary ancestor of Cyrus II the Great, founder of the dynasty.] At the height of their power, around 500 BC, the Achaemenid rulers of Persia ruled over territories roughly encompassing today's Iran , Iraq , Armenia, Afghanistan , Turkey , Bulgaria, eastern parts of Greece , Egypt , Syria , much of what is now Pakistan, Jordan , Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Caucasia, Central Asia, Libya , and northern parts of Arabia . The empire ruled by Persia eventually became the largest empire of the ancient world.

The Proclamation of Cyrus

22 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing:

23 "Thus says Cyrus king of Persia, 'The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Whoever is among you of all his people, may the LORD his God be with him. Let him go up.'"
–2 Chronicles 36:21-23 ESV
1 In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing:

2 "Thus says Cyrus king of Persia: The LORD, the God of heaven, has given me all the kingdoms of the earth, and he has charged me to build him a house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. 3Whoever is among you of all his people, may his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and rebuild the house of the LORD, the God of Israel— he is the God who is in Jerusalem.
–Ezra 1:1-3
The Persians from whom Cyrus hailed were originally nomadic, pastoral people in the western Iranian plateau and by 850 BCE were calling themselves the Parsa and their constantly shifting territory Parsua for the most part localized around Persis (Pars). As Persians gained power, they developed the infrastructure to support their growing influence including creation of a capital named Pasargadae, and an opulent city named Persepolis.

Begun during the rule of Darius the Great (Darius I), and completed some 100 years later, Persepolis was a symbol of the empire serving both as a ceremonial centre and a center for government. It had a special set of gradually progressive stairways named "All Countries" around which carved relief decoration would depict, scenes of heroism, symbolic depiction of the act of hunting, natural themes, and presentation of the gifts to the Achaemenid kings by their subjects during the spring festival, Nowruz. The core structure was composed of multitude of square rooms or halls, the biggest of which was called Apadana. Tall, erect, decorated columns would often welcome visitors as well as impress them as to the size of the structure. Later on, Darius the Great (Darius I), would also utilize Susa and Ecbatana as his governmental centres, developing them into a similar metropolis status.


Sunday, September 25, 2011


Angels of the highest order.

A Seraph (Hebrew שָׂרָף saraph "majestic beings with 6 wings, human hands or voices in attendance upon God, serpent, fiery serpent, poisonous serpent," from שָׂרַף saraph "to burn," plural שׂרפים Seraphim) is one of a class of celestial beings mentioned once in the Old Testament (Tanakh), in Isaiah.

Later Jewish imagery perceived them as having human form, and in that way they passed into the ranks of Angels.

In the Christian Angelic hierarchy, Seraphim represent the highest known rank of Angels.

Seraphim, literally "burning ones", is the plural of "seraph", more properly sarap. The word sarap/seraphim appears three times in the Torah (Numbers 21:6-8; Deuteronomy 8:15) and four times in the Book of Isaiah (6:2-6, 14:29, 30:6). In Numbers and Deuteronomy the "seraphim" are serpents – the association of serpents as "burning ones" is possibly due to the burning sensation of the poison.  Isaiah also uses the word in close association with words to describes snakes (נחש nachash , the generic word for snakes, in 14:29, and אפעה 'eph`eh, viper, in 30:6).

Isaiah's vision of seraphim in the First Temple in Jerusalem is the sole instance in the Hebrew Bible of the word being used to describe celestial beings: there the winged "seraphim" attend God and have human attributes:
1 In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one called to another and said:
"Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!""
(Isaiah 6:1–3 ESV)

In Isaiah's vision the seraphim cry continually to each other, "Holy, holy, holy, is YHWH of hosts: the whole earth is full of His glory" (verses 2-3) before carrying out an act of purification for the prophet (verses 6-7). It is possible that these are winged snake-beings, but given that the word "seraphim" is not attached as an adjective or modifier to other snake-words ("nahash," etc.), as is the case in every other occurrence of the word, it is more probable that they are variants of the "fiery" lesser deities making up God's divine court.


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Tribes Of Israel

Israel had 12 sons, as follows: Reuben, (ראובן Rĕ'uwben, Jacob's firstborn); Simeon, (שמעון Shim`own); Levi, (לוי Leviy); Judah, (יהודה Yĕhuwdah); Dan, (דן Dan); Naphtali, (נפתלי Naphtaliy); Gad, גד( Gad); Asher, (אשר 'Asher); Issachar, (יששכר Yissaskar); Zebulun, (זבולון Zĕbuwluwn); Joseph, (יוסף Yowceph); –Manasseh, (מנשה Mĕnashsheh); Ephraim, (אפרים 'Ephrayim);– and Benjamin (בנימין Binyamiyn). (Jacob was renamed Israel Gen. 32:27-29)

Yĕhowshuwa` (יְהוֹשׁוּעַ)
Lion Of Judah
(King of Kings)
The Tribe of Levi was set apart from the others in the sense that, the members of the Tribe of Levi were to be in charge of the tabernacle of the Testimony.
The Tribe of Joseph is not usually listed with the Hebrew tribes although Joseph is one of Jacobs twelve sons, the eldest of Rachel. It is sometimes referred to as the House of Joseph. Rather, the two tribes founded by his sons Ephraim and Manasseh are listed separately.



 (Hebrew: לִוְיָתָן, "Twisted; coiled, cetacean, whale, sea monster, dragon, large aquatic animal") was a Biblical sea monster or serpent of a larger kind (Job 3:8) the root of which is the word Pilel (Isaiah 27:1) where it is the symbol of the hostile kingdom of Babylon . It also refers to any very large aquatic creature (Psalm 104:26), used for a fierce enemy (Psalm 74:14. Compare (Hebrew: תנין tanniyn "dragon, serpent, sea monster") Isaiah 51:9; Ezek 29:3; Ezek 32:2-3). The word leviathan has become synonymous with any large sea monster or creature. In the novel Moby-Dick it (Job) refers to great whales, and in Modern Hebrew, it means simply "whale".

The word "Leviathan" appears five places in the Bible, and the Book of Job 41 is dedicated in describing Leviathan in detail.:
  • Book of Job 3:8 "8 Let those curse it who curse the day, who are ready to rouse up Leviathan."; ESV
  • Book of Job 41:1-34: "1 "Can you draw out Leviathan with a fishhook or press down his tongue with a cord?" 34 He sees everything that is high; he is king over all the sons of pride." ESV (quoted verses 1 and 34 only)
  • Psalms 74:14: "14 You crushed the heads of Leviathan; you gave him as food for the creatures of the wilderness." ESV
  • Psalms 104:24-25: "O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping innumerable, both small and great beasts." KJV;
  • Isaiah 27:1: " 1 In that day the LORD with his hard and great and strong sword will punish Leviathan the fleeing serpent, Leviathan the twisting serpent, and he will slay the dragon that is in the sea." ESV

The king over the children of pride is a reference to Satan (the Accuser). Just as he is referred to in the New Testament as a red dragon in Revelation 12 having seven heads, so in Psalm 74:14: "Thou didst crush the heads of the Leviathan"


Friday, September 23, 2011

Lucis Trust

The Lucis Trust (originally known as Lucifer Publishing) is a non-profit organization incorporated in New York State, created in 1920 by Alice Bailey and her husband Foster, to manage the business of publishing Mrs. Bailey's twenty-five esoteric books. Its headquarters are in: 1) New York City (at the 24th floor of 120 Wall Street), 2) London (Lucis Press Ltd.) and 3) Geneva (Lucis Trust Association).

12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! (Isaiah 14:12 ESV)

(Hebrew: הֵילֵל heylel "light-bearer" shining one, morning star, Lucifer, of the king of Babylon and Satan) from Hebrew: הָלַל halal to shine, to flash forth light, to praise, boast, be boastful, boastful ones, boasters

In addition to continuing to publish her books worldwide, Lucis Trust's activities also include a correspondence school based on her teachings (known as the Arcane School), a lending library of esoteric books known as Lucis Trust Libraries, a publishing house called Lucis Publishing Companies, Lucis Productions, World Goodwill and Triangles.

Today it has around 6,000 members, and an estimated annual revenue of $600,000.

The World Goodwill group, founded in 1932, is particularly important among Lucis Trust's activities, as it has been recognized by the United Nations as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), and is represented at regular briefing sessions at the United Nations in New York and Geneva. Lucis Trust is therefore a member of the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

In part because of this presence of Lucis Trust in the United Nations System, along with explicit reference by former Assistant Secretary General Robert Muller in his writings to Bailey's philosophy, some have accused the UN of having a New Age ideology and agenda. One such example is the World Invocation Day, where many could be mislead. The deceiver is very clever, so be aware of the entirely Satanic underpinnings of this. It is NOT of God, yet many will be lead astray by this false teaching (Matt. 24:11, Jer. 2:2).


  • Lucis Trust & The United Nations
  • Lucis Trust Website talks about Lucifer
  • Zeitgest - Lie of Lucifer (Lucis) Trust

Monday, September 19, 2011

Intelligent design

Intelligent design (ID) is the concept that "certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as natural selection." Its leading proponents, all of whom are affiliated with the Discovery Institute, say that intelligent design is a scientific theory that stands on equal footing with, or is superior to, current scientific theories regarding the origin of life.

More and more of the scientific community are beginning to view intelligent design as a valid scientific theory.

The Evidence in Cosmology
The Kalam cosmological argument is espousing a more powerful and compelling impetus. William Lane Craig desribes it as such:

  • Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
  • The universe had a beginning. Virtually all cosmologists agree that the universe had a beginning.
  • Therefore, the universe has a cause. Astronomer Robert Jastrow says,
"The chain of events leading to man commenced suddenly and sharply, at a definite moment in time, in a flash of light and energy."

The Evidence in Physics
The "Anthropic principle" lead Patrick Glynn to abandon atheism. He says, "Today the concrete data point strongly in the direction of the God hypothosis. It is the simplist and most obvious solution to the anthropic puzzle."

The evidence in Astronomy
"If the universe had not been made with the most exacting precision we could never have come into existance. It is my view that these circumstances indicate the universe was created for man to live in." -John A. O'Keefe of NASA

The evidence in Biochemistry
Michael Behe has demostrated that Darwin's theory has broken down, through his description of "irreducibly complex" machines. An irreducibly complex system cannot be produced directly (that is, by continuously improving the initial function, which continues to work by the same mechanism) by slight, successive modifications of a precursor system, because any precursor to an irreducibly complex system that is missing a part is by definition nonfunctional.

The evidence in Biological Information
Stephen C. Meyer (Cambridge) has demonstrated that no hypothosis explains how information got into biological matter through naturalistic means.

The evidence in Consciousness
"You can't get something from nothing. If the universe began with dead matter having no consciousness, how, then, do you get something totally different--consciousness, living, thinking, feeling, believing, creatures--from materials that don't have that?" -J. P. Moreland


Sunday, September 18, 2011

Leo Tolstoy

Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy (Lyof, Lyoff) (September 9 [O.S. August 28] 1828 – November 20 [O.S. November 7] 1910) (Russian: Лев Никола́евич Толсто́й) commonly referred to in English as Leo Tolstoy, was a Russian writer – novelist, essayist, dramatist and philosopher – as well as pacifist Christian anarchist and educational reformer. He is perhaps the most influential member of the aristocratic Tolstoy family.

As a fiction writer Tolstoy is widely regarded as one of the greatest of all novelists, particularly noted for his masterpieces War and Peace and Anna Karenina. In their scope, breadth and realistic depiction of 19th-century Russian life, the two books stand at the peak of realist fiction. As a moral philosopher Tolstoy was notable for his ideas on nonviolent resistance through works such as The Kingdom of God is Within You, which in turn influenced such twentieth-century figures as Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.

Leo was born on his father's estate of Yasnaya Polyana, in the Tula guberniya of Central Russia. The Tolstoys are a well-known family of old Russian nobility, the writer's mother was born a Princess Volkonsky, while his grandmothers came from the Troubetzkoy and Gorchakov princely families. Tolstoy was connected to the grandest families of Russian aristocracy; Alexander Pushkin was his fourth cousin. His birth as a member of the highest Russian nobility marks off Tolstoy very distinctly from the other writers of his generation. He always remained a class-conscious nobleman who cherished his impeccable French pronunciation and kept aloof from the intelligentsia.


Leo Tolstoy "The Last Years"

Saturday, September 17, 2011

1949 Armistice Agreements

The 1949 Armistice Agreements are a set of agreements signed during 1949 between Israel and neighboring Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, and Syria. The agreements ended the official hostilities of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, and established armistice lines between Israel and the Jordanian-held West Bank, also known as the Green Line. The United Nations established supervising and reporting agencies to monitor the established armistice lines. In addition, discussions related to the armistice enforcement, led to the signing of the separate Tripartite Declaration of 1950 between the United States, Britain and France. In it, they pledged to take action within and outside the United Nations to prevent violations of the frontiers or armistice lines. It also outlined their commitment to peace and stability in the area, their opposition to the use or threat of force, and reiterated their opposition to the development of an arms race. These lines held until the 1967 Six-Day War.

Why Israel can't withdraw to its pre '67 borders line...


Saturday, September 10, 2011

Aramaic of Jesus

Most scholars believe that Jesus spoke Aramaic with some Hebrew, and possibly Greek. Generally, scholars believe that the towns of Nazareth and Capernaum where Jesus lived were Aramaic-speaking communities, that he was knowledgeable enough in Hebrew to discuss the Hebrew Bible, and that he might have known some Greek through commerce as a carpenter in nearby Sepphoris. Accordingly, Jesus is believed to have addressed primarily Aramaic-speaking audiences. The following verses are evidence of the Aramaic language being a commonly used language of the Jews: John 5:2; 19:20; Acts 21:40; 22:2; 26:14; Revelation 9:11.

This article explores Aramaic reconstructions of phrases in the New Testament as attributed to Jesus (Hebrew-Aramaic: Eashoa' "the Life-Giver" Msheekha "the Anointed One") – Eashoa' Msheekha: The Anointed Life-Giver The Hebrew יְהוֹשׁוּעַ Yĕhowshuwa` (Joshua or Jehoshua = "Jehovah is salvation" or "YHVH is salvation"), and New Testament figures.

It is generally accepted that Jesus was born a Jew, and grew up in a Jewish family in Roman-controlled Palestine. For over a half-millennium, the colloquial language for Palestinian Jews was Aramaic, stemming from the Babylonian exile and invading Assyrian empire. Golgotha, the place where Jesus was crucified, is Aramaic (Matthew 27:33; Mark 15:22; John 19:17) For some Jews Hebrew remained a colloquial language, until the end of the 3rd century AD.

Nearly all of the Jewish scriptures were written in Hebrew, making it likely that a Jew who knew the Jewish scriptures also knew at least some Hebrew (especially as Hebrew and Aramaic are fairly kindred).

There were also the Targums, Aramaic translations of the Hebrew Bible, in Galilee or Judea in the days of Jesus during the Early Roman Period. The use of Targums in the synagogue did not become customary until the 3rd century, after the use of spoken Hebrew declined in the aftermath of the catastrophic Bar Kochba Revolt.


Thursday, September 08, 2011

Egyptian hieroglyphs

Sometimes called hieroglyphics, hieroglyphs were a writing system used by the Ancient Egyptians that contained a combination of logographic and alphabetic elements. Cartouches were also used by the Egyptians. The variety of brush-painted hieroglyphs used on papyrus and (sometimes) on wood for religious literature is known as cursive hieroglyphs; this should not be confused with hieratic.

The word hieroglyph comes from the Greek ἱερογλυφικός(hieroglyphikos); a compound of ἱερός (hierós 'sacred'), ἱερoγλυφος (hieroglyphos 'one who writes hieroglyphs', from ἱερός (hierós 'sacred') and γλύφειν (glýphein 'to carve' or 'to write'). Hieroglyphs themselves, were called τὰ ἱερογλυφικά (γράμματα) (tà hieroglyphiká (grámmata), 'engraved characters') on monuments (such as stelae, temples and tombs). The word hieroglyph has come to be used for the individual hieroglyphic characters themselves. While "hieroglyphics" is commonly used, it is discouraged by Egyptologists.

Hieroglyphs emerged from the preliterate artistic traditions of Egypt. For example, symbols on Gerzean pottery from circa 4000 BC resemble hieroglyphic writing. For many years the earliest known hieroglyphic inscription was the Narmer Palette, found during excavations at Hierakonpolis (modern Kawm al-Ahmar) in the 1890s, which has been dated to circa 3200 BC. However, in 1998 a German archaeological team under Günter Dreyer excavating at Abydos (modern Umm el-Qa'ab) uncovered tomb U-j of a Predynastic ruler, and recovered three hundred clay labels inscribed with proto-hieroglyphs, dating to the Naqada IIIA period of the 33rd century BCE. The first full sentence written in hieroglyphs so far discovered was found on a seal impression found in the tomb of Seth-Peribsen at Umm el-Qa'ab, which dates from the Second Dynasty. In the era of the Old Kingdom, the Middle Kingdom and the New Kingdom, about 800 hieroglyphs existed. By the Greco-Roman period, they numbered more than 5,000.


Ancient Israel Found In Egyptian Hieroglyphics

Tuesday, September 06, 2011


Stela of an ancient Arabian deity
Tunis, Bardo Museum
(Arabic: هبل‎) was a moon god worshipped in Arabia, notably at Mecca before the arrival of Islam.

Tracing the origins of ancient gods can be quite nebulous. If the name Hubal is related to an Aramaic word for spirit, as suggested by Philip K. Hitti, then Hubal may have come from the north of Arabia.
25 The carved images of their gods you shall burn with fire. You shall not covet the silver or the gold that is on them or take it for yourselves, lest you be ensnared by it, for it is an abomination to the LORD your God.  –Deut. 7:25

In Sumer, in southernmost Mesopotamia north of Arabia, the moon-god figures in the creation epic, the Enuma Elish. In a variant of it, Hubal is chief among the elder gods. According to Hitti, a tradition recorded by Muhammad's early biographer ibn Ishaq, which makes ˤAmr ibn-Luhayy the importer of an image of Hubal from Moab or Mesopotamia, may have a kernel of truth insofar as it retains a memory of such an Aramaic origin of the deity.
The period in which the population of Arabia was polytheistic in Islam, is called the “time of ignorance.” The ancient Arabian pantheon contained a great number of gods and goddesses, and worship of the heavenly bodies — the sun, moon, and evening star — was originally a major part of the religion. In Mecca, the moon god Hubal was venerated as the god of the city, as a tribal god, and as “lord of the house” (that is, the Kaaba(. Three female deities were also worshipped: al-Uzza (Venus, or the evening star), al-Lat (the moon goddess), and Manat (the goddess of fate). They were also called “daughters of Allah,” that is, the greatest god.


Monday, September 05, 2011


The act of someone intentionally causing the death of an infant is known as homicide of an infant, and homicide is the act of a human killing another human being. Murder, for example, is a type of homicide. It can also describe a person who has committed such an act, though this use is rare in modern English. Homicide is not always a punishable act under the criminal law, and is different than a murder from such formal legal point of view. For example, although abortion is a type of homicide it is not punishable because it is currently legal to kill unborn babies. Often it is the mother who commits the act, but criminology recognizes various forms of non-maternal child murder. In many past societies, certain forms of infanticide were considered permissible, whereas in most modern societies the practice is considered immoral and criminal. None the less, it still takes place — in the Western world usually because of the parent's mental illness or violent behavior, and in some poor countries as a form of population control, sometimes with tacit societal acceptance. Female infanticide is more common than the killing of male offspring due to sex-selective infanticide.

Infanticide throughout history and pre-history
The practice of infanticide has taken many forms. Child sacrifice to supernatural figures or forces, such as the one practiced in ancient Carthage, may be only the most notorious example in the ancient world. Regardless of the cause, throughout history infanticide has been common. Anthropologist Laila Williamson notes that "Infanticide has been practiced on every continent and by people on every level of cultural complexity, from hunter gatherers to high civilizations, including our own ancestors. Rather than being an exception, then, it has been the rule."

Carthage was described by its competitors as practicing child sacrifice. Plutarch (ca. 46–120 AD) mentions the practice, as do Tertullian, Orosius, Diodorus Siculus and Philo. However, Livy and Polybius do not. The Hebrew Bible also mentions what appears to be child sacrifice practiced at a place called the Topheth תפת  (or Tophet "place of fire, a place in the southeast end of the valley of the son of Hinnom south of Jerusalem.") by the Canaanites, related to the Carthaginians, although there is to date no evidence of human sacrifice among the Canaanites.
9 However, the priests of the high places did not come up to the altar of the LORD in Jerusalem, but they ate unleavened bread among their brothers. 10 And he defiled Topheth, which is in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, that no one might burn his son or his daughter as an offering to Molech. 11 And he removed the horses that the kings of Judah had dedicated to the sun, at the entrance to the house of the LORD, by the chamber of Nathan-melech the chamberlain, which was in the precincts. And he burned the chariots of the sun with fire. 2 Kings 23:9-11 ESV


Additional Information Related To Infanticide

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Epistle to the Romans

Often referred to as "Romans," The Epistle of St. Paul the Apostle to the Romans is one of the letters of the New Testament canon of the Christian Bible. It is one of the seven currently undisputed letters of Paul. It is even counted among the four letters accepted as authentic (known in German scholarship as Hauptbriefe) by Ferdinand Christian Baur and the Tübingen School of historical criticism of texts in the 19th century.

The book, according to Joseph Fitzmyer, "overwhelms the reader by the density and sublimity of the topic with which it deals, the gospel of the justification and salvation of Jew and Greek alike by the grace of God through faith in Jesus Christ, revealing the uprightness and love of God the father." N.T. Wright notes that Romans is "neither a systematic theology nor a summary of Paul's lifework, but it is by common consent his masterpiece.

Paul's Epistle to the Romans dwarfs most of his other writings, an Alpine peak towering over hills and villages. Not all onlookers have viewed it in the same light or from the same angle, and their snapshots and paintings of it are sometimes remarkably unalike. Not all climbers have taken the same route up its sheer sides, and there is frequent disagreement on the best approach. What nobody doubts is that we are here dealing with a work of massive substance, presenting a formidable intellectual challenge while offering a breathtaking theological and spiritual vision".

I. The doctrinal part of the epistles instructs us,

1. Concerning the way of salvation (1.) The foundation of it laid in justification, and that not by the Gentiles’ works of nature (ch. 1), nor by the Jews’ works of the law (ch. 2, 3), for both Jews and Gentiles were liable to the curse; but only by faith in Jesus Christ, ch. 3:21, etc.; ch. 4. (2.) The steps of this salvation are, [1.] Peace with God, ch. 5. [2.] Sanctification, ch. 6, 7. [3.] Glorification, ch. 8.
2. Concerning the persons saved, such as belong to the election of grace (ch. 9), Gentiles and Jews, ch. 10, 11. By this is appears that the subject he discourses of were such as were then the present truths, as the apostle speaks, 2 Peter 1:12. Two things the Jews then stumbled at-justification by faith without the works of the law, and the admission of the Gentiles into the church; and therefore both these he studied to clear and vindicate.

II. The practical part follows, wherein we find, 1. Several general exhortations proper for all Christians, ch. 12. 2. Directions for our behaviour, as members of civil society, ch. 13. 3. Rules for the conduct of Christians to one another, as members of the Christian church, ch. 14 and ch. 15:1-14.

III. As he draws towards a conclusion, he makes an apology for writing to them (ch. 15:14-16), gives them an account of himself and his own affairs (v. 17-21), promises them a visit (v. 22-29), begs their prayers (v. 30-32), sends particular salutations to many friends there (ch. 16:1-16), warns them against those who caused divisions (v. 17-20), adds the salutations of his friends with him (v. 21-23), and ends with a benediction to them and a doxology to God (v. 24-27).

Henry, Matthew. "Introduction to Romans."

→ Yale University: Paul’s Letter to the Romans


'elohiym Hebrew: (אֱלֹהִים m. "God" Dan 11:38;Hab 1:11) is a word that expresses concepts of divinity. It consists of the Hebrew word Eloah (Hebrew: אֱלוֹהַּ 'elowahh "God") with a plural suffix. Elohim is the third word in the Hebrew text of Genesis and occurs frequently throughout the Hebrew Bible. The most commonly accepted root of this source among Jewish scholars is that the word literally translates to "powers" meaning God is the One in control of these powers.
39 know therefore today, and lay it to your heart, that the LORD is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath; there is no other. Deut. 4:39 ESV

Bereshit bara Elohim et hashamayim ve'et ha'arets (Genesis 1:1, Jewish Transliterated text)

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1, English Text)


Thursday, September 01, 2011

The Twelve Apostles

In Koine Greek ἀπόστολος apostolos means  "a delegate, messenger, one sent forth with orders") and (Hebrew: שליח nm. "messenger, emissary, envoy, delegate, courier, runner, herald, legman, mercury, minister") as specifically applied to the twelve apostles of Christ, in a broader sense applied to other eminent "Christian teachers," were men that according to the Synoptic Gospels and Christian tradition were chosen from among the disciples of Jesus for a mission.

According to the Bauer Lexicon, Judaism had an office known as apostle. The Jewish Encyclopedia refers the Apostle as a person delegated for a certain purpose, such as those men sent by the rulers of Jerusalem to collect the half-shekel tax for the Temple.

The Gospel of Mark states that Jesus initially sent out these twelve in pairs (Mark 6:7-13, cf. Matthew 10:5-42, Luke 9:1-6), to towns in Galilee.

Literal readings of the text state that their initial instructions were to heal the sick and drive out demons, but some scholars read this more metaphorically as instructions to heal the spiritually sick and thus to drive away wicked behavior.

They are also instructed to only take their staffs, and that if any town rejects them they ought to shake the dust off their feet as they leave, a gesture which some scholars think was meant as a contemptuous threat (Miller 26). Their carrying of just a staff is sometimes given as the reason for the use by Christian Bishops of a staff of office, in those denominations that believe they maintain an Apostolic Succession.

Later in the Gospel narratives the Twelve Apostles are described as having been commissioned to preach the Gospel to the world, regardless of whether Jew or Gentile. Although the Apostles are portrayed as having been Galilean Jews, and 10 of their names are Aramaic, the other 4 names are Greek, suggesting a more metropolitan background.


Jesus Chooses The 12 Apostles




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