Tuesday, November 30, 2010


He is also called Jesus Christ, where "Jesus" is an Anglicization of the Greek: Ἰησοῦς (Iēsous), of Hebrew origin יְהוֹשׁוּעַ (Yĕhowshuwa`, Joshua "Jehovah is salvation") from יְהֹוָה (Yĕhovah "the existing One") from הָיָה (hayah "to be, become, come to pass, exist"), יָשַׁע (yasha`, to save, be saved, be delivered); or Aramaic ישוע (Yeshua), meaning "YHVH is salvation"; and where "Christ" is a title derived from the Greek christós, meaning the "Anointed One," which corresponds to the Hebrew-derived "Messiah" משיח (mashiyach "anointed, anointed one"). Jesus is the incarnate Son of God, the second person of the Trinity, and the prophesied Hebrew Messiah, deliverer of Israel). Jesus is also known as "Jesus Christ", "Jesus of Nazareth", and "Jesus the Nazarene."

Christian views of Jesus (known as Christology) are both diverse and complex. Most Christians are Trinitarian and affirm the Nicene Creed, believing that Jesus is both the Son of God and God made incarnate1, sent to provide salvation and reconciliation with God by atoning for the sins of humanity (see also Christian worldview).

The most detailed accounts of Jesus' birth are contained in the Gospel of Matthew (probably written between 60 and 85 AD/CE) and the Gospel of Luke (probably written between 60 and 100 AD/CE). There is considerable debate about the details of Jesus' birth even among Christian scholars, and few scholars claim to know either the year or the date of his birth or of his death.


Monday, November 29, 2010

Eusebius of Caesarea

Eusebius of Caesarea (c. 275 – May 30, 339) (often called Eusebius Pamphili, "Eusebius [the friend] of Pamphilus") was a bishop of Caesarea in Palestine and is often referred to as the father of church history because of his work in recording the history of the early Christian church. An earlier history by Hegesippus that he referred to has not survived.

His exact date and place of birth are unknown, and little is known of his youth. He became acquainted with the presbyter Dorotheus in Antioch and probably received exegetical instruction from him. In 296 he was in Palestine and saw Constantine who visited the country with Diocletian.

He was in Caesarea when Agapius was bishop and became friendly with Pamphilus of Caesarea, with whom he seems to have studied the text of the Bible, with the aid of Origen's Hexapla and commentaries collected by Pamphilus, in an attempt to prepare a correct version.

In 307, Pamphilus was imprisoned, but Eusebius continued their project. The resulting defence of Origen, in which they had collaborated, was finished by Eusebius after the death of Pamphilus and sent to the martyrs in the mines of Phaeno in Egypt. Eusebius then seems to have gone to Tyre and later to Egypt, where he first suffered persecution.

Eusebius is next heard of as bishop of Caesarea Palaestina. He succeeded Agapius, whose time of office is not known, but Eusebius must have become bishop soon after 313. Nothing is known about the early years of his tenure. When the Council of Nicaea met in 325, Eusebius was prominent in its transactions. He was not naturally a spiritual leader or theologian, but as a very learned man and a famous author who enjoyed the special favour of the emperor, he came to the fore among the 300 members of the council. The confession which he proposed became the basis of the Nicene Creed.


Sunday, November 28, 2010

Fertile Crescent

The Fertile Crescent is a historical region in the Middle East incorporating Ancient Egypt, the Levant, and Mesopotamia. The term "Fertile Crescent" was coined by University of Chicago archaeologist James Henry Breasted.

Watered by the Nile, Jordan, Euphrates and Tigris rivers and covering some 400-500,000 square kilometers, the region extends from the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea around the north of the Syrian Desert and through the Jazirah and Mesopotamia to the Persian Gulf. These areas correspond to the present-day Egypt, Israel, West Bank, Gaza strip, and Lebanon and parts of Jordan, Syria, Iraq, south-eastern Turkey and south-western Iran.

The population of the Nile River Basin is about 70 million, the Jordan River Basin about 20 million, and the Tigris and Euphrates Basins about 30 million, giving the present-day Fertile Crescent a total population of approximately 120 million, or at least a third of the population of the Middle East.


Saturday, November 27, 2010


Isaac (Hebrew: יצחק Yitschaq "he will laugh" or "he laughs") was the only son of Abraham (אברם 'Abram / אברהם 'Abraham) and Sarah (שרי Saray / שרה Sarah) and the father of Jacob (יעקב Ya`aqob) and Esau (עשו `Esav) as described in the book of Genesis of the Hebrew Bible. Isaac was the longest-lived of the patriarchs (one hundred and eighty years), and the only biblical patriarch whose name was not changed. Isaac was also the only patriarch who did not leave Canaan, although he once tried to leave and God told him not to do so:
1 Now there was a famine in the land, besides the former famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went to Gerar to Abimelech king of the Philistines. 2 And the LORD appeared to him and said, "Do not go down to Egypt; dwell in the land of which I shall tell you. 3 Sojourn in this land, and I will be with you and will bless you, for to you and to your offspring I will give all these lands, and I will establish the oath that I swore to Abraham your father. 4 I will multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and will give to your offspring all these lands. And in your offspring all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, 5 because Abraham obeyed my voice and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.

Compared to other patriarchs in the Bible, his story is less colorful, relating few incidents of his life.

Abraham's willingness to follow God's command to sacrifice Isaac has been viewed by early as well as modern Christianity as an example of faith and obedience.


 Isaac and Abimelech — Genesis 26:1–34

Thursday, November 25, 2010

F.F. Bruce

Frederick Fyvie Bruce (1910-1990) (more commonly known as F.F. Bruce) was a Bible scholar, and one of the founders of the modern evangelical understanding of the Bible.

He was born in Elgin, Morayshire and was educated at the University of Aberdeen, Cambridge University and the University of Vienna. After teaching Greek for several years first at the University of Edinburgh and then at the University of Leeds he became head of the Department of Biblical History and Literature at the University of Sheffield in 1947. In 1959 he moved to the University of Manchester where he became professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis. In his career he wrote some thirty-three books and served as editor of The Evangelical Quarterly and the Palestine Exploration Quarterly. He retired from teaching in 1978.

Bruce was a dedicated member of the Open Plymouth Brethren, though he did not affirm the dispensationalism usually associated with that movement.

Bruce was a distinguished scholar on the life and ministry of Paul the Apostle, and wrote several studies the best known of which is Paul: Apostle of the Free Spirit. He also wrote commentaries on several biblical books including Acts of the Apostles, 1 & 2 Corinthians, and the Epistle to the Hebrews.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010


In Christianity, the disciples were the students of Jesus during his ministry. Though often restricted to the Twelve Apostles, the gospels refer to varying numbers of disciples. In the Book of Acts, the Apostles themselves have disciples. The word disciple is used today as a way of self-identification for those who seek to learn from Christianity.

The term disciple is derived from the New Testament Greek word μαθἡτἡς., coming to English by way of the Latin discipulus meaning "a learner". Disciple should not be confused with apostle, meaning "messenger, he that is sent". While a disciple is one who learns from a teacher, a student, an apostle is sent to deliver those teachings to others. The word disciple appears two hundred and thirty two times in the four gospels and the Book of Acts.
28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, 29 but they urged him strongly, saying, "Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent." So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. 31 And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight. 32 They said to each other, "Did not our hearts burn within us while he talked to us on the road, while he opened to us the Scriptures?" 33 And they rose that same hour and returned to Jerusalem. And they found the eleven and those who were with them gathered together, 34 saying, "The Lord has risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!" 35 Then they told what had happened on the road, and how he was known to them in the breaking of the bread. –Luke 24:28-35

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Shekhinah (Hebrew: שכינה - alternative transliterations Shekinah, Shechinah, Shekina, Shechina, Schechinah, sometimes spelled Shchinah in Judaism) is the English spelling of a feminine Hebrew language word that means the dwelling or settling, and is used to denote the dwelling or settling presence of God, especially in the Temple in Jerusalem. Shekhinah is the "gentle" or "feminine aspect" of the Divine.

Shekhinah is derived from the Hebrew verb שכן shakan "to settle down, abide, dwell, tabernacle, reside," as in the Book of Exodus:
"And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God." –Exodus 29:45

ושכנתי בתוך בני ישראל והייתי להם לאלהים׃ ספר שמות 29:45

Christian theologians have often connected the concept of Shekhinah to the Greek term "Parousia", also a feminine word (literally: "presence") which is used in the New Testament in a similar way for "Divine Presence".


Jpost video: Thousands gather at the Kotel for Priestly Blessing

Monday, November 22, 2010

ONE Modern Day Prophet

At the Willow Creek Association's 2006 Leadership Summit Senior pastor Bill Hybels interviewed U2 lead singer Bono. Bono painted a poignant picture of the response of the Christian church to emergency of the global Aids and extreme poverty crisis, but reminds us that it is not too late. He asked Americans to rally – ONE by ONE.
"It's not about charity, it's about justice." –Bono
Rick Warren's (Saddleback Church) organized a Global Summit on AIDS and the church.
17 The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:
18 "The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor." –Luke 4:17-19, (from Isaiah 61:1,2)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tribe of Asher

The Tribe of Asher (Hebrew: אשר from אָשַׁר 'ashar "to go straight, walk, go on, advance, make progress") is one of the Hebrew tribes of Israel, the tribe descended from Asher the eighth son of Jacob and Zilpah. Asher, his four sons and a daughter, settled in Egypt.
And Leah said, "Happy am I! For women have called me happy." So she called his name Asher. —Gen 30:13
The tribe may be the same as the Weshesh mentioned in Egyptian accounts (the W of Weshesh is a modern invention for ease of pronunciation, the Egyptian records containing mention of the group refer to Uashesh). The Weshesh were part of a tribal confederation known as the Sea Peoples, which also included Peleset (the Philistines), Danua (possibly Dan), Tjekker (thought to mean of Acco, and thus may refer to Manasseh), Shekelesh (thought to mean men of Sheker, and thus may refer to Issachar).

Records only state that the Sea People attacked Egypt, and other nations, but not where hey came from or where they went to. As such there has been much speculation, with some thinking they either invaded, or returned home to, coastal Canaan, and subsequently their federation for some unknown reason split, with some tribes joining the Israelite federation.


Saturday, November 20, 2010

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (October 15, 1844 – August 25, 1900) was a nineteenth-century German philosopher and philologist. He wrote critical texts on religion, morality, contemporary culture, philosophy, and science, using a distinctive German language style and displaying a fondness for aphorism. Nietzsche's influence remains substantial within and beyond philosophy, notably in existentialism and postmodernism. His style and radical questioning of the value and objectivity of truth raise considerable problems of interpretation, generating an extensive secondary literature in both continental and analytic philosophy. Nonetheless, his key ideas include interpreting tragedy as an affirmation of life, an eternal recurrence (which numerous commentators have re-interpreted), a rejection of Platonism, and a repudiation of (especially 19th-century) Christianity.

In his History of Western Philosophy Bertrand Russell was caustic in his chapter on Nietzsche, calling his work the "mere power-phantasies of an invalid" and referring to Nietzsche as a "megalomaniac".

Nietzsche began his career as a classical philologist before turning to philosophy. At the age of 24 he became the Chair of Classical Philology at the University of Basel (the youngest-ever holder of this position), but resigned in 1879 due to health problems, which would plague him for most of his life. In 1889 he exhibited symptoms of serious mental illness, living out his remaining years in the care of his mother and sister until his death in 1900.

Born on 15 October 1844, Nietzsche grew up in the small town of Röcken, near Leipzig, in the Prussian Province of Saxony. He was named after King Frederick William IV of Prussia, who turned 49 on the day of Nietzsche's birth. (Nietzsche later dropped his given middle name, "Wilhelm".) Nietzsche's parents, Carl Ludwig (1813–1849), a Lutheran pastor and former teacher, and Franziska Oehler (1826–1897), married in 1843 and had two other children: a daughter, Elisabeth Förster-Nietzsche, born in 1846, and a second son, Ludwig Joseph, born in 1848. Nietzsche's father died from a brain ailment in 1849; his younger brother died in 1850. The family then moved to Naumburg, where they lived with Nietzsche's paternal grandmother and his father's two unmarried sisters. After the death of Nietzsche's grandmother in 1856, the family moved into their own house.


includes:  "Parable of the Madman" Friedrich Nietzsche Read by Ravi Zacharias

Friday, November 19, 2010

Early Church Fathers

The Early Church Fathers, (Church Fathers, or Fathers of the Church) are the early and influential theologians and writers in the Christian Church, particularly those of the first five centuries of Christian history. The term is used of writers and teachers of the Church, not necessarily saints. It is generally not meant to include the New Testament authors, though in the early Church some writing of Church Fathers were considered canonical (those books considered to be inspired by God or to express the authoritative history of the relationship between God and his people).

Apostolic Fathers
The very earliest Church Fathers, of the first two generations after The Twelve Apostles of Christ, are usually called the Apostolic Fathers.

Famous Apostolic Fathers include
  • Ignatius of Antioch
  • Polycarp of Smyrna
  • Clement of Rome

In addition, the Didache (a brief early Christian treatise (c. 70–160 CE), containing instructions for Christian communities) and The Shepherd of Hermas (a Christian work of the second century, considered a valuable book by many Christians, and occasionally considered canonical scripture by some of the early Church fathers) are usually placed among the writings of the Apostolic Fathers although their authors are unknown.


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.

Includes:  Conversations with Leo Tolstoy by Leo Tolstoy and Simon Parke

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


In modern and late Medieval Christian thought, Lucifer (Hebrew: הילל, Lucifer, "light-bearer" shining one, morning star, v. to praise, glorify, laud, commend) is a fallen angel commonly associated with Satan, the embodiment of evil and enemy of God. Lucifer is generally considered, based on the influence of Christian literature and legend, to have been a prominent archangel in heaven (although some contexts say he was a cherub or a seraph), prior to having been motivated by pride to rebel against God. When the rebellion failed, Lucifer was cast out of heaven, along with a third of the heavenly host, and came to reside on the world.

Lucifer was originally a Latin word meaning "light-bearer" (from lux, "light", and ferre, "to bear, bring"), a Roman astrological term for the "Morning Star", the planet Venus.

"I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel." Genesis 3:15 ESV

The word Lucifer was the direct translation of the Greek eosphorus ("dawn-bearer"; cf. Greek phosphorus, "light-bearer") used by Jerome in the Vulgate. In that passage, Isaiah 14:12, it referred to one of the popular honorific titles of a Babylonian king; however, later interpretations of the text, and the influence of embellishments in works such as Dante's The Divine Comedy and John Milton's Paradise Lost, led to the common idea in Christian mythology and folklore that Lucifer was a poetic appellation of Satan.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Hope (Hebrew: תקוה tiqvah, from the root word "qavah" to wait, look for, hope, expect Greek: ἐλπίς elpis, in the Christian sense: joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation) is one of the three theological virtues in Christian tradition (Faith, Hope and Love or Charity) which are spiritual gifts of God. In this sense, hope is not a physical emotion but a spiritual grace.

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. –1 Corinthians 13:13

Hope being a combination of the desire for something and expectation of receiving it, the virtue is hoping for Divine union and thus eternal happiness. Like all virtues, it arises from the will, not the passions.

The Coming of the Lord
remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. –1 Thessalonians 1:3

8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him.
–1 Thessalonians 5:8-10


includes youtube: A Godly Woman: Hope in God, Fearlessness, and Inward Adornment by John Piper

Monday, November 15, 2010

"Son of God"

A biblical phrase from the Hebrew bible, and the New Testament of the Christian bible. According to the bible, "Son of God" refers to Jesus.

Throughout the New Testament the phrase "son of God" is applied repeatedly, in the singular, only to Jesus. "Sons of God" is applied to others only in the plural. The King James version of the New Testament calls Jesus God's "only begotten son"

(John 1:14, 3:16-18, 1 John 4:9)
  • "begotten"
    Greek: μονογενής monogenēs
    single of its kind, only
  • "his own son" (Romans 8:3).
  • "own"
    Greek: ἑαυτοῦ
    himself, herself, itself, themselves
It also refers to Jesus simply as "the son" in contexts in which "the Father" is used to refer to God.
16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
Similar terminology was present before, during and after the Ministry of Jesus and in his historical and cultural background. The Roman Emperor Augustus Caesar was the first Roman ruler to be worshiped as a son of a god (divi filius), and the day of his birth was considered the beginning of his glad tidings or "gospel" for the world. Caesar Augustus was called "divi filius". (son of the deified Julius Caesar): "Divi filius", not "Dei filius" (son of God), was the Latin term used. In Greek, the term huios theou was applied to both, but, while huios theou is used of Jesus three times in the New Testament, he is usually described as ho huios tou theou, not just "a son of God", but "THE son of God".

includes  Hillsong: "Son of God"

Sunday, November 14, 2010


From Ancient Greek pseudes = "false", epigraphe = "inscription", Pseudepigrapha are falsely attributed works, texts whose claimed authorship is unfounded; a work, simply, "whose real author attributed it to a figure of the past."  For instance, few Hebrew scholars would ascribe the Book of Enoch to the prophet Enoch, and few liberal Christian scholars would insist today that the Third Epistle of John was written by John the Evangelist, or that the Second Epistle of Peter was written by Simon Peter. Nevertheless, in some cases, especially for books belonging to a religious canon, the question of whether a text is pseudepigraphical or not elicits sensations of loyalty and can become a matter of heavy dispute. The authenticity or value of the work itself, which is a separate question for experienced readers, often becomes sentimentally entangled in the association. Though the inherent value of the text may not be called into question, the weight of a revered or even apostolic author lends authority to a text: in Antiquity pseudepigraphy was "an accepted and honored custom practiced by students/admirers of a revered figure". This is the essential motivation for pseudepigraphy in the first place.

Pseudepigraphy covers the false ascription of names of authors to works, even to perfectly authentic works that make no such claim within their text. Thus a widely accepted but incorrect attribution of authorship may make a perfectly authentic text pseudepigraphical. Assessing the actual writer of a text brings questions of pseudepigraphical attributions within the discipline of literary criticism. In a parallel case, forgers have been known to improve the market value of a perfectly genuine 17th-century Dutch painting by adding a painted signature Rembrandt fecit (i.e. fecit: "made by or did. Aquatinta fecit: engraved in aquatint by").


Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Temple Mount

The Temple Mount (Hebrew: הַר הַבַּיִת (without niqqud: הר הבית) or Noble Sanctuary (Arabic: الحرم الشريف) is a hotly contested religious site in the Old City of Jerusalem.

It was the site of the first and second Jewish Temple in Jerusalem and, according to Judaism, is to be the site of the third and final Temple in the time of the Messiah. It is also the site of two major Muslim religious shrines, the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque, built in the 7th century.

It is the holiest site in Judaism, the third holiest site in Islam, and has special significance to Christianity.

It is thus one of the most contested religious sites in the world.

The Temple Mount forms the northern portion of a very narrow spur of hill that slopes sharply from north to south. Rising above the Kidron Valley to the east and Tyropoeon Valley to the west, its peak reaches a height of 740 m (2,428 ft) above sea level. In around 19 BCE, Herod the Great extended the Mount's natural plateau by enclosing the area with four massive retaining walls and filling the voids. This artificial expansion resulted in a large flat expanse which today forms the eastern section of the Old City of Jerusalem. The trapezium shaped platform measures 488m along the west, 470m along the east, 315m along the north and 280m along the south, giving a total area of approximately 150,000 m2 (35.5 acres). The northern wall of the Mount, together with the northern section of the western wall, are hidden behind residential buildings. The southern section of the western flank is revealed and contains what is known as The Western Wall. The retaining walls on these two sides descend many meters below ground level. A northern portion of the western wall may be seen from within the Western Wall Tunnel, which was excavated through buildings adjacent to the platform. On the southern and eastern sides the walls are visible almost to their full height. The platform itself is separated from the rest of Old City Jerusalem by the Tyropoeon Valley, though this once deep valley is now largely hidden beneath later deposits, and is imperceptible in places. The platform can be reached via Bridge Street — a street in the Muslim Quarter at the level of the platform, actually sitting on a monumental bridge; the bridge is no longer externally visible due to the change in ground level, but it may be seen from beneath via the Western Wall Tunnel.


includes Temple Mount: 3rd Jewish Temple

Friday, November 12, 2010

Adolf Hitler, rise to power

Adolf Hitler's rise to power in Germany began in September 1919 when Hitler joined the political party that was known as the Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (abbreviated as DAP, and later commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). This political party was formed and developed during the post-World War I era. It was anti-Marxist and was opposed to the democratic post-war government of the Weimar Republic and the Treaty of Versailles; and it advocated extreme nationalism and Pan-Germanism as well as virulent anti-semitism. Hitler's "rise" can be considered to have ended in March 1933, after the Reichstag adopted the Enabling Act of 1933 in that month; President Paul von Hindenburg had already appointed Hitler as Chancellor on 30 January 1933 after a series of parliamentary elections and associated backstairs intrigues. The Enabling Act—when used ruthlessly and with authority—virtually assured that Hitler could thereafter constitutionally exercise dictatorial power without legal objection.

Hitler rose to a place of prominence in the early years of the party (1919 - 1923) largely as a result of his considerable skills in oratory, organization and promotion. He was aided in part by his willingness to use violence in advancing his political objectives and to recruit party members who were willing to do the same. The Beer Hall putsch in 1923 and the later release of his book Mein Kampf (usually translated as My Struggle) introduced Hitler to a wider audience. In the mid-1920s, the party engaged in electoral battles in which Hitler participated as a speaker and organizer, as well as in street battles and violence between the Rotfrontkämpferbund and the Nazi's Sturmabteilung (SA). Through the late 1920s and early 1930s, the Nazis gathered enough electoral support to become the largest political party in the Reichstag, and Hitler's blend of political acuity, deceptiveness and cunning converted the party's non-majority but plurality status into effective governing power in the ailing Weimar Republic of 1933.


includes Hitler – Mein Kampf (full documentary) Part 1-3

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Samaria, or Shomron (Hebrew: שמרון Shomĕrown, "watch mountain", its root word, שמר shamar, meaning to "keep, guard, observe, give heed"– see Amos 4:1) is a term used for the region of northern Palestine (West Bank of the Jordan River) associated with the northern kingdom of the 10 tribes of Israel which split from the kingdom after the death of Solomon during the reign of his son Rehoboam and were ruled by Jeroboam. The word is perhaps from shâmar, 'to watch,' hence meaning something like 'outlook'; but, according to 1 Kings 16:24, derived from the individual [or clan] Shemer, from whom Omri purchased the site.

Samaria is one of the several standard statistical "areas" utilized by the Central Bureau of Statistics of the State of Israel. "The CBS also collects statistics on Judea-Samaria and the Gaza District. It has produced various basic statistical series on the territories, dealing with population, employment, wages, external trade, national accounts, and various other topics." Samaria is used by people who want to emphasize Israel's and the Jewish people's relationship with their land. For example, Samaria , along with Judea, is now more widely known, outside of Israel, by the neologism "West Bank."

According to Paul, the last words of Jesus before His ascension included Samaria:
6 So when they met together, they asked him,

"Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?"

7 He said to them: "It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth."

9 After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. –Acts 1:6-9


includes  The Prophet Elijah Part 1 of 5 (1 Kings 17)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Sumer (or Shumer, Egyptian Sangar, [biblical Shinar], native ki-en-gir, (native ki-en-gir, (from Ki = "Earth," En = "title" usually translated as Lord, Gir = "cultured" usually translated as "Civilized," thus "the land of the civilised lords") was an ancient civilization located in the southern part of Mesopotamia (modern day southeastern Iraq) from the time of the earliest records in the mid 4th millennium BC until the rise of Babylonia in the late 3rd millennium BC. The term "Sumerian" applies to all speakers of the Sumerian language. Sumer is considered the first settled society in the world to have manifested all the features needed to qualify fully as a "civilization."

1 Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. 2 And as people migrated from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. 3 And they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly." And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. 4 Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be dispersed over the face of the whole earth." 5 And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of man had built. 6 And the LORD said, "Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language, and this is only the beginning of what they will do. And nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down and there confuse their language, so that they may not understand one another's speech." 8 So the LORD dispersed them from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. 9 Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the LORD confused the language of all the earth. And from there the LORD dispersed them over the face of all the earth.
–Genesis 11:1-12 ESV
In an interview, controversial Azeri-born American author Zecharia Sitchin discusses the Annunaki and the origins of the human race on earth, which he calls:
"Best corroborating evidence for the voracity of the bible"

What do you think?


Monday, November 08, 2010

Jesus the man

During the Sanhedrin Trial of Jesus, the high priests and elders asked Jesus, "Are you the Son of God?" When he replied, "You are right in saying I am," they condemned Jesus for blasphemy (Luke 22:70–71). The high priests then turned him over to the Roman procurator Pontius Pilate, based on an accusation of sedition for forbidding the payment of taxes Luke 23:1-2 and claiming to be King of the Jews.

When Jesus came before Pilate, Pilate asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" to which he replied, "It is as you say." According to the Gospels, Pilate personally felt that Jesus was not guilty of any crime against the Romans, and since there was a custom at Passover for the Roman governor to free a prisoner (a custom not recorded outside the Gospels), Pilate offered the crowd a choice between Jesus of Nazareth and an insurrectionist named Barabbas. The crowd chose to have Barabbas freed and Jesus crucified. Pilate washed his hands to indicate that he was innocent of the injustice of the decision (Matthew 27:11–26).


According to all four Gospels, Jesus died before late afternoon at Calvary, which was also called Golgotha. The wealthy Judean Joseph of Arimathea, a member of the Sanhedrin according to Mark and Luke, received Pilate's permission to take possession of Jesus' body, placing it in a tomb. According to John, Joseph was aided by Nicodemus, who joined him to help bury Jesus, and who appears in other parts of John's gospel (John 19:38–42). The three Synoptic Gospels tell of the darkening of the sky from twelve until three that afternoon; Matthew also mentions an earthquake (Matthew 27:51, the earth breaking open and a number of righteous dead people rising out of the grave and going into Jerusalem.


Sunday, November 07, 2010


Apocatastasis is a Greek word (αποκαταστασις) meaning either reconstitution or restitution or restoration to the original or primordial condition.


In Stoic philosophy, the cosmos is a physical expression of Zeus' perfect thoughts and apocatastasis is the contraction when Zeus returns to self-contemplation. This will occur when the stars and planets return to their original positions, believed to be an alignment with Cancer, and the universe will be consumed by fire (ekpyrosis). Antapocatastasis is a counter-example or a counter-occurrence when the stars and planets align with Capricorn and the universe will be destroyed by flood (see also Noah's ark). When Zeus turns his thoughts outwards once more, the cosmos will be reborn or reconstituted under the guidance and sustenance of Logos (which Christianity considers the creative Word of God), an emanation of Zeus.


In Gnostic writings (considered hersy by Christian churches), apocatastasis occurs when a soul, which is Divine Light trapped in evil matter, frees itself by attaining special knowledge or Gnosis to rejoin the True God above all gods. Messengers of Light, of which Jesus Christ is an example, reveal the salvation that comes from finding the Kingdom of God within. The gnostic Gospel of Philip 180-350c contains the term itself and in other sayings expresses the idea that all comes from a common, eternal source:
"Of what a nature is the resurrection! And the image must rise again through the image. The bridegroom and the image must enter through the image into the truth, which is the apocatastasis."


In Christianity, apocatastasis is the doctrine of the ultimate reconciliation of good and evil forces. Apocatastasis maintains that all moral creatures – angels, humans and devils – will eventually come to a harmony in God's kingdom, the evil ones through repentance and rejection of evil.

The belief was first articulated by Clement of Alexandria (d. 215) and Origen of Alexandria (d. 232) and defended by Diodore of Tarsus . They adapted Platonic terminology and ideas to Christianity while explaining and differentiating the new faith from all the others. Proponents cited biblical passage in 1 Corinthians 15:28 ("When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.") in support.


Saturday, November 06, 2010

Unconditional Love

Unconditional love is a term that means to love someone regardless of his actions or beliefs. It is a concept comparable to true love, a term which is more frequently used to describe love between lovers. By contrast, unconditional love is frequently used to describe love between family members, comrades in arms and between others in highly committed relationships. It has also been used in a religious context to describe God's love for humankind through the forgiveness of Christ. However, this can be seen as contradictory in some cases where God's "unconditional" love is predicated upon the believer's fulfillment of one or more criteria. But this love is not solely based on those met expectations.

14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.


Thursday, November 04, 2010


feature: Music by
Ofra Haza
"Yerushalaim Shel Zahav"
"Jerusalem of Gold"
A member of an ancient Jewish sect in Judea in the first century who fought to the death against the Romans and who killed or persecuted Jews who collaborated with the Romans. Zealotry (with an upper case "Z") was a movement in first century Judaism, described by Flavius Josephus as one of the "four sects" at this time. The term Zealot, Kanahi (or qana' Hebrew: קנאי plural: kanahim, קנאים); is a term given for a "zealot". It literally means one who is "burning with zeal" on behalf of God. The term is Greek in origin. The lower case form in modern English is used to refer to any form of zeal, especially in cases where activism and ambition in relation to ideology have become excessive, possibly to the point of being harmful to others, oneself, and one's own cause. A zealous person is called a zealot. In non-political or non-religious terms, zeal is an ordinary word and simply means extreme enthusiasm and passion for a particular activity.

Zealotry was originally a political movement in first century Judaism which sought to incite the people of Iudaea Province to rebel against the Roman Empire and expel it from the holy land by force of arms, most notably during the Great Jewish Revolt (AD 66-70).Two of Judas' sons, Jacob and Paul, were involved in a revolt and were executed by Tiberius Alexander, the procurator of Iudaea province from 46 to 48. Zealotry was described by Jewish historian Flavius Josephus as one of the "four sects" at this time.


Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Johann Sebastian Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750) was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity. Although he did not introduce new forms, he enriched the prevailing German style with a robust contrapuntal technique, an unrivaled control of harmonic and motivic organisation, and the adaptation of rhythms, forms and textures from abroad, particularly from Italy and France.

Revered for their intellectual depth, technical command and artistic beauty, Bach's works include the Brandenburg concertos, the Goldberg Variations, the Partitas, The Well-Tempered Clavier, the Mass in B Minor, the St Matthew Passion, the St John Passion, the Magnificat, The Musical Offering, The Art of Fugue, the English and French Suites, the Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin, the Cello Suites, more than 200 surviving cantatas, and a similar number of organ works, including the celebrated Toccata and Fugue in D minor and Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor.

Bach's abilities as an organist were highly respected throughout Europe during his lifetime, although he was not widely recognized as a great composer until a revival of interest and performances of his music in the first half of the 19th century. He is now generally regarded one of the main composers of the Baroque style, and as one of the greatest composers of all time.

Without including the entire tradition of German composers, from Bach to Arnold Schönberg (when the links with tonality finally broke), this writer believes that, it is safe to say that Johann Sebastian Bach was the single most influencial composer in the history of Western musical tradition.


includes Toccata & Fugue in d minor (BACH, J.S.), and Bach's Passacaglia and Fugue in C minor

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

N.T. Wright

Tom (N.T.) Wright is the Bishop of Durham of the Anglican Church and a leading British New Testament scholar. Ordinarily he is known as "Tom Wright", although his academic work has always been published under the name "NT Wright" (Nicholas Thomas). He is generally perceived as coming from a moderately evangelical perspective. He is associated with the so-called Third Quest for the Historical Jesus, and the New Perspective on Paul (a complex movement with many unique positions, originating from the probing works of James Dunn and E. P. Sanders). He argues that the current understanding of Jesus must be connected with what is known to be true about him from the historical perspective of first century Judaism and Christianity.

Wright has written over 30 books.

He has completed three books in a projected six-volume scholarly series Christian Origins and the Question of God. These are:
  1. The New Testament and the People of God,
  2. Jesus and the Victory of God, and
  3. The Resurrection of the Son of God.
He has also written books on a popular level, including The Challenge of Jesus and the projected twelve volume For Everyone Bible commentary series in a similar vein to William Barclay's Daily Study Bible series.

His work has been praised by scholars from a wide range of views, such as Professor James DG Dunn, Richard B. Hays and Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury. However, critics of his work are also found across the broad range of theological camps, from conservatives such as J. Ligon Duncan to liberals like Robert J. Miller.

plus: N.T. Wright Simply Christian (Part 1 & 2) by apologetics101

Monday, November 01, 2010


A dystopia (from Ancient Greek: δυσ-: bad-, ill- and Ancient Greek: τόπος: place, landscape) (alternatively, cacotopia, or anti-utopia) is, in literature, an often futuristic society that has degraded into a repressive and controlled state, often under the guise of being utopian. Dystopian literature has underlying cautionary tones, warning society that if we continue to live how we do, this will be the consequence. A dystopia, thus, is regarded as a sort of negative utopia and is often characterized by an authoritarian or totalitarian form of government. Dystopias usually feature different kinds of repressive social control systems, a lack or total absence of individual freedoms and expressions and constant states of warfare or violence. Dystopias often explore the concept of technology going "too far" and how humans individually and en masse use technology. A dystopian society is also often characterized by mass poverty for most of its inhabitants and a large military-like police force.

Dystopia is a modified form of utopia, which was originally coined by Thomas More in his book of that title completed in 1516.

The first known use of dystopian, as recorded by the Oxford English Dictionary, is a speech given before the British House of Commons by John Stuart Mill in 1868, in which Mill denounced the government's Irish land policy: "It is, perhaps, too complimentary to call them Utopians, they ought rather to be called dys-topians, or caco-topians. What is commonly called Utopian is something too good to be practicable; but what they appear to favour is too bad to be practicable.




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