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Archive for the ‘God’ Category

Human cells make up only 43% of the body’s total cell count. The rest are microscopic colonists. It is a micro-biome that includes bacteria, viruses, fungi and single-celled archaea. The human genome – the full set of genetic instructions for a human being – is made up of 20,000 instructions called genes. But add all the genes in our micro-biome together and the figure comes out at between two million and 20 million microbial genes. It’s known as the second genome and is linked to diseases including allergy, obesity, inflammatory bowel disease, Parkinson’s, whether cancer drugs work and even depression and autism. I included this piece of news from the field of Science to show what we call human where boundaries are fluidal; and our rational thinking is neither open and shut nor complete as we would like to believe. We rationalize at one on impulses that no one can tell where it has begun or it will end. As evidence of it we have conscious and unconscious halves that our brain represents. It is in our inability the matter of faith for a Christian draws certainty. We are not making assertion on blind trust of our abstract thinking or in what we observe as a world outside. We are neither in control of one nor other to be correct.

When the Bible asserts, ’God created the heaven and the earth’ we believe it as true. Considering man in terms of biology is composite we can infer from the statement ‘And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of his life…(Ge.2:7)’. His living soul is bequeathed by courtesy of God and material body in the light of earlier statement of the earth. Consider dust as a catch-all for micro-biome. In the light of the facts supplied by the Scripture and Science do we see heaven and earth as separate or as one? Our faculties operate for which what instructions are set in us owe to God as well as to our forefathers. Thus faith is not what we employ by our reason but sound reasoning when it has a transcendental quality of a high authority, as it were. It always shall transcend merely what our human side informs. Patriarch Abraham would not have left Haran merely because there were series of migration at that time to the land of Canaan. He believed when God prompted him to leave his kith and kin. “ …Also He hath set the world in their hearts so that no man can find out the work that maketh from the beginning to the end.(Eccl.3:11)”The opening verse of the Book of Genesis, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth,” means exactly what it says.
Benny

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“For he(Abraham) looked for a city…whose builder and maker is God (He.11:10).”

Man makes his city of habitation. In the verse quoted here above, we find a city made by God is mentioned. Throughout the Scripture we shall note a parallelism existing between heaven and the earth. Man builds a city one of the earliest mentioned is the one founded by Cain whose credentials ought to give us the quality of it. Cain settled in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden (Ge.4:16) and built a city and called it after the name of his son. It is no different from Alexandria or Constantinople to commemorate famous people. Leaving the presence of God one can imagine the city founded by him and the kind of people who would have settled there. The cities of habitation are all alike. Man creates cities and brings many to dwell in company; slowly number of people swells necessitating city limits to extend further. If the created in turn drive the creator to fall in a pattern, that is what urban dwelling would mean, are they not slaves to custom or habit brought upon themselves? Look at any city and the frenetic pace of their daily routine to understand this truism. Their urbanity and way of life go against the nature of things. Longer hours and living on caffeine or strong spirits, commuting to and from, all the while racing against time and missed deadlines it is what means to be upward mobile city dweller. Haran in the time of Patriarch was indeed a commercially thriving city as New York today. Situated on the high road, which ran from Nineveh to Carchemish its importance increased by proximity to the Mediterranean Sea. When God called out Abraham he was leaving his comfort zone, he ‘went out not knowing whither he went.’ The city of Haran is a shadow of city, which exists in heaven and we read that in eternity shall be called holy. In a vision Apostle John saw the holy city coming down from heaven. This parallelism existing between heaven and the earth can only be bridged by the article of faith. It is how we need take the whole narrative and several of symbols provided therein.

Law of Moses provided for cities of refuge in which God set apart six such cities, three of which were on the west and the other on the east of Jordan (Josh.20:7). Spiritual significance of crossing the river of Jordan is well known. For our present intent and purpose we may see such parallelism is not any coincidence but for our spiritual understanding. Under the old covenant these were for set apart for those who had shed blood unintentionally and as a place for refuge. Christ is our refuge to which the writer to the Hebrews alludes thus: “Let us go therefore unto him, without the camp bearing his reproach (He.13:12).” Jesus took away our reproach being made a curse for us and he hung on a cross was predicted by the brazen serpent on a pole. (Gal.3:13). The city is Jesus Christ and when we speak of being hid in Christ and abiding in him its spiritual significance is obvious. Like Abraham it is the ‘place where we should after receive for an inheritance’. This life in a limbo is life of faith. If we live in the most wonderful city the dictum by which we live shall be to place ourselves above. “…All things are lawful for me, but all things edify not (1 Co.10:23).”
Coming back to the Promised Land God commanded Moses to set apart three cities of refuge (Deut.4:41-43) and Joshua set apart three cities on the other side of the River Jordan. Having discussed the role of Jesus Christ as our refuge we may consider the probable significance of the words, “In my Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so I would have told you (Jn.14:2).” Also significance is the context in which he conveyed this piece of news to his disciples. His time on earth was drawing near. He had already promised them a kingdom (Lk.12:32) so his mentioning of many mansions is a mystery only known to the Father. So we shall leave all conjectures over them as a sealed book to us. Joshua meaning Jehovah is salvation is same as the Hellenized form of the name Jesus.

(Reprinted from Guide To His Word of July17,2018)
Benny

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Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead, so many as the stars of the sky… (He.11:12)”

Here we see Abraham and Sara counted among the heroes of faith. A man of faith by accepting God is adopted in his Son so he is counted as though he were predestined for His blessings. Things that are seen are temporal while things not seen are identified as belonging to eternal attribute of God. Faith is one such. In order to show this we have stars of the sky and sand by the seashore as symbols. One indicates the innumerable and nameless host of believers (whose faith is counted) still living or dead. Whether dead or alive they are witnesses: they are preserved as a memorial in heaven. It is similar to the seven golden lamp-stands in the first vision of John in the Book of Revelation. No churches on the earth are perfect but these are indicated in heaven. Wherever these churches are fallen off it shall correspondingly show. In whichever case the seven golden lamp-stands remain as a memorial. This is Parallelism of faith. Faith of man becomes testimony of God, to be precise.
God having promised to bless Abraham brings him outside in the open and said, “Look now toward heaven and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him (Abraham), so shall thy seed be.” Abraham believed him and it was counted to him for righteousness (Ge.15:5-6). In the Book of Job we read that his Spirit garnished the heaven with stars. No man can fathom the Spirit, which like the wind is not seen but we see its effect in the night sky. Faith as evidence of things seen is held as a memorial in heaven. This is also mentioned in the creation act of God. “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven…and let them be for signs (Ge.1:14).” The point we need to understand is the stars may run out of fuel and other stars shall make appearance. Amidst such changes the sign shall never change since it a memorial of faith. It is forever settled like the word in heaven (Ps.119:89). ‘By his spirit he (God) hath garnished the heavens (Jb. 26:13)’
In the key verse we are given the seed of Abraham compared to sand, which by the seashore innumerable. God’s promise to the patriarch ‘In thee shall all families of the earth be blessed (Ge.12:3) has a parallel in heaven. In this connection the writer to the Hebrews in the following chapter refers to ‘ a cloud of witnesses (He.12:1)’ and from the context we can understand that it is of all those martyrs who have suffered affliction ‘not accepting deliverance.’ They all ‘…having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided …that they without us should not be perfect (He.11:39-40).’

“The voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground…(Ge.4:10)” The Spirit in setting down Abel as a martyr uses his blood (‘bloods’ in Hebrew in plural form)in the verse, indicating how before God every creation stands. From Abel to the end of time each shall be counted in the cloud of witnesses in heaven as a memorial. Not even the fall of a sparrow shall escape His notice. No less is the death of a saint whose death before time is an affront to his majesty and honor. Those nine African American churchgoers who were killed in Charleston because of their color are martyrs and included in the cloud of witnesses. So are those killed in diverse places from Egypt to Indonesia because of belief. What we need to infer from the above is the timelessness of saints since faith is of such quality and their faith and their works are secure from hatred and calumny of the world. We have the testimony of God, “Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth…(Re.14:13)” Significant is the context in which this verse is marked in the apocalyptic vision of John. Just before the beast is judged the angel urges patience of those living. Those hundred and forty and four thousand souls shown standing with the Lamb on the mount Sion bear the Father’s name on their foreheads (Re.14:1). Urgency of the voice from heaven is to stiffen the faith of those caught in the Great Tribulation and they have a choice of martyrdom or bear the mark of the beast on their foreheads or on hand. Those who died for their faith shall be counted as blessed and their works validated. Thus the Spirit in setting Core Will of God uses parallelism of memorial in heaven for events occurring on the earth.

Benny

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Past Imperfect-2

Considering our middle state we do not begin our lives on a clean slate; instead we are carrying a world of genetic information along. Where it began or where it shall all end we cannot say. Human condition sets limits to our knowledge. For a Christian only God is endowed with Power and Wisdom in absolute sense.
With cosmic impacts shaping events on the earth we might say man is caught in the middle not realizing some parts of our globe are helped while some are destroyed. Atlantis is a case in point. So how do we settle on to anything? In our solar system we have planets orbiting around the sun. Meanwhile the sun the Milky Way has its own orbit. With so many objects moving about we require a rest frame to study motion of celestial objects relative to us. This is a frame of reference. It is thus we affix God as Absolute, ‘I changeth not.’ Our moral values and history keeps shifting so what we see now is a new normal and truth is transactional. We may say a lie is permissible but it is set in context of God. Thus we have God and his Word as the frame of reference.
From many passages in the Bible we are shown how God shall set up his kingdom. It signifies the end times.
The Book of Daniel narrates that King Nebuchadnezzar in a dream saw an image of world kingdoms. Head of the image was of fine gold, the breast and arms were of silver and so on. The quality of these governments progressively is shown inferior. The feet made up of iron and clay. Naturally the world powers are, by very design set up on a weak foundation. A stone is dropped out of nowhere smashing the image and nothing of it was to be seen. Instead the stone became a mountain filling the earth. Of this let us only take up the stone, which is dropped out of nowhere. A meteor striking like any cosmic impact is otherworldly, is it not? This dream interpreted by Daniel is a clue to the manner God shall set up his kingdom.
In the Bible we have several references of such impacts directly affecting historical events. In the Book of the Judges we have almost an identical event. On the eve of a war with the Midianites one soldier is narrating his dream to another and Gideon is overhearing as arranged by God. One barley cake comes out of nowhere and tumbles into the enemy camp smashing them. As intended Gideon is ready to fight. Gideon became a hero as a result. This leads us to what happened to one of his sons Abimelech, the son from a maid. He had to kill his brethren, 70 of them before he could reach this position. Because of his treachery and wickedness his end came in a most dramatic manner. He came before a tower and he was there to punish those who held out. One woman dropped a millstone on him. He died. (Jud.9)
This event is identical with the millstone thrown by an angel to punish Babylon, which is a label for any great harbour city. It could be New York, Shanghai, Singapore or Dubai. The point is the manner it is done. “And a mighty angel took up a great millstone and cast it into the sea..(Rev.18:21)” triggering the end of the city. This is how we make sense of the word of God. Narrative passages from beginning to the end are consistent in spirit. Man without God is heading for disaster while man who follows peace shall be secure in the kingdom of God as and when set up.
It is news while some would say it is fake news. Man is at liberty to choose what he will but one day all the lies shall be called out.
Benny

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Let us examine how the Spirit arranges the predictive part of the narrative from the point of view of the Son.

“For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations (Joel 3:1) Here we have a prophecy about the nation of Israel which is as good a place to understand how the Spirit deals with prophecies. The Spirit the third office in the Trinity is particular about time on which God and man can have a meaningful context. Time is God’s Time to which the Son of man is the emblem. So so many symbols, bread from heaven, the vine, the Good Shepherd  are all indicative time quality of which is not limited to man’s life span. mankind of all ages and clime regardless of race or clans draw on its divine quality. Similarly the fellowship of which the Father-Son relationship built up, is also an emblem. So when the Spirit uses phrases like ‘In the beginning’ and ‘in the end times’ or fullness of times we are left with no doubt as to the quality of Core Will. Man is inducted into it through the Son of man.

In the Time reset by the Spirit the Lamb slain before the worlds began’ is a kangaroo word. Into which many events must flow in. God who commanded ‘Let there be light’, reveals the divine Will. By the same token the Word was God (Jn.1:1). By restructuring time scales for God and man what the Spirit has achieved is underpinning, a scaffolding for the whole Scripture. Thus the Image of the invisible God is perceptible as spoken word of the Father and also a symbol. Father of lights is of the same quality and weight as the Son who “…was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world Jn.1:9”.

God the Son was present at the Creation Day and when the Spirit qualifies him as the Firstborn of all creation it is true. “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation (Col.1:15-NIV)  This has a direct bearing on the following verse: “Then say to Pharaoh, ‘This is what the LORD says: Israel is my firstborn son. Ex.4:22-NIV).” The Lamb slain before the worlds began as an emblem relates to the nation of Israel through God’s promise to Abraham. So must all families and nations  from the same promise. It is valid for God’s Time so nation of Israel is only one part. Remember the ladder of Jacob where so many steps laid one after another reaching to heaven? Each nation marks a time frame. God deals with nation of Israel as with others which is consistent with the prophecies, which are articulate. Articulated prophecies are like many pleats in a concertina working in unison in Time. We see it in Daniel’s vision of 70 weeks Dan.9:24 Daniel is informed of only one part and the other is separated as the river as the angels of God who stood on either side of it. This shall throw light on a few other passages.

Coming back to the prophecy of Joel what do we see in the manner the Holy Spirit places several gatherings of the nation of Israel as one? Beginning with Moses to coming of the Messiah the persons are what value the Spirit tags each. Moses as servant of God and Messiah as anointed Christos are predicted. So is Immanuel. “For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations (Joel 3:1). In those days and in that time are in God’s Time. 70 year of Israel as a state must expect captivity and gathering that must only happen in God’s Time. What we need remember is that God the Son stands as a symbol stumbling stone, corner stone as well as the rock cut without hands. As many strings strung on a single thread of God’s Will. Remnant of nations is as true as the total number of the children of Israel are all in context of the Son who serves as the fulfillment.

Benny

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Testimony of God is eternal. When the Spirit reorganizes narrative account from the view of God, the Father and the Son he is setting into Time, which for clarity sake must be understood is not time counted as we do. For example when the Spirit writes, ‘Now is the day of your salvation’. Salvation of man is brought into it. Saul or Paul’s conversion as he journeyed towards Damascus is covered by ‘Now’ as the time you and I accepted the call and became His children. What does that mean? Time is reset so salvation is part of the Core Will without any unseemly joint of being an afterthought or correction.

At the mouth of two or three every matter is settled. Witness of God the Father and the Son make time established and it is how we ought to approach the Bible.

Topolgy is a term belonging to the field of mathematics also in computing.  It has two meanings. One is the study of geometrical properties and spatial relations unaffected by the continuous change of shape or size of figures. 2nd meaning is the way in which constituent parts are interrelated or arranged. Topology of the Spirit refers to the manner the Spirit has rearranged two narrative bodies from God the Father and God the Son respectively into one. Time also is set by the Spirit to hold the Scripture as one single narrative. Think of the Bible as obeying the topology where we hold to the second meaning.

The Book of Zechariah mentions of the vision of a flying roll (Zech.5:1) ( Zech.5:1). Suppose we take a similar roll and were to set down the narrative from the Son and the Father along the length and breadth respectively truth of the roll is not lost. The roll can serve as ice cream cone for waffle or as dunce cap is still true since integrity of the roll is intact. The Spirit similarly fits the scriptural passages according to the purpose. Topology of the Spirit assigns God’s Time to the Father-Son relationship,- entire Will and Fulfillment, in order to fit. It is the Testimony of God set in verbal mode.

Core Will is the Testimony of God applied to the earth and mankind. Time operating here is God’s Time. In order to hold the inerrancy of the Word we are to read as the Spirit has applied it to the Scripture.

Core Will when applied to heaven and mankind ask ourselves what must take precedence God or man. Blessings always conferred from the greater to the lesser. Thus God the Son is about whom CoreWill of the Father revolves.

The Spirit while reorganizing the narrative bodies from the Father and the Son uses symbols. The Greater Light and the Lesser Light for example are symbols to indicate the Father-Son Relationship. Light radiating from heaven is for man. Light reaching other worlds besides the earth is not for man’s benefit so we may concentrate our attention on our kind.

All Scripture is intended as set forth in 2 Ti.3:16  for our correction, consolation; it is most conducive for man to be built up from examples for instruction in righteousness. For this reason the Spirit glorifies Jesus Christ above everything else. He is the key figure. (Jn.16:14) This we shall see from the first book to the last His shadow looms over everything else so we may be consoled, enthused and be instilled in virtues. To all intent and purpose God the Son who became a man makes heaven and the earth as one. His quintessence Love is the mortar that holds Core Will together.

From many examples we shall see the Spirit keeps time. Conversion of the Ethiopian eunuch owes to his direct intervention (Ac.8:29). Holy Spirit pouring over the Gentiles also owe to him (Ac.10:19).When the Spirit writes about the Lamb slain before the worlds began it is set in Time. When God warns of the death of firstborn in all Egypt we have punishment for disobedience in balance. The Son had already paid the price and it makes Punishment and Atonement in balance. So who shall accuse God of injustice?

Benny

 

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“And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not (Ch.28:16). ”

This well known story throws up some important theological concepts.

Firstly sleep is a symbol for death.

What is sleep? God caused Adam a deep sleep and he slept (Ge.2:21) The Spirit used it in the sense mentioned above.

We shall consider sleep now in normal sense. The idea here is that sleep is from God. It is a blessing. It is a rest that is a shadow of God’s Rest from his labours. He sanctified end of His Creative Day as a Holy Day. The Preacher has this verse to observe what man may rightfully claim as his due at the end of each working day. “The sleep of a labourer is sweet, whether they eat little or much, but as for the rich, their abundance permits them no sleep (Eccl5:12-NIV)”. In contrast to what God has provided for man, what is wealth but what he generates by his own efforts. This boils over even after the day is done so much so it is insomnia that he has to cope with.

Secondly it gives us an insight into God’s Time, which is how the Spirit correlates God’s Will with life of man. Time and space do not make sense for eternal God. When God visited King Abimelech in a vision and warned him on account of Sarah it was for the present. When He gave Daniel a series of visions (Dan.10-12:9) it was for ‘the time of the end.” The vision of the ladder with each rung going up to the Lord must be several events hinged on one another. Angels going up and down signifies a door has been opened for the sleeper. It is reminiscent of St John’s vision (Re.4:1-2). The Spirit gave him a foretaste of the Salvation Plan of God as it were, which in narrating is for our benefit. As soon as he woke up he realized where he was. He exclaimed, “Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not.” This indicates our foreknowledge comes from God who equips each man for His service. Gift of prophecy is a gift. Gift of interpreting is yet another. Such are gifts the Spirit distributes to each accordingly so glory of God must be set as paramount.

Thirdly we need address an often-overlooked piece, namely the stones that served Jacob as pillows.

“…He (Jacob) took stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep (28:11).”

These stones serve as a memorial. This act is to be seen as a symbolic act very similar to Joshua at the crossing of Jordan (Jos.4:23). Jacob was a man fleeing for safety and was in a strange place settling down for a night’s rest. God’s vision was a private and it was to assure His protection.

Like the Shekinah glory of God separated the mercy seat and the Ark of the Testimony from surrounding areas the vision was a memorial to him. From what Jacob did following day we get the idea as to what it meant to him. Each of us is Bethel meaning the house of God. This idea is transferred to stones that served for pillows in the night. He set the stone up and poured oil upon the top of it. ‘He called the name of that place Beth-el; but the name of that city was called Luz at the first (vs.19).’This holds spiritual significance for us. Born again experience in a child of God marks a change over from serving the world. Pouring oil over the stone naturally indicates the infilling Spirit. The following verses are of help to us.

“Know you not you are the temple of God?

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;(1 Co.6:19;3:16-NIV)”

We can well appreciate the seven churches in Asia minor were such stones as Jacob found; these local churches were not the Church of Christ but indicative of God’s Will concerning the Body of Christ.

Benny

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