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Posts Tagged ‘Benny Thomas’

Samuel Foote(1720-1777) wit
Dear Son,
I am in prison for debt; come and assist your loving mother.-E. Foote

Dear Mother,
So am I; which prevents his loving duty being paid to his loving mother.-Your affectionate son.
Samuel Foote
P.S_ I have sent my attorney to assist you; in the mean time let us hope for better days.

Living too well on oysters wine and roses is as bad as having to gnaw at the bones since dog of my Lord Hi-n-Mighty has got marrow.

But at what cost is to bay at the moon of one percenters while worms are frisky and waiting to be had, and the apple is within reach?
ii
John Ruskin (1819-1900)

John Ruskin once received a request for donation to pay off the mortgage of the Duke Street Chapel and I have given here below an excerpt of his reply. It would seem he was addressing our present world; and for those who want buy now and pay later it may even be an eye opener!
Brentwood, 19 May,1886,
Sir,
I am scornfully amused at your appeal to me, of all people in the world the precisely least like to give you a farthing! My first word to all men and boys to hear me is”Don’t get into debt. Starve and go to heaven-but don’t borrow. Try first begging_ I don’t mind if it’s really needful_stealing!. But don’t buy things you can’t pay for!”….
Isn’t it surprising how what we hold up as a virtue and a proof of a solid character is chipped away so slowly that none notices the enervation of personal values? In his essay ‘Unto This Last’ Ruskin wrote ‘There is no wealth but life.’
Dulled senses of a person who has chased a mirage at the cost of his or her personal values,-character, take the place as a slave driver. No pity or no worthwhile example but the constant goading the person to acquire branded items that he or she doesn’t really need. The victim scarcely notices what is branded right through the flesh to the spirit.

Moral: Virtues of one Age are the vices of another. Capitalism invented mass consumerism and made the bible for the lost and the damned. One only needs to see the mess we are all in.

benny

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There was once an aged king who had an only son. One day he called the prince to him and said: “Now before I die I should like to see you happily married. Get you a wife, my son.”The son seemed to be not so keen but his royal sire pressed him a key to a chamber in the palace and report back. Thus the son went to a part for so long neglected and he climber to an upper chamber where some 12 alcoves were seen. In each stood statues of princess whose cold beauty did not interest him. Before returning he saw one alcove draped over. His curiosity aroused, he parted the curtain.

H saw a princess deathly pale and trembling, who only said, “Will you not save me? Oh prince You have it in you!” With wan smile she drew out a rose from her bodice and after dropping it she disappeared.

He was intrigued and he picked up the flower. He smelled it tenderly and he was determined to leave no stone unturned in order to possess her. He went down to his father and said all that he saw. He declared, “Father I found my princess! No other will do!”Of course he did not tell the token of love in the form of a rose.

The king trembled. “My son,” he said, “you did ill to uncover what was covered and in declaring this, your choice, you have exposed yourself to a great danger. This maiden is in the power of a black magician who holds her captive in an iron castle. Of all who have gone to rescue her not one has ever returned. However, what’s done is done and you have given your word. Go, then, try what fortune has in store for you, and may Heaven bring you back safe and sound.”

So the prince bade his father farewell, and when his father kissed him tenderly he trembled, “I smell death!” Are you sure that you did not pick anything when I sent to the tower?” Unable to tell a lie he was also loath to turn back from his resolution. So quickly he mounted his horse, and rode forth to find his bride. His first adventure was to lose his way in a deep forest. He wandered about some time not knowing where to turn when suddenly he was hailed from behind with these words: “Hey, there, master, wait a minute!”

He looked around and saw a tall man running toward him.

“Take me into your service, master,” the tall man said. “If you do you won’t regret it.”

“What is your name,” the prince asked, “and what can you do?”

“People call me Longshanks because I can stretch myself out. I’ll show you. Do you see a bird’s nest in the top of that tall fir? I’ll get it down for you and not by climbing the tree either.”

That is not what I am after, the prince said and walked on with his hand easy on the reins of his horse..

Longshanks said, “very well. We are trapped in a tangle of mazes aand shall not ever get out.” Noticing interest he took prince and stretched himself to a mile or so, an the prince could have a bird’s eye view. The prince from up could plan their way out. Thus they came out to the rim where a deep valley began. As the prince wondered how to manage Longshanks said, “There comes my friend Girth.”

The new man was heavily built and round as a barrel.

“Who are you?” the prince asked. “And what can you do?”

“I am called Girth,” the man said. “I can widen myself.” I am a battering ram and as well spin as a top. In the village I come from I make cheese by wading into tanks filled with milk…” Suddenly he stopped short saying, ‘I sometimes shoot my mouth…’

“Let me see you do it,” the prince said.

“Very well, master,” said Girth, beginning to puff out, “I will. But take care! Hold on to me tight while I just let myself roll. The prince did not let go of the coat tails of Girth who rolled himself like a top and before the prince could catch his breath they were on the plains. Langshanks caught up with them and the prince’s horse in tow.

“You made me spin like a top!” the prince said. “I tell you I don’t meet a fellow like you every day! By all means join me.”

They went across the plain and as they neared the rocks they met a man whose eyes were bandaged with a handkerchief.

“Master,” said Longshanks, “there is my other comrade. Take him into your service, too, and I can tell you you won’t regret the bread he eats.”

“Who are you?” the prince asked. “And why do you keep your eyes bandaged? You can’t see where you’re going.”

“On the contrary, master, it is just because I see too well that I have to bandage my eyes. With bandaged eyes I see as well as other people whose eyes are uncovered. When I take the handkerchief off, my sight is so keen it goes straight through everything. When I look at anything intently it catches fire, and if it can’t burn, it crumbles to pieces. On account of my sight I’m called Keen.”

He untied the handkerchief, turned to one of the rocks opposite, and gazed at it with glowing eyes. Soon the rock began to crumble and fall to pieces. In a few moments it was reduced to a heap of sand. In the sand something gleamed like fire. Keen picked it up and handed it to the prince. It was a lump of pure gold.

“Ha, ha!” said the prince. “You are a fine fellow and worth more than wages! I should be a fool not to take you into my service. Since you have such keen eyes, look and tell me how much farther it is to the Iron Castle and what is happening there now.”

“If you rode there alone,” Keen answered, “you might get there within a year, but with us to help you, you will arrive this very day. Our coming is not unexpected, either, for at this very moment they are preparing supper for us.”

“What is the captive princess doing?”

“She is sitting in a high tower behind an iron grating. The magician stands on guard.”

“If you are real men,” the prince cried, “you will all help me to free her.” They agreed.

By late afternoon they had crossed the last mountain, and saw looming up ahead of them the Iron Castle. Just as the sun sank the prince and his followers crossed the drawbridge and entered the courtyard gate. Instantly the drawbridge lifted and the gate clanged shut.

They went through the courtyard and the prince put his horse in the stable, where he found a place all in readiness. Then the four of them marched boldly into the castle.

Everywhere—in the courtyard, in the stables, and now in the various rooms of the castle—they saw great numbers of richly clad men all of whom, masters and servants alike, had been turned to stone. They went on from one room to another until they reached the banquet hall. This was brilliantly lighted and the table, with food and drink in abundance, was set for four persons. They waited, expecting some one to appear, but no one came. At last, overpowered by hunger, they sat down and ate and drank most heartily.

After supper they began to look about for a place to sleep. It was then without warning that the doors burst open and the magician appeared. He was a bent old man with a bald head and a gray beard that reached to his knees. He led in a beautiful lady dressed in white with a silver girdle and a crown of pearls. Her face was deathly pale and as sad as the grave. The prince recognized her instantly and sprang forward to meet her. Before he could speak, the magician raised his hand and said:

“I know why you have come. It is to carry off this princess. She always brings captives by droves. Very well, take her on one condition. Here is a rusty wheel something similar to oil press. You must spin it in a steady tempo. Alas no one has spun it so fast.” The prince would not agree till he knew where they stood. “Aw come on, you shall see soon enough.” The prince motioned Girth who began feeling the wheel that was heavy. Finally he made the wheel spinning so fast and furious,  and the magician grinned and he jumped to a spot. To the amazement of all the magician was turning into gold! The magician laughed uproariously and said, “I got back by my youth and I claim the princess for myself!” It was a blood curdling scream. But Keen stepped forward even as the prince removed his bandage. He looked at the magician who was shrilling at the princess, ‘Where is the rose I left with you, Where is it?” Keen saw what was making him mad. In the golden body he had no heart. Meanwhile the prince took the rose out and Keen simply burned it to ashes. With a scream the magician simply collapsed like a slag. Nothing of gold but the spell was broken.

The knights who had been restored to life gathered in the hall to thank the prince for their deliverance. But the prince said to them: “You have nothing to thank me for. If it had not been for these, my three trusty servants, Longshanks, Girth, and Keen, I should have met the same fate as you.”

The prince set out at once on his journey home with his bride and his three serving men. When he reached home the old king, who had given him up for lost, wept for joy at his unexpected return.

All the knights whom the prince had rescued were invited to the wedding, which took place at once and lasted for three weeks. When it was over, Longshanks, Girth, and Keen presented themselves to the young king and told him that they were again going out into the world to look for work. The young king urged them to stay.

“I will give you everything you need as long as you live,” he promised them, “and you won’t have to exert yourselves at all.” But such an idle life was not to their liking. So they took their leave and started out again and to this day they are still knocking around somewhere.

When they were together the bride asked, “how did you know the rose was meant to break the power of the wicked magician?” He smiled and said, “Love knows much more than it can tell.”

Ack: CZECH Folk Tales:

Author: Parker Fillmore
Published: 1919
Publisher: The Quinn & Boden Company Rahway, N. J.

benny

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Just one point

Joseph who was the first son born to Rachel, and the eleventh son of Jacob. The name Joseph signified May God add to me another (Ge.30:24). Rachel meant thereby to imply that the name was drawing attention not for itself but  something looking to future. Joseph is by all accounts an antitype of Jesus. For example we have the sons of Jacob selling  their brother to the Ishmaelite-Midianite caravan for 20 pieces of silver. Consider Jesus was betrayed for 30 pieces, which of course is higher in value that owes to exchange rates of the time. “And they (chief priests) covenanted with him (Judas Iscariot) for thirty pieces of silver (Mt.26:15)”Jesus came unto his own, and his own received him not(Jn.1:11).

benny

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Alternate Facts ©

Hey Dude, wasn’t it bad?

Take a bad stance with news that bites deep;

Remember to shape it into what sounds

Almost true: you can do one better-

Hey dude, hurt is not hurt,

Leave that apart and make it fake news:

Remember no news is so true as it sounds
So you can start play with dem facts

Hey dude, photoshopping
With verve, make it stick,- crop it and paste!
The minute you have made white look black
Add your caption to make it better
Remember you cant spell right to let bad news
Get your goat! You are one helluva artist

Hey dude, don’t be afraid
You were made to make news so splash it….

benny

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My Tonsorial Musings ©

 

Imagine there’s no shavin’

It is easy if we let

No blade to hurt us;

Below nose only hair

Imagine sir,my goatee growing downwards!

Imagine there’s no saloons

It isn’t hard to do-
Barbers can take something else

Hirstute or not, they can dye

Hair,- frizz it, wave or curl!

Imagine all the people living in salons, you

You may say I’m a dreamer

But what dreams may come colour
me red,- some day you’ll understand
And the world will be all fair

Imagine no more split ends
I wonder birds nest in peace
In a beard full fathom five!

My follicles all-in health

No more wringing of hands, sir
Imagine all the birds on perch trilling, you

You may say I’m a dreamer

But what dreams may come colour
me red,- some day you’ll understand
And the world will be all fair.

(Ack: downtown music publishing)

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(This is an excerpt from my book Marginalia, a Concise Guide to the Bible- amended)

Numbers:

In Bible numbers have many uses. We see it used for rhetorical purposes. ’For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof…(Am.1: 4).This is not what we shall discuss here. Nor are we seeking any mystical system that owes to the School of Pythagoras.

Then what are numbers for? The Holy Spirit communicating with man uses mathematical concept that he can well understand. These in the Spiritual parlance are often used as symbols. We shall see the Spirit tagging ministry and fulfillment of deeds wrought through human agencies  with corresponding numbers.

Miracle of multiplying loaves:

When we examine the miracle of Jesus feeding the multitude we find that the fragments that remained were twelve baskets full (Mt.14:20).This seemingly minor detail is repeated in all the four gospels.(Jn.6:13;Lk.9:17). In the gospel of St. Mark we read the fragments of the fishes were also part of these 12 baskets (Mk.6:43). One may wonder if frugality of saving food items that are noted for their perishability is so significant to find mention in synoptic gospels? This has however a deep spiritual significance. Our free will offerings are precious in the Lord’s sight. Testimony of the Son of man in feeding the multitude was a testimony noted in heaven as well!

In the twelve stones that Joshua placed in the River Jordan where the feet of the priests bearing the ark stood, also the Holy Spirit places similar emphasis. It is an everlasting memorial. Our service to the Lord nothing of it shall be lost and death cannot dispel its sweet savour (Ro.12:1).

The numbers are used to represent specific groups. These groups also carry theological significance.

Jesus chose twelve disciples who were to spread the gospel about the kingdom of heaven among the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Later we read that he went to preach in their cities as well(Mt.11:1). Even after Judas betrayed him and forfeited his place among them we read that a substitute was found by so the number twelve remained intact. The number 12 designates the Son. ( In brackets I shall give what is to be taken with caution:  One is  God 1+2: 3 trinity and 12 the Son as reconciliation principle.)

It is the designated number for God the Son on the earth. The number is as significant as the Almighty God is symbolized by One. (Ac.1:29). Also interesting to note is the fact all the disciples gathered in the upper room on that occasion were twelve tens,-one hundred and twenty. Ministry of Jesus as the Son of man represented kingdom of heaven. He was sent by his Father for a specific purpose (Jn.3:16). His father represented the Kingdom of God into which his own kingdom must be subsumed at a later date.

Multiples of twelve bear a theological tag on the earth as well as in the City of God. Such groups of 12 in multiples of ten designate the City of God. It is not difficult to understand the significance of an hundred forty and four thousand that stood with the Lamb on the mount of Sion (Re.14:1). They were redeemed from the earth for the Kingdom of God. The symbolism of the mount, lamb and number adds to our understanding. In the new earth and the new heaven we have the city of God and the scale is given as “according to the measure of a man, that is of the angel Re.21:17” Needless to say the man is like angels in resurrection Mt.22:30)

The number 4 is the tag that connects divine intervention over the history of nations. In the Book of Zechariah we have a sign of 4 carpenters who were sent ‘to fray them (the horns)…to cast out the horns of the Gentiles, which lifted up their horn over the land of Judah to scatter it(Zech.1:21).’ In another place an angel from the Lord reveals four chariots to the prophet, who asks him what do they represent. They are four spirits of the heavens that stand before the Lord of hosts. “Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts… he(the Branch) shall build the temple of the Lord(Zech.6:12-13). We get a telescoping view of the nations of the world being pressed into the temple-building to which Jesus Christ is the head(Zech.6:15). The number signifies cardinal directions which are echoed in the heavenly host that serve the Lord God(Re.4:2-3). Also noteworthy are the four beasts that are placed there to praise the Lord God Almighty without ceasing.

Thus we may conclude the number 4 speak of heavenly agencies who either stand as a memorial before the Lord or as enforcers of the God of hosts.

This number also refers to the manner the tribes camped during their wanderings in the wilderness. In the book of Numbers thy were to pitch their tents in their designated places about the tribe of Levi (Nu.2:17). Again we see the number 4 applied to angels who stood on the corners of the earth.(Re.7:1) The beasts and the elders are tagged by the number to indicate sovereignty of God over the earth and the fullness thereof. They are memorial unto God representing man and the creatures of the earth.

In the Book of Apocalypse we read of the 24 elders which are 6 groups of 4 each and their roles are different from the twelve apostles or the tribes of Israel.

Let us turn our attention from apostles to another group of seventy. The same number we first read as the elders upon whom God distributed some of the spirit resting on Moses (Nu.11:24)

In the gospel of St. Luke we read that Jesus appointed as a second wave seventy other disciples whom he sent two by two and their message was specific: the Kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.(Lu.10:1,9).

Perfect Atonement

On one occasion Jesus fed a crowd of four thousand. We read of that what was remaining filled seven baskets( Mt.15:32-38; Mk.8:1-9).An interesting point to note is that the number of baskets same as the number of loaves offered to Jesus. In his rebuke of his disciples for their lack of understanding (Mk.8:16-21) we may infer that there is more to it than simple telling of a miracle. Seven is perfection associated with God. And he (God) rested on the seventh day from all his work… (Ge.2: 2). The seven in this case symbolizes his broken body on the cross, the perfect atonement he could offer us. (This is reprinted from my blog Guide to His Word-selected)

benny

 

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The Parable of the Prodigal Son is an illustration of God’s long-suffering nature. He gives sinners a long rope upon which some hang themselves while some, like the younger son in the parable came to realize, just the right time to find way home. Consider God as the father and here we are talking of a share the son could claim as his. God allows his material blessings for each according to his ability. The same we find while God distributed manna from His storehouse. ‘…every man according to his eating (Ex.16:18).’ Compare this with the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus(Lk.16:19-31) and we shall see what is the significance of material wealth.

Wealth is a blessing indeed. But without God such blessings can turn contrary. The son realized without the Father his lot was suddenly thrown into misery. The younger son having to satisfy with hunger with husks is one of the most pathetic scenes one could conjure up! But God in mercy uses it to open his eyes.  What did it bring to mind? “He remembered of his patiently awaiting father and decided that it was to his parental solicitude he ought to appeal. Yes he had made a dent in the material wealth created by his sire. But love that overlooked all faults of the son was yet untried. The parable reveals the son was warmly received by the father. He puts on the best robe on the son who came back from the dead.  His righteousness is what God the Father offers to every sinner who repents.

Not so lucky was the dives who wined and dined on a grand scale never minding the sign of God had set right at the gate. Lazarus was indeed a sign for the dives as the husks of grain were for the boy.

Wealth indeed is a blessing from the Lord. But we need consider our roles. God as the maker of heaven and the earth has the right to call to account how his gifts have been put to use by every one of us. No man has come with the right to enjoy wealth not belonging to him and not having justify his actions. We need not consider how wealth is created and how man tries to hold on to privileges and wealth by stealth that over the years have become a precedent. But before God  no such man made laws, of the nation can save anyone who has proved to be bad stewards. At best we are his stewards as the many parables of Jesus Christ illustrate.

God always sets signs and symbols on the material objects that man often fails to acknowledge. Rock from which the children of Israel drank was not merely rock but holds a spiritual side. Manna similarly from heaven signified something much more than the article themselves. In these two parables we can see the Spirit relying on the husks and the beggar to teach the persons concerned something profound.

Death is the last stop before hell for those who felt no conscience prick about spending wealth with such impudence and boast over what they were not entitled to use solely for their own enjoyment. The rich man  did not bring wealth at birth and neither did he care if the wealth of others passing through his hands entitled him to carry blessings as well beyond the land of the living. When we are given gifts we need accept where they are from and set before us a warning: our accountability to God and our fellowmen shall confront us one day..

Internal evidence suggests both were Jews and observed the commandments of Moses. What the younger son wasted was material aspects of his (Father’s) living. Diaspora of Jews scattered the nation of Israel to four corners of the earth and in one such places the younger son being cast into dire straits joined to a citizen who tended the swine. It was in such a circumstance he awoke himself to the spiritual aspects of his father. Love of God is one such quality material wealth throws up.

Before we move on we need consider an aspect of spiritual life not often dwelt upon. The Prodigal Son among the swine delineates how tenuous our connection in the world is and being tempted all about us. The son had to eat whatever came in hand in order to satisfy hunger. ‘Being unequalled yoked’ with ungodly in the world how often we see children of God is constrained to live like every other in order to be as one among them. Certain cultural baggage that a believer carries around is unnecessary and often a drag on his spiritual life. There was a coarsening aspect wealth brings on people that the five brothers of the dives would not have listened to him had he gone to warn them of what agony awaited them. “If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead (Lk.16:31). If wealth has deadened the soul what awaits man?

(reprinted from Guide To His Word)

benny

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