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Friday, May 09, 2014

The Theology of Unclean Food

Gordon J. Wenham


The problem of unclean foods was at the heart of the first great controversy in the early church (Acts 15). Did Gentile believers have to be circumcised and keep the laws of Moses about food? The conclusions of the council of Jerusalem are recorded in Acts, but there is little explanation of the theological reasoning behind the decisions. Commentators therefore tend to regard the decree (Acts 15:19-20) as little more than a pragmatic compromise between Judaizers and Hellenists.1

Since the theological principles determining the division of animals into clean and unclean are so obscure in the OT, it is not surprising that NT scholars have only been able to discern pragmatic reasons for the abolition of the distinction. Recent discussion of the OT material has at last brought some semblance of order into the apparent chaos of the food laws in Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14. These insights, it will be suggested, may also provide a clue to the thinking of the primitive church on these controversial issues.


I. TRADITIONAL EXPLANATIONS OF THE FOOD LAWS
1. Hygiene
Despite its inherent attractiveness the hygienic explanation faces four grave difficulties.3 First, other peoples have held and hold certain animals to be unclean, yet their demarcations seldom coincide with the biblical. Second, it is far from clear that all unclean animals mentioned in Leviticus are harmful to health. For. example, the Arabs have long enjoyed the camel and its products. As for pork, if it is supposed that  ancient Israel had discovered the risks in eating it, they could also have learnt that these risks could be avoided by cooking it thoroughly. Third, though motive clauses justifying particular rules are frequent in biblical law, there is no appeal to health in connection with the food rules. Yet this would surely have constituted an excellent reason for keeping them had it been recognized. Instead the motive clauses explain that certain animals may not be eaten, because of the way they travel or their eating habits (Lev. 11:3-12, 20-23, 26-31, etc.). Finally, if hygiene was the motive underlying the OT regulations, why did the early church allow their abolition in the first century AD? What was harmful when Leviticus 11 was drafted, would have been just as dangerous in the days of the early church.
2. Religious Associations
The above article is extracted from  "The Theology of Unclean Food" by Gordon J. Wenham,  Evangelical Quarterly 53.1 (January/March 1981): 6-15.







Probably the most popular explanation of the food laws is hygiene. The unclean animals were recognized by the ancients as a danger to health, and were therefore pronounced unclean. This explanation is a very old one, but enjoyed its greatest vogue at the beginning of this century, with the great advances in medical knowledge. Moses was hailed as anticipating the findings of modern science. It still has its advocates today. R. E. Clements writes: “What we have here is a simple and comprehensive guidebook to food and personal hygiene.”2


The second kind of explanation of the food laws is that the unclean animals were closely associated with non-Israelite religion.4 They were either used in sacrifice or the deities were supposed to manifest themselves in animal form. Israel was called to be the holy people of God and had therefore to disassociate itself from these pagan practices. For example, Isa. 65:4speaks of people “who sit in tombs... who eat swine’s flesh”. And at various sites collections of pig bones have been found, which lends support to the notion that the pig was eaten in Canaanite rituals.5 Other animals banned as unclean by Leviticus were worshipped by the Egyptians. This explanation of the distinction between clean and unclean animals has the merit of noting the biblical writers’ insistence that these regulations are designed to further the ideal of creating a holy nation (Lev. 11:44-5; Deut. 14:2). But its major weakness is that it can only explain a few of the regulations. In general, Israel used much the same animals for sacrifice as her neighbours. If use in contemporary religions were ground for making animals unclean, the bull should have been an abomination in Israel in view of its role in Canaanite and Egyptian culture. Yet in Israel the bull was the best and most valued of the sacrificial animals. ( Continue Reading - PLS CLICK HERE)

What Would Jesus Eat? The Science Within the Bible

With historical interpretation, experts can go back and assess how people lived during Jesus' time. What did He most likely eat? Could we follow His example for better health?

jesus-fishing

AJ Jacobs, author of The Year of Living Biblically, and Dr. Don Colbert both studied the bible for nutritional clues about Jesus’ diet.

How Was His Food Different?

People back in Jesus’ time ate a mostly plant-based, clean diet. In that region of the world, lentils, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, dates, nuts and fish were all quite popular. For snacks, some even ate grasshoppers and crickets! All these foods provided proper and satisfying nutrition without excess fats or cholesterol.

Many ate most of their food raw, which also bestows additional health benefits. The additional chewing that raw food requires burns additional calories. Plus, cooking certain foods puts its nutritional value at risk.

Also, without refrigerators, it was harder to eat huge steaks, slabs of ribs, or massive amounts of meat at every single meal. Hence, it’s likely that Jesus and his followers ate little red meat or poultry.

Furthermore, Jacobs and Colbert believe not only that the people of Jesus’ time ate a more plant-based diet, they also think that our bodies were designed to eat a mostly plant-based diet – similar to what Jesus ate.

How Does Science Show This?

To assess how our bodies are potentially designed to eat, scientists have studied our dental records and concluded that humans are more suited for a plant-based diet with little meat – especially red meat.

In our mouths, we have four canine teeth, eight frontal teeth and many molars, depending on your dental history.

Our four canine teeth are designed to tear meat apart. More of this type of teeth is prevalent in the mouths of carnivores like alligators, wolves or sharks.

Our eight frontal teeth, also known as incisors, are used to bite fruits and vegetables.
The majority of our teeth, however, are molars, which are located toward the back of the mouth. They are used to grind and crush plants and seeds.

Because the majority of our teeth are molars, Dr. Colbert believes that our bodies are mostly designed for a plant-based diet. Carnivores, on the other hand, have much more than four canine teeth and have jaws that are designed to bite off chunks of meat.

Furthermore, our saliva is alkaline and full of enzymes, like amylase, that are designed to process plants and carbohydrates. After analyzing this and comparing it with other animals, Dr. Colbert postulates that this means we are more suited to digest plants instead of meat. Carnivores, on the other hand, have mostly acidic saliva without amylase.

Also, after comparing the length of our intestines with that of carnivores, Dr. Colbert has also postulated that we are designed to eat mostly plants. Our intestines are four times longer than we are tall. In carnivores, on average, their intestines are only twice as long as their height. This allows for meat to pass through the digestive tract quickly before it starts to rot.

Our longer tract, however, allows for more time to process the complex carbohydrates within plants. However, as we eat meat with little fiber, especially red meat, it has a higher chance of getting stuck within our intestines – causing constipation or bloating. In fact, because Jesus and people around Him ate a mostly plant-based diet with little red meat, there’s little mention of “constipation” in the bible.

How Can I Eat More Like Jesus?

Based on the Bible and historical records, Jesus most likely ate a diet similar to the Mediterranean diet, which includes foods like kale, pine nuts, dates, olive oil, lentils and soups. They also baked fish.

AJ Jacobs and Dr. Colbert have both teamed up with The Dr. Oz Show to develop a set of guidelines for eating more like Jesus:

1. Calculate Your Breakfast Time and "Break Your Fast" Accordingly: Jesus ate breakfast very early so he could have the energy and fuel for a full day’s work. You should be breaking your fast every morning 12 hours after your last meal the previous day. If you had you dinner at 6 p.m., you should break your fast the next morning at 6 a.m.

2. Linger Over Lunch: Many people rush through lunch, eat at their desks at work, and wolf down their food. The key to eating like Jesus is making lunch your biggest meal and eat in as much of a relaxed atmosphere as possible.

3. Eat a Light Dinner at 4 p.m.: Your digestive system should not have to work on overdrive when you should be sleeping. Eat dinner as early in the evening as possible.

4. Wine and Walk: This should not be confused with wining and dining. Wine played an important role in Jesus’ life and health. They drank red wine with meals. It’s good for the heart. But don't overdo it!

Source: Doctoroz.com

The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs can be read here. Pls Click here to download (pdf format. Adobe Acrobat Reader maybe needed to read the file.)

Thursday, May 08, 2014

If Predestination is True--Why Pray?

James51618

An objection has been raised which is very ancient indeed, and has a great appearance of force. It is raised not so much by sceptics, as by those who hold a part of the truth; it is this—that prayer can certainly produce no result, because of the decrees of God have settled everything, and those decrees are immutable. Now we have no desire to deny the assertion that the decrees of God have settled all events. It is our full belief that God has foreknown and predestinated everything that happened in heaven above or in the earth beneath, and that the foreknown station of a reed by the river is fixed as the station of a king, and "the chaff from the hand of the winnower is steered as the stars in their courses."

Predestination embraceth the great and the little, and reacheth unto all things; the question is, wherefore pray? Might it not as logically be asked, wherefore breathe, eat, move, or do anything? We have an answer which satisfies us, namely, that our prayers are in the predestination, and that God has as much ordained his people's prayers as anything else, and when we pray we are producing links in the chain of ordained facts. Destiny decrees that I should pray—I pray; destiny decrees that I shall be answered, and the answer comes to me.

Moreover, in other matters we never regulate our actions by the unknown decrees of God; as for instance, a man never questions whether he shall eat or drink, because it may or may not be decreed that he shall eat or drink; a man never enquires whether he shall work or not on the ground that it is decreed how much he shall do or how little; as it is inconsistent with common sense to make the secret decrees of God a guide to us in our general conduct, so we feel it would be in reference to prayer, and therefore still we pray. But we have a better answer than all this. Our Lord Jesus Christ comes forward, and he says to us this morning, "My dear children, the decrees of God need not trouble you, there is nothing in them inconsistent with your prayers being heard. 'I say unto you, ask, and it shall be given you.' " Now, who is he that says this? Why it is he that has been with the Father from the beginning—"the same was in the beginning with God" and he knows what the purposes of the Father are and what the heart of God is, for he has told us in another place, "the Father himself loveth you."

Now since he knows the decrees of the Father, and the heart of the Father, he can tell us with the absolute certainty of an eye-witness that there is nothing in the eternal purposes in conflict with this truth, that he that asketh receiveth, and he that seeketh findeth. He has read the decrees from the beginning to end: hath he not taken the book, and loosed the seven seals thereof, and declared the ordinances of heaven? He tells you there is nothing there inconsistent with your bended knee and streaming eye, and with the Father's opening the windows of heaven to shower upon you the blessings which you seek. Moreover, he is himself God: the purposes of heaven are his own purposes, and he who ordained the purpose here gives the assurance that there is nothing in it to prevent the efficacy of prayer. "I say unto you." O ye that believe in him, your doubts are scattered to the winds, ye know that he heareth your prayer. 

By Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

How God Relates to Evil in the Book of Job

Hee Sung Lee, Chongshin University, Korea, goodnews21c@yahoo.co.kr

JobEviland Suffering The evil that befell righteous Job causes controversy among scholars, questioning whether it was from God or from Satan. Classical theists argue that God is the first and primary cause of every occurrence in the world. They unanimously claim God never takes risks concerning evil. While the notion of Satan as the archenemy of God in the prologue is not compelling, the malicious evil character of Satan is. Even though his role and identity in the prologue is somewhat ambiguous, the text clearly demonstrates that the activity of Satan, which is confined to the prologue, is restricted to God’s permission. More...

How does God relate to evil and suffering in the book of Job? Different understandings of the providence of God, creaturely freedom, and evil have given rise to a number of responses. The Calvinist model of God’s providence maintains that everything is determined by God and divinely ordained. The openness of God model argues that both God’s knowledge of the future and his ability to control every event are limited and contingent upon the actions of his creatures to whom he gave freedom. However the prologue of Job (2:1 and 2:10) clearly demonstrates that the activity of Satan is restricted to God’s permission. As far as the author of Job was concerned, God exercises absolute control over Satan, suffering and evil. - MORE READ THE WHOLE ARTICLE HERE.(pdf format. Adobe Reader maybe required to read the article.) The whole article can also be downloaded from Torch Trinity Graduate University. - Pls Click Here.

This Faith That You Gave Me (A Prayer)

Eph. 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Phil 1:29 For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake...

2 Pet 1: 1 To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ...

Phil 1: 6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.

John 6: 39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day. 40 For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”

John 10: 26 but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.

Heb 12: 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith...

8457759_f520

THE FAITH YOU GAVE ME (A Prayer) by John Samson

"Lord, I thank you for this confidence I have in You, Your Person, Your word, Your promises. I thank You for this because it was not anything of my own doing, but from first to last, Your gift to Me.

I once thought that the grace was your part, the faith my own, but now, through Your word, I see that You gave me faith as a gift - yes, You gave me the gift of trust, the gift of confidence, the gift of an assurance that You are true, that You are all You say you are, and that You will do all You say. Oh, how I thank You for this! Left to myself I would never have come to You, would never have trusted You, and I would never know the assuring, priceless comfort of Your promises. But You did not leave me to myself, but you granted me faith to believe You and when I did so, You justified me forever.

I know that faith is simply a belief in You, a faith that does indeed lead to action on my part. Romantic feelings between couples ebb and flow and my fear was that what I feel about You today may not last forever. How this fear robbed me of sacred and blessed assurance - the assurance of my salvation. Could I keep this thing up? Would I feel the same thing next Friday as I do today? Would I really? Really would I?

Now I know that You complete every project You start. This faith is much more than a feeling, but a sure and steadfast confidence that Your promises are true. You are the ground and depth of my faith. It is You (not me) who began the good work in me and therefore You will bring it all the way to completion. By Your grace I will be found trusting You ten thousand Fridays from now. The faith that You require is the faith You Yourself gave me, and this faith is not a casual temporal interest in You, but a faith that endures all the way to the end. That is its very nature.

Oh, how this knowledge thrills my soul. My faith is not the product of my prone to wandering heart, but the gift of a Sovereign and sure Savior. I once thought that the one thing I brought to the table of redemption was my puny but hoping faith... now I see that this faith I have was something You gave me. It is as strong and eternal as You are, unshakable in the midst of trial... a constant sure thing when all around me fails!

And even when my faith seems to fail... even when I might lose sight of You and even deny You by my words or my actions, and start walking in another direction, like Peter before me, you pray for me that my faith would not fail and I am turned around so that I see You once again. You do this Lord, over and over again, and that is why You never lose any of Your true sheep.

Oh how this truth sets me free... Salvation is truly of the Lord.

Lord, when I feel weak and when faith seems to be failing, I now know that all I need do is look away from Me and look instead to You. You will help me to look up and see You, Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith. Yes, yes, yes, You are the source of my faith. You are faith's initiator and perfecter. Though frail and tiny, my faith looks to You now and will always look to You to find a God big enough and trustworthy enough to rest in. I do believe You Lord and I know I always will. This is not because of some feeling I have, but because Your word teaches me that my confidence in You is the gift of God, not as a result of works, so that for even this, I cannot boast.

Oh how I love You Lord. Oh, how I love You."

More on Prayer @REFORMATION THEOLOGY - PLS CLICK HERE.

 

Monday, May 05, 2014

Another Jesuit and Masonic Deception April 2014

The Perfect Spiritual Con of the Millennia – Create fake religious freedom, then create the idea of “Spiritual Racism” to silence the Christians

Matthew 10:34-38 - “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.

37 He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.

38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me.“

For all those who have been following this blog, you can clearly see I had recently taken up the subject of “religious freedom“. Even though I have discussed this subject before going back to 2012 and 2013, this time was different. I knew the Lord wanted me on this and now I know why or least have a better understanding of why. So lets lay this thing out.

Whenever the Freemasons and Jesuits scheme up a “religious freedom” idea, you already know it’s not from the Lord because they are already under Satan’s power (Acts 26:18). We may not get it right off the bat, it may take some fasting and praying but if we keep seeking the Lord on the matter, the Lord will give us the spiritual discernment we need to see what Satan is doing through these guys.

What happened? A macro view of a “Spiritual Con”

Christians come to America to escape England
Freemasons/Jesuits come to America and set up “religious freedom” so they can do what they want to do. In doing this they give the open worship of all false gods the “green light” and call it “freedom” even though it’s actually further bondage spiritually.
The Freemasons/Jesuits “leveled” the spiritual “playing field” by doing this
Then advance 225+ years later with the term “racism” firmly planted in the minds of the population
Next roll out the idea of “spiritual racism” to anyone who won’t unite with Rome
Label all Christians opposing Rome as “spiritual racists“
You know the next step will be anyone who speaks out against any other religion will be called “spiritual racists“
Here is a short video clip of Tony Palmer introducing the NWO concept of “spiritual racism” -

When you listen to this, you will hear pure evil. Especially starting around the 1:30 time mark. Very demonic.





YOUTUBE VID: Another ,Jesuit ,and, Masonic, Deception ,April, 2014


http://youtu.be/f90MrKgtS90



Tony Palmer – “Spiritual racism is a sin”



So if you don’t unite with Rome, you are sinning.



Matthew 24:9 - “Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for My name’s sake.“

John 16:2 - “They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.“

So let’s see what they did -

The US Constitution promoted the, “all roads lead to God” concept and makes it so nobody is persecuted
Then over time as the minds of people are being introduced to new ideas, the term “racism” enters the public discussion vocabulary
The term “racism” is then used in the public discussion on regular basis with a very negative connotation
Now Satan plants in the minds of Tony Palmer, the Vatican, and the NWO the term “spiritual racism” for those who will not unite with Rome
Do you see what Satan has done? The table has been set for Christians in America.

The opening image of the tidal wave of Christians embracing the whole “religious freedom” concept is about to hit. They are going to have to make a choice as to whom they are going to serve.

highway-to-hell

 

The “pursuit of happiness” is probably going to direct much of their thinking and their sinful flesh may win.



Instead of being like the Apostle Paul (filled with the Holy Spirit) in Acts 14:15 telling the truth and getting beaten for it (who would be called a “spiritual racist“), the church is going to join just so they can have peace. If there was a time to witness a “strong delusion“, this is it.



DOCTRINE IS ESSENTIAL



Romans 16:17-18 - “Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.



18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple (gullible).”



Ephesians 4:13-14 - “Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:



14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind ofdoctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive”



Faith come by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. The “UNITY OF THE FAITH” is on the Word of God. Not UNITY with Rome.



1 Timothy 4:13 - “Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.”



1 Timothy 4:16 - “Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee.”



Conclusion



Obviously the whole “religious freedom” was a scam from the beginning because Christians already had religious freedom. Stephen had religious freedom as he was being killed and Jesus gave us religious freedom all the way to the death.



masonic-jesuit-rel-free



norman-rocwell-rel-free



Buy War Bonds to save “freedom of worship” WOW!!

Norman Rockwell was a Freemason by the way (SOURCE)

Now we see more clearly why Satan directed the Freemasons and Jesuits to “level the spiritual playing field” and come up with the concept “pursuit of happiness“. It was a set up from the very beginning to “hook” Christians in to a cushy sinful flesh lifestyle and then roll out the term “spiritual racism“.

If Christians want to continue the American cushy sinful flesh lifestyle, they will have to join with Rome in order to avoid being labeled a “spiritual racist“.

The time of decision is now. Here comes the tidal wave.

Matthew 7:21-27 - “Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven.

22 Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? and in Thy name have cast out devils? and in Thy name done many wonderful works?

23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from Me, ye that work iniquity.

24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

 

american-seducing-spirit

 

The Declaration of Independence states “pursuit of happiness” while the Bible says –



Proverbs 11:19-20 – “As righteousness tendeth to life: so he that pursueth evil pursueth it to his own death.”



20 They that are of a froward (perverse) heart are abomination to the LORD: but such as are upright in their way are his delight.”



Jeremiah 17:9 – “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”



Much of what is “pursuing happiness” today is evil, it’s no secret. So the spiritual set up is set up and operational.



Telling people that are not born-again but are actually under Satan’s power to “pursue happiness” is encouraging them to pursue evil because so much evil (like abortions, Satan worship, etc.) is legal.



So right now, open Satan worship or any false god, fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence (desire), and covetousness are a “built in” part of the American Dream.



Many American Christians are still unknowingly standing on the Freemason/Jesuit sand foundation while they are believing they are standing upon the Rock. Embracing the “trust of men” and the documents they produced.



When the “tidal wave” hits, they will fall.



We want to thank our brothers & sisters in other parts of the world for praying for us so we could see the blinding spiritual predicament we are in over here in America. Your prayers are paying off. Thank-you.



SOURCE: Ephesians 5:11 Blog



 
 
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