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Category Archives: history

Nahum’s Tomb

For those who may not know about this topic, we offer the following quoted information from a newsletter we receive regularly:

Not every old thing is buried deep in the dirt. The 2,700-year old tomb of the Hebrew prophet Nahum, many believe, is located in the northern Iraqi town of Al Qosh, in an abandoned synagogue which is about to collapse. A local Christian church and a restoration group based in the U.S. are trying to save and restore the synagogue.

Al-Monitor reports that the local Chaldean church put a roof over the crumbling structure a couple years ago to stop further deterioration by winter rains. This spring, a team of engineers with ARCH (Alliance for the Restoration of Cultural Heritage) traveled to Iraq to add scaffolding, ropes and support beans which should hold the structure together for at least three years while plans are made and money is raised for restoration.

The synagogue was deserted in the 1950’s when Jews left under Iraqi persecution–a response to the creation of the State of Israel, according to Al Monitor. A local Christian family was handed the keys to the synagogue and has opened it faithfully throughout three generations for visitors coming to pray at the tomb of the minor prophet Nahum, writer of the Bible’s Book of Nahum.

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2,000 year old discovery

We will let you read about it sans too many comments

http://patternsofevidence.com/blog/2018/04/06/2000-year-old-coins-found-in-jerusalem-cave/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=Thinker108JerusalemCoins&utm_term=&utm_content=&utm_campaign=Thinker108JerusalemCoins&inf_contact_key=6ef6ad25532b4f4b55580f0d8cbd14277b41b3a55b3e2013f8e0295890f0c8ae

Archaeologist Eilat Mazar and her team have discovered a trove of bronze coins and cookware in a cave at the base of Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. The discovery was made last month, on the fifth day of a new dig at the Ophel, which is mentioned in the Bible as a point of fortification.

Dr. Mazar speculates that the 7 x 14-meter cave was a hiding place for Jews seeking to escape the Roman siege and eventual sacking of Jerusalem during the First Jewish-Roman War (66–70 AD). At the end of that war, the Roman army destroyed both the city and the Second Temple built by King Herod the Great.

“It’s not a usual phenomenon that we can come to such a closed cave, untouched [for] 2,000 years, including the very last remains of life of the people who were sieged in Jerusalem, suffered in Jerusalem, till the very last minute of the Second Temple period,” The Trumpet quoted Dr. Mazar as saying.

We question the funding source since Herbert W. Armstrong was not a Christian but a cult leader.

Found in the cave with the coins were broken jars and cooking pots, and a network of tunnels with footholds and handholds carved into the walls, indicating that people seeking to escape the warfare overhead, actually moved around and lived for an extended time in this cave.

Just keep in mind that the pottery and the coins may come from different time periods. They may not make a dating case for each other

 

The Next Archaeological Discovery

There has been an interesting find in Israel. Please be advised that Israel Finkelstein is more of a Minimalist and his dating will be skewed. Given the state of modern journalism, the headline writer must have gone a bit insane. No archaeologist would be stunned by this discovery.

https://www.christianpost.com/news/discovery-3600-year-old-burial-chamber-biblical-book-revelation-city-stuns-archaeologists-221513/

Discovery of 3,600-Y-O Burial Chamber in Biblical Book of Revelation City ‘Stuns’ Archaeologists

Also the headline is not even close to being correct. It should read burial chamber found in a city mentioned in the biblical book of Revelation But that is a point for another day. Here are some details

Archaeologists now say they have discovered a tomb there from the 15th century B.C., when Megiddo was besieged for seven months by the forces of Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III, eventually surrendering. Thutmose III then moved to incorporate Canaan as a province in his empire.

Israel Finkelstein and Mario Martin of Tel Aviv University and Matthew Adams of the W.F. Albright Institute of Archaeology, who have been conducting excavations in Megiddo since 1994, first found a subterranean corridor near the Bronze Age palaces in the area leading to a burial chamber back in 2016.

The chamber contained the remains of three people, a man, a woman, and a child, who were adorned with elaborate gold and silver jewelry. The man had been crowned with a gold diadem, which suggested a high level of skill and artistry.

 

What is Missing in Education

We are not going to play favorites here as both the Christian school system and the secular one make the same mistakes. Some schools, teachers and officials are good in both systems but sadly, those are overshadowed by others who do not perform as they should. Too often, schools in both systems tend to favor teaching ideology instead of educating the students correctly. This is so in spite of the warning given in the book of James.

Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment. (NASB 3:1)

We know this as we have seen education first hand and have tracked the misdeeds of teachers, administration staff and education officials for several years. These people, even in Korea, treat students as objects not worthy of the best information possible or teaching as just another job. It is no longer a profession worthy of their best behavior, best effort, or having any character or integrity. It is now a means to an end, hopefully by padding their bank account and pension fund.

Teaching has lots a lot in recent years and there is enough blame to go around. No one group is solely to blame as all have contributed to the demise of education– even in Christian circles.Sadly, we saw this in our own undergraduate alma mater as well.Then when you see stories like the following article:

https://www.yahoo.com/news/teacher-accused-feeding-puppy-snapping-140248186.html

Teacher Accused of Feeding Puppy to Snapping Turtle in Front of Students

{and the title is enough of an example}

You know that something has been lost in teaching. It doesn’t matter the level because all levels have been infected with the same disease. In the book, Hitler Furies, a study on the female Nazis of that era, it was stated that Hitler introduced dumbing down into the German education system. It is much harder to manipulate and control educated people. The most successful educational program in the west since the 1980s has been the strategy to dumb down the students.

We have seen this first hand as well. But it was not limited to just the students who got a lack of an education. The teachers were dumbed down as well. We saw that over the years in Korea as teacher after teacher heading towards that country were not smart, lacked education and some could barely string a sentence together. There is something missing from education. Probably several elements are no longer in the profession. But again, that is not true in all cases.

As we thought about that article linked above, it was brought to our attention what God wanted done with his people. But many believers will probably miss their importance because the instructions are found in the Old Testament not the New. Non-believers won’t normally know these passages unless they read Deut.in their spare time. But then even if they do, will they believe God’s word pertaining to how their profession should be handled? It is highly doubtful.

But the book of Deut. is filled with verses providing God’s instructions on what should be taught in his people’s schools. Here are some of those verses:

“Now, O Israel, listen to the statutes and the judgments which I am teaching you to perform, so that you may live and go in and take possession of the land which the Lord, the God of your fathers, is giving you. You shall not add to the word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you (NASB 4:1-2)

See, I have taught you statutes and judgments just as the Lord my God commanded me, that you should do thus in the land where you are entering to possess it. So keep and do them, for that is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the peoples who will hear all these statutes and say, ‘Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.’ (NASB 4:5-6)

10 Remember the day you stood before the Lord your God at Horeb, when the Lord said to me, ‘Assemble the people to Me, that I may let them hear My words so they may learn to [b]fear Me all the days they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children.’(NASB 4: 10)

 “Now this is the commandment, the statutes and the judgments which the Lord your God has commanded me to teach you, that you might do them in the land where you are going over to possess it, so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. (NASB 6:1-2)

These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up (NASB 6:6-7)

And on these verses go.

God has said very clearly what he wanted taught to his people and their children. These instructions have not been voided by the New Testament.

As I urged you upon my departure for Macedonia, remain on at Ephesus so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines, (NASB 1 Tim. 1:3)

Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you (NASB 1 Tim. 4:16)

holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict. (NASB Tit. 1:9)

The firs set of verses has what is missing from teaching that takes place today in both the secular and Christian school systems.

so that you and your son and your grandson might fear the Lord your God,

The fear or respect of God is what is lacking. No one that we know of, is doing this today. God is not feared and his ways are not taught. While the secular world and some Christians run around looking for human answers to school shootings, we have that answer here from God himself. The fear of God would stop many shooters from committing their evil schemes. Plus, if they were taught the ways of God then they would know that taking a life is wrong and should not be done.

When you make God’s rules appear as human origin rules, then it is easy for people to forget about God and ignore these human based rules. If people are not taught God’s ways, instructions and commands, how will they learn how to live properly? Ho will they treat their fellow human correctly if they do not know the better way to live?

These lessons start in the home where the parents teach it to their children and their grandchildren. Eventually, those lessons will reach politics, science, education and so on. God’s OT instructions and commands are not just for an Old Testament group of people who lived 4000 years ago. We bring the fear of God back to the lives of families, education and so on then we bring back the other missing elements in education.

You may ask what are we doing about this instead of just posting the thoughts God wants us to share on the internet? We have lived these principles in Korea as we taught. We had problems, criticism, attacks, but in the end, because we obeyed God and taught the way he wanted us to teach, we were rewarded as well. Maybe someday we will post some pictures recording those rewards.

We have been preaching in the Philippines using God ways. Now we have been asked to be the preacher of one church full-time as well as start a new Bible College. We opted for the latter. We are working on setting up a new Bible college that will have God’s instructions as the guiding force behind our teaching. Do not worry we do not plan on asking for money. We will need books though, lots of them. We will make that request when the time is right. Eventually we will be looking for teachers but that is a ways down the road. We will need prayer as well.

But we do what we can to practice what we are teaching in these web pages. This means we may not have time to post here but that remains to be seen. Christians need to take action and it is not done by teaching interpretation or ideology. It is done by following the Holy Spirit to the truth. Then accepting that truth and teaching it to others.

If you want a better education system, then it begins with the fear of God.

 

We Read The Headlines

But it is impossible for us at this time to address every pertinent issue that the church faces. In this article, we hope to address 3 issues that do or will affect the Church in general.

#1. Believers & Unbelievers

https://www.christianpost.com/news/stephen-hawking-nothing-existed-before-big-bang-christian-astrophysicist-hugh-ross-220309/

This article warrants being included here because it deals with an important Christian issue. Believers have been warned by God in the Bible not to walk in the counsel of the ungodly and changing views about creation to the secular ideas is walking in the counsel of the ungodly. It does not matter what secular position a person holds or the amount of their education they have or the number of experiments they have conducted.

What matters is if their thinking lines up with God or not. If they say that God is wrong and that what he wrote in the Bible is in error, then those people are not to be followed and their views are not to be accepted. Both Mr. Hawking and Mr. Ross hold alternative views to God and the Bible and while the latter claims to be a Christian, his views cast doubt on that claim.

People like Mr. Ross embrace John 3:16 because it gives them a feeling of acceptance, salvation and an escape from hell. But they do not like Genesis 1 because it contradicts what secular science is saying about our origins.While they try to shoe horn God into the secular scientific models on our origins,they are merely exposing their unbelief.

Why would men and women like Mr. Ross want to believe in John 3:16 since it was written by the same God who they claim made errors in Genesis 1 or did not tell us the truth about his creative act?

This is the issue for the Church. How can they bring people to Christ if they say that the same God they want unbelievers to embrace does not tell the truth? How can anyone have confidence in John 3:16 if Genesis 1 is faulty? How can anyone trust that God?

The church has failed its people, they have failed unbelievers, and they have failed God when they send this type of message to the world. It is no wonder so many false religions and faulty denominations exist and it is no wonder that many supposedly Christian denominations embrace evil. They have been taught that the God of the Bible is wrong.

They have seen that the very people claiming to believe God and his word, do not believe God and his word. Who wants to join a church that does not believe their God? They create their own religions to find that perfect God who loves and accepts them as well as tell the truth about himself.

The church is not to walk in the counsel of the ungodly because the ungodly are the ones who are blind, deceived, lost and in need of a savior. The church is none of those things if they follow God correctly. The church is the light to the world not the other way around. The church cannot be the light if they do not believe God.

#2. Billy Graham

There are numerous stories published about Mr. Graham and while we have not always agreed with his point of view, we are grateful that he was the man he was. But we have concerns about what is happening since his passing. One article talks about his legacy. Another talks about how some misguded Christians are trying to get a holiday named after him.

https://www.christianpost.com/news/prophet-american-civil-religion-historians-billy-graham-legacy-220298/

https://www.christianpost.com/news/petition-billy-graham-holiday-gets-over-100000-signatures-220465/

Both articles show some misguided thinking. While Mr. Graham was a man of God, he was not his creation. He was a man-made by God and that is where our focus should lie. We disagree with the idea that a national holiday should be named after him because that distracts people from Jesus and places their attention on a human who served God faithfully.

We already have 2 national holidays in honor of Christ, Christmas and Easter. A third honoring God’s servant would not help. This brings us to Mr. Graham’s legacy. There are biblical scholars and others who are debating this topic right now. But to us his legacy is clear. Mr. Graham was an evangelist who humbly obeyed God.

That brings the focus back to where it belongs. On the God behind the man. Without God Mr. Graham would not have achieved what he did. While we are grateful that Mr. Graham lived his life the way he did, we cannot take our eyes off of God and place it on a human being. When we do that we sink in the faith and fail to see who God is and what he can do through us.

It also creates an unrealistic standard that is impossibe for most humans to meet. We remember back to our undergrad days where there were some students who did not meet the accepted vision of what constitutes a full time Christian worker. They were ultimately denied licensing wwith the denomination because they did not meet what the authorities of the denomination thought should be the public face of the Church.It was a sad situation, one that does not seem to have been rectified.

Part of Mr. Graham’s legacy shows us that God will use those whom religious leaders reject. Remember that Mr. Graham was rejected by Bob Jones Sr. His legacy tells us to look on people as God sees them and instead of applying our own ideas and standards, we see what we can do to help those humanly rejected candidates achieve what God wants them to do.

Obedience to God is important and Mr. Graham has shown what takes place when a man humbly obeys God. If Mr. Graham can do it, then so can most other believers. Jesus’ statement that we would do greater works than he, was limited to only those each denomination finds acceptable.

On another note but related, is the topic of this article

https://www.christianpost.com/news/billy-kim-the-billy-graham-of-asia-inducted-into-nrb-hall-of-fame-220454/

We are sure the man is worthy of the honor but we are not happy that the Church has copied the secular world and created a hall of fame.If the church wants to make an impact for Chrst, it should stop copying the secular world and live as Christ instructed.

As this article shows

https://www.christianpost.com/news/cma-denomination-decides-not-to-discipline-ravi-zacharias-over-credentials-illicit-relationship-220615/

men of God make mistakes. That is why we are to focus on the God behind the man.

#3. Artificial Intelligence {AI}

We are sure that you have heard aboout or read the numerous articles on this new technology. What is developing is a wide application for these new robots. From flipping burgers to driverless cars and trucks.

https://www.christianpost.com/news/ai-robotic-arm-takes-over-grill-california-fast-food-chain-220620/

We do not like driverless vehicles and think that is one area of life that should be off-limits to AI. We may be a little biased as we love to drive. We also do not like robots cooks and we have written about how science and scientists have never been accused of being good cooks. We will avoid restaurants that rely on science to prepare their foods.

But one really important issue has begun to emerge in the AI discussion. That is how AI relates to the church.

https://www.christianpost.com/news/10-commandments-of-artificial-intelligence-top-bishop-issues-list-warns-of-power-to-destroy-220431/

This bishop has proposed his 10 commandments to govern AI development, application and use. But he is a bit idealistic. While it may be nice to have robots do what the church wants, the church must remember that AI has no soul, it has no life and it is created by fallible, deceived, sinful, non-perfect people. It does not understand morality, right and wrong or good and evil. It is a slave to its programming. AI cannot make moral decisions.

If you click enough links at CP you will find another article stating that Dan Brown claims that AI will replace God? How can that be? AI is a human creation, it is not eternal, perfect, holy nor does it offer a plan of salvation. It also does not heal the sick, help the poor, feed the hungry and so on. It does what its masters tell it to do. That creation cannot replace God, even though there is a former Google executive who is trying to register an AI church.

This, then, brings up the question about AI developing life and taking over the world. It is a scenario offered by many top scientists and billionaires. The answer to that paranoia is that AI cannot develop life nor turn itself into life. God did not give the power to create life to humans. That remains in his domain only. Inanimate objects also do not have the power to make itself into a life form.

Anyone who thinks it can is being deceived or misguided. The creation of life is not in the hands of unbelieving scientists. Should Christians jump on the AI bandwagon? No. Robots cannot replace humans in what God wants humans to do. Robots are programmed machines not independently thinking human beings. If anything Christians should be looking for the truth in this issue and seek to influence AI development so that the evil people of this world do not use AI to further their nefarious schemes.

This is the last thing we are prepared to say on this issue at this time. AI makes it easier for one person or a minority of people to rule the world. It is not AI that you have to be afraid of. It is the sinful people behind AI that you should be concerned about. They are ruled by evil not God and that relationship only means trouble for God’s creation.

 

Biblical Discovery

In reading about the upcoming biblical discovery, we already know the arguments against its identification Why do we know this? Because of the person who is making the identification.

https://www.christianpost.com/news/signature-biblical-prophet-isaiah-predicted-jesus-discovered-2700-year-old-seal-219150/

Mrs. Eliat Mazar is known to work with a religious group whose agenda is to prove everything biblical. Not that such an agenda is wrong, It is sometimes such focus just gets in the way of proper identification. here is an example:

One obstacle to confirming the identity of the signature, she explained, is that the word “prophet” is not legible on the bulla.

The questions that come to mind upon reading this comment are: why would Isaiah identify himself as a prophet? Wouldn’t that be redundant since everyone at that time knew he was one? How can they prove this identification and on it goes. Another example,

Finding this bulla leads us to consider the personality and the proximity of the prophet Isaiah as one of the closest advisors to King Hezekiah

What this demonstrates is that archaeologists are unaware of the role prophets played. There are numerous explanations as to why the two bulla would be found next to each other and none of them would point to Isaiah being a close advisor. Even with that said, the bulla does represent that Isaiah was a name used at the time the Bible said it was. That counts for something.

Archaeology does not disprove the Bible at all.

 

Egyptian Discovery

It looks like the Egyptians have uncovered a cemetery dating to just before Alexander’s  conquest.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/ancient-egypt-newly-discovered-2-161838651.html

here is the title of the article:  Ancient Egypt: Newly Discovered 2,000-Year-Old Tomb Contains Mummy of High Priest and 40 Sarcophagi

The previously unknown complex—located in the Minya region, south of the capital Cairo—consists of a vast network of burial shafts inside which a number of people are buried in 40 limestone sarcophagi of different shapes and sizes…

According to hieroglyphics found on jars in the priest’s tomb, he was one of the “Great Five”—the most important of Thoth’s priests. Gruesomely, four of these alabaster jars contained the preserved organs of the holy man.

 

 
 
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