TESTIMONY TO TRUTH
THE DREAM AND THE REALITY
compiled by Dee Finney
9-29-02 - DREAM - I was out in the country, walking down a road, going to meet my Father, when I saw a an old man come down an adjoining road on a motorcycle. Just as the man came to the intersection, he hit a small hillock on the corner of the intersection because he cut the corner too short. When he hit the hillock, he bounced over it, hit another hillock and then crashed and slid his motorcycle along the road on its side and he died.
There were witnesses to the accident besides myself. My Father saw it happen, as well as my cousin Paul, who is about the same age as myself. The man's son also saw the accident.
The man's son immediately blamed my cousin Paul and had him arrested and jailed. The penalty for this accident was death, so knew I was going to have to testify for Paul, because I knew the truth.
I was thinking about this again as my Father and I were again walking down a hill towards the scene of the accident. My Father pointed out to me where he had seen the accident occur. He pointed to the wrong spot on the opposite side of the road from where the motorcycle had hit the hillock to start with.
I went ahead of my Father to point out to him exactly which hillock the motorcycle had hit because since the accident, the grass had grown over part of the road and the scene didn't look exactly like it had earlier in time.
As I neared the corner where the accident occurred, I saw a huge tree fall in the woods to my right. The branches were already cut off the tree, as were the roots and stump, so only the trunk was falling. I walked faster to get away from the falling tree trunk and saw another tree trunk fall nearby.
I hadn't heard the sound of a logger's saw, these trees were falling on their own.
I was standing at the intersection and looked back up the road towards where my Father was slowly coming down the hill behind me.
I couldn't believe my eyes, but more and more cut tree trunks without branches or roots were falling on the road behind my Father and coming close to hitting him and killing him, but not only that, huge brown grizzly bears were coming down the road behind my Father too. They had been frightened out of the forest by the numerous falling cut trees, which were continuing to fall.
My Father was too far away for me to holler at him that he should hurry or the trees or the bears were going to kill him. How could he not know that he was in danger of being killed? But he didn't walk any faster.
There was an old barn right next to where I was standing and I was ready to provide shelter to my Father just by opening the door on the barn, when he got to the intersection. But then I saw one of the bears pick up my Father, hold him up in the air, shake him, and put him back on the ground.
My Father still didn't look afraid as more and more tree trunks fell and slid down the road behind him and more and more bears came down the road out of the forest. He didn't walk any faster either. It was like there was a timing to this and he wasn't going to hurry it out of fear.
The huge bear again picked up my Father with his huge clawed paws and held him up in the air -
I was waiting then, watching - fearing my Father's death and woke up - remembering the silent scene - remembering that all those trees fell in silence - there had never been a sound.
Paul's first missionary journey (46-48 A.D.) was the shortest, in time and distance, of the first three, but it was nevertheless a very significant development in the history of the new Christian church. It established Paul as a leader in the spreading of The Word of God. He went on to write a large portion of the New Testament
Paul who was then still called Saul, Barnabas, and Mark sailed across to Cyprus, some 80 miles to the south-west. At this point in time, Barnabas was still the senior member over Paul, who was a relative newcomer after his conversion on the road to Damascus.
After landing at Salamis, and proclaiming The Word of God in the synagogues (Acts 13:5), they traveled along the entire southern coast of the island of Cyprus until they reached Paphos (Acts 13:6). There, Sergius Paulus, the Roman proconsul, was converted after Paul rebuked the evil Sorcerer Elymas (Acts 13:6-12). It was at that point that Paul effectively became the leader. He was from then on called Paul, rather than his former name, Saul.
From Paphos they then sailed north up to the Asian mainland in what is today Turkey. They traveled the short distance up the river Cestrus to Perga in Pamphylia (Acts 13:13), where Mark left them and returned to Jerusalem.
Paul and Barnabas then continued inland for about 100 miles (160 kilometers), up to Pisidian Antioch. Many were converted by Paul when he made his first recorded address there (Acts 13:16-51). Not long afterward however, they encountered persecution from certain people who refused to hear the gospel. After being expelled from the region, "they shook the dust from their feet in protest against them and went to Iconium." (Acts 13:51)
After traveling southeast to Iconium, they again made many converts among Jews and Gentiles (Acts 14:1), but they were again persecuted. This time they would have been killed (Acts 14:5) if they hadn't discovered the plot and fled quickly from the city (Acts 14:6).
From there they continued southward to Lystra where they again made converts (Acts 14:8). Unfortunately, the people of the city, who were accustomed to idolatry, went too far in their esteem for Paul and Barnabas, who they proclaimed as "gods." (Acts 14:11-18). Paul and Barnabas quickly tried to explain that they were merely men sent to teach, but it didn't go over very well with a number of the people. Some of the persecutors from Antioch and Iconium had followed them and incited the crowd. Paul was stoned, dragged out of the city, and left for dead. "But after the disciples had gathered around him, he got up and went back into the city. The next day he and Barnabas left for Derbe." (Acts 14:20).
After preaching the good news in Derbe, they then returned back along their entire route, through Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, "appointing elders for them in each church" (Acts 14:23). They then continued southward through the regions of Pisidia and Pamphylia until they arrived at the seaport of Attalia (Acts 14:24-25). From there, they boarded a ship and sailed back home to Antioch, where they had began 2 years before. "On arriving there, they gathered the church together and reported all that God had done through them and how He had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles." (Acts 14:27).
During Paul's second journey through this same area, at Troas, "During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." (Acts 16:9). Paul realized that the vision was a message from The Lord, so the very next day he sailed across the Dardanelles, also called the Hellespont, which separated him from Europe. It was a big step for Christianity that The Spirit of Jesus Christ Himself was guiding.
During Paul's third journey, Paul eventually found himself in grave danger from idol worshipers, in this case that of the pagan god Artemis (also known as "Diana of the Ephesians"), and those who were in the business of supplying them (Acts 19:24-27). He exposed their fraud, and in return they nearly killed him (Acts 19:28-41).
While awaiting to sail for Syria, Paul discovered another plot against him, so he instead returned through Macedonia (Acts 20:3). Upon reaching Philippi, and after observing the Feast of Unleavened Bread there, he sailed across to Troas (Acts 20:6).
When Paul went to Athens and came across many idol worshippers, he was called 'the babbler', but he kept calm and with quiet respect, Paul managed to get them to listen:
"So Paul, standing in the middle of the Areopagus, said: "Men of Athens, I perceive that in every way you are very religious. For as I passed along, and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, 'To an unknown god.' What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in shrines made by man, nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He himself gives to all men life and breath and everything. And He made from one every nation of men to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their habitation, that they should seek God, in the hope that they might feel after Him and find him. Yet He is not far from each one of us, for 'In Him we live and move and have our being'" (Acts 17:22-28 RSV)
For many more details and more maps, click here:
The first journey: Acts 13:1 to 15:35
The second journey: Acts 15:36 to 18:22
The third journey: Acts 18:23 to 21:17
The voyage to Rome: Acts chapters 27 and 28
PAUL CALLED 'THE LIAR"
He said: "What advantage, then, is there in being a Jew, or what value is there in circumcision? Much in every way! First of all, they have been entrusted with the very words of God. What if some did not have faith? Will there lack of faith nullify God's faithfulness? Not at all! Let God be true, and every man a liar. As it is written: 'So that you may be proved right when you speak and prevail when you judge.'
But if our unrighteousness brings out God's righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? that God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? (I am using a human argument.) Certainly not! If that were so, how could God judge the world? Someone might argue, 'If my falsehood enhances God's truthfulness and so increase his glory, why am I still condemned as a sinner?' Why not say -- as we are being slanderously reported as saying and as some claim we say -- 'Let us do evil that good may result'? Their condemnation is deserved." (Romans 3:1-8)
. Paul was born in Tarsus, in what is now Turkey about the year 5 CE of Jewish parents who belonged to the tribe of Benjamin. He spoke both Greek and Aramaic, both languages being commonly known among Jews of the Diaspora. He claims that he was reared a Pharisee and that he was zealous in the Law. About 30 CE, he went to Jerusalem and studied under the famous rabbi Gamaliel. As a Pharisee he was a persecutor of the early Church, yet after his conversion he was the major voice for distancing the Church from its adherence to the Law. Despite his Pharisee background, he was a citizen of Rome and he had Herodian connections. One of his companions was named Herodian (Romans 16:11) and another was Manaen (Acts 13), who had been brought up with Herod the Tetrarch. He was at least marginally involved in the martyrdom of Stephen, who alluded to the murder of those who prophesied the advent of the "Righteous One" or "Just One". Clement, in Recognitions (1.70-71), cites the Ascents of James as revealing that when James was preaching to the people at the Temple, Paul--called the "enemy"--entered the Temple, argued against James, instigated a riot, and threw James from the top of the steps, leaving him for dead. In Acts 9:21 he was accused of engineering the attacks on the early Church, of being a minion of the pro-Roman priesthood.
After his conversion, Paul remained under the tutelage of the early Church community at Damascus for three years (Gal. 1:17-18).
When he returned to Jerusalem, the members there threatened to kill him. His allies sent him to Tarsus, his birthplace, which was tantamount to exhiling him. In 43 CE he visited Antioch, where converts to the Jesus movement were the first to be called "Christians" (Acts 11:26). In 48 CE he was accused of laxity regarding the Law among Gentile converts, and he and Barnabas were summoned to Jerusalem to answer these charges. Later, in 2 Corinthians 11:3-4, Paul referred to the "servants of righteousness" (early Church members who still adhered to the Law) as preaching "another Jesus" (one who was a Zealot for the Law, rather than the Son of God).
It is also clear that there were conflicting views about internationalizing the Church and about abandoning the Law (as fulfilled by Jesus) even among the early leaders of the day. And that the original leaders were, at least in the beginning, among the traditionalists, while Paul (the marginalized Jewish Christian from Turkey, a Gentile nation) was a radical reformer that they did not always view positively.
When the plot to kill Paul is reported by a mysterious "nephew", Paul was moved for his own safety--with an escort of 470 troops (200 infantry under the command of 2 centurions, 200 spearmen, and 70 calvary)! One begins to suspect that Paul's Herodian/Roman connection was not that of an insignificant person. Paul is taken to Caesarea, the Roman capital of Judea. Agrippa, Rome's current puppet kings, sends him to Rome, and he disappears from history at this point.
|The Essenes required a person to commit to a three year study period,
prior to acceptance into the Brotherhood. The Bible records that Paul withdrew
for a 3 year period just prior to beginning his preaching.
In the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Essenes record that a man who had studied with them for a three year period, had betrayed them, and was spreading 'lies' about their faith. This person is simply referred to in these writings as "The Liar". The Bible and several other historical manuscripts record that there was much disagreement between Paul and some of the disciples and leaders of the early church. Paul was teaching that observance of certain Jewish customs or 'laws' was not a requirement for salvation. He defends himself in the Bible, claiming "I am NOT a liar!"
Shaul (Saul) (later called Paul) belonged to one of the strictest sects of the Jews. ...I am a Pharisee, the son of a Pharisee... (Acts 23:6). We must accept this statement of Shauls at face value. He did not say; I was a Pharisee, he said; I am a Pharisee...
Shaul studied under the head of the Sanhedrin (the highest court in Judea). ...brought up in this city (Jerusalem) at the feet of Gamaliel... (Acts 22:3). Shaul was himself most likely a member of the Sanhedrin, as evidenced by the following scripture, which fits perfectly the Jewish practice of stoning: And cast him (Stephen) out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young mans feet whose name was Saul (Shaul). (Acts 7:58). Since it was the responsibility of the members of the Sanhedrin to witness public stonings, we believe that Shaul was present (in an official capacity) at the stoning, while those who were witnesses against Stephen were required to cast the stones.
Shaul attended synagogue. ...came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews: And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, (Acts 17:1-2). It was the habit of Paul (as it was of Yeshua) to attended synagogue every Sabbath.
|The lie or liar is he who denies or rejects that Jesus is the Christ.
But, whats this? Doesnt the word "Christ" just mean Jesus is
God? Or maybe its his last name, like Joseph and Mary Christ of 421 Bethlehem
Lane? No! Its none of these things! For the word "Christ" has one meaning
and one meaning only. The word "Christ" is the Greek translation of the Hebrew
"Messiah" as it is stated: "we have found the Messiah (which means
Christ)" John 1:41
"Messiah" is a title referring to the anointed descendants of king David. This lineage of David is the key to the meaning of "Christ". The New Testament opens in the first book, Matthew, the first chapter, the first verse by proclaiming Jesus to be a "son of David".
"This is the book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham,..."
The New Testament makes the point of Jesus being descended from David very evident because this is the main criteria for a person being a Christ. If Jesus was not descended from David, then he could not be a Christ. Period. This was a main teaching in the early Christian church such that the first book of the Gospels is proclaimed to be the "book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David..". The fact that Jesus was a descendant of David was so important to the writers of the gospels, that this fact is repeated over and over again.
Paul referred to himself as the "apostle to the Gentiles" by taking the teachings of Christianity to the Gentiles or those who were not of the house of Israel. In writing to these first communities of Gentiles, Paul would try to help these people understand the importance of Jesus being a Christ, a descendant of David, because they were not familiar with the importance of this lineage. For instance, in Pauls letter to the Romans in the first chapter he begins by making this point as clear as it can be:
"Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God. (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures.) Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; and declared to be Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead." Romans 1:1-4
The word in Greek for "Seed" is "Sperma" or as defined in Strongs Concordance to the bible: "the male sperm". Paul comes right out and says that Jesus is made of the male sperm of David according to the flesh and designated Son of God according to the Spirit of Holiness. Jesus was a descendant of David according to the flesh through the male line by the only other person in the bible that the New Testament literally goes out of its way to show is also a descendant of David. Who is this?
"And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David,..." Luke 2:4
Why, if Jesus being a descendant of David is so important, does the bible make the point that it is Joseph who is also a descendant of David? Because the bible says that the physical father of Jesus was not God, it was Joseph. If God was the physical father of Jesus, then Jesus could not be a "Christ" because God is not a descendant of David, God is not a descendant of anybody. It is Joseph who is the only one who could be the physical, biological father of Jesus for Jesus to be a Christ.
Mary was not a descendant of David, as many Christians would like to believe. Mary was the kinswoman of Elizabeth, John the Baptists mother, who was one of the daughters of Aaron from the tribe of Levi (Luke 1:5, 36). For Jesus to be a "Christ" he had to have been born of the physical, biological, sperm lineage of David. To hold to any other teaching or doctrine was not the doctrine of Christ, not the doctrine of the physical lineage of David through the male line. What did the apostles tell the early Christian communities about this?
"For many deceivers have gone out into the world, men who will not acknowledge the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh; such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist...If any one comes to you and does not bring this doctrine [Christ in the flesh], do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting; for he who greets him shares in his wicked work." 2 John 1:7
PAUL AND THE OLD MAN
In Ephesians 4 Paul presents an easy-to-understand formula for change. He illustrates the method with several examples so we may clearly understand what is involved in overcoming sin. When we examine these verses, we notice three steps we must take to shift from a sinful life to one that properly represents Gods working with and within us. If we miss any one of these steps, change either cannot take place or will remain incomplete.
Pauls instruction regarding overcoming sin is to put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in righteousness and true holiness" (Ephesians 4:22-24).
Out with the Old
The first step, says Paul, is to put off . . . the old man. To do this we must realize that our nature, the old man, is our carnal, selfish nature, which lives hostile to God (Romans 8:7). Our unconverted human heart will not obey God (Deuteronomy 5:29) and is in Gods eyes "deceitful" and "desperately wicked" (Jeremiah 17:9). Our self-centered way of sin inexorably earns us death (Proverbs 14:12; 16:25; Romans 6:23).
The "old man" to whom Paul referred is both our unconverted mind and the individual acts of sin that spring from it. He, the old man, must be put to a symbolic death through the waters of baptism (Romans 6:1-4). Spiritually, we must lay the ax to the root so that the evil tree with its corrupt fruit will cease producing sin.
Over time God can work with the worst of us; He can free us from the many sins that imprison ussins that we may feel we can never overcome. We can be released from the myriad bonds that ensnare us and hold us captive, even as Gulliver was held captive by Lilliputians with hundreds of tiny ropes as described in Jonathan Swifts Gullivers Travels. We can be free, even though now we lie helplessly caught in the cords of sin (Proverbs 5:22).
By a great margin most references to cedar are for the "cedars of Lebanon." This variety of cedar is widely distributed, but there are exceptions to this species mentioned in Scripture. They are:
(1)The cedar wood used in purification, connected with scarlet and hyssop. This would seem to have been another tree from the Sinai Desert area and in use long before the Israelites could have obtained the Cedar of Lebanon. It might have been Juniperus phoenicia which is found in the vicinity of Mt. Hor and could easily have grown on the mountains of Sinai.
(2) The "cedars in God's garden" mentioned in Ezekiel 31:8. The comparison to Assyria, called "a cedar in Lebanon" with these trees would seem to indicate a different tree altogether. Today this tree has not been identified. According to Unger we have no means of identifying it.
(3) The "cedars beside the waters" from Numbers 24:6 can hardly be cedars of Lebanon. This tree never grows in such a location. In poetry, not excluding the Scriptures, because of poetic license, it is not to be expected that all congruities of time and space would be rigidly adhered to. Unless we suppose such poetic license, we must assume some other species that were water-loving and known as cedars, now no longer determinable.
It is probable that the subalpine regions of Lebanon and Antilebanon were home to these trees. At Besherreh in the Republic of Lebanon approximately one hundred miles north of Beirut there was an excellent group of these cedar trees. Cedars are abundant in the Taurus Mountains, in southern Turkey, including the Nur Mountains, called the Amanus Mountains in ancient times. They range from the Himalayas to the Atlas, and from central Asia Minor to Lebanon. They also existed in Cyprus.
These ancient trees had reddish-brown bark and very sturdy trunks as much as 40 feet in girth. Their branches spread very wide and they bore cones about 5 inches in length. Their bright green needles were about 1/2 inch long. They grew slowly and were prized for architecture. From Isaiah we know that this was a tall trees (Isaiah 2:13, etc.). Ezekiel 31:3 tells of beautiful branches and forest shade.
Its wood was suitable for masts of ships (Ezekiel 27:5); for beams, pillars and boards (I Kings 6:9; 7:2); and for carved work (Isaiah 44:14). The temple was built with a great deal of cedar, as was Solomon's house and other important public structures in Jerusalem.
Cedar was used for roofing on the temple of Artemis (Diana) at Ephesus and that of Apollo at Utica, the places of the Persian kings at Susa, and other famous buildings. The claim of "king of trees" is not to be applied to the whole forest world, but only among trees found in Bible lands. This claim was never disputed in the Hebrew nation or the region. The sacred grove at Besherreh, on Lebanon, still bears the name of "the cedars of the Lord."
Ezekiel 31:3 (KJV) Behold, the Assyrian was a cedar in Lebanon with fair branches, and with a shadowing shroud, and of an high stature; and his top was among the thick boughs.
Ezekiel 31:4 (KJV) The waters made him great, the deep set him up on high with her rivers running round about his plants, and sent out her little rivers unto all the trees of the field.
Ezekiel 31:5 (KJV) Therefore his height was exalted above all the trees of the field, and his boughs were multiplied, and his branches became long because of the multitude of waters, when he shot forth.
Ezekiel 31:6 (KJV) All the fowls of heaven made their nests in his boughs, and under his branches did all the beasts of the field bring forth their young, and under his shadow dwelt all great nations.
Ezekiel 31:7 (KJV) Thus was he fair in his greatness, in the length of his branches: for his root was by great waters.
Ezekiel 31:8 (KJV) The cedars in the garden of God could not hide him: the fir trees were not like his boughs, and the chestnut trees were not like his branches; nor any tree in the garden of God was like unto him in his beauty.
Numbers 24:6 (KJV) As the valleys are they spread forth, as gardens by the river's side, as the trees of lign aloes which the LORD hath planted, and as cedar trees beside the waters.
Isaiah 2:13 (KJV) And upon all the cedars of Lebanon, that are high and lifted up, and upon all the oaks of Bashan,
1 Kings 6:9 (KJV) So he built the house, and finished it; and covered the house with beams and boards of cedar.
1 Kings 6:10 (KJV) And then he built chambers against all the house, five cubits high: and they rested on the house with timber of cedar.
1 Kings 7:2 (KJV) He built also the house of the forest of Lebanon; the length thereof was an hundred cubits, and the breadth thereof fifty cubits, and the height thereof thirty cubits, upon four rows of cedar pillars, with cedar beams upon the pillars.
Isaiah 44:14 (KJV) He heweth him down cedars, and taketh the cypress and the oak, which he strengtheneth for himself among the trees of the forest: he planteth an ash, and the rain doth nourish it.
THE BRANCHES OF THE TREE
A branch cannot bear fruit of itself (John 15:4). A branch does not bear, produce. or support the trunk or the root (Romans 11:18). A branch is not of the same importance as the trunk of the tree. The branches of a tree (individual translations) have no life of their own and cannot produce fruit if they are separated from the tree of God's Word in the original languages.
If they cut one branch (one translation--the KJV) off their own tree and try to make it different from the other branches, they will only destroy their branch. A branch cut off by itself withes and dies (John 15:6). It is wrong and harmful to cut the KJV off from its underlying texts (Hebrew and Greek) and to attempt to make it superior to them.
Thoughts on the trees.
The significant part of the tree is the fruit, although leaves can be used for medicines. When the fruit is eaten the flesh gives life to the eater and the seed passes out to give life to another tree. So it seems the flesh of the fruit of one tree gives life but of the other comes death from eating.
In Egypt to eat of the tree of ASHERAH was to eat the flesh of the mother goddess and to gain knowledge of the tree of life. Asherah means happiness or good fortune. When you had eaten you became one with the goddess and shared in her resurrection. So maybe the two trees were from one root or trunk. This means the forbidden knowledge Moses was speaking of would come from the eating of the fruit of worshipping other gods; even if the other god is yourself. . The root or trunk of the tree is worship: but of the fruit of which branch will you eat..? Both look good to the eye and could bring happiness.
The story answers questions about how things are now : death, suffering, the hard life of most people struggling to make a living, pain in child birth, the relationship between man and woman, and both to God.
It also asks questions that are not answered. What if they had eaten of the tree of life first, or instead? Did God set them up to fail, knowing they would make the wrong choice? What exactly was the evil knowledge? (The Hebrew has "bad" which is not what we think of as evil) Was it sexual awareness and knowing they would die one day : a consciousness of self in a way animals seem not to have ?
The "old man" to whom Paul referred is both our unconverted mind and the individual acts of sin that spring from it. He, the old man, must be put to a symbolic death through the waters of baptism (Romans 6:1-4). Spiritually, we must lay the ax to the root so that the evil tree with its corrupt fruit will cease producing sin.
THE TREES AND NOAH'S ARK
(Genesis 6:9 et seq.). The Bible also tells us the dimensions of the Ark; "This is how you are to build it: The ark is to be 450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet high. Make a roof for it and finish the ark to within 18 inches of the top. Put a door in the side of the ark and make lower, middle and upper decks." (Genesis 6:15-16).
Here is an estimate of how much wood would take to build the Ark. The boat was 450 feet long. Assuming an average tree is 30 feet tall and three feet thick. That means that, just to build the outside of the boat we would require over two hundred tree trunks. That's assuming they just use the tree trunks without splitting them - remember we're dealing with elephants here so the wood needs to be pretty strong. Noah didn't have modern tools. It would take him the better part of a day to chop down a tree, chop off all the side branches, neaten it up and carry it back to the Ark. That means he's spent two thirds of a year just chopping down trees.
The Grizzly Bear - Symbolism to First Nations people
For centuries grizzly bears have held a unique position in the cultural traditions of First Nation peoples in North America, chiefly through ceremonies, myths and religion.
Along the coast of British Columbia and Alaska, images of grizzlies can be seen carved into totem poles, a powerful symbol of their importance to certain tribes. The Nuu-chah-nulth people of Canada's west coast historically have a complex relationship with the bears that share the coastal forests. A ceremony has been described in which a grizzly killed by the tribe for meat and hides is placed in a sitting position facing the chief and adorned with a ceremonial head-dress.
In former times the Shuswap people were told by their elders not to hunt grizzlies because it was thought they looked like humans when skinned.
Hereditary Chief Qwatsinas of the Nuxalk Nation (Ed Moody) describes the role of the grizzly in his people's culture: "The grizzly family has always been important to our people, our culture and our history.
"Maybe God our creator allowed us to have this majestic animal in this region, signifying it is a very special place and that this animal has a special place in the world. I think that the grizzly bear is the king of the forests."
The Haisla First Nation people have acted to safeguard the grizzlies in the Kitlope area where they live, and were at the forefront of a successful campaign which obtained a moratorium on the sport hunting of grizzlies in the region.
Because of its power and human-like qualities, the bear was referred to by Northwest Coast people as "Elder Kinsman." When killed, it was taken to the chief's house, sprinkled with eagle down (a symbol of welcome and friendship) and generally treated as a high ranking guest.
|Artemis as bear ruled the constellation Ursa Major, which pointed
to the North Pole Star, the axis mundi. As such, she guarded and protected
the very hub of the world. The seven stars of Ursa Major may have been the
original Seven Sisters or Seven Pillars. The Pleiades are in the constellation
Taurus, connecting them to Artemis Tauropolos, so all of the Pleiades were
followers of Artemis, not just Taygete. Given these connections, it is easier
to understand the importance of such a dim group of stars.
The month and season can be worked out in the Northern hemisphere by noting where Ursa Major is in the sky at nightfall. When Ursa Major's tail points East, spring has arrived; South, summer; West, autumn; and finally, the tail pointing North heralds winter. Perhaps this direction of movement gives us 'clockwise,' since it is easier to learn about how the appearance of the sky relates to the seasons when the stars are visible to the naked eye. Later reinterpretation of Ursa Major as the transformed Kallisto and Ursa Minor as her son are forced and not consistently repeated by scholars or folklore. Ursa Major and the pole star were always feminine in mythology, even after attempts to masculinize them both. For instance, the axis mundi was made a tree of life, with weirdly feminine abilities. More often Ursa Major was divorced from its bear symbolism and made the throne of the Sky Goddess, Hera or Artemis Astrateia.
Artemis and her followers could take the form of bears at will, an idea integral to the worship of Artemis Brauronia. In Attica the statue of the Goddess had an obsidian knife in her crown, used in animal sacrifice by her priestesses. Young girls were brought to the Brauronian temple for confirmation ceremonies during the festival of Mounychia. They danced as bears in Artemis' honour, becoming her companions in freedom and self rule. Wearing yellow tunics coloured with saffron and leaf crowns, carrying twigs or torches, they also gave thanks for the animals of the forest.
Artemis, especially when associated with Ephesus is also a destroyer, deathbringer and psychopomp. Eventually Kallisto's sacred island Kalliste was renamed Thera 'she-beast,' and rededicated to Artemis.
|Esoteric Astrology - The Nature of Esoteric Astrology - Spiritual
Effects of the Zodiacal Constellations
Leo is the sign wherein the consciousness of individuality is developed, utilized and finally consecrated to divine purpose. It is related to Polaris, the Pole Star (found in the Little Bear) and it is also peculiarly susceptible to the influence of that Pointer in the Great Bear which is the nearest to the Pole Star. Esoterically speaking, the Pole Star is regarded as the "star of reorientation" whereby the art of "refacing and recovering that which is lost" is developed. This eventually brings a man back to his originating source. It might, therefore, be correctly inferred that this Pointer and the energy emanating from it guides humanity upon the involutionary path, and is constantly active in its influence upon the man who is still upon the Mutable Cross. Then the energy of the Pointer furthest from the Pole Star begins to make its presence felt and a sense of right direction or guidance is registered by the disciple upon the Path, and such guidance (when followed) leads man nearer to the Hierarchy. It is here that the divine necessity of achieving alignment is portrayed for us in the symbolism of the sky and when it has been achieved then there is a direct inflow of divine energy and man is linked up in a new and creative manner to sources of divine supply. Astrologers will do well (in connection with the horoscopes of disciples and particularly of initiates) to consider the two Pointers and the Pole Star. They are mysteriously connected with the three aspects of incarnated man - Spirit, soul and body. More than this it is not permitted to me to convey to you. I may, however, give you another hint. These three stars are embodiments of the three aspects of divine will. It is the three aspects of all expressions of divinity in manifestation which underlie the Science of Triangles.
|One of the old names for a bear came from words meaning "honey pig."
It is a long story, but honey and bees are important symbols that are coming
in various ways. One very old meaning is connected with Deborah of the Bible.
Her name means "bee" in Hebrew, and was interpreted long ago as the "sweetness"
of the Holy Spirit.
"And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority."
With an understanding that the beast represents the ungodly world governments, consider Johns description of that beast.
The next description is not of a bear, but rather of feet. We see feet that are like that of a bear. What would go through your mind if you are wandering alone in the woods, and you looked down and saw the fresh footprint of a large grizzly bear. You would probably be first impressed by its size, and the size of the beast that produced it. If you had any sense, you would be afraid because you are well-aware of the danger that this footprint represents. The readers would also see the footprint identifying mobility and the power to trample. Because of this some dispensationalists think that the beast literally refers to the Roman government. However, the thesis represented here takes the definition wider, referring to world-wide governmental powers that are under Satans power.
When examining the appearance or structure of the first beast, beginning with its feet, notice the following: It has feet as of a bear, a general resemblance unto a leopard, and a mouth as of a lion (Rev.13:2). In the book of Daniel, the figure of a bear represented the Mede/Persian Empire; the figure of a leopard symbolized the four Greek dynasties - from one of which had come the king Antiochus IV Epiphanes, who defiled the temple in 168 B.C.; and the figure of a lion originally represented the Babylonian kingdom; but here it represents the one that succeeded the four Greek dynasties; that is, the Roman Empire.
John was told that five of these kingdoms (also symbolized by the seven heads) had already fallen in his time; that the sixth one was holding the power in his time (that is, the Roman Empire); that a seventh kingdom was to succeed the Roman Empire for a short time, and thus finally an eight kingdom (the beast) would take the power, which is also identified with one of the previous seven (rather one of the first five - the Seleucid dynasty, from which Antiochus IV Epiphanes had come). See Rev. 17:10-11.
The Roman Empire, as bad as it was, was not the beast! We know this for a fact, because repeatedly (in several ways) it is said, in Johns times, that the beast was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition (Rev. 13:3,12,14; 17:8,11). It was necessary for the seventh kingdom to take the power and then retain it only for a short period (Rev 17:10). Here is what the seventh kingdom (also represented as the ten horns) had to appear in the scene of History to accomplish: Overthrow the powerful Roman Empire, and give the power to the beast!
And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast. These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful
And the ten horns which thou sawest upon the beast shall hate the whore, and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire. For God hath put in their hearts to fulfill his will, and to agree, and give their kingdom unto the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled (Rev 17:12-17). This is also hinted at in 2 Thessalonians 2:6-8.
The most notorious barbarian Germanic tribes that invaded and overthrew the Roman Empire, can be and have been numbered as ten. As attested by History, the fall of the Roman Empire (in 476) was crucial for the Roman Catholic Church to rise to power; and three of these tribes (which established themselves in Europe and the North of Africa) were eventually subdued by the Roman Catholic Church, while the others practically just went along with it and converted to Roman Catholicism (This matches what is said of them in Dan. 7:8,24!).
MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH (Rev 17:1-7)!
The waters where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues And the woman is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth, concluded the angel (Rev 17:15-18)! This couldnt be any other than ROME! Nevertheless, the city of Rome itself, as the see of a global dominion, has had two successive roles: First, that of representing the whole Roman Empire (the latter deriving its name from her); and second, that of representing the whole Roman Catholic Church (which also derives its name from her). The tribes that invaded the Roman Empire took the power and throne away from it, and gave them to the Roman Catholic Church (Rev 13:2;18:2)!
We are so far removed from the events that took place centuries ago that is easy, even for those who perceive the Holy Roman Empire had something to do with the beast, to overlook the inherent Roman Catholic nature of it all, and just how evil it was! In these latter times, Satan and his forces are in the process of promoting ecumenism, undermining the importance of truth and sound doctrine, in a campaign to join forces against him who is Faithful and True, whose coming is imminent (1 Ti 4:1-3; 2 Ti 3:12-13; 4:1-4; Rev 16:13-21; 19:11-21)!
The Bear Claw
Clues from the bible about the Anti-Christ
He will receive power from Satan (Rev. 13:2).
The Antichrist is given various descriptive names in the Bible. He is referred to as:
The Little Horn (Dan. 7:7-28)
|The Grizzly Bear is the State animal of
. California's republic Flag This flag was first flown on June
14, 1846 by American settlers in California who revolted against Mexican
rule in California and proclaimed an independent republic. This short-lived
revolution ended on July 9, 1846. They raised a bear flag that had a gold
star and red stripe from "Old Glory" and a gold color silhouette of the
The grizzly bears of Yellowstone National Park weigh from 200 to 700 pounds.
the Grizzly Bear
The most critical piece of information provided by the Revelation prophecy is that after the healing of the beast's wound the beast would be given authority to continue a further 42 months.
The cryptic reference, 42 months, is a New Testament reference to the period cryptically described in the Old Testament as 'seven times'. It refers to a time period of 2,520 years. This runs from the time when Cyrus released the Jews to the time of future period of trial.
While it is easy to see that 42 months could equate to 1,260 years (ie, 42 x 30 days and the application of the day/year principle) the doubling of 1260 years to 2,520 years could be questioned. However, the notion of '42 months' can also be understood as '42 new moons' and understood in light of the Old Testament feasts. Each of the three annual feasts were at times referred to as 'new moons' (eg Ezekiel 46:2). This means a period of '42 moons' would represent 14 actual years. The three annual feasts were not spread throughout the year, but occurred during the first half of the year, 1st to 7th month. It is also quite apparent that the important dates of the 1st month are reflected in the important dates of the 7th month, thereby reflecting a real time difference of exactly 180 days. It is interesting to note that, 14 years x 180 = 2,520 years. ]
Understanding the literal meaning of '42 months' allows the reader to perceive that the near mortal wound was that brought upon the ancient nation of Israel by Nebuchadnezzar and his army. The wound was healed when the Jews were released from captivity by the Medo-Persian Empire.
NOTE: Interestingly though, Saddam Hussein claims to be the reincarnation of Nebuchadnezzar.
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