Tallit for a Sword

September 28, 2012 20 comments
Grab a sword and you will die with it, says Jesus. Sell your cloak and buy a sword, but only if you do not already have one, hints Jesus. Are these contradictions, does God want us to fight with swords or have we somehow misinterpreted this message? Let’s find out.

Introduction

As always, we are, of course, going to provide to you a pure biblical perspective; however, in order to answer our audience fully, we must also spend a little time with the world. You will see how Jesus was not asking His disciples to arm themselves, but rather you will find that He was testing them when He told them to buy a sword. Furthermore, you will see how this was not just a test, but it was also a warning, one that should be taken quite seriously.

We hear too many Christians trying to use Luke 22:35-38 to justify the threat of violence, but we are here today to tell you quite honestly that you are very much in error. Much of the issue boils down to a single passage in the book of Luke and we tell you honestly that you have misunderstood its meaning and have effectively rejected our LORD and Savior, Jesus.

Hidden in Plain Sight

It is very easy to misunderstand the Gospel and Luke is no exception, especially chapter 22, verses 35 to 38, because as Gentiles, we lack a critical understanding of Jewish culture that is the key to understanding the true meaning of Luke 22:35-38.

35 And he said unto them, When I sent you without purse, and scrip, and shoes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing.

36 Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.

37 For I say unto you, that this that is written must yet be accomplished in me, And he was reckoned among the transgressors: for the things concerning me have an end.

38 And they said, Lord, behold, here are two swords. And he said unto them, It is enough.

Above is our questionable passage found in Luke 22:35-38, so what we need to do in order to fully understand this passage is to look up the original Greek, so to see which Greek words were used, as doing so often tells us more than the English translations.

Tallit for a Sword

The word “garment” was translated from the Greek word, “himation”. In ancient Greece, the “himation” was not just any sort of garment, as the Greek lexicon might have you believe; on the contrary, the himation was worn over clothes, like a cloak, and would have been the closest thing that the Greeks had to compare to the Jewish “Prayer Shawl”.

Let’s not forget that Jesus and His disciples were faithful Jews and would have, indeed, worn a “Prayer Shawl”, because they would cover themselves with it while praying. In Hebrew the “Prayer Shawl” is called a “tallit” and the Jews were commanded by God to wear them while praying, as is described in the book of Numbers 15:38 and in Deuteronomy 22:12.

Therefore, allow us to translate Luke 22:36 using what we have just learned:

Then Jesus said, “But now, he that has a purse, let him take it, and treat it as a beggars-bag: and he without a sword, let him sell his tallit, and buy one.

Now that we have this verse in proper context, we can easily see that Jesus was testing the faith of His disciples. We know this because Jesus effectively said to His disciples, “those without faith in me, go buy a weapon to protect yourself”, because in Ephesians 6:17 we learn that the true “sword” of faith is the word of God and with Jesus was the word:

17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

In order to understand Luke 22:36 fully, we must now turn to Matthew 26:51-52:

51 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest’s, and smote off his ear.

52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.

Here is a passage that must be overlooked, because upon reading it, one would immediately detect a contradiction, assuming that we can be counted amongst the lot of those who believe that Luke 22:36 is suggesting that one buy weapons for their personal safety. What we are failing to consider is that we are trading our tallit for a sword.

In other words, one is effectively trading ones faith for a weapon; therefore, in turn, one is literally rejecting the offer of Salvation and attempting to bring about ones own salvation by foolishly relying upon oneself. The Bible says that no man can save himself and if he tries to save his own life, he will surely lose it. Honestly, the word of God cannot be more clear.

Conclusion

When Jesus asked His disciples if any of them had a sword, at least 10 said “No” and at least 2 said “Yes” and they showed Jesus actual swords. They were Jewish and should have known better than to consider selling their tallit, as God commanded them to wear it. Not even they understood the reference and their chance is gone, but you can reconsider.

We are asking you to sell your sword and to buy back your tallit. Place your faith in the word of God, which is your greatest sword of all, and love your enemies as yourself. Be reminded that we have a mighty God and that He truly wants to fight in your place.

For it is written, “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” (Romans 12:19)

DIVINECODERS

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Categories: Arguments

Satan: God of this World?

September 22, 2012 9 comments
In 2 Corinthians 4:4 it states that the god of this world blinds the minds of unbelievers, so to keep them from hearing the gospel of Christ, so to become saved. Many Christians believe that this verse is referring to Satan as the god of this world -we disagree.

Introduction

Many Christians understand and admit that Jesus was God in the flesh, but they don’t quite make the connection between YHWH and Jesus. If YHWH and Jesus are indeed both the same entity, then this would mean that Jesus is not just the creator, but He is also the destroyer; lest we forget about the Great Flood in Noah’s time that wiped out the entire planet.

The Bible states that God forms the light and creates darkness, He makes peace and creates evil, and that He, the LORD, does all of these things. (Isaiah 45:7) Do not be fooled, He is both our judge and lawyer, He is both our executioner and savior -all at once and this is why we should both fear His reprove and love His mercy, because He is truly all things.

Christians do not want to believe that God will punish them and they certainly do not want to even fathom that God would prevent sinners from being saved, because, quite simply they cannot imagine a single reason why God might want to prevent some sinners from being saved. Which is why we have written this article: To challenge an erroneous belief.

God of this World

Truly, the God of this world is and always has been the Creator. We challenge you to answer us, “At what point did God lose control of His universe?” Or, better yet, “At what point did God give away His control to Satan?” Where in the Bible was this exchange recorded?

Certainly, you can search the entire Bible from cover to cover and you will not find it, because it never happened. Case in point, in the book of Job, Satan had to ask for permission from God to attack Job. If Satan is indeed the “god of this world” then why would he need to ask the LORD for permission to control a world that he is supposedly the god of?

Honestly, we could thoroughly disassemble this concept using pure logic and from that alone we would prove our point; however, the following passages are far more evidential:

Isaiah 6:8-10

8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.

9 And he said, Go, and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not.

10 Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert, and be healed.

Here we see a passage in the book of Isaiah that tells us that the LORD made a command to prevent unbelievers from hearing His message, so that they cannot be healed by it.

John 12:39-40

39 Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias said again,

40 He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.

Here we see a passage in the book of John that references Isaiah 6:8-10, which is a direct correlation between the salvation offered by the LORD and the salvation offered by Jesus Christ, therefore suggesting that they are the same offer, from the same source.

Why Would God Do This?

Hopefully, by now, you understand that the god of this world is truly the LORD and that Jesus Christ is the LORD. So, you are probably wondering, ‘Why would God reject sinners?’ And, the answer to that question can be found in Romans 1, in the following verses:

21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,

31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

So, we see that the answer is essentially because these people know God but have chosen to reject Him. Moreover, they are undesirable, untrustworthy, despicable, and vile. They will cause another harm for their gain. They are lustful and very wicked individuals.

The Bible calls these people scoffers and says that they are willfully ignorant of God’s word. These people are your evolutionists, atheists, humanists, satanists, etc. They are your Hitlers and Stalins, your Dawkins’ and Scotts, and all else who have willfully rejected God and have contributed in some way to one of the many man-made iniquities of this world.

Conclusion

We were made aware of this misconception and found that those who believe that the God of this world is Satan has been misguided. As followers of Christ, we want to offer our readers the truth about our God, even if it makes you angry. The truth will set you free.

DIVINECODERS

Categories: Arguments

Hell: The Truth About Eternity

July 8, 2012 33 comments
Many Christians believe, because many pastors preach that the torments of Hell will last forever. This article takes a biblical approach to this age old misconception and reveals the truth about Hell by exposing the inaccuracies of the, ‘Eternal Torment’ hypothesis.

Introduction

The concept of an eternal Hell is a catastrophic misconception that has played a central role in mainstream dogma for as long as anyone can tell, yet according to scripture, the concept of an eternal Hell is one that is clearly, undeniably, and irrefutably heretical.

If you have gone your entire life believing in an eternal place of damnation, then this article is for you, as it is going to challenge you to your core and it will force you to seriously question that belief, perhaps for the first time. The shattering of this dangerous misconception will lead you to understand the reality of judgment like never before, as the Bible intended.

Judgement Day

If you turn to the book of Revelation, chapter 20, you will notice that here is a description of events that have not yet taken place where Christ will reign on earth for 1000 years and that Satan and his demons will surround the kingdom and God will destroy them with fire and the red dragon himself is cast into the eternal lake of fire, then the following happens:

12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Now, we want you to pay close attention to verse 13 where it states, “death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them”, then we want you to look at verse 14 where it states, “death and hell were cast into the lake of fire.” This would mean the following:

1. Hell and the Lake of Fire are not the same place, because the Bible states that Hell was “cast into the lake of fire”, which would suggest that Hell and the Lake of Fire must exist at two different locations, because one cannot logically “cast” something into itself.

2. When Hell and Death are finally cast into the Lake of Fire (which is eternal), both Death and Hell will be completely empty, so that the institutions themselves will be destroyed.

We now have absolutely no biblical reason at all to conclude that Hell will last for eternity. To state something different would be heretical, completely inaccurate, and contradictory.

Path to Salvation

Now that we know the truth about Hell, and that our time there as sinners is only temporary, we can freely spread the truth of the Gospel of Christ, so that every sinner will hear the truth and know that the second death is not eternal torment; it is a complete and permanent deletion of our existence, but that salvation is for those who choose to strive for it.

9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

So, we see that Christ is the bridge between sinner and salvation for everyone. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)

Conclusion

We hope that we have made our case against an eternal place of torment and have provided you with enough information to continue your own study into Judgment and what this could mean for you and how you might find salvation through your faith in Jesus Christ.

DIVINECODERS

Categories: Arguments

Mirror Neurons: See No Evil

February 6, 2012 4 comments

The Bible tells us a lot about ourselves, but who would have ever thought that we would be given an understanding of the human brain? In this article, we will discuss the Mirror Neuron and show where the Bible might actually be describing this incredible function.

Mirror Neuron Discovery

In the late 1980s, Italian Neurophysiologists were studying the brain of a Macaque monkey. They wanted to map the regions of the brain that were responsible for primitive motor skills, such as the act of feeding oneself, stacking blocks, hammering, etc.

Their research, although initially it was rejected by Nature, lead to the discovery of the Mirror Neuron. The discovery of the Mirror Neuron has had a great impact on “neuroscience” and a range of disciplines “from social sciences to esthetics.” [1]

Empirical evidence showed that the neurons in the “ventral premotor cortex (area F5)” region of the Macaque monkey’s brain discharged “when the monkey performed a certain motor act”, and “when it [monkey] observed another individual (monkey or human) performing that or a similar motor act” [1] Which is to say, “Monkey see, Monkey internalize.”

Moreover, there are neurons in area F5 that “discharge depending on whether the motor act is performed within or outside the monkey’s peripersonal space” [1] which suggests that the brain has a sense of reality and that it was designed to mechanically process it.

Further research shows that the Mirror Neuron can also be found in birds. [1]

Human Mirror Neuron Theory

Scientists believe that the Mirror Neuron may be responsible for a range of functions found in Humans, such as “Empathy, Language, Self Awareness, Motor Mimicry” [2] The Mirror Neurons in our brain allow us to re-experience (chemically) the actions of others. Which means that in order for your brain to accurately simulate the action it must first experience it.

This would suggest that the brain is encoded and that this code is preserved statically by the Mirror Neuron and later becomes a response mechanism. So, as we experience the world, we store these experiences and these experiences can be relived (internally) by sight.

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging suggests that Humans have Mirror Neurons. A series of tests showed that Humans contain Mirror Neurons in special regions of the brain that allow Humans to personalize concepts such as emotion, motive, and intent in others. [2]

Recent Criticism: “Two Populations” Hypothesis

In the article Mirror neurons: from discovery to autism the author said “recently some articles appeared expressing a curious “anti-mirror” stance.” He continues by saying:

“Their main argument is the following: action observation activates in humans, as in the monkeys, parietal and motor areas, but the properties of the activated neurons are different in the two species. While in monkeys the activated neurons are mirror neurons, this is not so in humans. In humans, motor areas are endowed with two distinct populations of neurons: one merely sensory, the other merely motor. The two populations do not communicate one with another. Hence the mirror neurons do not exist in humans.

It was also claimed that, in order to prove “really” the existence of mirror neurons in humans, one has to show that they present the “repetition suppression”, that is that they decrease their response not only following repetitive observation of the same motor act done by another, but also, crucially, following visual presentation of a motor act after its execution. If mirror neurons do exist, they should habituate in this cross-modal test.”

However, the author (Giacomo Rizzolatti) finds this argument to be absurd saying “the “two populations” hypothesis is very shaky.” and that “the most recent data using this technique show cross-modal adaptation and clearly prove the mirror neuron existence.”

Possible Biblical Connection

One possible reference to the Mirror Neuron can be found in the book of Matthew chapter 5 verse 27 to 28, where we see Jesus is recorded to have said the following:

27 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

How is it possible to commit adultery without actually committing adultery? Well, it turns out that one possible explanation is the Mirror Neuron, because it allows us to simulate internally (heart) the things that we observe as if we are actually doing those things ourselves.

Apparently, Jesus was not speaking symbolically when He made that statement. Instead He was speaking quite literally, based on the evidence. From a biological perspective, technically one would be guilty of adultery, even if committed only in the imagination, because the same neurons could discharge and the physical act could then be simulated internally.

DIVINECODERS

Footnotes
1. Rizzolatti, Giacomo. “Mirror neurons: from discovery to autism .” Experimental Brain Research. 200. (2009): 223-27. Web. 30 Jan. 2012. <http://www.springerlink.com/content/ru581585v7883515>.
2. “Mirror Neuron” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 19 Jan 2012. Web. 30 Jan. 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mirror_neuron>

Categories: Discussion

Doomsday 2012: End of the World?

January 24, 2012 23 comments
If the world ends in 2012 AD, then we as Christians are in a lot of trouble, because this would mean that the Bible was wrong. There is no record or knowledge that suggests that the end of the Mayan calendar was ever supposed to represent a doomsday scenario.

Not surprisingly, both science and the Bible take the same position on the ‘Mayan Hypothesis’, which is that they do not agree. As a response to counter the mainstream commercialization of the Mayan 2012 doomsday, let’s look at the evidence and put a few minds at ease.

Why Science Disagrees

Just as the calendar on our Windows PC predicts the phases of the Earth’s rotation around the sun and that this cycle ends on Dec. 31st, 2099, so does the Mayan calendar, except the Mayans tracked the Lunar cycle and stopped calculating at the year 2012 AD.

There are no records left behind by the Mayans that suggest that this would mean that the world would end. [1] Instead, conventionally what is suggested by those who have studied the Mayan civilization is that this date represents the end of a celestial epoch.

The only truly significant event represented by the date Dec. 21st, 2012 AD to both science and the Bible is that this date marks the Winter Solstice, which is even more evidence for the epoch theory as this would show why the Mayans had indeed built their calendar.

Science presents another problem for the 2012 prediction because they now believe that the calendar might be wrong by at least 60 days. [2] Researchers now claim that they cannot be sure if the Mayans were tracking a meteor or Venus and that the translation from the Mayan “Long Count” to the Julian and Gregorian calendars has not been resolved. [2]

Why the Bible Disagrees

The book of Revelation provides us with a very detailed description of the second coming of Christ. In fact, the book of Revelation is so precise, even a timeline is provided. This timeline can be used to determine what we can expect from the future in terms of duration.

We turn to the book of Revelation chapter 13 verse 1, which states:

And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.

We know this is Satan at work, because before this verse in chapter 12 verse 3, we see:

And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.

This is how the opposition appeared to God when Heaven and Hell went to war. Now we see this same symbolism repeated from Earth’s perspective due to the combining of nations that many might refer to as the New World Order or the return to Great Babylon.

So, if we are told that the first real sign of the coming of Christ will result in the forming of this seven headed beast with ten horns and seven crowns, then we know that we must still have time to spare since this world government has not yet been established officially.

How much time do we have? This answer is unknown, but we can say that after the following event has taken place that we will have at least a few years longer according to the following verse found in the book of Revelation chapter 13 verse 5, which states:

And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty [and] two months.

So, by calculation we find that, according to the word of the Holy Spirit, we would be given an additional 42 months, which when divided produces the decimal 3.5 years. At this point we do not need to calculate any further, because the world government has yet to appear.

Therefore, according to scripture, even if the New World Order officially established itself on Dec. 21st, 2012 AD, we would still have at least 3.5 years before the coming of Christ, thus the word of God says that the ‘Mayan Hypothesis’ is impossible, and so it must be.

Conclusion

We see that both science and the Bible disagree with the ‘Mayan Hypothesis’, the date 2012 AD does not mark the end of the world, rather it marks the end of a long cycle. Any problems that this could present to mankind are yet to be known, but it is certainly not the end.

DIVINECODERS

Footnotes

1. MacDonald, G. Jeffrey. “Does Maya calendar predict 2012 apocalypse?” USA Today. Gannett Co. Inc, 03/27/2007. Web. <http://www.usatoday.com/tech/science/2007-03-27-maya-2012_n.htm>.
2. Normark, Johan. “2012: The Long Count may be off by at least 60 days.” Archaeological Haecceities. WordPress, 09 Oct 2010. Web. <http://haecceities.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/2012-the-long-count-may-be-off-by-at-least-60-days/>.

Categories: Arguments

A Thousand Years As One Day

July 24, 2011 56 comments
Divine information in the Holy Bible is shrouded in mystery. Described by numbers, information is presented to its reader as an equation, begging to be solved. In this article, we distinguish time between Heaven and Earth, and explain their differences, mathematically.

Biblical References

According to the word of God, recorded in the Holy Bible, there are dramatic differences in the way that Heaven and Earth perceives time. We know this because there are two places in the Holy Bible where we are provided the same information regarding the differences.

Psalm 90:4
4 For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night.
2 Peter 3:8
8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

So, we see that one day in Heaven is proportional to 1000 years on Earth.

Presenting the Problem

Our problem is solved proportionally though the information we have is not proportionate. For instance, a day is determined by the amount of time a celestial object takes to rotate upon its axis and a year is defined by the amount of time it takes a celestial object to orbit around the Sun, nevertheless, with one assumption, we know enough to solve this problem.

Approaching the Problem

We assume that one day in Heaven is split into 24 equal parts, which is possibly explained by Einstein’s theory of Special Relativity or specifically the Twin paradox where the time on Earth is accelerated greatly due to its apparent “light-speed” rotation -relative to Heaven.

Solving the Problem

For every hour that passes by in Heaven, how much time has passed by on Earth?

Let,

a = 24 hours
b = 1000 years

Thus,

b/a = 41.66 years (41 years, 7 months, 27 days, 14 hours, 24 minutes)

For every minute that passes by in Heaven, how much time has passed by on Earth?

Let,

a = 24*60 minutes
b = 1000 years
c = 12 months

Thus,

b/a*c = 8.33 months (8 months, 28 days, 19 hours, 12 minutes)

For every second that passes by in Heaven, how much time has passed by on Earth?

Let,

a = 24*60*60 seconds
b = 1000 years
c = 12*30 days

Thus,

b/a*c = 4.16 days (4 days, 3 hours, 50 minutes, 24 seconds)

For every millisecond that passes by in Heaven, how much time has passed by on Earth?

Let,

a = 24*60*60*1000 milliseconds
b = 1000 years
c = 12*30*24*60 minutes

Thus,

b/a*c = 6 minutes

For every microsecond that passes by in Heaven, how much time has passed by on Earth?

Let,

a = 24*60*60*1000*1000 microseconds
b = 1000 years
c = 12*30*24*60*60*1000 milliseconds

Thus,

b/a*c = 360 milliseconds

This information suggests that if those in heaven looked upon the earth, then they would see it spinning like a top! This is exciting information that could explain a lot more!

Conclusion

To know God well is to know but a fraction of His might. Therefore, we may not understand all of the mysteries of God and His creation, but it is certainly worth the effort to try. So, we hope that you enjoyed this article as much as we enjoyed the challenge of discussing it.

Keep searching.
DIVINECODERS

UPDATE: Checkout the follow-up to this article, Proving Universal God Time.

Categories: Bible Math