Handy To Know

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WebersHome

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#41
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Ways To Describe Grace

1Cor 1:3 . . Grace to you, and peace from God our Father, and the Lord
Jesus Christ.

I seriously doubt that John Q and Jane Doe pew warmer have an adequate
concept of grace. I suspect that most are under the impression that grace is
somehow a quantifiable substance like butter and gasoline; but in regards to
God, grace is an abstract noun that expresses personal qualities apart from
substance.

The New Testament Greek word for "grace" is charis (khar'-ece); which
means: graciousness.

Webster's defines graciousness as: kind, courteous, inclined to good will,
generous, charitable, merciful, altruistic, compassionate, thoughtful, cordial,
affable, genial, sociable, cheerful, warm, sensitive, considerate, and tactful.

Cordial stresses warmth and heartiness

Affable implies easy approachability and readiness to respond pleasantly to
conversation or requests or proposals

Genial stresses cheerfulness and even joviality

Sociable suggests a genuine liking for the companionship of others

Generous is characterized by a noble or forbearing spirit; viz: magnanimous,
kindly, and liberal in giving

Charitable means full of love for, and goodwill toward, others; viz:
benevolent, tolerant, and lenient.

Altruistic means unselfish regard for, or devotion to, the welfare of others;
viz: a desire to be of service to others for no other reason than it just feels
good to do so.

Tactful indicates a keen sense of what to do, or say, in order to maintain
good relations with others in order to resolve and/or avoid unnecessary
conflict.

Compassion defines a sympathetic awareness of others' distress, coupled
with a desire to alleviate it.

The Old Testament Hebrew word for grace is chen (khane); and means the
same as charis (e.g. Gen 6:8).

When you put all those lovely attributes together, you get a pretty good
picture of the bright side of God's personality. There's a dark side too; but
grace doesn't go there.

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WebersHome

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Dec 9, 2014
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#42
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Knowing Your Religion is Right

"Faith is believin' what you know ain't so."
-- Mark Twain --

Every so often I get asked how I know that my beliefs are true. My answer
is: I don't know if they're true. Then of course they follow up with: Then why
do you believe your beliefs are true when you have no way of knowing
they're true?

Most of the people who ask me those kinds of questions are genuine; they're
not trying to trip me up and make a fool out of me. They really are curious
about it. So I tell them that though I don't know if my beliefs are true, my
instincts tell me they are; in other words: I cannot shake the gnawing
conviction that they're true.

"I have never seen what to me seemed an atom of truth that there is a
future life . . . and yet . . .
I am strongly inclined to expect one."
-- Mark Twain --

Twain logically concluded that there is no afterlife, but his instincts did not
agree with his thinking; and I dare not criticize him for that because even
my own religion requires that I believe in my heart rather then only in my
head.

Why does any believer believe what they believe? Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu,
Bahá'í, Hare Krishna, Jehovah's Witness, Mormon, Catholic, Baptist,
Judaism, Voodoo, Wiccan, Jain, Druze, Native American, etc, etc, etc. The
answer? It appeals to them.

It's a known fact that quite a few voters do their voting not with their head
but with their gut. In other words, they settle on a candidate based upon
how they feel about him, and then argue their choice.

Take for instance President Barack Hussein Obama. A large block of
Americans voted for him solely on the basis of the color of his skin rather
than his executive ability. (Ironically Mr. Obama isn't even Black. He's what
used to be called Mulatto prior to the era of political correctness, but now
called Mixed Race; viz: his father was Black, but his mother was White.
Lucky for Mr. Obama that his skin turned out dark or he may never have
been nominated for US President, let alone elected.)

"It ain't what you know that gets you into trouble.
It's what you know for sure that just ain't so."
-- Mark Twain --

Bigotry is rampant in the world of religions; and it's not uncommon for
someone to shriek; "That's a lie!" and/or "You're wrong!" I like to tell bigots
that they really ought to be a bit more circumspect with their choice of
words lest the hapless day arrives when they are forced to eat them.

It is of course impossible that all religions are right; that's pretty much a
given. But on the other hand, it's very possible that none are right. So I
would say that when settling upon a religion, don't worry so much about
picking the one that's right; instead pick the one that's right for you; and if
none are right for you, then in my estimation; you're just as well off because
if your heart's not in it; then let's face it; your choice is no less arbitrary
than randomly selecting cookies out of a jar of 100.

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WebersHome

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#43
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The Rich Man, Lazarus, And Abraham

Fiction can be defined as stories about people, places, and events that,
though untrue; are plausible; viz: realistic.

Fantasy can be defined as stories about people, places, and events that are
not only untrue; but implausible; viz: unrealistic.

For example: a story about a wooden boy like Pinocchio is unrealistic; while
a story about a boy with autism is realistic. The difference between Pinocchio
and the autistic boy is that the one is compatible with normal reality; while
the other is far removed from normal reality.

I have yet to read even one of Jesus Christ's parables that could not possibly
be a real-life story. They're all actually quite believable-- banquets,
stewards, weddings, farmers sowing seed, pearls, lost sheep, fish nets,
women losing coins, sons leaving home, wineskins bursting, tares among the
wheat, leavened bread, barren fig trees, the blind leading the blind, et al.

Now; if Christ had told one that alleged the moon was made of green
cheese; we would have good reason to believe that at least that one was
fantasy; but none of them are like that. No; there's nothing out of the
ordinary in his parables. At best; Christ's parables might qualify as fiction;
but never fantasy because none of them are so far removed from the normal
round of human experience that they have no basis in reality whatsoever.

Luke 16:19-31 is commonly alleged to be a parable; which of course implies
that the story is fiction; and some would even say fantasy. But the parable
theory has a fatal flaw. Abraham is not a fictional character: he's a real-life
man; the father of the Hebrew people, held in very high esteem by at least
three of the world's prominent religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
And he's also the friend of God (Isa 41:8). I simply cannot believe that Jesus
Christ-- a man famous among normal Christians for his honesty and
integrity --would say something untrue about a famous real-life man;
especially about one of his Father's buddies.

And on top of that, the story quotes Abraham a number of times. Well; if the
story is fiction, then Jesus Christ is on record testifying that Abraham said
things that he didn't really say; which is a clear violation of the
commandment that prohibits bearing false witness.

There is something else to consider.

The story of the rich man and Lazarus didn't originate with Jesus Christ. No,
it originated with his Father. In other words: Jesus Christ was micro
managed.

John 3:34 . . He is sent by God. He speaks God's words

John 8:26 . . He that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those
things which I have heard of Him.

John 8:28 . . I do nothing on my own initiative, but I speak these things as
the Father taught me.

John 12:49 . . I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me,
He gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.

John 14:24 . .The word which you hear is not mine, but the Father's who
sent me.

So, by alleging that Luke 16:19-31 is fiction/fantasy, the parable theory
slanders God by insinuating that He's a person of marginal integrity who
can't be trusted to tell the truth about people, not even about His own
friends, which is ridiculous seeing as how Titus 1:2 and Heb 6:18 testify that
God cannot lie.

God's impeccable character is what makes that narrative all the more
disturbing. Unless somebody can prove, beyond a shadow of sensible doubt,
that Christ's Father is a tale-spinner; I pretty much have to assume the
narrative was drawn from real-life; and if not drawn from real life, then at
least based upon real life.

In other words: there really is an afterlife place of conscious suffering where
people endure unbearable anxiety worrying their loved ones are on a road to
where they are and there is no way to warn them; which brings to mind the
survivors of the Titanic watching their loved ones go to Davy Jones while
utterly helpless to do anything about it.

People for whom I feel the most pity are parents that brought up their
children to walk in mom and dad's ideological footsteps and the ideology
turned out to be mistaken. How do people in hell bear up under something
like that on their conscience?

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WebersHome

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#44
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Christ's Demise

The Koran's Christ didn't pass away on the cross.

"And their saying: Surely we have killed the Messiah, Isa son of Marium, the
apostle of Allah; and they did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but it
appeared to them so (like Isa) and most surely those who differ therein are
only in a doubt about it; they have no knowledge respecting it, but only
follow a conjecture, and they killed him not for sure." (The Women 4.157)

The Bible's Christ fully expired.

"And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said: Father, into Thy hands I
commit my spirit. And having said this, he breathed his last." (Luke 23:46)

"When they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not
break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side with a spear,
bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. The man who saw it has given
testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and
he testifies so that you also may believe." (John 19:31-35)

Since Jesus was somewhat elevated, (it's not stated exactly how high) the
spear point would have entered his body at an upward angle. The text
doesn't say which side was penetrated, but from John's description, and
judging from the intent of the soldier to leave no doubt about Jesus' death,
the heart side was very likely the side they cut into and the spear point
would've entered just under his rib cage.

The heart is surrounded by a membrane called the pericardium; which
serves to contain a serous material resembling water to prevent the surface
of the heart from becoming dry and/or chafed by its continual motion. It was
very likely this which was pierced and from which the water flowed. The
point of the spear also seems to have reached one of the ventricles of the
heart, and the blood, yet warm, rushed forth, either mingled with, or
followed by, the liquor of the pericardium, so as to appear to John to be
blood and water flowing together. Though not medically accurate in our day,
John's calling the serous fluid "water" was accurate enough in his own day.

Had Christ managed to survive the spear he most certainly would have died
of suffocation. According to the records, his friends covered his face with a
towel, wrapped him with strips of cloth like a mummy, and coated him with
a paste consisting of 75 pounds of myrrh and aloes: all of which served to
not only put him in a straight jacket, but also sealed him in an air-tight
cocoon of sorts.

1• The Towel

"And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes,
but wrapped together in a place by itself." (John 20:7)

The koiné Greek word translated "napkin" is soudarion (soo-dar'-ee-on)
which defines a sweat-cloth; viz: a towel for wiping the perspiration from the
face, or binding the face of a corpse.

2• The Mummy

"Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes" (John
19:40)

"And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes,
but wrapped together in a place by itself." (John 20:7)

The Greek word translated "wound" is deo (deh'-o) which means to bind

The Greek word translated "linen cloths" is othonion (oth-on'-ee-on) which
defines bandages.

3• The Cocoon

"And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night,
and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.
Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the
spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury." (John 19:39-40)

Myrrh is a gum resin. The aloe of that day was a thick liquid taken from an
aromatic tree and used in medicines and cosmetics, etc. Blending those two
ingredients together produced a nice sticky goo that could be slathered and
plastered all over the deceased to seal the body and retard putrefaction
and/or seal in odors and thwart vermin. This was likely the final step just
prior to wrapping the whole affair in a shroud (Matt 27:59).

So all told-- the crucifixion, the spear, the face towel, the wrappings, and
the gooey paste --I think it's pretty safe to conclude that Christ, as he is
depicted in the Bible, was quite deceased.

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WebersHome

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Dec 9, 2014
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#45
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Christ's Recovery

There lacks a universal consensus regarding the nature of Christ's
resurrection. Some say his crucified body came back to life. Some say that
his crucified body was exchanged for a glorified body. Still others say that
Christ's crucified body not only didn't recover, but he came back with a spirit
body; and his post resurrection physical appearances were done as an angel
disguised in a fully-functioning human avatar.

It's evident that Christ has a glorified body at present (Php 3:20-21). But I
really don't think such was the case out at the cemetery.

John 2:19-22 . . Jesus answered them: Destroy this temple, and I will
raise it again in three days. The Jews replied: It has taken forty-six years to
build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days? But the temple
he had spoken of was his body. After he was raised from the dead, his
disciples recalled what he had said.

Had not Christ's crucified body revived, then his prediction would be easily
proven false because the temple he spoke of was "this temple" viz: the body
he was standing in as he spoke with the Jews.

Q: If Christ didn't come back from death with the glorified body spoken of in
Php 3:20-21, then how and when did he obtain it?

A: Some day the bodies of all Christ's believing followers will be raised from
the dead and taken up to meet the Lord in the air (1Thes 3:14-17). On the
way up, the bodies will undergo a sudden and miraculous transformation.
(1Cor 15:51-53). I think it's pretty safe to assume that Christ's body
underwent a similar transformation while on the way up to heaven as per
Acts 1:9 so that today his body is no longer a normal human body; but
instead a superhuman body to which all his believing followers' bodies will
one day conform.

Q: What about the fact that he was able to pass through a locked door?
(John 20:19). Surely a normal human body could never do such a thing.

A: Jesus Christ was virgin-conceived, walked on water, calmed storms,
restored withered limbs, put the lame up on their feet, healed blindness and
leprosy, multiplied loaves and fishes, converted water into wine, raised the
dead, withered a fig tree, levitated into the sky, etc. Come on now; what's
one more miracle more or less for a man like that?

Q: Why make a big deal out of the nature of Christ's resurrection?

A
1: Were I the Devil, I would do my utmost best to disprove Jesus' bodily
resurrection because his bodily crucifixion is only half enough to protect
people from the wrath of God. Though his bodily crucifixion obtains
forgiveness for people's sins, it does not gain people an acquittal; i.e. a
verdict of innocence.

Rom 4:25 . . He was delivered over to death for our sins, and was raised
to life for our justification.

The Greek word translated "justification" is dikaiosis (dik-ah'-yo-sis) which
means acquittal; i.e. a verdict of innocence; viz: exoneration.

People merely forgiven still carry a load of guilt; viz: they have a criminal
record. Christ's bodily resurrection expunges their record so that on the
books, it's as though they've never done anything bad.

This clearing of one's record that I'm talking about is obtained via the
kindness and generosity of God through belief in the resurrection of Christ's
crucified body. If the Devil can succeed in convincing people that Jesus'
crucified body is still dead or, even better yet, make them question whether
the man even existed at all; then they will fail to obtain an acquittal, and
consequently end up put to death in brimstone because records are to be
reviewed when people stand to face justice at the Great White Throne event
depicted at Rev 20:11-15.

A
2: Belief in Christ's bodily resurrection is one of the essential elements of
the gospel that must be accepted if one is to have any hope at all of
escaping the lake of brimstone.

1Cor 15:1-4 . . Now I make known to you, brothers, the good news which
I declared to you, which you also received, in which you also stand, through
which you are also being saved, with the speech with which I declared the
good news to you, if you are holding it fast, unless, in fact, you became
believers to no purpose.

. . . For I handed on to you, among the first things, that which I also
received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; and that
he was buried, yes, that he has been raised up the third day according to
the Scriptures.

Paul goes on to say that if Christ's crucified body did not revive, then his
followers haven't a prayer of escaping the sum of all fears.

1Cor 15:17 . . If Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you
are still in your sins.

FYI: What and/or where are the scriptures about which Paul spoke? There's
at least two. One is the story of Jonah; which Christ appropriated as a "sign"
of his own resurrection. (Jonah 1:17, Matt 12:40). Another is in the book of
Psalms at 16:8-10 (cf. Acts 2:22-36)

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WebersHome

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#46
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Inspiration

2Tim 3:16 . . All Scripture is inspired by God

The Greek word for "inspired" is theopneustos (theh-op'-nyoo-stos) which is
a combination of theo which means God, and pneustos which means to
inflate: as in blowing up a balloon or a soccer ball and/or filling a boat's sails
with wind.

Theopneustos is probably about as close as you'll get for a Greek word
corresponding to Gen 2:7 where it's stated:

"Then Yhvh God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his
nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being."

"breathed into" is pretty much what theopneustos says. But the breath of life
isn't artificial respiration. Pumping air into a corpse doesn't work. It's been
tried. The breath of life is a mysterious energy with enough power to even
make solid rock sentient. (Luke 3:8)

What all this means is: scripture is more than just text-- God has willed
scripture to have a peculiar kind of life all its own.

Heb 4:12-13 . . For the word of God is living and active and sharper than
any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of
both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the
heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open
and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

Scripture, then, is a divine agent: it speaks about God, it speaks for God,
and it speaks as God. In a manner of speaking then: scripture can be
thought of as a close encounter.

"In its pages we recognize His voice, we hear a message of deep significance
for every one of us. Through the spiritual dynamism and prophetic force of
the Bible, the Holy Spirit spreads His light and His warmth over all men, in
whatever historical or sociological situation they find themselves." (Paulus PP
VI, from the Vatican, September 18, 1970)

Paulus PP VI said it well. So then: when people listen to the Bible, they listen
to God; and when they mock and ridicule the Bible, they mock and ridicule
God.

The voice of God is set to be called as a witness in the prosecution's case
against certain individuals.

John 12:48-49 . . He who rejects me, and does not receive my sayings,
has one who judges him: the word I spoke is what will judge him at the last
day. For I did not speak on my own initiative, but the Father himself who
sent me has given me commandment, what to say, and what to speak.

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WebersHome

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#47
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Interpretation

"Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private
interpretation."

The KJV's obsolete language is misleading. Here's that same passage in
updated language.

2Pet 1:20-21 . . Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of
Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy
never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were
carried along by the Holy Spirit.

That passage isn't talking about one's own personal understanding of
prophecy, rather, the origin of prophecy. In other words: the sayings of the
prophets didn't arise from human reasoning and a fertile imagination. No,
they got their sayings directly from God.

Now, the sayings they got from God are not quite the same as the sayings
that you see in print. No, the sayings you see in print are the prophets'
interpretations of the sayings they got from God; viz: they translated God's
language and grammar into common language and grammar that you and I
can understand. That's pretty amazing when you think about it.

For example: Jesus once said that his words are spirit (John 6:63). Well that
right there is a bit of a problem because I don't have in my possession an
Enigma machine designed to decode spirit words; so were I not blessed with
the anointing as per 1John 2:26-27, I'd be sort of like a blind man in a dark
room looking for a black cat that isn't there when it comes to spirit words.

1Cor 2:12-13 . .We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit
who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.
This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in
words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words.

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WebersHome

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#48
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Sons And Bums

Deut 21:18-21 . . If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who does not
obey his father and mother and will not listen to them when they discipline
him, his father and mother shall take hold of him and bring him to the elders
at the gate of his town. They shall say to the elders, "This son of ours is
stubborn and rebellious. He will not obey us. He is a profligate and a
drunkard." Then all the men of his town shall stone him to death. You must
purge the evil from among you.

The Hebrew word for "profligate" is zalal (zaw-lal') which, among other
things, means to be morally loose and/or worthless

The word for drunkard refers to heavy drinking; which could refer to wild
parties and such.

Those words don't describe minor children, rather, of-age children, i.e.
legally adults still living at home and mooching off their parents instead of
out on their own, working for a living to support themselves.

There's a rule of thumb that says "When you live in our house, you'll live by
our rules". Well; the bum described in Deut 21:18-21 not only mooches off
his parents, but does whatever he pleases in their home, not caring how
mom and dad might feel about anything.

These days that's becoming more and more common when 26 is the new 21.
Kids are staying home longer than they used to. Well; there's nothing
intrinsically wrong with kids staying home longer, but when their lifestyle
becomes intolerable for their parents, it's time for them to move out.

Why is the punishment so severe for bums? Well for starters; it violates one
of the Ten Commandments.

Ex 20:12a . . Honor your father and your mother,

Failure to comply with that command merits dying before one's time.

Ex 20:12b . . that your days may be prolonged in the land which Yhvh
your God gives you. (cf. Eph 6:1-3)

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WebersHome

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#49
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Jephthah's Daughter

Judg 11:30-32 . . And Jephthah made a vow to Yhvh and said: If you will
indeed give the sons of Ammon into my hand, then it shall be that whatever
comes out of the doors of my house to meet me when I return in peace from
the sons of Ammon, it shall be the Lord's, and I will offer it up as a burnt
offering.

Some of the "houses" back in that day were constructed as an enclosed
compound; which included a courtyard. Around the periphery of the
courtyard were the family's living quarters and sometimes accommodations
for certain of the family's animals. The "door" of the house served not as an
entry to the family's living quarters, rather, as a gate to the courtyard.

Something very similar to that description is depicted in the Charlton Heston
movie Ben Hur. I rather suspect that at least of few of the animals were
allowed to freely roam the courtyard and were Jephthah's intended sacrifice
rather than his kin. That would help explain the bitter disappointment he
expressed when his daughter met him first.

As for giving his daughter to the priests for a burnt offering; that just wasn't
done. Human sacrifice isn't specified in the covenant that Yhvh's people
agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and
Deuteronomy; so offering a human on the Altar would have been a violation.

Deut 4:2 . .You shall not add anything to what I command you or take
anything away from it, but keep the commandments of the Lord your God
that I enjoin upon you.

Deut 5:29-30 . . Be careful, then, to do as the Lord your God has
commanded you. Do not turn aside to the right or to the left: follow only the
path that the Lord your God has enjoined upon you

In the end, Jephthah's daughter didn't bewail the loss of her life; rather, the
loss of any hope of having a family of her own. I've a feeling she joined
other women of Israel dedicated to assisting with things in and around the
Temple vicinity (cf. 1Sam 2:22). According to 1Cor 7:34, that vocation is
better suited to unencumbered single women than married.

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WebersHome

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#50
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Of Babes And Bears

2Kgs 2:23-24 . . And [Elisha] went up from thence unto Bethel: and as
he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city,
and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou
bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the
name of The Lord. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and
tare forty and two children of them."

It would appear from the 1611 KJV that Elisha was guilty of criminal child
abuse. But to begin with, there's two different Hebrew words translated
"children" in that passage.

In verse 23, the word is na` ar (nah'-ar) which has a pretty wide
application; and more than one meaning: 1) a boy from the age of infancy
to adolescence 2) a servant (of either gender) 3) a girl (of similar latitude in.
age as a boy)

The word in verse 24 is yeled (yeh'-led) which has even more latitude than
na` ar; and just simply means offspring, viz: the young of either man or
beast, e.g. Gen 30:26 where yeled indicates not only Jacob's sons, but also
his daughter Dinah. In other words: yeled speaks of somebody's kids; in this
case the wayward kind, i.e. juvenile delinquents.

A far more rational scenario is that Elisha was accosted by a youth gang; not
by a posse of unsupervised little toddlers; as some have supposed. Youth
gangs can be dangerous at times; and Elisha was very lucky to get away
before they attacked him. The curse of the bears was obviously an act of self
defense. They ran interference for Elisha; distracting the youths; thus
creating an opportunity for Elisha to get away before the gang did more to
him than just taunting.

Here's a paraphrased way to look at it.

"From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking along the road,
some youths came out of the town and jeered at him. Go on up, baldy; they
said. Let's see you go on up too, chrome dome. He turned around, looked at
them and called down a curse on them in the name of The Lord. Then two
bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths."

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WebersHome

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Dec 9, 2014
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#51
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Spiritual Body vs Spirit Body

1 Cor 15:44 . . It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If
there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body.

Watch as I revise that passage because the difference is significant.

"It is sown a natural body, it is raised up a spirit body. If there is a natural
body, there is also a spirit body."

No; it doesn't say spirit body but nevertheless that's what some people have
decided it ought to say.

The Greek word translated "spiritual" is ambiguous. It doesn't necessarily
refer to spirit. Below is a list of spiritual things that bear absolutely no
resemblance whatsoever to the body chemistry of an angel or a demon.

Spiritual gifts (Rom 1:11)
Spiritual law (Rom 7:14)
Spiritual things (Rom 15:27)
Spiritual people (1Cor 2:15)
Spiritual nourishment (1Cor 10:3)
Spiritual water (1Cor 10:4)
Spiritual rock (1Cor 10:4)
Spiritual blessings (Eph 1:3)
Spiritual music (Eph 5:19)
Spiritual understanding (Col 1:9)
Spiritual housing (1Pet 2:5)
Spiritual sacrifices (1Pet 2:5)

The spiritual body spoken of at 1Cor 15:44 is in no way composed of spirit.
Of what material it is composed I don't know; but I do know at least three
things about it.

1• The spiritual body is patterned after Christ's body.

"Our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a savior from there, the
Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything
under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his
glorious body." (Php 3:20-21)

2• The spiritual body is capable of dining upon ordinary foods and
beverages.

"I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I
tell you: I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of
God." (Luke 22:15-16)

"I tell you: I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day
when I drink it anew with you in my Father's kingdom." (Matt 26:29)

"You are those who have stood by me in my trials. And I confer on you a
kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, so that you may eat and
drink at my table in my kingdom." (Luke 22:28-30)

3• The spiritual body is capable of being seen by the naked eye.

"Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has
been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you
have watched him go into heaven." (Acts 1:11)

"Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even
those who pierced him." (Rev 1:7)

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WebersHome

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#52
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Non Binary Identification

The non binary political movement consists of people who give no
importance to identifying one's self as either male or female, and prefer to
speak of themselves with neuter pronouns, for example: it, its, that, they,
and them.

I've no reservations whatsoever that humanity's creator regards non gender
people as freaks of nature; in other words: non gender people are not of His
making because His making was two genders: male and female.

Gen 1:27 . . God created Man in his own image, in the image of God
created He him; male and female created He them.

Matt 19:4 . . Have ye not read, that He which made them at the beginning
made them male and female?

If people can't agree with humanity's creator on something as elementary as
their gender designations as per Gen 1:27 and Matt 19:4, then I have to
assume that they disagree with Him on many other issues far more
important than that.

There's a term for people unable to accept themselves as the person they
really are. I think it might be called Dissociative Disorder. There was a time
when society confined people with those kinds of conditions to psychiatric
facilities for observation and therapy, but nowadays political correctness
requires that they be "included". But God-honoring Christian churches dare
not accept into their official membership roles someone known to be non
binary.

Heb 12:15 . . See to it that no one misses the grace of God, and that no
bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.

A bitter root is one belonging to a species unfit for human consumption.
When you find noxious vegetation sprouting in your garden, you've got to
get out there with a hoe and dig that stuff up before it spreads out of
control.

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WebersHome

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#53
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God's Good Faith

Eph 1:13-14 . . Having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of
promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the
purchased possession

Eph 4:30 . . Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were
sealed for the day of redemption.

The Holy Spirit of God is the seal; which is from the koiné Greek word
sphragizo (sfrag-id'-zo). The word has no reference whatsoever to a zip lock
bag, or a strip of tape, or a gasket, or that little widget that the power
company clips onto electric meters, or a cork, or a bar code, or a bottle cap,
or a label, or a tag, or the lid on a jar, or glue, or the ring of bee's wax that
goes in between the base of a toilet and the flange of the soil pipe it drains
into.

Sphragizo refers to the impression that's made upon wax with a signet ring.
In other words: the Holy Spirit is God's own personal signature on the dotted
line; and it serves a very important purpose.

The Holy Spirit is also the "guarantee" of a believer's inheritance. Let me
explain.

The koiné Greek word is arrhabon (ar-hrab-ohn') which refers to a pledge;
viz: part of the purchase-money or property given in advance as security for
the rest.

When we bought our home, I had to submit, along with the escrow papers,
an amount of money called a "good-faith" deposit. In the event that my wife
and I backed out of the deal, for any reason at all; we would've forfeited the
deposit. That's no doubt an incentive to make sure people mean business
about buying a home.

Eph 1:13-14 explains a difficult spiritual truth by putting it into a context
easy to understand by anyone familiar with the process of buying a home.
Another context, also easy to understand, is located in the 38th chapter of
Genesis.

Long story short, Judah left his staff and signet with Tamar as a pledge that
he would pay her with a young goat as compensation for sleeping with him
(Gen 38:18). The Hebrew word for Judah's pledge is 'arabown (ar-aw-bone')
which is equivalent to the Greek word for guarantee.

Well; Judah was unable to make good on his promise because Tamar took a
powder. So his response was:

"Let her keep what she has or we will become a disgrace." (Gen 38:23)

You bet your bippy they would have been a disgrace because until such a
time as Judah paid Tamar what he promised; she had a legitimate right to
keep his staff and his signet because that's the way an 'arabown works.

Bottom line is: at this point in the plan of salvation, should God not spare a
believer's soul from the sum of all fears; then He has to forfeit the Holy
Spirit. In other words: should a believer end up in hell, they get to keep the
Holy Spirit and take Him down there with them because that's the way the
arrhabon and the 'arabown work; and believers have God's signature holding
Him to it.

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WebersHome

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#54
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How People Stay In Heaven

I should think that producing enough piety during one's lifetime in order to
get to heaven would be difficult enough. But people who make it to heaven
don't face a lifetime; no, they're facing eternity. Producing piety for that long
has to be even harder.

According to Rom 2:6-11, people's piety has to be consistent. In other
words: there's no reward for complying with some of God's wishes some of
the time, nor even most of His wishes most of the time. No, people have to
comply with all of His wishes all the time in order to stay in heaven; no
slacking off-- people are expected to give it everything they've got.

Mark 12:30 . . You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and
with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.

Christ is the lucky one. Piety is second nature to him. Christ doesn't even
have to work at it because he was born with the nature of God rather than
only the nature of a human. That's quite an advantage over the rest of us.

1John 3:8 . .Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed
remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God.

According to Rom 6:23, the wages of sin is death. Well; if the wages of sin is
death down here, wouldn't the wages of sin be death up there too? I can't
imagine why not. So then, it seems to me that people in heaven are living
under a sword of Damocles, hanging by a slender thread easily broken by
the slightest impiety; and thus finding themselves booted out of heaven
right quick.

Human nature being what it is, the obvious solution to this dilemma is to
take people right back to square #1 and route them through birth all over
again. Only the second time, instead of born the normal way; they'd be born
by the hand of God in such a way that piety would be second nature to them
just like it is for Christ; because unless God can say about ordinary people
"this is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased" like He says about
Christ; they are not going to survive in heaven for very long.

Is what I'm talking about a possibility? Yes; it certainly is.

2Pet 1:3-5 . . His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to
life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His
own glory and excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious
and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become
partakers of the divine nature.

Routing through another birth all over again in order to obtain the divine
nature isn't optional. No; it's a must.

John 3:3 . . Jesus declared: I tell you the truth, no one can see the
kingdom of God unless he is born from above.

John 3:7 . . Do not wonder that I said to you: You must be born from
above.

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WebersHome

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#55
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Female Pastors, Preachers, and Teachers

NOTE: The comments below pertain specifically to Christians within a
Christian congregation, rather than to people in general throughout the
world community.

Christ's apostles speak for Christ; and obeying them is a walk pleasing to
God.

1Cor 14:37 . . If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let
him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the
commandments of The Lord.

1Ths 4:1-2 . .We beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord
Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please
God, so ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments
we gave you by the Lord Jesus.

Seeing as how the apostles' commandments are Christ's commandments,
then refusal to obey an apostle is all the same as refusal to obey Christ. It's
a domino effect all the way to the top.

Luke 10:16 . .Whoever listens to you; listens to me. Whoever rejects you;
rejects me. And whoever rejects me; rejects the one who sent me.

Therefore, these next commandments are not just one man's opinion; but
are Christ's wishes, and being so, are God's too.

1Cor 11:3 . . But I would have you know, that the head of every man is
Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is
God.

1Cor 14:34-35 . . Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is
not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under
obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn anything, let them ask
their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

1Tim 2:11-12 . . Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I
suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be
in silence.

People who refuse to obey those commandments are no better than pagans
practicing dark arts and/or worshipping Shiva and Vishnu.

1Sam 15:23 . . Rebellion is as the sin of divination, and insubordination is
as iniquity and idolatry.

They're Christ's enemies.

John 15:14 . .You are my friends if you do as I wish.

And they're disloyal too.

John 14:15 . . If you love me, you will comply with what I command.

John 14:21 . .Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one
who loves me.

John 14:23-24 . . If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching . . He who
does not love me will not obey my teaching.

Their insubordination insinuates that God's wisdom is absurd.

2Pet 3:15-16 . . Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him.

Q: What about Deborah? God appointed her to lead men. (Jdgs 4:4-5:31)

A: Things are quite a bit different now with Christ at the helm, i.e. Christ's
association with his church trumps Deborah's association with the Jews. I do
not recommend using her, or any other woman in the Bible, as an excuse to
defy Christ's edicts in matters pertaining to the governance of Christian
congregations.

NOTE: Paul appeals to "the law" as the basis for 1Cor 14:34. Normally when
Paul speaks of the law he's referring to the covenant that Yhvh's people
agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy.
Exactly where in the covenant women are explicitly forbidden to preach, or
teach, or usurp authority over men in matters of religion, I don't know.
However, it's quite obvious that the covenant is very sexist, i.e. women are
not permitted in either the priesthood or the Sanhedrin.

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WebersHome

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#56
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Christ And The Melchizedek Priesthood

Melchizedek was a priest of the Most High God in the book of Genesis
contemporary with Abraham. (Gen 14:18-20)

Mel, along with Abraham, existed prior to the covenanted law that Yhvh's
people agreed upon with God as per Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and
Deuteronomy. This is very important seeing as how according to the Bible,
law enacted ex post facto isn't retroactive.

Deut 5:2-4 . .Yhvh our God made a covenant with us at Horeb. Yhvh did
not make this covenant with our fathers, but with us, with all those of us
alive here today.

Rom 4:15 . . Law brings wrath. And where there is no law there is no
transgression.

Rom 5:13 . . Sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Gal 3:17. .The Law, which came four hundred and thirty years later, does
not invalidate a covenant previously ratified by God.

That being the case, then Melchizedek's constituents-- among whom was
Abraham --were immune to the consequences specified for breaking the
covenant's law as per Ex 34:6-7, Lev 26:3-38, Deut 27:15-26, and Deut
28:1-69.

Christ's priesthood is patterned after Melchizedek's (Ps 110:4, Heb 5:5-6).
So then, seeing as how Melchizedek and his constituents-- which included
Abraham --were immune to the curses specified for breaking the covenant's
law, then Christ and his constituents are immune to the curses too. In a
nutshell: neither Christ nor his followers can be sent to hell for breaking the
Ten Commandments.

John 5:24 . . I assure you: those who listen to my message, and believe in
God who sent me, have eternal life. They will never be condemned for their
sins, but they have already passed from death into life.

Another advantage of Christ's priesthood is its continuity.

Take for example Judaism's priesthood. No one has benefited from its
services since Titus destroyed Jerusalem in 70ad. Which means of course
that 1,945 years worth of Yom Kippurs have been merely for show because
the Day Of Atonement cannot be observed properly and effectively without a
fully functioning priesthood.

In contrast: Christ's priesthood isn't effected by wars, and/or geopolitics. He
officiates in heaven where nothing happening on earth can reach to either
interfere with, or interrupt, his services (Heb 8:1-4). And seeing as how
Christ rose from the dead immortal (Rom 6:9, Heb 7:3, Rev 1:18) then old
age and death will never be a factor in either the length or the effectiveness
of his priesthood tenure.

Heb 7:24-25 . . He, on the other hand, because he abides forever, holds
his priesthood permanently. Hence, also, he is able to save forever those
who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make
intercession for them.

FYI: Melchizedek's office is a high priest's position (Heb 5:10, Heb 6:20).
Well; the Bible limits the number of high priests in office to just one at a
time; and the man stays in place till he's dead before being replaced-- which
of course won't happen with Christ seeing as how he's currently immortal.

Point being: Mormonism's over-crowded order of Melchizedek is unbiblical:
and so, for that matter, is Mormonism's order of Aaron seeing as how his is
the office of a high priest too.

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WebersHome

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#57
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Hope For Pedophiles And LGBT, et al.

Everybody has problems with proclivities; which Webster's defines as
inclinations or predispositions toward something; especially strong inherent
inclinations toward something objectionable.

Everybody also has problems with predilections too; which Webster's defines
as a natural liking for something; viz: a natural tendency to do or to be
attracted to something.

Those definitions are keyed to the words "natural" and "inherent". So then
what we're talking about here are not conditioned responses, nor acquired
tastes.

In the passage below; Paul's pronoun "we" included himself as someone with
natural-born longings and desires for bad things.

Eph 2:2-4 . .We too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging
the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of
wrath, even as the rest.

Paul's pronoun "all" torpedoes every Christian claiming to be born free of
one or more sinful predilections.

The point is: unless something were done to remedy human nature's sinful
proclivities and predilections, nobody would qualify for citizenship in either
the new cosmos or the holy city depicted in the 21st chapter of Revelation.
Everybody, no exceptions, even Christ's apostles, would be barred entry
even though Christ gave his life as a ransom to rescue their souls from the
wrath of God.

The problem is: forgiveness isn't a cure; viz: forgiven pedophiles and LGBT
go right on as pedophiles and LGBT just like always and were they to
attempt to suppress their desires throughout eternity, I think they would
eventually go mad with a nervous breakdown because they would be
fighting against nature; which everybody instinctively knows is a fight that
can't be won without suffering serious psychological consequences.

So then, it's futile to tell pedophiles and LGBT to stop giving in to their
desires if they want to get to heaven and stay in heaven because that's not
a viable, long-range solution to their problem. The problem is not their
conduct; no, their conduct is merely a symptom; and as every informed
person knows: you don't treat an illness by treating its symptoms-- that
method has been proven ineffective.

God's remedy for pedophiles and LGBT is radical, to say the least; but it's
the only way He can get them into heaven so they can stay in heaven.

First off: He doesn't remove their longings and desires; instead God regards
their natural-born condition as so far gone that it can't be treated. In other
words: God throws the baby out with the bath water, so to speak, and starts
from scratch with a new baby.

John 3:3 . . I tell you the truth: no one can see the kingdom of God unless
he is born again.

The birth about which Christ spoke isn't an option; no, it's a must.

John 3:7 . .You must be born again.

That goes for everybody, not just pedophiles and LGBT, because Christ said
"no one" can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again; which of
course has to include all the holy people in the Old Testament too or
otherwise the words "no one" are just hot air and serve no useful purpose.

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WebersHome

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#58
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Christian Defined

Acts 11:26 . . in Antioch the disciples were for the first time called
Christians.

Webster's defines a Christian as somebody who professes belief in the
teachings of Jesus Christ.

According to that definition; it isn't necessary to actually believe in Christ's
teachings in order to qualify as a Christian; it's only necessary to say you do.

People don't even have to know what Christ's teachings are; they only have
to say they believe in them.

Nor is it necessary to put Christ's teachings into practice in order to qualify
as a Christian; it's only necessary to say you believe in them.

Webster's is a very broad definition, but if all denominations complied with
it, I think they'd all be a whole lots more tolerant; and get along a whole lots
better too.

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WebersHome

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#59
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Savior Defined

Matt 8:23-25 . . And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him.
And behold, there arose a great storm in the sea, so that the boat was
covered with the waves; but he himself was asleep. And they came to him,
and awoke him, saying: Save us, Lord; we are perishing!

The koiné Greek word for "save" in that verse is sozo (sode'-zo) which
means to rescue and/or protect.

Luke 2:8-11 . . And in the same region there were some shepherds staying
out in the fields, and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel
of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone
around them; and they were terribly frightened.

. . . And the angel said to them: Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you
good news of a great joy which shall be for all the people; for today in the
city of David there has been born for you a savior, who is Christ the Lord.

The Greek word for "savior" in that verse is soter (so-tare') which means: a
rescuer.

Rescuers typically help people who are in grave distress and/or imminent
danger of death and/or serious injury, and helpless to do anything about it;
e.g. Red Cross, Firemen, Emergency Medical teams, snow patrols, mountain
units, and the Coast Guard and National Guard.

Wouldn't it be awful if those agencies refused to assist desperate folk until
they first proved themselves deserving? Well lucky for everyone that those
agencies work on the basis of need rather than merit or many of us would
end up thrown back to the wolves.

I think quite a few people are under the impression that Christ is some sort
of probation officer; viz: if people "endure to the end" as they say; then he
grants them a clearance for heaven. But God forbid they should fail to
satisfy the conditions of their probation, because then they're out the door.

Probation can be likened to a sword of Damocles hanging over people's
heads by a slender thread easily broken by conduct unbecoming. How dare
the angel of Luke 2:8-11 describe his announcement as "good news of great
joy" if probation were actually what's meant by sozo instead of to rescue
and/or to protect.

On the other hand; if Christ is in the business of rescuing and protecting
people from the wrath of God in accordance with the humane principles
underlying normal emergency services; then yes, I fully agree with the angel
that the birth of Christ is something to get excited about.

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WebersHome

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#60
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The Good Shepherd

One of Christ's characteristics, in which I have complete confidence, is that
he's conscientious about doing what he's told.

"The one who sent me is with me. He has not left me alone, because I
always do what is pleasing to Him." (John 8:29)

Were Christ to fail in any way, any way at all, pleasing the one who sent
him. then it would be dishonest of Christ to claim to "always" please Him.
Christ might be able to claim pleasing the one who sent him a high
percentage of the time, but certainly not always.

Here is one of the things that God wants from His son.

"This is the will of the one who sent me; that I should not lose anything of
what He gave me." (John 6:39)

The one who sent Christ has given him sheep (John 10:27-30). Were Jesus
to lose one single head of those sheep-- even just one --he would fail to
always please the one who sent him.

Regarding those sheep, Jesus stated:

"I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch
them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than
all; no one can snatch them out of my Father's hand." (John 10:28-29)

It has actually been posited that the sheep are an exception. In other words;
it's been posited that the sheep of their own free will can take themselves
out of Jesus' hand. But of course they can't because the Father's free will
trumps the sheep's free will.

"This is the will of the one who sent me; that I should not lose anything of
what He gave me." (John 6:39)

The posit is a vote of no-confidence in the good shepherd's determination to
succeed at pleasing the one who sent him; and reveals a belief that the
sheep have enough strength and cunning to overpower their shepherd and
run off.

Were the good shepherd only human, then I would be inclined to agree with
the posit that his sheep might get past him and run off. But the Bible
teaches that Christ is not only human, but also the divine architect of the
entire cosmos with all of its forms of life, matter, and energy. So then, the
good shepherd has at his disposal all the powers and abilities of the supreme
being to utilize in keeping the sheep right where he wants them to be.

Surely no one in a right mind would dare to suggest that sheep have
sufficient powers and abilities of their own at their disposal to overcome
Christ. Were that the case, the sheep would have no need of his services;
the sheep could shepherd themselves.

But even were the sheep to somehow manage to escape Christ's hand, they
would still have his Father's hand to contend with; and good luck getting
away from Almighty God!

Now, seeing as how the good shepherd has all the powers of the supreme
being at his disposal to keep the sheep, then it shouldn't take too much
more to persuade the sheep that it's okay to fully trust in this next
statement of his.

"I am the gate; whoever enters through me shall be saved." (John 10:9)

Were Christ a so-so shepherd; then he wouldn't dare say "shall be" saved;
no, he'd have to tone it down a bit and say "can be" saved. That would leave
him some room for error. But when Christ says "shall be" he's claiming a
0.0% failure rate. That's how confident Christ is that he will lose nothing of
what his Father has given him.

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