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Sunday, January 22, 2017

Gabbatha , The Place of Judgment



     Sometimes journeys are measured in units of distance, sometimes in units of time and finally some journeys are measured by experiences.  All three could be applied to the title of this post. The word Gabbatha, however is only used one time and in one place in the whole Bible. It refers to the place of judgment and where the judgment was carried out.

  ‘When Pilate heard this, he brought Jesus out. Then he sat down on the judge’s bench at the place known as “The Stone Pavement.” In Aramaic this pavement is called “Gabbatha.” 

   As I drove a truck for most of my life, which I learned to do in Vietnam while running away from God, it took on a special meaning to me. To me it means we are judged by the path we walk every day of our lives. You can find a couple versions of that story elsewhere on my blog. My company name was G.I.F.T. Enterprises, The acronym is “Gabbatha Interstate Freight Transportation” At least it was till I had a heart attack died and had to quit trucking.   Then it became ‘God Is for Trusting” That happened thirteen years ago today.  It seems every year about this time I go on a nostalgia trip.

      My wife goes to Texas to see her mom in January and February which is usually not a bad decision but it left me taking care of my twin four year old Great-Grand-Grand-daughters 10 hours a day and five days a week. I was doing fine, till I got the flu earlier in the week.  Fortunately me for their mom took a couple days off and gave me a couple days to recuperate.  Suddenly I found myself with a lot of time on my hands and decided to watch a movie and found the movie Forrest Gump just as it was starting. My dog Forrest Gump, a Boston terrier, was my youngest daughter’s dog before she passed away. You can find the story in one of my blog posts. It is a real tear jerker and even though I cried with my daughter every time we watched it I never realized it was almost the story of her life though she left three boys, not one.

    While watching I had an Epiphany. Suddenly I realized that Jesus’s walk on the Pavement took all his life to get him to that point, but he knew where he was going. Thank God my daughter had the faith to make that journey trusting she was going to a better place. She fought a brain tumor for seven years from 2003 to 2010.  When I had my heart attack in 2004 it gave us a lot of time to be together. The Lord provided me time and a means to be there for her till she went home. It says in Math 27:33 and Mk 15:22 they offered Jesus pain killers, but he refused them. The pain and the suffering were why he was here.

       The thought crossed my mind that Gol’gotha, where they took Jesus to crucify him, was more than a place and very symbolic.  His cross pierced Gol’Gotha (the skull) just as it should our minds so that we really grasp that dying is not a onetime experience, but an ongoing event that is played out in the course of our lives.

     The turmoil and hate that has been generated in America during this election cycle had totally baffled me till I started looking at it. Many people who I know and who I consider good Christians are ready to fight if anyone says anything against the new president.

     All my life elections have been about controlling spending and cutting or fixing the government, things that did not even get a mention during this election cycle by any of the candidates. It was Islamophobia and Immigration and none of the  views expressed during the cycle showed any Christian compassion for those suffering around world, a large portion of which have been caused by American actions to start with.

     Another thing that has come up repeatedly during the course of my life is taking or creation a national ID card.  Christian American would beat that down every time it came up as being a sign of the Mark of the Beast.  I think the will of the people to stop such an action may have been finally wiped out by the fear of terrorism.  I pray not, but I definitely see things to look out for.

    The Bible also says a double minded man is unstable in all his ways. I don’t think I need to mention where that might apply.  Proverbs 6 gives us another piece of food for thought, reading the whole chapter may even be more insightful

        16These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:  17A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,  18An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, 19A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

   Amos 4:6 makes the price of ignorance clear.  Notice he said my people. He did not say the ignorant or the ungodly. He said His people would perish, time may be running out to confirm that the knowledge you possess will actually save you.
 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.  7As they were increased, so they sinned against me: therefore will I change their glory into shame.

    At some point God will become fed up with mankind and pour out his wrath on mankind. We may be getting very near that point. I have heard several people say that we got the President that God wanted us to have.  That may be true and probably is, but keep in mind that God put some kings in place to lead Israel into judgment.  To me that is where I see this new President leading America. He has done nothing but insult people and nations since he took office.

      He says he is going to create jobs, but his tactics may backfire. He has constantly insulted the country of Mexico.  I heard last night on the news that Mexican politicians in retaliation are going to boycott American corn and buy all of their corn from Venezuela, Brazil and Argentina.  That will definitely not be good for the American economy.  The President’s business failures and short comings definitely indicate the possibility of a major problem in the making.

     Many countries are in the process of dumping the dollar as their reserve currency. That is not good at all for America.  With all his insults to China they could easily cut America off financially and quit buying American Treasury bonds which at present time pay virtually nothing to those who have them.  Such an event would collapse the American economy in short order.

   Considering all the chaos he has created in just one month, it is hard to believe that America can survive four more years of his Presidency. The scandals he is having in his administration could easily lead to his impeachment, which may be the only hope for America.

     So to those who say we got the President God meant for us to have. We might search our heart and ask what God is trying to tell us as a nation.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Number 70’s Biblical Significance


            The Number 70’s Biblical Significance

     If history repeats itself, two thousand seventeen promises to be a very significant year for several historical and Biblical reasons. Of course there are a couple of catches to that statement. First you must actually believe the Bible and you must have read it and understand that it means what it says. Many people read it and then explain why it does not mean what it says. That is a sign of doubt and unbelief.  This is the seventieth year since Israel was revived as nation. When you look at what that means historically in the Old Testament, you also get a grasp of what or why it has significance in this day and age.

   In the Old Testament it was a number that signified that God was performing some great work. When Israel went into the Babylonian captivity prophecy said they would be there seventy years. The reason was to pay for their iniquity which Ezekiel 4:5-6 makes clear is a punishment of every day for a year, which equals a period of 430 years. That number rang a bell in my mind and I remembered reading it in Exodus 12:41 and there it said it was “four hundred thirty years to the day.” It had caught my attention and made me wonder why it was so specific that it was “to the day.” Later I found a reference that from the start of the rebuilding of the wall in Jerusalem after the Babylonian captivity till the coming of Christ was also 430 years. That made three periods of 430 years. Each period was followed with a return to the Promised Land. Two were followed by a period of seventy years.

    Israel was in the Babylonian captivity for seventy years, then while studying I found from the birth of Christ to the destruction of the temple was also a period of seventy years.  All of a sudden I realized there was no seventy year period at the time of Moses, but after some serious studying I found out I was wrong.  There was a seventy year period at the time of Moses. It is just a little harder to see as it is not called a seventy year period, but it exists. Joshua said at the time Moses sent him to search out the land he was forty years old. They then wondered in the wilderness forty years. So when he took charge from Moses and entered the Promised Land the second time he was 80 years old. It also says in 24:27 having done all he was called to do, he lay down and died being 110 years old. That means it took him 30 years to conquer the Promised Land and with his time wondering in the Wilderness it took seventy years from beginning to end. Just a coincidence that there happened to be three periods of 500 years in the Old Testament.

     Sometime later I was reading in Amos and God said he had punished Israel’s enemies three times for their iniquity and that they would be punished for a forth. That got me to wondering wouldn’t he do the same for His Chosen Nation.  As hard as I searched for it I could not find a fourth period in the Old Testament. Then one night I was helping my daughter, Angel, do a paper on Martin Luther and I realized that from the time Martin Luther nailed his treatise to the door of the church in Germany was a period of 431 years. It could not be right as it had to be 430 years to the day. So I got out our World Book and looked it up. I got a real shock. Israel physically became a nation in 1948, but it was voted on in the United Nations and approved in November 1947.  That was 430 years and a couple of days, but knowing it takes time to write legislation I realized it could easily have actually been initiated 430 years to the day. That would take research and going to the United Nations and verifying the facts, but I have no desire to go to that place for any reason.

   Whichever date you use November 1947 or May 1948 the time cycle is about fulfilled. Jesus said in the end time it would be as it was in the days of Noah, read chapter 6 of Genesis and you will find that is exactly the kind of world we are living in today. Recently in a one week period there were, bombings, earthquakes, tornados, tsunami’s and all kinds of destruction going on in the world. I am not a rocket scientist or a genius, but I can see things are coming closer and closer together which is just how it is described in the Bible, like birth pains.

   If you really want some enlightenment read Matthew 24, then realize it is Jesus saying these things and giving these warnings and Tribulation will come before deliverance. If you have those you really care about your time to do something is growing shorter by the day.

    In June of 1967 when Israel regained the Wailing Wall and took control of the Temple Mount I was stationed in Germany. At the time I was twenty one and all of this was unknown to me, but now having reached seventy years of age and been dead twice already myself, my only goal in writing this is to share it so others may understand that the time end time is near. My first big event was thirteen years ago this month. In fact the anniversary is one week from today.  I know I have said this over and over in the last six years I have had a blog, but if it enlightens one soul it will be worth it. At least now I know I can go to rest in peace having shared all I know and hoping it helps someone. My only request if you find this information useful, share it with others.  Remember as my granddaughter says, Sharing is Caring.

Friday, January 6, 2017

America from Babylon to Sodom

America the New Babylon, and On and On and On

     While sitting and watching CNN it hit me that America has hit a new phase in history. Unfortunately we have reached a new low, which seems to be the direction the country is headed. While there may have been hope things would change when the President Elect won the election, but so far his diplomacy by insult has only intensified.

     Having been self-employed most of my working life except the thirteen years I spent in the Army at the start, which I left because of my refusal to compromise my views on a matter of truth. The system is fine as long as you go along with it, but when you are unwilling to compromise, conflict is inevitable.  My career came to a point where my superiors were determined to kick a black-man in my section out of the Army.  I had no problem with doing that, several men in my section had been kicked out over the years, black, white and Hispanic. But it was based on the truth and their record. In this particular instance my superiors were determined to frame the person and lie to do so. The problem was it would require me to lie also. The person involved had already been warned by me that he was on thin ice and that if I caught him doing drugs he was gone.  Other than that issue he was an awesome soldier. My superiors violated several military rules to set him up, but they justified it because of something they thought he did. Not something they could prove. I was willing to wait till I legally caught him and sooner or later I would.  They went ahead with the Court Martial and denied me the right to testify because they knew I would not lie for them. After the trial I was called in as a character witness and had an interesting learning experience. The Major had already found the man guilty based on the evidence presented.  In the course of our conversation he asked me a number of questions knowing I was in the man’s chain of command and why I was not allowed to talk at the trial. After we were done he told me he knew I was telling the truth. I asked how and he said my story made since out of all their stories, so it had to be the truth.  Instead of kicking the man out he decided to fine him $25 and drop all the other punishments. My leaders were furious. Before I left country a few months later they gave me two efficiency reports at 29 points.  I had guys I kicked out that I gave 70’s and 80’s, based on the point scoring system.  To be considered for a promotion in my grade and field required an average score of 110. The irony was that they had promoted me to staff sergeant E-6 in the middle of the same period they gave me the rating for.

     Later when I decided I had had it with the Army I used those two efficiency reports to justify volunteering for discharge under the Qualitative Management System.  Having worked part time as a legal clerk based on my having taken typing in high school, I typed and submitted the paperwork on my own. Ninety days later I was a free man.  So the Truth really did set me free. Knowing that simple truth has allowed me to do things that I never before thought I would be able to do.

    Because of the experience I had in my life I have learned that John 8: 32 is based on Biblical fact. There are many truths that can help us understand the events in our lives especially when we our trying to discern the proper path to follow. Jeremiah 17:5 says we are cursed if we put our trust in any man. We are supposed to trust God and His Word. His Word says “You reap what you sow.” When we ignore God’s Word we are about to have a bad harvest.  As the elections rolled along I began to see a sign.  The babbling went on and on. Both sides saying whatever they thought might get them a vote. The Truth was a totally irrelevant matter.

    The Bible also says, “a double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”  The candidates changed their mind and attitude depending on the audience they were in front of. In Proverbs 6, it says there are seven things God hates.

    16These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:  17A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,  18An heart that devises wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, 19A false witness that speaks lies, and he that sows discord among brethren.

I could almost say this is the campaign manual for Donald Trump’s campaign.  He is pretty well seven for seven on what God hates. Not to judge Trump but I know these things are not something I am looking for in a leader.  Especially in view of the fact that the Bible also say that pride goes before the fall. A few verses before the part in Red it gives a fairly severe warning that fairly well describes America today.

6Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: 7Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, 8Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathers her food in the harvest. 9How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep? 10Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: 11So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man.
12A naughty person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth. 13He winketh with his eyes, he speaketh with his feet, he teacheth with his fingers; 14Frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord.  15Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly; suddenly shall he be broken without remedy.

    What really amazes me is the Christian leadership in America turned a blind eye to Trump’s actions and words and said at least he is better than Hillary. While I agree with those people I find it hard to believe that Americans could vote for either candidate and the outcome of the election made it clear that majority does not rule in America and as long as the Electoral College exists the will of the people can be thwarted.  People say the little states won’t have a chance. They won’t if they don’t elect Senators who will vote their will.  That is where the balance comes from in our political system.  Doing away with the Electoral College will make it easier for third party candidates to get involved and make a difference. It may have been necessary when it took weeks to cross the country, but that is not the case today. It is time to amend the system.

    It is also time to rein in the Supreme Court and reduce it back to the seven it was before FDR expanded it to nine justices to push through legislation that he wanted to pass.  That can be done by reducing the court through attrition.  Also judges should be forced to retire at seventy-five so that the court stays functional.  They can start the process by removing Clarence Thomas for failing to recuse himself in the Monsanto hearings and then making the decision in favor of his former employer.  All the decisions and judgements in the cases affected by his judgment should be nullified and set aside.  The destruction of the honey bee and the potential devastation it is causing are directly related to those decisions.

   The Bible says “My people are destroyed for a lack of Knowledge” notice he did not say lost or sinners. He said His People.  As America moves from Babylon to Sodom it apparent that we are entering a time that the Bible warns us is coming.

16For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. 17For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written,  The just shall live by faith. 18For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
19Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.  20For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:  21Because 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. 22Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.  26For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: 27And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. 28And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;   29Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, 30Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:  32Who 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.

    Sounds a little like the world we are living in today. We can’t escape it, but we do not have to promote or be part of it. We need to look at the world around us and set our hearts, minds and lives on being what God called us to be.