Can’t we all just get along?

Can’t we all just get along during the presidential elections?

The following is a political conversation between me and a republican friend. It started with me asking who he was voting for in the presidential election. He responded that it depended on who their running mate would be. So I inquired, “If Hillary teams up with the right one, then you’ll vote for her, right? “Hell no!” was his emphatic response. This led into the following text messages:

Me: And remember, I still love you, even though you’re a republican. You can’t help it, bro. Lol

‘Inferiors may Disagree’ (his chosen alias):

So you’re admitting you’ve dumbed down to the ‘dumbacrat’ level?

Me: 🙂 if I did that, then you’d disown me. I’m messing with you just like I would any democrat. I actually choose not to choose. I don’t get involved in the squabbles of this physical world.

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

I wouldn’t disown you, but I would ask myself ‘why, I ever thought Mike was intelligent?! Where do I go from here, now that I’ve let myself down by associating with an unintelligent being?’

Me: I forgot to thank you for that compliment yesterday about me being smart. Thanks.

Now image how peaceful your life would be were you to let loose of just a few opinions? I’ll give you an example, but remember, I could just as easily give examples of democrats as well. Anyway, this is why I choose not to get involved. Like I once was, and most republicans are, you’re probably under the misguided opinion that this is a Christian nation. This is because it perfectly aligns to their beliefs; it’s what we want to believe. What we want to believe far outweighs all other notions, truth or otherwise.

And I’m sure, you get upset when democrats claim this country wasn’t founded on the principles of Christianity. One day I decided to do my own investigation, and I no longer believe as I once did; I understand the intent of the Founding Fathers. They, being fed-up with religious domination over government in the ‘old world’, established our great nation with absolutely no connection to any religion. Allowing our government to govern people based on the ‘rights of man’ through the dictates of reason, without superstition, while still maintaining the liberty for all men to worship as they pleased. I believe it’s obvious the Founding Fathers believed in God, so I don’t side with democrats either – particularly when they adamantly want to remove all references to the Divine. If I choose a side I – which I usually don’t – it’s always based on any truth which I’ve discovered through my own research – it’s never based on anything presented by the skewed media.

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Yeah, I’m aware, but I choose to side with the lesser of both evils.

Me: God bless you bro. That, in and of itself, is the crux of all conflicts of every age. The distinction of good vs evil – ever since the garden. Don’t you think there are good democrats, who sincerely make their decisions based on the same ‘logical reasons’ as you? It’s unfortunate that ever since Jefferson and Adams competed for the presidency, this ‘us vs them’ mentality has prevailed. They were just as ugly about it, two hundred years ago, as we are today . The papers actually quoted preachers exclaiming, “A vote for Jefferson is a vote for the Devil.” How is that any different from the fundamentalist who’ve called Obama the antichrist for seven years?

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Oh, I know, but I’m speaking of the lesser of both evils in regards to benefits to me and my family.

Me:

Oh, so the real root of the problem is selfishness. Everyone’s only interested in their own agendas and protecting their own interests. 🙂 I know you’re not selfish, but, I still think there’s much truth to that. I know smart democrats who call you ignorant, just like you were implying about me; but I think it’s time to stop entrenching ourselves against one another and start working together.

My dad was so funny, through the entire eight year term of Bush he used to preach – especially when someone criticized his boy, G.W. – “There shouldn’t be any democrats or republicans; we’re all Americans. And everyone should support our president, regardless of his affiliation. But boy, did he became indignant when I reminded him of his self-righteous proclamations once Obama got into office. He said, “Bull shit, I don’t have to support that no good son of bitch!” He refused to adhere to the standards which he himself expected democrats to live up to.

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Sounds like your dad was a great man! Democrats only do good if you’re into socialism, the welfare system, abortion, open boarders, political correctness, etc., and they’re against our military, defending our nation – basically all the things which are in the best interest of this country.

Me: I love you, bro. Can have your permission to post this conversation on my website? And if so how do you wish to be labeled anonymous, fanatical republican nut-job, or by name?

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Go for it, but label me as ‘Inferiors may Disagree’. [END]

If we could all learn to express our opinions and concerns without the added insults and biased positions, we might be able to work together to build a brighter future for our children. Until that time we continue to stand on one side of the fence or the other and hurl insults and anathemas at one another while making little to no progress. It’s the ego which keeps us spinning in circles in the same spot.

Michael Blakeslee ‘Never accept any limitations in an unlimited Universe.’

Have you hugged your homeless dude today?

Have you hugged your homeless dude today?Something I never imagined I’d ever experience in my life; but yesterday I found myself hugging a dirty, smelly homeless dude named Mike. He said my little expression of kindness made up for the rudeness of several other mean people.

What really amazed me about him was his love and forgiveness for those rude people. He said, “I know they don’t really mean it; they just don’t know how to handle me. So it’s easier to get angry about my presence than treat me humanely. But I know later they feel sorry about the way they treated me. And I feel sorry for them.”homeless pastor

I thought here’s Mr. “spiritual guru” learning Universal Truths from a homeless guy, isn’t that great? If you pay attention, you’ll discover God uses any and every opportunity to teach us something. Someone once said, “The Universe will toss you off a cliff, if it thought you’d wake up on your way down.”

I actually wondered if this guy might be one of those undercover angels, you know the ones placed here to test our spiritual resolve. The entire conversation had a rather deep impact on me; I thought about it all day. Although his display of gratitude contradicts what I’m about to say, I believe my encounter with Mike had a much grander impact on the future of my life than it did on his.

He read my shirt and said, “Oh, Flying J, I just love that place. Dale The manager there was very nice to me when I needed a shower. I hadn’t showered in four months, and I needed one really bad. A driver offered me one of his, but I wasn’t able to use it right away. Dale was so kind; he signed the receipt, and said I could use it anytime later. He was so wonderful to me, just like you’ve been to me today, Mike. I’m gonna pray for you, just like I’ve been praying for Dale.”

This is the point where he got real emotional and stretched out his arms towards me. I had a split second to decide, am I going to shun this man who may be an undercover angel, or am I going to – right in front of all these passing customers – reciprocate, and hug him back. Well, I’m proud to say I chose the latter, and I didn’t feel like anyone thought less of me for it either.

You know, I believe the Beatles were right when they said, “All you need is love.” Mike didn’t need my condemnation or my condescending judgments. He’s well aware of the mistakes which have led him to where he’s at now. I’m sure he’s had to listen to that inner voice of damnation for decades. I often think there’s a reason many of them would prefer beer over food – anything for a little peace from that barrage of self-condemnation. What he needed was the same thing we all need, for someone to simply extol a little human kindness. To quote Nick Nolte from the movie, ‘The Peaceful Warrior’: “The ones who are the toughest to love are the ones who need it the most.”

Michael Blakeslee, Never accept limitations in an unlimited Universe.

P.S. If you click on the picture it take you to a FB link of a pastor who dressed like a homeless man to see how his congregation would react to his presence in their church. It’s quite shocking.

Bloody Footprints in the Snow

Honoring the unsung
heroes of
The American Revolution

 

            My son was reading “Magic Tree House… American Revolution” (by Mary Pope Osborne/Natalie Pope Boyce) to me, when he abruptly asked, “Why are you crying, dad?” “Because,” I replied, “I suddenly realize how much those American soldiers sacrificed for our freedom.” And then I thought to myself: “I’m grateful to the authors for keeping a children’s book authentic and not omitting disturbing images, like shoeless soldiers marching in the snow.”

The crossing of the Delaware, historians say, was a pivotal moment in the Revolutionary war. By the end of 1776, the war efforts hadn’t been as successful as the patriots had hoped. They’d lost two strategic forts, indispensable supplies, and their footing in New York was slipping. Furthermore, the enlistment terms of many were expiring soon, and it appeared doubtful that very many of those soldiers would re-enlist. Without a positive, significant turn of events, the war would surely fizzle out by spring; and this was Washington’s no-holds-bar attempt at changing the course of history.

Crossing the Delaware was a battle against a tumultuous storm. Heavy winds, snow, and freezing rain made it an insurmountable obstacle. I wouldn’t have wanted to drive in it, let alone cross an icy river with frozen hands in soaking wet clothes. By this time, desertions had become quite common; and if ever there was a time to tuck tail and run, it was that night. It’s Christmas and you’re spending it with gloomy soldiers instead of your loving family.

It wasn’t until after midnight when all the troops and equipment made their way across; and with no sleep, these soldiers – some of them shoeless – trudged through the snow for almost four hours. Try and imaging what might’ve gone through your head during that trek. “This isn’t going to work. We’ve lost so many other battles, what makes Washington think this one will be any different? It’s Christmas, I’m soaking wet, shoeless, and freezing my butt off. Why couldn’t this wait until after the holidays? Things weren’t so bad under King George, were they?”

Washington was leading a disheartened, ragtag army with little hope of success; but before they started this strenuous task, he showed true genius by reciting “The American Crisis” to them – A stirring piece by Thomas Paine, which arrived – hot off the presses – just in time to encourage the troops to stay the course. I’d like to reproduce the introduction from this brilliant classic:

“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.”

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Washington is primarily glorified for the Revolution – and I don’t mean to undermine his contributions in any way. But I believe he’d agree when I say, we should also commemorate those who sacrificed the most. It was a brilliant plan, but it would’ve come to nothing without bloody footprints in the snow. And I say, God bless those men who did what I couldn’t do by carrying on in the face of overwhelming odds.

It’s wonderful that we take advantage of our liberties today; but we should never forget the hardships endured by our ancestors who secured these freedoms for us – many of whom died long before seeing any light at the end of the tunnel. So I encourage us to stop from time to time, and remember those soldiers who left bloody footprints in the snow.

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Now I’d like to explore the events set in motion by those bloody footprints. First of all: questioning a “divinely sanctioned” monarch was unheard of at the time and took great courage. To question the king back then meant certain death; and in an era today, when David Limbaugh can write a book entitled, “The Great Destroyer: Barack Obama’s war on the Republic”, and live to collect royalties, well I guess we really should honor those bloody footprints. They sacrificed everything to resist a tyrant who would’ve hanged Limbaugh for much less insolence than this title. Those footprints were distinguished by an air of defiance against despotism. People had had enough of it in Europe. Why do you suppose these daring souls left all familiarities, crossed an uncertain ocean, and braved an uncharted new world? They were sick and tired of the old ways established for millennia in Europe.

Furthermore, why did they call it a “New World?” Today if we talked about a new world, we’d assume a new planet had been discovered. But 500 years ago we found a new world right here on Earth, on the other side of the world from tyrants and religious superstition.

This novel insolence not only worried the king, but it also alarmed the clergy as well. They were still nursing the wounds of the Reformation. Since the king’s rule was sanctioned by the church, the church, of course, would say: To question the authority of the king is to question the sovereignty of the church, and to question the church is to question God Almighty. we the people

The next wrong in a long line of things to be righted was Slavery. It wasn’t long after the Revolution that people began wondering how we could call ourselves a free nation while millions of our fellow humans were in shackles. Several anti-slavery parties sprung up, and the conflict to abolish slavery commenced.

Two battles intertwined themselves with the Abolition movement: 1) not only were the slave-holders enraged against it, but the church of the south was united with them as well. They asserted that Jehovah endorsed slavery in his sacred scriptures. And 2) the second battle raging was primarily promoted by the church, regarding women speaking in public. In a time when women were the property of men and expected to keep their mouths shut, these brave women were publicly sharing their first hand knowledge of how their fathers had abused and raped their female slaves.

The newspapers and clergy vehemently attacked these women at every occasion, calling them infidels and atheists, with degrading statements like: “A woman preaching is like a dog walking on his hind legs. It’s not done well, but you’re surprised to find it done at all.” Ladies, next time you feel coerced into repressing your God given rights, try honoring those women who endured great hardships so you could be recognized as equals and not as property.

One of the most influential heroines of this epoch was Lucretia Mott. Her motto should be inscribed upon the altars of every church, mosque, and synagogue: “Truth for authority and not authority for truth.” I love her!

After a long, turbulent clash, including a violent Civil War, both dreams were eventually realized. Although it took about a century for the idea to sink in, these new concepts had rooted themselves in the American psyche. Even the church resisted both notions; But the direction mankind was headed in could not be restrained – women were eventually recognized as equally created by God.

The slaves were initially freed with the Emancipation Proclamation, but like women, it was another century before their Constitutional rights were completely established. And what was the position of most churches during the initial battles of the 1800’s, and the finalization of both repressions in the 1960’s and 70’s? Yes, Martin Luther King’s church, of course, was supporting the Civil Rights Movement, but what stance did the ‘whites only church’ take on the issue? I think the answer to this was made plain in 1995, when the Southern Baptist church formally apologized for their support of slavery and segregation.

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Can you appreciate that Lincoln held the second, if not the most difficult term in our presidential history? There was a tremendous amount of polar opposites clashing together with Lincoln at the center. I believe a most candid account of these epic battles can be found in the beginning of Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln.” Lincoln explains the precarious gray area he traversed in making the ‘Emancipation Proclamation’. It’s a riveting scene – within the first thirty minutes – where he reveals how, from one angle, it appeared proper, yet an argument could be made from another that he’d trampled the rights of each individual, southern state.

Lincoln frequently had good Christians expressing their concerns to him. One assuring him that God endorsed slavery, while the other asserting it sin. This is what Lincoln was referring to when he said, “I am approached with the most opposite opinions and advice, and that by religious men, who are equally certain that they represent the Divine will.” And at another time when he said, “Both read the same Bible, and pray to the same God; and each invokes His aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God’s assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men’s faces.”

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The last great movement of this spirit of Human Rights came along in the 1960’s. That’s when we saw a marvelous revolution against orthodoxy and conventional programming. Not only was this when African-Americans renewed their struggle for their God-given rights, but long-haired white people were rebelling against long held traditional values as well. We’re all familiar with the pandemonium of this era, but I’d like to focus on the crux of this revolution. It was nothing more than asserting the right to be different, and encouraging love and peace towards all mankind. What’s wrong with that?

At a time when America was in a ‘Leave it to Beaver’ construct, they wanted to break the shackles of conformity. People were pretty much cookie-cut and molded into culturally accepted positions of society. The daughter was conditioned to be the stay-at-home mom who got a wrap on the cheek if she didn’t comply with her husband’s demands. The son was groomed to be a hard-working man who never cried, who hated communism, and never questioned authority.leaveit_to_beaver1

Things were drifting back to pre-revolutionary conditions. If you don’t believe it, watch some of the shows and commercials from that era. Anything from vacuum cleaners to Mr. Clean helping out in the kitchen were always aimed at the stay-at-home mom for example. And examine any ad directed at a man today, and you’ll most likely see a half naked big-breasted woman. I know Fry’s is campaigning women when I see the attractive, but not extraordinary, lady in the common, red house dress. I know this primarily because there is no cleavage to be seen.

Some more recent rights to be considered before we close: Worker’s rights, Children’s rights, and animal rights organizations, to name a few.

And finally: Very soon we’ll see the long-awaited finalization of equal rights for the gay community as well. I’m perplexed that two hundred years after the Revolution, and we’re still finding human rights that need to be addressed. It’s kind of a great time in history to be alive. I honestly believe gay rights will be remembered as the final stage of established human rights. And gay people should, as much as the rest of us, show appreciation to those nameless soldiers who left bloody footprints in the snow.

Let us always honor those who paid the heaviest burden to secure our wonderful freedoms. And let us also keep in mind that, at nearly every step, over the last two-millennia, the church has piously stood in staunch opposition to the advancements of society – from the Abolition of slavery and Women’s Liberation to gay rights.

Michael Blakeslee

 

Why has Jesus delayed His return so long?

For those of you wondering why Jesus has delayed His coming for over 2,000 years, Pastor Ray Hagins has some insightful clues:

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These excerpts taken from his sermon, ‘There will be no rapture’ which can be found on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=FiLq5UWNIuA#

Pastor Hagins starts off by saying, The Bible says, “There will be no rapture, and Jesus is not coming back.” Our primary response would be, “Show me where it says that.” We shall get into that after we address 3 core questions.

Pastor Hagins then asks three key questions:

Is it possible that Jesus expected His Messianic Kingdom to be established on Earth within His generation?

Is it possible that Jesus thought that the end of the world was eminent because of a fulfillment of prophecy? Not 2,000 years later but right then in His time.

Is it possible that what Christians teach about what is yet to come has already happened? This is important because if it’s already happened; then what are we waiting for?

On careful examination of the words of Jesus in the Gospels, it seems to me, Jesus sincerely held the belief and taught that He was the long looked for Messiah and He was going to usher in the Kingdom of God within His own generation.

Luke 21:31-32 “Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is nigh.” What things? The things previously mentioned and we’ll get into that. What does nigh mean? It means near or now not 2,000 years from now.

“I tell you the truth, [or, rest assured] this generation [what generation? He is talking about his generation; not the generation of 2012. Don’t look at it from the perspective of the reader but from the perspective of the speaker.] this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.” Those people listening would not die until what he said happened.

Matt 24:34-35 “Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass, till all these things are fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” In other words, you can take this to the bank.

Matt 24:3 “And as he sat upon the Mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?” Then what does Jesus tell them? And keep in mind who was He talking to? The disciples, He wasn’t talking to us.

Matt 24:4-5 “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. [Who is ‘you’? the disciples, not us. He was saying, ‘James, Peter, Andrew, I don’t want you guys to be deceived.’ And what was He concerned about for His disciples?] For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.” Many preachers like to say that in the end, people are going to come to you and say, they are the Christ. That is not what that scripture says! Have there been many people in history who have claimed to be the Christ?

It doesn’t say many will come in my name claiming to be Christ. What it says is many will come in my name, or as my representatives, saying that I am Christ and shall do what? Deceive many. It clearly states that people are going to come along teaching that Jesus is Christ and deceive a lot of people. Why would He have to be concerned about 12 men, who’ve followed Him 3 years, being deceived by somebody claiming to be Him? Why would I have to stand here and say to you, “Take heed because someone’s going to come along claiming to be Ray Hagins?” it’s ridiculous; Jesus was not saying someone is pretending to be me. Now the primary question here is: Are people teaching that Jesus is the Christ? Yes.

Matt 24:21 “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” ‘Ever shall be’ negates the entire point; however, based on what Jesus is saying, we must assume He is talking about the great tribulation. Now this next section is talking about the rapture.

Matt 24:29-31 It says after the tribulation then the rapture comes; contrary to what most of us have been taught, that we will be taken up before the troubles begin. “Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.”

I Cor 15:51-52 “Behold, I show you a mystery; we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.” This use of ‘we’ in this verse indicates that Paul also believed Jesus was coming back in his own time.

Matt 24:34 “Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass, till all these things are fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” You people I am talking to right now, shall not die until all this happens. This means that if the Bible is in fact true, then it means everything you’re looking forward to happening in the future has already happened. It means that He has already come back in the clouds, the trumpet already blew, and the angels have already gathered up His elect from the four winds of the Earth.

Now let’s look at how John the Baptist fulfilled the end time’s prophecy:

Mark 1:14-15 “Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” The time is now, everything we’ve been waiting for is now, it is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is eminent. Why are we waiting for it to happen later?

We need to understand who John the Baptist was. Jesus believed and taught that John the Baptist was Elijah. The Muslims believe that the prophet Elijah who was to come was Elijah Muhammad.

Malachi 4:5 “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD: And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.” Malachi prophesied the coming of Elijah as a sign that the end is here. Elijah had died 700 years earlier. Jesus told his disciples that John the Baptist was Elijah.

Matt 17: 10-13 “And his disciples asked him, saying, why then say the scribes that Elias must first come? And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things. But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they wished. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them. Then the disciples understood that he spoke unto them of John the Baptist.”

Matt 11:11-15 “Verily I say unto you, among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist: notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. And from the days of John the Baptist until now [this ‘now’ means the days of Jesus not our days.] the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force. For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if ye will receive it, [if you will listen to what I’m saying] this is Elias, which was for to come. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.” So John the Baptist was the fulfillment of the prophecy in Malachi of Elijah’s return and that is the sign that the end is here.

Mark 9:1 “And he said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power.” Who was Jesus talking to? Not those of us 2,000 years later. There are some of you standing here right now who shall not die till you see Me coming in the clouds. I ask this question again: Is it possible Jesus expected His Messianic Kingdom to be set up within His own generation? Yes, He did. There is nothing that would lead us to believe that He thought He was coming back some 2,000 years later.

Mark 13:32-37 “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is. For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cock crowing, or in the morning: Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.” This is a serious mind game; one which has stopped young people from going to college; one which has caused this industrial revolution to rape and poison our planet because it breeds a nonchalant attitude that it doesn’t matter what we do if Jesus is going to make a new Heaven and Earth soon anyway.

Matt 10:5-6 “These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” This was a message not meant for the Europeans.

And what did Jesus say later in verse 23, “When you are persecuted in one town, flee to the next. I tell you the truth, the Son of Man will return before you have reached all the towns of Israel.” You better hurry up and get going, because before you have gone over the cities of Israel, I will be back. Jesus has already come back or He is not coming back at all. Do you imagine that His disciples are still out there proselyting from one Israeli town to the next?

Mark 10:35- 37 He was so adamant about His impending eminent return that two of His disciples asked to be seated next to Him in His coming Kingdom. “And James and John, the sons of Zebedee, come unto him, saying, Master, we would that thou shouldest do for us whatsoever we shall desire. And he said unto them, What would ye that I should do for you? They said unto him, Grant unto us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left hand, in thy glory.” This is also interesting because in another Gospel He already promised all 12 of them that they would sit upon thrones. Matt 19:28 “And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”

And the final question is: What are you going to do with this information.

Will God really destroy the wisdom of man?

I posted a comment to someone on Amazon and received this comment from a person who refers to himself as the ‘Voice of truth’:

“Look Michael, or should I say ET?? Do you also believe in UFOs and there’s a strong possibility that you idolize Stephen Hawking as well…Allowing your intelligence to lead you in matters of faith and/or spirituality is mistake number one. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”(Cor.1:1-19)
Bottom line, be real careful about who or what you place stock in, it’s your eternity that you are taking chances with.”

I’m not relaying my original post here, because I failed to make the correlation between my first comment and his unsolicited response. However, I do want to share my response to this post which he has failed to comment on yet.

So can you give me a rough idea of when God is going to – as the scripture indicates – “destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate?” Incidentally, did you know we’ve been living in the ‘end times’ for two thousand years? – A third of our existence. Any ways: I know the church tried to fulfill this prophecy by killing as many intelligent men as they could during the Dark Ages, any man who claimed the Earth was round and not the center of the universe. (Hmmm, I wonder why they called the era which the church dominated “the Dark Ages”)

Even after Magellan physically proved the Earth was indeed round; the church still resisted the Truth of it for another five years. Truth is truth my friend, whether you discover it by your heart or your brain. Science fought hard to bring us indoor plumbing and other means of sanitation in order to help eradicate the black plague, even though the church insisted it was the wrath of God. Now we’re building space stations and creating the big bang on an infantile scale proving the existence of the God particle, which is holding this entire thing together; so exactly when will God stop the evolution of intelligence? You make it appear as though God is against wisdom; if you do a search of the word, you’ll find it 222 times in the Bible. Knowledge shows up 169 times.

First of all, if you go look up that scripture (Isaiah 29:14), you’ll find Paul doing what so many modern people like to do: dramatizing and overemphasizing the point. It’s not a global prophecy; it’s a very specific prophecy directed at a certain city.  And Paul, what it actually says is “Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.”

Go read I Kings chapter 3 entitled “Solomon’s prayer for wisdom” sometime.

How about Luke’s 1:17 prophecy of how John the Baptist shall make the people ready for the Lord: “And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

Why did James 1:5 say “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraided not; and it shall be given him.”

Here is the beauty of an infallible ancient text: We can contradict each other all day long. In rebuttal to your scripture, I could quote, Luke 2:40 in reference to Jesus as a child: “And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.”

Luke 2:52 “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man.”

When is God going to destroy the wisdom of Jesus as Paul has either misquoted or has been misinterpreted at some point over the last two thousand years?

And Here’s some more fun we could have: You might say Heli was the name of Jesus’ grandpa (Luke 3:23), but I would say his name was Jacob (Matt 1:16). Before you dismiss this as a simple misprint, run a name by name Bible study comparison between these two gospels. You’ll discover one list is mysteriously longer than the other, and aside from David and Joseph, there is only one other name who matches between the two.

You may say, “Big deal!” You’re right it is a very big deal. The anonymous writers of these two gospels were well aware how vital it was to trace the heritage of Jesus back to King David in order to substantiate the Messiah claim. And both did a great job of validating this important prophecy; however, since they both contradict each other, you have to wonder, which is inspired of God and, which came from His nemesis.

And if one were proven to be uninspired, would we remove it from the canon? Would they shorten it to a three-way  gospel or would they want to continue in the tradition of the early fathers who believed they had to narrow the eight gospels down to 4 on account of the four corners of the Earth, hence adding one back from the apocrypha writings?

Alternatively, with the new-found wisdom of science proving the Earth has no corners; would they narrow it down to one gospel? I think we all know which one that would be. The only one which speaks of ‘being born again’; the only one containing the one phrase, “I am the only way to the Father” – the only one where Jesus continually contradicts the other three gospels by saying believing in Him is the only way to salvation; when in the others, Jesus tells people “go sin no more, sell all you have and give to the poor, pick up your cross and follow me” as well as other requirements placed on the believer, which many today would call ‘works’.

You see; we believe there was a tree of some kind of knowledge, and the releasing of this knowledge into the world was a very bad thing. Hence, knowledge=sin=bad=going to hell. However, the interesting thing is this: The clergy, the monarchs and the politicians who have all profited from keeping us shackled to this archaic superstition have never stopped seeking knowledge and wisdom; they just don’t want us finding for it. Because on the day we do, they shall surely die. Why do you suppose the church fought so ardently to oppose translating the scriptures into the common language?

So perhaps now you can begin to understand why the clergy have pushed for unwavering and unquestioning faith for two thousand years. I’ll leave you with a quote from one of those ancient supposed religions of the devil:

Believe nothing just because a so-called wise person said it. Believe nothing just because a belief is generally held. Believe nothing just because it is said in ancient books. Believe nothing just because it is said to be of divine origin. Believe nothing just because someone else believes it. Believe only what you, yourself test and judge to be true… Buddha

Was I defending the devil? You decide:

I met an eccentric hard core Christian, who surprisingly considered dating me. But she just couldn’t get around the fact that I told her honestly; “I don’t believe Jesus is the only way.” She had agreed to go on a date with me after making this statement, but as that fateful day approached; she had a change of heart. The following is a hilarious rendition of our text messages about it. It is quite comical, please enjoy.?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Her:      I’ve been thinking about this all day & we CANNOT date.

Me:      Ok, can we at least be friends?

Her:      We can be Friends, I Won’t Sleep With You!!! But we can hang out at the pool but as far as Dating, I just Don’t See That Happening we are Different People & It Just Wouldn’t be Right the Fact that You Don’t Believe Jesus is the Only Way Is Something We Don’t Have In common & for me that Is Something HUGE!! JESUS Should Always be #1 & you don’t see things the same way as I do.

Me:      I don’t blame you. When I was hard core like you, I was the same way. But why do you have to assure me you won’t sleep with me? Did I come across like that? Did you act like you would?

Her:      Well I am a Hardcore Christian & I Want a Solid Rock Christian Not someone who Is Lukewarm you’re either in All the Way with Jesus or you’re Not. I’m just making it Clear; I’ve been Talked into it Before & I Need to Stand My ground about it!! No Offense, just Want to remain Celibate for The One.

Me:      Good luck…

Her:      I don’t need Luck, I Know that The Right One that comes Along Won’t Push the Subject or Push me to do Something that is Not Right In Gods Eyes.

Me:      I’m sorry I meant to say good night.

(This is where it gets really juicy! I couldn’t let it rest; so I kicked it off the following day with the following)

Note for future reference: she was always referring to “the enemy” or the devil using people; she even mentioned that “the enemy used my mom to cause an issue between us.” The devil didn’t use her in his fiendish plan, only her mother.

—————————————————————————————–
Me:      Hey queenie, just so we’re clear, contrary to your narcissism; not every guy is trying to sleep with you. And just so you’re aware, if some smooth talking guy schmoozed his way into your pants once, I’m certain it’ll happen again. As for me, if “the enemy” wanted to “use” me to cause you to fornicate; don’t you think, between him as an angel of light & my past experience as a born again Bible thumping Christian, together we could have come up with all the perfect Bible phrases so “the enemy” could weasel his way into your panties again. But no, I told you the basic truth about my beliefs because like you, I am zealous about them.

Also another psychology lesson: I’m not surprised to hear you were tricked into pre-marital sex. Aside from the fact that you’re bubbling over with sexuality & I can virtually smell your pheromones – the basic fact that you have to fight so hard against it is a dead ringer. Your response to my “do you wanna be friendly” question sounded as if I asked to be fuck buddies; however, primarily what gives you away is, like I told you the other day; “whatever front someone puts up, you can be sure the opposite is lurking beneath the facade”; even more so when you work so hard to convince someone of it. So, what is the opposite of a pious, reserved, prude front? Hmmm…

Carl Jung said “What u resists persists!” When you fight something you send it energy & help it grow, when you turn your back on it & say I don’t even acknowledge it, you stop feeding it. The truth is; we’re all born with base survival & procreate drives put in our brains & who did that – not the devil? The problem lies when we act like animals over these instincts because we have something they don’t – a rational brain. This is the part that tells your primitive brain “don’t sleep around” or “I know you’re in survival mode because my job is in jeopardy, but it’s still not right to lie your way through it.”

The sooner people stop blaming the devil & start taking responsibility for their own issues, the sooner they will discover the inner strength of God to overcome their personal issues. But as long as they continue to point the finger at the devil & say he made me do it; they will forever remain a victim of circumstances outside of their control – constantly begging God to give them the strength to overcome “the enemy” out there. God bless you in your endeavors & I hope we can be friends.

(You wouldn’t think she would have the gumption to respond after that but she did and it gets even better.)

Her:      I don’t know what u want to hear Plane n Simple U don’t Believe Jesus is the Only Way & as Far as Sex goes I Do Make it Very Clear Whether or Not I Discern That The guy I’m Speaking to Has that urgency or Not!! & as far as The Enemy is Concerned He Will & Has Used People to Do Things They Shouldn’t Do & Yes We Are to Take Responsibility for Our Own actions & Of course The Enemy is Always Pointing Fingers. I’m Not Friends with the Enemy & I Hate Him!! You don’t Believe Jesus is The Only Way & Quite Honestly You’ll Have to Answer to That just like we All will Have to Answer for Our Lives & Accounts held.

Me:      I don’t understand why you keep judging & holding that against me. I never said Jesus wasn’t the way for you & countless others; I just believe this excludes a lot of people & I believe they deserve an opportunity just like those of us who were fortuitous enough to be born in a Christian nation & were programmed to be believe a certain thing before we were old enough to question it. It’s just not fair, so if I wanna believe those who are excluded have an alternative option; why should your judgmental God send me to hell for being an optimist?

I believe Christianity is good & all Christians are saved & going to heaven. I also believe it helps millions of people; it helps people be more loving, it helps drunkards put down the bottle, it’s even helping you curve your sexual addiction. But please stop judging me for your own sake. Jesus said with the same measure you judge it will be judged back on you. Besides, I could say that when a Christian sins he is crucifying the lord again & you would say; well Jesus said a righteous man falls 7xs & gets up 7xs, but then I would say Heb 10:26 says “after knowing the truth & sinning again there is no more forgiveness.” So you see; we could contradict each other all day from scripture. Why do you think there are 20000 different Christian factions, all who claim to be the only true church, while all others are destined for hell?

(She still doesn’t quit)

Her:      I’m not judging you just stating facts.

Me:      Well, let me tell you about another faction who was also just stating facts; they were called the Spanish Inquisition & God granted them the right to torture & murder thousands upon thousands for simply questioning things. People like myself who held beliefs outside of conventional views of the time & who felt the need to question those long standing views which were strangling the people. But seriously, again I never want to dissuade you from your beliefs; I truly believe God has called me to encourage people to be more accepting of others beliefs. & in all sincerity I really like you, if you don’t want to date that’s cool; but I enjoy your personality & these lovely discussions; so I would really like to remain friends.

Her:      All I’m saying, is I stand My Ground about my Belief. It Took A Man to Lay His Life Down for me & I am Forever Going to Remember Him, His Name Is Jesus!! & No one can Make Me Change How I feel about that!! & His Sacrifice, No Buddha Or Yoda or Sasquatch can Make me Feel how I feel about My Jesus And I will! And Honestly I just Can’t Wrap my Head around why you or any one would say Jesus isn’t the Only Way.

Me:      Think about this: what might your mother’s beliefs entail, had it not been for the Spanish conquest of the 16th century? (Her mother is a direct descendant of the Mayans) What would her religion be if those righteous men hadn’t crossed the ocean, murder 2 million Mexicans, stole their religious artifacts, to be melted into gold coins, burn their religious books, & force the love of Jesus upon them?

Her:      Well we live what we learn & if we walk away from what we were taught then that’s something we will have to be accountable for And Again had it Not been for God the Creator of All Things None of Us Would be here & if it weren’t For Jesus I WOULDN’T BE A FORGIVEN SINNER!! AND THIS GOES FOR ANY ONE ELSE WHO WANTS TO SAY THAT JESUS ISN’T THE ONLY WAY! JESUS WALKED ON WATER BUDDHA, YODA & MOHAMMAD ALI HAVEN’T, NOR DID THEY. I’m just letting it be known I won’t let my guard down when it Comes to My Jesus.

(Not once in this babbling did she even remotely come close to answering my question. We are all now dumber for having read this rebuttal.)

Me:      Oh I am well aware, you have been more than sufficiently clear with your proclamations. I promise I won’t take your Jesus away from you.

Her:      Were u trying to say your jobs in jeopardy? (Wow, how far back was this comment of mine; but more importantly: how did she miss the point?)

Me:      No, just an example of an unfortunate event which might provoke a person’s subconscious to enter the “fight or flight mode” causing one to freak & contemplate the idea of lying. Then it’s up to said person’s frontal lobes to rationally say “no, lying is wrong in the eyes of the Lord.” What you might call “the temptation of the devil” & the battle between darkness & light. But I would draw your attention to James 1:14-15 “each one is tempted by his OWN EVIL DESIRE (not Satan)”

Her:      Well, yes Sin is In Nature because of Our Imperfections but we are to Look out for the Enemy, Satan, he isn’t a Friend; Therefore the Enemy who is Out to Kill Steal and Destroy. I don’t know why You’re Defending Satan!! You’re either for God Or Against Him! & from the Looks of it; you want to Quote Scripture & Yet Jesus isn’t #1 in Your Life Sounds Like Pharisee to Me! I’m Being Honest & Calling It Out! Called Rebuking in Love; as we should do with each other.

Me:      I love you; you make me laugh so much.

Her:      We can’t Know what Love is Unless We Know Jesus First! I’m just saying you keep saying that it’s no big deal; but seriously it is a big deal LIVE FOR CHRIST NOT SATAN!

Me:      Ok, but seriously I will never forget being called the avenger of Satan. God love you. I think that actually made my entire year. I can’t stop giggling. Your right, we can’t date but I hope I never piss you off enough for you to ever stop rebuking me.

Her:      YOU MUST LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART ALL YOUR SOUL AND ALL YOUR STRENGTH. DEUTERONOMY 6:5 You Said You DON’T BELIEVE JESUS is The ONLY WAY!! Did you Not?!

Me:      And somehow that implies, I no longer love the lord my God with all my heart, soul & strength & that somehow I have put another god before my God?

Her:      Well Yes, I mean Why Else Would You Say Jesus Isn’t the Only Way??? We Can’t Go Thru Buddha to get to God, we Go Thru Jesus We Don’t Go Thru Yoda to Get to God. Therefore Who have you Placed before Christ Jesus Who Died For You?! If He isn’t First in your Life?!

Me:      I hate to have to recapitulate; but I said Jesus is the way for Christians, but I believe God makes other arrangements for other belief systems. It doesn’t negate the salvation offered through Jesus, nor am I saying that Buddha replaces that salvation; I just believe that for the millions of souls that were never offered a legitimate knowledge of Christ, God makes a way for them. That is of course, up to God, but it’s just something I believe now. I just refuse to have an exclusive religious mentality any longer. That’s just me & I don’t want, or expect you to agree with me. It’s my personal belief & that’s it, it’s not that I think anyone else replaces Jesus; however, if something they said makes sense, I accept it; just like you might accept something a pastor says even though he never wrote a single sentence in the bible.

Her:      As far as religion, that’s All Man Made & Yes I was Once a Catholic; but I came to Understand a True Relationship with Christ & What it Entails its Work. But I’m Not given any more than I can handle & I’m Not Trying to Change your views & if you believe what you believe then That’s Between You & Jesus.

Me:      Perfect, thank you for allowing me to have my own relationship with Jesus, that’s all I want. You don’t have to agree, just give me the space to love & worship Jesus in my own unique way. You can say what you will; but obviously there are many ways to worship Jesus. If there was only one way, there would be only one universal (catholic) Christian church; not 20,000 – 38,000 different Christian churches. Thank you so much for accepting & respecting my views.

Her:      The Point is: There is One God and One God Only! That’s what I’m saying.

Me:      And I completely agree with you; so why are we arguing?

Her:      You can’t say One Minute, I Don’t Believe Jesus is the Only Way & then turn Around & be all Like, well I do Believe Buuuuuut….. it doesn’t work that way.

Me:      Never mind!

Her:      See, Now Who’s Getting upset? I’m Just Trying to Prove a Point apparently You Don’t Get It. (Ah yeah, it’s me who doesn’t get it!)

Me:      I’m not upset. Holy shit woman, you accused me of being an attorney for Satan himself & I laughed my ass off! Most insecure, ego oriented, jack asses would’ve been outraged at you. Unfortunately, I was excited because I thought we had come to a mutual agreement to respect each others different views; but now it appears we are back at the beginning again & I must prepare for bed, so I am now a little discouraged.

Her:      I’m just stating my Views, Its That Simple You have yours I have mine one day we will find out if how we lived was Pleasing To God the Father And We are to Rebuke in Love & If Satan isn’t An Enemy What is he?! To Me he is an Enemy & Discouragement comes From The Enemy. Pray that the Lord Help You.

Me:      I’m willing to bet my soul, we are both children whom are pleasing to our same Father. Ok, I’m going to bed; but since you can’t let it rest, I’ll give you something else to get your panties into a bunch… There is absolutely no possible way I could be the attorney for the devil. It would be as if you were to defend a ‘foogle knocker’. Because you cannot defend something you believe to be fictitious. God love you my dear, I hope that doesn’t keep you up all night; but unfortunately I drive a gas truck & hundreds depend on me to get a good night sleep. Good night my friend.

Tired of Dogmatic Intolerance

Recently, a friend sent me a link (at the bottom) to ‘Biblical Meditation’; and I thought, awesome, finally someone was talking about meditation from a scriptural perspective – especially since it’s mentioned so frequently therein. However, I was very disappointed to discover the author bashing Eastern traditions. Why couldn’t he just say what he had to say without attacking someone else’s beliefs?

But OK, now he’s said it, let’s get on with it; however, no, the author couldn’t stop blaspheming Eastern traditions – in fact, he attributes Eastern meditation to the work of the devil on four occasions. You already proved meditation is scriptural, so why the extra attack on Eastern philosophy? Evidently, you must still expect to find some members of your faith bucking your novel concept, so you go the extra mile to reassure your readers it’s not the devil’s meditation from those evil Eastern philosophies. What scripture is it again where Jesus said, “Go ye into all the world and condemn every faith that differs from your own”?

If your simple-minded belief structure requires you to have an antagonist – which is no different from any Hollywood movie – in order for you to feel coerced into being good little boys and girls so Santa Claus brings you more presents, so be it; however, you needn’t project your primitive superstitions on a culture that was established over a millennium before your own.

Mr. J. Hampton Keathley, you obviously don’t know much about Eastern meditation. that’s OK, since you’ve probably never studied it; however, don’t you think it wise to do some research before you make such outlandish statements. I’m sure your answer would be, “It didn’t come from my faith, which is of the only true God; hence it must come from the devil!”

This is nothing less than the ignorant mentality of the Spanish Inquisition – which cost thousands of good people their lives – passed down as a legacy from your predecessors. I’m certain your response to this would be, “Oh; that’s the Catholic Church; I’m a narrow-minded bigot of another Christian faction!” Well, funny how much you all think alike my friend, but regardless of what you may think those are your religious ancestors.

I believe religious intolerance is just as potent today as it ever was, the only difference: The church is no longer more powerful than the government. In fact, I believe the Constitution and the principle of ‘separation of church and state’ is the core blockade preventing religious bigots from burning innocent victims at the stake again. I firmly believe there are still radical fanatics who would, if they could. It’s only been a decade since Christian Serbs established rape camps for Muslim women, and when they had Muslim men bite the testicles off of other Muslims in an attempt to commit religious genocide. Why, because I’m sure that’s what Jesus would’ve wanted, right?

When normal secure people are in possession of the best car – government – or what have you, they don’t feel the need to bad mouth someone else’s stuff just to make theirs appear superior – it simply just is. You don’t see Mathew McConaughey talking down other actors of lesser quality – there’s no need for it; it merely reveals one’s ignorance and insecurities. If you want to believe your unique branch of Christianity is the only real religion having God’s approval, then go right ahead; but please don’t do it at the expense of other’s beliefs and long standing traditions.

It’s been 2000 years since Jesus tried to teach us how to love and forgive one another, including our enemies, not withstanding, “He who is without sin may cast the first stone.” How long before we start practicing these primary principles? If you want to proselyte other faiths, that’s fine; however, please do so without belittling them. Have you ever wondered why Christianity is on the decline? It’s time to put an end to religious intolerance once and for all.

Having been born again and having studied Eastern meditation, I feel compelled to end this with some constructive information: If you practice your Biblical meditation, and only that, you will do yourself a world of good – I promise you. However, know this: Among many of the several versions of meditation found in the East, they also teach, focusing on one good moral quality – like focusing your mind on peace.  It will teach you how to master the 10,000 screaming voices in your head, which is a major culprit hindering us from hearing the voice of God. Try it sometime.

If their meditation is from the devil then where does yours come from? Especially when you consider; Christianity traces its roots to the East. Jesus wasn’t born in Mississippi, you know.

As far as other meditations, which focus on ‘clearing your mind entirely’ being a dangerous practice, opening your mind to the wiles of the devil: First of all, it’s merely an advanced stage of the meditation we’ve already been discussing – you should try it also. And, most importantly, if you – who were created in the image of God – are in possession of such a weak mind that simply clearing it will create an open invitation for the devil to move in, may I suggest you toss it out! Because that kind of concept is as ludicrous as saying, “I have to keep my garage full of junk in order to prevent my neighbors from parking in it.”

Thank you for doing a much-needed  piece on Biblical meditation; it is an exceptional piece which is very informative. However, please remove the derogatory remarks on Eastern philosophies, such as:

“In Scripture it does not mean to sit and ponder infinity or to empty the mind so some force can fill it by repeating some chant or mantra. Such is dangerous and opens the mind to demonic attack. Just as meditating in a vacuum or to empty the mind as it is done in eastern religions is dangerous and may open the mind to demonic attack”

Michael Blakeslee “Never accept limitations in an unlimited Universe”

http://bible.org/article/biblical-meditation

Drew Gerald I think his criticism was very well articulated, open-minded, mature, non-dualistic, valid, and well-deserved. I think more people should voice such opinions in a peaceful and humane way.