Archive for the ‘Archived Posts’ Category

      I respond to a question on the benefits of wearing crosses and religious items; and there’s more on sin without wrongdoing. For new readers: The feature below (The Battle Axe) shares addenda, afterthoughts and corrections to the previous day’s posting. Also, The Double Dagger (as below) identifies articles among the total of 432 earlier posts that complement the day’s post, and that continue to be available archived at both WordPress.com and thoughts.com. The focus of today’s presentation was selected from “Yahoo! Answers” where a writer using ID “conundrum” (Level 7 with 28,340 points, a member since June 23, 2007) posted the following:

Of what benefit is it to wear crosses and other religious items on the body,does it give protection?

Iam still to read where the followers if Christ donned such attire in the first century ..

THE BATTLE AXE: Sin Without Wrongdoing? (08/28/2012)—Despite the many demonstrations that sin results in death, destruction, loss and shame, even educated and mature men and women continue to indulge this noxious influence upon human will as a legitimate aspect of their own personal makeup, their own private feelings, and their own hidden person. “Common sense”, human logic, philosophy, religion and science have not been sufficient to eliminate sin. Sin is no thing of matter or spirit, contains neither thought or feeling, and must be understood as indiscriminate and mindless. Sin was first apprehended by GOD among the holy angels, who are neither mortal nor immortal. For mortals, the sting of death is sin (i.e., the barb or hook that stops death from being withdrawn; the feature that introduces poison). Speaking to Israel, GOD makes a divine appeal against sin that is directed to all mankind: GOD takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked; men are to repent and live (see Ezekiel 33: 11-20).

THE GOLDEN ARROW: Now it came to pass in the third year of Hoshea son of Elah king of Israel, that Hezekiah the son of Ahaz king of Judah began to reign. Twenty and five years old was he when he began to reign; and he reigned twenty and nine years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name also was Abi, the daughter of Zachariah. And he did that which was right in the sight of the LORD, according to all that David his father did. He removed the high places, and brake the images, and cut down the groves, and brake in pieces the brasen serpent that Moses had made: for unto those days the children of Israel did burn incense to it: and he called it Nehushtan. He trusted in the LORD God of Israel; so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him. For he clave to the LORD, and departed not from following him, but kept his commandments, which the LORD commanded Moses. (2 Kings 18: 1-6, King James Version)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: The Work of Jesus (03/13/2012); Idols of Flesh (03/12/2012); The Accursed Thing (02/05/2012); Meal Time Grace (11/14/2010); Things? (11/13/2010)

      Mature Christian believers generally regard crosses, crescents, stars of David, and similar objects as tokens to trigger thoughts of a persons faith. As mere prompts and reminders to direct a person’s feelings and thoughts, symbols are regarded as harmless. To regard any object as having power within itself to repel demons, to guarantee prosperity and success, or to protect from bodily harm and death would be to hold that object as an idol—a vessel containing a god, and an object possessing “person” that is to be appeased and worshiped.

      Simple objects may be used to signal a person’s participation within a sacred relationship or worship community (such as the fish sign or the wedding ring); and may even be used to concentrate awareness, and trigger the operation of a person’s faith resulting in a miracle (for example, a handkerchief or another person’s shadow—see Acts 19: 11-12 and Acts 5: 14-16, KJV). Some use of symbols may be discouraged among believers. For example, the use of scars and tattoos are forbidden among Christians along with piercing a servant’s ear to indicate that, out of love, they have committed themselves to lifelong servitude as another person’s slave.

      There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended. (For example, occult practices, superstition and unbelief are often characterized as attacking Christianity by using religious symbols. Given that an object has been cleansed, prayed over, prepared and set apart (we say “blessed” or “sanctified”) for exclusive use in service and worship to GOD, the dedicated or devoted thing may become defiled, and profaned through abuse, desecration and vandalism. Believers may react with anger, embarrassment, fear, and indignation. Yet, it remains that the spirit content of a believer is determined by GOD, not by human objects and events.) Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful. Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIXWashington, DC