Archive for the ‘Islam’ Category

Today, Scripture points are shared on holy altars, Christ as a cornerstone, and the Lord as a stone of judgment.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Muhammad Javed” (Level 5 with 5,007 points, a member since April 25, 2013) posted the following:

 

Religiously, What was the stone Jesus was referring to, in Mathew 2 1:42~44?

The stone that builders rejected, has become the cornerstone. The Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes. That I tell you that kingdom of God will be taken away from you and would be given to a people who will produce its fruits, He who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces and on whom it falls it will be crushed!
Is Islam this stone?
If not why?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  O that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would consider their latter end!  How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock had sold them, and the LORD had shut them up?  For their rock is not as our Rock, even our enemies themselves being judges.  For their vine is of the vine of Sodom, and of the fields of Gomorrah:  their grapes are grapes of gall, their clusters are bitter:  Their wine is the poison of dragons, and the cruel venom of asps.  Is not this laid up in store with me, and sealed up among my treasures?  To me belongeth vengeance and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time:  for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste.  For the Lord shall judge his people, and repent himself for his servants, when he seeth that their power is gone, and there is none shut up, or left.  And he shall say, Where are their gods, their rock in whom they trusted,  Which did eat the fat of their sacrifices, and drank the wine of their drink offerings? let them rise up and help you, and be your protection.  See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me:  I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal:  neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand.  For I lift up my hand to heaven, and say, I live for ever.  If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and will reward them that hate me.  (Deuteronomy 32:  29-41, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Guided By Divine Truth (06/20/2016); Jesus Given A Divine Ministry? (08/18/2015); The Holy Spirit and Unity? (08/13/2015); A Pillar and Ground? (04/13/2014); A Spirit Church? (04/04/2013); My Brother’s Keeper (04/05/2013); The Need to Purify Heaven (01/17/2013)

 

“Muhammad Javed”, in the holy writings, “a rock” is used as an altar, a holy table, and the point of contact between heaven and earth.  Judgment is portrayed, for holy fire must consume the offerings and sacrifices placed upon the altar, destroying all defilement, profanity and uncleanness while lifting and releasing all glory, honor, petition, praise, and thanksgiving.  Specific doctrines and truths are spoken of as “a rock,” to indicate they express divinity who is immutable and unchanging.  Among mature Christian believers, the “rock” and foundation whereon the existence of mankind has been built must be understood as “spirit” that first appears displaying authority, “person”, power, “presence”, purpose, and volition (self-will).  The character, nature, and process for generating created beings and living creatures is the platform of divine existence itself, rather than a base that is carnal, material, or social.  This allows believers to grasp that (1) the living are made “in the image” of GOD who is spirit; (2) are endowed with spirit substance that enables communication, exchange, and interaction with divinity in ongoing relationships; and (3) believers must experience permanent changes and gradual growth through operations of divine law, prophecy, revelation, and transformation in the presence of GOD in order to exist as eternal companions to divinity.  Through revelation, the Creator becomes knowable, known, and “visible” to the Created.  Thus, Jesus Christ, a physical appearing of divinity, is embraced as an aspect of the complete revelation (we say, an embodiment, an Incarnation) of Deity as is the imparted, indwelling Spirit (also called, the Comforter, the Holy Ghost, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Prophecy, the Spirit of Truth).  Believers are to serve as vessels of the inseparable aspects that are the makeup of GOD such as faith, forbearance, forgiveness, holiness, humility, joy, kindness, meekness, righteousness, truth, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Consider how some of this is stated using language from the Bible:

(1.)  1st Samuel 2:  2-3, King James Version (KJV):  2 There is none holy as the LORD:  for there is none beside thee:  neither is there any rock like our God.  3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth:  for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.

(2.)  Psalms 95:  1-6, KJV:  1 O come, let us sing unto the LORD:  let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.  2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.  3 For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods.  4 In his hand are the deep places of the earth:  the strength of the hills is his also.  5 The sea is his, and he made it:  and his hands formed the dry land.  6 O come, let us worship and bow down:  let us kneel before the LORD our maker.

(3.)  Colossians 1:  15-20, KJV:  15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:  16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers:  all things were created by him, and for him:  17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.  18 And he is the head of the body, the church:  who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.  19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;  20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.

(4.)  Romans 1:  18-21, KJV:  18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;  19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.  20 For 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:  21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

(5.)  Matthew 16:  13-18, KJV:  13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?  14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist:  some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.  15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?  16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.  17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona:  for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.  18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

There is far more to be said, carefully examined, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (6.)  Matthew 7:  24-27, KJV:  24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:  25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not:  for it was founded upon a rock.  26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:  27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell:  and great was the fall of it.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

New Disclaimer

 

Today, I share a poem to acknowledge the poet, Black American Muslim minister, Olympic gold-medalist, world-renowned athlete, and three-time boxing heavyweight champion of the world, Muhammad Ali.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  He teacheth my hands to war, so that a bow of steel is broken by mine arms.  Thou hast also given me the shield of thy salvation:  and thy right hand hath holden me up, and thy gentleness hath made me great.  Thou hast enlarged my steps under me, that my feet did not slip.  (Psalms 18:  34-36, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Dimensions of Death? (04/24/2016); A Note On Spirit Warfare (01/06/2016); GOD Grants License? (06/21/2013); Origin of Baptism? (06/22/2013); Must We Really Die? (05/13/2013); Can GOD Die? (05/14/2013); The Church as a Bride? (05/15/2013)

 

 

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WHAT’S IN A NAME
[A Poem Recalling a Man Who Conquered Nations, Muhammad Ali]

Shakespeare was first to speak the name to me,
“Yon Cassius has a lean and hungry look”
The words from Caesar’s mouth
In that same book where he says,
Gather ye fat men about me,
such as sleep o’er nights
Little knowing his own ambition
To protect all Rome as imperator
god, would end by Cassius
And the unkindest cut from Brutus his best friend

So when I first saw young Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr.
Sleek, lank, handsome and tall, ready to make history
A teenager, like myself, I wondered
Just where or when this champion would fall
His AAU and Golden Gloves careers began to jab
And the goal of Olympic heights
So strange for a youngster hailing from the South
Began to knock our sox off
Making the Sport of “fisticuffs”
A household name

Laurel-crowned in Rome, he leaves the rank of amateur behind
Becoming the professional he longed to be
In mind, child’s play, the competition of the Globe
Bear-baiting, entertainment for its day
Comes then young warrior coarse and loud
Cutting and strutting, drawing a crowd
“I want Sonny Liston!  I want Sonny Liston!”
A name from the “Gangster Chronicles”
and would say, titled “Champ” only because of bulk
Ready to put his name on the dotted line

A first-round KO, seconds off the clock
An unseen punch so swift, so strong, so dark
Confused and dazed, the crowd was stunned
the spark of recognition burst aflame, sweet science
And standing on the ropes, the prince proclaimed
“I’m King of the World!”, disputed king of the ring
A saga for the ages that would draw
All eyes, all envy, a bum for every month
The known, the unknown, the best, the just s0-so
And one who earned the name, “I broke his jaw.”

And then there was the struggle with the war
Announcing that the Muslim knight had come
Muhammad Ali, no more the wrestler Gorgeous George
The savvy mentors Angelo Dundee, Bundini Brown
Who had urged him float like a butterfly
Sting like a bee, and rumble, young man, rumble
Now Malcolm X and Honorable Elijah Muhammad
Would mold the gladiator-athlete, the poet bold
To minister Islam, justice, protest and peace
To carry the name of X in pride, in freedom

We haven’t heard the last yet of “the Lip” from Louisville
Acknowledging he did give the world a thrill
A record of 56 and five, the Greatest, he would say
A Southern boy, Olympian again in Atlanta
Leading the way having fought and won
The Fight of the Century, the Rumble in the Jungle

The kid grew up, and made a name for himself
Upon the world stage, so fast, he cut off the light
And was in bed before the room got dark
Where sticks and stones may break ones bones
Yet, names will never hurt

Signature Mark

©Michael Andrew Williams, 2014.  All rights reserved worldwide.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

New Disclaimer

Points and Scriptures are shared, today, on prophecy and spiritual gifts bestowed upon the church of Jesus Christ.  While Jesus fulfilled prophecy by his actions and words, defined divine love and peace for all who would follow him, performed as a spokesperson sent from GOD (we say, prophet), and was the agent of heaven to govern as king and Messiah, his official title among those at the Temple in Jerusalem was merely that of rabbi.  At his first coming, the holy writings once spoken of as “the law and the prophets” were being interpreted to be “the law without the prophets.”  Given the politics of the times, and increasingly to please the Romans, the Pharisees and Sadducees both were pressured to eliminate the notion that prophecy would be filled on the basis of conditions (blessing and cursing).  This implied the covenant of Moses was provided on condition (i.e., strictly upon the basis of obedience); and that the nation’s law was provided only as a loose system for guidance made up of instruction, principles and recommendations that could be applied in commerce and exchange.  Jewish “law” and rule could not be seen on the level of one-world government, with codes and systems for legislation imposed upon them by Rome.  Law was to be an instrument for assimilation and control, where prophecy was an instrument for faith, relationship, trust, and worship.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Ahsan” (Level 2 with 520 points, a member since January 23, 2015) posted the following:

When Jesus isn’t the last prophet?

When Jesus isn’t the last prophet then what Christianity says about who will be the last prophet? How many prophets are alive, and where they are?

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:  And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.  For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.  Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;  And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;  In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.  (Ephesians 2:  14-22, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Jesus Given A Divine Ministry? (08/18/2015); Christ Brought A New Nature? (07/15/2015); Fulfilling Divine Law? (07/14/2015); The Decalogue A Moral Guide? (04/15/2015); The Spirit of Truth? (02/11/2015)

“Ahsan”, far from being the last prophet, Jesus Christ may be spoken of as a “father of prophets,” and the one who restored the “school of the prophets” described in the Old Testament.  The revelation given to Christ by the Father is to be received, understood and passed on by every member of the church to others.  Here are a few points and Bible verses to consider that may be useful as you continue your study:

(1.)  Prophecy is a process and spiritual gift being used by divinity for communication, instilling hope (i.e., sacred expectations), responding to consciousness of GOD within the living (we say, adding certainty), and revealing the character and nature of Deity.  While both secular and sacred events (we also say, miracles) may be described and made known (e.g., that a virgin would be with child), the function of prophecy is not predicting human history and detailing the future before it occurs.  Prophecy declares the will and intent of GOD, and, therefore simultaneously embraces the past along with the future and the present.  1st Corinthians 14:  1-4, King James Version (KJV):  1 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy.  2 For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God:  for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.  3 But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.  4 He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church.

(2.)  Prophecy as a sacred gift was first bestowed upon Adam and continued to appear among those serving as priests and Patriarchs.  The prayer that all the people in covenant with GOD might have the same gift of prophecy is recorded as coming from Moses at what may be taken as the founding of the Sanhedrin court.  Numbers 11:  24-29, KJV:  24 And Moses went out, and told the people the words of the LORD, and gathered the seventy men of the elders of the people, and set them round about the tabernacle.  25 And the LORD came down in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took of the spirit that was upon him, and gave it unto the seventy elders:  and it came to pass, that, when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied, and did not cease.  26 But there remained two of the men in the camp, the name of the one was Eldad, and the name of the other Medad:  and the spirit rested upon them; and they were of them that were written, but went not out unto the tabernacle:  and they prophesied in the camp.  27 And there ran a young man, and told Moses, and said, Eldad and Medad do prophesy in the camp.  28 And Joshua the son of Nun, the servant of Moses, one of his young men, answered and said, My lord Moses, forbid them.  29 And Moses said unto him, Enviest thou for my sake? would God that all the LORDS people were prophets, and that the LORD would put his spirit upon them!

(3.)  The gifts from GOD to mankind through the new testament in his blood founded by Jesus Christ upon the earth are described being in hierarchy and rank that suggests differences in authority for various offices within the body (e.g., bishops, deacons, disciples).  However, within the church status is determined on the basis of humility, meekness (readiness to be directed and learn through the Holy Spirit), and willingness to serve the collective.  (2)  1st Corinthians 12:  27-29, KJV:  27 Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.  28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.  29 Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles?

(4.)  All the spiritual gifts that are bestowed at no cost to the receivers within the church have been purchased through the suffering, death, obedience, and service of the resurrected  Christ as a high priest in the temple of heaven.  1st Corinthians 12:  1-3, KJV:  1 Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant.  2 Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led.  3 Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed:  and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.

(5.)  The gifts of GOD through Christ and the Holy Ghost are not to divide and separate believers on the basis of sacred knowledge, sacred practices (we say, ceremonies, rites, rituals, sacraments), or church organization and policy.  Prophecy is to establish unity in the same way as shared praise and prayer, divine proclamation, and sacred promise.  1st Corinthians 12:  7-11, KJV:  7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.  8 For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;  9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;  10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:  11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

(6.)  There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, The gifts for the church are not provided for the pleasure and satisfaction of the clergy, particular individuals, or of a peculiar class of believer.  Prophecy is an evidence of things unseen, and accomplishes multiple works that pertain to creation, judgment, and salvation as well as the transformation of mankind to exist as immortal and incorruptible at the coming of Christ to  harvesting his church from the earth.  Ephesians 4:  10-14, KJV:  10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)  11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;  12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:  13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:  14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, ignoring the veiled accusations of anti-Semitism, focus is upon the labels and names given the actors and characters within the holy writings of Hebrew, Islamic and Christian believers.  The many figures and roles employed by divinity include men and women as anointed one, apostate, beloved, betrayer, blasphemer, brother, child, covenant partner, counselor, debtor, disciple, donor, elder, eunuch, follower, friend, handmaiden, heir, herald, heretic, hermit, high priest, hypocrite, judge, king, lawyer, minister, musician, neighbor, orphan, pastor (we say, shepherd), pauper, poet, Pharisee, psalmist, prophetess, publican, queen, rabbi, Sadducee, saint, scribe, servant, singer, sinner, spy, vessel, victim, warrior, widow, and wise man. The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Sam” (Level 3 with 1,017 points, a member since June 27, 2015) posted the following:

In islam they call people like adam , eve and cain , prophets (of judaism)?

what are they called in chrisitian churches? i personally believe they were anti-semites of their own time , except cain and eve of course , lol

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:  And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.  For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.  Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;  And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;  In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:  In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.  (Ephesians 2:  13-22, KJV)

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  More About the Trinity? (03/30/2015); Agents of Allah? (01/26/2015); Focus of Believers? (06/17/2014); Discernment (06/18/2014); Mob Rule and Violence (09/27/2012); Suppose I Am Wrong? (09/28/2012)

“Sam”, among Christian believers who correctly value the sacred knowledge shared through the holy writings, the Scriptures are the primary source for the many labels and words used to identify those who serve as divine instruments to accomplish eternal purpose, carry out and perform things prophesied, fulfill divine promises, publish sacred proclamations, pronounce godly judgment as well as introduce, continue, restore or revive sanctifying practices and truth that may have become hidden or obscured.  Names for these agents of GOD vary during different periods in accordance with distinct purposes and works of GOD, and consistent with the aspects of full revelation already received by mankind.  Today, those who have believed and served are known as angels, apostles, fathers, harvesters, holy men, laborers, messengers, one sent, priests, and spokespersons (we say, prophets).  Consider again the word:

(1.)  Patriarchs.  Hebrews 7:  1-6, King James Version (KJV):  1 For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him;  2 To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace;  3 Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.  4 Now consider how great this man was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.  5 And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham:  6 But he whose descent is not counted from them received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him that had the promises.

(2.)  Seers.  1st Samuel 9: 9, KJV:   9 (Beforetime in Israel, when a man went to enquire of God, thus he spake, Come, and let us go to the seer:  for he that is now called a Prophet was beforetime called a Seer.)

(3.)  Witnesses.  Isaiah 43:  11-13, KJV:  11 I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour.  12 I have declared, and have saved, and I have shewed, when there was no strange god among you:  therefore ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, that I am God.  13 Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand:  I will work, and who shall let it?

(4.)  The household of faith.  Galatians 6:  8-10, KJV:  8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.  9 And let us not be weary in well doing:  for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.  10 As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.

(5.)  Children of God.  Galatians 3:  26-29, KJV:  26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.  27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.  28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female:  for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.  29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

(6.)  Sons of God.  1st John 3:  1-3, KJV:  3 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God:  therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.  2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be:  but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.  3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.

There is far more that could be said, and that must be correctly understood and spiritually taken into account.  (For example (7.)  The house of God.  1st Peter 4:  14-19, KJV:  14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you:  on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.  15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters.  16 Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.  17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God:  and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?  18 And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?  19 Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Points are shared, today, on judgment, mercy, and Christian believers as a new creation.  Wrath against sin is an ongoing and permanent aspect of the divine makeup that is held in restraint, so to speak, through such further aspects of the eternal nature as compassion, empathy, forbearance, forgiveness, impartiality, and divine love.  The harsh aspects of divine judgment (i.e., punishment, death, separation from GOD, the second death) become conditional and optional, rather than inescapable, inevitable, and unavoidable.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “lio” (Level 1 with 1 point, a member since June 07, 2015) posted the following:

 

My Muslim friend from Somalia is devastated she can’t stone gay people in USA?

I’m a progressive liberal and i feel bad for her
why do we deprive her of practicing her culture

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:   Come, and let us return unto the LORD:  for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.  After two days will he revive us:  in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.  Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD:  his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.  O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? for your goodness is as a morning cloud, and as the early dew it goeth away.  Therefore have I hewed them by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of my mouth:  and thy judgments are as the light that goeth forth.  For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.  But they like men have transgressed the covenant:  there have they dealt treacherously against me.  (Hosea 6:  1-7, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  The Judgment Against Sodom? (04/10/2015); Human Law, Divine Favor? (03/23/2015); The American Covenant? (03/03/2015); Grace is Not Against Law (07/23/2014); Cruel and Offensive (07/24/2014); Separation of Church and State (07/04/2014); The Point of Wisdom? (07/05/2014)

 

“lio”, here are a number of points shared among Christian believers that may help you avoid error and spiritual confusion:

(1.)  American culture and law have responded to many of the most important disciplines, guidelines and principles that are aspects of Christian belief.  In particular, there is an emphasis upon mercy as an artifact of Judgment (i.e., to obtain divine mercy, there must be divine judgment), rather than Sacrifice to expiate and “pay for the removal” of sins from ones record from the Book of Life that is used in judgment.

(2.)  Christian belief acknowledges that, due to  the operations of sin (i.e., the transgression of divine law), all created beings and living creatures are equally in need of permanent changes, and transformation of their inner makeup (we say, life essence, spirit).  The Creator must provide aspects of divine content that allow believers to endure upon the earth as a new creation, because they are “born again” having divine substance.  Even so, such persons also must mature (we say, become ripe for harvest, become perfected) by meeting the same “growing pains” and life challenges that face all mankind.

(3.)  Important and inseparable aspects from the makeup of GOD that all Christian believers receive include faith, forbearance, forgiveness, holiness, humility, longsuffering, love, truth, wisdom, and wrath against sin.  Born again believers must “grow up” again, acquiring sacred knowledge and continuing practices that set them apart for divine service (e.g., baptism, confession, giving, marriage, prayer).  The believer increasingly becomes complete, consistent, and stable to demonstrate all their anointing and gifts in proper exchange, harmony, interaction, and mutual support.

There is far more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually taken into account.  (For example, (4.)  Believers are to direct their focus to such themes as eternal life; the proclamations, promises and prophecies from GOD; and preparing to receive the Savior at his coming to harvest all believers from the earth.  The damage and power from human errors, infirmities, and weaknesses do not magically disappear; yet, they must pale and shrink in the light that beams to us as the goodness, grace, and majesty of our Maker.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, a PDF document (3 p.) is described discussing Federal legislation that provides necessary legal protections for people of faith who seek to live out their spiritual commitments in daily life.  Nearly unanimous bipartisan support was garnered within both houses of Congress for this law addressing restoration of religious liberty.  A decision by the U.S. Supreme Court (called Employment Division v. Smith) made it more difficult for religious believers to challenge laws that constrained their ability to live out their faith.  In that case, Native Americans were fired from their jobs because they used peyote as part of their religion.  The RFRA was intended to affirm and buttress the First Amendment of the Constitution that guarantees the free exercise of religion.  Twenty states are reported as having adopted their own versions of RFRA, and another eleven states have similar provisions in place provided by state court decisions.  RFRA is reported as supplying a balancing test when the government attempts to restrict the free exercise of religion.  In general, RFRAs help people of minority faiths who cannot secure legislative exemptions for specific practices maintained among themselves.

 

THE KINGS SPEAR:  I am continuing to review documents posted in the “Bishop’s Advocacy Activity on Religious Liberty” page at the Internet site of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops (USCCB).  The Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty has published a “must read” PDF document on the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) [http://usccb.org/issues-and-action/religious-liberty/upload/Why-the-Religious-Freedom-Restoration-Act-Works.pdf].

The Federal law enacted in 1993 under Bill Clinton is described using a Q&A format that presents the following six questions:

1. Does RFRA provide a “license to discriminate” against gay people?

2. What are the safeguards built into RFRA?

3. Why is any RFRA necessary at all?

4. Since there is already a federal RFRA, why do states need their own?

5. Who really benefits from RFRAs?

6. What is the impact of RFRA on current debates over “same-sex marriage” and laws prohibiting “sexual orientation” and “gender identity”
discrimination?

See Why the Religious Freedom Restoration Act Works/The Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, April 07, 2015.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And it came to pass, that after three days Paul called the chief of the Jews together:  and when they were come together, he said unto them, Men and brethren, though I have committed nothing against the people, or customs of our fathers, yet was I delivered prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans.  Who, when they had examined me, would have let me go, because there was no cause of death in me.  But when the Jews spake against it, I was constrained to appeal unto Caesar; not that I had ought to accuse my nation of.  For this cause therefore have I called for you, to see you, and to speak with you:  because that for the hope of Israel I am bound with this chain.  And they said unto him, We neither received letters out of Judaea concerning thee, neither any of the brethren that came shewed or spake any harm of thee.  But we desire to hear of thee what thou thinkest:  for as concerning this sect, we know that every where it is spoken against.  And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening.  And some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not.  (Acts 28:  17-24, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER: Human Law, Divine Favor? (03/23/2015); The American Covenant? (03/03/2015); On Christians Being Inclusive? (07/16/2014); War and Peace (07/17/2014); Separation of Church and State (07/04/2014); The Point of Wisdom? (07/05/2014); Holiday Displays? (12/07/2012); An Attack Upon Creation? (12/08/2012); The Crux of the Matter (10/26/2012); Women Ordained to Minister? (10/27/2012)

 

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually understood.  (For example, members of minority faiths in the U. S. (e.g., Baha’i, Hindu, Muslims and Sikhs) and those operating family-owned businesses must have further protection through the law when their beliefs continue and promote practices in opposition to state or local antidiscrimination laws.  Their legitimate conscientious objections may appear as expressions of “unjust discrimination,” yet, are exactly what is intend when America speaks of religious freedom protected by strong law.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Today, points are shared on the Kingdom of GOD, and America and Israel as modern states.  The Israel created by the United Nations General Assembly in 1947 is not the same as the Israel created by Jehovah at Mount Sinai. Many are confused that the influence and place of Israel as an instrument in divine judgment does not appear to be the same as in ancient times.  Yet, at some stage as they develop or follow paths that were not available in their beginning, all nations appear to betray their founding fathers and pioneers.  Maniacal dissatisfaction and frustration with world leaders should be expected to increase where they are promoted as celebrities, demigods, and idols.  Exaggerated expectations appear when hero-worship and idolatry are practiced.  Foolish critics attack the President and Prime Minister of America and Israel as though a single person is permitted to make every decision for their State without input from experienced professionals, military, scholars and other experts, and as if they are not restricted from unilateral action by existing procedures and protocols that are rigorous and demanding.  Correctly understood, it is absurd to blame one man for the challenge that comes by shared goals and motives pursued among millions of men.  Fault-finding, placing blame and political invective are primarily fueled by anger, bitterness, ignorance, and immaturity.  Accusations against the United States and its leadership have long included the insinuation that greed, imperialism, pride, self-promotion, and vainglory are the only national agenda for those who serve through the American Presidency.  However, popular and world culture often seek to promote peculiar ideas of anonymity, defiance, freedom, and lawlessness without also pursuing disciplined logic, critical thinking, and the careful scrutiny required for developing and implementing accountability, consensus, sound policy, and stable government.  The fighter at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Harold” (Level 3 with 2,300 points, a member since June 24, 2009) posted the following low blow:

 

Is Obama going against God by opposing Israel?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation:  Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.  And he said unto the disciples, The days will come, when ye shall desire to see one of the days of the Son of man, and ye shall not see it.  And they shall say to you, See here; or, see there:  go not after them, nor follow them.  For as the lightning, that lighteneth out of the one part under heaven, shineth unto the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of man be in his day.  But first must he suffer many things, and be rejected of this generation.  And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.  They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.  Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;  But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.  Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.  (Luke 17:  20-30, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Human Law, Divine Favor? (03/23/2015); The American Covenant? (03/03/2015); Correctly Knowing Israel? (03/01/2015); Why Prophets Were Sent to Israel (11/23/2014); The Need for Prophecy Then and Now (11/24/2014); The Bible is All About GOD? (07/27/2014); No Mystery in Lawful Judgment (07/28/2014); Separation of Church and State (07/04/2014); The Point of Wisdom? (07/05/2014); Holy Ground (03/30/2014); The Temple Mount (03/31/2014)

 

“Harold”, in these times, Christian believers are careful to focus upon prophecy, Scripture, and spiritual truth, rather than temporal events.  Consider the following:

(1.)  Israel and America are not the Kingdom of GOD.  While ancient Israel may have functioned as a monarchy with kings and prophets having authority as visible agents for divinity, America and modern-day Israel are operating as independent secular states within a global economy.  Those who belong to the kingdom are citizens through their spirit content, and are not in a mere cultural or political relationship.

(2.)  The sovereign authority and power of Deity is not appearing as inarguably active and present through the lifestyles, policies, and public presentations from existing states.  National goals do not include maintaining, expanding, or ratifying any covenant with divinity.

(3.)  Israel has compromised the historical, traditional and spiritual commands to destroy the worship places of those in the territory they would be given as their Promised Land.  After victory during the 1967 Six-Day War, instead of destroying the al-Aqsa Mosque, Israel transferred its control to an Islamic trust that is independent of the Israeli government.  Despite Israeli desire to exist as a state having the boundaries described within the Scriptures (see the Fourth Book of Moses, called Numbers, chapter 34), multiple peace accords and agreements have now seen concession of land to demonstrate their commitment to participate within a community of nations on the basis of international law.

(4.)  Many around the world now attack President Obama as our head of State, and as a representation of the American people.  Their displays of hatred, venom, and violence are as much the product of sin and their true spiritual content as of deception, lies, propaganda and slander.  Those who misread Scripture even apply the following to accuse Obama of being the Antichrist:  2nd Thessalonians 2:  3-4, KJV:  3 Let no man deceive you by any means:  for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;  4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

The holy writings provide far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually understood.  For example, (5.)  Ezekiel 14:  13-14, KJV:  13 Son of man, when the land sinneth against me by trespassing grievously, then will I stretch out mine hand upon it, and will break the staff of the bread thereof, and will send famine upon it, and will cut off man and beast from it:  14 Though these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they should deliver but their own souls by their righteousness, saith the Lord GOD.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  May your prayers ever be answered according to correct sacred knowledge and your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC