Tag Archives: Jews

How to Go Forward without Fear

Lots of our brethren and sisters do not dare to come in the open. Most Jeshuaists prefer to stay in the darkness of this world hidden. They are afraid of being discovered or unmasked as Jew or Jeshuaist.

Many of our friends wonder how we live life when the world seems to be spinning in ways we did not expect it to be and where so many are against other religious people. Many Jews in Belgium and France are afraid. Several already left these regions, because they did not find it safe any-more for their kids to grow up here, and remembering what happened to those who wanted to leave Europe in the 1930ies too late.

Perhaps we should go to the Scriptures to find some advice, for being able to cope with our fear.

The first chapter of the book of Habakkuk is essentially a long complaint followed by God’s response. It then continues with yet another complaint and another response from God. The book concludes with a prayer or a Psalm from Habakkuk. This book was written, proceeding the fall of Babylon, yet the date of composition of the book cannot be guaranteed just by perusing the book itself. Most likely, individuals who lived after the fall Babylonia in 539 BCE understood much of this book is a meditation on life in an unjust world. They wondered how to relate to God when nations “slays nations without pity,” and “seize homes not their own.”

Today we can see many places in the world where nations are slain. We can see that political leaders do not mind what happens to those living in their country. Some even not having a blush on their face when they use gas-bombs on areas where many innocent people (inclusive many children) live.
We find lots of places where there are people who say they fight in the name of Allah (= God) but do the most atrocious things one can think of. Often they say it is the suffering people their own fault, not trusting in the right god.

What do we do when individuals do not place their trust in God, and how can a pious person deal with this unwieldy situation?

God responds that the answer is clearly written on tablets, perhaps as described in the book of Deuteronomy.

He then says:

הִנֵּ֣ה עֻפְּלָ֔ה לֹא־יָשְׁרָ֥ה נַפְשׁ֖וֹ בּ֑וֹ וְצַדִּ֖יק בֶּאֱמוּנָת֥וֹ יִחְיֶֽה׃

“Lo, his spirit within him is puffed up, not upright, But the righteous man is rewarded with life For his fidelity.” (Habakkuk 2:4)

This verse, initially describes a person whose life is swollen with not good things and who lives a twisted or unjust life. Perhaps it is one full of deception or one full of egotism. It then moves to a pious person whose faith is in God even under the most dire circumstances. Even though they must live life where justice is delayed or denied, that time according to God will be short-lived. Habakkuk goes on to draw a parallel with Isaiah chapter 11:9, that there will be a time when everyone will know God…

We agree today does not seem to be such a time, because not many are knowing God. Several people may say they believe in God, but they do not worship God, or many even believing in a three-headed god, they call the Trinity, and as such not believing in the God of Moshe, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Christ and his disciples.

Today sometimes it looks like we are living in a world where everything is permitted, as long as it is not a matter of religious expression. Then suddenly no religious symbols are allowed or persons are not allowed to wear what their religion demands. In several countries we can see demonic people offering themselves as the leader who shall make their nation great again. With the stroke of a pen those men think they themselves can play for god and decide what to do with other people and with other nations. Every occasion, be it even the national day they use for putting themselves in the picture and throwing hate words against others.

Today many people are confronted with difficulties to come around, not earning enough, but working hard enough to have not much time for the rest of the day. Several people in Europe are wondering and struggling, what can they could do to make this world a better place and to assure it to make Europe a safe haven for all sorts of people.

In a world of greed, where materialistic values often take first place, money or financial gain and pleasure have become the gods of today next to the many starlets and idols from entertainment and sports.

In this world today there seems not much place for integrity, the moral value that makes people the same on the inside as they are on the outside — with no discrepancy between what they say and what they do, between their walk and their talk. Many people around us prefer to wear a mask and present themselves differently on social media than they are in reality. that is also an important factor why so many in our community are so afraid to show themselves in public.

Though I believe we should not hide, but come out of our cocoon and show people that it might go different ánd better. The answer is that the most impact we will have is on those who surround us. It is their lives that we can make better. We can and should speak up when we see injustices, and we can remove blind spots by becoming more aware of the world around us and the systems that work in it – systemic poverty and racism for example. We need to focus our energies on walking in the footsteps of God as a community. The book of Habakkuk ends by saying:

“my Elohim Hashem Jehovah is my strength: he makes my feet like the deer’s and lets me stride upon the heights.” (Habakkuk 3:19).

You should know it is inside of us all  that God is found and when we unite our hands together we can bring the divine into this world through our very actions.

Those who believe in God should join hands and show the world their unity. It may not always be easy to live our lives full of tackling difficult and challenging issues, but let those experiences cause ourselves to grow and become better individuals and communities more focused on God and assisting those around us.

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Additional reading

  1. If some of us do not feel safe
  2. Speciesism and racism
  3. Governments need to be more proactive to ensure racism is kept in check
  4. Christian fundamentalists feeding Into the Toxic Partisanship and driving countries into the Dark Ages… #1
  5. Faith related boycotts
  6. Rome mobilisation to say no to fascism and racism
  7. On French beach French police forces woman to undress in public
  8. Allowing dress code according liberty of religion
  9. Today’s thought “When approaching the battle against your enemies today” (May 03)
  10. Religious Freedom in a Multicultural World
  11. Jewish and Gentile Disciples
  12. Martin Luther King’s Dream Today
  13. God Our Refuge
Columbia hate crime

Racist tirade on Columbia’s university campus

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Related

  1. In The Grip Of The Politics Of Disimagination And The Pathologies Of Power
  2. Religious Freedom
  3. On religious freedom
  4. Christian values; Porn stars and religious freedoms
  5. The biggest difference between Israeli and American Jews
  6. Deconstructing Scotty
  7. Where Does It End???
  8. Lansman’s Extraordinary Attempt to Smear Anti-Semitism Whistleblowers
  9. The fight against anti-Semitism on the arena of international sports
  10. Critics who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones about anti-semitism. Chaos arrived at Labour HQ before Corbyn did
  11. Jeremy Corbyn’s time has run out to solve Labor’s anti-Semitism crisis
  12. The Bigotry Of The ‘Anti-Racists’
  13. Jennie Formby goes to Tom Watson’s home in union anti-Semitism
  14. Corbyn Criticizes the “Inaccuracies” of the BBC Concerning Labor Anti-Semitism | politics
  15. Jewish figures stubbornly resist Labor’s treatment of anti-Semitism charges | Policy
  16. Hopefully, the Labor nightmare will be over soon, for Jews and for the country
  17. “HATE: The Rising Tide of Anti-Semitism in France (and What It Means for Us),” by Marc Weitzmann
  18. Jewish German group says news article els fueled anti-Semitism ‘
  19. A Question of American Values
  20. “Who Is My Neighbor?” – Sermon on Luke 10:25-37: The Good Samaritan
  21. From Whence Anti-Semitism?
  22. Muslim Women Debate Anti-Semitism
  23. Abandon Ship!
  24. Snakes Slithering From ‘Neath The Rocks …
  25. Muslims seek voice in a changing Uzbekistan
  26. 25-Year-Old Woman Says She Was Kicked Out Of Golden Corral For Dressing ‘Too Provocatively’
  27. Normal, Odd, and Different
  28. Florida father wears ‘short shorts’ to teach daughter dress code lesson
  29. Black & Yellow for the festive ready at the office!!
  30. No Hats in School: This is Not a Bar-B-Que
  31. This School Now Has One Dress Code for All Genders — But Why Doesn’t Every School?
  32. Combating Racism, One Day at a Time
  33. After the Trump attack: “US President’s blatant racist attack” – Politics
  34. For Trump It Is About Skin Color
  35. Tuesday’s Quick Hits
  36. Quacks like a duck
  37. Trumpian Hypocrisy: Rep. Ilhan Omar Has Been A U.S. Citizen Longer Than Melania Trump
  38. Why the Republican silence talks about Trump’s racist tweets volumes – France 24
  39. Donald Trump: Graceless Under No Pressure
  40. Racial injustice in America
  41. Donald Trump branded ‘racist’ by Humza Yousaf over ‘hate crime’ comments about US Congresswomen
  42. Opinion: I learned a valuable life lesson at the barbershop. It takes courage to speak out against hatred.>
  43. Integrity Takes Effort
  44. Dignity Check

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Being and Feeling, Crimes & Atrocities, Lifestyle, Political affairs, Religious affairs, Social affairs, Welfare matters, World affairs

For Jews wanting to learn more about Jeshua and of other Jews following Jeshua

Many Jews prefer to stay in the background or in the shadow. Some Jews become curious in the Nazarene rebbe Jeshua and would love to come to know more about him and his followers.

In Israel, Great-Britain, France, Belgium and the Netherlands are Jewish brethren and sisters who would not mind to tell about this incredible master teacher. As followers of Jeshua or Jeshuaists, in the Netherlands also some calling themselves Jesjoeaansen or Jesjoeaist (from another Dutch way of writing Jeshua’s name: Jesjoea), are hoping to bring more people to see that Jeshua or Jesus Christ is the way to God and the long awaited promised sent one from God, the anointed or Messiah (the Moshiach = Kristos or Christ).

On the web you may find

From the Flemish part of Belgium and the Brussels region there is published the general website: Jeshuaisten / Jeshuaists Volgers van de Nazarener Joodse rebbe Jeshua – Followers of the Nazarene Jewish rebbe Jeshua

and additional two more personal sites of a Jeshuaist and of Immanuel Verbondskind

From the Walloon site of Belgium you may find: Jeshuaists (from Genvalin mainly in english and some French) and the site discussing Jeshuaism (from Genval in Dutch)

with its blog

with its blog

and both also with a Forum

Naturally both Jews and non-Jews are very welcome to those sites which want to shed a light on the set apart or Holy Scriptures and our way of life, in the prospect of our hope in the Messiah and the coming Kingdom of God.

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Filed under Announcement, Religious affairs

Need to reject an archaic, racist inspired interpretation of the Bible and animosity against other believers

In Belgium and France we see a growing hatred against lovers of the One and Only One True God, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah. Several Jews have been attacked physically or were made afraid by all kinds of threats or intimidations. That made many of our brethren and sisters leave for Israel. In France Jehovah’s Witnesses, Bible Students and Christadelphians are prohibited to proclaim the Good News or the Gospel of the Kingdom in public, for example by speaking to people on the street or by billing leaflets. In several regions people look down at Muslims or show their hate, giving the impression that they must be all so terrible or be believers of the faith IS promotes.

The Netherlands for years already had their very conservative Calvinist groups, but the last 30 years they were joined by other radical Christians. Many of those follow the Bible literally and can’t read in between the lines nor showing understanding Hebrew thinking or Hebrew way of talk.

As a college professor, the writer of Help from Heaven looks at this world and sees how we have come to a period people want to have eye-flaps, but also finds that the present youngsters could perhaps be more interested in and learning from stories that illustrated the teachings he was bringing but also about the teaching the Holy Scriptures wants to bring to mankind.

Is it

Archaic, bygone, ancient, passe, primitive, old. {Bonkers away blog: daily-prompt: Archaic}

that makes us not fitting in this world any more, giving us the impression it is becoming less accepting, more limited of views, less free thinking, more prudent, less receptive to other opinions. We clearly feel how youngsters today look more hostile to different thinking people, otherwise believers and to those who belong to a different culture.

Also certain communities are guilty of bringing limitations to free thinking. We even do not have to go far. In our own regions we have very conservative Jews who want to have the children over protected and also want them to believe in literal Biblical interpretation, holding fast on a six day creation and as such with their thought on the same line as the growing group of Christian Creationists. You may call it a response to modern evolutionary theory, which explains the emergence and diversity of life without recourse to the doctrine of God or any other divine power. Mainstream scientists generally rejecting creationism may find several believers in God joining them too, but worse is to see how by the growing pressure of certain religious groups trying to get diversion or war between other religious groups, we can see many more people getting fed up with religion and putting it aside.

Certain people want to to overwrite history and think they can make for it a better picture that covers the archaic marks and portray a new picture. They have the impression the strokes that they shall strike this time shall be much stronger and sharper just like the person they have become in the journey of their life … {“Life is like an Old Sketch”}

The article “The Racist Bible” brings a view of the recent problems our world is facing. There is written:

We live with such an archaic interpretation of the Bible. People interpreted the Bible in different ways 100 years ago, 500 years ago, and 1500 years ago. We need to know why those interpretations came into being. Once we do, we can see how it is hurting us. Only then can we move on to a powerful Biblical interpretation, one that is vibrant and appeals to the modern non-Christian. {The Racist Bible}

In several of the Jeshuaists their articles they try to bring a view how the ancient Hebrews saw the beginning of the world and how the Adonai handled the rebellion of man. We can see how by the years ‘Church‘ made use to bend words or twist interpretations to get people under the spell or in their ban. Several religious groups love to have control over their flock and found it most appropriate to do that with fearmongering and with hard language (sometimes even going so far to use abusive language or enormity). Scaring people or trying to intimidate them has become more popular these days. We can find certain preachers (like Mr. Dave Norris) happy to present all sorts of lies about other religious groups than their own church, (for Mr Norris: the Bible Church), which must be the only one true church every one should have to become a member, because otherwise they shall have to burn in hell for ever. Strangely enough in several articles he attacks groups which say we are saved but still have to do works.  He then claims (like Mr. Cross Roman)  we do not have to do any works any more because we are saved by Christ his blood. Norris also knows about the problems of human tradition and writes

All this is ridiculous and pits Apostolic Authority against scripture. Judaism regards the Torah or the first five books of the Bible highly but not quite as high as the Talmud which is Jewish tradition. Tradition can be classified as a philosophy written by men. Whether you believe it or not the Bible was not written by men per se but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. Christadelphians and Bible students also follow their own traditions which supersedes the word of God and each Congregation of those bodies believe differently as there is no uniform Doctrine. Just like in the Book of Judges when everyone did what was right in their own eyes yes. I follow the word of God and place very little impetus on tradition. {Precious Spiritual Children- 2}

He tells others lies about the Belgian Biblestudents and Christadelphians, so called claiming Jesus would return a certain day or year (what they certainly do not)  but he himself writes that the Jewish people will accept a guaranteed peace covenant secured by the countries of the now 80% Islamic Roman Empire.

Norris on return of Christ + Jews+ Islamic world + doctrine of imminence+end-time prophesies

Some preachers, because they believe the world shall come to an end, try to call others false prophets and try their believers to belief that those groups would have prophesied such dates for the end of the world, whilst those groups, like the Belgian Bible Students and the Christadelphians already have spend many articles saying that we should be careful with people claiming that Jesus would return on such or such a day, because even Jesus did not know it and we also can not know the exact day of the return of Jesus. But for sure we may be sure that the world shall not come to an end, not because the Belgian Bible students and the Christadelphians belief so , but because that is just the biblical truth and God’s promise  to our Patriarch Abraham, that we may look forward to a big state of united people under God’s King his reign her on earth and in heaven.

Lots of present teachers attacking Jews, Non-Trinitarian Christians and Muslims do have much self-esteem and though they seem to recognise it as part of the possible signs of the end-times do not see the beam in their own eyes but blame the splinters in someone else’s skin, claiming that at all dates setters fail to do is to rely on the words of the scripture which they only are able to do, them being able to see how fast Satan is working to cause chaos and evil, deceiving this world (like Mr. Norris is doing), because all others are “kindergartners” or “have no brains” (Norris his words).

The kettle blames the pot that it looks black but does not see the beam in its own eyes while it complains about the splinters in someone else’s skin. Mr. Dave Norris blaming others to tell and warn about end-times sings, but giving himself also some recognition to those signs in his series over the The End Times (namely part 4)

It might look honourable when people try to talk about that nice prospect of their Messiah coming back. But then they would have to follow the footsteps of that Nazarene master teacher Jeshua, Jesus Christ, who preached peace and not war, like they are doing. So many preachers may be happy with the contemporary technology making it very easy to bring the Word of God all over the nations. To our regret we also find lots of people finding in it a tool to spit their gal and to do everything to have their poisonous words to obscure all reality and decency.

Internet evangelism is how the nations will have an opportunity to hear and receive the Good News. No longer can one person reach only as many as he knows or comes into contact with. Today one person, right out of the comfort of his home, can reach millions of people in places he has never been and most likely, never will go. One person can invest a little time, without investing thousands of dollars in travel expenses, and can do much more, plant more seeds, and encourage more brethren than if he were to board a plane and go somewhere. {Today’s “Roman Road” – the Internet}

But at the same time we can see how one person can manage to bring all sorts of writings on the different denominations which exist in the world of religion, to break them. He even attacks the people of God and let his readers believe that we give more attention to human teachings and traditions than to the Torah.

Dave Norris of the Bible Church on Jews + Talmud + Rabbinical teaching

Mr Dave Norris of an American bible Church wanting his readers and all people in the world to believe the Jews are using the goyim as their slaves and would find raping women and killing whites ok, clearly wanting to create hatred against the Jewish people (Picture from The Shocking Jewish Talmud Revealed)

Concerning founders Mr. Norris has shown, about other denominations too, he also has a strange view, him believing it were the Hebrews who founded Judaism, though it was the Most Almighty Elohim Who has chosen us as His people and promised us by the seed of Abraham a great nation.

He also seems to forget one of the main points of a monotheist religion, which according to him our ancestors would have created. In Judaism part 101-1 he mentions the essence of a monotheist religion, namely worshipping only One True God above all gods, whilst he is a worshipper not of “One and Unique” God, but of the trinity and as such worships three gods: a God the Father, god the son and god the Holy Spirit, and by doing so should fall under the polytheists. When he considers the Hebrew religion as the mother religion of his religion, we would like to ask him why he went so far away from his mother and betrayed her?

Judaism – Jews chosen by God practising and teaching monotheism

For Mr. Norris it seems to be clear that all those who preach peace between Jews, Christians, Muslims and non believers are oxymorons.

Mr Dave Norris finds all those who want to live in peace together and accept the other religious groups “biblical oxymoron” finding they falter between two opinions following Baal considering that (according to him) God and Baal are oxymorons as is this question of the agreement the temple of God has with idols. (Though he himself belongs to a church with several idols or gods.) (picture of his article: The Coexist Movement- 2)

Like he does not seem to see the many differences between the Bible students he also does not seem to know much about the different forms of Judaism, only mentioning three.

Dave Norris limited vision on Jewish groups

Though people like him are being followed by many as if they are the gurus of truth.

Perhaps he, living in the United States, feels united with the many creationists and conservative and fundamentalist Christians. Him also for the whites, thinking Jews love to kill them, can find  confirmation in the writing of the professor who writes

In fact, it was not until Luther that people started taking the Bible more literally. The Creationist movement, though, including the world-wide flood didn’t really take root until the southerners of 1850+ started promoting it. Thus, we had a racist theology demand that their interpretation was the only one. Many were convinced to write on it, without referring to slavery. Slowly the arguments strengthened, until many who are not racist accept the arguments. This, though has saddled us with a theology that contradicts science. Now, we have to invent miracles that are not mentioned in the Bible to fit this theology. For example, a single flood doesn’t leave layers, it jumbles up everything.  {The Racist Bible}

For the professor it might be clear that certain Western Christians have perhaps taken a too restricted look at the Scriptures and perhaps in their thought that the King James Bible is the only true Bible, many Americans even thinking those Hebrews, like Abraham, Isaiah and Jesus all had English Names and as such find, it can not be that the rebbe his name is Jeshua or that God is called Jehovah.

Perhaps it is getting time that people from the West Northern hemisphere start looking at the Bible with other eyes. They also should start questioning their attitude to Jews, real Christians, Muslims, other and non-believers. If they want to win souls or if they want to convert people, loving to see them as members of their Christian faith, it will certainly come down not to follow the way of preachers like Dave Norris serves his community of the Bible Church, because I think he is at the moment getting more people away from faith and religion than getting them in his group or into becoming a Christian. The way we see many Christians act against other Christians and how there is a growing number of Christians reacting cruel against other faith groups or pushing others not to believe in the existence of dinosaurs or that the earth is flat and that NASA would be fooling us about the round earth, it is understandable why so many Christians are leaving the Christian Faith.

We need to reject the archaic, racist inspired interpretation of the Bible. We need to look at it afresh. The interpretation I suggested is not necessarily right, but is a reasonable alternative. Right now, because we are stuck with the racist inspired creationism, we are losing Christians when they go to High School and college and study science. They see how the two conflict, and are rejecting the Bible in great numbers. If we study the Bible fresh, we will see that there are literal interpretations that do not conflict with science, and we can then focus on talking about Jesus without people saying, “I don’t believe that stuff. It is just an archaic myth that science has shown to be wrong.” {The Racist Bible}

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Preceding

Confrontation by people telling lies to force others to avoid the targetted groups

The written, the spoken, and the audible a part of the soul and a blessing to humanity but also the trigger to those who love Crusades and the Inquisition

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Additional reading

  1. Dave Norris and his writings on the Belgian Bible Students
  2. Trusting present youngsters who are not necessary evil
  3. Overprotection and making youngsters drifting away
  4. The way of looking at the Scriptures and the people in this world
  5. Knife-trust in democratic sore back
  6. Pushing people in a corner danger for indoctrination and loss of democratic values

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Related

  1. The Watchtower Belgian Biblestudents
  2. Comfort Zone Gospel
  3. Jonah; Wake Up
  4. The Missing Piece to Salvation
  5. Saved From What?
  6. Selling Jesus
  7. Think About It…
  8. Entering the Trail to True Freedom
  9. Main Reason to Share the Gospel
  10. Evangelism as a lifestyle
  11. How to Overcome Fear of Sharing the Gospel – The Story of the Waldensians
  12. Forgetting that the Gospel is Good News, Romans 1:7
  13. Salty Agape
  14. Communicating the Wondrous Truth of God’s Love and Mercy
  15. Eschatology for beginners (part 1)
  16. The Return of Yeshua Ben Joseph, also known as Jesus – by New Dimension – 12-23-17
  17. Exit Strategy End Times: “Unforgiveness and the Band Aid of agreement.” “
  18. This is NOT the Time to be SILENT
  19. Eastern Lightning | The Awakening of a Deceived Spirit (Part 2)
  20. Keep Racing!
  21. How to Teach About the Second Coming
  22. Today’s “Roman Road” – the Internet
  23. The Antichrist in the Holy Place Church
  24. The Historical Lesson Historians Need to Learn
  25. Scoffers
  26. Why Is Christ’s Return Not Widely Taught?
  27. The Beginning and the Ending
  28. Seven Reasons For Six Day Creation
  29. The Creationism
  30. Elmore Fundamentalism, Part 1: Matter
  31. More on Evolution: From the Mail Room, by Fred Reed
  32. Is There Biological Evidence of Life’s Recent Creation? – Part I
  33. Scientists Identify a Key Cognitive Error that Could Explain Why People Believe in Creationism and Conspiracy Theories
  34. Why Evolution is True Review
  35. Teleogical views predict not just creationism, but conspiracy theories
  36. A Creationist Surprise
  37. Is Creationism racist?
  38. God and Science
  39. Eric Hedin, prohibited from teaching intelligent design at Ball State, retires and moves to a Christian university
  40. Claim of creationism taught in school linked to National
  41. School response on creationism, claims evolution ‘controversies’
  42. School response on creationism, claims evolution ‘controversies’ — Your NZ
  43. Origin Story: A Big History of Everything
  44. There IS Purpose!
  45. Your Mythology is not Science
  46. Where Were You Radicalized?
  47. The Ends of the World
  48. Civil Debate? Catcall? Or Creationist Ruse?
  49. Faith abates reason at Edmonton’s first Flat-Earth International Conference
  50. #1: Inexplicable Species and the Theory of Evolution
  51. Evolutionary psychology: The naturalistic and agency fallacies
  52. A creationist makes the dumbest criticism of evolution ever
  53. Noah’s ark: the most ridiculed story in the Bible
  54. Tel Aviv’s new natural history museum (built to look like Noah’s Ark) deliberately omits mentioning evolution
  55. Why Do the Fundamentalists Love Tracey Ullman Now?
  56. InfightingNon-Physical Fighting 2
  57. Sikh Radicalisation in Britain
  58. Waitress Denied Tip for ‘not loving Jesus’
  59. Christian-hating transgender VT gubernatorial candidate DUPED by satire site: ‘Some evangelists just crazy!’
  60. The Nashville Statement (A Plain Language Translation)
  61. Love and Hate

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Being and Feeling, Crimes & Atrocities, Headlines - News, History, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, World affairs

Martin Luther “Last Words of David” (1543) a polemical work bearing the same ugly language as in “On the Jews and their Lies” (1543)

Many people do forget how Luther did not like women, Jews and Muslims.
A Lutheran pastor but not a Lutheran scholar dares to look at the works of Luther in an attempt

to go through Luther’s works interpreting scriptures which may not be as concise as many of his theological works but give me as a reader some exposure to the evolution of Luther’s thought and theology in conversation with the Word that he cherished. {An Ongoing Reference to Luther’s Works}

He also thinks

it is useful as we approach each volume to honestly look at what Luther’s interpretation over 500 years ago in his earliest works might have to still contribute in our time (and some books will be better handled by Luther’s theology than others). {An Ongoing Reference to Luther’s Works}


Last Words of David (1543) – This is a polemical work and it bears the same ugly language of On the Jews and their Lies which appeared in the same year. This is the dark side of Luther’s Christocentric way of approaching scripture.
If you want to learn about Luther’s later views on the Jewish people and Muslims this is one of the places where his anti-Jewish views are clearly exhibited.
Luther spends a lot of time revisiting the Christological debates of the early church and attempting to argue in a way that would be unlikely to convince anyone who wasn’t already a Christian. Perhaps he was trying to erase any perception that he could have been an ally to the Jewish people from some of his earlier writings, but this is really an ugly piece.
~An Ongoing Reference to Luther’s Works


Martin Luther (1523) by Lucas Cranach

Martin Luther (1523) by Lucas Cranach

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Filed under History, Quotations or Citations, Religious affairs, Social affairs

Men who believed and had faith in a Higher Power they could not see

In the ancient past there were men who did know where to go. They could have followed their own path, but they choose to follow the directions given to them by a much higher Power than any human being.

faith_cropped

Today there are many people who believe their patriarch Abraham got there where he had to be by the Power of the One Who directed him and Who he was prepared to follow. By his act of faith Abraham received a blessing which may come over to his progeny. The Jews believe they are the rightful descendants of the patriarch Abraham. Muslims also take Abraham as their most important patriarch and ‘father’. In him they all see a man of faith,like there have been many people of faith who went before us and showed us what we too should belief and do.

In the ancient books we come to see that faith led Abel to offer God a better sacrifice than Cain’s sacrifice. Scripture also tells us about Enoch who was taken by God because He had found in him a man of faith and because He was pleased with him. We also should see that no one can please God without faith. Whoever goes to God must believe that God exists and that He rewards those who seek him. (Hebrews 11:6)

It was also faith that led Noah to listen when God warned him about the things in the future that he could not see. This man came to build an ark in a place were there was no big water and found people laughing at him. No matter how they ridiculed him he obeyed God and built a ship to save his family. Through faith Noah condemned the world and received God’s approval that comes through faith. (Hebrews 11:7)

Can you imagine someone would tell you in your old age that you can still get children or would ask you to some place you do not know?  Again in the Old Testament we come to know about a man with faith which led him to obey when God called him to go to a place that he would receive as an inheritance. Abraham left his own country without knowing where he was going. (Hebrews 11:8) It led him to live as a foreigner in the country that the Elohim Hashem Jehovah had promised him. He lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who received the same promise from God the Most High Abraham trusted God and was waiting for the city that God had designed and built, the city with permanent foundations. (Hebrews 11:9)

All those pepole showed they had strong belief in that Unseen Power. they were convinced that they could fully trust that Voice that reached them from the unknown. For them That Voice was much more important than any human voice. they were convinced there was a better substance for them when the would follow that Incredible Voice, than what man could offer them. They had the feeling that what would come over them or would given to them when they would follow that Voice was much more important than what the world could or would give them. They did not first demand evidence. They had not to see a thing or set of things helpful in forming a conclusion or judgment. The means by which an allegation could have been proven, such as oral testimony, documents, or physical objects, were not necessary for them. By faith they followed what was deep in their heart.

We can see that it was faith that enabled Abraham to become a father, even though he was old and Sarah had never been able to have children. Abraham trusted that God would keep his promise. We should remember that Abraham was as good as dead. Yet, from this man came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the grains of sand on the seashore. (Hebrews 11:11)

Looking at those men we should know that they didn’t receive the things that God had promised them, but they saw these things coming in the distant future and rejoiced. They acknowledged that they were living as strangers with no permanent home on earth.

We too today, should consider ourselves as tenants in this world; Sojourners, travelling in this time space.  We reside temporarily on this earth where mankind tries to make something of it, but has proven not to succeed in it. Therefore we should trust God and look forward to the coming times and the coming Kingdom of God.

Through faith Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets conquered kingdoms, did what God approved, and received what God had promised. They shut the mouths of lions, put out raging fires, and escaped death. They found strength when they were weak. They were powerful in battle and defeated other armies.(Hebrews 11:32-33)

All these people, mentioned above, were known for their faith, but none of them received what God had promised. God planned to give us something very special so that we would gain eternal life with them. It is in those promises which are made we should have faith.

As faith convinces us that God created the world through his word, we also believe that He guided His people all the time and that He does not abandon any one who is willing to belief in Him. We should put our hope and trust in the Unseen and put our hope on Him and on His son who paved the way to the entrance of the great Kingdom. Without faith we shall never be able to reach the right goal or to run and finish the race.

*

Please do read the faith-chapter of the apostate Paul, his letter to the Hebrews: Hebrews 11

We're not called to success, we're called to faith. We please God when we step out in faith in Jesus.

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Preceding

How to Live Beyond the Ordinary

How to set your mind

9 Adar and bickering or loving followers of the Torah preparing for Pesach

Knowing The Truth and Loving The Truth

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Additional reading

  1. Faith
  2. Issue 116 of Faith alive
  3. Assimilation of the mind to the divine ideas, principles, and affections exhibited in the Scriptures
  4. Honest-hearted people are losing faith in humanity and humanity losing faith in God
  5. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  6. Fear of God reason to return to Holy Scriptures
  7. Hope by faith and free gift

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Related
  1. Pistis ( πίστις)
  2. By faith Enoch
  3. What to do to Grow in the Spirit
  4. Be a God Pleaser
  5. Oh Mighty God! by Penny Chavers
  6. It is impossible to please God without faith. (today’s verse) 
  7. A List Of Ten Things That God Is Pleased About
  8. Please God, and not people
  9. The Seen And The Unseen
  10. When You Want to Step out but You’re Afraid to Fail
  11. Personal Victories
  12. Leadership Insight…
  13. Holding on to God
  14. Hey God…Meditation Monday
  15. Inside the Mind: The Human Soul
  16. Today is One PartDivine Providence
  17. Lessons from Hopelessness

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Filed under Knowledge & Wisdom, Lifestyle, Religious affairs

French rabbis of the suburbs confront anti-Semitism

Last year 50 000  Jews left France for better pastures. In Belgium we also find many who preferred to go to Israel and to face the difficulties there between Palestinians and Israeli soldiers.

When rabbi Prosper Abenaim first arrived at La Courneuve’s Ahavat Chalom synagogue in 1992 there were over 4,000 Jews in the neighbourhood then and at that time it was a struggle to fit them all into the synagogue on Yom Kippur. Today, at this Paris suburb’s only Jewish facility, he serves sweet tea to his synagogue’s most frequent and reliable guests: machine gun-toting troops of the French Legion which entered the seen on January 2016 to defend Jews in this heavily Muslim and crime-stricken municipality bordering the capital. This dwindling community, which has lost thousands of congregants over the past two decades to Israel and safer areas of Paris has now on some mornings, troops outnumbering worshippers.

That wasn’t the case when Abenaim first arrived at La Courneuve’s Ahavat Chalom synagogue in 1992. There were over 4,000 Jews in the neighbourhood then and it was a struggle to fit them all into the synagogue on Yom Kippur.

“The shul overflowed onto the street,”

Abenaim recalled.

Since then, improved economic fortunes and repeated anti-Semitic attacks have driven out all but 100 Jewish families from the neighbourhood, where drug dealers operate openly on streets that residents say police are too afraid to patrol. The remaining Jews are mostly a greying bunch, stuck here for financial reasons.

“We have two big problems, extremism and criminality, and they often mix,”

said Abenaim, who lives in Paris’ affluent and heavily Jewish 17th arrondisement and has encouraged his congregants to leave for Israel.

“I understand why people don’t want to raise children here. I’m here myself only because of my duties. Otherwise, I’d be in Israel.”

Rudy Abecassis, a Marseille-born computer specialist who moved to the Paris region in 2009 to find work, had a good job at a time of rising unemployment. In 2016 his family also left behind their comfortable lives and moved to Israel, joining nearly 8,000 French Jews who Abecassis said

immigrated to Israel in 2015.

“We’re not fleeing,”

He had found a nice life in France and he loved France for it,  leaving it with sorrow. For him it being important

“to live in a Jewish country of our own, where we are not outsiders who need to be tolerated.”

Tolerance is the big word we have to look for these days. When we hear small children saying Jews are dangerous people we can wonder what they hear their Muslim parents telling about Jews.

Most Jews in France are not affiliated with any synagogue, while the majority of those who are belong to Orthodox synagogues. The third major current of Judaism in France is the Conservative or Massorti movement (with a.o. rabbi Haim Fabrizio Ciprian in Marseille). Next to them there are the Liberal and Reform Jews. The “Libérale” in French corresponds to the Reform movement in the UK and the US, though for some Americans its approach might appear to be midway between Reform and Conservative.

‘For French who do not have the American connection, if you’re Jewish, Israel is the easy place to go. Otherwise the other ambitious entrepreneurs of that age who are not Jewish and are not going to think of going to Israel tend to go to London, which is now the seventh largest ‘French’ city.”

says the American Rabbi Tom Cohen from the synagogue Kehilat Gesher in Paris’s 17th arrondissement.

In those suburbs Rabbi Michel Serfaty is not afraid to go to talk to the Muslims and to create events for Muslim kids. He also created a community or “French Jewish Muslim Friendship Association” for which he hopes to recruit several more young people to help with community outreach in the largely Muslim, immigrant communities where most people have never even met a Jewish person.

A poster for the French Jewish Muslim Friendship Association, which works in many poor, immigrant neighborhoods. – Eleanor Beardsley/NPR

 

The rabbi is convinced that Jews can live together in peace with Christians and Muslims as well with atheists. He also believes they can help and foster each other and can work together to build up France’s future.

“In these places they often have specific ideas about Jews,”

says Serfaty.

“And if they’re negative, we bring arguments and try to open people’s eyes to what are prejudices and negative stereotypes. We try to show children, mothers and teenagers that being Muslim is great, but if they don’t know any Jews, well this is how they are, and they’re also respectable citizens.”

The rabbi takes advantage of funding from a government program that helps youths without work experience find their first job. First of all Serfaty takes time for the Muslim youngster and unites them by creating opportunities to have games, like a football match together. Two days ago we could see on television how a coloured boy was proud to present his equip, which was constructed of youngsters from different origin. Serfati lets them feel how other young kids feel and have similar aspirations. He tries taking away the borders and wrong ideas their parents or some radicals imposted on them.

The rabbi offers them also tuition and for a period of three years, gives them valuable training in mediation and community relations. Serfaty’s recruits also study Judaism and Islam. And he takes them on a trip to Auschwitz, the Nazi concentration camp.

Though French laws on secularism forbid him from asking applicants about their religion, he tries to have also Muslim employees for his work, who harbour no anti-Semitic feelings, which is not always so easy to find.

The people helping the rabbi are aware of the task to are wake up people’s consciences. They say

“This is a job that counts and we could have a real impact if there were more of us.”

Rabbi Michel Serfaty, third from right, and employees of his French Jewish Muslim Friendship Association. He says he has only grown more determined to do his bridge-building work since the terror attacks in Paris in January. – Eleanor Beardsley/NPR

Now there is also signed a manifesto where is demanded that the fight against this democratic failure that is anti-Semitism becomes a national cause before it’s too late. By the people who put their signature under it can be found politicians from the left and right including ex-president Nicolas Sarkozy and celebrities like actor Gerard Depardieu.

The signatories condemned what they called an “quiet ethnic purging” driven by rising Islamist radicalism particularly in working-class neighbourhoods. They also accused the media of remaining silent on the matter.

“In our recent history, 11 Jews have been assassinated — and some tortured — by radical Islamists because they were Jewish,”

the declaration says.

Condemning the “dreadful” killing, President Emmanuel Macron had reiterated his determination to fighting anti-Semitism.

“French Jews are 25 times more at risk of being attacked than their fellow Muslim citizens,”

according to the manifesto.

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Preceding

Bringers of agony, Trained in Belgium and Syria

Dr. Miller looking at Jews in France

Apocalyptic Extremism: No Longer a Laughing Matter

Anti-Semitic pressure driving Jews out of Europe

Growing anti-Semitism possible sign of certain times

What to do in the Face of Global Anti-semitism

Jews In France Ponder Whether To Stay Or To Leave

When will it stop

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Additional reading

  1. 2015 Human rights
  2. 2016 in review Politics #1 Year of dissonance
  3. As there is a lot of division in Christendom there is too in Judaism
  4. Propaganda war and ISIS
  5. Religious Practices around the world

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Related

  1. Russian chief rabbi: France’s Jews should leave if Le Pen wins
  2. ‘Cowardly, Odious’ Attack on Jewish Family Condemned by French Government
  3. ‘Caught, Kicked, and Gagged’: Jewish Family Tells of Brutal Anti-Semitic Robbery Outside Paris
  4. Exodus: Jews Flee Paris Suburbs Over Rising Tide of Anti-Semitism
  5. Paris Taxi Driver Threatened To Kill Passenger Because He Was an Israeli Jew
  6. Jews Are Being Murdered in Paris. Again.
  7. 300 French Personalities Sign Manifesto Against ‘New Anti-Semitism
  8. 300 French Personalities Denounce ‘Islamist Radicalisation’, Sign Manifesto Against ‘New anti-Semitism’
  9. Religious Muslims in France submit twice as many job applications as Christians to get callbacks

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Filed under Activism and Peace Work, Educational affairs, Lifestyle, Religious affairs, Social affairs