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91
Theology Forum / Re: the Book of Isaiah
« Last post by gary sechler on July 31, 2014, 06:05:26 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Isaiah 59 10-17
10.  We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noon day as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men.

Those who do evil cannot see beyond the walls of their jealousy and hate. They grope about as those who are blind seeking to “right” the false wrongs they believe they have been victims of, but every action they take is wrong and only leads them deeper into the pit of their own wrong doing, each step is a stumble, that will lead them to die again and again.

 11.  We roar all like bears, and mourn sore like doves: we look for judgment, but there is none; for salvation, but it is far off from us.

They roar like a wounded bear, and mourn for their distress, they seek revenge, but there is none, because every action they take, bring more revenge from God upon them.  They look for salvation, but all they know is lies.  While this described the Jeueish faith during the time of Isaiah all the way through the Bar kochba revolt, this describes the Muslim faith as it exists today.

 12.  For our transgressions are multiplied before you, and our sins testify against us: for our transgressions are with us; and as for our iniquities, we know them;

Again a good description of the Jeueish faith 2600 years ago, and it is a perfect description of the Muslim faith today.

13.   In transgressing and lying against the Lord, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood,

Which continues in the next verse.

 14.  And judgment is turned away backward, and justice stands far off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter.
 15.  Yes, truth fails; and he that departs from evil makes himself a prey: and the Lord sees it, and it displeases him that there was no judgment.

Well, since God was in charge of the judgment this verse is slightly off keel either Isaiah didn’t understand or the translator didn’t.  Once someone “departs from evil,” they still have the judgment for their prior evil to face, this is Justification.  Designed to remake them into someone who will never do that evil again.

 16.  And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him.

“He,” is God, who saw that there was no good men, no one who would stand up for those who were wronged, so God brought forth his “arm,” which is His angels, who work in the world to create righteousness and to bring salvation to those who depart from evil.
 
17.  For he put on righteousness as a breastplate, and a helmet of salvation upon his head; and he put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloke.

Again, this is God putting on a breastplate of righteousness and a helmet of salvation, and clothed Himself with vengeance or Justification, and clad Himself with the “zeal” or passion, to try to save every soul in the world.

 18.  According to their deeds, accordingly he will repay, fury to his adversaries, recompence to his enemies; to the islands he will repay recompence.

O.K. we find another way of saying the dark side of “love thy neighbor as yourself,” as Isaiah tells us that as we have done, He will do to us.

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Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
92
Seminarian Connection / Re: Is Jesus Alive ?
« Last post by jxrryk on July 31, 2014, 06:50:49 AM »
Isnt Jesus in each and every one of us, whether or not we acknowledge it...then again who do we Worship, Jesus?? or the Father, Isnt Jesus just the vessel we use to reach the Father??  in crude terms, Why not just skip the middleman? a lot of faiths do
93
Seminarian Connection / Re: No "Good News " is Bad News
« Last post by jxrryk on July 31, 2014, 06:48:10 AM »
  A possible revival could be imminent if people of faith were willing to grow into the times, I would be willing to bet that most of the remaining members are worshipers of the building, that they would not remain a community of worship were  it held in a members basement or garage, and herein lies the problem with revitalization, people such as myself and a few friends are not looking for a nice building, we are looking to serve others in some meaningful way with support of a faith driven community, not looking to serve a structure that "houses" God....the reason, or at least one of the reasons, I dont belong to a "church" at the moment is I am looking for a deeper faith commitment, learning, Social Justice(The U.C.C has some good work in that dept.) Where it happens is unimportant, and I definitely dont want 95% of the energy I might invest to go to building upkeep and, unfortunately, its that tradition that seems to be the focus, save the building mentality at a stretch could be considered doing the opposite of God's Will..hhmm I could make a good argument and I am lay.....I am not sayng the building must or even have to go but if their preservation is the number 1 priority, good luck attracting new people that are having faith struggles..
94
Theology Forum / Re: The Book of Ezekiel
« Last post by gary sechler on July 30, 2014, 04:26:46 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Ezekiel 42 6-15

6.  For they were in three stories, but had not pillars as the pillars of the courts: therefore the building was straitened more than the lowest and the middlemost from the ground.

The translation here is as clear as mud, but I believe what is said is what I said before we read this verse.

 7.  And the wall that was without over against the chambers, toward the utter court on the forepart of the chambers, the length thereof was fifty cubits.

This would be the wall that the galleries were joined to, which is seventy five feet in length.

 8.  For the length of the chambers that were in the utter court was fifty cubits: and, lo, before the temple were an hundred cubits.

This refers to the eating galleries along the walls to the utter court.

 9.  And from under these chambers was the entry on the east side, as one goes into them from the utter court.
 10.  The chambers were in the thickness of the wall of the court toward the east, over against the separate place, and over against the building.
 11.  And the way before them was like the appearance of the chambers which were toward the north, as long as they, and as broad as they: and all their goings out were both according to their fashions, and according to their doors.
 12.  And according to the doors of the chambers that were toward the south was a door in the head of the way, even the way directly before the wall toward the east, as one enters into them.
13.  Then said he unto me, The north chambers and the south chambers, which are before the separate place, they be holy chambers, where the priests that approach unto the Lord shall eat the most holy things: there shall they lay the most holy things, and the meat offering, and the sin offering, and the trespass offering; for the place is holy.

These chambers, would be eating and dressing chambers for the priests, when they serve their period of service time at the temple.

14.  When the priests enter therein, then shall they not go out of the holy place into the utter court, but there they shall lay their garments wherein they minister; for they are holy; and shall put on other garments, and shall approach to those things which are for the people.

The priests had special clothes when they were doing their work in the temple, but would change when they served the people.

15.  Now when he had made an end of measuring the inner house, he brought me forth toward the gate whose prospect is toward the east, and measured it round about.

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Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
95
Theology Forum / Re: the Book of Isaiah
« Last post by gary sechler on July 30, 2014, 04:12:26 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Isaiah 59 3-9
3.  For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.

God has been working in your lives for centuries, and you may no longer be defiled by blood, nor your fingers with iniquity, but “lies” and “muttering perverseness” may still be a problem, only you and God can know the answer to that, and He will take care of that in good time.  At the time this was written, every one was a real problem for God and that is the reason what was going to happen to them, was going to happen.

 4.  None calls for justice, nor any pleads for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.

These are the requirements of God, Justice, truth, and doing nothing in vain.

 5.  They hatch cockatrice' eggs, and weave the spider's web: he that eats of their eggs dies, and that which is crushed breaks out into a viper.

A cockatrice is a mythical creature, a two legged dragon with the head of a rooster, that was created in the 16th century, so Isaiah definitely had a different monster in mind. The NIV translates it as “Adder” a poisonous snake, which makes sense, the original meaning of the Hebrew is simply “that it is time to move” to get out of there, which if it were an Adder or a cockatrice, would be good advice.  Weaving a spiders web, means that they are acting as a spider who is looking to catch something to eat.  “he that eats of their eggs,” means that those who fall victim to their snares and trickery will die.  When one of them is “crushed” or their webs are destroyed so people can’t fall victim to their trickery, they get mad, and turn into a very deadly viper.

 6.  Their webs shall not become garments, neither shall they cover themselves with their works: their works are works of iniquity, and the act of violence is in their hands.

While those who are due for an act of Justification, will fall victim to their evil schemes, eventually the planners of iniquity will fall victim to their own evil, and all of their ill-gotten gains will disappear and take an equal amount of their legitimate prosperity with them.  Evil only appears to prosper, it never does in reality.

 7.  Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.

“Wasting and destruction are in their paths,” because God is aware of what they plan and what they do, and he will see that justice is done, whether the legal authorities ever catch them or not.  It may not happen for decades, but it does come, just as the morning sun will continue to rise and bring a new day.

 8.  The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goes therein shall not know peace.

All of our problems come from God who is in the process of Justifying us for our sins, and until we have received justice from God and have determined to always walk in a straight, true, and fair path, peace is not possible.  We must attain to treat everyone fairly and justly, and then we too will attain fairness and justice, which brings us peace.
And now we dip into the mind of those so afflicted.

 9.  Therefore is judgment far from us, neither does justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness.

Doing evil, is seen by them, as taking from those who are weaker, because only the strong survive, but true strength comes when we can reach out and protect the weak from the evil.  They can continue to do evil, because justice will not over take them, they will avoid being caught and punished.  They walk in darkness and continue in their evil while they are waiting for the light of God to show them the wrongs they are doing, by turning them into victims of the evil they have done to others.

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Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
96
Theology Forum / Re: The Book of Ezekiel
« Last post by gary sechler on July 29, 2014, 06:36:41 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Ezekiel 41 21-end 42 1-5
21.  The posts of the temple were squared, and the face of the sanctuary; the appearance of the one as the appearance of the other.

There were two large posts at the front of the temple, and they were identical.

 22.  The altar of wood was three cubits high, and the length thereof two cubits; and the corners thereof, and the length thereof, and the walls thereof, were of wood: and he said unto me, This is the table that is before the Lord.

The altar was where the sacrifices were cooked and the wood was burned to cook the
meat and to bake the bread, so it had to be rebuilt several times a day, four feet six inches high and three feet long.

 23.  And the temple and the sanctuary had two doors.

There were double doors at the front of the temple.

 24.  And the doors had two leaves apiece, two turning leaves; two leaves for the one door, and two leaves for the other door.

Each door would be made up of two pieces that would fold together when the doors were opened.

 25.  And there were made on them, on the doors of the temple, Cherubims and palm trees, like as were made upon the walls; and there were thick planks upon the face of the porch without.

The posts supported the roof of the porch, something that is never drawn in on any of the pictures of the temple, that I have seen.  The doors were decorated with angels and palm trees, just like the inside wood work over the doors and gates.  The porch appears to have been constructed out of heavy wood.

 26.  And there were narrow windows and palm trees on the one side and on the other side, on the sides of the porch, and upon the side chambers of the house, and thick planks.

The porch walls were also decorated with cherubim and palm trees.

Ezekiel 42:1.  Then he brought me forth into the utter court, the way toward the north: and he brought me into the chamber that was over against the separate place, and which was before the building toward the north.

“Utter” means the “outermost,”


 2.  Before the length of an hundred cubits was the north door, and the breadth was fifty cubits.

This area, is a hundred and fifty feet, by seventy five feet.

 3.  Over against the twenty cubits which were for the inner court, and over against the pavement which was for the utter court, was gallery against gallery in three stories.

These “galleries,” would have also been for people coming to the temple, to eat, and they too were three stories high.

 4.  And before the chambers was a walk of ten cubits breadth inward, a way of one cubit; and their doors toward the north.

The ten cubits, equals 15 feet.

 5.  Now the upper chambers were shorter: for the galleries were higher than these, than the lower, and than the middlemost of the building.

The galleries being stacked upon each other would have to be “shorter” or shallower than the galleries below the upper ones, in order to provide a walkway to reach, dine in, and be served.

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Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
97
Theology Forum / Re: the Book of Isaiah
« Last post by gary sechler on July 29, 2014, 06:26:10 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Isaiah 58 10-end 59 1-2
10.  if you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in the darkness and your gloom be as the noonday. 

This takes us back to verse 7 again, which is where we fall short in doing the work of God. 

 11.  And the Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your desire with good things, and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. 

What a wonderful promise that if we do the things pointed out in verse 7, the good things we desire for our church and its ministry, and the health of our members, will be taken care of by God and we will not be left in the darkness of a dying church.

 12.  And your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to dwell in.   

Our “ancient ruins” is the theology with which the church was allowed to flounder and walk away from the true teachings of Jesus.  To be the “restorer of the streets” that led to Jesus and God, would be a fantastic legacy for our church, and would make it an ideal place for children to be raised up in.

 13.  "If you turn back your foot from the sabbath, from doing your pleasure on my holy day, and call the sabbath a delight and the holy day of the Lord honorable; if you honor it, not going your own ways, or seeking your own pleasure, or talking idly; 

The Sabbath was set aside by God as a day for a man to spend with his family, in order for his family to grow together in love, today that takes into account his church family as well.

 14.  then you shall take delight in the Lord, and I will make you ride upon the heights of the earth; I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken." 

It is hard to fully comprehend exactly what God means by this, but I believe it is safe to assume that this is something that everyone, would really like to be a part of.
Interpreting the Bible Isaiah 59

 1.  Behold, the Lord's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:

The Lord’s hand reaches all the way around the world and back again to be able to touch the whole world. And His ears go with His hands.  To not only hear the words spoken but each thought that is thought.  It will always be there ready to reach out and help or hinder, depending upon what is needed in your life to help you reach His Kingdom.

 2.  But your iniquities have separated you from your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

A little clarification is needed, God is never separated from us from His side of the fence, but because of our “iniquities,” He will do nothing to bless us or help us attain our corrupt goals, He will stand back and watch us commit corrupt things, and withhold judgment until later, but remember God does not forget anything.  God hides His face from us, as far as recognizing Him is concerned, even though we see Him every day of our lives, we work with Him, we talk with Him, we may even live next to Him, but we do not recognize Him for who he is, and until He has prepared us for the shock of knowing Him, we won’t.  One day, you will see him as he really is.

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Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
98
Theology Forum / Re: The Book of Ezekiel
« Last post by gary sechler on July 28, 2014, 05:57:11 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Ezekiel 41 12-20
 12.  Now the building that was before the separate place at the end toward the west was seventy cubits broad; and the wall of the building was five cubits thick round about, and the length thereof ninety cubits.

Now we have another building which is one hundred and five feet broad, which has walls that are seven feet six inches thick, and is one hundred and thirty five feet long.

 13.  So he measured the house, an hundred cubits long; and the separate place, and the building, with the walls thereof, an hundred cubits long;

The total length of everything within the walls is one hundred and fifty feet, long.

 14.  Also the breadth of the face of the house, and of the separate place toward the east, an hundred cubits.

The breadth of the temple structure is also one hundred and fifty feet.

 15.  And he measured the length of the building over against the separate place which was behind it, and the galleries thereof on the one side and on the other side, an hundred cubits, with the inner temple, and the porches of the court;

Again a hundred and fifty feet.

 16.  The door posts, and the narrow windows, and the galleries round about on their three stories, over against the door, cieled with wood round about, and from the ground up to the windows, and the windows were covered;

The temple has a wooden ceiling, the “windows were covered,” means that there were wooden shutters to close up the windows.

 17.  To that above the door, even unto the inner house, and without, and by all the wall round about within and without, by measure.

What that means is that the stone could not span the openings over the gates and doors, so wood was used to close those openings and complete the structure.

18.  And it was made with Cherubims and palm trees, so that a palm tree was between a cherub and a cherub; and every cherub had two faces;

Meaning that all the wood surfaces were carved with angels and palm trees, and a palm tree was carved in between the cherubs, and the cherubs have two faces.

 19.  So that the face of a man was toward the palm tree on the one side, and the face of a young lion toward the palm tree on the other side: it was made through all the house round about.

One face of the cherub was that of a man, and the other face was that of a lion.  Cherubs were pictured very differently then, than now.  Today we think of cherubs as being the size of a plump baby, with wings and a bow and arrow, flying around shooting arrows through hearts and causing people to fall in love.  To Understand their view of cherubs, we must go back to Ezekiel 1 or 10 where Ezekiel described angels with 4 wings, and 4 faces, one face of a man, one of a lion, which we see here, and a face of an ox, and the face of an eagle.  Here the faces represent that God is present in all life, from the lowest form, the lion, representing the wild beasts, and man representing the highest of God’s creations.

 20.  From the ground unto above the door were Cherubims and palm trees made, and on the wall of the temple.

Everywhere there was wood, there was palm trees and cherubs.

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Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
99
Theology Forum / Re: the Book of Isaiah
« Last post by gary sechler on July 28, 2014, 05:44:21 PM »
Interpreting the Bible Isaiah 58 5-9
5.  Is such the fast that I choose, a day for a man to humble himself? Is it to bow down his head like a rush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Will you call this a fast, and a day acceptable to the Lord? 

This is the idea of the Muslims today, just as it was of the Jeues during the time of Jesus.  Just as modern Muslims have no concept of God and what He requires of His followers today, neither did the Jeues of that time.

 6.  "Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? 

They don’t understand, so Isaiah explains it to them, but it falls on deaf ears, just as it did in Jesus’ time.  This one point has been dealt with today.

7.  Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? 

Boy, does this one strike home in all modern churches, yes we give food to the mission but we charge for the meals we serve here when others are invited in to share a meal with us, I know I put the words up on our sign.  The homeless poor are not invited to spend the night in our new building, we have no showers for them to bathe with before they would go to sleep, if we did.  We have no washing machine to wash their clothes in, or a dryer to dry them in, though that is the mission that God gave to the church.  It is something most Christians do not want to deal with, but that is what being a Christian means.  We want to preach to them and pray for them, but preaching and praying doesn’t change them, God does, in His own time, in His own way, and until He does, it is up to us to provide food, shelter, clothes, and a safe, warm or cool place to spend the night, until God can make a change in their souls.  We are the hands of God in this world and for most of the last hundred years, they have been kept in our pockets and not reaching out to do the work of God, and as a result, the mainline churches who refuse to do the work of God, are becoming as unfaithful as the Jeues of Isaiah’s time had become.  God is speaking to us here!  “Hiding ourselves from our own flesh” is a troubling statement.  It refers to those who have parents or children, who they are angry with or do not wish to see and help if necessary.

 8.  Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard. 

There it is, that is the answer to all the church’s problems all we have to do is follow the directions of God through the pen of Isaiah, and the church will start growing. I remember hearing when we were discussing the building of our new building, that if we build it, they will come.  Well, we built it, and they haven’t come.  A building is not a church.  A true church of God takes Isaiah 58:7 to heart and makes it their mission in the world, not holding anything back, but giving their hearts and souls to furthering the work
of God in this world by doing exactly what God told the Jeueish people 2600 years ago to do, and they didn’t, unless we want to end up like Jerusalem, we must change and follow the way of God, and do His work in the world, one that needs us badly.  If we do, God will lead and also be our rear guard.

 9.  Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry, and he will say, Here I am.  "If you take away from the midst of you the yoke, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, 

These points I believe we have come real close to conquering, we have that up over the Jeues of Isaiah’s time, though we are in constant danger of back sliding, and it requires
our constant vigil to stay on course.

<><===><>
Gary Sechler
With knowledge on loan from God
100
UCC Café / Re: Share some daily Humor
« Last post by RamiroRadfor on July 28, 2014, 11:57:48 AM »
what am I going to do with all these police jokes?  Have I waited long enough not to offend most of you?

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A lady was filling her tank at a gas station, smoking a cigarette manufactured by
e cigarettes manufacturer, even though all the signs say not to. The fumes that came out of the gas tank ignited, severely burning her hands.
But it also lit up her arm, too!

Instead of rolling on the ground to put it out, she panicked. She took off running down the street.

A police car was at the intersection where it happened and he tried to stop her to put out the fire on her arm, but she just kept running and screaming. All the officer could think of doing was to shoot her. This took everyone by surprise. The officer ran over to her and put the fire out, then called for an ambulance.

When questioned about his course of action to stop her, the officer said, "My only thought was to stop her. After all, she was waving a fire-arm."[/font][/size]

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Ya it is better to kill such people who does make such silly mistake..
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