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    orthodoxymoron

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    Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 22, 2011 10:41 am

    Here is a cool documentary on sacred texts. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3bmeIpAqL8 I continue to think that religion and theology are important, even if you don't believe in God, or don't go to church. I keep going on and on about the Roman Catholic Church because all roads lead to Rome, and the RCC is the biggest game in town. It cannot be ignored, regardless of whether one likes it or not. One cannot properly understand this crazy world without considering church and state, politics and religion, and how they interact with each other. We need to be honest about both the positive and negative information we uncover. I tend to be pretty general about all of this, because I mostly wish to point people in productive and constructive directions, rather than leading them around by the hooks in their noses, and trying to make money doing so. Even if 95% of religion is BS (I don't know that it is), what about the 5% that isn't BS??? BTW, the church which John Dominic Crossan is interviewed in sure looks like the First United Methodist Church in Hollywood, California (Franklin and Highland). It's a really cool church I used to attend sporadically. They have a cool four-manual Casavant pipe-organ with trompettes enchamade located on each side of the front of the balcony (which features very steep seating beneath a large and beautiful stained-glass window). It was built around 1930. They also have a huge carillon. This church has been used for a lot of television shows and motion-pictures. You didn't need to know all of that, now did you??!! I like John Dominic Crossan. He has done a significant amount of work with the notorious 'Jesus Seminar'. Here is another Bible documentary for your consideration. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNZ-sOzXWEk&feature=related


    Last edited by orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 22, 2011 2:01 pm; edited 5 times in total
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    Arrowwind

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    Location : Idaho

    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:25 am

    Religion is very important to understanding the societal context in which we live. Personally the only concept that comes out of religion that has any real power it the teaching of love... which has largely been ignored by ALL the Christian religions over the centuries...

    But to give a fair shake, there have been individuals and orders within churches that did get the teaching of Love and worked hard to promote it.

    Otherwise, hat has been done in the name of god and for the sake of love had kept us bound in fear and war and tyrrany over the ages.

    I've been watching the made for TV serial from Showtime called The Tudors...

    Here you see the impact of religion upon a man who seems to me to be a young soul with a limited moral compass regardless of his Christian Catholic upbringing... in part the serial tells the story of the separation of England from the Catholic church and why it happened... although it is dubious that the Lutherians were any better,it seems that creating a podium of conflict between the two religions allowed for some people to deeply question and to see the folly of both and hence to set themselves free from dogmatic bondage... so I consider the frolicking and follies of King Henery somewhat important for driving one of the first stakes into the coffin of the Catholic Church by gettiong people to question the tyranny of the rule, the corruption of the church and the nature of free will, although considerable efforts of rebellion against the church were mounting in other parts of Europe also.


    It seems to me that true freedom for individuals from the bondage of church (any church) really didn't fully start to manefest until after the formation of the United States, within the States, due to separation of church and state, allowing individuals to see that no church can rule either a nation nor a soul, but that point of view could largely be from my limited perspective on world history...so it may be my fantasy.

    I'll watch those videos when I get some time...oh, they're not videos. I've read the Book of Enoch from the recently found scrolls... Nag Hammadi?
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:50 am

    Thank-you for your thoughtful reply Arrowwind. I have refined the concept of love into the word 'responsibility'. I tend to doubt the substitutionary atonement, and I tend to believe that we simply need to become more and more ethical, rather than depending on a human-sacrifice to get us off the hook with God. I lean heavily upon the Teachings of Jesus, but I recognize that there are many hard-sayings contained in the words attributed to Jesus. The Book of Enoch is very interesting to me, although I am somewhat repulsed by all of the fighting, retribution, and utter-destruction. To me, the Roman Catholic Church should have followed the Teachings of Jesus, instead of using Peter and Apostolic Succession as a way to avoid having to obey what Jesus taught. It was more convenient to keep Jesus nailed to the cross, while Mary (wearing the pants) and the Pope (wearing the crown) ruled the church and the world. Perhaps that last sentence is too harsh, but that's how I feel, regardless of whether I'm right or wrong. It just seems as if they used one text from the Teachings of Jesus (in a rather strained manner) to get out of having to deal with ALL of the Words of Christ. Again, just my impression. One more thing. Where do Paul and the other New Testament Writers quote the Teachings of Jesus, and base their messages upon these teachings by employing expository preaching???????? Which Christian church, in 2,000 years of Christianity, has made the Teachings of Jesus their doctrinal statement, and sole foundation of faith and practice????????
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:00 pm



    The following introduction to the Sermon on the Mount is from the preface and first chapter of 'Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing' by Ellen White. This is followed by the Sermon on the Mount from Matthew 5-7. (KJV) The homily is from 'The Sermon on the Mount' in the book 'Desire of Ages' by Ellen White. Try listening to Classical Music or a Latin Mass - while reading this aloud. Repeatedly. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enWiFcsBqIE

    1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JW8AJds1CzI
    2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mM46lVVarg&feature=related
    3. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YdU0-d1Kz7I&feature=related
    4. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rAMdw4DQIE&feature=related
    5. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r9QIEvARo1M&fmt=18
    6. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcphxV9jpo8&feature=related
    7. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Rk2zJP85Cc
    8. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZWOGcdC_PI&feature=fvst
    9. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ydyLBdVZh34
    10. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCsnSXRpXug&feature=related
    11. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rig6b-jogg&feature=related
    12. BWV 564 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XuVzH8CkAoU&feature=related (includes BWV 538)
    13. BWV 565 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7QVaFcoC4_Y&feature=related
    14. BWV 565 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Aej0vQJNQA&feature=related
    15. BWV 566 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2mYzjhZmJk&feature=related
    16. BWV 566 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=egT5ZLt5GVg&feature=related (includes BWV 532 and BWV 546)
    17. BWV 572 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AG0cTLyOsmU&feature=related
    18. BWV 575 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oDvUHr6WpFI&feature=related (includes BWV 549 and BWV 568 and BWV 589 and BWV 535 and BWV 550)
    19. BWV 577 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5M-RWJki3wY&feature=related (includes BWV 541 and BWV 539 and BWV 534 and BWV 537)
    20. BWV 582 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uIagXM16RkQ&feature=related
    21. BWV 582 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k1kX8T-CG7I (includes BWV 540 and BWV 565)
    22. Vierne Symphonie 3 Cantilene http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=907EiMOZnOI
    23. Durufle Toccata http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxEzz3MW6yo&NR=1
    24. Mulet Carillon Sortie http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gq8i69-L-Fs&feature=related
    25. Dubois Toccata http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKwQTvj1h8w&feature=related
    26. Boellmann Suite Gothique http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ueU4CDjn3v0&feature=related
    27. Gigout Grand Choeur Dialogue http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9suezChCKtk&feature=related
    28. Saint Saens Sympony 3 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pny-Ily4SbE&feature=related
    29. Vierne Symphony 1 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Y_AAX4ay9U&feature=related
    30. Vierne Symphony 6 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpzNdNbne-Y&feature=related
    31. Widor Symphony 2 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7DlJgdmcRG8
    32. Vierne Carillon de Wesminster http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MCsnSXRpXug&feature=related
    33. Widor Symphony 6 Allegro http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmjpkvXbyII&feature=related
    34. Guilmant Sonate 1 Introduction et Allegro http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZ8EoNyJvnU&feature=related
    35. Widor Symphony 6 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9BxHcPcTyTU&feature=related
    36. Guilmant Sonate 1 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdYtGTjo2cM&feature=related
    37. Widor Symphony 6 Intermezzo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ooOT_v2rLlI&feature=related
    38. Guilmant Sonate 4 Allegro Assai http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4BDiXqz9Grg&feature=related
    39. Widor Symphony 6 Cantabile http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7uNrMyOEfYw&feature=related
    40. Guilmant Sonate 2 Allegro Moderato http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqcfsIz9oXU&feature=related
    41. Widor Symphony 7 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWsDk77nBwg&feature=related
    42. Guilmant Sonate 2 Allegro Vivace http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cqT0ykAWbg&feature=related
    43. Widor Symphony 7 Chorale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2vfr9Uj4rlI&feature=related
    44. Guilmant Sonate 5 Allegro Appassionato http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKCoXZYi-dI&feature=related
    45. Widor Symphony 7 Lento http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5UzvstgxRI&feature=related
    46. Guilmant Sonate 5 Choral et Fugue http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Nb3eU141WI&feature=related
    47. Widor Symphony 7 Moderato http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-gyvljgrrU&feature=related
    48. Guilmant Sonate 7 Intermezzo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvYJjR1m7qI&feature=related
    49. Widor Symphony 7 Andante http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lpvmw9yQfW0&feature=related
    50. Guilmant Sonate 5 Scherzo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6dinKSLtrs&feature=related
    51. Widor Symphony 7 Allegro Non Troppo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LefzuHUCfto&feature=related
    52. Bach BWV 662 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8aW_nHk33wU
    53. Dupre Symphonie-Passion Nativie http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EyWH7jrgZk&feature=related
    54. Dupre Symphonie-Passion Crucifixion http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EyWH7jrgZk&feature=related
    55. Dupre Symphonie-Passion Resurrection http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dlMwN5MDQ0M&feature=related
    56. Widor Matthaeus Finale from Bach's Momento http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eq9fKPnYDHM&feature=related
    57. Chapuis Improvization on Bach's 'Vater unser im Himmelreich' http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YiMnLsJK-qk
    58. Widor Symphony 'Gothique' Moderato http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyvN5tC4IU0&feature=related
    59. Saint Saen Fantasie in E Flat http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3vYn1lKgv4c&feature=related
    60. Widor Symphony 'Gothique' Andante Sostenuto http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O79sLYjkefA&feature=related
    61. Vierne Symphonie 3 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mVSoikeA0o
    62. Widor Symphony 'Gothique' Allegro http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zswHI0BGaU&feature=related
    63. Lemmens Fanfare http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svtE5iJUrgg&feature=related
    64. Widor Symphony 'Gothique' Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rIO1sU-LHAU&feature=related
    65. Durufle Prelude-Suite Opus 5 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2Q3iAOeQ3M&playnext=1&list=PLD3D3D76A5CB51065
    66. Widor Symphony 'Ghotique' Moderato http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MGf17M51uys&feature=related
    67. Tournemire Victimae Paschali Laudes http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ilqw9D0YcA&feature=related
    68. Widor Symphony 10 'Romane' Moderato http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0RaATmFXXU&feature=related
    69. Tournemire Grave Fugue Postlude http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_sK5cJPczb0&feature=related
    70. Widor Symphony 10 'Romane' Chorale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpjYGAzEXjI&feature=related
    71. Vierne Toccata http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n59t1_2kflA&feature=related
    72. Widor Symphony 5 Toccata http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsyR40G2BeU&feature=related
    73. Liszt Funerailles http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ws9_F-FXqgI&feature=related
    74. Widor Symphony 8 Allegro http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1d0cXMdZ7_E&feature=related
    75. Kramer Evocation Improvization http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vgNOvYTY4Os&feature=related
    76. Widor Symphony 8 Adagio http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44jKBaazlTM&feature=related
    77. Vierne 'The Bells of Hinkley' http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5qhEgE7-K34&feature=related
    78. Widor Symphony 8 Finale http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6L1zaZ1q9I&feature=related
    79. Chapuis Improvization on Bach's "Valet will ich dir geben" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J70-Kbvf_9A&feature=related

    The Sermon on the Mount is Heaven's benediction to the world--a voice from the throne of God. It was given to mankind to be to them the law of duty and the light of heaven, their hope and consolation in despondency, their joy and comfort in all the vicissitudes and walks of life. Here the Prince of preachers, the Master Teacher, utters the words that the Father gave Him to speak. The Beatitudes are Christ's greeting, not only to those who believe, but to the whole human family. He seems to have forgotten for a moment that He is in the world, not in heaven; and He uses the familiar salutation of the world of light. Blessings flow from His lips as the gushing forth of a long-sealed current of rich life.

    Christ leaves us in no doubt as to the traits of character that He will always recognize and bless. From the ambitious favorites of the world, He turns to those whom they disown, pronouncing all blessed who receive His light and life. To the poor in spirit, the meek, the lowly, the sorrowful, the despised, the persecuted, He opens His arms of refuge, saying, "Come unto Me, . . . and I will give you rest." Christ can look upon the misery of the world without a shade of sorrow for having created man. In the human heart He sees more than sin, more than misery. In His infinite wisdom and love He sees man's possibilities, the height to which he may attain. He knows that, even though human beings have abused their mercies and destroyed their God-given dignity, yet the Creator is to be glorified in their redemption.

    Throughout all time the words that Christ spoke from the mount of Beatitudes will retain their power. Every sentence is a jewel from the treasure house of truth. The principles enunciated in this discourse are for all ages and for all classes of men. With divine energy, Christ expressed His faith and hope as He pointed out class after class as blessed because of having formed righteous characters. Living the life of the Life-giver, through faith in Him, everyone can reach the standard held up in His words.

    More than fourteen centuries before Jesus was born in Bethlehem, the children of Israel gathered in the fair vale of Shechem, and from the mountains on either side the voices of the priests were heard proclaiming the blessings and the curses--"a blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the Lord your God: . . . and a curse, if ye will not obey." Deuteronomy 11:27, 28. And thus the mountain from which the words of benediction were spoken came to be known as the mount of blessing. But it was not upon Gerizim that the words were spoken which have come as a benediction to a sinning and sorrowing world. Israel fell short of the high ideal which had been set before her. Another than Joshua must guide His people to the true rest of faith. No longer is Gerizim known as the mount of the Beatitudes, but that unnamed mountain beside the Lake of Gennesaret, where Jesus spoke the words of blessing to His disciples and the multitude.

    Let us in imagination go back to that scene, and, as we sit with the disciples on the mountainside, enter into the thoughts and feelings that filled their hearts. Understanding what the words of Jesus meant to those who heard them, we may discern in them a new vividness and beauty, and may also gather for ourselves their deeper lessons.

    When the Saviour began His ministry, the popular conception of the Messiah and His work was such as wholly unfitted the people to receive Him. The spirit of true devotion had been lost in tradition and ceremonialism, and the prophecies were interpreted at the dictate of proud, world-loving hearts. The Jews looked for the coming One, not as a Saviour from sin, but as a great prince who should bring all nations under the supremacy of the Lion of the tribe of Judah. In vain had John the Baptist, with the heart-searching power of the ancient prophets, called them to repentance. In vain had he, beside the Jordan, pointed to Jesus as the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world. God was seeking to direct their minds to Isaiah's prophecy of the suffering Saviour, but they would not hear.

    Had the teachers and leaders in Israel yielded to His transforming grace, Jesus would have made them His ambassadors among men. In Judea first the coming of the kingdom had been proclaimed, and the call to repentance had been given. In the act of driving out the desecrators from the temple at Jerusalem, Jesus had announced Himself as the Messiah--the One who should cleanse the soul from the defilement of sin and make His people a holy temple unto the Lord. But the Jewish leaders would not humble themselves to receive the lowly Teacher from Nazareth. At His second visit to Jerusalem He was arraigned before the Sanhedrin, and fear of the people alone prevented these dignitaries from trying to take His life. Then it was that, leaving Judea, He entered upon His ministry in Galilee. His work there had continued some months before the Sermon on the Mount was given. The message He had proclaimed throughout the land, "The kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matthew 4:17), had arrested the attention of all classes, and had still further fanned the flame of their ambitious hopes. The fame of the new Teacher had spread beyond the limits of Palestine, and, notwithstanding the attitude of the hierarchy, the feeling was widespread that this might be the hoped-for Deliverer. Great multitudes thronged the steps of Jesus, and the popular enthusiasm ran high.

    The time had come for the disciples who had been most closely associated with Christ to unite more directly in His work, that these vast throngs might not be left uncared for, as sheep without a shepherd. Some of these disciples had joined themselves to Him at the beginning of His ministry, and nearly all the twelve had been associated together as members of the family of Jesus. Yet they also, misled by the teaching of the rabbis, shared the popular expectation of an earthly kingdom. They could not comprehend the movements of Jesus. Already they had been perplexed and troubled that He made no effort to strengthen His cause by securing the support of the priests and rabbis, that He did nothing to establish His authority as an earthly king. A great work was yet to be accomplished for these disciples before they would be prepared for the sacred trust that would be theirs when Jesus should ascend to heaven. Yet they had responded to the love of Christ, and, though slow of heart to believe, Jesus saw in them those whom He could train and discipline for His great work. And now that they had been long enough with Him to establish, in a measure, their faith in the divine character of His mission, and the people also had received evidence of His power which they could not question, the way was prepared for an avowal of the principles of His kingdom that would help them to comprehend its true nature.

    Alone upon a mountain near the Sea of Galilee, Jesus had spent all night in prayer for these chosen ones. At the dawn He called them to Him, and, with words of prayer and instruction, laid His hands upon their heads in benediction, setting them apart to the gospel work. Then He repaired with them to the seaside, where in the early morning a great multitude had already begun to assemble. Besides the usual crowd from the Galilean towns, there were great numbers from Judea, and from Jerusalem itself; from Perea, and from the half-heathen population of Decapolis; from Idumea, away to the south of Judea, and from Tyre and Sidon, the Phoenician cities on the shore of the Mediterranean. "Hearing what great things He did," they "came to hear Him, and to be healed of their diseases; and . . . power came forth from Him, and healed them all." Mark 3:8, R.V.; Luke 6:17-19, R.V.

    Then, as the narrow beach did not afford even standing room within reach of His voice for all who desired to hear Him, Jesus led the way back to the mountainside. Reaching a level space that afforded a pleasant gathering place for the vast assembly, He seated Himself upon the grass, and His disciples and the multitude followed His example. With a feeling that something more than usual might be expected, the disciples had pressed about their Master. From the events of the morning they gathered assurance that some announcement was about to be made in regard to the kingdom which, as they fondly hoped, He was soon to establish. A feeling of expectancy pervaded the multitude also, and eager faces gave evidence of the deep interest.

    As they sat upon the green hillside, awaiting the words of the divine Teacher, their hearts were filled with thoughts of future glory. There were scribes and Pharisees who looked forward to the day when they should have dominion over the hated Romans and possess the riches and splendor of the world's great empire. The poor peasants and fishermen hoped to hear the assurance that their wretched hovels, the scanty food, the life of toil, and fear of want, were to be exchanged for mansions of plenty and days of ease. In place of the one coarse garment which was their covering by day and their blanket at night, they hoped that Christ would give them the rich and costly robes of their conquerors. All hearts thrilled with the proud hope that Israel was soon to be honored before the nations as the chosen of the Lord, and Jerusalem exalted as the head of a universal kingdom.

    The Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew.

    Matthew 5: 1 And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set , his disciples came unto him: 2 And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying , 3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are they that mourn : for they shall be comforted . 5 Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled . 7 Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy . 8 Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. 10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are ye , when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely , for my sake . 12 Rejoice , and be exceeding glad : for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. 13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour , wherewith shall it be salted ? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid . 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. 17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy , but to fulfil . 18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass , one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled . 19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 20 For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven. 21 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill ; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: 22 But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say , Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. 23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee; 24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way ; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

    25 Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison. 26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing. 27 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery : 28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. 29 And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out , and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish , and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. 30 And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off , and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish , and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. 31 It hath been said , Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement: 32 But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery : and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery . 33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thyself , but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths: 34 But I say unto you, Swear not at all; neither by heaven; for it is God's throne: 35 Nor by the earth; for it is his footstool : neither by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great King. 36 Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black. 37 But let your communication be , Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil. 38 Ye have heard that it hath been said , An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: 39 But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if any man will sue thee at the law , and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloke also. 41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. 42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away . 43 Ye have heard that it hath been said , Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye ? do not even the publicans the same? 47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so? 48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

    Matthew 6: 1 Take heed that ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven. 2 Therefore when thou doest thine alms, do not sound a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward. 3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth : 4 That thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father which seeth in secret himself shall reward thee openly . 5 And when thou prayest , thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you , They have their reward. 6 But thou, when thou prayest , enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly . 7 But when ye pray , use not vain repetitions , as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. 8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him. 9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come . Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread. 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. 14 For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: 15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. 16 Moreover when ye fast , be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast . Verily I say unto you , They have their reward. 17 But thou, when thou fastest , anoint thine head, and wash thy face; 18 That thou appear not unto men to fast , but unto thy Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly . 19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt , and where thieves break through and steal : 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt , and where thieves do not break through nor steal : 21 For where your treasure is , there will your heart be also. 22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. 23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. 25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat , or what ye shall drink ; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on . Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? 26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap , nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? 27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? 28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow ; they toil not, neither do they spin : 29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is , and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? 31 Therefore take no thought , saying , What shall we eat ? or, What shall we drink ? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed ? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek :) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

    Matthew 7: 1 Judge not, that ye be not judged . 2 For with what judgment ye judge , ye shall be judged : and with what measure ye mete , it shall be measured to you again . 3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? 4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold , a beam is in thine own eye? 5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. 6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you. 7 Ask , and it shall be given you; seek , and ye shall find ; knock , and it shall be opened unto you: 8 For every one that asketh receiveth ; and he that seeketh findeth ; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened . 9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? 10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? 11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? 12 Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets. 13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat : 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. 15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. 16 Ye shall know them by their fruits . Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. 19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down , and cast into the fire. 20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. 21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them , I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 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.
    28 And it came to pass , when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: 29 For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes.

    The Gospel of the Lord.

    Christ disappointed the hope of worldly greatness. In the Sermon on the Mount He sought to undo the work that had been wrought by false education, and to give His hearers a right conception of His kingdom and of His own character. Yet He did not make a direct attack on the errors of the people. He saw the misery of the world on account of sin, yet He did not present before them a vivid delineation of their wretchedness. He taught them of something infinitely better than they had known. Without combating their ideas of the kingdom of God, He told them the conditions of entrance therein, leaving them to draw their own conclusions as to its nature. The truths He taught are no less important to us than to the multitude that followed Him. We no less than they need to learn the foundation principles of the kingdom of God.

    Christ's first words to the people on the mount were words of blessing. Happy are they, He said, who recognize their spiritual poverty, and feel their need of redemption. The gospel is to be preached to the poor. Not to the spiritually proud, those who claim to be rich and in need of nothing, is it revealed, but to those who are humble and contrite. One fountain only has been opened for sin, a fountain for the poor in spirit. The proud heart strives to earn salvation; but both our title to heaven and our fitness for it are found in the righteousness of Christ. The Lord can do nothing toward the recovery of man until, convinced of his own weakness, and stripped of all self-sufficiency, he yields himself to the control of God. Then he can receive the gift that God is waiting to bestow. From the soul that feels his need, nothing is withheld. He has unrestricted access to Him in whom all fullness dwells. "For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones." Isa. 57:15.

    "Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted." By these words Christ does not teach that mourning in itself has power to remove the guilt of sin. He gives no sanction to pretense or to voluntary humility. The mourning of which He speaks does not consist in melancholy and lamentation. While we sorrow on account of sin, we are to rejoice in the precious privilege of being children of God. We often sorrow because our evil deeds bring unpleasant consequences to ourselves; but this is not repentance. Real sorrow for sin is the result of the working of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit reveals the ingratitude of the heart that has slighted and grieved the Saviour, and brings us in contrition to the foot of the cross. By every sin Jesus is wounded afresh; and as we look upon Him whom we have pierced, we mourn for the sins that have brought anguish upon Him. Such mourning will lead to the renunciation of sin.

    The worldling may pronounce this sorrow a weakness; but it is the strength which binds the penitent to the Infinite One with links that cannot be broken. It shows that the angels of God are bringing back to the soul the graces that were lost through hardness of heart and transgression. The tears of the penitent are only the raindrops that precede the sunshine of holiness. This sorrow heralds a joy which will be a living fountain in the soul. "Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God;" "and I will not cause Mine anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the Lord." Jer. 3:13, 12. "Unto them that mourn in Zion," He has appointed to give "beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness." Isa. 61:3. And for those also who mourn in trial and sorrow there is comfort. The bitterness of grief and humiliation is better than the indulgences of sin. Through affliction God reveals to us the plague spots in our characters, that by His grace we may overcome our faults. Unknown chapters in regard to ourselves are opened to us, and the test comes, whether we will accept the reproof and the counsel of God. When brought into trial, we are not to fret and complain. We should not rebel, or worry ourselves out of the hand of Christ.

    We are to humble the soul before God. The ways of the Lord are obscure to him who desires to see things in a light pleasing to himself. They appear dark and joyless to our human nature. But God's ways are ways of mercy and the end is salvation. Elijah knew not what he was doing when in the desert he said that he had had enough of life, and prayed that he might die. The Lord in His mercy did not take him at his word. There was yet a great work for Elijah to do; and when his work was done, he was not to perish in discouragement and solitude in the wilderness. Not for him the descent into the dust of death, but the ascent in glory, with the convoy of celestial chariots, to the throne on high. God's word for the sorrowing is, "I have seen his ways, and will heal him: I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners." "I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow." Isa. 57:18; Jer. 31:13.

    "Blessed are the meek." The difficulties we have to encounter may be very much lessened by that meekness which hides itself in Christ. If we possess the humility of our Master, we shall rise above the slights, the rebuffs, the annoyances, to which we are daily exposed, and they will cease to cast a gloom over the spirit. The highest evidence of nobility in a Christian is self-control. He who under abuse or cruelty fails to maintain a calm and trustful spirit robs God of His right to reveal in him His own perfection of character. Lowliness of heart is the strength that gives victory to the followers of Christ; it is the token of their connection with the courts above.

    "Though the Lord be high, yet hath He respect unto the lowly." Ps. 138:6. Those who reveal the meek and lowly spirit of Christ are tenderly regarded by God. They may be looked upon with scorn by the world, but they are of great value in His sight. Not only the wise, the great, the beneficent, will gain a passport to the heavenly courts; not only the busy worker, full of zeal and restless activity. No; the poor in spirit, who crave the presence of an abiding Christ, the humble in heart, whose highest ambition is to do God's will,--these will gain an abundant entrance. They will be among that number who have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. "Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple: and He that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them." Rev. 7:15.

    "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness." The sense of unworthiness will lead the heart to hunger and thirst for righteousness, and this desire will not be disappointed. Those who make room in their hearts for Jesus will realize His love. All who long to bear the likeness of the character of God shall be satisfied. The Holy Spirit never leaves unassisted the soul who is looking unto Jesus. He takes of the things of Christ and shows them unto him. If the eye is kept fixed on Christ, the work of the Spirit ceases not until the soul is conformed to His image. The pure element of love will expand the soul, giving it a capacity for higher attainments, for increased knowledge of heavenly things, so that it will not rest short of the fullness. "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness; for they shall be filled."

    The merciful shall find mercy, and the pure in heart shall see God. Every impure thought defiles the soul, impairs the moral sense, and tends to obliterate the impressions of the Holy Spirit. It dims the spiritual vision, so that men cannot behold God. The Lord may and does forgive the repenting sinner; but though forgiven, the soul is marred. All impurity of speech or of thought must be shunned by him who would have clear discernment of spiritual truth. But the words of Christ cover more than freedom from sensual impurity, more than freedom from that ceremonial defilement which the Jews so rigorously shunned. Selfishness prevents us from beholding God. The self-seeking spirit judges of God as altogether such a one as itself. Until we have renounced this, we cannot understand Him who is love. Only the unselfish heart, the humble and trustful spirit, shall see God as "merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth." Ex. 34:6.

    "Blessed are the peacemakers." The peace of Christ is born of truth. It is harmony with God. The world is at enmity with the law of God; sinners are at enmity with their Maker; and as a result they are at enmity with one another. But the psalmist declares, "Great peace have they which love Thy law: and nothing shall offend them." Ps. 119:165. Men cannot manufacture peace. Human plans for the purification and uplifting of individuals or of society will fail of producing peace, because they do not reach the heart. The only power that can create or perpetuate true peace is the grace of Christ. When this is implanted in the heart, it will cast out the evil passions that cause strife and dissension. "Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree;" and life's desert "shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose." Isa. 55:13; 35:1.

    The multitudes were amazed at this teaching, which was so at variance with the precepts and example of the Pharisees. The people had come to think that happiness consisted in the possession of the things of this world, and that fame and the honor of men were much to be coveted. It was very pleasing to be called "Rabbi," and to be extolled as wise and religious, having their virtues paraded before the public. This was regarded as the crown of happiness. But in the presence of that vast throng, Jesus declared that earthly gain and honor were all the reward such persons would ever receive. He spoke with certainty, and a convincing power attended His words. The people were silenced, and a feeling of fear crept over them. They looked at one another doubtfully. Who of them would be saved if this Man's teachings were true? Many were convicted that this remarkable Teacher was actuated by the Spirit of God, and that the sentiments He uttered were divine.

    After explaining what constitutes true happiness, and how it may be obtained, Jesus more definitely pointed out the duty of His disciples, as teachers chosen of God to lead others into the path of righteousness and eternal life. He knew that they would often suffer from disappointment and discouragement, that they would meet with decided opposition, that they would be insulted, and their testimony rejected. Well He knew that in the fulfillment of their mission, the humble men who listened so attentively to His words were to bear calumny, torture, imprisonment, and death, and He continued: "Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you." The world loves sin, and hates righteousness, and this was the cause of its hostility to Jesus. All who refuse His infinite love will find Christianity a disturbing element. The light of Christ sweeps away the darkness that covers their sins, and the need of reform is made manifest. While those who yield to the influence of the Holy Spirit begin war with themselves, those who cling to sin war against the truth and its representatives.

    Thus strife is created, and Christ's followers are accused as troublers of the people. But it is fellowship with God that brings them the world's enmity. They are bearing the reproach of Christ. They are treading the path that has been trodden by the noblest of the earth. Not with sorrow, but with rejoicing, should they meet persecution. Each fiery trial is God's agent for their refining. Each is fitting them for their work as colaborers with Him. Each conflict has its place in the great battle for righteousness, and each will add to the joy of their final triumph. Having this in view, the test of their faith and patience will be cheerfully accepted rather than dreaded and avoided. Anxious to fulfill their obligation to the world, fixing their desire upon the approval of God, His servants are to fulfill every duty, irrespective of the fear or the favor of men.

    "Ye are the salt of the earth," Jesus said. Do not withdraw yourselves from the world in order to escape persecution. You are to abide among men, that the savor of the divine love may be as salt to preserve the world from corruption. Hearts that respond to the influence of the Holy Spirit are the channels through which God's blessing flows. Were those who serve God removed from the earth, and His Spirit withdrawn from among men, this world would be left to desolation and destruction, the fruit of Satan's dominion. Though the wicked know it not, they owe even the blessings of this life to the presence, in the world, of God's people whom they despise and oppress. But if Christians are such in name only, they are like the salt that has lost its savor. They have no influence for good in the world. Through their misrepresentation of God they are worse than unbelievers.

    "Ye are the light of the world." The Jews thought to confine the benefits of salvation to their own nation; but Christ showed them that salvation is like the sunshine. It belongs to the whole world. The religion of the Bible is not to be confined between the covers of a book, nor within the walls of a church. It is not to be brought out occasionally for our own benefit, and then to be carefully laid aside again. It is to sanctify the daily life, to manifest itself in every business transaction and in all our social relations. True character is not shaped from without, and put on; it radiates from within. If we wish to direct others in the path of righteousness, the principles of righteousness must be enshrined in our own hearts. Our profession of faith may proclaim the theory of religion, but it is our practical piety that holds forth the word of truth. The consistent life, the holy conversation, the unswerving integrity, the active, benevolent spirit, the godly example,--these are the mediums through which light is conveyed to the world.

    Jesus had not dwelt on the specifications of the law, but He did not leave His hearers to conclude that He had come to set aside its requirements. He knew that spies stood ready to seize upon every word that might be wrested to serve their purpose. He knew the prejudice that existed in the minds of many of His hearers, and He said nothing to unsettle their faith in the religion and institutions that had been committed to them through Moses. Christ Himself had given both the moral and the ceremonial law. He did not come to destroy confidence in His own instruction. It was because of His great reverence for the law and the prophets that He sought to break through the wall of traditional requirements which hemmed in the Jews. While He set aside their false interpretations of the law, He carefully guarded His disciples against yielding up the vital truths committed to the Hebrews.

    The Pharisees prided themselves on their obedience to the law; yet they knew so little of its principles through everyday practice that to them the Saviour's words sounded like heresy. As He swept away the rubbish under which the truth had been buried, they thought He was sweeping away the truth itself. They whispered to one another that He was making light of the law. He read their thoughts, and answered them, saying, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill." Here Jesus refutes the charge of the Pharisees. His mission to the world is to vindicate the sacred claims of that law which they charge Him with breaking. If the law of God could have been changed or abrogated, then Christ need not have suffered the consequences of our transgression. He came to explain the relation of the law to man, and to illustrate its precepts by His own life of obedience.

    God has given us His holy precepts, because He loves mankind. To shield us from the results of transgression, He reveals the principles of righteousness. The law is an expression of the thought of God; when received in Christ, it becomes our thought. It lifts us above the power of natural desires and tendencies, above temptations that lead to sin. God desires us to be happy, and He gave us the precepts of the law that in obeying them we might have joy. When at Jesus' birth the angels sang, "Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, good will toward men" (Luke 2:14), they were declaring the principles of the law which He had come to magnify and make honorable.

    When the law was proclaimed from Sinai, God made known to men the holiness of His character, that by contrast they might see the sinfulness of their own. The law was given to convict them of sin, and reveal their need of a Saviour. It would do this as its principles were applied to the heart by the Holy Spirit. This work it is still to do. In the life of Christ the principles of the law are made plain; and as the Holy Spirit of God touches the heart, as the light of Christ reveals to men their need of His cleansing blood and His justifying righteousness, the law is still an agent in bringing us to Christ, that we may be justified by faith. "The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul." Ps. 19:7.

    "Till heaven and earth pass," said Jesus, "one jot or one tittle shall in nowise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." The sun shining in the heavens, the solid earth upon which you dwell, are God's witnesses that His law is changeless and eternal. Though they may pass away, the divine precepts shall endure. "It is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail." Luke 16:17. The system of types that pointed to Jesus as the Lamb of God was to be abolished at His death; but the precepts of the Decalogue are as immutable as the throne of God.

    Since "the law of the Lord is perfect," every variation from it must be evil. Those who disobey the commandments of God, and teach others to do so, are condemned by Christ. The Saviour's life of obedience maintained the claims of the law; it proved that the law could be kept in humanity, and showed the excellence of character that obedience would develop. All who obey as He did are likewise declaring that the law is "holy, and just, and good." Rom. 7:12. On the other hand, all who break God's commandments are sustaining Satan's claim that the law is unjust, and cannot be obeyed. Thus they second the deceptions of the great adversary, and cast dishonor upon God. They are the children of the wicked one, who was the first rebel against God's law. To admit them into heaven would again bring in the elements of discord and rebellion, and imperil the well-being of the universe. No man who willfully disregards one principle of the law shall enter the kingdom of heaven. The rabbis counted their righteousness a passport to heaven; but Jesus declared it to be insufficient and unworthy. External ceremonies and a theoretical knowledge of truth constituted Pharisaical righteousness. The rabbis claimed to be holy through their own efforts in keeping the law; but their works had divorced righteousness from religion. While they were punctilious in ritual observances, their lives were immoral and debased. Their so-called righteousness could never enter the kingdom of heaven.

    The greatest deception of the human mind in Christ's day was that a mere assent to the truth constitutes righteousness. In all human experience a theoretical knowledge of the truth has been proved to be insufficient for the saving of the soul. It does not bring forth the fruits of righteousness. A jealous regard for what is termed theological truth often accompanies a hatred of genuine truth as made manifest in life. The darkest chapters of history are burdened with the record of crimes committed by bigoted religionists. The Pharisees claimed to be children of Abraham, and boasted of their possession of the oracles of God; yet these advantages did not preserve them from selfishness, malignity, greed for gain, and the basest hypocrisy. They thought themselves the greatest religionists of the world, but their so-called orthodoxy led them to crucify the Lord of glory. The same danger still exists. Many take it for granted that they are Christians, simply because they subscribe to certain theological tenets. But they have not brought the truth into practical life. They have not believed and loved it, therefore they have not received the power and grace that come through sanctification of the truth. Men may profess faith in the truth; but if it does not make them sincere, kind, patient, forbearing, heavenly-minded, it is a curse to its possessors, and through their influence it is a curse to the world.

    The righteousness which Christ taught is conformity of heart and life to the revealed will of God. Sinful men can become righteous only as they have faith in God and maintain a vital connection with Him. Then true godliness will elevate the thoughts and ennoble the life. Then the external forms of religion accord with the Christian's internal purity. Then the ceremonies required in the service of God are not meaningless rites, like those of the hypocritical Pharisees. Jesus takes up the commandments separately, and explains the depth and breadth of their requirement. Instead of removing one jot of their force, He shows how far-reaching their principles are, and exposes the fatal mistake of the Jews in their outward show of obedience. He declares that by the evil thought or the lustful look the law of God is transgressed. One who becomes a party to the least injustice is breaking the law and degrading his own moral nature. Murder first exists in the mind. He who gives hatred a place in his heart is setting his feet in the path of the murderer, and his offerings are abhorrent to God.

    The Jews cultivated a spirit of retaliation. In their hatred of the Romans they gave utterance to hard denunciations, and pleased the wicked one by manifesting his attributes. Thus they were training themselves to do the terrible deeds to which he led them on. In the religious life of the Pharisees there was nothing to recommend piety to the Gentiles. Jesus bade them not to deceive themselves with the thought that they could in heart rise up against their oppressors, and cherish the longing to avenge their wrongs. It is true there is an indignation that is justifiable, even in the followers of Christ. When they see that God is dishonored, and His service brought into disrepute, when they see the innocent oppressed, a righteous indignation stirs the soul. Such anger, born of sensitive morals, is not a sin. But those who at any supposed provocation feel at liberty to indulge anger or resentment are opening the heart to Satan. Bitterness and animosity must be banished from the soul if we would be in harmony with heaven.

    The Saviour goes farther than this. He says, "If thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath aught against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift." Many are zealous in religious services, while between them and their brethren are unhappy differences which they might reconcile. God requires them to do all in their power to restore harmony. Until they do this, He cannot accept their services. The Christian's duty in this matter is clearly pointed out. God pours His blessings upon all. "He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust." He is "kind unto the unthankful and to the evil." Luke 6:35. He bids us to be like Him. "Bless them that curse you," said Jesus; "do good to them that hate you, . . . that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven." These are the principles of the law, and they are the wellsprings of life.

    God's ideal for His children is higher than the highest human thought can reach. "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." This command is a promise. The plan of redemption contemplates our complete recovery from the power of Satan. Christ always separates the contrite soul from sin. He came to destroy the works of the devil, and He has made provision that the Holy Spirit shall be imparted to every repentant soul, to keep him from sinning. The tempter's agency is not to be accounted an excuse for one wrong act. Satan is jubilant when he hears the professed followers of Christ making excuses for their deformity of character. It is these excuses that lead to sin. There is no excuse for sinning. A holy temper, a Christlike life, is accessible to every repenting, believing child of God.

    The ideal of Christian character is Christlikeness. As the Son of man was perfect in His life, so His followers are to be perfect in their life. Jesus was in all things made like unto His brethren. He became flesh, even as we are. He was hungry and thirsty and weary. He was sustained by food and refreshed by sleep. He shared the lot of man; yet He was the blameless Son of God. He was God in the flesh. His character is to be ours. The Lord says of those who believe in Him, "I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." 2 Cor. 6:16.

    Christ is the ladder that Jacob saw, the base resting on the earth, and the topmost round reaching to the gate of heaven, to the very threshold of glory. If that ladder had failed by a single step of reaching the earth, we should have been lost. But Christ reaches us where we are. He took our nature and overcame, that we through taking His nature might overcome. Made "in the likeness of sinful flesh" (Rom. 8:3), He lived a sinless life. Now by His divinity He lays hold upon the throne of heaven, while by His humanity He reaches us. He bids us by faith in Him attain to the glory of the character of God. Therefore are we to be perfect, even as our "Father which is in heaven is perfect." Jesus had shown in what righteousness consists, and had pointed to God as its source. Now He turned to practical duties. In almsgiving, in prayer, in fasting, He said, let nothing be done to attract attention or win praise to self. Give in sincerity, for the benefit of the suffering poor. In prayer, let the soul commune with God. In fasting, go not with the head bowed down, and heart filled with thoughts of self. The heart of the Pharisee is a barren and profitless soil, in which no seeds of divine life can flourish. It is he who yields himself most unreservedly to God that will render Him the most acceptable service. For through fellowship with God men become workers together with Him in presenting His character in humanity.

    The service rendered in sincerity of heart has great recompense. "Thy Father which seeth in secret Himself shall reward thee openly." By the life we live through the grace of Christ the character is formed. The original loveliness begins to be restored to the soul. The attributes of the character of Christ are imparted, and the image of the Divine begins to shine forth. The faces of men and women who walk and work with God express the peace of heaven. They are surrounded with the atmosphere of heaven. For these souls the kingdom of God has begun. They have Christ's joy, the joy of being a blessing to humanity. They have the honor of being accepted for the Master's use; they are trusted to do His work in His name. "No man can serve two masters." We cannot serve God with a divided heart. Bible religion is not one influence among many others; its influence is to be supreme, pervading and controlling every other. It is not to be like a dash of color brushed here and there upon the canvas, but it is to pervade the whole life, as if the canvas were dipped into the color, until every thread of the fabric were dyed a deep, unfading hue.

    "If therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness." Purity and steadfastness of purpose are the conditions of receiving light from God. He who desires to know the truth must be willing to accept all that it reveals. He can make no compromise with error. To be wavering and halfhearted in allegiance to truth is to choose the darkness of error and satanic delusion. Worldly policy and the undeviating principles of righteousness do not blend into each other imperceptibly, like the colors of the rainbow. Between the two a broad, clear line is drawn by the eternal God. The likeness of Christ stands out as distinct from that of Satan as midday in contrast with midnight. And only those who live the life of Christ are His co-workers. If one sin is cherished in the soul, or one wrong practice retained in the life, the whole being is contaminated. The man becomes an instrument of unrighteousness.

    All who have chosen God's service are to rest in His care. Christ pointed to the birds flying in the heavens, to the flowers of the field, and bade His hearers consider these objects of God's creation. "Are not ye of much more value than they?" He said. Matt. 6:26, R. V. The measure of divine attention bestowed on any object is proportionate to its rank in the scale of being. The little brown sparrow is watched over by Providence. The flowers of the field, the grass that carpets the earth, share the notice and care of our heavenly Father. The great Master Artist has taken thought for the lilies, making them so beautiful that they outshine the glory of Solomon. How much more does He care for man, who is the image and glory of God. He longs to see His children reveal a character after His similitude. As the sunbeam imparts to the flowers their varied and delicate tints, so does God impart to the soul the beauty of His own character. All who choose Christ's kingdom of love and righteousness and peace, making its interest paramount to all other, are linked to the world above, and every blessing needed for this life is theirs. In the book of God's providence, the volume of life, we are each given a page. That page contains every particular of our history; even the hairs of the head are numbered. God's children are never absent from His mind.

    "Be not therefore anxious for the morrow." Matt. 6:34, R. V. We are to follow Christ day by day. God does not bestow help for tomorrow. He does not give His children all the directions for their life journey at once, lest they should become confused. He tells them just as much as they can remember and perform. The strength and wisdom imparted are for the present emergency. "If any of you lack wisdom,"--for today,--"let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him." James 1:5.

    "Judge not, that ye be not judged." Do not think yourself better than other men, and set yourself up as their judge. Since you cannot discern motive, you are incapable of judging another. In criticizing him, you are passing sentence upon yourself; for you show that you are a participant with Satan, the accuser of the brethren. The Lord says, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves." This is our work. "If we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged." 2 Cor. 13:5; 1 Cor. 11:31.

    The good tree will produce good fruit. If the fruit is unpalatable and worthless, the tree is evil. So the fruit borne in the life testifies as to the condition of the heart and the excellence of the character. Good works can never purchase salvation, but they are an evidence of the faith that acts by love and purifies the soul. And though the eternal reward is not bestowed because of our merit, yet it will be in proportion to the work that has been done through the grace of Christ. Thus Christ set forth the principles of His kingdom, and showed them to be the great rule of life. To impress the lesson He adds an illustration. It is not enough, He says, for you to hear My words. By obedience you must make them the foundation of your character. Self is but shifting sand. If you build upon human theories and inventions, your house will fall. By the winds of temptation, the tempests of trial, it will be swept away. But these principles that I have given will endure. Receive Me; build on My words.

    "Everyone therefore which heareth these words of Mine, and doeth them, shall be likened unto a wise man, which built his house upon the rock: 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 the rock." Matt. 7:24, 25, R.V.


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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:09 pm

    What if Martin Luther had based the Protestant Reformation upon the Mass, the Teachings of Jesus, and Gregorian Chant? What if a significant number of Protestant and Catholic churches were based upon a prayer book or missal which integrated the Latin Mass, the Teachings of Jesus, and Gregorian Chant? Who might protest such a development? How about replacing the Ninety-Five Theses with the Three Theses? How about calling it 'Minimalist Traditionalist'?
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:32 pm

    orthodoxymoron wrote:What if Martin Luther had based the Protestant Reformation upon the Mass, the Teachings of Jesus, and Gregorian Chant? What if a significant number of Protestant and Catholic churches were based upon a prayer book or missal which integrated the Latin Mass, the Teachings of Jesus, and Gregorian Chant? Who might protest such a development? How about replacing the Ninety-Five Theses with the Three Theses? How about calling it 'Minimalist Traditionalist'?
    ]

    I dont have much time to address this as I must prepare for a 4 day road trip but a few thoughts here... Luther did base his rebellion on the mass... he wanted Latin out... he wanted people to understand that the bread and wine was not the actual body of Christ, but symbolic, and that all the images of god, christ and the saints had no power... hence came the destruction of the Abbys and churchs of England and other parts of Europe in the 15 hundreds... Luther wanted freedom from dogama, but alas, those who promoted it were as willing to slay as the Holdy father in Rome to get their way, so the Love teachings of Jesus were not abided by.

    All that stuff that Mathew recorded, I take with a huge huge grain of salt, like a boulder, for in fact they are not his words but the agreed upon manipulated doctrine of Cahtolic assembiies... so they hold absolutely no merit to me. The twist of one word alters a whole intention. And aside from what they did to it, you have all the changes that took place from translations of the origianl Aramayic (sp?) to Greek, to Latin, to English... and the current English translations are an abomination, if nothing else is... watered down for a 3rd grade intelligence.

    As always things are construded to control the masses, milk their money and personal power... and above and beyond all else to respress sexual Kundalini power... hence Mary is a virgin, Christ a celebate and the apsotiles unmarried... never to know what living force flows though their bodies... and in not knowing it cannot teach it
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:08 am

    You make some good points Arrowwind. I like listening to Gregorian Chant, Sacred Classical Music, and Latin Masses, even though I have HUGE theological problems with Roman Catholicism and the Mass (Latin or otherwise). However, if the Mass were interpreted solely by the words attributed to Christ, this would be a HUGE improvement. I don't know why I even bother with any of this. NOBODY will go for what I'm proposing. The Catholic-Haters aren't going to change their minds. The Roman Catholic Faithful are not going to change their minds. And God knows, the Curia and the Pope aren't going to do an about-face! This is a monumental waste of time. But really, I do like the formal mysticism and solemn grandeur of the Latin Mass, especially when properly accompanied by Gregorian Chant and French Romantic choral and organ music. I try to base my theology upon the words attributed to Jesus, rather than upon this or that council or pope. I'm leaning heavily toward nearly 2,000 years of Sedevacante. Has there been even one pope in 2,000 years who strictly followed the Red-Letter Teachings of Jesus? Were they rightly representing the absent Christ, and faithfully carrying out the Great Commission? Were they rather following someone other than Jesus?
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:03 am

    I know of no pope who followed the red letter edition... it being a fairly recent edition of the bible.

    I might suggest that you look at the possibility that you were a priest or monk in a past life or some other type of Christian devotee... where for the mystery of the ceremony seems like it is almost encode in your DNA. If it moves you to sprirtual sensitivities and awakening then it is a good path for you. Perhaps it is your challenge to sift though the real shamanic possibilities of awakening though the ceremonies and rituals and the inactements of repression the institutions have brought to the people. It is my opinion that all humans hold the potential of priesthood, to reach up and contact the holy trinity and that is actually our vehicle of connection with the godhead, even if you call it by another name.
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:00 pm

    Thank-you Arrowwind. A unifying ritual could consist of nothing more than chanting "2+2=4" over and over again, week after week, complete with robes and incense. Most of us might have reincarnational and genetic memories of mass-type rituals, going back thousands of years, such as in the ancient Hebrew Sanctuary Service. I don't participate in any religious services, and I am opposed to worship and ritual human-sacrifice (bloody or unbloody), but I continue to like the idea of group ceremonial activities which make people face themselves and think about the important things in life, including dealing with sin and mistakes. I'm really not partial to any particular race or religion. I just think we all need to evolve just a little bit more, and a little bit faster...
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Tue Jun 28, 2011 5:56 pm

    orthodoxymoron wrote:. I don't participate in any religious services, and I am opposed to worship and ritual human-sacrifice (bloody or unbloody)

    Phew. Glad for that.
    orthodoxymoron wrote:. but I continue to like the idea of group ceremonial activities which make people face themselves and think about the important things in life, including dealing with sin and mistakes. I'm really not partial to any particular race or religion. I just think we all need to evolve just a little bit more, and a little bit faster...

    I myself find ceremony highly rewarding and I routinely particpate in 3 different ones... (no human sacrifice Razz )

    The defination of sin I have a hard time with... I prefer viewing it as an acroynm... S = self, I = imposted, N = negativity
    Self Imposed Negativity. and if I ever refer to sin, this is what I mean.
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:34 pm

    Arrowwind wrote:
    orthodoxymoron wrote:. I don't participate in any religious services, and I am opposed to worship and ritual human-sacrifice (bloody or unbloody)

    Phew. Glad for that.
    orthodoxymoron wrote:. but I continue to like the idea of group ceremonial activities which make people face themselves and think about the important things in life, including dealing with sin and mistakes. I'm really not partial to any particular race or religion. I just think we all need to evolve just a little bit more, and a little bit faster...

    I myself find ceremony highly rewarding and I routinely particpate in 3 different ones... (no human sacrifice Razz )

    The definition of sin I have a hard time with... I prefer viewing it as an acroynm... S = self, I = imposted, N = negativity
    Self Imposed Negativity. and if I ever refer to sin, this is what I mean.
    Thank-you Arrowwind. Would torturing children qualify as SIN? Sin is irresponsibility in its root and fruit. There are many definitions and manifestations, but sin is real and hideous, disguise it as one might try. What is the absolute standard of morality? What are the consequences of not knowing what the absolute standard of morality is? What are the implications and ramifications of rebelling against the absolute standard of morality? These are serious questions which demand definitive answers. There's a difference between an answer, and a convincing answer. Just because most clergy don't know the difference between a bottomless-pit and an anatomical black-hole doesn't mean that there isn't a pure and refined form of religion and politics. I consider religious-ritual to be a liturgical-discipline, rather than being redemptive in any way, shape, or form.
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:06 am

    orthodoxymoron wrote: Would torturing children qualify as SIN? Sin is irresponsibility in its root and fruit. There are many definitions and manifestations, but sin is real and hideous, disguise it as one might try.

    Yes, absolutley, torturing children would qualify as Self Imposed Negativity. Such acts separate oneself from ones most high potential and god realization and encode that separation even further with every act. They keep one from experiencing the purity of life and love. They cast the soul into endless karma of which many lifetimes are required to learn ones way out of it.

    In regard to the child - every child is a mirror of ones self. We are all united in our DNA, our group soul and our path, no matter what cloak of religon may color it. Damage to a child is damage to the whole of humanity, hence to ones self. There is no separation between self and another. Damage to a child procures severe damage to society and creates karma that all must work though. Native Americans say that for at least 7 generations a damage is done... If you can see that we are all one in soul matter, in puropose, in destination towards the godshead, any infraction towards another creates deep deep karma for yourself... So yes, it is self imposed negativity... self imposed because one choses to create it, and this creation is done fully out of ignorance, regardless of what one thinks they know...

    One may know that they are breaking the rule, that it is "bad", but they know not how breaking the rule casts them out of the Love and Light of god...they have no comprehension. They have no soul awareness. Where darkness dwells there is no light but only separation from god... and if one had an inkling of the spendor of the godhead... one would not damage others... but would work daily to promote god awareness in self and others.


    orthodoxymoron wrote: What is the absolute standard of morality? What are the consequences of not knowing what the absolute standard of morality is? What are the implications and ramifications of rebelling against the absolute standard of morality?

    I do not think that there are any absolute standards of morality. Moraltiy if a nebulous construt created by society to perserve the status quo and to control the people. For example, in the day of King Henry the 8ths, torture and beheading were considered moral applications of law. They believed it and hence enacted it with condonation by the church. By todays standards this is not acceptable and is considered immoral.

    If there were any absolute stantard of morality it would be in teaching and expressing Love, in my opinion which would include compassion and forgiveness and the art of redirection though these qualties for those who are astray.


    orthodoxymoron wrote: These are serious questions which demand definitive answers. There's a difference between an answer, and a convincing answer. Just because most clergy don't know the difference between a bottomless-pit and an anatomical black-hole doesn't mean that there isn't a pure and refined form of religion and politics. I consider religious-ritual to be a liturgical-discipline, rather than being redemptive in any way, shape, or form.

    Yes, serious questions. There is only one difinative answer that I have found and that is in the creation and emmination of Love...and developing compassion is the path to it... and out of love and compassion forms the answers to complex questions of justice and rehabilitation. Much of our law system is still based on revenge... which in my mind is still more SIN.

    Ritual is a liturgical-dicipline, a rote routine... enacting symbols.

    But ceremony is something quite different. Ceremony is rebirth and is redemptive. A Ritual can be transformed into a ceremony at times, but a ceremony is never just a ritual. In a ritual symbols are recalled, in a ceremony symbols are lived and breathed and are agents for change taken on by the mind/heart/soul complex to encode a new way of being...


    " Whatever you do unto others,( the least of these) you do unto me."
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:41 pm

    If there is no absolute standard, how can we judge anything? The whole moral and legal framework is henceforth built upon shifting-sand, instead of a rock. This is what happened when the popes built their church upon Peter instead of Jesus. Look at the tragic history. Look at the tragic state of affairs today. I'm not sensing a lot of compassion toward victims here. The whole karmic-debt issue seems to be somewhat self-centered. I once spoke with someone who thought that women and children deserved to be eaten by lions in the Colosseum, because of soul/karmic reasons. At least that was my understanding. I had tried to give them an 'out' regarding how I presented the subject to them, but there seemed to be absolutely no sorrow for this 'sin'.
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:06 pm

    orthodoxymoron wrote:If there is no absolute standard, how can we judge anything? The whole moral and legal framework is henceforth built upon shifting-sand, instead of a rock. This is what happened when the popes built their church upon Peter instead of Jesus. Look at the tragic history. Look at the tragic state of affairs today. I'm not sensing a lot of compassion toward victims here. The whole karmic-debt issue seems to be somewhat self-centered. I once spoke with someone who thought that women and children deserved to be eaten by lions in the Colosseum, because of soul/karmic reasons. At least that was my understanding. I had tried to give them an 'out' regarding how I presented the subject to them, but there seemed to be absolutely no sorrow for this 'sin'.

    The answer is in the bible ... it says you will know a tree by its fruits.. a tree is good by the sweetness of its fruits. The absolute standard is in love and compassion. Was love given and recieved? was compassion enacted?

    the tragic state of affairs today will change as soon as people act with love and compassion instead of rules and laws made by man. Its as simple as that.

    Karma is not self centered... it is the normal energetic response to events. What you do is what you get.. its very simple.. but karma extends over lifetimes so if you are not seeing the whole picture it can be difficult to understand. If negativity and hate is spilled out you will only attract more of that to you. If you project love the tides of change will bring love your way. Much of what we do is the gestalt to learn how the energy works and how to effectively create our reality. It may take some souls many life times to learn that revenge and hatred only breed more revenge and hatred and as they create more of it it angers them and they go about creating more revenge and hatred.. it is a endless circle until one decides to stop it, stop it not in someone else, but within themselves, with full commitment and faith that this is how humanity should express their life force.

    I am not concerned with the church. Their karmic destiny is largely separated from mine these days. I have chosen a path of healing not game playing and power control. Why should I wish to change them? I can only change myself and be a beacon for humane living. They are all wrapped up in their delusions that I have freed myself from. I freed myself out of an act of will. Im sure in the old days I would have been burned or beheaded... but these days many have gone before me to pave my path of freedom that I have chose to walk... and I thank them, and I continue paving this path where ever I go and in what ever I do. Liberation is right there in front of everyone.. only thing that is required is to enact our choice and we have the freedom to do so in most parts of the world today... but agreed I would not want to be a taliban Muslim man or woman. The respression of fear and hatred is very strong still there. They must climb out of their own karma.. if they want to eventually they will... and as for Christians, it will come over the course of years and lifetimes as one generation opens an door for another.

    BTW, sorrow for sin is not required. What is required is an understanding of the damages done, how the energy works and how one created the mess for themselves and the damages and their results on others. What is required is change on a deep soul level that removes one from such negative participations. When this occurs a deep and profound learning has occured and karma is changed to dharma if you allow yourself to grow and exapnd in awareness though the events. God does not intend us to grieve or to worship him/her but to emmulate him/her and then to merely radiate our light and love into all we do, every action, every word, hence forth
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Jun 29, 2011 7:25 pm

    So, Karma means never having to say you're sorry, and never having to feel pain for the pain inflicted upon others? And who keeps score in the Game of Karma? Do victims of violent crime really attract their attackers to them because of unresolved karmic issues? There would have to be some sort of an Ongoing Investigative Judgment by a Galactic Tribunal, to determine who deserves what, wouldn't there? I don't have a problem with church and state rules, regulations, and discipline which actually make sense. I agree that love is at the center of morality, but I believe that responsibility and response-ability are at the center of a proper definition and application of agape-love.
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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:57 am

    orthodoxymoron wrote:So, Karma means never having to say you're sorry, and never having to feel pain for the pain inflicted upon others? And who keeps score in the Game of Karma? Do victims of violent crime really attract their attackers to them because of unresolved karmic issues?

    The soul keeps track of everything. Nothing is forgotten on soul level. All is accounted in the Akashic record. You do not need to say you are sorry and in most cases the opportunity for such words is lost to time, but you are changed. You now have knowlege guiding you instead of man made rules and laws. Of course people do say they are sorry when there is opportunity and they now have knowledge... but if there is no knowledge behing the works "I am sorry" they certainly mean little.

    I think that victims of violent crime as well as the criminals enter into such experience to learn about life, about power, about forgiveness, about integrety, about service, about so many different things. You attract to you opportunity to learn. It is up to you if you create the learning or not, no matter how dire the situation is or not.


    orthodoxymoron wrote: I don't have a problem with church and state rules, regulations, and discipline which actually make sense. I agree that love is at the center of morality, but I believe that responsibility and response-ability are at the center of a proper definition and application of agape-love.

    Of course love is the center of responsibiltiy, along with respect which is an off shoot of love. Many church and state rules do not make sense, hence they create confusion and lack of trust as well as fear and isolation. The rules are used to take advantange of the weaker.

    If one leads their life following all the rules simply because they are the rules, first hand knowledge is very difficult to obtain. One is like a puppet who has no depth of character. Rules are created by man in an attempt to maintain some sense of order and power, and tradtionally those rules also are to bring wealth and power to the few at the cost to the many...

    for instance all the laws regarding Marijuana in the USA. It has become a huge big business in catching, prosecuitng and the incarceration of people who transport and sell marijuana. To whom do these rules serve but the agents who inforce them, perpetuaing an economy of milking the poor of their estates and savings.... for a crime that is not a crime but a man made opportunity to control others for profit. It is tyranny at its finest, refined to be enacted at all levels of society, and is also self perpetuated by a state that is known to contribute to the transport and trade of marijuana within its back box operations internationally (as well also of some very very dangerous drugs). It is not the user and producer of marijuana who is the criminal but society at large though concession with TPTB who profits and controls, condems and punishes that very act of which they are guilty.

    There are so many rules designed to control. That is only one example. The church has many many rules designed to control not just the behavior of people but to control their whole energetic life force, their free will, their spiritual bodies, their mental bodies and their reproductive bodies, all for servitude to a heiarchy that does not serve their soul developement interest, but seeks to pull in more and more gold and power.

    For example they would just as soon caste a maiden or woman to the pits of hell than to really serve her in times of "illigitimate pregnacy"... they would tear the child away from her, condemn her soul for sinning, shame her, beat her, separate her from her family, and in the not too distant past condemn her to laundries to only find her death and that the bastard child, also ... that's the the good catholic way of Northern Europe. There was no love behind those rules. No compassion... and still today we suffer from the memory and still today many behaviors are based on the shame and fear of death for conceiving an "illigitimate child" .... 7 generations have still yet to pass....before we collectively have seen our SIN and our way out of it... and this memory tones and qualifies in so many arenas of morality... memeory backed by fear, shame, hatred, guilt, ... for within all of us, is known that what has transpired towards women,(sisters, daughters, mothers, aunts, friends) in this arena was greviously wrong, and memory is carried from generation to generation in the forms of false teachings, lies, guilt, anger, repression and the impressions such emotional states make on children, and hence the SIN is perpetuated again and again by false beleif systems that continue to crush spirits and keep us from our devine human potential, as individuals, and as a society.

    My own great grandmother was commited to an asylum for post partum depression, never to see the light of day again, because she could not "serve" her husband.

    Along with Church delusion and rule of law I would add to it Medical Delusion and rule of law, along with Educational Delusion and rule of law, as well as Scientific Delusion and rule of law.

    How many great inventors or those who have found cures for cancer, of even our day have been found dead or missing or totally ruined by TPTB?

    What is the mind set that creates this? where does it come from? I strongly suggest it comes from Churches and the ignorant and political people who control them. The mindset is taken on by the masses and perpetuated into every corner of society


    http://www.amazon.com/Women-Asylum-Voices-Behind-1840-1945/dp/0385474237#reader_0385474237

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magdalene_asylum

    http://www.amazon.com/Evolution-Womens-Asylums-Since-1500/dp/0195051645



    Last edited by Arrowwind on Thu Jun 30, 2011 4:34 pm; edited 3 times in total (Reason for editing : spelling and grammer)
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:43 am

    What you said was really quite good, Arrowwind. What continues to bother and puzzle me about church and state, is who REALLY controls them? Just a bunch of stupid men, or very dark and powerful unseen forces?
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    Arrowwind

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Thu Jun 30, 2011 4:16 pm

    I really don't know who controls church and state at the root... that there is evilness (evil = another acronym for me for living backwards.. spell evil backwards and you get L I V E.... evilnesss always brings death to the spirit, if not also the flesh)... are these people reptiles, fallen angles? Aliens? Satan? Greedy Bankers, power despots, who really knows for sure. ... that there is evilness I am sure... and ignorance and a non knowledge or experience of love... but there is also great love in the world and we must work diligently to keep focused on that, to live it to breath it to teach it to be it.

    Christ clearly told us that there is only one weapon against evil and that is to turn the other cheek... if you believe in reincarnation, and have faith in the immortality of your soul, you know that this is the right answer. That the teachings of reincarnation were removed from the bible is the greatest of all deceptions waged upon humanity by the Church and at that time TPTB.

    But as I see it I am here where I am because of my karmic destiny. The evil will disappear when I find my own way to evolve away from it. In my personal circle of self and friends and family I see and experience very little evil... at least the worst of living backwards is not here. Want to tune in? Just pick up a newspaper or watch CNN or FOX.
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Thu Jun 30, 2011 5:11 pm

    I believe in waging peace instead of war, but I also believe in being disciplined and tough, and at some point provocation must be answered with force, to at least disempower the attacker, and to protect the innocent. 'Turn the other cheek' is one of the 'hard-sayings of Jesus' for me at least. I agree that a 'soft answer turns away wrath', and that we resort to violence all too quickly, but we must be prepared to meet force with an even greater retaliatory force, when necessary. However, I am critical of all extermination events, even at the hands of a loving God. Turn the other cheek once (strike one!), twice (strike two!), three times (strike three!) - and then kick the ever-living excrement out of the b@$stards, and make them an example for whoever thinks they might like to be next. Turn the other key as you turn the other cheek...
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    Arrowwind

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Fri Jul 01, 2011 9:40 am

    All people and all nations have the right to true self defence when faced with attack and we certainly are prepared here on our home front on a personal level to hold our own as best we can if others should decide to intrude upon us and jeopardize our wellbeing ... but the trend has been to attack first and ask questions later on our planet and the US and other nations and groups use fear mongering and lies and false patriotism and religiosity to promote war for profit and power control and none have profited so greatly as Haliburton and the Cheney dynasty of industry.

    Oil is not a legitimate reason to wage war, nor is fear of terrorism, (but only actual and real acts of terrorism) nor is it legitmate for aquiring any natural resouce that another holds in another land.

    We are given spirit with great capacity of intelligence to solve our economic problems. and it is in this, our god given capacity that Christ would wish us to rely on.

    The oil cartels and the drug cartels are surely the most evil of empires to wreak havoc upon our cultures... and when I say drug cartels I do not mean Mexican drug cartels but the huge pharmaceutical companies that have invaded nations around the world and hold not national allegiance except to their own self determined corporation. If the pharaceutical companies did not have the power that they do politically the Mexican drug cartels would not exist for most narcotics would be legal and accessible, thus illiminating one of the darkest episodes now evolving in Mexican history and spilling over into US borders to envade US cities..

    Instead of turning ones cheek in the issue of drug use, it has been attacked with hatred and anger and violence and oppression, by the very people who profit from pharmaceutical industry. It has been made a crime and a war and burdens the people with endless costs and loss of freedom and increased tyranny on US streets and the burgeoning prison system that is not state operated any longer but now largely corporate operatedn(some of it Haliburton again) which subjects inmates to even greater tyranny... with counltess thousands now criminals who should be productive members of society, but now never will be because they have been marginalized, and oppressed for their very personal choices. If drugs were legal there would be minimal profit and people would be motivated to find economic solutions to their life situations elsewhere... and many thousands would still be living and many thousands more not living in fear in our border cities and in Mexico at large.

    this is just one example of the cost of not turning one's cheek. Turing ones cheek does not mean to turn it to be slapped again.. it means to turn away from violence and use your god given intelligence inspired by god given light and love.
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    Lionhawk

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Lionhawk on Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:38 am

    Personally, I think turning the other cheek equals compromise. IMO that this phrasing was woven into the bible and is not Jesus's take or saying or his belief. There is so much of that in the bible to begin with. So if I slap you hard in the face, you mean to tell me you are going to stand there and turn the other cheek? Expecting to get another one? A fresh one? Where does that lead to? Another one and another one and another one and another one, etc.................. Things were manipulated in the bible in a reversal fashion of the truths. It is also a program to control the masses into a belief we should submit to their intentions by submitting our free agency gift in their favor. That is one of the major golden keys we all carry, our free agency gift. How we use it or abuse it is another thing. Turning the other cheek is an abuse of it. We can argue all you want on this subject and I welcome anyone to prove what I have written as false.

    The truth of the matter is that you have every right to protect yourself. It is a Universal axiom as to your God given right to exist. I will dare say that Jesus knew this as well. I'm not talking of starting a war here. I am just speaking of defending that sacred ground. That ground is the ground you walk on. If you just give it away and submit to the PTB, then you end up being as much of the problem as they have been. You enable them to continue this behavior. That is where it all leads too. A continuous stream of bad behavior that becomes a plague. That plague comes into reality in the physical.

    Here is some common ground. The link we have also forgotten. When we become ill on whatever level, it is because there is an imbalance in our spirit. That spiritual imbalance manifests in our physical bodies and we are now ill. Now let me ask you this. Do you think that only works for all of humanity? What if I said it works that way because Gaia's template works that way. We were born from that template. Not the so called template of the bible.

    Another statement that is one that sets the hook is the one where it states we were created in the image of God. Then they show an image of some older bearded dude. The statement is correct but the image they present is false. If you "believe" in the way they presented it, then you also support pedophilia without knowing it. Would you consider that an illness of humanity?

    Also here's another one. I mean if you are talking about things that got banned from the bible, what is the difference if what was presented in it was reversed so that the truth was hidden. What is the difference? If you ban it, you are hiding it away from something in either case. 144,000 are chosen. What is the opposite of that? 144,000 must chose. Which one is the correct answer? 144,000 must chose is the correct answer. Why? Because this is a free agency quadrant and Free Agency applies. If they are chosen, as it is written then someone did the choosing. If that isn't good enough for you, you can ask Jesus yourself in person. He won't lie to you. For that matter, I think he spends more time undoing the written wrongs when he engages with folks. But at least you will get the right answer. Not the manipulated one.



    To turn the other cheek is to also to compromise oneself. You are using your free agency gift to submit to a control freak. What is even worse than this, is APATHY.

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    Arrowwind

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Arrowwind on Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:17 pm

    Lionhawk wrote:Personally, I think turning the other cheek equals compromise. IMO that this phrasing was woven into the bible and is not Jesus's take or saying or his belief. There is so much of that in the bible to begin with. So if I slap you hard in the face, you mean to tell me you are going to stand there and turn the other cheek? Expecting to get another one? A fresh one? Where does that lead to? Another one and another one and another one and another one, etc.................. Things were manipulated in the bible in a reversal fashion of the truths. It is also a program to control the masses into a belief we should submit to their intentions by submitting our free agency gift in their favor. That is one of the major golden keys we all carry, our free agency gift. How we use it or abuse it is another thing. Turning the other cheek is an abuse of it. We can argue all you want on this subject and I welcome anyone to prove what I have written as false.

    The truth of the matter is that you have every right to protect yourself. It is a Universal axiom as to your God given right to exist. I will dare say that Jesus knew this as well. I'm not talking of starting a war here. I am just speaking of defending that sacred ground. That ground is the ground you walk on. If you just give it away and submit to the PTB, then you end up being as much of the problem as they have been. You enable them to continue this behavior. That is where it all leads too. A continuous stream of bad behavior that becomes a plague. That plague comes into reality in the physical.

    Here is some common ground. The link we have also forgotten. When we become ill on whatever level, it is because there is an imbalance in our spirit. That spiritual imbalance manifests in our physical bodies and we are now ill. Now let me ask you this. Do you think that only works for all of humanity? What if I said it works that way because Gaia's template works that way. We were born from that template. Not the so called template of the bible.

    Another statement that is one that sets the hook is the one where it states we were created in the image of God. Then they show an image of some older bearded dude. The statement is correct but the image they present is false. If you "believe" in the way they presented it, then you also support pedophilia without knowing it. Would you consider that an illness of humanity?

    Also here's another one. I mean if you are talking about things that got banned from the bible, what is the difference if what was presented in it was reversed so that the truth was hidden. What is the difference? If you ban it, you are hiding it away from something in either case. 144,000 are chosen. What is the opposite of that? 144,000 must chose. Which one is the correct answer? 144,000 must chose is the correct answer. Why? Because this is a free agency quadrant and Free Agency applies. If they are chosen, as it is written then someone did the choosing. If that isn't good enough for you, you can ask Jesus yourself in person. He won't lie to you. For that matter, I think he spends more time undoing the written wrongs when he engages with folks. But at least you will get the right answer. Not the manipulated one.



    To turn the other cheek is to also to compromise oneself. You are using your free agency gift to submit to a control freak. What is even worse than this, is APATHY.


    Personally, I dont think you have really been following this thread. Your post makes little to no sense to me in context to the conversation, and if you were reading you would clearly know that I do not follow Jesus, but I use his words or other segments of the bible to speak to Christians in a language they are accustom to. There are common threads amongst most belief systems.

    I cannot address what you have said and I stand by all that I have already said. All I can say is that we are given opportunity to use our intelligence and spirit connection to the great spirit to solve worldly problems, rather that smacking someone back in the face everytime we are smacked. It is the act of a true peacemaker to find a higher path when at all possible. This is not comprimise but instead working with higher intelligence.
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Jul 01, 2011 1:54 pm

    Arrowwind, I think Lionhawk was mostly responding to what I wrote, and I mostly agree with him. I've lately been looking at clean sheet of paper, idealistic political and theological constructs. I have tried to utilize a Minimalist Traditionalist approach, as sort of a bridge. I'm mostly working outward from the word RESPONSIBILITY, even though I continue to be quite irresponsible and disgusting. The Holy Bible and Non-Canonical Scriptures are a real Mixed-Bag, and are simply the Historical Roadmaps of a VERY Bumpy and Mined Road to Utopia, rather than being the Infallible and Inerrant Very Word of the Creator God of the Universe.

    Once again, I believe in waging peace instead of war, but I also believe in being disciplined and tough, and at some point provocation must be answered with force, to at least disempower the attacker, and to protect the innocent. 'Turn the other cheek' is one of the 'hard-sayings of Jesus' for me at least. I agree that a 'soft answer turns away wrath', and that we resort to violence all too quickly, but we must be prepared to meet force with an even greater retaliatory force, when necessary. However, I am critical of all extermination events, even at the hands of a loving God. Turn the other cheek once (strike one!), twice (strike two!), three times (strike three!) - and then kick the ever-living excrement out of the b@$stards, and make them an example for whoever thinks they might like to be next. Turn the other key as you turn the other cheek. The Lord is my Shepherd, but just in case, I Want the Bomb!!!

    TURN THE OTHER KEY AS YOU TURN THE OTHER CHEEK!
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    Lionhawk

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    Re: Banned from the Bible

    Post  Lionhawk on Fri Jul 01, 2011 3:13 pm

    I was responding to OXy's statement. Also as to what has been banned from the bible by a reversing twist to the truth, to hide that truth, to ban that truth. Is that not also staying on topic with the title of this thread?

    Peace

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    Arrowwind

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    When Winning Isn't Winning

    Post  Arrowwind on Fri Jul 01, 2011 6:30 pm

    And what wars and events have merited our attack?

    Vietnam? did it really help them or stop Kjmer Rouge in Cambodia?
    but hey, were great trading partners with Vietnam today.. after a couple million are slaughtered, 55,000 of our own included.

    Iraq? only if you believe the 9/11 lies.. and over 100,000 innocents to avenge a 3,000 US loss... does that mean Iraqi lives are less valuable than US lives? and what about the depleted uranium... the terror weapon that keeps on killing the unborn and children into the future with birth defects and cancer?

    Now didn't I hear that they just dropped some DU bombs on Lybia the other day? Could they be after population reduction and oil control?
    No not really. Just got to keep the bad guys in check... and for how many years did we support Gaddafi?

    perhaps Afghanistan? how many drones to kill innocents there in search of Bin Ladin?

    Or maybe we should take north Korea out before they do something extreme.

    and what was that 30,000 dead in guatamala all about, backed by US black box operations? and underhanded deals.

    And why did the USA send chemical and biological weapons to Saddham Hussien anyway? and train his scientists on how to use them? and then crucify them?

    and in our race for fierceness and matching forces we have detonated over 2,050 nuclear bombs, mostly on US soil and people wonder why we have skyrocketing cancer rates.

    and our chemistry labs are filled with posions and disease designed for killing... and we have lyme disease, MS, deadly e-coli, and Morgellons diesase and a variety of micoplasmas that weaken and eventually kill ever so silently, as well as strains of flu and plague and smallpox sitting in vials waiting for the beckon and call.

    and lets not forget HAARP... was it HARRP that sunk Japan and caused nuclear caos across the planet? some say so... I really dont know. Now the planet has about 30 HAARP stations located around the world. Some say thier real military intent is for mind control through frequency attacks.

    and lets not forget all the underground bases for someones protection, certainly not yours and mine or wouldn't we know where they are and perhaps have had a tour?

    But perhaps the FEMA camps are for us... we have clearer ideas where they are.

    and then we could give a moment of thought to our GI's who are suffering cancer from actually sitting on depeted uranium bombs, and then all those who have died from all those dam vaccines they were forced to endure... as well as the vaccine induced diseases passed on to their wifes during intercourse and then on to their unborn.

    All designed to win, to control. to match force with force, and please, lets not forget that this is done in the name of democracy and god and country... and this is truely the old time Christian way.. no different than all the beheadings, burinings and slaughters of the multitudes of the middle ages in the name of Jesus Christ and the Holy Roman Catholic Church.

    Yes. we must keep matching force with force and hope that we win as we annhilate ourselves and the planet in the process.

    Dont you see the folly?






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