The Ideology Of God Proves His Existence

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We all know that the existence of God cannot be proven on the basis of observations made on planet earth, or elsewhere in the universe. Nothing humans can observe in nature is perfect enough to prove the existence of a perfect God. It is for that reason, in fact, that many deny His existence. How could a perfect God have created a universe short on perfection, they ask with good reason. The main reason this question is brought up is because, by and large, humans are not reading the Bible correctly, or they misunderstand its contents because of faulty translations, or because they misinterpret what they read, even when it is written in plain language.

Jesus said to Nicodemus: “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again” (John 3:3).The NIV adds a note here. It says: “or born from above.” Indeed, no one can see God or anything related to God without realizing that what can be seen naturally is nowhere near the perfect works of the Perfect God of Scripture. Nothing we see in the universe has any resemblance to what God originally created. “The whole universe has been groaning as in the pain of childbirth” (Romans 8:22) exclaimed the Apostle Paul. Everything that can be seen in all of God’s creation has been marred by the entrance of evil in the universe. What is happening to planet earth is only a microcosm of what has happened to the entire cosmos.

My contention that the first two verses of the Bible have been misunderstood or misrepresented has already been explained in previous blogs. We will take a closer look at verse 1 later, because the error here contained is very enlightening. The suggestion previously made about verse 2 emphasizes the fact that God does not say: “the earth WAS without form and void,” but that “it BECAME” that way. Indeed, when God originally created the universe that included this earth, it was perfect, but a cosmic event linked to the the introduction of evil in the universe caused it to become so chaotic that it could no longer support life. Jude is implicit when he says: “And the angels who failed to maintain order were forced to abandon their home. They have been kept in gloom that will remain imperceptible to them until The Day of the Great Dividing (between good and evil falsely called judgement)” (Jude 1:6, my translation and NIV). This text is stunning, and it perfectly sets the stage for our discussion.

According to this statement and others in Scripture, a third of the angles chose to live in spiritual darkness without realizing the gravity of their condition. To this day, they are still content with the way of life they have invented. They fail to realize how damaging their way of life is, probably because they view themselves as immortal. These angels, are extremely powerful created beings who roam the universe, but they have lost sight of the fact that God is perfect because He is humble, not a show-off; loving, not imposing; and merciful, never punishing. Not unlike humans, the pride of these fallen cosmic beings has led them to think that love is weakness, and that there is a more efficient and more rewarding way to live than by love. What did it cost them? Not their life, since they are still living. The fact is that they were never punished by God. The reason they lost their planet and had to settle elsewhere is only due to the consequences of living self-centered lives. Jude, the brother of Jesus tells us that they live in spiritual darkness, which means that they are living in contempt of God’s humility, love, and mercifulness. They consider God’s hallmark of perfection, which is love, as the putrid depths of weakness and the lofty heights of inefficiency.

It is because humans have developed a similar mindset to that of evil angels that we have fallen into the depths of confusion that leads, invariably to utter despair. The day will come when humans will become persuaded of this reality. The Day of the Great Dividing is the day when Love and Evil will reach their pinnacle. As already mentioned, in such situations evil always appears to win as it appeared to win when Jesus died on the Cross. In fact, Jesus predicted that the conditions of life on this planet would become so treacherous that He will have to hasten His return, because, He said: “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:22, NIV, emphasis supplied).

Such prophecies of Jesus declared two millennia ago are themselves proof that there is a God. Who, other than God, could have predicted long ago that humans would someday have weapons powerful enough to destroy life on our planet? This is a reality that has only developed in the last half a century. No such event could have been remotely possible in the days of Jesus. He also knew that the Gospel would be preached to the whole world: “And this gospel of the kingdom,” He said, “will be proclaimed throughout the world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). How could Jesus have known that this would happen at a time when the most learned in the Roman Empire were ignorant that vast regions of the world existed, such as the Americas not officially discovered until 1492 CE by Columbus.

Biblical prophecies are, in themselves, proof of the existence of God. But the message of love and mercy Jesus brought to the world in words and deeds is even greater proof. He knew before leaving the Heavenly Courts that His ministry to humanity would cost Him His life. His message of love is so contradictory to the human way of life founded on pride, that Jesus knew in advance that the pride in the hearts of humans He had personally enlightened through the prophets would spell His death. These people had developed the pride of thinking themselves more important than others because they were the only ones on the planet with direct communications from God. For two millennia they had received communications from God, and more recently from Jesus Himself, but they deliberately chose to disregard His message of love. It is a message so powerful that when correctly understood, it renders a person incapable of ever rendering evil for evil, as Jesus demonstrated in His life all the way to the Cross.

This attitude of love Jesus taught clearly includes the concept that a person should never render evil for evil. It is an understanding of life diametrically opposed to the way humans have chosen to administer their businesses, their sports, their institutions of education, their legislative pursuits, their religions, and their politics. If there is in this world a single ideology that teaches God’s principle of unconditional love and how to cultivate such love in the heart, please let me know who they are. I would not hesitate to join forces with such a group. To my knowledge no single entity on planet earth upholds such a way of life. Indeed, Jesus is the only way to this truth that makes eternal life possible (see John 14:6). His truth is entirely about developing a mindset molded on God’s commitment to unconditional love. Without it, life can only become a contest for survival. All forms of life on our planet operate on the principle of the survival of the fittest. Scientists are excellent observers. They are not wrong in this regard. But this observation simply implies that to survive we must all be willing to compete and render evil for evil in the process – if nothing else, in self-defense. When we accept to live by the self-centered mindset we are indeed “of the world” (John 17:14), as Jesus said. We are all born evil because we are all born with the instinct of survival at the expense of others. It is the principle of life that governs nature, and it thrives only because evil is always more powerful than love, but the kind of life can only be short-lived. As such, we are all partakers of this principle of survival from our birth. It is for this reason that we need to be born again, not out of a natural womb, but out of the mindset of God. We are all instinctively indoctrinated to believe that to live and survive, we must become more evil than those willing to aggress us. In short, the acceptance of the evil way of life is the acceptance of a senseless vicious cycle of evil that can only lead humanity to ever greater evil, and its ultimate annihilation.

If humanity is merely the accidental product of the survival of the fittest, as science would have us believe, we would never have come to understand the concept that rendering evil for evil can only advance the exponential growth of evil. Jesus is the only philosopher who brought to light that universal principle of truth, and it is founded on the bedrock of pure logic. It is only because He came from God that we have access to this amazing message. It is absolute truth that should always be more precious to us than life itself. People are willing to go to war and risk death to defend their country, they are willing to commit suicide to promote their religion, they are wiling to die for a lover, but they are not willing to die for the sake of putting an end to the vicious cycle of evil on our planet. Which is more noble? Dying for nations, for fanatical religions, for a political ideology, or for the sake of an immutable commitment to unconditional love? The willingness to die for the sake of promoting God’s kind of unconditional love is infinitely more edifying to our world than living with the willingness to perpetuate evil. The ideology of God is the only one worth dying for. All others lead to the growth of evil. If humans were the product of an accident of nature that produced life governed by the survival of the fittest, they could never have formulated or understood this divine concept without the help of God. Yet, it is a concept entirely founded on rock solid logic. Could there be greater proof that there is a God?

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Only One Ideology is Acceptable to God

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Anyone aware of the events currently taking place across our globe can recognize that while there are still gaps of understanding between nations, the cultural gaps between people are growing exponentially. It is sad to think that nations can’t get along, but in a way, it is even more sad to think that people of the same nation are sometimes willing to impose maliciously their ideologies upon their own countryman. This appears to be a growing trend in our modern societies despite constitutional efforts and strident calls made to encourage respect and tolerance. This trend is alarming, because if unchecked it is bound to take our modern world down the road that leads to self-annihilation.

Ideologies are important, and they should all be respected and tolerated; but only as long as they inflict no harm or discomfort upon others. People of all faiths persuasions should be allowed to live and celebrate their persuasions and cultures. In most modern societies they are free to share with others the love they have for their faiths and cultures. However, celebrating and sharing one’s persuasion or culture should always be done with tolerance founded on love. It is our duty as members of the human family, to respect and love one another, but that does not mean that anyone should be compelled or coerced to accept the faiths, cultures or persuasions of others. It should be viewed as desirable to love people whose persuasions and cultures are different from our own. Indeed, there should never be a reason to mistreat or hurt in any manner a person whose faith and ideologies we do not share. As intelligent humans we should be able to accept to love our fellow humans even when we disagree with their ideologies.

Our world is filled with ideologies of all kinds. Some may appear to make more sense than others, but none are perfect, not even those we might be tempted to uphold and proclaim as the only solution to solve the world’s woes. All religions make such claims, but which religion has openly stated and demonstrated by their words and actions that hurting or killing someone is always wrong? Hurting others is not only the administration of physical pain upon others; words can be even more hurtful; they often hurt more than death, because it is pain that lingers indefinitely in wounded hearts.

It is regrettable that in history Christians have often suffered at the hands of other Christians only because they understand Scripture slightly differently. Even in modern history we have witnessed the bombing of buildings and the killing of abortion staff founded on mere differences of understanding Scripture. It should always be acceptable to compare the differences between ideologies and faiths; we all have something to learn from others even when there are disagreements. Such deliberations should be respectful of others, and carried out with the ultimate goal of better understanding one another’s views. This is the only mechanism that leads to progress. The same is true in science and all walks of life. Disagreements can be constructive, but only to the extent that all parties are willing to recognize the value of sound logic while retaining full respect founded on love for others.

Scripture says that “There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death” (Proverbs 14:12). We could state this verse a little differently by saying: There are ideologies that may appear to be useful to humanity, but if pursued unchecked they eventually lead to death. The converse of that statement is also interesting to consider: There is one ideology that may appear useless and counterproductive to humans, but when pursued with enthusiasm and dedication it leads to life, and even eternal life.

Indeed, the ideology of God does not appear valid at first sight. In fact, when correctly understood the ideology of God appears totally incompatible with that of all human ideologies. From a purely human perspective, German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche was not wrong when He said that the teachings of Jesus are utopia. Indeed, love never wins in a dual with evil. Who has ever seen a person determined to love his or her enemies and win a conflict between them? The one who lacks love always wins. It is for this reason that our world has adopted laws and rules intended to protect those who hurt or kill in self-defense.

The ideology of Jesus appears to protect the aggressor, not the victim. “Do not resist the evil person.” He said, “If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” (Matthew 5:39).

What Jesus is saying is that love for enemies will cause His followers to be “persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:10). What Jesus clearly implies is that His followers will likely be persecuted because of their unconditional love for their enemies. The ideology of God that Jesus taught and lived makes universal and eternal sense. How can we expect to reduce evil in the world if we render evil every time we suffer the ill effects of evil? What Jesus is saying, and what He was willing to live all the way to the Cross without the least hint of contempt in the face of His enemies, is that rendering evil for evil will never cure the problem of evil in this world. It is better to die loving than to die rendering evil for evil that only perpetuates evil.

It is for this reason that He was raised after three days in the tomb. He showed His followers that they had nothing to fear about life, not even death at the hands of enemies. Love for him was more important than life. His resurrection was intended to show humanity that as long as they love they have nothing to fear, not even death. Resurrection for those who love is just around the corner, because even time does not count in death, just as sleep is timeless. May humans begin to recognize the value of the only Way to the Truth that gives Life Eternal (see John 14:6). Since the only antidote to evil is love, why not love one another regardless of culture or ideology. That is the ideology of God Jesus represented on His behalf here on earth, as it should be the ideology of all those who choose to follow Him.

Jesus said, on God’s behalf: “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, (His ideology) I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them” (John 17:25, 26).

What Does The Carnage In Orlando Tell The World?

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These blogs are written a stone’s throw away from the shooting that took place in San Bernardino, CA. on December 2, 2015, just seven months ago. Since then, dear souls in Orlando, FL. have lost their lives, and the entire country has suffered the worst ideologically motivated carnage in USA since the events of September 11, 2001. Our hearts and condolences go out to the victims, their friends and families, and all people suffering persecutions, repression, and the denial of basic freedom around the world. No person’s life should ever be threatened because of culture, ethnicity, religion, political affiliation or ideology. Indeed, freedom is a fundamental human need, but it is under attack and threatened by religious and political ideologues overzealous to impose their beliefs on others.

The reference to religion and politics is not intended to target any specific entity, because there is plenty of guilt and bloodshed on all sides. The reason they are mentioned is simple; in their current state, none of them can provide lasting answers to the world’s woes. Considering that none of them teach the truth that has the power to set humans free (see John 8:32), their zeal and often fanatic struggle to impose flawed and self-serving solutions on others is all the more surprising. Why are so many of them arrogant to the point of imposing their ideologies by the sword, or, at the end of a gun barrel? The imposition of order in a self-serving society is intended to protect individual freedom, but the imposition on others of any ideology always destroys freedom.

In this regard, Jesus was the model. He shared the ideology of heaven, but never imposed it on anyone. He made stunning predictions while teaching a message that no other philosopher, religious leader, prophet or politician has ever offered to the world. While we can observe a growing repression of freedom in our world today, we must consider the claim of Jesus who told His disciples: “If you hold to my teachings, then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:32, NIV, emphasis supplied). What is impressive is that Jesus makes the claim with remarkable assurance. As with all His predictions, this will happen with certainty.

During His lifetime on this earth Jesus predicted a political event that would usher the final events of our world’s history. It is during that period of time that the truth will be known and will set humans free. This author believes that this unique and universal Truth will be widely recognized and preached to the whole world, just as Jesus predicted. He spoke at length about the time of the end. He assured His listeners that the spirit of truth will guide humanity into a complete knowledge and understanding of the truth, and that it will set them free (see John 16:13). What is perhaps more amazing is that the beginning point of the period of which Jesus spoke of is marked by a political milestone so unique in history that it cannot be mistaken. Speaking of the Jews to whom He was preaching He said: They will fall by the sword and will be taken as prisoners to all the nations” (Luke 21:24). We know from history that Jews have not only been persecuted by the nations, but they have also been scattered throughout the world. The text goes on to say that “Jerusalem will be trampled on by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.” Some versions of this statement replace the word Gentiles by the word nations, because the Greek word “ethnos” is translated both ways.

Jesus appears to say that when Jerusalem will cease to be “trampled on by nations, the time of nations will be over.” Indeed, we can all observe that borders of nations are porous and that nationalism is in sharp decline in our world. The national and ethnic lineage of people is increasingly less relevant, while ideologies have become badges of honor and distinctiveness – not to mention, divisive pride. The event of which Jesus spoke took place only once in the past two millennia. The Six-Day War of June 1967 marked the end of Gentile control over Jerusalem. Since that event nationalism and ethnic rivalry have surrendered to ideological differentiation. As a result ideological wars have become more prominent than wars between nations. Unfortunately in a way, the imposition of ideologies on others is far more dangerous and difficult to control than the supremacy of nations over one another. This is where we recognize the wisdom of God’s ideology as taught by Jesus. He respected all people regardless of their ideologies, but He taught them a new ideology that humanity as well as Christianity would do well to study attentively.

Jesus went so far as to predict the following events that came true: “They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, the time is coming when anyone who kills you will think they are offering a service to God” (John 16:2). “Out of the synagogue” implies a broader concept. It is the displacement of students who are learning the ideologies and cultures of their own people, and killing them in the name of God. A sincere search for God’s ideology of love will undoubtedly accomplish exactly what Jesus predicted: “When the spirit of truth will come, it will guide you into all truth” (John 16:13, my translation). In my view, the spirit of truth is the spirit of logic that has guided humanity toward incredible scientific and technological advancements in the past two centuries. This spirit of truth, which is logic, will someday guide humanity toward the discovery of the undeniable truth Jesus has brought to the world. It is the ideology of God that can be found in His message of truth we loosely call “the Gospel.” When that perfectly logical truth will finally be recognized, it will become widely evident that whenever a person, a group, a political ideology or a religion chooses to render evil for evil for any reason, it will only serve to perpetuate evil in the world. The message of Jesus condemned such attitudes of heart. He said in clear terms: You have heard it said, an eye for an eye, “But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” (see Matthew 5:39). The only way for sound ideology to take hold is to be respectful of all people, as did Jesus. He did not condemn the religious Jewish or Gentile ideologies of His day, He lamented the fact that none of them were listening to God.

Indeed, it is better to die loving others, even our enemies (see Matthew 5:44), than to die with any level of hatred in the heart. Such hatred can only perpetuate the spirit of evil equipped with evermore powerful weapons of destruction. God receives those who love, not those who refuse to love. It is better to live a short life of love on this planet than to perpetuate hatred that can only promote more hatred and destroy freedom for all people.

May the world realize that we must become more diligent in our study and understanding of the only true God. He has given us the only true definition of love and the only way to achieve its uncompromising ideology in our lives. “Eternal life is that they know you, the only true God,” Jesus said (John 17:3). Why? Because “God is love” (John 4:8,16). To resemble God by restoring His image in us and become His children, we must become evermore loving as He is the Father of uncompromising love.

Religion and Science, Will They Ever Agree? – Part E

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Faulty readings of the Bible lead to unscientific conclusions

Biased interpretations of the Bible have produced thousands of different Christian denominations. Unfortunately, religious biases are extremely difficult to recognize or shake-off. When Jesus said to His disciples: “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town” (Matthew 10:14, NIV, emphasis mine), He was talking about the peoples’ acceptance of His message of truth, not the acceptance of people. God never rejects a person, He only rejects all forms of corruption responsible for distorting His eternal message of love. It is an everlasting message that will stand the test of eternity. With God, the message of truth that changes hearts is always more important than the person, as the Cross demonstrates. Jesus allowed Himself to be killed because He was demonstrating that the everlasting word of truth that leads to love is far more important than a person’s life, even His own as the Creator. A person can always be brought back to life by the Creator, but as long as His message that leads to true love is corrupted, life on earth and eternal life in heaven will remain unsustainable.

The message of truth contained in the Bible has been under attack ever since it has been communicated through the prophets, and later by Jesus Himself (see Hebrews 1:1-2). Time has come for humanity to sort out truth from fiction attributed to God, or the solution to the human condition will never be resolved. When the given of a problem is false, its solution cannot be true.

We have previously underlined several problems related to translations and interpretations of Scripture. The earth was already created when God re-created it to support human and animal life. There is no information in Scripture that helps us determine when the original creation occurred, nor can it be determined with any level of certainty when the re-creation described in Genesis might have taken place. What is clear is that matter was already present when God began the re-creation involving the human family. Time may not be a factor at all when considering all the stresses to which our planet has been subjected when it became “formless and empty” (Genesis 1:2 NIV). As previously discussed, the Interlinear translates that statement as saying: “the earth she-became chaos and vacancy” (http://www.scripture4all.org/OnlineInterlinear/OTpdf/gen1.pdf).

On the other hand, nothing in the Creation account suggests that the entire planet was made into a Garden of Eden. The opposite appears to be true. Adam and Eve were prohibited from entering the Garden ever again for good reasons (see Genesis 3:23). They were to “work the ground from which he (Adam) had been taken” (Genesis 3:23). This was not a punishment, it was a consequence of what happens when trust is broken between people. Because they had broken trust with God, and thus with one another and all other forms of life, Adam and Eve could not stay in the Garden where all aspects of life present there were entirely submitted to perfect other-centered love.

When they were made to leave the Garden, Adam and Eve were sent from a place perfectly protected by perfect mutual love to a place where life was no longer protected by mutual trust founded on perfect love. Having left the Garden, they were confronted with the conditions known in the rest of a universe permeated with unrest, competition for life and prosperity, as well as survival at the expense of all other forms of life. These conditions of unrest altered nature over time. All forms of life were forced to adapt to a variety of unfriendly environments. Paul described the state of the universe affirming that it “has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time” (Rom 8:22). When the evil  of self-centeredness is present anywhere in any form, rest and peace is destroyed. The entire universe “has been groaning” because sin has effected life negatively, including on our planet. This is what must have caused the state of chaos God chose to restructure when He created humans. When they stepped out of the Garden, Adam and Eve were suddenly faced with the “groaning” realities of the universe Paul described.

Our first parents were now subjected to all the laws of life that lead to death dictated by self-centeredness and self-preservation Scripture calls evil, or sin. These laws are in sharp contrast with the principle of unconditional love that sustained perfect peace and comfort for all forms of life in the Garden. From that point forward all forms of life were forced to adapt to the new conditions for the sake of survival. God had framed the power of adaptation into all forms of life knowing that it would be required for their survival in a world where evil subjects all forms of life to competition. Humans, animals and other forms of life have since then been compelled to adapt to ever changing conditions and circumstances. It is largely for this reason that today we recognize such a large diversity of humans, animals and plants. More could be said on the subject, but unfortunately scientists obsessed with proving Evolution remain largely unwilling to consider Scripture as a credible source of information to guide their studies.

When theology is founded on dogmas, progress in understanding God, life, science and love cannot escape the molds of such dogmas. The same holds true in the scientific world. Evolution is one of its dogmas that holds scientists captive. In fact, the dogmas of science are every bit as unscientific and damaging to life and love as are the dogmas of religion. No science has yet proven that anything can be made out of nothing, or that energy can be produced out of absolute nothingness. Yet, the Big Bang Theory is entirely founded on a concept generally proven to be unscientific.

Time has come for both science and theology to rid themselves of dogmas responsible for holding back progress related to the understanding of the Author of life and matter, neither of which were created as we see them or study them (see 2 Corinthians 4:18). Sin recognized as self-centeredness in the universe has degraded both life and matter. It is for this reason that Jesus said: “Heaven and earth will pass away” (Matthew 24:35). Dogmas have kept wide open the doors of utter confusion on all sides of human knowledge and understanding. The Tree of Knowledge of Good Mixed With Evil was in fact the Tree of Confusion. Sound logic has been compromised on both sides. Science and theology will never be reconciled as long as hints of confusion are allowed to persist on either, or both sides.

Religion and Science, Will They Ever Agree? – Part D

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Chronologies derived from Masoretic texts are clearly faulty

Masoretic vs. LXX Chronology

Masoretic vs. LXX Chronology (Charts by Frederic Zurcher)

These two charts compare the only two biblical chronologies available. They are derived from two different sets of texts: the Hebrew Masoretic (800 to 1000 CE), and the Greek Septuagint (200 to 150 BCE). About one thousand years separates the two. They show significant differences. One or the other has to be wrong, if they are not both wrong. In these charts we only consider the time period that elapsed from the Biblical Flood of Noah to the lifespan of Abraham. According to calculations from the Masoretic, the Flood occurred roundabout 2,300 BCE. The same calculations from the Septuagint place the Flood 1,000 to 1,500 years earlier or about 3,600 BCE. Needless to say, secular archeologists do not agree with either sets of dates, but the Septuagint comes much closer to their conclusions.

If the Flood occurred roundabout 2,300 BCE, according to the same chronology Abraham would have answered the call to leave Ur about 400 years after the Flood. We know that at the time of Abraham the pyramids of Egypt were already built. It does not appear possible for the population of the world to have grown sufficiently in 400 years to produce the Egyptian civilization and their incredible accomplishments.

Let us calculate. It is estimated that the global population at the time of Jesus counted only 250 to 300 million people – or about a quarter of a Billion people. If, as the Masoretic suggests, the Flood occurred 2,300 years before the birth of Jesus, we would have to count in reverse to estimate the rate of population growth from the 8 people that came out of Noah’s Ark. We find that the population doubled 25 times in those 2,300 years, an approximate doubling of the population every 92 years. It does not take a genius to realize that if there were only 400 years between the Flood and the call of Abraham, the 8 people would have doubled about five times. This means that there were only 300 to 400 people on the entire planet when Abraham was called – not nearly enough time or population to build the pyramids or the Egyptian civilization. If we can add 1,500 years to that time period on the basis of the Septuagint, the world’s population could have reached 20 to 30 Million people at the time of Abraham; barely enough to produce a civilization as advanced as was Egypt; a country that probably counted 20 to 40% of the world’s total population, or less than 10 Million people living in Egypt at the time of Abraham.

Since the world’s population reached 7 Billion on March 12, 2012, we can also calculate the rate of population growth since the beginning of the Common Era. It has doubled 27 times since then, which means that the world’s population doubled every 75 years for the past 2,000 years. However, most of the growth has occurred in the last two centuries. Since the year 1800, the world’s population has grown from One Billion to over Seven Billion. That period of time accounts for a doubling of the population every 35 to 40 years, though the trend has slowed in the last 40 years.

It is clear that Scripture is not a treatise of chronology or archeology. There are numerous errors throughout. Scripture itself recognizes that fact. God is speaking when He said: “How can you say, ‘we are wise, for we have the law of the LORD,’ when actually the lying pen of the scribes has handled it falsely” (Jeremiah 8:8)? It is the work of imperfect humans. The most egregious error theologians have made is to make issues out of information unrelated with the Message God has been conveying to humans since Creation Week. On the other hand, while it is true that there are shortcomings in Scripture, the same can be said about science using the same simple math we have applied to demonstrate shortcomings in Scripture.

Evolutionists estimate that humans began to roam the planet about 200,000 years ago. How can they explain that 2,000 years ago there were only 250,000,000 people on the planet? Even if humanity had doubled every 1,000 years, or ten times the slowest growth mentioned above, it would have taken only 31,000 years to reach the current population of the world. While it is true that there were large volcanic explosions and other cataclysms during that period of time, it is also true that a doubling of population every 1,000 years is preposterous – humanity would be extinct.

Indeed, there are problems both with Scripture and the sciences. The only purpose of the Bible was to teach humanity the secret of a mentality that maintains life eternal while abandoning the mentality that leads to annihilation. Unfortunately religions have done a poor job of fulfilling God’s wish that led Him to accept the Cross to teach us the secret of eternal life. Jesus came to show us the way to the truth that gives this life (John 14:6), but are humans listening to His Message? Failure to change our mentality can only spell doom – let us give that some serious thought! Science is of little help in this regard.

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Religion and Science, Will They Ever Agree? – Part C

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Traditional chronologies of Christianity and Judaism defy science

Most people living in the Christian world have heard it said that the world is about 6,000 years old. Many go so far as to say that the entire universe is only 6,000 years old. As we have discussed, this belief is not founded on a correct reading of the Jewish and Christian sacred texts. The globe God reorganized was already present in the universe. Scripture tells us that it became chaos and lifeless, which implies that when originally created, our globe was neither chaotic nor lifeless. It also implies that it became disorganized and lifeless because something happened in the universe that damaged it throughout. “We know that the whole creation has been groaning,” said the Apostle Paul (Romans 8:22). Why would the universe be in a state of groaning? It is apparently because no place in the universe is untouched by the ill effects of sin. Indeed, Scripture tells us that the works of God are perfect: “your works are wonderful, I know that full well,” said the Psalmist (Psalm 139:14).

Sometime in past millennia, God brought healing to a small planet of the universe in particular distress. He reorganized it and placed plant, animal and human life upon it. But this did not happen 6000 years ago as countless theologians would like us to believe, it happened thousands of years ago, and it is not possible to know for sure the exact timing of this astounding event.

How can we be sure that the “Creation Event” took place more than 6,000 years ago? And, why are Christians and Jews so persuaded that it happened nearly 6,000 years ago? According to the Jewish Calendar, we are currently in the Hebrew Year 5776 since Creation. Usher, whose chronology the majority of Christians support, also calculated it on the basis of the same Masoretic texts. He claims that the world was created in 4,004 BCE. This means that for most Christians the world is currently in the year 6,019 since Creation. There is a 243 years gap between Usher’s Christian calendar and the Jewish calendar.

In reality, neither calculation is correct. The Hebrews texts used by the Masoretes shortly before the end of the first millennium of the Common Era had already been altered to fit Jewish interpretations of prophetic timelines. This is a long story we cannot take the time to discuss here. A much more ancient text was used to translate the Septuagint from Hebrew sacred texts into Greek about two centuries before the Common Era. Though also altered, these Hebrew documents translated into Greek fail to agree with the Masoretic timeline.

Let me introduce the reader to two graphs I have created to show the difference between the two timelines. Let us consider the differences in timing they suggest.

Masoretic vs. LXX Chronology

Masoretic vs. LXX Chronology

Both of these charts begin with the Flood of Noah. They show the successive patriarchs that followed the Flood to the time of Abraham. The vertical lines represent the lifespan of Abraham. As can be seen, according to the Masoretic text, Abraham was born during the lifetime of all the eleven patriarchs that preceded him. In fact, three of them outlived him, Shem, the son of Noah, Salah and Eber. When considering the timeline suggested by the Septuagint, Abraham knew his father and may have known his grand father for a short period of time, as most people would. One of the two timelines appears far more plausible than the other. Indeed, according to the Masoretic timeline, Abraham died within the first five centuries after the flood. When considering the Septuagint, he died nearly 1500 years after the Flood. This chart looks far more plausible than does the Masoretic timing from which the 6,000 years since Creation has been calculated.

Why is this important to the subject at hand? The chart most Judeo-Christians have adopted is obviously flawed for a number of reasons we shall consider later. If correct, the Septuagint Chart would add at least one thousand years to the traditional Jewish calendar, and the same timeframe to Usher’s chronology. This fact alone makes it very clear that Creation would have taken place more than 6,000 years ago. How can such discrepancies of data be expected to agree with Science?

The civilizations of the past 5,000 years are fairly well established. Carbon 14 dating and other scientific dating methods generally agrees with the Septuagint chart. It clearly suggests that Creation took place much sooner than most Jewish and Christian theologians claim. If religion cannot agree with itself, how can it be expected to agree with Science? The problem is that the same thing could be said about science. More often than most people realize, science also fails to agree with itself on a host of subjects. Global warming comes to mind, but dating is also far from a perfect science.

What is important in Scripture is not the details of timing through millennia, it is the message of love God has been trying to communicate to humanity. Let us listen to the message, and let us forget the details of the timeframe; it may well be totally irrelevant to the growth of divine love in the human heart.

Religion and Science, Will They Ever Agree? – Part B

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Problems in interpreting Scripture from its very beginning

As previously stated, if two people arguing with each other are both wrong, at the end of the day they will still both be wrong. No progress towards truth will have been made because instead of seeking truth, they both remain pridefully entrenched in their dogmatic beliefs. This, in a nutshell, is the problem we have between science and religion. If we are to believe Scripture, both were created by God, thus they should both agree, but only so long as both groups are flawless in their assessments or interpretations of the facts.

As it relates to religion founded on Jewish and Christian Scripture, there are problems of translations and interpretations from the very beginning of the sacred documents.

It is puzzling to think that much of Judaism and Christianity have believed for centuries that God created the entire universe some 6,000 years ago. There is no way to reach such a conclusion from a straightforward reading of the book of Genesis. The only conclusion that can be reached from the first verses of that book is that the planet was already there when God began to restructure it so that it could sustain plant, animal and human life. A self-sustained garden was especially prepared for them to be their home for eternity. unfortunately they failed, but where did the idea that God created the universe at that time come from? Humans are the only culprits because they have attributed faulty readings and interpretations to the text. Indeed, the NIV clearly states that before God created anything “the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep…” (Genesis 1:2).

Nothing here says or implies that planet earth or the universe was created at that time. To make matters worse, as stated in the NIV note associated with this text, it should probably say that “the earth became formless and empty.” This implies that the earth had not always been formless and empty. Thus, as we read from the first verse from the Interlinear Translation (see, scripture4all.org) of Genesis, we have the following: “in beginning he-created Elohim the heavens and the earth.” Since there were no punctuation in the ancient Hebrew texts, we could read this verse to say: “In the beginning He (God- who is Yahweh) created Elohim (all angels created in His image), the heavens, as well as the earth.”

Studies by Hebrew scholars suggest that even the word translated “created” could well be an exaggeration of the intended message. Indeed, the Hebrew word “bara” is elsewhere translated “improved,” “enhanced,” “endowed,” or even, “to fatten,” as in Genesis 41: 4 and 1 Sam 2:29.

Humans have always had a propensity to reinterpret what God has communicated to them. If I had to reinterpret the first two verses of Genesis at the light of the latest linguistic advancements, I would have to restate them as follows: “In the beginning He improved (or rehabilitated) the status of the heavens and the earth. The earth became a state of uncontrollable active chaos, lifeless, and total darkness blanketed the mired waters of the deep.”

This interpretation changes everything for Christianity. It suggests that Elohim is not “the only true God” (John 17:3), this plural implies that they are intelligent beings that God created in His own image, as He later did humans. It also suggests that the earth was alive and beautiful before something caused it to loose its capacity to sustain life. Something drastic occurred in the universe, it impacted matter negatively throughout. In fact, matter as we know it self-destructs over time and changes of temperature. Scientists call that entropy. Since the universe was once perfect, this occurrence had a particularly negative impact on planet earth. The Apostle Paul brought this point into perspective when he wrote: “We know that the whole creation (the whole universe) has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time” (Romans 8:22, parentheses supplied).

The darkness that covered the earth was so dense that Yahweh had to bring a special light to the site so that the angels (Elohim) could see the extent of destruction and chaos their sins had produced. The product of sin is always caused by pride that leads to a deficiency of moral love. The resulting destruction had to be made visible to angels that they might recognize the destructive power of pride that produces sin. By reorganizing the world and bringing new life to it in seven daily steps, God proceeded to show them the required changes that must take place in one’s life to convert the chaos of pride that reigns in sinners’ hearts into the beauty and peace that love produces to maintain eternal life in a Garden of Eden.

The Creation of humans was to serve the inhabitants of the entire universe as a model of the way God operates to eradicate chaos. The demonstration is not yet complete because humans have failed; but Scripture predicts that at least some of them will someday demonstrate the beauty of their moral love while showing the world that such love is more desirable that life itself. Indeed, without unconditional devotion to love, life cannot survive eternity. We are not talking here about gushy passionate love that may or may not be related to moral love; nor are we talking about natural affectionate attractions between people. We are talking about the principle of unconditional moral love and respect that all humans are called upon by God to develop for one another. This devotion becomes a passion for love recognized as the only way to sustain eternal life. That was also the passionate demonstration Jesus made before the universe all the way to the Cross where His moral love towards His enemies was manifested to be far more important to Him than His own life. Such love should also become ours. Religions that fail to teach this fundamental principle of life cannot be from “the only true God” of the universe.

Religion and Science, Will They Ever Agree? – Part A

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This question may well be the age-old question, or at least, ever since the beginning of the Scientific Age. The problem is this: If there is a Creator God of the universe, doesn’t sound logic suggest that true science and true religion should be in perfect agreement with one another? With this in mind we should recognize that as long as there will be failure of agreement between the two it will only be because something is wrong with either one of them, or both.

Considering that science claims to be perfectly rational in its approach to empirical realities of the universe, religion is made to appear as the only culprit of this enigma. Interestingly enough though, even science has been obligated to review many of its prior conclusions, or to adjust them to fit new research and discoveries. A professor of medicine was telling his students that by the time they become physicians about half of the scientific understanding they will have gained will be irrelevant or obsolete in years to come. The problem, the professor added, is that no one knows which half of the scientific knowledge thought to be true now will later be proven false.

We all witness that science is in a constant state of flux. The huge changes that have taken place on recommended dietary charts in the last 50 years should serve as a clue. While science can often be applauded for its willingness to make the necessary adjustments, the same is unfortunately not true of religion. Why is humanity facing such a dilemma? Why such confusion if both science and religion are the product of the same Creator? In the face of this dilemma, it is obviously easier to dismiss the notion of a Creator God, and this, for good reasons. Indeed, by and large religion is never founded on logical thinking. It is founded on something religious people call “faith,” and they often refuse to recognize faith as involving logic.

The writings of the prophet Isaiah begins with startling statements regarding the relationship that should exist between God and His created beings. First there is a complaint that the children of Israel have failed to listen to God. “(T)hey have rebelled against me,” said the Lord” (Isaiah 1:2).   A bit later God calls them a brood of evildoers, children given to corruption!” (v.4). Interestingly, the prophet reports God’s complaint in the following terms, “Why do you persist in rebellion? your whole head is injured, your whole heart afflicted. From the sole of your foot to the top of your head there is no soundness”(v.6). The reference to the injured head and the lack of soundness is God’s way of saying that His people are not thinking correctly because they are not thinking logically. Their religion has led them away from sound thinking founded on pure logic. The LORD goes on to say: “The multitude of your sacrifices – what are they to me?” … “I have more than enough of burnt offerings…I have no pleasure in the blood of bulls and lambs and goats.” (v. 11).

God is sick of His people’s meaningless worships. He tells them, “Stop bringing meaningless offerings! Your incense is detestable to me. New Moons, Sabbaths and convocations – I cannot bear your evil assemblies. Your New Moon festivals and your appointed feasts my soul hates. They have become a burden to me; I am weary of bearing them” (v. 14). God goes on to say, “even if you offer many prayers, I will not listen” (v. 15). Why should God listen to people unwilling to listen to Him and His logic? If they did, they might finally recognize the pure soundness of His message to humanity.

In desperation the LORD addresses His children by exhorting them in the following terms: “Come now, let us reason together” (v. 18, emphasis supplied throughout). The call to reason with God is a call to think logically about His message to humanity. His logical message should constitute the foundation of all our scientific and religious beliefs. The problem of humanity is that they have yet to respond to this call from God. All religions are founded on various forms of superstitions and religious concepts lacking logic.

It appears that the religions of our world have not changed much since the days of Isaiah the prophet. The forms of our religions have changed, but their foundational beliefs built on pagan concepts involving irrational superstitions, have not. This is a tragedy of biblical proportion for humanity.

As long as there are flaws both in science and in the religion of people claiming to listen to God, the two shall forever fail to agree. Humility on both sides should suggest that they still lack pure truth. Both should be open to new approaches to truth founded on logic. Short of truth on both sides, the reconciliation of science and religion will remain impossible. The larger culprit however, is religion; because it often refuses to change from a so-called meaningless “faith-based” understanding of God’s messages to a logical approach to His communications. Religion prides itself for dealing with invisible powers in the universe – the problem is that in the process sound logic is set aside. The lack of logic in religion is detestable to God. How can a religion lacking the very logic God has created, ever be reconciled with a science willing to consider logic, but unwilling to accept the possibility that there is a Creator God?

This topic will continue to be the object of our consideration in the next few weeks. Let me know what you think.

Does God Punish Or Kill Beings Created In His Image? – Part I

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Is the Final Judgment an expression of God’s wrath?

It is true that mainstream Christianity has changed through the ages. However, one fundamental belief remains largely seared in the minds of the faithful: The Last Judgment of God upon humanity. Cathedrals built in the Middle Ages often depicted sculptures of Last Judgment scenes on their walls and tympana. Central to the image, Christ is represented judging the righteous on His right, and the wicked on His left. The picture here presented shows details from the Cathedral of Saint Lazare, in Autun, France. The giant claws of Satan are grabbing someone by the neck. The expression on the face of the condemned suggests an almost audible primal scream of pain.

Sadly, this image represents an angry God who looses patience. He decides to end evil by rewarding the righteous and destroying the wicked. Autun - St. Lazarus

As we have already discussed, the wrath of God is not a fit of anger. Properly translated the word should suggest His passion for love and mercy founded on freedom that will never be compromised. The idea of God’s Final Judgment is largely inspired by pagan beliefs whereby the gods reward good people and punish those who disobey.

The words “wrath” and “judgment” applied to the only true God are influenced by the human understanding of these words. Indeed, we humans constantly imagine God in our own image, and His government in the image of our judicial systems. Instead we should consider the perfectly loving image of God that we might be restored back into His image. With a false image of God it is impossible to restore in humans the true image of our loving Creator God.

The Greek word krisis is generally translated “judgment.” In reality, the early Christians probably understood that the primary meaning of the word is “a separating” (see StudyLight.org entry for Strong’s #2920). The Final Judgment should never have been depicted as a divine sentence against the wicked, but as a natural separation that will ultimately take place in human history. From the Greek word we have the English word “crisis.” Indeed, a crisis of Biblical proportion is upon us, and it will separate the loving from those who hold-on to self-preservation.

Scripture makes mention of this separation throughout. Ultimately a group of followers of Christ will trample the head of the Serpent (see Genesis 3:15). The crushed head of the Serpent is a metaphor to depict the mindset of Satan, which is the self-serving mindset of evil. By contrast, the mindset of Jesus, which is “the faith of Jesus” (see Romans 3:22; Galatians 2:16 and 3:22; Revelation 14:12 in the KJGV), is the guiding principle of life that involves one’s attitude of unconditional love towards others. Many translations have modified the expression “faith OF Jesus” to “faith IN Jesus.” Indeed, it is not believing in Jesus that transforms humans into the image of God, it is accepting to espouse the belief system OF Jesus that changes the way we think and behave. The persuasion of Jesus that love is the secret of eternal life should also become the guiding light of our mindset, and thus, the faith of Jesus by which we must learn to live.

Accepting Christ is not merely accepting the fact that He died and was resurrected, but that in all humility He died to show all created beings of the universe the true and perfect meaning of love. His love was so intense that only death could interrupt His love for others – and even His death was an act of love, because it teaches humans that true love can only be interrupted by death. Jesus could have exterminated His aggressors, but He showed us instead that even self-defense is not an excuse to kill other human beings. It is not the death of Jesus that saves us, though without His death we would have never understood the message of His death that saves: namely, that true love stops at nothing short of death.

It could be said that Christianity has not yet spread that message of unconditional love to the world. The day is coming when not only many Christians will recognize the value and wisdom related to the message of God’s love, but all people willing to think logically will recognize the wisdom of this Divine principle of eternal life. Indeed, for God, as it should be for us, love is more important than life.

With the message of Christ clearly understood, a dramatic crisis will produce the predicted “separation” in our world. It will not be a divinely appointed tribunal involving a judgment scene. Many will appreciate the value of unconditional love, recognizing that the eternal continuation of life is impossible without it. Others will choose to remain devoted to their traditions of self-preservation in the face of enemies whom they will fail to love with the kind of love Jesus expressed towards His persecutors.

The so called “wrath” of God is His determination to allow both evil and love to reach their pinnacle of expression. No one will be in a position to misunderstand the differences between the two groups. The difference will become so flagrant from a purely logical point of view, that without realizing it many will follow Christ by adopting “the faith OF Jesus,” which is the unshakable determination to live love at any cost to one’s own life.

Many will realize that it is better to die loving even if there were no reward, than to live a self-centered life that involves rendering evil for evil. Such a lifestyle can only perpetuate and intensify the level of evil on our planet. A humanity bound to operate on the principle of self-preservation is also bound to reach the pinnacle of self-destruction. The separation between good and evil will take place, but it will not be a judgement-call made by a God who has lost patience, because God is unconditionally loving, as we should become also.

Does God Punish Or Kill Beings Created In His Image? – Part H

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Is God really capable of wrath?

God has been blamed for the problems of humanity ever since Adam and Eve committed their first sins in Eden. Adam said: “the woman you put here with me–she gave me some fruit from the tree” (Genesis 3:12). Later Eve said: “The serpent deceived me, and I ate” (v. 13). God did not get angry, nor did He punish them; He merely reminded them that there are consequences to actions short on love. Indeed, lack of love is responsible for all sins, and all the pain and suffering in our world. Lack of love makes humans untrustworthy, thus it makes them dangerous towards one another to the point of self-destruction, not because God punishes them with death.

Today most people recognize that misguided religions produce the kind of mutual distrust that will soon bring about mutual oblivion upon the world. I am not making that prediction, the Bible does (see Mark 13:19-20). This mutual destruction is not a punishment from God, it is the natural consequence of a world where there is lack of love.

Insurance companies use the expression “acts of God.” The implication is that God destroys people, blaming Him for causing tsunamis, earthquakes, tornadoes and floods. It is probably true that God does not prevent such events from occurring, which He would do if humans were unconditionally loving towards one another. The wrath of God is not anger, as it is often portrayed by religious figures. In fact, that word is probably mistranslated, because in pagan mentality the gods are eager to punish human misbehavior. The Only True God, does not.

Isaiah the prophet makes mention of God’s “strange act” (Isaiah 28:21-22). This act is often believed to be His anger towards the guilty. How could a loving God destroy the guilty? In reality there is another way to look at this strange act. Consider how strange it would be for a person to be in a position to prevent a murder while failing to do so! God is clearly in that position. He has the power to prevent every single act of violence in this world, but He does not. Strange indeed! But if God took action to prevent all forms of violence, He would impose His will on people He created free. This would in turn destroy the very freedom they must enjoy to be loving. God does not want to remote control His created beings, this would be an insult to the very intelligence He has given them. He created them with the mental capability to be loving. Retracting the freedom God has given us would be pure tyranny on His part, and love would no longer be possible.

Paul explains the nature of God’s wrath: “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness” (Romans 1:18, emphasis supplied). A bit later Paul says that “God gave them over to shameful lusts” (v. 26). That is the way Paul understands the so called “wrath” of God, He allowed them to do shameful things. In other words, God avoids intervening in human actions as much as possible. He allows evil to follow its course knowing that it leads inevitably to mutual and self- destruction. Paul goes so far as to say: “Since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind…they became filled with every kind of wickedness, evil greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice” (Romans 1:27-28, emphasis supplied).

The so called wrath or anger of God should probably not be called by these words. In Paul’s statement the Greek word translated “wrath” or “anger” is orge. It is an internal disposition, a painful disposition of heart founded on one’s passions. God’s passion is love, and He is unwilling to do anything that has the potential to destroy love.

In Hebrew the word is ‘aph. This word can also mean countenance, or face. In a passage of the Old Testatment, let us transpose the word “wrath” and use “countenance” instead: “The displeasure of God will not pull back until He fully realizes the purpose of His heart, which is the fulfillment of His countenance. In days to come, you will understand this” (Jeremiah 30:24, my translation, and NIV).

Indeed, the purpose of salvation is to restore the image of God, or the countenance of God in humans. It is the restoration of what God is by nature: The restitution of His infinite and unconditional love in the human heart. And yes, “In days to come,” we will finally “understand this” incredible universal truth. May this day come soon, the world desperately needs that understanding.