Sunday, May 8, 2011


This is an argument to somebody's friend on facebook.... and for obvious reasons I decided not to post it on fb... 2093 words? Really? Anyways, here's the article "" but this is really just between me and him/her.


Here are my disagreements for several of your paragraphs:

(“When the Messiah was born into the world......following the example of their Master.”)

Are you suggesting we should follow the law? I think you’re seriously mis-using this passage:

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matt 5:17-20.
Jesus THEN goes on to tell us that, “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder,and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment.”

We cannot possibly live the life required by the law. He doesn’t want us too. I’m thinking of verses like, Gal 2:17-3:5, among dozens of other similar verses.
“I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by observing the law, or by believing what you heard? Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort? Have you suffered so much for nothing—if it really was for nothing? Does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you because you observe the law, or because you believe what you heard?”


(“Not only was the Sabbath dropped from the new religion.... and the birthday of the Sun-god took their place as Christmas.”)

Rom 14:5-6 “One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. 6 He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God.”


(“Sprinkling took the place of immersion;”)

That’s Catholism, which I personally have a few disagreements with (none of which you raised). I personally was dunked. I don’t have a problem with sprinkling, however, what’s important is what it symbolizes (being buried with Him and raised with Him) - not what it is in of itself. I know an older lady who got sprinkled at the same time I was immersed because she couldn’t get into the water.

(“immortality of the soul, adopted from paganism, replaced the doctrine of conditional eternal life; the resurrection and day of judgment were forgotten, and a continuous judgement was taught through which the dead entered heaven, or hell, for eternity, no resurrection being necessary in this program.”)

I don’t understand this accusation, it’s written slightly confusingly. I personally (as a “Christian”, please note) believe that in the resurrection of the dead, heaven, hell.... I also believe in the immortality of the soul, whether that soul goes to heaven or hell.

(“The kingdom of heaven, as an actual earthwide government under the whole heavens was ignored, as the members of the new religion sought to please the "powers that be."”)

The kingdom of heaven will come whenever Jesus - Yeshua - returns. We don’t have anything to do with that part except to wait and pray, right?


(“Truly, as Hurlbut said, "We find a church in many aspects different" from that of St. Paul, St. Peter, and the Messiah.  This new church, so differet, was Christianity; and for its deities it adopted various ones from the heathen, discarding the Most High of the Jewish Scriptures, and His blessed Son, Yahshua.“)

Um... no? We’ve “discarded” some of the Jewish Scriptures because we’re “no longer under the law but under grace” and His blood.


(“The inflexible Protestantism of the primitive missionaries, with fiery denunciations of heathendom, had been exchanged for the supple policy, the easy tolerance, the comprehensive charity of shrewd ecclesiastics, who clearly perceived that if Christianity was to conquer the world it could do so only by relaxing the too rigid principles of its Founder, by widening a little, the narrow gate which leads to salvation.”)

      This I can sort of agree with. Certain denominations and “Christian” leaders have watered down the gospel. But, again, we’re under grace, not under the law, and no longer have to follow the entire OT law. God’s the one who widened... actually, OPENED the gate at all, so that through belief in His son’s (Yeshua/Jesus’) atoning death on the cross. Again with the above Galatians verse... and if you have a problem with that one there’s tons of others.


(“The new religion was not the old festivals with change of name and worship."”)

This was mainly an effort of the Catholics to subdue and “convert” pagan holidays. And as long as we’re celebrating Yeshua/Jesus/Yahweh/God.... does it really matter what the ancient history behind that holiday was? The holiday is no longer celebrating heathen deities but Christ, ehem, excuse me, “the Messiah”.... isn’t that a good thing?

On two of the points not related to holidays:
We got the Trinity from Yeshua’s teachings about his “Father”/Yahweh/Almighty God/Creator, from the Yeshua’s teachings on how we would be filled with His Spirit/the Holy Spirit, and from, obviously, Yeshua himself as the Son. 

    John 10:30-33 and 36-38: “I and the Father are one.” Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, “I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?”3“We are not stoning you for any of these,” replied the Jews, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.”.....“What about the one whom the Father set apart as his very own and sent into the world? Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, ‘I am God’s Son’? Do not believe me unless I do what my Father does. But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.””
    Rom 8:11 “And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you.”
    Matt 28:19 “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
    Is 9:6 “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Jesus is called all three parts of the Trinity here... Counselor (Holy Spirit is often called this), Everlasting Father/Mighty God (Yahweh), and, himself, “Prince of Peace”. I personally don’t think it’s humanly possible to “understand” the Trinity/the relationship between Yahweh/God, Yeshua/Jesus and the Holy Spirit, but I think the concept of the “Trinity” might be the closest we can get on this earth... three “parts” of God, distinct but one. Confusing. Either way, I couldn’t find much evidence it came from gnosticism.

      And the immorality “from the pagan greeks” we actually got from basically the whole New Testamant.. you know, the whole fact that we’re either going to heaven to live with him for eternity.
      Rev 21:6-7 “He [Yeshua] said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.”     
     1 John 5:11-12 “And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”
      Either that or we’re going to the lake of fire...
Matt 24:46 ““Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”


(“The heathen had been worshipping was born Christianity.”)

      Um... no. There’s a difference between worshiping Zeus under the name of God and worshiping Yahweh/Yeshua under the name of God. And I do disagree with the Catholic deification of Mary.


(“After the death of the disciples... graven images." - Isa. 42:8.”)

    Oh my goodness. Are you saying that whenever I pray to God, the Almighty Maker of heaven and earth, the only true God, who is omnipotent, omnipresent and all-powerful, he doesn’t hear me or accept my prayers because I’m not using the right name? Um... and from what I’ve heard, at least, ‘Yahweh’ isn’t for certain even the correct pronunciation of His name, because (A) in Hebrew writing it had no vowels, and because (B) NO JEW EVER USES GOD’S TRUE NAME BECAUSE THEY BELIEVE IT IS SACRED AND SHOULDN’T BE USED (and are afraid they might accidentally use His name in vain.) And, if God is all powerful, if he really wanted us to use his “only” name, don’t you think he would have laid that on the Biblical translator’s hearts to put that in instead of “God” or “Lord”?


(“Our translated Scriptures say that Yahweh's son's name is Jesus..... now known to us as Jesus.”)

    History and etymology here. Hebrew “Yeshua” (translated Joshua in English) means “Yahweh is Salvation” (or something similar).  Greek “Iesus” (Translated Jesus in English) means “Yah[weh] will save”. It’s the difference between two different languages, and I’m pretty sure Jesus was actually called Iesus while he walked the earth. At the time of Jesus’ ministry, the Romans (who spoke Greek) had taken over and ruled Israel. As a consequence of that, the main language was Greek, although the Israelites still spoke Aramaic and Hebrew. When the Apostles wrote the gospels, THEY WERE WRITTEN IN GREEK. The original manuscripts were in Greek, the language of the entire civilized world at the time. “The books of the New Testament were written in Koine Greek, the language of the earliest extant manuscripts, even though some authors often included translations from Hebrew and Aramaic texts.”  Annnnnnnnd a lot of the things I mentioned about “Yahweh” above stand the same. As long as we’re worshiping him and not Zeus, does it really matter? The name isn’t what’s important... it’s what the name is naming... ie, the Savior of the world as described in the Bible.


(“The new religion was known as Christianity... and it was now known as the new Christian (Krisna) faith.”)

Where on earth you getting this stuff from? Can you put in some links? At least I’m using Wiki. And the Bible, come to think of it ;).  “Christ is the English term for the Greek Χριστός (Khristós) meaning "the anointed one". It is a translation of the Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ (Māšîaḥ), usually transliterated into English as Messiah.”


So yeah, I just have a few little arguments on the passage. Personally I think Catholics are too legalistic with their traditions and are trusting on works instead of on Christ, but that wasn’t part of your argument. I also think that Christians (some times and places more than others) have deviated from the religion set out in the gospel by Jesus Christ, but in my opinion your arguments have nothing to do with this, and I’m sick of typing. ;)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Homeschooling and Regulation

 This is an essay I wrote for the scholarship contest from New Threats to Freedom, addressed to the second video, Max Borders on our Compulsive Urge to Regulate.

As a homeschooled teen, I and my family are all for de-regulation as much as possible. We don’t want the government upsetting our basic rights… especially the right to educate one’s children. My mother, as a leader of our local homeschool group, has personally led the efforts against regulation of homeschooling in our state.

In our state of RI, especially in the town my family lives, regulations are fairly low. Homeschoolers are required to send in a letter of intent, once a year, basically declaring  their intent to complete the subjects required by law. That doesn’t stop the districts from attempting to regulate us, though. Last year our town changed their homeschool policy, without informing homeschoolers, as their constituents. Many of our town’s homeschooling parents and their children turned up at the next meeting in protest and they eventually agreed to go back to the old policy.

Many of the regulations, as with regulations on food and health safety, result from the odd mishap or abnormal case, where people react with outrage and the government overreacts to ensure that such a thing never happens again. For instance, recently in a nearby town, the school board declared that homeschool students had to register with all children present. This happened because a “homeschool” mother living in a hotel was using homeschooling as an excuse to keep her children out of school… the family was already on the social service’s radar and was an atypical case. Because of this one woman, who was clearly not the average homeschooler, the town changed its policy and several homeschoolers were visited by the truant officer – before even being informed of the town’s changed policies!

Often the worst opponent of homeschooling are administrators… they would love to micromanage homeschooling, or even get rid of it altogether. What does it say about public schools in general – when a bunch of “amateurs”, regular parents, teach children whose test scores are consistently higher than the average public school student? They say they want to ensure that homeschooled children are well-educated and socially adept.... and I can see why they think this way, but by now they should admit that the evidence points to the contrary – that homeschooled students are polite, sociable, well-educated, and excelling academically.

Basically, all homeschoolers want is to be left alone. We fight very hard against regulation; we don’t want to jump through hoops in order to be allowed to teach our children. We want the freedom to discipline, educate and train our children as we see fit, and not how the State sees fit. If we can’t trust loving parents to do the best for their children, how can we trust a impersonal government to do any better?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Why is Jesus Called the Son of Man?

Soooooo I was bored, so I decided to look up every single time the phrase “Son of Man” is used in the Bible, and exactly what it means. When I was younger, I sort of half assumed he was referring to his humanity, his humility, or something like that. It confused me and I didn’t pay much attention to the phrase. Then I read a side note in one of my bibles that “The Son of Man”, is actually referring to the Angel/God/Messiah like reference in Daniel 7:13-14. I wasn’t going to blindly except this, of course (heh heh), so I looked up the verse, and it certainly LOOKS like that might be what he was referring too, but I couldn’t be sure… so I looked up every time Jesus refers to himself as “Son of Man” and what it’s connected too…
       Most of the references to him being the Son of Man are either connected to his death/resurrection, the second coming, or some aspect of his divinity. Some other important passages are in Revelation, which describe Jesus in nearly identical terms to Dan. 7:13-14. Also interesting are a couple of places in Psalms where there is a mention of a “son of man”, that while could be about a regular human, hint of the Messiah.
        Please note that there is one other person, the prophet Ezekiel, who is referred to as “Son of Man” (by God, who is addressing him) about 93 times. (Jesus refers to himself as “Son of Man” 81 times… including overlap from the gospels, which there is a lot of, btw). I don’t have any idea what that’s supposed to mean. I haven’t read Ezekiel in a long time. There is a footnote in Ezekiel 2 on that “Ezekiel 2:1 - The Hebrew phrase ben adam means human being. The phrase son of man is retained as a form of address here and throughout Ezekiel because of its possible association with “Son of Man” in the New Testament.”
Feel free to give imput on this point, I think it's probably unrelated... also read the Wiki page on it, apparently "Ben Adam" was a pretty generic term for "human being", or "humanity", in ancient Israel.
        So Ezekiel is referred to in Hebrew as “Ben Adam”, Daniel 7 is the Aramaic (Wiki says “kibar 'anash”) “Ben Enash”, Daniel 8 (where Daniel himself is referred to as “son of man”) is Hebrew “Ben Adam”, the Psalm verses are both “Ben Adam. And of course all NT verses are the Greek, “Huios Anthropos”. Wiki is also has a page on the phrase, “Son of Man”. I might be missing some because of the translation (NIV), NKJV links).

Also I wrote this post just to play with Blueletterbible's cool linky thingy. :)

Main Prophecy
Daniel 7:13-14

Jesus revealed as Son of Man
Revelation 1:12-16
Revelation 14:14-16

Hebrews 2:5-9 / Psalm 8:4-6
Psalms 80:15-19

Jesus Foretells His Death (and Resurrection)
(The three times that the NIV gives as headers ;)
1. Mark 8:31, Luke 9:22
2. Matt 17:22-23, Mark 9:31-32, Luke 9:44
3. Matt 20:18-19, Mark 10:33-34, Luke 18:31-33
After the transfiguration: Matt 17:9,12, Mark 9:9,12
Aaand a bunch of random times, Matt 26:2, Mark 12:40 John 12:23-26
John 3:12-15 (Please note this passage also mentions that he is from Heaven.)

Jesus Foretells his Return
Main passages (compare to Daniel): Matt 24, Mark 13, Luke 21
Secondary prophecies of return:
1. No one knows when he will return: Luke 12:40
2. Will Judge: Matt 25:31-46, John 5:24-30
3. It will be obvious when he returns: Luke 17:20 –37
4. If Anyone is Ashamed of the Son of Man, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him -Matt 16: 26-28, Mark 8:36-38, Luke 9:25-26,
5. Blessings/Rewards to the Faithful: Matt 10:22-23, Matt 19:28- 30, Luke 6:22-23, Luke 12:8-10
6. (Random): John 1:50-51, Luke 18:7-8 (will he find faith?)

Other Passages refer to The Son of Man as:
Bread of Life: John 6:26-27, 53, 61-63
Lord of the Sabbath: Matt 12:8, Mark 2:28, Luke 6:5
Has Authority to Forgive Sins: Matt 9:6, Mark 2:10, Luke 5:24
The Father is with Him: John 8:27-30
Sows the Good Seed: Matt 13:37,41
Came to Serve and be a Ransom: Matt 20:28, Mark 10:45
Will be A Sign like Jonah: Luke 11:29-30
Came to Seek and Save the Lost: Luke 19:9-10
Has no Place to Lay His Head (context): Matt 8:20, Luke 9:58
Has come to Judge: *John 9:35-39
Misc.: Matt 12:32, Matt 11:18-19, Luke 7:33-35,

Who is the Son of Man?
Matt 16:13-17 – Peter Confesses Jesus (the Son of Man) as Messiah
John 12:34-36- People ask who Son of Man is – I’m not sure whether Jesus is saying the Son of Man is the Light, or if he’s just doing a rapid (and in my opinion not very smooth) change of topic here. ;) Read whole chapter for a clearer context.

Jesus, the Son of Man, is Betrayed:
(At the last Supper): Matt 26:23-24, Mark 14:20-21, Luke 21:20-22, John 13:31
(In the Garden): Matt 26: 45-46, Mark 14:41

Jesus Calls Himself the Son of Man: – in a way that makes it obvious that he’s calling himself the Son of God.
Matt 26: 63-66, Mark 14:61-64, Luke 22:66-71

After The Resurrection:
Luke 24:5-7 – Angels remind the women what Jesus said about his resurrection.
Acts 7:54-56 – Stephen sees Jesus.

* NIV has “Son of Man” (ben adam), NKJV has “Son of God”.

PS: If any of the links are wrong, please tell me. Thanks. It's very late at night so I'm not about to check.