Ascension Day

I noticed on my calendar that today is Ascension Day.  You would think it would be a bigger holiday than Good Friday.  Yet it passes unnoticed.  It is always 40 days after Easter, since Acts 1:30 states that Jesus ascended to heaven 40 days after his resurrection from the dead.  But there is no information on what he did or said during that 40 days.  Matthew 28:9-20 doesn’t address it at all; Mark 16:9-19 simply states, a”after speaking to them, he ascended”; John 20:14-25 makes no mention of the ascension; and Luke 25:15-31 and 36-51 states he ate twice, blessed them and went to heaven.

Several places state he was unrecognizable, implying certainly that it could have been someone else pretending to be Jesus.  The gospels completely disagree on whom the women saw at the tomb: Matthew states an angle, Mark states a young man, Luke states two men and John states two angels.

Matthew states Jesus made his first appearance to the two Marys, Mark and John state it was Mary Magdalene, Luke states Cleopas and another woman, and 1 Corinthians states it was Cephas.

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Anne Graham Lotz declares that God sends terrorists and bad weather to punish America for defying Jesus.

Does god create new religions and send terrorists from those newer religions to punish people for not believing in one that he didn’t even create first?

How is early Christianity not a cult?

The New Testament contains several references to the world coming to an end “soon”:

1 John 2:18 It is the last time

Matthew 24:34 This generation shall not pass till all these things be fulfilled.

Matthew 16:28  There be some standing here which shall not taste of death till they see the son of man coming in his kingdom.

Luke 9:27 There be some standing here which shall not taste of death till they see the Kingdom of God.

Luke 21:32 This generation shall not pass away till all be fulfilled.

John 21:22-23 If I will that he tarry till I come…

Acts 2:17 In the last days, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh…

Corinthians 7:29 The time is short…

II Corinthians 1:14 We are your rejoicing, even as ye also are ours in the day of the Lord Jesus.

Phillippians 1:10 Ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ.

Phillippians 4:5 The Lord is at hand.

I Thessalonians 3:13 – The coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all his saints.

4:15-17 Which we are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord

5:23 – The coming of our Lord Jesus Christ

Hebrews 1:2 these last days…

9:26, the end of the world

10:25 the day is approaching

10:37 For yet a little while, he that shall come will come and will not tarry.

James 5:8 the coming of the Lord draweth nigh…

2 Peter 3 – last days;

Jude 1:14 The Lord cometh with 10,000 of his saints

Revelations 1:1, Things which must shortly come to pass

1:3 the time is at hand

22:10 the time is at hand

3:11 Behold I come quickly

22:7 Behold I come quickly

22:12 Behold I come quickly

22:20 Surely I come quickly

Matthew 10:23 Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel till the Son of man be come.

Many passages also tell followers to leave or hate their family and give up everything:

Matthew 10:35, 37 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and a daughter against her mother…He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worth of me. and he that loveth son and daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

Luke 14:26  If any moan come to me and hate not his father and mother and wife and children and bretheren and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.

Luke 14:33 Whosoever he be of you that foresaketh not all that he hath he cannot be my disciple.

Matthew 19:29 Everyone that hath forsaken houses, or brethren or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands for my name’s sake shall receive an hundredfold an shall inherit everlasting life.

Luke 12:33 Sell that ye have.

Matthew 10;21 Brother shall deliver up the brother to deat and the father the child; and the children shall rise up against their parents and cause them to be put to death. And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake.

Mark 10:29-30 There is no man that hath left house, or brethren or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands for my sake and the gospel’s.

Luke 5;11 And when they brought their ships to land, they forsook all and followed him.

Luke 18:29-30 There is no man that hath left house, or parents or brethren or wife or children for the kingdom of God’s sake who shall not receive manifold more in this present time and in the world to come, life everlasting.

Acts 2:44-45 And sold their possessions and goods and parted them to all men.

Acts 4:32-35 Neither was there any among them that lacked; for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them…

 

That’s not what they meant

I looked up to see when John the Disciple died.  It occurred to me that it was odd the he wrote the words, (John 3:16) “Whosoever believeth in me (Jesus) should not die, but have everlasting life.”  Yet John died (of old age).

And I thought, if you asked anyone about this, they would say, that’s not really what they meant. That you never die.  (But it’s a helluva marketing tool.)  But if that’s not what they meant, why did they keep saying it?  John says it again at 8:51, 10:28 and 11:26.  And every time somebody revises the Bible, they keep that wording, with a few exceptions:

Good news Everyone who Believes in him May not die But have eternal life
King James Whosoever Believeth in him Should not perish But have everlasting life
English Standard Whoever Believes in him Should not perish But have eternal life
1599 Whosoever Believeth in him Should not perish But have everlasting life
Young’s Literal Translation Everyone Who is believing in him May not perish But may have life age-during.
Contemporary English Everyone Who has faith in him And never really die Will have eternal life
American Standard Whosoever Believeth on him Should not perish But have eternal life
Amplified Whosever Believes and trusts in him as Savior Shall not perish But have eternal life
Christian Standard Everyone Who believes in him Will not perish But have eternal life
Common English Everyone who believes in him Won’t perish But have eternal life
Complete Jewish Bible Everyone Who trusts in him Instead of being utterly destroyed May have eternal life
Easy to read Everyone Who believes in him Would not be lost But have eternal life
God’s word Everyone Who believes in him Will not die But will have eternal life
International Chidlren’s Bible Everyone Who believes in him Will not be lost  
Jubilee Bible Everyone Who believes in him Will not perish But will have eternal life
Lexham Bible Everyone Who believes in him Will not perish But will have eternal life
Living Bible Everyone Who believes in him Will not perish But will have eternal life
Message Anyone By believing in him; who refuses to trust him Has long been under a death sentence without knowing it Can have a whole and trusting life
New Century Everyone Who believes in him May not be lost But have eternal life
New International Everyone Who believes in him Not die Eternal life
New Testament for Everyone Everyone Who believes Should not be lost But share in the life of God’s new Age (cue Vangelis)
New Life Version Whoever Puts his trust in God’s son Will not be lost But will have life that lasts forever
New Living Translation Everyone Who believes in him Will not perish But have eternal life
New Matthew None Who believe in him Should perish But should have everlasting life
New Revised Standard Everyone Who believes in him May not perish But may have eternal life
Passion Translation Everyone Who believes in him Shall never perish But experience everlasting life
Revised standard Everyone Who believes Not perish Eternal life
Tree of Life Version Everyone Who believes Not perish Eternal life
The voice Everyone Who believes Not face everlasting destruction But will have everlasting life.

If you never died, I’d have to dump my funeral home stock.

What if God had killed Adam for eating the apple?

So God told Adam if he ate of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, he will die that day.  And you would think that Adam knew that he was created by God.  And he would do anything he said.    But no, his wife listens to a talking snake, because no one had ever lied before.  Well, I take that back.  If you count God saying “if you eat this tree you will die the same day” then yeah, that’s the first lie.

Adam had ONE JOB.  And he blew it.

But what if they did die?  Would God just make another couple of humans?  Or would God, who at that point had made all the animals, have said, “You know what?  I’ll just go with the animals, they don’t give me any lip”.  You’d think he’d at least have killed the snake.  But he doesn’t even do that.  He even lets the snake on board the ark! WTF?

And Adam named all the animals

I just returned from a birding trip to Costa Rica, where I added over 100 new birds to my “life list”.   There are exactly 800 birds on the total list possible for Costa Rica.  They have a Latin name and a common name, which is often changed depending on the DNA discovered about the bird.  Often the birds are named after the person who discovered them, as in Passerini’s Tanager, or Cabani’s Ground Sparrow.   And that’s just Costa Rica, a country the size of a couple of states in the US.  There are over 8,000 different kind of birds, all with a unique Latin name.  Did Adam name the Nashville Warbler?  I doubt it.
And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found a helper meet for him.
And the man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the heavens, and to every beast of the field; but for man there was not found a help meet for him.
And the man gave names to all the livestock, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for Adam there was not found a helper [that was] suitable (a companion) for him.
And Adam gave names to all the livestock and to the birds of the air and to every [wild] beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found a helper meet (suitable, adapted, complementary) for him.
And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
The man gave names to all the livestock, to the birds of the sky, and to every wild animal; but for the man no helper was found corresponding to him.
The human named all the livestock, all the birds in the sky, and all the wild animals. But a helper perfect for him was nowhere to be found.
(S: iii) So the person gave names to all the livestock, to the birds in the air and to every wild animal. But for Adam there was not found a companion suitable for helping him.
So the Lord took some soil and made animals and birds. He brought them to the man to see what names he would give each of them. Then the man named the tame animals and the birds and the wild animals. That’s how they got their names. None of these was the right kind of partner for the man.
And Man gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the heavens, and to every beast of the field; but as for Adam, he found no helpmate, his like.
And Adam called all the beasts by their names, and all the fowls of the air, and all the cattle of the field: but for Adam there was not found a helper like himself.
The man gave names to all the tame animals, to all the birds in the air, and to all the wild animals. He saw many animals and birds, but he could not find a companion that was right for him.
The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him.
The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper fit for him.
The man gave names to all the ·tame animals [beasts; livestock], to the birds in the ·sky [heavens], and to all the ·wild animals [L animals of the field]. But ·Adam [or the man; 1:27] did not find a helper that was right for him [2:18].
The man therefore gave names unto all cattle, and to the fowl of the heaven, and to every beast of the field: but for Adam found he not an helper meet for him.
So the man named all the domestic animals, all the birds, and all the wild animals. But the man found no helper who was right for him.
So the man named all the birds and all the animals; but not one of them was a suitable companion to help him.
The man gave names to all the livestock, to the birds of the sky, and to every wild animal; but for the man no helper was found as his complement.
The man gave names to all the tame animals, to the birds in the sky and to all the wild animals. But Adam did not find a helper that was right for him.
The man gave names to all the livestock, to the birds that fly, and to each of earth’s animals, but there was not found a strength corresponding to him,
And the man gave names to every beast, and to the fowl of the heavens, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a help meet for him.
And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
And the man gave names to every domesticated animal and to the birds of heaven and to all the wild animals. But for theman there was not found a helper as his counterpart.
So the Lord God formed from the soil every kind of animal and bird, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever he called them, that was their name. But still there was no proper helper for the man.
God said, “It’s not good for the Man to be alone; I’ll make him a helper, a companion.” So God formed from the dirt of the ground all the animals of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the Man to see what he would name them. Whatever the Man called each living creature, that was its name. The Man named the cattle, named the birds of the air, named the wild animals; but he didn’t find a suitable companion.
The man gave names to all the livestock, to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.
So the man named all the domestic animals, all the birds, and all the wild animals. But the man found no helper who was right for him.
The man gave names to all the tame animals, all the birds of the air, and all the wild animals; but none proved to be a helper suited to the man.
The man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, but for Adam there was not found a helper suitable for him.
The man gave names to all the tame animals, to the birds in the sky, and to all the wild animals. But Adam did not find a helper that was right for him.
So the man named all the animals, the birds of the air, and the living creatures of the field, but for Adam no companion who corresponded to him was found.
So the man gave names to all the livestock, all the birds in the sky, and all the wild animals. But Adam didn’t find a helper that was just right for him.
So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds in the sky and all the wild animals. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.
So the man gave names to all the livestock, the birds in the sky and all the wild animals. But for Adam no suitable helper was found.
So Adam gave names to all cattle, to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field. But for Adam there was not found a helper comparable to him.
Adam gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every animal of the field. But there was no helper found that was right for Adam.
He gave names to all the livestock, all the birds of the sky, and all the wild animals. But still there was no helper just right for him.
The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner.
The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner.
The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner.
The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every animal of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper as his partner.
And the adam gave shemot to all behemah, and to the oph HaShomayim, and to every beast of the sadeh; but for Adam there was not found an ezer for him.
The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper fit for him.
The man gave names to all cattle, and to the birds of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for the man there was not found a helper fit for him.
So the man gave names to all of the livestock, and to the flying creatures of the sky, and to all the animals of the field; but for the man He did not find a well-matched helper for him.
Thus the man chose names for domesticated animals, birds, and wild beasts. But none of these creatures was a right and proper partner for Adam.
The man gave names to all livestock, and to the birds of the sky, and to every animal of the field; but for man there was not found a helper comparable to him.
And Adam called by their names all living things, and all volatiles [of (the) heaven(s)], and all unreasonable beasts of [the] earth. Forsooth to Adam was not found an helper like him. (And so Adam named all the living things, yea, all the birds of the air, and all the unreasoning beasts of the earth. But there was not found for Adam a helper like himself.)
And the man calleth names to all the cattle, and to fowl of the heavens, and to every beast of the field; and to man hath not been found an helper — as his counterpart.

Book Review

I just finished — ok, I skimmed, the book God: A Human History by Reza Aslan.  I liked his other book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth.  But this book I felt melded fact and fiction too much.  He states he is a believer in God but he is a pantheist, believing that God is US.  He speaks of the “ancestors of Adam and Eve”.   He states, “The very process through which the concept of God arose in human evolution compels us, consciously or not, to fashion God in our own image”.  You can’t talk about evolution and people inventing God and have there still be a God that you pray to to get the job, or ace an exam.  What’s the point of praying to a pantheistic God? Again, I keep coming back to the same themes: if there is a God, there would only be one religion.  And the same would be true for a pantheistic God.

God is man-made, not the other way around.  Which means that before there were humans, there was no “god”.  And humans are a relatively recent addition to the planet, much less the universe.  To say that God = man is another narcissistic construct of the whole idea.