25DEC2018 – Quote of the Day

Merry Christmas to All the Readers out there (even you Atheists and Democrats!)

Matthew 2:1-12 King James Version (KJV)

Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.

And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,

And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.

Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.

And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.

11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.

12 And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed into their own country another way.

24DEC2018 – Quote of the Day

Merry Christmas to All the Readers out there (even you Atheists and Democrats!)

Luke 2:1-20 King James Version (KJV)

And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.

(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)

And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.

And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)

To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.

And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.

And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.

16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.

18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.

20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

1APR2018 – Quote of the Day

John 20:1-29 KJV

1 The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre.

2 Then she runneth, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him.

3 Peter therefore went forth, and that other disciple, and came to the sepulchre.

4 So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun* Peter, and came first to the sepulchre.

5 And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in.

6 Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie,

7 And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself*.

8 Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed.

9 For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead.

10 Then the disciples went away again unto their own home.

11 But Mary stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre,

12 And seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.

13 And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.

14 And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus.

15 Jesus saith unto her,Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing* him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.

16 Jesus saith unto her,Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.

17 Jesus saith unto her,Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

18 Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her.

19 Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them,Peace be unto you.

20 And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord.

21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them,Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.

25 The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.

26 And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said,Peace be unto you.

27 Then saith he to Thomas,Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.

29 Jesus saith unto him,Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.

31MAR2018 – Quote of the Day

The Holy Bible King James Version

The Gospel According to Saint Matthew

Matthew 27

27:1 When the morning was come, all the chief priests and

elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death:

 

27:2 And when they had bound him, they led him away,

and delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.

 

27:3 Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned,

repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders,

 

27:4 Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood.

And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that.

 

27:5 And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple,

and departed, and went and hanged himself.

 

27:6 And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said,

It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood.

 

27:7 And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter’s field, to bury strangers in.

 

27:8 Wherefore that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day.

 

27:9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet,

saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him

that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value;

 

27:10 And gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord appointed me.

 

27:11 And Jesus stood before the governor:

and the governor asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews?

And Jesus said unto him, Thou sayest.

 

27:12 And when he was accused of the chief priests and elders, he answered nothing.

 

27:13 Then said Pilate unto him,

Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee?

 

27:14 And he answered him to never a word;

insomuch that the governor marvelled greatly.

 

27:15 Now at that feast the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would.

 

27:16 And they had then a notable prisoner, called Barabbas.

 

27:17 Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them,

Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?

 

27:18 For he knew that for envy they had delivered him.

 

27:19 When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying,

Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have

suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.

 

27:20 But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude

that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.

 

27:21 The governor answered and said unto them,

Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you?

They said, Barabbas.

 

27:22 Pilate saith unto them,

What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?

They all say unto him, Let him be crucified.

 

27:23 And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done?

But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.

 

27:24 When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made,

he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying,

I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.

 

27:25 Then answered all the people, and said,

His blood be on us, and on our children.

 

27:26 Then released he Barabbas unto them:

and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.

 

27:27 Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall,

and gathered unto him the whole band of soldiers.

 

27:28 And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe.

 

27:29 And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head,

and a reed in his right hand: and they bowed the knee before him, and mocked him,

saying, Hail, King of the Jews!

 

27:30 And they spit upon him, and took the reed, and smote him on the head.

 

27:31 And after that they had mocked him, they took the robe off from him,

and put his own raiment on him, and led him away to crucify him.

 

27:32 And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene,

Simon by name: him they compelled to bear his cross.

 

27:33 And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a place of a skull,

 

27:34 They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall:

and when he had tasted thereof, he would not drink.

 

27:35 And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots:

that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet,

They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots.

 

27:36 And sitting down they watched him there;

 

27:37 And set up over his head his accusation written,

THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.

 

27:38 Then were there two thieves crucified with him,

one on the right hand, and another on the left.

 

27:39 And they that passed by reviled him, wagging their heads,

 

27:40 And saying,

Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days,

save thyself. If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross.

 

27:41 Likewise also the chief priests mocking him, with the scribes and elders, said,

 

27:42 He saved others; himself he cannot save.

If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him.

 

27:43 He trusted in God; let him deliver him now, if he will have him:

for he said, I am the Son of God.

 

27:44 The thieves also, which were crucified with him, cast the same in his teeth.

 

27:45 Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.

 

27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying,

Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

 

27:47 Some of them that stood there,

when they heard that, said, This man calleth for Elias.

 

27:48 And straightway one of them ran, and took a spunge,

and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink.

 

27:49 The rest said,

Let be, let us see whether Elias will come to save him.

 

27:50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.

 

27:51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom;

and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;

 

27:52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,

 

27:53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection,

and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

 

27:54 Now when the centurion, and they that were with him,

watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done,

they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.

 

27:55 And many women were there beholding afar off,

which followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him:

 

27:56 Among which was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joses,

and the mother of Zebedees children.

 

27:57 When the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph,

who also himself was Jesus’ disciple:

 

27:58 He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.

Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.

 

27:59 And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth,

 

27:60 And laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock:

and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.

 

27:61 And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.

 

27:62 Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation,

the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,

 

27:63 Saying,

Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.

 

27:64 Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day,

lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people,

He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.

 

27:65 Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.

 

27:66 So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

An Old Guy Reconsiders Ecclesiastes

I’m not an intensely religious man.  I ponder the questions of who, what, how and why in much the same way I imagine men always have.  But I do read the Bible and I have my favorite passages.  In the Old Testament I gravitate to Ecclesiastes 9:7 to 9:10.

The King James Version translates it thus:

7Go thy way, eat thy bread with joy, and drink thy wine with a merry heart; for God now accepteth thy works.

8Let thy garments be always white; and let thy head lack no ointment.

 9Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun.

 10Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.

 

Now something in verse nine always bothered me.  “All the days of the life of thy vanity.”  So, Solomon says our lives and our happiness and our loves and our families are in vain?

I dug a little deeper and found that the Hebrew word being translated as vanity is “hevel.”  The root meaning of hevel I have read, is “mere breath.”  And the connotation is insubstantial, ephemeral.  That makes a little more sense.  Life is ephemeral.  We have a thousand versions of this.  “Time flies, “life is short,” “ars longa vita brevis,” etc., etc., etc.

I felt better about that.  I retranslated that passage:

Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the fleeting days of thy life, which he hath given thee under the sun, all thy fleeting days:

 That’s better.  So, that’s how I became a biblical scholar.  The pay is non-existent but I imagine the big guy up there will appreciate me straightening out the English language version of his book.  So, I’ve got that going for me which is nice.

But I was still disturbed by the negative vibe of all this ephemeral talk.  Was Solomon trying to bum us out?  In fact, the whole book of Ecclesiastes was a giant downer.  Here’s a guy who’s got everything in the world.  He’s got gold, silver and bronze literally piled up to the sky.  He’s got wives and concubines to the extent that he probably was considering a vow of chastity just to save his own life.  He’s blessed by God with matchless wisdom and a mighty nation that views his word as law.  He should be the happiest man on earth.  Why is he griping about everything under the sun?

It’s because he sees the end of the road.  He sees his own death on the horizon.  In other words, he’s old.

And now I’m old and I understand.  You see all the things you should have done or shouldn’t have done and you’re filled with regret and anger at yourself.  And since Solomon knows himself to be the wisest man on earth he sees it as his part to tell the rest of us to stop chasing all the meaningless stuff like gold and silver and empires and just eat our bread, drink our wine and love our wives for as long as we’re allowed.

Now I no longer see Ecclesiastes as a depressing work.  I see it as a friendly signpost to the rest of us to cut to the chase and take care of the things that have actual meaning.  Keeping healthy with food that is good, enjoying the simple pleasures of life and loving your wife and your family.  And don’t waste time.  Time is short.  Use it.  So that’s why my articles are short too.  I’ve got most of today off and I intend to have some fun.  Have a great day.

 

Since my readers don’t always stop by every day I figured I’d paste this poll on each post for a while to see what folks call themselves.  This is the post the poll came from  Who Are We?

… And that got me thinking. Who are the people who read my blog?  I thought it might be fun to see what the cross-section looked like.  If you feel like saying what you believe in, feel free to leave a comment and/or pick a label from the poll below.  I think it might be interesting.

 

Coming Soon
Total Votes : 56