Sunday, January 27, 2013

The Prayer Shawls of Auschwitz


Those who have visited Auschwitz are likely to find their thoughts straying back there on this day of Holocaust remembrance.

A visit both underwhelms with the very ordinariness of the buildings, yet at the same time the significance overwhelms, as Auschwitz reaffirms its special place in the pit of human history.

A visit needs to be approached like a pilgrimage, with preparation, otherwise there will be a numbing of the experience, a confusion of conflicting emotions which may encompass anger, indignation, bewilderment and the deepest sadness. The reactions of others around you may mirror your own, yet they may not, and that too can be a challenge. Some seem visibly shocked, some deeply affected, some struggle, whilst others present as merely curious and that response can be a challenge as it may offends one’s own interpretation.

The Holocaust was possible because the humanity of the rejected was stripped away from them as it was, is, and always will be from the unwanted, yesterday, today, and tomorrow, wherever we are in the world.

Holocaust Memorial Day needs its universal dimension.

There, all humanity was killed in a systematic, planned way; not in anger, but simply because that is what the state said needed to be done, and someone had to do it.

It has to be universal, but it also has to be rooted in places like Auschwitz, which shows how genocide moves beyond the personal killing of Abel by Cain. Here it is shown in all its bureaucratic, banal evil. Hair is cropped and piled here, children’s shoes collected and dumped over there.

When I visited, I realised that I would need to take a Bible and that I should find a suitable quiet place to read it. I decided on Psalm 88 and Psalm 10. I invite you to read them. You will find there the anguish of those who wore the prayer shawls captured in verse after verse.
Psalm 88
O LORD God of my salvation,
have cried day and night before thee:
let my prayer come before thee:
incline thine ear unto my cry;
for my soul is full of troubles:
and my life draweth nigh unto the grave.
I am counted with them that go down into the pit:
I am as a man that hath no strength:
free among the dead,
like the slain that lie in the grave,
whom thou rememberest no more:
and they are cut off from thy hand.
Thou hast laid me in the lowest pit,
in darkness, in the deeps.
Thy wrath lieth hard upon me,
and thou hast afflicted me with all thy waves.

Psalm 10
Why standest thou afar off, O LORD?
Why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?
The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor:
let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined.
For the wicked boasteth of his heart's desire,
and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhorreth.
The wicked, through the pride of his countenance,
will not seek after God:
God is not in all his thoughts.
His ways are always grievous;
thy judgments are far above out of his sight:
as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them.
He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved:
for I shall never be in adversity.
These Psalms surely must have been prayed under those shawls.

Psalm 88 is particularly striking because of its steadfast refusal to find any cause for optimism. "Life is grim,” says the Psalmist. “I know it is grim, God - you know it is grim.”

'Let’s not kid each other' is the subtext.

It concludes with no verse of praise, no expectation of redemption, no hope. This is why I think Psalm 88 must have been the Psalm for Auschwitz. The evil was so evil that it takes mortal man beyond hope.

Yet surprisingly Psalm 10 begins to recover from the blow. It ends:
O LORD thou wilt hear the desire of the meek
thou wilt strengthen their heart thou wilt incline thine ear
to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed
so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.
I chose to read these psalms before I went, and I found the place to contemplate their meaning as I stood before those prayer shawls displayed as if on a gibbet in a cabinet. Surely these psalms expressed the prayers of those who suffered and prayed under them.

Many who are separated from the scriptures by the modern world may be shocked by their candour, directness, and anger. God is no stranger to the outrage of those who suffer. Two things are striking: Psalm 88 is in the same spirit as those who urged Job to ‘Curse God and die’. Psalm 10, which retains hope, pre-figures the ‘Song of Mary’ – The Magnificat.

Contrast:
Let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined
For the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire
with
He has scattered the Proud
in the imagination of their hearts.
And so God did.

So He did.

The underlying sin of Auschwitz and the genocidal killer is that of Adam himself - Pride. The proud have supplanted the judgment of God with the judgment of themselves. They take to themselves the right to judge and the power of life and death itself, and when Man does that, it leads to places like Auschwitz.

It does not last. If the world hates His people, it hated Him first and God is not mocked for long.

Auschwitz also teaches that early in its story the Atheist Nazi State consigned to the camp the leaders of Polish Church lest it speak its truths, hold its peoples to hope, and challenge the inhumanity of what was to come, and the pride that underpinned it.

As God sent His son, so it sent His Church.

Amongst those was Maximillian Kolbe, ‘The Saint of Auschwitz, who lit a feint light in the darkness by laying down his life in place of another man. His story is worth reading today: it is one of sacrifice and the triumph of faith and hope.

Yet there is another lesson and paradox to be found at Auschwitz today. It is full of living Jews. Young Jews, confident Jews, handsome young men and beautiful young girls, tanned and healthy carrying their flag. They, too, are on pilgrimage and have prepared themselves for it.

They represent the refusal to allow the triumph of those who hated them then and who hate them today. Their presence demonstrates the power of hope in all places of despair, the light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.

God will not have it any other way. As the Jewish singer-poet Leonard Cohen has written: 'There is a crack in everything - that’s how the light gets in.'

It is true about our fractured humanity, our brittle pride, and our broken hearts.

Before the Prayer Shawls of Auschwitz, it is possible to doubt and to cry out, “How can this happen? How can this be redeemed?”

With His living Church and His Chosen People, the answer comes back on this and every other day: 'Because with God - all things are possible'.

(Posted by Brother Ivo)

164 Comments:

Blogger Naomi King said...

The Jewish people are a prophetic Nation who have brought both the Old and the New Testament to the dying world. Praise God.

27 January 2013 09:29  
Blogger len said...

The Holocaust was 'engineered' by the Nazi Party, but the Holocaust could never have happened without the collusion of a vast number of people this leads to the question ' why?'.

27 January 2013 09:39  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Each to their own on this one as far as constructing a window through which to view it before visiting. I've been to Prague a few times and they have a Holocaust memorial there. I visited at the end of a Jewish walking tour and I was completely unprepared. There wasn't piles of shoes or other grim displays in the main section, just some plain rooms with every wall, floor to ceiling, covered in this. Thousands and thousands of names and their dates of birth and death. It was so powerful that I burst into tears and couldn't stop for perhaps half an hour or so. The resulting gamut of emotions was right for me, I think. At the end, my abiding thought was that we must push back against ideologies, particularly homogenising ones which inevitably produce outliers and non-conformists, all the time and never let up.

27 January 2013 09:48  
Blogger Naomi King said...

And here is the end time prophecy about the Church and it's relationship with the Jewish people

There is a change coming, there is a shift coming. The age has seen the spreading of the Gospel, this Salvation, the power from Israel to the nations and from now there must be the ingathering back. From the ends of the Earth, the Gospel, the Children of Israel, the Church must come home, from the ends of the Earth. The return. For 2,000 years this Gospel, this Salvation, this power of Messiah has gone away from Israel, from Israel it has gone out. The Church must come back to Jerusalem and the Jewish people. The final ingathering. We must be ready, we are standing at the gate prophetically of something new. We are to return not as the tail but as the head. This power of Messiah must return. There is an ancient torch of the prophets and the apostles of Israel, the first Messianic Jews and Gentiles, that was the most powerful force ever seen on earth that must come again and we are to receive it. We are the closing act of what is to come. We are linked to the final outpouring of the spirit of God. We must be ready. We have a call to be watchmen. We are accountable if we do not sound the shofar, we are accountable, if we do not proclaim to people salvation we are the ones who are accountable. Son of Man, 'If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." It is the time, the end times, to be vigilant as watchmen, we don't have forever to repent, we don't have forever to get our lives together, we don't have forever to live out the holy calling He has put upon our lives and we don't have forever, it is time to wake up, if you would ever preach the Gospel, preach it now, if you would ever save the lost, save them now, if you would ever live victoriously as God calls you, live it now because we do not have forever.

27 January 2013 09:51  
Blogger Naomi King said...

Cont

It is time to be diligent and vigilant and to live in the Word and in Prayer as holy apostles and disciples as in the 1st century. God will pour out his Spirit on the people who are before Him. It is time to sound the alarm and to lift up our voices and save the lost. It is time to proclaim the Gospel and not be held back by fear or compromise. It is time to stop compromising with the world and to wake up and to wake up the world. It is time, we must start rising higher as we are the heirs of the apostles and the prophets, as they began we are the closing last days. Its for us to take up the ancient mantle and God will give it to us. It is time we stopped playing around and stop being complacent and to love God as never before. The time is short. To draw near as never before. To love others, to minister others, as never before. To say "I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Salvation, it is the power of God for Salvation to everyone who believes to the Jew first and also for the gentile". It is time to save the lost and to be all out, to be sold out for Him. For the Lord says "I have set you as watchmen on the walls, for Zion's sake, do not keep silent until Jerusalem blazes forth like a mighty touch". "Go through, go through the gates says the LORD, remove the stones, for a voice is crying in the wilderness prepare ye the way of the Lord make his paths straight, let every mountain be cast down and every valley be lifted up and the crocked ways be made straight and the rough places plain and a highway for our God that all flesh shall see the Salvation of our God. The hour is prophetic and prophetic is your calling. Let us my brothers and sisters for real begin to live like it, let us rise to the charge. May God open the eyes of your heart that we may see the lateness of the hour and the height and the glory of his calling. May God strengthen and empower us for such a time as this. May God have mercy and bring his end time revival that we might at last arise and shine because our light HAS come and the glory of the LORD will shine upon us. For Nations shall come to our light and Kings to the brightness of our rising to the most high and glorious name the KING of KINGS the anointed one, Jesus Christ, who is exalted for ever and ever. Amen. Praise the LORD

27 January 2013 09:52  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Brother Ivo

Thank you.

27 January 2013 10:32  
Blogger Corrigan said...

Naomi,

Give the "end times" garbage a rest, will you? It's heretical; God summons you, when He's ready; you don't summon Him.

27 January 2013 10:39  
Blogger jfleming said...

Let not the modern media nor politians allow the memory of these death camps be forgotten.

27 January 2013 10:39  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Jfleming

The lawyers and the judges at the European Court of Human Rights have ignored conscience in the Ladele case (under Article 9).

The implications of this judgment are percolating into the legal systems of Dublin in the west to Bucharest in the east; from Athens in the south to Moscow in the north.

History is about to repeat itself.

27 January 2013 11:16  
Blogger gentlemind said...

Nail on head: pride. Always pride.

27 January 2013 12:33  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Horrible things happen when you defy the will of God. And yet, here we are with the ECHR, a NAZI inspired cabal masquerading as an ostensibly benign instrument for good, and our own Cameron, promoting homosexuality as a beloved national treasure.

And we haven’t even mentioned the EU. What would the fisher of men say about the fish being dumped overboard dead !

27 January 2013 12:35  
Blogger David B said...

"'Because with God - all things are possible'."

Or to put it another way if god exists everything is permitted.

David B

27 January 2013 12:40  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. Look what the NAZIs ‘achieved’ when you take God out of the equation. And here you are today, wanting to take God out of the equation.

27 January 2013 12:44  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

David B:

I never know whether you intend your comments to provoke debate or to be taken seriously as theological commentary. I'll let you have this one - I'm not in the mood to start a fight under such an important and devastating subject.

27 January 2013 13:12  
Blogger David B said...

The Nazis were very anti atheist - do you really want me to seek out all those anti atheism and pro religion quotes from Hitler and others yet again?
Inspector

Many Nazis were Catholic, many others Protestant, and yet others some sort of theistic pagans.

Do you really want me to seek out those anti-Jewish quotes of Luther again, which so informed German history?

I will if you want, but it will make you look rather wilfully ignorant, since all this has been pointed out to you on numerous occasions before.

David

27 January 2013 13:16  
Blogger David B said...

Belfast - I am quite serious about this.

It has often been claimed that without god everything is permitted - something I would in fact dispute, based on my view of morality as neither god-given or some sort of Platonic ideal, but rather as an emergent, and still emerging phenomenon, but one in which everything is not permitted.

Further, I do rather think that the quote from the OP does in fact imply that with god everything is permitted, and further take the view that the holocaust could not have taken place were there a benevolent god sufficiently powerful to have stopped it.

Wouldn't a Calvinist, for example, insist that basically the holocaust must have been God's will?

To me this goes back to Epicurus

"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?"

I do like to provoke debate as well, mind, but I do think that the Problem of Evil provides real difficulties for any view of a benevolent god.

David

27 January 2013 13:28  
Blogger Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh said...

Laoidh am Beul an Là
A Hymn on the Lips of the Dawn


‘No poetry after Auschwitz’ - Theodor Adorno (Philosopher and Music-critic)

‘What do you think an artist is? An imbecile who has only his eyes if he is a painter, or ears if he is a musician, or a lyre at every level of his heart if he is a poet?...On the contrary, he is at the same time a political being...No, painting is not done to decorate apartments. It is an instrument of war for attack and defense against the enemy’- Pablo Picasso

There is poetry after Auschwitz.
I say it respectfully, for I am not a Jew.
We won’t give that victory to the Nazis -
to pluck the last gold from our mouth
and traumatize our tongue with a barbed-wire gag.
What but poetry shall deliver our speech?
- each metaphor a severed wire
- each poem an utter breach.


There is painting after Dachau.
I say it respectfully, for my arm bears no blue number.
We won’t give that victory to the Nazis -
to make an endless Kristalnacht of our eyes
and brand our retinas with after-images of horror.
What but painting shall screen our vision?
- each brushstroke a beam of light
- each canvas a prism of insight.


There is music after Buchenwald.
I say it respectfully, for I have worn no yellow star.
We won’t give that victory to the Nazis -
to banish every bird from the ruins of our head
and seal in our ears the undying echo of death.
What but music shall make our hearing sound?
- each vibrant string a trembling wing
- each melody a hymn on the lips of the dawn.

27 January 2013 13:31  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. There was no comeback to this man’s post at 12:44. Everyone knew that, including you, but that didn’t stop you, did it ?

No. Dodgy ground or not, your pride refused to let that truism pass. Because you couldn’t let it pass, because it threatens to underpin everything you stand for on this site. The secularisation of the entire world. A shameful desire, but it doesn't put you off.

And you have the raw nerve to THREATEN to backup your ludicrous position by portraying the NAZI party at divine Christian worship ???


27 January 2013 13:32  
Blogger IanCad said...

Thanks for that link DanJo.

You are so right. Names compound the horrors of the numbers.
Only two generations ago and the memory is fading fast.
The evil that man can do to his fellows.
That same spirit lives today.
Never Again.
The unofficial motto of The State Of Israel.

27 January 2013 13:53  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

the Atheist Nazi State

This statement requires some defense, for it is not true in my historical understanding. National Socialist Germany was not an atheist state in the sense that Communist Russia was atheist. Certainly National Socialist Germany was an explicitly anti-Christian state, and it was actively trying to recast Christianity into a National Socialist form much as liberals are doing to Christianity today. The SS was drenched in paganism, and that is what Germany was evolving towards. If Germany had won the war, that is what would eventually have emerged.

carl

27 January 2013 13:58  
Blogger D. Singh said...

OIG

Outstanding!

27 January 2013 14:03  
Blogger michael north said...


I wonder at what point David B would like a benevolent God to step in to prevent evil. What sort of body count should trigger divine intervention? Where is the threshold on one side of which we have free will and on the other we are sent off for bad behaviour?

27 January 2013 14:04  
Blogger David B said...

Inspector

To quote Hitler

"Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord."

And to quote Luther

Accordingly, it must and dare not be considered a trifling matter but a most serious one to seek counsel against this and to save our souls from the Jews, that is, from the devil and from eternal death. My advice, as I said earlier, is:

"First, that their synagogues be burned down, and that all who are able toss sulphur and pitch; it would be good if someone could also throw in some hellfire...

Second, that all their books-- their prayer books, their Talmudic writings, also the entire Bible-- be taken from them, not leaving them one leaf, and that these be preserved for those who may be converted...

Third, that they be forbidden on pain of death to praise God, to give thanks, to pray, and to teach publicly among us and in our country...

Fourth, that they be forbidden to utter the name of God within our hearing. For we cannot with a good conscience listen to this or tolerate it..."

If you wish to persist in trying to lay the guilt for the atrocities in Germany on atheism, then you no longer have the excuse of ignorance, wilful or otherwise, and any such attempt can only be laid at the door of ... well, work it out for yourself.

Want me to quote some German churchmen concerning the Nazi rise to power?

David

27 January 2013 14:06  
Blogger David B said...

Michael North - warning Adam about the serpent might have been an idea.

If there were an Adam

Or a serpent.

Or a God.

David

27 January 2013 14:11  
Blogger Naomi King said...

Our concern should be that President Obama is planning to supply nuclear fuel to Iran to do the process all over again !

As for Obama this is from Asia Times online from the 11th January ...

"US President Barack Obama has made a valiant move by nominating the former US senator from Nebraska, Chuck Hagel, as the next secretary of defense, defying an avalanche of accusations that Hagel is too "tough" on Israel and too "soft" on Iran. By choosing Hagel, who is also in favor of dialogue with Palestine's Hamas and Lebanon's Hezbollah, Obama has sent an important signal regarding his desire to give his failed "Iran engagement" policy a new lease of life. Obama's pick for secretary of state, the Massachusetts Senator John Kerry, is also likely to be more in sync with Obama's Iran policy than the outgoing Hillary Clinton ever was. Like Kerry, Hagel has in the past hinted at recognising Iran's nuclear rights. In a recent interview with Al-Monitor, Hagel referred approvingly to another Al-Monitor article that urged the White House to take President Mahmud Ahmadinejad's offer of stopping the 20% enrichment if the outside world was willing to guarantee the delivery of nuclear fuel to Iran. The Iran nuclear crisis stands a good chance of de-escalation in 2013 if both sides show the necessary flexibility. Conditions include the US and its allies agreeing to tolerate Iran's enrichment program at a low ceiling and higher degree of transparency, and Iran consenting to a technical formula regarding its enriched pile of uranium." 'Obama duo offers new hope on Iran' By Kaveh L Afrasiab fromi http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/OA11Ak02.html

So there we have it Obama the Sunni muslim without any constraint of having to answer to his electorate again.

27 January 2013 14:20  
Blogger Naomi King said...

Corrigan said..."Naomi, Give the "end times" garbage a rest, will you? It's heretical."

Explain please, is the Revelation of John the Divine heretical ? The Prophecy came from Messianic Rabbi Jonathan Cahn and was given at the Messianic Association of America Address in 2011.

It certainly seems to fit to me and we appear to be in a time of the God of Judgment, note financial and moral collapse of the western world.

27 January 2013 14:33  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

David B

Your error is to presume on the purpose and intent of God. You presume that He thinks like you and acts like you. Is God unwilling to address the problem of evil? But in fact He has already done so. Irrevocably and finally in the Cross of Christ. Is God unable to address the problem of Evil? But in fact He has already done so. Irrevocably and finally in the Cross of Christ. It is God who will uncover each man from the dust of the Earth and call him forth to judgment. It is God who will visit punishment on men for the evil they have done. It is God who redeems men from evil through the work of Christ.

Your problem is not with the willingness or capability or power of God to do these things. Your problem originates in the firm conviction that a Just and Righteous and Omnipotent God ought to produce certain outcomes at certain times in accordance with your expectations. You want a Bread King. You implicitly state "If I was God, this is how things would be. Things aren't that way. Where then is this 'god?' "

But you are not God. Your thoughts are not His thoughts. Your ways are not His ways. Your purposes are not His purposes. It was God who actively purposed good to come from Joseph being sold into Egyptian slavery. It was God who actively purposed good to come from the crucifixion of Christ. It is God who works all things together to the good of those who love Him, who are called according to his purpose.

If you do not understand the divine purpose of the things you see around you, then reflect on the fact that you are a limited finite transient creature who cannot see and does not know and does not understand the things of God. You would make God into a man that you could occupy His place. But you are not God. You never will be God. And so you have no standing to judge Him. As it is written:

Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me. Will you even put me in the wrong? Will you condemn me that you may be in the right? Have you an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like his? Adorn yourself with majesty and dignity; clothe yourself with glory and splendor. Pour out the overflowings of your anger, and look on everyone who is proud and abase him. Look on everyone who is proud and bring him low and tread down the wicked where they stand. Hide them all in the dust together; bind their faces in the world below. Then will I also acknowledge to you that your own right hand can save you. Job 40:7-14

You can do none of these things. You fret about evil but your solution is to cast all of it into a purposeless meaningless void where men remain in the dust and their deeds with them. Such a hopeless outcome. "There is no God. Despair then in your misery for there is no remembrance where you are going."

carl

27 January 2013 14:38  
Blogger michael north said...


David B @14.11

So if God had simply warned Adam about the serpent, no one would ever have done any wrong in the whole of human history? Adam would still have been free to choose, which leaves the question as it was. At which point in the series of evil decisions taken by Adam and his descendants should God intervene?

27 January 2013 14:41  
Blogger Naomi King said...

...
"It certainly seems to fit to me and we appear to be in a time of the God of Judgment, note financial and moral collapse of the western world."

Not to mention abortion and the sacrifice of our unborn children.

27 January 2013 14:41  
Blogger Brother Ivo said...

I think a little quiet contemplation is needed to explore the folly of that characterisation.

27 January 2013 14:49  
Blogger Ivan said...


Both Hitler and Stalin understood the power of religion over the minds of men. Hence the pseudo religious rallies of the Nazis, with their Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Fuhrer cries, which is a clear parody of the Body of Christ and brought the retort of all true Christans that Jesus Christ is the Fuhrer. Stalin gained his education in a seminary, he knew the power of the Mother Church over the Russians, and all effective Russian propaganda had appeal to it. The medieval theologians summarised it as: The Devil is the ape of God, ie all effective movements to mislead people have to work as parodies of the Christian religion. This stuff is way over the head of the likes of the Boetians and it is useless to engage to them.

So there we have it Obama the Sunni muslim without any constraint of having to answer to his electorate again

Oh do give it a rest. Like you I too had my fears that he was a secret Muslim in 2008 at the elections. At that time I was something of Christian Zionist nut. The truth is Obama has done nothing at all to undermine the Israelis. The Iranians are under a punishing embargo which you can read up if you care. At this stage in George Bush's presidency there were any number of (perhaps make-believe) conferences and dialogues to bring the Israelis and Palestinians together. Do you see anything like that now? If anything it is far worse for the Palestinans, with the Israelis continuing with their land-grabs with greater impunity. Spare a thought for the native Christians there who have suffered these confiscations. I've followed the Middle East since I was a boy way back in 70s and frankly the Obama is as pro-Israeli as any other.

Ivan

27 January 2013 14:59  
Blogger Anglican said...

30th January 2013 - next Wednesday - is a sombre anniversary. It is the 80th anniversary of Hitler being appointed German Chancellor.


David B – Hitler certainly referred to ‘God’ when it suited him. But in his final speech at his trial (March 27 1924) for the Munich putch attempt, he claimed, “The goddess of the eternal court of history …..[will find] us not guilty.” He was essentially a pagan. The Wandervogel, reorganised by the Nazis, held solstice celebrations. Hitler, & the Nazis, believed in the Aryan master race and, if they believed in any gods at all, believed in the old Norse/Germanic gods. Hitler was bitterly opposed to Christianity.


27 January 2013 15:01  
Blogger Ivan said...

...and frankly the Obama Administration as any other.

27 January 2013 15:01  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

David B:

I was going to reply, but see no reason to duplicate Carl's post, which outlines my own position.

Your criticism of God - like many atheists - derives from being inseparable from your rejection of His existence. The base line you start from is that man is the centre of the moral universe, and determiner of what is right and wrong. Any rival claimants to this authority are consequently measured against this. In effect you treat God as a man in your criticism - a position which effortlessly blurs with your view that God is merely the invention of man, and which implicitly permits you to criticise not God (who does not "really" exist) but those who believe in him.

To a more personal response: I have watched friends, family, brothers and sisters be wracked with suffering, both natural and as a result of other's evil (and even their own self-inflicted evil). I have also experienced, in my own limited way, suffering and evil, and have inflicted suffering and done evil. I affirm God as my Shepherd, and know both within my own life and the lives of loved ones the truth known to the Psalmist:

"Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me."

Blessed is the Lord in times of trial. Blessed is the Lord when He takes away. Blessed is the Lord in the Death Camps.

27 January 2013 15:05  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

'His Chosen People'

The folly of such belief underscores the history of followers of the Jewish religion. Such a cruel con-trick as ever was invented. It's the equivalent of supposing the validity of such a thing as a 'Master Race'.

27 January 2013 15:07  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught

It's the equivalent of supposing the validity of such a thing as a 'Master Race'.

Ironic that you should say this, since the theological point of the choice was precisely that the Jews weren't a Master Race. You have the concept exactly backwards.

carl

27 January 2013 15:17  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. Gestapo organisation. Courtesy Wikki. Enemies of the state to be monitored. Luckily for you, no mention of amoral secular aethiests. In fact, one would go so far as to suggest that amoral secular aethiests would rise quite impressively in the organisation...

The Gestapo became known as Amt IV ("Department or Office IV") with Heinrich Müller as its chief.[12] In 1942 Ernst Kaltenbrunner became the RSHA chief after Heydrich was assassinated in Prague.[12] The specific internal departments of Amt IV were as follows:[16]

[edit] Department A (Political opponents)
Communists (A1)
Counter Sabotage (A2)
Reactionaries and Liberals (A3)
Assassinations (A4)

[edit] Department B (Sects and Churches)
Catholics (B1)
Protestants (B2)
Freemasons (B3)
Jews (B4)

[edit] Department C (Administration and Party Affairs)

The central administrative office of the Gestapo, responsible for card files of all personnel including all officials.

[edit] Department D (Occupied Territories)

A repeat of departments A and B for use outside the Reich.
Opponents of the Regime (D1)
Churches and Sects (D2)

[edit] Department E (Counterintelligence)
In the Reich (E1)
Policy Formation (E2)
In the West (E3)
In Scandinavia (E4)
In the East (E5)
In the South (E6)

It should be noted that in 1941 Referat N, the central command office of the Gestapo was formed. However, these internal departments remained and the Gestapo continued to be a department under the RSHA umbrella.

27 January 2013 15:39  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. Why drag Luther into it. He wasn’t a NAZI, just a ‘good’ protestant. Are you anti German, because NAZIsm is alive today, in lesser countries, Islamic ones. The fact they are racially inept peoples who are unable to administer a sweepstake, and thus don’t have it in them to match what the originals did, is to our relief. The fact that they exist here and now is to our regret.

27 January 2013 15:47  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

CJ

I did not suggest that the Jews were a supposed master race and the reference was one of intended ironic comparison of the stupidity of either concept.

27 January 2013 15:49  
Blogger Corrigan said...

Naomi,

We're ALWAYS living in a corrupt era, although some eras are more corrupt thn others, and the revalation of John is in no way definitive as regards time. The early Christians expected the end of the world within their lifetimes, some modern Christians still do. Sooner or later, somebody will be right, but surely by now, after 2000 years, it's penetrated that it isn't for us to know the day or the hour? There is a sin called prometheanism, literally stealing the fire of the gods. Or in this case, of God. Behave as though tomorrow is the day, and be thankful if it doesn't turn out to be. The opinions of a rabbi, messianic or otherwise, carry no greater weight than my own, or yours, for that matter.

27 January 2013 15:51  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...


One was viewing a documentary of the European plagues of the middle ages. This man knew that the overall death toll was about a third of the population. What he didn’t appreciate until yesterday was in towns, the death toll typically exceeded 50%. THEY were the real end times, so lets have no more sandwich board nonsense about us living out our last days today.


27 January 2013 16:10  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

27 January 2013 16:13  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Dreadnaught

Is the concept of a 'chosen people' stupid because God wouldn't chose a people for Himself? But that proposition is unsustainable because God has the freedom to do as he desires. Are you then saying that the concept is stupid because the idea of God is stupid? What then have you done besides express you own unbelief?

And it is doubly ironic because the the truth of your first premise ('There is no master race') is dependent upon the falsehood of your second premise ('There is no God.') For without God, the answer to the question of a 'master race' is determined solely by the power to give an answer. If a victorious race says "We are the master race" then it is the master race. Who is there to gainsay them? Human equality proceeds from the moral equidistance of each man from God. Without God it is a meaningless concept.

carl

27 January 2013 16:15  
Blogger michael north said...


carl jacobs @ 16.15

"Without God it (equality) is a meaningless concept." Obama started touting that meaningless concept when he began quoting the Declaration of Independence, leaving out any mention of God. There is nothing self-evident about human equality; just look at the slobs all around you.

It is because we are all creatures that we are equal. Our equality consists in our common inferiority.

27 January 2013 16:47  
Blogger Naomi King said...

At this time maybe it would be good to reflect on Saeed Abedini, awaiting 'sentencing' by the hanging judge Pir-Abassi this week for his witness of the Christian Faith in Iran, and his situation ?

I had not heard Saeed's testimony “Prison is a test of faith. I was always worried that the storms of this life would break the ship of my faith, but when you stand steadfast, the storms are like a nice breeze. Nothing can break my faith. These walls have created more fervor for me to love others through sharing the Gospel, but more than that, the walls have deepened my love for my Savior. I feel the prayers of all who are praying for me.”

What an inspiration to us all this young man is.

27 January 2013 17:15  
Blogger Brother Ivo said...

Corrigan/ Naomi Matthew 25 .13 tells us that none knows the day or the hour; one can hardly be " bible based" and " end times" confident at one and the same time.

27 January 2013 17:33  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Auschwitz has never presented me with difficulties. It's axiomatic in Christian anthropology. Man is by nature evil, and loves to do evil. Evil men do evil things. Could it therefore happen again? Of course it could. The nature of man does not change. In fact, it has already happened in other places and with much greater death tolls. The Cultural Revolution dwarfs the Holocaust in terms of sheer numbers. North Korea is even today laced with labor camps. The Germans of course sought to deliberately exterminate a specific people, and that makes the Holocaust unique. But it is by no means a one-off in human history.

The modern 'enlightened' West however is transfixed by Auschwitz and all that it represents. It doesn't make pilgrimages to Kolyma. In fact, it by and large has no idea what or where Kolyma is. It doesn't look at North Korea and say "We must end this! Never again!" It dismisses both with a barely hidden conceit about Asian barbarity. Yet the modern West stares intently at Auschwitz, and not for the sake of the victims. Here it encounters evil - something it has trouble comprehending or explaining in a world devoid of absolutes. It stares as into a mirror, and hopes not to see its own reflection.

The Holocaust after all originated in Germany. The Germany of Bach and Beethoven and Goethe and Heisenberg and Schleiermacher. It originated in the center of European civilization. The question hangs about like a thick mist. Not "How did it happen?" but "How did it happen here among people like me?" And the more important question is unspoken. "How do I know I would not have participated? What separates me from them?" That is why people examine so intently the remains of the Third Reich. They search among the ashes to find some exculpation for the Progress of Man - some reason to believe they personally exist beyond the possibility of joining the mob.

But they can find no satisfactory answer. So they return again, and again, and again. And they sift through the same ashes well-stirred ashes with same well-worn stick.

carl

27 January 2013 17:47  
Blogger John Magee said...

We must never forget the Nazi Holocaust of the Jewish people.

The Holocaust of the Jewish people has been the focus documentaries, movies, books, etc now for decades and rightly so.

There was another holocaust in Europe in the last century which gets no attention. At least 40 million died in this holocaust which happened before, during, and after the Nazi Holocaust of the Jewish people from 1939-1945.

This was the Soviet Holocaust from 1917 - 1953.

When will there be a day set aside for the world to remember the over 100 million who were murdered in the last century under Communism in the USSR, Mao's China, Cambodia, Laos, Tibet, in Eastern Europe, North Korea...

Will the lost graves of tens of millions who died s slave laborers in the tundra of the Soviet labor camps in Kolyma and the Magadan Peninsula and all over the vast Soviet Gulag get their day of remembrance too someday?

In the former Soviet labor camps on the Magandan Peninsula in Eastern Siberia today their are bones scattered on the surface of the landsape for dozens of miles today of the millions who died there. No one cares for them. You can see the pictures of this endles field of bones if you search the internet.

No one sheds a tear nor is there a world remembrance day for the 7 to ten million who died from 1931 to 1934 during the forced Ukrainian famine which took place 6 years before the Nazi Jewish Holocuast...

Death by slow starvation is a terrible way to die. Especially when Soviet commissars ruthlessly took the last grain of wheat and even weeds from millions of starving people in the Ukraine...

Let's also say a prayer for the hundreds of thousands of Polish Roman Catholics who also died at the hands of the Nazi's because they were members of the Polish educated classes, the aristocracy, the clergy, and politicians at Auschwitz from 1939 until 1942 when it then became the major camp in the Nazi extermination camp system in Poland for the extermination of the Jews of Europe...

Shalom

27 January 2013 17:47  
Blogger len said...

The 'prophetic clock' started ticking when the Jews returned to Israel.
Prophesy is given by God so that we should know the times(not specifically )Bible prophesy is one of the ways Christians can 'prove' the Bible

The Jews did not connect Bible prophesy with the coming of Jesus Christ and suffered because of it "because you did not know the time of your visitation" (Luke 19:41-44).
Christians should know and be aware of 'the times'.

27 January 2013 17:56  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Len

The OT Jewish state of Israel ended permanently and forever when the temple was destroyed in AD 67. The Priesthood is gone. It can never be recreated. Without the Priesthood, there can be no OT Israel. There is now One High Priest. The modern state of Israel has nothing whatsoever to do with either eschatology or the Old Testament.

carl

27 January 2013 18:00  
Blogger non mouse said...

Thank you again, Br. Ivo.

Also: Well said many commentators today, especially OIG @ 12:35,12:44, 13:32; AiB as ever, but especially @ 15:05

Mr. Jacobs @ 14:38 you bring clarity indeed. To which I would add that we identify Satan's Fall as being predicated on such Pride as you describe. Blinded by his own brilliance, that Angel believed he was as good as God; he couldn't see the difference.
This concept relates to the suggestion that, in order to discern Evil, we must also recognise its opposite (God, btw, is the OE for "good"). St. John presented the contrast in 1:5 of his Gospel--- "And the Light shineth in the darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not."

I commend you all for your patience! You may be wasting time, of course, there being none so blind, etc. as pot-stirrers who are busy convincing themselves that they're smarter than everybody else. Purblind Christians applied this principle, when I was agnostic and trying to believe. They would get snotty and say: "I will not argue with you; my religion forbids it." Thereafter, the Lord took my vision into His own hands, and He healed it... As Br. Ivo reminds us: "With God, all things are possible."
Oh... and while that may mean we have free will to do as we choose, it does not mean that we do so with impunity. God's Universal Law delivers consequences, even through unwitting agencies.

Ivan @ 15:49: The Devil is the ape of God, ie all effective movements to mislead people have to work as parodies of the Christian religion.
Quite, and we see this repeatedly.
I say "Judaeo"-Christian in the light that Christ was himself a Jew. He was a reformer, but still a Jew; He was also the motivator through whom knowledge of God, who chose to reveal Himself to the Jews, spread abroad.

Finally, vis-a-vis present-day difficulties of the Jews. Ah well, there are 'more ways of killing a cat'... We have good news of sabotage in Iran, so if Br. Ivo and His Grace will permit the link:
http://www.timesofisrael.com/israeli-minister-welcomes-report-of-huge-blast-at-iran-nuclear-plant/

27 January 2013 18:01  
Blogger michael north said...


John Magee's comment at 17.47 should remind us that history is now written by the entertainment industry. The word "holocaust" has become the accepted term for the Nazis' "Final Solution" because of a German TV film of that title. The word the Jews used was "Shoah". The crimes of the other diabolic regimes of the 20th century do not fit into showbiz with such dramatic clarity.

27 January 2013 18:07  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

The Inspector thanks Mr Singh and mouse for their kind recognition of some of his contribution today. Believe this man when he says that praise from you two is praise indeed...

27 January 2013 18:11  
Blogger len said...

It would seem that Hitler was more influenced by Darwinism than Christianity.Darwinism has spawned many atheists and also led to the growth of the Abortion industry, eugenics, and the moral downturn of our Civilisation.If we are but 'animals' then anything is permissible.

27 January 2013 18:12  
Blogger len said...

Carl are you saying that Israel no longer has any function to perform in the plans of God?.

27 January 2013 18:16  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

len

I am saying that the nation of Israel has been superceded by the Church. The OT nation of Israel no longer has any part in God's plan. There is now neither Jew nor Greek, male nor female, slave nor free. We are all one in Christ Jesus.

carl

27 January 2013 18:23  
Blogger len said...

Carl what do you make of "For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery, lest you be wise in your own estimation, that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in; 26 and thus all Israel will be saved; just as it is written,“The Deliverer will come from Zion. He will remove ungodliness from Jacob.” 27 “And this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins.” 28 From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God’s choice they are beloved for the sake of the fathers; 29 for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable," (Rom. 11:25-29).

27 January 2013 18:34  
Blogger len said...

Carl do you subscribe to 'replacement theology?.

27 January 2013 18:35  
Blogger Laurence Boyce said...

Can I quote the Bible too? Matthew 27:

"Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children."

Allegedly . . .

Religion excels at the self-fulfilling prophecy.

27 January 2013 18:38  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Lawrence Boyce

Anyone can quote scripture. Even the father of lies can quote Scripture, and indeed he did so. But can you quote it with wisdom and understanding? Aye, there's the rub.

carl

27 January 2013 18:44  
Blogger Owl said...

YG, thank you for your excellent article. You have humbled my pride.
I am sad and can only rely on God.
Carl, thank you for your clarity, I cannot even approach your level of insight.

"There but for the grace of God, go I"

27 January 2013 18:50  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

len

I wonder what connection you might find between Romans 11 and the establishment in 1947 of a secular state in the Middle East called Israel. You might as well say "Look, there is a modern state called Egypt. The pharaohs are reborn."

Do I hold to 'replacement theology?' Tell me what you mean by that phrase and I will answer. I am an Amillenialist. That means I assert that certain prophesies to Israel will be fulfilled in the Church. That's historic position of Christianity before Darby produced his eschatological innovations about 100 years ago.

carl

27 January 2013 18:50  
Blogger michael north said...


carl jacobs' post @18.23 hits on a subject which has been on my mind for a long time. He maintains, essentially that the job of the Jews is over. God chose them to be the vehicle of his plan for the world. He prepared them through what Christians call the Old Testament, but when he revealed the fulness of his plan, in the person of Jesus of Nazareth, his chosen people rejected that person, accused him of blasphemy and got the people in charge (the Romans) to put him to death.

That makes perfect sense to me. But there is a significant number of self-styled Christians (mostly in the USA) who believe that the Jews still have a significant part to play in the final Showdown At The End Of The World. The Vatican also seems to believe that God hasn't finished with the Jews yet.
The Muslims certainly haven't.

27 January 2013 18:58  
Blogger len said...

Carl 'the connection'

Amos 9:14-15
I will bring back my exiled people Israel; they will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them. They will plant vineyards and drink their wine; they will make gardens and eat their fruit. I will plant Israel in their own land, never again to be uprooted from the land I have given them,” says the Lord your God.



Ezekiel 37:10-14
So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet--a vast army. Then he said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’ Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord.’”

In Isaiah 66:7-8, the prophet foreshadowed the re-birth of Israel in 1948. Isaiah describes a woman giving birth before going into labor, and he speaks of a country being born in one day. This accurately describes what happened on May 14, 1948 - when the Jews declared independence for Israel as a united and sovereign nation for the first time in 2900 years.

27 January 2013 19:00  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Brother Ivo,

Thank you for a thoughtful and moving tribute on this very emotive and difficult issue.

27 January 2013 19:03  
Blogger len said...

Verse 22-24 “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am going to do these things, but for the sake of my holy name, which you have profaned among the nations where you have gone. I will show the holiness of my great name, which has been profaned among the nations, the name you have profaned among them. Then the nations will know that I am the LORD, declares the Sovereign LORD, when I show myself holy through you before their eyes.

27 January 2013 19:03  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

len

So, I ask for a connection in Romans 11 and you quote OT prophesy to me. That in itself is revealing. But let's go with this. I haven't yet seen any connection between the fulfillment of those prophesies and the establishment of the secular state of Israel. I see your ipse dixit. ("Look! OT Prophesy! New state of Israel! It's prophesy fulfilled!") I haven't seen any credible exegesis that connects the two.

carl

27 January 2013 19:15  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

David B,

However, there were many of the 'righteous among the nations' who were of the Christian faith and opposed the Nazi regime and did whatever they could to fight it and save as many Jewish people as they could.

For example (quoted from Wiki) :

Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Zakynthos, who, when ordered by the Axis occupying forces to submit a list of all Jews on the island, submitted a document bearing just two names: his own and the Mayor's. Consequently all 275 Zante Jews were saved.

Archbishop Damaskinos - Archbishop of Athens during the German occupation. He formally protested the deportation of Jews and quietly ordered churches under his jurisdiction to issue fake Christian baptismal certificates to Jews fleeing the Nazis. Thousands of Greek Jews in and around Athens were thus able to claim that they were Christian and were thus saved.

Archbishop Johannes de Jong, later Cardinal, of Utrecht, Netherlands, who drew up together with Titus Brandsma O.Carm. († Dachau, 1942) a letter in which he called for all Catholics to assist persecuted Jews, and in which he openly condemned the Nazi German "deportation of our Jewish fellow citizens" (From: Herderlijk Schrijven, read from all pulpits on Sunday 26 January 1942).

Alfred Delp S.J., a Jesuit priest who helped Jews escape to Switzerland while rector of St. Georg Church in suburban Munich; also involved with the Kreisau Circle. Executed February 2, 1945 in Berlin.

Rufino Niccacci, a Franciscan friar and priest who sheltered Jewish refugees in Assisi, Italy, from September 1943 through June 1944.

Maximilian Kolbe - Polish Conventual Franciscan friar. During the Second World War, in the friary, Kolbe provided shelter to people from Greater Poland, including 2,000 Jews. He was also active as a radio amateur, vilifying Nazi activities through his reports.

Bernhard Lichtenberg - German Catholic priest at Berlin's Cathedral. Sent to Dachau because he prayed for Jews at Evening Prayer.

Hugh O'Flaherty - an Irish Catholic priest who saved about 4,000 Allied soldiers and Jews; known as the "Scarlet Pimpernel of the Vatican". Retold in the film The Scarlet and the Black.

Sára Salkaházi - a Hungarian Roman Catholic nun who sheltered approximately 100 Jews in Budapest.

Andrey Sheptytsky - Metropolitan Archbishop of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, harbored hundreds of Jews in his residence and in Greek Catholic monasteries. He also issued the pastoral letter, "Thou Shalt Not Kill", to protest Nazi atrocities.

The Sisters of Social Service, nuns who saved thousands of Hungarian Jews; included Sister Sara Salkahazi, recognized by Yad Vashem as well as beatified.

Archbishop Stefan of Sofia - Bishop of Sofia and Exarch of Bulgaria, actively supported Dimitar Peshev's pressure against the Bulgarian government to cancel the deportation of the 48 000 Bulgarian Jews.

André and Magda Trocmé - A French pastor and his wife who led the Le Chambon-sur-Lignon village movement that saved 3,000-5,000 Jews.

Omelyan Kovch - Ukrainian Greek Catholic priest who was deported to Treblinka camp for helping thousands of Jews. He was canonized by pope John Paul II

Dietrich Bonhoeffer – a German Lutheran pastor who joined the Abwehr (a German military intelligence organization) which was also the center of the anti-Hitler resistance, was involved in operations to help German Jews escape to Switzerland. Shot in a concentration camp.

27 January 2013 19:30  
Blogger Naomi King said...

It is a truth that the Jews are forgathering again in the Land of Promise from all the four ends of the earth. It is also a truth that the Messianic Jew in rapidly growing in number and there are now many messianic congregations in the Land. These are all fulfillments of Biblical prophecy.

I am greatly saddened at the hardness of heart of my brothers in Christ toward God's chosen people. Remember salvation is for the Jew first and also for the gentile. Remember God made an everlasting covenant with Abraham and his descendants, throughout all generations, forever. And those that bless them (the Jews) will be blessed and those that curse them will be cursed.

27 January 2013 19:35  
Blogger Owl said...

David, their light still shines. Thank you.

27 January 2013 19:41  
Blogger michael north said...


8pm, and still no sign of the Catholic heavy gang and their punchbag.

27 January 2013 20:08  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

The Nazi Holocaust was an evil act and should never be forgotten. It is an example to us of man’s inhumanity to man. Just as the events of the Old Testament are 'ensamples' to us as a guide as to how we respond to God’s word and teaching.
Life as a Christian is not guaranteed to be a bed of roses, otherwise there would be no mention of persecution. Otherwise there are simple rules to live by.
I am told to 'occupy till He comes.
Any one of us could die tomorrow so, plan as though one will live forever but be ready to be with the Lord at any time.
Grace is what sees us through all circumstances.

27 January 2013 20:26  
Blogger non mouse said...

Mr. Jacobs @1800 -- this is an instance where I must question your adamantine certainties.

I do not accept that you know the mind of God. American you are, but that doesn't give you a hot-line to Him.

You may not be aware of how American your outlook is. You people project a high and mightiness: a sense of self-perceived glory about yourselves in the land you stole from its indigenes. You betray no sense of the differences between your points of view and those of Britons who stayed at Home; nor do you seem prepared to recognise any reason for those differences.

However, we have occupied our islands for nigh on 14,000 years, and we have fought to keep our homelands for all that time. While some Americans have latterly contributed to that end, you have yourselves become the motliest crew ever known. You therefore do not fully share the understandings that derive from our singular heritage, and your insular, generalized, pronouncements reflect your ignorance of our Being. For the same reasons, I believe you should not pontificate about the even more ancient heritage of the Jews.

Incidentally --- the only time I ever visited a Synagogue was in America. I attended a memorial service for a family member --and there I felt an intense awe for the holiness of the place, and the ceremony. Our Anglo-Christian tradition has its ancient roots, but I cannot express the veneration I experienced for the parent branch of those roots. I don't even think the contrast with your so-called modernity enhanced my impression: it was the Jewish environment itself. No -- you cannot convince me that the Jews have lost their relevance.
________________

As to how we should react to alien, Anti-Christian, invaders: from desert lands to our erstwhile 'green and pleasant' one. These are the ancient enemies of Jew and Christian both - I suspect you'd better look to your own interests. They've announced they're after those too. You're not the only ones who know how to colonise, you know.

Omar provided this image of their Warlord founder:
The Mighty Mahmud, the victorious lord,
That all the misbelieving and black horde
Of fears and sorrows that infest the soul---
Scatters and slays with his enchanted sword.


(He was drawing a parallel with alcohol, at the time...)

27 January 2013 20:35  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Dreadnaught,

I have spent the past hour trying to find your ironic comparison in your post and the thrust of your superior atheistic creed and then the claim that you were not inferring Judaism says Jews are a master race.

Can you explain it for me, as I can only see the ironic inference if one sees the concept of a chosen people as equatable was National Socialist ideology of the Aryan Master Race.

Ergo :

1. Jews see themselves as a master race.

2. We were nearly exterminated by another group claiming to be the master race.

3. Hence this is ironic, given one and two above- that is -Judaism ironically found its mirror-image inversion in the anti-Jew Aryan racialism of the Nazis.

I am splitting my sides with the irony of this, but the problem here is that the Jewish concept of us being a chosen people is so far removed from Nazi ideology, I don't know where to begin in a deconstruction of that argument or, see the irony in your post.

27 January 2013 20:44  
Blogger David Hussell said...

The French were and and still are one of the two main architects of the whole european project, motivated by the thought that, if they held Germany close to themselves, it could be tamed. Germany was motivated by its national guilt. Undermining the nation states, constituents of the " project ", would be a price worth paying for an end to devastating wars. However far from generating security and happiness the EU and its tame, atheist court, is rapidly enslaving its citizens within a Soviet like system which enslaves, impoverishes and at best ignores the continents Christian heritage. As the thirst for control increases any alternative thought system, especially Christianity will be attacked. The beginning of that process is now evident.

27 January 2013 20:48  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

Carl

Excellent comments on Christian eschatology.

"Amillennialism" is not the same as "Replacement Theology" - a much misused and misunderstood concept.

It holds that there will not be a future "millennium" in which Christ will physically reign on earth through the Jews prior to the Second Coming.

Rather it holds that Jesus is presently reigning from heaven, seated at the right hand of God the Father; that Jesus also is and will remain with the church until the end of the world, as he promised at the Ascension;
that at Pentecost, the millennium began, as is shown by Peter using the prophecies of Joel, about the coming of the kingdom, to explain what was happening; and that, therefore the Church and its spread of the good news is Christ's Kingdom.

27 January 2013 21:12  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Owl,

Indeed. I think for every Christian anti-Jew comment our atheist friends point out, there are many others who, in part thanks to their own faith, stood against what was without a doubt an immoral and evil system. As the Archbishop of Athens said to the occupiers of Greece (when threatened with being shot), that he wanted the Germans to respect Orthodox Christian tradition of their prelates being hanged, not shot or the Christian leaders of Romania who threatened to tie themselves to the railways, should any Jews be deported.

As Brother Ivo notes, one small chink of light in the dark...

27 January 2013 21:15  
Blogger Lord Lavendon said...

Brother Ivo,

Thank you for your most Christian and thoughtful post on this most difficult of subjects- I cannot write much more on the topic because I still have nightmares when I saw, as a young man, the horrors of this wicked and evil regime for myself- the Nazis and everything they stood for was nothing more than the devil incarnate.

And welcome to contributing to His Grace's "cyber ministry team".

27 January 2013 21:30  
Blogger michael north said...


non mouse @18.36 claims that "we" have occupied our islands for 14,000 years. That seems excessive, but what's a nought when you're raving? "Our islands" were invaded and taken over in 1688 by a Dutch force, without any discernible resistance. I suspect that "we" had a harder time kicking out the "indigenes" when "we" arrived from what is now part of Germany .

27 January 2013 21:31  
Blogger Lord Lavendon said...

Brother Ivo,

You might notice that we may get any of the Jew haters crawling out the wood work, as often happens on this site when the word 'Jews' or 'Israel' are mentioned, I would like to use- and slightly change- the words of Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens, who was the spiritual Christian leader of the Greek nation,during the war :

"[British] Jews have proven themselves valuable contributors to the economic growth of our great country and are law-abiding loyal subjects of the Crown,who fully understand their rights and duties as Britons.

They have made sacrifices for our country and were always on the front lines of the struggle of the to defend her inalienable historical rights...

In our national consciousness, all the people of Great Britain are an inseparable unity under our beloved Monarch: they are equal members of the national body irrespective of religion...

Our holy Christian religion does not recognize superior or inferior qualities based on race or religion, as it is stated: 'There is neither Jew nor Greek' and thus condemns any attempt to discriminate or create racial or religious differences.

Our common fate both in days of glory and in periods of national misfortune has forged inseparable bonds between all British Subjects, without exemption, irrespective of race...

We have lived together in both times of trial and times of glory, and we have come to appreciate the Jewish people; their feelings, their brotherly attitude, their economic activity, their contributions to academia and the sciences and most important, their indefectible patriotism.

God bless our Jewish brothers and sisters!

God save Israel!

God save the Queen!"

27 January 2013 21:52  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Hear Hear Lavendon !

27 January 2013 21:57  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

non mouse

You may not be aware of how American your outlook is.

I do not know how my position could be any less 'American' since my position far predates the founding of the United States. The Reformers (let alone the ECFs) would have recognized nothing of Glorious Appearings and the Pre-tribulation raptures and a re-gathering of Israel to the Land. In fact, Dispensational eschatology (which is what len is preaching) traces its origins all the way back to John Nelson Darby in the 19th century. And John Nelson Darby was a subject of the British Crown.

carl

27 January 2013 22:10  
Blogger David B said...

I'm very tired tonight but fully intend to have a go at at least one of the chunks of apologetics aimed at me in this thread tomorrow.

David

27 January 2013 22:18  
Blogger David B said...

Oh, and I'm happy to concede that there were honourable decent Christians who opposed Nazism, just as there were honourable decent godless communists who did likewise.

Sadly, though, they were not in a majority. Had they been Hitler could not have taken over.

There were also many honourable priests in Latin America who opposed the fascist regimes there, though often in opposition to the supporters of these regimes in the CIA and of course the Catholic hierarchy, which has a long tradition of supporting fascism in Europe and elsewhere.

Let us not forget the Berrigan Brothers, as well.

David B

27 January 2013 22:33  
Blogger Julia Gasper said...

And don't forget the present day.

Please sign our Voice for Justice UK petition, addressed to the government and calling for immediate regulation of this Pathway so as to provide safeguards against its further misapplication and abuse. The petition can be found at:

http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/prevent-abuse-of-the-liverpool-care-pathway-lcp.html

We would be very grateful if you would sign it yourself, and then forward this email to your contacts, asking for their support.

27 January 2013 22:48  
Blogger Hannah Kavanagh said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

27 January 2013 22:53  
Blogger Hannah Kavanagh said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

27 January 2013 22:56  
Blogger Hannah Kavanagh said...

Hi Brother Ivo,

AM YISRA'EL CHAI!

Thank you for this thought for the day and for your sensitive handling of an event which is always difficult to come to terms with and for remembering the Jewish people during one of our darkest periods in our history.

I would add that we, as Jews, have "Hatikvah".

"Kol ode balevav
P'nimah -

Nefesh Yehudi homiyah

Ulfa'atey mizrach kadimah
Ayin l'tzion tzofiyah.

Ode lo avdah tikvatenu
Hatikvah bat shnot alpayim:

L'hiyot am chofshi b'artzenu -
Eretz Tzion v'Yerushalayim.

27 January 2013 22:57  
Blogger Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh said...

The Dooyeweerd family sheltered Jews during the Nazi occupation of Holland. Herman Dooyeweerd saw Nazism as a kind of cancer usurping the entire body of reality. Dooyeweerd viewed reality as characterised by creational "aspects", each of which is (or ought to be) "sovereign" in its own "sphere". The great "isms" of life are illicit and impoverishing attempts to reduce the rich diversity of reality to a single sphere (like trying to reduce the whole colour-spectrum to red). God, however, has so structured reality that sooner or later reality itself "judges" sphere-infringement. In Dooyeweerd's analysis, "Historicism" was the source of Nazi ideology. Around 1945 he writes (I ask indulgence for longish extract - but I assume the interest of some) -

"Without doubt many remnants of primitive cultural formation exist even in very highly developed and opened cultures. Reminders of old pagan customs are still with us today: Easter rabbits, Santa Claus, the "celebration" of an eclipse, and so on. But such remnants are not alive in our culture. They are the petrified, fossilized relics of tradition. Today we classify them as 'folklore.'

National socialism tried to restore new life into the petrified remains of a primitive and pagan Germanic culture. These relics were accorded a place of honour in the culture of the "race" in accordance with the demands of the national-socialistic myth of "blood and soil." A more pronounced retrogression or a bleaker spirit of reaction is not known in the history of mankind. National socialism can be explained only as the poisonous leaven of a directionless historicism that lost all consciousness of historical distance in the face of the dead remains of tradition.[...] A judgment then begins to take place in history, which opens up the relation of the historical to the jural aspect of reality. [Continued...]

27 January 2013 22:57  
Blogger Fearghas MacFhionnlaigh said...

[Continued...] What a great historical judgment has been executed over the excessive expansion of the cultural power of historical science in our most recent historicistic and relativistic period! The first phase of this judgment is already behind us: we have witnessed the unspeakably bloody and reactionary regime of nazism, the degenerate spiritual offspring of modern historicism. Totalitarian "racial" [volkse] ideals, inspired by the myth of "blood and soil," reverted western culture to the dark night of the pagan nature religions. Moreover, these totalitarian ideals were backed by the military power of a mighty modern state. The total Germanic Volk community — incorporated in a totalitarian state! The military power of the German nazi state expanded without bounds, attempting to break all opposition from the other cultural spheres. Science and art, nurture and education, industry and technology, labour organizations and philanthropy — all were made serviceable to the pan-Germanic ideal of the Volk. Each became a segment of the all-embracive state. The totalitarian state led to a totalitarian war among the nations that made no distinction between soldier and civilian. Great cities and great cultural treasures were transformed into smoking ruins. Certainly this was God's judgment in world history!

The Second World War has ended. But has the political and military defeat of the totalitarian states also delivered us from the spirit of modern historicism with its overestimation of the folk community and its flight into an all-encompassing whole? Do we not detect totalitarian ideas of either an ecclesiastical or political nature all around us? Surely, today no one desires centralized state power. Today people prefer "functional decentralization," which seeks to unburden the central organs of government by creating "new societal organs" and by recognizing their autonomy and self-government. What men do not recognize, however, is the great creational principle of sphere sovereignty, the principle that sovereignty is rooted in the intrinsic nature of the life spheres according to their creational structures. Neither do men recognize the divine norm for historical development which is rooted in the principle of sphere sovereignty.[...]Many still live in the relativistic, leveling world of historicistic thought." (Herman Dooyeweerd, "Roots of Western Culture: Pagan, Secular, and Christian Options" Paideia Press, 2012 (£6:50)

27 January 2013 22:58  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

David B. honourable decent godless communists

No such animal. There are communists, and there are people who want nothing to do with communism. Your scattergun approach on all matters religious makes the Inspector wonder if you are a worthy opponent at all. You are woefully short of historical knowledge, in as much as the Inspector is now at a stage in his intellectual development that he can ‘feel’ what is like to have been alive in times past. You show no such affinity to history and run it out as so many words...

That is your weakness, old chap. And people will rightly judge your stance by it...


27 January 2013 23:06  
Blogger Hannah Kavanagh said...

Hi Lord Lavendon,

That is correct, British Jews, despite being less than 1% of the population, have always contributed to our nation in many ways.

The following links to Wikipedia shows this :

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

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

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

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

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

27 January 2013 23:16  
Blogger Roy said...

@ david kavanagh said...

However, there were many of the 'righteous among the nations' who were of the Christian faith and opposed the Nazi regime and did whatever they could to fight it and save as many Jewish people as they could.

Thanks for your informative list of people and organisations that helped to save Jews during World War II. I would add to it the rescue of the Danish Jews, the great majority of whom were smuggled to safety in neutral Sweden. The bishops of the Danish Lutheran Church issued a pastoral letter condemning actions against the Jews. A translation of it is given below - copied from:

50th Anniversary of the Rescue of the Danish Jews
Oct 3, 1993

http://www.avenueoftherighteous-illinois.org/danishanniversary.html

The Pastoral Letter

The Danish bishops have forwarded the following communication to the leading German authorities through the heads of the government departments.

Wherever Jews are persecuted as such on racial or religious grounds the Christian Church is duty bound to protest against this action:

Because we can never forget that the Lord of the Christian Church, Jesus Christ, was born in Bethlehem of the Virgin Mary according to God's promise to His Chosen People, Israel. The history of the Jewish people before the birth of Jesus contains the preparation for the salvation God has prepared for all mankind in Christ. This is shown by the fact that the Old Testament is part of our Bible.
Because persecution of the Jews conflicts with that recognition and love of man that are a consequence of the gospel which the church of Jesus Christ was founded to preach. Christ is no respector of persons, and He has taught us to see that every human life is precious in the eyes of God.
Because it conflicts with every concept of justice which prevails in the Danish people, settled in our Christian culture for centuries. In consequences of this, equal rights and responsibility before the law, and freedom of religion. These are secured to all Danes according to the constitution.
We regard religious freedom as the right to worship God according to voaction and conscience and that neither race or religion can deprive any citizen of rights, liberty or property. Despite differences of religious opinion, we fight for the right of our Jewish brothers and sisters to preserve the same liberty that we prize more highly than life itself!

The leaders of the Danish Church are fully aware of our duty to be law abiding citizens, who do not set themselves up againt those exercising authority over us, but at the same time we are in conscience bound to unequivocally acknowledge the words that we should obey God rather than Man.

H. Fuglsang Damgaard
Archbishop of Copenhagen

Countersigned by all Bishops of
the Lutheran Church in Denmark

28 January 2013 00:04  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Lord Lavendon/Hannah,

That's right, I also think of the time when I took the Queen's shilling (so to speak). "Through The Falklands, Iraq and Afghanistan, Queen Elizabeth Commands and we obey"...

Or in one of the other versions :

"Here's forty shillings on the drum
For those who'll volunteer to come
To 'list and fight the foe today.
Over the hills and far away.

O'er the hills and o'er the main.
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain.
King George commands and we obey.
Over the hills and far away.

When duty calls me I must go
To stand and face another foe.
But part of me will always stray
Over the hills and far away.

O'er the hills and o'er the main.
Through Flanders, Portugal and Spain.
King George commands and we obey.
Over the hills and far away.

If I should fall to rise no more,
As many comrades did before,
Then ask the fifes and drums to play.
Over the hills and far away.

Then fall in lads behind the drum,
With colours blazing like the sun.
Along the road to come-what may.
Over the hills and far away."

28 January 2013 00:17  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

28 January 2013 00:19  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

28 January 2013 00:22  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Roy,

Thanks for your post. I have always enjoyed the Scandinavian countries, if not the cold weather. I am sure that there are many other examples - not recorded- of how people defied and fought against this evil and wicked regime. David B started this discussion by quoting Hitler in the context of the christian religion.

But as another atheist, Danjo, said on one of the threads below, 'What would [your] Jesus do?'. From what I know of the Christian side of my family, I doubt very much he'd be there cheering on the Third Reich... And from what I understand of the Christian texts, Jesus was after all a good Jewish lad himself.

28 January 2013 00:54  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

I would also add that there is nothing contradictory in being proudly Jewish and British, but at the same time supporting Israel and the Jewish homeland.

28 January 2013 01:22  
Blogger non mouse said...

Michael North @ 21:31: non mouse @18.36 claims that "we" have occupied our islands for 14,000 years. That seems excessive, but what's a nought when you're raving?

“Raving,” Mr. North? Sifting the blogs for people you can ‘Certify’ by ad feminam is the new style of argumentation then? Or what’s your game?

Before you engage in slander, you might consider some scholarly opinions. A fairly easy read is Bryan Sykes’ Blood of the Isles - in which he suggests that the Red Lady of Paviland (Swansea, S. Wales) is the earliest survival of our ancestors in Britain (13). John Davies, a Welsh scholar, indicates that (s)he dates from about 24,000 BC. Some 40 other British sites provide evidence of contemporary habitation. (A History of Wales, 4).

From such sources, you may glean:
c 10,000: BC seas began to separate Wales from Ireland - which is when they think Cheddar Man, a hunter-gatherer, began to colonize what is now Britain.
c 9000-8000: BC The Younger Dryas snapped in, after which ice melted and seas rose.
c 8,000 BC: Mesolithics left microliths at places like Cramond, on the south bank of the Firth of Forth.
c7,500 BC: Hunter gatherers inhabited Starr Carr in the Vale of Pickering, a few miles west of modern Scarborough, Yorkshire.
6,500 to 6,000 BC: seas continued to rise, and GB became distinct from both Ireland and [Deo Gratias] the big land mass. At this time, farmers from Turkey migrated to the Balkans (Sykes 140).
c5,500 BC: Some Balkan farmers moved east and North, towards the Baltic and the North Sea. Others progressed via Mediterranean Italy, eventually reaching the Iberia and the Atlantic coast of France. These are people we now call Celts. Sykes suggests that some of them continued to Ireland and Britain: between 7,500 and 4,500 years ago (156).
>i 4,500 BC: Megaliths appeared in Ireland, Orkney and Lewis, and in Spain and Portugal.

cont'd...

28 January 2013 02:02  
Blogger non mouse said...

cont'd...
c 4,000 BC: Agriculture, cromlechs, henges, and stone buildings followed thereafter.

Early Irish settlers were still arriving. Sykes says, “The genetic evidence shows that a large proportion of Irish Celts, both on the male and female side, did arrive from Iberia at or about the same time as farming reached the Isles. They joined the Mesolithics who were already here, having reached the Isles either by the same maritime route or overland from Europe before the Isles were cut off by the rising sea,” (282).

These we learn, are the origins from which British indigenes descended, until the Vikings (and a few Angles/Jutes/Saxons) provided a 'Germanic' component. However, Sykes interprets his tests as indicating that we are predominantly Celtic. Results show that few of us are of either Roman or Norman stock. Nobody “kicked the indigenes out,” although William the Bastard did a certain amount of damage in 1069.

So Mr. North.... perhaps some of “your” ancestors did come over with William of Orange – they were probably not part of “our” basic genetic makeup, if so.
_____________________________
Any errors are of course mine. Do check some of the sources of my information.

Cunliffe, Barry. The Ancient Celts. New York: OUP 1997.
Last week I recommended the CSAD website at Oxford University, for those who wish to think about Roman Britain (specifically at Vindolanda, here).
The series: A Short Oxford History of the British Isles presents intelligible accounts of our History, such as After Rome, and From the Vikings to the Normans (OUP, 2003).
Davies, John. A History of Wales. In English, 1993; In Welsh, 1990. Harmondsworth: Penguin,1994.
Rollason, David. Northumbria, 500-1100: Creation and Destruction of a Kingdom. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2003.
Sykes, Bryan. Blood of the Isles: Exploring the Genetic Roots of Our Tribal History. London: Bantam Press, 2006.

28 January 2013 02:04  
Blogger Ivan said...


By 1939 the majority of Jews who sought refuge from the Nazis had already found it in the neighbouring countries, or so most would have thought. The people of that era did not reckon on the frightening efficiency of the German armed forces, (and lets face it the plain bad luck that dogged the French, and the monumental criminality of Stalin who ordered the Soviets down in the initial stages of Barbarossa). Large swathes of Europe fell quickly to the Germans and there was no escape for the unfortunates caught in the Nazi grip. But had Hitler a less capable force, say like the Italian Army, there would likely have been no Holocaust for the simple reason the Nazis would have been bested on the battlefield. The true lesson to draw from this is one has always to be armed and ready to give a good account on the day of battle. The Germans were altogether too good in everything they did; along with the British they were the foremost technical innovators in WW11. But the average German was no worse or better fellow than a person of any other nationality.

28 January 2013 06:31  
Blogger ENGLISHMAN said...

The only thing that we should be remembering today is that propaganda is a powerful tool in the hands of unscrupulous politicians,it is meerly the intention to decieve wherever it occurs,from the commies to the nazis to the eussr,all intend to make us beleve that which is untrue,and now WE are watched just as closely ,our rights just as inhibited,our lives worthless to our treasonous "representatives",but all we get is belly-aching about auschwitz,a synthetic rubber plant,yes it can happen again,and it is,though few of you can recognise it,blinded as you are by the fear of having to do something about it,some of the worst tyrants in the world are jews,one of them even set up the state of isreal,the same one who controls half the wealth of this planet today.

28 January 2013 07:49  
Blogger len said...

'Replacement Theology'(the false idea that the church has replaced Israel in the plans of God)contributed towards the Holocaust and the persecution of the Jews right up to this present time.It is a' theology' from which the Church should repent.

Before the Catholic gang gather to 'beat me up'I know Luther was anti semitic.

The Old Testament is not irrelevant today some of the 'old Covenants' still stand and God is not One who will dishonour His Word.

2 Samuel, 1 Chronicles and Psalms, David talks about an 'everlasting covenant', the Abrahamic covenant. He sings it beautifully in Psalms 105, “He remembers His covenant forever, the word which He commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant which He made with Abraham, and His oath to Isaac, and confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, to Israel as an everlasting covenant.”



28 January 2013 08:22  
Blogger Naomi King said...

Well said len but anti semitism is very strong in the Anglican Church today as well. I know, I have been to Holy Trinity Brompton run Theology lectures in the past (and they REALLY should know better) to hear this sort of devil lead denial of the Word of God. This is heresy, the total denial of the role of the Israel in the Divine plan of the King of Kings and Lord of Lord' and they should be down on their knees repenting, as you rightly say.

God bless

28 January 2013 08:32  
Blogger David B said...

Non mouse, that looks like an interesting book. At first sight the only obvious quibble I have with your posts is that my understanding is that ice led to Britain being uninhabited at periods after the Red Lady, and before the recent re-settling from sources very much as you describe.

I'm happy to note that the chronology you cite does not include a flood killing all the inhabitants of Britain around 5000 years ago, as some of those more befuddled by religion would claim, following the Bible and Ussher as their sources of science.

David

28 January 2013 09:09  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Englishman,

Well the trouble is with your complaint is that you don't actually have to read this webpage and yesterday was not Goebbels day, but it seems like you have been brushing up on your own far right propaganda.

"belly-aching about auschwitz". How terrible that there is a day out of 365 in which people remember and recall the extermination of millions of people; Jews, Slavs, gays, gypsies and others whom - in the warped minds of the Nazis party-formed part of the 'Untermensch' (sub-human) and in which two thirds of the Jewish population were slaughtered.


"the worst tyrants in the world are jews,one of them even set up the state of isreal,the same one who controls half the wealth of this planet today."

I am sure that there are other sites out there which fit in with your conspiracy theory view. Yet the rest of us know that the 'protocols of the elders of Zion' are a made up load of crock.

28 January 2013 09:40  
Blogger David B said...

Inspector I decided long ago that, unlike some of your co-religionists, you are no worthy opponent at all, with your over-simplistic and often overtly racist comments on other groups.

There were many decent communists who later came to reject the horrors of Stalinism, many, religious or not, prepared to lay down their lives in the fight against fascism, notably but far from exclusively in Spain. Jessica Mitford's husband, the nephew by marriage of Winston Churchill among them.

David B

28 January 2013 09:50  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Dikkie said

"Carl

Excellent comments on Christian (RC/Protestant orthodoxy, you mean?) eschatology.

"Amillennialism" is not the same as "Replacement Theology" - a much misused and misunderstood concept.(Oh, do elaborate and expand further on this throw away statement)

Isaiah 11:11-12
11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.
12 And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.'

It holds that there will not be a future "millennium" in which Christ will physically reign on earth through the Jews prior to the Second Coming.(You knowingly state false accusations to cover your track of being disingenuous. You truly are a cad when it comes to protecting your orthodox interpretation. WHICH CHRISTIAN SAYS THAT CHRIST WILL RULE IN ISRAEL PRIOR TO HIS SECOND COMING!! Utter codswallop but 'needs must', huh!)

Rather it holds that Jesus is presently reigning from heaven, seated at the right hand of God the Father; that Jesus also is and will remain with the church until the end of the world (It is called 'Age' and is distinct from your exegesis {what it actually says}, as he promised at the Ascension;
that at Pentecost, the millennium began, as is shown by Peter using the prophecies of Joel, about the coming of the kingdom, to explain what was happening; and that, therefore the Church and its spread of the good news is Christ's Kingdom.(The Kingdom and the Church age are two distinct things and periods The kingdom always refers to Messiah's Millennium reign as promised to David and each christmas we are reminded of the words quoted to Mary by Gabriel. The Church was a mystery hidden in the OT and revealed by Paul. It is scriptural NOT conjecture. Rev 20, Isaiah 65, genesis 12:7, 13:15-16, 17: 7-8, psalm 89:27-37, Jeremiah 31:31, 37 and Ezekiel 36-39. You obviously know nothing about Chiliasm as the early church called it in the Greek? It was believed by the early church, irenaeus, hyppolytus, justin martyr, ephraem the syrian, peter jurieu, philip dodridge, Dr John Gill, James MacKnight and Thomas Scott prior to it being popularised by Emanuel Lacunza (Ben Ezra), in 1812. This was 8 years prior to Darby, young bird! but of course you do not believe in the 'Rapture' despite it being found in the Vulgate in 'Latin' . *Huge Guffaws and Sniggers*)"

Blofeld

28 January 2013 10:09  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Carl said

"len

So, I ask for a connection in Romans 11 and you quote OT prophesy to me. 'funny, Jesus only quoted OT prophesy whilst speaking of Himself from the start of His mission to His words ' a complete bible study SOLELY based on the OT' on the road to Emmaus after resurrection! John 5:39 refer to Scripture but no NT written yet) That in itself is revealing (It reveals more about you than Len, my boy). But let's go with this. I haven't yet seen any connection between the fulfillment of those prophesies and the establishment of the secular state of Israel. (Do crank yer neck upwards, there's a fine fellow)I see your ipse dixit. ("Look! OT Prophesy! New state of Israel! It's prophesy fulfilled!") I haven't seen any credible exegesis that connects the two.(that is because your exegesis and hermeneutics are faulty, based on the allegories of Origen (a gnostic) and then Augustine (Roman empire crumbling, something needed to be interpreted into the chaos hence 'The city of God' theory! You lack PRECISION)

2 Thessalonians 2:3-4
3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

When was this accomplished as Paul is speaking circa 55AD? and how can the Jews be in a temple that is not built and has not since 70AD after the destruction of it by Titus that is about to occur in 15 years from this letter! No Antichrist appeared with all the signs and wonders that Jesus stated, unless we missed it?!

Please allegorise for me!

Acts 1:6-11

6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore AGAIN the kingdom to ISRAEl?
7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be WITNESSES unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

What could this mean as Jesus never denies the Kingdom does not belong to 'Israel' but not YET, though it appears this specific national 'Kingdom' is not for the church, as He is about to establish this at Pentecost by the WITNESS of the Apostles to both Jew and Gentile until 'the fullness of the Gentiles be brought in'??"

Blofeld

28 January 2013 10:15  
Blogger David B said...

@ Carl Part one, Carl's comment broken up with quotes, my replies without quotes.

"Your error is to presume on the purpose and intent of God."

No. I don't believe in any sort of god or gods. I'm not persuaded by any of the arguments for any sort of god, even a deistic one, leave alone the war god of one particular tribe, with one - well, two contradictory - creation myths among thousands that have been invented in human history, all of which are demonstrably untrue.

Having said that, I am still entitled to point out weaknesses in any theistic position by pointing to contradictions, untruths, and opposition to basic human decency in the purported personality of their deities, especially when such attributes as omnipotence and benevolence are claimed for it.

"You presume that He thinks like you and acts like you."

Well, don't the texts say that man was created in his image? What is that supposed to mean, do you think? I don't believe it for a moment, mut what would it mean if I did? That god has an arsehole, a penis and has wet dreams? Or for that matter a vagina and menstrual flows? Or that God has a moral intuition somewhat akin to man's? Or what? Or perhaps the text is wrong and man is not built on God's image? It is rather the other way round to my mind.

"Is God unwilling to address the problem of evil? But in fact He has already done so. Irrevocably and finally in the Cross of Christ."

Please keep in mind that I don't believe for a moment that there is a god to address the problem of evil.

But to have a son in order to have a human sacrifice made of him, as the story goes, strikes me as so monstrous that it reinforces in me the view that religion tends to damage the moral compass of people, many of whom are otherwise decent, well meaning people.

The alleged solution is a bit partial, too, is it not? Depending on sect it leads to an awful lot of people, perhaps including infants who die before baptism, to eternal suffering.

Any sort of hell addresses the problem of evil how?

End of part one

28 January 2013 10:49  
Blogger David B said...

@ Carl cont

" It is God who will uncover each man from the dust of the Earth and call him forth to judgment. It is God who will visit punishment on men for the evil they have done. It is God who redeems men from evil through the work of Christ."

So you say. Where is the evidence for this?

All the evidence I see points to no God at all, and mankind evolved from a common ancestor with all other life on earth.

Which points in turn to the Bible. and the Koran and the Book of Mormon and the ravings of L Ron Hubbard for that matter, being more than a little out of touch with reality.

I am a little curious about the Biblical 'evidence' for what you say - I don't think it was in the OT.

Was this view attributed to Christ, Paul or some sort of pseudo Paul, or some combination of the two?

In either case, though, it doesn't ring true to a methodological and metaphysical naturalist like myself.

Now I'm tired again - I'm feeling better by the day, but realising more and more just how ill I was a couple of weeks ago.

I may get back to this later, but perhaps what I've written so far is sufficient.

I'll just conclude by saying that to my mind any sort of god who tortures someone eternally for doing their best to find out about the human condition, the universe, and the relation between them is a gos not in the least worthy of worship, and that to think otherwise says a lot about the pernicious effect on the human moral compass of religion.

David

28 January 2013 11:05  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

David B

You state categorically by this "All the evidence I see points to no God at all, and mankind evolved from a common ancestor with all other life on earth." that there is no God, and so you have made an absolute statement.
For the statement to be true, You must know for certain that there is no God in the entire universe. No human being has all knowledge, not even you, dear fellow. Therefore, none of us is able to truthfully make this assertion.

If you must insist upon disbelief in God, what you must say is, "Having the limited knowledge I have at present, I believe that there is no God." Owing to a lack of knowledge on your part, you don't know if God exists, do you.

So, in the strict sense of the word, you cannot be an atheist as you state.

The only true qualifier for the title is the One who has absolute knowledge, and why on earth would this person, God, want to deny His own existence?

The professing atheist is what is commonly known as an “agnostic” in Greek - one who claims he “doesn't know” if God exists.

You maybe unaware but the Latin equivalent for the Greek word is “ignoramus.” The Bible tells us that this ignorance is “willful” (Psalm 10:4).

It's not that a person can't find God, but that he won't. It has been rightly said that the “atheist” can't find God for the same reason a thief can't find a policeman. He knows that if he admits that there is a God, he is admitting that he is ultimately responsible to Him. This is not a pleasant thought for some.

It is said that Mussolini (the Italian dictator), once stood on a pinnacle and cried, "God, if you are there, strike me dead!" When God didn't immediately bow to his dictates, Mussolini then concluded that there was no God. However, his prayer was answered some time later.

Hell and the afterlife is like a criminal that was given a death sentence and he then said to the judge, "But I don't believe in the electric chair," it wouldn't change reality, dear boy, would it.

Blofeld

28 January 2013 11:51  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

Blofeld

I will not engage in bandying passages of Scripture around to speculate about the Second Coming of Christ or the place of the Jews in this. It is unbecoming and entirely fruitless.

Should you wish to pursue this discussion, please address your comments to len and Carl.

28 January 2013 12:22  
Blogger David B said...

@ESB+T

"You state categorically by this "All the evidence I see points to no God at all, and mankind evolved from a common ancestor with all other life on earth." that there is no God, and so you have made an absolute statement.
For the statement to be true, You must know for certain that there is no God in the entire universe. "

Simply wrong. For the statement to be true then all the evidence I see points to no God at all - it says nothing at all about evidence that I don't see.

Still, all the evidence I do see points to no God at all.

And further, none of the purported logical arguments for God work, not the KCA, not the fine tuning argument, or the one that goes I can imagine it so it must be true.

The fine tuning argument should be stood on it's head. If there were life in a universe completely unsuited to the development of life, then that might well be considered evidence for a god of some sort, even if only a deistic one who lit the blue touch paper and then either retired to a safe distance or was killed in the bang.

But since we live in a universe which allows life to spontaneously form after the passing of sufficient time for the right chemicals to come into being in stellar explosions, then there is no compelling argument for a god there.

David

David

28 January 2013 13:26  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

David B

"Simply wrong. For the statement to be true then all the evidence I see points to no God at all - it says nothing at all about evidence that I don't see." Thomas Edison, one of the greatest scientists who ever lived, said, "We do not know a millionth of one percent about anything."

Let's say that you have an incredible one percent of all the knowledge in the universe. Would it be possible, in the ninety-nine percent of the knowledge that you haven't yet come across, that there might be ample evidence to prove the existence of God? If you are reasonable, you will be forced to admit that it is possible. Somewhere, in the knowledge you haven't yet discovered, there could be enough evidence to prove that God does exist.

"Still, all the evidence I do see points to no God at all." How much is 'all'?

"The fine tuning argument should be stood on it's head. If there were life in a universe completely unsuited to the development of life, then that might well be considered evidence for a god of some sort, even if only a deistic one who lit the blue touch paper and then either retired to a safe distance or was killed in the bang.
" However this "If there were life in a universe completely unsuited to the development of life, then that might well be considered evidence for a god of some sort," is nonsensical as the only life we know is found here on this Blue planet and even this can be held in check by making it's environment sterile, which makes that life impossible to multiply within the sterile environment. Food companies have spent billions on ensuring that a sealed sterilized container cannot have 'life' evolving within it unless information (bacteria) is introduced to it by placing it within.
It, life, only comes from a preceding life form!

"But since we live in a universe which allows life to spontaneously form after the passing of sufficient time for the right chemicals to come into being in stellar explosions, then there is no compelling argument for a god there." Where is the evidence for this "life to spontaneously form after the passing of sufficient time"..Show me this life evolving because of the introduction of chemicals etc.
When we die we have all the chemicals and correct constitution available within our corpse but we are dead and no life can be animated in us again, can it, no matter how long we leave it or throwing it into some stellar explosion!

Blofeld

28 January 2013 14:16  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

"The fine tuning argument should be stood on it's head. If there were life in a universe completely unsuited to the development of life, then that might well be considered evidence for a god of some sort, even if only a deistic one who lit the blue touch paper and then either retired to a safe distance or was killed in the bang."

There's a very good reason, from an exclusively scientific perspective, why turning it on its head would be a very bad idea. The fine tuning argument (both for God and for cosmology) rests on the probability of factors known to us being suited to life.

Turning it on its head essentially says: ok, it's very unlikely, but hey - it happened anyway.

With respect, David, any modern scientist worth their salt will look on that proposition with horror. The modern scientific method rests on - nay relies on and is utterly inextricable from - the basis that the probability of chance can be eliminated. Turn it on its head and you don't turn a theory: you abolish the basis for scientific claims to reliability.

This is why so much effort has been expended by cosmologists in finding alternative explanations to "fit the math", so to speak. There are obvious methodological limitations to modelling "other universes" - but as the investigators aren't unaware of them, it's not a particularly helpful endeavour to dismiss them out of hand. As with any science, you assess it on the basis of its acknowledged limitations and the likelihood of its accuracy... ah wait, back to that old chestnust.

Your "universe that is antithetical to life but nevertheless has life owing to a deity" idea is a rather strange one.

A universe with life in it, is quite obviously, a universe that can support life. In your example how long would it be before the scientists discovered that their existence was predicated upon the constant exertion of a force or process to sustain life? Would they not, as we do, then conclude that that force or process, fully susceptible to explanation, accounted for the existence of life?

But what if the scientists arrived at a place where they were sure they needed it, but were not sure that its existence was divine (rather than natural) in origin? Would they not search their minds for other types of universes: imagining places that, but for a slightly different set of factors, would be hostile to life and yet still possess it?

All these dreams and hypotheses are wonderfully wrought, but they suffer from the simple basis that they cannot be proved. We cannot access "another universe" - because by definition, for the theory to work, the universes must be ontologically separate. Any place in which an exception was occurred would simply be understood as an extension - albeit a fascinating one - of our own universe.

What that means, in the round, is that many of the most mathematically compelling answers must forever be restricted to hypotheses that rely on the numbers, on that probability still being correct. That's the one continuous theme: the maths has to work. But in that instant, it's easy to see that it is simply one of a possibilities that make the maths work - each "unproveable" in their own way, but not all of them being as appealing to our secular age as others.

The alternative, in which we accept our happy universal accident of chance, reliant only on what we can prove, rather than what adds up, is to accept that the very basis on which we assess evidence scientifically must be considered suspect.

28 January 2013 14:30  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

It should be noted that I approached this issue tangentally, and acknowledge that from the same limited perspective, a fine-tuning argument taken in the direction of a creator or a creating force provides no evidence to favour a simulation over a divine plan.

What such thought games do do, however, is demonstrate the limits of evidence, or our capacity to develop ideas under the rubric of science to explain evidence in ways that are not discomforting either to us as thinking, spiritual beings, or methodologically.

28 January 2013 14:32  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

The theological content is the stuff that is really important though: because nobody believes in Justice and Mercy because it has been identified under a microscope, or found in the form of electromagnetic waves passing through the universe.

Much of your complaint deals with the "elementals" - why punishment, why a torturous hell, and why, if these things, suffering. I hope you'll understand, then, if I reply with a similar focus on the elementals, not with the intention of ignoring or disregarding the details of eschatology and Christology, but rather to answer you as plainly as I can.

The latter question is the one that most immediately arrests all but the most unfeeling human: why suffering? Very often it exists in tension with the other two, which both relate to things to come. In this temporal hierarchy, God is distantly in the future, and the embittered cry of humanity is that it is all good-and-well promising resolution to come, but what about now? What about the children who are dying?

My understanding of God is not of His being so detached or removed from suffering. God embraces suffering in His Son, fully taking on what His Creation endures. In Jesus, God suffered - and not only suffered, but died.

To this you answer with horror that a Father could so sacrifice His Son - and yet to do so, we must ignore one of the most foundational creeds of Christianity: that Jesus is God. God demanded a sacrifice of Himself, a sacrifice He paid in His blood in obedience to Himself.

To which comes the response: why need a sacrifice at all? Surely a forgiving God could just ignore offense? God is fully and perfectly Just - and He demands perfect Justice. That means that when He judges, He does so totally: not one bitter thought can escape Him.

The merit of Justice is God's alone. We choose whether to follow His Will or rebel against Him - and whilst we might raise complaints about seeing as through a glass darkly, even the angels, for whom the reality of God was never in question, still possessed the freedom to rebel.

28 January 2013 15:23  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

How does one rebel against the Creator? Surely, if all providence belongs to His plan, no such rebellion can truly be said to exist? After all, in creating the rebel, the omniscient God surely knew His creation would rebel. The answer is Hell.

God gives us freedom by withdrawing Himself totally and completely from those who rebel against Him, "away from the presence of the Lord". There is a place, utterly apart from God, where we can depart to. It is a place where God permits us to have the full truth of our wills be done, instead of His Will. It is the very worst of punishments: but it is a punishment that arises from rendering to each according to their works. And it is a punishment because there is no remembrance of God in that place.

And yet we being flawed and fallen may recognise the desire to do good - and may even do good on many occasions - but still prefer our own wills to God's and do evil. How then should we be judged? In many ways, Jimmy Savile is the modern example of this question: a man who unquestionably did enormous good in his life, but who, almost certainly, was enormously evil. The nature of his crimes allows us the opportunity to enact a form of judgement on another - but Savile is in the same position as every other man and woman before God. We come with the good things we've done and also the evil, and we come before a God whose tolerance of evil simply does not exist. Evil cannot stand in His presence.

The answer, wrought in God's blood on the Cross, wrought in Jesus' human agony on the Cross, and wrought in His death on the Cross finds its fulfillment in His resurrection. God gives Grace freely to all: we are judged either with Christ on the Cross, or on our own merits.

"For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."

Where mankind suffers: there is God. God still suffers, and He suffers because He loves us with wild abandon, and He suffers because He has settled only for pure and perfect justice.

28 January 2013 15:23  
Blogger David B said...

Thanks for those considered responses, which I have just read, and will consider how to best respond before doing so.

In the meantime might I suggest that googling Adam Jesus and Mo will show something that will have some relevance to my response.

I like Jesus and Mo:)

David

28 January 2013 16:52  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...



David B, Inspector…over-simplistic

Well really Sir ! What you describe as inadequacy, the Inspector prizes as brevity. One lives in hope eternal that some of the bores who post lengthy bull on this site would adopt the style themselves – you, for example.

Only a cultural Marxist would even consider the existence of ‘decent communists’. Communists who came to reject the system were / are no longer communists. From oppressor to victim. Rather obvious that to most thinking types, but apparently way over your head.

As for many, religious or not, prepared to lay down their lives in the fight against fascism,, you don’t have much of a clue do you. There were communists and there were religious. You can’t be both. And Stalin practiced decimation in the grand style of ancient Rome. From the top down, general to private. So you might want to tag on “rather than be shot in the back of the head” next time you post that one.

By the by, you do realise the way you jump around with your scattergun approach is hilarious, don’t you ? Your post of 9:50 is typical. From the horrors of Stalinism in one sentence to Jessica Mitford’s husband in the very next.

You are a most entertaining intellectual fraud, that’s for sure !



Otherwise, kind regards, so chin up, and get well soon…

Inspector General



28 January 2013 18:04  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

David B,
Firstly, I am glad that you are feeling well and that you seem to be getting better. I appreciate these things, because I have seen them for myself (a story for another day).

To keep you at your intellectual best, I would note that you have posed a million and one issues on various topics, of which we could all spend hours and hours debating and discussing... So I'll focus on a couple.

The first one is this :

"Well, don't the texts say that man was created in his image? What is that supposed to mean, do you think? I don't believe it for a moment, mut what would it mean if I did? That god has an arsehole, a penis and has wet dreams? Or for that matter a vagina and menstrual flows? Or that God has a moral intuition somewhat akin to man's? Or what? Or perhaps the text is wrong and man is not built on God's image? It is rather the other way round to my mind."

From my own Jewish perspective, On the question of human nature in Judaism, there is a lot of room for personal opinion. There is no dogma on the subject, no required belief about the nature of humanity. There are a variety of contrary opinions expressed on the subject, and one is no less a Jew (and no less a good Jew) for disagreeing with any or all of these opinions.

Nevertheless, there are certain ideas that seem to reflect the majority opinion in Jewish thought that are worth discussing, but because this is a blog and has limited space, I will give a intro ‘potted’ version to the topic and elaborate further if you are interested in it .

In Judaism what you have described is referred to as "b'tzelem Elohim," I see that this part of our Torah, is trying to teach us that all people stem from the same mould and have the same ancestry; all are, therefore, equal. Regularly, we reaffirm this concept of the inherent value and equality of all people through such practices as the Shabbat , burial rites, and many more. Human life is regarded of such immense inherent value that with the exception of several circumstances, we are commanded to transgress the laws of the Torah in order that we may live and affirm life.

And whilst I am not into Jewish Mysticism myself, I think that the following quote from Rabbi Dr Arthur Green sums up quite well :

"We are created in the image of G-d, if you will, and we are obliged to return the favour…The inner drive to imitate the ever-giving source of life calls forth in us an unceasing flow of love, generosity of spirit, and full acceptance, both of ourselves and of all G-d's creatures."

28 January 2013 18:10  
Blogger John Magee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

28 January 2013 18:36  
Blogger John Magee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

28 January 2013 18:39  
Blogger len said...

For an Atheist to say" there is no God" means that the Atheist has ALL knowledge about everything in the entire Universe(what a privileged position to be in!)

So I do not believe any Atheist can be that arrogant... even Dawkin`s God Bless him.So all the Atheist can say(in all honesty) is that the knowledge of God is not in the information I possess.Anything beyond that is supposition.So if the Atheist does not possess ALL knowledge then(if the Atheists is honest) then the knowledge of God may lie outside the sphere of knowledge within the Atheists possession.So to be an 'Atheist'is illogical.

28 January 2013 18:47  
Blogger John Magee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

28 January 2013 19:08  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

John Magee,

Read your post and was going to reply- not sure why you deleted it- but wanted to say do not be worried about typing errors, because I am more concerned about the argument being discussed, the content and not the grammar; our family suffers from Dyslexia and dyspraxia, so this is no shame.

28 January 2013 19:31  
Blogger John Magee said...

non mouse

This is In response to your snooty remarks about the USA.

But first of all, since HG's article is about remembering the Holocaust, let me say there is a reason there are almost 5.7 million Jews in the USA (almost half the Jews in the world) and less than 267,000 in Britain...The brutal history of Europe has not been kind to the Jewish people over the past 2,000 years since the Romans forced them into their diaspora and search for a home.

You said to Carl:

"You may not be aware of how American your outlook is. You people project a high and mightiness: a sense of self-perceived glory about yourselves in the land you stole from its indigenes."

I do not like to be bad-tempered because of something you post here because I like you very much. But another one of your slaps in the face of the USA was too much to ignore and it's deserves a comment from an American who loves Britain.

It was Europe which gave us two World Wars and the Cold war in the last century. Please remember this when being critical of the USA. We did our best to help you. that can't be denied.

When mentioning American's abuse of "indigeses" you neglected to mention the disgraceful treatment of the Irish people in Ireland by the English for hundreds of years. Let's not forget The Highland Clearances in Northern Scotland and the Western Isles in the 18th century when the clans were brutally broken (with the assitance of their treacherous Clan leaders who thought more of sheep than their people) and the Higlanders were deported by the English to Nova Scotia or they fled to the what became the USA. This is another stain on your history in your native Island in the not too distant past which took place at about the same time the Americans were fighting the "Indians" across the Atlantic Ocean. So be careful when pointing your fingers of hypocrisy and abuse of indigenous peoples when you point one at the USA.

Who stole land from whom back when Europeans were dividing up the world and creating their colonies? What about slave trade companies and their ships based in Bristol, England for over 200 years????

We ignorant Americans (the descendents of the poor of Europeans) are more than aware of European history because we have fled it for almost 400 years to escape from your religious persecution, stupid wars, absolute monarchs, inherited aristocratic privilidge, feudal systems which enslaved simple villagers and farmers, and insane ideologies such as Nazism and Communism which killed tens of millionsns of people only three generations ago.

Two European World Wars and a war in Asia were NOT caused by the USA. Because of WW II we gained the responsibility as a super power status which we NEVER WANTED. We did not create the USSR which became a threat to all of our freedoms after WW II. Because of our responsibility having to defend Europe, which to be fair, was in our own self interest, we joined you in our mutual defense against the USSR from 1945 until the Cold War ended when the USSR collapsed in 1991. We did our best. That can't be denied can it?

That's our point of view.

You said.

"self-perceived glory about yourselves in the land you stole from its indigenes.":

Shall we talk about Ireland, India, Australia, New Zeland, Hong Kong, British Colonies in Africa? The Middle East, English speaking Canada? Islands in the Caribbean? I bare no malice toward the your country or your former Empire but before you talk about Americans and what you claim we "stole (fought for)from the indigenes" you should take a look close look at your own history before you point the finger of theft at the American settlers (most of whom were British).

By the way. My state, Pennsylvania (about the size of the nation of Cuba) a former Colony of the British Empire when it was created by the English Quaker William Penn on land given to him by King Charles II to settle a family debt in 1682 was bought by the Penn family from the "Indians".

28 January 2013 19:48  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

John Magee

You've got to admit though that the treatment of the native Indian was fairly disgraceful. So too the ideology of 'manifest destiny' driving it - i.e. the belief the USA was a divinely favoured nation with "expansion, prearranged by Heaven" to set the Old World a better example.

A tad arrogant, wouldn't you say?

28 January 2013 20:22  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

28 January 2013 20:29  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

John Magee,

The 267,000 Jews on the UK census is slight inaccurate, probably more like 500,000 to 600,000, I will admit that this is partly 'cause I think all of my family (and a lot of others) wrote we were 'Jedi Knights', as it is bugger all to do with the state about one's personal religious affiliation, then there are a lot of secular Jews, who are Jews according to Judaism but are not Jews in other circumstances.

For example two well know in America, of our English-Jewish roses, Rachel Weisz (wife of James Bond) and Nigella Lawson are Jews according to Jewish tradition, yet, for example, Nigella is an atheist, but to me is more Jewish than Madonna ! (I understand that Nigella is currently in America, doing a 'reality TV' food programme).

Having said that, I appreciate and agree with the thrust of your article.

G-d save the Queen!

G-d Bless America!

28 January 2013 20:33  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...


Dodo, the Inspector thinks it was Beserker who mentioned the Maltese. They have an interesting language. It’s Semitic yet it’s written in Latin script, as is English. One can deduce from that that although the rulers of Malta remained staunchly European, the vernacular was fashioned by Semitic immigration over millennia. The same thing is happening to England today, the muslim festival of Eid being an example.

It is wrong to castigate the early American settlers for their attitude towards the native Americans. Sad as it is, the latter had a worthless nomadic culture, that was easily overthrown and was no great loss to the world. Meanwhile, America started to prosper...


28 January 2013 20:34  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

28 January 2013 20:40  
Blogger david kavanagh said...

Dodo,

As said in the thread below, I cannot contain my humorous views anymore, so to complement your dialogue with John Magee,as Mel Brookes pointed out there were Yiddish speaking native Americans in Antebellum America :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jsj4s9z-EAE

28 January 2013 20:41  
Blogger John Magee said...

Dodo

The USA 19th century concept of Manifest Manifest Destiny was always a very general notion rather than a specific policy. Don't forget that 1/3 of the present USA west of the Missisippi River was bought from the French, in the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. The USA bought 828,000 square miles of land (which is today most of the American midwest) from Napoleon. American cities like New Orleans and St Louis were once French colonial cities. Most of what is now the American Southwest inluding California was bought from Mexico after the Guadalupe Hidalgo Treaty signed after we won the Mexican American War in the 1840's. So a major part of the USA west of the Missippi was bought from France and Mexico NOT conquered by armies of the USA.

Florida Territory came into the possession of the U.S. in 1819 by signing the Adams-Onis Treaty, signed by Spanish minister Luis De Otis and U.S. Secretary of State John Quincy Adams. More settlers arrived and Tallahassee became the capital. Florida was admitted to the Union in 1845

Alaska was bought in the late 1860's by the USA from Russia. Russian territory in northern California was also bought by the USA earlier.

If you look at a map of the USA you will see the majority of the land it aquired after the Revolution was BOUGHT from France and Spain.

Of course the movement westward by European settlers it what became the USA after all this land was bought is another story but no different than how Canada was settled, or Australia, or British Colonies in East Africa, etc...

By the way. I have yet to see liberals or the churches give back their homes or property to the "indigenes"... LOL

28 January 2013 22:10  
Blogger non mouse said...

David B: so glad you approve of scholarly data! The sources I cite rely on archeological, literary, genetic, art-historical, historical (preferably not post-modernist), linguistic, and manuscript evidence: all from primary sources where possible. These are not witterings from wiki/google. Perhaps you should understand that some highly educated people have learned to verify, assess, and evaluate their sources.

I don't think you need to quibble about the ice ages --- Hunter gatherers tended to be nomads; my understanding is that they left and/or returned to their settlements as conditions dictated. If you are interested, however, please do go to the experts for yourself.

28 January 2013 22:37  
Blogger John Magee said...

Inspector

During my two cruises in the USA Navy in the Mediterrean in the late 1960's we stopped at Valetta, Malta several times. I loved the place. At that time it was still a vast Royal Naval Base and there was an RAF base too.
Some of the ruins from the island's long seige being bombed by the Luftwaffe from nearby Sicily during WW II were not rebuilt. One ruin I clearly remember was the opera house which has probably been rebuilt by now.

The Maltese are a devoutly Roman Catholic people still and their small island is full of beautiful churches.

Recently I read a book about the battle the Spanish, Italians, and other Christian volunteers against the Ottoman Turks who had captured the island of Malta in the 1500's. It was a terrble seige but the Catholics won. They probaly saved Siciliy and Italy from invasion by the Muslims. That battle and the naval battle of Lapento and the seige of Vienna saved Europe from being conquered by Islam.

You are also correct about the American "indigenes". Other than the Aztecs, Inca's, the few remaining Mayans and the Navaho's in who lived in what is now the SW USA and had a high level of culture and were exellent farmers the vast majority of "native Americans" lived in post stone age cultures at a subsistence level barely surving.

Today on their reservations they run tax free casinos which rake in billions every year. They can also sell cigarettes tax free. Reservations are nations within a nation and they receive all kinds of generous tax payer paid for benefits such as free medical care, free schools, housing, etc.

I rather imagine few of them would trade their comfortable life today in a nice modular home for their old way of living in a tepee chewing on buffalo meat. Life without the white man's electricity, lack of cable TV, and a wide screen TV and lots of "fire water" would be worse than they could imagine. Even worse than the white man taking their lands from them.

28 January 2013 22:38  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...



John, when it comes to worthless cultures that the liberals would champion, yet would not like to live under themselves, we must not forget the Central American live human sacrifice peoples, which the Conquistadors put an end to. Had they survived, can you imagine those bastards at the United Nations ?



28 January 2013 22:52  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

John Magee

I think 'Manifest Destiny' is alive and well in some parts of the USA.

28 January 2013 23:02  
Blogger non mouse said...

Mr. Magee --- To understand and be fair to what I said, you would have to consider my posts more carefully.

In fact, my remarks about the US do slightly less than respond in kind to the "snootiness" of most Americans; at the same time, I realise that Americans are usually unaware of their patronising 'addatood.' I eventually developed a theory that it's something you learn in your High Schools (not the same as ours, btw), which seem to be more about enshrining social/power bases than anything else. All those John Hughes movies show how it works. True... it could well share some traditions like those infesting "Tom Brown's Schooldays," but you have a lot of european stuff about you as well. However, we could go round the settlements on that for an eternity, and I have neither time nor interest; also, it is OT for this strand.

So I will not explain how my understanding of your country developed. Suffice it to say that, although I spent a few decades there, I could never consider myself one of you. That doesn't mean I don't like some things about your place, or some people; or, conversely, that I am not heartbroken about some of the things concerning my place and people. It is quite simply that I am British, nothing more, nothing less; and I know that Americans seldom understand us. As a small example, you have absolutely no idea of what the Norman-French did here, and of what they blamed the putative "English" for.

Thus, while I have made it my business to learn as much as possible about my own context, I do not claim to understand yours. That is too foreign, motley, and large for me; consequently, please note that I do not presume to explain it to you. Actually, I appreciate many of the explanations about it that you write here --

Incidentally, I am both glad and amused that you "like" me. Thank you. It took me years to figure out what that particular American preoccupation was about, and why it so concerns you-all!

In fine: I hope that my posts here reflect my belief that redemption is possible for the best in both our cultures.

28 January 2013 23:46  
Blogger non mouse said...

PS: Oh ... and we owe much of that best to the Hebrews. [Un-holy Romans not without sitting down.]

29 January 2013 00:25  
Blogger John Magee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

29 January 2013 04:08  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

David B

There were many decent communists who later came to reject the horrors of Stalinism

This is a curious phenomenon that I have long observed. There is by definition no such thing as a decent Nazi. Any association with the Party is sufficient to warrant condemnation. But the same condition is not applied to Communists. Here we see an excellent example. The problem (it can only be inferred) in the Soviet Union wasn't Communism per se. It was Stalinism. The hidden assumption is that there is some pure and noble form of Communism out there that can be isolated from the bloodshed and terror of the last 100 years. But of course this is historical nonsense. The terror didn't start with Stalin. It started with Lenin.

I can only assume that the principles of Communism are too firmly embedded in the Left for Communism to be theoretically repudiated by the Left. Thus it must always be a corrupted version that causes the slaughter. The ideal of Communism must be kept pure and unstained. Except that Communism has always led to slaughter, and always for the same reason. It presumes to remake the nature of man in the Communist image - and that can only be done by force.

carl

29 January 2013 04:10  
Blogger John Magee said...

Dodo

Give me three examples please.

29 January 2013 04:11  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

David B

One preliminary comment. I see that AIB made several long posts to you. I haven't really read through the thread. It's been a busy day. I am responding to your comments, however. My apologies if I step on anything AIB might have said.

You originally said:

I do think that the Problem of Evil provides real difficulties for any view of a benevolent god.

In order to demonstrate the truth of this proposition, you have to prove it from within the world view that would maintain the opposite. You have to assume the truth of my world view, and show me how my world view leads to a contradictory conclusion. In truth, the questions you asked demonstrated a significant lack of understanding. You can't just dismiss the Cross as 'divine child abuse.' You obviously have no idea what the 'image of God' means. You weren't even aware that I was paraphrasing Scripture when I said your ways are not His ways, and your thoughts are not His thoughts. If you don't comprehend the Book of Job, you can't even begin to critique my position.

What you did instead was simply declare it all nonsense based upon yourself as the standard, or demand evidence on the assumption that it was false. Neither addresses the actual point that you raised. You have in a very real sense side-stepped my entire argument.

carl

29 January 2013 04:36  
Blogger non mouse said...

Mr. Magee: Forget it.

We come from different planets; we will never speak the same language.




29 January 2013 05:02  
Blogger non mouse said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

29 January 2013 05:02  
Blogger John Magee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

29 January 2013 05:30  
Blogger John Magee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

29 January 2013 05:41  
Blogger John Magee said...

non mouse

If you spent a "couple of decades" in the USA that means you spent a large portion of your adult life here. It must have been hell for a person as sensitive as you living in the USA for that length of time.

Looking at your posts you certainly get up very early in the UK. Or are up very late in the USA.

:O)

29 January 2013 06:15  
Blogger len said...

One last thought to those who subscribe to 'replacement theology'(the false idea that the Church has replaced Israel in God`s plans.) If God could forsake Israel, in spite of His unconditional, everlasting promises, then He could forsake the Church!. So, if you hold to a theology that says, “God has forsaken physical Israel,” or “The Church has replaced Israel,” you had better be extremely careful.

29 January 2013 08:26  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Well said, young Len. The orthodox just don't get that we have two distinct entities in view. Israel and The Church! The Church is blessed by God's promise to Abraham and through Israel to David by his offspring, Our Wonderful Saviour but we are not the nation Israel.

Always nice to see you out and about.

Ernst

29 January 2013 10:02  
Blogger David B said...

Carl we are clearly talking past each other to a large degree.

But maybe we can give some clarity to one point at least.

You say that "You obviously have no idea what the 'image of God' means"

That is not quite right, as I have a number of ideas about what it might mean, but frankly none of them make a lot of sense to me.

So could you please clarify what 'image of God' means to you, and perhaps throw some light on any other Christian views of what it might mean.

The obvious meaning of course is that the OT god looked like a human male, rather like the gods of the Greek pantheon or that guy Hiawatha fought to get corn (IIRC) in a sort of variant of the Promethean myth.

But I suspect that there is more to it than that. If you could explain that then perhaps it would help me to, as you suggest, "You have to assume the truth of my world view, and show me how my world view leads to a contradictory conclusion."

David

29 January 2013 16:56  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Having the “image” or “likeness” of God means, in the simplest of terms, that we were made to resemble God.

The image of God refers to the immaterial/spiritual part of mankind. It sets mankind apart from the animal world, fits him for the stewardship God intended him to have over the earth and enables him to commune with his Maker through prayer and thought. It is a likeness mentally, morally, and socially.

Mentally, man was created as a rational, volitional agent so that man can reason and man can choose. This is a reflection of God’s intellect and freedom and intelligence. Anytime someone invents a machine, writes a book, paints a landscape, enjoys a symphony, calculates a sum, or names a pet or even posts comments on a blog, he or she is proclaiming the fact that we are made in God’s image.

Morally, man was created in righteousness and perfect innocence, a reflection of God’s holiness. God saw all He had made (mankind included) and called it “very good” (Genesis 1:31) (NOT PERFECT which is to come!). Our conscience or “moral compass” is a vestige of that original state. Whenever someone writes a law, recoils from evil, praises good behavior, or feels guilty, he is confirming the fact that we are made in God’s own image.

Socially, man was created for fellowship. This reflects God's triune nature and His love. In Eden, man’s primary relationship was with God (Genesis 3:8 implies fellowship with God), and God made the first woman because “it is not good for the man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18). Every time someone marries, makes a friend, hugs a child, or attends church, he is demonstrating the fact that we are made in the likeness of God.

Part of being made in God’s image is that Adam had the capacity to make free choices. Although he was given a righteous nature, Adam made an evil choice to rebel against his Creator. In so doing, Adam marred the image of God within himself, and he passed that damaged likeness on to all his descendants (Romans 5:12). Today, we still bear the image of God (James 3:9), but we also bear the scars of sin. Mentally, morally, socially, and physically, we show the effects of sin.

The good news for you and other non believers is that when God redeems an individual, He begins to restore the original image of God, creating a “new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24). That redemption is only available by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ as our Savior from the sin that separates us from God (Ephesians 2:8-9). Through Christ, we are made new creations in the likeness of God (2 Corinthians 5:17).

"You have to assume the truth of my world view, and show me how my world view leads to a contradictory conclusion." If man is truly an evolved being, what is the point of morals as they hinder rather than help a species to find and keep the resources that they come across.The most important part of successful evolution is that YOU AND YOURS SURVIVE. Tough if others suffer as the animal kingdom from which we evolved lives by this law...If another has what you require, take it by any means possible with any outcome acceptable as you are only following the paths of billions of years of survival of the fittest.

Why should anyone care if someone is ill or dying if it actually increases the chance of more for others.Why should it matter if we are only 2 billion rather than 7 in worldwide population, we are all just meat for the grinder, are we not?

E S Blofeld

29 January 2013 18:06  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Your worldview is warped because you accept the moralistic side of man yet remove the Creator from the picture, to suit your worldview as evolution has no such answer for morals even social creatures such as ants live by the means of forced slavery for one kind within the nest and varying degrees of hierarchy that wreck destruction upon the nest should the need arise.

There is no such thing as pity in the animal kingdom, which is a weakness to an evolved ape but the high of compassion to a fallen creature made in a corrupted image.

Only the truly wicked despise compassion and pity but as there is no such thing really as evil what would Ernst know!

Your position regarding evolution is merely a get out of jail card to say you hold no allegiance to any God, we all are as we are somehow but all atheists refuse to live by your propositions rules of empirical fact that morals would be a weakness in evolutionary terms!

Blofeld

29 January 2013 18:07  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

David B

No pithy retorts or statements of 'empirical evolutionary facts'?

All atheists are just like all men when in danger, They call out to Him for assistance but as everything is 'Tickety Boo' today why bother. It merely mirrors the believers failing of only calling on God when things are bad and 'why us' mentality but forgetting to thank him when things are good.

We all have this nature, my boy, it's the selfish streak within us all that He needs to work on to get us right.

Which reminds me...A man who was late for a job interview was circling the block searching for a parking spot. Finally, after the third time around and utterly frustrated, he says to himself, "God, I know I have never acknowledged you before or even considered if you exist but if you help me find a parking spot, I will go to the nearest church every Sunday and tithe ten percent of my income." Immediately, a spot opens up, and the man says aloud, "Never mind that last thought, luckily I found one." ;-O

Blofeld

30 January 2013 10:43  
Blogger len said...

Ernst ,

Keep up the good work...onward and upward to infinity and beyond!

30 January 2013 18:39  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

My goodness, thinks he's Buz Lightyear now!

Buzz Lightyear:
"I'll never give in. You killed my father!

Emperor Zurg:
"No, Buzz. I *am* your father!

Buzz Lightyear:
"NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"

30 January 2013 22:03  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

An alternative rendition:

len:
"I'll never give in. You killed my father!

Satan:
"No, len. I *am* your father!

ken:
"NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"

30 January 2013 23:13  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

Forgive the typo .... len

30 January 2013 23:14  
Blogger len said...

Whatever have you been doing with that beak Dodo?.

It has grown to a monstrous size.
Bit like pinocchio's nose?.

31 January 2013 08:14  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

I know what I'd like to do with it ...

31 January 2013 23:11  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...

Pray,do tell!

5 February 2013 01:50  
Blogger The Way of Dodo said...

If I did the post would be deleted and I'd be back on the naughty step.

The weasel isn't worth the trouble.


5 February 2013 20:25  

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