Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Excuse me Ronnie - the Pope's a better prophet than thou


The Great Tribulation has (to borrow someone else's one-liner) re-begun. The End is Nigh. Re-pant (and you know if that applies to you), or at the very least repent, and believe in God's messenger! No, not Jesus, what's he got to do with it? No, I mean Ronnie Weinland.

Ronnie, ably assisted by newly ordained wife Laura (when did women's ordination become standard practice in the splinters?), is the Eternal's number one bloke: Numero Uno of the Two Witnesses. 2008 is the year of doom... and the calendar is running out of available dates.

Ronnie is, of course, a true Christian. We know this because he "keeps" the Sabbath, pays tithes (to himself?) and won't eat bacon and egg pie. On the other hand, we know that Papa Ratzinger is a false Christian because he's Catholic, prays the Lord's Prayer, wears funny clothes and has set up a Christmas Tree in St Peter's Square.

But here's the thing: Papa R seems to know something Ronnie doesn't. Yes folks, we've got a real prophecy smackdown here! My money is on the old guy with the German accent.

Thanks to fellow Kiwi blogger, the mysterious Que, for pointing this out.

62 comments:

Juan Rheinland said...

Those whose focus is on the unknowable future in their theology gone insane only ever want it to perpetually be "almost" the end. They don't really want it to be the END.

There is no profit, ego pumping specialness, trips around the world eating and living at the expense of others, and a great cash flow, from the fearful, for it ACTUALLY being the end.

That would be horrible. Truly, truly horrible.

Anonymous said...

Now, THAT'S sanity! The Pope makes more sense than any words that come out of the mouth of False Prophet Weinland! Weinland is a very sick man, a VERY sick man. Insane!!

Anonymous said...

From OUTREACH Newsletter (COGUK):

PREPARE TO MEET THY DOOM?
Anyone writing about ‘the signs of the times’ must draw on a centuries-long history of failed prophetic interpretation. In fact, the only certainty—though disputed by some—is that Jesus will come again, and at a time preserved in the heavenly counsel.

That doesn’t mean we can live as if it will not happen ‘in my lifetime’. It could. It may. And Jesus’ stern warning is ‘...be ready’. It will be those who are faithful and diligent that are ‘ready’. And readiness isn’t measured by your understanding of prophecy.

Down the centuries any number of prophesied end-time scenarios have afflicted our planet sending believers scurrying to the hills or to their knees. They have been exploited by preachers of all faiths—some sincere, some for their personal benefit.

Earth’s scarred face bears witness to past calamity. Down the centuries catastrophies have re-shaped the planet. Millions have died from plagues. Nations have torn one another apart. And there’s the ever-present reports of impending war. But, said Jesus ‘...see that you be not troubled: for these things must needs come to pass; but the end is not yet’ (Matthew 24:6).

Much of the ‘Olivet prophecy’ (Matthew 24) was witnessed by the Jews in Palestine between 30 and 70AD. They suffered horrendously—suffering recorded by the historian Josephus—at the hands of the occupying Romans. But not all of that prophecy was fulfilled.

There’s more. For the generation that will witness the return of Jesus will be the generation that experiences the resurrection of the saints (v.31). Wrote Paul: ‘... the Lord himself shall descend from heaven, with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first’ (I Thessalonians 4:16).

At that time Jesus will ‘...stand on the Mount of Olives at Jerusalem’ (Zechariah 14:4) at the beginning of His reign as earth’s supreme ruler (v.9).

Clearly, none of this has yet happened. But believe that the Scriptures are indeed God’s Word and it will surely happen.

Be Alert
What, then, of our present ‘global credit crunch’, our looming worldwide recession? It has sent millions scurrying to protect their savings. Homes re-possessed, jobs lost. And a big concern for some—Christmas spoiled! Is this ‘the end’?

It would be brave—or foolhardy—to answer yes or to answer no to that question! Time and again the ‘signs’ have indicated ‘the end is near, even at the doors’. But we are still waiting. The signs are indeed there today. But— they may pass. cont’d over

Has God has finished with mankind? Who knows! At His perfect moment He will intervene to stop human annihilation. Life, for our present world, may recover after a few years. Or, it may not. Most of mankind will just deal with it, experience it, suffer it.

Of all people, Christians should not be fearful. Jesus’ counsel is ‘...be watchful’., ‘...be faithful’. Whatever befalls—stay close to Him, and draw on his spiritual power. Ω

Gibralter 2 said...

someone said:

"Earth’s scarred face bears witness to past calamity. Down the centuries catastrophies have re-shaped the planet"


That would be calle evolution. The planet changes. Humans are not all that special and will be eaten alive by evolution of the planet if they don't change their perspectives. Hairless apes all.

Dill Weed said...

Proof positive according to Ron:

Ron in his 1260 Days sermon said the 2nd trumpet would have physical and spiritual fullfillment.

“This will be seen BY ALL. THIS HAS NOT CHANGED.”

All will see this believers and unbelievers alike:

Something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned into blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.


So… look up for a great firey mountain screaming across the sky.

Ron has hung his hat on this one. This will need to happen soon because there are the 5 other trumpets and the bowls, too and all in 3 1/2 years.

Ron said the 1st Trumpet (which blew at the beginning of the 1260 days) was 'physical and spiritual,' but that exactly what that would be was not 'known' and would be given. LOL.

In any case, ALL will know when the 2nd Trumpet (the next Trumpet) is blown.

Tick Tock

Dill Weed

Anonymous said...

What happens when, at the Great White Throne Judgment, that Ronald stand there and understands that the Catholic church was not the great whore of revelation after all. Will he repent then or will he be cast into outer darkness, AKA hell?

Anonymous said...

....."Ich steht auf die Sand von Der See und ich sah ein Tier"

From the die Oeffenbarung Auf Johannes.

This quote is from memory so pardon imperfections in the Deutsch.

Rev 13:2.... I stood on the sand of the sea and I saw a beast".

This does typify the end but as El Papa said it's not here just yet.And he should know according to the Herbal Verbal.

"Recidivist" Ronnie is a poor prophet.Perhaps he is being led by the wrong spirit.He might need a change of brands on the top shelf...perhaps 15 year excelsior as opposed to 12 year middling.

Jorgheinz

Anonymous said...

John the Baptist wore some sort of leather girdle.

Horrible to see Ronnie attired similarly.He would definitely need to repant because his end would truly be in sight.And if he slept in the Judean wilderness at night he literally would be a "cold stern" man like the proverbial Mr Winterbottom.

Seamus

Anonymous said...

Specific dates come and go like Monty Python's The Day Nothing Happened.

Oh, Ratz!

But as Superman reassured Lex Luthor in Superman IV, "It's as it always was, on the brink...

Anonymous said...

"From OUTREACH Newsletter (COGUK):"

Wait wait wait --- are you saying there's a Brit splinter that's preaching Rapture now??

Whoa. Whatever happened to "three and a half years of final training"??

jack635 said...

"There are going to be surprises as we go forward"
Ronald Weinland 13 Dec 2008

Corky said...

Yeah, the pope can probably explain away 100+ passages that say that Jesus' return was imminent in the generation of the apostles. After all they have had over 1900 years to work on it.

Doesn't matter, because the fact is that the apostles all thought that Jesus would return in their lifetimes. It's easy to see that just by reading the NT.

It didn't happen, which means it never will - they were wrong.

What it amounts to is that there were some Jews (Jesus and apostles) who thought they understood OT prophecies better than the Jewish religious leaders.

It didn't turn out very well. They all got killed and the gentiles took over their religion.

Mel said...

Ha ha ha!

In the post from Anon, Dec 17, 04:42:00 AM...

All that cheesy stuff from the "OUTREACH Newsletter (COGUK)" made me think that there is something missing:

Ron Popeil, crappy-product-hawker-extraordinaire, in between all those screwy paragraphs, saying, "BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE!"

Rock Render said...

I was waiting for this one from Bob Thiel:

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — A weak earthquake shook parts of the South Carolina coast, tipping over people’s Christmas trees, knocking pictures off walls and causing minor injuries.

The Earthquake Hazards Program of the U.S. Geological Survey says the temblor hit at 7:42 a.m. Tuesday northwest of Charleston. It had a preliminary magnitude of 3.6

Of course, earthquakes of these magnitudes, at most, are indication of the beginning of sorrows according to Jesus:"

"Tipping over Xmas trees..." Nice observation there Bob. Makes it sound like God teaching them a lesson about the season. Some of the LCG of members in the area had their booklets knocked off the shelves. What means that? :)

Bob, you are intelligent person. Charleston is fraught with fault lines as what we know as the Atlantic plates are still separating Europe from North America with ocean floor spreading. It's how the planet works.

Earthquake, while mysterious thousands of years ago when the voice of god was in the thunder, the seed of god was in the rain, the might of god was in the wind and the footstomping of god was in the earthquake, are not mysteries to us and are NORMAL.

Since we can't comment on your comments we have to do it here on AW. If Western KY has a big one someday, don't call it unsual. The New Madris fault, bringing us the Mississippi River, was the scene of the worst earthquake in US history but in the 1850's when it as not so populated.

Funny how the earthquake during Jesus crucifixion "rent the rocks" and tore a thick curtain, I assume by spreading of the walls, but failed to crack a tall Temple or bring it down. Probably never happened any more than the sun went out for three hours and unrecoreded anywhere on earth. Midrash...go see what that means.

Geology Robert. Do you know Geology? Besides...the Bible says..."see that you be not troubled." So don't be.

Dill Weed said...

JWs and others use the claim that earthquakes are increasing to bolster their claims that THE END IS NIGH!!

I lookd up increasing earthquakes and found that they happen all the time! The USGS says there has been no increase in earthquakes, but the has been an improvement in our ability to identify them thus making them seem to 'be increasing.'

To see how frequent they are visit the USGS at this site:

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsww/Quakes/quakes_all.php


Dill Weed

Anonymous said...

"Geology Robert. Do you know Geology?"

If you mean your concept of geology, which is Satan-inspired Worldly Geography, then no. We are told to come out of this world. Bob uses Godly Geography, which is based on the Bible.

Paul Ray

Richard said...

Pretty sneaky by Pope Benedict, huh? He tells people the end is NOT near, to blind them from his secret plotting with the E.U. to bring down the USA and surround Jerusalem with armies!

At least that's how some COG is likely to explain it....

Byker Bob said...

"'Thallus, in the third book, explains away this darkness as an eclipse of the sun--unreasonably, as it seems to me'(unreasonably, of course, because a solar eclipse could not take place at the time of the full moon, and it was at the season of the Paschal full moon that Christ died).'" ~Julius Africanus

"during the time of Tiberius Casar an eclipse of the sun occurred during the full moon" ~Phlegon

Philopon: "And about this darkness...Phlegon recalls it in the Olympiads." (the title of his history). "Phlegon mentioned the eclipse which took place during the crucifixion of the Lord Christ, and no other (eclipse), it is clear that he did not know from his sources about any (similar)eclipse in previous times...and this is shown by the historical account itself of Tiberius Caesar."

BB

Jared Olar said...

Funny how the earthquake during Jesus crucifixion "rent the rocks" and tore a thick curtain, I assume by spreading of the walls,

Why do you assume that? The veil was torn from top to bottom, but who says it had anything to do with the earthquake?

but failed to crack a tall Temple or bring it down.

How do you know the Temple didn't sustain damage during the earthquake?

Probably never happened any more than the sun went out for three hours and unrecoreded anywhere on earth.

The pagan historians Thallus and Phlegon mentioned that there was an eclipse of the sun during a full moon during the reign of Emperor Tiberius. Only thing is, you can't have an eclipse of the sun during a full moon . . . and Jesus died during a full moon.

Midrash...go see what that means.

Good advice for you. The accounts of Christ's death are not examples of midrash.

Dennis said...

"Mark, using the Greek biographical model, drew much of his inspiration from the Hebrew Scriptures, building on the Jewish belief that the Messiah would be a historical, rather than a mythical savior. The author's belief that Jesus was the Son of God meant to him that his life would have been FORETOLD and MODELED on the beliefs, events and heroes of the JEWISH OLD TESTAMENT. Mark would REWORK Hebrew scripture through the Jewish rabbinical technique of MIDRASH, that is, elaborating on and interpreting sacred text from the past to explain and confirm truth for his time.

A case in point is the crucifixion of Jesus. Paul and the early Christians knew Jesus was crucified, but LACKED DETAILS of the event. Mark MINED the book of Isaiah (chapter 53) for the suffering servant motif and Psalm 22 ("My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?) for descriptive details in order to build his narrative of Jesus' death on the cross (Mk. 15:21-39). Matthew and Luke follow suit, but the former goes one step further; instead of the of darkness over all the land during Jesus' last three hours on the cross (when the sun hides its face in shame: (Is.24: 23)). Matthew substituted an earthquake when Jesus gave up the ghost. Matthew remembered Isaiah's account of Judah's deliverance (Is. 26:19). He writes of a great earthquake striking Jerusalem and many graves opening from which God's saints rise zombie-like from the dead, and after Jesus' resurrection walk about to be seen by many (Matt. 27:50-54). But John, who SUPPOSEDLY WAS PRSENT at the crucifixion, does not mention any of these fantastic events in his gospel - the earthquake, the three hours of darkness and the once dead walking about in Jerusalem (Jn. 19:25-37). Nor were these incredible events reported by any non-Christian writers of the period (e.g. Josephus, Seneca, Pliny the Elder).

This is not history, but heroic mythmaking based on a MIDRASH of ancient texts."
R. C. Symes
"The resurrection myths about Jesus;"
a Progressive Christian interpretation

I realize the progressive thing is off putting to many.

Sorry to go a bit long. The conflicting Gospel accounts are nothing but Midrash through and through from birth narratives to death and resurrection.

All of "Matthews" fulfillment statements in the birth accounts are midrash at it's worst making the OT mean what it never meant revealing that , 'perhaps' he did not even know how to go about it.

However, the Pope is probably more accurate than Ron Weinland still. :)

Anonymous said...

To the 3rd Anon in this thread, quoting OUTREACH saying Zech. 14:4 refers to Jesus, the LORD, standing on the Mt. of Olives when he returns: No doubt this is assumed because people use the term, "Lord," when speaking to or about Jesus in the NT. Yet the same term is used of several OT personalities, including kings, and a whole House of British Lords, none of whom is either God or Jesus.

In Gn. 23.10 Ephron tells Abraham, "Nay, my Lord, hear me." Sarah is praised by Paul for referring to her husband as Lord (Ba'al). Israeli wives refer to their husbands as "my lord," or Ba'ali. The English word, Lord, obviously hides the Hebrew or Greek word beneath it in translation, creating confusion of which most readers of English Bibles aren't the least bit aware.

This stuff is soooo elementary, and I'm sure some of you will be irritated by what I'm saying. To you I apologize for the unintended irritation, but no one else is saying it, so I will.

LORD, in caps, in English Bibles, translates the tetragrammaton, the word Moffatt translated as "Eternal" because those 4 Hebrew letters of God's name (actually 3 letters, 1 repeated, Y-H-V-H) can be permutated to mean "He was, He is, He shall be." It is God's ineffable personal name with an eternal connotation -- and LORD is not God's name but a title substituted for a name most Hebrew speakers will not pronounce.

"LORD" causes a host of misunderstandings when referring to God because it's so easy for Christians to assume that LORD generally means Jesus. It does not. It can not. Lord might, but LORD never does.

Jesus referred to his Father, and our Father, as "the ONLY true God" (Jn. 17.1-3). He took very seriously the first of the 10 statements (that we like to call the 10 commandments). There, God says, "I, the Eternal, [am] your God." "I" is singular, "your" is singular, "God" is singular. God deals with each of us uniquely so "your" is singular when God tells each of us, "YOU shall have NO other Gods besides, before, in addition to, in place of, Me."

Zechariah is not speaking of Jesus returning to earth, but of God, the LORD, besides Whom we, including Jesus, as he so eloquently acknowledged, are forbidden to have other gods.

There is no doubt that the momentum of Christianity is so high and so formidable that even God can not yet convince such people of what I just wrote. But if the vast momentum of Christian tradition were held at bay for just a day or two while looking into what the Bible and Jesus actually say on these things, it might be almost possible, ever so briefly, to accept the truth of this extremely important matter.

Anonymous said...

"Jesus referred to his Father, and our Father, as "the ONLY true God" (Jn. 17.1-3). He took very seriously the first of the 10 statements (that we like to call the 10 commandments). There, God says, "I, the Eternal, [am] your God." "I" is singular, "your" is singular, "God" is singular. God deals with each of us uniquely so "your" is singular when God tells each of us, "YOU shall have NO other Gods besides, before, in addition to, in place of, Me."

My family (six of us) IS...

Dennis said...

"There is no doubt that the momentum of Christianity is so high and so formidable that even God can not yet convince such people of what I just wrote."

Excellent. The momentum of Christianity as taught is so high and formidable that it is locked in stone and bound in chains and can never more be updated no matter how true the new information is.

It's why Ron Weinland, and others who merely repeat unexamined themes over and over, see their dark prophetic world as they do and cannot admit to being wrong or ill advised.

Frankly it's why a Pope, Priest, Prophet,prosperity preacher or Televangelist can't answer the simple question, "Just what would Jesus wear, who would he love and how would he live?"

Jordanes said...

To the 3rd Anon in this thread, quoting OUTREACH saying Zech. 14:4 refers to Jesus, the LORD, standing on the Mt. of Olives when he returns: No doubt this is assumed because people use the term, "Lord," when speaking to or about Jesus in the NT.

Wrong. Christians believe Zech. 14:4 refers to Jesus because Christians believe that Jesus is God, the LORD (Yhvh).

Yet the same term is used of several OT personalities, including kings, and a whole House of British Lords, none of whom is either God or Jesus. In Gn. 23.10 Ephron tells Abraham, "Nay, my Lord, hear me." Sarah is praised by Paul for referring to her husband as Lord (Ba'al). Israeli wives refer to their husbands as "my lord," or Ba'ali. The English word, Lord, obviously hides the Hebrew or Greek word beneath it in translation, creating confusion of which most readers of English Bibles aren't the least bit aware.

All of that is irrelevant, because you admit further on that Zech. 14:4 is referring to God, the LORD (Yhvh), not ba’ali or adoni.

This stuff is soooo elementary, and I'm sure some of you will be irritated by what I'm saying. To you I apologize for the unintended irritation, but no one else is saying it, so I will.

Anthony Buzzard and Ken Westby are saying it . . . not that there is any need for more than one person to saying something that is wrong, of course.

LORD, in caps, in English Bibles, translates the tetragrammaton, the word Moffatt translated as "Eternal" because those 4 Hebrew letters of God's name (actually 3 letters, 1 repeated, Y-H-V-H) can be permutated to mean "He was, He is, He shall be." It is God's ineffable personal name with an eternal connotation -- and LORD is not God's name but a title substituted for a name most Hebrew speakers will not pronounce.

"LORD" causes a host of misunderstandings when referring to God because it's so easy for Christians to assume that LORD generally means Jesus. It does not. It can not. Lord might, but LORD never does.

Since the New Testament teaches that Jesus is not just Lord, but LORD, it follows that Christians will see LORD as a reference not just to the Father but also to the Son.

Jesus referred to his Father, and our Father, as "the ONLY true God" (Jn. 17.1-3).

That’s the same Jesus who said, “I and My Father are one,” and whom St. Thomas worshipped as “my Lord and my God,” and who was condemned as a blasphemer for telling Caiaphas, “You shall see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power and coming on the clouds of heaven” (i.e., the human Messiah, the Son of Man, is equal to God, is divine).

Zechariah is not speaking of Jesus returning to earth, but of God, the LORD

True – and because Jesus identified Himself as God the LORD, therefore Christians interpret the prophecy of Zechariah as a reference to Jesus returning to earth.

Jared Olar said...

I suppose what it boils down to is that Corky prefers his own “midrash” of the New Testament and early Church history to that offered by the Pope, and Dennis prefers his own “midrash” of the Gospels to that offered by the Evangelists.

Mark Lax said...

"It didn't turn out very well. They all got killed and the gentiles took over their religion."

Gosh, Cork, could you let me down a little more slowly.

Dennis does make an interesting point about the accounts of Christ's death and rise. The birth, death and rise were not in the original accounts and are additive Midrash. The early church fought about this.

And poor Ron is basing his whole thingy on REV and a few throw aways from Matt.

Tou have to wonder why they felt the need to add all of this circus nonsense. The message of Jesus seems good enough without the floorshow.

Anonymous said...

Ronnie is, of course, a true Christian. We know this because he "keeps" the Sabbath, pays tithes (to himself?) and won't eat bacon and egg pie.

Sadly, many of us who still believe and practice the things that we learned in the WCG think that these 3 things are the litmus test for what a true Christian is. Although these things are very important, many have never understood the weightier matters of the law and the practices in their congregations show this. Let's not forget Love, Mercy, Justice and Righteousness. These are the foundations of God's way of life. The other things are important but are just some of the outward ways of showing love and respect to God. The weightier matters will be the downfall of any offshoot of the WCG. We need to be mindful of these.

Dennis said...

Long before western thinkers literalized the gods and their dramas, Jesus (Greek for Joshua or savior) had his own life captured by writers steeped in Midrash tradition.

Starting with a birth story that compares Jesus and Moses as survivors of infant genocide and ending with an ascension to the heavens that grounds Jesus in the legend of Elijah, the gospels tell us about Jesus through well known stories of Jewish antiquity.

They don't have to be historically accurate, and aren't really, to have meaning as the author intended. When the Jesus of Emmaus explains himself along the road "out of the scripture" that is Midrash. He did not explain himself as standing right there. He went back that in the past which explained the present. Well the author of the story did.

As John Shelby Spong notes,

"When studying midrash, students realize the question to ask of the texts is not, Did it really happen? That is a western question tied to a western mind-set that seeks by sensory perception to measure and describe those things defined as objectively real."

Each of us picks how we see the Bible. Some take it literally, some historically true, some midrashically so and some as mere folklore.

I currently see it as Midrash.

This is a method of looking at the Bible from a totally different perspective. As explained by retired Episcopal Bishop J.S. Spong:

"Midrash is the Jewish way of saying that everything to be venerated in the present must somehow be connected with a sacred moment in the past...It is the means whereby the experience of the present can be affirmed and asserted as true inside the symbols of yesterday."

For example,

As Moses escaped a Pharoah and the genocide of Israelite children, so Jesus excaped Herod and a similar fate and so forth in many many examples in the Gospel stories.

What we have often took as a foreshadowing of Jesus in the OT was and really is a reaching back into the OT in the style of Midrash to rewrite the old story into explaining new individuals..In the case of the NT...Jesus.

Huge topic.
This is my present truth and explains more to me than my views in the past. Each to their own along the path for sure.

Dill Weed said...

MMMM...., bacon.



Dill Weed

Bamboo_bends said...

MARK LAX WROTE:

Dennis does make an interesting point about the accounts of Christ's death and rise. The birth, death and rise were not in the original accounts and are additive Midrash. The early church fought about this.


Midrash is not another word for error, its simply the Jewish equivalent of camp fire stories.

Much of what and how Jesus taught could be called Midrash because he didn't write it down, his sayings were preserved at first in an oral tradition. Later repeated by followers around campfires at night.

Perhaps Jesus wanted a flexible oral tradition rather than fixed wording produced by great effort by humorless scribes?

One does not get the opinion of the historical Jesus that he had a bung up his arse.

And poor Ron is basing his whole thingy on REV and a few throw aways from Matt.

You have to wonder why they felt the need to add all of this circus nonsense. The message of Jesus seems good enough without the floorshow.


EXACTLY!!

But you don't get lots of attention for yourself teaching people the Golden Rule!

Baashabob said...

Anonymous 05:58 said:
"Sadly, many of us who still believe and practice the things that we learned in the WCG think that these 3 things are the litmus test for what a true Christian is."

Yes, it is sad. Those who still believe and practice the things they learned in the WCG also claim that they are Christians. But Christians are supposed to be living by the terms of the New Covenant. Strangely enough, none of those three litmus tests can be found as requirements in the New Covenant.

Dill Weed said...

How will Ron separate himself from his predicition that there will be no inauguration?


He's gonna need to deal with this one soon.

If he can make it "awesome and incredible to know" it may sell better.


Dill Weed

Den said...

"I suppose what it boils down to is that Corky prefers his own “midrash” of the New Testament and early Church history to that offered by the Pope, and Dennis prefers his own “midrash” of the Gospels to that offered by the Evangelists."

At least we have an admission that the Pope does have his own Midrash as did the Evangelists.

I think we can also note that Mark preferred his own Midrash to Matthews and Matthew preferred his own to Luke and John, well, John was John.

You'd think that if the Gospels were eyewitness accounts, Mark, being first, would have at least had an actual resurrection account of Jesus and not just ending with frightened women running from the tomb tellling no one anything.

We'd also not expect that 'Matthew' would copy nearly 90% of Mark for his own "eyewitness account," nor Luke over 54% of Mark for his. Lazy, lazy eyewitnesses. Without Mark as the first primary source, the other guys would not known what to write evidently.

Rob said...

"...Thallus and Phlegon mentioned that there was an eclipse of the sun..."

There are no actual records of Thallus or Phlegon mentioning this. Only a claim by Africanus, a Christian writer, that they wrote this. Phlegon would not even have been a contemporary of the event (he wrote in about 140 AD).

However, we do have actual records from other writers like Seneca the Younger and Pliny the Elder. They discussed natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, eclipses, and comets in their books, but neither one of them mentioned a three-hour period of darkness at midday. They referred to events far less phenomenal but didn't mention three hours of darkness at midday.

more at: http://www.theskepticalreview.com/tsrmag/022abs.html

Anonymous said...

Jordanes, I've not spoken to Anthony Buzzard or Ken Westby since the early 60s, and I've never studied their lit. But neither of them is stupid, not by a long shot. If they're pushing the notion of one God, they're in agreement with the Jews, who also aren't stupid. "What advantage then hath the Jew? ... Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God." Would God commit his Word to numbskulls? Perhaps He knew they were more worthy of trust than the other families of the earth. And you're saying Sir Anthony and Ken Westby agree with them? I find that encouraging.

If Christians hadn't been so committed to the notion that messiahs are gods, Jews might have been more willing to look at Jesus over the past 1900 years. Jesus' contemporaries were quite enamoured with him when he rode into Jerusalem on a donkey's colt. But as Jews they had no illusions that he was God.

As for "I and my father are one," Jesus also prayed "that they all may be one," referring to all his followers. Are all of Jesus' followers God? They all created the universe?

He also insisted that the opening statement of the Sh'ma is the most important statement in the Hebrew Scriptures, "Listen, Israel, the LORD our God (singular), the LORD is One." Christians say that refers to a Duality or Trinity, and ignore the oft-repeated opinion of God Himself, that "I alone am God and there is no one else."

But we know better, don't we.

Anonymous said...

Ronnie is, of course, a true Christian. We know this because he "keeps" the Sabbath, pays tithes (to himself?) and won't eat bacon and egg pie.


Gavin,

NO, Ronald Weinland is NOT a true Christian, and certainly NOT a true prophet. You need to look deeper than that shallow analysis.

The biblical seventh-day Sabbath IS a SIGN that helps to identify God's people. If anyone claiming to be a prophet does not observe God's weekly Sabbath, that person is a false prophet and not a true Christian. How could such a person be anything at all when he does not even know anything at all? (And, if he does know better, but does not obey God's Sabbath commandment, then his situation just gets worse.) Therefore, one can safely reject ALL prophets from the ham-eating, Sunday-keeping crowd of sinners (i.e., breakers of God's law). This simple Sabbath sign is very effective as it weeds out about two billion phonies today. If God calls one of them in this age, then he might listen, and learn, and repent, and become a true Christian.

The very serious problem today is with outright FRAUDS like Ronald Weinland, Gerald Flurry, and others who know about the biblical seventh-day Sabbath from the Worldwide Church of God (WCG). They use this to try to ensnare people who are looking for the truth of God, but then ADD many other unnecessary and unacceptable LIES to their package of beliefs. Therefore, while the biblical seventh-day Sabbath is very important, additional screening is necessary to weed out such scum.

An excellent example of this sort of thing can be found in the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church. SDAs talk about keeping "all ten" of the ten commandments. Yet, they themselves do not keep all ten! While they observe the Sabbath commandment, they then deliberately and perversely go far out of their way to break the commandment against idolatry by putting Catholic pictures of a long-haired false Jesus in virtually all their literature. This is a clear sign that the SDA church is a false church and that it is not serious about the truth or the commandments of God.

Gerald Flurry copied another guy's writings, revised them umpteen times over the years, and now claims that they were "delivered by a mighty angel" and are the "little scroll" mentioned in the biblical book of Revelation. His Philadelphia Church of God (PCG) members are now required to firmly believe this lie. Building his own cult on deliberate lies like that means that it CANNOT be the true church and that it can NEVER become the true church. Making Gerald's little book the "centerpiece" of the PCG's literature was a clear sign that his cult is UTTERLY FALSE and can NEVER be true. The PCG just misuses the Sabbath truth to try to snare unsuspecting former WCG members. Then, the PCG requires them to believe additional outright lies.

Ronald Weinland is so full of wrong guesses and nonsense that it is obvious that his purpose in the scheme of things is to make the Sabbath truth look like the belief of complete kooks like himself. But, you must remember that the biblical seventh-day Sabbath is something that came out of the mind of God. Ronald's endless wrong prophetic guesses came out of the mind of a shameful lying idiot. True Christians do not behave like him.

Gavin said...

Alas, concepts of irony and sarcasm seem lost on some folk...

Byker Bob said...

To Anonymous 2:34 PM: My parents bought into the criteria you just described way back in the 1950s. Sadly, they had no firm rooting, or understanding of the epistle to the Galatians, or they would have realized that such criteria were totally bogus. But, they didn't, and fell head over heels into HWA's scam. My entire childhood was ruined by HWA's fantasy that the Germans were going to come and get us by 1972. Because I thought at the time that HWA was actually acting on behalf of God, I made some detrimental choices which I most certainly would not have made had I known that he was just another one of those Deut.18:22 dudes. In retrospect, I would sincerely prefer that my parents had simply lied to me about Santa Clause. It would have been much less damaging than HWA's soul raping lies.

Having suvived numerous decades since then, I've had the satisfaction of watching God divide and confuse the tongue of the Armstrong movement. Clearly, not one of the splinters are doing God's work, or they would not have been allowed to be so consistently wrong. They are a disgraceful joke, calling one another "Laodecean", and stealing members back and forth. I personally believe that God did a tower of Babel number on them because they were not preaching the gospel which He intended, the one which concerns salvation and transformation of our hearts through Jesus. Instead, they have been preaching the gospel of Armageddon, and using this to manipulate and scare people about things of which they remain clueless. They have condoned exhibiting horrible calloused, elitist, non-caring fruits towards all people who are not part of the sanctioned groups.

Believe me, your sabbaths and holydays, tithing and clean meats do not provide any special insights into prophecy. That is a fallacy. We have decades of false alarms, gun laps, and wolf crying to prove this.

There are many different solutions to the Armstrong problem, and some of the most popular ones are represented here and on some of the other blogs. I've tried out a few, and certainly have my own preference these days. But, you may want to check some of them out before wasting more valuable years of your life. Based on my own personal experiences, I would suggest that twenty or thirty years from now, your children will probably appreciate it if you do.

BB

Mark Lax said...

“Would God commit his Word to numbskulls?”
The central idea of Christianity is to expand the franchise of God’s people, by simplifying the membership requirements. Jesus highlights what he feels are the key points, making membership in salvation a matter of Grace with a directive for behavior. His constant pardoning of sinners and other acts make it clear that “perfection” or “identity” are in no ways keys to the kingdom.

“The biblical seventh-day Sabbath IS a SIGN that helps to identify God's people.”
Wrong. It identifies you as a Jew, which has been made obsolete, for a Christian, as a key to salvation. I might agree with you on the SDA keeping pictures of a long haired man in their temples as being an example of graven images, which still might seem not kosher. But then again, the whole kosher and perfect thing was thrown out the window by Christ, the founder of the religion.

Eat your ham in peace.

A Merry 'ol Sol said...

Twas noted:

"Perhaps Jesus wanted a flexible oral tradition rather than fixed wording produced by great effort by humorless scribes?"

Sounds more then like Jesus could not write personally. I doubt a literate, well gifted writer would opt for oral traditions of his words which he labeled "life" itself.

Sitting around the campfire telling stories of Jesus for a few decades is risky business when it comes to getting it straight since the penalty for not getting it straight is the Lake of Fire, Eternal Hell or whatever. Not a very well thought out program by the Deity if that's how it gets sent out.

On the other hand there is a school of thought that has Jesus, as a pharisee himself going against, the grain.

Or an Essene cutting loose..

Or a goofball...

Or one who never in his wildest dreams every thought of starting a church since that all was added after his unexpected death..

or a nice guy named Brian who was misunderstood...

The sheer amount of confusion over Jesus, his reality, his origins, his message, his meaning, his intent and the length of his hair is enough to tell us something is terribly wrong with what is supposed to be THE most important topic on God's mind for all humanity.

Perhaps the scripture should have read.."Behold, I will build my church and it will be all downhill from there..."

Happy Holiday to all and to those who don't care...enjoy the Solstice because it the birth of the SUN, yet again, no matter.
:)

Anonymous said...

"If anyone claiming to be a prophet does not observe God's weekly Sabbath, that person is a false prophet and not a true Christian."

I agree with this. The reason I do is because prophets and sabbath keeping are not needed after Christ. So, if you claim to be a prophet, then you are still O.C., under the law, and must keep the sabbath. Prophets pointed us to Christ, and so did the sabbath rest. And now we have Jesus. Amen.

Jared Olar said...

At least we have an admission that the Pope does have his own Midrash as did the Evangelists.

Not much of an “admission.” As the Popes have been saying for 2,000 years, everybody interprets the Bible. It’s not like a book can interpret itself. The question is which interpretations are right and which are wrong, not whether or not people interpret the Bible.

I think we can also note that Mark preferred his own Midrash to Matthews and Matthew preferred his own to Luke and John, well, John was John.

I doubt we have enough information to be able to conclude that St. Mark “preferred” his take on Jesus to those of the other Evangelists. All we can say is that he had a take on Jesus that differed from those of the other three Evangelists.

You'd think that if the Gospels were eyewitness accounts, Mark, being first, would have at least had an actual resurrection account of Jesus and not just ending with frightened women running from the tomb telling no one anything.

Of course there’s not a shred of evidence that St. Mark wrote first. The earliest tradition is unanimous that St. Matthew wrote first, and there is no rival tradition that places St. Mark first. That’s only a hypothesis.

As for the shorter version of St. Mark’s Gospel, it is no less lacking a “resurrection account of Jesus” than the other Gospels are: none of them relate the event of the resurrection. They only mention how the tomb was found empty Sunday morning and then people saw Him alive.

We'd also not expect that 'Matthew' would copy nearly 90% of Mark for his own "eyewitness account," nor Luke over 54% of Mark for his.

Of course we don’t know that St. Matthew copied St. Mark. For all we know it was the other way around.

There are no actual records of Thallus or Phlegon mentioning this.

Not any more, that is. All we have now are quotes and cites from later writers. That is true of most ancient writers.

Only a claim by Africanus, a Christian writer, that they wrote this. Phlegon would not even have been a contemporary of the event (he wrote in about 140 AD).

Thallus was contemporary, however, and Phlegon wasn’t too much later than Tacitus and Josephus, whose historical writings from circa A.D. 100 and later are accepted as solid sources of history going back well prior to the time they wrote.

However, we do have actual records from other writers like Seneca the Younger and Pliny the Elder. They discussed natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, eclipses, and comets in their books, but neither one of them mentioned a three-hour period of darkness at midday. They referred to events far less phenomenal but didn't mention three hours of darkness at midday.

Three hours of darkness is more phenomenal than earthquakes and volcanoes?

Anyway, you’re only offering an argument from silence, and absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Just because the extant writings of Seneca and Pliny don’t mention the three hours of darkness and the earthquake in Jerusalem doesn’t mean they didn’t mention them in other writings since lost – and even if they didn’t mention them at all, that doesn’t mean they didn’t happen. Are there any reasons to doubt that Thallus and Phlegon wrote what Africanus and later writers say they wrote?

Jordanes said...

Jordanes, I've not spoken to Anthony Buzzard or Ken Westby since the early 60s, and I've never studied their lit. But neither of them is stupid, not by a long shot.

Nobody said they’re stupid. They’re both very intelligent. They’re also wrong.

If Christians hadn't been so committed to the notion that messiahs are gods, Jews might have been more willing to look at Jesus over the past 1900 years.

Or more likely, based on what the historical records tell us, Jesus Himself was committed to the notion that He was the Messiah and was both God and man, thus offending those Jews who couldn’t accept that God could assume a human nature.

Jesus' contemporaries were quite enamoured with him when he rode into Jerusalem on a donkey's colt. But as Jews they had no illusions that he was God.

Yep. And that’s how He ended up dead just five days later. Given a chance to say whether or not He was the Messiah, He not only affirmed that He was but went further and insisted that the Messiah is divine, equal to God, seated at God’s right hand and riding the clouds of heaven, as the Old Testament depicts Yhvh.

As for "I and my father are one," Jesus also prayed "that they all may be one," referring to all his followers. Are all of Jesus' followers God? They all created the universe?

Context, Anonymous. Context. (Hint: look up the words “theosis” and “divinization.”)

He also insisted that the opening statement of the Sh'ma is the most important statement in the Hebrew Scriptures, "Listen, Israel, the LORD our God (singular), the LORD is One." Christians say that refers to a Duality or Trinity,

No, Christians say that refers to a Trinity.

and ignore the oft-repeated opinion of God Himself, that "I alone am God and there is no one else."

If the one God is a Trinity of Persons, there’s no contradiction in God saying that He alone is God and there is no other.

Gavin said...

Well, shreds of evidence - or even better - DO exist that Mark wrote first. "Markan priority" is based on some pretty convincing textual evidence. Convincing enough to persuade the vast majority of scholars - Catholic and Protestant, evangelical and liberal. Even Mark Goodacre, who opposes the Q hypothesis, maintains Markan priority.

For a 90 second intro to the subject that explains it in a truly unique way - no degree required - click

Anonymous said...

"Well, shreds of evidence - or even better - DO exist that Mark wrote first. "Markan priority" is based on some pretty convincing textual evidence.

Thank you Gavin.

Markan priority, to me, in my opinion, as far as I can tell, it seems to me, (how'm I doin'?), is a pretty up to date and convincing piece of work.

Should I even dare suggest that the 21st chapter of John, which Gospel has two endings, is the missing ending of Mark at 16:8, which has no good ending?

Nah...won't bring it up
:)

Anonymous said...

Byker Bob said...

To Anonymous 2:34 PM: My parents bought into the criteria you just described way back in the 1950s. Sadly, they had no firm rooting, or understanding of the epistle to the Galatians, or they would have realized that such criteria were totally bogus. But, they didn't, and fell head over heels into HWA's scam. My entire childhood was ruined by HWA's fantasy that the Germans were going to come and get us by 1972. Because I thought at the time that HWA was actually acting on behalf of God, I made some detrimental choices which I most certainly would not have made had I known that he was just another one of those Deut.18:22 dudes.



Byker Bob,

Sorry to hear about your German nightmares. The problem is that HWA was just guessing about 1972. God had not revealed any such thing to HWA. When HWA wrote the 1975 in Prophecy! booklet of guesses in the late 1950's he still had not learned anything from his previous mistake of thinking that Hitler and the short Italian guy would win World War II.

At the same time, please consider the situation of the 2 billion Sunday-keeping Catholics and Protestants today. Some of them, at least for a while, take some of their church teachings seriously. This makes them sincere, but sincerely WRONG. Imagine the fear of those who truly believe that if they are lost they will be tormented forever in an ever-burning-but-never-quite-consuming hell fire. The Catholics also have to worry that even if they do eventually make it, they might first have to spend some time in Purgatory (a word not in the Bible).

Many Catholics have been abused by Catholic priests thanks to the RC church's "doctrine of demons" that forbids them to marry. The point is that rejecting God's Sabbaths to observe things like Sunday and Christmas is not all wonderful pretty colored lights and gifts.

The Bible says what it says. You have to accept it without accepting all the ADDITIONAL ERROR that people make up.

As for the German nightmare, well, it really might be coming yet to some nations near you that have rejected God's ways and gotten into many very evil practices, such as same-sex marriages, Harry Potter wizardry, abortion, Sunday-keeping, etc.

As for the pope being a better prophet than Ronald Weinland, that would not take much. Also, the pope knows what he is doing behind the scenes, so he can "predict" with that knowledge. But don't ever think that the pope is a true prophet. Revelation 19:20 calls him a "false prophet."

Anonymous said...

...German nightmare...really might be coming...

If I remember correctly, we were told the 1/3 of the US who survive the attacks will be "taken into captivity." With current figures, about 100 Million. Do COGs still have the hardline view that we'll be marched off to Germany, as Israel and Judah were in the Assyrian and Babylonian captivities?

And the Catholic superpower is going to nuke, despite the 50 million Catholics in the USA?

Just wondering. Oh, Canada... we mustn't forget Canada...

Bamboo_bends said...

Anonymous wrote: The Bible says what it says. You have to accept it without accepting all the ADDITIONAL ERROR that people make up.


This kind of thinking reveals a Biblicist right off the starting mark. That and the term "Living Word of God", which is blasphemy on its face, for theirs nothing living about the Bible. Life is a property of living beings...

There's wisdom, there's opinion, there's insights, and there's just plain wrong things and ideas from centuries ago, that we don't do in a civilized society.

As for the German nightmare, well, it really might be coming yet to some nations near you that have rejected God's ways and gotten into many very evil practices, such as same-sex marriages, Harry Potter wizardry, abortion, Sunday-keeping, etc.

Oh, lets kick out all the Gay Christian Harry Potter fans now before its too late for our nation and we are attacked from Europe!
Wait...didn't Harry Potter come to us from Europe?

Corky said...

Anonymous said...
But don't ever think that the pope is a true prophet. Revelation 19:20 calls him a "false prophet."

Yep, sure does. "The Pope is the false prophet" (Rev. 19:20).

Don't look that up, just take my word for it.

Anonymous said...

Is it a package deal with the COGs? I mean, do you have to believe their OC teachings as well as their proprietary interpretation of the book of Revelation? It seems that the different flavors of COGdom have their own spin on the book and make their distinctives out of that. Of course they have to all be different, that's what will enforce the exaltation of their leaders! Can't people see that this has less to do with any biblical interpretation and more to do with the leaders of these various churches being UNABLE to submit to anyone else's authority? They want to be the chief priest, and if they can't be then they will create their own kingdom where they can. HWA taught them well about all the trappings of authority, power, and wealth. Their motto? "Why wait for the kingdom, live like a king now."

Byker Bob said...

Where is the Pope even directly mentioned in the Bible? More speculative HWAcaca!

Remember when WCG embarrassed itself fawning all over Franz Josef Strauss as he visited the AC 'dena campus?

BB

Anonymous said...

Things God hates most:

1) Two women getting married.
2) Harry Potter
3) Abortions
4) Worshiping him on Sundays.


What an eclectic list. Your psycho God sounds a bit unfocused.


Paul Ray

Anonymous said...

Paul Ray --

That's why the OT prophets write so much about those four things...

Of course, you need to "here a little,..." to find Harry Potter. But, if you put together references to Esau (a Hairy man) and Judas Iscariot (the Potter's field), it's a start...

Mike (EkimKS) said...

The Spokesman Witness had a few things to say about the pope and his prophecies in yesterday's sermon.

He also had a few things to say about his mockers. Gavin, you and I won't be blogging much longer as we're to die speedily from the inside. And since he truly really, really for sure has his Witness powers this time we're goners.

Jared Olar said...

Well, shreds of evidence - or even better - DO exist that Mark wrote first. "Markan priority" is based on some pretty convincing textual evidence.

Well, since there's not a single ancient text that mentions Mark being written first, there can't be any convincing textual evidence. All we have are speculations and analysis of the extant texts of the Gospel of St. Mark. It's scholarly guesswork. There is simply no way to tell, based simply on the data provided by the Gospel texts themselves, which of them were written in what order.

Convincing enough to persuade the vast majority of scholars - Catholic and Protestant, evangelical and liberal.

Truth is not determined by a majority vote. The mere fact that they were persuaded doesn't mean the hypothesis is correct -- it's the argument and evidence brought forward that matters . . . and when it comes to Markan priority, as it with all the various speculations about how the four Gospels came to be written, there just isn't any evidence that we can work with . . . except the testimony of the early Christians, that is, who notably disbelieved in Markan priority. Of course they could have been wrong, but you'd think that a religion that, in just 30 or 40 years (or less) after the Synoptics were written, had made those four writings the centerpiece of their sacred writings would have some trace of memory that the shortest Gospel was the first to be written.

Anonymous said...

Gavin said...

Alas, concepts of irony and sarcasm seem lost on some folk...



Yeah! That Paul Ray guy really needs to lighten up a bit.

Anonymous said...

Bamboo_bends said...

There's wisdom, there's opinion, there's insights, and there's just plain wrong things and ideas from centuries ago, that we don't do in a civilized society.

Oh, lets kick out all the Gay Christian Harry Potter fans now before its too late for our nation and we are attacked from Europe!

Wait...didn't Harry Potter come to us from Europe?



Incurably Bent Bamboo,

Nope! He came to us from a wicked divorced woman from Britain (Ephraim). Looks like they might get nuked too for behaving like that.

You see, "there's just plain wrong things and ideas from centuries ago" that are still being done to this very day in our supposedly "civilized society."

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

...German nightmare...really might be coming...

And the Catholic superpower is going to nuke, despite the 50 million Catholics in the USA?

Just wondering. Oh, Canada... we mustn't forget Canada...



Anonymous,

That's right! German Catholics faught American Catholics in World War I, and again in World War II, and they'll try it again in World War III. Nothing new there.

You are also right about Canada! You can be sure that their behavior is being carefully noted too and that they will not be forgotten or left out of the fight or left behind during the exile.

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:01 -

I think soldier vs soldier who put their country first is a little different from nuking civilan targets. Will killing other Catholics be intentional, or collateral damage?

And would you like to comment on the marching off of captives issue?

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:01 -

I think soldier vs soldier who put their country first is a little different from nuking civilan targets. Will killing other Catholics be intentional, or collateral damage?

And would you like to comment on the marching off of captives issue?


Anonymous,

Yes, there is just a "little" difference. As for "intentional or collateral damage," it won't matter. They will be just as dead either way. Maybe the European ones won't consider the American ones to be "good" Catholics.

As for the "marching off of csptives" issue, maybe they won't march. Maybe they'll be carried away in cattle cars, like in the bad old days.

Dill Weed said...

Stop by my blogg:

theprophetwhofailed.blogspot.com/


All are welcome!

Dill Weed

Anonymous said...

...carried away in cattle cars...

100 million? To where? Assyria? To do what? Sit in concentration camps? Slave labor?