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hate and murder…OUCH! tough? topics

attitude communication conscientious-ness forgiveness healing insights Joan Winifred logic mind food patience peace spiritual food stress management study things i learned wisdom

Humans’ laws…do they get to the root of a problem? Can they rid us of hate? Can they stop murder?

IDK, couple weeks back?…was meaning to write on this topic, but i have a lot swirling in my brain and in my life…Yeah, i do have a life…(outside of this post/writing time)…major and minor responsibilities every day of which to tend…conscientiously. Plus, (too) long (for this post) story short, not always able to access computer for writing lately…my favorite device died-UGH!!:( …and haven’t made time nor opportunity to figure out/nor fix/resurrect my surface. i hate (aka strongly dislike) technology fails..especially when i am in an about to crash-wave of ultra-busyness and no-time-to-stop-or-i-may-drown…No, i am not putting my full confidence in technology! NOPE.;)

Enough explaining…(and complaining;)…back to topic under consideration/discussion: an oldie excerpt for reading: (my blue highlights)

God’s Word also counsels us not to cherish resentment, not to carry “internalized hatreds” around with us. It tells us that to ‘hate our brother is to be a murderer and that no murderer will gain eternal life.’ “You must not hate your brother in your heart.” “Let not the sun set with you in a provoked state.” (1 John 3:15; Lev. 19:17; Eph. 4:26NW) Hostility or personal hatred is actually a form of rebellion. It represents a desire to punish another, to work injury. It is unwilling to wait upon Jehovah to make an accounting but wants to take the law into its own hands. Note how this is brought to our attention in Moses’ law, which, by the way, also shows us what the remedy is: “You must not take vengeance nor have a grudge against the sons of your people; and you must love your fellow as yourself.” Rather than returning kind for kind we are instructed, “Continue to love your enemies, to do good to those hating you, to bless those cursing you.”—Lev. 19:18;Luke 6:27, 28NW. [Scriptural Aspect of Psychosomatic Medicine W 1954, 4/15 p. 236]

When we refuse to forgive a friend or enemy…it’s damaging to ourselves. Jesus and Moses get to the root of murder…a hateful/vengeful attitude/grudge/disposition toward someone…(not talking toward the something aka hurtful/bad/wrong behavior of said someone)…some who take the law into their own hands…act worse than the so-called perpetrator.  And IF we maintain/harbor a hate toward the someone say in our life…we may just cut off communication and association with said person…in effect…making them dead to us.

No communicating/associating with…the dead, eh?!

And honestly communicating before resentment and hatred take over a relationship…keep it a live…living…working on peace.

Work is life.

The scriptures have been a true friend to me…offering wise words…keeping me healthy…on a multi-wellness path. (God, i am such a geek!! an outsider to some)

this post is not how i planned it…(i’m tired, etc., etc., etc.)…You know what???

stop reading my post(s)…and start reading the Bible…(it’s written MUCH better and MORE worth Your time).

peace

BYE

10/1/18 @ 9:09 p.m.

p.s.

bye

 

 

 

 

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Being Selective

Breathing-Fragile-Life change choice conscientious-ness control courage education Freedom God humility insights Joan Winifred knowledge logic mind food motivation power questions spiritual food study Truth

Greetings:) Truth-Seeking-Reader.

Truth is a value i hold nearanddear (Not a typo). Since youth “Truth” (pursuing/acquiring/living it) has been my main objective, purpose, vocation, occupation!…obsession?-lol;)

For me, and obvious to any Regular Readers (Thanks for Your Time!:)), my priority is Spiritual/Biblical Truth…which trickles to other Truth topics…i.e., Science, health, etc.

Through the years, have had countless conversations with various Folks (the 🙂 and the 🙁 the pleasant, the disagreeable) from all walks of life, all walks of education, culture, religion including Agnostics and Atheists.

Every One is a teacher; for sure. Both positive and negative…conversations aka transmissions of knowledge…teach…(and possible mold).

Who is molding me?

A reocurring concern/cluster…family of spiritual questions bubbling to the surface among thinking, caring, loving people…seems to be:

Why is there evil?

Why would God allow suffering? When will it end?

IF God is all knowing and all powerful, did God “create” evil?

IF my life is predestined…why bother? (changing, trying, etc.)

Hoping this reading i’ve enJOYed (in the past) will help You now (and in the future)…resolve/reconcile…touch these seemingly tough topics of discussion.

Is Your Future Predestined?

Many people believe that their life and future are predestined by a higher power. They feel that from conception to death, we all follow a script already written in the mind of God. ‘After all,’ they say, ‘God is all-powerful and all-knowing, or omniscient, so surely he must know every detail about the past, the present, and the future.’

WHAT do you think? Does God foreordain our life course and ultimate destiny? In other words, is free will genuine or just an illusion? What does the Bible say?

Total or Selective Foreknowledge?

The Bible leaves us in no doubt as to God’s having foreknowledge. He knows “from the beginning the finale,” says Isaiah 46:10. He even used human secretaries to record many prophecies. (2 Peter 1:21) What is more, those prophecies always come true because God has both the wisdom and the power to fulfill them in every detail. Hence, God can not only foreknow but also foreordain events whenever he chooses to do so. However, does God foreordain the destiny of every human or even the total number who will gain salvation? Not according to the Bible.

The Bible teaches that God is selective when it comes to foreordaining the future. For example, God foretold that “a great crowd” of righteous humans would survive the destruction of the wicked at the end of the present system of things. (Revelation 7:9, 14) Note, though, that God did not give a specific number for that great crowd. The reason? He does not predestinate individuals. God is like the loving father of a large family. He knows that at least some of His children will reciprocate His love, but He does not predetermine the number.

Compare God’s use of foreordination with the way he uses his power. As the Almighty, God has absolute power. (Psalm 91:1; Isaiah 40:26, 28) But does he use his power in an uncontrolled manner? No. For instance, he held back from acting against Babylon, an enemy of ancient Israel, until the time was right. “I kept exercising self-control,” God said. (Isaiah 42:14) The same principle applies to his use of foreknowledge and foreordination. Jehovah exercises self-control in order to respect the free will that he gave us.

God’s control of his powers does not limit  him or render him imperfect. In fact, it magnifies his greatness, and it endears him to us, for it shows that his sovereignty truly is exercised not only with omniscience and power but also with love and respect for the free will of his intelligent creation.

Is God to Blame??

On the other hand, if God predetermines everything, including every nasty accident and vile deed that has ever happened, could we not rightly blame him for all the misery and suffering in the world? Thus, upon closer inspection, the teaching of predestination does not honor God, but casts a pall over him. It paints him as cruel, unjust, and unloving​—the very opposite of what the Bible says about him.​—Deuteronomy 32:4.

The Choice Is Yours

By means of his servant Moses, God said to the nation of Israel: “I have put life and death before you, . . . and you must choose life . . . by loving Jehovah your God, by listening to his voice and by sticking to him; for he is your life and the length of your days.” (Deuteronomy 30:19, 20) Had God predestinated each Israelite either to love him and gain life or to disregard him and merit death, His words would have been both meaningless and insincere. Do you believe that God, “a lover of justice” and the very personification of love, would act in such an arbitrary way?​—Psalm 37:28; 1 John 4:8.

More Questions:

HAVE YOU WONDERED?

▪ To what extent does God exercise foreknowledge?​—Deuteronomy 30:19, 20; Isaiah 46:10.

▪ Why would God not predetermine everything, including the bad things that happen to people?​—Deuteronomy 32:4.

▪ What will ultimately determine our future?​—John 17:3.

God’s purpose and man’s plan(s)…

By means of the Bible, God is, in effect, saying to us: ‘This is my purpose for mankind and the earth, and this is what you should do to gain everlasting life. It is now up to you to decide whether to listen to me or disregard me.’ Yes, how perfectly God balances his powers of foreordination with his respect for our free will! Will you choose life “by listening to [God’s] voice and by sticking to him”? [excerpted reading AWAKE! 2009, Is Your Future Predestined?]

Tackling evil…

Normally, people want to be peaceable, honest, and kind. Why, then, do we often see violence, injustice, and cruelty? Horrific news reports are common. Is there someone trying to make people act badly?Read 1 John 5:19.

Did God make humans with an evil tendency? No, Jehovah God created humans in his image, with a tendency to imitate God’s love. (Genesis 1:27; Job 34:10) But God also dignified humans with free choice. When our first parents chose to act badly, they rejected God’s example and became imperfect. We inherited the tendency to sin from them.Read Deuteronomy 32:4, 5.

God wants us to resist our bad tendencies. (Proverbs 27:11) So he teaches us how to avoid doing wrong and how to find real happiness. At present, though, we cannot imitate God’s love perfectly.Read Psalm 32:8.

Although evil abounds now, God is permitting it for a limited time to allow all to see its sad consequences. (2 Peter 3:7-9) Soon, however, the earth will be filled with happy people who obey God.Read Psalm 37:9-11

[excerpted Where Did Evil Come From? Bible Questions Answered]

Humans:) we have the power of selection. We can choose to use…any talent, gift, knowledge, circumstance…for the good, better, best.

9/30/18 @ 10:56 a.m.

Peace & Purpose:)..to You Reader.

Published by:

Searching: Truth

conscientious-ness education God insights Joan Winifred knowledge mind food never giving up! spiritual food True v. False Religion Truth

Greetings Truth Searcher🙂 Keep UP Your Search!🙂

We learned this: Myths can contain kernels/morsels of Truth…e.g., The Flood…(more than a legend).

(May be? these kernels serve as Morse code? an S.O.S. of sorts?)

Thus far, we’ve also learned this: Myths don’t always have a basis in fact or “in the Bible.” E.g., illusion of Immortality of the Soul…(false belief/incorrect teaching).

Ready to read…some more? (my blue highlights)

Sun Worship and Human Sacrifices

31. (a) What did the Egyptians believe about the sun-god Ra? (b) How does that contrast with what the Bible says? (Psalm 19:4-6)

31 The mythology of Egypt embraces an extensive pantheon of gods and goddesses. As in so many other ancient societies, while the Egyptians searched for God, they gravitated toward worshiping that which sustained their daily life​—the sun. Thus, under the name of Ra (Amon-Ra), they venerated the sovereign lord of the sky, who took a boat ride every day from east to west. When night fell, he followed a dangerous course through the underworld.

32. Describe one of the festivals to the fire-god Xiuhtecutli (Huehueteotl).

32 Human sacrifices were a common feature in the sun worship of the Aztec, Inca, and Maya religions. The Aztecs celebrated a constant cycle of religious festivals, with human sacrifices to their various gods, especially in the worship of the sun-god Tezcatlipoca. Also, in the festival of the fire-god Xiuhtecutli (Huehueteotl), “prisoners of war danced together with their captors and . . . were whirled about a dazzling fire and then dumped into the coals, fished out while still alive to have their still palpitating hearts cut out to be offered to the gods.”​—The Ancient Sun Kingdoms of the Americas.

33. (a) What did Inca worship include? (b) What does the Bible say about human sacrifices? (Compare 2 Kings 23:5, 11; Jeremiah 32:35; Ezekiel 8:16.)

33 Farther south, the Inca religion had its own sacrifices and myths. In ancient Inca worship, children and animals were offered to the sun-god Inti and to Viracocha, the creator.

Various Gods & Goddesses…

Mythical Gods and Goddesses

34. Who made up the most prominent Egyptian triad, and what roles did they play?

34 The most prominent of the Egyptian triads is that made up of Isis, symbol of divine motherhood; Osiris, her brother and consort; and Horus, their son, usually represented by a falcon. Isis is sometimes portrayed in Egyptian statues offering her breast to her child in a pose very reminiscent of Christendom’s virgin-and-child statues and paintings, which came on the scene over two thousand years later. In time Isis’ husband, Osiris, achieved popularity as the god of the dead because he offered hope of an eternally happy life for the souls of the dead in the hereafter.

35. Who was Hathor, and what was her chief annual festival?

35 Egypt’s Hathor was the goddess of love and joy, music and dancing. She became the queen of the dead, helping them with a ladder to achieve heaven. As the New Larousse Encyclopedia of Mythology explains, she was celebrated with great festivals, “above all on New Year’s Day, which was the anniversary of her birth. Before dawn the priestesses would bring Hathor’s image out on to the terrace to expose it to the rays of the rising sun. The rejoicing which followed was a pretext for a veritable carnival, and the day ended in song and intoxication.” Have things changed all that much in New Year celebrations thousands of years later?

36. (a) What was the religious setting for Israel in the 16th century B.C.E.? (b) What special significance did the Ten Plagues have?

36 The Egyptians also had many animal gods and goddesses in their pantheon, such as Apis the bull, Banaded the ram, Heqt the frog, Hathor the cow, and Sebek the crocodile. (Romans 1:21-23) It was in this religious setting that the Israelites found themselves in captivity as slaves in the 16th century B.C.E. To release them from Pharaoh’s stubborn grip, Jehovah, the God of Israel, had to send ten different plagues against Egypt. (Exodus 7:14–12:36) Those plagues amounted to a calculated humiliation of the mythological gods of Egypt.

37. (a) What kind of characters were some of the Roman gods? (b) How did the conduct of the gods affect their followers? (c) What experience did Paul and Barnabas have in Lystra?

37 Now let us move on to the gods of ancient Greece and Rome. Rome borrowed many gods from ancient Greece, along with their virtues and vices. (See boxes, pages 43 and 66.) For example, Venus and Flora were brazen prostitutes; Bacchus was a drunkard and reveler; Mercury was a highway robber; and Apollo was a seducer of women. It is reported that Jupiter, the father of the gods, committed adultery or incest with about 59 women! (What a reminder of the rebel angels who cohabited with women before the Flood!) Since worshipers tend to reflect the conduct of their gods, is it any wonder that Roman emperors such as Tiberius, Nero, and Caligula led debauched lives as adulterers, fornicators, and murderers?

38. (a) Describe the kind of worship practiced in Rome. (b) How did religion influence the Roman soldier?

38 In their religion, the Romans incorporated gods from many traditions. For example, they took up with enthusiasm the worship of Mithras, the Persian god of light, who became their sun-god […], and the Syrian goddess Atargatis (Ishtar). They converted the Grecian Artemis the huntress into Diana and had their own variations of the Egyptian Isis. They also adopted the Celtic triple goddesses of fertility.​—Acts 19:23-28.

39. (a) Who ruled the Roman priesthood? (b) Describe one of the Roman religious ceremonies.

39 For the practice of their public cults at hundreds of shrines and temples, they had a variety of priests, all of whom “came under the authority of the Pontifex Maximus [Supreme Pontiff], who was the head of the state religion.” (Atlas of the Roman World) The same atlas states that one of the Roman ceremonies was the taurobolium, in which “the worshiper stood in a pit and was bathed in the blood of a bull sacrificed over him. He emerged from this rite in a state of purified innocence.”

“Christian Myths”…

40. How do many scholars view the events of early Christianity?

40 According to some modern critics, Christianity also embraces myths and legends. Is that really so? Many scholars reject as myths the virgin birth of Jesus, his miracles, and his resurrection. Some even say he never existed but that his myth is a carryover from more ancient mythology and sun worship. As mythology expert Joseph Campbell wrote: “Several scholars have suggested, therefore, that there was never either John [the Baptizer] or Jesus, but only a water-god and a sun-god.” But we need to remember that many of these same scholars are atheists and thus reject totally any belief in God.

41, 42. What evidence is there to support the historicity of early Christianity?

41 However, this skeptical point of view flies in the face of historical evidence. For example, the Jewish historian Josephus (c.37-c.100 C.E.) wrote: “To some of the Jews the destruction of Herod’s army seemed to be divine vengeance, and certainly a just vengeance, for his treatment of John, surnamed the Baptist. For Herod had put him to death, though he was a good man.”​—Mark 1:14; 6:14-29.

42 This same historian also testified to the historical existence of Jesus Christ, when he wrote that there arose “a certain Jesus, a wizard of a man, if indeed he may be called a man . . . whom his disciples call a son of God.” He continued by saying that “Pilate had sentenced him . . . And even now the race of those who are called ‘Messianists’ after him is not extinct.”*(According to the traditional text of Josephus, footnote, page 48 of the Harvard University Press edition, Volume IX.)​—Mark 15:1-5, 22-26; Acts 11:26.

43. What basis did the apostle Peter have for believing in Christ?

43 Therefore, the Christian apostle Peter could write with total conviction as an eyewitness of Jesus’ transfiguration, saying: “No, it was not by following artfully contrived false stories [Greek, myʹthos] that we acquainted you with the power and presence of our Lord Jesus Christ, but it was by having become eyewitnesses of his magnificence. For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when words such as these were borne to him by the magnificent glory: ‘This is my son, my beloved, whom I myself have approved.’ Yes, these words we heard borne from heaven while we were with him in the holy mountain.”​—2 Peter 1:16-18. * (According to the traditional text of Josephus, footnote, page 48 of the Harvard University Press edition, Volume IX.)

44. What Bible principle should prevail in any conflict between man’s opinions and the Word of God?

44 In this conflict between man’s “expert” opinion and God’s Word, we must apply the principle stated earlier: “What, then, is the case? If some did not express faith, will their lack of faith perhaps make the faithfulness of God without effect? Never may that happen! But let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, even as it is written: ‘That you might be proved righteous in your words and might win when you are being judged.’”​—Romans 3:3, 4.

Let’s focus on threads now…

Common Threads

45. What are some of the common threads found in world mythology?

45 This brief review of some of the world’s mythologies has served to indicate some common features, many of which can be traced back to Babylon, the Mesopotamian cradle of most religions. There are common threads, whether in the facts of creation, or in accounts about a period when demigods and giants occupied the land and a deluge destroyed the wicked, or in the basic religious concepts of sun-worship and an immortal soul.

46, 47. (a) What Biblical explanation can we offer for the common origin and threads of mythology? (b) What further aspects of ancient worship will we cover?

46 From a Biblical viewpoint, we can explain these common threads when we recall that after the Flood, at God’s behest mankind spread out from Babel in Mesopotamia more than 4,200 years ago. Although they separated, forming families and tribes with different languages, they started off with the same basic understanding of prior history and religious concepts. (Genesis 11:1-9) Over the centuries, this understanding became distorted and adorned in each culture, resulting in many of the fictions, legends, and myths that have come down to us today. These myths, divorced from Bible truth, failed to bring mankind nearer to the true God.

47 However, mankind have also expressed their religious sentiments in various other ways​—spiritism, shamanism, magic, ancestor worship, and so on. Do they tell us anything about mankind’s search for God?

[excerpted reading reference: Mankind’s Search For God, Chapter 3, Common Threads in Mythology, pp. 57-61]

9/28/18 @ 3:11 p.m.

p.s. Extensive lists (excerpted from book of various “fake” gods): (and including reference to:  Potent, Almighty, True God of Bible, Yahweh/Jehovah.)

Greek and Roman Divinities

Many gods and goddesses of Greek mythology held similar positions in Roman mythology. The table below lists some of them.

Greek Roman Role

Aphrodite Venus Goddess of love

Apollo Apollo God of light, medicine, and poetry

Ares Mars God of war

Artemis Diana Goddess of hunting and childbirth

Asclepius Aesculapius God of healing

Athena Minerva Goddess of crafts, war, and wisdom

Cronus Saturn To the Greeks, ruler of the Titans and

father of Zeus. In Roman mythology,

also the god of agriculture

Demeter Ceres Goddess of growing things

Dionysus Bacchus God of wine, fertility, and wild

behavior

Eros Cupid God of love

Gaea Terra Symbol of the earth, and mother and

wife of Uranus

Hephaestus Vulcan Blacksmith for the gods and god of fire

and metalworking

Hera Juno Protector of marriage and women. To

the Greeks, sister and wife of Zeus;

to the Romans, wife of Jupiter

Hermes Mercury Messenger for the gods; god of

commerce and science; and protector of

travelers, thieves, and vagabonds

Hestia Vesta Goddess of the hearth

Hypnos Somnus God of sleep

Pluto, Hades Pluto God of the underworld

Poseidon Neptune God of the sea. In Greek mythology,

also god of earthquakes and horses

Rhea Ops Wife and sister of Cronus

Uranus Uranus Son and husband of Gaea and father of

the Titans

Zeus Jupiter Ruler of the gods

Based on The World Book Encyclopedia, 1987, Volume 13.

[Box on page 45]

Assyro-Babylonian Gods and Goddesses

Anu​—the supreme god, reigning over the heavens; father of Ishtar

Asshur​—national warrior-god of the Assyrians; also god of fertility

Ea​—god of water. Father of Marduk. Warned Utnapishtim of the flood

Enlil (Bel)​—lord of the air; later paralleled in Greek mythology by Zeus. Assimilated by the Babylonians into Marduk (Bel)

Ishtar​—divine personification of the planet Venus; sacred prostitution a part of her cult. She was Astarte in Phoenicia, Atargatis in Syria, Ashtoreth in the Bible (1 Kings 11:5, 33), Aphrodite in Greece, Venus in Rome

Marduk​—first among the Babylonian gods; “absorbed all the other gods and took over all their various functions.” Called Merodach by the Israelites

Shamash​—sun-god of light and justice. Forerunner of the Greek Apollo

Sin​—moon-god, member of the triad that included Shamash (the sun) and Ishtar (the planet Venus)

Tammuz (Dumuzi)​—the harvest-god. Ishtar’s lover

(Based on the New Larousse Encyclopedia of Mythology)

[Box/​Pictures on page 60, 61]

Gods of the Roman Soldier

Rome was famous for its disciplined army. The cohesion of its empire depended on the morale and the effectiveness of the military legions. Was religion a factor to be reckoned with? Yes, and fortunately for us, the Romans left behind clear evidence of their occupation in the form of highways, fortresses, aqueducts, coliseums, and temples. For example, in Northumbria, in the north of England, there is the famous Hadrian’s Wall, built about 122 C.E. What have excavations revealed about Roman garrison activity and the role of religion?

In the Housesteads Museum, located near the excavated ruins of a Roman garrison on Hadrian’s Wall, an exhibit states: “The religious life of a Roman soldier was divided into three parts. Firstly . . . the cult of the Deified Emperors and the worship of the protecting gods of Rome such as Jupiter, Victory and Mars. An altar was dedicated to Jupiter every year on the parade ground of each fort. All soldiers were expected to participate in the festivals celebrating the birthdays, accession days and victories of the Deified Emperors.” How similar to the customs of armies of today, in which chaplains, altars, and flags are a regular part of army worship.

But what was the second feature of the Roman soldier’s religious life? It was the worship of the protecting gods and the guardian spirit of their particular unit “as well as the gods brought from their native lands.”

“Finally there were the cults followed by the individual. As long as a soldier fulfilled his obligations to the official cults he was free to worship any god he wished.” That sounds like a very liberal freedom-of-worship situation, but “exceptions were those religions, of which Druidism was one, whose practices were considered inhumane, and those whose loyalty to the State was suspect, for example Christianity.”​—Compare Luke 20:21-25;23:1, 2; Acts 10:1, 2, 22.

Interestingly, in 1949 a temple to Mithras was discovered in a bog at Carrawburgh, quite close to Hadrian’s Wall. (See photo.) Archaeologists estimate that it was built about 205 C.E. It contains a sun-god image, altars, and a Latin inscription that states, in part, “To the invincible god Mithras.”

[Box on page 62]

Egypt’s Gods and the Ten Plagues

Jehovah executed judgment on Egypt’s impotent gods by means of the Ten Plagues.​—Exodus 7:14–12:32.

Plague Description

1 Nile and other waters turned to blood. Nile-god Hapi

disgraced

2 Frogs. Frog-goddess Heqt powerless to prevent it

3 Dust turned to gnats. Thoth, lord of magic, could not help

the Egyptian magicians

4 Gadflies on all Egypt except Goshen where Israel dwelt. No

god was able to prevent it​—not even Ptah, creator of the

universe, or Thoth, lord of magic

5 Pestilence on livestock. Neither sacred cow-goddess Hathor

nor Apis the bull could prevent this plague

6 Boils. Healer deities Thoth, Isis, and Ptah unable to help

7 Thunder and hail. Exposed the impotence of Reshpu,

controller of lightning, and Thoth, god of rain and

thunder

8 Locusts. This was a blow to the fertility-god Min,

protector of crops

9 Three days of darkness. Ra, the preeminent sun-god, and

Horus, a solar god, disgraced

10 Death of the firstborn including Pharaoh’s, who was

considered to be a god incarnate. Ra (Amon-Ra), sun-god

and sometimes represented as a ram, was unable to impede

it

[Box on page 66]

Mythology and Christianity

Worship of the mythical gods of ancient Greece and Rome was in full sway when Christianity came on the scene nearly two thousand years ago. In Asia Minor the Greek names still prevailed, which explains why the people of Lystra (in present-day Turkey) called the Christian healers Paul and Barnabas “gods,” referring to them as Hermes and Zeus respectively, rather than as the Roman Mercury and Jupiter. The account says that “the priest of Zeus, whose temple was before the city, brought bulls and garlands to the gates and was desiring to offer sacrifices with the crowds.” (Acts 14:8-18) Only with difficulty did Paul and Barnabas convince the crowd not to make sacrifices to them. It illustrates how seriously those people took their mythology back then.

begs the questions:

To which God am i making sacrifices??

an impotent, fake god??

a Potent, Almighty, True God?!

Published by:

Searching For Truth–Worthwhile Endeavor–Never Give Up

God insights Joan Winifred knowledge mind food never giving up! science & spirituality spiritual food things i learned True v. False Religion trust Truth

For current post context please read.

With any quest, we may not always look in the most obvious places…Truth may pop up when least expected and slap us in the face. Or wake us up like an irritating-obnoxious alarm clock at 5 a.m. after only 3-4 hours of limited sleep.

Okay, Hungry-Truth-Seeker…another excerpt to read/digest…a spiritual “snack“…worthwhile point for contemplation:

NOT ALL MYTHS HAVE A BASIS IN FACT OR IN THE BIBLE”

The All-Pervasive Immortal Soul Belief

20. What was the Assyro-Babylonian belief regarding the afterlife?

20 However, not all myths have a basis in fact or in the Bible. In his search for God, man has clutched at straws, deluded by the illusion of immortality. As we will see throughout this book, the belief in an immortal soul or variations thereof is a legacy that has come down to us through the millenniums. The people of the ancient Assyro-Babylonian culture believed in an afterlife. The New Larousse Encyclopedia of Mythology explains: “Under the earth, beyond the abyss of the Apsu [full of fresh water and encircling the earth], lay the infernal dwelling-place to which men descended after death. It was the ‘Land of no return’ . . . In these regions of eternal darkness the souls of the dead​—edimmu—​‘clad, like birds, in a garment of wings’ are all jumbled together.” According to the myth, this subterranean world was ruled over by the goddess Ereshkigal, “Princess of the great earth.”

21. According to Egyptian belief, what happened to the dead?

21 The Egyptians likewise had their idea of an immortal soul. Before the soul could reach a happy haven, it had to be weighed against Maat, the goddess of truth and justice, who was symbolized by the feather of truth. Either Anubis, the jackal-headed god, or Horus, the falcon, helped in the procedure. If approved by Osiris, that soul would go on to share bliss with the gods. As is so often the case, here we find the common thread of the Babylonian immortal soul concept shaping people’s religion, lives, and actions.

22. What was the Chinese concept of the dead, and what was done to help them?

22 The old Chinese mythology included a belief in survival after death and the need to keep ancestors happy. Ancestors were “conceived as living and powerful spirits, all vitally concerned about the welfare of their living descendants, but capable of punitive anger if displeased.” The dead were to be given every aid, including companions in death. Thus, “some Shang kings . . . were buried with anywhere from a hundred to three hundred human victims, who were to be his attendants in the next world. (This practice links ancient China with Egypt, Africa, Japan, and other places, where similar sacrifices were made.)” (Man’s Religions, by John B. Noss) In these cases belief in an immortal soul led to human sacrifices.​—Contrast Ecclesiastes 9:5, 10; Isaiah 38:18, 19.

23. (a) In Greek mythology, who and what were Hades? (b) What is Hades according to the Bible?

23 The Greeks, having formulated many gods in their mythology, were also concerned with the dead and their destination. According to the myths, the one put in charge of that realm of murky darkness was the son of Cronus and brother of the gods Zeus and Poseidon. His name was Hades, and his realm was named after him. How did the souls of the dead reach Hades? *(“Hades” appears in the Christian Greek Scriptures ten times, not as a mythological person, but as the common grave of mankind. It is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew she’ohlʹ.​—Compare Psalm 16:10; Acts 2:27Kingdom Interlinear.)

24. (a) According to Greek mythology, what happened in the underworld? (b) What similarity to the Epic of Gilgamesh was there in Greek mythology?

24 Writer Ellen Switzer explains: “There were . . . frightening creatures in the underworld. There was Charon, who rowed the ferry that transported those who had recently died from the land of the living to the underworld. Charon required payment for his ferry service [across the river Styx], and the Greeks often buried their dead with a coin under the tongue to make sure that they had the proper fare. Dead souls who could not pay were kept on the wrong side of the river, in a kind of no-man’s-land, and might return to haunt the living.” *(Interestingly, Utnapishtim, the hero of the Epic of Gilgamesh, had his boatman, Urshanabi, who took Gilgamesh over the waters of death to meet the flood survivor.)

25. Who were influenced by Greek thinking regarding the soul?

25 The Greek mythology of the soul went on to influence the Roman concept, and the Greek philosophers, such as Plato (about 427-347 B.C.E.), strongly influenced early apostate Christian thinkers who accepted the immortal soul teaching into their doctrine, even though it had no Biblical basis.

26, 27. How did the Aztecs, Incas, and Maya view death?

26 The Aztecs, Incas, and Maya also believed in an immortal soul. Death was as much a mystery to them as it was to other civilizations. They had their ceremonies and beliefs to help them reconcile themselves to it. As the archaeological historian Victor W. von Hagen explains in his book The Ancient Sun Kingdoms of the Americas: The dead were in reality living: they had merely passed from one phase to another; they were invisible, impalpable, invulnerable. The dead . . . had become the unseen members of the clan.”​—Contrast Judges 16:30; Ezekiel 18:4, 20.

27 The same source tells us that “the [Inca] Indian believed in immortality; in fact he believed one never died, . . . the dead body merely became undead and it took on the influences of the unseen powers.” The Maya too believed in a soul and in 13 heavens and 9 hells. Thus, wherever we turn, people have wanted to deny the reality of death, and the immortal soul has been the crutch to lean on.​—Isaiah 38:18; Acts 3:23.

28. What are some beliefs that have prevailed in Africa?

28 Africa’s mythologies likewise include references to a surviving soul. Many Africans live in awe of the souls of the dead. The New Larousse Encyclopedia of Mythology states: “This belief is bound up with another​—the continuing existence of the soul after death. Magicians are able to call on souls to aid their powers. The souls of the dead often transmigrate into the bodies of animals, or may even be reincarnated in plants.” As a consequence, the Zulu will not kill some snakes that they believe to be the spirits of relatives.

29. Explain the legends of some tribes of southern Africa. (Compare Genesis 2:15-17; 3:1-5.)

29 The Masai of southeastern Africa believe in a creator called ’Ng ai, who places a guardian angel by each Masai as a protection. At the moment of death, the angel takes the warrior’s soul to the hereafter. The previously quoted Larousse supplies a Zulu death-legend involving the first man, Unkulunkulu, who for this myth had become the supreme being. He sent the chameleon to tell mankind, “Men shall not die!” The chameleon was slow and got distracted on the way. So Unkulunkulu sent a different message by means of a lizard, saying, “Men shall die!” The lizard got there first, “and ever since no man has escaped death.” With variations, this same legend exists among the Bechuana, Basuto, and Baronga tribes.

30. In this book what will we further see about the soul?

30 As we pursue the study of mankind’s search for God, we will see even further how important the myth of the immortal soul has been and still is to mankind. 

[excerpted reading reference: Mankind’s Search For God, Chapter 3, Common Threads in Mythology, pp. 52-57]

9/27/18 @ 5:42 p.m.

p.s. off to Mind Gym soon…(will “try” to continue this post topic).

 

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