THE SIN QUESTION (2nd Part)

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The Vedas (1500–1200 BCE), depict heaven as the domain of sky gods such as Indra, the thunder god; Surya, the Sun; Agni, the sacrificial fire; Soma, the heavenly elixir (embodied on earth as an intoxicating plant); Varuna, the overseer of cosmic order; and Yama, the first human to die. Ritual sacrifice was deemed essential for world maintenance, and funeral rites ensured that the spirit of the deceased would ascend to the “world of the fathers” on high. Rebirth in heaven depended upon having male householder descendants to sponsor the necessary rites. The Hindu worship throws Indians into a disturbing predicament should they fail to procreate. The Bible says that the virgin birth of Jesus and His gory atonement settles the score of the sin question.

The Hebrew word for ‘sin’ is: chaṭṭa’ah (khat-taw-aw’) or chaṭṭa’th (kwat-tawth) which comes from (chata’ [khaw-taw]: ‘to miss, forfeit, lack, repent or expiate’). From its root chaṭṭa’ah has a dual definition of ‘offence and sin offering or expiation.’ The Greek calls it hamartia (ham-ar-tee’-ah): ‘offence, missing the mark’. In 2Corinthians 5:21, “For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him”; what Paul is teaching here is that Jesus was made a ‘sin offering’ (who never ‘missed the mark of righteousness’), becoming the solution to the, ten billion pound sterling, sin question!

Secular Humanists see themselves as gods, therefore, they have no sins to redress. Well, I know what the Bible says in 1John 1:8. To the Moslem, the decimation of unbelievers of Islam, and good doing ensures heavenly bliss. Isaiah 64:6 says, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away” (check out what Galatians 3:21 also says about righteousness). The Hindus will probably feel so blessed to have a whole pantheon to choose from, and besides karma will give them another body: of plant, animal or human. Bleakness of obliviousness! My judgment is an echo of the Scriptures. Deuteronomy 6:4 “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD”, and the Book of James 1:8-9. ‘God’ in Deuteronomy is elowhiym (God – in the plural), ‘LORD’ is Jehovah – self-existing God; while ‘one’ is: ‘echad (ekh-awd’) ‘A numeral; properly united, that is, one; or (as an ordinal) first’. From the mouth of the atheist I hear a bellow, “O, save me your balderdash!” He hisses and concludes in a whisper, “There’s no such thing as God, forget it”. Open the Bible and it reads somewhere: “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt…” in Psalm 14:1. Very deep thinking ones who think that they are too smart to be tutored by the words of the Bible have been able to fashion a way or ways for themselves. 2Thessalonians 2:11 has taken care of the gainsayers, “And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie”, please, do read it from verse one to the 12th.

Christianity is the only form of worship that cannot be called a religion in the sense that it is the way (hodos – destiny) of life (zoe – God’s kind of life). Destiny, in this context, is the distance between the point of the commencement of a journey and the final destination. Jesus is both the hodos and the zoe. HE is the author (aitios – causer or beginner) and the finisher (teleiotes – completeness, perfecter) of our faith (pistis – believing; the only element needed to apprehend God and His blessings). The only bridge, the sole connector and the connectivity between the corruptness of this sinful world and the Ultimate One, God. 1Timothy 2:5, James 1:23-24, Galatians 3:21-24, Hebrews 8:6 & 9:15.

The mystery of the sin question is in the fact that it was first perpetrated by Lucifer. When one sins, it is to a spiritual Entity, hence, a spiritual problem. The father of sin, Lucifer, Satan, the Devil, under whom all sinners must come, in spiritual slavery, is too formidable an enemy to be vanquished by any or all found in sin; he is much too older, too wise, too invincible and too invisible for anyone to engage him in combat.

God is love, 1 John 4:8. An attribute of that love (agapē [ag-ah’-pay]: affection, benevolence, love feast) is His beneficence. One great man defined this love as: “A love called out of the heart of a lover on account of the value the lover has placed on the object of his love”. Agape is a feminine noun, it is a love of commitment, it is not a feeling. God rose up to the demand of the occasion, brought out love and showered it on mankind; HE gave the ultimate Gift: Himself.

God the Son became our champion, met face to face with our foe, and having dealt decisively with the old dragon, Jesus asked, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” [1Corinthians 15:55]. The LORD God has remedied the sin question! Hallelujah!! Amen!!!

to read the 1st part click here

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THE SIN QUESTION (1st Part)

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That which has cast man into his present existence of social putrefaction, and characterized by a perfidious proclivity towards the Creator, and which has always been fanned by the mendacity of the philosophy of the cosmos (championed by Godless philosophers) is the innocuous looking and sounding three-lettered ‘sin’.

Our erstwhile rectitude before God (when He used to perform a daily, “walking {towards us} in the cool of the day” (Genesis 3:8) has suffered such an unbelievable disintegration that has warped the very reasoning faculty of man. The gerund, ‘walking’, in the Hebrew, halak (haw-lak’): means figuratively, ‘life style’. Our sinless nature, at creationism, enabled fellowship with the LORD God. The Hebrew has ‘leruach haiyom’, i.e. ‘in the evening breeze’. God saw it fit to be with them everyday, probably at 6 p.m. (6 being the number of man).

It is the bane of the corruption constantly bedeviling man: sin. The Bible does not just unravel its genesis (and its constant gnawing effect) by way of information both to the repentant one and the stiff-necked, but it proffers an eternal relief from this bane.

The earliest allusion to it, by God (the Judge of it), is found in Genesis 2:17, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die”. In the twenty-fifth verse, “And they were both naked {the Hebrew word is: ‛arom (aw-rome’) BDB Definition: (naked, bare}, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed {bush (boosh) BDB Definition: ‘to put to shame, be ashamed, be disconcerted, be disappointed’}”; is an evidence of man’s inculpability seen. Verse seventeen is a warning of what will befall them ‘if’ they should enter into a spiritual aberrational act. A thousand earthly years is as of a heavenly day (2Peter 3:8), and because the pristine couple did taste of a spiritual evil before their thousandth earthly year, none, from Adam to the present age, has ever clocked 1,000 years. Sin, the harbinger of death, Romans 5:12. Sin, unresolved, leads to hell! What, therefore, do religious beliefs teach as the solution to the sin question?

Egypt, just like several African people, believes in life afterlife and makes preparations especially for her Pharaohs’ journey beyond. My own mother had a disturbing dream concerning her dead mother. The deceased was lacking so many things like clothing and food. A consultation with Ifa oracle revealed that those things were making her after life journey impossible. Solution? My mother had to perform sacrifices, using those needs of her dead mother as the sacrificial elements so that she would be able to make it to the paradise of heaven. The father of Ifa oracle is Orunmila, which means ‘heaven knows who will succeed’: adherents are in total darkness as far as the glory of heavenly bliss is concerned.

Adherents of Pure Land Buddhism, for example, rely upon the vow of Amitabha Buddha to bring to Sukhavati (the Pure Land, or Western Paradise) all who sincerely call upon his name. What rituals and elementals are involved in this religion of Buddha: for we know how diabolic in nature some sacrifices are? While belief in a heavenly afterlife became widespread in the Hellenistic Age (323–30 BCE), no single model predominated, but rather a profusion of images and schemes, including resurrection of the dead, immortality of the soul, and transformation into an angel or star. An incoherent form of belief breeds confusion (1Corinthians 14:33) and, moreover, becoming a star turns a soulish person into an inanimate being.

On the Day of Judgment, according to Islam heaven will be split asunder, the mountains will crumble to dust, the earth will give up its dead, and each person will undergo a final test. The righteous, with faces beaming, will pass the test easily, passing through hell with ease. . I have three verses from the Qur’an. Chapter 9:86, “And when a surah is revealed (which saith): Believe in Allah and strive along with His messenger, the men of wealth among them still ask leave of thee and say: Suffer us to be with those who sit (at home)”. What Mohammad taught here is that no matter how huge your financial contribution towards a military campaign is, if you decide not to take the sword, and partake, physically in a jihad (religious war) you will have yourself to blame in aljana (paradise of heaven). From AlAnbiya i.e. 21:108, “Say: It is only inspired in me that your Allah is One Allah. Will ye then surrender (unto Him)?” Verse 109, “But if they are averse, then say: I have warned you all alike, although I know not whether nigh or far is that which ye are promised”. The second statement or rather, question, of the 108th verse is what jihadists ask any who does not believe in Islam while the 109th is the warning of an impending death.

Islam does not, from these sound like a peaceful spiritual venture. Al-Fath is chapter 48, and verses 16-17 read, “Say unto those of the wandering Arabs who were left behind: Ye will be called against a folk of mighty prowess, to fight them until they surrender; and if ye obey, Allah will give you a fair reward; but if ye turn away as ye did turn away before, He will punish you with a painful doom.” The 17th, “There is no blame for the blind, nor is there blame for the lame, nor is there blame for the sick (that they go not forth to war). And whoso obeyeth Allah and His messenger, He will make him enter Gardens underneath which rivers flow; and whoso turneth back, him will He punish with a painful doom”.

The Qur’an is said to be the Last Testament, meaning that what it says is binding on all beings; it is God’s last religious commandment. Mohammad calls himself the last Prophet/Messenger of God in Qur’an 33:40. In the 37th verse God told him to prophesy the amorous feeling that HE, God, had put into his (Mohammed) heart towards Zainab, his own daughter-in-law, she being Zaid’s (his adopted son) wife, hence, a speedy divorce was arranged to add Zainab to the harem of Allah’s prophet. This prophet of Islam must be something big to be consulted in God’s decisions (Qur’an 33:36). If it teaches so much Islamic jihad killings and the Bible (75% of which makes the Qur’an) teaches reconciliation, where is the truth? We should not be shocked to read of dastard massacres of Al-Qaida, ISIS and Boko Haram (for they are the true, God fearing, Muslims). (to be continued)

click here to read the 2nd Part

TRINITY (Mythical Or A Reality ?) Part Two

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The party was coming to an end so we had to discontinue our discussion. The following day at work Kudirat said she checked and found that the Quoranic verses were true. She would like to hear about how the Trinity solves the sin question. We have an hour break so, we chose to use it to understand the mysterious conundrum of the Trinity which I call ‘the three like one, one like three.’ A conundrum worth demystifying. All eyes and ears were turned to me so I continued.

“If God was going to create gregarious beings then He must need be the first to experience and to enjoy gregariousness. If He did not ensure this then the scripture will be deceitful in asserting ‘His preeminent state in all things’. For this number one reason, I believe, that God exists eternally a Triune distinct Personages in one God. Jehovah did this to engender the theological relationship theory of I-It, I-Thou and We-You. The ‘I-It’ is a subject-object relationship the Persons experienced with non-gender substances before intelligent beings came into being. I-Thou was first experienced by God such that when any of the Father, Christ or the Holy Spirit would have said, “You” it was to the eternal Christ, the ageless Holy Spirit or the Ancient of Days. God must experience plurality first as each One of them had on several occasions addressed the Other Two with a plural, “You,” experiencing sociality. Long before creationism, in the eternity past, had the Godhead, of three distinct Persons, practised gregariousness. This fact debunks the fatal defect of Unitarian views of Islam, Judaism and Jehovah’s Witnesses that there is only one person in the Godhead.

The second reason takes a soteriological stance. God has to be more than one to satisfy the legality that binds salvation. God as the Judge cannot be the Advocate to the created when he eventually falls. God alone can perform the vicarious death, hence, the Eternal Son. God, as a Judge (without a deputy), is eternally in heaven on the throne. How does He prove His power, His ubiquity and His divine acceptance of earthly worship? The Holy Spirit fills all, He is the all-powerful power Endower and is the One who is seated in the holy of holies in the great Jerusalem Temple as the Jewish Jehovah. Is there a fourth that you know of? I think not! You can only be saved from your sinful nature by the finished work of God (not of the Judge (the Father) but the Christ: called ‘Son’ in His representative capacity of Divinity). Spiritual empowerment and sealing to prove the genuineness of salvation is provided by the Holy Spirit so that when you appear before the thrice holy Eternal God His judgment of Ezekiel 18:4, “The soul that sinneth, it shall die,” will not fall on you. “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!” Romans 11:33.

Many are the scriptures that corroborate the Trinitarian conceptual stand, each of which gives not Personages more or less than three. Matthew 3:13-17 records the baptism of Jesus. Baptism is testamentary of sin exoneration which identifies one with the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. Which of the sins is Jesus guilty of? None! This baptism is meant to identify the Lord with mankind He came to exonerate: for water is a scriptural symbolism of the human race. In verse sixteen we see John, not inclined to suffer Him for the ritual, knowing the Personage standing before him. Two heavenly Entities amalgamated to confirm the act, two being the number of testimony and of witness, proving that Christ is the only visibility of the Godhead. “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” Matthew 28:19. ‘Teach’: mathēteuō (math-ayt-yoo’-o) {which comes from mathētēs (math-ay-tes) ‘a learner’} means, intransitively, ‘to become a pupil’; transitively, ‘to disciple, that is, enroll as scholar.’ ‘Name’ is onoma (on’-om-ah) ‘a “name” (literally or figuratively), (authority, character)’, which comes from ginōskō ‘knowledge;’ which compares with oninēmi (on-in’-ay-mee) ‘to gratify, that is, (middle voice) to derive pleasure or advantage from.’ This ‘name’ (note its singularity – encapsulating the three) is a title (the knowledge of which is as gratifying as it is advantageous) which is shared by the Trinity. ‘Son’ an interesting huios (hwee-os), the highest form of sonship, culturally, speaks of a one whose representative capacity of his father is a legality.

2Corinthians 13:14, “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.” This is the benediction shared by Christians in a Church service which involves the Trinity. God will not share His glory (Isaiah 42:8) so why would Jesus and the Holy Spirit share a worshipful rite with the Father? Ah! You see, They share the common Deity.

Jesus told them, “This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me” 1Corinthians 11:25. This communion takes us back to Exodus 12:14 when God told them, “And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and ye shall keep it a feast to the LORD throughout your generations; ye shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever;” a proof that Jehovah and Jesus are the same. I believe it would not be difficult to see who God meant in His reference to ‘us’, found in Genesis 1:26. They could never be angels as is erroneously believed. Angels are not participatory to creationism or else we will be paying obeisance to them in worshipful subjection, having created us.

In the book of Revelation 5:13, obeisance is given to God on the throne and to the Lamb. “Where is the ‘Third’?” you may ask. HE is very much there: “…and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God;” Revelation 4:5. When a person gets born again he receives the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, Acts 1:4-5, 2:1-4, which Jesus authored, John 3:14 and John 1:29; having been ordained by the Father, John3:16. Amen!

Jesus promised to visit whoever opens his heart to Him when He knocks, Revelation 3:20. Jesus promised to come with the Father, John 14:23, (not forgetting the already divine indwelling). Trinity! We pray to the Father (Luke 11:2), in the name of Jesus (John 14:13) and in the energy of the Holy Spirit, Romans 8:26. Trinity! The only reason why we desire heaven is because of the Father, seated in the divinity of the rainbow administration of HIS Royal Majesty (John 16:28 & Revelation 4:3); and the only thing which gets us there is ‘the walk’ with Him, patterned after the footsteps of Jesus, the most enigmatic Personage to tread upon the surface of this terra firma (Matthew 9:9), under the divine tutelage and in dwelling of the Holy Spirit (John 14:26), and it is in this verse we come to the acknowledgement of the uniqueness of a classic working in unison of the Trinity! Amen! At the Incarnation, there is the Son, given by the Father (Isaiah 9:6; John 3:16) and the indefatigable, overshadowing power of the Holy Ghost (Luke 1:35), working in a mysterious unison to perfect the salvation of mankind. You can be a glorious recipient of the celestial gift of God today. How? It is by getting born again. You will have to pray this prayer as if it is your last prayer: Dear heavenly Father, I come to You now in the name of Jesus Christ. I believe in my heart that Jesus is the Son of God. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sin. I believe that You raised Him from the dead. I confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and I receive Him now as my Lord and my Saviour. I give God all the glory. Amen!”

Read the first part by clicking here.

TRINITY (Mythical Or A Reality?) part 1

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TRINITY

Seated round a table, we were three ladies and three guys at a house warming party of a good friend. Discussions ranged from girls’ tittle-tattle, concessional parleys, blusters to articles of faith. “Can

you imagine some people believing in triune creators?” Kudirat asked. “Well anyone is entitled to his thoughts,” Fasusi opined. “Or her thoughts,” Lola made a case for the womenfolk. “How can’t myths thrive in the mental voyages embarked by humanity,” Kudirat pressed on. “What is wrong with the conceptualization of the Trinity?” I asked. “Yes, I’ve drawn you out of your shell, I thought you won’t say a thing this evening H.O…” K (is what we fondly call Kudirat) continued, “How do you justify what your Bible doesn’t have of the millions of words constituting it.” All eyes turned on H.O. to open up once again to accept a biblical challenge.

H.O.:      Yes, you’re right about the Bible in not having ‘Trinity’ as one of vocabularies that all together make up the Bible.

K:           Uh, huh! So, where did you pluck it, if not from the mythically induced imagination of mental perambulation? Another entry from a long, fairy-tale list.

H.O.:     The Bible is not a book you pick, read and expect an understanding from the grammar of the English version. You need to be able to read in between the lines of scripture. You know how that for anyone to understand any play of Shakespeare as you read from a page you’ll have to be checking from the next page, of the coded meanings of certain words? The concept of the Trinity is right there in the Bible, in fact, from the very first three verses of the Old Testament.

K:           Hun! H.O. I know you’ve told your first lie, today, just to patch up your ecclesiastic deficiency. You’re already getting me livid with anger!

H.O.:     “In the beginning, God created…” Genesis 1:1; verse two, “…And the Spirit of God moved…;” third verse, “And God said, let there be light.”

K:            Good, now let’s see how you are going to conjure out t-r-i-n-i-t-y from those verses. No wonder God got angry with you Christians that HE had to commission prophet Mohammed (s.a.w) to preach the lost truth of one Allah!

H.O.:     In the lingual Hebrew, ‘God,’ in verse one of Genesis chapter one, is Elohiym. K, it may interest  you to know that Elohiym is a Hebraic plural word.

K:            But…but we all know that Yoruba people address an elderly one as if talking to many people and…

H.O.:      Hold it, the Hebrews do not have such linguistic custom, go and check it out. That’s the argument of one Jehovah’s Witness woman too, when I pointed this out. So, the KJV literal rendition should be, “In the beginning the Gods created…” but the truth is that Hebrews have one God. Pantheism will be implied should plurality be scripted, hence, the singularity is the perfect translation. Verse two gives an intimation of the Spirit of God, and that is another Personage, a Divine Entity. When verse three speaks of light, is it that of the illuminant rays of the sun? No.

This light is another Personage which if you should read between the lines and further on in John 1:4, you will see Him as the Creator. This Light is Christ. Are the Three not complete?

K:            You’ve only succeeded in proving only two: Spirit and Christ. Where is the supposedly Father?

H.O.:      Verse three says, “And God said,” and here, the Father is the One who speaks on behalf of the Trinity in creationism.

Lola:       So anytime one sees ‘God’ in the Bible it means Elohiym, right, and does that mean the Hebrews do not have a singular word for God?

H.O.:      No. HE goes by many designations. You just have to study the Bible to know these things. The singular name for Elohiym is Elohha. Elohha appears fifty-six times in the Bible. Five times it is in connection with an idol and for the whole 51 times it designates Jehovah, the true God.

K:           This is interesting. You go to church only to worship three Gods. Do your Gods enjoy the          competition?

H.O.:      Your Islam teaches from Qur’an that jihad involvement earns Muslims aljana (heaven), where some will get as many as forty wives according to the number of non-Muslims they’re able to slaughter in jihads. Tell me, K, how many husbands will you have as your prize for successfully killing, all heathen, sixty thousand spectators in a stadium? Your Qur’an forbids you to be friends with a born again Christian like me. Qur’an 3:118, “O ye who believe! Take not for intimates others than your own folk, who would spare no pains to ruin you; they love to hamper you. Hatred is revealed by (the utterance of) their mouths, but that which their breasts hide is greater. We have made plain for you the revelations if ye will understand.” Chapter 3 verse 195, “And their Lord hath heard them (and He saith): Lo! I suffer not the work of any worker, male or female, to be lost. Ye proceed one from another. So those who fled and were driven forth from their homes and suffered damage for My cause, and fought and were slain, verily I shall remit their evil deeds from them and verily I shall bring them into Gardens underneath which rivers flow – A reward from Allah. And with Allah is the fairest of rewards.” The second chapter of Qur’an i.e. AlBaqara verse 105, “Neither those who disbelieve among the people of the Scripture nor the idolaters love that there should be sent down unto you any good thing from your Lord. But Allah chooseth for His mercy whom He will, and Allah is of Infinite Bounty.” Do you know who the people of the Scripture are? Christians! Read also, the entire AtTawba, i.e. the ninth chapter of the Qur’an.

K & Lola: That’s not true! (they cried in unison).

H.O.:      You attack the Christian Bible ignorantly, meanwhile your own sacred book you know nothing about. The Qur’an does not treat the sin question (and that should be worrisome, if you hunger for heaven). Read An-Nisa (4) verse 80, “Whoso obeyeth the messenger hath obeyed Allah, and whoso turneth away: We have not sent thee as a warder over them”. This is saying that Christians are disobedient to God. Go to the 88th verse, “What aileth you that ye are become two parties regarding the hypocrites, when Allah cast them back (to disbelief) because of what they earned? Seek ye to guide him whom Allah hath sent astray? He whom Allah sendeth astray, for him thou (O MUhammad) canst not find a road”. The God of the Bible never leads any astray. In the same 4th chapter of the 89th verse is this, “They long that ye should disbelieve even as they disbelieve, that ye may be upon a level (with them). So choose not friends from them till they forsake their homes in the way of Allah; if they turn back (to enmity) then take them and kill them wherever ye find them, and choose no friend nor helper from among them”, where Allah, through Mohammed tells Muslims never to befriend Christians. The 91st verse is why a good Muslim will see Christians as those who should be wiped out, it reads, “Ye will find others who desire that they should have security from you, and security from their own folk. So often as they are returned to hostility they are plunged therein. If they keep not aloof from you nor offer you peace nor hold their hands, then take them and kill them wherever ye find them. Against such We have given you clear warrant”.

The Bible (and only the Bible) treats the sin question and it is one of the reasons we have the Trinity. (to be continued)

Read the concluding Part Two here.