Category Archives: General

Shavuot/Pentecost: The First Thanksgiving

By:

Steve Daskal

Christian Messianic Analysis and Apologetics

In the latter half of November, the fourth Thursday of the month, most Americans celebrate Thanksgiving.  It is a federal holiday.

Some people say it reminds us of when the Pilgrims, the first settlers in Massachusetts, had a feast to thank the “Indians” — the native Americans — for helping them bring in a substantial harvest so they could survive the coming winter.  The previous winter had nearly wiped them all out due to starvation and disease.

But those who know their history better know that those Pilgrims were Puritans, very devout, God-fearing Christians, and that the first feast was to give thanks to God, and to share the Gospel with the native Americans.

The Puritans knew their Bible, for owning and studying it in English and treating it as the foundation of their faith was a major reason why they had fled England, and it was at the core of their long Lord’s Day or Sunday worship services.  They knew that God repeatedly stated, through Moses His prophet, His requirement for a festival of thanksgiving to Him for the harvest, a festival at which the first fruits of the harvest would be offered up to Him.

(Ex. 23:14, 16a NIV)  “Three times a year you are to celebrate a festival to me… Celebrate the Feast of Harvest with the firstfruits of the crops you sow in your field…. “

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Filed under Faith, General, History, Judeo-Christianity, Messiah, Religion, Tanakh

Created For God, Created to Work In Relationship With God

By:

Steven  Daskal & Joe Butta

Christian Messianic Analysis & Apologetics

 

          26   Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

          29   And God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food. 30 Also, to every beast of the earth, to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, in which there is life, I have given every green herb for food”; and it was so. 31 Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.   — Genesis 1:26-31 (NKJV)

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Strategically Sharing Christ

By

Steve Daskal & Joe Butta

Christian Messianic Analysis and Apologetics

The following broad strategy for reconnecting active Christian evangelism with Christian charity within and beyond the church came to Steve Daskal while in prayer on a very different subject. We’ll share it to provide a seed for future thought by other believers on the subject. Thank you for your consideration.

 

Premises:

  1. Over a century of Marxism-inspired, humanist-materialist [a.k.a. Progressive] indoctrination through academia, media, and State-run schools have resulted in a broad acceptance of class- and/or race- based envy and resentment, using an euphemism as “social justice.” This is especially true in the secular world, but sadly even to some degree within the church. Efforts by the better off to care for the less well off are viewed primarily as guilt-driven recognition of “what is due,” rather than a demonstration of care or love — especially if the sharing is primarily material without a direct personal connection. Such charity is viewed as insufficient, implies the assistance is given as assistance rather than compensation for past injustices, and is treated as an inadequate supplement to State-mandated enforced giving.

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Filed under Faith, General, Judeo-Christianity, Miscellaneous, Religion, Steven E. Daskal

SECULAR HUMANISM AND SIN: DETERMINING WHAT IS ULTIMATELY RIGHT OR WRONG

By: Joe Butta & Steve Daskal

CHRISTIAN MESSIANIC ANALYSIS AND APOLOGETICS

It is nearly 2018 and things that would have been unimaginable in the 1950’s are today protected by laws in various western nations.  The question is…How did we get here and who determines what can be described as normal behavior?

Secularism is not new.  It was rampant in the latter days of ancient Greece and the latter 2/3 of the Roman Empire.  Alexander’s Hellenism was very humanistic — while pagan rituals were retained, they were not taken very seriously as a belief system, but rather as a justification for the imperial cult and the sports, sex, and self-indulgence that was the norm for the free minority and eagerly sought by the enslaved majority.  Similarly, the Roman Empire became increasingly secular by the end of the Antonid [first] dynasty.  Again, pagan rituals were retained, but as a justification for the imperial cult and the orgiastic rituals of the various sects and cults that grew up around this or that “deity.”  Secularism arose at the end of these civilizations and played a role in their end, because the beliefs and values which motivated them during their rise became hollowed-out shells of what they once were, getting paid “lip service” but not being taken seriously.

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Filed under Atheism, General, Joseph A. Butta, Jr., Judeo-Christianity, Steven E. Daskal

How Many Times Did Moses Climb Mt Sinai?

By:  Steve Daskal,

CHRISTIAN MESSIANIC ANALYSIS AND APOLOGETICS

 

** A brother in Christ recently asked me about a seeming inconsistency in the Exodus account of Moses’ interactions with God and the Israelites at Mt. Sinai.  He thought it appeared as if the number of trips up and trips down didn’t match.  I had never actually sat down to work this out, though I’ve been hearing and reading this story repeatedly since I was in grade school.  This is what I found:

Ex 19 — The Israelites are three months after leaving Egypt via Rephidim [located in the Sinai desert].  They’ve reached Sinai, and set up camp in front of the mountain.  Moses goes up the mountain the first time [v3], he returns to the people [v7] and warns them that they are going to get the terms of the Covenant, and they agree to them — without having heard them — based upon God’s taking them out of Egypt and providing for this huge mass of people in the desert for 3 months.

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Scientism and Unbelief

The unbelievers in our schools and universities often teach that the existence of so much evil in this world negates the existence of a holy and righteous God. Life itself proceeds with no discernible purpose. Events that occur in the cosmos appear to be totally random.  The First Law of Thermodynamics proves since energy cannot be created or destroyed the universe has always existed.

Since we cannot argue that creation exists then how can creation exist apart from an act of creating initiated by an unseen Creator?

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Filed under Atheism, General, Joseph A. Butta, Jr., Miscellaneous

UNBELIEF: THE NEW BELIEF

Most people throughout history believed or practiced their religion because they were raised to do so, made to feel guilty if they failed to do so, or coerced by social pressure to “fit in” with their family/clan/neighbors/local elites.  Prior to the 20th century, there was generally little questioning of authority, and swift, vigorous punishment for those who dared to do so. What people learned in the home and school was also not all that demanding – it took an hour or so on a sabbath-day, or was the “price” for a feast day off from one’s work demands, or on fairly rare occasion required some self-denial for a fast day.  There were always privileged, authoritative “religious” to obey:  priests/monks/nuns on up through archbishops, or rabbis, or imams/mullahs, or the like, many of whom in turn had still higher human authorities to whom they were held accountable. These religious did not share their shortcomings, therefore many of the laity were convinced that they, unlike themselves, didn’t have any.

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THE UNIFICATION CHURCH:

WAS THE MESSIAH REALLY REVEALED IN THE 20TH CENTURY?

                Rev. Sun Myoung Moon was born in Korea around 1920 and he was raised a Presbyterian. He claimed he was visited by Jesus on Easter in the year 1935, in what is today North Korea, and was chosen by Jesus to finish the task Jesus was unable to finish. Later he also claimed to have communed with Buddha, Krishna and Moses. Apparently Jesus failed to save and redeem the world so Moon was chosen to have sex with 70 virgins, 70 married women and 70 widows so that he might procreate the Kingdom of God on earth. In 1946 he was arrested by North Korean communists and later released. The Presbyterian Church excommunicated him in 1948. In 1954 he formed the Unification Church and in 1957 published the Divine Principle which is his interpretation of the Bible.

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FREEMASONRY/SHRINERS:

The Hope of some for one united faith

                Freemasonry’s roots go back to 16th century France. It was being practiced in England by the 18th Century. It was a secret fraternal order binding together professional men and master tradesmen [and, later, government officers and commercial men] who were Deist Rationalists, and who were opposed to the existence of established churches, mandatory church attendance, and any sort of monarchial or nobility-based political order. What follows is generally true concerning Freemasonry however there are variations of how it is practiced in the United States.

When folks consider becoming a Mason they must begin in the Blue Lodge. If a person persists they will attain the Entered Apprentice Degree then the Fellowcraft Degree and finally the Master Mason Degree. At this point the Mason has the choice to stay in the Blue Lodge or seek advanced degrees in the Scottish or York rite. The Scottish rite has the 4th through 32nd degrees. The York rite has 13 degrees. Once the 32nd degree is attained the Mason can petition to join the Shriners.  Those who have mastered the advanced rites of Freemasonry and are accepted join The Ancient and Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.

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HINDUISM/ TRANSCENDENTAL MEDITATION:

Is Hinduism the one and only true faith?

In this series of posts we’ve looked at godlessness, dabbling in cults and immersion in the occult that can lead to Satanism. The other end of the spectrum is a faith that embraces multiple gods.

Hinduism is a very diverse collection of beliefs, but it is fundamentally practiced as either a Deist monism or a pantheistic paganism with thousands of gods.  The basic premise of Hinduism is Monism. Monism teaches that All is One. This gives sway to Pantheism meaning that All is God. So we are one with the universe and the universe is God so we are connected to the impersonal enlightenment. The problem is we are bound to this physical personal existence which inhibits us from joining with the true reality known as Brahman-Atman. The goal is to liberate oneself from this physical world of illusion. This is done by transcending this world through Yoga or Transcendental Meditation. The goal is to break the shackles of Karma which releases us from thinking and feeling so that we can be absorbed into the impersonal One. When we lose our personal identity we enter a state of bliss.

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