Tag Archives: Judeo-Christian Studies



Joe Butta & Steve Daskal

Genesis: Chapter 1

14 Then God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night. They will serve as signs for the appointed times and for days and years.15 They will be lights in the expanse of the sky to provide light on the earth.” And it was so. 16 God made the two great lights—the greater light to have dominion over the day and the lesser light to have dominion over the night—as well as the stars. 17 God placed them in the expanse of the sky to provide light on the earth, 18 to dominate the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw that it was good. 19 Evening came and then morning: the fourth day.   — Genesis 1:14-19 (HCSB)

 The earth in which we live was draped in darkness until the light was made to shine upon it. The lights in the sky are to serve as signs for appointed times, days and years. The greater light [sun] dominates day, stars are visible at night while a full moon would dominate the night.

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Filed under Faith, Islam, Judeo-Christianity, Messiah, Miscellaneous, Religion, Salvation, Tanakh

Has Anyone Seen the Face of God?

Christian Messianic Analysis and Apologetics

By: Steve Daskal and Joe Butta

No mortal human being has ever seen the Face of God — that is, God the Father.  Moses never saw God’s actual “face” — no man has except the God-Man, Yeshua/Jesus.

The emphasis in Exodus 33:11 is not on the “face-to-face” aspect, but on the last phrase, “as a man speaks to a friend,” [as translated in the NKJV, NIV84, & NASB].  One can speak to a friend “face-to-face” in the sense of speaking to them in person, relationally, but not look each other in the face [think of two people working on a project side-by-side, which in a sense is what God was doing by including Moses in His redemptive work and in creating the foundation for the nation of Israel].  This is what the QUEST Study Bible notes say — verse 11 is emphasizing that Moses, like Abraham before him and David who came after him, had a personal relationship with God.  Charles Ryrie and John MacArthur note that Moses never saw God’s actual “face” — no man has except the God-Man, Yeshua/Jesus.

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BY: Steven E Daskal

This is a simple question at one level, and a much more complex one beyond that.  It is one of my favorite Biblical conundrums, because we know quite a bit, yet so little.  BTW, while Melchizedek is commonly used, the pronunciation and Hebrew spelling reflect Melkhizedek (the KH being the sound common to Semitic and Slavic languages, while CH is the sound common to many linguistic families, as found in “Church” or “Chalice”).  I tend to use the KH version.

At the simplest level, it is a reference back to Abram’s (later Abraham) life in Genesis:

(Gen 14:17-24 NIV84)  After Abram returned from defeating Kedorlaomer and the kings allied with him, the king of Sodom came out to meet him in the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley).

          Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, and he blessed Abram, saying, “Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth.  And blessed be God Most High, who delivered your enemies into your hand.” Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.

          The king of Sodom said to Abram, “Give me the people and keep the goods for yourself.”  But Abram said to the king of Sodom, “I have raised my hand to the LORD, God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth, and have taken an oath that I will accept nothing belonging to you, not even a thread or the thong of a sandal, so that you will never be able to say, ‘I made Abram rich.’ I will accept nothing but what my men have eaten and the share that belongs to the men who went with me — to Aner, Eshcol and Mamre. Let them have their share.”

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Filed under Faith, Judeo-Christianity, Messiah, Steven E. Daskal, Tanakh


By:   Joe Butta and Steve Daskal


In the previous post the following comments were made concerning Biblical Christianity: “The latter [Christianity] emphasizes loving God with all one’s heart, mind, and strength, and loving others as one loves oneself.  The latter [also] emphasizes confession, repentance, and acceptance of divine forgiveness.  Sin, as understood in Biblical Christianity, is the fallen spiritual nature that we have inherited from our first earthly parents, Adam and Eve.  Unlike secular humanists and Islamists, who see humankind as basically good but corruptible, the faith that Jesus inspired and is taught in the Bible insists that we have all sinned and this is due to the sin nature that we inherited.

Biblical Christianity is not a faith based on strict adherence to Mosaic law.  It is based instead upon a unique relationship between the omnipotent, eternal Creator God and His people, through whom He would redeem all of mankind from sin.  God instituted the Torah through Moses to give the new nation of Israel, the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, a standard for living that, if followed, would set them apart from the ruthless, fatalistic, idol-worshipers around them and thereby enable them to be a holy nation — holiness in Hebrew meaning “set apart.”

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By: Joe Butta and Steve Daskal


Islam is a revolutionary ideology wrapped in set of religious beliefs, rites and rituals.  Islamism is the movement to Islamicize the world by fully implementing Islamic law [the Shari’a] globally over all believers [to stamp out heresy] and unbelievers [to bring all of mankind into submission to Allah].  Allah is the medieval Arab conception of the one God whose symbol is the crescent moon, whose primary place of pilgrimage is the Ka’aba in Mecca, and is linked through them to pre-Islamic moon worship].  The Allah of the Qur’an [the Islamic holy scripture] is NOT the God of the Bible, because the Allah of the Qur’an denies the validity of the far older and better documented Bible and rejects fundamental Biblical teachings such as the covenant promises to Isaac and Jacob/Israel for their descendants, asserts that Hebrew prophet Moses, the first Israelite High Priest Aaron, and Israelite kings David and Solomon were Arabs descended from Ishmael, and denies the virgin birth, sinless life, death by crucifixion, and resurrection of Yeshua HaMoshiakh [Jesus Christ].  If the Qur’an is accurate, then the Bible is a corrupted jumble of half-truths.  If the Bible is accurate, the Qur’an is a counterfeit of true religion.

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By: Joe Butta & Steve Daskal


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

Why a Dad is Needed in this Ordered Universe.

By:  Joe Butta and Steve Daskal

Christian Messianic Analysis and Apologetics

Can inanimate, purposeless, formless nothingness create something animate, purposeful, and alive? That would appear to violate the basic laws of physics [e.g., the laws of thermodynamics]. Before anything was or could be, there had to be Someone. Even the ancients understood this, and came up with a vast array of myths about one or more superhuman “gods” creating the world, starting with dust and water, and then everything else. Their reasons for doing so were obscure, but basically came down to either needing something to occupy themselves with [life and humanity as toys for gods] or needing workers to toil for them and feed their superhuman egos [life and humanity as slaves for gods]. But if these gods had the same vices and many of the same needs as mankind, how could they have created the universe, and why are they worthy of any respect, much less love?

The Bible presents a very different situation, in which an eternal, complete [God needing neither slaves nor toys] creates the universe to enjoy the process [aesthetics, accomplishment] and humanity with whom to enjoy it through interpersonal relationship.

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