The End of the World

Key Precept: How to know whose advice to follow to save yourself and loved ones from disaster.

15,000 scientists just signed the largest-ever warning about Earth’s destruction

On Nov 13, [2017] the journal BioScience published the “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice”…The first warning was issued in 1992 when 1,700 members of the Union of Concerned Scientists argued that humans are “on a collision course with nature.”

…Since 1992, with the exception of stabilizing the stratospheric ozone layer, humanity has “failed to make sufficient progress in generally solving foreseen environmental challenges, and alarmingly, most of them are getting far worse,” the paper states. Its authors say they are especially troubled by “the current trajectory of potentially catastrophic climate change…from burning fossil fuels, deforestation, and agricultural production—particularly from farming ruminants for meat consumption.”

They also point out that this rapid heating has “unleashed a mass extinction event, the sixth in roughly 540 million years.” Scientists predict many current life forms could be annihilated or near extinction by the end of this century...

Time is running out, the scientists remind us.

And if that’s not bad enough, there’s always the threat of atomic warfare.

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Think the human race ends in a win for mankind? Think again.

Even the scattered survivors of an apocalyptic event will wipe each other out if left to their standard modus operandi. That is what makes The Walking Dead so horrifyingly true to life. The zombies aren’t the greatest threat. It’s the other survivors.

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William James, “first among the Harvard faculty giants a century ago”, wrote in “one of his most eloquent, utterly ageless essays, a sweeping denunciation of war and at the same time, a paean to military values.”

“History is a bath of blood.” The Illiad is one long recital of how Diomedes and Ajax, Sarpedon and Hector killed. No detail of the wounds they made is spared us, and the Greek mind fed upon the story. Greek history is a panorama of jingoism and imperialism — war for war’s sake, all the citizens being warriors. It is horrible reading — because of the irrationality of it all — save for the purpose of making “history” — and the history is that of the utter ruin of a civilization in intellectual respects perhaps the highest the earth has ever seen…

But I do not believe that peace either ought to be or will be permanent on this globe…A permanently successful peace-economy cannot be a simple pleasure-economy. In the more or less socialistic future toward which mankind seems drifting we must still subject ourselves collectively to those severities which answer to our real position upon this only partly hospitable globe…Martial virtues must be the enduring cement; intrepidity, contempt of softness, surrender of private interest, obedience to command, must still remain the rock upon which states are built — unless, indeed, we wish for dangerous reactions against commonwealths, fit only for contempt, and liable to invite attack whenever a centre of crystallization for military-minded enterprise gets formed anywhere in their neighborhood.

In the article Is War Inevitable? by E. O. Wilson, he argues that, yes, it is.

Our bloody nature, it can now be argued in the context of modern biology, is ingrained because group-versus-group competition was a principal driving force...Each tribe knew with justification that if it was not armed and ready, its very existence was imperiled. Throughout history, the escalation of a large part of technology has had combat as its central purpose

Any excuse for a real war will do, so long as it is seen as necessary to protect the tribe. The remembrance of past horrors has no effect. From April to June in 1994…In a hundred days of unrestrained slaughter by knife and gun, 800,000 people died…The total Rwandan population was reduced by 10 percent…For a relentlessly growing population, the per capita arable land was shrinking toward its limit. The deadly argument was over which tribe would own and control the whole of it…

Wars and genocide have been universal and eternal, respecting no particular time or culture. Archaeological sites are strewn with the evidence of mass conflicts and burials of massacred people. Tools from the earliest Neolithic period, about 10,000 years ago, include instruments clearly designed for fighting…

Since the end of World War II, violent conflict between states has declined drastically, owing in part to the nuclear standoff of the major powers…But civil wars, insurgencies, and state-sponsored terrorism continue unabated. Overall, big wars have been replaced around the world by small wars of the kind and magnitude more typical of hunter-gatherer and primitively agricultural societies

At the present time, we are still fundamentally the same as our hunter-gatherer ancestors, but with more food and larger territories. Region by region, recent studies show, the populations have approached a limit set by the supply of food and water…

The struggle to control vital resources continues globally, and it is growing worse.

This fact challenges the myth of “the noble savage” envisioned by movements such as the Enlightenment, Communism, the New Age and Evolution. Their vision of native peoples satisfied with the bare essentials, minding their own business is pure romanticism. Any psychologist or sociologist will tell you it is not within human nature to find peace by families “living off the land by hunting and gathering what it had to offer…if there was not enough food in a group’s direct vicinity, it meant they had to move around and lead more nomadic lifestyles in order to sustain themselves.”  Even apes, our supposed ancestors, have inherently violent natures.

As the famous explorer Captain Cook discovered to his mortal chagrin, evidence gathered by social science supports the most ancient historical records that humanity has from the outset been murderers and thieves, with the strong oppressing the weak.

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…it is obvious that the techniques of organized warfare had been developed and were ready for extensive application at the beginning of historic times as man crossed the boundary of the prehistoric [which is to say undocumented] world into civilization. The societies of the Tigris-Euphrates and Nile valleys were forged from the outset in war, and the skill of war was one of the most important distinguishing characteristics of the early civilizations.

Fighting never ends. Truces and surrenders only provide brief respites to gather armies and stockpile weapons. When the balance of power tips to one side, it all starts again.

Every single great power has risen only to fall. Do we Americans really believe that our govenment is strong enough to override this inexorable course of history?

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Deluded megalomaniac leaders believe they can, with occult / secret knowledge and technology gained by allying with out-of-this-world hyperdimensional beings. 

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The ironic truth is that humans are actually more powerful than the hyperdimensional beings they seek to empower themselves through! Think about it for two seconds.

What other reason do these supermen have to ally themselves with humans other than to gain access to our power in order to claim our dominion for themselves?

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And yet massive resources have been expended since the most ancient times on accessing the heavens via ziggurats and astronomical calculators up to modern day space probes and interstellar and nuclear research programs for this purpose.

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And how’s that going to turn out? “Destroy a weary universe”?! Does it really take the most brilliant scientist of our day to analyze that?

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Is the following prayer your response to the intense anxiety this subject provokes?

Protect me from knowing what I don’t need to know. Protect me from even knowing that there are things to know that I don’t know. Protect me from knowing that I decided not to know about the things that I decided not to know about. Amen.

How about overcoming fear, not with scientific speculation, but with truth?

All you really need to know for the moment is that the universe is a lot more complicated than you might think, even if you start from a position of thinking it’s pretty damn complicated in the first place.

Or as Douglas Adams sums it up: “Don’t panic.”

I am proposing that you resolve your anxiety about the meaning of life, the universe, and everything by finding a solid basis for faith in the midst of a crisis. Obviously most people put their faith in themselves, thinking they can figure out the truth intuitively, without need to gather and study any data about the subject at hand.

But can we trust ourselves, really?

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The biggest crisis we face in this life is death, especially the question of where I’ll be and what I’ll be like after death. This isn’t a question I can really afford to ignore, neither can I trust my own limited experience on such a significant issue.

This is where we inevitably put our trust in a leader and his promises. We trust who we deem to be an authority on religion, philosophy, or science.

  • Religion automatically posits the existence of God or gods as powerful spirit beings to whom humans can turn for help resolving super-human problems.
  • Philosophy and science generally look for explanations and solutions in the observable four-dimensional world, which means leaving spiritual interventions out of the study.

This is fair, because maximizing consistency in the subjects under study it is the only way that predictions about future expectations can be made about cause-effect relationships. An example of this is a medical study on the benefit of taking a baby aspirin daily to prevent heart disease. It can’t include prayer to God for healing because of inconsistency in belief or use of prayer by the study subjects, not to mention unpredictability in God’s intervention. 

The key difference between philosophy and science is how they arrive at their conclusions, AKA beliefs about the world.

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Ind-uction is a process where ind-ividual arguments and premises are used to develop a generalization or a conclusion that can be attributed to much more than the initial subjects. In this method, the conclusion may be validated or disproved by the preceding premises.

Philosophy – which includes psychology – starts by observing human behavior in specific instances and generalizes this to draw conclusions about human nature in the entire population. Due to the limited data used by philosophers for their thesis, there is a high probability of a faulty conclusion drawn from an inaccurate thesis. The population to which observations of individuals can legitimately be generalized should be defined since behaviors in one culture or era may be significantly different in other times and places. Most of all, while typically expressed as facts, philosophical conclusions are in reality only theories which may be disproved or overthrown by a paradigm shift.

For example,

  • in 1952 the American Psychiatric Association published its first edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-1), the definitive criteria for diagnosing psychiatric illnesses as facts. At that time it classifed “homosexuality” as a “sociopathic personality disturbance.”
  • But in 1968 the second edition (DSM-2) reclassified homosexuality as a “sexual deviation.”
  • This was in turn replaced in 1973’s DSM-III by a new category called “Ego Dystonic Homosexuality”, despite being obvious to psychiatrists that this was done as a political compromise to homosexual social activists, and did not meet the definition of what was still considered by the majority of the psychiatric profession as a disorder.
  • In 1987 the DSM-IV completely removed homosexuality.

So in just 35 years the psychiatric community changed from pronouncing adult homosexuality to be a sociopathic condition to being a normal variant of sexual behavior. But we’re not settled on psychiatric “facts” yet.

  • In 2000 the revised DSM-IV (TR) included children for the first time in  homosexuality with a diagnosis of Gender Identity Disorder in Children. As a disorder this was considered a illness to be treated by changing the patient’s thinking, behavior and emotions.
  • In May 2013 the DSM-5 removed the GIDC diagnosis and replaced it with Gender Dysphoria. The difference is that dysphoria = unhappiness to be resolved by social support of the individual’s sense of self.
    • “There is some controversy around the inclusion of gender dysphoria within the diagnostic manuals, as it may inadvertently pathologize gender variance through its inclusion in this manual. Gender variance is a healthy exploration of the gender spectrum…we do not believe that gender variance is pathologic,
    • we know that individuals who experience incongruence between biologic sex and gender identity are forced to face intense minority stress, overtly and covertly, and it is unsurprising that transgender adolescents often have alarmingly high rates of mental health issues, including increased suicidal ideation and suicide attempts.1
    • Minority stress is seen systemically through the chronic violence toward transgender and gender nonconforming individuals, high rates of homelessness, underemployment, and poor medical care for these individuals.2–4
    • the dysphoria is not the result of the individual’s gender identity itself.5  Parental support is necessary for positive outcomes for transgender youth with gender dysphoria.

While stated as a factual relationship of cause and effect, the association of mental and social problems with society’s disapproval of this behavior is statistically a simple correlation. We find one occuring with the other.  There is no proof that disapproval is the major reason for mental and social problems, simply a theory that that is the case.

If we are objective on this issue, we see that a massive social paradigm shift on sexuality has come about by accepting a minority social activists group’s self-benefiting demands after a couple of decades while rejecting millenias-long social leaders’ prohibitions with the interests of all of society in mind. On what basis do we place our trust that the outcome for our children’s future will be positive? On one’s own rejection of civil or religious authority? Certainly not on time-tested evidence.

Would you trust your child’s future to such unproven treatment in the medical field?

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Philosophical conclusions are inevitably limited by the observations of human behavior available to the philosopher, and colored by the philosopher’s prejudice. Since philosophy often starts with the premise that there is no God, they aren’t trustworthy for determining best course of action for consideration of any life hereafter. And that’s not a rabid Christian speaking. That’s Norman Mailer.

…atheism is a cropless undertaking when it comes to philosophy. (We need only think of Logical Positivism!) Atheism can contend with ethics (as Sartre did on occasion most brilliantly), but when it comes to metaphysics, atheism ends in a locked cell. It is, after all, near to impossible for a philosopher to explore how we are here without entertaining some notion of what the prior force might have been. Cosmic speculation is asphyxiated if existence came into being ex nihilo. In Sartre’s case–worse. Existence came into being without a clue to suggest whether we are here for good purpose, or there is no reason whatsoever for us.

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Quoted from Francis Bacon.

His works are credited with developing the scientific method and remained influential through the scientific revolution.

Bacon has been called the father of empiricism…Most importantly, he argued science could be achieved by use of a sceptical and methodical approach whereby scientists aim to avoid misleading themselves…the general idea of the importance and possibility of a sceptical methodology makes Bacon the father of the scientific method. This method was a new rhetorical and theoretical framework for science, the practical details of which are still central in debates about science and methodology.

In contrast to philosophy, science primarily studies material substance and uses deduction to draw conclusions about reality. In the reverse process of inductive reasoning, deduction starts with general information to arrive at specific conclusions. The greater amount of data gives science greater credibility than philosophy, but that doesn’t mean greater accuracy.

As with philosophy, scientific conclusions are often presented or accepted as facts, but in fact science only derives generally accepted explanations about material reality. Even the cardinal fact-finder, the scientific method, is only applicable when direct observation is possible, and must be verified by repeated experiments. When experimentation is not possible, science formulates a hypothesis, which by definition is a statement of the desired condition, then develops a theory via imagination, bolstered when possible by assuming regularity and similarity to known conditions.  If just one assumption is wrong, then the conclusion is wrong.

Because life after death isn’t accessible for experimentation, the scientific method can’t give answers to the questions about its reality or condition, and can only speculate. Many scientific theories, such as evolution and the Big Bang, begin with a desired hypothesis that God does not exist, then invent a more-or-less plausible alternate explanation for currently observed reality.  These provide welcome, but hazardous, shelters, for people looking for justification for their own rejection of a higher authority than themselves.

Science is most applicable to researching the material body, philosophy for understanding the behaviors directed by the personality / soul. Religion is different from both science and philosophy in that it can’t rely solely on direct observation, but must depend on revelation for truth about a hyperdimensional spirit, to which one responds in faith. With that definition, it can be seen that any purportedly scientific or philosophical teachings involving aspects of human experience that are unknowable by direct observation are in fact religious teachings on which people base their faith on someone’s revelation, such as philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche‘s pronouncement that “God is dead” or scientist Richard Dawkin’s promotion of the theory of evolution.

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Oh really?

Belief in evolution is…passionately defended by the scientific establishment, despite the lack of any observable scientific evidence for macroevolution (that is, evolution from one distinct kind of organism into another). This odd situation is briefly documented here by citing recent statements from leading evolutionists admitting their lack of proof…

The scientific method traditionally has required experimental observation and replication. The fact that macroevolution (as distinct from microevolution) has never been observed would seem to exclude it from the domain of true science. Even Ernst Mayr, the dean of living evolutionists, longtime professor of biology at Harvard, who has alleged that evolution is a “simple fact,” nevertheless agrees that it is an “historical science” for which “laws and experiments are inappropriate techniques”2 by which to explain it. One can never actually see evolution in action…

They used to claim that the real evidence for evolution was in the fossil record of the past, but the fact is that the billions of known fossils do not include a single unequivocal transitional form with transitional structures in the process of evolving.

Given that evolution, according to Darwin, was in a continual state of motion…it followed logically that the fossil record should be rife with examples of transitional forms leading from the less to the more evolved3

With respect to the origin of life, a leading researcher in this field, Leslie Orgel, after noting that neither proteins nor nucleic acids could have arisen without the other, concludes:

And so, at first glance, one might have to conclude that life could never, in fact, have originated by chemical means5

Neither is there any clue as to how the one-celled organisms of the primordial world could have evolved into the vast array of complex multi-celled invertebrates of the Cambrian period. Even dogmatic evolutionist Gould admits that:

The Cambrian explosion was the most remarkable and puzzling event in the history of life8

paleontologist, Niles Eldredge, has acknowledged that there is little, if any, evidence of evolutionary transitions in the fossil record. Instead, things remain the same!

It is a simple ineluctable truth that virtually all members of a biota remain basically stable, with minor fluctuations, throughout their durations10

So how do evolutionists arrive at their evolutionary trees from fossils of organisms which didn’t change during their durations?

Fossil discoveries can muddle over attempts to construct simple evolutionary trees — fossils from key periods are often not intermediates, but rather hodge podges of defining features of many different groups. . . . Generally, it seems that major groups are not assembled in a simple linear or progressive manner — new features are often “cut and pasted” on different groups at different times11

Anthropologists supplemented their extremely fragmentary fossil evidence with DNA and other types of molecular genetic evidence from living animals to try to work out an evolutionary scenario that will fit. But this genetic evidence really doesn’t help much either, for it contradicts fossil evidence

Summarizing the genetic data from humans, another author concludes, rather pessimistically:

Even with DNA sequence data, we have no direct access to the processes of evolution, so objective reconstruction of the vanished past can be achieved only by creative imagination14

The main scientific reason why there is no evidence for evolution in either the present or the past (except in the creative imagination of evolutionary scientists) is because one of the most fundamental laws of nature precludes it. The law of increasing entropy — also known as the second law of thermodynamics — stipulates that all systems in the real world tend to go “downhill,” as it were, toward disorganization and decreased complexity.

This law of entropy is, by any measure, one of the most universal, best proved laws of nature. It applies not only in physical and chemical systems, but also in biological and geological systems — in fact, in all systems, without exception.

No exception to the second law of thermodynamics has ever been found — not even a tiny one. Like conservation of energy (the “first law”), the existence of a law so precise and so independent of details of models must have a logical foundation that is independent of the fact that matter is composed of interacting particles18

In no way does the idea of particles-to-people evolution meet the long-accepted criteria of a scientific theory. There are no such evolutionary transitions that have ever been observed in the fossil record of the past; and the universal law of entropy seems to make it impossible on any significant scale.

Evolutionists claim that evolution is a scientific fact, but they almost always lose scientific debates with creationist scientists. Accordingly, most evolutionists now decline opportunities for scientific debates, preferring instead to make unilateral attacks on creationists.

Scientists should refuse formal debates because they do more harm than good, but scientists still need to counter the creationist message.20

The question is, just why do they need to counter the creationist message? Why are they so adamantly committed to anti-creationism?

The fact is that evolutionists believe in evolution because they want to. It is their desire at all costs to explain the origin of everything without a Creator. Evolutionism is thus intrinsically an atheistic religion…the purpose is to eliminate a personal God from any active role in the origin of the universe and all its components, including man…

And atheism, no less than theism, is a religion! Even doctrinaire-atheistic evolutionist Richard Dawkins admits that atheism cannot be proved to be true.

Of course we can’t prove that there isn’t a God.22

Therefore, they must believe it, and that makes it a religion…

Eminent scientific philosopher and ardent Darwinian atheist Michael Ruse has even acknowledged that evolution is their religion!

Evolution is promoted by its practitioners as more than mere science. Evolution is promulgated as an ideology, a secular religion — a full-fledged alternative to Christianity, with meaning and morality . . . . Evolution is a religion. This was true of evolution in the beginning, and it is true of evolution still today…25

They must believe in evolution, therefore, in spite of all the evidence, not because of it. And speaking of deceptions, note the following remarkable statement.

We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, . . . in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated commitment to materialism. . . . we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counterintuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door.27

The author of this frank statement is Richard Lewontin of Harvard. Since evolution is not a laboratory science, there is no way to test its validity, so all sorts of justso stories are contrived to adorn the textbooks. But that doesn’t make them true! An evolutionist reviewing a recent book by another (but more critical) evolutionist, says:

We cannot identify ancestors or “missing links,” and we cannot devise testable theories to explain how particular episodes of evolution came about. Gee is adamant that all the popular stories about how the first amphibians conquered the dry land, how the birds developed wings and feathers for flying, how the dinosaurs went extinct, and how humans evolved from apes are just products of our imagination, driven by prejudices and preconceptions.28

A fascinatingly honest admission by a physicist indicates the passionate commitment of establishment scientists to naturalism. Speaking of the trust students naturally place in their highly educated college professors, he says:

And I use that trust to effectively brainwash them. . . . our teaching methods are primarily those of propaganda. We appeal — without demonstration — to evidence that supports our position. We only introduce arguments and evidence that supports the currently accepted theories and omit or gloss over any evidence to the contrary…29

the leading evolutionist is generally considered to be Sir Julian Huxley, primary architect of modern neo-Darwinism. Huxley called evolution a “religion without revelation” and wrote a book with that title (2nd edition, 1957). In a later book…he argued passionately that we must change “our pattern of religious thought from a God-centered to an evolution-centered pattern…”34 “The God hypothesis . . . is becoming an intellectual and moral burden on our thought…we must construct something to take its place…”35

the reader is reminded again that all quotations in the article are from doctrinaire evolutionists…The evolutionists themselves, to all intents and purposes, have shown that evolutionism is not science, but religious faith in atheism.

According to evolutionists themselves, they offer an alternative faith to Christianity. Makes sense. But evolution is the religion that demands faith and trust in the revelator and belief despite EVIDENCE to the contrary. Such as Richard Dawkin’s claim that books about evolution present overwhelming quantities of mutually buttressed evidence. I’m sorry, but what a liar.

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There is one book has never – ever – been proven to be wrong about anything it has reported in the course of human history for over 6,000 years. Oh, it has constantly been claimed to wrong, but never proven to be wrong. And the way to escape destruction and even death is its theme.

Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord

  • Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature [immortality]
  • we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty. For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount.
  • We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts…scripture…For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” (II Peter 1)

“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

  • I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book…
  • And I turned to see…one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead.
  • And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;” (Revelation 1)

And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire: And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea [outer space], and his left foot on the earth, And cried with a loud voice, as when a lion roareth:

  • and when he had cried, seven thunders uttered their voices. And…I was about to write: and I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Seal up those things which the seven thunders uttered, and write them not [because the counter-action is not to going to be spoken or written into being.]
  • And the angel which I saw stand upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven, And sware by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven, and the things that therein are, and the earth, and the things that therein are, and the sea, and the things which are therein, that there should be time [therefore death] no longer: But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.
  • And the voice which I heard from heaven spake unto me again, and said, Go and take the little book which is open in the hand of the angel which standeth upon the sea and upon the earth…And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.” (Revelation 10)

What makes the Bible unique among all other religious – or philosophical or science -books is the proof it gives to back up its assertions.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

  • For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
  • Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
  • Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And…changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.” (Romans 1:18-25)

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Of all religious leaders, Yahweh’s Consecrated Savior – delegated before time began – alone proved, by his own resurrection, to have the power to fulfill his “exceeding great and precious promises: that…ye might be partakers of the divine nature” reported by contemporary “eyewitnesses of his majesty.” 

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that The Chosen or Sent One / Messiah / Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also…” (I Cor 15:3-8)

The resurrection of Jesus Christ is established by legal and scientific evidence unparalleled by any provided by any other religious claim, philosophical argument, or scientific theory.

There is good reason why, according to Guinness World Records, “Although it is impossible to obtain exact figures, there is little doubt that the Bible is the world’s best-selling and most widely distributed book.  A survey by the Bible Society concluded that around 2.5 billion copies were printed between 1815 and 1975, but more recent estimates put the number at more than 5aagqmz3 billion.”  And that’s not even taking into consideration the fact that the first section of  this book, commonly called the Torah, has been in continuous circulation for about 3,500 years.  So there is something special about this book.

This blog explores how the Bible explains our world, which has deteriorated to such a degree than even adults escape into fantasy Masters of the Universe.

“For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faithhe that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God” (I John 5:4-5)

The Bible also contains everything that makes for a captivating story – relevance to the reader, engaging characters, meaningful themes, suspenseful core plot with character-driven subplots that unfold and deepen over time, surprise twists and turns that keep the reader enthralled, fascinating detail, stirring of emotions, and conflict that builds in intensity before it is finally resolved and brings the story to its conclusion, leaving the reader empowered through greater understanding of humanity, self-examination, and identity transformation.

“Are you kidding?!” you exclaim. “Going to church was the most boring activity of my childhood!” That’s because you were dragged through a routine catechism. How unfortunate, because the Bible tells the utterly fascinating real-life story of the Game of Thrones, complete with dragons.

red-dragon-apo12-3“And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon…and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throneAnd there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon…and his angels…And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him…Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrathAnd the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” (Rev 12:3-7)

Unfortunately, Bible study is generally used as a guide to morality – how to conduct yourself, become a better person, or better equipped to serve God. If that’s what you’ve been doing, then you’ve missed the point. The Bible claims to be a guide to life – how to become alive, and survive all forces of destruction, even death.

got_ep605_cut_i_vam_20160418_001552591-h_2016.jpg

In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near theeBehold, they shall surely gather together, but not by me: whosoever shall gather together against thee shall fall for thy sake… No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD.” (Isa 54:14-17)

Although Bible study should result in self-improvement, that should be a by-product, not our objective. The primary reason the Bible itself says we should study the Bible is to engage in a relationship with the only hyperdimensional being who can rescue us from danger and death.

And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” (Joh 17:3)

its-not-what-you-know-or-who-you-knowOur survival, quality and success in life is certainly tied to the relationships we have. In any relationship the way we come to know the other person is to learn what they have to say about themselves. Flawed relationships are the result of interacting with someone on the basis of what you hope they are like, while ignorant of their true character, preferences, motivations, and boundaries.  If there is God, and we are ever going to develop a healthy and functional relationship with him, we must learn what he says about himself.

Sanctify them [set them apart from the crowd of strangers into a personal relationship] through thy truth: thy word is truthNeither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one [shared identity]; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us:” (Joh 17:17-21)

I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep [safeguard] that which I have committed unto him against that day.” (II Tim 1:12)

What day is that? The last day of the world, the day when all of humanity’s self-centeredness inevitably culminates in our own annihilation.

Too often the Bible is treated like a database, with verses as data bytes, used to assert one doctrinal position against another.  Certainly there are important doctrinal statements like “Jesus / Yeshua / Yahweh’s Savior saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6).  But why should you believe that?  How does that make sense?  It doesn’t, unless you know the background to Jesus’ statement.

This study analyzes the Bible as a student would analyze any piece of literature, from the perspective of an unfolding story that has to be read from the first sentence to the last to be understood. Our knowledge of the main character grows as the story progresses, and our understanding of the plot thickens as the action proceeds. Every author chooses every word carefully, and plans ahead with every statement supporting and leading to the ultimate conclusion. Mystery stories are the best. When the final revelation is made, the reader can go back to the beginning and recognize the clues that had been woven into the story all along. We simply can’t understand bits and pieces of any book without getting the whole story.

“But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound, the mystery of God should be finished, as he hath declared to his servants the prophets.” (Rev 10:7)

An American classic, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, starts with “You don’t know about me, without which you have read a book by the name of “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer…” The same should be said about the Bible. We don’t know about the Son of God in the episodes written by John in his gospel and Revelation unless we’ve read the episodes written about him in the book of Genesis. In both books recounting the adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Jesus Christ, their “...preeminence derives from… inspired characterization, the author’s remarkable ear for dialogue, and the book’s understated development of serious underlying themes: “natural” man versus “civilized” society, the evils of slavery, the innate value and dignity of human beings, and other topics.”

“But there are so many different denominations based on different interpretations of the Bible!” you protest. Which is the “right” interpretation? There is a true interpretation, because “God is not the author of confusion.” (I Cor 4:33) However, it is not for me to tell you what that is.

My goal in this blog is to support you in studying the Bible objectively, for yourself, not to put blinders on you to make sure you believe only what I believe.

417700_362740043799136_1268472845_nWhat is the basis for you believing anything you believe? Comfort? Convenience?  Because it is what your parents taught you? Because it is what respected theologians or your familiar denomination teaches? Blending in with the crowd so your associates don’t think you are a religious freak?

Have you ever really studied what the Bible itself teaches? Or for that matter, what your schoolteachers taught you, or what politicians say, or anything you encounter on the internet?

Being in a scientific profession, I have applied scientific research methods to this study.

NOTE: If this is where your eyes glaze over and you find yourself reading the same paragraph over and over, you can skip this part. It is, however, the basis for you having any reason to take seriously anything that follows, so if you do skip this and move on immediately to the more interesting posts, when you find yourself rejecting anything you don’t already believe, I encourage you to come back to this section and read this before discarding a new concept out of hand. This blog is for people who believe, or at least suspect, that knowledge is power, and that knowing the truth can set you free, but freedom does cost us something.

Define the problem

A research study starts by defining a problem which needs to be solved. This study looks at the tragic state of mankind living in perpetual personal, social and political conflict even while individually destroying one’s own home and collectively pushing the whole world to the brink of extinction, knowing it all ends in death anyway. Scientists agree that this is the biggest problem facing humanity today.

The research problem is often put in the form of a question. This helps focus the search for a solution to the problem. This blog asks the question:

“Is the Bible an accurate and trustworthy account of the nature and history of humanity, including the explanation for and solution to man’s apparent self-destructive nature?”

Review available literature on the problem

Next, the research study reviews the available literature on the subject to examine their opinions. If science is, at it claims to be, the absolute and final authority on reality, i.e. what is right, AKA right-eous, it will not only hold up to comparison to other explanations such as the Bible, it will silence the opposition in any debate. And vice versa. Literature and media that realistically portray the human condition will also either support or refute biblical concepts, as well as one’s own personal experiences. I have included a host of sources which can be used to double check my claims. These can be ignored like footnotes, explored, or used to jumpstart even more in depth exploration of these topics by the individual reader.

Focus the scope of the investigation 

Next the researchers use what they have found in the initial literature review to focus the scope of the investigation to a manageable size. In this case, the problem narrows from all humanity to the individual. “Can I rely on the Bible as the written word of God to overcome the destructive forces in my life and at death?”

And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God.” (Ex 31:18)

Knowing this first, that no prophecy  [communicating and reinforcing revealed truth] of the scripture is of any private interpretationFor the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” (II Pet 1:20-21)

Define terms

Next, the researchers clearly define terms and concepts used in the study.  Readers of the study may impose a preconception on certain key words, and thereby miss a significant finding.  At the simplest level, Strong’s Concordance is used to discover the other ways and contexts in which a word is translated elsewhere in scripture, allowing the Bible to be its own dictionary.

However, the only way to understand the true meaning of words and passages in the Bible is to determine how the original writers understood the meaning of words, expressions, and concepts. I once read instructions for an electrical appliance made in China that duly informed me that it must be “earthed”. Oh, you mean “grounded.” In the case of the Bible, that means Greek and Hebrew must not only be translated into English but the subtle differences in which any single word is translated into one of multiple possible English words must be determined. These often change over hundreds of years, which is why new versions of the Bible are published regularly to meet the constantly lowering educational levels of society. This is counterproductive to elevating our understanding of God.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9)

The depth and breadth of scholarship of the men who translated the King James Bible from the original ancient languages into English is impressive. It certainly beats my own limited education, and the objective of translations that intentionally reduce the scholarship of the Bible down to uneducated levels.

By the time King James I and Archbishop Richard Bancroft (ca. 1544–1610) were organizing in 1604 the Bible translation project that would become the KJV, the advances of biblical scholarship since Tyndale’s time had been so profound that the two men were able to design and staff a translation committee that would comprise six companies of about nine translators each, with scholars drawn from the two great British universities (Oxford and Cambridge) working from three locations (the two universities and Westminster Abbey in London). All were thoroughly at home with Biblical Hebrew and Greek and the wide range of the Greek and Latin classics; most also knew other ancient and modern languages, and many had learned from youth to read, write, think, and discuss in Latin. The renowned Cambridge linguist Lancelot Andrewes (1555–1626) is a prime example of the impressive depth of the KJV translators’ scholarship and preparedness at this point in history. Proficient in all biblical and cognate languages and several dozen modern languages, a spellbinder in the pulpit who often preached from the Greek New Testament, Andrewes exemplifies the “collective genius” of the KJV in terms of the scholarship these translators brought to the project.

Next, the researchers define the population to which the findings of the investigation will apply, such as pregnant women or men with cardiovascular disease.  In this case, it is all humanity.

“,,,this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” (Mat 24:14)

Develop study protocols

Next, the researchers develop a plan of action – how to go about conducting the study. The way in which the study is conducted is the proof of the value of the findings.  In order to prove that the results of your study are worth acting on, researchers have to demonstrate that the results of their investigation are reliable and valid. 

  • Reliability = consistency.  Does our study show that the same source says the same thing in different places and at different times under different conditions? Internally, the Bible itself demands this.In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established…Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me…” (II Cor 13:1-3)

Any new revelation or prophecy or church policy or practice that is a private interpretation of scripture, without corroborating testimony by two or three other scriptures, will be discarded, regardless of the reputation of that teacher. This will eliminate the denominational distinctions. Likewise, any scientific teachings that are a private interpretation of scientific evidence will be discarded.

“What! Came the word of God out from you? Or came it unto you only? If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I [Paul] write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.” (I Cor 14:36-37)

A big difference between the biblical creation story and the other creation stories of the same era and place is the consistency of the biblical account. It has endured, unchanged, for thousands of years. The others?

Question: Could you talk about the Mesopotamian creation myth?

The key question here is, of course: which one?

“Mesopotamian mythology” is really an umbrella term for the ancient religions of the cradle of civilization (centered mostly in what is now Iraq). The largest of these are the Sumerian civilization, which was centered on the city of Sumer (4500-1900 BCE); then the Akkadian Empire, which focused on Akkad (2334-2154 BCE); then the Assyrian Empire with its center in Assur (2200-605 BCE); and finally the Babylonian Empire, based in famous Babylon (1895-619 BCE). As you can see, there’s lots of overlap in time – Sumer continued to be relevant for the entire existence of the Akkadian Empire and into the beginning of the Assyrian and Babylonian Empires, and the Assyrian Empire arose while Akkad was still a power and also coexisted with Babylon for several centuries.

And also, as we can see, they’re all on top of each other geographically as well. So it’s no wonder they have religious features in common – or rather, they all very nearly share the same religion, each adding their own features, which is why we usually talk about…it all in one big bowl of Mesopotamian Myths.

  •  Validity = accuracy.  Does our study show that other reliable studies say the same thing? In our case, that would be the results of scientific studies. This study has already shown that science warns that human behavior is bringing about the destruction of the earth. The Bible also predicts this.

O LORD God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come…thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reignedand thy wrath is come, and the time…that thou shouldest…destroy them which destroy the earth.” (Revelation 11:17-18)

The consistency of the biblical written record throughout thousands of years and multiple human authors provides reliability unparalleled by any other document in history. The forensic evidence provided in geology, genetics, sociology, psychology, and all the sciences provides unparalleled validity.

Research bias will contaminate findings. In this study only one version of the Bible, the King James, is used for its authority and worth as proven over five centuries, consistency in maintaining one single version during cross-referencing, and reduction in the risk of investigator bias deriving from preferentially drawing from sources whose English translation fit a preconception. I encourage you to clear your mind of secular preconceptions and objectively examine the evidence for scientific claims.

Apply hermeneutics

The Eight Rules of Literature Interpretation, AKA hermeneutics are followed. They are not unique to Bible study. They have been used by scholars since Socrates, and are equally applicable to legal, historical, and scientific documents.

  1. Definition – correctly define terms, as noted above. If science is defined as the use of a certain method to determine facts, then a process that fails to use that method cannot be called science.
  2. Usage – recognize when slang, idioms or cultural mannerisms change the usual meaning of a word, for example:  cool, hot, cookies, mouse.
  3. Context – as in, don’t take words out of. For example, “If any man will come after me, let him (Mat 16:24)” is not a scriptural justification for immorality.
  4. anachronism-lincoln-laptopHistorical and cultural background adds not only accuracy but depth and richness of understanding. We can’t expect to just read the Bible and interpret it from our 21st century paradigm.
  5. Logic – using well-established principles of reasoning to draw a conclusion. For example, “In the Bones of a Buried Child, Signs of a Massive Migration to the Americas” there is no logical reasoning in the account that follows that headline. There is simply a massive leap of faith to an absolutely unfounded but desired conclusion that would not be accepted as proof in a court of law.
  6. Precedence – as in the justice system, once the evidence for a case has been examined and a decision made, this judgment covers subsequent similar cases.
  7. Unity – any document must be analyzed and interpreted as a communication of a coherent, unified message. Any part of the communication must be consistent with the rest of the message. This prevents imbalance and excesses in misapplying pieces of the whole, like instructions “to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates” (Titus 3:1) since, when there is a conflict of interest,we ought to obey God rather than man.” This also prevents splintering into denominations by segregating out and highlighting certain phrases while ignoring other, moderating, passages. Most of all, this prevents “unhitching the New Testament from the Old Testament” which inevitably degenerates New Testament Christianity into a New Age self-centered entitlement program ignoring humanity’s utterly corrupt sin nature and desperate need for a merciful God as demonstrated over thousands of years of proven history in the Old Testament. Old Testament scriptures are the key to unlocking New Testament teaching as demonstrated by the numerous references and quotes and explicitly stated to be so in the case of the revelation of Jesus Christ.”And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.” (Luke 24:27)
  8. Inference – deducing a non- observable fact through logical reasoning from observable facts. We can’t see God, but there is enough evidence of the existence of a Creator and Sustainer in the phenomenally complex yet orderly physical world to infer his existence. Contrarywise, we can’t see the process of, or any evidence of, evolution but science infers that it must have happened based on the belief (not scientifically established facts) that there is no creator God. You can infer from this what I personally believe.

Understand the mind of the speaker

quote-anthropology-demands-the-open-mindedness-with-which-one-must-look-and-listen-record-in-margaret-mead-124985

l0076931-margaret-mead-sitting-between-two-samoan-1024x502Only the originator of a communication can truly explain what was meant. This takes on special significance when communicating across widely separated times and cultures, and even dimensions. Try to explain colors to a person blind from birth, or music to a person who has always been deaf. Spiritual things can only be understood by those who are connected to the spirit dimension.

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God…neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” {I Cor 2:12-14)

Remember what it was like to be in school, transforming into someone with the knowledge and skill to manage computer, or mechanical, or electronic, or medical, or whatever kind of systems. This is no different.  It takes time, commitment, and effort on your part, and taking in a Bible 101 lecture on morality once a week on Sunday morning isn’t going to be enough. You have to have hands-on practice.

“…be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove [as in a science lab or court case] what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Ro 12:2)

“Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, and receive with meekness the engrafted word, which is able to save your souls. But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” (Ja 1:21-22)

There is great value in preaching and teaching, and we should all take full advantage of opportunities to learn from others who know more than us, but no-one can claim perfect knowledge. And it is a hard truth that we have to be alert to leaders who use “knowledge is power” to build a cult following.

Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation  [behavior or way of life]Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace.” (Heb 13:7-9)

“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;” (I Tim 4:1)

We are protected when we build our own knowledge base directly on what the Bible says and can measure what someone is teaching against the standard. This is the only way to know when some charismatic teacher is creating his own following, or even when some well-meaning but uninformed preacher is failing to guide us into the truth that we need to succeed in overcoming the challenges of our lives.

But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth….But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth.” (I Joh 2:20-27)

Study does take time and effort, but is more easily managed than ever with the tools available on the internet at our fingertips.  Like every complex subject, we shouldn’t expect to understand every statement as it stands alone, especially at the beginning of the book. How many mystery stories do you understand when a clue is first dropped into the story? How many clues did you not even realize were clues when you first encountered them?

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (II Tim 2:15)

“Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:” (Ro 16:25-26)

Studying the Bible is a challenge, but the most rewarding project you’ll ever tackle. Eventually you’ll come to realize that every great story ever written is rooted in the Bible. As you recognize biblical elements in your favorite stories, you will also see the Bible come to life in your imagination. The tame tableaus that made up most of our Sunday School lessons will be replaced with vivid drama.

fighting-a-giant

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sunIs there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.” (Ecc 1:9-10)

I invite you to become absorbed in the most fascinating and most meaningful history ever written. No, not my blog. The Bible.

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