From Dust & Ashes Part II,
a conversation with Wm. F. Buckley Jr.
by Mel West
(From Who is of the Truth, by Mel West)
Having seen the Jews [Children of Israel] restored to the Holy Land, which was May 15, 1948, after a long 2,000 year exile, according to the criteria given them in their Holy Scriptures (the Bible); we have living examples of a people who know without a doubt the meaning of Liberty.
Applying their experience and teachings, to defend similarly persecuted peoples in America, I thought to write to Mr. Buckley in December 1992, who took the time to answer our complaint: that some seven million homeless Americans (and there will be more) suffer because our leaders have forgotten the meaning of Liberty. This page does not show or imply Mr. Buckley's opinion on the matter addressed, in any way.
Out of our discussion with Mr. Buckley came a series of Small Books which continued my argument that our present form of government is exceedingly unjust and must be changed and then extended to reflections towards world peace. These books recording the conversation are: Against Leviathan, works associated with it, including Financial Institution Credit Watch and The Second Coming of the American Revolution; then we delved into ethics and morality in On The Breakage of the Holy Catholic Church, Works and Days among the Hyperboreans, Planks towards Freedom, Quest for Human Dignity, The Mehl Commentary, Duty and Profit, and Immoral Coercion, From Dust & Ashes to Joy (this page is from Part II of From Dust & Ashes to Joy ), and Who is of the Truth.
Xenophon, Cicero and then Hobbs said that a people tend to resemble their leaders. Our leaders are corrupt; so it is with our people. Since our leaders and people are leading the world, it follows that the world is being led into corruption. This includes our religious institutions. Here we focus on the Christian Church, how it has been corrupted and has been corrupting our leaders. We focus on this church because its disciples wield the greatest power in the world. One wrong calculation by them will annihilate the world. As noted in Against Leviathan, Duty and Profit, Immoral Coercion, and our satire, Quest for Human Dignity, our leaders have already made enough miscalculations that the world I inherited as a youth has been substantially destroyed. I mean the trees, the creatures, the land, air and water and now the climate. Because the Church did not restrain them-though many of our miscreant leaders carry Bibles under their arms-we must therefore examine the Church.
There was a knowledge in the world which restrained corruption, but that knowledge has been abandoned in favor of a new law based on exploitation. That new law is the law of Hell: it is every man for himself; you're on your own kid. Because of this new law, when one complains about injustice one receives blank stares.
The Thesis of the Bible (Holy Scriptures) is to promote justice, which it views as defending the meek and the poor against the Nazi-like tempers which tread on them. If you take time to read the Psalms of David, for instance, you will get this message. If you can't take the time, read Psalm 12. The message of the entire Bible is carried in Psalm 12.
One cannot defend the poor and the meek and, at the same time, disparage and desolate a group of people. As you can see in Psalm 12 and can verify throughout the Holy Scriptures (except the epistles of Paul), all of the poor and the meek of the world are defended by the Holy Scriptures. Paul switched this gospel to include only those covered under his particular gospel which, incidentally, contradicted the Holy Scriptures, making all of the foundations of Jesus Christ old and obsolete. This resulted in a series of teachings which are now known to us as anti-Semitism; and we have seen their effect in Martin Luther's tract (see Maravot's_homepage_2.html) which begins with, What shall we Christians do with this damned, rejected race of the Jews? This led to Hitler's final solution of the Holocaust. We back-tracked this hateful mentality in On the Breakage of the Holy Catholic Church, through the Church Fathers to the Apostle Paul. Even saintly men like St. Maximos the Confessor-whose wonderful teachings you shall hear in this work- got contaminated through Paul's spoiled and rancorous epistles. Witness:
St. Maximos, Fifth Century of Various Texts #37[580-662 A.D.] When the Law is understood only according to the letter, it is hostile to the truth, as the Jews were, and as is anyone else who possesses their mentality.
The Jewish Mentality was obedience to the Law of Moses [Torah and its prophets]. That same mentality is also in the Koran. Paul and his later disciples condemned both the Jews and their Law, setting standards for continuing condemnations of not only the Jews but any others honoring the law, as seen in St. Maximos' comment. We intend to change such attitudes. Anti-Semitism must be cast away in order to realize the epiphany of this page, which is to deliver a promise made in the Bible having to do with a simple Jewish Wedding which will change many. As in all weddings first there will come tears and then joy.
Our foundation on the Wedding refers to Jesus' sayings. Besides confirming and honoring the Law of Moses, they boil down to this:
That His Word is from the Father which includes the Law of Moses and the prophets [re: John 8.55; that the Father and His Word are Spirit [John 6.63]; and finally that in Christ ye might have peace, but in the world ye shall have tribulation [John 16.33].
Our desire, which is the desire of the Holy Scriptures, includes shouldering a curious Tent of Refuge [Tabernacle] through a sealed gate, called the Golden Gate, which faces the Temple mount. This selection from From Dust & Ashes to Joy explains why this is important. A picture of the Golden Gate is on Maravot's_homepage_2.html. The Tabernacle, our Tent of Refuge, is constructed as follows. The 16 th bar, the ridge-pole, provides a slight pitch to the roof which is not shown here. All people are invited to enter it once in their life, exchange a pledge of marriage before the Veil, before the Mercy Seat, and then exit. They will offer a gold or silver band which will be used to maintain the Tent. If they do not have their band, one will be given to them by the Nuns. The funds not needed to maintain the Tabernacle site will be delivered to shelters for the poor, the needy, and the homeless, as may be determined by the electorate of the Nuns. The Tent of Refuge will be administered by Nuns. The LORD is the only priest of the Tabernacle, where He resides between the two Cherubim upon the Mercy Seat. There will be no preaching or sacrifices except penitent hearts of any kind in proximity to the Tabernacle grounds. If there is bloodshed of any kind nearby, the Shekinah will lift up and move to another place. Remove your shoes and keep the silence for this is a holy place, and try to keep your pledge after you leave the grounds.
Continuing the Tabernacle portion of the argument with Mr. Buckley, we enjoined him and his Bishop in From Dust & Ashes to Joy to honor it as a sanctification pronounced in the Holy Scriptures, which concerns not only the Marriage of God to all nations and restoration of the Jews to the Holy Land, but also the renewal of the Temple. We described how this Promise of being Sanctified in Israel and the Tabernacle relates to Jesus' concept of His Second Coming. Keyed to the Promise, of course, is the pledge to provide a refuge for the poor of all nations (which presumes a time when all the world is exploited by a few greedy sociopaths and brother fights against brother). This page carries that plea.
The following is a woodcut attributed to Josephus that shows what appears to be the original Temple of Solomon (B) next to the peaks of the Temple mount. (However, based upon other maps detailing the same area, the building appears to be the governor's castle, Antonina - See "Philistia Triumph thou...") Covering the highest peak today is the Dome of the Rock. It is not likely that the Temple covered the top of Mt. Zion and would have been placed adjacent to the highest peak. This should dispel fearsome rumors among Moslems that to restore the Temple the Dome of the Rock would have to be razed to the ground.
"A" Shows a curious location for the three crosses, which appears to be close to the site of the Garden Tomb. "C" shows a flight of stairs going up from the Palace Grounds and stables approximately where stairs now ascend to the Temple Mount from the area of the Western Wall. "D" appears to be located near the modern site of David's Cenotaph. The Comet in the picture may be Halley's Comet of 66 A.D. Josephus was a prisoner of Vespasian and his son Titus before the walls of Jerusalem, when Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed in 70 A.D. Josephus recorded that event in his book "The Jewish Wars."
Threaded through our works is the idea that the principles applied to set the Jews free from affliction will also set those Americans persecuted in our streets free. If you, the reader, feel shame over the treatment of the Jews, particularly during the formative days of the Holocaust-when they were forced into homelessness and then denied the right to beg (then 6 million of them murdered)-then you should be more particularly ashamed of the treatment of our 7 millions of homeless in America. They too have been forced out of their homes, denied the right to even raise a tent over their head, denied equal access to work (as they have no phones nor address by which a prospective employer may contact them); besides these atrocities, the homeless, lacking a shelter and means to get work, are then even denied the right to beg! This horrible and villainous practice has gone unnoticed, it seems, because most Americans have been falsely taught that because the homeless failed to achieve in our society it is not the fault of our society. Our argument with Mr. Buckley has been to the effect that the Homeless were not homeless before about 1985, that the condition is an effect of the Reagan-Bush (and now Clinton) Estate, and the lies it has perpetrated upon the American people [re: Duty & Profit and Immoral Coercion]. Our government engineered (and continues to do so) our state of homelessness. It was no mistake or accident. A part of this argument is carried on Maravot's_homepage_4.html.
We concluded in our argument that a people who will not challenge the lies which perpetrate our homelessness will not likely challenge the lies which the Apostle Paul engineered, or any other lies fostered by the Church (whose members should have defended the rights and dignity of the homeless and haven't). Thus, the way we treat our own poor is a reflection upon our churches-of all kinds and dominions-as well as our other "ethical" foundations.
Counting the numbers of multitudes shivering in tunnels and under bridges (who are usually chased out of their refuges), we can say as a general principle that the American people have devolved to a state where there is complete ignorance of those virtues which enabled tolerance and mercy: where liberty and providing for the common welfare have been replaced by a law which we call the Law of hell: it is every man for himself; you're on your own kid.
This mentality has also undermined our foundations in the Holy Scriptures. The desire of the Holy Scriptures, as said, is easy to explain [re: Psalm 12]: of overcoming oppression, providing for the afflicted and the poor, and setting captives free. Our forefathers, through the Constitution, had, in fact, hoped to bring the desire of the Holy Scriptures into reality: when all men can live in liberty, justice for all, and peace. But this is hard to manifest when, at the same time, there are ministers teaching their congregations that certain peoples are to be despised (and thus it is okay to kill them). It is because of this relationship, then, in our argument with Mr. Buckley, that we cannot separate modern political realities from the desires of the Holy Scriptures. This is serviceable, we think, because our application of the desire of the Holy Scriptures is more meaningful when we contrast it against modern political realities and failures.
In the debate I took a formless nature. The principal characteristic of my form was that I would assume the spirit of a gathering of the important sages in history, which we call, a Great Troop; and we would use their arguments to defend not only our poor but also others similarly treated around the world, as for example in Bosnia and Israel. We apply our Great Troop as an eternal, common body of knowledge, and these include the teachings of Jesus Christ and the prophets of Israel. Where you see me use the word "we" it refers to my Great Troop.
In our argument with Mr. Buckley, whose status as an informed American and leader is well known, we quoted sages and scriptures why our leaders are in default of every moral institution honored by man; that they are consuming us with their avarice and lies about our National Debt [re: Against Leviathan, Duty and Profit and Immoral Coercion--see Maravot's_homepage_4.html] and its effects, causing homelessness and other ruptures in our lives; and pleaded for the case of a Wise Man to step forward to defend us from the indignity. We saw Mr. Buckley..
Because the argument involves ethics reflecting upon the Body of Christ and how we should thus recognize Christ, Mr. Buckley's argument carried us forward to a discussion on the epiphany of Christ's Second Coming. One can derive in the progress of our argument that the epiphany of the Second Coming must, to defend His Name, at least reproach this, the greatest nation on earth, for persecuting 7 million homeless people, and recall its implications and effects.
Here our Great Troop continues to explore details Promised in Christ's epiphany, where our Great Troop maintains that coaxing a spirit to defend the Homeless will lead to a spirit of reconciliation which can solve other problems that are currently blocking the epiphany Mr. Buckley is looking forward to [see Duty and Profit and Immoral Coercion, The Mehl Commentary and From Dust & Ashes to Joy Part I, for more details on that epiphany].
We have played the argument as a contest, following the allegory of a Joust between our Great Troop and Mr. Buckley and his Bishop, or a game of chess. In the last work, Who is of the Truth, we put Mr. Buckley's Bishop in check.
Each member of our Great Troop speaks for himself, but, as will be seen in examining all of our works, they all have a common voice.
The Importance of Rooting out Lies
At the foundation of the Jewish, Christian, and Moslem faiths is a simple precept: that God cannot lie, neither can his prophets lie. Nor His Christ. A binder in that foundation is that Christ carries God's Eternal Truth. If one comes with a message which contravenes the foundation delivered at Mount Sinai (applying first to the Jews), he is a false prophet or false Christ. Fundamental to this progression, then, is that Christ would (as is the case with the Father of the Holy Scriptures) point out a lie when He sees one. For surely we can all agree, who have read either the Holy Scriptures or American Fundamentals of Law, there is no place in an honest covenant-be it our Constitution or the Holy Scriptures-where one is asked to trust in or believe in a lie or a liar. A convicted liar, who repents and does not lie again, we are asked to redeem. This is fundamental to our system of justice.
Fundamental to the epiphany of Christ is the idea that the Holy Scriptures ask man to reason with them (see Isaiah 1.18). They present, in fact, a solution for these times- an age when the wickedest men are extolled [re: Psalm 12]-and this solution we threaded through our Buckley Series argument. One of the items in the Holy Scriptures' Catalogue of Solutions has to do with the concept of bringing forth a Kingdom of God on earth as it is in Heaven. This has been addressed as a Marriage of all the nations to God, which we described in From Dust & Ashes to Joy and Philistia Triumph thou because of me and cover in part herein. All of the prophets and saints of the Holy Scriptures agree that in that Kingdom there is no room for unrepentant liars (and other similarly hardened criminals). And certainly there can be no room in the Kingdom for a nation, be they Nazis or Americans, who persecute so many homeless and poor as those 7 million now languishing in our streets.
Another related controversy the Holy Scriptures have with the Pauline Church has to do with their repudiation of the Kingdom and its Spiritual King Messiah, who sits upon the throne of David in Jerusalem when Israel is restored to the Holy Land [sic. as the Second Coming of Christ]. The modern church is flip-flopping on this matter; but until Israel was recently restored this was the general interpretation of the Kingdom of God:
St. Maximos the Confessor, On the Lord's Prayer..we should next invoke the rule of the Kingdom of God the Father with the words, 'Thy kingdom come' (Matt. 6.10), that is, "May the Holy Spirit come'; for, having put away these things, we are now made into a temple for God through the Holy Spirit by the teaching and practice of gentleness. For on whom shall I rest,' says Scripture, 'but on him who is gentle and humble and trembles at my words?' (cf. Isa. 66.2). It is clear from this that the Kingdom of God the Father belongs to the humble and the gentle. For 'blessed are the gentle, for they will inherit the earth' (Matt. 5.5).
Our forefathers thought to lead the way, as it were, to bring forth the Kingdom of God on earth. As we can see in our traditions and procedures [as in our dollar bill] our government devoted great thought to form a nation which trusts in God, whose people become a temple of God. As noted above, the Pauline plan to put God's temple in our hearts has not worked; in fact, the average American is far worse and more threatening to the world than Sodom and Gomorrah were. Hence we return to Christ's idea of the Kingdom, which, being of David, poses the question:
Psalm 15 ..who shall abide in thy Tabernacle? Who shall dwell in thy Holy Hill?
15.2 He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart.
Here we describe the motive of the LORD's Tabernacle and His Holy Hill, how they shall become a refuge for many in these times. The Holy Scriptures intend to turn the Holy Land into a Sanctuary which would defend anyone seeking refuge from persecution. A very good idea, we think.
Until this is done there will not be peace in Jerusalem--nor in the world.
In Who is of the Truth [Maravot's_homepage_2.html] we focus on certain obstacles which stand in the way of creating the Sanctuary, which scriptures call a Tabernacle of Refuge [tabernacle means tent ]. Witness:
Isaiah 4.6 [when the Children of Israel are redeemed from the Spirit of Judgment and the Spirit of Burning and restored to the Holy Land; ed. note] And there shall be a Tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.
If a people have no shame in preventing some 7 million homeless from having the right of a tent over their heads, how can they ever appreciate our Tent of Refuge ? In truth just to raise the Tent of Refuge we are blocked by obdurate hearts who believe that the Temple of God is in them (that they are gods), as was also the case with the Pharaoh when the Children of Israel were brought out of their captivity in Egypt circa 1492 B.C.
If you, dear reader, can make this connection, how raising a Tent of Refuge in the Holy Land is sympathetic to the needs of our own homeless, who suffer under their own kind of pharaoh, then perhaps you can understand the significance of raising the Tent of Refuge. The entire argument falls on this issue: that if we cannot raise a Tent of Refuge here, we surely will not obtain the compassion and mercy necessary to raise it in Jerusalem!
The cap-stone of our argument from Who is of the Truth is in the revelation of a blatant and murderous lie perpetrated first by the Church and continued by Pope John-Paul II [see Maravot's_homepage_2.html]. The lie is murderous because it has perpetrated, in the case at hand, a false judgment of the Jews, and then, because the lie condemned the Law (and thus the Tent of Refuge ), it holds in contempt others who honor the law, such as the Koran. During the time when Columbus was discovering America, in 1492 A.D., this contempt was manifested in all kinds of outrages: from the enslavement of new peoples in the New World to Torqemada's Old World torture chambers, where all heretics (Jews, Moslems, Protestants) were burned and broken on the wrack to save their souls; and continuing into recent times the contempt re-manifested itself in Hitler's death factories. Now we have gruesome ethnic cleansing episodes upwelling in such diverse places as Armenia, Iraq, among the Kurds in the north and the Shi'ite Moslems in the south; Rwanda, Burundi, Liberia, Somalia, Bosnia, and Palestine. Whether we speak of the twelfth century, the fourteenth or the current century, in the West the wars and persecutions, one sect unto another, continue to escalate. It is too often the case that millions of people have suffered because of a "religous" lie. The same lie listed against the Pope in Maravot's_homepage_2.html launched the Crusades, for instance. Suffer the Children we are told..
This is evidenced by the small lie which was behind the Holocaust (which we listed in On the Breakage of the Holy Catholic Church (and repeat in Maravot's_ homepage_3.html.). A simple, comparative example is in the subtle lie perpetrated against the Moslems of India: that the British had (during India's struggle for independence) smeared their bullets with pork fat. Moslems, as with the Jews who also honor the Law of Moses, avoid pork, for to them it is unclean. The rumor that the British had smeared their bullets with pork fat thus caused an uprising among the Moslems in India, and this resulted in a massacre. There is no such thing as a small lie, when it attacks the dignity of a people.
A Reflection added 4.14.2002: While reformatting this book for current browsers, coming across this paragraph brought to mind the suicide bombers--now called Homicide Bombers--among the Palestinians. The practice comes from a culture which believes that by strapping a bomb on one's body with the purpose of killing as many civilians as possible will reward the suicide with a special place in paradise attended by 70 or so beautiful women. The practice has now spread within the past few weeks to include women, young and old, who are now being sent into marketplaces to blow up Israelis and other victims who happen to be where the bomb is set off. This belief/practice has been around for centuries. Joinville, a Crusader of the 13th Century, as I recall, points out in his book that in the mountains of Libya their are Bedouins who assasinate people through the practice of suicide. They believe that by killing through martyrdom they obtain a special place in heaven. These people were known as a group called the Assasins.
Such is our precarious world that it cannot deal with the Assasins.Who come to the Truth will recognize my voice, said Jesus. Well, a liar, by definition, is not one who comes to the Truth, but a repentant liar--who tells those to whom he lied that he was wrong--absolutely everyone of the Truth loves. We have been carrying forth in our argument that the Truth is God.
The Holy Scriptures promise that on the acceptable day of the Lord a special wedding procession with its wedding canopy will seek to re-enter the Temple Mount. The appropriate gate it must go through is the Golden Gate, which is currently sealed. Specifications for the special wedding canopy are above.
When the souls of our Great Troop speak, the litany tends to stretch the argument beyond the intellectual endurance of our readers, and we apologize for this. We should prefer to say, "Open ye the Golden Gate to allow for the entry of the Tent of Refuge", but that has not sufficed before.
Let us now introduce our heralds whom we have grouped under the heading, A Century of Christian Truths. Listen to them first.
To keep things in perspective, we use many allegories in our argument. One is as if our Great Troop were standing upon the Mountain of the Prophets, or Jacob's Ladder, before the Gate of Righteousness which is in Heaven, and we encouraged Mr. Buckley and his Bishop [re: Quest for Human Dignity ] to come up to see what we have in view.
We come from the Spiritual plane and, thus, our allegiance is to the Word of God. We offer our appeal in good faith, knowing it contains reproof. Receive us, then, in this spirit: that the LORD corrects whom He loves (Proverbs 3.12):
Proverbs 12.1 Whoso loveth instruction loveth knowledge: but he that hateth reproof is brutish.
30.6 Add thou not unto his words lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.
Eccles. 10.1 Dead flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savor: so doth a little folly him that is in reputation for wisdom and honor.
Proverbs 15.31 The ear that heareth the reproof of life abideth among the wise.
There is a reward for answering reproof. One is admitted into the Great Congregation of the Wise, which is called the Sons of Heaven; and surely no one in our Great Troop will fail to bow to them. We believe that a simple bow to the Truth by the Pope, in answer to our decree on Maravot's_homepage_2.html, will cover them all. This, incidentally, is our concept of grace as well. Our heralds may help him in that wise.
1) Think that you are standing in heaven, and that in the company of the Holy angels you are meeting God and receiving Him in your heart. Prepare yourself with great awe and trembling, lest you mingle with the holy powers unworthily [A Discourse on Abba Philimon; 6th-7th Century A.D.].
2) ..so far as you can, do nothing simply to gain the esteem or goodwill of others, and never bear ill will towards your brother, lest you separate yourself from God [A Discourse on Abba Philimon; 6th-7th Century A.D.].
3)..The Pure heart, being completely receptive to the Holy Spirit, mirrors God in His entirety [A Discourse on Abba Philimon; 6th-7th Century A.D.].
4) Holy Knowledge is the light of the soul; bereft of it, 'the fool walks in darkness' (Eccles. 2.14) [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 51; 7th-9th Century A.D].
5) He who conceals his hypocrisy beneath feigned love blesses with his mouth but curses inwardly [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 3 7th-9th Century A.D].
6) True words from a pure conscience betoken unfeigned love [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 8; 7th-9th Century A.D].
7) Worldly virtues promote human glory, spiritual virtues the glory of God [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 10; 7th-9th Century A.D].
8) Do not neglect the practice of the virtues and your intellect will be illumined; for it is written, ' I will open for you invisible secret treasures' (Isa. 45.3); [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 48; 7th-9th Century A.D].
9) These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation..[John 16.23].
10) A strong man is one who repels evil through the practice of the virtues and with spiritual knowledge [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 12; 7th-9th Century A.D].
11) The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life..[John 6.63].
12) The intellect freed from the passions becomes like light.. [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 50; 7th-9th Century A.D].
13) As wax melts before fire, so does an impure thought before the fear of God [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 26; 7th-9th Century A.D].
14) Our Lord and God is Jesus Christ, and the intellect that follows Him will not remain in darkness (cf. John 12.46); [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-Control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century # 44; 7th-9th Century A.D].
15) Since man is composed of body and soul, he is moved by two laws, that of the flesh and that of the Spirit. The law of the flesh operates by virtue of the senses; the law of the Spirit operates by virtue of the intellect. The first law, operating by virtue of the senses, automatically binds one closely to matter; the second law, operating by virtue of the intellect, brings about direct union with God (cf. Rom. 7.23) [St. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Second Century # 9; 580-662 A.D.].
16) The Lord said, 'First seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness' (Matt. 6.33), that is, seek the knowledge of truth before all things, and therefore seek training in appropriate methods of attaining it. In saying this, He showed clearly that believers must seek only divine knowledge and the virtue which adorns it with corresponding actions [St. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Second Century # 16; 580-662 A.D.]..
17) To deny the Logos is to fail through fear to do what is good; to betray Him is deliberately to choose and commit sin [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, First Century # 75; 580-662 A.D.]
18) Real faith is faith which is manifest and active..[St. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, First Century # 84; 580-662 A.D.].
19) When intelligence is stupefied, the incensive power precipitate and desire mindless, and when ignorance, a domineering spirit and licentiousness govern the soul, then sin becomes a habit, actively entangling one in the various pleasures of the senses [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Second Century # 77; 580-662 A.D.].
20) Goodness, which is the full expression of divine activity within us, is said to be the consummation of practical virtue. The soul's intelligent power is drawn towards goodness when it uses its incensive and desiring aspects in accordance with nature. In goodness the beauty that is according to God's likeness is made manifest..Such knowledge makes manifest the dignity of the divine image in a wholly unsullied state [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 26; 580-662 A.D.].
21) Blessed is he who knows in truth that we are but tools in God's hands..and that to all this we contribute nothing at all except a disposition that desires what is good. Zerubbabel had this disposition when he said to God: 'Blessed art Thou who hast given me wisdom; I give thanks to Thee, O Lord of our fathers; from Thee comes victory and wisdom; and Thine is the glory and I am Thy servant' (1 Esd. 4.59-60) [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 28; 580-662 A.D.].
22) Real faith is truth which is all-embracing, all-sustaining and free from all falsehood. A good conscience confers on us the power of love, since it is not guilty of any transgression of the commandments [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 37; 580-662 A.D.].
23) When by neglecting the commandments a person blinds the eyes of faith that are within him, then he is certain doomed, for he no longer has God watching over him. For if Scripture calls the energies of the Spirit the 'eyes of the Lord' (Deut. 11.12), the person who does not open those eyes by fulfilling the commandments does not have God watching over him. God watches us only when through fulfilling the commandments we are illumined by the energies of the Spirit, for He has no other eyes by which He looks down on those who dwell on earth [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 43; 580-662 A.D.].
24) ..goodness is faith manifested. God is by nature both faithful and good (cf. Matt. 19.17) [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 50; 580-662 A.D.].
25) Evil has a beginning, for it has its origin in activity on our part which is contrary to nature. But goodness does not have a beginning..Goodness, then, is what we should seek with our intelligence, long for with our desire, and keep inviolate with our incensive power. With our cognitive insight we should prevent it from being adulterated by anything that is contrary to it [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 57; 580-662 A.D.].
26) The contemplative intellect, if it is to rule over conceptual images of created things, as well as over its own activities, must be in a state barren of evil, that is, one which neither conceives evil in any way nor gives birth to it..[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 58; 580-662 A.D.].
27) Hypocrisy is the pretence of friendship, or hatred hidden in the form of friendship..or deceit with the outer form of truth. Hypocrisy is the trade of those who emulate the serpent in their twistings and twinings [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 67; 580-662 A.D.].
28) When it is said that 'the just man's prayer, made active, has great strength' (James 5.16), I understand such prayer to be made active in two ways: the first is when the person who offers prayer to God supports it with works performed in accordance with the commandments.. [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Third Century # 80; 580-662 A.D.].
29) ..Once the intelligence is dominant in us, the flesh necessarily suffers, because the intelligence compels it into the service of virtue.. [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 4; 580-662 A.D.].
30..For the sake of virtue he severs his will from the flesh, and so dies daily, like David (cf. Ps. 4.22). At the same time, he is continually renewed through his soul's spiritual regeneration..[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 10; 580-662 A.D.].
31) Not even the grace of the Holy Spirit can actualize wisdom in the saints unless there is an intellect capable of receiving it; or spiritual knowledge unless there is a faculty of intelligence that can receive it; or faith unless there is in the intellect and the intelligence full assurance about the realities to be disclosed hereafter and until then hidden from everyone...[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 13; 580-662 A.D.].
32) God is the limitless, eternal and infinite abode of those who attain salvation. He is all things to all men according to their degree of righteousness...[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 51; 580-662 A.D.].
33) If a person's will is not directed towards what is good, it is inevitably directed towards evil; for it cannot be stationary with regard to both. Because it implies obduracy with regard to virtue, Scripture describes the soul's sluggishness in pursuing what is good as 'stones'; while it describes as 'timber' the soul's readiness to commit evil (cf. Zech. 5.14)....[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 62; 580-662 A.D.].
34) A man is also a thief when he conceals his soul's unseen evil behind a seemingly virtuous way of life, and disguises his inner disposition with an affected innocence...In that day the Lord will reveal their pretence (Isa. 3.17)..[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 66; 580-662 A.D.].
35) He who simulates spiritual knowledge merely by the utterance of words filches the mind of those who hear him in order to boost his own reputation Similarly, he who simulates virtue in his outward behavior pilfers the sight of those who look at him, once more in order to promote his own self-glory. Both steal by means of deceit, the first perverting his audience's mind, the second the bodily sense of those who see him. [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 68; 580-662 A.D.].
36)..For God is glorified not by mere words but by works of righteousness, which proclaim the majesty of God far more effectively than words [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 86; 580-662 A.D.].
37) Let us not light the divine lamp-that is, the illuminating principle of knowledge-through contemplation and the practice of the virtues, and then place it under the grain bin (cf. Matt. 5.15); for if we do we shall be condemned for confining the incomprehensible power of wisdom to the letter. On the contrary, let us put it on a lamp stand-the Holy Church-beaconing to all men the light of divine truth from the summit of contemplation.[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 77; 580-662 A.D.].
38) ..and to sit in ashes-symbolizing poverty of spirit, in which everyone who is learning to live a devout life sits, lashed by his conscience because of the sins he has committed (cf. Jonah 3.1-9) [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 94; 580-662 A.D.].
39) Unbelief means rejection of the commandments; belief is acceptance of them. Darkness is ignorance of the good; light is knowledge of it. Christ is the name given to the essence and subsistence of the good; the devil is the depraved state that produces all sins [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fourth Century # 99; 580-662 A.D.].
40) The Law of grace directly teaches those who are led by it to imitate God himself..[St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century # 12; 580-662 A.D.].
41) Everyone who has fallen away from divine love is ruled through sensual pleasure by the carnal law. With such a law, he cannot keep a single divine commandment, nor does he wish to: preferring a life of pleasure to a life ruled by virtue and lived in the Spirit of God, he embraces ignorance instead of Knowledge [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century # 20; 580-662 A.D.].
42) ..our intellect will be preoccupied with whatever it is we gravitate towards [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century # 22; 580-662 A.D.].
43) It is better to belong to God than to ourselves; for it is on those who belong to God that divine gifts are bestowed [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century #68; 580-662 A.D.].
44) An intellective being that acts intellectively in accordance with its own principle naturally apprehends with its intellect. Moreover it will love what it apprehends and so in a passive manner, under the influence of the erotic impulse, it will be drawn out of itself towards that which it loves; and this impulse will grow continually more urgent and intense. In this way it will not rest until it is entirely immersed in the total reality of what it loves, wholly and willingly encompassed by the wholeness of that reality, welcoming its saving embrace, and completely conformed to that which embraces it. So much will this be the case that it will now wish to be recognized not from itself but from what embraces it, like air made luminous by light or iron penetrated through and through by fire, or something else of this kind [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century #70; 580-662 A.D.].
45)..'What can separate us from the love of Christ?' (cf. Rom. 8.35)-such a person has become, like Melchisedec, 'without father, without mother, without descent' (cf. Heb. 7.3). For, because of the union with the Spirit that has taken place within him, he cannot now be dominated by flesh or by nature [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century # 75; 580-662 A.D.].
46) Spiritual knowledge unites knower and known, while ignorance is always a cause of change and self-division in the ignorant. Hence nothing, according to sacred Scripture, will shift him who truly believes from the ground of his true faith..For he who has been united with the truth has the assurance that all is well with him, even though most people rebuke him for being out of his mind...that through truth-simple and always immutable the same-he has been liberated from the fluctuating and fickle turmoil of the manifold forms of illusion [St.. Maximos the Confessor, Various Texts on Theology, the Divine Economy, and Virtue and Vice, Fifth Century # 91; 580-662 A.D.; compare this to Jesus' statement that in Christ you will have peace but in the world you will have tribulation (or turmoil); ed. note].
47) God rejoices in intelligence alone and this is what He demands from us His servants. He reveals this when He says to David, 'What have I in heaven, and besides yourself what have I desired on earth?' (Ps. 73.25). Nothing is offered to God in heaven by the holy angels except intelligent worship ; and it is this that God also demands from us when He teaches us to say in our prayers, 'Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven' ...'But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things as well will be given to you' (Matt. 6.10; 6.25, 32,33) [St. Maximos the Confessor, On the Lord's Prayer; 580-662 A.D.].
48) Rightly motivated, the intellect will find the truth; but motivated by passion it will miss the mark [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century, # 58; 7th Century A.D.].
49) Only those who have reached the extremes of virtue or of evil are not judged by their conscience [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century, # 58; 7th Century A.D.].
50) When you hear something to your benefit, do not condemn the speaker; for if you do you will nullify his helpful admonition [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century, # 82; 7th Century A.D.].
51) To each virtue there is an opposing vice; hence the wicked take vices for virtues [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century, # 89; 7th Century A.D.].
52) Forgiveness of sins is betokened by freedom from the passions; he who has not yet been granted freedom from the passions has not yet received forgiveness [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, First Century, # 101; 7th Century A.D.].
53) It is an insult to the intelligence to be subject to what lacks intelligence and to concern itself with shameful desires [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 6; 7th Century A.D.].
54) Let us strive to fulfill the commandments so that we may be freed from the passions; and let us struggle to grasp divine doctrine so that we may be found worthy of spiritual knowledge [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 13; 7th Century A.D.].
55) The soul's immortality resides in dispassion and spiritual knowledge; no slave to sensual pleasure can attain it [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 14; 7th Century A.D.].
56) The demons bind the intellect to sensible things by means of desire and fear, distress and sensual pleasure [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 17; 7th Century A.D.].
57) Desire for wisdom scorns fear, and the delight of spiritual knowledge expels distress [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 18; 7th Century A.D.].
58) The scriptures contain four things: commandments, doctrines [sic. teachings; ed. note] threats, and promises [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 20; 7th Century A.D.].
59) The intellect becomes a stranger to the things of this world when its attachment to the senses has been completely sundered [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 51; 7th Century A.D.].
60) We are sons of God or of Satan according to whether we conform to goodness or to evil [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 59; 7th Century A.D.].
61) A wise man is one who pays attention to himself and is quick to separate himself from all defilement [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 60; 7th Century A.D.].
62) An obdurate soul does not notice when it is whipped and so is unaware of its benefactor [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 61; 7th Century A.D.].
63) A soiled garment excludes one from the divine wedding feast and makes one a communicant of outer darkness (cf. Matt. 22.12-13) [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 61; 7th Century A.D.].
63) He who fears God will pay careful attention to his soul and will free himself from communion with evil [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 63; 7th Century A.D.].
64) Even if we do not wish to believe Him, it was Jesus who said that no one can serve two masters (cf. Matt. 6.24) [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 65; 7th Century A.D.].
65) Fearful afflictions await the hard of heart, for without great sufferings they cannot become pliable and responsive [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 67; 7th Century A.D.].
67) Christ is the Savior of the whole world, and has conferred on men the gift of repentance so that they may be saved. Repentance engenders the keeping of the commandments, and this in its turn purifies the soul [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 76,77; 7th Century A.D.].
68) The purification of the soul is release from the passions, and release from the passions gives birth to love. A pure soul is one that loves God, and a pure intellect is one divorced from ignorance [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 78,79; 7th Century A.D.].
69) If you lay down rules for yourself, do not disobey yourself; for he who cheats himself is self-deluded [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 86; 7th Century A.D.].
70) The soul's disease is an evil disposition, while its death is sin put into action [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Second Century, # 89; 7th Century A.D.].
71) Whether we think, speak or act in a good or an evil manner depends upon whether we cleave inwardly to virtue or to vice [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 3; 7th Century A.D.].
72)..an ingrained habit is not easily uprooted [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 7; 7th Century A.D.].
73) The first renunciation is that of material things, the second that of the passions, the third that of ignorance [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 23; 7th Century A.D.].
74) Malicious thoughts are a fully existent form of evil: if you do not get rid of them you will not become a disciple of spiritual knowledge [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 44; 7th Century A.D.].
75) The person who listens to Christ fills himself with light; and if he imitates Christ, he reclaims himself [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 45; 7th Century A.D.].
76) The tongue of a back-biting soul is three-pronged: it injures the speaker, the listener and sometimes the person being maligned [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 48; 7th Century A.D.].
77) The dissolute man is sold to many masters and lives his life in whatever way they lead him [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 60; 7th Century A.D.].
78) The hypocrite, like the false prophet, is betrayed by his words and actions [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 66; 7th Century A.D.].
79) Hardship and humility save the soul and free it from all the passions [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 72; 7th Century A.D.].
80) A helpful word indicates an understanding mind; a good action reveals a saint-like soul [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 73; 7th Century A.D.; nothing so pleases God as a repentant soul; re: the parable of the lost sheep; ed. note ].
81) An illumined intellect brings forth words of wisdom; a pure soul cultivates godlike thoughts [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 74; 7th Century A.D.].
82) The intellect energized by divine love cultivates good thoughts about God; but when impelled by self-love it produces diabolic thoughts [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Third Century, # 79; 7th Century A.D.].
83) ..We call a man a fornicator, a drunkard or a liar not on account of a single lapse, but only when he keeps on falling into the sin in question and makes no attempt to correct himself [St. John of Damaskos, On the Virtues and the Vices c. 675-749 A.D.].
84) Do not think that the intellect is free from its attachment to the flesh so long as it is still troubled by the activities that pertain to the flesh [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 2; 7th Century A.D.].
85) Just as the senses and sensible objects pertain to the flesh, so the intellect and intelligible realities pertain to the soul [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 2; 7th Century A.D.].
86) Be ruled by God and rule over your senses; and, being on a higher level, do not give authority to what is inferior to you [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 8; 7th Century A.D.].
87) Devote yourself ceaselessly to the words of God: application to them destroys the passions [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 18; 7th Century A.D.].
88) You have been sentenced to eat the bread of spiritual knowledge with the toil, struggle and the sweat of your face (cf. Gen. 3.19) [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 22; 7th Century A.D.].
89) Eschewing self-esteem, look to God, and beware lest you become presumptuous or unchaste [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 282; 7th Century A.D.].
90) A sign of self-esteem is an ostentations manner; of pride, anger and scorn of others [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 29; 7th Century A.D.].
91) Pride deprives us of God's help, making us over-reliant on ourselves and arrogant towards other people [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 34; 7th Century A.D.].
92) The intellect's task is to reject any thought that secretly vilifies a fellow being [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 38; 7th Century A.D.].
93) A man deadened by the passions is impervious to advice and will not accept any spiritual correction [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 41; 7th Century A.D.].
94) He who does not accept advice will never go by the straight path, but will always find himself among cliffs and gorges [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 42; 7th Century A.D.].
95) He who has disciplined his body and dwells in a state of spiritual knowledge finds that through this knowledge he is purified still further [St. Thalassios, On Love, Self-control and Life in accordance with the Intellect, Fourth Century, # 77; 7th Century A.D.].
96) A priest should be pure from all passions, especially unchastity and rancor, and should keep his imagination passion-free. Otherwise he will be rejected with loathing, as if he were some foul leper who touches the body of a king [St. Theognostos, On the Practice of the Virtues, Contemplation and the Priesthood # 17; possibly eighth century A.D.].
97) When you fall from a higher state, do not become panic-stricken, but through remorse, grief, rigorous self-reproach and, above all, through copious tears shed in a contrite spirit, correct yourself and return quickly to your former condition! [St. Theognostos, On the Practice of the Virtues, Contemplation and the Priesthood # 48; possibly eighth century A.D.; ed. exclamation].
98) When you boldly take up the yoke of the priesthood, you should mend your ways and expound the truth rightly...for our God is a consuming fire..! [St. Theognostos, On the Practice of the Virtues, Contemplation and the Priesthood # 53; possibly eighth century A.D.; ed. exclamation].
99) Authority over the earth is in the hands of the Lord, and in due time he will set over it one who will serve his purpose [The Wisdom of Sirach 10.4].
100) For it is easy in the Lord's sight when a man dies to repay him according to his ways. An hour of hardship makes one forget enjoyment, and when a man dies, what he has done is disclosed [The Wisdom of Sirach 11.26].
We could add to this centuries more of advise from the saints. But we have included enough for the purpose needed in this scroll (we add strength to our Great Troop already compassing Mr. Buckley's Bishop, to put him in check). To restate our desire, we do this not because of some worldly need (St. Theognostos says that if you want to be known to God, do all that you can to remain unknown to men), but rather because of our loyalty to the Word of God, how the sages and prophets interpreted and applied it, how it relates to our own dying world.
We believe in revelation to save lives: of sorting out the truth from the hidden: unearthing distortions, cover-ups, lies.
If Pope John-Paul II dies uncorrected, and ignores this appeal, he leaves a legacy of lies which hecertainly from the view of heavenshould have resolved [and I believe he would have had he seen this appeal]. Nevertheless, we hope he comes to the Truth; if not, we can return again and again until we are satisfied..
|January 11, 1995
Dear Mr. Buckley,
Continuing the thesis of our correspondence on the Day of the Lord, there are Jewish customs on Marriage and death which confirm the position we have set before you; and some of these we alluded to in our letter of December 31, 1994 .. Drawing upon the background of the Jewish Marriage cycle will help us to more fully explain the sanctification yet to come. As noted, this calls forth two principals: a Watchman and a Bride. We have said enough about the Watchmen and now it is important to address the event of the Bride. To appreciate who she is and the nature of her Messianic Wedding which we have been calling forth (see Philistia Triumph Thou because of me ) we need to now explain what the LORD meant when He said that the Gentile will know that He is sanctified in Israel when the Gentile see them restored to the Holy Land and His Tabernacle and Sanctuary midst them forevermore. The word, sanctify, is used in the context of a Wedding; and the approach of the Jewish Groom is seen as a Good Shepherd wandering across desolate places to redeem his Bride; and often this included a dowry of sheep.
If your Bishop thinks this argument irrelevant to the Second Coming, then we ask you to prove us wrong that Jesus never attended a Jewish Wedding nor spent forty days in the wilderness (when He was born again before the First Passover of His Ministry, after His Baptism by John the Baptist), of which John the Baptist said:
John 3.29 He that hath the bride is the bridegroom: but the friend of the bridegroom, which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth greatly because of the bridegroom's voice: this my joy therefore is fulfilled.
Attending a Jewish Marriage Ceremony, we assure you, will give you a greater appreciation for not only what we have presented to date but also the teachings of John the Baptist and Jesus with regard to watching for His Second Coming.
We referred you to Enoch 32.2 which calls forth the Second Coming and pertains to the verse in Daniel of One Like the Son of Man coming in the Clouds of Heaven:
Daniel 7.13,14..And there was given him dominion and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve Him: His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.
Now Jesus followed the prophets, such as Daniel, who referred to himself as the Son of Man. Jesus called Himself the Son of Man, which means the son and heir of Adam, which is a double entendre meaning not only the son of Adam and Eve, who were given the blessing that they and their children would one day be restored to Paradise, but also it involves all of the inheritance rights in that blessing (including the gift of carrying the Oracle of God); in addition the Son of Man means Son of the earth, meaning ultimately Son of Zion, since the Jews are joined to the Holy Land and the Holy Land is consecrated to YHVH through the consecration of the Temple Mount.
We all know the funeral oration, from dust returned to dust, etc., and in both Jewish Marriage and Funeral Ceremonies this is called into remembrance. For instance, the marriage is accompanied with the Bride's mourners and gnashing of teeth, and the groom sometimes throws ashes or dust on his head. The Wedding Ceremony, contrasts with the apparent despair shown among the mourners of the Betrothal Feast, for the coming of the Groom is a day of great joy and Torah reading.
A Gentile attending the Betrothal Ceremony might be confused, in fact, whether it were a funeral or marriage, except for certain customs a Jew recognizes. Both those being Betrothed or being buried in Jesus' time were often dressed in white linen, accompanied by hired mourners, and this continues to this day.
The greatest excellence of a Jew is his knowledge of the Torah. This is shown both through his Wedding and his burial, since he was tested at his Betrothal on his knowledge of the scriptures, and, then at the time of Jesus, he was buried with his keys and scroll or writing tablet so that he would be prepared to write the Ketubah (marriage contract), if called to do so. All Jews had to be buried the same day of their death in their family tomb; however, if they were famous and it took more time to notify surrounding towns of his death, the burial could take place the next day. No corpse was ever allowed to remain overnight in Jerusalem, and all burials had to be at least 50 ells from the city. Galileans were carried on a bier to their tombs preceded by women mourners, and after they were laid to rest, as with all Jews, the final words to the departed were Lech b'sholom, meaning, go in peace.
By tradition (too long to explain here) all Jews were married to their land of inheritance and were to be interred there in the family grave. During the time of Jesus, as a result of Greco-Roman influence, the bones of the deceased were recollected and buried a second time in an ossuary and placed again nearer to their home. Most family tombs were then near the family house and usually in their garden. Although custom changed from time to time, generally the rich were buried in fine attire and their face left uncovered, but the poor had a napkin put over their face, as was in the case of Jesus. Jesus was not of a poor family as shown in our other works.
On the return from the grave the Jewish funeral procession would stop at seven distinct rest sites, and the rites of mourning lasted seven days after the funeral. Likewise, both the Betrothal and Wedding Ceremonies each would last seven days.
We do not have room here to discuss the keys which accompany the dead, but it should be suffice to recall Jesus' complaint to the scribes:
Luke (meaning Luminous ) 11.44 Woe unto you, scribes and pharisees, hypocrites! For ye are as graves which appear not, and the men that walk over them are not aware of them.
11.52 Woe unto you, lawyers! For ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered.
In the first part of Jesus' address, with reference to walking over graves, we noted in Immoral Coercion, how the placement of graves in front of the Golden Gate was believed to inhibit the Jewish Messiah from approaching the gate. This comes from the Jewish burial practice, where burial [ossuary] fields were marked off and it was forbidden to walk through them, because one could never be sure whether one were walking over a grave. Also, it was believed that one should not be caught in a burial field at night because of the haunting effects of the dead (who await Elijah).
The second part of Jesus' address, referring to the Keys of Knowledge, is better appreciated (see our Synoptic Matrix, line 1298) when one sees that where Luke referred to the Keys of Knowledge Matthew referred to the Keys of the Kingdom, which, we find, are the same. The Jew, who awaits the resurrection of the dead, awaits Elijah with his Keys of Knowledge. Christ, we recall, passed on His Keys to Saint Peter.
When a man died Betrothed his ink-stand and writing pen were laid with him in the coffin, and he was also left without a napkin on his face. In the case when a man dies childless the keys and or a writing tablet were especially placed in his coffin.
A corpse to the Jews is contaminated (it could not be buried in the West; only in the East) and special acts of purification applied after the internment. During the first three days of mourning, for instance, the Torah was not read (since the Torah reading is an event of joy). These are things which would have applied in Jesus' funeral.
As in death so too is it with a Jew's marriage to the Messiah, when their King comes in the Last Days. That event, to the Jews, is known as their Redemption and an opening of the graves. Until that day comes they consider themselves ritually impure. This comes from many reasons but essentially relates to the idea that as long as they are separated from their land of inheritance they are impure. This again relates to the idea of the Son of Adam (adam meaning earth) which connects the Children of Israel to their land of inheritance; and, as Sons of Adam, they are ritually impure when separated from the land. Carrying the bones of the dead back to his home was practiced wherever possible and is seen in the story of Jacob and Joseph. Jacob was buried with his fathers in Hebron and Joseph was interred in his land of inheritance, in Ephraim. In life and death Jews are joined to their land of inheritance, and for Jews the most treasured place to be buried is Jerusalem on the Mount of Olives facing the Temple Mount. Moving their bones from Babylon, for instance, to the Mount of Olives is the same as redeeming them to God, for once they are redeemed to the land they are redeemed to God. This comes from the argument in the story of Adam and Eve, that Elohim will one day restore them to Paradise (but the date of the deliverance is hidden from Satan and his troops). So the precepts of the Son of Adam, or Son of Man, all connote redemption to the land. Again, as indicated in Immoral Coercion, p. 5, we have:
Ussishkin, Eretz Israel, 1932..When the Jewish people will have been redeemed to the Land of Israel, the Land of Israel will redeem the Jewish people.
After a manner of speaking, when the Jews were carried off to captivity in Babylon they were served a Bill of Divorcement (get ); but then it was torn up:
Jeremiah 3.8 And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also.
3.9 And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with stocks.
3.14 Turn, O backsliding children saith the LORD, for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:
3.15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
3.16 And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the LORD, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more.
3.17 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.
3.18 In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers.
So the Children of Israel are married to God, though they were cast off, and this is manifested in their redemption to the land, of Zion. It is upon this fact that modern Zionism is based. Again, this draws from the promise to Adam which is passed to Abraham and his heirs.
That He will give you pastors which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding also is revealing, since the Jews select their mates not according to wealth or comliness as the Gentile see it but according to wealth and comliness in the Torah. All Jewish knowledge, from the prophets to the wedding to funeral rites, link precept upon precept, line upon line, to the knowledge of the Torah-as is the case with our books.
We have reviewed in many places how, building from the blessings and curses of Deuteronomy 30, etc., the relationship to the Jews is as a man to his bride: who may cast her away for a moment's wrath, but will redeem her. Since the Betrothal to God is wrapped up in the precept that they are joined to the Promised Land, His act of casting away his bride is done by casting them off the land. One reason they were cast off the land was because they did not allow the land to enjoy its Sabbaths. Another reason, pertinent to our thesis here, comes from Isaiah:
Isaiah 50.1 Thus saith the LORD, Where is the bill of your mother's divorcement, whom I have put away? or which of my creditors is it to whom I have sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have ye sold yourselves, and for your transgressions is your mother put away.
50.2 Wherefore, when I came, was there no man? When I called, was there no man to answer? Is my hand shortened at all, that it cannot redeem? or have I no power to deliver?..
Here we have a paradox: how the teachings of the Torah are so interlinked in the hearts of Jews; yet they suffer the ignominy of being scattered off their land because when their LORD calls they fail to answer! Thus we hear the Messiah speaking:
Isaiah 50.1 The Lord GOD hath given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary: he wakeneth me morning by morning, he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
This is the "complaint" of the prophets of Israel: they are awakened early to receive God's revelations. In this sense they see themselves as Sons of Light--being the first to receive God's light--; and among the early Therapeutae, as recorded by Philo Judaeas of Alexandria, we saw how they rose early to greet the sun in prayer.This continues to be particularly a Christian rite to this day at the Easter morning Sunrise Service.
Whilst Christians await the second rising of the Messiah, Jews await the first rising and they, because they have been cast off the land, consider themselves impure until that day comes: when they see Elijah and the Messiah who redeem them back to their God and the land. This involves another paradox which we have yet to tell.
In addition to the Moslem Guards at the Temple Mount (who watch over the sanctity of the site and, as noted earlier, guard the Golden Gate), below the mount are Jewish guards who prevent Jews from going up to the mount for worship. Instead they worship at the Wailing Wall, which is the only surviving vestige of the Second Temple of Jerusalem completed by Herod and destroyed on the 9th of Av, 70 A.D., by the Roman general Titus ["Av" means "shelter" like those made of reed and wood in Babylon; ed. note] .
The reason why Jews do not go up to the mount has to do with their wait for the Messiah. A reminder of that wait is in the last and seventh benediction in a Wedding Ceremony. We hope to show you as best we can that the Jewish Wedding Ceremony, in fact, reflects the complete panorama of the Holy Scriptures, including both the weeping, from the curses, which is death, to the joy of their blessings, of life, and the Second Coming of their Messiah to redeem them to Paradise. With respect to being rejoined to their land, in fact, the Sons of Adam cannot separate the reception of the Messiah, their redemption, and the promise of long life from one another. They are all signs of their redemption.
As pertaining to the Gentile the scriptures connect the Redemption of the Jews to the Marriage of God to the nations. As noted earlier the Marriage to the Gentile connotes a time of Judgment, where you judge yourself. This we already argued extensively, but the following, for purposes of this proposal, should suffice:
Had we not a Biblical verse (II Samuel 7.23) we could not say it: Israel said to God, Thou hast redeemed Thyself! [Akiba, Sifré, Nu., #84]:
II Samuel 7.23 And what one nation in the earth is like thy people, even like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make him a name, and to do for you great things and terrible, for thy land, before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, from the nations and their gods?
7.24 For thou hast confirmed to thyself thy people Israel to be a people unto thee forever: and thou, LORD, art become their God.
Thus, it follows:
Gather our dispersion, free those in bondage, look upon them that are despised and let the nations know that Thou art God! [Apocrypha: II Macc., 1.27].
This appeal is clear: for when the Redeemer comes to Zion, God shall be sanctified in Israel. We have called forth this before:
Ezekiel 37.21 And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land:
37.22 And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all:
37.23 Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling places wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.
So redeeming the Jews to their land involves cleansing them, and in the cleansing they shall be My People, etc. How are they cleansed?
Ezek. 37.24 And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them.
37.25 And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children's children forever: and my servant David shall be their prince forever.
37.26 Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them: and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them forevermore.
37.27 My tabernacle also shall be with them: yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
37.28 And the heathen shall know that I the LORD do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them fore evermore.
When God said He would be sanctified in Israel-and you would know it when you see His Tabernacle (meaning Tent, Pavilion) among them- this calls into remembrance the basic Marriage Contract among all Jews. For in the Tabernacle was the Shekinah and:
..Moses was wedded to the Shekinah [Zohar, Gen. 21b-22a].
A great man should not disdain to serve as best man to one of minor position. The Holy One was best man at Adam's wedding [Talmud: Erubin, 18b; Talmud: Baba Bathra, 75a and Pirké R. Eliezer, ch. 12].
The Wedding of a Jew, as well as the Messianic Wedding, is one of great joy:
He shall open the gates of Paradise, and remove the threatening sword against Adam. He shall give to the saints to eat from the Tree of Life [re: the Torah is a Tree of life-see p.10 of Immoral Coercion; ed. note], the spirit of holiness shall be upon them, and all saints shall clothe themselves with joy [Apocrypha, Levi 18].
..Then the actual wedding will take place between God and Israel.. [Exodus Rabbah 15.31].
..Then, as Israel will marry its land again, so the Holy One, blessed be He, will marry His Shekinah again, which is the Assembly of Israel. It is this whereof it is written (Zechariah 14.9) 'In that day YHVH shall be One and His Name One.'
The world can be redeemed only by the redemption of Israel and Israel can be redeemed only by reunion with its land [Martin Buber, On Zion ].
Now the word for Betrothal (Keddushin) in Hebrew comes from the word, sanctification, which is Kedushah. So to be sanctified means to be Betrothed. As we see in Ezekiel above, the precept is that the nations shall know that God is sanctified (Betrothed) in Israel when the nations see His Tabernacle in Zion. Thus, the proof that God exists (to the Gentile) is confirmed in the restoration of the Tabernacle to Mount Zion. How that occurs follows the Jewish tradition of a Wedding.
The Bride's Betrothal and Wedding parties, for instance, are accompanied by hired musicians (Klezmorim) who play melancholy music; others, usually hired scullions along the street, in winter throw snowballs at the troop and in summer throw burrs which catch to the Bride's hair and dress, as she proceeds towards the Groom's father's house (for the Chupo Wedding). How humiliating! Sometimes the scullions taunted the Bride for being ugly, poor, and being beneath her groom: Look at that thing in the [litter] basket !; or they may harp on how uneducated she is, etc. This is the Betrothal part of the Marriage Ceremony, when the Bride's custody is transferred from her father to her husband.
In contrast to the Bride's procession, the Groom's party was accompanied with joyful music and the blessing:
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD..
Jesus used this expression when He said that He would not taste wine with his disciples again until He heard the words, blessed is He who comes, which refers to the time of His Second Coming:
Matthew 23.38 Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
23.39 For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
This comes from:
Psalm 118.19 Open to me the gates or righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the LORD:
118.25 Save now, I beseech thee, O LORD: O LORD, I beseech thee, send now prosperity.
118.26 Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD.
118.27 God is the LORD, which hath shewed us light..
Relating to this verse which begins with the righteous entering the gates of righteousness is:
Daniel 12.10 Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand: but the wise shall understand.
12.12 Blessed is he that waiteth..
When Jesus entered Jerusalem for his last Passover He was preceded by disciples crying Hosanna ! (meaning, save Lord )..Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD, to which the priests chastised Jesus, saying, Master, rebuke thy disciples ! [Luke 19.39; note the difference in the saying at line 1181 of our Synoptic Matrix, where in Luke the appellation, King, is emphasized].
Afterwards, one of the disciples (Judas) became disenchanted with Jesus, because the Wedding of the King which he thought had come Jesus did not intend to confirm. This is because the phrase, Blessed is he who comes, pertains to the time when the Groom, the King Messiah, arrives in His Second Coming to redeem His Bride and in Jesus' mind-even though His disciples were calling for it then-that day had not yet come.
The Wedding mentioned in our December 31, 1994 letter, of which Jesus spoke, recalls the Second Coming of every Jewish Groom; for every Groom comes first to his father-in-law's house for the Betrothal Ceremony and then comes again (the Second Coming to the Bride) to redeem his Bride and bring her to his father's house for the Wedding under the Bridal Canopy called the Chupo. While he is away, his servants prepare for his return for the Wedding and make ready the Chupo. Thus:
Luke 12.36 And ye yourselves [be] like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately
The Marriage event has two ascents as noted: first there is the Betrothal and then there is the Wedding. During Jesus's time the Betrothal involved a procession to the home of the Bride, which could be in another town or far off as in the case of Jacob's Betrothal to his uncle Laban's daughters [Gen. 31.2-7]. Usually there was about a week between the two events, sometimes a year; and each took a week (as in the case of funerals); but as seen in Jacob's case, and also in the case of Moses, the period between Betrothal and the Wedding could be many years.
The Betrothal Ceremony sets the Contract
In the Betrothal Ceremony the Groom's attendants must deliver a Marriage Contract (Ketubah ) to the Bride's family and an offering of purchase (for in the early Biblical days brides were purchased). All Jewish men are expected to be prepared to write the Ketubah, and, as seen earlier, they are expected even to be prepared to write it during the resurrection and, thus, are equipped with pen and ink in their tomb. Because of this, neither in life nor the after-life (or resurrection) are rabbis or priests needed to officiate at a Wedding. For any two or three Jewish men can and are expected to perform the rite. And with the contract they carry terms of purchase.
The price paid by the father of the Groom to the father of the Bride is called mohar and is still so-called by Arab peasants; in fact, claims Hayyim Schauss, much of the old Jewish marriage rites can be witnessed still being observed among Arab peasants [see Hayyim Schauss, The Lifetime of a Jew, union of American Hebrew Congregations, NY, 1950 for a thorough history of Jewish marriage and funeral practices]. Although we call the mohar in English a dowry, in early Biblical and Talmudic times the mohar may have involved an offering of services rather than money, or a combination of both, or other things of value, most of which were returned to the Bride and her Groom to carry them in their early marriage. Some mohar demands might, for instance, involve, as in the case of the most treasured bride of all-a daughter of a great scholar-funds which would keep the couple financially secure for ten years; where selection involved the most valued Groom of all-an excellent scholar in the Torah-the mohar might provide sustenance during the couple's entire lifetime so that the Groom could continue his profession in study of the Torah. Here, from the moment of the Wedding to the day a man is laid into the tomb, excellence is determined by knowledge of the scriptures (because, as seen above, God promised He would send His people men of knowledge and understanding to lead them).
The family of the Bride-father, brothers, uncles, etc.- also might be given portions of the offering to keep them happy. Because of the expense of the mohar one might think that Jewish Brides might be more treasured, but in actuality one was more fortunate to have a son than a daughter. A prayer of young Grooms might be:
I thank thee 0 Lord that I was not born a women..
From a progression of precepts, how the Jews were married to the Shekinah and the Shekinah delivered the Torah, which also is feminine, all Jewish males are considered married to the Torah; and breaking the bands of the Torah would be the same as adultery.
..The Shekinah attends even one who is engaged in Torah [Mishna: Abot, 3.6].
..The Holy One studies with him who studies alone [Seder Eliyahu Rabbah, ch 18].
Where two meet in Torah, the Shekinah is present [Mishna: Abot 3.2].
When a Jewish couple enter into the Wedding portion of their Marriage Ceremony they are brought under the Chupo before the Torah and, therefore, for the several reasons indicated, the Shekinah is considered to be between them when they are married. Also connected with this idea is that all marriages are made in heaven which relates to some precepts Jesus expounded.
Thus Betrothal or Sanctification began with the contract (Ketubah ) which is signed by two or three witnesses and cites all the conditions under which the Groom and Bride are obliged to each other. This also would include conditions and payments the Groom would pay to the Bride in the event of his death or their divorce. Over time the mohar money was reserved to the Bride as a guarantee by the Groom against his death or divorce.
During Jesus' time, because of the Roman dominion and general disturbance and uncertainties in the land, Grooms tended to marry late, into their late twenties and thirties; but in early Biblical times marriage could take place (and often was preferred) at the time of a youth's bar mitzvah, which for a girl could be at the age of fifteen and a boy at the age of seventeen or eighteen.
The Betrothal Ceremony in Biblical times need not be accompanied by a rabbi, as is now the practice. Because of the contract, the Betrothal was seen as we view a Wedding; and it could only be broken through a formal bill of divorcement called a get .
Because the Betrothal Ceremony could last a week or longer, everyone in the town was invited to the feast during the period of the Betrothal. It was customary during the last days of the Betrothal feast to invite the poor of the village to the table and seat them beside the Bride and Groom at the head of the table. In processions to the feast coins were thrown to the poor.
Jesus' parable of the nobleman going into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return (Luke 19.12) recalls this Betrothal scene which is expanded by Matthew:
Matthew 25.14 For the Kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them..
Then Jesus continued the expression of the Betrothal scene as pertaining to returning for Judgment (Matthew 25.30-43) which concludes:
Matthew 25.44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
25.45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
25.46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment; but the righteous into life eternal.
This, of course, is the fulcrum of our argument presented to you and other Christians, Sir.
The Bride and Groom, in the early days, were crowned and addressed as the King and Queen of the feast. The Queen was often given a seat which was fashioned from a threshing board or a large grain storage jar which had a pillow put in it. Tradition provided that the women in the Bride's household would spend their time making sweet cakes, but since they could never make enough to serve the entire community over the days of the feast, women attending the Betrothal feast would bring cakes themselves. Everyone in the town(s) was invited to the Betrothal and Wedding feasts and expected at one time or another to attend.
Now Jesus (being a Jew) built upon this thesis, helping one to better appreciate what the coming of the Kingdom of Heaven is like, which we should recite in full (because of lazy Christian readers and other Heathen):
Luke 14.16 Then he said unto him, a certain man made a great supper, and bade many:
14.17 And sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come; for all things are now ready.
14.18 And they all with one consent began to make excuse. The first said unto him, I have bought a piece of ground, and I must needs go and see it: I pray thee have me excused.
14.19 And another said, I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to prove them: I pray thee have me excused.
14.20 And another said, I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.
14.21 So that servant came, and shewed his lord these things. Then the master of the house being angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and the blind.
14.22 And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room.
14.23 And the Lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in that my house may be filled.
14.24 For I say unto you, That none of those men which were bidden shall taste of my supper.
During the Jewish Betrothal Ceremony each day Seven Benedictions were recited, accompanied with wine and foodstuffs, and at the close of the Seventh Benediction-which is addressed to the coming Messiah-the wine glass from which the Bride and Groom drank was dashed to the floor (repeated again at the close of the Wedding); and if it did not break an attendant would grind it into the floor with his foot. This is the mourning part of the feast, and it refers to the desolation of the First and Second Temples, and in later times the day when the Jews were thrown out of England and in Spain in 1492, which is remembered on the 9 th of Av (The fast day of Av 1 commemorates the destruction of the First and Second Temples as well as the expulsion of the Jews from Spain). Thus the melancholy music of the Bride's company then and still to this day, and the final breaking of the wine glasses (sometimes in the Betrothal Ceremony the women of the village brought all kinds of pottery to break from their homes), commemorate the mourning at the core of Jewish life; they'll mourn until they see the King Messiah, coming.
When Nehemiah rebuilt the temple in the 4th century B.C., the people consecrated the site to God.
Nehemiah 8.8 So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.
8.9 And Nehemiah, which is the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, This day is holy unto the LORD your God: mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the law.
Later he said:
Nehemiah 9.36 Behold, we are servants this day, and for the land that thou gavest unto our fathers to eat the fruit thereof and the good thereof, behold, we are servants in it:
9.37 And it yieldeth much increase unto the kings whom thou hast set over us because of our sins: also they have dominion over our bodies, and over our cattle, at their pleasure, and we are in great distress.
9.38 And because of all this we make a sure covenant, and write it; and our princes, Levites, and priests, seal unto it.
10.1 Now those that sealed were..
The Sages in the Talmud debated whether this consecration of the site was for all time, or might have lapsed when the temple was destroyed; but finally they came to the conclusion that the consecration of the land was for all time. Because of this they have ruled that no Jew, who is ritually impure, may set foot on the Temple Mount. In these days the rabbis have concluded that everyone is presumed to be ritually impure, pending the Messiah and the rebuilding of the temple (as illustrated in the time of Nehemiah); and, thus, they place guards at the gate to the Temple Mount to dissuade Jews from going up there (although the Israeli government, as a secular body, does not forbid any Israeli from going up to the mount). Until the Messiah comes, they mourn at the Wailing Wall. In their prayers all of their bodies sway, and this comes from the verse in the Torah to the effect that God never rests, and in imitation of His continually moving body they move their entire body in prayer.
Humiliation of the Bride and her party, of course, relates to the curses imposed with the blessings (see Deuteronomy 30) which warn Israel that if they abrogate their covenant with Him He will scatter them to all the nations of the world (which Nehemiah recalled in chapter 1 of his book); and they will be held in scorn and derision wheresoever their steps may lead them; but then they would be redeemed. All of this is history and the Marriage Ceremony carries a double value here, since it reminds Jews of the mourning in their past, because they turned away from the LORD and they were thus scattered; they mourn also because the Messiah has not yet come in their eyes; they weep also because of the words of the Torah, as seen above. Also, since the Torah demands humility, (that Israel was scattered because of its haughtiness) a Bride's comeliness was not in her beauty but her good breeding through the Torah. Thus, the humiliation of the Bride, to remind her that she is a servant of the Torah, and the practice of keeping her and her entourage in tears has several meanings.
Just as the Jewish Marriage ceremony involves two steps, and the funeral also two steps (First and Second Burial) so too is it with their concept of Redemption. First comes the scattering:
Malachi 4.2 But unto you that fear my name shall the Son of Righteousness arise with healing in his wings: and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves of the stall.
then the redemption of Israel and Judgment of the Gentile:
Isaiah 36.3 Strengthen ye the weak hand, and confirm the feeble knee.
Isaiah 36.4 ..behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; he will come and save you.
Isaiah 49.6..to restore the Preserved of Israel..
Isaiah 36.5 Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
36.10 And the ransomed of the LORD shall return, and come to Zion with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.
Isaiah 35.8 ..it is the day of the LORD's vengeance, and the year of recompense for the controversy of Zion.
35.9 And the streams thereof [in Bozrah/Idumea] shall be turned into pitch, and the dust thereof into brimstone, and the land thereof shall become burning pitch.
Those who are not redeemed at the Last Judgment are condemned to what is called the Second Death (Rev. 20.12-15). It follows that the nations cannot be redeemed to God until Israel is redeemed to its land, etc. All of this diffuses into the idea that the nations will be joined to YHVH through the Holy Scriptures first, the Children of Israel who carried them, and finally through the anointing of the Messiah. And the Messiah is the Light of the Anointing; to wit:
Light is the symbol of the divine [Union Prayer Book, 10.7, 1940 ].
Psalm 36.9 For in thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light.
Psalm 37.6 And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.
Psalm 43.1 Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.
43.3 O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy Tabernacles.
104.2 Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain:
104.3 Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters..
18.7 He made darkness His Secret Place; His pavilion round about Him were dark waters and thick clouds of the skies.
104.4 Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:
Isaiah 8.20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
Psalm 19.4..In them he hath set a Tabernacle for the sun, which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber..
4 Ezra..He will destroy them without labor by the Law, which is like fire..
Psalm 78.63 The fire consumed their young men; and their maidens were not given to marriage.
Revelation 10.1..His face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire..
Isaiah 29.27 Behold, the name of the LORD cometh from far, burning with his anger, and the burden thereof is heavy: His lips are full of indignation and His Tongue as a devouring fire.
Proverbs 4.18 But the path of the just is as the shining light that shineth more and more unto the perfect day..
Psalm 119. 105 NUN Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.
Bavli CCXVIII.N He knew how to tell the exact time at which the Holy One, blessed be He, was angry.
Which leads to:
Isaiah 61.1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath annointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
61.2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn.
As noted in our December 31, 1994 letter, Jesus opened His Ministry with this: that this day this prophesy is fulfilled. In dealing with the particulars of the matter, He confirmed that He was the sign that Israel would be scattered and the Temple destroyed. In Matthew 16.2 He used the word Sign. The prophets identified the completion of an event of prophesy as a sign, as in the Sign of the Virgin (Isaiah 7.14-23) or the Sign of Zerubbabel:
Zech. 2.23 In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, my servant, the son of Shealtiel, saith the Lord, and will make thee as a signet: for I have chosen thee, saith the Lord of Hosts.
4.7 Who art thou, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, Grace, unto it.
4.8 Moreover the Word of the Lord came unto me saying,,
4.9 The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house: his hands shall also finish it; and thou shalt know that the Lord of Hosts hath sent me unto you.
Since it was Zerubbabel, with Nehemiah, who were Signs of the restoration, the prophets have used Zerubbabel, who is a Son of David and Jesus' ancestor, as a Sign of the Latter Day restoration, which, as shown above, includes restoration of the Tabernacle and the Temple. The Second Coming for whom you watch is another Sign; and just as Jesus knew the Sign of His times so too does the Second Coming know the Sign of His times, which is Zerubbabel. Zerubbabel, incidentaly, means, born in Babylon; and this precept connects with the principles reflected by the rabbis on Edom on page two of my December 31, 1994 letter. Without the Sign of Zerubbabel the prophesy is incomplete, and you would have no proof that God had sent Zechariah as His prophet, leaving you to speculate on the accuracy of Zechariah's other statements, such as the Messiah coming out of Bethlehem, riding upon an ass and a foal of an ass [Zech. 9.9], etc., which the Gospels have used to refer to Jesus' proof. Sir, I think if you give a bit of thought to the matter, you will conclude that Zerubbabel confirms Jesus. This is verified by:
Zohar..And He will shine like the Zohar of the sky. Which sky? As it is said: The sky of Moses..
The opening of the Tent is the opening of Righteousness,
As the Psalmist says:
Open for me the gates of righteousness..[Psalm 118.19]
This is the first opening to enter.
Through this opening, all other high openings come into view.
One who attains the clarity of this opening
Discovers all the other openings,
For all of them abide here.
Now that Israel is in exile, this opening is unknown;
All the openings have abandoned Her.
It is impossible to know, impossible to grasp.
But when Israel comes forth from exile,
All the soaring spheres will touch down upon this opening,
One by one.
Then human beings will perceive wondrous, precious wisdom
Never known by them before,
As it is written:
'The spirit of YHVH shall alight upon him:
A spirit of wisdom and insight,
A spirit of design and power,
A spirit of knowledge and awe of YHVH [Isaiah 11.2]
All these are destined to alight upon the opening below,
The opening of the Tent.
All these are destined to alight upon King Messiah
So that he may judge the world,
As it is written:
He shall judge the poor with righteousness [Isaiah 11.4].
Habbakuk 3.4 And His brightness was as the light; He had horns coming out of his hand: and there was the hiding of his power.
And this brings us to:
Isaiah 49.6 And he said, it is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel; I will also give thee for a Light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.`
Matthew 5.14 Ye are the light of the world..
5.16 Let your light so shine forth before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
Which brings us to the place where Jesus picked up His Mission as the Light of the Gentile:
Isaiah 9.1 Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations.
9.2 The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.
9.3 Thou hast multiplied the nation, and not increased the joy: they joy before thee according to the joy in harvest, and as men rejoice when they divide the spoil.
9.4 For every battle of the warrior is with confused noise, and garments rolled in blood; but this shall be with burning and fuel of fire..
As noted before, in the early part of Jesus' ministry, Jesus had spent some time going through Samaria preaching the gospel that the Kingdom of God was at hand; and, in reply to the Syro-Phonecian woman [Matthew 15.21; Mark 7.24], Jesus indicated that he had not come to minister to the Gentile but to seek the lost sheep of Israel. This goes with the paradox we mentioned concerning his mission as the Light of the Gentile who does not go into the streets [Mattthew 12.16]. In the beginning He saw this mission as the Light of the Gentile who comes out of Galilee of the nations-which is where He was from-who seeks out the Lost Sheep of Israel, as seen in Isaiah 9 above; to which Nathanael replied, first hearing of Jesus the Messiah, to his brother Philip:
John 1.46..Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?
After Jesus' Second Passover, when John the Baptist was beheaded, Jesus' Light of the Gentile mission was questioned [ Matthew 12.6]; and after being queried about the matter, that the Light of the Gentile does not go into the streets (as He had been doing), Jesus answered that the disciples should not tell anyone that He had been in the streets; and the rule, with regard to his miracles, etc. was "tell no one".
Nevertheless, Jesus had come from Galilee, the entrance of which is through a valley known through history by the Jews as the Valley of Death, and Galilee of the nations is, of course, another place referring to a place of the Gentile. Obviously, seeing himself coming out of the circle of the Gentile, He would identify Himself as the Light of the Gentile; also, at that moment in Judah's history it could be debated whether or not it was the Last Day, as pointed out in our other works-with regard to the testimony of the Gospels, Dead Sea Scrolls and the Oral Torah.
After John the Baptist's death, Jesus changed His pitch from that of seeking out the Lost Sheep of Israel (which had yet to be scattered in accordance with Isaiah 9.5, 7.14-23, Mal. 4.2, and other correlating scriptures) to that of the redeemer and savior: that He would suffer and be put to death much after the manner of John the Baptist, that His blood would be an offering for the sins of My People per Isaiah 53; to wit:
Matthew 17.12 But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.
There was much confusion among the disciples as to who John the Baptist and Jesus were. Jesus Himself had not at this point sorted out the two's missions; for He had called John the Baptist Elijah when, in fact, Elijah does not appear until the Last Days and is a Sign of the dreadful Day of the Lord, mentioned by Malachi:
Mal. 3.18 Then shall ye return and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.
4.1 For behold the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up..
4.5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:
4.6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
Knowing this John the Baptist answered those who queried him whether he were the Messiah or Elijah (Elijah being considered a name of the Messiahs) saying:
John 1.20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ.
1.21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.
1.22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? That we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?
1.23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias [see Isaiah 40.3; ed. note].
What a brilliant man John the Baptist was! Picking up on this, later in His Ministry Jesus refined His mission into that thing which divides the father from the son, mother from daughter, etc.:
Luke 14.26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.
How He related this to Malachi 4.6 we cannot say. However, Malachi 4.6 presumes a time when the nations are angry (Psalm 2; Rev. 11.18), where it is every man for himself, and the ultimate remedy is in the phrase: "lest I come and smite the earth with a curse". The covenant with Noah was that God would never again take his wrath out on the earth but only on man and his high towers, to wit:
Genesis 9.11 Neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.
9. 13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.
Zeph. 1.14 The great Day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hateth greatly, even the voice of the Day of the Lord: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly.
1.15 That day is a Day of Wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness.
1.16 A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers.
The threat in Malachi 4.6, then, provides a remedy, Elijah, who, according to Jesus:
Matthew 17.11 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.
17.12 But I say unto you, that Elias is come already, and they knew him not..
We conclude that Jesus by then had contemplated a Second Coming for Elijah too; and this is not altogether inconsistent with the views of the Oral Torah, that you cannot separate the name Elijah from among the names of the Messiahs (see Hidden Pavilions p. 612 on this; Zechariah 4.14, on its Two Messiahs). Other scriptures which define the conditions of the sacrifice of the Messiah, how he is denied, include Psalms 22 and 69, and the books of Adam and Eve and Enoch, previously mentioned, which provide for the resurrection of the Messiah after three days, etc. as cited by Jesus and his disciples. The denial and sacrifice of the Messiahs follows the treatment of the Two Witnesses mentioned in the story of Lot (Genesis 19.15) which is replayed in Revelation 11.3, where they are given:
Rev. 11.6 ..power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they will.
They are killed and their bodies are left in the streets three days and a half and then resurrected.
In Luke 6.6 we hear Jesus saying that He is Lord of the Sabbath, which, according to the Gospel perception, would have been taken as blasphemous, that Jesus (as in other instances) had made Himself equal to God! But this could be taken as a blasphemy (pretending to be equal to God) or wryly, since we know that in Jewish tradition the Sabbath is viewed as a Bride. We rise to greet her as we would a Bride. Keeping in mind the idea that a Sabbath is a good day for the Wedding, because, after a manner of speaking the Groom under the Chupo greets all of His Brides: the Torah, the Shekinah, if it is the Sabbath, the Sabbath, and his Bride! The Groom on that Wedding Day is the King and therefore, to be technical, He is the Lord of the Sabbath on His Wedding.
Jesus thus argued that the Sabbath is made for man (as Eve was made for Adam) and not man for the Sabbath. Clever, wasn't He?
If you love me, you will love the Sabbath, so the saying goes, to wit:
To observe the Sabbath is to bear witness to the Creator [Mekilta, to Exodus 20.13]
The Sabbath is the choicest fruit and flower of the week, the Queen whose coming changes the humblest home into a palace [Judah Halevi, Cuzari, 3.5, 1135 A.D.]
If Israel kept properly one Sabbath, the Son of David would come, for Sabbath is equivalent to all commandments. [Levi, Exodus Rabbah, 25.12].
In the prophets, the Redeemer is He who restores Israel and its Tabernacle and Temple. Here, in the Redeemer, a peculiar set of scriptures comes into view; for these do not pertain to the Passover Sacrifice (which is when Jesus' blood was shed, as a paschal lamb as it were) but rather to the Feast of Atonement, when two scapegoats are taken: one is sacrificed and the other released in the wilderness with a red ribbon tied to its horns. There was a time when the scapegoat was driven over a cliff in the wilderness or thrown off the Temple Mount. The scapegoat driven into the wilderness was chased with verbal abuse and scorned; as it was believed that it carried the latter year's sins of the people. Relating to this is:
Isaiah 52.14 As many were astonied at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men...
53.3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
53.4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
53.5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
53.6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
53.7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
53.8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? For he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
53.10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him: He hath put Him to grief..
So the Messiah bore the sins of many at Passover rather than the Day of Atonement which is when the Scapegoats are sacrificed and is a day of joy.
The rabbis have always considered the best days for a Wedding to be either in the spring, when the fields are in flower, fresh from the early rains, or in autumn, when the harvest (and New Year) is come. The Sages of the Oral Torah, thinking on this, concluded that the time when the Messiah should come should be on the 9th of Av; and this feast is called Tishbah be-Av. The reason for this conclusion is obvious, for it is in autumn (usually August) and just before Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, which is the 10th day of the New Year feast of Judgment called Rosh Ha-Shanah. On Yom Kippur --which is also called the Sabbath of Sabbaths --one spends the entire day in prayer, forgives his enemies and those who offended him, and releases others of their debts, as noted in our earlier works, including Philistia Triumph Thou because of me. For the Torah says:
Lev. 23.27 On the tenth day of the seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you: and you shall afflict yours souls.
Dr. Schmuel Himelstein, (The Jewish Primer , p. 85) in the name of a hasidic rabbi, says:
I don't understand why the law forbids us to eat on Yom Kippur and on Tishbah be-Av. On Yom Kippur, when we spend the whole day in the synagogue praying to God for forgiveness, who wants to eat? And on Tishbah be-Av, when we remember how the glorious Temple was destroyed, who can possibly eat?
The atonement of the Jews is considered an atonement for not only their sins but more so the sins of the world. For, as noted above, the Salvation of the Jews is linked as a Blessing to mankind. For:
..the sake of Torah and Israel, let the world be saved! [Judah b. Simon, Levit. Rab., 23.3]
And in another place we have:
Many have been created, but few shall be saved [Apocrypha: 2 Esdras, 8.3]
Please send me over to check out the Acceptable Day of the Lord Part II
Please send me over to check out Light.html
Please send me over to check out Repentance.html
Please send me over to check out Judgment.html
Please send me over to check out Duty and Profit.html
Please send me over to check out On the Breakage of the Holy Catholic Church.html
Please send me over to check out Immoral Coercion.html.
Please send me over to check out Quest for Human Dignity.html.
Please send me over to check out Liberating the Poor.html.
Please send me over to check out Light of the Gentile's Day.html:
a collection of scriptures which identify what the Messiah, Light of the Gentile, looks like and must do,
and what his day is like, when Israel is restored to the map again.
Please send me over to check out a related page, The Miracle of Zer Anpin.html.
Please send me over to check out a related page: Four Parables and a Prayer.html
Please send me over to check out a related page: Opening to the Divine.html, teachings of Jesus on the
Keys of Knowledge:
how the Keys of Knowledge and the Keys to the Kingdom are one and the same.
Please send me over to check out Philistia Triumph Thou because of me.html, a related page.
Please send me over to check out related precepts
from the Upanishads, Lao Tzu, Confucius, and Buddha: The Tapestry of One.html.
Please send me over to check out The String of Pearls.
Updated 8.11.96; 11.21.96; 12.15.96; 4.12.98; 4.25.98; 6.8.99; 6.13.99' 6.20.99; 5.27.2000; 4.14.02; 9.29.04; 11.08.04; 11.11.05; 5.04.08
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Copyright © 1995-2008 Mel Copeland. All rights reserved.