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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Why Does the New World Translation Bible Use the Words, "Time Indefinite" Where Other Bibles Read, "Forever"?

Why Does the New World Translation Bible Use the Words, "Time Indefinite" Where Other Bibles Read, "Forever"?

Other Bible translations are inaccurate when they translate the Hebrew word 'Oh lam (or "Owlam"; "Olam") as "forever."

Many lexicons and dictionaries will show that the explicit meaning of 'Oh lam is of an unknown length of time and not forever. It can be used of something that is to last forever but in itself the word can only imply eternity.

Jehovah's Witnesses accept the meaning of the word as given in standard Hebrew Lexicons. Here is what their reference work "Insight on the Scriptures" states:

"The Hebrew word 'oh lam carries the thought of indefinite or uncertain time. Lexicographer Gesenius defines it as meaning "hidden time, i.e. obscure and long, of which the beginning or end is uncertain or indefinite." (A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the OT, translated by E. Robinson, 1836, p. 746) Accordingly, expressions such as "time indefinite" (Ps. 25:6), "indefinitely lasting" (Hab. 3:6), "of old" (Gen. 6:4), "a long time ago," "of long ago" (Jos. 24:2; Pr. 22:28; 23:10), and "long-lasting" (Ec. 12:5) appropriately convey the thought of the original-language term. The word 'oh lam is at times associated with that which is everlasting...However, the Hebrew expression 'oh lam does not in itself mean "forever." It often refers to things that have an end, but the period of such things' existence can be said to be ‘to time indefinite' because the time of their end is not then specified." - it-2 pp. 1102-1103

The context and other parallel texts must be referred to in order to determine whether the sense of 'Oh lam is to be understood as eternity or just an indefinitely long period of time in any specific occurrence.

For more, see:

Time Indefinite - Links to Information (INDEX; Watchtower Online Library)

TIME INDEFINITE (Insight-2 pp. 1102-1103; Watchtower Online Library)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Matthew 28:18 - What Did Jesus Mean When He Said, "ALL Authority Has Been Given Me"?

(Some have misconstrued this Scripture by using) the term "all" as if it was all inclusive and meant that there was absolutely no authority greater than what Jesus now has. It should be obvious that this view is not correct since repeatedly the Bible shows that Jesus is less than Almighty God even after he received "all authority" (Matt. 20:23; Jn. 20:17; Mk. 13:32; 1 Cor. 15:27,28; Rev. 3:2,12).

The Greek word "all" is many times used in a limited or general way. There are many examples but a one good one to demonstrate this is 1 Cor. 15:24 which says that Christ will "abolish all rule, authority and power." Will he destroy the Kingdom of God or God's authority and power? No, that is why various translations have added "other" (Phillips; Wey.; AT; Twentieth Century; Williams; Becks; Kleist and Lilly).

Another is Heb 2:8-9 where it first states that "All things you subjected under Christ's feet" but then says that "we do not yet see all things in subjection to him."

Obviously the word "all" can be used in a limited way. This is very clear when Paul stated that even although "ALL things were subjected under Christ" this statement "excluded God who subjected all things under Christ" (1 Cor.15:27).

Jn. 5:26 says the Father had to "give" or "grant" Jesus the power to give life (NKJV, NRSV, NIV). The Son does not naturally possess the ability to save or give life within himself. Christ did not have the power or authority to even "save" himself (Jn. 12:26-27, Heb. 5:7-10).

GOD gave us life and granted his son to be the "agent" or "prince" by whom we gain salvation. The ability to be "savior" was a position that Jesus had to be EXALTED to by God "AS A PRINCE," not as the Almighty (Acts 5:31; Jn. 17:2 (prince: Heb 2:10). If Jesus were all-powerful, why would he have to be "exalted" to the position of savior?

In Acts 5.31, we see that Jesus became God's "Prince" (ARCHEGON) at God's right hand–not God Himself!

So yes, by Christ's own testimony and the explicit teaching of Scripture, Christ's power is limited. Jehovah God has given him "all authority" that will be necessary to carry out God's judgment upon wickedness, in heaven and on earth. But Christ's authority and power is ALWAYS less than that of Almighty God. Every thing he does is done only because his God and Father allows him to do them. No one has to (or can) give The Almighty God such power or authority.

Explicit Scriptures show that Jesus was less than Almighty God at every point of his existence (Jn. 14:28; 20:17; Mark 13:32; 1 Cor. 15:27,28; Rev. 3:2,12). At the highest position he will ever attain, Jesus is still "subject" to GOD the same way we are "subject" to him. Jesus cannot be Almighty God.

Christ always taught that he was given authority (power, KJV) by his God Jehovah (Mt. 28:18; 11:27; Jn. 5:22; 17:2; 3:35; 2 Pt. 1:17). Jesus said: "the Son can do nothing of his own accord" and, "For I have not spoken on my own authority; the Father who sent me has Himself given me commandment what to say and what to speak" (Jn. 5:19; 12:49).

There are dozens of Scriptures which explicitly show that Jesus had to receive power and authority from God–even after he returned to heaven: (Dan. 7:13,14; Matt. 22:42-44; 28:18; Acts 2:34-36; 1 Cor. 15:27,28; Eph. 1:17, 19-22; Heb. 1:13; 2:5,8; Rev. 2:26-27; 5:12). God also had to subject all things under Jesus even after he was elevated to heaven. This alone shows that Jesus cannot be Almighty God since the Almighty would never have to be given anything.

So Jesus receives commands and obeys God (Jn. 12:49; 14:31; 15:10; 12:49; 10:18). Christ recognized that he only did his work because he was given authority by his God Jehovah (Mt. 28:18; 11:27; Jn. 5:22; 17:2; 3:35; 2 Pt. 1:17).

Jesus' power and authority are not his own but he came "in the Father's name" (Jn. 5:43) just as an angel was given similar power and authority (Ex. 23:20, 21).

"Jesus is not God but God's representative, and, as such, so completely and totally acts on God's behalf that he stands in God's stead before the world.... The gospel clearly states that God and Jesus are not to be understood as identical persons, as in 14:28, ‘the Father is greater than I'" - Jacob Jervell, Jesus in the Gospel of John, 1984, p. 21

(Source: This is the Best Answer given by Bar_Anerges to a question posed on Yahoo Answers.)

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Counsel on What One Should do When Threatened With Rape (Deuteronomy 22:23- 27)

The Bible offers counsel on what one should do when threatened with rape. What the Law says on the matter is found at Deuteronomy 22:23-27. This covers two situations. In the first case, a man found a young woman in a city and lay down with her. Even so, the woman did not scream or cry for help. Consequently, it was determined that she was guilty “for the reason that she did not scream in the city.” If she had cried out, people nearby might have been able to come to her rescue. In the second instance, a man found a young woman in the countryside, where he “grabbed hold of her and lay down with her.” In defense, the woman “screamed, but there was no one to rescue her.” Unlike the woman in the first instance, this woman clearly did not give in to the actions of the attacker. She actively resisted him, crying for help, but she was overpowered. Her screaming proved that she was an unwilling victim; she was not guilty of wrongdoing.

Although Christians today are no longer under the Mosaic Law, the principles that are mentioned provide them with guidance. The above account underscores the importance of resisting and screaming for help. Screaming when threatened with rape is still viewed as a practical course. As one expert on crime prevention stated: “If a woman is attacked, her best weapon is still her lungs.”

Even in the sad case where a woman is overpowered and raped, her struggle and screaming for help is not in vain. On the contrary, it establishes that she did all she possibly could to resist her attacker. (Deuteronomy 22:26) Despite going through this ordeal, she can still have an undefiled conscience, self-respect, and the assurance that she is clean in God’s eyes. The horrifying experience might leave her with emotional wounds, but knowing that she did all she could to resist the attack will greatly contribute to her gradual healing.

In understanding the application of Deuteronomy 22:23-27, we must realize that this brief account does not cover all possible situations. For example, it does not comment on the situation where the attacked woman cannot scream because she is mute, unconscious, or paralyzed with fear or is forcibly prevented from screaming by a hand or tape over her mouth. However, since Jehovah God is able to weigh all factors, including motives, He deals with understanding and justice in such cases, for “all his ways are justice.” (Deuteronomy 32:4) He is aware of what actually took place and of the efforts the victim put forth to fight off her attacker. Therefore, a victim who was unable to scream but otherwise did all she could under the circumstances can leave matters in Jehovah God's hands.—Psalm 55:22; 1 Peter 5:7. - 2/1/03 Watchtower

Friday, May 25, 2012

Since "No Man Has Seen God at Any Time", Then How Was it That Moses Knew God "Face to Face"? (Deut. 34:10)

John 1:18 says that "No man has seen God at any time." So how was it that Moses knew God "face to face"? (Deut. 34:10)

Moses, though he never literally saw the very person of God, he had a more direct, constant, intimate relationship with God than did any prophet prior to Jesus Christ.

Because God said: “Mouth to mouth I speak to him,” this reveals that Moses had a personal audience with God (by means of angels, who have access to the very presence of God; Mt 18:10). As Israel’s mediator, he enjoyed a virtually continuous two-way conversational communication arrangement. He was able at any time to present problems of national importance and to receive God’s answer. The later prophets simply continued to build on the foundation that had been laid through Moses.

The manner in which God dealt with Moses was so impressive that it was as if Moses actually had beheld God with his own eyes, instead of merely having a mental vision or a dream in which he heard God speak, which was the usual way in which God communicated with his prophets. God’s dealings with Moses were so real that Moses reacted as if he had seen “the One who is invisible.” (Heb 11:27)

For much more, see:

Face (Insight-1 pp. 801-802; Watchtower Online Library)

A Prophet Jehovah Knew “Face to Face.” (Insight-2 pp. 434-441; Watchtower Online Library)

No Man Has Seen the Father (Search For Bible Truths)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Deluge—A View from Ancient Mesopotamia

The Deluge—A View from Ancient Mesopotamia

The ancient Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh contained an account about a vast flood that destroyed all mankind. Many claim that this flood legend is based upon history that is much older than the Biblical account of a global flood as found at Genesis chapters 6 through 8.

Babylonian Deluge Stories

During the early part of the 19th century, the Bible’s record of a worldwide deluge survived by Noah and his family was subjected to much criticism and dismissed by many as mere legend. But due to an archaeological discovery in the spring of 1850, widespread interest in the Noachian flood was once again aroused. Diggings at Nineveh led to the discovery of a room filled with clay tablets. Archaeologists had found the clay-tablet library of Assyrian ruler Ashurbanipal.

Later, as George Smith of the British Museum proceeded to decipher cuneiform texts from this collection, he encountered a series of tablets known as the Gilgamesh Epic. As he worked with one of those tablets, Smith’s heart leaped for joy. Letter by letter he made out:

“Man of Shurippak, son of Ubara-Tutu! Tear down (thy) house, build a ship! Abandon (thy) possessions, seek (to save) life! . . . [Cause to] go up into the ship the seed of all living creatures. The ship which thou shalt build, Its measurements shall be (accurately) measured . . . ”

Smith realized that he was dealing with a report of the Flood from an Assyro-Babylonian point of view.

Though that version was dated to the seventh century B.C.E., scholars realized that the source material used in its composition was much older. Today some of the more ancient accounts have been discovered. The oldest known non-Biblical Flood account is found in a Sumerian narration. Fragments of that narration on a broken clay tablet were found at Nippur in southern Mesopotamia. Some experts believe that it was written between the 21st and 18th centuries B.C.E. A passage from this Sumerian document reads: “[Give] ear to my instruction: By our . . . a flood [will sweep] over the cult-centers; To destroy the seed of mankind . . . Is the decision, the word of the assembly [of the gods].”

The Gilgamesh Epic

But let us return to the Gilgamesh Epic. Gilgamesh is thought to have been an early ruler of the town of Uruk (called Erech at Genesis 10:10). A Sumerian king list assigns him to the first dynasty of Uruk. One dictionary says of this individual: “A cycle of Sumerian mythical-epic poetry was built around Gilgamesh, handed down only fragmentarily since about 1900 B.C.E.”

The Gilgamesh Epic itself contains a number of poems combined into one work. It spans 12 clay tablets of which the 11th presents the Flood story. In summary, its contents are as follows: Gilgamesh learns that his friend Enkidu has died. Consequently, fear of death drives Gilgamesh to seek out Utnapishtim, said to be the only mortal who has attained to eternal life. Gilgamesh crosses the river of death by means of a ferryman and meets Utnapishtim, who tells him of the Flood and how he managed to survive it. In an older Babylonian Deluge story Utnapishtim bears the name Atrahasis, meaning “the exceedingly wise one.”

That information on clay tablets is truly significant. Though highly charged with fanciful details, it demonstrates that a flood of massive proportions had become stamped on the memory of mankind.

A Difference of Opinion

After experts had carefully examined the Gilgamesh Epic, opinions became divided over which Flood account was older, the Mesopotamian one mentioned in the Epic, or the one found in the Bible. Many adopted the viewpoint that the non-Biblical account was first. For example, in Gods, Graves, and Scholars, C. W. Ceram asserts that it is “impossible to question the fact that the primal version of the Biblical legend of the Deluge had been found.”

But is it correct? Does the Flood narrative of Genesis really have its origin in Sumerian or Babylonian legends? It seemed best to seek an answer to that question by making a comparison of the Bible’s Flood account with that found in the Epic of Gilgamesh.

Some Similarities

The global flood occupies a prominent place in the histories of ancient nations. More than 100 separate Deluge stories from every part of the earth have been found, including the one in the Gilgamesh Epic.

In some details, that ancient Mesopotamian Flood account resembles the one in the Holy Scriptures. For instance: Both sources relate that, with the exception of just a few survivors, the entire human race suffers destruction. One person is told to build a vessel for preservation. Waters pour down from the heavens day after day. Afterward, birds are sent out of the vessel to determine whether dry land has emerged. Upon leaving the preservation vessel, survivors offer sacrifice.

Do such resemblances constitute proof that the Gilgamesh Epic or earlier Mesopotamian Deluge legends take precedence over the Biblical record? Before answering that question, it would be helpful to isolate some of the . . .

Conspicuous Differences

First, as to the cause of the Deluge. According to the Gilgamesh Epic, an assembly of gods resolved to destroy mankind by means of a flood. Though that decision was to be kept secret, the god Ea (in the Sumerian account “Enki”) warned his favorite, Utnapishtim, about it.

The older Babylonian Atrahasis Epic states that one of the gods (Enlil) felt disturbed in his sleep due to noise made by humans. He turned for help to the divine assembly of “great gods” who then sent a famine for some six years, but without bringing the desired quietness. When the gods decided to send a flood, Ea disclosed the plan to Atrahasis, who built a survival vessel according to divinely given measurement.

The Biblical Flood account is altogether different. In it is stated a truly just cause for the Flood:

“Jehovah saw that the badness of man was abundant in the earth and every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only bad all the time. And the earth came to be ruined in the sight of the true God and the earth became filled with violence. So God saw the earth and, look! it was ruined, because all flesh had ruined its way on the earth. After that God said to Noah: ‘The end of all flesh has come before me, because the earth is full of violence as a result of them; and here I am bringing them to ruin together with the earth.’”—Gen. 6:5, 11-13.

As to perishing in the Flood or surviving it, the Bible relates that people died because they ‘took note’ of neither the work being done by Noah and his family on the ark for survival nor what Noah said as “a preacher of righteousness.” (Matt. 24:39; 2 Pet. 2:5) If they had heeded Noah’s warning words and example, they would have survived.

Too, in the Bible there is no command that Noah keep secret the fact that God was going to bring a global flood. However, the Mesopotamian legend indicates that the god Ea went so far as to suggest that Utnapishtim should deceive his contemporaries so as to keep them in the dark with regard to the coming catastrophe.

Important differences appear also with reference to the effect of the Flood. The Gilgamesh Epic relates that the gods became full of dismay and sought refuge in the highest heavens of the god Anu. Before entering, they “cowered like dogs,” crouched in distress and pressed to the wall. With weeping they raised voices of protest. Especially the goddess Ishtar reproached herself bitterly for originally consenting in the council of gods to mankind’s destruction.

And there are yet further differences. The Epic reports that, following the Flood, when Utnapishtim was about to offer sacrifice, “the gods crowded like flies about the sacrificer.” Ishtar, “the great goddess,” desired to exclude Enlil from the sacrifice and reproached him for having caused the calamity. The Mesopotamian account depicts Enlil as being enraged that one of the human race had survived.

This analysis of similarities and differences is very helpful in determining which account of the Flood came first.

‘Dependence Totally Unlikely’

After noting differences between Flood accounts from the Bible and ancient Babylon, P. J. Wiseman wrote in New Discoveries in Babylonia About Genesis: “The Bible account is simple in its ideas, and irreproachable in its teaching about God, while the Babylonian tablets are complex and polytheistic. The difference may be compared to that between the pure waters of the springs at the source of the Thames, and the contaminated waters of the docks of London. There are resemblances between a river at its source and at its termination, both are in one sense the same river; so in Genesis we find the story at its pure source, while in the Babylonian it is seen at its contaminated development.”

As for the Bible’s being dependent upon Flood accounts from ancient Babylonia, the Lexikon zur Bibel by Fritz Rienecker contains the remark: “A literary dependence of the Biblical, entirely unmythological Flood account on the Babylonian stories appears to be, however, totally unlikely in view of the differences of both texts in manner and contents.”

(According to) Bible chronology, the writer of Genesis did not need to draw upon any Babylonian legend. Because of the overlapping of life-spans, the truth about the Flood could easily have been handed down by Noah’s son Shem (who was an eyewitness) through just three human links to Moses, the writer of Genesis. It is unreasonable to think that the Hebrews, who worshiped the same God as Noah did, would not have included an event of such importance in their history.

Other Bible writers had endorsed the Genesis account. For example, Isaiah and Ezekiel called attention to Noah and the Flood. (Isa. 54:9; Ezek. 14:14, 18, 20) The apostles Peter and Paul made specific references to the Flood. (1 Pet. 3:20; 2 Pet. 2:5; 3:5, 6; Heb. 11:7) And all such Bible writers, including Moses, were “inspired of God,” which gives me assurance as to the truthfulness of their accounts.—2 Tim. 3:16.

Jesus Christ, too, acknowledged that the Genesis account was the truth. When speaking of the coming destruction of the present wicked system of things, he said: “For as they were in those days before the flood, eating and drinking, men marrying and women being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark; and they took no note until the flood came and swept them all away,” so it would be at this system’s end.—Matt. 24:37-39.

Thus, this strengthens the conviction that the Bible’s account of the Flood is authentic, genuine. It does not rest on the shifting and exaggerated folklore of primitive peoples. - 7/8/80 Awake! "The Deluge—A View from Ancient Mesopotamia"

Also see:

GILGAMESH, EPIC OF (INDEX; Watchtower Online Library)

Monday, May 21, 2012

2 Cor. 3:17 - "The Lord is the Spirit."

One thing that Trinitarians actually do have correct: The Father is not the Son. The Son is not the Father. They are different persons. Now if the Holy Spirit is a person, as they say, then the Holy Spirit is not the Father, and the Holy Spirit is not the Son.

Nevertheless, occasionally 2 Cor. 3:17 is used as evidence that the Holy Spirit is a person who is God: "The Lord is the Spirit."

Now it is provable that the Lord Jehovah is the Father, and it is provable that the Lord Jesus is the Son. Therefore, IF the HS is a person, "he" cannot be either Jehovah or Jesus! That is why the noted trinitarian scholar E. F. Scott (in his The Spirit in the N.T.) can understand

"Kurios ["Lord"] here [in 2 Cor. 3:17] to be Christ and interpret Paul as denying the personality of the Holy Spirit." - Word Pictures in the New Testament, A. T. Robertson, Vol. IV, p. 223.

Also the trinitarian The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, Zondervan Publishing, 1986, tells us:

"It is important to realize that for Paul too the Spirit is a divine power whose impact upon or entrance into a life is discernible by its effects." and, "It is important for Paul that the Spirit is a shared gift; it is a centripedal force [not a person!] drawing believers together into the one body of Christ. .... They are constituted the one body of Christ by their common participation in the one Spirit." - Vol. 3, pp. 701, 702. (Also see: Quotes: Holy Spirit is a Force from God, Trinitarians Admit; Search For Bible Truths)

Therefore to be 'one' with the Spirit results in being one with the Lord (whether it refers to Jehovah here, as I believe, or to Jesus as in most trinitarian interpretations. Having the active force of God, the Spirit, figuratively means having the Lord. Or as CBW, AT, and Moffatt translate 2 Cor. 3:17 "The Lord means the Spirit." Or, as the extremely trinitarian The New American Bible, St. Joseph ed. tells us in a footnote for 2 Cor. 3:13-18 -
"The apostle knows that his work is to result in the permanent presence of Christ among men through the power of the Holy Spirit."

And Thayer, also tells us:

"But in the truest and highest sense it is said ['the Lord is the spirit'], he in whom the entire fulness of the Spirit dwells, and from whom that fulness is diffused through the body of Christian believers, 2 Co. iii. 17.... to be filled with the same spirit as Christ and by the bond of that spirit to be intimately united to Christ, 1 Co. vi. 17...." - pp. 522, 523, Baker Book House, 1984 printing.

So we can see that even many trinitarians believe this particular scripture is saying that Jesus is figuratively the Spirit because union with that Spirit means union with Jesus.

Another possibility is shown by this trinitarian translation:

"the Lord [whether Jehovah or Jesus] no doubt is a spirit .... but we ... are changed unto the same similitude, from glory to glory, even of the spirit of the Lord [or 'just as the spirit comes from the Lord' - Lamsa]." - 2 Cor. 3:17, 18, Tyndale's New Testament, 1989, Yale University Press.

Not only do we never find anything approaching a clear statement of the trinity in the entire Bible, but in all the dreams, visions, etc. where we "see" God we never see a three-in-one God represented in any manner, nor do we ever see the "person" of the holy spirit (even though we often see the real spirit persons, the angels and Jesus, in association with that one true God). We nearly always "see" the heavenly spirit persons (God, Christ, angels) represented in human-like form. (E.g., Ezek. 1:5, 26; Acts 7:55.)

"The name ['angel'] does not denote their nature, but their office as messengers" - p. 38. "As to their nature, they are spirits.... whenever angels appeared to man it was always in a human form." - p. 39. And, "In...2 Cor. 3:17; 1 Tim. 3:16; 1 Pet. 3:18, it ['spirit'] designates the divine nature." - p. 593, Today's Dictionary of the Bible, 1982, Bethany House Publ., written by mainstream trinitarian scholars.

So we see God (who is a spirit person) always represented in human form and always as a single person, e.g., Ezek. 1:26 (Ezekiel could have easily represented him as three persons or even one person with three faces-compare Ezek. 1:10 -- but no Bible writer ever does such a thing! (Compare Dan. 7:9, 13) We nearly always see the spirit person of the resurrected Jesus in human form and always as a single person. We always see the individual spirit persons who are messengers (angels) of God as individual persons (and, incidentally, always with masculine, not neuter or feminine, personal names). But we never see the holy spirit as a person (and it is frequently represented as something that can be dealt out in multiple portions) - Acts 2:3, 4. (Also see: Is the Holy Spirit really a thing that can be poured out into portions?Search For Bible Truths)

It is more than just odd that we "see" God (the Father only, Jehovah), we see Christ (the Son only, Jesus) with God, sent from God praying to God, etc., but we never see the neuter "person" of the nameless holy spirit in heaven with God or with the Son. (Also see: "Holy Spirit" in the Original Greek is Neuter - "It," "Itself" are Used in the Original New Testament GreekSearch For Bible Truths)

This could not be if the trinity doctrine were true. The inspired Bible writers simply could not so completely ignore as they have in the Holy Scriptures a person who is God.

There is no proper evidence (let alone proof) for the concept of the holy spirit being a person who is God.

This certainly should come as no surprise when we understand that the Bible writers all considered the Holy Spirit as an impersonal force sent by God. When a person rejects that force which God himself has produced and sent, then, of course, he is also rejecting the Most High God. This is why Jesus can equate the Holy Spirit with God and, at the same time (since Jesus is not God), show the superiority of God to himself:

"whoever says a word against the Son of man will be forgiven; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven" - Matt. 12:32, RSV. (For more, see: Matthew 12:32 "whoever says something against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven"; Examining the Trinity)

For much more, see:
Holy Spirit - Links To Information (Search For Bible Truths)

Exposing the False Reasoning Behind Holy Spirit 'Proof-Texts' (Search For Bible Truths)

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Is There Anything Wrong For a Christian to Use Marijuana? Can it Be Equated to Alcohol?

The Bible provides principles as to how a Christian should view illegal drug use.

Christians must be in subjection to governmental “superior authorities,” obeying them as long as they do not demand that we violate God’s laws. (Romans 13:1; Acts 5:29) So since cannabis is illegal to consume, use, possess, cultivate, transfer or trade in most countries, it's use would not be considered being in a proper subjection to governmental “superior authorities”.

Even if it wasn't an illegal substance, another thing to consider concerning the smoking of marijuana is the effect that it could have on the smoker and those around him/her. Among the many listed negative effects on one's health, the National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that "marijuana smoke contains 50-70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons than tobacco smoke." (Heading: "Effects on the Lungs")

With this in mind, consider these Bible principles:

2 Corinthians 7:1 counsels us to: "cleanse ourselves of every defilement of [the] flesh."

Even the second-hand smoke is harmful to others. The Bible says: "You must love your neighbor as yourself." (Matthew 22:39)


So the use of marijuana cannot be likened to the drinking of products that contain alcohol since alcohol is currently legal to consume. Additionally, the Bible does not condemn the consumption of alcohol. The Bible’s view of alcoholic beverages is balanced. On the one hand, the Scriptures say that wine is a gift from God “that makes the heart of mortal man rejoice.” (Psalm 104:1, 15) Jesus himself often drank wine with his meals. (Matthew 11:18, 19) On the other hand, in condemning overindulgence the Bible uses the expressions “heavy drinking,” “excesses with wine, revelries, drinking matches,” ‘given to a lot of wine,’ and being “enslaved to a lot of wine.” (Luke 21:34; 1 Peter 4:3; 1 Timothy 3:8; Titus 2:3) The Bible forbids overindulgence in drinking. Drunkenness is a sin against God. (1 Corinthians 6:9-11)

As a result, drinking alcoholic beverages is not central in the lives of true Christians. They do not come dangerously close to drunkenness nor do they allow alcoholic beverages to impair or in any way interfere with their serving God with their whole soul and with a clear mind. (Matthew 22:37, 38)

The Bible helps to determine what constitutes a godly view of alcoholic beverages. Any amount of alcohol that may impair your “practical wisdom and thinking ability” as a Christian is too much alcohol. (Proverbs 3:21, 22) It also would seem unreasonable to conclude that a Christian would be “acceptable to God” if he drinks alcohol to the point of relinquishing his “power of reason”. (Romans 12:1)

For more, see:

MARIJUANA - Links to Information (INDEX; Watchtower Online Library)

Is Marijuana Really That Bad? (yp1 chap. 33 pp. 237-245; Watchtower Online Library)

What about marijuana—is it harmless? (rs p. 106-p. 112; Watchtower Online Library)

Does the Bible actually forbid the use of drugs for pleasure? (rs p. 106-p. 112; Watchtower Online Library)

Drugs - Links to Information (Defend Jehovah's Witnesses)

How Safe Is Marijuana? Why Say No to Drugs? Marijuana—A New Wonder Drug? (Jehovah's Witnesses Questions and Answers; Quotes from yp chap. 34 p. 278 and g01 7/8 p. 9)

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Does the Word "Day" in the Genesis Creation Account Refer to a Literal Twenty-Four Hour Period?

Young Earth Creationists believe that the word “day” in the Bible’s creation account refers to a literal twenty-four hour period. But, this belief is without exegetical evidence and ignores the facts from Scripture.

First, they ignore that while the Hebrew word YOHM can refer to a literal day, it can also be used to refer to a time period. Lexicons show that the word ‘day’ can be used for “time,” “time of light,” “a division of time,” “lifetime,” even “year.”

As “A Religious Encyclopaedia” (vol. I, p. 613) observes: “The days of creation were creative days, stages in the process, but not days of twenty-four hours each.”—Edited by P. Schaff, 1894.

1.) First, a 24-hour day reference would be impossible for the first three days. This is because, while the sun and moon were evidently created before this, the fourth day was the first that the sun and moon were “placed” so as to cause a “division between the day and the signs for...days and years” (1:14). The 24 hour day is dependent on the sun’s relationship with the Earth. Only on the fourth day was the sun “established” (‘ASA) (1:16) or “set” (NATAN) (1:17) so as to cause this division.

2.) Next, if we exclude the 9 references to the seven creative days, out of the remaining seven references to “day” in the first two chapters of Genesis only one of them can refer to a 24 hour period (1:14b). In 1:5,14a,16 and 18, only the period of “light” is called “Day” (cf. Jn.11:10).

3.) The seventeenth and eighteenth occurrences of the word makes it clear that “day” cannot be taken literally (2:17; 3:5). Jehovah said that “in the day you eat from it you will positively die”. Adam did not die within 24 hours but lived on for hundreds of years. Obviously the word “day” means a period of time here.

4.) The description of the events during each ‘day’ would logically require far more than 24 hours (1:11-12; 1:20-25; 2:5- 9). Those who adamantly insist on a literal interpretation for ‘day’ inconsistently claim that the “planting” “growing,” “watering” and etc. are not to be taken literally, but rather miraculously occurred instantaneously. God noted that it was not good for Adam to continue by himself. If the sixth “day” was only 24 hours long why would there be a concern for Adam becoming lonely? The context indicates that for a lengthy time Adam developed a longing as he saw that there was no complement for him (2:18-20). His exclamation indicated Adam had anticipated Eve for some time: “This is at last...” (2:23).

All these activities do not seem to be describing the last part of a literal 24 hour day!

5.) Further, Gen 2:4 uses the Hebrew word TOLEDAH which means “history” (generations) to describe the whole period of creating the heavens and earth. TOLEDAH never means a short period. This whole history or time period in its entirety is then called a “day” (YOHM). This use of the word “day” to refer to all six creative days and also the prior creation of “heaven and earth” conclusively demonstrates that the word day denotes a period of time, not just a 24 hour period.

[6].) Next we have the implications of Ps. 90:4 and 2 Peter 3:8. These two Scriptures do not tell us how long a creative “day” was, but they do tell us that God’s “days” cannot be measured by human standards and thus limited to 24 hours!

[7].) Last, but not least, is the obvious continuance of the seventh “day.” Every day but the seventh was ended with the refrain “There was an evening and morning a xx day.” This omission could only lead to the conclusion that the seventh day did not end back then. Further confirming this, we have the verbal statements in 2:2 & 3, correctly rendered by the NWT as, “he proceeded to rest” and “he has been resting.”

The above examination of Scripture makes it clear that we cannot force God’s creative “day” into a 24 hour period. This would be like saying that God must have hands like ours because this is what most other uses of the word “hand” means! The word “day” is obviously used anthropomorphically (or poetically) in the first chapter of Genesis! The meaning of “day” is simply “a measured length of time.” Only the context can tell us how the writer used this term, whether in reference to “daylight,” “24hrs,” a “lifetime,” or some “time period."

(Source: This is the chosen best answer given by Bar_Anerges to this question.)

Please also see:

How Long Were the Creative Days? (lc pp. 24-28; Science and the Genesis Account; Watchtower Online Library)

ARE JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES CREATIONISTS? ("Are Jehovah's Witnesses Creationists?"; g 9/06 p. 3; Watchtower Online Library)

Day - Links to Information (Defend Jehovah's Witnesses)

Monday, May 14, 2012

Why Does the New World Translation Bible Say, "God's Active Force" at Genesis 1:2?

In the New World Translation (NWT) Bible, it says at Genesis 1:2,

"Now the earth proved to be formless and waste and there was darkness upon the surface of [the] watery deep; and God’s active force was moving to and fro over the surface of the waters."

Yet many translations do not say "God's active force" at Genesis 1:2.

However, the New World Translation's "active force" for the Hebrew RUACH is both accurate and appropriate for Genesis 1:2 because the way that the Bible uses the term "holy spirit" indicates that it is God's active force that He uses to accomplish a variety of His purposes.

Even many trinitarian scholars will admit this:

"In the New Testament there is no direct suggestion of the Trinity. The Spirit is conceived as an impersonal power by which God effects his will through Christ." - An Encyclopedia of Religion, p. 344, Virgilius Ferm, 1945 ed.

Using Genesis 1:2; Job 33:4 and Psalm 33:6 as its basis, Swete writes about the "Spirit" in the Old Testament:

"The Spirit of God is the vital power which belongs to the Divine Being, and is seen to be operative in the world and in men. It is the Divine Energy which is the origin of all created life, especially of human existence and the faculties of human nature." Swete, The Holy Spirit in the New Testament (1909), page 2.

The commentator clearly sees the Spirit as a force, not a person in this verse.

About the translation of Genesis 1:2:

"There is little to commend "a mighty wind" (NEB, Speiser, von Rad); in the relatively few passages where "God" is used as a superlative, the context usually makes it clear. The sense is excellently given by "the power of God" (GNB)." A Bible Commentary for Today, General Editor G. C. D. Howley (1973), page 135.

Note that this Commentary states, "The sense is excellently given by "the power of God" (GNB)."

"There is apparent a development in the direction of hypostatization of the Spirit, not in the sense that it is conceived as a person but as a substantial source of force and activity. It is the creative force of Yahweh (Gn. 1:2; Jb 33:5)" Dictionary of the Bible, McKenzie (1965), page 841.

This Bible Dictionary agrees with the NWT that in Genesis 1:2, the Spirit is the "creative force of Yahweh."

"The Spirit brooding over the primeval waters (Gn. 1:2) and creating man (Gn. 2:7), the Spirit who garnishes the heavens (Jb 26:13), sustains animal life and renews the face of the earth (Ps. 54:30), is the ruah ('breath,' 'wind') of God, the outgoing divine energy and power." The New Bible Dictionary, J. D. Douglas (1962), page 531.

The ruach is not a person, the basic meaning in Genesis 1:2 (and the other scriptures quoted) is shown to be "the outgoing divine energy and power."

Additional Reading:

Genesis 1:2 New World Translation - "..and God's active force was moving to and fro..." (In Defense of the New World Translation)

Holy Spirit - Links to Information (Search For Bible Truths)

The Holy Spirit—God's Active Force (Insight-2 pp. 1017-1027; Watchtower Online Library)

Monday, May 7, 2012

Does Matthew 1:22, 23 Really Imply That Jesus is God?

No, Matthew 1:22, 23 does not imply that Jesus is God.

A fairly common trinitarian “proof” that “Jesus is God” uses the meanings of personal names. It is very true that personal names were extremely important to God and to his people as recorded in the Bible. The meanings of their names were often carefully selected by their parents and were sometimes changed during their lifetimes because of changing circumstances.

But honestly, should Jesus really be considered to be God because he was symbolically “named” Immanuel (Is. 7:14; Mt. 1:23) which means “God is with us”? No more so than Gabriel was calling himself God when he visited Mary and declared: “The Lord is with thee” - Luke 1:28. Nor did Zacharias mean that John the Baptizer (his new son) was actually God when he was asked, “I wonder what this child [John] will turn out to be?”, and he answered, “Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, for he has come to visit his people and has redeemed them.” - Luke 1:66-68, LB.

Gabriel and Zacharias (Zechariah) meant exactly what Israelites have meant throughout thousands of years when saying “God is with us” and similar statements. They meant “God has favored us” or “God is helping us”. - Joshua 1:17; 1 Samuel 10:7; 2 Chron. 15:2-4, 9 (cf., Jer. 1:8; Haggai 1:13).[3] But if we insist on trinitarian-type “proof,” then Gabriel must have meant that he (Gabriel) is God. And Zacharias (whose own name means ‘Jehovah is renowned’ - p. 678, TDOTB) must have meant that John the Baptizer is God! – Also see 1 Sam. 17:37; 2 Sam. 14:17; 1 Ki. 8:57; 1 Chron. 17:2; 22:18; 2 Chron. 1:1; 35:21; 36:23; Ezra 1:3; Is. 8:8, 10; Is. 41:10; Amos 5:14; Zech 8:23. (Also see “Immanuel” in the Insight books.)

This understanding is seen throughout the Bible. For example, “But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or outsider enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all, the secrets of his heart are disclosed; and so, falling on his face, he will worship God and declare that God is really among you.” - 1 Corinthians 14:24-25, RSV.

Or, in a Psalm many of us apply to ourselves or our friends:

4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me - ASV.

Even the widely acclaimed trinitarian Bible dictionary, The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology, 1986, Vol. 2, pp. 86, 87, admits:

“The name Emmanuel [or Immanuel] which occurs in Isa. 7:14 and 8:8 means lit. ‘God [is] with us’ .... In the context of the times of Isaiah and King Ahaz the name is given to a child as yet not conceived with the promise that the danger now threatening Israel from Syria and Samaria will pass ‘before the child knows how to refuse evil and choose the good.’ Thus, the child and its name is a sign of God’s gracious saving presence among his people .... [The name Emmanuel] could be a general statement that the birth and naming of the special child will indicate that the good hand of God is upon us.” - p. 86. And, “The point of the present passage [Matt. 1:23] is to see in the birth of Jesus a saving act of God, comparable with the birth of the first Emmanuel. Both births signify God’s presence with his people through a child.” - p. 87.

For more, see:

This identity of Jesus Christ as Immanuel did not mean he was the incarnation of God (Insight-1 pp. 1187-1189; Watchtower online Library)

Does Matthew 1:23 indicate that Jesus when on earth was God? (rs p. 209-p. 220; Watchtower Online Library)

Exposing the False Reasoning Behind Trinity Proof Texts (Examining the Trinity)

Scripture Index

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Was Jesus Impaled on a Cross or an Upright Stake? Should the Cross Be Used in Worship to God?

Many are surprised to read in many Bibles that Jesus was hung upon a "tree" at Acts 5:30.

This is because the word "Stau·ros´ in both the classical Greek and Koine carries no thought of a "cross" made of two timbers. It means only an upright stake, pale, pile, or pole:

"The Greek word for `cross' (Stau·ros´) means primarily an upright stake or beam, and secondarily a stake used as an instrument for punishment and execution." - Douglas' New Bible Dictionary of 1985 under "Cross," page 253.

And noted Greek scholar W. E. Vine mentions the following concerning this subject:

"STAUROS denotes, primarily, an upright pale or stake. On such malefactors were nailed for execution. Both the noun and the verb stauroo, to fasten to a stake or pale, are originally to be distinguished from the ecclesiastical form of a two beamed cross." - Vine's Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, 1981, Vol. 1, p. 256. Vine also goes on to describe the Chaldean origin of the two-piece cross and how it was adopted from the pagans by Christendom in the third century C.E. as a symbol of Christ's impalement.

The Pagan History of the Cross

Not only does the Greek word Stau·ros´ not mean a "cross" made of two timbers, but the cross "was an emblem to which religious and mystical meanings were attached long before the Christian era." - Chamber's Encyclopaedia, 1969 ed.

The pagan Romans used the symbol of the cross before and during the early days of Christianity: "These crosses were used as symbols of the Babylonian sun-god ... and are first seen on a coin of Juolius Caesar, 100-44 B.C., and then on a coin struck by Caesar's heir (Augustus), 20 B.C." - The Companion Bible.

And Prof. G.F. Snyder points out that "The sign of the cross has been a symbol of great antiquity, present in nearly every known culture. .... The universal use of the sign of the cross makes more poignant the striking lack of crosses in early Christian remains, especially any specific reference to the event on Golgotha. Most scholars now agree that the cross, as an artistic reference to the passion event, cannot be found prior to the time of Constantine." - p. 27, Ante Pacem - Archaeological Evidence of Church Life Before Constantinte.

The Baptist NT scholar W.E. Vine wrote about "Cross":

"STAUROS ... denotes, primarily, an upright pale or stake. On such malefactors were nailed for execution. Both the noun and the verb stauroo, to fasten on a stake or pale, are originally to be distinguished from the ecclesiastical form of a two beamed cross. The shape of the latter had its origins in ancient Chaldea, and was used as the symbol of the god Tammuz (being in the shape of the mystic Tau, the initial of his name) in that country and in adjacent lands, including Egypt. By the middle of the 3rd cent. A.D. the churches had either departed from, or had travestied, certain doctrines of the Christian faith. In order to increase the the prestige of the apostate ecclesiastical system pagans were received into the churches apart from regeneration by faith, and were permitted largely to retain their pagan signs and symbols. Hence the Tau or T, in its most frequent form, with the cross-piece lowered, was adopted to stand for the cross of Christ." - p. 248, An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, Thomas Nelson, 1983 printing.

"In ancient Israel, unfaithful Jews wept over the death of the false god Tammuz. Jehovah spoke of what they were doing as being a `detestable thing.' (Ezek. 8:13, 14) According to history, Tammuz was a Babylonian god, and the cross was used as his symbol. From its beginning in the days of Nimrod, Babylon was against Jehovah and an enemy of true worship. (Gen. 10:8-10; Jer. 50:29) So by cherishing the cross, a person is honoring a symbol of worship that is opposed to the true God." - Reasoning From the Scriptures, "Cross".

The Cross - A Form of Idolatry 

But even if we ignore the evidence and assume that Jesus was killed on a cross, the most important thing is that the cross should not be venerated. Whether it was an upright single torture stake, a cross, an arrow, a lance, or a knife, should such an instrument really be used in worship?

Not only should the thought of venerating the very instrument of Jesus' execution be offensive in itself, but the symbol of the cross is also a pagan symbol...idolatry that God commands us to not even "touch":

“What agreement does God’s temple have with idols?...'Quit touching the unclean thing.'" (2 Corinthians 6:16, 17)

“Guard yourselves from idols.” (1 John 5:21)

"You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or that is on the earth underneath or that is in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them nor be induced to serve them, because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion." (Exodus 20:4-5)

Long before the Christian era, crosses were used by the ancient Babylonians as symbols in their worship of the fertility god Tammuz. The use of the cross spread into Egypt, India, Syria, and China. Then, centuries later, the Israelites adulterated their worship of Jehovah God with acts of veneration to the false god Tammuz. The Bible refers to this form of worship as a ‘detestable thing.’ - Ezekiel 8:13, 14.

First-century Christians, however, held the sacrificial death of Christ in high esteem. Likewise today, although the instrument used to torture and kill Jesus is not to be worshipped, true Christians commemorate Jesus’ death as the means by which God provides salvation to imperfect humans. (Matthew 20:28)

For more, see:

Cross - Links to Information (Defend Jehovah's Witnesses)

Why True Christians Do Not Use the Cross in Worship (What Does the Bible Really Teach?; JW.ORG)

Did Jesus Really Die on a Cross? - What Does the Cross Symbolize? (w11 3/1 pp. 18-20; Watchtower Online Library)

Should Icons Be Used in Worship? (g05 5/8 pp. 20-21; Watchtower Online Library)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Matt. 25:46 and the New World Translation - Does Kolasis Here Mean "Cutting Off" or "Punishment"?

Some condemn the New World Translation's use of kolasis as `cutting off' at Matt. 25:46 when they say that the word `punishment' is the only meaning cited in the lexicons for it.

This can easily be checked out! And easily proven false!

Dr. Young in his popular Young's Analytical Concordance, p. 995, defines this word, kolasis, as "a pruning, restraining". And although Strong's Exhaustive Concordance merely tells us kolasis derives from the source words kolazo and kolos (which means "to curtail"), The New American Standard Exhaustive Concordance tells us that kolasis comes from kolazo and kolos and that kolos means "docked" ("dock .... 1. to cut off" - Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary).

And what does highly respected NT Greek expert W. E. Vine say about the source word (kolazo) for kolasis in his An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words, p. 903 ?: "kolazo primarily denotes to curtail, prune, dock (from kolos, docked)."

An Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon says that kolazo is "Properly, to curtail, dock, prune" - p. 441, Liddell & Scott, Oxford, 1994 printing.

At Matt. 25:46 it seems clear from context that "death" (or "cutting off") is the proper interpretation. Notice that "everlasting kolasis" is contrasted here with "everlasting life". Certainly "death" is the most appropriate contrast to "life". (Even if we insisted on a "punishment" meaning here, there is no reason why that "punishment" could not be understood as death as context demands in this verse. - compare the use of kolasis at Ezek. 18:30 in the ancient Greek Septuagint: the "punishment" here is also to be understood as death as the context of the entire chapter clearly shows. - Also note the everlasting punishment meted out at 2 Thess. 1:9 and the contrast of life with destruction at Jn 3:16 and Matt. 7:13, 14.)

Even the Presbyterian minister and anti-Watchtower writer R. H. Countess ADMITS that "the root meaning of [kolasis] is that of `checking' in the realm of trees..." - p. 81, The Jehovah's Witnesses' New Testament, 1987 ed. However, it is more accurately described (as shown above) as pruning of trees and vines and docking of animals (tails, horns, etc.).

But if we are referring to those persons or things which are pruned, docked, or cut off (the `branches,' `horns,' etc.), we are speaking of things that are no longer living but dead. These things are not being `corrected'. It is the remaining body (which loses that which was `pruned') that is being `corrected' through the destruction of that `limb,' `branch,' `horn,' etc.

This figurative use of cutting off branches and completely annihilating them is clear in John 15:5, 6 -

"I am the vine, you are the branches. .... If anyone does not remain in union with me, he is thrown away as a mere branch and is dried up; then it is picked up and thrown into the fire and burned up [kaiw, kaio]" - CBW.

Obviously when a branch is cut or broken off from the vine (or tree), it immediately begins to die. By the time it is dried up it is dead. Then, after it is dead, it is completely burned up, annihilated. Such figurative examples leave no place for the eternal torment concept favored by those who insist on the more ambiguous "eternal punishment" rendering.

The word used in this verse is kaio (kaiw in NT Greek) and defined by Thayer as: "to burn; consume with fire: pass. Jn. xv. 6; 1 Co. xiii. 3." – p. 319, #2545, Baker Book House, 1984 printing.

Popular NT scholar Dr. William Barclay writes about this verse: "The only thing that could be done with the wood pruned out of a vine was to make a bonfire of it and destroy it [not torture it]." – p. 174, The Gospel of John, Vol. 2, Revised Ed., The Daily Study Bible Series, 1975.

One of Christendom's most respected Bible dictionaries, The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology ("Indispensable for advanced theological students and scholars as well as for ordinary Bible students." - Christianity Today) agrees:

"Jesus did not teach, like Plato and others, that the soul was intrinsically immortal and that it would necessarily go on after death. References to the eternal fire (Matt. 18:8; cf. Mk 9:43-48; Jude 7) are necessarily figurative


"Eternal judgment is referred to in Heb. 6:2 and 2 Thess. 1:9. This, like the idea of eternal fire, does not necessarily imply that those concerned go on being judged or continue to be consumed. If the metaphor of fire is to be pressed at all, it would imply that the fire of righteousness continues to burn, but that what is consumed once is consumed for good (cf. also Paul's observation about works being consumed by fire, 1 Cor. 3:15)." - p. 99, Vol. 3, Zondervan Publ., 1986.

You will find that the New World Translation is one of the very few Bibles that actually translates this word (kolasis) properly in spite of the rarity of occurrences of that word in the New Testament.

Also see:

Cutting Off - Links to Information (INDEX; Watchtower Online Library)

Cutting Off  (Insight
-1 pp. 562-563; Watchtower Online Library)

Matthews 25:46. KOLASIS : "cutting-off"- New World Translation (IN Defense of the NWT)

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Deut. 22:5 - What is The PRINCIPLE of this Law About not Wearing Clothing of the Opposite Sex?

Deuteronomy 22:5 in the KJV states:

"A woman must not wear men's clothing, and a man must not wear women's clothing. The LORD [Jehovah] your God detests people who do this."

What is Deuteronomy 22:5 Really Saying and Does This Still Apply to Christians Today?

When this law was given, both men and women wore robes. Yet there was a difference with the style of the robes. It is similar today. There are men's pants and there are women's pants.

The principle of the law at Deut. 22:5 was for a man to WANT to look like a man and for a woman to WANT to look like a woman. An example has been given that if a woman were to put on a worn-out pair of her husband’s trousers to do a job around the house she wouldn't be going against the evident purpose of the law, namely, to prevent confusion of sexual identity and sexual abuses.

But even though the law itself is no longer binding since it is from the Mosaic Law and Christians today are no longer under the Mosaic law, the same principle mentioned above still stands today.

Also see:

Dress (Deut. 22:5) Insight-1 pp. 652-656; Watchtower Online Library)

11/2/72 Watchtower, Questions from Readers

Mosaic Law - Links to Information (Search For Bible Truths)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Race and Ethnicity - Does God Have a Favorite Nationality?

Notice what the apostle Peter wrote about how God feels:

“The truth I have now come to realise, is that God does not have favourites, but that anybody of any nationality who fears God and does what is right is acceptable to him.’” (Acts 10:34, 35, Jerusalem Bible)

The Bible says that all peoples, regardless of stature, culture, color, or language, are members of one human family and that "all nations" were “made out of one man. (Acts 17:26)

The apostle Paul admonished Christians and practicers of Bible principles to do "nothing out of contentiousness or out of egotism, but with lowliness of mind considering that the others are superior to YOU." (Phil. 2:3) This certainly would not involve viewing those of another race as a so-called “inferior” race.

Recommended Related Articles:

Race and Ethnicity: We Are All One Family (g 11/09 pp. 22-23; JW.ORG)

What Is the Solution to Ethnic Intolerance? (w07 7/1 pp. 3-6; Watchtower Online Library)

Where Do the Different Races Come From? (Search For Bible Truths)

Is a Classless Society Really Possible? (w02 1/1 pp. 4-7; Watchtower Online Library)