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Thread: Hold These Thoughts

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    Post The Rich Man, Lazarus, And Abraham

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    Fiction can be defined as stories about people and events that, though untrue; are plausible; viz: realistic.

    Fantasy can be defined as stories about people and events that are not only untrue; but implausible; viz: unrealistic.

    For example: a story about a boy like Pinocchio is unrealistic; while a story about a boy with autism is realistic. The difference between Pinocchio and a boy with autism is that the one is compatible with normal reality; while the other is far removed from normal reality.

    I have yet to read even one of Jesus Christ's parables that could not possibly be a real-life story. They're all actually quite believable-- farmers sowing seed, women losing coins, sons leaving home, wineskins bursting, tares among the wheat, leavened bread, barren fig trees, the blind leading the blind, et al.

    Now; if he had told one that alleged the moon was made of green cheese; we would have good reason to believe that at least that one was fantasy; but none of them are like that. No; there's nothing out of the ordinary in his parables. At best; Christ's parables might qualify as fiction; but never fantasy because none of them are so far removed from the normal round of human experience that they have no basis in reality whatsoever.

    Luke 16:19-31 is commonly alleged to be a parable; which of course implies that the story is fiction; and some would even say fantasy. But the parable theory has a fatal flaw. Abraham is not a fictional character: he's a real-life man; held in very high esteem by at least three of the world's prominent religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. And he's also the friend of God (Isa 41:8). I simply cannot believe that Jesus Christ-- a man famous among normal Christians for his honesty and integrity --would say something untrue about a famous real-life man; especially about one of his Father's buddies.

    And on top of that, the story quotes Abraham a number of times. Well; if the story is fiction, then Jesus Christ is on record testifying that Abraham said things that he didn't really say; which is a clear violation of the commandment that prohibits bearing false witness.

    There is something else to consider.

    The story of the rich man and Lazarus didn't originate with Jesus Christ. No, it originated with his Father. In other words: Jesus Christ was micro-managed.

    †. John 3:34 . . He is sent by God. He speaks God's words

    †. John 8:26 . . He that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I have heard of Him.

    †. John 8:28 . . I do nothing on my own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught me.

    †. John 12:49 . . I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, He gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.

    †. John 14:24 . .The word which you hear is not mine, but the Father's who sent me.

    So, by implying that Luke 16:19-31 is false, the parable theory insinuates that God is a person of marginal integrity who can't be trusted to tell the truth about people, not even about His own friends, which is ridiculous seeing as how Titus 1:2 and Heb 6:18 testify that God cannot lie.

    His impeccable character is what makes that narrative all the more terrifying. Unless somebody can prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Christ's Father is a tale-spinner; I pretty much have to assume the narrative was drawn from real-life; and if not drawn from real life, then at least based upon real life.

    In other words: there really is an afterlife place of conscious suffering where people endure unbearable anxiety worrying that kin are on a road to where they are and there is no way to warn them.

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    Post The Begotten God

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    Q: One translation of John 1:18 says that Jesus is the only begotten god; while another translation of John 1:18 says Jesus is the only begotten son. Which translation is correct?

    A: Either will do because, biologically speaking, they're both saying the very same thing.

    Human beings are labeled "sons of god" in the 82nd Psalm; but we know from Gen 1:26-27 that human beings aren't begotten sons of God, but rather, created sons

    The Greek word for "only begotten" in John 1:14, John 1:18, John 3:16, John 3:18, is monogenes (mon-og-en-ace') which is a combination of two words. The first is mono, which music buffs recognize as a single channel rather than two or four in surround-sound stereo. Mono is very common; e.g. monogamy, monofilament, monotonous, mononucleotide, monochrome, monogram, monolith, monologue, monomial, et al.

    The other word is genes; from whence we get the English word gene; which Webster's defines as a biological term indicating a part of a cell that controls or influences the appearance, growth, etc., of a living thing.

    In other words: monogenes refers to one biological gene set rather than many.

    Monogenes always, and without exception, refers to a parent's sole biological child. If a parent has two or three biological children, none of them qualify as monogenes because in order to qualify as a monogenes child, the child has to be an only child. Obviously then, an adopted child can never be monogenes in the home because it wouldn't be the home's biological child. Examples of monogenes children are located at Luke 7:12, Luke 8:42, and Luke 9:38.

    Now if God's monogenes son is really and truly His biological offspring, so to speak, then we are going to have to admit that His son is a chip off the old block; which in fact the Bible declares.

    †. Col 2:9 . . In him all the fullness of divinity dwells in bodily form.

    Webster's defines "divinity" as the quality, or the state, of being a god.

    According to the Greek version, "divinity" is modified by a definite article; so that what we're looking at here is not just divinity per se, but "the" divinity; viz: the quality, or the state, of being Almighty God.

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    Last edited by WebersHome; 09-30-2015 at 08:55 AM.

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    Post Christ's Demise

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    According to Muhammad; Christ didn't die on the cross.

    The Women [4.157] . . And their saying: Surely we have killed the Messiah, Isa son of Marium, the apostle of Allah; and they did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but it appeared to them so (like Isa) and most surely those who differ therein are only in a doubt about it; they have no knowledge respecting it, but only follow a conjecture, and they killed him not for sure.

    But according to the New Testament; Christ fully expired.

    †. Luke 23:46 . . And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said: Father, into Thy hands I commit my spirit. And having said this, he breathed his last.

    Other sources corroborate Luke.

    †. John 19:31-35 . . But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe.

    Since Jesus was somewhat elevated, (it's not stated exactly how high) the spear point would have entered his body at an upward angle. The text doesn't say which side was penetrated, but from John's description, and judging from the intent of the soldier to leave no doubt about Jesus' death, the heart side was very likely the side they cut into and the spear point would've entered just under his rib cage.

    The heart is surrounded by a membrane called the pericardium; which serves to contain a serous material resembling water to prevent the surface of the heart from becoming dry and/or chafed by its continual motion. It was very likely this which was pierced and from which the water flowed. The point of the spear also seems to have reached one of the ventricles of the heart, and the blood, yet warm, rushed forth, either mingled with, or followed by, the liquor of the pericardium, so as to appear to John to be blood and water flowing together. Though not medically accurate in our day, John's calling the serous fluid "water" was accurate enough in his own day.

    Had Christ managed to survive the spear he most certainly would have died of suffocation. According to the records, his friends covered his face with a towel, wrapped him with strips of cloth like a mummy, and coated him with a paste consisting of 75 pounds of myrrh and aloes: all of which served to not only put him in a straight jacket, but also sealed him in an air-tight cocoon of sorts.

    1• The towel

    "And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself." (John 20:7)

    The koiné Greek word translated "napkin" is soudarion (soo-dar'-ee-on) which defines a sweat-cloth; viz: a towel for wiping the perspiration from the face, or binding the face of a corpse.

    2• The mummy

    "Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes" (John 19:40)

    "And the napkin, that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself." (John 20:7)

    The Greek word translated "wound" is deo (deh'-o) which means to bind

    The Greek word translated "linen cloths" is othonion (oth-on'-ee-on) which defines bandages.

    3• The cocoon of sorts

    "And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight. Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury." (John 19:39-40)

    Myrrh is a gum resin. The aloe of that day was a thick liquid taken from an aromatic tree and used in medicines and cosmetics, etc. Blending those two ingredients together produced a nice sticky goo that could be slathered and plastered all over the deceased to seal the body and retard putrefaction and/or seal in odors and thwart vermin. This was likely the final step just prior to wrapping the whole affair in a shroud (Matt 27:59).

    So all told-- the spear, the face towel, the wrappings, and the gooey paste -- there is just no way in nature that Christ could have possibly survived either his crucifixion or his burial.

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    Quote Originally Posted by WebersHome View Post
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    According to the covenant that God instituted with Noah after the Flood; murder is a mandated death offense. (Gen 9:5)

    The death penalty for murder was included as a mandate in the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God at Sinai as per Ex 21:12-14, Lev 24:17, Lev 24:21, and Num 35:31-34.

    Q: So then, seeing as how capital punishment for murder is a divine mandate; then how was God able to let Cain walk without obstructing justice and compromising His own integrity? Does God practice a double standard?

    A: Murder is morally wrong, yes; and it is intrinsically a sin, yes; however; prior to the Flood, homicide wasn't a transgression because God had not yet enacted any laws to that effect. Divinely ordained capital punishment was unheard of, and unthinkable, prior to the Flood because it is an axiom that Bible law isn't retroactive; viz: it can't be enforced until after it is enacted; which is precisely why God couldn't prosecute Cain for murder. (Rom 4:15, Rom 5:13, and Gal 3:17)

    Case in point: Abraham married a half-sister. Sarah was his father's daughter, but not his mother's (Gen 20:12). According to the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God at Sinai, it is a breach of the covenant to sleep with someone that close.

    "The nakedness of your sister-- your father's daughter or your mother's, whether born into the household or outside --do not uncover their nakedness." (Lev 18:9)

    But Abraham was exempt from that law because God didn't introduce it till several centuries after Abraham's passing; and this is very important to understand. Here's why:

    Modern Judaism insists that Deut 29:14-15 retroactively binds Abraham to the covenant. Well; not only is that kind thinking a stretch of the imagination; but it's not even sensible because any and all breaches of the covenant incur curses.

    "Cursed is the one who lies with his sister, the daughter of his father or the daughter of his mother." (Deut 27:22)

    "Cursed is he who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them." (Deut 27:26)

    If God were to level curses at Abraham for breaching the covenant; then God would be quite obligated to level curses at Himself.

    "I will curse him who curses you" (Gen 12:3)

    Not only that; but any curses that the covenant would impose upon Abraham for sleeping with his half sister, would quite effectively annul any and all of the promises that God made to him in the book of Genesis.

    The Jews' occupation of the land of Israel has always been conditional upon their compliance with the covenant; but their ownership of the land has always been conditional upon the promises that God made to Abraham prior to the covenant's institution. That way there is no possible chance of Abraham's posterity ever losing the deed to that land no matter how many times they breach the covenant. They might get evicted from their homeland from time to time; but it will always remain theirs due to Abraham's immunity to the covenant's curses.

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    That answers a question I was pondering and could not put my finger on...when Jesus entered Hell He preached to the pre-Noah group..I often wondered why they alone were visited...this makes perfect sense...thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quest View Post
    That answers a question I was pondering and could not put my finger on...when Jesus entered Hell He preached to the pre-Noah group..I often wondered why they alone were visited...this makes perfect sense...thanks
    "Hell" is an unfortunate English translation of the New Testament Greek word haides (hah'-dace) which just simply indicates the unseen world of the dead: both the good dead and the bad dead.

    The portion of haides that Christ went to during his interment (Acts 2:31) was actually quite pleasant.

    †. Luke 23:42-43 . . And he was saying: Jesus, remember me when you come in Your kingdom! And he said to him: Truly I say to you; today you shall be with me in paradise.

    The New Testament Greek word for "paradise" is paradeisos (par-ad'-i-sos) which means an Eden-like park; viz: a place of peace, pleasure, comfort, and rest.

    I think that you'll find that the spirit by which Christ preached to the antediluvians as per 1Pet 3:18-20 is the self-same spirit mentioned in Gen 6:3, and the preaching was accomplished by means of an inspired man (2Pet 2:5) seeing as how all the prophets were inspired by the spirit of Christ. (1Pet 1:11)

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    Post Christ's Recovery

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    There lacks a universal consensus regarding the nature of Christ's resurrection. Some say his crucified body came back to life. Some say that his crucified body was transformed into a glorified body. Still others say that his crucified body never did recover. They say Christ came back with a spirit body; and his post resurrection physical appearances were done as an angel disguised in a fully-functioning human avatar.

    It's evident that Christ has a glorified body at present (Php 3:20-21). But such was not the case out at the cemetery.

    †. John 2:19-22 . . Jesus answered them: Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days. The Jews replied: It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days? But the temple he had spoken of was his body. After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said.

    Had not Christ's crucified body revived, then his prediction would be easily proven false because the temple he spoke of was "this temple" viz: the body he was standing in as he spoke with the Jews.

    Q: If Christ didn't come back from death with the glorified body spoken of in Php 3:20-21, then how and when did he obtain it?

    A: Some day all Christ's followers will be raised from the dead and taken up to meet the Lord in the air (1Thes 3:14-17). On the way up, their bodies will undergo a sudden and miraculous transformation. (1Cor 15:51-53). I think it's pretty safe to assume that Christ's body underwent a similar transformation while on the way up to heaven as per Acts 1:9 so that today his body is no longer a normal human body; but instead a superhuman body to which all his followers' bodies will one day conform.

    Q: What about the fact that he was able to pass through a locked door? (John 20:19). Surely a normal human body could never do such a thing.

    A: Jesus Christ was virgin-conceived, walked on water, calmed storms, restored withered limbs, put the lame up on their feet, healed blindness and leprosy, multiplied loaves and fishes, converted water into wine, raised the dead, withered a fig tree, levitated into the sky, etc. Come on now; what's one more miracle more or less for a man like that? Ironically people usually find it easy enough to believe in Christ's other miracles; but when they get to that locked door their IQ suddenly goes south.

    Q: Why make a big deal out of the nature of Christ's resurrection?

    A: The nature of Christ's resurrection is one of the essential components of the gospel that must be accepted if one is to have any hope of escaping the wrath of God.

    †. 1Cor 15:1-4 . . Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures

    Paul goes on to say that if Christ's crucified body did not revive, then his followers haven't a prayer of escaping the wrath of God.

    †. 1Cor 15:17 . . If Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins.

    Bottom line: If one's concept of Christ's resurrection is false, then they have not yet believed he was raised.

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    Post Inspiration

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    A common interpretation of inspiration is as follows:

    †. 2Pet 1:20-21 . . No prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophets themselves or because they wanted to prophesy. It was the Holy Spirit who moved the prophets to speak from God.

    That's actually motivation rather than inspiration. This next example is better.

    †. 2Tim 3:16 . . All Scripture is inspired by God

    The Greek word for "inspired" is theopneustos (theh-op'-nyoo-stos) which is presumed a combination of theo which means God, and pneustos which means to inflate: as in blowing up a balloon or a soccer ball.

    Theopneustos is probably about as close as you'll get for a Greek word corresponding to Gen 2:7 where it's stated:

    "Then Yhvh God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being."

    "breathed into" is pretty much what theopneustos says. But the breath of life isn't artificial respiration. Pumping air into a corpse doesn't work. It's been tried. The breath of life is a mysterious energy with enough power to even make solid rock sentient and aware. (Luke 3:8)

    What all this means is: scripture is more than just text-- God has willed scripture to have a peculiar kind of life all its own.

    †. Heb 4:12-13 . . For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

    Scripture, then, is a divine agent: it speaks about God, it speaks for God, and it speaks as God. In a manner of speaking then: scripture can be thought of as a close encounter.

    "In its pages we recognize His voice, we hear a message of deep significance for every one of us. Through the spiritual dynamism and prophetic force of the Bible, the Holy Spirit spreads His light and His warmth over all men, in whatever historical or sociological situation they find themselves." (Paulus PP VI, from the Vatican, September 18, 1970)

    Paulus PP VI said it well. So then: when people listen to the Bible; they listen to God; and when they mock and ridicule the Bible, they mock and ridicule God.

    FYI: Ironically; it was the power of the voice of God on the pages of the Bible that motivated me to part company with Roman Catholicism.

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    Last edited by WebersHome; 10-03-2015 at 10:33 AM.

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    Post Jephthah's Daughter

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    †. Judg 11:30-32 . . And Jephthah made a vow to Yhvh and said: If you will indeed give the sons of Ammon into my hand, then it shall be that whatever comes out of the doors of my house to meet me when I return in peace from the sons of Ammon, it shall be the Lord's, and I will offer it up as a burnt offering.

    Long story short: Yhvh gave Jephthah the victory and the first person to meet him coming home was his daughter; and she was his only child; but Jepthah, with his daughter's consent, kept his end of the bargain.

    There's some very important things to consider if we're to correctly sleuth what happened.

    1• Bloody human sacrifices are illegal under the terms and conditions of the covenant that Yhvh's people agreed upon with God as per Deut 29:9-15, so Jephthah couldn't take his daughter to the Levitical priests to be offered on the altar as a literal burnt offering.

    2• Although Judges 17:6 say: "In those days there was no king in Israel; every man did what was right in his own eyes." Jephthah wasn't an "every man" he was a judge (Judg 12:7)

    3• Heb 11:32 lists Jephthah as a man of faith. Men of faith don't kill their children in pagan rituals knowing full well that God regards all such sacrifices as abominations.

    4• According to Judges 11:29, Jephthah was under the influence of Yhvh's Spirit when he made the vow. I seriously doubt that Yhvh would lead that man to kill his daughter contrary to God's feelings about sacrificing one's own children in a bloody pagan ritual.

    5• Jephthah's daughter didn't bewail an impending death, but rather, she bewailed her virginity; in other words: she wept at the prospect of spending the rest of her life as an old maid.

    6• The Bible doesn't mention her death, but rather, that she never slept with anybody.

    When all of the above is taken into consideration; I think it's fairly safe to conclude that Jephthah's daughter took a vow of celibacy and became something equivalent to a nun; which, for a young girl in that day and age, was tantamount to death.

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    Post Eating Meat

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    †. Gen 9:1-4 . . Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them: Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands.

    . . . Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything. But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it.

    Blessings should never be construed to be commandments and/or mandates. In other words: God gave Noah and his sons the green light to eat meat, but He didn't say they had to.

    †. Rom 14:2-3 . . One man's faith allows him to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him.

    FYI: Prior to the Flood, humans were vegans. Afterwards; they were given permission to become omnivorous. People are often curious about that.

    According to an article in the Dec 10, 2013 Science section of the New York Times, scientists believe that the early human body was able to manufacture all of its own essential vitamins; but over time gradually lost the ability to manufacture all but K and D.

    That seems plausible to me seeing as how Noah lived to be 950 years old, but by the time of Abraham, the human life span had decreased considerably to 175; which the Bible describes as a ripe old age (Gen 25:7 8). Well, Noah at 175 was about equivalent to Abraham at 32; so the human body was obviously a whole lot stronger back in Noah's day than it was in Abraham's.

    Apparently the inclusion of meat in Man's diet after the Flood was intended primarily as a source of natural supplements to make up for the human body's gradually lessening ability to manufacture all it's own essential nutrients; much the same reason that modern vegans resort to synthetic supplements in order to avoid contracting deficiency diseases.

    People subsisting on vegan diets, such as many of the people of India, often eat lots of minute insect eggs along with their fruits and vegetables without knowing it, thus providing themselves with a number of essential nutrients that most everyone else obtains by deliberately eating animal products. It's kind of humorous that in their care to avoid meat they end up eating bugs.

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    Post God's Good Faith

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    †. Eph 1:13-14 . . Having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession

    †. Eph 4:30 . . Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

    The Holy Spirit of God is the seal; which is from the koiné Greek word sphragizo (sfrag-id'-zo). The word has no reference whatsoever to a zip lock bag, or a strip of tape, or a gasket, or that little widget that the power company clips onto electric meters, or a cork, or a bar code, or a bottle cap, or a label, or a tag, or the lid on a jar, or glue, or the ring of bee's wax that goes in between the base of a toilet and the flange of the soil pipe it drains into.

    Sphragizo refers to the impression that's made upon wax with a signet ring. In other words: the Holy Spirit is God's own personal signature on the dotted line; and it serves a very important purpose.

    The Holy Spirit is also the "guarantee" of a believer's inheritance. Let me explain.

    The koiné Greek word is arrhabon (ar-hrab-ohn') which refers to a pledge; viz: part of the purchase-money or property given in advance as security for the rest.

    When we bought our home, I had to submit, along with the escrow papers, an amount of money called a "good-faith" deposit. In the event that my wife and I backed out of the deal, for any reason at all; we would've forfeited the deposit. That's no doubt an incentive to make sure people mean business about buying a home.

    Eph 1:13-14 explains a difficult spiritual truth by putting it into a context easy to understand by anyone familiar with the process of buying a home. Another context, also easy to understand, is located in the 38th chapter of Genesis.

    Long story short: Judah left his staff and signet with Tamar as a pledge that he would pay her with a young goat as compensation for sleeping with him (Gen 38:18). The Hebrew word for Judah's pledge is 'arabown (ar-aw-bone') which is equivalent to the Greek word for guarantee.

    Well; Judah was unable to make good on his promise because Tamar took a powder. So his response was:

    "Let her keep what she has or we will become a disgrace." (Gen 38:23)

    You bet your bippy they would have been a disgrace because until such a time as Judah paid Tamar what he promised; she had a legitimate right to keep his staff and his signet because that's the way an 'arabown works.

    Bottom line is: at this point in the plan of salvation, should God not spare a believer's soul from the sum of all fears; then He has to forfeit the Holy Spirit. In other words: should a believer end up in hell, they get to keep the Holy Spirit and take Him down there with them because that's the way the arrhabon and the 'arabown work; and believers have God's signature holding Him to it.

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