Tag Archives: Moses

Jannes and Jambres and Other False Teachers: Just Plain Stupid — Post by Mary C. Findley

love girl

2 Timothy 3:6-9 ISV

For some of these men go into homes and deceive foolish women who are burdened with sins and swayed by all kinds of desires. These women are always studying but are never able to arrive at a full knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men oppose the truth. They are depraved in mind and their faith is a counterfeit. But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those two men, their stupidity will be plain to everyone.

I always wondered something about those magicians of Pharaoh’s back in the time of Moses. Why would it be a good thing that they could duplicate God’s plagues the first few times? Then I remembered that, in the scientific world, the first step to getting rid of a problem, such as a disease, is to duplicate it. Knowing the nature of the problem is at least helpful in discovering its solution.

Perhaps, then, the magicians were really scientists. So maybe Pharaoh was cheering them on those first few plagues, saying, “Yes! You’ve duplicated the problem. Now get to work on the solution!”

However, there came a time when, not only could the magicians no longer “do likewise with their enchantments”, God even allowed the Hebrews to be spared some of the plagues while they continued to decimate the Egyptians. I can imagine Pharaoh, and that point, changing his tune. “You idiots! All you ever did was make more frogs and bugs! Now you can’t even make bugs! What good are you?” If Jannes and Jambres were not beheaded or impaled, I guess they were at the very least looking for new jobs.

2 Timothy 3 is talking about religious con men. They keep deceiving women who claim to be trying to learn truth but never manage to do anything but fall for every quasi-religious self-help scheme that comes along. Jannes and Jambres were solid with Pharaoh, I bet, before Moses and the ten plagues came along. Note that many scholars say the plagues were each a different frontal attack on the gods and pagan religious practices of Egypt. God attacked and undermined their pet sins, since their entire society’s structure was based on a false religion. He intended to show them His truth by destroying their foundation of lies.

So Paul takes the example of Jannes and Jambres, who had similarities to the false teachers of his day, and explains how the women of his time could stop being deceived by them. If you just get rid of your sins, ladies, these false teachers will be exposed to you for the liars they are, and the truth will start making sense to you.

This problem is still common today. What will it take for silly women nowadays, laden with sins to stop listening to the latest spiritual scam artist? I want to say that they need to get rid of those sins they are carrying around with them. The Bible clearly says, in many places and ways, that we have to purify ourselves or a. The Lord will not hear us, and b. we will not hear Him.

It’s not that there aren’t any good religious self-help books. But let’s study the Scriptures, not the latest religious best seller, to learn how to stop being silly and burdened down by sins Christ died to forgive and cleanse and make disappear. Then we’ll know how stupid some of these self-help wizards are.

Images from Kozzi.com and 1Photos.com

1 Comment

Filed under Bible Teaching, Current Issues, Politics

How Did We Get The Old Testament?

ezra-reads-the-law

While there are numerous detailed answers, this is a brief, simple overview.
1) Moses wrote of what he learned as an Egyptian.
And when he was cast out, Pharaoh’s daughter took him up, and nourished him for her own son. And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds. Acts 7:21,22
Like every other book in the Word of God, God used the background, education and culture of the author.
2) Moses wrote what God revealed to Him on Mount Sinai.
And Moses wrote all the words of the Lord. Exodus 24:4
God gave part of the Law to Moses directly and Moses wrote down these parts word for word as God dictated them to Moses.
3) Samuel edited the Law. Samuel, the last of the Judges and the first of the prophets founded the sons of the prophets who kept records during the kingdom period.
Then Samuel told the people the manner of the kingdom, and wrote it in a book, and laid it up before the Lord. 1 Samuel 10:25
4) King Manasseh destroyed every copy of the Law he could find. It was restored by King Josiah.
And Hilkiah the high priest said unto Shaphan the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the house of the Lord. And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he read it.And Shaphan the scribe came to the king, and brought the king word again, and said, Thy servants have gathered the money that was found in the house, and have delivered it into the hand of them that do the work, that have the oversight of the house of the Lord.And Shaphan the scribe shewed the king, saying, Hilkiah the priest hath delivered me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king. 2 Kings 22:8-10
4) Ezra the Scribe, after the Children of Israel returned from captivity under the Persians, collected the material and edited everything into what we have today.
For Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments. Ezra 7:10
And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that was before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring the book of the law of Moses, which the Lord had commanded to Israel. And Ezra the priest brought the law before the congregation both of men and women, and all that could hear with understanding, upon the first day of the seventh month. And he read therein before the street that was before the water gate from the morning until midday, before the men and the women, and those that could understand; and the ears of all the people were attentive unto the book of the law. And Ezra the scribe stood upon a pulpit of wood, which they had made for the purpose; and beside him stood Mattithiah, and Shema, and Anaiah, and Urijah, and Hilkiah, and Maaseiah, on his right hand; and on his left hand, Pedaiah, and Mishael, and Malchiah, and Hashum, and Hashbadana, Zechariah, and Meshullam. And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up: Nehemiah 8:1-5
Books were not readily available. To have a book to read from meant that Ezra had to first make (assemble) the parts of the book together.

Leave a comment

Filed under Bible Teaching, Education, History

“They Will Not Believe Me.”

The bush at St. Catherine’s Monastery, Sinai, which monastic tradition identifies as The Burning Bush.

In Exodus chapters 3 and 4 God spoke to Moses through the thorn bush that burned without being consumed.

1 Then Moses said, “What if they will not believe me or listen to what I say? For they may say, ‘The Lord has not appeared to you.’” 2 The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” And he said, “A staff.” 3 Then He said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from it. 4 But the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand and grasp it by its tail”—so he stretched out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand— 5 “that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you.”

6 The Lord furthermore said to him, “Now put your hand into your bosom.” So he put his hand into his bosom, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous like snow. 7 Then He said, “Put your hand into your bosom again.” So he put his hand into his bosom again, and when he took it out of his bosom, behold, it was restored like the rest of his flesh. 8 “If they will not believe you or heed the witness of the first sign, they may believe the witness of the last sign. 9 But if they will not believe even these two signs or heed what you say, then you shall take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground; and the water which you take from the Nile will become blood on the dry ground.”  Exodus 4

Moses said repeatedly that the elders of Israel would not believe him. This passage defines the word belief for the rest of the Word of God. As Abraham told the rich man in hades, “If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded even if someone rises from the dead.”

Josephus, the first century AD Jewish historian, tells the Romans that Moses is their lawgiver.

Belief, the way Moses uses it in Exodus, is a legal term. It is used the same way a jury foreman would use the word when he announces, “we believe the defendant is guilty.” Believe means to examine the evidence and come to a reasoned conclusion. That is way it is used in Exodus.

Modern secularists use the word belief to mean nothing more than a personal opinion. When they ask, “What are your beliefs?” on a subject, they mean nothing more than “What is your opinion?”

But the word Abraham uses when he talks to the rich man in Hades is best translated either persuaded or convinced. Examine the evidence. Be convinced, persuaded. Because if you are not convinced, persuaded by the words of Moses, nothing will convince you to believe.

1 Comment

Filed under Bible Teaching, Excerpts from our Nonfiction Books, History

The Religion of Physics IV: What is “Scientific Evidence?”


All quotes, unless otherwise noted, are by Stephen Hawking from his book A Brief History of Time.

“A theory is a good theory if it satisfies two requirements: It must accurately describe a large class of observations on the basis of a model that contains only a few arbitrary elements, and it must make definite predictions about the results of future observations.”

“Any physical theory is always provisional, in the sense that it is only a hypothesis; you can never prove it. No matter how many times the results of experiments agree with some theory, you can never be sure that the next time the result will not contradict the theory. On the other hand, you can disprove a theory by finding even a single observation that disagrees with the predictions of the theory.”

“There is a fundamental difference between religion, which is based on authority, and science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win, because it works.”

“If they will not believe you (Moses) or heed the witness of the first sign, they may believe the witness of the last sign. But if they will not believe even these two signs or heed what you say, then you shall take some water from the Nile and pour it on the dry ground; and the water which you take from the Nile will become blood on the dry ground.” Exodus 3: 8,9 NASB

In the Bible the word belief means intellectually examining the evidence, and accepting the evidence. The Bible uses the word belief the same way we think of a juror examining the evidence. The juror votes according to what he believes about the evidence. Actively following up on that evidence is faith and passively following up on the evidence is trust.

Anyone can examine evidence, come to certain conclusions about that evidence and believe that their conclusions are correct. Orville and Wilber Wright believed that a heavier than air machine could fly. Their faith in that belief built an airplane. After building the airplane, they trusted in what they built and flew it. Our beliefs can be incorrect. We can place our faith in things which are not true. We can trust in things which are not true and people who will let us down.

The difference between the religion of Stephen Hawking and the Bible is absolute truth. The Bible claims to be absolute truth. Though few people today believe that it is absolute truth, all honest people know that it claims to be absolute truth. The religion of Secular Humanism demands that there is no absolute truth.

A very tiny number of people ever gain access to the multimillion-dollar equipment necessary for modern physics experiments. Only a tiny number of that tiny number are privileged enough to set up and run their own experiments. Of these who run their own experiments, very few ever see the experiments of others. These physicists are trusting in the records of others. They believe that the total sum of the experiments performed worldwide will reduce or eliminate error. They have faith in the peer review process.

They also believe, with a dogmatic faith, that the records of the Bible are untrue, or at least unscientific. Yet the historic record of Moses meets every test for science. It has multiple, credible witnesses. It was repeated. It can be falsified. It accurately predicted the future. It is based on observation and reason, Men reject Moses, not because of science, but because their religion is opposed to Moses.

“What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands concerning the Word of Life.” 1 John 1:1. NASB This is both scientific and legal testimony. John is either telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth or he is lying.

The scientific information of the Bible records that the processes which govern the universe today are different from the processes which brought the universe and life on this planet into existence. These records are as scientific as the photographic plate which record the collision of antimatter with matter. As anyone can mistrust or disbelieve the photographic plate, or the interpretation of the information on that plate, so we can mistrust or disbelieve the scientific information recorded in the Bible.

Secular Humanists believe that the miracles of Moses were not scientific because they cannot duplicate them today. Yet these same men believe in peer-reviewed studies which they cannot duplicate, such as a supernova. The only difference is that they believe in the results of these studies, while they reject the historic accounts of Moses.

The scientific records of Moses have no less authority than the peer-reviewed studies produced today. The basic difference is the information. Modern peer-reviewed studied usually have false conclusions for the primary content. The actual scientific data is usually contained in footnotes, appendices and attachments. In the published articles the conclusions usually lead. I believe the reason for this common layout is the difficulty very educated men have understanding how the available data supports their conclusions.

By contrast, the scientific data in the Bible is clearly laid out. From the beginning of the Bible we must simply choose to believe or reject the clearly laid out evidence of the witnesses. The data in the Bible is scientific.

1 Comment

Filed under Bible Teaching, Current Issues, Politics, Excerpts from our Nonfiction Books, History, Scientific

Comments on The Little Prince by Antoine de Sainte-Exupery

“But if you tame me, my life will be filled with sunshine. …”
The fox to the Little Prince in the story of that name by Antoine de Sainte-Exupery

People have tried to make me like The Little Prince for many years. I have read excerpts from it. Usually I don’t even respond when people quote from it. They seem to know it very well and love it. Some of them are believers. I haven’t read the whole thing, and I didn’t feel qualified to comment.

This is going to anger some people, perhaps hurt some feelings. Since the first time I heard anything from it I knew it was a bad story, with a bad philosophy. It was never a charming fantasy to me. Today someone who is my friend quoted from it again, and I suddenly realized what I’ve been needing to say about it.

The fox claims he wanted to be tamed. He promised to love the Little Prince and said that their relationship would make him better. Unfortunately, this is not the way it works in real life. The following describes people who asked God to give them laws and promised to obey them.

And all the people answered together, and said, “All that the LORD hath spoken we will do.” And Moses returned the words of the people unto the LORD. Exodus 19:8

Isaiah later recounts how God dealt with His chosen people, how they returned His love and care for them.

Now will I sing to my wellbeloved a song of my beloved touching his vineyard.
My wellbeloved hath a vineyard in a very fruitful hill: And he fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes.
And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt me and my vineyard.
What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it? Wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes?
And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard: I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be eaten up; and break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down:
And I will lay it waste: it shall not be pruned, nor digged; but there shall come up briers and thorns: I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it.
For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.
Isaiah 5:1-7

This is one of those passages hated by people who want a God of love. Even in the Scriptures, people questioned God’s judgment on their sin. Man asked to be tamed, whether by promising to follow the law or by accepting the atonement of Christ and becoming a believer. Part of the process is the purging of sin and rebellion and the purifying of a vessel fit for the Master’s use. But man squirms under this taming and instead invents a god that will be all loving and pleasant, one that will make him special, unique, important like the Little Prince’s rose.

“One sees clearly only with the heart. What is essential is invisible to the eye,” says the fox in the same part of the story. Yet the Scriptures say, “The heart of man is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked, who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9

I’m sorry, you who love The Little Prince. I can’t let it go as a charming fantasy. It’s philosophy. Everyone admits that. And I have to stand by my original assessment. It’s a bad story, with a bad philosophy.

1 Comment

Filed under Current Issues, Politics, Writing, Reviewing, Publishing, and about Blogging

Who Do You Serve?

“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Matthew 6:23-25

An oft-stated goal of Secular Humanism is to put every citizen in slavery by debt. They conceal this purpose by such phrases as “loyalty to the federal family.” On facebook some people said they could be both Secular Humanists and good Christians. Either these people are Christians, but ignorant that Secular Humanism is a religion seeking Christianity’s destruction, or they are wolves in sheep’s clothing trying to destroy Christianity from within.

And Elijah came unto all the people and said, “How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: if Baal, then follow him.” And the people answered him not a word.
1 Kings 18:20-22

“Then Moses stood in the gate of the camp, and said, Who is on the LORD’s side? let him come unto me. And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together unto him. And he said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbor.”
Exodus 32:25-27

We are not advocating killing anyone. But this is a serious matter. Any time we bring up this matter, Christians ignore it or become angry. We are not trying to make enemies, but “friendship with the world” really does make you God’s enemy.

1 Comment

Filed under Bible Teaching, Current Issues, Politics

Giants, Genetics and Original Sin

After the death of Virgil in the First Century BC, the Roman Emperor Augustus Caesar posthumously published his Aeneid. Caesar Augustus loved this book because it took the history of Rome, romanticized it and treated it as “prophecy.” Virgil built on an existing legend about the founding of Rome. He expanded a story around that legend based on the Odyssey. The most famous part of the book is the story of the Trojan Horse.

The hero of the Aeneid, Aeneas, son of Venus, was one of Hector’s commanders. He fled Troy with a small band of Trojans when it fell to the Greeks. They built ships and sailed to Italy, with many adventures along the way. They were commanded by the gods to join with the existing people in Italy and to build Rome. Aeneas and the Trojans were opposed and attacked by the Latins, led by Turnus. Turnus is described by some scholars as having a mother who was a nymph, and the Aeneid states that his sister was a nymph. In the final scene, Turnus and Aeneas fought to the death for Lavinia, the daughter of the old Latin King. By killing Turnus and marrying Lavinia, Aeneas united the Trojans with the Latins.

Both Turnus and Aeneas are described as giants. Aeneas challenged Turnus to single combat soon after the arrival of the Trojans, but Turnus was afraid of the larger Aeneas, so Turnus repeatedly stirred up many cities against the Trojans.

At the end of the duel, Turnus picks up and throws a stone with one hand which Virgil describes as requiring 12 men of today to lift. Though the giant Turnus was stronger with one arm than 12 of Caesar’s legionnaires, he was no match in size or strength to Aeneas. Yet the Iliad repeatedly describes the giant Hector as much larger than any other Trojan. Hector’s mother, Hecuba, is described by some accounts as being the daughter of a river god.

Hector was equally fearful of facing Achilles in single combat because he was so much smaller than Achilles, son of Thetis. Thetis is described by some accounts as a nymph, by some as equal to Neptune and one of the descendants of the Titans, and by others a creator-goddess. Though no other Greek was able to stand before Hector, the larger and stronger Achilles humiliated and defeated Hector in single combat.

That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose. And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown. Gen 6:2-4

“Sons of God” has two possible meanings. It either means that line of Adam’s son Seth, spoken of in the Scriptures as having descendants who “began to call upon the name of the Lord” polluted itself by intermarrying with pagans. or that the “Sons of God” were fallen angels.

Normal men filled with the Spirit of God did superhuman feats of strength. Jacob and Moses both lifted a great stone off a well that seems normally to have required many people to move. Samson (although he does not exemplify the best in God’s servants) performed stunning feats of strength. So it is possible that the descendants of these earlier, formerly godly people, who intermarried with pagans, might have produced “giants” or “mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”

Many ancient sources claim that the “giants” and “mighty men of old” were pagans who believed in many gods and goddesses. Their parents were at least part “divine.” The phrase “Sons of God” is the also found in beginning of the book of Job where the phrase clearly means angels or demons. Some say that Gilgamesh of ancient Mesopotamia, who was said to be “two thirds god,” Hercules, the son of the god Zeus, and other ancient “superheroes,” Herakles in the Indus Valley of India, the Viracocha of the Incas, and even Nimrod of the Scriptures, may have all been the same person or his descendants.

This is food for thought, a point on which good men can disagree. The “superpowers” described in ancient documents could be the remnants of God’s great blessing, or they could be indications that the great deceiver, Satan, used his rebellious angels to try to corrupt man beyond his fall and drive a greater wedge between the Creator and His creatures. In any case, the “superpowered” actions governed by enormous pride, the conflicted beliefs about God or “the gods,” and the despairing or outright evil decisions made by these demigods and heroes of old, and the people who lived around them, indicate the workings of our fallen nature and Satan, the “accuser.”

Understanding genetics can help us understand what the sin nature is and how sin is passed on. Some scholars arrive at the interpretation of the Sons of God being Seth’s line because they do not believe that angels or demons have the power to interact with the human race genetically. This position requires belief that the genetic character of original sin literally makes man “born in sin” only because of Adam’s sin.

In the passage in Genesis these “sons of God” are clearly male, spoken of as taking wives. If they were angels or demons, this would call into question the genetic character of Adam’s original sin. Man could not be held fully responsible for his need for redemption if these were non-humans introducing corruption into the genetic material.

In many ancient cultures, most notably the Egyptians, inheritances of property and position passed from mother to daughter. Mitochondrial DNA is DNA in a cell outside a nucleus. It is passed from mother to daughter without any genetic recombination. This explains Christ’s redemptive power, as the “one born of woman,” having Mary’s mitochondrial DNA passed on but not Adam’s original sin.

1 Comment

Filed under Bible Teaching, Current Issues, Politics, Excerpts from our Nonfiction Books