Archive for the ‘israel’ Tag

My Turn: ‘Eye for an eye’ shows neither strength or courage | Juneau Empire – Alaska’s Capital City Online Newspaper   Leave a comment

My Turn: ‘Eye for an eye’ shows neither strength or courage | Juneau Empire – Alaska’s Capital City Online Newspaper.

I’ve pretty much stayed off this topic because I can’t see a “right” side in this conflict.

However …

This needs to be pointed out. Hamas killed three teenagers FIRST! Then Israeli settlers killed a Palestinian teenager in retaliation.

Neither death was righteous, but if you pay attention to who started doing the killing this time … it was Hamas. I suspect if you look back at similar incidents, it’s almost always Hamas (or like organizations) that start the blood shed.

It doesn’t make Israel right for what they’re doing, but neither is Hamas/Palestinians correct in what they are doing.

Both sides need to STOP and NEVER start again.

Posted July 16, 2014 by aurorawatcherak in Common sense

Tagged with , , , ,

On Human Bondage   Leave a comment

The apostle Paul had been a Pharisee and Jewish legal scholar before his encounter with Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus. Jews believed that society and culture were based upon instructions originating from God the Father and not from humans. They saw no difference between the social, legal or political systems of their day. They were all one and the same. As a Jew, Paul would have had no objection to a legalistic social order so long as that society was based upon God’s word. All of Jewish life was based on a theocratic political system in which there were no distinctions between social, political or religious spheres.

In the early years of Israel, the people were largely free to conduct themselves within their tribes as they saw fit. Tribes selected leaders and conflicts where resolved by consultation with “judges”, who spoke for God. Later in their history, the Israelites demanded a king. God warned that they wouldn’t like what they got, but they insisted. However, even the king was subject to the authority of God. He didn’t rule in his own right. He answered to God. When Saul turned out exactly how Samuel had warned he would, God allowed him to destroy himself and replaced him with David — a (flawed) man after God’s own heart who knew that he was answerable to God. Even David let the power go to his head and he stumbled and when you read the account of the kings, there are few that followed God and more that followed the lust of their power. Many of the kings of Israel chose to worship idols as well.

Ancient Israel is recorded in the Bible as frequently needing to repent of building temples to idols and joining with nearby pagan cultures in practices of which God did not approve. By Paul’s time as a young student in Jerusalem, the Pharisees comprised about 20% of the population. They had devised a very strict religious code to help steer themselves and their society away from the moral degradation of the greater Greek society around them. They met with some success, but their king was still a hot mess.

By Jesus’ day, there was still the understanding that God was the ultimate authority, but the political system of Israel was entangled with the Roman Empire. Being as Israel had been a theocracy, the political system’s entanglement with the Roman Empire meant the religious system of Israel was very much in the thrall of the Empire, even though the people didn’t realize it.  Jesus challenged both the authority of the Temple and of the Roman government. His authority came from a much higher source than either of these two hierarchies, which is why — apart from it being God’s will — they killed Him. Christians understand that it as a wholly spiritual event pre-ordained for salvation, but from a secular political view, Jesus died because He was civilly disobedient. The Temple authorities thought He was bucking their power structure (He was, just not in the way that they thought) and the Romans thought He meant to proclaim Himself king (He was, just not in the way that they thought).

Understanding Christian relationship with the state starts with the understanding that in order to serve God, we may have to break the law.

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