Letters for July  27, 2017

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No real basis for outlandish anti-Semitism

It’s surprising to find at least some of our supposedly educated college professors are actually teaching antisemitism to their young students.

Actually, it’s more like disgusting than surprising.  Some of it could be due to efforts on the part of some Muslim leaders, who knows?

In the 1930s Muslim kids played soccer with Jewish kids and they all got along just fine.  That is, until Hitler paid the Grand Mufti of Iran to go into Palestine and spread hatred for Jews and to this day, although long dead, Hitler still has influence on the minds of Muslims around the world.

In the year 325 Constantine ordered some 52 Gospels destroyed, leaving us with little information about the early life of Jesus. Biblical scholars, however, seem to agree that Jesus was a rabbi.  Rabbis were required to not only be successful but married as well but this is another story that remains debatable.

There has often been the complaint that Jews invaded Israel and Palestine but that story belongs in the fake news category.

Jews had long lived in Palestine and were the majority for several centuries.

Notwithstanding their battle with the Babylonians and then Romans, along came the Crusades, many Jews were kicked out of their country or killed off by the Crusaders.

In the meantime, Arabs settled in Palestine, immigrating from other parts of the Middle East.  They spoke no common language.

Majority populations in Israel and Palestine shifted from century to century and at one time Christians were in the majority.

In total, best estimates have the total Jewish world population at around 15 million and Israel’s population at around seven million.

Compared to the Catholic Church which has over one billion members and the Muslims who also have over one billion faithful one must wonder why such an outlandish reaction to Jews even exists.

Unlike the British, Germans, Dutch and other countries, Jews have never invaded another country and never started a war except to defend themselves.

There is evidence that the Palestinians hate them not just for religious reasons but simply because they turned Israel into a prosperous small county when the Palestinians did nothing.  In other words, they are jealous of the accomplishments the Jews brought to the area.

While the Jews have some 33 Nobel Prizes to their credit the Palestinians have only one and that was for Yassar Arafat.

We may be looking at the same animal instinct we see when a pack of wolves try to take down an injured animal but this time it’s Muslims with their billion population trying to take down the tiny world population of Jews.

 

Bob Wilson — Franklin, N.C.

Putin already has absolute power

Do Donald Trump and his close political allies really believe that the long-standing F.B.I., C.I.A., N.S.A. and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence merit less credibility than his “recent” acquaintance Russian President Vladimir Putin?  These are some of the finest intelligence agencies in the world. Yet he publicly derides them in favor of the words of Putin. Or does Trump protest too loudly and too often in order to keep his supporters deceived with a smoke screen while trying to hide the truth about his ties with Russia?

Stop and think for a minute, though, what the “news” coming from the Trump organization has been like during his six months of turmoil. There has been precious little honesty and transparency coming from his camp. He has tried, instead, to re-live his fantasy TV show, “The Apprentice,” with the entire American public as his audience. He has made millions purveying fantasy to people. But, his play-acting won’t cut it with other world leaders as well as the majority of Americans who are doubtful about his leadership and integrity.

Is the Republican Congress so drunk on the power gained illegally in the last election that they choose to sacrifice our form of government for temporary power? Have they set an alarm clock to wake them up at a certain time? Are they waiting on some imminent political catastrophe to make a move to bridle our run-away “leader” in hopes of installing Mike Pence? Are they attentive to the distinct possibility that Pence may be as sullied as Trump? Amazingly, there are signs of needed arousal in the Republican Party with the stunning revelation of the Donald Jr. meeting with Russians in 2016 in an effort to obtain damning information on Hillary Clinton. What more will it take to pry Republicans loose from their commitment to the first president who was 70 years old when elected, has no military service and has never been elected to a public office? Have some of them forgotten that loyalty to the United States should trump “loyalty” to the president of the United States and any political party?

Let’s hope this almost sudden awareness by a few conservative politicians will trigger a widespread focus on the real problem confronting America – Donald Trump and the ever-present cloud of suspicion about his political and business ties to Russia. If Congress allows Trump to work in conjunction with Putin on cybersecurity we may soon be saying, “Goodbye, America.” Then Putin can shift from influence to control of the U.S.A.

Putin and Trump both want absolute power. The huge difference is Putin already has it. He will use that knowledge to out-smart and out-maneuver Trump along with our slumbering politicians in Washington. That is if they don’t wake up and take control.

 

Dave Waldrop — Webster, N.C.

We are justified by the faith of Christ

Again I write, the upcoming words that are worthy of our respect, a high regard.

“I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: which is not another gospel.” Galatians 1:6,7

“Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law; for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.” Galatians 2:16.

“I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness comes by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.” Galatians 2:20

“Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Galatians 3:6

“So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.” Galatians 3:9

“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone that hangs on a tree.’” Galatians 3:13

“For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise; but God gave it to Abraham by promise.” Galatians 3:18

“For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:26.

 

Floyd E. Cruse — Franklin, N.C.

Who, do you think you are ?

This question may seem a bit sarcastic when directed towards someone, but everyone has or are searching for an answer when it’s directed internally towards one’s self, as in what is it to be human, how do I defined myself, is there a reason why I exist, is there more to one’s self that can be known? With all the enjoyment of freedom and prosperity we are blessed with, this is one of the dominant questions asked by many young people, what is it to be human?

In an age of dismantling foundations for life and living, society seems as though it’s fractured and crumbling with little to uphold it. The question of “what it is to be human” seems elusive and we’re not fully sure we can answer the question, because it’s too big to grasp. Man defines himself as more promising for the future, but we seem to have little trust in man from all the failures of the past. We look for satisfaction within ourselves but can’t seem to find it. This dilemma is temporarily smoothed over by many distractions in life, but this inner searching is what we all feel. To be human has various definitions, but where exactly does the “me or I” exist?

Many feel the physical body is our being, and expresses who we are. But any doctor will tell you when searching deep into the human body, they never find the actual you. Your body is a vessel which you reside in, until the two separate, and the physical reverts back to earth, and the “I” or the essence of who we are which is spiritual and lives on or it ceases, but if it ceases where did it come from in the first place, and for what reason?  The manual for life and living, the Bible,  describes it “We fight not against people of earth … We are fighting against the spiritual powers of evil. (Ephesians 6:12)

If we are spiritual beings looking for something that makes us feel connected and complete, then by all means we should search out the ultimate spiritual being the “I Am,” God, in which we are all created by, and in His likeness as spiritual beings, with a meaningful relationship with Him, as well as with others who are also created in His likeness, whether we believe in Him or not. This is truly worth thinking upon seriously, and in depth. This is in part, a beginning of knowing what it means to be human – not perfect, but in relationships that are more reflective of God’s likeness. If your life is doing well without God, so be it, we have the freedom to dis-believe as well as believe. I, as well as others have found nothing else which makes sense for living life, and the relationship that “I” enjoy with the “I Am,” God, who made me is what “I” was missing, but have found.

 

Deni Shepard — Franklin, N.C.

Free parking, cancer treatments and the Ark

I love free parking! So when I went to the Ark Encounter, and found out it would be $10 to park, I kept going. The first house I came to had a big sign out in the yard, so I went up to the door and was greeted by a 96-year-old WW2 vet. I spent the next two hours listening to Julian’s life story, and viewing an entire wall of photos of him and his wife pictured next to Willie Nelson, and other celebrities.

He told me how 12 years ago, he had been diagnosed with metastatic colon cancer. The doctor scheduled him for surgery to remove all or part of his colon. A friend suggested he eat a small amount of “hedge apple” 2 or 3 times a day, which he did. Three weeks later, he went in for his surgery. After his pre-surgery scans, he was told they could not do the surgery because the equipment was broken. That’s because it showed no sign of the extensive cancer that had been found earlier. At 97-plus now, Julian still has his colon and there has been no sign of cancer since.

He went to a local TV station and told a reporter his story, and was laughed out of the studio.

Julian estimates he has given hedge apples to about 400 others. When asked how many of those people did not get the desired result, he held up his hand and made a zero with his fingers. He said that as long as they did not receive conventional treatment, and followed directions, all of them were successful.

Wouldn’t it be great if the cure for cancer was found to be in a fruit that is plentiful, costs nothing, and is easily available to all?

His granddaughter gave me a ride to the Ark, the largest timber frame structure in the world, built by a crew of 200-plus Amish craftsmen. It is a full scale replica of the ark that Noah, the last of the patriarchs to live over 900 years, had spent decades building. He had warned friends and neighbors of coming judgment, but won no converts, except his three sons, their wives and his wife. (Hebrews 11:7)

Some try to dismiss the flood as a myth. However, the flood provides the best explanation for the millions of dead things, buried in rock layers, laid down by water, all over the earth. That’s because when things die, they are consumed by scavengers and nothing is left.  Most fossils were formed, as living things were quickly buried before they had a chance to decay. Today, they serve as a reminder that God keeps His word.

Jesus referred to Noah and the flood in Matthew 24:37-39, and used it to illustrate the soon-to-come judgment upon the Jews of His generation, who had rejected their long-awaited Messiah. Peter also compared Noah’s flood to another judgment day, yet to come, when the earth will be destroyed by fire (2 Peter 3:3-7). Often scoffers ignore such warnings.

The sign in Julian’s yard? It reads, “Jesus said, I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Just as no one escaped the flood unless they entered the ark, no one will escape the coming judgment, unless they come to the Father, through Jesus Christ, His Son. Revelation 20:11-15 describes that fearful day, when those who have died will face God Himself, and there will be no other escape from that final judgment, described as “the second death.”

God is merciful and always gives warnings before judgment. He is gracious and always makes a way of escape. But, He is also holy and cannot allow sin to go unpunished. Since He has freely provided the Way, will you, by faith, get on board the ark (Jesus), while you can still escape the coming judgment?

 

Ed Hill — Franklin, N.C.

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