Thursday, October 27, 2011

ZEUS = LUCIFER

With all the movies coming out recently that pertain to the Greek/Roman Mythology, I thought it rather interesting when I came across this blog today and thought I would share.  With many appreciations to Rob Skiba II!


The following information is taken from the e-book series:
 
http://www.seedtheseries.com/blog/BR206.html


To the Greeks, there was no higher deity than Zeus. He ruled supreme in the ancient world for three thousand years! Like Nimrod, he was known by many names. In the far north countries, he was known as Odin. The Egyptians associated him with Amon. The Hindus thought of him as Indra. The Romans knew him as Jupiter and the Assyrians, Medes, Persians and Babylonians appear to have known him as "Bel" or even Jupiter Belus. In fact, some even refer to the Tower of Babel as the Temple of Jupiter Belus. In every case, he was known as the "king of the gods," the "father of gods and men" and the ruler of the air or sky.
As mentioned in the The Days of Noah blog, I believe Zeus was actually Lucifer himself. If he is indeed the Devil of our Bible, then the Greek model of mythology perfectly illustrates how Satan works. Just look at all the things this powerful, ruling Olympian is and does, and you will understand the person, character and actions of the most famous and powerful Fallen Angel of them all! 

Here are just a few characteristics to consider when comparing Zeus with Lucifer:
  • He was full of pride and arrogance.
  • He waged war against the gods above him.
  • He was a master of disguise and deceit.
  • He wielded mighty power on earth.
  • He was known as the "sky god", often referred to as the "lord of the sky".
  • He breed with the women of earth to create god-men.
  • He was known as the "god of this world" to many of the ancient cultures.
Let's see what the Scriptures have to say about Lucifer to see if he is indeed the one the ancients worshiped as Zeus.
"Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don't believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don't understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God."  - 2 Corinthians 4:4 (NLT) [emphasis mine]
We have to consider the cultures of the people mentioned in the Bible. For instance, when Paul is writing to the Ephesians, he is writing to the people who lived in Ephesus. That much is obvious. But now, let's take a trip to Ephesus to get the context for what Paul was saying, who he was speaking to and what was going on at that time.

There, I stood in the lecture hall of Tyrannus where Paul had daily discussions (for two years). I saw the place where the new believers burned their scrolls of sorcery (the total value of which was 50,000 drachmas - each drachma being roughly equal to a days wage!). And I sat in the theater where the riot took place. And that is where I want to draw your attention here in order to make a point. Let's look at the story as written by Luke in the Book of Acts:


"About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way. A silversmith named Demetrius, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought in a lot of business for the craftsmen there. He called them together, along with the workers in related trades, and said: “You know, my friends, that we receive a good income from this business. And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. [note: they were led astray from the worship of Artemis, who was an immortal daughter of Zeus - in other words, a Final Tier god] He says that gods made by human hands are no gods at all. [implying blasphemy from their point of view. Those people believed these gods were real] There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited; and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty.”

When they heard this, they were furious and began shouting: “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” Soon the whole city was in an uproar. The people seized Gaius and Aristarchus, Paul’s traveling companions from Macedonia, and all of them rushed into the theater together. Paul wanted to appear before the crowd, but the disciples would not let him. Even some of the officials of the province, friends of Paul, sent him a message begging him not to venture into the theater.

 The assembly was in confusion: Some were shouting one thing, some another. Most of the people did not even know why they were there. The Jews in the crowd pushed Alexander to the front, and they shouted instructions to him. He motioned for silence in order to make a defense before the people. But when they realized he was a Jew, they all shouted in unison for about two hours: “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” [because the Greeks did not want to hear about the God of the Jews]

The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: “Fellow Ephesians, doesn’t all the world know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the temple of the great Artemis and of her image, which fell from heaven[that should give us a clue as to the true nature of this "deity"] Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to calm down and not do anything rash. You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess. If, then, Demetrius and his fellow craftsmen have a grievance against anybody, the courts are open and there are proconsuls. They can press charges. If there is anything further you want to bring up, it must be settled in a legal assembly. As it is, we are in danger of being charged with rioting because of what happened today. In that case we would not be able to account for this commotion, since there is no reason for it.” After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly."    - Acts 19:-23-41 (NIV) [emphasis mine] 

This passage shows that there was clearly a battle going on for the souls of men. On the one hand, the Ephesians thought Artemis was the key to their salvation. On the other, the Jews under Paul's leadership were trying to show them the Way (of Christ). With that in mind, read what Paul had to say to the Believers there in Ephesus when he wrote the Book of Ephesians:
"And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest."  - Ephesians 2:1-3 (NASB) [emphasis mine]
Do you see how an understanding of cultural context - in this case the worship of the Greek gods - brings this Scripture that much more to life, with deeper meaning and significance? Paul was writing to people who "formerly walked according to the course of this world," people who followed the "prince of the power of the air." We find multiple meanings here. The gods were up in the sky. The one who ruled over them - at least in the mind of the Greeks - was Zeus!

Barnes' Notes on the Bible has this to say about the identity of the "prince and power of the air" mentioned by Paul:
According to the prince of the power of the air - see Ephesians 6:12; compare the notes at 2 Corinthians 4:4. There can be no doubt that Satan is here intended, and that Paul means to say that they were under his control as their leader and prince. The phrase, "the prince of the power," may mean either "the powerful prince," or it may mean that this prince had power over the air, and lived and reigned there particularly. The word "prince" - ἄρχοντα archonta - "Archon," means one first in authority and power, and is then applied to anyone who has the pre-eminence or rule. It is applied to Satan, or the chief of the fallen angels, as where he is called "the prince - ἄρχων archon - of the devils," Matthew 9:34Matthew 12:24Mark 3:22Luke 11:15; "the prince of this world," John 12:31;John 14:30John 16:11. [emphasis mine]
So, Paul was keenly aware of who and what he was up against. Which is why he wrote things like:
"For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places."  - Ephesians 6:12 (NLT) [emphasis mine]
To him, in that day and age, the battle was very real. It was a battle between God and the gods. But is this proof enough that Zeus was Satan? Probably the most direct reference in Scripture that would lead us to believe this, can be found the Book of Revelation (which has already been quoted in my blog, "72 And A Red Moon Rising"):
"I know that you live in the city where Satan has his throne, yet you have remained loyal to me. You refused to deny me even when Antipas, my faithful witness, was martyred among you there in Satan’s city."  - Revelation 2:13 (NLT) [emphasis mine]
Here are a few other (more indirect) references that I believe point to Zeus as being none other than Lucifer:
"How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High."  - Isaiah 14:12-14 (KJV)
From a Biblical perspective, if Zeus is indeed Satan (Lucifer), it is easy to see how he weakened the nations. He was the dominant god of antiquity, worshipped all over the known world by the time of Christ. Zeus also demonstrated his arrogance and pride by taking a stand against his father (and the other Titans). He waged a war that won him a throne in the heights of the clouds known as Mt. Olympus.
"And he [Jesus] said unto them, 'I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.' "
- Luke 10:18
Zeus was well known for his association with lightning.

When you realize that Zeus was Lucifer himself, you will see the New Testament in a whole new light. You will have a greater understanding about what the First Century Apostles were up against, and most importantly, you will have an even greater appreciation for who Yeshua was and what He (and His Apostles) accomplished too! 










Tuesday, October 4, 2011

THE SURPASING RIGHTEOUSNESS

Jesus said in Matthew 5:20 - "For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven."

Earlier in Scripture Isaiah 64:6 states, "All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away."

 Of course it is true, none of us is perfect.  We all make mistakes.  We then have to find perfect rightness or righteousness outside of ourselves.  Jesus said to the people of that day (and His words speak down through the years to today) that you must find that perfect, surpassing righteousness even beyond the Jewish religious hierarchy.  Only then will you be able to enter into the kingdom of heaven.


Well, if nobody is perfect and the best religious leaders can't supply what we need to be right with God and grant us entry into the kingdom of heaven than who can?  


Only someone who lived a perfect life, was tempted in every way that life could possibly offer but did not yield, taught a better way of living, and sacrificed them-self - could qualify as a candidate for that higher, surpassing standard of righteousness we needed.  Only God in human form could accomplish this goal.  He did.  His name is Jesus.  "For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin." - Hebrews 4:15

All other religions of the world declare a path YOU have to take in order for YOU to attain through works of your own somehow a way back to oneness with God because our relationship with God is broken, we are all fallen or imperfect beings.  All other world religions are YOU-CENTERED. 


Christianity is Christ centered.  Jesus centered.  He is the one who provided everything.  Jesus supplied a better way of living, provided Himself as "the Way, the Truth, and the Life" and a standard of righteousness that punched the believers ticket for heaven.  He is God the Father's love gift to humanity.   

With a gift comes the choice of acceptance or rejection.  If you have not accepted Jesus as your ultimate standard, as your surpassing righteousness, as your God - then I urge you strongly to consider Him and His love for you.


This, for that lack of a better term, "creationism" - going through life believing you can create events and relationships as you see fit is a lie and illusion from the pit of Hell.  Jesus says, "apart from me you can do nothing" (John 15:5).  "He [Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.  For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him.  He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.  And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.  For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross." (Colossians 1:15-20)


There's a better choice, if you have not chosen Christ as your Savior.  There really is somebody much better than you and so much better than me that there is NO comparison.  Yet, Jesus did not stop being God the Son, He just loved us so much He clothed Himself with humanity and showed it.  Believe in His life, death, and resurrection and you will be saved from an eternity without Him.  Believe in something greater than yourself, believe in Him as your surpassing righteousness and one of the many benefits is citizenship in heaven.  Hope to see you there.

 

MOTIVE

Matthew 5:16 vs. Matthew 6:1

Both of these verses deals with motive.

Matthew 5:16 encourages your "light to shine before men" and "your good deeds" to be seen, SO THAT there might be proper praise given - to God the Father.

Matthew 6:1 discourages you to perform your "acts of righteousness before men," SO THAT you may be seen by them.

If you read Matthew 6 carefully you will see that God desires privacy and intimacy with His family.  Your "righteous acts", "giving to the needy", praying and fasting should all be done in "secret".  In Matthew 6:6 Jesus says, "But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen.  Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you."  I can just hear God in modern speak encouraging us, "The world does not need to know your business, so get alone with me and tell me what's up."  Now verse eight goes on to say that "your Father in heaven knows what you need before you ask him", but that should not stop us from seeking Him out in private and asking anyway.  I believe He loves those one-on-one times together and the more time we spend with Him like that the more we will too.

I believe the more time we spend with the Lord, the more discernment He will bless us with concerning motive.  We can also make it a point of prayer in our everyday prayers to Him.  Prayer for motive based on the end result being God's Glory.  Why do you encourage, help out a struggling person or family, bless someone with lunch or whatever God lays on your heart?  It should be so that God receives praise out of everything you are doing.  Our lives should be an eternal, worshipful, glorifying display of living to God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit that draws other believers to praise Him and non-believers to accept Him.

Let us check our motive and make sure to spend some private time with The Lord.  His rewards are awesome!  Men's rewards - not so much.