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JERUSALEM-During the last days of the kingdom of Judah, the Prophet Jeremiah warned the residents of Jerusalem of their impending captivity at the hands of the Babylonian army. But instead of heeding that warning message, the princes of King Zedekiah’s administration attacked the messenger and plunged him into the depths of a miry dungeon (Jeremiah 38:1-6).
One of Jeremiah’s accusers, Gedaliah the son of Pashur, had his name stamped on a small clay seal that was discovered about 600 feet south of the Temple Mount. Dr. Eilat Mazar, one of Israel’s top archaeologists, found the bulla earlier this year, in mint condition, while wet-sifting debris excavated under a tower at the north end of the City of David,the original site of ancient Jerusalem.
In the summer of 2007, Mazar, whose grandfather was the late Prof. Benjamin Mazar(also an archeologist), began an emergency dig near the top of Jerusalem’s famous Stepped Stone Structure in order to repair a collapsing tower. But what started as a reconstruction project quickly turned into a fascinating collection of new discoveries. Under the tower, she found a rich assemblage of pottery and other finds. After dating the pottery, Mazar concluded that the tower must have been built by Nehemiah after the Jews returned from Babylonian captivity to rebuild the temple and repair the walls around Jerusalem.
Included underneath Nehemiah’s tower were numerous remains and artifacts, including the Gedaliah bulla, that date to the final years of the first temple period, during the reign of Zedekiah, Judah’s last king.
In 2005, Mazar found another seal with the name of Jehucal the son of Shelemiah,mentioned twice in the book of Jeremiah. The Jehucal bulla was found on the platform above the Stepped Stone Structure, where Dr. Mazar has uncovered a small section of what used to be King David’s palace.
”We found the bulla of Jehucal inside the palace structure,” Mazar told reporters. “This time, we found the bulla of Gedaliah outside the wall, just at the foot of the same spot we found Jehucal.” The two must have been connected somehow, she said.
Both princes, the Bible relates, unsuccessfully petitioned for Jeremiah’s execution and were responsible for his imprisonment on two separate occasions. During Jeremiah’s second internment, the Babylonian armies besieged and demolished Jerusalem, bound their Jewish captives in chains,including Zedekiah and carted them off into Babylonian captivity.
Incredibly, the Prophet Jeremiah managed to survive the destruction and captivity.
Mazar’s two clay seals managed to survive as well,buried under 2,600 years’ worth of debris. “It’s not often,” Mazar said, “that such discoveries happen in which real figures of the past shake off the dust of history and so vividly revive the stories of the Bible and authenticity of God's Word!
Irenaus a student of Polycarp who is himself a student of John the apostle.http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/irenaeus-book1.html
Going through the above link makes me tremble at how arrogant we christian are.Even though materials of how early churches conducts themselves are available especially through today's press the button world,yet we tends to ignore sound doctrines.
Check out what Irenaeus says in Chapter X.-Unity of the Faith of the Church Throughout the Whole World starting from 2. "As I have already observed, the Church, having received this preaching and this faith, although scattered throughout the whole world, yet, as if occupying but one house, carefully preserves it. She also believes these points [of doctrine] just as if she had but one soul, and one and the same heart, and she proclaims them, and teaches them, and hands them down, with perfect harmony, as if she possessed only one mouth. For, although the languages of the world are dissimilar, yet the import of the tradition is one and the same. For the Churches which have been planted in Germany do not believe or hand down anything different, nor do those in Spain, nor those in Gaul, nor those in the East, nor those in Egypt, nor those in Libya, nor those which have been established in the central regions of the world. But as the sun, that creature of God, is one and the same throughout the whole world, so also the preaching of the truth shineth everywhere, and enlightens all men that are willing to come to a knowledge of the truth. Nor will any one of the rulers in the Churches, however highly gifted he may be in point of eloquence, teach doctrines different from these (for no one is greater than the Master); nor, on the other hand, will he who is deficient in power of expression inflict injury on the tradition. For the faith being ever one and the same, neither does one who is able at great length to discourse regarding it, make any addition to it, nor does one, who can say but little diminish it."
This man is a student of Polycarp who was personally taught by John the Apostle.He knows the TRUTH.And he was one of the greatest fighter of heresies creeping slowly into the churches then just like Polycarp.Going through his writings makes me realized that we are truly deceived by observing all these doctrines introduced by Satan himself! Example the early churches never believed in a trinity but nowdays trinity is a core doctrine in just about any church you came across.Makes me wonder if John the apostle leant all these from Jesus Christ why then didn't we follow suits?Mathew 15:9 says, "But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." And further down in verse 13 to 14 Jesus said, "Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up.Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch."
Polycarp was burnt at the stake a martyr.Polycarp fought against the introduction of the observance of Easter in place of what Jesus taught and observed and His Apostles also observed.John observed passover thus Polycarp vigorously fought against Easter.
Hebrew 10:26 "For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins"
Church Eras of Revelation Are Historic as well as Prophetic
Look at the opening verse of Revelation!
“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his SERVANTS things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John” (Revelation 1:1). This was revealed to “show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass.” That is, PROPHECY of the future.
I have often heard people saying that we are not to delve into eschatology as time will come according to how God wills it and in His own timing.We should be very careful with what we say especially those with positions in churches as everything we said will be used against us.The above verse shows that God wants us to know what will happen in the future as the word servants is plural.It is not just that you don't have the time or you don't want to study Biblical prophecies which makes up a third of the Bible,that you are telling the congregation to follow suit.The Devil is using you without you knowing.The Bible encourages us to learn these as well as prophesy but Satan says DON'T! Revelation 10:11 "And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings."
There were only two church eras mentioned in the Bible that were commended by God for holding on to the TRUTH till the end.The Smyrna era and Philadelphia.We are now in the lukewarm era,of the Laodicean.That alone should ring the bell for those with a right state of mind!If we want to be favorable in God's sight we should at least try and study the history of these churches and what makes them so special in God's sight.Don't forget they are also prophecy for the churches.
What makes the Smyrna era so special?Let us see!
Below is a description of Polycarp the bishop of the church in Smyrna as described by All about religion site.
Polycarp is a celebrated figure in the. A direct pupil of the apostle John, Polycarp lived between 70 and 155 A.D., connecting him to both the biblical apostles and the age of the early church fathers. Several ancient sources document the contributions of Polycarp to Christianity, including his letters written to the church at Philippi, in which he encourages the members to remain strong in their faith and to flee from materialism. He also instructs the members in the proper handling of financial dishonesty that was creeping into the church. Polycarp was personally appointed by John the apostle and served as the bishop of the church at Smyrna (modern day Izmir), and was recognized as one of the early combatants of Christian heresies. He rejected the teachings of Marcion, an influential heretic who tried to create a "new brand" of Christianity by redefining God and rejecting Old Testament teachings. In his well-known thesis, Polycarp combats Gnostic heresies that were beginning to spread throughout the Christian church.
Polycarp as shown above fought against newly introduced doctrines which was slowly being absorbed into the early churches but as of NOW have become core fundamental beliefs of our churches.He was highly praised by God for such actions which led to his death by being burned at the stake.
So for our churches today if they REALLY WANT to be precious in God's sight,we should go back and study what the early church of Smyrna practiced and believed in.Or else we would only be WORSHIPING GOD IN VAIN!
Look what the Bible says about Polycarp and the church of Smyrna in Revelation chapter 2 starting from verse 8 to 11.
Found this on the net and I believe it to be interesting since Christ and the apostles observes this Holy Day.Polycarp took a special trip to Rome to show his disappointment when Passover was replaced with Easter.
"Each year, God's Holy Days remind us of His overall plan and purpose for man. When the holy days are to be kept is determined by the Hebrew sacred calendar, which has its first month (Nisan) in the spring. The Jews keep the Passover on the evening of the 15th of Nisan. But is this the correct day to observe the Passover?
Most of the world denies this day altogether and instead embraces Easter.
This is a very controversial issue. But did you know that it was also very controversial in the first century when Jesus Christ still walked on this Earth? The controversy has continued to this day.
The three Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke show that on the night Jesus Christ was betrayed, He and His disciples prepared and kept the Passover (Mark 14:12, 16; Luke 22:15). The Jews, however, kept it 24 hours later (John 18:28).
Who kept the right day? Are we to assume that Christ could have kept the Passover on the wrong day? In this article, we will show that Jesus Christ indeed kept the right day and that it is the Jews who today keep Passover on the wrong day.
Back to the Beginning
We need to go back to the beginning to when and why this day was even sanctioned by God to be kept. The children of Israel were commanded to keep the Passover on the 14th of Nisan, which, depending on the year, is during the month of March or April. There were no divisions among the Israelites. They all kept it on that day.
God lists all of His holy days and gives instructions concerning them in Leviticus 23: “These are the feasts of the Lord, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons. In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the Lord’s passover” (verses 4-5). Notice first that this is God’s Passover—not the Jews’—and the day it is to be kept is the 14th, not the 15th. God reveals that the days are to begin and end at even, or sunset (see Leviticus 23:32; Deuteronomy 16:6; Psalm 104:19). So the Passover begins at sunset at the beginning of the 14th. The Jewish community observes their Passover on the 15th beginning at sunset, as any standard Western calendar will show.
Leviticus 23:6 tells us that the first day of Unleavened Bread is on the 15th. But, as we shall see, the Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread are two very different and separate festivals.
Before covering the events of the Passover in the New Testament, let’s first review the events as they occurred in the Old Testament.
Between the Two Evenings
First of all, the Passover lamb was to be sacrificed “in the evening” (Exodus 12:6) on the 14th day of the first month. “In the evening” is better translated “between the two evenings,” which literally means between sunset and dark. Deuteronomy 16:6 confirms this when it says the lamb was sacrificed “at even, at the going down of the sun.” Gesenius’ Lexicon says this about the phrase “at even”: “the time between sunset and deep twilight.”
If the Bible is so clear, how did the date of observance change? Very simply, the Jews changed what determines the beginning and ending of a day, going against plain Bible proof that the day begins at sunset. Their teachings about the beginning of days and the time of the Passover are simply not provable from the Bible. You can prove when the Passover is to be observed!
IN the 14th
Exodus 12:8 says the Israelites were to eat the Passover meal “in that night.” Which night? The one mentioned in verse 6: the 14th. After that, God smote the firstborn “this night” (verse 12). Not the next night—this night—the 14th!
That is why, in Numbers 28:16, it says, “And in the fourteenth day of the first month is the passover of the Lord” (see also Leviticus 23:5-6). The events of the Passover occur in the 14th. And the events of the first day of Unleavened Bread occur in the 15th!
Other Obvious Proofs
In Exodus 12:21-22 we find clear instructions that the Israelites were not to leave their houses until morning. If they did, they would have died. This is why they were to burn their leftovers the next morning (verse 10). Remember, since God’s days begin at sunset, the morning after the Passover is still the 14th—the day portion of the 14th.
They weren’t supposed to leave their houses until morning, yet Deuteronomy 16:1 says they left Egypt “by night.” Their exodus from Egypt then had to be that following night, or the night of the 15th. This was to be a “night to be much observed” (Exodus 12:42). This is confirmed in Numbers 33:3: “And they departed … on the fifteenth day of the first month; on the morrow AFTER the passover .…” Throughout Scripture, God makes an obvious distinction between the Passover and the exodus from Egypt.
And finally, there is the spoiling of the Egyptians (Exodus 12:33-36). This could have only taken place on the afternoon of the 14th, just hours before the Israelites left Egypt the night of the 15th. They did not spoil the Egyptians many days before the Passover as some falsely claim. The Israelites were slaves. Why would the Egyptians give their slaves all their belongings days prior to the killing of all the firstborn? After all, it was this plague that caused the Egyptians to surrender their belongings!
God Names Things What They Are
How did the Passover get its name originally? “For the Lord will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when he seeth the blood upon the lintel, and on the two side posts, the Lord will pass over the door, and will not suffer the destroyer to come in unto your houses to smite you. … That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the Lord’s passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshipped” (Exodus 12:23, 27). It is called the Passover because the death angel passed over the houses of the Israelites who had followed God’s directions given to Moses.
God names things for what they are. The name Passover is appropriate. God passed over the houses that had the blood of the lamb on their doorpost. God also passes over (forgives) our sins when we repent of them and come under the shed blood of Jesus Christ our Passover, sacrificed for us.
Kept on the 14th Many Generations Later
When the Hebrew children would ask about this service years later, the parents were to respond, “It is the sacrifice of the Lord’s Passover” (Exodus 12:27). Yes, this is God’s Passover—and God said “the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the Lord’s passover” (Leviticus 23:5).
Many generations later, the Israelites were still keeping the Passover on the 14th.
They kept the Passover on the correct day when they were in the wilderness (Numbers 9:5). When they entered into the Promised Land, they were still all in agreement (Joshua 5:10). King Josiah kept the Passover on the 14th (2 Chronicles 35:1). We also read in Ezra’s time they were still keeping it on the 14th (Ezra 6:19), and this was about 519 b.c.
New Testament Jews Keep it a Day Later
So why is it, when we come to the New Testament, we find that the Jews were not all keeping the same day as Jesus Christ?
“And the Jews’ passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem” (John 2:13). Here it is called “the Jews’ Passover”—not “the Lord’s Passover.” Why were the Jews now keeping it a day later? The Jewish confusion most likely arose in the third century before Christ. The Palestinian Jews were under Egyptian control from 301 to 198 b.c. (Do not confuse this Egyptian control with that during the days of Moses, which occurred many centuries earlier.)
Here is what happened, according to the April 1963 Good News: “While the Egyptians allowed the Jews to retain their ancient calendar, there was a change made in the beginning of the day—it became common to begin the day at sunrise. This custom was adopted, and persisted among the Jews even down to New Testament times (see the Jewish Quarterly Review, April 1946). We … have had personal information from the Hebrew Union College admitting this fact. (The proof of this is also given in The Expository Times, June 1948, pages 250-251.)”
Christ Instructed Keeping Passover on 14th
Most people are in agreement when Christ was killed. It was in the afternoon of the 14th. But when did Christ keep the Passover? It was in the night portion of the 14th—that is, the night before the day Christ was crucified. Some have reasoned that Christ kept the Passover correctly every year until the last year, when He kept it on the wrong day. Others insist that because John mentions the Passover as occurring on the evening after Christ’s sacrifice, that the Passover Christ kept the previous evening was just a Last Supper or some kind of “love feast.” But Christ makes it very clear in Matthew, Mark and Luke that the disciples were to prepare the Passover.
“Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified” (Matthew 26:2). Clarke’s Commentary states regarding this verse: “This feast began on the fourteenth day of the first moon, in the first month, Nisan, and it lasted only one day; but it was immediately followed by the days of unleavened bread, which were seven, so that the whole lasted eight days, and all the eight days are sometimes called the feast of the passover, and sometimes the feast or days of unleavened bread.”
It’s interesting to note that even Clarke’s Commentary says the two are separate. But the point is that these days were generally called the Passover or the feast of Unleavened Bread, meaning the whole eight days, including the Passover and the Days of Unleavened Bread. Matthew says, “after two days is the feast of the passover.” In Mark 14:1 it says, “After two days was the feast of the passover, and of unleavened bread.” And in Luke 22:1 it says, “Now the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called the Passover.” All three use slightly different terminologies, but the meaning is the same.
The same is true for John 19:14. On the day Christ was crucified, John wrote that the “preparation of the passover” was at hand. It is true that this was just before Christ died on the afternoon of the 14th; but in verse 31, John makes it clear what this preparation was for. “The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.” At sunset, after Christ died, the “high day,” or holy day (the first day of Unleavened Bread), began. The Jews were preparing for their passover, not “the Lord’s” (Leviticus 23:5).
Now let’s continue with the story. Matthew 26:17-18 read: “Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover? And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples.” The Greek word for “passover” in these two verses is pascha. Strong’s Concordance defines this word as, “the Passover, the meal, the festival.” Any lexicon verifies this definition.
Verse 19 continues, “And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover.” They made ready the Passover—same Greek word. If this event was only referring to a final meal or last supper, certainly the word pascha would not have been inspired.
Notice Mark’s account: “And wheresoever he shall go in, say ye to the goodman of the house, The Master saith, Where is the guestchamber, where I shall eat the passover with my disciples?” (Mark 14:14). Same Greek word—pascha. This same word is also used in Luke’s account. Notice: “And he said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer” (Luke 22:15).
Let’s again notice Matthew 26:18: “And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples.” Those who advocate a 15th-of-Nisan Passover and say this was just some kind of final dinner are actually saying Jesus Christ did not know what He was talking about! Jesus said, “I will keep the Passover … with my disciples.”
This makes it plain that when Jesus gathered with His disciples the night He was betrayed by Judas, it was indeed the Passover!
The next morning, after the betrayal, the Jews brought Jesus before the Sanhedrin. “Then led they Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment: and it was early; and they themselves went not into the judgment hall, lest they should be defiled; but that they might eat the passover” (John 18:28).
This was before the Jews’ passover. The holy day was to start at sunset of that evening. Remember, the Jews did not want to kill Him on a feast day for fear of what the people might do (Matthew 26:5). They also wanted to be sure that the bodies did not remain on the stake during the holy day (John 19:31). Then around 3 o’clock in the afternoon on the 14th, Christ died (Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34). The Passover meal and sacrifice all occurred on the 14th of Nisan.
When we read that the Jews’ Passover was at hand, that is exactly what it was—the Jews’ Passover!
The New Testament Church
Had Jesus Christ kept the Passover on the wrong day, how could He still be our Savior? Could He be a Lamb without blemish? Years after He died, this same Christ instructed the Apostle Paul about the symbols that had been changed on that last Passover before His crucifixion (Matthew 26:26-30; Luke 22:15-20). Paul explained to the Corinthians that Christ was our Passover. Notice 1 Corinthians 5:7: “Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.”
Paul further explains the Passover in 1 Corinthians 11:23. “For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread.”
Paul and God’s people at that time were to eat the bread and drink the wine. When? On “the same night in which he [Christ] was betrayed” (verse 23): the evening of the 14th.
Again, the time setting is the evening of the 14th—the night Jesus was betrayed by Judas. Paul goes on to explain the changed symbols. “And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me” (verses 24-25).
There can be no doubt that what Paul is talking about is the Passover Christ kept with His disciples. Paul instructed God’s Church to keep the Passover at the same time and the same way that Christ kept it. It was to be kept in remembrance of Christ.
Now notice the next verse which makes it very plain. “For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come” (verse 26).
Some assume that, since Christ was crucified on the afternoon of the 14th, the lamb must have been slain in the afternoon of the 14th in the Old Testament and that the Passover meal must have been that night on the 15th. The night Christ was betrayed, which He plainly called the Passover, they ate the bread and drank the wine for what? To “show the Lord’s death till he come”! Paul’s group followed that example precisely. In the New Testament, Christ changed the symbols, not the day.
The Church After the Apostles
But what about after the time of Christ and the New Testament apostles? Is there any proof that the Church after the apostles kept the Passover on the 14th? On page 141 of Eusebius Ecclestical History, it mentions that Polycarp went to Rome to discuss with Anicetus, the head of the Roman church, a topic concerning the day of the Passover. Polycarp had been instructed by the apostles and had been appointed head of the Church at Smyrna by the apostles.
Eusebius writes that “he [Polycarp] always taught what he had learned from the apostles, what the Church handed down and what is the only true doctrine.” He mentions there was considerable discussion about the difference of opinion concerning the Passover: “The churches of all Asia guided by a remoter tradition supposed that they ought to keep the 14th day of the moon for the festival of the Savior’s Passover.” This was around a.d. 154, when Polycrates, who followed Polycarp, stated, “We observe the exact day: neither adding, nor taking away.” Notice they kept the 14th day for the Passover. So here is historical evidence that the apostles and the New Testament Church kept the Passover on the 14th, also indicating there was still controversy on which day to observe it, the 14th or the 15th.
Remember, the Jews kept it a day later than Christ, and later Jewish converts could have brought this controversy into the New Testament Church when they were converted to Christianity.
Many have heard of what is called the “quartodeciman controversy.” Quarto means four, and deciman means ten; together that totals 14. In the early New Testament Church, after Christ died, there arose this quartodeciman controversy. The Christians who were keeping the 14th Passover were called into question about their beliefs. It appears that the Jews began to make division concerning the 14th or the 15th Passover observance. There is evidence that this movement began right after the fall of Jerusalem, and the Jews could no longer offer a temple sacrificial lamb on the evening before the 15th because the temple had been destroyed. The Jewish passover at that point became exclusively a 15th of Nisan Passover. It is still that way today.
There would not have been a quartodeciman controversy had the Christians not been observing the 14th Passover as Jesus Christ did. Notice again in 1 Corinthians 11:23: “For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread.” This is the day the Apostle Paul taught Christians to observe the Passover, and there is no doubt—no dispute by anyone, anywhere—that the night Jesus Christ observed His last Passover was on the 14th! With this in mind, we need to understand that if the Christians were in fact observing a 15th Passover, there would not have been a quartodeciman controversy in the first place.
Some Jewish traditions and customs have been accepted as the teachings of Jesus Christ, even though He never practiced or taught us to observe them. If a person does accept the traditional Jewish Passover (15th observance), they would be accepting the commandments and traditions of men, which are contrary to the truth of God.
The Apostle Paul in Galatians 2 soundly and publicly rebuked Peter and the other Jews for making the Gentiles Judaize by following the tradition of the Jews in place of the teachings of God. That is exactly what is happening today to those who follow and accept the traditional teachings of the Jews over the teachings of Jesus Christ. Jesus, without reservation, totally rejected the Jews’ religious traditions, because in holding to their traditions, they rejected and set aside the commandments of God.
“Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition” (Mark 7:7-9).
Those who try to combine the Passover with the first day of Unleavened Bread are missing out on the beautiful symbolism God has given us through His holy days. “Can you see the wonderful meaning? Do you grasp the true significance of it all? Do you see God’s purpose? The Passover only pictures the death of Christ for the remission of sins that are past (Romans 3:25). The accepting of His blood does not forgive sins we may later commit; it does not give license to continue in sin. Therefore when we accept it, our sins are forgiven only up to that time—past sins. But shall we stop there with only past sins forgiven? We are still flesh beings. We still shall suffer temptations. Sin has held us in its clutch—we have been slaves to sin, in its power. And we are powerless to deliver ourselves from it! We have been in bondage to sin. Let us understand the picture—the meaning. To what extent shall we put away sin? Not partially, but completely! And, as leaven is also a type of sin (1 Corinthians 5:8)—leaven puffs up, and so does sin—and, as seven is God’s number symbolizing completeness, we are to follow the Passover with seven days of Unleavened Bread! The picture—the meaning—the symbolism, is not complete with Passover alone. Passover pictures the acceptance of Christ’s blood for the remission of past sins. It pictures the crucified—the dead—Christ. Shall we leave Christ symbolically hanging on the cross? The seven days of Unleavened Bread following Passover picture to us the complete putting away of sin, the keeping of the commandments—after past sins are forgiven.”
The Passover pictures the acceptance of Christ’s blood for the remission of past sins. That occurs first. Next, after Passover, come the Days of Unleavened Bread, which picture us going forward and putting away sin completely. What a wonderful picture!"
Sadly we purporting to be Christians have made up our own Holy Days.
We often try to poke into other people's business without even trying to clear our own backyard.Taking on extra responsibilities and telling people what to eat,drink and what not and offering religious and spiritual advise which are mostly out of line and are a waste of time which could be better used elsewhere.
I would prefer that people first study Scripture before trying to share them rather that just hearing and continue sharing.
Below is an article which shows how out of line from the Bible,our Christian religions are.
"Most have falsely assumed that God is composed of three personages: the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. And yet, as popular as this particular belief is, in the minds of most, it is a vague concept shrouded in a cloud of mystery. As it says in A Handbook of Christian Truth, “The mind of man cannot fully understand the mystery of the trinity. He who would try to understand the mystery fully will lose his mind. But he who would deny the trinity will lose his soul.”
If you try to understand it, you’ll go crazy. And yet, if you reject it, you will supposedly lose your salvation! Notice this candid remark from The New Catholic Encyclopedia: “It is difficult … to offer a clear, objective, and straightforward account of the revelation, doctrinal evolution, and the theological elaboration of the mystery of the trinity.”
The reason there is no straightforward explanation is because it’s not biblical. The word “trinity” is nowhere mentioned in God’s Word. And the few Bible passages that appear to support some kind of three-in-one concept have either been translated incorrectly or grossly misunderstood.
Jesus Christ and the Father
1 John 5:7-8 is one of the first passages that proponents of the trinity doctrine will turn to: “For there are three that bear record [in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth], the spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.” The bracketed words in the verses quoted, however, were added by editors of the Latin Vulgate translation of the Bible—probably some time during the early fourth century.
The words do not appear in any of the older Greek manuscripts of the New Testament. Without the spurious addition, the passage actually reads, “There are three witnesses, the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree”—not exactly the definition of a three-in-one godhead.
Now why would fourth-century editors feel compelled to insert these uninspired words into the Bible text? It’s because they were unable to prove their false theories using the inspired text of the Bible! The Bible’s description of God the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit completely refutes the idea of a trinity.
For example, according to Matthew 1:18-20, Christ was not begotten by a human father, but by the Holy Spirit. This, however, does not mean the Holy Spirit was or is a distinct being. Otherwise, Christ would have prayed to the Spirit, instead of to the Father. Jesus called God His Father—not the Holy Spirit. Yet He was conceived of the Holy Spirit. Luke 1:35 explains: “And the angel answered and said unto [Mary], The Holy [Spirit] shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God” .
Here we find a simple and straightforward definition of the Holy Spirit. It is the “power of the Highest”—God the Father! Verse 37 continues, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” Indeed! That’s because of the tremendous power at His disposal—the power of the Holy Spirit.
Jesus Christ was begotten of the Father through the power of the Holy Spirit. That is the plain truth of your Bible.
Why Is the Holy Spirit Referred to as “He”?
In John 14:15-16, Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.” The Comforter is the Holy Spirit—and Christ said that God would send it in His name—the name of Jesus Christ (verse 26).
The pronouns “he” and “him” used here and in John 16:7, 13 are what some will refer to as another “proof” that the Holy Spirit is a third person in the godhead.
But in the Greek language, just like in many other languages, every noun, including inanimate objects, has a gender—either masculine, feminine or neuter.
The Greek word translated “Comforter” in these passages has a masculine gender, which is one reason why translators used the pronoun “he”—assuming they did this for grammatical reasons rather than theological ones. Whatever the reason, the best English translation would have been “it.”
But notice one other verse in this same biblical passage. It’s in John 15:26: “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me.” Here again, this time in John’s Gospel, it says the Holy Spirit comes from the Father—it proceeds from God.
Baptized in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit
One other passage commonly cited to “prove” the trinity is Matthew 28:19, which says, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy [Spirit].” But to say that this verse means there are three God beings in one is not being honest with God’s Word. Without question, the Father and Son are identified as two separate beings throughout the Scriptures. The same cannot be said about the Holy Spirit.
Far from proving that God is a trinity, when this verse in Matthew 28 is examined within the context of Christ’s true gospel message, it actually proves that God is a growing Family! The word “name” implies the totality of everything God embodies—including His character and composition.
Acts 2:38 says that after baptism, we receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. God is the one who gives this gift (read Luke 11:13). So why must one be baptized into these three names—the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit? What exactly did Christ mean by that in Matthew 28?
Well, as we saw with the example of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit—as the power that emanates from God—is the begetting agent that brings us into the God Family. “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” (Romans 8:14). Ephesians 1:14 calls the Holy Spirit “the earnest of our inheritance.” It is a small token or pledge of what comes later—spiritual birth into God’s Family!
“If the Holy Spirit of God dwells in someone, and he is being led by God’s Spirit, then (Romans 8:14) he is a begotten son of God. But, at the time of Christ’s return to Earth in supreme power and glory to set up the Kingdom of God, restoring the government of God abolished by Lucifer, then all being filled and led by God’s Spirit shall become born sons of God. The God Family will then rule all nations with the government of God restored!
“The trinity doctrine limits God to a supposed three Persons. It destroys the very gospel of Jesus Christ! His gospel is the good news of the now soon-coming Kingdom of God—the only hope of this world and its mixed-up mankind!”
By twisting and perverting God’s truth, Satan actually uses the trinity doctrine to slam the door shut on the truth about the ever expanding God Family. In actual fact, it is by the power of the Highest that God opens up His Family plan to all of mankind!
That awesome purpose and plan for man is revealed and thoroughly explained, from beginning to end, in the book almost no one knows—the Holy Bible!"
A great challenge to those who claimed to be Biblical literate or seems to have a thing of knowing just about everything especially about other people.We as Fijian tends to flow with the crowd.We are brought up in such a way where we are taught to accept whatever we are handed.We are brought up believing in such and such and when someone brought up a different scenario we are quick to point!Some even shouted, "who gave you the authority to do such and say such?" Well did you know that John the Apostle of Jesus was cast out of the church of Ephesus because he questioned authorities?He was cast out but he was right in line with the Bible and with God!
It is all just because we were taught not to question authorities.When the first few white men started arriving in Fiji centuries ago,our ancestors then were furious when the white men told stories of big cities and that there are bigger houses,bigger ships and more advanced technologies as well as know how.They did not accept that another civilization existed outside of small Fiji!That is just the same lax attitude we have today concerning our beliefs!We cannot change our belief even though the Bible says otherwise!But it is now being served unto you whether you believe it or not is up to you.
"Prove all things; hold fast that which is good."1 Thessalonians chapter 5:21
More TRUTHS uncovered bares Satan's sinister ploy in misleading us away from God's eternal life.Read below about an interesting article about the time Jesus spent with death and compare with our traditional belief!
"How do you know if Jesus Christ was the Messiah?
In Jesus’s day, the Pharisees asked Him for proof that He really was the Messiah, and this was His response: “An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas: For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth” (Matthew 12:39-40).
That was it—Jesus Christ only offered one sign: that, like Jonah (see Jonah 1:17), He would remain in the grave for three days and three nights.
Ever since, mankind has struggled with second-grade math, trying to squeeze three days and three nights into a barely 36-hour period between Friday evening and Sunday morning.
There were no eyewitnesses to Christ’s resurrection, and there is only one historical record: the Holy Bible. Jesus Christ’s proof of His messiahship was singular: not some spectacular miracle He would perform, or proofs that only the disciples were privy to, or even the fact of His resurrection. The only proof was the length of time He would be in the ground.
On this point, there can be no contention—they are the words of Christ Himself. Why, then, would anyone believe He died on Good Friday in the evening and rose on Sunday morning? Do other portions of the Bible reveal exactly when He died and was resurrected? And what does the truth about Christ’s resurrection mean for your observance of Easter?
There is no real dispute as to the meaning of Christ’s words in Matthew 12. Certainly He knew how long a day was and how long a night was (12 hours each): “Are there not twelve hours in the day? … But if a man walk in the night, he stumbleth,” He said in John 11:9-10.
Hebrew scholars agree that the expression “three days and three nights” in Jonah 1:17 refers to a 72-hour period. The division of the day and night was clearly established in the very first book of the Bible: “… and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day. … And the evening and the morning were the second day. … And the evening and the morning were the third day” (Genesis 1:4-13). Notice it: God even spells out how long three days and nights would take: three periods of light, and three periods of darkness.
Four other scriptures confirm the period of time Christ was in the grave: Read Mark 8:31, Mark 9:31, Matthew 27:63 and John 2:19-21. All confirm the duration. If we reject that singular proof, we reject the sign that Christ Himself gave of His being the Messiah.
When Did Christ Die?
Realizing that the common belief has no connection to the scriptural record, can we ascertain which day Christ died—and which day He was resurrected? Absolutely yes!
One reason so many believe Christ died on Friday is actually quite sensible. The Bible explicitly says the day of the crucifixion was called “the preparation” (e.g. Luke 23:54). This means the next day was a sabbath. Everyone knows the Jews keep a Saturday Sabbath, so they naturally assume this “preparation” day was a Friday.
But the Apostle John was even more specific. The Jews intended to break Christ’s legs, which would have violated the prophecy that a “bone of him shall not be broken” (John 19:36; Psalm 34:20). Why would the Jews do this? Because “it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day)” (John 19:31).
Note that. That expression “high day” does not denote the weekly Sabbath; rather, it was one of the annual holy days listed in Leviticus 23—specifically, the first day of Unleavened Bread. If His legs were broken, Christ would die in time to be buried before the holy day arrived. But, the Scriptures show, He was already dead when the soldiers arrived.
Matthew 26 makes this timing clear: “And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said unto his disciples, Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified” (verses 1-2). Jesus Christ died on Passover—the same day that the Passover lamb was killed throughout biblical history! The Passover was the day before, and therefore the preparation day for, the first annual holy day.
These annual holy days can fall on any day of the week, not necessarily on Saturday. In 2002, 2003 and 2006, for example, the Passover was on Wednesday—just as it was in 31 a.d., the year of Christ’s death (as the Hebrew calendar shows). The first annual holy day was on Thursday. Rather than dying on “Good Friday,” Christ died on Wednesday, the Passover, just as the Jewish people had typified with the slaughter of a lamb for thousands of years before.
So when was He resurrected?
Knowing that this was exactly a 72-hour period, we should immediately realize that Christ’s resurrection took place at the same time of day or night as His burial.
The preparation day would end at sunset (a day ends at sunset according to the Bible; see Leviticus 23:32), and law required that the dead be buried prior to the Sabbath. Christ “cried with a loud voice” at “about the ninth hour”—an expression referring to the ninth hour after dawn—or around 3 o’clock in the afternoon (Matthew 27:46). We know then, from the scriptural record, that Christ died in the late afternoon on Wednesday (verse 50), was buried before sunset, and was resurrected on the Sabbath—Saturday—at the same time. That is the fulfillment of the only sign Christ gave: the sign of the Prophet Jonah.
The Apostle Paul agreed that Christ fulfilled the Scriptures—and specifically that sign: “For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4).
A few other, related scriptures have been commonly misunderstood—most notably Mark 16:9. We read clearly that Mary Magdalene came to anoint Christ on “the first day of the week … at the rising of the sun” (verse 2). She found that the stone of His sepulcher was rolled away (verse 4). Verse 9 confirms that He had already been resurrected: “Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week .…” Notice carefully though: It doesn’t say He “did rise” or “rose on the first day.” It says He was risen. He had done so, as the Scriptures so clearly show, on late Saturday afternoon.
That expression—was risen—is the sole basis for the idea that Christ was resurrected on Sunday morning—yet it says nothing of the sort! Instead, it simply confirms that Christ had already been resurrected and emerged from the tomb by the time Mary arrived.
So you have a choice: You can believe the common tradition, the minister down the street and most of your neighbors—or you can believe the only sign Jesus gave, the historical record found in your Bible, and an elementary mathematical calculation.
As for Easter and its traditional Sunday “sunrise service,” there is no biblical basis for its observance. The Catholic Encyclopedia frankly admits that “the apostolic fathers do not mention it” .
That’s right: The word Easter is never even mentioned in the Bible. Although “Easter” is found once in the King James translation, scholars agree that the Greek word translated “Easter” (pascha) in Acts 12:4 should be translated “Passover.” In his commentary, Adam Clarke says about this word, “Perhaps there never was a more unhappy, not to say absurd, translation than that in our text.”
The pagan origins of Easter and how it became entrenched in our culture are facts of history, easily uncovered."
So according to the above article if you observe Easter,it means you are not doing it for Christ.You are merely worshiping God in vain!
We as Christian have just gone past Easter.But have you really extracted the facts or do you really know what's hidden under one of our supposedly holy religious holy day?
Well anciently Semiramis also known as Easter and many other names who was both the Mother and wife of Nimrod created sun worship after Nimrod was killed.She invented all sorts of beliefs and practices which have found their way into mainstream christian religion doctrines.Examples are Christmas and Easter.
Through her sexual prowess she committed fornication with leading men at the time and coerced them into accepting her mysterious religion of worshiping Nimrod who was later called Baal.She later conceived a child in which she claimed Nimrod is come back to life.Her son is called Tammuz and he was born around the same time we now observe Easter!
But today's Christianity says we are doing it for Jesus even though the dates are the same.But let it be known to everyone that Jesus and the apostles died and they never observed such practices.The church started observing these long after the apostles died.And on top of these,do you know that God forbids such idolatry and will destroy those who partake in such worships even though thought we are doing it for Christ?