Wednesday, July 31, 2013

On Waking Up

Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids. Proverbs 6:4

Ever notice how fast a dog or cat can wake up? No matter how deeply asleep they are, they can be instantly awake.

My Irish setter would be asleep but wake up to the sound of an owl too nearby for her.. She would get to her feet and push open the screen door. You could hear her bark until the owl had flown away. She thought spring peeper frogs were a threat too, and bark until I had to bring her in.

My cats were never "watch cats", but my tom could instantly be awake also. In his case he could jerk awake from deep slumber to start licking. Once he woke up from snoring on my shoulder to full alert. Must have been a nightmare, because he looked around the room for danger that was not there. Finally he once again settled down and went back to sleep.

People on the other hand can take hours to be fully waked up. One of my duties on my first job, was to make coffee for an office crew. Some said they could not function until they had their morning brew. As messenger I had to get in the company station wagon and take a faulty electric pot to be repaired, so the crew could have their coffee.

Faithful dogs are always ready to defend their homes, and cats will waken to lick themselves. I understand that a cat's licking is to reduce any odor from off their fur that a predator might use to track them down. Danger or threats are a deep concern to our pets, but many of us are not so well equipped.

I hear some great folks from alternative media calling out to us, "Wake up!" Many people are waking up.

Howard K. Smith wrote a book called Last Train from Berlin. He described his escape from Germany before war broke out. He just made it. Forget turning Germany around and shaping it up. The ship of state had an evil captain and it was doomed.

Howard went on to a career in broadcasting in the USA. If he were still alive what a changed country he would see. Only those living in the past believe that our nation can be saved.

My witness to you is to change locations. Get off the tracks because the train is coming. Like Elijah in the wilderness, hide yourselves until "the wrath be passed".

Yes, the Rapture is coming. It will probably rescue me from the sleep of death unless He comes soon. Then we will all be awake, Oh glorious day.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Korah Goes to Hell

They went down alive into the realm of the dead, with everything they owned; the earth closed over them, and they perished and were gone from the community. Numbers 16:33, NIV

A very dramatic scene! Wicked people falling alive as the ground split open under them. You just can't find many situations like this one either in the Bible or out of it.

Recently a man died when he and his bed fell into a sink hole. Same idea. By that I mean that the man did not go into a fiery nether region ruled over by a being with a point on his tail and with horns on his head.

Yet he, along with Korah, went into the Biblical abode of the dead. It is not a location deep inside the earth where people are tormented.

I am a believer in root words. Though I do not read either Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek, I have access to the works of those who do. We all do. A good Bible store can sell you books on these sources. If you want to avoid traffic or can't get out, then Amazon and other online sources will send them to you.

So, if you are not certain of the meaning of a word, look up the original source. Strong's online does a great job and is free.

So Korah and his family went to what many call "hell". However, in reality they died on the day of that great subsidence and now await the Judgement Seat of Christ.

An often bypassed part of the Korah story is that though he and his followers died, their incense censors were holy unto God. They were to be saved and used in the tabernacle.

There are some people out there who are unfit to serve God, but their Bibles are still good and true.

Monday, July 29, 2013

A Thermos of Coffee

The factory was an old one, mostly of wood and other inflammable material. No one thought much about it because they had never experienced a fire firsthand. Most of the workers were far too busy with other considerations to think of the consequences of a fire. Some worked very hard and some drove the workers to produce even more products.

There were a few respites from this labor, though. Men gathered around the water cooler to talk about sports. Ladies slipped away to the powder room for a bit of gossip. Some techies plied their computers and occasionally indulged in personal communication.

But no one foresaw the terrible fire that would break out this day. Some began to smell smoke. Others noticed the beginning of a vague panic--people beginning to group around elevators.

Two men, eating at their desks, had thermos bottles on their benches, still unopened, when the flames came through the ceiling. Instant action was called for. That is when each man determined his course of action.

One man, the older of the two, headed for the fire escape, figuring the elevators would be jammed with crowds of people, and perhaps cease to function altogether. He expected the younger man to follow, but as he glanced over his shoulder, he was amazed to see his companion still standing by his table, thermos in hand with the top open.

"Why aren't you coming?" he called.

"I'm no coward!" the younger man replied, "I'm going to stay right here and fight this thing. I'll pour my thermos on it, if necessary."

As the older man was leaving the building, he thought he would try once more to reason with his friend. "A little thermos of coffee won't stop this fire."

"Perhaps not, but if we got everyone to pour out their drinks, we could still beat this thing. I am going to ask others to do what I'm doing, and then tell others. Soon we'll have enough people to put out the fire."

The fire escape was growing warm as the old man stepped out of the window. By the time he reached the sidewalk the building was engulfed in flames. Still carrying his coffee he found his way to the edge of the fire line. He extended the bottle to a weary fireman standing by a fire truck. The man had just exited the building.

"I tried to save people, but I was too late." He gulped down a cup of the coffee and held out his cup to the old man.

"Keep it," the old man said. "I can get another one when I get to a safe place."

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Letter to an Inmate

Since my first letter told you who I am, I want to tell you about my approach to Bible teaching, in case you decide to try me.

First of all I will not try to get you to join anything or to quit anything. I feel that is between you and God. Also I won't tell you about a bunch of rules you must follow, or things you must not do. All I am is a finder of Bible ideas.

Many people would not think I am very religious, and I might not come across that way. But I have dedicated much of my life to Bible study. I don't think of it as a duty I must perform, I just love to do it.

As you study the Bible you may be concerned that there are so many disagreements between different denominations. To me this shows how free we are in the faith. Some people are shocked when a person likes a person outside their denomination. There are those who even say that theirs is the only one that can lead to salvation.

Let me make a simple story. Imagine you are feeling extra depressed one day at lunch and you happen to be seated across from a stranger. The two of you start talking and you find you like this person and they like you. As the two of you talk you start feeling better.

Later another person says to you, "Don't you know what kind of person you were just having lunch with? He is from Eviltown, one of the most wicked towns there is!"

You have heard of Eviltown and that their mayor is a really bad man. Yet you like the person you have just met and are sure everyone from there is not evil. How would you resolve this seeming contradiction?

It turns out that although the mayor of Eviltown is totally corrupt, a lot of good people live there. In fact ,you just met one.

So I look at some forms of Christianity as really evil, but people in these systems are your brothers and sisters. Arguments may break out among you, but you are still in the same family.

It seems like the closer you get to the top in almost any country, political party, or religion, the more evil it is. You can get along with the common people though and even learn from them. I don't hate anyone, but I do believe there are evil systems and leaders.

I just try to be as accurate as I can about what the Bible says. I try so hard that people have accused me of having a "know it all" attitude. I do not have this attitude. I believe I have a "try to understand it all" attitude. This is what I offer to you.

My faith is very simple. Believe in Jesus, then finer points come later. I am only a Bible teacher, but I try to be the best one I can.



Saturday, July 27, 2013

And I Thought Satan Was in Hell!

And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man [child]. Revelation 12:13

A number of events occur in Revelation chapter twelve. The dramatic fall of Satan to the earth is one of them. It marks the beginning of the Great Tribulation.

An amazing fact is that Satan and one third of the angels in heaven are cast out. They do not come out of a trapdoor in the ground and smelling like sulfur. Until that day, Satan and these angels are heaven dwellers. Not the third heaven where God dwells, but the second heaven, the starry sky.

Michael and his heavenly army will do the job when it is time. This is further illustrated in Revelation 12:7-8.

How can anyone say that Satan is not in hell? He is no more in hell than Santa Claus is at the North Pole, and chapter 12 of Revelation proves this.

Riddle: What is the difference between hell and the North Pole?

Answer: The North Pole exists.

I looked up the word "cast" in Strong's concordance. It is a very good study in itself.

I ramble, but please let us get free of mythology in Bible interpretation. It may take awhile, but if you are patient it is really not hard to do.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Give Me a Couple of Conies, Please

The conies [are but] a feeble folk, yet make they their houses in the rocks; Proverbs 30:26

I love this truth about the little conies, feeble but safe. I am feeble but safe in the Rock. Don't you love how the Bible tells of little creatures, even insects, to teach important lessons. I try to get the lessons and at the same time I enjoy thinking of the animals.

Once a lady I knew said in alarm, "Oh, there's a spider on the rug!" It was a very small spider, wending its way through the fibers. Like a human trying to walk through the jungle. She expected me to do something.

I took a file card and let the spider walk onto it. Then I put it onto a potted plant, saying something like, "This is your jungle, and now you are boss of the jungle." She looked at me in the nicest way and told me she was glad I did not kill it.

Can't people learn from the littlest creatures? Not just great spiritual lessons, but practical lessons on how to survive. What I learn from little "folk", is that the big guys have a rough time. They are hunted. Their habitat is destroyed. But the really small creatures, live on, usually ignored.

That must be their secret. They "are not worth notice". In a disintegrating situation they live on.

Gary North in his nifty book Government by Emergency tells of a humble little man who lived during the Nazi occupation of France during WWII. It was a terrible time for the French. People suspected of being in the resistance were tortured and shot. The Germans registered every farm, and this man had a farm. But it was one acre smaller than the ones being registered.

This man grew grapes on his farm and made wine from them. He kept his old car running by pouring bearings. He took a street car to his job as a machinist. He was safe. No one paid any attention to him. He lived through the horrible war this way.

Their are great advantages to being small. Your life could depend on it some day.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Jesus Said, "Do Not Touch Me."

Jesus sayeth unto her, touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: John 20:17

Jesus touched many people with his healing touch. The hem of his garment could heal. Yet we have in the Gospel of John the admonition not to touch him. He further says why not--"for I am not yet ascended to my Father:"

In my early days of Bible study I found this passage baffling. What had ascending to his Father got to do with not being touched? Later, Jesus says, "handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have." )Luke 24: 39).

There are those who see a difference here between being touched by a man or a woman. But this is only true concerning when he was to be touched. Scripture tells us that Our Lord appeared to women after his resurrection. Yet we need to see the office of High Priest he was yet to perform.

It was hard for me to grasp that Jesus was yet to ascend to heaven to offer his blood for our sins. His blood in heaven, and not poured out on the ground of Golgotha! But there is a temple in heaven where His offering was made.

When this idea was presented to me, I balked. The wonderful book of Hebrews tells us about Jesus, our High Priest in heaven. Before He ascended He was a consecrated vessel, set apart, not to come in contact with a woman until He ascended on high. So we know He fulfilled the Law, acting as our Priest, as earthy men only anticipated.

When we see him again, He will be our King.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Gates of Hell

And I say unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18

A good friend asked me about this term. It used to trouble me. How do gates, being passive, prevail? Does Jesus mean that the church will break the doors down? Who needs to break down the doors of hell, since according to the beliefs of the great majority, unsaved people go there every day?

But if hell is the grave (and one definition of the word Jesus used means grave) then I can see how some breaking down is needed. It is easy to speak of hell. Since no one can see it, you can believe anything you want.

But resurrection is totally different. Only a few have seen it. There is no room for pretense or error. Overcoming the grave is something no one does. But Jesus resurrected. He promised that some day we will be also.

Can the gates of the grave prevail against the church? Victory over death is the sweetest of promises. The very gates of the grave shall not prevail against the redeemed.

Death will hold us no more. O happy day.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Shake it, Baby, Shake it!

Ruth lived well over three thousand years ago, but to read about her is to admire her. She is in the line of descent to Jesus. We begin her story in a time of famine. Ruth was a gleaner of grain, which was a provision under God's law for the poor, to keep them from starving.

Now, of course, there are no poor in America. The War on Poverty has solved that. In the same way, the very idea of famine in the US is absolutely unthinkable. So will you join me if I just imagine that there could be hungry people here?

I will also imagine that among these people there will be a lady who is threatened by hunger. She will be a modern-age Ruth. But instead of bending down to gather heads of grain, she reaches up to bend over the tops of plants and shakes them so that they release their seeds. She has a little sack hanging from her neck by a string. She might prefer a little plastic bucket. Either way she shakes the seeds free to fall into her container.

Each plant produces about two hundred thousand seeds, though not all at once. So she let's the plant live. She may return to harvest more seeds later on, like milking a cow. The seeds of this plant are very small, but they quickly add up. Soon she has enough for a meal, either as a cereal or to bake in a loaf of bread or to make into a bannock.

This scene is not imaginary for many people, for this plant is extremely widespread and produces a lot of good food. It is the Palmer Amaranth. You may know it as pig weed. It easily outgrows crops like cotton or soybeans. Nothing but cutting each one off can stop it. Chemicals no longer do. It has become immune to poisons.

I looked it up in You Tube and copied off the first screen. There are all kinds of speakers talking about how to kill this plant. Billions of dollars are spent trying to eliminate a plant that people in other countries cultivate as a crop.

Much of the agriculture in Africa is done by women. Corporations are trying to convince them to grow good old commercial American crops and then export them to this country. Hopefully they will receive enough money for their efforts to buy food, though they were previously raising it.

Learning that the world is dominated by insane people has really helped me to understand it.

The honorable occupation of farming has been taken over by chemical companies and banks. Farmers, who were once pictured with pitchforks and wearing battered straw hats, now own millions of dollars of land and equipment. Yet even with subsidies many are in debt and will die in that condition. Chemicals such as herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers are expensive. It costs a lot of money to poison the soil as well as to buy expensive equipment.

But weeds are defeating the efforts of many despite these things. Weeds grow for free, don't need to be planted or fertilized. So far I haven't seen any weed farms, not here, anyway. But a modern day Ruth can gather free food as Ruth once did. Like her ancient counterpart, she and her family will not starve.

About the title, I just wrote that to get your attention. Did I?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Face-It Book

A nurse came into my room and saw my computer. My good friends with great effort had set it up for me, connecting a myriad of cables so that I even had my printer. Although she was busier than a bee she stopped and looked at the screen. She giggled and said, "Oh, that machine takes up so much time! I waste hours on FaceBook."

Almost everyone seems to be on it. I'm sure it has its uses, but I don't even know how to write the name correctly. I am preoccupied with another source I call Face-It Book. I'm not on it, but we are all in it.

Who am I to preach or warn? Who would listen if I had the ability to do so?

A wonderful phenominon has made anyone's warnings impossible to refute. Instead, this amazing situation can be measured with great accuracy so that there is no room for arguing. Even the animals know about it and warn us as their bodies wash ashore. This is no diatribe, any more than someone in a hotel noticing that it is burning down and telling people about the advance of the flames. It is, of course, the spread of radiation.

I was reading a forum when I saw a commenter's logo. It was a cute little Micky Mouse with three ears and three eyes. Some people get it.

Ever get tired of being warned? There must be a psychological condition known as Warn Fatigue. I have it myself.

When I was a kid I admired great figures in the world of chemistry. If I had had bedroom posters, one of them would have been of Madam Curie and her discovery of Radium. I have left that phase behind. But the effects of the new chemistry of radioactive isotopes, even man-made ones, are impossible to escape. They are knocking on the door.

My new heroes are people who understand these things and talk about them. I'll name two--Helen Caldicott and Christopher Busby.

Helen is a physician. Her daughter is also. Helen was talking to her daughter about the cumulative radiation in our bodies. Her daughter said, "Don't worry about it, Mother, you'll be dead before it gets you." "What are daughters for?" said Helen.

Now Christopher is a little more laid-back. He really reminds me of the actor who played Topper--super conservative, with a clipped diction. Christopher, please take off your beret. I wonder if he wears it in the shower?

But I really like such people. They tell us about the facts--the ones that no one can deny or do anything about. The nuclear cat is out of the atomic bag. These folks are the secular prophets of our age, echoing God's prophets of long ago, in His Face-It Book.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Man in the Mason Jar

This was his home. You might call it his prison, but it was all he had. It seemed as if he had always been here. He would spread his fingers over the glass walls and looked out. The view was distorted of course, and above it all were the words "Ball Mason". Now it was time to leave, to see more and see it more clearly. His ceiling was heavy and almost beyond reach. The only way out, he felt, was to tip the jar.

<>p>He began to quickly move from side to side, he could hear the sound of his own voice as he exerted himself. Slowly the jar moved until it tipped. It crashed to the floor and shattered. Free at last, his view was vivid and clear. But the freedom he sought was also frightening. He gathered the pieces that lay broken on the floor and made them into a heap. He lay upon the little pile of glass, sorry it was broken.

* * * * *

I wrote this for the high school newspaper when I was 17 years old. They published it in the Glendale Monitor. They were desperate for material. It may be, as they say, frought with all kinds of dire Freudian implications.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

I Am Dandelion

People all know me. Boy do they know me! Seems like everyone is out to kill me. There are chemical companies who dedicate whole divisions to making poisons to kill me and my friends. Of course most of the poison goes into the ground water that these guys drink. Kind of poetic justice I guess. Live by poison, die by poison.

Then there are the machines. Don't get me started. We see 'em coming, but there's nothing we can do. We're frozen in our tracks, can't move an inch. So, we try to be as pretty as we can, but people try to kill us anyway. It's nothing to see a man on a huge mower, with his child on his lap, cutting our heads off. I think this is called "spending time with Dad". Something like that.

Even though God made us before He made humans, they look down on us, like we're invaders. But kids like us and bees love us! We all imagine a better world. I mean who doesn't? We imagine a time when almost everyone likes us.

We would love to show what we can do for people. We can help them with their health if they would let us. A few people are catching on. Human women mostly. Seems like giving life and letting life live is what they do best.

You might think we get depressed from all this persecution, but somehow we go on, having as many children as we can. We have a kind of support group, my friends and I. There is Lamb's Quarters, Amaranth (most of us call him Pig Weed), and Purslane. He tries to show us how to survive by staying down low.

We are not snobs. Anybody can join our group, as long as they're good guys, and don't hurt anyone. I could go on about our membership. There are hundreds of us. I wish people would get to know us, maybe even invite us to dinner!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Magical Thinking, or Why Grandma Will Never Die

...For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. 2 Peter 3:4

I received two opposite responses to my idea that the US could face famine some day soon. One is favorable and the other a repudiation of the whole idea. They are not from the "Response" section but I would like to share them anyway. Both are from people I have known for about 40 and 50 years.

First the favorable one:

"Dear Gerald, First, I think your article is GREAT! Older folks included... are apt to put their trust in the old way of doing things.. that worked for them in times past. You hit the nail right on the head..I too grew up with shelves of canned goods and we knew we would not "go hungry". Those days are gone with the propeller airplanes. I had a brief meeting with Larry last week. He is still "hanging in there" trying to find the right medical treatment to give him some relief. Gerald, he is melting away and lost most of his teeth. But..I gave him the book you sent on survival and the little cards with key chain (I really wanted to keep them!) and he became TOTALLY engrossed...that was the end of conversation. I gave him a few minutes to look through and his comment was 'this may be Gerald's greatest contribution to all of us'. He hasn't called since our meeting , but asked me to send your e-mail address, which I did. So this is my long answer to your question if we are taking all of this seriously...YES. I told Ken about it last Saturday when I visited. You'll love what he said. He asked me about Jerry's old place and wondered if I thought of using the big back yard we struggle to maintain for weeds, good ones that is! ... He asked me if I had a book about edible weeds." (Part of letter.)

Now the unfavorable reply:

"Hi again, Ger! Well I can't really say a whole lot about famine, because I don't know a whole lot about it. People tell us things, and I think at times, they just want to throw fear into us, much like they did with the y2k thing, but I think it's good that you're planting all that stuff. I always think it's good to do whatever you believe in."

I told this person that since Grandma has always recovered from seemingly fatal conditions, she always will. There are no changes. All things stay the same. Bible prophecies about famine will not come true, because y2k did not occur. I will let it go at that and not address the issue with her any more.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

What Mama Cass Taught Me About Survival

I am concerned about so many would be survivalists and preppers. They are such nice people too. In their fields many are world class experts. So what is my complaint about such wonderful people? This would especially apply to preppers, but they are giving advice for how to live through the great depression of the thirties.

I remember, as a child, opening a cabinet in the basement of my grandparents and finding it full of canned goods. The grocery they bought from was a block away. Echoes of the food shortages of a generation ago. This was a harmless relic of the past, and a good policy against short term power outages.

But I am thinking of a very different world we face today. Many, many, people are on food stamps or are teetering on the abyss of homelessness. I am not referring to a mere lack of help from an inept but well meaning government.

I see a totally different situation that we face. Think of an evil government and corrupt administrators of it. Think of one that has just bought billions of rounds of ammunition in a wide variety of types. Does the Department of Homeland Security plan on shooting rabbits and squirrels?

A really nice lady chided me for my pessimism. She said she prefers to live in hope not fear. Prefers? As if she was ordering a cup of custom coffee. Preferences are a fatal dream world of those who believe "wishing will make it so".

I see a total collapse brought on by a psychopathic elite who wish to kill us. In my response I say, give up the old way of living. Prepare to move while you can. Don't plan on using electricity.

Food? I am growing examples of the most nutritious plants in the world, just to show my beloved friends how to identify them. I am not counting on making it. Death to me will lead to eternal happiness.

So how does Mama Cass come into all this? I love to hear her beautiful voice. The other evening I played her singing "Make Your Own Kind of Music". In spite of indifference and foolish optimism, that is what I am trying to do.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The Golem of Prague and the Image of Revelation Chapter 13

The second beast was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that the image could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed. Revelation 13:15

I needed to go into the basement of an old building where I once worked. I had never been there before, so I was startled to see the figure of a woman seated in a big glass box. She was a life size figure of a Gypsy fortune teller. If the machine was plugged in and you put a coin in the slot, the lady gave you your fortune. Harmless fun, but there are figures that are ominous--the golems--Jewish figures made of clay that come to life.

In Jewish literature Adam was a golem, made of clay by the hand of God. But also in these writings are the golems made by men, the most famous being Rabbi Judah Loew ben Bezalel, rabbi of Prague. Though there are older stories, the Prague golem is the most famous and detailed.

A Jewish friend told me that he and other conservative Jews believe that to read the Kabbalah would lead to madness, but it's the source of such an idea as creating a living being made from mud. These man made golems could do many things. They had acute hearing, but could not speak.

It seems that the idea of an image that comes to life is quite old. In Jewish literature it goes back to the 12th century. But the idea is still with us. Even Jewish childrens' story books keep it alive. Could it be that the conciousness of some people has been made ready to accept an image of the Beast?

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Radical Book Store

The cab driver let me out on the fringe of town. I was an outsider, from a very conservative town. This city was different though. It had every ethnicity and culture you could imagine.

I had been having the weirdest dreams. There was one theme that kept repeating. I dreamed I was going to my grocery store as usual, but as I neared the area there was a police blockade. As I came to a stop a cop looked in the window and told me there had been trouble up ahead.

"I'm just going to the grocery store. I won't be very long."

He looked at me with a mixture of pity and disdain. "Haven't you heard? That store has been closed for two days. They had put up a sign, 'Closed because of lack of deliveries, shelves empty.' People couldn't believe it so they smashed the doors down to get some food. They found out the food was gone and the lights were out. So they moved out to the suburbs in search of something to eat."

This was my dream. I had more similar dreams. Was I being warned?

That brought me to the book store in a nearby town. People in the know said the Radical Book Store had all kinds of books, like for conspiracy nuts. As I entered the rather run-down store, I was greeted by a clerk wearing a revolver in his belt.

"Can I help you?" he said as he sized me up.

" I'm looking for books on wild foods, like nutritious weeds."

"Sure, we've got 'em." As he showed me to the section on food he told me, "A lot of people have been asking for books like that recently. Some even say they've had bad dreams about food shortages and want to be prepared."

He shook his head as he told me this. He thought people would buy books on political solutions to the coming food problems, but these were radical people and that was what the store was for. "Here's one that's very popular," he said. Stockpiling the Survival Pantry. The cover showed a smiling couple standing in front of of thousands of dollars worth of canned food.

"That's not quite what I'm looking for. I'm looking for something about natural food. Something you could find anywhere growing wild."

"Oh sure I get it." He pulled one down from above. "This one is a big seller. We have trouble keeping it on the shelf. This is more in the line you're thinking of."

I looked at the cover. Cooking Wild Foods in Your Microwave. I continued to scan his collection. Baking Wild Plant Bread in Your Convection Oven. None of them dealt with the theme I had in mind. Survival spices was a popular topic, as was staying in place until the crisis is over.

I was about to turn away and leave, when I saw Leaving on Short Notice and Eating What You Find. I clutched it until I got to the desk which served as a check out counter. "I'll take this one," I said.

He handed me my change. "Please don't get the wrong idea about this pistol I'm wearing. It's just for keeping people away. You know, the mobs."

Monday, July 15, 2013

Johnny Amaranth Seed

"Just who do you want to be?" the stern voice demanded.

"Oh, kind of a combination of Johnny Apple Seed and Diogenes," was all I could reply. The idea was still forming in my mind.

"Have you ever considered that you may be crazy?" the voice asked.

"Funny that you should mention that. I went so far as to imagine I might be rational, even sane."

"Look, you have to be practical. You can't just go out into the woods to live."

This dialogue took place in my mind, and still does, as I ponder my response to an increasingly irrational world.

I saw a map showing thousands of places planned to be off-limits to the American public. The government will tell us where we can live. Eventually, we should live in cities, under surveillance of cameras, like the TV series, "The Prisoner".

There is a growing understanding that our future has been planned by what Winston Churchill called "the great cabal". People in the West understand this perhaps better than most. States are being taken over as "government land. Permits are required for grazing cattle. Access to water is denied to cattle because they will pollute the streams and their hooves will cause erosion.

How ironic. We are to be herded like animals and slaughtered. Write to your congressman, he who put you in this terrible situation to begin with.

For some of us there is an alternative--drop out and disappear. It should not be for long. In my case death will intervene. For others Christ himself will end this imprisonment. Either way, we can leave the system.

What about the two heroes? They were chosen because they symbolize unworldliness, even world renunciation. John Chapman shows us how little we can live on. He lived it.

Is there any wilderness left? Millions of acres.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Jacob's Flocks and Rescue Dogs

My wife and I decided to take a side road and discovered a whole new little world. Right off one of the main highways of our state there is a little valley with flocks of dairy goats. There is lots of greenery for the goats to eat and the whole scene is peaceful. These folks have an alternative lifestyle.

My next door neighbors used to raise goats, and I learned what they like. They were not grazers, like cattle. They would rather eat from vines and shrubs. Thorns did not bother them at all.

I think of Jacob's flocks that kept increasing. They are part of my dreams--goats and rescue dogs. I imagine living off the land where flocks of goats would be guarded by dogs rescued from death. My choice would be Pygmy goats. What do I know, but they appeal to me. Little guys you could carry around.

I saw a picture of garbage cans filled with the bodies of dead dogs and cats. Their time was up and no one had adopted them. As to those still alive,"Give me a couple dozen each, please.

I shall not pass this way again. We are heading for Camp Last Stand. Until the Lord comes we will try to live a primitive life with our animals. This sounds so irrational! But I would like to try it anyway.

Goats devour weeds like the kudzu that is taking over the South. Depending on your frost zone your state has it, or it has your state. Invasive weeds versus the goats. "Come on gang, you can do it!"

"But, Mr. Vegetarian wanna be, what will your rescued dogs eat?" Try fish that we will catch in fish traps. Sled dogs eat them. What if they don't like fish? Hey were scheduled for execution anyway . As for cats, they dream of fish!

In my dream world we all adapt. We will even make goat cheese. I just found out there is vegetable rennet for curdling. We will be high tech campers ready to move at a moment's notice. Our dogs will help us by pulling travois.

I doubt if I will make it, but the dream for others never dies. Jacob lived off his herd, maybe we can too?

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Cat Hair in Noah's Ark

Make thee an ark of gopher wood; rooms shalt thou make in the ark, and shall pitch it within and without with pitch. And this is the fashion which thou shalt make it of: The length of the ark shall be three hundred cubits, the breadth of it fifty cubits, and the height of it thirty cubits.
Genesis 6:14, 15

Noah's ark has been found. No doubt about it. The dimensions are exact', using the old cubit that Noah used. Metal fastenings were analyzed that are of man made iron. The wood covered with pitch has been found.

There have been many such stories published. I have been to a lecture on the experience of an investigator. These were men of faith who lacked the scientific techniques needed to find and prove the ark's existence. This is no longer a problem.

Ground penetrating radar is an exacting tool that has been used to establish the dimentions. Turkey is building a visitor center at the site. A core sample there has found animal dung, and--of all things--cat hair. If you have a cat, your cat's ancestors were on the ark. All of us descended from it's eight inhabitants.

View a conclusive documentary on finding Noah's Ark here.

Friday, July 12, 2013

In the Days of Uzziah

You will flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. Zechariah 14:5, NIV

You may have heard of the cat in a barn full of mice. He pins down one with each paw, and then he sees another one! Zechariah 14 is so rich you can become wealthy in Bible knowledge just by reading it.

This chapter explains so many things and puts them in place and time, that some preachers would have to change churches or go independent if they followed it. First, who cares about the days of Uzziah? I mean, besides God. But in modern terms you could compare these days to the time of the great quake in San Francisco. That would put it into perspective.

I imagine a young person asking, "Why should I read about such an ancient time? What's in it for me?" I was like that at one time. But this chapter is about the future--events that are yet to be.

Do we care about the greatest time of trouble that will ever be, with an earthquake that will split Jerusalem? Do we care about what will happen to those who will oppose the Lord? Do we care about the fate of true believers who remain upon the earth? Do we care about one day, unlike any other, when it will become brighter in the evening? Do we care about the return of Jesus and all the holy ones with Him?

If we do, this is shown in one chapter, Zechariah 14. No matter what a person's economic status, this little chapter will make them wealthy.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

The King Who Ate Grass

And they shall drive thee from men , and thy dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field: they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen... Daniel 4:32

When I was a kid, Life Magazine carried a story about a man who tried an all grass diet. He lost weight and ended the experiment. It was decided that humans were not able to digest grass. End of argument. At the time it was settled in my mind.

After a number of years I read the story of Nebuchadnezzar doing so, and for seven years. How could this be? Who to believe, Life or the Bible? Maybe God gave Nebuchadnezzar the ability? Maybe somebody slipped him a hamburger once in a while to give him some real nourishment? Or, could it be that people could really subsist on a grass diet?

There are over 400 varieties and all are edible. Especially when you count the seeds. Wheat, corn, barley, and cereal grains are grasses. This is the most widespread plant in the world. Its secret of survival may be in its extreme adaptability.

I don't know about the man who gave up eating grass, but the king I do know about. I go with the Bible. The story of the king's pride and his reduction to animal status for seven years is one of the most dramatic in the Word, because he regained his sanity, and restored. He turned and praised God. Such a lesson for him and all who observed.

Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgement: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase. Daniel 4:37

Such a powerful lesson in humility. Is it also a lesson in nutrition?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

A Mostly Wasted Life

Mine, I mean. If I were to put a number on it I would say, in the high ninety per cent. In my youth I was surrounded by, and went to school with, people who knew how to be happy as if by some instinct. I did not.

My sister said she saw me walking, head down, dragging my feet. For Christmas I received a book titled, Here's Help for You. When I was seventeen I became a Christian. This really helped. But my purposelessness was still with me.

When asked, in school, what I wanted to be, I wrote "Hobo". I collected railroad maps. I was serious about this. It seemed a far better alternative to what I saw around me.

I had a few kindred spirits in this. Two guys, elsewhere, had written "Hero" and "Inca sun god". I guess we were some of the original beatniks.

I hear women say "You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a prince." Guess this was part of my problem--eliminating the negatives until I found what I wanted.

Have you had this experience? I can understand this, but should it take decades?

Church failed me, in every way. You find your best guides are dead authors. In your mind, you live and think apart. Some happy day you find your place, but in my case almost too late.

Wash me in your blood, Lord Jesus, and forgive me.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Attack of the Crabgrass!

"We shall fight it on the lawns, we shall fight it in our flower beds. We will poison it from out of our golf courses. With Dow on our side we shall prevail. And if the neighborhood lasts a hundred days, history will say, 'This was their final hour.'"
- Neighborhood Improvement Committee

Most of us have other things to worry about. We become preoccupied with petty concerns such as paying rent or house payments. Many have health problems or know of those who do. We must keep our cars running and full of gas. Some of us are worried about paying for food. Will there be food shortages?

To some, though, their concern is that horrible plant known as "crabgrass". "Why it's not even American! It's an immigrant!" It must be fought to the death. America's survival depends on it.

My wife was waiting for me to pick her up, so she got onto an early type of computer game. It was the search for hidden treasure. She was progressing nicely until the game confronted her with a cobra. It asked, "What will you do about the cobra?" She replied, "Eat the cobra." Not even Indiana Jones could think of that one. The game said "You've got to be kidding!"

So, echoing her answer to the cobra problem, I will say, "Eat the crabgrass." I'll even go beyond that, and say, "Raise the crabgrass." I propose an amnesty program for this poor, misunderstood foreigner.

Crabgrass seed is even deliberately planted as a forage crop, since almost nothing will kill it. Drought killing pastures? The crabgrass will still be there. It even replants itself. Green Deane, the wild plant expert, asks if it is really "manna". He offers a muffin recipe as an example.

Maybe, from a medicinal point of view, it will help cure sarcasm? I should really try it.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Doctor Feen's Amazing Machine

The doctor had a PH'D in electrical engineering. Not really a degree, but he had acquired enough knowledge to have the equal of such a degree, and his friend's called him "doctor" because of his rigorous studies. And, so armed, he set about to build his amazing World Analyzer. That's what he would call it.

At first he scrounged parts from all over in a vain attempt to construct his machine. He found pieces that he thought would work, but no matter how he tried to put them together, they just did not. Surely, he thought, someone must have invented such a machine, maybe a long time ago. After all, the world was trillions of years old, and Man had been around for millions.

One day, in a used bookstore, the light began to dawn. He saw a battered old book, neglected on a lower shelf. Someone had underlined many passages, and it obviously had been read many times. He had heard the book recommended, way back in his childhood, as containing the answer to all things, but he had forgotten about it since the claim was obviously preposterous. The book was inexpensive and so he took a chance. He bought it.

Did I say that the doc's World Analyzer project had been abandoned? Every time he turned it on, all he could hear was weeping and cries of pain, no matter how he tuned it. This couldn't be right.

He began to read the battered old book. It was surprisingly well written, he thought. And if it's contents were valid, his attempts to cobble together a World Analyzer were not necessary at all. He continued to read.

The opening sentence told of something he had never heard. It claimed that the whole world was invented by someone named God! Further reading told of someone called Satan and had a prophecy about a Redeemer. What a drama! He wanted to read it all and see how it all came out.

The book had been authored by a number of people and over a long period of time, but he was told that the 66 parts all fit together. "Is it sad?" he asked the book store owner. "Parts of it are very tragic, but if you keep reading to the end it will fill you with joy."

After he read the first five parts, written by someone named Moses, he was determined to read the whole book. He certainly needed to be filled with joy.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

She Threw Up in Petra

And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.
Revelation 12:14

A lady told me a little story about her daughter. They were to visit the rock-hewn city of Petra in Jordan. You must enter the city by what is described as a narrow defile, and by horseback. The little girl bounced around on the horse until just as they entered this marvelous place, the little girl got so sick she threw up. What an introduction to this marvelous city!

Not only is it marvelous because it is in a deep canyon of rock and carved out of the solid rock, but because it may be of great prophetic importance. The book of Daniel speaks of the short reign of Antichrist. In this reign he dominates most of the world. Israelites flee him into the wilderness.

Chapter twelve of Daniel is echoed by chapter twelve of Revelation. They go together. Daniel eleven, verse forty-one, has this very important statement: ...but these shall escape out of is hand, even Edom, Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon. The King James says the chief of the children. Other translations clear up this phrase and translate it "the main portion of the Ammonite territory."

Now we are getting geographical. Ammon is modern Jordan, as in Ammon, Jordan. The Bible tells us this will be a refuge to the Israelites, a place of safety from Antichrist. How ironic that their flight will be through Edom and Moab! These ancient territories previously have been trouble for Israel, but now they save her.

What has this to do with Petra? Petra is in Jordan, and could be Israel's three and one half year dwelling place during the great tribulation--a place "prepared for her". There is so much to be said about Edom and Moab, from their terrible origin in Genesis, to God using them to save his people.

And as for the now uninhabited city of Petra, one little girl will remember it as the place where she threw up.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Knocking the L Out of Hell

It has been awhile since I looked up Hel, so I just looked her up in Wikipedia. There she was, complete with a picture. I don't know how they know what she looks like because Hel is a goddess of Norse Mythology. It's kind of like finding the exact weight of the Easter Bunny.

Let me assure you I do believe in Hel. She is a very popular myth. What I do not believe is that she is real. Neither is the realm she is supposed to preside over.

According to the myth, Hel is a place of darkness and the place where some dead people go. Even the venerable teacher J. Vernon McGee said he could not reconcile a place of darkness with a place of flames. Some have tried to explain this inconsistency by saying the flames are like burning sulphur--hot but invisible. But sulphur's flames are not invisible. They are blue. I have seen them. They look like the flames of your gas stove.

For me the attempt to make a region in Norse mythology coincide with the Bible is, as they say, a stretch. I admit to being a "naive literalist", but not that naive.

I printed out every reference in the Bible where hell is mentioned. The words translated as "hell" have a number of meanings: pit, grave, and Jerusalem's town dump. You have a number of definitions to choose from. One actually says "hell" = "hell". That doesn't help. What is not there is a place fitting the description of the Norse goddess Hel, or her abode of darkness.

Now I like the King James or Authorized version, but I also like the NIV. I clicked on this translation and, my oh my, all the Old Testament references had disappeared. My Baptist buddies would say that the major deletions are proof that the NIV is a "liberal translation". I have not found this to be true. If I thought so, I would dump it. I have given this a lot of thought, and my conclusion is that the King James contains translations that honor the mythology long accepted by the Catholic church.

As Bishop Fulton J. Sheen said, "No one ever needs to leave the church for theological reasons, because the Catholic church contains all theologies." I believe that the latter part of his statement is true. And those who follow the doctrine of hell are promoting a myth found nowhere in the Word of God.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Buddy and The Arrow Club and a Greek Interlinear

When I was about nine, I woke very early in the morning to plug in the lights of the Christmas tree. My teeth were chattering, as our coal furnace had died down. Plus I was so excited. Under the tree, was a book about, my then current interest, archery. Robin Hood was my ideal hero.

A few days ago I thought to look up the book about Buddy, and behold and lo, there it was! I ordered it immediately. I still remembered some of the incidents in the book and wanted to read it all again.

It came in the mail and, though it was published in 1937, it was in good shape, with the minor flaw of a brown stain of a flower that had been pressed in it. I wish I knew what flower it was. It had a delightful old-book smell. Young lads in knickers said things like, "Hark, what was that?"

I have also ordered a Greek Interlinear, though I do not know how well I will use it. I will try. Brother Dobson has revealed that his father, a Presbyterian minister read so much that he literally lost his ability to read. I mean, how much reading must you do?

I have my own theory on how to use your brain. No one else wants it. I call it the Holographic Brain Theory. It is very simple. Just think about different things once in awhile, "give it a rest"! Approach life from different angles if you can.

I hope to keep reading as long as I can, but once in awhile, I want to think about nothing more complicated than a cartoon of Garfield.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

How Much Ice Cream Did You Sell Today?

The driver of an ice cream truck pulled into the parking lot of the company at the close of a hot July day. His boss rushed out. "Well James, how much ice cream did you sell today?"

James tries to conceal his pride. "Boss, I'm happy to say my truck is still loaded!" Turns out James's truck was full, not only of 13 flavors of ice cream, but slurpys and the makings of hundreds of vanilla, chocolate, and raspberry malts.

He had been assigned a neighborhood filled with active little kids. Some of them would tell you they were about to perish from thirst.

You see, James sold nothing at all! He played the little bells with the tune that every kid recognized, but when their eager faces appeared at his open window, all James did was tell them about the chemical formulas of what he had to offer. James knew all about the ingredients, including the molecular weight of chocolate and the FD&C approved sprinkles he could have put on their cones.

But every kid went away broken hearted, though they had anticipated a nice, delicious treat after playing in the hot sun.

When the boss heard that James had sold nothing at all, he was so disgusted that he fired him right out there in the parking lot. He had given James a truck loaded with goodies. The kids really looked forward to what was to be the highlight of their day.

James was paid fairly well. That was not the problem. James didn't have to climb poles to replace downed wires after a storm, or drive a heavy semi through winding mountain roads. He didn't have to wait on tables until he was exhausted. All he had to do was give to the kids from his abundant truck, and they were so eager!

You see James had been fired from his old job too. Believe it or not, James had been a preacher. He had degrees to prove it. But while he promised so very much, and he had such a wonderful product, when he rang the bells and people came, he told them how much he knew-but he sent them empty away.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Beyond All Speculation

"Cruden's for the crude, Young's for the young, and Strong's for the strong." So goes an old memory device about concordances. In that way only, I am a Strong man.

Do you use a concordance? It could seem so dry. After all there is a much simpler way, coined by the Witte family music tape. It is called "Pop it, pick it and prove it." You just highlight your favorite verses and use them to make your point, when you pop your Bible out. Or, more likely, your New Testament. If this works for you, then God bless you.

But, say, you are home alone, and you are thinking, "I wish I knew all the Bible says about a certain word or idea." I'll just pick one at random--"love". Let's look up "love", you think. And suppose you are old fashioned enough to own a concordance. Further, let's just imagine you have a Strong's concordance of the King James Bible.

How thorough is your concordance? If you should be the owner of a Strong's, the answer is "completely". This two-handed, heavy book, contains every mention of "a" or "and". That is why it is so very big. It took 40 years to compile it. But if the word you are looking for is in the Bible, Strong's has it.

Of course nowadays this wonderful book is online, with some very helpful new features. You can look up more than one word at a time, and in a number of translations. A dictionary is built in, so that you can easily look up the definition of any word in question, in Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek.

I was explaining the term "persnickety" to a young girl. After I had defined it, she said, "You mean like you?" It was funny to me, that I came across to her like that. Guilty as charged.

I am not picky about food at all, but when it comes to the meaning of a Bible word I want to get it as right as I can. New and deeper truth can come to you this way. Look up every place a key word appears in the Word. Check its definition in the original language if needed. Old traditional ideas that are false will fade away when you see every mention and original meaning of a word. They may be replaced by wonderful new insights of what you have been taught was true.

Your Bible is right most of the time, even in paraphrase versions, but I want to get as close to the original text and every mention of a word as I can. Guess that is why the little girl called me "persnickety".

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Day I Got New Glasses

My old glasses were terrible. All I could see was myself, my face in a mirror, my arms and legs . I didn't like what I saw. I had faint glimpses of very desirable objects, like dream girls and motorcycles; but my visions of myself were sharp and clear and not very good at all.

I fell short. Physically I guess I was ok, but these were special glasses that could see more than that.

I had been reared in a church where there were two projects--self-improvement and the Current Church Project. We were to follow the Sermon on the Mount and the examples in the Parables for self-improvement. For church projects we were to give money.

There were a lot of meetings and Special Committees. Big plans were afoot. Some glorious day we would convert the whole world. Then everyone could be as good as we were. It would be hard to come up with an agenda more boring, or even hateful, to a young man.

I soon got out. I became, as the sports fans would say, a "free agent". I was looking for a team to sign on with. I even tried out for some. Although I could have signed on with some of them, they fell short of my needs. They had fatal flaws.

Back to my glasses. Someone was making new glasses for me, so that I could see things so much more clearly. I didn't know it at the time, of course.

I was browsing in a book store and looked at an illustration in a book. It showed a rather sinister picture of Nebuchadnezzar. I remember that the picture had a kind of yellow cast to it. Pretty grim. I remember thinking, "Who cares about such a thing as some ancient king?"

I replaced the book on the shelf, but the illustration stayed in my mind. My new glasses were starting to work. I had a glimpse of something in a religious book that was not about self-improvement! In fact, it was not about me at all.

Was this God's view of great kings and their kingdoms? I was starting to see something relating to God's point of view.

It is said that falling in love is the first time the young really get out of their self-absorbtion and love someone else. Well, this was ,for me, the early beginning of letting go of my me-centered upbringing and learning about God's perspective. He cared about the king of Babylon. Maybe I should, too?

Later I learned that Nebuchadnezzar became mad at the hand of God. He was later restored and realized how great God is. Nebuchadnezzar got a new set of glasses. I did too.

Monday, July 1, 2013

All Will Be Well, or Who Will Be a Lying Spirit?

It seems that telling the truth is the most dangerous occupation. People really don't like anything but good news. Those who tell bad news are shunned, all the way up to God himself. "Killing the Messenger," is an old saying about those who forecast bad news.

This is the situation described in I Kings 22. The subject is possible war between Israel and Syria. Doesn't that sound familiar?

Jehoshaphat, king of Judah, pledges his troops to fight with the king of Israel. About 400 prophets are consulted and they give assurance that Ramothgilead will be delivered to them by the hand of the Lord. Just to be sure though, another prophet is consulted.

Enter Micaiah, a man of truth. Opposed to him is the false prophet Zedikiah, who puts on a ridiculous performance with a set of iron horns he has made to demonstrate the coming victory over Syria.

The scene changes to a heavenly vision of the Lord and his host. God asks that a spirit go forth to deliver His message.

Now therefore, behold, the Lord hath put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these thy prophets, and the Lord hath spoken evil of thee, verse 23.

Micaiah is put in prison for prophesying defeat. Just as he said, Syria prevailed. Things remain the same. People demand good news, though it be false. Israel goes to war over Syria, and those who tell the truth are villified.

Could this also be true of those who say we are headed for trouble?