She Gave All

Out of Wealth - image from pixabay.com
Out of Wealth – image from pixabay.com

Giving can be a misleading activity

Easy to Give Big - image from pixabay.com
Easy to Give Big – image from pixabay.com

Mr. Smith gave $1,000,000 to a charity that helps victims of catastrophes: His action enjoyed much attention and a chorus of praises from a host of prominent people. Mr Smith also got a nice deduction on his tax return and was placed in a lower tax bracket.

She has little - image from pixabay.com
She has little – image from pixabay.com
Two Cents - image from pixabay.com
Two Cents – image from pixabay.com

Mrs. Jones hesitated outside s a supermarket right after getting some needed food  . . . she looked at the Salvation Army bucket . . . then she took the 93 cents from her purse and put it all in: it was all she had and except for a thank you and a Merry Christmas from the faux Santa no one noticed.  She gave all she had and only got a good feeling in return.

Mark 12:41-44 ESV 

And he sat down opposite the treasury and watched the people putting money into the offering box. Many rich people put in large sums. And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny. And he called his disciples to him and said to them, “Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”

How you give and how you help others reveals your heart.
Give more than money - image from pixabay.com
Give more than money – image from pixabay.com

2 Corinthians 9:7 ESV

Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

1 Timothy 6:17-19 ESV

As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.

When People Cheat we must Tax Sin

Perfect- image from pixabay.com
Perfect- image from pixabay.com
Sin- image from pixabay.com
Sin- image from pixabay.com

This is not an Ideal World

Ever since Adam and Eve sinned and were cast out of the Garden of Eden life for humans has not been easy: we have great capabilities in intelligence, skills and adaptability but use our free will for evil as well as good. Some times we find ourselves stuck in paradoxes and even the best of us can only guess at a solution to a problem.

Commandments - image from pixabay.com
Commandments – image from pixabay.com

Yes, if all people were obedient to GOD all would be much better here and now.  Yet, even if only all Christians were perfectly obedient to Christian Ideals unsaved nonbelievers would still need some kind of help in order to live in this world successfully, as we strive to lead them to The Lord.

Gamble- image from pixabay.com
Gamble- image from pixabay.com
Moulin-rouge - image from pixabay.com
Moulin-rouge – image from pixabay.com

There Just are not Enough Christians Living in Obedience to GOD.

 

Only Human- image from pixabay.com
Only Human- image from pixabay.com

Of course if it were to happen that all people are saved and know Jesus as their Lord and Savior then the work of The Great Commission would be finished.

 

Dead Shot- image from pixabay.com
Dead Shot- image from pixabay.com

The World would be a different place: no suffering, no mistakes . . . etc.  Or would it?  We still are living in the fallen world tempted and subject to deception and our own weakness.

Sin City- image from pixabay.com
Sin City- image from pixabay.com

When the people of GOD fail to be their brother’s keeper, care for widows and orphans and, support Christian principles fully, human logic may then lead us to tax wrong things instead of opposing them and, fail to call them what they are in the sight of GOD: SINS.

Washington DC - image from pixabay.com
Washington DC – image from pixabay.com
Alcohol - image from pixabay.com
Alcohol – image from pixabay.com
Tabacco- image from pixabay.com
Tabacco- image from pixabay.com
Prostitution- image from pixabay.com
Prostitution- image from pixabay.com

 

Cannabis - image from pixabay.com
Cannabis – image from pixabay.com

Therefore,  GOD’s Revelation will be fulfilled nevertheless.

Revelation 20:11-15 ESV

Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

 

So, what can we do fellow Christian?

Wisdom
Wisdom

We as Christians are living in a flawed physical world that is ruled by a Fallen Angel; we accept Jesus, study GOD’s Word and become as obedient as possible to GOD.  Each day that we are alive is a day closer to the return of Jesus Christ.  Each day that we are alive we should grow in our Christian Walk and become more Christ-Like.  We can only strive to do what is right and good. Keep up the Good Fight. Without GOD we cannot become Christ like but we must try.

Pinical - image from pixabay.com
Pinical – image from pixabay.com

 

 

SCRIPTURE:

Genesis 3:17-19 ESV

And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

Mark 16:15 ESV

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.

Luke 14:13 ESV 

But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind,

 

AMEN

Use of ESV Bible verses: https://www.crossway.org/support/esv-bible-permissions/

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Center of Everything

You and the Universe - image from pixabay.com
You and the Universe – image from pixabay.com

For Each of Us Our Consciousness Is  . . .

. . . the Center of Everything.  No, I do not mean greater than GOD.  What I am referring to is this: We perceive all about our existence through our senses and our senses are how we know everything that we know. Seems obvious to some of you and maybe weird to others.  OK, GOD is everywhere, has been forever past (from our perspective) and will be forever future: GOD is beyond time without a beginning or ending.

Infinity - image from pixabay.com
Infinity – image from pixabay.com

We on the other hand view existence in terms of beginnings and endings. Think of it like this: we are at the center of how we perceive life; living.

Pointing - image from pixabay.com
Pointing – image from pixabay.com

 

GOD gave us life, a brain and knowledge.

 

We should pay our respects to our Creator.  Yes our minds can perceive and conceive, project and reckon with and, come to recognize this truth: We are the created not the creator.  Can any of us form from nothing a living entity? Can we make a new form of matter? Invent a new natural law?   I do not think so.

 

We Update Our Knowledge All the Time

A speck on a speck - image from pixabay.com
A speck on a speck – image from pixabay.com
The Milky-way - image from pixabay.com
The Milky-way – image from pixabay.com

The Earth was center . . . no, the sun . . .  no, the galaxy . . . no, the universe . . . This thing is good; no it is bad; wait it is, good; now it is bad again. . . GOD is the only true eternal constant.

SO WHO WILL YOU SERVE?

Jesus is central - image from pixabay.com
Jesus is central – image from pixabay.com

I chose the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, eternal Supreme Being-Creator GOD. GOD is the center and source of all that I know and can know. Forever and ever AMEN.

 

Scripture that helps guide and correct our understanding of GOD and who we are:

Genesis 1:1-31 ESV

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. …

Hebrews 11:3 ESV

By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.

Jeremiah 4:23 ESV

I looked on the earth, and behold, it was without form and void; and to the heavens, and they had no light.

Genesis 1:14 ESV

And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years,

John 1:3 ESV

All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.

 

About Your Vote

President Clinton from Pixabay.com
President Clinton from Pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

You May Think There Are No Good Choices . . .

 

. . . and perhaps from a human perspective you may seem correct.  Again, I say GOD knows all about it and, GOD is in control.

Romans 13:1 ESV 

Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.

 

Anything can happen at anytime, yet humans tend to project the worst that could happen (admittedly I am guilty of that).  If you research the history of elections you may discover unusual outcomes or what actually occurs during a victors term.   Suppose the political rhetoric turns out to mean nothing at all? Suppose a candidate wins but acts totally different than what was expected?   Suppose a winning candidate resigns while in office?  We cannot see the future but GOD does know all about the future.  GOD is in control.

Titus 3:1 ESV 

Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work,

As a Christian I do not see any candidate representing me at this time.

Vote - image from pixabay.com
Vote – image from pixabay.com

 

As a Centrist  I do my best to select someone who comes close to representing my beliefs and preferences.  However, there are a few issues I cannot compromise on: 1) I favor Pro-life 2) I believe in what GOD’s Word teaches us  about right and wrong and 3) I cannot support greed (or greed’s agenda), abuse of power or disregard for the common good.

 

So What Can I Do? Pray, Pray, Pray

Pray - image from pixabay.com
Pray – image from pixabay.com

I pray for GOD’s guidance and that GOD’s will, will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven.

Daniel 2:20-21 ESV

Daniel answered and said: “Blessed be the name of God forever and ever, to whom belong wisdom and might. He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;

Romans 13:7 ESV

Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.

1 Peter 2:13-17 ESV 

Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.

AMEN

Use of ESV Bible verses: https://www.crossway.org/support/esv-bible-permissions/

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Can GOD’s Mind Change?

Prayer - image from pixabay.com
Prayer – image from pixabay.com

Have you wondered why we pray?

This post will discuss a topic that has the potential to be controversial: GOD is omniscient; GOD knows all aspects of eternity; Consequences for violation of GOD’s standards are inevitable. Could the things humans experience and execute within the realm of human existence under free will make a difference in an outcome when we pray?  At this point I will let GOD’s WORD offer clues about whether the mind of GOD can be changed.

Arrows - image from pixabay.com
Arrows – image from pixabay.com

Examples from scripture that reveals clues as to whether the mind of GOD can be altered:

Genesis 18:16-33 (ESV)

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. "Lot and His Family Fleeing from Sodom" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed September 5, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/ad2b8500-2efe-0133-5d45-58d385a7b928
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Lot and His Family Fleeing from Sodom” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed September 5, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/ad2b8500-2efe-0133-5d45-58d385a7b928

26 And the Lord said, “If I find at Sodom fifty righteous in the city, I will spare the whole place for their sake.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adam and Eve suffered consequences

When humans violate a command of GOD they can expect to suffer consequences for their action.  That does not mean we cannot be saved for eternity because even the worst offenses are forgiven when we accept the accomplishment of Jesus Christ who took our place taking our punishment for our sin nature and leading us to eternal life in the presence of GOD>

 

Manuscripts and Archives Division, The New York Public Library. "Full-page miniature of Adam and Eve questioned by God." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed September 5, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47da-e6b0-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Manuscripts and Archives Division, The New York Public Library. “Full-page miniature of Adam and Eve questioned by God.” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed September 5, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47da-e6b0-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

Genesis 3:17-19 (ESV)

And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life; thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you; and you shall eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”

GOD grants a reprieve

Isaiah 38:5 (ESV)

“Go and say to Hezekiah, Thus says the LORD, the God of David your father: I have heard your prayer; I have seen your tears. Behold, I will add fifteen years to your life.

Consider this . . . 

Exodus 32:14 (ESV)

14 And the Lord relented from the disaster that he had spoken of bringing on his people.

AMEN

Use of ESV Bible verses: https://www.crossway.org/support/esv-bible-permissions/

The Value of Human Life

 

From healthcare to war casualties

The people of The United States of America have demonstrated a high standard when it comes to the value our Nation places on human life.  No, we are not perfect; we have some flaws and some people who abuse others. Yet when considering the World as a whole the U.S.A. has been, and is, a leader in helping others and acting as a force for improvement.

Function of a Christian Church

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

Do You Know what the Church is?

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

The Church is not a building, meeting hall or home it is The Body of Christ present on Earth; this body is composed of all Christians that are true believers in what Jesus instructed, taught and ordained when he was here on Earth.  He fulfilled “The Law” as revealed in the Hebrew Bible and amplified, clarified and augmented The Word of GOD Himself and  through His disciples (Apostles) to whom He sent the Holy Spirit to assist in this mission.

Matthew 28:16-20 ESV*
The Great Commission

16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted.18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com
This is the primary function of the church

There are other important functions of course: Teaching, edifying, supporting missionaries and each other in Christian Fellowship.  Since this world we live in is currently flawed and subject to the effects of sinful imperfect people, including we Christians, we have more to do than what is delineated above.

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

In gratitude to GOD Christians strive to obey God representing HIS Good on Earth by ministering to needy people: needy non-Christians and, needy Christians alike.

Helping fellow humans in as an unconditional manner as possible demonstrates GOD’s Love to all.  God wants all people to gain eternal life and access to heaven and Christians are HIS voice to the unknowing people.  The unbelievers the unsaved the lost the troubled wherever they are.

Fellow christians use your gifts to serve

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

2 Peter 3:9 ESV*

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

John 3:16 ESV*

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Romans 6:23 ESV* 

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 10:13 ESV*

For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

*Use of ESV Bible verses: https://www.crossway.org/support/esv-bible-permissions/

Are there Prophets here Today

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

Yes, there are prophets here today.

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

No, not prophets like Elijah or Jeremiah but prophets of GOD nevertheless. Since Christians can read and study GOD’s Word in great detail every Christian has the potential to speak for GOD.  The better they know GOD’s Word the more able they are to express GOD’s messages for all people.

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com
Some Christians have the Spiritual Gift of Prophecy.

1 Corinthians 12:27-28 ESV 

Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues.

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com
Not to judge but to encourage one another to do what is right.
images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

Since we all fall short the modern Christian Prophet reminds fellow Christians to do what is right, what is good and what is edifying. There is a need in some cases to explain a Biblical principle in modern terms. For example:

Exodus 23:4-5 ESV

“If you meet your enemy’s ox or his donkey going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying down under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it; you shall rescue it with him.

The Modern Prophet may say, “You should help anyone in need not just those you know and like.

images from pixabay.com
images from pixabay.com

There is no shortage of opportunity

Not just repeating a truth from GOD’s Word but expressing His love in many ways: demonstrating forgiveness, promoting justice, being fair and demonstrating that you care for GOD’s creation and fellow humans. Help those harmed by floods, wars, tornadoes and ever small scale calamity affords an opportunity for you help people in GOD’s name.  You as a Believer in Our Lord Jesus Christ can express GOD’s love in this way.  In the process you contribute to making living on Earth better.  It will be made better though the perfection will not be extant until Jesus returns when we as believers will enjoy a perfect body and live upon a New Earth.

Isaiah 65:17 ESV

“For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth, and the former things shall not be remembered or come into mind.
AMEN 

 

*Use of ESV Bible verses: https://www.crossway.org/support/esv-bible-permissions/

What is Wealth Anyway?

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

Wealth – *abundance of valuable material possessions or resources

*[http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wealth]

This post is a little different from most of my previous posts. How is it different you wonder?  It is about the current world order and the distribution of wealth.  Wait: it is not a manifesto of a radical social point of view; not about an ideology; not a litany of complaints. First I shall briefly write about the world condition and then emphasize speculation concerning current events as I perceive them. In conclusion I shall link conditions with wisdom from what I have learned and now believe. Let me begin.

Humans have discovered many things about our world that has contributed to the success of our species.

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

Science, technology, ability to anticipate, plan, test and pass on knowledge and skills have made life better for many of us but, not for all of us. The reality is, we have never conquered that trait of human nature that temps us to indulge in evil for personal reasons especially in order to gain riches and power.  It infiltrates even the best milieu and as our population increased worldwide so does the negative fruit from this self-serving tendency.  Fortunately today our collective memory about the two world wars of the last century has confined this manifestation of evil to a relatively  small-scale and not on the large-scale infestation of the worst kind that history reveals.  Of course if you are living in one of the hot spots where evil rules your world view surely must be very negative; this is understandable.

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. "View in the Five Points." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e0-1b4c-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. “View in the Five Points.” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e0-1b4c-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

Even from a secular frame of reference people do not expect perfection in this world.

Yes we seem to have done better in many ways than what history reveals about past generations.

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. "A destitute family, Ozark Mountains area, [Arkansas]" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/629acaf0-fc0c-0132-ee40-58d385a7b928
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. “A destitute family, Ozark Mountains area, [Arkansas]” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/629acaf0-fc0c-0132-ee40-58d385a7b928
If you do study history you probably have recognized, like many things we observe, the good and bad times are cyclical.  Political, social and even cultural aspects are greatly affected by this cycle of ups and downs good and bad times.  The part of the cycle when good prevails followed by the part of the cycle when evil prevails.  This pattern seems to continue ad infinitum.  One old nemesis of peace and tranquility is a condition that arises whenever the disparity between rich and poor reaches a critical breaking point.  When a population arrives at such a point drastic things usually happen:  mass immigration, civil unrest, revolts and wars.  Does that seem like a familiar theme to you?

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

Today some sources claim that the gap between the wealthy people of the world and the poor people of the world is greater than ever.

Music Division, The New York Public Library. "The Piccadilly Johnny with the little glass eye" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47de-1630-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Music Division, The New York Public Library. “The Piccadilly Johnny with the little glass eye” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47de-1630-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

I can believe this.  I see in the news everyday indications of clashes caused by desperate people on the move in search of a better life.  The hopeless people flee anarchy, radical ideology and war.  Unfortunately some stay and turn to more radical measures themselves, by adopting barbaric and brutal behavior believing it is their only choice.  What is worse, people with criminal tendencies see this manifestation of evil masking as religious or political expression as an opportunity to validate their barbaric behavior.

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

Some adopt an ideology inspired by hate and fueled by anger because they are angry and they do hate; even if they have cause, their action only worsen situations that are already horrible.  At the end of this post I will summarize the direction I suspect our

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. "Destitute Ozark resident, Arkansas" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/5f12b7f0-fc0c-0132-ccb6-58d385a7b928
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Photography Collection, The New York Public Library. “Destitute Ozark resident, Arkansas” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed April 17, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/5f12b7f0-fc0c-0132-ccb6-58d385a7b928

social reality will continue to be moving toward if the current state of human affairs continues unchallenged and unabated, but first I want to write about what may help alter these negative social forces and what may be a possible solution.

Like it on not a redistribution of wealth will always occur and seek a happy medium.

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

In physics we learn that equilibrium will occur when two different things representing opposites, like hot and cold, dense and sparse, or fresh and salty water will eventually arrive at a point when both modify each other and neutralize the disparity.  The second law of thermodynamics.  Wait, are not humans infinitely more complex than a gas or a fluid?  True.  If we examine extreme differences between groups of people with opposing positions we may note some similarities from their solutions resembling the basic examples above in some cases, and less predictable very different results in others : 1) Human behavior is unlikely to end a point of contention with all the individuals agreeing completely, instead there will be a distribution of agreement and disagreement along a familiar pattern  – introducing the famous “bell curve”,

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

2) It only takes a small percent of a population to disrupt a solution, increase costs or foment discontent, 3) A total diffusion of any possessions, freedom, privileges or power may be unnecessary.  Not many individuals desire solutions that guarantee they will be allowed to gain in excess.  This is true especially if the extra benefits place greater demands on them who take possession of them.  In other words, a fair distribution of material gain, freedom, power and privilege spread throughout a population would satisfy the majority of the people involved.  Some would like more power and more wealth but others would not want the added responsibility that would go with it.  Whatever solution is adopted it would require periodic evaluation, mechanisms for adjustment and remedies for failures.  The group as a whole would need safeguards: methods to deal with disrupters, law breakers and abusers.

How is a more equitable world achieved?

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

There are many ways to redistribute wealth: a social mechanism such as taxation, charity, welfare, land reform, monetary policies, confiscations or more drastic measures like warfare, immigration, and lawless behavior on a large-scale.  If people want peace then they must address the problem equitably before evil harnesses the unsettled masses and we all move toward anarchy, barbarism and a return to “The Law of the Jungle.” An immigrant may send money home; a nation may provide aid to a suffering neighbor country; the wealthier societies may invest money and resources where there is a need – a need to cultivate a higher standard of living for a people.  In my opinion a more equitable world can be achieved but whether it will be a peaceful or violent transition remains an open question; an answer to a question that all people alive today have a vested interest in finding a peaceful answer to.

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What if the gap between rich and poor continues or increases?

from pixabay.com
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I have read science fiction literature and watched films that portray a future for humanity that is bleak, in chaos and violent.  Walled or fenced cities where “The Haves” isolate themselves from the “Have-Nots”; within the cities luxury is common and excesses abound; beyond the perimeter where the poor masses struggle to survive it is a “dog eat dog” existence ruled by cruel and violent people.  The status quo one day is totally upset when the security zones are breached and the deprived run amok venting frustration and hatred by attacking all who have “the good life” until an ugly equilibrium is established and a horrible dystopia is the reality for all people.

 

from pixabay.com
from pixabay.com

As a follower of Jesus Christ I believe the Holy Bible provides insight and the wisdom to achieve this goal.

*Excerpts from The Holy Bible:

      1. Genesis 4:8-10 ESV

Cain spoke to Abel his brother. And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?” He said, “I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?” And the Lord said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground.

      1. 1 John 3:17-18 ESV

But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.

      1. Proverbs 14:31 ESV

Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him.

      1. Psalm 82:3-4 ESV

Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”

      1. Proverbs 29:7 ESV

A righteous man knows the rights of the poor; a wicked man does not understand such knowledge.

      1. Mark 14:7 ESV

For you always have the poor with you, and whenever you want, you can do good for them. . . .

*Use of ESV Bible verses: https://www.crossway.org/support/esv-bible-permissions/

The Rise of Women

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It is ridiculous to think our world can be run by one sex. In In

"Self Contained Society" Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. "Jungle village scene." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/c261e829-384b-8b35-e040-e00a18061102
“Self Contained Society”
Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Jungle village scene.” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/c261e829-384b-8b35-e040-e00a18061102

OK, throughout history variations in culture and tradition make things appear that people have lived (and some may still live) within a society dominated by one sex: either male or female.  I am referring to what societies considered norms not the exceptions: there always seems to be a person (or persons) who is (are) unique and as an exception to the pattern of the society they have lived in.  How people see what is normal is dependent on the milieu they were born and nurtured in, and this may become so firmly embedded within their being that to them it is the only way it can be.  So within the world and at various times people have come to accept a variety of traditions that define roles for Men and Woman: then, what seems to be the standard is actually just the prevailing view.  What is the predominant view from within my society?  From the historical frame of reference I was taught: “it seems to have always been a male dominated world.”  Really?

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. "Femmes Cabocles (sauvages civilisés) vivant du métier de blanchisseuses dans la ville de Rio Janeiro." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47df-7934-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Femmes Cabocles (sauvages civilisés) vivant du métier de blanchisseuses dans la ville de Rio Janeiro.” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47df-7934-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

Sometimes I believe women let men believe they are in charge.  I think there is much evidence to support the view that despite differences in appearance, humans cannot function without a close partnership between the sexes.  Each has characteristics making them important to survival. When there are few people and the priority is to multiply and populate, the traditional family unit becomes vital for a group of humans to survive.  There is limited time and resources available for anything but sticking with what enhances the prospects for survival. In that circumstance what each is more suited for cast them into particular jobs in general but, that is not where the story ends.  Variation in both sexes confuses stereotypical classification; the brain power is virtually identical and physical prowess (or lack of it) is subject to individual specialization.  It may be that the only real difference is women bear our children and have the ability to nourish infants with breast milk and men cannot.  Almost all other differences are just apparent differences; this is because humans chose to believe how things should be and then act out what is assumed to be correct.  Often people are motivated predominately by what they like; each sex enjoys the differences between the sexes in some way, and so for the most part the accepted norm continues.  So what does history indicate to me, concerning the role of the sexes in society over time?

 Sometimes men seem to be in charge and sometimes women seem to be.

General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Count Neipperg, Marie Louise, Duchess of Parma, [and ?]]” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e2-7d7d-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Bardos Phokas Caesar, Saraceen.” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47da-37f8-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

When there are few people and the priority is to multiply and populate, the traditional family unit becomes vital for a group of humans to survive.  There is limited time and resources available for anything but sticking with what enhances the prospects for survival. Obtaining food, shelter and physical security is paramount.

 

 

New opportunities arise.

Gradually as the basic needs become assured some individuals can pursue endeavors beyond mere survival: Specialization is then possible.  Political leadership, religious leadership, career warriors, health-care specialists all become possible; the group initially affords them by sharing resources willingly but as the society expands the need for taxing may then become necessary.

Some of the leadership roles can be assumed by women and they may even choose not to bear children.  This is fine as long as the group as a whole has sufficient population growth to fill vacancies as people age and become less productive: in good times even elderly members may be cared for despite their inability to contribute much in the physical sense.  The society develops a tradition concerning roles for males and females and then after a time the pattern becomes the social norm resisting further change unless dire circumstances force it.

Change can evoke fear in some people.

Humans tend to fear change and reject it when there is too much of it, when there is too wide a variation, or if change happens with too rapid a pace.   This aversion to alteration usually persists long after survival needs had been met, and when patterns mature to become in grain they acquire a sense that “we have always done it that way, so why change?” Social innovation may be slow in coming without strong influences pressing for it.

And so today we are living in a multi cultural world with extensive global trade, extreme specialization and rapid social change challenging almost all the people on the planet.  The pace and amount of change varies in different degrees but the influences of easy travel, social networking and technological advances is irresistible .  What was normal is challenged; what is normal is challenged ; what could become normal is challenged,.  All these challenges force humans to adopt and adapt now, if they have not done so already – this is done in spite of the risk of “growing pains”.

Examples of woman rising up to meet a challenge are not so rare.

Throughout history regardless of when or where women have arisen to leadership –  even within a male dominated tradition – some have led, defended, defined or discovered in important ways.  I see only more opportunity in the times ahead for women to expand their influence and their roles.  To gain an understanding of what women are capable of doing just examine the list via the link below and read the stories of notable women from throughout history:

See  “100 Important Women of History”  http://www.angelfire.com/anime2/100import/

General Research Division, The New York Public Library. "Fig. 18. Amonmai [Meritamon] ; Fig. 19. Iside [Isis]; Fig. 20. Tascia [Takhat]; Fig. 21. Titi ; Fig. 22. [questa fig. ??]; Fig. 23. Rêninofre [Nefrure]; Fig. 24. Tsutenninofre [Bitneferu]." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47d9-485f-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Fig. 18. Amonmai [Meritamon] ; Fig. 19. Iside [Isis]; Fig. 20. Tascia [Takhat]; Fig. 21. Titi ; Fig. 22. [questa fig. ??]; Fig. 23. Rêninofre [Nefrure]; Fig. 24. Tsutenninofre [Bitneferu].” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47d9-485f-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Siam Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. "Hill tribes, Northern Siam." New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/c2631e3d-fa70-f0be-e040-e00a180615d2
Siam
Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Hill tribes, Northern Siam.” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/c2631e3d-fa70-f0be-e040-e00a180615d2

When survival becomes a dim memory non-traditional roles abound: Does it matter? What aspects of human progress do we depend on most?

What is familiar gives us comfort and furnishes a sense of identity, a place called home, a recognizable society and a reassuring cultural (a lens for understanding).  Brave new worlds are challenging for most people, upset many people , generate fear and prompt insecurity in some people.  So overall while some people welcome change many do not (at least not easily). Perhaps a slow pace of change can allow more people to adopt, and adapt because rapid change often is unsettling and reaction to it prompts a counter productive risk.  And yet change still can occur anyway.  Having said that, I recognize change is an ongoing process that cannot be stopped; it cannot be stopped because it is part of a natural progression that is the way reality works on our planet (and probably for all of the cosmos).  Since the echoes from the distant past often still reverberate within us, this legacy helps us make sense of it all; how we come to judge what works and what does not is recognized by the realized outcomes of past change?  What is now, is compared to what once was, and the process never stops.

Observing more women in roles that were traditionally taken by men should not automatically be rejected or instill fear in our culture.  The socioeconomic structure can handle it (in fact it may be necessary: i.e. during World War II women replaced men in factories for example). Humanity has much less need for what was established during a period when population growth was paramount, and what roles were adopted when they were essential for survival.  Still, I must interject that the foundation layer of the human experience really has not changed and, still is important though not so much to increase the population, but as an emotional foundation for well-balanced individuals who will join the society.

My bottom line:

Yes there is another side to this progression of change in my opinion: though we can see the merits of change and embrace some of it quite well, I believe we still need to cling to the traditional family unit – no vision of Aldous Huxley for me or for many other people I suspect is acceptable.  We should cling to the family unit because children benefit and therefore society benefits: people are less emotionally challenged, learn right from wrong early, have a sense of identity and a place to call home. This is in my opinion of course, but if I had time I probably could produce some evidence for the positive effects derived for those nurtured within traditional families and the benefits for society. 

People nurtured from within a traditional family unit are less likely to violate social rules or be abusive; more likely to be law-abiding, civil and productive.  Families that are fostered in love, promote caring and peace that often spreads well beyond the family unit itself. Families grounded in true Christian principals experience much comfort and are the example for what the good side of humanity can demonstrate.  It proves that our existence within this dispensation can improve because we have the knowledge, means and motivation for doing so.

So, how are women rising?

 Rare Book Division, The New York Public Library. "DINNER [held by] HAMBURG-AMERIKA LINIE [at] EN ROUTE ABOARD FURST BISMARCK (SS;)" New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47db-6815-a3d9-e040-e00a1806

Rare Book Division, The New York Public Library. “DINNER [held by] HAMBURG-AMERIKA LINIE [at] EN ROUTE ABOARD FURST BISMARCK (SS;)” New York Public Library Digital Collections. Accessed January 26, 2016. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47db-6815-a3d9-e040-e00a1806

Woman are rising because with more specialization, understanding and the recognition that the female mind is as competent as the male mind, more woman can contribute to society in more ways than what some traditions limit them to. So not only should they be considered equal contributors to men, they should be paid at the same rate as men are paid, for the same job when they do the same work.  Women have always been as vital as men for the survival of humans and it is time to see in what ways they are similar and in what ways they are different for real. This knowledge will allow us to get the maximum good from both sexes: symbiotic and complementary scenarios together ensure people get the best of what life has to offer. Yes similarities and differences both can be harnessed for the advantage of our total and complete society.

Achieving our goals is more enjoyable when the partnership of the family unit (a man a woman and their children engaged in a social partnership) are extended to other aspects of society in my opinion.  So not only do the children raised in a traditional family unit have a better chance for a better outcome, so do the men and women embedded within a secure personal relationship as well.  Exceptions are expected but I am convinced the benefits go far beyond the individuals and it offers “the good” to all people.

What guidance do Christians obtain from God’s Word about this?

What Christians are taught amounts to “realistic common sense“; division of labor that makes use of the advantages each sex brings into the relationship and the recognition of different emotional and physical requirements for each: man and woman become one unit.  The relationship is to be governed by the spirit of unconditional love and dwell within a permanent loyal commitment to each other.  The fruits of the man-woman relationship do change over time but these changing needs associated with age can be met within the traditional framework quite well.  Yes, each can meet the needs of their partner throughout their entire life from child rearing years on through to the years of old age. Nothing can replace the joy and fulfillment of a close relationship that has accommodated these changes over a lifetime.

In conclusion, all this love and the relationship’s beauty, demonstrates to all and, interacts with the people who live it and the people who come in contact with it.

Excerpts from scripture that define roles for Men and Woman:

Galatians 3:28 ESV (Equality)

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.and

 InEphesians 5:21,22,25 ESV (Relationships)

21 submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ. 22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. . . . 25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, . . . 

Judges 4:4 ESV (Leadership)

4 Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time.

Genesis 1:27 ESV (In God’s image)

27 So God created man (I see this as “people”)* in his own image, in the image of God he created him (“them”); male and female he created them.  (*my words in italics)

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