Archive for February, 2011

When will they ever learn. . .

Honestly, it boggles the imagination. It would appear that there is money to be had in arms dealing. And when dollars are on the table, conscience goes out the window.

BBC posted the following this morning:

In May 2008, the US firm General Dynamics inked a $165m (£165m) contract to arm the Libyan army’s elite second brigade.

This force, led by Mr Gaddafi’s son Khamis, was deployed to the streets of al-Bayda – a city east of Benghazi and near the border with Egypt – where it has unleashed live ammunition on protesters.

Export licences for British arms to Libya in the first nine months of 2010 were valued at over £200m, spanning military cameras and sniper rifles. Libya’s final death toll, already over 300, will outstrip that of Egypt’s comparatively peaceful struggle for democracy.


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The Mind of Anti-Christ

I’ve been following the protests in North Africa, particularly Egypt, and that led me to  works on non-violent protest by Gene Sharp, who is said to have influenced those in Tahrir Square.
As I rabbit-trailed onward I found this quote:

Pol Pot decided that a people so “stupid” as to refuse his ways and thoughts must be destroyed and re-educated through forced labor and “tbaung chawb” (hoe blade) to strike the necks of those with “incorrect” thinking. There is no gain to keep them, no loss to eliminate them, the Khmer Rouge said. Thus, Pol Pot killed the nation.- A. Gaffar Peang-Meth

I read it to the Magpie, “There is no gain to keep them, no loss to eliminate them.” and he immediately responded, “The mind of the anti-Christ.”

Think back and now, to dictators past and present, who thus shed the blood of their people without compunction, and your heart will tell you that this is true.

Whenever the church too, departs from the mindset of the God who is “not willing that any should perish” and thinks “There is no gain to keep them, no loss to eliminate them.” it has espoused the mindset of the enemy.

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Enter the Babble of Babel

Genesis 11:1-9

Just nine little verses, but rather of import to me, sitting here, jumping my thoughts between Hebrew, English, and Nkonya, checking the first Nkonya draft of the book.

So often I have focused my thoughts on the vision of Revelation with every tribe and language gathered around the throne of God in worship, or on the day of Pentecost with divine simultaneous translations into multiple languages.

But here is the start of it all.  From one language to many, in a blink.

The presumptuous tower of Babel – with its head in the clouds, lofting to the place of God.

The city that would draw men to a place of unified strength, and go against a divine command to spread out and repopulate the earth.

And God came down, and looked things over and said, “If this is the way they have begun, nothing will stop these sons of Adam from carrying out every intention.”

An ironical statement, as without further ado he put a spoke in their wheel and sent them out to the far corners of the earth, as previously commanded, but now each with their own language, unable to communicate with former associates.

Multiple languages were designed to keep people from unifying against God, to hinder the multiplication of evil. They were not to keep them from communicating with the Creator, from whom all languages originate.

And so I plug on.

Can’t help wondering though- when we all gather at the throne of God, before the Lamb, representing close to 7000 languages and who knows how many dialects, will the need for differing speech vanish, and will we again speak one language with one set of words?

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Bubble milestone- first 100 lengths

Twenty lengths is half of a kilometre,

just twelve lengths short of half a mile,

and then you might as well add eight to make an even kilometre,

which is not that much short of a mile,

which on a good day isn’t that far off two kilometres,

and having swum this far why not make the effort worth it and go a mile and a half,

and that of course is only four lengths short of 100 lengths,

which is such a nice round number.

So. . . a late morning nap seems like such a sensible decision.

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Light Ten Thousand Cell Phones

Watching video of the first minutes in Tahrir Square after the announcement of President Mubarak’s resignation my attention was caught by the multitude of glowing blue squares of cellphones and the like held high to record the moment.

Truly,  Facebook, Twitter, and the Internet, albeit abetted by good old fashioned landlines, helped release the genie from the bottle this time.

Amazing to sit here in snowy Canada and be given such a window on happenings half a world away.

While we wait for the day to dawn and the smoke of celebratory fireworks to clear, I pray that the one who is the light of the world and the sun risen with healing in his wings, would bless Egypt and uphold what is good.

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God will see to it

How often has someone said, “Don’t worry, I’ll see to it for you.” And we relax.

I’ve been turtling along in my Hebrew studies and the reading I read on Sunday was that most intimate of stories, of God, and Abraham, and Isaac in the mountains of Moriah.

“Jehovah-Jireh- my provider, thy grace is sufficient for me, for me.” . . . the words of a popular Christian song are probably the first things that drift through my mind, along with the phrase,  “God will provide a lamb,” and “Behold the lamb, of God, which taketh away the sins of the world.”

But the verb, now brought as “provide” in the majority of English translations, is the common everyday verb usually translated as “see”, and the lamb, in fact turned out to be a full grown ram with horns large enough to get entangled in a thicket.

Nothing wrong with the English Christian translations, though worth noting that our conceptions do influence our word choice.  Still, it was the simplicity of literal translation that encouraged me.

The Tanakh, a Jewish translation of the tradition Hebrew text says,|

Then Isaac said to his Father, Abraham, “Father”

And he answered, “Yes, my son.”

And he said, “Here are the firestone and the wood, but where is the sheep for the burnt offering?”

And Abraham said, “God will see to the sheep for the burnt offering, my son.” And the two of them walked on together.

Lets walk on together, God will see to it.

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And along came Wael Ghonim

And just as the media were beginning to think they had squeezed the most vital juices out of the story along comes Wael Ghonim. The young Google executive, just released from 12 days imprisonment by Egyptian security forces, has breathed new life into the protest at Tahrir square.  History in the making is full of incredible twists. Perhaps I should stop boycotting Facebook after all.

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