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A website for those not afraid to examine their beliefs, compare them to the real world, and make sure they fit.



Return of the gods

VIEWPOINT



While this book is an indictment of the entire world, it is especially descriptive of the experience of the American people. If anything, I feel that Mr. Cahn's explanation of the American journey is too kind as it gives the American churches some credit where very little is due. In fact, the churches of America are actually helping to drag our people down that path of return to the gods of yesteryear.

FACT



A Messianic Jewish Rabbi, Jonathan Cahn, has recently written a book called Return of the gods. The subject matter is a description of the course of today's society and how it is a re-enactment of the history of the Israelites from as far back as their experience in the wilderness up to this present day. Today's Christian churches are just as fickle.


VIEWPOINT



A long time ago, Israel turned away from God, and looked to other gods

And then, they turned back to Him, and then they turned away again, and turned back again, etc., etc. If you are paying attention, you can see that the American churches are pretty much doing the same thing, except without the turning back to Him parts. They seem to be turning to Jesus, but away from the Father...? They acknowledge Jesus as our Savior, but deny God as being the One with the Plan, and forget that His rules are part of the Plan (Matthew 7:21
21Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

).

I know, this sounds like a blatant groundless accusation from the crackpot who writes this blog page. However, reading the Jonathan Cahn book mentioned above, Return of the Gods, I see some ties that connect some of the dots that we make in the topics shown on this site. He speaks of the return of ancient "gods" to modern times, but then draws parallels between the way people acted back then and the way they act today - acting as though the very same influences are at work in the world today. Indeed, they are following the same "gods".

A point of history

If you review some of the other pages on this site, you will see some references to the changes of the practices of the first-century church into the traditions of today's churches. This was not a sudden thing that happened ten or twenty years ago, but something drawn out over the centuries starting shortly after the year 100 A.D. The first change was Sunday worship and ignoring the Sabbath, but that is not the point I want to make here.

Since those changes started way back then, and the American churches did not start until the 15th century (first discovery by Leif Erikson in 1000 A.D., but we were discovered and settled the second time by Columbus in 1492), the European churches of the time were already under the influence of the forces that had changed the way the world looks at God for over 1000 years. God didn't do that - men did. The Catholic church essentially started in the fourth century with Constantine who made Sunday the official day of worship for "Christianity" (see Got Questions?). They are the churches that fled the persecution of the Church of England and the Catholic church. Our worship system was already corrupted by the time this country was started. The churches were then free, but many of the changes had already been made.

What we have today

While modern-day churches do not blatantly "worship other gods", they seem to be doing things modified away from the first-century church practices, but have no valid reasons for doing so. When you dig into them, you find that they were introduced into today's worship services from second-century sources and slowly became incorporated and treated as though they were there from the beginning. When you find the origin of those practices from the second century on, you see the results of power plays to exert dominance over the congregation (pulpits on stage high above the pews, one speaker, no interaction with the audience), and other things that came from practices other than those of the original church (see Pagan Christianity?).

These all came from influences that stray from the Bible instructions from God and interfere with obedience to Him. The American "Christian" considers himself or herself to be exempt from obedience to the very God they claim to worship, yet they seem confident that Salvation is already theirs. This attitude is very different from what even Paul himself explained in Philippians 3:12
12Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.

.

Let's start with some "definitions"

Anyone who believes the Bible believes that there is a God. They believe that He is the One who created the heavens and the earth that exist around us today. That Book tells us what He expects from us, and gives many stories of how we have let Him down, turned back to follow Him, worshiped Him for a while, then walked away time after time to follow other paths.

These other paths are things or activities that we considered more important than being obedient to the God of the Bible. While the thought of multiple gods conjures up images of Zeus and Apollo, anything that becomes more important than the God of the Bible can be called a god. Money, cars, power, pleasure, sex, alcohol, and a host of other things and activities can become the biggest motivating factor of our lives. In fact, we surrender our will to activities that promise to accomplish either participation in these activities or bring about ownership of the items that are symbols of this influence in our lives.

"But, those aren't 'gods', right?"

Think about it. If you really believe in the God of the Bible and go to "church", then the way you live your life should be demonstrated by your words, actions, and lifestyle. Most people consider a believer to be one who will love his neighbors, give to the poor, hold Bible studies, be honest with everyone, tithe to the "church", and go to that church every Sunday, right? Well, I agree except for the Sunday part. That is a concession to the ancient pagan Sun worship in the Roman Empire - a real life pagan "god". And what day do most of the modern day denominations worship? Sunday.

What about the other side of that coin? If you do not believe in the God of the Bible, you may not have the compunction to love your neighbor except in the physical sense. The poor don't deserve the money you worked for, the Bible is for weaklings who have no sense of strength, honesty is overrated when it interferes with your plans, tithing is a stupid waste of money, and church is for sheep who need to be led around by the nose. You may ask, "How could anyone call the drive to feel this way a 'god'?"

Who is encouraging us to 'fall away'?

Now, these are not what the average person would call gods. Most of them are not intelligent entities with a plan of their own, but things and activities that we prefer over being obedient to the real God of Heaven. However, anything that gets between us and Him is a distraction, and guess who would really like us to stop paying attention to what God wants and spend more time on our desires? Satan and his minions would like nothing better than to get us interested in anything but obedience to God, including breaking the Ten Commandments, all the while scoffing at the idea that these personal inclinations should be called 'gods'. But, what else would you call something that so rules your life that you follow it's urges with joy. If you succumb to the temptations to ignore God's wishes for your own, you are following the whims of a 'god' who is getting you to act selfishly.

"But, I would never do that...!"

No? You say that you would never disobey God for selfish reasons? If you knew that the Bible was telling you that God wanted you to do something, would you refuse to do it? Are you sure? How about if the Bible said not to do something, would you still do it? Most people deny that they would ever do anything against what God told them to do in the Bible.

Yet, amazingly, this is exactly what is happening all the time - at least once a week for nearly every so-called "Christian" in the world. And yet, none of them feel like they are doing anything wrong. In fact, they have been convinced that this is the right thing to do by the leaders of their church. If the Bible says that doing what your church leaders say is against God, and then you found out, would you change your thinking? Or, as billions of others do today, would you keep following those leaders because they deny that the Bible is really saying that it is wrong? I mean, what do they get out of it - besides, that is, a new car, new suits, vacations, a home, and a comfortable living paid for by the congregation?

"Just because I would rather do that doesn't make it a god!"

The problem here is not that people believe in other gods. It's that people have been so convinced by people that God has put no requirements on their daily lives that supposedly nothing that they do is wrong. The only trouble with that idea is that someone has convinced them that they don't have to follow God's rules. They feel that those requirements are only for the Jews. And no one stops long enough to look at each of the clear statements in the Bible to see that God has not changed - people have changed. (Matthew 7:21
21Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

)

Do you remember the tempation of Jesus in Luke 4:1-13
1And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness 2for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry. 3The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." 4And Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone.' " 5And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, 6and said to him, "To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. 7If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours." 8And Jesus answered him, "It is written,

        " 'You shall worship the Lord your God,
           and him only shall you serve.' "

9And he took him to Jerusalem and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, 10for it is written,

        " 'He will command his angels concerning you,
           to guard you,'

11and

        " 'On their hands they will bear you up,
           lest you strike your foot against a stone.' "

12And Jesus answered him, "It is said, 'You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.' " 13And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time.

? The Devil is not a god, but you hear him called the "god of this world" all the time. In these verses, Jesus was not tempted by a god, but that did not make the temptations any less strong. All the statements made by the Devil were true, but they were expressed in a context that suited his own selfish purpose. How well do you think you would have done if you had been offered all the kingdoms of the world? Oh, I'm sure you will shout out that you would never fall for that line of - persuasion. But, look around you. What things in your own life have taken precedence over obedience to the commands of God from His Book? Do you even know?

Anything can become a god when it replaces God

Unless you are a very different "Christian" than the rest of the 2.2 billion Sunday-keepers in the world, you have told God to go jump in the lake regarding His Sabbath day - just for starters. Just where do you think that ignoring the Sabbath and keeping Sunday instead originated? Oh, your pastor says that Jesus rose on Sunday, so that's why we keep it now instead of Sabbath. Like the words of the Devil, those words are true. However, they are never spoken by God or any of His Apostles, but only by those who followed the threatening influence of the Romans (and fleeing the persecution from the Romans) of the first and second centuries. Satan wants you to worship his influence (Sun worship started long before Christ came, and tempted even the Israelites to turn away from God time after time. It's what the Romans were doing when Jesus came the first time.). Like we said above, Constantine made the change official in the fourth century A.D.

You cannot find any place in the Bible that suggests keeping Sunday instead of Sabbath. Yet, how is it that "everyone keeps" the first day of the week and ignores the Sabbath?

So, what are these gods?

OK. Just what "gods" are we talking about here? Mr Cahn's book speaks of what he calls a dark trinity that consists of three influences called the Possessor, the Enchantress, and the Destroyer. They are patterned after the mythical gods of ancient times - Baal, Ishtar, and Molech. Of course, you would never have anything to do with gods by these names, right? Well, let's take just one of them and see if we can see any influence from that one. Ishtar was a Mesopotamian goddess who operated through prostitution and sexuality to obtain what whe wanted. She was often depicted as the wife or mistress of Baal. Did you know that one of the American "holidays" most revered by "Christians" is named after her? Say her name a few times and see if you can guess which holiday.

A made up day

The day is full of fertility symbols like rabbits, eggs, and baby chicks. "Whoa!", you say! "That's not the holiday we celebrate, we honor the resurrection of Christ!" Well, in the Bible, resurrection day has never been called by the name of a pagan goddess, and was never held up as a day to even celebrate. This is something that people chose to do.

If you look into how the holiday of Easter is determined, you will find that it comes on the first Sunday that is on or after the full moon between March 22 and April 25th (Spring equinox) each year. While that sounds very spiritual, there was a choice in the year 2016 about when to celebrate Easter. Since Christians determine that they are celebrating the resurrection, when should that celebration fall? When did the resurrection happen in the beginning? Since the remembrance and celebration is determined by its relation to the day of Passover, Jesus' last meal with His apostles, which happened before the resurrection in the year that Jesus was crucified, it should be celebrated after the Passover events that preceded it in history, right?

The Jews point the way...

Well, in 2016, the date of Easter was set as Sunday, March 27, falling between March 22 and April 25 as determined above by the first full moon of that period. Now, Passover, the event that preceded the resurrection of Jesus, happened on April 22 in 2016, nearly a month after the Sunday churches celebrated their holiday named after the Enchantress of ancient Mesopotamia. So, what is it that they were celebrating? And why was it so clearly not during the time recognized as the time for the true event that is not even a Biblical holiday? Kind of like Christmas in July...think about it... (there is no holiday of Christmas, it's pagan as well).

...but no one follows.

Those who celebrated Easter will claim that it does not matter because they were worshiping the Lord. Hold on... They were worshiping the Lord with Bunnies, Eggs, and baby chicks, the way the pagans worship their gods. Have you ever heard of Bible warnings against that kind of activity? (Deuteronomy 12:4
4You must not worship the LORD your God in their way.

, Deuteronomy 12:31
31You must not worship the LORD your God in their way, because in worshiping their gods, they do all kinds of detestable things the LORD hates. They even burn their sons and daughters in the fire as sacrifices to their gods.

)

"But, we didn't mean it that way..."

Sure, we can see that you were under the wrong impression about the meaning of the day you celebrated, but you still celebrated it, following the "god" who wanted you to ignore the will of the real God (Leviticus 5:17
17If anyone sins and does what is forbidden in any of the Lord's commands, even though they do not know it, they are guilty and will be held responsible.

). You were under the influence of the people who were under the influence of those who convinced them that they were doing the right thing. Now, if you research this and find out the truth, but do the same thing the next time that there is a conflict of dates for that holiday, aren't you worshiping the way the "gods" want you to? That means being under the influence of the gods and turning away from the God of Heaven. Now, read Deuteronomy 12 and see if you can glean any advice as to whether or not we should be worshiping our God the way the pagans do theirs. You won't have to look very deeply to see it. Oh, and one more thing. See if you can find where we are told to celebrate the resurrection as a Holiday - ever.

Oh, I hear you out there, shouting that, "We are not Israelites, so those are not instructions to us. Since we are Gentiles, we can still go out and mimic the pagans and worship God the way we want to instead of the way He told us - uh, them - well, people - to do." Does that even make sense to you?

God sets holidays, not us

A holiday is a day set apart by God in order for us to worship Him the way He told us to do. It is not a day we set apart because we thought it was a good idea, especially if it ignores another day that He set aside for a specific purpose. As you can see, the American "Christians" have absorbed several pagan holidays into their "holy" schedule and do this same thing every year. These "holidays" were designed to give reverence to the ancient Roman and pagan "gods", but we grabbed them and made them "sanctified", acting against the very commands of the God we claim to be worshiping. And the holidays and Sabbaths He did set up for us to use to worship Him, we ignore as anathema (note definition 2):

    

because we consider them Jewish. Refusing to follow God rules makes us gods of our own. But that makes the Pope a "god", especially when he calls himself the "Vicar of Christ", the "authority of Christ on earth" without actually having the authority.

I mentioned Christmas earlier in this page. Did you know that "Christmas" was originally the celebration of the birth of the sun god Mithra? It was preceded by a two-week festival called Saturnalia, which was essentially a two week long drunken party honoring the god Saturn. Today, we have a time period before Christmas called Advent (the four weeks before Christmas). I wonder where we got the idea for that since the idea for Christmas wasn't even ours? And, look it up, the Pope celebrates Christmas. You can read more about these outrageous ideas at Academus Education, Voice and Vision, and VOA News, just three of the many places you can get the same stories, if you think I am spoofing you.

Trying to help point us in God's direction

So, the book from Jonathan Cahn is pointing the finger at those who are not paying attention to the widening gap between modern worship practices and the way God said in the Bible that He wanted to be worshiped. In deed, some are actually widening the gap by encouraging the "free spirit, no rules" attitude of today's "Christian" churches. So, who are you listening to - God or the pagan gods of ancient times that have returned to haunt us?

















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