Friday, December 31, 2010

The Parallel Universe

The Christian lives in two worlds. He or she contends with a parallel universe, unlike the man of the world who is secular and does not relate to the G-d of the universe, but dwells primarily on the every day realities. The secular man can only live in the world that he sees, while the Christian both lives in the world of the material and physical, but also in the realm or spiritual reality. Spiritual reality is that realm where interaction takes place between humanity and G-d and/or other spiritual entities (whether angels or demons).

So while the Christian is in the world of the material and is concerned about meeting his or her needs, the Christian is also concerned about the interaction that they have in the universe of the spirit. He or she is concerned not only with the quality of life as a citizen of earth, but also the quality of his or her interaction in the universe of the spirit.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

"Ye shall have Tribulation"

I begin with the scripture text, John 16:33 (King James Version):

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
When I was young, I had a misconception about being a Christian. I thought that being a Christian meant immunity; immunity from bad situations and circumstances.

I do not remember being taught in my early Christian years, that bad things will happen to people regardless of their relationship with Christ in this world. I was under the impression that once I came to Jesus, that "no weapons formed against me shall prosper, and every tongue formed against me, G-d will condemn". I felt that with my relationship with Jesus, I would get security from gunmen and armed thuggery.

While we are ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20 New International Version), Christians do not get diplomatic immunity from world events and the affliction, grief, sorrows and troubles that occur because of our existence in a fallen world, where nature sometimes fights against us. If there is one thing that JESUS promises us, it is that while we are not guaranteed peace, but we are guaranteed tribulation. Yet, we are told to face our tribulations with good cheer.

In another part of the scriptures, Peter declares that our fiery trials will be the norm. Peter declares in the King James version of the Bible:

Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: (1 Peter 4:12).
Affliction, tribulation and the grief that we all experience as human beings are facts of living in our current world. This will never change until JESUS wipes away every tear from our eyes (Revelation 21:4; Revelation 7:17). We will not totally eradicate human suffering today. It is because, human suffering is a part of the consequence of the sins of Adam. Through Adam, tribulation is our necessary condition of existence. Not even Jesus's first advent eliminates this. Rather, accepting Jesus may intensify our own afflictions, seeing that we pledge allegiance to a system outside of the world's system.
Another pastor suggests that pain is G-d's megaphone to get our attention. Humanity on a whole need to experience lack and suffering, in order to recognise their need and come to G-d.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Seek Him first; Experience the Results

Biblical Christianity is a try first and experience the results. The only way to prove that G-d is real and that the Bible is inspired is to apply the principles and experience the results. G-d throws out test after test to people in the Bible. Lots of conditionality.

In one case, G-d says:

 10Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
 11And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.(Malachi 3:10-11)

 In another G-d says

Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:
So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.  (Proverbs 3: 9-10)
 Jesus throws out a challenge in Matthew 6:33, similar to his Father:

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
For months now I have neglected studying word, due to my work load. It is even reflected in this blog. There have been many days since  I have shared any spiritual lesson or insight here. Today, I proved the principles of the Kingdom. This morning, I took the opportunity to seek a word from G-d before I began my work and daily routine.Even though I had so many responsibilities, I decided I needed the word from G-d. As I sought that word, I got it, and I have shared it the previous post.

Today, work that took me weeks to complete, were done so easily, that it seemed as if today I did a whole week work. I did not feel tired, but was focused and sharp throughout the day, making major break through. I was so amazed, that I  just paused to document this testimony, so that the atheist and agnostic will know that you can prove G-d and the Biblical principles, if you are willing to apply the Biblical principles and watch and wait for the results.

I also wanted the persons who believe in G-d, but have neglected their practice of seeking G-d's word in the early morning to know that you will get much more done, and be more efficient if you seek him first. 

G-d's Shalom to You!

NB: All quotations mentioned here are taken from the King James Version Bible.

Finding our own faults

In search of the Word of G-d today, I checked out some spiritual music videos that a friend posted on Facebook, with the aim of having those music messages set the tone for contemplation and meditation. I also decided to comment on the videos. I however, naturally wanted to be critical of the one of musical messages and made a critical comment of the tempo.

Then I read the commentary on the portion -Parashah Shelach - "Send" Numbers 13:1 - 15:41 from Elofer. In the commentary, these words caught my attention:
“We were given two eyes—one very powerful for introspection, so we should find our smallest faults; the other very weak, for viewing others. Only too often we switch their functions.”
This is the word for today for me. Do not be quick to find fault in others, but find my own faults. However, look for good in others today. Look for these first. Matthew 7:3.

In fact that is just what Jesus did in Revelations in the messages to the churches. He stated what he found good in them first, then discussed the bad (Read Revelations 2).


Elofer, Richard-Amram.(2010, June 10). "Parashah Shelach - "Send" Numbers 13:1 - 15:41." World Jewish-Adventist Friendship Center. Accessed: June 10, 2010.

Monday, May 24, 2010

My Account of the Dudus and Tivoli history

My account of this Dudus affair, with the siege of Tivoli

A situation that I have paid much attention to since the extradition was signed and warrant issued for the arrest of Dudus.

I have been monitoring the international media through my iGoogle page via Google news gadget, customised to display news on Dudus.

When this thing started, I recognised the danger that it posed. I was one of those that wanted the delay in the extradition matter, and even secretly desiring the lobbying attempts by Mannatt and Phelps. I foreknew that if this issue was dealt with, that it would be a great crisis for Jamaica. It is the type of crisis that no leader of Jamaica, regardless of whichever party wants to have to deal with.

Tivoli has long been labeled the "mother of all garrisons". It is known that in this commuity there are weapons stock piled, and that the residents are not afraid to confront the police with these weapons. Historically, Jamaica police have encountered violent resistance from this community in the past, while attempting to go in and retrieve guns.

It was not an easy extradition request that the US made to our leaders last year. Frankly, I wanted it to be worked out in secret. Or perhaps, that the Jamaican authorities would not sacrifice our own lawmen, but give US permission to use their CIA to enter the community and take the strong man themselves.

Nevertheless, it came to this. I know not how much Jamaican blood will be shed. Yet, it is necessary for many to die, in order to rid oursevles once and forever of the conditions that continue to feed our crime and violence.

There shall be martyrdom, both on the side of Tivoli residents and already on the side of our Security forces. Everyone who dies in this fiasco are the ones who made this historical turning point possible. Their blood will not go in vain. Instead, their blood will speak to future generations of the price Jamaica paid to separate itself from a history of political violence.

Too many times nations have to change history with violence. This is one such ocasion for Jamaica. We need violence to re-establish paradise.

In the past Jamaica would have been a Spanish speaking nation, if not for violence. In the past, Jamaica could have become a French speaking nation, but for violence. Today, the blood spilled in Tivoli and over Tivoli, will indicate what Jamaica will speak in the future. What language will be uttered in the streets? What will our dancehall artistes sing about after this? Hopefully, no more will we speak/sing the language of violence, but as a people have changed consciousness and speak of peace for many years to come.

From my monitoring of the international media's reporting on this matter, I realise that Jamaica has introduced 2 new words to the global vocabulary - "garrison community" and "don". Tomorrow, I hope that the new words that Jamaica will introduce to the globe's vocabulary will not be ones that drip with blood and violence, but will be inspiring as Usain Bolt is "to di wurl" (to the world).

G-d bless Jamaica. G-d bless Tivoli. Let out of this situation, arise a new and fresh beginning for our nation. May Tivoli and Jamaica be cleansed and experience new birth, a renaissance and reconstruction.

Let Jamaica increase in beauty, fellowship and prosperity...and play her part in advancing the welfare of the whole human race.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Leaving back Food for the Poor

The Passage of Meditation:

Leviticus 23:22

And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the LORD your God. King James Version (KJV)

"When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the LORD your God." New International Version (NIV)

Leviticus 19:9

And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not wholly reap the corners of thy field, neither shalt thou gather the gleanings of thy harvest. King James Version (KJV)

There has been a young man who I have been assisting financially since 2007. I was not pleased that everytime the fellow found himself in financial quagmire, that he called me or visited me at my office.

I believed that I have spent over JMD 100,000 helping this young man. I helped with groceries, gave him capital contributions for small self-start business ventures such as rearing poultry and the sale of mobile phone cards. I gave money to assist with getting necessary documentation to get jobs overseas and for skill training.

Yet, the young man has had calamity after calamity. He has been robbed by gunmen and his relatives, have been homeless a couple times, lost employment and have not been able to prosper at his business ventures.

I reached break point last week, feeling that it is almost 3 years, and the young man still did not reach anywhere to the point where he was self-reliant. He was still where he started, despite the financial assistance that I have given for self-employment, skill training certification and towards gaining employment.

This week, I attempted to meditate on the Word for the season of Pentecost, awaiting some fresh insight into ministry and purpose.

This text of scripture came out to me, showing me an underlying principle of the kingdom of G-d.

I have come to point where I have learnt that 100% of what we earn is G-d's, who expects us to use that 100% in the following ways:

  • give a tenth to his workers (10%) (Malachi 3:8-10)
  • give an offering when we feel greatful to do so (2 Corinthians 9:7)
  • spend on family, wife and children (man who does not do so is worse than an infidel -see 1 Timothy 5:8)
  • spend on parents (honouring parents actually mean spending on them - Mark 7:11-12)
  • spend a percentage to sustain ourselves as well as pay people who we owe (as the ox must not be muzzled - 1 Timothy 5:18)
  • Pay our taxes (give what is due to Caesar and other rulers -  Luke 20:25)

Well the scripture text also supports the fact that we must not spend all our remaining (90%) on ourselves, but to leave back some money for others. Even after we have spent our money in the ways I have mentioned, we must still attempt to hold back some to distribute to the poor and people we are unfamiliar with.

The underlying principle is that we should not spend all that we earn, but are to leave a portion to be spent in giving alms. In this sense, we must plan and have an intention to give from the time we collect the pay check. Hence provision must be made from collecting the pay check to set aside a portion to give away to persons or a person in need. This portion however is not to be given to friends (who are not poor) and family, but to those who you either know as being poor or those who you are unfamiliar with.

In this case, the alms giving usually take the form of food provision. As such, I have come back to the persuasion that I need to put a side food when I go to the supermarket or market for others who are less fortunate.

While the passage speaks to food, I also wondered if it speaks the same for time? Should I never give 100% commitment to any activity, but always leave a portion of uncommitted energy for others?

For further reading of scriptures on the subject of how G-d wants us to treat the poor please view:

Monday, April 5, 2010

Supporting Wednesday Crucifixion theory

A friend of mine sent me a forward from a person arguing against the Wednesday Crucifixion theory. To the e-mail I had to respond, giving my thoughts.

I believe that the Wednesday crucifixion theory is a more solid one than the theory of Jesus being crucified on a Good Friday. In this blog entry, I will give the foundation for my view, without reference to the argument of inclusive reckoning, which I believe has to be dealt with by itself. For Christian background on the inclusive reckoning and Wednesday Crucifixion, check the following URLs: or For some thoughts about how an Orthodox Jew sees inclusive reckoning see

However, in this blog entry, I would like to examine three ideas. First the concept of preparation day, as I believe that this concept requires more deliberation. Secondly, I would like to defend the view of two Sabbaths intervening between crucifixion and resurrection. Finally, I want to further consider and further raise some issues regarding the relevance of the annual Sabbaths beyond just what Christ did, but the relevance extending to the future of Christianity and the world.

While preparation is needed for the weekly sabbath, especially as it relates to meals, as cooking was forbidden on the Sabbath (Exodus 35:3), there is indication from the scriptures that the preparation was not for a weekly sabbath.

John 19:14 Now it was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about the sixth hour.
With this said, perhaps you would argue that the weekly sabbath and the annual sabbath would be occuring on the same day. If you take that view, then that view cannot be refuted unless the idea of inclusive reckoning is dealt with. As mentioned before that will be outside of the scope of this blog entry.

However, what I can address is the idea of two Sabbaths between the crucifixion and the resurrection. It is generally accepted that Jesus rose on a Sunday, which when interpreted Biblically is refered to as the first day of the week. The first day of week in the Bible begins after the evening of the Sabbath (Saturday evening) to Sunday evening. Hence, when the scriptures speak of Jesus being raised on the first day of the week, everyone understands this to mean Sunday (even though I think Jesus rose in midnnight on Saturday night as the women went to the tomb early Sunday morning to find Jesus already gone).

Since the firstday is a Sunday, people generally take the preparation day to mean Friday. Unfortunately, the majority of Christianity does not realise that Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread requires preparation too. Since, it is less accepted that Passover and Feast of Unleaven Bread requires preparation, I must declare that Passover preparation (which also entails preparation for the Feast of Unleavened Bread) required more preparation than that for the weekly Sabbath. This is because, not only were they to prepare food for a day, but for a week, as they had to prepare unleavened bread, plus remove unleavened products (yeast) from their houses (13:7). Further, they had to have the Paschal or Pesach supper with a special lamb and with other special food items.

Further, John records in:

John 19:31 Therefore, because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.
Clearly, there were two Sabbaths after the crucifixion. Whether they intersected or not is the question. However, from John's records it is clear that Jesus did not die on any ordinary day. It was the same season as the type given to the children of Israel. G-d had never intended that Jesus would die on any ordinary Friday before the Sabbath. He gave Israel a special time to signify what the Messiah would go through, which is the Passover ceremony.

If you accept this premise then we can move into the final argument or issue to be raised.

The annual Sabbaths marked God's seasons of intervention in human affairs. In Genesis 1:14, God declares that he made the sun and the moon to mark seasons and signs. Hence sunset marks the start of a day, including the weekly Sabbath. However, the annual Sabbaths are marked by a lunar calendar. Hence, in Olivet prophecies, Jesus again mentions of the sun and moon being signs. Jesus also mentions that he came "not to destroy the law or prophets", but that "heaven and earth" would have to pass before the law is changed, until all is fulfilled (Matthew 5:17-18).

Yet, many in Christendom, including the Advent movement, ignore the new moons and lunar calendar, and keep only days that they deem holy. Yet, God said that these signs would be sign forever, which in Isaiah 66:23, all humanity will worship him in these seasons.

In fact, the annual Sabbaths signify steps that God takes to execute the plan of Salvation. God used the Passover as the appointed time for his son to die. Later he used the Feast of Pentecost to send the Holy Spirit and bring in the first fruit of his harvest for the kingdom.

Hence, based on how G-d works, these appointed times and seasons were not just given to symbolically represent the salvation work. They also marked literal times and days that G-d would use to effect his plan for humanity's redemption. Hence in Leviticus 23, God calls them not feasts of the Jews, but in Leviticus 23:2, God says "feasts of the LORD...even these are my feasts". Among them, the first is the weeklu Sabbath, but the rest of the annual feasts are outlined. Hence, the Seventh-day sabbath is not holier than the annual Sabbaths.

Based on these arguments, without considering the weakness of man made ideas such as inclusive reckoning (a phrase which is not even literally found in the Bible), it is quite likely that God chose a Passover Day for Jesus to be slain, and in the middle of the Feast of Unleavened bread, Jesus rose again. If this is accepted, it is highly likely that there were two sabbaths between crucifixion and resurrection.

Further, if God's pattern is to use Jewish holy days to do things for humanity, I don't believe that he will change this approach. Hence, the other annual feasts (the fall festivals) that have not yet been fulfilled will be literal days and times when Jesus will return and when God will do things to intervene in humanity's redemption.

Even Jesus made mention that the Feast of the Passover will be continued when he returns (Matthew 26:29). This indicates that these festivals are far from abolished, but will be reinstated to the entire earth, when the LORD returns. Hence Zechariah 14:16-19 records that there will be international celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles. And much more could be said in support of the future observance and significance of these seemingly Jewish holy days.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Self-Control, not self-denial

During a Sabbath School discussion and reflection, I had the opportunity of focusing my thoughts on SELF-CONTROL, which is a part of the fruit of the Spirit.

SELF-CONTROL is otherwise known to KJV Bible readers as TEMPERANCE. As the term suggests, it is about exercising control over self - which consists of our feelings, thoughts, appetites, drives and will.

The Apostle in Galatians 5: 23 did not advocate that self-denial - denial of feelings, appetites and drives but rather the exercising of control.

Control does not mean total disuse, but rather a regulation of use. It requires knowing when to permit partaking in a pleasure, activity or a state and when to restrict self from indulgence.

For example, our sexual feelings have been given to us by G-d both to populate the earth (Genesis 1:28) and for enjoyment and pleasure (Proverbs 5:15-19; Proverbs 30:18-19 and Songs of Solomon). The appetite for food, has also been given to us by G-d (Genesis 1:29). Our desires for responsibility and power are also given to us by G-d, who designed us all to be rulers over his domain on earth (Genesis 1:28).

Nothing is wrong in these appetites of themselves. What is wrong is how we use or misuse our drives and appetites. Do we use them to fulfil the purposes of G-d? Or do we let these drives violate G-d's original intent, will and design for us?

Even our personality traits and temperament may be designed in order for us to achieve a G-d given role or purpose. I believe that G-d puts in every individual that he has created a little of himself that we all collectively manifest G-d (Genesis 1:26). Individually, we just manifest only a particular trait or DNA of G-d. Collectively, all human beings could represent the entirety of G-d characteristics and traits. Hence even our psychological make up could represent a part of G-d that no one else has. As such, nothing that we have are evil of it self, but rather, what constitutes the self requires right alignment with G-d purposes and will.

For example there is the account of Levi and his descendants. Levi's short temper was cursed by his father, Israel or Jacob (Genesis 49:5-7). Yet his descendants were chosen to be G-d's priests because of this trait that led them to be intolerant of unrighteousness. Levi was redeem through men like Moses and Phineas, who both had zeal for G-d and for seeing his will executed, even if it meant slaying others.

G-d has also left us with the model example of JESUS, who did not deny his feelings when he was in the garden, where he wanted the cup to pass (Matthew 26:36-42). Yet Jesus submitted to G-d's will even though he felt troubled at the thought of crucifixion.

Finally, I leave with this beautiful text (Phillipians 2:5-8; The Holy Bible, English Standard Version):

5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, [1] 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, [2] being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

Align thyself with the will and purposes of G-d!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Conflicting paradigms

I am in two minds. Being raised a social scientist and a Judeo-Christian, I have conflicting praradigms.

On one hand, social science tells me that through education and the application of scientific methods to discovering the best social order can help to raise humanity into a more Utopian existence. Also in Judeo-Christian theology, we are encourage that our works, deed, faith and prayers can help to transform the world into a more just and equitable place.

Yet, there is my other Judeo-Christian upbringing that argues that all attempts by men to build a more just and equitable social order will fail, especially because they wish to build without the foundation of G-d's Law. Further, most of the Bible are prophecies of what is in store for man. Humanity according to prophetic revelation is to become more degenerated in ethics and morality than better, and their attempts to save themselves will only lead them to give themselves over to Satan powers that will lead humanity in rebellion against G-d. This will lead to a final catastrophe, where G-d pours out his wrath against the unity of man and Satan in rebellion.

Further, there is my conspiracy theorist and critical social science background, where I am not sure if I believe that there is global political elite that is controlling the events of the world, through economic and political interventions into nations across the globe. Hence, this background lends me to pessimistic view of the New World Order and movements towards global integration.

All these ideas within makes me ambivalent about what I believe and what I should strive for in my present reality.

I am spooked out by UNESCO's mission (

Building peace in the minds of people

Yet enthralled by it. I really desire for humanity to be at peace. For conflicts to be resolved. For human beings to have shared ethics and values. Yet be guaranteed their freedoms. I want fair and just systems, and compliance by all.

At the same time, I wonder, did not the Bible call Jesus the prince of Peace. Is it not his mission to bring peace to the world?

I recognise that for developed countries, they aim to make people more peaceably through education and teaching ethics. They feel that they can educate all human beings into social order and transform people's minds through education and truth.

Yet, for Christians it is evangelizing and educating the world about Jesus that will bring liberation to all men.

And I wonder, where is the blur. The world system has the same goals as my Christian worldview. Just that they differ on rights, freedoms, ethics and values.

Friday, February 26, 2010

The beginning of the creation of God

I recently received the best explanation of the "mystery of God" from a household Bible study group. For centuries it has puzzled Christians how JESUS could be God, yet be the son of God. The Bible mentions that JESUS is the "firstborn of every creature" and "the beginning of the creation of God".

In Revelation 3:14 (King James Version)it says:
And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

In the NIV, this concept was so problematic for Christian interpreters that they rendered it:
To the angel of the church in Laodicea write:
These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation.

However The Message translation renders it:
Write to Laodicea, to the Angel of the church. God's Yes, the Faithful and Accurate Witness, the First of God's creation, says:

This Christian theologically problematic statement has lead the Jehovah's Witnesses to declare that JESUS is a created being (Watchtower, 2005, para. 10).

Well, in that Bible study on Wednesday night, February 24, 2010, at Milborough, Jamaica, when this passage was read, I raised the point to the group's leader, that obviously, JESUS' existence came from the Father.

I went on to say, that there are only two ways that a person could be a son, either through birth or adoption. G-d declares in the scriptures that someone (who I believe is JESUS) became his son. Psalm 2:7 (King James Version) says:
I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.

If Jesus lived independently of the Father prior to creation, then G-d have no need to say "this day have I begotten thee [as my Son]". It would be more reasonable for G-d to say "this day have I adopted thee [JESUS as my son]". However, the first born or begotten obviously implies that one proceeded from the other. Clearly, the person in Psalm 2:7 became G-d's son through birth, or else, the L-RD would have used the term "have adopted thee" in place of "begotten".

I even went on to explain that JESUS is described as the Word (John 1). The Word implies that there is a source. Word can even be translated as message or communication, which implies an author or source. The question:

How can Jesus come from a source yet still be described as the source itself?

Going back to the idea of the word. A word can exist with the source before it is expressed. JESUS was in God before he was expressed by the Father. However, the word can exist in one's mind prior to being expressed or manifested. The message or information that an author wants to communicate or express, could exist within the author or communicator long before it is expressed. This fits well with the description or definition of the Word (logos) as described in Vine, Unger and White (1996) as the "expression of thought" (p. 683).

JESUS therefore existed and was expressed long before anything was created. When G-d spoke the world into existence, His Word brought forth everything. The Word preceded the establishment of the universe and creation. In fact the Word was always present with G-d, and was expressed and reflected in creation. Further its the Word that sustains the current creation and order of the universe. As Hebrews 1:2-3 (King James Version)says:

[G-d] Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high:

G-d's Word (JESUS), now speaks for him. G-d has nothing else to say or communicate or express outside of his son, the Word that proceeded from him, while existed with him in the beginning. In fact, this word is also the last word or the Amen (Revelation 3:14).


Vine, W. E., Unger, M. F., & White, W. (1996). Vine's complete expository dictionary of Old and New Testament words: With topical index. Nashville: T. Nelson.

Watchtower.(2005). Who is Jesus Christ? What Does the Bible Really Teach? (Chapter 4). Jehovah's Witnesses Official Web Site. Retrieved from

Monday, January 4, 2010

Grace in the story of Cain

As I attended church meeting on Sabbath at Andrews Memorial Seventh-day Adventist Church (January 2, 2009), the speaker for the day, Pastor Lorenzo King, discussed how the Bible showed two contradictory positions on capital punishment. His explanations took me back to Genesis 4 with the example of Cain. This morning I decided to go over the account for myself and was touched by the immense grace and mercy that G-d granted unto this first murderer.

Cain, the world's first murderer, did not get capital punishment. Instead G-d gave him another punishment. Cain was to be a nomad, a wanderer, who would not make his living through agriculture and farming (Genesis 4:12).

Cain being a farmer all his life felt that this punishment was too harsh (Genesis 4:13), as the only way he knew to survive was through farming. After all, that is what he had done all his life.

As a result Cain appealed unto G-d to lighten his punishment, as he felt that it was too great for him to continue on earth and survive (Genesis 4:13). Perhaps he felt that with him having no homeland or base to dwell, being nomadic would leave him at the mercy and the hospitality of others. Cain did not see how he could continue on the earth. Perhaps he felt that demons awaited to torment, torture and kill him as he was outside of G-d's presence.

So G-d gave Cain a mark (Genesis 4:15). This was the first time G-d marked someone. Yet this mark gave Cain security. It ensured his protection from being killed. This mark preserved Cain from destruction. This was an act of mercy, an act that mirrors the salvation that G-d would later give to humanity.

In Egypt, centuries later, the Hebrew children would later also have a mark placed on them that would protect themselves and their families from the destroyer.

Even after Cain went out from the presence of the LORD, he found some place to dwell. In Genesis 4 verse 16, the Bible says that Cain dwelt in the land of Nod. This meant that even after being punished, Cain could find a place to rest and settle. Not only did Cain find settlement and refuge in earth; G-d also allowed him to build and establish a city (Genesis 4:17). After having his son, Cain was seemingly motivated to build for future people and give his son and future peoples a better life with greater opportunities and choices than what he had. Cain thereby became a community builder and someone concerned about urbanisation and putting in the provision for life in the future.

G-d also permitted Cain to become a contributor to humanity and help to fulfill G-d's mission or purpose of populating the earth. Cain did not just have a passive existence. Not only did Cain settle, but he also was able to share his life with his spouse and start a family (verse 17). His family also contributed to humanity's technological advancement and progress of humanity. His descendants, through one of his great grand son, who was also a murderer, were able to become musicians, skillful inventors and players of the organ and harp (verse 21). Another descendant through the same great grandson that was also murderer was able to master the art of tent making and cattle rearing (verse 20). Thus one domesticated cattle and discovered how to build tents while the other learnt how to build, repair and play musical instruments.

Thus G-d by being merciful unto Cain, and even his descendants allowed them to settle on the earth and make technological advances that the rest of humanity could benefit from.

In this case, the absence of capital punishment still meant that the families of murderers could add to human civilisation and existence, which in the long term bettered the human experience on earth.

This remarkable account of Cain and his family, shows that G-d is indeed merciful and compassionate and will even listen to a murderer and redeem his life. If G-d could hear that murderer's appeal and grant favour, G-d can hear our petitions for his favour, especially if we want to break from fears of the future, and the wrongs of the past. All of us who are looking for a fresh start, we can call on G-d and ask him to help us find our gifts, talents or comfort zone, where we can make a meaningful contribution to the human family.

Love, security and peace be yours as you seize the opportunities in 2010 to make a fresh start and attempt to move from a destructive past towards a future of making a meaningful contribution to the human family.

(You can read Genesis 4:9-24 for the account on which this blog entry is based.)