22 thoughts on “Understanding the Bible

  1. Marleen February 4, 2021 / 8:49 am

    My youngest son has been influenced by some folks via going off to college. I’ve mentioned this once (I think only once) before; same conversation, actually, that I’m going to extract from now. I told him I’M responsible for what I believe. Admittedly, young people are in a tough position; they haven’t had a lot of experience or time to think. Even most people, though, don’t have time to study or think about hardly anything (by which I don’t only mean the Bible) except what gets them a job and a paycheck. But it’s important to get across an attitude that I don’t have to believe a set form someone tells me to believe (and do) in order to believe in the king of kings in the Bible and in “God” (an English use stuck into our versions). Don’t forget about the Spirit. It is the interaction between spirit and Spirit that forms your Rorschach result.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Marleen February 4, 2021 / 11:14 am

      If Christians can’t analyze themselves (in addition to taking a joke), they’re doomed.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango February 4, 2021 / 12:02 pm

      Well, Jim, there are different versions of the Bible and different interpretations, but every religion believes its version is the only correct one.


  2. Melanie B Cee February 4, 2021 / 9:36 am

    O_o That’s the ‘standard’ translation you know. Now add “Mormon” to it and watch your computer explode trying to define the two…. 😉 I do take a bit of mild exception to the fact that “English” is the header for the nasty description though. It ought to read “MAGA English” with the post-script “Usually Southern U.S.A., Red-neck, Fanatic”. Then that would cover the thing… (I know it was meant to be humorous and hope I don’t offend. I do know your views sir!)

    Liked by 2 people

  3. XingfuMama February 4, 2021 / 10:16 am

    Many “Christians” have no idea what’s actually in there. The gospels (the part about Jesus) shows he held in contempt many of the things espoused by them. If you actually crack the book, it turns out Jesus was probably a damned liberal! In some spots a (gasp of horror) socialist! I told my husband that if Jesus (a middle eastern guy) had stood on the National Mall and read the sermon on the Mount last summer the previous administration would have shot him dead.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Marleen February 8, 2021 / 9:23 am

    With a little looking around elsewhere, I found that the swearing in of Theodore Roosevelt wasn’t photographed.

    Something I looked up, just now, because someone mentioned four presidents in this regard:


    By convention, incoming presidents raise their right hand and place the left on a Bible while taking the oath of office. In 1789, George Washington took the oath of office with an altar Bible borrowed from the St. John’s Lodge No. 1, Ancient York Masons lodge in New York, and he kissed the Bible afterward.[20][21] Subsequent presidents up to and including Harry S. Truman, followed suit.[22] Dwight D. Eisenhower said a prayer in the end instead of kissing the Bible in 1953.[23]

    Theodore Roosevelt did not use the Bible when taking the oath in 1901,[24] nor did John Quincy Adams, who swore on a book of law, with the intention that he was swearing on the constitution.[25] Lyndon B. Johnson was sworn in on a Roman Catholic missal on Air Force One.[26] Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, George H. W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump each swore the oath on two Bibles.[24] The large leather-bound Bible used by Joe Biden had been in the Biden family since 1893.[27]

    [Earlier in this writing at Wikipedia, as well as elsewhere, one president is said to have affirmed rather than sworn.].

    I added the emphasis of bold-face, to sort out the exceptions, but also to note what has been from early on.

    And I speculate, today, that what Joe Biden did was perhaps a bit of palate cleansing, so to speak.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Marleen February 8, 2021 / 1:11 pm


      This indicates Wikipedia left out James E. Carter as someone who used two bibles at his swearing in, one of which was the one George Washington used. And I’m not sure Wikipedia got all the others right either. Perhaps there is academic disagreement on some of them. But I actually think we know the real answer as to what Obama did; it’s not clear from these two readings (as of today).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Marleen February 8, 2021 / 1:19 pm

        Bibles Used in Inaugural Ceremonies

        Bible and Scripture Passages
        Date President
        January 21, 2013 Barack H. Obama
        Event : Fifty-Seventh Inaugural Ceremonies
        Bible and Scripture Passage : {si_potus_mtx}{potus_bible}{/si_potus_mtx}
        January 20, 2009 Barack H. Obama
        Event : Fifty-Sixth Inaugural Ceremonies
        Bible and Scripture Passage : The Lincoln Bible. The Lincoln Bible was the Bible used by president Abraham Lincoln at his presidential inauguration. The Bible is part of the collection of the Library of Congress. The Bible itself is an Oxford University Press edition published in 1853, has 1280 pages, and measures approximately 15 cm (6 in) in length and 10 cm (4 in) in width, and 4.5 cm in thickness, and is bound in burgundy red velvet with gilt edges.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. mosckerr March 4, 2021 / 1:16 am

    No Way Hosey, forget it Charlie Brown. All Xtian Biblical translations suck, for the simple reason: they all attempt to make a silk purse from a sows ear.

    The tohor middah רחום, as expressed in the 4th Middle Blessing within the Shemone Esri –

    ראה בענינו וריבה ריבנו וכו’ גואל ישראל

    This subcategory “king” of the 13 tohor middot, (each of these 13 middot wears its own unique crown), orally communicated to Moshe at Horev, functions as the expression and maturity of emotional development. The tuma reverse of the midda of mercy, expressions of Oedipus hubris. The Book of Ester teaches a strong mussar against arrogant anger. How extreme anger, combines with power, as played out in the Book of Ester. Maturation of strong passions defines how I learn the B’hag’s דאורייתא commandment of the Torah touching the mussar of Purim. A similar mussar within the Talmud teaches this same idea through the general terms, extreme anger directly compares to avoda zara.

    Oral Torah logic, contrasts with the Greeks philosophy: as expressed by both Plato and Aristotle, with it’s study of emotions. The Torah story: Aaron and Miriam, how they murmured against Moshe, serves as a specific which defines the subject of tuma from within the Torah itself. Another example: at the burning bush, one of the plagues revealed to Moshe – leprosy. Torah faith stands between the opposing poles of g’lut and geulla. Just as the latter expresses powerful emotions of national mourning and national joy, so too leprosy teaches this relationship ratio between strong emotions expressed through a personal human health disaster.

    The 1st commandment of the Sinai revelation directly refers back to the specific case of the redemption from Egyptian slavery. But slavery does not limit itself to physical bondage, but includes emotional slavery domination and mind control. The rivalry between the sons of Yaacov, which culminated in the enslavement of Yosef, and further expressed by the במדבר stories that emphasize the Yatzir HaRa within the hearts of Israel, to return back to Egypt – this tuma contrasts with the tohor middah – רחום.

    When the sages command that a ברכה requires שם ומלכות, the latter term of king directly refers back to the 13 middot דאורייתא. In effect, making a blessing calls in the Name of HaShem upon a specific comprehension of no less than one of the 13 Oral Torah middot. Keeping and doing halachic mitzvot requires שם ומלכות, [kingship – in the plural form], just as does pronouncing a blessing, both before and after eating food. The curse of g’lut:
    דתנן גיטין: המביא גט ממדינת הים, צריך שיאמר בפני נכתב ובפני נחתם. מ”ט? רבה אמר לפי שאין בקיאין לשמה

    The loss of wisdom to do mitzvot לשמה effectively defines the curse of g’lut. The sages within the Sha’s, they affix the root cause of g’lut to ‘hatred without cause’. But this concept, does it not most essentially hang upon a lack of emotional maturity among the Jewish people? The idea of hanging a mountain by a thread, this indispensable concept, it defines the Order of Damages in the Mishna. What ratio exists between words and emotions? This commentator refers to this question as: “Cave of many colors”. Primitive stone age man, these people directly compare to the enslavement of Israel by Egypt.

    Human cultures both express and “cook” the raw emotions which surge through our blood and minds. No man, irregardless of his talent and genius can stand upon the יסוד of ‘fear of heaven’, without wrestling with his emotional immaturity. The substance of mussar builds upon this fundamental יסוד. Theology, by stark contrast, totally ignores this most fundamental requirement of faith. In fact, what a person personally believes promotes raw uncooked passions. For this reason the brit mussar faith does not recognize, nor in any wise does it validate theology. Avoda zara cherishes and highlights theological belief systems, which center themselves upon the ego of I.

    How do emotions shape human cultures?. Human emotions, unlike a computer, do not stand divorced from our knowledge. Computers do not possess the ability to cry. Emotions shape how societies develop cultural, linguistic, even intergroup rivalry and conflict or ethnic misunderstandings. They directly influence and differentiate a national culture from all other cultures. Neither Xtianity nor Islam possess the means to understand either the T’NaCH or Talmud because these foreign aliens know nothing of the Jewish cultural impact, and how it shapes the perspective of the Cohen nation. Only a ger tzeddick, as a new creation, with a Torah blessing, can grasp the Torah brit faith.

    The New Testament attempt to understand the Torah, by referring to it as “the Law”, serves as a strong proof. Law does not encapsulate commandments. Rather, it reflects court room rulings which strives to compensate for damages inflicted or suffered. But Xtian believers remain blissfully unaware of the concept of lateral Common Law courtrooms. The latter codified Talmudic court rulings, they so most essentially define pharisaic law. Which Church anarchy so heartily despises with their tuma hypocrisy, criminally expressed throughout the last two kilo-years. The final outcome of this false messiah tuma – the Shoah itself.

    The soul and the afterlife, both learn from the brit cut between the pieces. How many children did Avram have at that time? Zero children. He cut an oath brit on the sworn oath that his future born seed would compare to the stars in the sky for its great multitudes. Now! What oath did Avram swear back to the Creator of the Universe whom father Avram called El Shaddai? El Shaddai, the Divine Name affixed to Chag Sukkot — the name of the Nefesh Yechidah.

    The halachic mitzva of kiddushin: what does a man acquire through kiddushin? If its the body of the woman, such an acquisition compares to buying a Hebrew slave – tohor; or acquiring the permission of a whore for sex – tumah. The mitzva of kiddushin an inference learned from Get – as in divorce. What does the Get return back to the divorcee? Her Nefesh O’lam Ha’Bah – – her future born children. The mitzva of kiddushin therefore stands upon the foundation of the Brit between the pieces. The oath which Avram placed upon El Shaddai to judge and witness – – – the faith commitment that El Shaddai would live within the hearts of the chosen Cohen Nation. This oath brit sworn by Avram stands eye to eye with the oath brit sworn by El Shaddai that the seed of Avram would compare to the stars in the heavens.

    Upon this יסוד rests the primary precondition known as avodat HaShem. The Torah explicitly warns the house of Aaron, never to attempt to do avodat HaShem while in a condition of tuma. Any attempt to perform avodat HaShem while breathing tuma spirits carries the Divine Decree of כרת – that person cuts himself off from the brit faith. The din of כרת, encourages the opposite response of t’shuva. King David experienced כרת as a consequence of his ערוה with Bat Sheva. The prophet Natan pronounced the Divine Din of Civil War throughout the generations of the House of David. Meaning that t’shuva for the crime of ערוה, which carries the din of כרת, equally applied to not just David himself, but to all his future born generations. This same כרת din equally applied to Adam HaReshon. Adam did not alone die. Rather 10 generations of Adam died during the floods in the days of Noach.

    The brit faith its cut upon the lives of a Man’s children. Each father, in his own right establishes the Creation story within his own brit seed. Herein explains the k’vanna of the opening blessing to acceptance of the yoke of the kingdom of heaven
    קדוש (previous generations) קדוש (present generations) קדוש (future generations) בכל יום תמיד מעשה בראשית.
    The language קדוש refers to the oath brit dedication of the Cohen nation unto HaShem. Directly comparable to the dedication of Yitzak upon the altar unto HaShem. A Torah korban dedicates, by means of swearing a Torah oath, life and not death, to HaShem. As a direct consequence tefilla stands in the place of korbanot. Tifilla stands in open contrast to prayer. It dedicates middot tohorot by which a Cohen Israel sanctifies his life walk before HaShem. Prayer, by stark contrast, Goyim make plead requests to their God(s) which primarily involve their own immediate personal lives.

    The Oral Torah stands upon the יסוד of tohor middot, both דאורייתא ודרבנן. Tohor middot serve as pronouns, as opposed to adjectives, unto the Name of HaShem. The 6 Yom Tov + Shabbot manorah, a Cohen Israel strives to kindle and light a tohor midda fire. By affixing a tohor middah unto one of the 6 Yom Tov (nefesh, ruach, neshama, chyyah, yeshida, nefesh kalli), affixed to a specific day of the week, face of the soul; a Cohen Israel strives to attach a tohor middah (defined as a consequence of Torah learning) unto a specif face of his soul. (The soul: directly refers to passing this tohor commitment unto his children). The mitzva of kiddushin most essentially entails bearing children and their education in Torah tohor middot. The name of the soul a Cohen Israel dedicates on Shabbot – Shalom. Hence Yidden traditionally greet one another on shabbot with — Shabbot Shalom.

    Neither Xtianity nor Islam possess any wisdom upon the defining concept of faith – tohor. The Cohen Israel dietary laws, for example, do not prohibit the consumption of delicious foods because those animals qualify as “unclean”. Tuma does not mean “unclean”. Both opposing Torah concepts – tohor & tuma – refer to spirits breathing within our hearts. The Torah dietary laws apply strictly and only to the Cohen Israel brit people alone. Irregardless that the Catholic church dresses up as priests, similar to Islam’s slaughter of halal meat attempts to duplicate rabbinic kashrut laws, neither this nor that qualify as part of the brit Cohen nation. Both alien religions worship foreign Gods.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fandango March 4, 2021 / 9:18 am

      Wow. It sounds like you know what you’re talking about, but, no offense, to me, as an atheist, to me, it sounds like a bunch of mumbo jumbo.

      Liked by 1 person

      • mosckerr March 4, 2021 / 2:38 pm

        Greetings Fandango. Jewish culture and traditions should be totally alien to you. Why should you as a none Jews know and understand Jewish cultural traditions? Its absurd to assume that you should have an in depth knowledge of the cultures and customs of a people foreign to your cultural family and national traditions! Its totally normal for this introduction into Jewish culture and customs to “sound like a bunch of mumbo jumbo”.

        A Torah oath brit alliance – Life and Death – hang upon the scales of Judgement.  The servant of Avraham, his name Eliezar, he met the family of Avraham who lived in Iraq.  Through his half sister Sarah – through their shared father – but Sarah’s mother – not related to Avraham’s mother.  From here the sages interpreted the intent/k’vanna of the Torah that the mother determines the Jewishness of the all new born children for all generations.  This judgement ruling has received challenge, primarily the Tzeddukim sons of Aaron.  They base the logic of their opposition upon the Torah which commands, that only the sons of Aaron can do avodat HaShem in the service of korbanot dedications.  The Torah refers to Klall Yisroel as the nation of Cohonim.  Therefore unto this day, the Reform Judaism opposition argues that the father determines the Jewishness of all new born children.

        The sages answer the challenge made by the Tzeddukim cohonim by teaching the Torah commandment-mussar which instructs Avram to heed the command of Sarah to expel both Ishmael together with his mother.  That only Yitzak, her son, would inherit the oath brit Cohen alliance.  The logic of the Tzeddukim collapsed on this refutation.  The sages who compiled the Gemara made upon all 6 Orders of the Mishna, established the common law legal style of difficulty/answer – bringing a close precedent from any and all of the other 6 Orders of the Mishna; which includes the Order that the current Mishna exists therein.  פשיטה – obvious.

        The style of the servant Eliezar before the family living in Iraq: the father, mother, and eldest brother of Rebekka, comes to teach the mussar of cutting a brit.  A brit alliance, by definition excludes the enemy.  פשיטה – obvious.  The oath brit which Avraham made his servant Eliezar to swear: that he would never make a קידושין oath brit alliance with any of the sons of Canaan.

        This judicial ruling Avraham made from Lot.  The Book of Ruth, the Nasi of the Court – Boaz – interpreted the Torah prohibition not to cut a Torah alliance with the children of Lot: Moav and Ammon; consequent to Balak who hired Bil’am – to curse Israel.  Bil’am, a descendent of La’van, profaned the sworn oath brit alliance which Yaacov and La’van swore to cement the alliance which the servant Eliezar swore through a Torah oath unto Avraham – to travel to the family of Avraham, who live in Iraq, and to cut an oath brit alliance with members of Avraham’s immediate family.  The קידושין [Jewish chuppah wedding] of this union did not violate the כרת din of ערוה that the daughters of Lot profaned.  The oath brit alliance of the children of Adam and Noach rests upon the four legs which prohibit acts of theft, oppression, ערוה, and courtroom injustice.  The Nasi Boaz ruled that the daughters of Lot, that the Torah prohibition did not apply to them.  The enemy curse applied only to the sons of Lot.  The Tzeddukim sons of Aaron the Cohen could not logically respond to this difficulty from the Torah.  The Sages, also more popularly known by Greek New Testament translation – as the pharisees.

        The tohor middah חנון affixes to the 5th middle blessing of the Shemone Esri רפאנו ה’ ונרפא.  A Torah oath brit – cut upon Life or Death/Blessing or Curse.  The case/din of the story of how the servant of Avraham – Eliezar cut an oath brit alliance with the family of Avraham living in Iraq logicly compares to the famine in the days of Ahav.  The prophet Eliyyahu judged king Ahav as a wicked king, who like Yerov’am, abandoned the oath brit alliance that establishes the Torah as the Written Constitution of the Tribal oath brit Republic alliance.  In similar logic analysis by making a precedent comparison, Bil’am – the descendant of L’van – profaned the oath brit alliance cut between Yaacov and La’van.

        King Sh’lomo in equal measure violated and profaned the oath brit Republic alliance when he failed to set, and establish the authority of the Great Sanhedrin lateral common law court system.  Justice functions as the נמשל to the משל of rain fall in its proper season.  Ahav assimilated and embraced foreign cultures and customs; he decreed the abandonment of the Torah Constitution.  The משל of famine – caused by no rain – the נמשל –  foreign enemy troops scale the walls of Jerusalem and brutally conquer the nation’s Capital.

        Hitler in a point of comparison, he lacked the clarity of leadership to focus the invasion of the USSR with the capture of Moscow.  Napoleon captured Moscow and likewise suffered total defeat in war.  A basic strategy of total war, to conquer the Capital City of the enemy; meaning capture its Government leaders.  Napoleon’s army failed to defeat the Czar of Russia, even though it physicky – militarily temporarily occupied Russia’s Capital city – Moscow.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Fandango March 4, 2021 / 10:45 pm

          Just to be clear, it’s not just Jewish culture and customs that “sound like a bunch of mumbo jumbo” to me. It’s ALL religions and religious cultures and customs, including Christianity and Islam that sound like mumbo jumbo.

          Whether it’s dogma or rituals or beliefs or practices, everything about organized religion is, to me, fantasy. I’m not anti-religion. If believing in God and carrying out the rituals and customs, and embracing the cultures of whatever religion one chooses helps you make it through the day, that’s great. It’s when I’m told by people who claim to be religious that, because I don’t believe in God or embrace their faith and beliefs, I can’t know right from wrong or distinguish between good and evil, that I can’t be a moral person because morality comes only from a belief in God, and that I will be condemned to eternal damnation unless I am saved by accepting Jesus when I call bullshit.

          People ought to be free to believe (or not believe) however they want without criticism or persecution. Yet how many people have lost their lives in the name of God or in furtherance of particular religious beliefs? If we are all children of God, why do we hate our brothers and sisters who might not believe in God “our father” the same way as we do?

          That is why I believe that God is a fiction, that God did not create man in His image, and that man created God in his man’s image. God became the explanation for things we couldn’t explain, an answer to our many unanswerable questions about our origins and our purpose and the meaning of our lives. God is a fantasy that makes us feel good. And, hey, if that works for you, well, whatever floats your boat.

          Liked by 1 person

          • mosckerr March 4, 2021 / 11:03 pm

            In the name of clarity, this “sh’itta” of learning views the Torah as only a Constitutional political document. Religion has no place within the Torah faith. The dedication of middot in how a person emotionally matures his/her life has no portion with dogma or halachic ritualism stripped clean of mussar; a person who dedicates a tohor midda unto HaShem does not thereafter “believe” he swear a Torah midda oath. In equal measure Torah middot can never qualify as practices of organized religion because how a person matures his own personal emotional issues – emotional issues never qualify as religious practices but rather as strong personal habits. Correcting a midda character trait compares to changing the course of a river.

            “If believing in God and carrying out the rituals and customs,
            and embracing the cultures of whatever religion one chooses
            helps you make it through the day, that’s great. It’s when I’m
            told by people who claim to be religious that, because I don’t
            believe in God or embrace their faith and beliefs, I can’t know
            right from wrong or distinguish between good and evil, that I
            can’t be a moral person because morality comes only from a
            belief in God, and that I will be condemned to eternal damnation
            unless I am saved by accepting Jesus when I call bullshit.”

            Wow that’s totally profound!!! Thank You. Torah as a political Constitutional document establishes the Order of the Cohen society. Just as the United States Constitution shapes American society but not British society. Just as Parliamentary law determines the Constitution of British society but not American society. So too the Torah brit faith shapes only the Cohen nation. The idea propagated and foisted by both Xtianity and Islam of a Universal faith, complete and total rubbish.

            Liked by 1 person

            • mosckerr March 7, 2021 / 4:47 am

              The key issue of writing a Sefer Torah, the sofer has to write the Name of HaShem לשמה.  Doing a mitzva לשמה requires a subject and a predicate.  The latter informs what the subject does.  For example, P’sach Jews remove all leaven products from their possessions.  Korbanot have a halachic prohibition to switch from one korban type to another korban type.  Tanning the hide of an animal intended by the sofer to write a Sefer Torah: that hide requires a dedication for the purpose of writing a Safer Torah.
               Therefore what predicate sets the Name of HaShem apart, when the sofer writes the Name לשמה?

              גיטין: המביא גט ממדינת הים, צריך שיאמר בפני נכתב ובפני נחתם

              This opening Mishna describes the services of a notary, an individual officially licensed by a governmental body to perform certain actions in legal matters.  The Rosh did not require a sofer נחתם using an impressed seal, whenever that sofer wrote the Name of HaShem.  But the masoret of writing a Sefer Torah does permit the sofer to inscribe straight lines upon the leather.  Consequently it appears to me that the language נחתם implies some type of impressed seal, which all notaries employ today.  The notary seal impressed upon the margin of the Torah on the identical line that contains the written Name of HaShem, this seal – impressed upon the margin – serves as evidence that the sofer wrote the Name לשמה.

              However, what precisely defines the k’vanna of a sofer, when he writes the Name of HaShem לשמה?  Forty days after the sin of the Golden Calf, on Yom Kippor, Moshe heard the voice of HaShem declare the 13 tohor middot.  Why the second repetition of the Name of HaShem in that revelation which addresses the tohor middot of logic – otherwise referred to as the Torah Sh’Baal Peh?  The second Name of HaShem comes to teach that the middot thereafter, beginning with אל, that these middot serve as pronoun extensions of the noun of HaShem.  Therefore the sofer should set aside 13 specific “Crowns” to precisely indicate which middah of HaShem, that that sofer held as his k’vanna, at the precise moment in time, when that sofer wrote the Name of HaShem לשמה.

              A safer Torah which does not נחתם with a defined tohor midda crown, the question stands: what proof exists which testifies that the sofer wrote the Name of HaShem לשמה?  The opening Gemara of גיטין teaches that g’lut Jewry lost the knowledge how to do mitzvot לשמה.  Consequently, it appears to me that a sofer has a Torah obligation to prove his k’vanna when he writes the Name of HaShem לשמה.  This requirement which sets the correct way to write a Sefer Torah, which this commentator strongly advises, it compares to the time of Ezra, when he changed the shape of the letters of the א – ב.

              Liked by 1 person

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