LBJ and the Conspiracy to Kill Kennedy

Farrell, Joseph P. LBJ and the Conspiracy to Kill Kennedy.

Farrell argues there was a “coalescence of interests” in Kennedy’s murder.  There was no single group. This means that other Kennedy researchers are probably right but do not have the whole picture.  Kennedy analysis breaks down along the following lines:

Who wanted him dead?

How did they actually kill him (e.g., Spanky the Magic Bullet)?

Who actually had the means to pull it off?

Framing the questions this way lets Farrell show the conspiracy as layers within layers.  For example, the Mafia could easily be involved in wanting him dead, but they wouldn’t have had the long-term influence to cover it up.  The CIA, and LBJ, by contrast, could fit all three layers.

It is the genius of Farrell’s argument that he acknowledges the truth (and limitations) in each of the angles.  The trick is synthesizing them.  I think he comes close. What begins to emerge is a coalition–even very loosely formed–of anti-Castro Cubans, pro-Castro Cubans, the Mafia, the Deep State (think FBI, CIA, etc), and the Nazi International.

Towards the end of WWII Allen Dulles made a deal with Nazi general, Reinhard Gehlen. Gehlen would use his German intelligence network, Fremde Heer Ost, to spy on the Soviets in exchange, not only for immunity, but he would head the spy agency himself.  The OSS (later the CIA) got its intelligence from Nazis (56ff).

If Oswald was being run by the CIA, then Gehlen’s organization would be the natural point of contact in his getting out of Russia.  How else could a defector leave Russia with the daughter of a GRU colonel?

George De Mohrenschildt: he might be the key to the whole thing.  He had connections with the CIA, the Nazis, and probably NASA.

The difficulty is that no country was sure with whom he was working (154).  After the war he returned to America and got a master’s degree in petroleum engineering, later being hired by the ONI (155).

It is unlikely, though, that he worked for the CIA.  He spied on CIA assets in the Bay of Pigs fiasco (155).

Even stranger, his petroleum connection brought him in contact with oil magnates Clint Murchison and HL Hunt (157).  Hunt himself had right-wing connections with the Fremde Heere Ost and R. Gehlen.  This places De Mohrenschildt in vicinity of Permindex Corporation.

Permindex

Founded in 1958, it’s actual purpose was to fund and direct assassinations, etc (Torbitt document).  It used hotels and gambling casinos as fronts. Its donors included mafioso, NASA, fascists, and the like.  It is here that drug trafficking in South America takes off, and “these funds represented a virtually bottomless pit of money that could be kept off the books and used to fund their various black projects and covert operations” (167).\

Key argument: The goal of alchemy is to create, “via a magical operation, a transformation of consciousness in a group of individuals” (191).

Farrell draws heavily upon Michael Hoffman’s Secret Societies and Psychological Warfare.  There are at least three elements to this transformation of society’s consciousness:

The Creation and Destruction of Primordial Matter (the atom was split at Trinity Site, NM, which runs along the 33rd degree north latitude)

The Killing of the Divine King. (JFK was killed at the 33rd degree of north parallel latitude between the Trinity River and the Triple Underpass at Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas. Dealey Plaza was the site of the first masonic temple in Dallas. This was also a televised slaughter in a sense).  

The Bringing of Prima Materia to Prima Terra (91).

The “Phoenix” lunar landing module, after its return to the orbiting mother ship piloted by Michael Collins, was jettisoned directly into the sun in fulfillment of one of the most persistent themes of alchemical lore and Rosicrucian poetry: the “sexual marriage” of the sun and the moon (98).

But if all this is a conspiracy, then why is it out in the open now?  It kind of works this way: if the elite (call them what you will) can reach the point where they tell you how they murdered JFK, and that they know you won’t do anything, then they completely own you.  

Ritual Symbolism

Dealey Plaza, dedicated to the first Masonic Grand Master of Texas (196).
When viewed from above, the Plaza forms a Trident (think Poseidon, olds gods).

Conclusions:

The assassination transfered power from the elected front-man to the unelected invisible college capable of terminating him with impunity (quoting Hoffman).

Concluding Observations

Nodal points.  These are the complexes of facts that place most (or all) of the main factions at one time in one place.  There are several nodal points: The Permindex Corporation, New Orleans bars, etc.

It’s not so important as to who killed Kennedy? (I think we can safely rule out Oswald).  Where Farrell succeeds is outlining the existence of a structured, multi-national group who had the means to cover-up, including eliminating loose-ends, a murder of this caliber

The Day the Earth Stands Still

by Gilbert and Peck.

More people believe in UFOs than in God.  Rather, more people believe in UFOs than in the traditional understanding of God. That is why there is an urgent need for Christians to give thoughtful, kind, yet firm responses to the UFO movement.  Sadly, most Christian responses are about as robust as the star children at Roswell. Derek Gilbert and Josh Peck help remedy this situation.

While the book has the same “feel” as Gilbert’s earlier Satan’s Psy-ops, it is less exegetical and more of a commentary on current events–at least at first. The later chapters are a gold mine of resources in response to Crowley, Jack Parsons (Scientology!), and H.P. Lovecraft.   In fact, we should spend some time on Lovecraft and Crowley.

While Lovecraft was a materialist, his fiction provided the grounds for later horror thinkers.  Here is where it gets spooky. Lovecraft wrote “The Call of Cthulhu” in 1927, with much of the action taking place in New Orleans. His characters call forth Cthulhu in an orgiastic celebration.  At the exact same time, with no prior knowledge, Crowley summons a demon named “Tutulu” or “Kutulu.” He wrote this on November 1, 1907, the exact time as Lovecraft’s story (44-45).

We’ll come back to Lovecraft.

One of the authors’ theses is that Science Fiction provided a vehicle to communicate “ET” ideas to the larger culture.  

A creepy episode is when members of America’s “9 Ruling Families” channeled a space demon.  I’ll explain. Andrija Puharich was a para-psychologist with connections to US government and various foundations.  He created a think tank whose members included Aldous Huxley and Henry Wallace, FDR’s Vice-President and a 32nd degree Freemason.  On New Year’s Even in 1952 Puharich contacted a Hindu channeler, Dr D. G. Vinod, who conducted a seance and made contact with an entity calling itself “The Nine” (82).

Nine months later another seance was conducted, this time including members from key American families: Marcella DuPont, Alice Bouverie (an Astor), Arthur Young (son-in-law of the Forbes family).

It gets weirder. Vinod had brought a statue of a monkey god named Hanoumn.

I only mention this because the elite of American life believe this stuff, believe they have contacted entities (probably what St Paul called archons).

The authors spend a lot of time on John Podesta’s wikileaks.  While Podesta is one of the creepiest humans on the planet, I don’t think there is a smoking gun regarding ETs.  He did push for ET disclosure under Obama, but as he was moving into the Clinton orbit that wasn’t important for him.  There are a lot of emails to Podesta on disclosure, but very few from him.  

The man is slick.  Think about it. We know the sumbitch is guilty on Pizzagate, yet he never faced judgment. Let’s be blunt: we aren’t going to get him on aliens.

Exoplanet Waterworlds and Chaotic Sea Monsters

Enuma Elish story. Tiamat’s son Enki kills Apsu (fresh water). Tiamat summons forces of chaos.

Baal Cycle.

Both Ps. 74 and Genesis 1 are creation psalms.  The former specifically echoes (and subverts) the Ugaritic Baal Cycle.  In all of these texts–Enuma Elish, Psalm 74, Baal Cycle–there is the question of who defeats the tehom (chaos; in Akkadian it would have been Temtum.  In Sumerian it would have been Tiamat).

The victory of creation is connected with the quelling of the waters.  This is relevant today since occultists follow the doctrine of “order out of chaos,” but not Yahweh’s order.

Leviathan and Behemoth in the End Time

* The Sea is no more.

* Leviathan is Sea-Chaos; Behemoth is Land-Chaos.

Are Evangelicals and Extraterrestrials Compatible?

Much of this chapter is a synthesis of Heiser’s writings on the Nephilim. The authors are flexible, though.  They lean towards the idea that the different ET “races” are likely demonic and/or fallen angels.

Image of God

Whatever imago dei means, it must include, per Genesis 1, the following (184-185):

  1. Both men and women are included.
  2. Divine image bearing is what makes humankind distinct from animals.
  3. It makes us “like God” in some way..
  4. There is nothing “potential” about it.  You either have it or you don’t.

If aliens are demons, couldn’t one argue that at least some aliens are angels?  Peck and Gilbert give a very interesting response to this. When mal’akim appear to man in Scripture, they always appear in humanoid form.  This rules out alien “races” such as Nordics, reptilians, and greys. While Nordics appear human, they never do what angels do. Angels don’t do probes and abductions!

(When Ezekiel sees the cherubim they are in the typical cherubic form: partly beast, four faces, etc.  This gives evidence that Cherubim aren’t really angels in the sense that we use the term).

Uncomfortable implications of the Ancient Aliens hypothesis (190-195).

* The gods were tasked with hard work, so they created humans to do it.

* humans aren’t image-bearers of these gods (which is probably a good thing).

* No evidence that there is anything beyond matter.

* According to the myths, the gods behave the same way as humans.

* The Anunnaki made some bloodlines superior.  Think of the racial implications.

* These aliens are creator-masters, not brothers.

* Unlike the bible, no one is destined to be kings.

Conclusion

Criticisms:  There were some editing problems.  The usual typos. In one appendix the author (Peck, I think) referenced Psalm 8 when he mentioned Proverbs 8.

The Day the Earth Stands Still (Peck and Gilbert)

images

More people believe in UFOs than in God.  Rather, more people believe in UFOs than in the traditional understanding of God. That is why there is an urgent need for Christians to give thoughtful, kind, yet firm responses to the UFO movement.  Sadly, most Christian responses are about as robust as the star children at Roswell. Derek Gilbert and Josh Peck help remedy this situation.

While the book has the same “feel” as Gilbert’s earlier Satan’s Psy-ops, it is less exegetical and more of a commentary on current events–at least at first. The later chapters are a gold mine of resources in response to Crowley, Jack Parsons (Scientology!), and H.P. Lovecraft.   In fact, we should spend some time on Lovecraft and Crowley.

While Lovecraft was a materialist, his fiction provided the grounds for later horror thinkers.  Here is where it gets spooky. Lovecraft wrote “The Call of Cthulhu” in 1927, with much of the action taking place in New Orleans. His characters call forth Cthulhu in an orgiastic celebration.  At the exact same time, with no prior knowledge, Crowley summons a demon named “Tutulu” or “Kutulu.” He wrote this on November 1, 1907, the exact time as Lovecraft’s story (44-45).

We’ll come back to Lovecraft.

A creepy episode is when members of America’s “9 Ruling Families” channeled a space demon.  I’ll explain. Andrija Puharich was a para-psychologist with connections to US government and various foundations.  He created a think tank whose members included Aldous Huxley and Henry Wallace, FDR’s Vice-President and a 32nd degree Freemason.  On New Year’s Even in 1952 Puharich contacted a Hindu channeler, Dr D. G. Vinod, who conducted a seance and made contact with an entity calling itself “The Nine” (82).

Nine months later another seance was conducted, this time including members from key American families: Marcella DuPont, Alice Bouverie (an Astor), Arthur Young (son-in-law of the Forbes family).

It gets weirder. Vinod had brought a statue of a monkey god named Hanoumn.

I only mention this because the elite of American life believe this stuff, believe they have contacted entities (probably what St Paul called archons).

The authors spend a lot of time on John Podesta’s wikileaks.  While Podesta is one of the creepiest humans on the planet, I don’t think there is a smoking gun regarding ETs.  He did push for ET disclosure under Obama, but as he was moving into the Clinton orbit that wasn’t important for him.  There are a lot of emails to Podesta on disclosure, but very few from him.  

The man is slick.  Think about it. We know the sumbitch is guilty on Pizzagate, yet he never faced judgment. Let’s be blunt: we aren’t going to get him on aliens.

Exoplanet Waterworlds and Chaotic Sea Monsters

Enuma Elish story. Tiamat’s son Enki kills Apsu (fresh water). Tiamat summons forces of chaos.

Baal Cycle.

Both Ps. 74 and Genesis 1 are creation psalms.  The former specifically echoes (and subverts) the Ugaritic Baal Cycle.  In all of these texts–Enuma Elish, Psalm 74, Baal Cycle–there is the question of who defeats the tehom (chaos; in Akkadian it would have been Temtum.  In Sumerian it would have been Tiamat).

The victory of creation is connected with the quelling of the waters.  This is relevant today since occultists follow the doctrine of “order out of chaos,” but not Yahweh’s order.

Leviathan and Behemoth in the End Time

* The Sea is no more.

* Leviathan is Sea-Chaos; Behemoth is Land-Chaos.

Are Evangelicals and Extraterrestrials Compatible?

Much of this chapter is a synthesis of Heiser’s writings on the Nephilim. The authors are flexible, though.  They lean towards the idea that the different ET “races” are likely demonic and/or fallen angels.

Image of God

Whatever imago dei means, it must include, per Genesis 1, the following (184-185):

  1. Both men and women are included.
  2. Divine image bearing is what makes humankind distinct from animals.
  3. It makes us “like God” in some way..
  4. There is nothing “potential” about it.  You either have it or you don’t. 

If aliens are demons, couldn’t one argue that at least some aliens are angels?  Peck and Gilbert give a very interesting response to this. When mal’akim appear to man in Scripture, they always appear in humanoid form.  This rules out alien “races” such as Nordics, reptilians, and greys. While Nordics appear human, they never do what angels do. Angels don’t do probes and abductions!

(When Ezekiel sees the cherubim they are in the typical cherubic form: partly beast, four faces, etc.  This gives evidence that Cherubim aren’t really angels in the sense that we use the term).

Uncomfortable implications of the Ancient Aliens hypothesis (190-195).

* The gods were tasked with hard work, so they created humans to do it.

* humans aren’t image-bearers of these gods (which is probably a good thing).

* No evidence that there is anything beyond matter.

* According to the myths, the gods behave the same way as humans. 

* The Anunnaki made some bloodlines superior.  Think of the racial implications.

* These aliens are creator-masters, not brothers.

* Unlike the bible, no one is destined to be kings.

Conclusion

Criticisms:  There were some editing problems.  The usual typos. In one appendix the author (Peck, I think) referenced Psalm 8 when he mentioned Proverbs 8.

 

Federal Vision’s bad Trinitarianism

Leave aside the abuse scandals.  Leave aside justification by faithfulness alone.  Let’s just take the Trinity.

So Fatherhood is ultimate, and Fatherhood is ad intra. The Fatherhood of the Father did not come into existence after the decision to create the world. It is not in any way dependent upon the decision to create the world. And so there should be no more difficulty in saying that the Son is eternally obedient than there is in saying that He is eternally begotten. His existence is obedience — eternal obedience, obedience that could not be otherwise. The Father’s existence is authority.

Here is some basic Patristic theology:  anything that is ad intra applies to the being of God.  Wilson is saying that Fatherhood applies to the being of God.  Since the Son isn’t the Father, then that excludes the Son.  This is why you don’t project human analogies onto the Trinity.

Besides being a complete break with Nicene Christianity, it is also a break from Reformed teaching.

Subordination:  talk of Christ’s subordination referred to his mediatorial kingdom, when he handed it over to the Father (115).

Richard Muller, Post Reformation Reformed Dogmatics.  Triunity of God.

Lights in the Sky and Little Green Men (Hugh Ross)

Image result for lights in the sky and little green men

Samples and Ross cogently argue against any sort of “alien visitors” while acknowledging the reality of eye-witness reports.  They are able to maintain this tension by reducing the question from “UFOs” to “residual UFOs” (RUFOs). With this move they are able to move the questions regarding abductees from the scientific realm to the spiritual realm.  They are quite successful.

Samples and Ross suggest it might be better to speak of “UFO phenomena” rather than “UFOs.”  

  1. It is hard to distinguish between UFOs and the phenomena.
  2. Paradoxically, in attempting to define a UFO we are defining that which isn’t identified.
  3. We can’t do a direct study of a UFO.
  4. The meaning of the terms change over time.

Most of the UFO sightings can be explained away.  But that still leaves thousands of RUFO (residual UFO) sightings that aren’t so easily explained.  Making matters worse, there is still overwhelming evidence against “extraterrestrials.” 

The problem with interstellar travel: 

Traveling at half the velocity of light, it would take nine years to reach the nearest star.  But we aren’t going to the nearest star. We have to find an earth-like one that could support life.  That would take at least fifty light years.

The faster you move through space, the more damage debris does to the craft.  The slower you move, the longer it takes. That’s the insurmountable problem. If you armor the craft, then you need extra propellant. That makes the craft faster, which means you need more armor, which means you need extra propellant for the extra propellant.

Kenneth Samples does an excellent job outlining the supposed UFO experience, tying in “contactee” accounts with similar accounts by Swedenborg and Blavatsky. Ross and Samples note that the contactee accounts sound almost identical to demonic oppression.  They end with a fervent evangelistic appeal.

Marx and Satan (Richard Wurmbrand)

One only has to read Marx’s analysis of Hegel to see that Marx is clearly demon-possessed.  But Wurmbrand suspects there might be more to it. Wurmbrand is not saying Marx made a pact with the Devil.  He is saying he used Luciferian categories, language, etc. And later Marxists were openly Satanic.

For further reading: North, Gary. Regeneration through Revolution.

Satanic Evidence

Marx speaks of “building his throne against God” in language reminiscent of Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28.

Background:

One of the rituals of the Satanist church is the back mass, which Satanist priests recite at midnight. Black candles are put in the candlesticks upside down. The priest is dressed in his ornate robes, but with the lining outside. He says all things prescribed in the prayer book, but reads from the end toward the beginning. The holy names of God, Jesus, and Mary are read inversely. A crucifix is fastened upside down or trampled upon. The body of a naked woman serves as an altar. A consecrated wafer stolen from a church is inscribed with the name Satan and is used for a mock communion. During the black mass a Bible is burned. All those present promise to commit the seven deadly sins, as enumerated in Catholic catechisms, and never to do any good. An orgy follows (Wurmbrand 8).

We will now consider Marx’s drama “Oulanem” (which is an inversion of the name Emanuel, a specifically Satanic move)  Marx writes,

The hellish vapours rise and fill the brain, Till I go mad and my heart is utterly changed. See this sword? The prince of darkness Sold it to me. For me he beats the time and gives the signs. Ever more boldly I play the dance of death.  

Wurmbrand comments: These lines take on special significance when we learn that in the rites of higher initiation in the Satanist cult an “enchanted” sword which ensures success is sold to the candidate. He pays for it by signing a covenant, with blood taken from his wrists, agreeing that his soul will belong to Satan after death (9).

Marx writes in a letter to his father, “A curtain had fallen. My holy of holies was rent asunder and new gods had to be installed” (10 November 1837).

Instead of telling his kids fairy tales at bed times, he told them stories of men who sold their souls to the devil.  Seriously. Who the *&%% does this? Wurmbrand quotes Robert Payne, “There can be very little doubt that those interminable stories were autobiographical. He had the Devil’s view of the world, and the Devil’s malignity. Sometimes he seemed to know that he was accomplishing works of evil.”

Speaking of the anarchist Bakunin, Wurmbrand has a very interesting paragraph: “Bakunin reveals that Proudhon, another major Socialist thinker and at that time a friend of Karl Marx, also “worshiped Satan.” Hess had introduced Marx to Proudhon, who wore the same hair style typical of the nineteenth-century Satanist sect of Joanna Southcott” (Wurmbrand 16).

Marx’s favorite daughter Eleanor married an avowed Satanist, Edward Eveling.

Marx’s behavior on his deathbed was rather strange.  His housemaid and whore, Helen Demuth, said he prayed before candles the week before his death.  Marx never practiced Judaism and he openly rejected Christianity. So what was happening? More interesting is that he had a statue of Zeus.  Zeus, as those who aren’t enamored of a Bowdlerized Greek classicism know, is Satan. Plain and simple.

Wurmbrand: “Britain’s center of Satanism is Highgate Cemetery in London, where Karl Marx is buried. Mysterious rites of black magic are celebrated at this tomb. It was the place of inspiration for the Highgate Vampire, who attacked several girls in 1970” (35).

Wurmbrand then has some observations on Lenin’s Satanism. The rest of the book (from about page 40 onward) is a litany of Marxist crimes, especially in connection with Satanic themes.  It is a supplement to Solzhenitsyn’s never-sufficiently-praised Gulag.  It’s not easy reading.   It’s necessary, though. If anyone is tempted by Wokism or Cultural Marxism, then he/she/xir/xim needs to read it.  And own it. Because that’s exactly what is going to happen.

The last chapter is a snapshot from a Satanic mass by a person who later escaped.  I won’t mention it here for obvious reasons.

Some criticisms

This is one of those issues where it is “document or die.”  Wurmbrand will refer to the titles of Marx’s works, but often not any more specific than that.  I guess that can’t be helped, since most of these were pamphlets which wouldn’t have any consistent pagination.

 

Demons in the World Today (Unger)

Image result for unger demons in the world today

Unger, Merrill. Demons in the World Today. Tyndale.

Merrill Unger writes with much force and energy and in a clear style.  While he gets many details wrong, the general thrust of his argument is correct.  This book is an update (but by no means a replacement) to his classic Biblical Demonology.  In this work Unger (correctly) recognizes that “possession” is a misleading term (and one the Bible never actually uses).  This allows him to bring pastoral insight to Christians who are struggling with the occult.

My main problem with this work is that Unger lumps all “bad” spirits as “demons” and all good spirits as “angels.”  While he equates demons with fallen angels, he realizes that his position isn’t self-evident and a number of plausible theories are advanced.  He rejects the idea that demons are the disembodied souls of fallen Nephilim (Unger 12-13). He says it is pure speculation. Modern scholarship has shown it is anything but that.  I’m not 100% sold on the idea, but one can make a case for it. Nephilim are not fully human or divine, so it makes some sense that their souls are earth-bound.

Unger says, alluding to Revelation 12, that demons are connected with the primordial fall of the dragon and his angels (13).  But when we look at Revelation 12, the “fall” is happening at Christ’s birth, not in some eon past. On another note, following the plain reading of the Bible and numerous scholars today, Unger agrees that the “sons of God” are semi-divine beings who copulated with human women (12).  And then he argues that demons are incorporeal beings (22), and that the two are the same; how, then, can an incorporeal demon fornicate with a woman?

There is a way out of this.  It is something along the lines of when angelic beings enter the realm of time, space, and matter, they can take on the properties of matter (this is obvious from Abraham’s encounter with the angels).  Nonetheless, I agree with Unger that demons are invisible spirits. I simply reject the equation with fallen beney ha-elohim. Strangely enough, Unger seems to entertain the idea elsewhere (28).

Unger has some sage comments on the supernatural and the demonic.  He writes, “When men ignore God’s warnings and enter a forbidden realm, they may witness materializations, levitations, and luminous apparitions, as well as experience spirit rappings, trances, automatic writing…” (27).  His chapter on magic, while good, reads sort of like a series of horror clippings from a magazine. The pastor can probably use these as sermon introductions.

What is “demon possession” and can Christians be demon-possessed?  Unger defines possession as “a condition in which one or more evil spirits inhabit a body and take complete possession” (140).  A key indicator is when a possessed individual “blacks out” and doesn’t remember anything. This seems to indicate that Christians cannot be possessed, as defined above.  

However, the occultic attacks on disobedient Christians are far more insidious than merely chanting “oppressed, not possessed.” Unger then documents probably close to 100 cases.

Unger’s dispensationalism mars his treatment at points.  While there are strong cases for the cessation of spiritual gifts, Unger’s arguments are just bad  He argues throughout the book that the super gifts ceased because the perfect has come (1 Cor. 13), which of course means the New Testament canon.  There are several huge problems with this (huge enough that modern cessationists no longer advance this argument). According to 1 Corinthians 13, whenever the perfect comes, other conditions will also obtain.  Do you know in full? Has faith passed away? Do you still see in a glass darkly? The most obvious problem is that 1 Cor. 13 doesn’t identify the perfect with the New Testament canon.

The King James Only Controversy (James White)

Image result for james white king james only controversy

If you love the Textus Receptus for what it is, you should not have a problem with this book.  James White acknowledges the value of the Textus Receptus and even the King James Version at times.  What is problematic is the cult-like character of some King James Only advocates.

White begins with a survey of textual history and transmission. It’s one thing to say “God providentially preserved my favorite ms tradition.” It’s quite another to work through the transmission process.  He explains the discovery of Sinaiticus and other texts. Even if you are a Ruckmanite, you will nonetheless appreciate the discussions on miniscule vs uncial texts, etc.

Copyists of manuscripts are going to make errors.  Try it one day. Copy a page from a dictionary and see if you made any mistakes?  Repeat a few thousand times. These minor errors are called textual variants (misspelled words, skipped lines, etc.).  They are easily recognizable. White writes,

“Another kind of “scribal error” has to do with harmonization. Let’s say you were used to the way a particular phrase sounds in a particular passage of Scripture because your pastor uses that verse all the time in church. But let’s say that a similar phrase occurs elsewhere in Scripture—similar, but not exactly the same. As you are copying that other passage of Scripture it would be very easy to inadvertently make that passage sound like the one you are accustomed to. You might not even know you had changed anything” (White 37).

Text Types (43)

“(1) The Alexandrian text-type, found in most papyri, and in the great uncial codices K and B.

(2) The Western text-type, found both in Greek manuscripts and in translations into other languages, especially Latin.

(3) The Byzantine text-type, found in the vast majority of later uncial and minuscule manuscripts.

(4) The Caesarean text-type, disputed by some, found in and “Family 1” (abbreviated f 1).”

One of White’s stronger arguments is that Erasmus used the same method of textual analysis that is condemned by KJV Only advocates today.

This book actually increased my appreciate of the NKJV. It’s a decent translation, but it also provides variant readings in the margin.  This isn’t to “sow doubt,” but to alert the reader to the textual issues.

Responding to Byzantine-Text Arguments

White: “The question we must ask the proponents of the Byzantine text-type is this: upon what basis should we believe that the Byzantine text, simply because it ended up being the majority text later in history; was in fact the best representative of the original writings during that vital period of the first few centuries” (152)?

The text, on the contrary, would have resembled the Alexandrian-type.

One often hears from KJV Only types that the modern translations delete passages proving the deity of Christ.  While White explains how basic textual transmission works and how that accounts for these passages, he reverses the method and lowers the boom by showing passages where the modern translations are clearer on the deity of Christ than the KJV (Jude 4, Col. 2:9, 1 Peter 3:14-15, Acts 16:7).  Does this mean the KJV translators were in conspiracy to deny the deity of Christ? Of course, such a position is idiocy.

Problems with the KJV

Acts 5:30.  Did they kill Jesus and then hang him on a tree?  Or did they, as the modern translations note, kill him by hanging him on a tree (225)?

1 Chronicles 5:26. The KJV at best is misleading.  It makes it seem like Pul is co-ruler with Tiglath Peleser.  At worst it is simply wrong. As the NASB notes, Pul is Tiglath.

Acts 9:7/22:9. On the KJV’s reading, the others heard the voice and didn’t hear the voice, a clear contradiction.  The modern translations have a better reading.

The Changing English Language

“Fetched a compass” (Joshua 15:3, 2 Kgs 3:9) actually means travel or turn around. Quoting Edwin Palmer White notes,

what is the meaning of “chambering” (Rom. 13:13), “champaign” (Deut. 11:30), “charger” (Matt. 14:8— it is not a horse), “churl” (Isa. 32:7), “cielcd” (Hag. 1:4), “circumspect” (Lxod. 23:13), “clouted upon their feet” (Josh. 9:5), “cockatrice” (Isa. 11:8), “collops” (Job 15:27), “confection” (Exod. 30:35— it has nothing to do with sugar), “cotes” (2 Chron. 32:28), “covert” (2 Kings 16:18), “hoiscd” (Acts 27:40), “wimples” (Isa. 3:22), “stomacher” (Isa. 3:24), “w?ot” (Rom. 11:2), “wist” (Acts 12:9), “withs” (Judg. 16:7), “wont” (Dan. 3:19), “surctiship” (Prov. 11:15), “saekbut” (Dan. 3:5), “the scall” (Lev. 13:30), “scrabbled” (1 Sam. 21:13), “roller” (Lzck. 30:21— i.e., a splint), “muffler” (Isa. 3:19), “froward” (1 Peter 2:18), “brigadinc” (Jer. 46:4), “amercc” (Deut. 22:19), “blains” (Lxod 9:9), “crookbackt” (Lev. 21:20), (White 236).

Some more:

And Mt. Sinai was altogether on a smoke (Exod. 1^:18).

Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing I Ps. 5:6).

“For example, while one finds the KJV translating the Greek phrase Ttmuia rr/iov at Luke 11:13 as “Holy Spirit,” the very same phrase is translated “Holy Ghost” at Luke 2:25. It is interesting to note as well that the KJV always capitalizes Holy Ghost, but does not always capitalize Holy Spirit, i.e., Ephesians 1:13, 4:30, and 1 Thessalonians 4:8, where each time the KJV has “holy Spirit” (239 n.10).

In the appendix there is a fine discussion of the Granville Sharp rule, something which wasn’t clear in the 17th century.

Granville Sharp’s rule, according to Granville Sharp, is:

When the copulative kai connects two nouns of the same case [viz. nouns (either substantive or adjective, or participles) of personal description, respecting office, dignity, affinity, or connexion, and attributes, properties, or qualities, good or ill,] if the article o, or any of its cases, precedes the first of the said nouns or participles, and is not repeated before the second noun or participle, the latter always relates to the same person that is expressed or described by the first noun or participle: i.e., it denotes a farther description of the first named person.

Granville Sharp, Remarks on the Definitive article in the Greek Text of the \e w Testament: Containing many proofs of the Divinity of Christ from Passages.

 

3 Crucial Questions about Spiritual warfare

Image result for 3 crucial questions about spiritual warfare

Arnold, Clinton. 3 Crucial Questions on Spiritual Warfare. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 1997.

Continuing with the material in his dissertation on Ephesians, Clinton Arnold gives top-level scholarship combined with practical application for the church. In this text he steers a middle path between animism and deism. His three crucial questions:

1) Should we engage in spiritual warfare?
2) Can Christians be possessed?
3) What about territorial spirits?

Arnold begins with a simple (yet for some, baffling) observation: “ Foundational to spiritual warfare is a belief in evil spirits and a desire to get the upper hand on them before they get it on us” (Arnold, [it’s hard to cite the page number, since I am reading this on an epub]).

1. The concept of spiritual warfare reflects a primitive, prescientific worldview

2. Demons and evil spirits are not very prominent in the Bible. Even if this were true, it had force only if we limit the term to daimonia.

Supernatural Opponents

archai = Principalities

exousiai = authorities

kosmokratores = world rulers

pneumatika = spiritual forces

Arnold makes one observation with which I disagree: “These terms probably do not represent the so-called territorial spirits that we find in Daniel—that is, a demonic prince with responsibility over a country or region (see Dan. 10:1320).”

It’s hard to see how they couldn’t be territorial spirits. But maybe they don’t have to be. Arnold doesn’t mention it, but these could be the shedim and rephaim mentioned in Deut. 32. In discussing Ephesians 6, I do like how Arnold emphasizes the corporate nature of prayer.

Can a Christian Be Demon-Possessed?

After the 1970s better texts on spiritual warfare moved away from speaking of “possession” (given its connotations with the Exorcist) and more on demonization (which is actually what the Greek word says). The problem is that terms like “possession” mean “to be totally the Devil’s control.” Of course Christians aren’t totally under the Devil’s control, but in terms of bodily motions, neither are most unbelievers. Arnold then clinches the argument: ““Demon possession” is always the translation of a single Greek word, daimonizomai. Words for ownership or possession (e.g., huparch , ech , katech , ktaomai, or peripoie ) are absent in the original text.”

However, not all arguments to the effect “Christians cannot be demon-possessed” because ________ are very good. While we are a temple of God, there is no reason why demons cannot “latch onto the outer court,” to extend the metaphor. In fact, we can “give turf” to the Devil. “In your anger do not sin; Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.” The term translated “foothold” is the Greek word topos, an expression that was commonly used for inhabited space.

Further, we can allow evil to reign (Romans 6:12).

Did Paul Exorcise Christians?

Arnold writes that Luke tells of a massive exorcism *after* some Jews and Gentiles were converted to the Lord (Acts 19:10). Arnold: Luke then tells us that “many of those who believed now came and openly confessed their evil deeds” (Acts 19:18, italics mine). The result was a massive ceremony of renunciation involving the burning of 50,000 days’ wages worth of magical papyri. These were Christians burning their occultic texts!

And Arnold documents that the type of magic they were doing involved invoking a daimon to come to one’s aid. So you have born-again Christians invoking demons to come to them.

Can a Christian Exhibit Altered States of Consciousness?

If by altered states one means “dissociative identity disorder,” and as long as that is understood by what the govt did with MK-ULTRA, and not because a spiritual entity, then yes.

Can We Imitate the Gospels on Exorcism?

The gospels are manuals for us on how to live. This is how the earliest Christians (and common sense) understood the gospels. Further, in Luke 11-12, the coming of the kingdom is also attended by exorcisms. Further, in the Great Commission Jesus commands us to teach and do all.

The early church exorcised new Christians. 

Hippolytus, Apostolic Traditions. Moreover, from the day they are chosen, let a hand be laid on them and let them be exorcised [exorkizein] daily. And when the day draws near on which they are to be baptized, let the bishop himself exorcise each one of them, that he may be certain that he is purified (20.3).

But if there is one who is not purified let him be put on one side because he did not hear the word of instruction with faith. For the evil and strange spirit remained with him (20.4).

The leader would anoint the person with oil and say, “Let all evil spirits depart far from thee” (21.10).

Tertullian: Because of the omnipresence of idolatry, Tertullian asked rhetorically, “What man is there to whom an evil spirit does not adhere, even at the very gates of his birth, waiting to ensnare his soul?” Of course, Tertullian has a lot of issues himself, so take this with a grain of salt.

Pseudo-Clement, Recognitions 2.71, as cited in Kelly, The Devil at Baptism, 124. “Everyone who has at any time worshiped idols and has adored those whom the pagans call gods, or has eaten of the things sacrificed to them, is not without an unclean spirit; for he has become a guest of demons, and has been partaker with that demon of which he has formed the image in his mind, either through fear or love.”

Origen: “Anyone who vanquishes a demon in himself, e.g. the demon of lewdness, puts it out of action; the demon is cast into the abyss, and cannot do any harm to anyone. Homily on Joshua 15.5, as quoted in Everett Ferguson, Demonology of the Early Christian World, Symposium Series 12 (Lewiston/Queenston: Edwin Mellen, 1984), 128.

Cyprian. and although he [the demon] often says that he is going out, and will leave the men of God, yet in that which he says he deceives, and puts in practice what was before done by Pharaoh with the same obstinate and fraudulent deceit” (Epistles 75.15).

Apostolic Constitutions. “Ye energumens, afflicted with unclean spirits, pray, and let us all earnestly pray for them, that God, the lover of mankind, will by Christ rebuke the unclean and wicked spirits and deliver His supplicants from the dominion of the adversary” (Apostolic Constitutions 8.6).

What about Deliverance Ministries?

Properly glossed, it is line with the practices of the earliest Christians. He does give some warning about excesses, though:

* When in doubt, cast it out!

* Uncritical acceptance of testimonies of demons.

Arnold downplays the reality of Satanic Ritual Abuse, however. Granted, he wrote this when many aspects of the “satanic panic” were being exposed. But he is wrong if he says no evidence of Satanic rituals have been found. Yet he admits that murders have been carried out in the name of Satan. So which is it? I think he is rejecting the idea of an international Satanic conspiracy cult. Well, when you put it like that, then no, they probably aren’t real. But there are other ways of framing the issue.

Are We Called to Fight Territorial Spirits?

The acronym SLSW, strategic level spiritual warfare, is what he is talking about. At the most basic level, the concept of territorial spirits is biblical. Daniel 10. And given the fact that God alloted the nations to the beney ha-elohim per Deut 4 and 32, it is legitimate to think that fallen spirits (whatever we want to call them) control (or did control) some countries.

The controversy is when we get to “spiritual mapping.” According to George Otis, it is “superimposing our understanding of forces and events in the spiritual domain onto places and circumstances in the material world” (Otis, George Otis Jr., The Last of the Giants: Lifting the Veil on Islam and the End Times (Grand Rapids: Chosen, 1991), 85).

The second aspect isn’t as problematic: dealing with the corporate sin of an area. This seems biblical. The final question is the main one: can we pray against these spirits?

Arnold’s response:

The first point is utterly biblical. And Arnold corrects the flawed translation of Deut. 32:8 with the correct one from the Dead Sea Scrolls. And while the LXX translates Deut 32:17 as “demons,” the better reading is the Hebrew shedim, which is a territorial spirit of the underworld.

Church Fathers on the topic:

Justin Martyr (2nd century A.D.) makes reference to “the power of the evil demon that dwelt in Damascus” (Dialogue with Trypho 78). “for the princes in Tanis are evil angels” (Dialogue with Trypho 79).

Clement: Well, now, let us say in addition, what inhuman demons, and hostile to the human race, your gods were, not only delighting in the insanity of men, but gloating over human slaughter (Exhortation to the Greeks, 3.1).

But can we name and discern these spirits? Arnold asks us to pause on this point. Scripture really doesn’t say we should. And if Jude is any indication, as he quotes from the Assumption of Moses, we need to be very careful in how we address these fallen territorial spirits. Arnold makes the very perceptive insight: “We do not have the right to tell a spirit to leave if it has an invitation to stay.”

And when Paul was in Ephesus, he no doubt encountered the territorial spirit of the City (i.e., Diana). He didn’t engage in SLSW against her, but in deliverance for the demonized in the city.

Fast Facts on the Masonic Lodge

Fast Facts on the Masonic Lodge

Ankerberg & Weldon.

Surprisingly good.  You never can tell with pop apologetics tracks.  It doesn’t get into the hermetic issues of Freemasonry.  It focuses on the “Blue Lodge,” as most Masons are there.  It mainly stays with standard Masonic texts and is fair. Instead of quoting the actual text, I am going to quote from the Masonic manuals from which they quote.

They argue that Masonry is a religion because a) some of its key texts say it is; b) it requires specific religious beliefs (immortality of the soul; belief in a supreme being), and c) promises an eternal reward.  And koinonia.  This is exactly what the church offers (Henry Wilson Coil, Coil’s Masonic Encyclopedia 1961:512).  And since they require belief in these, that fits the definition of a Creed.

Since this religion disagrees with Christianity in key aspects, Christians can’t be Masons. We will focus on some of these aspects:

  1. Jahbulon.  This name of God is a combination of Jehovah, Baal, and Osiris.  By definition this isn’t the God that Christians worship.  We worship the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
  2.   Freemasonry teaches that a man is in darkness prior to becoming a freemason (Albert Mackey, Manual of the Lodge, 520).  The Bible, on the other hand, says that before Christ we were in darkness (Galatians 1:4).
  3. Freemasonry openly mocks the biblical God, calling him “a partisan tribal god” (Coil 516-517).  And they aren’t nearly as apophatic as they claim.  They make a number of positive assertions about God: he is unitarian, deistic (Martin Wagner, Freemasonry: An Interpretation, 284).  Even on Masonic principles there is no way they can reconcile these disparate claims (and that’s not even mentioning Islamic theology or Judaism).  We don’t have the same view of God, as both Pike and Coil admit.

This is a good primer. I read it in under an hour.  It doesn’t get into the occultic darkness aspects, which is just as well. It ends with an evangelistic appeal to those Christians who are caught in Freemasonry.