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4th June 2010

6:28pm: Barack Obama
Of President OBama I am again I am reminded....

Romans 13:1

"Let every soul to the higher authorities be subject, for there is no authority except from God, and the authorities existing are appointed by God, ..."

---and---

Matt 5:22

"But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell"

---and---

Romans 8:28

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."

What strikes me as so odd is that it's mostly Christians who end up rejecting Gods ordained leader of America and calling this man worthless and have a lack of faith.

Of course this is all subject to opinion... of which I am grateful that you often let me express mine. Finally, I believe three things about President Obama...

1) He is who God set or possibly suffered to lead America, who am I to question his judgment, God's that is.
2) Despite my disagreements with this man's various policies, He is likely a more worthy choice for presidency than most, including myself and various religious leaders.
3) When the time comes, I will likely vote for someone else... that is the way God has delegated to us Americans to play a part in whom he chooses to be our leader... very nice of him to do so 'cause other nations don't all have that freedom.


just my $0.02 and if you are one of these Self Righteous Christians.....before you scold me, consider your self very closely, consider your own selfish lust, your sins, your mistakes, your errors in doctrine... whence you have cleansed yourself from these things... you are free to stone me.

2nd January 2010

6:14pm: Veneration

Before out right condemning veneration, I would like to take a step back and see if it can first be justified via the Bible. This is likely, as most doctrines have their root in the Bible. Although through the course of history and changing sociopolitical climate the true meaning, or need for a particular teaching is often lost.

Since veneration has to do with miracles and the calling on of saints or relics in intersession has to do with miracles we will start with the last miracle of Elisha, the resurrection of a dead man in 2 Kings 13:20-21:

 20And Elisha died, and they buried him. And the bands of the Moabites invaded the land at the coming in of the year.

 21And it came to pass, as they were burying a man, that, behold, they spied a band of men; and they cast the man into the sepulchre of Elisha: and when the man was let down, and touched the bones of Elisha, he revived, and stood up on his feet.

Using this portion of scripture its already easy to understand veneration, and why it would be important. While the bones of Elisha were not actually sought out in this case in the next example there is another relic which preformed a similar function which was sought after in Numbers 21:4-9:

 4 They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea, [a] to go around Edom. But the people grew impatient on the way; 5 they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, "Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the desert? There is no bread! There is no water! And we detest this miserable food!"

 6 Then the LORD sent venomous snakes among them; they bit the people and many Israelites died. 7 The people came to Moses and said, "We sinned when we spoke against the LORD and against you. Pray that the LORD will take the snakes away from us." So Moses prayed for the people.

 8 The LORD said to Moses, "Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live." 9 So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived.

And now while this does not appear on the surface to be a relic it did become one later, as people kept visiting it. At first because of what God did through it in the past and likely continued to do, but later, to the demise of the people out of ignorance, to worship it. And there in lies the problem, when a relic or saint makes the jump from veneration to adoration it be comes a sin, 2 Kings 18:4:

4 He removed the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles. He broke into pieces the bronze snake Moses had made, for up to that time the Israelites had been burning incense to it.

With this alone we can easily see the place of relics, the good they do and the bad they can bring about when the reason why is misunderstood. Now with the issue of Saints let us turn to the New Testament, the most obvious to me is Peter's shadow in Acts 5:12-15:

12The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people. And all the believers used to meet together in Solomon's Colonnade. 13No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people. 14Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number. 15As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter's shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by. 16Crowds gathered also from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil spirits, and all of them were healed.

While the current form of veneration and sainthood is commonly posthumous the teaching so far is Bible based. But what about what saints in heaven interceding? Lets see Luke 16:22-25:

 22And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;

 23And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

 24And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.

 25But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.



Now if a dead man can seek out a saint, seen here as Abraham or also possibly Lazarus, on behalf of a cause for the living, why cant the living also seek out a saint for causes as well. So long as their faith is in God for the work and not the saint.

Furthermore, from the Wikipedia on saints...

The veneration of saints, in Latin, cultus, or the "cult of the saints", describes a particular popular devotion to the saints. Although the term "worship" is somtimes used, it is intended in the old-sense meaning to honor or give respect (dulia). Divine Worship is properly reserved only for God (latria) and never to the saints. They can be asked to intercede or pray for those still on earth, just as one can ask someone on earth to pray for them.

A saint may be designated as a patron saint of a particular cause or profession, or invoked against specific illnesses or disasters, sometimes by popular custom and sometimes by official statements of the Magisterium. Saints are not thought to have power of their own, but only that granted by God. Relics of saints are respected in a similar manner to holy images and icons. The practices of past centuries in venerating relics of saints for healing is taken from the early Church.

A further study on worship and the differences between veneration and adoration should also be made but due to time I will not go into detail.

In conclusion we now see that first, objects can and are imbued with power from God. Second, people seeking them out in faith, that through them God will preform a work is evident in both the Old and New Testaments. Third, it is the power of God which people are pursuing in veneration not the power in the saint or relic. And lastly, when that faith is turned from faith in God to faith in the object or saint it is sin.
























14th December 2009

6:54pm: Defective By Design
I am a huge proponent of Christianity in general and more more deeper Biblical concepts as well. However, over the course of time this has not left me without questions, and lots of them. For example.. original sin, if death entered by sin and before sin there was no death, when Adam ate of any fruit other than that which caused the fall of man, was that fruit dead? Was it ever alive? Are trees really alive?

With respect to the age of the universe, if you interpret the Bible literally, the earth came into existence in its current state....i.e. complete with star light in 6 days, yet if we guess at the earths age this way and use a purely Biblical account the earth in its current state can not consist of star light older than 6-12,000 years old max.... yet it does.

And ultimately a lot of things might (including the above two problems) be explained if one were to accept that God is not omni-benevolent in a human sense of the word, which is what I believe.

While the majority of Christianity teaches that God is totally and completely benevolent(without evil) I believe that the real problem lies in mans understanding of what goodness is in relation to God. Goodness in relation to God is not something equal to God or something which defines God. It is the reverse, God defines what is good.

You have heard it is impossible for God to lie, in fact this is the only thing that is impossible with God. If he were to tell a lie the fact that he is God would change it into truth. And it is the same with how we see good and evil with relation to God.

There is much evil in the world, but if it is good to God then it is good, no matter if it completely cuts you out of life and liberty, it it good... evil has always been a problem for man, but it is not a byproduct of good or of the fall. Evil is a creation, created for a purpose, and like the rest of us it is subject totally to the will of its creator. And when it has run its course the evil brings about good.

In fact, the divine plan for humanity, which existed before the fall (yet another creation,) does not exist without this creation. Of course such notions totally eliminate the possibility for free will. But free will, like benevolence, is relational to humanity as well.

12th June 2009

5:33pm: Longing For Death

My wife's cousin(around 40 years old) is dying of cancer, or so it would seem. She recently was diagnosed with stage 3 cervical cancer which had spread into her lymph nodes. Pretty bad stuff so first off the big thing is everybody pray. And why not we're Pentecostal, that's what we do when there is trouble.

 

So we do we pray and cry and pray. And inevitably she gets better. She passed the tumor and the cancer retreats from her lymph nodes. And now, now she has a chance to live. This was 6 months ago, which I hear is pretty good turnaround on cancer. But now she goes in for her first real checkup to see if she is in remission, and there is more cancer found, this time in her spine, breast, and lungs. To which every one is completely upset, and there seems to just be crying from every one. we all feel as if we are going to loose this wonderful person.

 

And it's true, she is a wonderful person. But I cannot share in all of the sadness, not yet anyway, and heres why. Her family were not big church goers, and when she first got sick... I wasn't crying then either, because I though, “God is using her to get her family in church, right.” Yeah right, that's what he did, she got in church, her mother came in, got right, prayed through, her brother and his family came in, got right and now they are all coming to church and contributing to the work of God more regularly than they were before. Therefore, I conclude that whether the cancer is of God or if it's just plain life, it was progress for her and her family and therefore a wonderful example of God working bad things for our good.

 

Now, today she finds that she's still got cancer, although not in the same places as before. Did God answer her prayers, the old cancer is gone and surely she didn't say anything about this new cancer that's in her because she was unaware of it. But God knew, why didn't he heal her completely?

 

I believe, and it may just be me. But I believe that this is still good. If a person is in good standing with God, what is there to loose. I find myself envious of this woman and her position. Now with cancer spreading and no doubt a timetable on her life.... she is truly free!

 

Free to die, but not death in the since of physical death. That death is easy compared to the death which we all must face and that is spiritual death. I do my best to live for God, but it's not really my best, I make compromises everyday. Because I'm human, because I'm selfish, because I have a lot to live for,... I choose to only go so far and quit. And every one is like this, you're only fooling your self if you don't believe so.

 

We can all spend an extra hour in prayer, but we don't because we know that “Days of Our Lives” will be on in 15 minutes and we want to cook up some lunch so we can have something to eat while we watch it. So we compromise that extra hour of prayer away. We know that we can take every opportunity to witness about the goodness of God, but we don't because people will think were nuts and we have to interact with them every day and most of the time were not ready to risk destroying our daily relationships for the work of God. Someone upsets us vehemently at work and we may turn the other cheek, but after that we are all out of cheeks and we let them have it.

 

But dying, now there is freedom, no longer are we bound to sacrifice our time with God, or our relationships with others, or even our own personal feelings, because death is imminent and eternal life looms just over the horizon.

 

I am envious, that she knows that she will die soon. And now she has the opportunity to live like the disciples did, to freely give and expect nothing in return, because nothing will bring her back to life.

 

I wish I knew when I was going to die, because I would put my nose to the grindstone, I would make a fool of myself to bring people to the truth, if that's what I needed to do, I would give away all my stuff and all my money, I would pay people to come to church with me, because I would truly have no use for it where I was going. I Would let people walk all over me and then they might turn and see that God is sending them a welcome mat so they can come to church and get right.

 

And what of it if I failed, and what if it hurt, and what if it cost me everything... I would have lost nothing more than I was already losing.

 

But what if I succeeded, what if I won a soul to God, what if I made a difference. I would have treasure in heaven, and God might even spare my life if he saw that I could still do a work for him here on this earth. But even if he didn't I have lost nothing.

 

I am envious, I want to die in my flesh too, because then I might be alive to God...


17th May 2008

6:12pm: A Litte Bit of Tail
My Problem:

    Every now and again I need a little tail, not much, just a few lines. You see, I work as deskside support( every ones got to start somewhere ) and the environment in which I work is strictly W!ndows based. And of course theres no MS equivalent to tail. Now I rarely look at log files, but when I do, I really don't want to have to wade through thousands of lines just to see the information I'm looking for.

    True to my nature, I decide make a script that would do all the work for me. So I set out... to make my self a functional equivalent to tail. Now, before you say, "Why don't you just download program X that will do what you want?," let me say that our environment is highly restricted, and thus installing such a program is against policy.

    After several hours trying to make it in batch, and VB(VB really hurts me head to look at). I come to the conclusion that something more familiar would be better, so I choose Java.

    Java? Why Java? Simple.... I took a course on C in college. It's portable across all PCs at work (all come with Java 1.5.0 on the standard image.) And since I have the source code with me, it's not against policy.

    First, I checked to see if anyone had done what I wanted first, no need in creating when you can steal. However, all I could find were GUI based versions and really high end whiz-bang do every thing programs, not what I'm in the market for. So after 3 days(pathetic, aye) of working  on it in my spare time at work this is what I came up with:


import java.io.*;

public class tail    {
    public static void main ( String args[] ) throws Exception    {
        //File file = new File( "c:\\windows\\win.ini" );
        File file = new File( args[0] );
           
        // test if file is readable
       
        if (!file.exists( ) || !file.canRead( ) )     {
            System.out.println( "Can not read " + file );
            return;
        }
       
        try {
            int a = 0;
            int b = 0;
                       
            // read file, dump file length to int a
           
            FileReader fr = new FileReader ( file );
            BufferedReader in = new BufferedReader( fr );
            String line;
            while ((line = in.readLine()) != null){
                a++;
        }
           
            //create array, the length of the file
           
            String [] lines;
            lines = new String [a];
            //System.out.println( "\n" + lines.length + " = lines total\n" );
                    // Test
           
            // read file again(note 1...ie. fr1,br1,in1) and move contents
            // of each line into an Array of strings
           
             FileReader fr1 = new FileReader ( file );
             BufferedReader in1 = new BufferedReader( fr1 );
            while ( (line = in1.readLine()) != null ) {
                lines[b] = line;
                //System.out.println( b );           
                   // Test
                //System.out.println( lines[b] );                    // Test
                b++;
            }
                       
            // read the last # of lines
               
            int j = lines.length;
            int i = j - 10;                                                         // # of lines you want
            while ( i < j){
                System.out.println( lines[i] );
                i++;
            }
        }
        catch (FileNotFoundException fnfe ) {
            System.out.println( "whoops");
        }
    }   
}


Now I realize that there are probably better ways to do this, but I am only operating off of one semester of C(which I aced) and one O'riely book called Learning Java. Secondly, I also realize that this takes only one argument, the file to read, but all other functionality can( if I ever get around to it ) be worked out later. Otherwise, enjoy!

12th December 2007

5:24pm: windows still sucks
Finally got the SUNPCi card working (sorta) in the Ultra60. I was able to load most drivers for the card but unable to use the NDIS network card passthough that would allow me to use the hme on my Sparc (Bad Trap - and the system resets.) Though officialy unsupported it was relatively easy by following these instructions (http://www.recursivegreen.com/howtos/sunpci.html .)

And yes, even in  *nix w!ndw$ still sux!

30th November 2007

5:47pm: Ultra 60
A while back I bought a SUN Ultra 60 off E-Bay. I was quite glad to receive my item with minimal problems and cost. To my dissappointment, however, I found that it was actually a brick.... This happens from time to time especially when you bid on items that carry a low price. After much tooling around with it, I found that the keyboard will output some diagnostics when something has gone awry with the system. What I learned was that my cpu was bad.... However upon replacing said cpu with a known working cpu I deduced that it was the mainboard .

>> Fast forward to the present , Ive just bought a SUN Netra 1125 from E-bay for around a $1, $66 shipped. Upon receiving it I figure Ill try to play around with the U60 again And what I found was that my mainboard was good but it was the eeprom that was bad. This is excellent, as all ultra class machines will allow you to interchange eeproms and come back with a working box. Now I just happen to have a surplus of Ultra 1s.... I'm robbing out a eeprom as we speak.

With a little work I get it to come up and now I'm ready for an OS...and my next problem.

Apparently the CD-ROM drives which handle most things fine, have trouble reading newer CD-Rs because of this I beat my head up against the wall for at least a week burning at slower speeds, with different media, and different drives. Some times I would get part of the way through some times it wouldn't even boot. Ultimately I found and answer to my problem..... mount the ISOs and do a net install. I found a nifty how to guide (http://www.sun.com/bigadmin/content/submitted/cd_free_install.html) and got to it.
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