Today I start walking…

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Today I start walking the Camino De Santiago. As I was sorting out my paperwork in my old room at home, I came across a prayer of Thomas Merton which seems appropriate…

“My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following Your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.

But I believe that the desire to please You does in fact please You. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that, if I do this, You will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it”

– Thomas Merton, Thoughts on Solitude

Wise Words on Wednesday: Let Truth Speak For Itself

Lion

Prepare the way, then get out of the way. Open the cage door and let the Truth speak for itself. It will roar like a lion who, once encountered, needs no help being taken seriously

– Matthew Warner, Messy & Foolish

When is a Hebrew not a Jew?

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When you hear people speaking about the Bible, and especially the Old Testament, you will often hear the terms “Israelite”, “Hebrew” and “Jew” used interchangeably. However, strictly speaking, these terms are not identical.

An Israelite is simply anyone who is a descendant of the Patriarch Jacob. In Genesis 32:28, after wrestling a mysterious man, Jacob is given a new name, “Israel”, which literally means “He who strives with God”.

If you recall, Jacob/Israel had twelve sons. These would later form the heads of the twelve tribes of Israel. Well, eleven of these sons took great umbrage at their brother Joseph, so they sold him into slavery (those of you with siblings will understand this). Years later, Joseph rose to power in Egypt and, after being reconciled with his family, brought them all to Egypt.

The family of Israel flourished in Egypt for some time until a new Pharaoh rose to power who forced them all into slavery. It is at this time that Moses is called by God to rescue his people and lead them out of Egypt. It is during the period of the Exodus that the term Hebrew is used to refer to the population.

Once the people return to Israel, they enjoy a period of prosperity. However, eventually there is a split in the Kingdom between the northern and southern Kingdom. The Southern Kingdom was known as “Judah” and the inhabitants of that area known as Jews. Both the northern and southern kingdoms are conquered and people exiled. After the exile, the term “Jew” is used to refer to any of the Israelites who were left.

I hope that this explanation of terms and recap of Salvation History is helpful!

Music Monday: As it is in Heaven

Today’s song is another from Elevation which I heard at a recent concert in San Diego, “As it is in Heaven”:

The atmosphere is changing now
For the spirit of the Lord is here
The evidence is all around
That the spirit of the Lord is here

Overflow in this place
Fill our hearts with your love
Your love surrounds us
You’re the reason we came
To encounter your love
Your love surrounds us

Spirit of God fall fresh on us
We need your presence
Your kingdom come
Your will be done
Here as in heaven

A miracle can happen now
For the spirit of the Lord is here
The evidence is all around
That the spirit of the Lord is here

Friday Frivolity: Ninja Nuns

The other day, I came across this video:

In trying to find out more information as to its background, I found this webpage which has a pretty good analysis as to the issues surrounding authenticity (as well a rather amusing joke).

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