Bible Teaching aimed at helping you enjoy the Scriptures which are the Word of GOD!
Preaching by: John J. Malone, Sr - JABSBG*
I’ve added a new category to this site to accommodate some of my thoughts about public policy that I think make for a more peaceful and productive society. The kind of society we should pray for so that we can more readily advance the gospel of Jesus Christ. Christians are the salt of the earth , a preserving agent, and we need to function accordingly, lest the surrounding society rots faster.
There are approximately 4,000,000 children born in the USA annually. The average cost of a birth is $3,500, which in my opinion is pretty high because my daughters and daughter-in-law give birth for a little as $50. And I have 36 grandkids.
If vouchers were given to every child born in the USA as a birthday present, it would cost $14B. That’s a drop in the bucket in the context of the Affordable Health Care Act, and would remove some of the ridiculous underwriting requirements involved in that fiasco such as providing maternity coverage for all males.
Insurance NEEDS underwriting requirements.
It would also lead to the reduction in cost of births because it would stimulate competition for birthing. Pregnancy is not a disease and doesn’t necessarily belong in hospitals in the first place. I’d let parents shop the birth so that any remainder of the voucher would go to an HSA for the child.
One of the main problems with insurance is that it tends to destroy price discovery by the consumer. The provision of leftovers into an HSA will stimulate consumer price discovery, which in turn stimulates competition, which in turn provides efficiency.
I don’t think we can have too many more justifiable public expenses than birth. $14B would take maternity out of the public health care insurance debate.
Happy birthday, citizen.
The second thing that needs to be done is to restore the allocation scheme of “uninsurables” so that insurance providers can more accurately price products without worrying that they will be “selected against” by high-cost consumers. As it stands today, each participating insurer in public health care has to worry about such selection – a standard practice in insurance – and price accordingly. It is possible as it currently stands, for instance, for 10 insurance companies to each price their products as if they will attract 25% of the high-cost consumer. Normal distribution of those 10 would yield one company with 25%, and two with 20% of those consumers, but ALL the companies have to price for the eventuality. That adds up to 2.5 times the number of those consumers, or 150% excess expense. I have oversimplified, but the idea is here.
Instead, companies should be allowed to underwrite as they have in the past, but me made to absorb the uninsurable according the the market percentages they acquire. A simple allocation scheme. Such a simple provision as this would allow more accurate pricing by insurers of the base product. The uninsurable would raise the price of insurance for the insurable , but that is what insurance is, after all.
When these sorts of simple ideas are not present in the scheme, one wonder what the scheme really is.
Author: John Malone
Date: 13th February, 2014 @ 03:42:07 PM
A modern-day repackaging of an old-time religion may be found in the “Hebrew Roots” movement, which teaches that Christians need to obey the Levitical laws and sanctions generally agreed to be 613 laws, customs, and so forth derived from the first five books of Scripture.
This “movement” is misnamed. Of course, the errors it propounds are nothing new, and are prominently figured into Paul’s rather seething commentary on such ideas in his epistle to the Galatians. Most people either gloss Galatians when they read it, or mistake its major premise by focusing on a minor one, and/or reading too many commentaries. To aid the reader, the central consideration is not initial salvation from sin unto the gift of eternal life, but progressive sanctification in the life.
The Hebrew Roots movement is truly against Christian practice and faith, despite being occupied as it is by Christians. There are very clear Scriptural warnings to NOT do the very thing this movement represents. It steals the liberty into which every Christian has been placed. We should, rather, stand fast in that liberty.
Once again we learn the difference between being sanctified – which every single believer in the Lord Jesus Christ is – and being able to sanctify: which no Christian can do.
How many times do you hear, in a discussion of an unbiblical practice or doctrine, how many Christians, including Christians of some note, either do the practice or believe and or teach the doctrine? As if that can possibly settle a matter? All of this leads to confusion in the mind of the beholder, the very beholder we are trying to reach with the truth of God’s word. When Peter violated the principles of the early church, his acts were not sanctified, but Paul put him in his place.
A paradox, you may say? Sure it is. But of all people to understand the paradoxes of those who are identifiable by faith and practice, Jewish people should understand that a variety of practices and beliefs doesn’t completely obscure the identity underneath. In short, these are Christians acting as if they are Jewish proselytes, to a large extent, and when Christians join into the inferior priesthood of Levi – as they do – they do a disservice to the Christian faith.
“Christians” were first called as such by others who identified them at Antioch, in Pisidia, in the middle of the first century. Prior to that time, before Gentiles began to be Christians in larger numbers, they were knows as Jews who went “the way.”
In fact, this fairly large group of Jews who believed in Jesus Christ could be found occupying “Solomon’s porch” in the Herodian temple when it was standing, and Jews gathered together on the requisite feasts.
So, yes, Christianity has Jewish roots. To call it “Hebrew roots” is flat wrong.
Abraham is called a Hebrew. He didn’t perform any of the law, nor did he keep its dietary restrictions, let alone wear phylacteries, etc., and other Rabbinic practices which actually miss the mark spiritually, and, at best, are superstition, or worse, end up choking on gnats and swallowing camels.
As for how it happens, Christians receive a supernatural love for God and His word, because of the love of Jesus Christ. It doesn’t take much study of the Scriptures to realize God’s special love for His people, Israel. Jesus is a Jew, too. Not was. Is. Tribe of Judah.
So any thoughtful Christian cannot hate the Jews – even though many do – but instead have a supernatural affinity to them, and are indebted to the Jews because that is where faith in Jehovah (Jesus Christ) comes from. To call that a “Hebrew Root,” is a misnomer.
The Scriptures teach that Israel is a tender planting of God, a tree (or vine) that grew, and then later at some time Gentile branches were grafted in. That time was in the first century, as Jews increasingly rejected Jesus Christ, even though many, many believed.
That leaves we former Gentiles who have believed readily aware that we only stand by our faith in Jesus Christ, and when the time comes that no longer is the case among the Gentiles, God will once again take up Israel as the light of the world.
But that is NOT Hebrew roots, even in the generic sense. True “Hebrew Roots” may be found in Abraham the Hebrew, but not in the Levitical priesthood.
And this is the core of the problem. These misled and misleading Christians have come short of the second phase of the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, the one He is in today, which is His priesthood at the right hand of His and our Father. This is not a Levitical priesthood as is obviously evident in the fact that Jesus Christ is of the tribe of Judah, house of David, and not of the tribe of Levi. He’s genealogy is most eloquently found in first parts of Matthew and Luke.
Paul, when he was before Ananias, the alleged Jewish high priest, was slapped at Ananias instruction, and Paul subsequently called Ananias a “whited wall.” He then claimed he did not know Ananias WAS the high priest. Of course, Paul was aware of who Ananias was.
However, unlike the others around, Paul also knew Who the Lord Jesus Christ is, and also knew Him to be a high priest of a higher order than any from Levi. He published this viewpoint clearly and succinctly in his Epistle to the Hebrews. And it is in that epistle that the undeniable logic is presented: that Abraham paid tithes to Melchisedec.
Because Abraham is Levi’s great grandfather, Levi paid tithes to Melchisedec in Abraham. And after Abraham tithed to Melchisedec, Melchisedec blessed Abraham. It is not controversial that the greater blesses the lesser, and therefore we see how great this man Melchisedec was: greater than Abraham. It is significant that in the blessing of Abraham, Melchisedec, the king-priest of Salem, brought forth bread and wine to Abraham. This foreshadows the Christian ordinance.
Therefore we see that, prior to Levi and Moses, there was a priest of God who was king of Salem, later to be Jeru-salem. This priest was greater than Abraham. He was NOT a high priest, but that his order existed is a fact of the Bible. This no doubt traces back to the commitment of the true worship of God to Shem. In fact, I suspect that Melchisedec may have indeed BEEN Shem. But that’s not especially important. If Melchisedec’s genealogy was important, it would be included. The fact is, it is important he has NO genealogy, typifying as it does his priestly Successor, Who is timeless.
Shem was the father of ALL of the children of Eber, upon whose name the term Hebrew rests.
These are Hebrew roots if the phrase is to be used. The roots of faith in Abraham the Hebrew.
Abraham the Hebrew recognized the priesthood of Melchisedec. And while Melchisedec was a king-priest, his Successor, Jesus Christ, is the High-Priest King, after the same order. With Jesus Christ the high-priestly order of Levi was terminated. The High Priest after the order of Melchisedec took His office after His ascent back to heaven.
The Lord Jesus will hold the three offices given to Israel: Prophet, Priest, King. No other single man was ever allowed this. He dies, as prophets do, at the hands of His own people. Today, he is the High-Priest, after the order of Melchisedec, and therefore all the order of Aaron (Levi) is terminated. Finally, He will rule as King of Kings, Lord of Lords.
And the law of Moses, which came 400 years later, cannot annul God’s promises to Abraham, in part signified by his meeting with Melchisedec after Abraham’s triumph over the kings.
This, by the way, is orthodox and fundamental Christian belief.
I have Hebrew roots.
Author: John Malone
Date: 12th February, 2014 @ 06:47:04 AM
It’s been quite a few years ago that I was introduced as being “Somewhat to the right of Attila the Hun,” by a friend of mine. I’m misunderstood. Sometimes I revel in that. I try to stay principled. I think that’s the only way to live.
So in my experiences lately of trying to function as both salt to the earth as well as light to the world, the call to faithfulness of every Christian, I have set about in my local community to confront lawless government.
That has led me to represent myself in Court as a citizen advocate. I have received injunctive relief against the City of Omaha because it implemented an illegal set of ordinances to license virtually everyone that does any work on real property. I am attempting to stop the City of Omaha from illegally appropriating tax money to the state-supported university.
Recently I have been watching the city of Fremont, NE try to drive the illegal aliens out of their city. It’s incipient xenophobia. Now, there is no doubt that illegal aliens crossing our borders is a problem. It is a problem of failed government. But what Fremont citizens are doing is truly the stuff of pitchforks and lanterns, as they have set about a licensing scheme of all rental real estate AND all renters. That’s right, license everything.
First, let me say that Fremont has always been a city dominated by Masonic elements and therefore has become the kind of community brought about by that secret society.
As far as I can tell, there isn’t a gospel-preaching church in the whole town.
It has failed to grow because it is run my local monopolistic interests. Sort of reminds me a bit of the town of Millard NE, annexed several years ago by Omaha, which is now looking a lot like a ghost town. A lot like Fremont. I wonder if there is a single Jewish family in the entire town.
I pretty much expect Fremonters to tell me: “We’ve handled the Jews, and we’ve handled the blacks, and we sure are going to handle these browns.”
Now here is the paradox in all this. Who do you suppose lined up behind this movement to license all rental real estate and all renters in the Fremont city limits? “Conservatives.” And of course, the expedient bunch of unprincipled politicos that adhere to “conservatives” like barnacles (or,maggots?) – the Republicans.
I have many Republican friends, though I have never been one. And I’m still a Bible Christian. Before I was saved, I was far, far more radical than my Democrat registration described. Of course, today Hubert Humphrey would be to the right of John Boehner, and George Bush, but leave that. I was a definite lefty. I met real communists. I also saw the Civil Rights Movement get hijacked by Sodomites, but I’m working on another article for that.
Anyway, I say all this to explain why it is I have come to my political conclusion on the state of American politics: I left the Democrat party over 35 years ago because they held wrong principles. I’ve never joined the Republicans because they have none.
Watching Republicans and conservatives parade and prate about what a wonderful thing they have achieved in Fremont – by seizing fundamental liberty away from every citizen in Fremont – is exactly the kind of thing I’ve come to expect from Republicans. Just as the Omaha Republicans seized on licensing nearly every man that works with his hands in Omaha.
Republicans stand no more for freedom that Democrats. They are both becoming more and more like Nazi parties. They will have brownshirts at our doors soon enough. In Omaha they have criminalized work. In Fremont, they have denied property owners an important right. The right to rent out your property without governmental permission. The right to rent a property without government permission.
I’m pretty sure I’m one of the only guys around that thinks that seizing liberty from the people is contrary to both Americanism and Christianity.
Even if it does serve the interests of local anti-christian xenophobia.
Author: John Malone
Date: 11th February, 2014 @ 12:36:58 AM
Every time I look “over there,” at Israel, I see a nation out of whack. Israel just cannot find its place in this world, and it won’t until Messiah comes. Devout Jews agree with this.
When Messiah RETURNS – the Scriptures are clear that Messiah needed to suffer death – David will be running Jerusalem here on earth, but the economy of Jerusalem will be so massive that there will plenty of room for all of Abraham’s children, including a heavenly sphere where God’s heavenly people, those He is calling out today.
Just as Abraham looked for a city with permanence, so do I. And I sincerely hope so does everyone.
We Bible Christians do not lust after Jerusalem as do others because we know there is coming a heavenly city, the dimensions of which are closer to the size of the land promised to Abraham – from the Euphrates to the Nile – than to the tiny city on earth. This city, being pyramidical in its dimension – having as it does a 1,500 mile length, width, and height – will have plenty of room for God’s heavenly people. If it were not so, He would have told us.
There is a New Jerusalem, and it’s not the old Jerusalem. In fact, we anticipate, and we see, the Jerusalem of today slide into a moral abyss. It will get worse. Yet we continue to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. even as we continue to watch it decline until the day it is spiritually called “Sodom” and “Egypt.”
The earthly Jerusalem belongs to God’s people Israel, the title deed is in the Scriptures. This is why I cannot understand Jewish people who reject the authority of the Scriptures, and yet hold to Zionism.
This is patently incompatible, as the horrors of the holocaust do not logically devolve into a title deed. “Holocausts” are the natural result of envious nations. The nations are envious of Israel’s first-born national status, which, today, has been set aside, together with the nation itself, by God Himself.
I have met many, many Jews who set aside the Scriptures as not written by God, and yet insist on holding out for Jerusalem as belonging to the nation of Israel. I recall one time I was allowed to speak briefly – very briefly – at a synagogue in town, after listening to a speaker carry on for about 20 minutes how it was that Moses did not write the Torah.
I asked him why he was pulling the title deed away from Israel for the land, and the meeting ended on that controversy, the presiding Rabbi assuring me that not all Jews believe and teach such as what I heard.
I realize it is difficult for us Bible Christians to get an audience with sincere Jewish people about what the Scriptures say, but it helps when we agree that they ARE the Scriptures.
When we discover Jewish people looking forward to Messiah, our hearts are warmed knowing that they are not far from the kingdom of God, which, first and foremost, was and is prepared for God’s only first-born national son (Exodus 4:22).
It’s one of the great paradoxes in life that God is trying to get Christians to look forward to the return of the Messiah, knowing already Who He is, while at the same time He is trying to get the Jewish people to look backward to see Who He is.
There remains today, according to the Scriptures, a “remnant according to the election of grace” among the Jews, whose circumcision is of the heart . I sure hope to find them.
These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country.
And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned.
But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly:wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God:for he hath prepared for them a city.
Maybe some of you are with me when I wonder what is happening to our country’s middle class.
Let me give you my conclusion up-front. It’s being exported overseas.
America’s middle class is now our chief export, and the growth of that class abroad has been fueled by the so-called “quantitative easing” that has had our government funding foreign bank commitments with at the very least $6 Trillion of our debt.
Many have this number closer to $30 Trillion.
How did this happen? Well, it had to do with commoditizing the American lifestyle. First and foremost that means you own your home. It’s the cornerstone of the marketed American dream.
I won’t bore you with the details of how US Housing was monetized into quasi-government-secured securities that were largely held by sovereign national funds, but I will tell you that when that market exploded and was exposed for the near-ponzi scheme that it was, our government ponied up to those other governments, and secured their interest at our expense. Not only did our government guarantee those funds risk capital, but it guaranteed a 30-year interest rate that perhaps is double – potentially triple or quintuple – the average rate paid by our government.
And these actions were, to an extent, an effort to secure the retirements of EU government workers in countries that might have GDP’s of $100,000 per capita.
(You see, it’s an expensive proposition these days to stay in the middle class that has been enjoyed for nearly two generations in America and Europe. Very expensive indeed when you consider that the businesses that created such a class – and the expectations that go with it – are heavily either closed down, or in trouble. General Motors. AT&T (not the name, the company!). Most railroads. IBM. Digital Equipment Corporation. Amoco (Standard Oil). The automotive industry, the aircraft industry. Steel. Rubber.)
Those huge funds are being paid according to their holdings despite a worldwide decline in interest rates, giving these bond holdings at high interest enormous returns.
Yes, friends, all that debt has to go somewhere, and once you’re thoroughly convinced you aren’t seeing it spent on “shovel-ready” infrastructure projects, you’re ready to realize that it’s not going here, in our country.
Meanwhile, the story that’s NOT being told, is that while America’s middle-class promise is collapsing around my children, and my grandchildren, it is booming in the developing world, the only place in the world where you can readily consider a worthwhile project, and it adds up to a profit.
If you want to see where our middle class went, it’s overseas. What that does to the middle-class here at home is pins a new, disappointed dependent class upon them.
My advice to young fellows starting out today, is look overseas for the resources that went away, and bring them back. Figure it out how. It’s not that hard.
I’m glad I, like those who have gone before me, am looking for a heavenly country, and a heavenly city.
Author: John Malone
Date: 14th January, 2014 @ 10:45:14 AM
For better or worse, I am a trained economist That training was paid for, for the most part, by the taxpayers of Nebraska. Thank you very much.
Economics has been rightly called “the dismal science.” Indeed, while it is a dismal study, it’s not really science, intersecting as it does with world politics, where real science is accorded no respect, and often no attention. The one thing that the study of economics can achieve for the student is a certain analytical discipline of mind which holds stubbornly to principles and facts. This bent of mind, which thrives in skepticism, is free and eager to grapple with the affairs of nations and their systems, once armed with a few sturdy analytical tools.
The professors who influenced me a great deal in my youth, were engaged in the analysis of the behavior of nations, and taught me to so engage. Two men in particular come to mind in connection with my present topic, but I estimate there were a many as 10-12 men and one woman who had a salutary influence in the training of my mind, despite their foibles and warts. It was a thread of both study and conversation to discuss the pasts and futures of nations, with focus at least in part, on their political economies.
In the midst of these studies, personal and social crisis in my life colluded together against me, according to the beneficent and inexorable plan of God, Who personally directed the disorderly, hostile and overreaching events that were the true stuff of my life. God truly caused, in my own case, “all [sorts of] things [to] work together for good to them who love God, who are called according to His purpose.”
God actually met me mystically in my studies. I am not claiming the miraculous, but I will tell you that God can be intensely personal, and enter into your deepest problems right along with you. He did this for me in a most preposterous circumstance.
I received Jesus Christ as Savior in the spring of 1975.
I had been dilatory, to say the least, in my approach to my university baccalaureate degree. Upon receiving Jesus Christ, I made some determinations among which was that I would finish my degree in a year. Incredibly, I needed to complete or take 51 credit hours in that year. I set to it.
One particular piece of that work was a course in Political Science involving the development of nations. I went to the professor, who was one of my favorites, but who played no favorites. This was Dr. Orville Menard, a man with whom I had many conversations, and enjoyed at the local pub as often as in the classroom.
He was still a serious student himself, occupying the true place of scholar in his field. I met him in the afternoon. We looked on the calendar and saw that I had no more than a week to complete the course without receiving a failing grade, and, worse, that the professor was leaving for studies overseas in two days, and so the final test must be taken “tomorrow morning.”
I had not prepared for that class in nearly two years. I had taken an incomplete with a “D” on my mid-term test. I asked the professor what will the final cover, and he handed me the textbook, and said, “This.” I went home with that book, determined to read it all afternoon and evening, get a little sleep, and then take the test.
But that’s not what happened.
I had a difficult time settling down to read that book. Call it whatever you want, I have my own excuses. But when I settled in to read it, it was later in the evening, perhaps 10 pm. I determined that I might not sleep. I was alert. I told God I need Him to pull me through this. I did not cry, although I certainly have. I had no anxiety.
As I read that 300-page book, I did not underline. I took no notes. I read with an understanding and insight as I now only have with the Scriptures. I had thought to stay up all night, but completed the book and got perhaps two hours of sleep before reporting to the test. I brought two “blue books” as required. The professor handed me a single question for this final test: “Using the model presented in the text, comment on the future development of India and China.”
Eagerly, I set about that dissertation. The entire model of development, in detail, was actively residing in my mind. I wrote feverishly for perhaps 2-3 hours. Everything flowed well. I submitted my completed papers, and they would be graded that very afternoon. I went away and rested a few hours. I returned to Dr. Menard’s office midway through the afternoon. He was intense. It was good that he was smiling. He handed me my test, scored as it was at the very top. “A+.”
The professor wanted to talk to me now that he saw I had done, apparently, extremely well on his test. “I wanted to give you an ‘A’ in this course. Clearly you have mastered the material. But I could not conceive of any score to combine with your ‘D’ that could come out ‘A.’ So I gave you a B+ in the course.” Frankly, the work achieving the “A+” needed an explanation.
I explained to that very nice, but atheistic professor, that God had helped me, and I actually enjoyed taking the test. I am certain it made an impression on him. I certainly hope it did. This was the last time that I met with this very nice man, to whom I am in certain debt beyond that paid to him by Nebraska taxpayers.
Today Orville Menard died at age 80. He wanted no fanfare, especially not a memorial service.
I want to use this opportunity to give glory to God first, who enabled me in that remarkable test preparation, and speak some good words about a kind man, Dr. Orville Menard who truly cared for me in my youth, and who was a good example of some of the best in manhood, including a 60-year marriage to the same woman.
Dr. Orville Menard led no vain life. I wish I knew I would meet him cheerfully in the coming age.
The word “hypocrite” is being thrown about way too often.
It’s a good Bible word. It is a pure word.
That means it is, in its Greek form, one of those “words of the earth,” that God has selected, and refined like silver seven times in a furnace, sanctifying (setting it apart) for His use in the Holy Scriptures.
The Lord used the word when He walked here. He reserved it for particular sorts of persons: the Pharisees, Scribes, and the like. These were persons with an agenda. Insincere. Conniving. Jealous. Hateful. Ceaselessly plotting against the Lord Himself. As they do against His servants. As the Lord said: Woe to them.
The word itself is the compound Greek word hypokrites meaning under judgment, or under discernment. This gives us important keys to he meaning of the word. It can be rendered “play actor” because in the ancient theatre, play actors held masks over their faces to portray their inward characteristics. The sophisticated cinema of today masks those masks, and requires the player to project those cunning characteristics of the hypocrite in various ways.
The wearing of a mask, or play-acting is the important characteristic of the hypocrite. In any society you can see such people, but it is rare indeed that someone would point them out publicly. They put on a show, oftentimes to make you think they are friendly, but equally often to disguise not only who they are, but their bad intentions. Like the Sadducees, they may give themselves off as knowledgeable Bible guys, when, as the Lord said, they are ignorant. In any case, as false prophets , they show themselves as pious, when inwardly they are ravening wolves.
So, a hypocrite is no ordinary sinner. The hypocrite is an intentional, inward, purveyor of ill-will and hatred, driven as he is by envy, greed, and other corrupt motives. He’s not failing when he sins, he’s succeeding.
No, an ordinary sinner, such as all of us, yields to his weakness. He is overcome by the fatal flaws of every man. He cannot do what he should do, and he cannot fail to do what he shouldn’t.
A sinner is no hypocrite when he fails to do what he thinks he should. He is no hypocrite when he does what he should not. He is a normal sinner.
Today, you will discover people calling normal sinners, “hypocrites.” They would disqualify the righteous man, who speaks God’s word, and portrays him accurately, because that righteous man sins just as they do.
The Lord never judges men in this way, and will not. He desires his children to reason with Him about sin and see it the way he does.
He socialized with sinners, sat and ate with them, made himself available to them. He still does. You will not find the Lord Jesus among the hypocrites. They hated Him. They stirred up other sinners to have Him killed. They succeeded at His death.
But a normal sinner is not a hypocrite when he says what is right and what is wrong, even when he doesn’t or does do the right or wrong.
Instead, he’s just a sinner, warts and all, and no hypocrite.