The Lords Prayer: Matthew 6: 9-13 (Food For The Heart And The Soul)

The Lords Prayer: Matthew 6: 9-13 (Food For The Heart And The Soul)

When the Lords Apostles asked him to teach them how to pray this is the answer the Lord Jesus gave to them.

 

“Our Father which art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name (Holy is Your Name). Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done in Earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.”

Everyone Should Be Thankful The Jewish People Killed Jesus 2,000 Years Ago

 

For those of you who have little or no knowledge of the Scriptures I can understand if you are screaming at me right now, and that is okay, if I had no knowledge of the Scriptures I would be doing the same thing. I used this title to try to get people’s attention. If you know the story about Moses and the Egyptian Pharaoh do you remember how there was several times that the Pharaoh had agreed to let the Hebrew people leave Egypt one day but the next day changed his mind? Each time this happened we are told it was because God hardened Pharaoh’s heart. Even the last time where Pharaoh actually ordered them to get out of Egypt, after the people had left God hardened his heart one last time and Pharaoh took off after them to bring them back, only to drown the Egyptians in the Red Sea.

 

I brought that issue up to help remind you that God did the same thing about 1,500-1,600 years later except this time He hardened the hearts of the Jewish people of Jerusalem so that they would go through with having  their own Messiah killed at the hands of the hated Romans. You see, the Jewish people of that time were waiting for the Messiah to come there and to set up an Earthly Kingdom where He would rule the whole world from Jerusalem and in the process, get rid of the hated Romans. Actually, this is what the Jewish people of today are also waiting on, for the Messiah, the Christ, to come to Earth and do exactly that, except for the Romans part. The Jewish people were/are God’s chosen people and when the Messiah does come (back) He will do exactly that. When the Jewish people 2,000 years ago realized that Jesus was not there to set up the Messiah’s Kingdom at that time, God hardened their hearts so that the Scriptures could be fulfilled completely.

 

Folks, if Jesus had set up His Throne at that time, if He had not been killed and if He had not been raised from the dead three days later, there would be no such thing as Christianity and no one and I do mean no one but the Jewish people would have been able to be saved. Jesus the Christ, the Messiah, went through with all of that pain so that everyone could have the chance to be saved. The Jewish people are correct, the Messiah is coming and the people who are of pure Hebrew blood are still peculiar people to God. And yes, Christ is going to set up His Kingdom from the Holy City of the New Jerusalem which will come down out of Heaven and yes the Messiah will set up His Throne upon the Temple Mount. After the New Jerusalem has come down from Heaven those of us who are not of %100 Hebrew blood (Gentiles) will be allowed to walk the streets of the Holy City for 42 months. After that time Christ will come down from Heaven and sit upon His Throne and rule the whole world from the Holy City for ever more. But, after that forty-two months us Gentiles will no longer be allowed within the Holy City. I know that some folks are angry at the thought that I/you/we are only relegated to the reality of a true Heaven on Earth type life style but think about it for a moment before you complain too loudly. If the Jewish people of 2,000 years ago had not killed Jesus we would all be one of those folks in Hell hoping for a bit of ice water. So, quit complaining, and just be thankful.

31 Yr Old Saudi Prince Shaking Up The Kingdom As He Climbs The Latter Of Success

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF THE NEW YORK TIMES)

Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince, has a hand in nearly all elements of Saudi policy. CreditFayez Nureldine/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

He has slashed the state budget, frozen government contracts and reduced the pay of civil employees, all part of drastic austerity measures as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is buffeted by low oil prices.

But last year, Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince, saw a yacht he couldn’t resist.

While vacationing in the south of France, Prince bin Salman spotted a 440-foot yacht floating off the coast. He dispatched an aide to buy the ship, the Serene, which was owned by Yuri Shefler, a Russian vodka tycoon. The deal was done within hours, at a price of approximately 500 million euros (roughly $550 million today), according to an associate of Mr. Shefler and a Saudi close to the royal family. The Russian moved off the yacht the same day.

It is the paradox of the brash, 31-year-old Prince bin Salman: a man who is trying to overturn tradition, reinvent the economy and consolidate power — while holding tight to his royal privilege. In less than two years, he has emerged as the most dynamic royal in the Arab world’s wealthiest nation, setting up a potential rivalry for the throne.

He has a hand in nearly all elements of Saudi policy — from a war in Yemen that has cost the kingdom billions of dollars and led to international criticism over civilian deaths, to a push domestically to restrain Saudi Arabia’s free-spending habits and to break its “addiction” to oil. He has begun to loosen social restrictions that grate on young people.

The rise of Prince bin Salman has shattered decades of tradition in the royal family, where respect for seniority and power-sharing among branches are time-honored traditions. Never before in Saudi history has so much power been wielded by the deputy crown prince, who is second in line to the throne. That centralization of authority has angered many of his relatives.

His seemingly boundless ambitions have led many Saudis and foreign officials to suspect that his ultimate goal is not just to transform the kingdom, but also to shove aside the current crown prince, his 57-year-old cousin, Mohammed bin Nayef, to become the next king. Such a move could further upset his relatives and — if successful — give the country what it has never seen: a young king who could rule the kingdom for many decades.

Crown Prince bin Nayef, the interior minister and longtime counterterrorism czar, has deep ties to Washington and the support of many of the older royals. Deciphering the dynamics of the family can be like trying to navigate a hall of mirrors, but many Saudi and American officials say Prince bin Salman has made moves aimed at reaching into Prince bin Nayef’s portfolios and weakening him.

This has left officials in Washington hedging their bets by building relationships with both men, unsure who will end up on top. The White House got an early sign of the ascent of the young prince in late 2015, when — breaking protocol — Prince bin Salman delivered a soliloquy about the failures of American foreign policy during a meeting between his father, King Salman, and President Obama.

Many young Saudis admire him as an energetic representative of their generation who has addressed some of the country’s problems with uncommon bluntness. The kingdom’s news media have built his image as a hardworking, businesslike leader less concerned than his predecessors with the trappings of royalty.

Others see him as a power-hungry upstart who is risking instability by changing too much, too fast.

Months of interviews with Saudi and American officials, members of the royal family and their associates, and diplomats focused on Saudi affairs reveal a portrait of a prince in a hurry to prove that he can transform Saudi Arabia. Prince bin Salman declined multiple interview requests for this article.

But the question many raise — and cannot yet answer — is whether the energetic leader will succeed in charting a new path for the kingdom, or whether his impulsiveness and inexperience will destabilize the Arab world’s largest economy at a time of turbulence in the Middle East.

Prince Mohammed bin Salman, left, and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef of Saudi Arabia. Many Saudis and foreign officials believe Prince bin Salman’s goal is to become the next king.Credit Faye Nureldine/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Tension at the Top

Early this year, Crown Prince bin Nayef left the kingdom for his family’s villa in Algeria, a sprawling compound an hour’s drive north of Algiers. Although he has long taken annual hunting vacations there, many who know him said that this year was different. He stayed away for weeks, largely incommunicado and often refusing to respond to messages from Saudi officials and close associates in Washington. Even John O. Brennan, the C.I.A. director, whom he has known for decades, had difficulty reaching him.

The crown prince has diabetes, and suffers from the lingering effects of an assassination attempt in 2009 by a jihadist who detonated a bomb he had hidden in his rectum.

But his lengthy absence at a time of low oil prices, turmoil in the Middle East and a foundering Saudi-led war in Yemen led several American officials to conclude that the crown prince was fleeing frictions with his younger cousin and that the prince was worried his chance to ascend the throne was in jeopardy.

Since King Salman ascended to the throne in January 2015, new powers had been flowing to his son, some of them undermining the authority of the crown prince. King Salman collapsed the crown prince’s court into his own, giving Prince bin Salman control over access to the king. Prince bin Salman also hastily announced the formation of a military alliance of Islamic countries to fight terrorism. Counterterrorism had long been the domain of Prince bin Nayef, but the new plan gave no role to him or his powerful Interior Ministry.

The exact personal relationship between the two men is unclear, fueling discussion in Saudi Arabia and in foreign capitals about who is ascendant. Obscuring the picture are the stark differences in the men’s public profiles. Prince bin Nayef has largely stayed in the shadows, although he did visit New York last month to address the United Nations General Assembly before heading to Turkey for a state visit.

His younger cousin, meanwhile, has worked to remain in the spotlight, touring world capitals, speaking with foreign journalists, being photographed with the Facebook chairman Mark Zuckerberg and presenting himself as a face of a new Saudi Arabia.

“There is no topic that is more important than succession matters, especially now,” said Joseph A. Kechichian, a senior fellow at the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies in Riyadh, who has extensive contacts in the Saudi royal family. “This matters for monarchy, for the regional allies and for the kingdom’s international partners.”

Among the most concrete initiatives so far of Prince bin Salman, who serves as minister of defense, is the Saudi-led war in Yemen, which since it was begun last year has failed to dislodge the Shiite Houthi rebels and their allies from the Yemeni capital. The war has driven much of Yemen toward famine and killed thousands of civilians while costing the Saudi government tens of billions of dollars.

Saudi troops along the country’s border with Yemen. The war in Yemen has cost the kingdom billions and led to international criticism. Credit Carolyn Cole/Los Angeles Times, via Getty Images

The prosecution of the war by a prince with no military experience has exacerbated tensions between him and his older cousins, according to American officials and members of the royal family. Three of Saudi Arabia’s main security services are run by princes. Although all agreed that the kingdom had to respond when the Houthis seized the Yemeni capital and forced the government into exile, Prince bin Salman took the lead, launching the war in March 2015 without full coordination across the security services.

The head of the National Guard, Prince Mutaib bin Abdullah, had not been informed and was out of the country when the first strikes were carried out, according to a senior National Guard officer.

The National Guard is now holding much of the Yemeni border.

American officials, too, were put off when, just as the Yemen campaign was escalating, Prince bin Salman took a vacation in the Maldives, the island archipelago off the coast of India. Several American officials said Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter had trouble reaching him for days during one part of the trip.

The prolonged war has also heightened tensions between Prince bin Salman and Prince bin Nayef, who won the respect of Saudis and American officials for dismantling Al Qaeda in the kingdom nearly a decade ago and now sees it taking advantage of chaos in Yemen, according to several American officials and analysts.

“If Mohammed bin Nayef wanted to be seen as a big supporter of this war, he’s had a year and a half to do it,” said Bruce Riedel, a former Middle East analyst at the C.I.A. and a fellow at the Brookings Institution.

Near the start of the war, Prince bin Salman was a forceful public advocate for the campaign and was often photographed visiting troops and meeting with military leaders. But as the campaign has stalemated, such appearances have grown rare.

The war underlines the plans of Prince bin Salman for a brawny foreign policy for the kingdom, one less reliant on Western powers like the United States for its security. He has criticized the thawing of America’s relations with Iran and comments by Mr. Obama during an interview this year that Saudi Arabia must “share the neighborhood” with Iran.

This is part of what analysts say is Prince bin Salman’s attempt to foster a sense of Saudi national identity that has not existed since the kingdom’s founding in 1932.

“There has been a surge of Saudi nationalism since the campaign in Yemen began, with the sense that Saudi Arabia is taking independent collective action,” said Andrew Bowen, a Saudi expert at the Wilson Center in Washington.

Still, Mr. Bowen said support among younger Saudis could diminish the longer the conflict dragged on. Diplomats say the death toll for Saudi troops is higher than the government has publicly acknowledged, and a recent deadly airstrike on a funeral in the Yemeni capital has renewed calls by human rights groups and some American lawmakers to block or delay weapons sales to the kingdom.

People who have met Prince bin Salman said he insisted that Saudi Arabia must be more assertive in shaping events in the Middle East and confronting Iran’s influence in the region — whether in Yemen, Syria, Iraq or Lebanon.

Brian Katulis, a Middle East expert at the Center for American Progress in Washington, who met the prince this year in Riyadh, said his agenda was clear.

“His main message is that Saudi Arabia is a force to be reckoned with,” Mr. Katulis said.

Prince bin Salman at a news conference in April for Vision 2030, his plan to transform Saudi life by diversifying its economy away from oil, increasing Saudi employment and improving education, health and other government services. Credit Fayex Nureldine/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

A Swift Ascent

Saudi Arabia is one of the world’s few remaining absolute monarchies, which means that Prince bin Salman was given all of his powers by a vote of one: his own father.

The prince’s rise began in early 2015, after King Abdullah died of lung cancer and King Salman ascended to the throne. In a series of royal decrees, the new king restructured the government and shook up the order of succession in the royal family in ways that invested tremendous power in his son.

He was named defense minister and head of a powerful new council to oversee the Saudi economy as well as put in charge of the governing body ofSaudi Aramco, the state oil company and the primary engine of the Saudi economy.

More important, the king decreed a new order of succession, overturning the wishes of King Abdullah and replacing his designated crown prince, Muqrin bin Abdulaziz, with Prince bin Nayef.

While all previous Saudi kings and crown princes had been sons of the kingdom’s founder, Prince bin Nayef was the first of the founder’s grandsons to be put in line. Many hailed the move because of the prince’s success at fighting Al Qaeda and because he has only daughters, leading many to hope he would choose a successor based on merit rather than paternity.

The bigger surprise was that the king named Prince bin Salman deputy crown prince. He was 29 years old at the time and virtually unknown to the kingdom’s closest allies.

This effectively scrapped the political aspirations of his older relatives, many of whom had decades of experience in public life and in key sectors like defense and oil policy. Some are still angry — although only in private, out of deference to the 80-year-old king.

Since then, Prince bin Salman has moved quickly to build his public profile and market himself to other nations as the point man for the kingdom.

Domestically, his focus has been on an ambitious plan for the future of the kingdom, called Vision 2030. The plan, released in April, seeks to transform Saudi life by diversifying its economy away from oil, increasing Saudi employment and improving education, health and other government services. A National Transformation Plan, laying out targets for improving government ministries, came shortly after.

Secrets of the Kingdom
  • How One of the Deadliest Hajj Accidents Unfolded SEPT. 7, 2016

  • Saudi Arabia, Where Even Milk Depends on Oil, Struggles to Remake Its Economy OCT. 14, 2016

  • Saudis and Extremism: ‘Both the Arsonists and the Firefighters’ AUG. 26, 2016

  • A Saudi Morals Enforcer Called for a More Liberal Islam. Then the Death Threats Began. JUL. 11, 2016

  • A Saudi Imam, 2 Hijackers and Lingering 9/11 Mystery JUNE 18, 2016

  • How Kosovo Was Turned Into Fertile Ground for ISIS MAY 22, 2016

  • ISIS Turns Saudis Against the Kingdom, and Families Against Their Own APRIL 1, 2016

  • Quiet Support for Saudis Entangles U.S. in Yemen MARCH 14, 2016

  • U.S. Relies Heavily on Saudi Money to Support Syrian Rebels JAN. 24, 2016

Read in one way, the documents are an ambitious blueprint to change the Saudi way of life. Read in another, they are a scathing indictment of how poorly the kingdom has been run by Prince bin Salman’s elders.

Official government development plans going back decades have called for reducing the dependence on oil and increasing Saudi employment — to little effect. And in calling for transparency and accountability, the plan acknowledges that both have been in short supply. Diplomats and economists say much about the Saudi economy remains opaque, including the cost of generous perks and stipends for members of the royal family.

The need for change is greater now, with global oil prices less than half of what they were in 2014 and hundreds of thousands of young Saudis entering the job market yearly. Prince bin Salman has called for a new era of fiscal responsibility, and over the last year, fuel, water and electricity prices have gone up while the take-home pay of some public sector employees has been cut — squeezing the budgets of average Saudis. He has also said the government will sell shares of Saudi Aramco, believed to be the world’s most valuable company.

Many Saudis say his age and ambition are benefits at a time when old ways of thinking must be changed.

“He is speaking in the language of the youth,” said Hoda al-Helaissi, a member of the kingdom’s advisory Shura Council, which is appointed by the king. “The country for too long has been looking through the lenses of the older generation, and we need to look at who is going to carry the torch to the next generation.”

Some of his initiatives have appeared ham-handed. In December, he held his first news conference to announce the formation of a military alliance of Islamic countries to fight terrorism. But a number of countries that he said were involved soon responded that they knew nothing about it or were still waiting for information before deciding whether to join.

Others have been popular. After Prince bin Salman called for more entertainment options for families and young people, who often flee the country on their vacations, the cabinet passed regulations restricting the powers of the religious police. An Entertainment Authority he established has planned its first activities, which include comedy shows, pro wrestling events and monster truck rallies.

Photo

The Serene, a 440-foot yacht Prince Mohammed bin Salman spotted while vacationing last year. He dispatched an aide to buy it; the deal was done within hours, at a price of about 500 million euros (roughly $550 million today). CreditPhil Walter/Getty Images

The prince has kept his distance from the Council of Senior Scholars, the mostly elderly clerics who set official religious policy and often release religious opinions that young Saudis mock as being out of touch with modern life.

Instead, he has sought the favor of younger clerics who boast millions of followers on social media. After the release of Vision 2030, Prince bin Salman held a reception for Saudi journalists and academics that included a number of younger, tech-savvy clerics who have gone forth to praise the plan.

Prince bin Salman’s prominence today was difficult to predict during his early years, spent largely below the radar of Western officials who keep track of young Saudi royals who might one day rule the kingdom.

Several of King Salman’s other sons, who studied overseas to perfect foreign languages and earn advanced degrees, built impressive résumés. One became the first Arab astronaut, another a deputy oil minister, yet another the governor of Medina Province.

Prince bin Salman stayed in Saudi Arabia and does not speak fluent English, although he appears to understand it. After a private school education, he studied law at King Saud University in Riyadh, reportedly graduating fourth in his class. Another prince of the same generation said he had gotten to know him during high school, when one of their uncles hosted regular dinners for the younger princes at his palace. He recalled Prince bin Salman being one of the crowd, saying he liked to play bridge and admired Margaret Thatcher.

King Salman is said to see himself in his favorite son, the latest in the lineage of a family that has ruled most of the Arabian Peninsula for eight decades.

In 2007, when the United States ambassador dropped in on King Salman, then a prince and the governor of Riyadh Province, to say farewell at the end of his posting, the governor asked for help circumventing America’s stringent visa procedures. His wife could not get a visa to see her doctor, and although his other children were willing to submit to the visa hurdles, “his son, Prince Mohammed, refused to go to the U.S. Embassy to be fingerprinted ‘like some criminal,’” according to a State Department cable at the time.

Prince bin Salman graduated from the university that year and continued to work for his father, who was named defense minister in 2011, while dabbling in real estate and business.

Many members of the royal family remain wary of the young prince’s projects and ultimate ambitions. Some mock him as the “Prince of the Vision” and complain about his army of well-paid foreign consultants and image-makers.

Other are annoyed by the media cell he created inside the royal court to promote his initiatives, both foreign and domestic. Called the Center for Studies and Media Affairs, the group has focused on promoting a positive story about the Yemen war in Washington and has hired numerous Washington lobbying and public affairs firms to assist in the effort.

Inside the kingdom, the government has largely succeeded in keeping criticism — and even open discussion — of the prince and his projects out of the public sphere. His family holds sway over the parent company of many Saudi newspapers, which have breathlessly covered his initiatives, and prominent Saudi editors and journalists who have accompanied him on foreign trips have been given up to $100,000 in cash, according to two people who have traveled with the prince’s delegation.

Meanwhile, Saudi journalists deemed too critical have been quietly silenced through phone calls informing them that they are barred from publishing, and sometimes from traveling abroad.

In June, a Saudi journalist, Sultan al-Saad al-Qahtani, published an article in Arabic on his website, The Riyadh Post, in which he addressed the lack of discussion about Prince bin Salman’s rise.

“You can buy tens of newspapers and hundreds of journalists, but you can’t buy the history that will be written about you,” he wrote.

He said that the prince’s popularity among Saudis was based on a “sweeping desire for great change” and that they loved him based on the hope that he would “turn their dreams into reality.”

In that lay the risk, Mr. Qahtani wrote: “If you fail, this love withers quickly, as if it never existed, and is replaced by a deep feeling of frustration and hatred.”

The site was blocked the next day, Mr. Qahtani said, for the third time in 13 months. (It is now back up, at a new address.)

President Obama welcoming Prince Mohammed bin Nayef, center, and Prince bin Salman to the White House in May 2015. Officials in Washington have been hedging their bets by building relationships with both men, unsure who will end up on top. CreditChip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The Future

As sweeping and long-term as Prince bin Salman’s initiatives are, they may hang by the tenuous thread of his link to his father, who has memory lapses, according to foreign officials who have met with him. Even the prince’s supporters acknowledge that they are not sure he will retain his current roles after his father dies.

In the meantime, he is racing against time to establish his reputation and cement his place in the kingdom’s power structure.

His fast ascent, and his well-publicized foreign trips to Washington, Europe, the Middle East and elsewhere in Asia, have led senior Obama administration officials to consider the prospect that he could step over Prince bin Nayef and become Saudi Arabia’s next king.

This has led to a balancing act for American officials who want to build a relationship with him while not being used as leverage in any rivalry with Prince bin Nayef. Obama administration officials say relations with Prince bin Salman have generally improved, but only after a rocky start when he would routinely lecture senior Americans — even the president.

In November, during a Group of 20 summit meeting at a luxury resort on the Turkish coast, Prince bin Salman gave what American officials described as a lengthy speech about what he saw as the failure of American foreign policy in the Middle East — from the Obama administration’s restraint in Syria to its efforts to improve relations with Iran, Saudi Arabia’s bitter enemy.

Personal relationships have long been the bedrock of American-Saudi relations, yet the Obama administration has struggled to find someone to develop a rapport with the prince. The job has largely fallen to Secretary of State John Kerry, who has hosted the prince several times at his home in Georgetown. In June, the two men shared an iftar dinner, breaking the Ramadan fast. In September 2015, dinner at Mr. Kerry’s house ended with Prince bin Salman playing Beethoven on the piano for the secretary of state and the other guests.

In May, the prince invited Mr. Kerry for a meeting on the Serene, the luxury yacht he bought from the Russian billionaire.

His desire to reimagine the Saudi state is reflected in his admiration — some even call it envy — for the kingdom’s more modern and progressive neighbor in the Persian Gulf, the United Arab Emirates.

He has influential supporters in this effort, particularly the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who for more than a year has been promoting Prince bin Salman in the Middle East and in Washington.

Crown Prince bin Zayed, the United Arab Emirates’ de facto ruler, is a favorite among Obama administration officials, who view him as a reliable ally and a respected voice in the Sunni world. But he also has a history of personal antipathy toward Prince bin Nayef, adding a particular urgency to his support for the chief rival of the Saudi crown prince.

In April of last year, Mr. Obama’s national security adviser, Susan E. Rice, led a small delegation of top White House officials to visit Prince bin Zayed at his home in McLean, Va. During the meeting, according to several officials who attended, the prince urged the Americans to develop a relationship with Prince bin Salman.

But all questions about Prince bin Salman’s future are likely to depend on how long his father lives, according to diplomats who track Saudi Arabia.

If he died soon, Prince bin Nayef would become king and could dismiss his younger cousin as a gesture to his fellow royals. In fact, it was King Salman who set the precedent for such moves by dismissing the crown prince named by his predecessor.

“If the king’s health starts to deteriorate, Mohammed bin Salman is very likely to try to get Mohammed bin Nayef out of the picture,” said Mr. Riedel, the former C.I.A. analyst.

But the longer King Salman reigns, foreign officials said, the longer the young prince has to consolidate his power — or to convince Prince bin Nayef that he is worth keeping around if Prince bin Nayef becomes king.

Most Saudi watchers do not expect any struggles within the family to spill into the open, as all the royals understand how much they have to lose from such fissures becoming public or destabilizing their grip on the kingdom.

“I am persuaded as someone who focuses on this topic that the ruling family of Saudi Arabia above all else puts the interest of the family first and foremost,” said Mr. Kechichian, the analyst who knows many royals.

“Not a single member of the family will do anything to hurt the family.”

The Great Prophetic Story Book That Is The Old Testament Book Of Daniel

 

Daniel, a Prophet of God whose name means ‘God is my judge’. This Old Testament book is really quite an enjoyable read. The book is only 12 chapters long and contains several well know stories as ‘Daniel in the lion’s den’ and his three friends who were thrown into the furnace of fire that was so hot that some of the men who took them to the furnace died because of the heat. Three friends who would not bow to a fake God were to be burnt alive because of it. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, three men thrown into the fire because of their beliefs. Three men thrown in yet the King witnessed four men walking around within the fire. The King calls them out, three men come out of the fire with out a burn or even singed clothing. I believe that evening the slaves and the soldiers who witnessed this event had a story to tell to their wives and children, not exactly the normal day at the fire pit/office.

If you would this would be a wonderful book to read to your children during a family hour at home or during a set time you and your family set aside for the Lord each evening. I believe that the story of Daniel in the lion’s den is one of the first if not the first Bible story I remember hearing as a small child. It has been my experience that the stories within this book have always been well received by most everyone young or old who were hearing it for the first time. If you do not know these stories personally, please take the time to explore them with your family, I honestly believe that almost all of you will enjoy it. I am on purpose leaving the lions den story vague hoping that you will take the time to explore it for yourself.

 

Daniels life and his ministry covered a time that the people of Israel were in bondage in the nation of Babylon where they were taken and lived for seventy years. Daniel was deported with the other Israelite’s who had not been killed during the battle, he was 16 years old at the time. Daniel was hand-picked along with his three fore mentioned friends for government service. They were educated in Babylon’s best schools for three years and given new names, Daniel was given the name Belteshazzar  after a Babylonian God and the name meant ‘Bel protect his life.’

 

Daniel was blessed by the Spirit of God with great wisdom and interpretive skills which through time brought him into a position of prominence with the King, especially with Kings Nebuchadnezzar and King Darius. Daniel was mentioned three times by the sixth century BC Prophet Ezekiel as a man  who was ‘greatly loved’ and as a man who was an ‘example of righteousness.’ Jesus Himself also attributed a quote to Daniel the Prophet in Matthew 24:15.

 

The Book of Daniel is also widely known as a book of Prophesies and in the eleventh chapter alone there are over 100 prophecies of historical events that have come true.  The Book of Daniel just like the Book of Isaiah give the world a very detailed and quite through view of world events through the end of this world as we all know it. In his book Daniel wrote the first chapter in his native tongue of Hebrew. Chapters two through seven were written in the Aramaic language in which he chartered the future course of the future Gentile world powers.  The last five chapters (8-12) Daniel reverted back to Hebrew to show the Jewish nation of Israel under Gentile domination. The events written show the sovereign control that God has over the affairs of world history. These writings would be a lot of comfort to both the current captives of Babylon as well as many years later to the Church that Jesus would set up here upon the Earth. The truth is laid out that there will be kingdoms like the Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, English and Germans but that they will all come to ruin. Yet the fact remains that God will establish His Kingdom where Israel and God’s redeemed will stand forever. Please consider Chapter 2 verse 44, “And in he days of these Kings shall the God of Heaven set up a Kingdom which shall never be destroyed: And the Kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these Kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.”

 

The Book of Daniel  is a beautifully written piece of art that you and your whole family can enjoy together. Daniel is one of only a very few Biblical people where nothing negative is written about them anywhere in the Scriptures. Daniel was truly one of God’s most loved and trusted servants. Daniel set himself aside from the world around him that was full of sin and violence. He chose to be a man of God through his actions of love faith and obedience to the teachings of his Creator. Daniel chose to be a pillar of faith and Godly works even though he lived in a world where he and his people were captives and slaves. Friends, O how I wish that these traits could be said about the human race today. I wish these were traits of all of our families, the Churches we attend, about our own selves! I hope you have enjoyed this little piece about one of God’s most faithful servants. I pray that the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob (Israel) will ride with you in all of your journeys. Friends, until we meet again, Shalom.

 

Jordan: Whole Family Clans Forced To Move Because One Member Commits A Crime

(This article is courtesy of the Jordan Times of Amman)

Forced relocations raise doubts over Jordan’s tribal customs

Forced relocation’s raise doubts over Jordan’s tribal customs

By AP – Aug 24,2016 – Last updated at Aug 24,2016

 

In this August 5 photo, Asma Dawaghreh poses for a photo at her apartment in Irbid, Jordan. Her family is one of dozens uprooted every year in the Kingdom under the tribal practice of jalwa‌ — Arabic for forced relocation‌ — in which an entire clan can be forced to relocate because of a crime committed by a family member (AP photo by Layla K. Quran)

IRBID  — It was four in the morning when Asma Dawaghreh fled her home with her sick husband and six children. With nothing but the loose change in her pockets, she packed her family into a car and left under the cover of darkness.

Her family is one of dozens uprooted every year in the Kingdom under the tribal practice of “jalwa”— Arabic for “eviction”— in which an entire clan can be forced to relocate because of a crime committed by a family member.

In Dawaghreh’s case, a nephew on her husband’s side of the family stabbed his cousin to death, forcing three-dozen relatives to flee their village in northern Jordan.

The Dawaghrehs fled pre-emptive, fearing revenge killings, and then found that they were barred from returning. In exile, they were pressured into selling their supermarket, the family’s source of income.

Three years on, they have moved home six times and are increasingly impoverished.

“I can’t even afford to buy bread now. What is my crime? What is my son’s crime … my husband’s crime?” said the 40-year-old, speaking in the family’s latest refuge, a run-down apartment in the northern city of Irbid. “We had no business in this.”

Jalwa predates the 1946 founding of modern Jordan. It is rooted in tribal tradition, under which the practice was applied in cases of murder or rape when the assailant and the victim lived in the same area.

Although jalwa is not written into Jordanian civil law, the practice continues unchallenged — and sometimes with the support of civil institutions — because of the country’s strong tribal influence. Over the years, tribal leaders and local authorities have arranged the forced relocation of hundreds of people across the country. In some cases, relatives of the attacker as distant as a fifth cousin have had to move.

Supporters say forced relocation prevents blood feuds between tribes, while critics denounce it as collective punishment.

The government is now trying to scale back the practice, proposing to limit forced relocation to the perpetrator and his immediate family. The initial period of banishment would be one year, with the possibility of extension.

The proposed amendment was adopted by the Cabinet earlier this year. It now awaits approval by Parliament and a signature by the King. If the amendment is passed, it will be the first time jalwa is enshrined in civil law.

An Interior Ministry official in charge of tribal affairs said the government is trying to adapt tribal law to modern times.

Jordanians have homes and jobs, and can’t just pack up tents and move to a different area, as during their nomadic past, said the official, Turki Akho Ersheidah. “We have to implement these amendments to adapt to the 21st century.”

Jalwa is still being practiced, to varying degrees, across the Middle East, with forced relocation more common in rural areas than in cities. Although some governments have tried to curb the practice — either through outright bans or by negotiating with tribes — the tradition remains powerful. This is particularly true in countries like Yemen, where the state has deteriorated.

Jordan is unusual because of the strong tribal influence on the government.

In one high-profile murder case, hundreds of people were forced to leave the southern Jordanian town of Karak earlier this year in a jalwa deal negotiated by Deputy Prime Minister Mohammed Thneibat. As part of the agreement, the victim’s clan reserved the right to kill any members of the assailant’s family if they returned to the community, local media said at the time.

Constitutional law expert Omar Jazi said jalwa amounts to collective punishment and violates the constitution.

“You cannot deprive anyone of his or her constitutional right, that can’t be tolerated,” he said. “Jalwa does not make sense within a civic society, within the rule of law and within the type of society we are living in.”

Some tribal leaders argue that reforms would be difficult to carry out and that Jordanians prefer the swift justice of tribal law.

“Civil law is weak, it could take up to six years or more for a court case to proceed,” said Sheikh Hayel Al Hadeed, a tribal leader from the capital, Amman.

The plight of the Dawaghreh family illustrates the practical difficulties of enforcing jalwa in modern times.

Before the eviction, the family lived with other clan members in an apartment complex in a village south of Irbid. Dawaghreh asked that the name of the community be withheld, to avoid causing harm to relatives through renewed public attention.

They fled their home in 2013, almost immediately after receiving a call from a relative informing them of the killing.

A year later, some members of the assailant’s clan reached a financial settlement with the victim’s family, including payment of 50,000 dinars ($70,000) in blood money.

In theory, the deal enabled them to return — but Dawaghreh said she had been pressured to sell their supermarket to the victim’s family.

As a result, the family bounced from apartment to apartment, struggling to pay rent.

Paint peels from the cracked walls of her current home in Irbid. Dawaghreh cooks or babysits to make money. Her husband, who has cancer, works as a security guard.

Dawaghreh wants jalwa abolished, but is not hopeful. “No one can interfere in the jalwa of the tribes, not the government, not the members of parliament … not the ministries, nobody.”

The Lords Prayer: Matthew 6: 9-13 (Food For The Heart And The Soul)!

The Lords Prayer: Matthew 6: 9-13 (Food For The Heart And The Soul)

When the Lords Apostles asked him to teach them how to pray this is the answer the Lord Jesus gave to them.

 

“Our Father which art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name (Holy is Your Name). Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done in Earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For Thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.”