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Showing posts from December, 2020

CAN WE PRAY TO THE SAINTS?

  CAN WE PRAY TO THE SAINTS? Since the third century, invocation of defunct Christians considered to be ‘saints’ and in God’s presence, has been practiced in Christendom, and eventually been accepted as established doctrine by all traditional branches of Christianity around the world. Even though the Bible expressly forbids to contact the dead, under any circumstance or form (Deuteronomy 18:9-14), and only God has the power to listen to prayers passing the barrier of death and from multiple people at the same time, this practiced filtered into Christianity from the Hellenic mind of the gentile converts, as well as other practices like the veneration of images and the cult of angels (Colossians 2:18-19; Ephesians 4:17). COMMUNION OF SAINTS The biblical doctrine of Communion of Saints (John 17:21; 1Thessalonians 5:11; James 5:16) is invoked to justify this erroneous practiced, arguing that since the Christians dead are in God’s presence, they can pray for us, and that because the

THE PRESENTATION IN THE TEMPLE - LUKE 2:21-40

  THE PRESENTATION IN THE TEMPLE 22And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23(as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) 24and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” 25Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 27And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law, 28he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said, 29“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word 30for my

THE NATIVITY

  THE NATIVITY 1In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn. 8And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. 10And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good

WHO WERE THE MAGGI THAT CAME TO JESUS

  WHO WERE THE MAGGI THAT CAME TO VISIT JESUS The chapter 2 of the Gospel of Matthew tells us about certain ‘Maggi’ that went to worship Lord Jesus after He was born (Matthew 2:1-2). The Bible does not specify their number, but the tradition that they were three, was born from the number of presents they gave the Lord, when they met Him; gold, frankincense a myrrh (Matthew 2:11). It is assumed they arrived around two years after the Lord was born, since they found Him living in a house (Matthew 2:11), and the children that King Herod killed were up to two years old, ‘according to the time’ he was given by the Maggi (Matthew 2:16). THE MAGGI The idea that they were three and that they were kings is only based on folklore. The Bible calls them ‘Maggi’ that came from the East (Matthew 2:1), obviously referring to the Iranian Priestly Zoroastrian class, who held that name on the ‘East’ of Judah. Zoroastrianism, is a Henotheistic faith born from the ancient Vedic religion of the

THE ANNUNCIATION

  THE ANNUNCIATION 26In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. 28And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you! Blessed are you among women” 29But she was greatly troubled at the saying and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” 34And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?” 35And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you,

DO WE CELEBRATE THE DAY OF THE SUN ON THE 25TH OF DECEMBER?

  ARE WE CELEBRATING THE SOLSTICE DAY ON THE 25 TH OF DECEMBER? Some Christians are afraid of uniting themselves to the Nativity celebration of our Lord Jesus Christ because they have heard that the ancient Church chose the pagan day of the ‘Invincible Sun’ imposed by Roman Emperor Aurelian in 274, on the 25 th of December. But that is not correct. The Calendar in used by the time the 25 th of December was chosen, was the ancient Roman Calendar imposed by Julius Caesar in the year 46, which was called ‘Julian’ for that reason. It was on the 25 th of December of that calendar that the Romans celebrated their pagan festival, which is equivalent to the 7 th of January on our modern calendar. In 1582, Pope Gregory XIII designed his new calendar, called ‘Gregorian’ for that reason, which is an average of 13 days behind than the old Julian calendar. Keeping with the traditions, he also kept Christmas on the 25 th of December of his new calendar, and the original 25 th of Decembe

WHEN WAS JESUS REALLY BORN

  WHEN WAS REALLY JESUS BORN The word ‘Christmas’ comes from an old English word meaning ‘Mass of Christ’, and dates back from the beginning of the first millennium. Christians celebrate on that day the incarnation of the Son of God, as the man Jesus of Nazareth and the beginning of the new era of Grace. Based on all traditions, most Christians have always celebrated this date, since the 4 th century, on the 25 th of December of the old Roman Calendar, called Julian Calendar, in forced in the whole Roman empire at the time. However, since the creation of the Gregorian Calendar by Roman Pope Gregory XIII in the middle ages, this old 25 th of December became the 7 th of January in the new updated Gregorian Calendar, and the new 25 th of December as we know it today came into existence.   However, many eastern Christians still keep the old 25 th of December on the 7 th of January as it shows in the Gregorian almanac, and some other minorities like the Armenian Christians contin

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

  CHRISTMAS LIGHTS At the beginning of the week, I walked late in the evening to the front of my house to put the garbage bins out. Surprisingly enough, I saw half of the street greatly illuminated with Christmas lights. The neighbors from three houses down, on both sides of the street, had decorated not only the front of their houses, front and roof, but also extended the lights over the road, making an arch of lights over the street on their side. This has been a difficult year for us. With the low amount of work, the establishment of the Christian community in the house, the number of government prohibitions we had to sort, and the random threats I received for holding home services, I am really looking forward to a new year better than this one. But one of the things I don’t do, is putting the same amount of effort in light work the other neighbors do. It is expensive and for two people, me and my mother, I just don’t see the reason. My mother puts a single chain of lights on t

PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD - MARK 1:1-8

PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD 1The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. 2As it is written in Isaiah the prophet, “Behold, I send my messenger before your face, who will prepare your way, 3the voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight,’” 4John appeared, baptizing in the wilderness, and proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. 5And all the country of Judea and all Jerusalem were going out to him and were being baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 6Now John was clothed with camel’s hair and wore a leather belt around his waist and ate locusts and wild honey. 7And he preached, saying, “After me comes he who is mightier than I, the strap of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. 8I have baptized you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.” MARK 1:1-8 COMMENTARY Marks starts his narrative of the life and ministry of

DOES 2 MACABEES 12:39-45 SPEAK OF PURGATORY?

  DOES 2MACABEES 12:39-45 SPEAK OF PURGATORY? The Catechism of the Roman Catholic Church, says the following about Purgatory: 1030 All who die in God's grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified, are indeed assured of their eternal salvation; but after death they undergo purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven. 1031 The Church gives the name Purgatory to this final purification of the elect, which is entirely different from the punishment of the damned. The Church formulated her doctrine of faith on Purgatory especially at the Councils of Florence and Trent. the tradition of the Church, by reference to certain texts of Scripture, speaks of a cleansing fire: As for certain lesser faults, we must believe that, before the Final Judgment, there is a purifying fire. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence we underst