Monday, March 31, 2008

World History - Class Seventeen

World History – Class Seventeen
Rome’s Final Defeat in the East and Europe is poised to conquer of the world

We didn’t have time in our last session but I want to give you some names worthy of note with regard to New Testament Christians living in the Medieval period or Dark Ages and a few more Jewish names of note so that, in the event you pursue your education further, you will have at least have heard of these people.

Moses Ben Nachman, also know as Nachmonides, and RaMaBaN, was a Spanish rabbi, philosopher, and biblical commentator born in Catalonia (the area around modern day Barcelona) in 1194. He argued that the central issue separating Christianity from Judaism was not the issue of Jesus as the messiah but whether or not Jesus was God. This is the dividing line between the two religions as per Nachman.

Isaac Abrabanel was called the last Jewish Aristotelian, in that he followed the Greek philosopher Aristotle’s lines of thinking, as did the Roman Catholic church later. He was also very influenced by Christian Biblical interpretation. He was born in 1437 and believed the Messiah would arrive in 1503. He died in 1508 having seen his prophecy fail.

The Jewish mystic, Isaac Luria, was expelled along with the rest of Jewry from Spain in 1492. He was most famous as a believer in and follower of the Kabbala, studying the book of Jewish mysticism called the Zohar. It is from Kabbala that we find the origins of the Big Bang theory of the 20th century, as I explained in Class One. The similarity is too vivid to be dismissed as mere coincidence.

Among the Christians of note in the period were Arnold of Brescia who lived from 1110 to 1155 and came from Northern Italy, the heart of the many Anabaptist groups. Another word for groups or divisions is sects. He was condemned as a schismatic, someone who causes a schism, or a divide resulting from controversy, at the Synod of Lateran in 1139 and again at a Council of Sens in 1140. He was expelled from Italy and then from France and from there he went to Bohemia to preach, returned to Rome inciting a riot and was banished again as a heretic. He was hanged, his body burned, and his ashes thrown into the Tiber River. His great crime was that he was against infant baptism. He also did not believe in a church, any church, aligned with a state government. Separation of church and state, a hallmark of our Constitution, was a heresy to the Medieval Church (Roman Catholic).

Girolamo Savonarola who was born in 1452 and died in 1498 was an Italian reformer from Ferrara, Italy. He entered a Dominican monastery in 1474 studying the Bible and the writings of Augustine and could not deal with the contradictions between the two. He became a preacher in Florence and a harsh critic of the Church. Pope Alexander VI offered him a cardinal’s red hat but Savonarola said the only red hat he would accept was one made out of blood. He stayed a devout Roman Catholic, however, until his death by burning at the stake after being tortured for two months.


Henry of Lausanne and Peter of Bruys, living in the late 11th century to early 12th , condemned baptism as a saving sacrament, the mass, and the use of images. Henry died in prison while Peter died at the burning stake.

There were many others during this time period of note that can be found in the works of Schaff and Foxe, as well as Latourette and Newman.

Now, on to the Black Death. In 1338 a horrible disease flared up in the Italian port city of Genoa with symptoms of hard, black boils which appeared under the arms and in the groin. Sufferers began to vomit blood. In three days or thereabouts they were dead. It was the beginning of something called the Black Death. It was the worst epidemic of many plague epidemics and even worse than the Plague of Justinian hundreds of years previous. Within the next fifty years, the Black Death or Bubonic Plague, which was its real name, killed more than 1/3rd of the population of Europe with outbreaks recorded in all the major countries of Europe over the next 500 years. At its height, more than 200,000 towns and villages in Europe were completely without one living human inhabitant.

Dried toads and goat urine were among the “cures” suggested, prescribed by quacks, well meaning and otherwise. Doctors often refused to treat the plague victims, knowing how infectious it was. Those groups who did not suffer as heavily from it, such as Jews, who followed the Old Testament cleanliness practices were massacred as being the cause of it. No one knew anything about germs at the time but if they had followed the admonitions given in the Old Testament the outbreaks would have been less severe. Modern antibiotics and improved standards of public hygiene have virtually eliminated it from the world scene. The plague had a profound impact on politics, religion, folklore, economics, music, and art.

One of the most interesting sourcebooks on the plague is The Black Death, A Chronicle of the Plague, by Johannes Nohl. He reports that at Venice alone, a half million people died within two years. It has been estimated that this plague that spread through Europe killed 43,000,000. Other cities were depopulated by the plague such as Bristol, England, which had all communications with it severed during the outbreak to try and prevent its spread. It was often thought to be a punishment for sin, personal and national. It is believed that it was brought to Europe by ships containing rats which had infected plague carrying fleas on them.

Speaking of politics, William I of England consolidated his conquest between 1067 and 1071. He successfully stopped many Anglo-Saxon uprisings and even defeated a Danish backed force that had captured the city of York. In 1072 he invaded Scotland. In 1073 he reconquered the French province of Maine which he claimed. He then invaded Brittany but was forced to back off due to pressure from Philip I of France against whom he warred in 1087, accidentally being killed in the effort. His son, William II, took over and

reigned until 1100 almost constantly fighting with his brother, Robert, who wanted the throne. The fourth son of William I, the Conqueror, was Henry I, who reigned from 1100 to 1135. He continued fighting with Robert until capturing him at the Battle of Tinchebrai. Henry declared himself Duke of Normandy and King of England, fighting a war with Louis VI of France.

Stephen, Henry’s nephew reigned from 1135 to 1154, fighting a constant battle with his cousin Matilda, Henry’s daughter. A truce was finally concluded at the Battle of Wallingford in 1154. Henry II began to rule in 1154. He was Matilda’s son and founded the important Plantagenet dynasty of Kings of England. Remember, all of these people spoke the French of the time and had roots in France. Although French speakers made up only 2% of the English population at any given time, they ruled until in the 1400’s the aristocracy began to act more like English than Anglo-Norman Kings. It took losing their territory in France to cut their ties with French soil.

Henry II was a capable ruler and married the famous Eleanor of Aquitaine, whose marriage to Louis VII of France, had been annulled. This made Henry II of England the largest landholder in France due to Eleanor’s family connections, thereby creating the cause for the Hundred Year’s War. Henry was usually at war with Louis, who was technically his lord, as being a landholder in France made the King of England a subject of the King of France. He invaded Wales and attempted to invade Ireland. He did suppress the last Anglo-Saxon revolt in 1174 which may have been inspired by his possible order of the murder of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas a’ Becket, by Norman knights. He constantly warred against his own sons; Henry, Richard, Geoffrey, and John who were always shifting alliances between brothers and their father and Philip II Augustus of France.

In 1199 Richard, who is said to have been the very epitome’ of the chivalrous knight, took over England as Richard I. He was known as Richard the Lionhearted, the hero of the Third Crusade, who spent more time away from England than actually ruling it. He also fought a war with Philip of France, winning his greatest battle at Gisors. He was succeeded by his brother, John, who ruled from 1199 to 1216. This is the era of the legend of Robin Hood and his Merry Men. It may have been based on a true story but it also might have been an accumulation of various legends.

John’s most famous contribution to real history was his compromise with the feudal barons of England in a document called the Magna Carta or Great Charter, which is a forerunner of our Constitution. This is one of the many documents that paved the way for Anglo-Saxon freedom and English inspired Republican government, a process of hundreds of years, which explains why no other culture, such as Russia, Arab, or Spanish has been able to duplicate it so successfully as America. The process of true freedom took nearly a thousand years and does not come overnight. The document was written in Latin and is rather vague but outlines concessions made by John to acknowledge freedoms that had already been granted by previous kings to the nobility. Like our Declaration of

Independence, it was not drawn up to create new rights but to demand the sovereign’s acknowledgement and respect of already existing freedoms that he had stolen or ignored.

In Scotland, the Danes invaded in 1009 and 1010 with King Malcolm defeated by Swen Forkbeard at Nairn but the Danes withdrew. The next summer, Malcolm defeated Swen at the battle of Mortlack. Malcolm then invaded Northumbria and annexed some of its territory after the Battle of Carham in 1018. Macbeth, made famous by Shakespeare, seized the throne between 1040 and 1057 after killing King Duncan but was killed by Duncan’s son, Malcolm, at the Battle of Dunsinane in 1054 which led to his death three years later.

Malcolm III reigned from 1057 to 1093 and fought with the English but was forced by William the Conqueror to submit to his authority. Rebelling, Malcolm was killed at the First Battle of Ainwick. David I ruled from 1124 to 1153 and helped Matilda in England with her efforts mentioned above. Malcolm IV had to surrender conquered English land to Henry II. William the Lion, Malcolm IV’s brother, ruled from 1165 to 1214 but was captured at the Second Battle of Ainwick and forced to pay ransom to the English King.

In Ireland, the tenth century opened up with Brian Boru High King defeating Mael Sechnaill II, former High King and the 12th century ended with a Norman Conquest with lots of internal squabbling and fighting in between.

Before England fell to the Normans, Harold of England had defeated and killed Harald III Hardraade, who had failed to conquer Denmark for his native Norway. A Dynastic Civil War ensued after the reign of the Danish king who fought him, Sweyn II Estridsen and his five sons had passed away. Valdemar I won the struggle and became known as the Great, ruling from 1157 to 1182. He was assisted by a famous statesman and religious leader named Absalon.

Valdemar expanded Danish influence in the Baltic sea at the expense of the Swedes and Germans. His advisor, Absalon extended Danish control all the way to Estonia. From 1182 to 1202 Denmark was in full glory with Knud (Canute) IV ruling, still with Absalon as the principal advisor and strategist. He repulsed a German invasion and smashed an enemy fleet at the Battle of Strela.

In 1157 there was a Catholic Swedish invasion of pagan Finland by King Erik III who was accompanied by a Catholic Bishop from England named Henry who died in the effort and became Finland’s patron saint. Pope Alexander III issued a Papal Bull in 1172 encouraging the Swedes to force the Finns to submit to the Church.

France’s history at this time was entwined with the Norman-English Dynastic struggles and the land claims of the Norman-English kings in France. Louis VII inspired and participated in the Second Crusade to the Holy Land. He reigned between 1137 and 1180.


Germany saw a gradual rise in imperial power under three able Holy Roman Emperors in the 11th century. There was Henry II, Conrad II, and Henry III. Then a struggle between Henry IV and Pope Hildebrand which the Pope won was followed by civil war, weakening the power of the emperors and strengthening the power of the Popes. Henry V continued the struggle with the Popes reigning from 1106 to 1125. The constant fighting between the empire left by Charlemagne which was supposed to serve the Church and the Pope and his loyal allies in France and Italy caused a weakening of German power and perhaps set the tone for the later willingness of Germany to embrace Protestantism during Luther’s time.

In 1138, Conrad III started the Hohenstaufen dynasty. He, along with his nephew, Frederick, participated in the Second Crusade. Frederick became Frederick I “Barbarossa” (Redbeard), the greatest of the Hohenstaufen kings. He had numerous successful military campaigns in Poland, Bohemia, and Hungary, as well as six expeditions to Italy. He was defeated at the Battle of Legnano in 1176. Later, he participated in the Third Crusade and was drowned in Cilicia in 1190.

Moving ahead in time we look at the first phase of the Hundred Years War. This war was actually a series of eight major conflicts between the royal houses of England and France lasting nearly 120 years, from 1337 to 1453. Four of these periods took place in the 14th century and four in the 15th. Although this series of wars started out as a typical feudal dispute, it had nationalistic importance that resulted in an English (Anglo) French rivalry that lasted for more than 5 ½ centuries. There were three main causes of the war;

1. The feudal relationship of the kings of France and England. As dukes of Aquitaine and barons of other French lands, the kings of England were vassals; as rulers of England, they were sovereign kings. The French kings rightly feared that the English rulers would try to consolidate their French lands with their English. The English kings hated being subordinate to the French.
2. The French and English kings were fighting over the commercial promise of the wealthy and industrial County of Flanders.
3. The French were helping by way of Scotland to stir up the almost constant wars in England.

An important battle was the Battle of Sluys on June 24, 1340, when an English fleet of 150 vessels fought a French fleet of 190 ships at the entrance of Sluys harbor and captured or sunk 166 of them. In 1338, Edward, King of England, proclaimed himself King of France also. This claim was accepted by Louis IV of Germany. In 1345 Edward raised a large expeditionary force to invade France and support his allies in that country. In his army were a great many archers, archery having become a significant English battlefield tactic. The English longbow was famous for its power and accuracy. King John had long ago ordered the English to practice archery at least twice a week by law.


During his campaign in France he fought the French army which vastly outnumbered him at the Battle of Crecy on August 26, 1346 and making use of the English longbow his army slaughtered 1542 French knights including King John of Bohemia, between 10 and 20,000 soldiers, and thousands of horses. The English lost about 200 dead and wounded. Only 2 English knights died.

An interlude stopped the war for a time as the Black Death devastated both countries from 1347 to 1354 and a truce was called. But, mankind isn’t about to let a little thing like a plague killing millions of people to stop him from killing as many as he can so the war resumed in 1355. This time, Edward’s son, Edward, the Black Prince conducted a devastating raid into France with a relatively small force. A superior French force responded and the English retreated. Exhausted from retreating the English chose to stand and fight at Poitiers on September 19, 1356.

Once again, a hail of English arrows met the French knights. However, it is believed that if the French knights had continued forward they would have broken the English line. With arrows spent, the English and French engaged in hand to hand combat. Finally, an English force attacked the rear of the French line and they began to flee. The French lost over 5,000 killed or taken prisoner, the English 1,000.

The Black Prince died in 1376 and in 1396 the Peace of Paris was signed between Richard II of England and Charles VI.

Later, in 1415, an English king named Henry V invaded France. The most memorable battle there was the Battle of Agincourt where, on October 25, 1415, 5,000 heavily armored French knights fell under the English bowmen on a muddy field, encumbered by their heavy plate armor. The English reported only 13 soldiers or men-at-arms and 100 footmen had been killed.

In all of these wars the French had been bested by the English. But, in 1429 a 17 year old peasant girl named Joan of Arc convinced the Dauphin or Prince that she had a divinely inspired mission to drive the English out of France once and for all. Surprisingly, he put her at the head of an army whose function it was to try to relieve the city of Orleans. Even more surprisingly she did it, ending the myth of English invincibility by winning many more battles. Finally, she was captured and turned over to the English and was burned at the stake for religious reasons. Her Dauphin had betrayed her by not coming to her aid. Within 5 years of her death the French had recaptured Paris and a 5 year truce was signed. Two excellent books on Joan of Arc are Joan of Arc, Her Story by Regine Pernoud and Marie-Veronique Clin and Joan of Arc, A Military Leader by Kelly DeVries.

Back in England, after King John had been forced to sign the Magna Carta by his barons, a faction of English barons actually invited Louis, Dauphin of France in 1215 to be king of England. John proved to have more determination and skill than Robin Hood movies

and books will grant him and he defeated an invasion by King Alexander of Scotland and rallying the English people to his side he cornered Louis and the barons who supported him in southeastern England , defeating them on land at Lincoln and on the sea at Sandwich.

Henry III’s reign saw the loss of a great much of the territory the English had in France and a civil war ensued led by Simon de Montfort between 1263 and 1265. There was almost constant civil war of some type until the abdication of Richard II in 1399.

So, now, keep in mind; Magna Carta, Crecy, Poitiers, Agincourt, William the Conqueror, Henry II, Eleanor of Aquitaine, Plantagenet Dynasty, etc. etc. Did I leave anything out? Yes, a great deal was left out due to our limited amount of time. It’s all worth further study.

The conflict between the Church and the Holy Roman Empire reached a compromise at the Concordat of Worms in 1122 between Pope Calixtus II and the Emperor Henry V. Henry, who had forced his unfortunate father Henry IV, who had spent three days standing shoeless in the snow begging a Pope to reverse his excommunication from the Church back in 1076, to abdicate in 1105. Henry V gave up the right to invest or create bishops and abbots and recognized that only the Church had that right. Of course, most of the kings of Europe still continued to pick who would be a bishop in their territory.

Kings and Churchmen often collided on the subject of who would be Pope and there were those who backed one and then the other in bitter disputes over power. At times a Holy Roman Emperor like Frederick Barbarossa would make a Pope and at other times he would be forced to kiss a Pope’s feet, which Frederick did after the Battle of Legnano humbling himself as Henry II of England was forced to do when he walked barefoot to the tomb of Becket to receive discipline from the canons of Canterbury. The same Pope, Alexander III, caused both monarchs to humiliate themselves in these situations.

The Papacy was a constant swirl of plotters and diabolic intrigue and some of the worst of it was from the 11th to the 13th century. Dr. Ludwig Pastor’s 1906 work, The History of the Popes, Volume I, says it this way, “The disastrous struggle between the highest powers of Christendom, which began in the eleventh century and reached its climax in the thirteenth, was decided, apparently to the advantage of the Papacy, by the tragical downfall of the House of Hohenstaufen.” Please note how all historians equate the Christian in history before the Reformation as being synonymous with the Catholic in history. The Holy Roman Empire started by Charlemagne and the Papacy were constantly at odds and with the weakness of the empire the Popes had to look more to France for support. So began the 14th century or the 1300’s.

Clement V was a native of France. After being crowned Pope, afraid of the constant turmoil and warfare in Italy and influenced by the French King, Philip the Fair, he stayed in France and never set foot in Rome. He reigned as Pope from 1305 to 1314. His

successor, John XXII, also from France, was elected after much controversy in 1316 with the Papacy or Holy See being vacant for two years. He took up permanent abode in Avignon, France just across the Rhone river from the French king like his predecessor.

When Clement V moved the Papacy to Avignon, Durant tells us there began the sixty eight years of “Babylonian Captivity” of the Popes. The papacy had freed itself from Germany but surrendered to France. Clement, according to Durant, was a weak tool of the French king, implying that the Avignon popes were tools of the French King. Dr. Pastor disagrees in his book if that is applied to all of the Avignon Popes, saying that the statements about the weakness of the Popes at Avignon are “unjust” although he does admit that Clement wasn’t a strong Pope. It was under Clement V that the Papal Bull calling on the King of France to destroy the Knights Templars was made.

Pastor tells us, though, that the move from the natural home of the Popes of Rome to France was a disaster for the Papacy. Obviously, he is a good Catholic as he laments how the Popes lost prestige while in France. It is true that it was strange for the Popes, who had so been used to rebuking kings and princes, were now almost subject to one.

The Holy Roman Emperor, Charles IV, with the excuse of freeing the Popes from the constant struggles between France and England, worked hard to bring the Papacy back to Rome. Urban V, Pope from 1362 to 1370 almost did just that. This emperor made a pilgrimage to Rome and unlike previous German leaders he formed a good relationship with the Papacy. Rome was in decay without the Popes and the Papal Palaces were in ruins. Urban went back to Avignon and died before any permanent move back to Rome could be accomplished. Gregory XI did move the Papacy back to Rome after much difficulty with those opposing the move and with much fanfare.

The next “great” event in Roman Catholic Church history is known as the Papal Schism of 1378 to 1417 when the plans for reforming the Church by Urban VI made Charles V of France angry and hoping to drag the Papacy kicking and screaming back to Avignon he supported some renegade cardinals in electing Robert of Geneva as Pope Clement VII. Once again, the Papacy was in a turmoil. The kings of various countries at war would align with the Pope that most suited their cause, of course.

One of the less endearing efforts of the Church in this period was the Inquisition which began as a way of dealing with heretics like you and myself who viewed the scripture as their final authority and that man was not saved by the sacraments of any Church but by the grace of God through the Lord Jesus Christ. After 1227, Gregory IX set up several special inquisitores to pursue heresy. He favored the Dominican order of monks so heavily for this task that they became known as the “hunting dogs of the Lord”. The Dominicans were founded by Catholic Saint Dominic, a Spaniard born in 1170. The Inquisition is purely and uniquely a Catholic institution. The office of the Inquisition was changed to Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1965 after having been renamed


Supreme Sacred Congregation of the Holy Office in 1908. The current Pope, Benedict XVI, aka Joseph Ratzinger, was in charge of that office from 1981.

The Medieval Inquisition, one of four, did its job. It stamped out Catharism in France and drove the Waldensians to the remotest hills, postponing the Reformation by three centuries. In Spain, the Inquisition played a minor role before 1300, according to Durant and Northern Italy contained many Bible believing Christians in spite of its efforts right up to the Reformation.

Durant says that Western Europe reached a pinnacle of art comparable with the Golden Ages of Athens and Rome in the 12th and 13th centuries. The Viking and Muslim raids had been defeated and the Crusades created a burst of creative energy bringing back many art forms from the Eastern Roman or Byzantine Empire and the Muslim world. Economies were booming from trade and artists and artisans were hired from the Greek and Muslim world to teach how and to adorn monasteries and churches with art and sculpture. A school of monastic art developed at the abbey of Monte Cassino, the protection of which cost so many American lives in World War II. When we get that far in history I’ll explain. Painting; mosaics, miniatures, and murals were beautiful and richly done and stained glass was a high art form. Sculpture came into its own as well with angels, devils, gargoyles adorning cathedrals, and depictions of Biblical figures being created.

The Catholic Cathedral’s creation was a special kind of art often taking generations to complete. The Gothic Cathedrals, as one style was called, with pointed arches and vertical construction meant to give an impression of height, are some of the most beautiful buildings ever constructed. There are several styles of cathedrals named by students of architectural history and many impressive examples of the Cathedral still existing throughout Europe.

Monks preserved Classic Greek and Roman Literature as well. Great universities arose in England and France providing a nesting place for Medieval thinkers like Abelard, Thomas Aquinas, Anselm, and Albertus Magnus. Greek philosophy, particularly Aristotle’s, was a powerful force within the thought world of Roman Catholic Europe. The mixing of philosophy with religion so focused on by Philo and Origen found its ultimate expression in the Medieval Roman Church. Skeptics, pantheists, and atheists contended with the Church for possession of the European mind. Contact with Islam further increased the Europeans interest in other ways of thinking besides the one approved by their priests.

Two of the great literary talents of the Middle Ages were Geoffrey Chaucer of Canterbury Tales fame and Dante Alighieri of The Divine Comedy.

It is time now to briefly discuss a topic of history that I have neglected; gold. Gold has played such a huge part in history that it can be taken for granted that the student

understands how great an effect it has had on nations, kings, and popes. It is important to note that whether in the Crusades or in the Dynastic or Territorial struggles in Europe it was common to capture and ransom enemy knights for gold. Ransoming captives was a great way to raise money and the value of a captured knight in gold was far greater than his death. Saladin ransomed Christian captives when he retook Jerusalem. Richard the Lionhearted himself was taken for ransom in Europe, costing his people a fortune.

The economic consequences of the Black Death, according to Peter Bernstein’s The Power of Gold, was the exchange of gold and other wealth from the ownership of the massive amount of the dead to the hands of the few, living survivors. Barbara Tuchman, in her brilliant work on the 14th century, A Distant Mirror, wrote of this century of the Black Death, the Hundred Years War, and constant conflict as “a violent, tormented, bewildered, suffering, and disintegrating age, a time, as many thought, of Satan triumphant”.

With those brief comments on gold for now, let’s move on to the great conflict between the rising power of the Ottoman Turks and the Byzantine Empire, the results of which would send a flood of precious Bible manuscripts into Europe in preparation for the next great age to come; the Reformation.

In the middle of the 13th century the Seljuk Turks, who had been known by the Crusaders as simply the Turks, were overwhelmed by the Mongols, who we have previously discussed. Their core base in Anatolia, what is today the eastern part of Turkey, was destroyed. A new Turkish leader, Osman I (Othman), emerged into prominence in Anatolia. After establishing their supremacy over neighboring Turkish tribes, the Ottomans steadily whittled away at the declining Byzantine power and territory, taking advantage of the constant infighting and struggles within the empire. Near the middle of the 14th century the Ottomans gained a foothold in Europe and overran Thrace, Macedonia, Bulgaria, and much of Serbia. One thing they were unable to do was to take Constantinople where the last remaining power of Byzantium stood. Just as Constantinople was about to fall the Turks were smashed by the conqueror, Tamerlane, seemingly beyond hope but they rebuilt and came back.

The Turks had defeated Serbia at the Battle of Kosovo on June 20, 1389. This defeat by Muslim forces was a rallying cry 600 years later as the Serbs and Kosovars fought again, only this time the Serbs’ defeat came at the hands of a military alliance of the United States and the United Nations.

I want to give a review of what had been happening in the Byzantine Empire since the Constantinople was sacked by the Crusaders in 1204. I had told you in the last class that there were three important Crusades. Five more, at least, succeeded them and they also ended in disaster with the with the 4th Crusade being even more of a disaster for the declining Byzantine Empire. In 1204, after the capital’s fall to the Crusaders Count Baldwin of Flanders in France became Emperor Baldwin I of Constantinople for a year.

Theodore Lascaris became Emperor of Nicea, the largest remnant left of the Byzantine Empire, and Alexis Comnenus established the Empire of Trebizond. In 1205 Baldwin was captured and died in captivity after the Bulgarians defeated his army at the Battle of Adrianopole. Then, Alexius Comnenus and his brother, David, were defeated by Lascaris in a Civil War which saw the Seljuk Turks choose first one and then the other to support. Eventually, there was a three way war between Crusaders, Nicea, and Trebizond. This seesaw conflict continued until the Niceans seized Constantinople from the Latins (as European Crusaders were called) in 1261.

Another Civil War devastated the Byzantines between 1341 and 1347. The Ottoman Turks had become players now with the Seljuks destroyed and the Mongol menace withdrawing and got involved in this Civil War. The Mongols had crushed the Seljuk Turks at the Battle of Kosedagh in 1243. It is a testimony to how powerful the Byzantine Empire was that they did not fall permanently to so many adversaries at the time. There was a confused dynastic struggle until 1392 and the Turks took advantage of that.

Ottoman Turkish Emperor, Murad I, had captured Adrianople in 1365 and made it his capital and, after defeating a European crusader force the next year felt secure. He then conquered Bulgaria and created the Janissary corps. This elite body of almost all archers was composed of former Christians captured as children and raised to be fanatical Muslims. For more than 500 years the Janissaries would play a major role in Ottoman history. By comparison, the Mamelukes of Egypt were also Turkish slave soldiers and horse archers who first rose to prominence as warriors for the great Kurdish general Saladin, who retook Jerusalem from the Crusaders and then signed a treaty with Richard the Lion Hearted. They, too, eventually played an important role in Egypt’s history.

Then, for eight years from 1391 to 1399, the Ottoman Turks besieged Constantinople. The Byzantines were helped by a small force of volunteers under French marshal (general) Jean Bouciquaut, repulsing attacks on land and sea by Ottoman Emperor Bayazid I. The Byzantine emperor at the time, Manuel II, was capable enough but he only ruled over Constantinople, Thessalonika, and the Morean Peninsula (the Medieval name for the Peloponnesian Peninsula).

In 1422, Manuel repulsed another Turkish attack on his capital. His son, John VIII, conquered what part of the Morean that Byzantium didn’t have, from the Franks (French). John’s younger brother, Constantine Palaeologus or Constantine XI, succeeded him and invaded central Greece which was ruled by the Turks but was repulsed by Sultan Murad II.

Finally, one of the important moments of history takes place, one that you must remember. Between February and May of 1453, Mohammed II, called “The Conqueror”, laid siege to Constantinople with an army of more than 80,000 men and a siege train of over 70 heavy cannon, commanded by Urban, a Hungarian renegade. Constantine XI had less than 10,000 men at his disposal. The Turkish navy sealed off all hope of help from

the sea. The great siege batteries consisting of 12 super-cannons known as superbombards which hammered at the many walls of the ancient city caused great destruction
A Venetian fleet tried to help but were driven off by the superior Turkish navy. Assault after assault hit the city. The last Roman emperor, the Byzantine emperor, Constantine, namesake of the founder of the city for Rome, fought on the walls until he, too, was killed. The city became property of the Turks and is now called Istanbul.

The Turks went on to conquer Greece and the entire Aegean Sea, also fighting a war with Venice from which Shakespeare derived the basis for his play, Othello. They even attacked Italy. The Turks won a great and decisive victory over the Venetians at the Battle of Lepanto in 1499. A flood of Greek monks and churchmen, along with thousands of Christian refugees flooded Western Europe bringing with them manuscripts that had been copied and used in the Greek and Syrian churches from the time that the Old Latin Bible was first penned in Antioch in the middle of the second century and even before; copies of copies of copies of the Greek original manuscripts of the Gospels, and the rest of the New Testament. The Hebrew Masoretic Text of the Jews, having reached its apogee in the 10th century was already known in Europe.

An interesting character of this time is a person that has come down to us as Dracula, or Vlad Tepes, called the Impaler by the Turks. Vlad ruled Wallachia, in what is now southern Romania on three separate occasions in the mid to late 1400’s. He is best known for his defeat of a Turkish invasion by destroying everything in the invaders path, pursuing a guerilla war against them, and then finally, according to legendary accounts, impaling thousands of Turkish soldiers. He is a great folk hero in present day Romania and is certainly worthy of further study but was hardly a huge player in the entire scope of history.

The niece of the last emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire who went down fighting with it was named Sophia. She married Ivan III, Grand Duke of Moscow, and Ivan claimed to be the heir of the Roman Empire and called Moscow, the Third Rome. Constantinople had often been called the New Rome and as I have noted before, the Muslims referred to this Greek empire as Rome, during the Crusades. The Byzantines were mainly Greek speaking and the dependence of the Roman Catholic Church on Latin led the Crusaders to be called Latins or Franks for the predominant French influence among them. This idea of Moscow being the Third Rome is of great interest to students of Bible Prophecy although most would consider the European Union as being the revived Roman Empire which many believe will dominate the end times, and even others refer to the United States of America as Rome revived. It is interesting that in the turmoil in Palestine today and in the Middle East the diplomatic coalition of Russia, the European Union, the United States, and the United Nations is called the Quartet and all of them individually have been referred to as the revived Roman Empire by some Bible teacher at some time. Just file it away for future study.


Now, we need to bring Western Europe up to this point in history before we move on to the Renaissance and Reformation. There is also much to report in Eastern Europe at this time. The desperate attempts to hold off the Mongol invasion of 1241 with Prince Henry of Silesia’s army smashed at the Battle of Liegnitz by Kaidu of the Mongols was not followed up by pursuit. Kadan, another Mongol general, attacked Hungary. King Bela of Hungary with 100,000 men fought the Mongols at the Battle of Sajo River and was smashed. The Mongols had all of Eastern Europe at their feet. They had defeated armies five times their strength. But, the death of the Emperor, Ogotai, forced, by Mongol law, all leaders to return home to elect a new khan, so Europe was spared.

Scotland’s history is fascinating at this time as there was a Scottish king named Alexander II who ruled from 1214 to 1249 who tried to take advantage of the barons’ revolt against King John that gave us the Magna Carta. He invaded England but was defeated near London by John. Alexander III, ruling from 1249 to 1286 drove Norwegians from the islands of western Scotland in the Battle of Largs in 1263. In 1290 a total of 12 different nobles claimed the crown. Foolishly, Edward I of England was asked to mediate and he gained recognition of English overlordship of Scotland, choosing John Baliol to be king.

John got into a dispute with Edward I and allied with France, resulting in Edward I declaring John’s right to the throne forfeited and claiming the throne of Scotland for himself. In 1296 England invaded Scotland and annexed it, defeating John at the Battle of Dunbar. It is then that William Wallace led an uprising that defeated the Earl of Warenne in the Battle of Cambuskenneth Bridge, raiding northern England afterwards in 1297.

In 1298, Edward I invaded Scotland and in spite of Wallace’s efforts to avoid a pitched battle with this superior force of up to 7,000 heavily armored cavalry, 3,000 light cavalry, and 15,000 infantry, Edward did manage to force him to fight. At the Battle of Falkirk in 1298, Wallace’s army was annihilated and he was later captured and executed in 1305.

In 1306 Robert Bruce, who was the grandson of one of an earlier claimant to the throne and had fought under Edward at Falkirk against Wallace, led a revolt from 1307 to 1314. At first, using guerrilla tactics he pushed the English back to where they only controlled Stirling, Dunbar, and Berwick. In order to rescue Stirling which Robert Bruce had put under siege, Edward took the field against him in 1314. Leading an army of nearly 60,000 men he met Robert Bruce and his much, much smaller army at a stream called Bannockburn. There, one of the most amazing battles in the British Isles took place in which The Battle Book by Byran Perrett tells us the Scots won a decisive victory which secured Scottish independence. Harper’s Encyclopedia of Military History claims losses for the English of at least 15,000 which Perrett disputes but both agree that it was a disaster for England. Sir Charles Oman in his The Art of War in the Middle Ages says that it was the worst loss every suffered by the English army in the Middle Ages.


When Edward attempted another invasion Robert defeated him at the Battle of Byland in 1322. Scottish independence was formally recognized at Peace of Northampton in 1328. Robert died the year after that

The era of 1400 to 1455 in England was called the Lancastrian era as Henry IV seized the throne from Richard II. His son, Henry V, brought England to its height of power and prestige in the Middle Ages and inspired Shakespeare’s play of the same name but by 1450 there was growing disorder and unrest. Henry IV had intermittent periods of insanity which led to the rise of Richard, Duke of York elected as Protector by Parliament. Henry IV subsequently dismissed him from the government which led to a civil war called the War or Wars of the Roses for the color of the roses that represented Lancaster and rival York. The dismissal of Richard from the King’s Council, and the assumption of dictatorial powers by Henry’s queen Margaret and the Duke of Somerset started a revolt which included several powerful men lined up against the crown. When one of those powerful men, Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, was killed in battle his son named himself King Edward IV and then proceeded to crush the Lancastrians at the bloody, Battle of Towton. Edward realigned himself with Queen Margaret and was succeeded by his 12 year old son as Edward V. As if this wasn’t confusing enough another Richard, Duke of Gloucester, Edward IV’s younger brother then usurped the throne. The House of York which had defeated the House of Lancaster was now threatened by a series of uprisings including an invasion led by Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, leader of the now revived Lancastrians. Richard III, whose army deserted him, was defeated at the Battle of Bosworth. Henry Tudor ascended the throne as Henry VII. At least Richard III had a Shakespeare play named after him.

One of the most interesting aspects of this civil war was the Battle of Towton on a snowy Palm Sunday in 1461. Contemporary chroniclers estimated the size of the armies at hundreds of thousands with the dead, mostly Lancastrians, being in the tens of thousands. Modern historians scoffed at this number much as they do at the number of dead at Aphek in 1 Kings 20:30 (AV) as if to say that people who had to be able to count chickens, pigs, and cows could not count corpses. Subsequent excavations at Towton since 1996, as revealed in the book Blood Red Roses, The Archaeology of a Mass Grave at Towton AD 1461, have uncovered the remains of the tens of thousands of men who were slaughtered at that battle. Modern, presumptuous, and arrogant historians strike out again in their impression of ancient and medieval historians as being simply stupid or worse, liars.

1485 and the crowning of the first Tudor king laid the foundations for four centuries of English glory as that nation proceeded to conquer much of the world.

I want to move on to a country that holds some importance as a nest for independent thought during the Reformation and the safe haven for John Calvin and his followers. During the early part of the 1400’s Switzerland had so perfected their infantry organization of pikemen, halberders, and crossbowmen that they became the leading

military power in Europe. As infantry tactics came to take successes away from cavalry, first underscored by Edward III of England’s defeat of the French at Crecy, the Swiss became masters at defeating seemingly militarily superior forces. The Swiss did not attempt, however, foreign conquest, but used their invincibility against all comers to secure their own independence from foreign tyranny. They were ruthless on the battlefield and often slaughtered their enemies, so much so that battles were often over before they were fought. They saved themselves by being a nation of fierce warriors who weren’t interested in taking anyone else’s land but only in defending their own. Switzerland has become a byword for neutrality in many European wars and the Popes have traditionally been “protected” by a Swiss Guard at the Vatican, which is today more of a ceremonial force than anything else.

In 1454 a German printer named Johannes Gutenberg founded the modern publishing industry when he set the Latin Vulgate in lead alloy movable type and printed it on a wood printing press. Gutenberg was not the first to invent printing or movable type, however. The first experimenters with the printing process were the Sumerians, who cut into cylindrical stones, symbols representing a signature, and pressed the image into clay that was then baked. The technique of reversed characters being inked onto paper was first developed by the Chinese, who engraved images onto wood blocks as early as the eighth century. The first such book, The Diamond Sutra, was printed in 868. By the 11th century, both Chinese and Korean printers were using clay, word, bronze, and iron to develop movable type. The Chinese printer Pi Sheng was a leader in the field of setting individual ideograms in clay type.

The development of the printing press in Europe, though, had a huge significance. The Roman Catholic Church’s dominance over religious works with all unapproved manuscripts having to be copied laboriously by hand was ended. The printing press heralded a new age in freedom of thought and freedom of religion.

Some of the most significant inventions in the medieval period in Europe were the crossbow, introduced in France around 1050 and so effective its use was banned at various times as giving one side an unfair advantage over the other, as if war was a sport. Forks as eating implements were introduced to Europe through Venice in Italy from the Byzantine Empire around 1071 but were slow to gain acceptance as fingers were still the preferred utensil for many years.

The use of latitude and longitude measurements, in degrees, was introduced by an Anglo-Saxon scientist named Welcher of Malvern around 1120. In 1137 the abbey of St. Denis near Paris became the first major building to use flying buttresses which allowed the building of huge cathedrals. Coal is first mined in Newcastle, England in 1220, although it had been used as fuel in China since 1000BC. In 1250 returning Crusaders helped Europe convert to Arabic numerals and use the decimal system. In 1240 Roger Bacon introduced the use of lense to improve vision with eyeglasses appearing in Europe and China about the same time.

In 1249, gunpowder is first mentioned in Europe in writings by scientist Roger Bacon while the first known gun, a small cannon, was built in China in about 1288. Edward III of England used cannon at the Battle of Crecy in 1346 although they didn’t have much bearing on the battle but by 1439 the French king Charles VII is using gunpowder artillery in a planned, systematic way. In 1450 the Dutch created the Harquebus which was the first firearm small enough to be carried and fired by a single person.

Around 1160 the French poet, Chretien de Troyes begins writing his romances based on the Arthurian legend after Geoffrey of Monmouth’s publication of his History of the Kings of Britain in 1135.

Around 1250 Albertus Magnus began applying Aristotle’s ideas on botany and biology to Europe. He classified plants and identified function in various parts. In 1269 William of Moerbeke translates Archimedes’ work into Latin. In 1452, Italian scientist, theoretician, and artist, Leonardo Da Vinci begins to believe in the marine origin of fossils. Why it would be thought as heretical is a mystery as anyone believing in the Great Flood of the Bible would expect many fossils to have come from the see but he did not reveal his work publicly through 1519 due to that concern.

In 1250 Albertus Magnus discovers arsenic while sulfuric acid is discovered by an anonymous alchemist or someone who wanted to make gold by mixing of other elements in 1300.

As Europe began to discover scientific information both that it created and that it gleaned from other cultures’ previous work it began to develop particularly its military technology to a high degree. Constant warfare moved Europe ahead of almost every other culture group on earth in regard to military technology. However, two events we have already discussed prepared the way for the Reformation of mainstream Christianity; the invention of the printing press and the fall of Constantinople. Just as it took 425 years to complete Winchester Cathedral in England (finished in 1474) it took Europe awhile to get on its feet scientifically and catch up with the rest of the world.

A third factor was exploration and colonization of lands around the world which allowed for the spread of Christianity to distant lands. In 1402 Emperor Yung-Lo of China’s Ming Dynasty encouraged overseas exploration and conquest and his admiral, Cheng-ho’s fleet sailed as far west as the Red Sea, visiting Mecca and Egypt as well as Indonesia, Malaya, and Sri Lanka but this exploration was not capitalized on or exploited. At about the same time, in 1418, Prince Henry the Navigator of Portugal opened an observatory and school for navigation at Sagres on Cape St. Vincent, Portugal. His goal was to find a way around Africa in order to touch base with the rich trade of China. The same year, Portuguese navigators rediscovered Madeira, 360 miles directly west of Morocco and 540 miles southwest of Lisbon, the capital of Portugal. They had been discovered by the Romans and called the Purple Islands.


In 1427, Portuguese navigator, Diogo de Sevilha discovered the Azores, an island chain 700 miles west of Portugal. By Prince Henry’s death in 1460, Portuguese explorers have sailed down the coast of Africa all the way to present day Gamba. In 1487 Bartholomeu Dias discovers the Cape of Good Hope, the southernmost tip of Africa, for Portugal. At the same time, King John II of Portugal, Prince Henry’s grand-nephew, organizes an expedition through the Mediterranean and the Red Sea under the leadership of Pero de Covilhao.

On October 12, 1492, Italian mariner Christopher Columbus, leading a fleet of three ships from Spain becomes the first European since the Vikings to reach the Americas, which we know of. Unlike the Vikings he will open the Americas up to exploration and colonization. Basque fishermen had been fishing off the Grand Banks off Newfoundland for a long time but no effort had been made to explore inland except possibly for a mention of a land called Bacalao, or the Land of Codfish, in some writings. Columbus’ second voyage left Cadiz, Spain in 1493 with 17 ships to explore Dominica, Puerto Rico, Cuba, and Jamaica. On a side note, as this was happening a great syphilis epidemic began to sweep Europe with those infected ordered to leave the city of Paris or be thrown into the Seine River.

In 1497, Italian navigator Amerigo Vespucci, exploring some of the coast of land touched by Columbus declares that this land is not Asia but a “new world”. America is named after him. In the same year, Italian mariner Giovanni Cabot (John Cabot) sailing for the English, reaches Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. He becomes the first European since the Vikings to reach the mainland of North America. Also in the same year, Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama becomes the first European to round the Cape of Good Hope and goes on to India. Columbus’ third voyage takes place the next year. The genie is now out of the bottle, so to speak, and events are racing forward to Europe’s conquest of the world.

Portugal was obviously a pioneer in the early days of world exploration by the countries of Europe. The country of Portugal came into existence on the north bank of the Douro River in the 10th century as the Kingdom of Leon pressed the Moslems southward on the west coast of the Iberian peninsula. Separatist tendencies appeared early in the 12th century during the stormy reign of Queen Urraca of Castile and Leon. The strong Count Alfonso Henriques (1112-1185) won many victories over the Muslims, culminating in the 1139 Battle of Ourique. Alfonso then declared independence from his cousin, Alfonso VII of Castile and Leon, who reluctantly recognized him as King of Portugal in 1140. Alfonso continued to push the Muslims southward, capturing Lisbon and establishing Tagus as the southern boundary of Portugal in 1147. He was assisted in his efforts by Crusaders from England and the areas that would one day be called the Netherlands on their way to Palestine. Throughout the Middle Ages Portugal maintained incessant warfare with the North African Muslims who had conquered Spain called the Moors, sometimes in coordination with the Spanish kingdoms of Castile and Aragon. Wars against these Christian kingdoms were also frequent. It appeared for a brief time at the

end of the 14th century that Portugal might fall to Castile but with English support at the Battle of Aljubarrota in 1385 and the following Treaty of Windsor an alliance was made between England and Portugal that has continued to this day. With Castile’s eventual success at driving out the Muslims, the era called the Reconquista was complete. Spain and Portugal were now wholly Catholic countries. The warlike culture of both countries pushed them to foreign conquest. Both countries were better poised to conquer the world from the sea than any other with powerful, experienced armies and skilled leadership.

The violent internal struggles that characterized the Iberian peninsula were as brutal as the efforts to take the land back from the Muslims. A number of independent principalities and petty kingdoms arose in what is now called Spain. Castile rose to prominence and then declined as Aragon became powerful. In the early part of the 15th century Castile was wracked by virtual anarchy, while Aragon was the powerhouse of the Mediterranean world. The marriage of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella of Castile helped lead Spain to the preeminent global position of power. Jointly they conquered Granada, the last Muslim holdout in Spain. Then, they turned their sight to overseas expansion.

Regretfully, I must pass by many other exciting and interesting events in Europe. Perhaps, in future classes I’ll be able to discuss the rise of Poland as a power or the development of Lithuania but time does not permit us to go into great detail on all these things. There are hundreds of scientific achievements and discoveries, thousands of topics on art, and political and religious events that you will have to search out for yourself. I am trying to give you a base from which to work, a platform for further study.

Next, we will begin the periods known as the Reformation and the Renaissance, two powerful events that still have a hold on the mind of the world.

It is now the late 1400’s on the 15th century. The Jews have been kicked out of Spain. The Inquisition is slaughtering Bible believers and New Testament Christian groups everywhere. The Roman Catholic Church is the dominant cultural and religious force in the European World. Islam is under the domination of the Ottoman Turks who have ended the long standing political empire of Rome that began with Rome’s founding in 753BC and ended with the eastern part of that empire, now called Byzantium, being killed along with its last emperor in 1453 at Constantinople. The Catholic Popes have claimed the mantle of emperor, a spiritual ruler ruling a temporal political world. But something is about to break, a force that sweeps Europe and the world, and changes all of the rules. Still, the concept of the state-church continues to dominate human political practice as it has done since before Babylon. In fact, in a way, Babylon is still a ghost that stands over all of these events as the modern nation states of Europe began to form from the Medieval, Feudal associations that swirled and boiled for a thousand years since the fall of the political Roman Empire in the west in 476AD.

World History – Class Seventeen Study Questions

Arnold of Brescia was executed because he did not believe in what?

What was the disease known as that killed as many as 43 million people in Europe in the 1300’s?

Name three important battles which the English won against the French during the Hundred Years War.

The fall of what ancient city led to the influx of thousands of true Bible manuscripts into Western Europe?

What city in Russia declared itself the Third Rome?

Name the German printer who is credited with the modern printing press.

Name the Italian mariner, sailing for Spain, who rediscovered the Americas for colonization and conquest.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Importance of the Bible

For any of you out there who claim to be Bible Believers but don't read it every day or listen to it every day on your CD, Mp3 player, or computer, let me just point out that you are fooling yourself.
There is one verse in the Bible that preachers use to underscore the importance of church attendance. There are dozens to underscore the importance of letting God speak to you Himself through His word, as in w-o-r-d-s. If you are expecting to be fed on God's word once a week or even three times a week by a Pastor and that you don't have to let God do it each and every day you are about as useless as a parachute with a massive hole in it.
Bible reading, believing, is more important than attending church. If you attend church faithfully but don't read your Bible, you are, at best, a lazy, ungrateful Christian. At worst, you are a tare, sitting and soaking up what you can in church but a total fake depending on your own righteousness to get you through and not giving God the opportunity to change you.
God preserved His word in the King James Bible, the Authorized Version, and He will use it to do things with you and for you. Take the medicine.If you believe that the NIV or the NKJV, which say different things about important matters, are God's word, too, then let me ask you, how many times have you read them through? I'm on my 46th reading of the AV. Now, let's see, if you've been a Christian for five years and almost anyone can read the Bible through in one year, you should have read it five times. If it doesn't hold your interest, if it is not something you love and desire to read and hear, and if it doesn't soothe, inspire, and encourage and convict you, revealing new truths and things of value on each reading, then perhaps it isn't the word of God or perhaps you are playing games with God and deceiving yourself.
What is that, three chapters a day, thereabouts? If you don't like to read you can at least hear it. How about cutting off your trashy "The View" and your pagan priestess, Oprah, and your Catholic demagogue, Bill O'Reilley, and your godless sitcoms and TV shows for kids brainwashing your family into believing Satan's lies and start reading your Bible to your children and reading it aloud and memorizing parts of it yourself.
Or, perhaps, your god isn't the God who wrote the Book.
2 Corinthians 11:13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Mark, Chapter Six

We’ve had a miracle over nature, a miracle over the Devil, a miracle over disease, and a miracle over death. Christ has shown His power over all four.

1 ¶ And he went out from thence, and came into his own country; and his disciples follow him.
2 And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands?

The world looks at you that unless you have the world’s learning and education you can’t amount to much.

John 7:15 And the Jews marvelled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned?

But, education will not save you in eternity or from sin and its consequences in this life.

1 Corinthians 3:11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

You can not know God or have a relationship with Jesus Christ from a textbook. It is His Bible that will set you apart for His service. A book on engineering is not going to save you from Hell or make you useful to God.
3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.

See here, how the Roman Catholic Church is wrong, and Jesus Christ has brothers and sisters, and that Mary had many other children than Jesus. She had at least six children other than Jesus. This and other verses show that the Vatican doctrine is incorrect. Things like the Assumption of Mary, she was a perpetual virgin, and the like have no Biblical basis.

Matthew 1:25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.

Saying that they were cousins or Joseph’s children from a first marriage have no basis in the Scripture. We can’t get together with the Catholics if they reject God’s word. It is impossible to pursue righteousness when you are zealously clinging to error.

4 But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, but in his own country, and among his own kin, and in his own house.

Deuteronomy 18:15 The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;

Deuteronomy 18:18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.

With regard to John the Baptist whom they thought might be that Prophet and asked him;

John 1:21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.

5 And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them.

There are times, though, when Jesus worked when the people’s faith wasn’t an issue. This is reported to prove a point to us. We complain that God isn’t doing enough for us and we don’t examine our unbelief.

6 And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages, teaching.

Unbelief limits God by His own rules. If you refuse to believe He will not honor unbelief.

Psalm 78:40 ¶ How oft did they provoke him in the wilderness, and grieve him in the desert! 41 Yea, they turned back and tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel.

Mark 5:36 As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.

A church will get warning after warning but their belief in God’s word is not there and God’s spirit over the congregation is removed because of that unbelief. It can happen in a city where God removes His presence. There are cities where you can feel the absence of God. I felt that when I went to Philadelphia once. That place is void. There are Christians there and you can get saved in Philly but you won’t feel the Spirit of God there. When God removes His Spirit from a country, such as England, it becomes a spiritually barren wasteland.

7 ¶ And he called unto him the twelve, and began to send them forth by two and two; and gave them power over unclean spirits;
8 And commanded them that they should take nothing for their journey, save a staff only; no scrip, no bread, no money in their purse:
9 But be shod with sandals; and not put on two coats.

Here’s a sending off of the twelve to Israel with signs for the Jews.

Matthew 10:5 ¶ These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: 6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. 8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. 9 Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass in your purses, 10 Nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet staves: for the workman is worthy of his meat. 11 And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, enquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence. 12 And when ye come into an house, salute it. 13 And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet. 15 Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city. 16 ¶ Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.
17 But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues; 18 And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. 19 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. 20 For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you. 21 And the brother shall deliver up the brother to death, and the father the child: and the children shall rise up against their parents, and cause them to be put to death.
22 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endureth to the end shall be saved.
23 But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come. 24 The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. 25 It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household? 26 Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. 27 What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. 28 And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. 29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. 30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. 32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. 33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. 34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. 37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. 39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. 40 He that receiveth you receiveth me, and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.
41 He that receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.
42 And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.

The Anabaptist group, the Vaudois, from the Cottian Alps in Northern Italy went out two by two to witness all over Europe during the Medieval period, preparing them for the Reformation to come.

10 And he said unto them, In what place soever ye enter into an house, there abide till ye depart from that place.
11 And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.

This is one evidence of levels of punishment in Hell. The perverts in Sodom will not be as miserable as those Jews who heard the preaching of Jesus’ disciples.

12 And they went out, and preached that men should repent.
13 And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them.

Remember, to translate the word as demon links it to the Greek idea that demons could be good. No, they are never good. They are devils.

14 ¶ And king Herod heard of him; (for his name was spread abroad:) and he said, That John the Baptist was risen from the dead, and therefore mighty works do shew forth themselves in him.

Here is the power of a bad conscience.

Acts 24:25 And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee.

Leviticus 26:36 And upon them that are left alive of you I will send a faintness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies; and the sound of a shaken leaf shall chase them; and they shall flee, as fleeing from a sword; and they shall fall when none pursueth.

15 Others said, That it is Elias. And others said, That it is a prophet, or as one of the prophets.
16 But when Herod heard thereof, he said, It is John, whom I beheaded: he is risen from the dead.
17 For Herod himself had sent forth and laid hold upon John, and bound him in prison for Herodias’ sake, his brother Philip’s wife: for he had married her.
18 For John had said unto Herod, It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother’s wife.

This simple truth profoundly affected King Herod. This is the power of the word of God and of preaching it in the streets.

19 Therefore Herodias had a quarrel against him, and would have killed him; but she could not:
20 For Herod feared John, knowing that he was a just man and an holy, and observed him; and when he heard him, he did many things, and heard him gladly.
21 And when a convenient day was come, that Herod on his birthday made a supper to his lords, high captains, and chief estates of Galilee;
22 And when the daughter of the said Herodias came in, and danced, and pleased Herod and them that sat with him, the king said unto the damsel, Ask of me whatsoever thou wilt, and I will give it thee.
23 And he sware unto her, Whatsoever thou shalt ask of me, I will give it thee, unto the half of my kingdom.
24 And she went forth, and said unto her mother, What shall I ask? And she said, The head of John the Baptist.
25 And she came in straightway with haste unto the king, and asked, saying, I will that thou give me by and by in a charger the head of John the Baptist.
26 And the king was exceeding sorry; yet for his oath’s sake, and for their sakes which sat with him, he would not reject her.
27 And immediately the king sent an executioner, and commanded his head to be brought: and he went and beheaded him in the prison,
28 And brought his head in a charger, and gave it to the damsel: and the damsel gave it to her mother.
29 And when his disciples heard of it, they came and took up his corpse, and laid it in a tomb.

Herod here was afraid of looking weak. He was afraid of his wife and of his companions.

Jude 1:16 These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.

30 ¶ And the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught.
31 And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat.

Jesus Christ mandates rest, not pushing yourself to death. There are people who think they can substitute obedience with causing themselves unnecessary personal suffering as a sign of spirituality.

Pastors need a balance. Christians need a balance. God didn’t call us to go without sleep or to not eat right under ordinary circumstances. It proves nothing.

32 And they departed into a desert place by ship privately.
33 And the people saw them departing, and many knew him, and ran afoot thither out of all cities, and outwent them, and came together unto him.
34 And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach them many things.

It must have been amazing to have compassion on a bunch of hard hearted and stupid sheep who you know won’t do what you have told them to do. One of God’s character traits is that He has compassion on stupid, stony hearted people. Here is something of note. Jesus condemns the religious leaders but regards the people as stupid sheep who need a shepherd. The world needs to be taught this Book, this Bible. They are in darkness and they don’t have a clue what to do. Every week Christians are hearing the same message; how to be saved, that they must attend church, and that they must give money to the church. They aren’t growing because they aren’t being fed. They have to learn how to feed themselves and bring others to a knowledge of the truth.

Christians who don’t read the Bible or know it are ignorant and in need of the knowledge it gives.

35 And when the day was now far spent, his disciples came unto him, and said, This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed:
36 Send them away, that they may go into the country round about, and into the villages, and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat.

Compare the disciple’s attitude with Jesus Christ’s. We need to feed people who we lead to the Lord. Take some time. Create a Bible study in your home or on the ‘net.

Furthermore, it is incumbent upon a Christian man, a husband to feed his wife and children during the week with the word of God. If you are waiting for and dependent upon the Pastor to feed your family and yourself once a week or even three times a week you are a worthless Christian. We have Sunday Schools in America because Christian men failed and let God down in their duty to be the Pastor of THEIR family and teach them (that’s not the reason it was founded in Great Britain first but that’s not for this commentary). If you are a Christian husband and you don’t conduct daily Bible reading with your family and Bible Study and devotions and worship with daily prayer, you are a waste of oxygen. Period. Get right with God you scoundrel, you cad, who dares to waste the family that God Himself has given you for the purpose of teaching them about Him and expressing His love to them.

Ephesians 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

37 He answered and said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they say unto him, Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat?
38 He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? go and see. And when they knew, they say, Five, and two fishes.
39 And he commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass.
40 And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties.
41 And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.
42 And they did all eat, and were filled.
43 And they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments, and of the fishes.

I think of the significance of twelve baskets showing that this passage is doctrinally significant to the Jews, the twelve tribes of Israel.

44 And they that did eat of the loaves were about five thousand men.

Five is the number of death and of grace, depending on the context. Spiritually dead men hear the gospel and live, just as those who are faint from hunger eat bread and are revived.

45 ¶ And straightway he constrained his disciples to get into the ship, and to go to the other side before unto Bethsaida, while he sent away the people.
46 And when he had sent them away, he departed into a mountain to pray.

Get alone and pray.

47 And when even was come, the ship was in the midst of the sea, and he alone on the land.
48 And he saw them toiling in rowing; for the wind was contrary unto them: and about the fourth watch of the night he cometh unto them, walking upon the sea, and would have passed by them.

God’s character is such that He will walk right past you, wanting you to call Him. If you reject Him and deny Him, even if after claiming His salvation He’ll walk right by you. Many Christians don’t wish for fellowship and God will leave you alone in your trouble. You have to call to Him.

49 But when they saw him walking upon the sea, they supposed it had been a spirit, and cried out:

Call out to God.

Romans 10:21 But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.

Reject Christ’s admonitions and you will find yourself very alone in a time of trouble and it won’t be because God didn’t try to reach you. But, eventually He’ll move on.

Did God hear your voice this morning when you woke up?

Psalm 5:3 My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.

Did God hear your voice at noon and at night?

Psalm 55:17 Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.

Do you have a Hollywood Jesus who expects nothing from you but feigned, lisping spirituality, and benign neglect?

Jesus is not walking on ice or running like the lizard you’ve seen on the Discovery Channel. He is walking on water and stops and talks. This is a violation of natural law, a miracle.

50 For they all saw him, and were troubled. And immediately he talked with them, and saith unto them, Be of good cheer: it is I; be not afraid.

He’ll respond to your cry with comfort. He will take away your fear. Call to Him. However, you will probably have to learn the lesson He wants you to learn before He comes to you.

51 And he went up unto them into the ship; and the wind ceased: and they were sore amazed in themselves beyond measure, and wondered.
52 For they considered not the miracle of the loaves: for their heart was hardened.

Our hearts are hardened when we forget His miracles. God, the Lord Jesus Christ, has done miracles in your life and you aren’t thankful and don’t even acknowledge it. If you think about it there have been many times in your life when you should have died in your sins before you received Christ and yet He kept you alive. You forget those mercies. You might even look back and say, “things were better before I believed in Christ.” God didn’t bring you out of “Egypt” for you to die.

Numbers 11:5 We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick:

Even though Christ is going to rapture His church before the Great Tribulation we will see some terrible trouble.
Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

Luke 3:7 Then said he to the multitude that came forth to be baptized of him, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

1Thessalonians 1:10 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

Then, BANG!

Revelation 11:18 And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.

But this doesn’t mean that His believers won’t go through some terrible times before that. And don’t we deserve it. Here is what one church is told before the rapture in Revelation.

Revelation 2:10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.

Historically, this may be a reference to the “ten great persecutions of Christians” in the early centuries of Christianity but an application may be made safely to the present day as we will see the suffering that foreign churches have endured come to apostate America.

53 And when they had passed over, they came into the land of Gennesaret, and drew to the shore.
54 And when they were come out of the ship, straightway they knew him,
55 And ran through that whole region round about, and began to carry about in beds those that were sick, where they heard he was.
56 And whithersoever he entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch if it were but the border of his garment: and as many as touched him were made whole.

These people had expectations of Christ. What expectations do we have of Christ?

Look at how the faith healers have to set up a tent, take up an offering, advertize on television. Why don’t they do it like Christ did if they are genuine? If you could really heal people you wouldn’t need our modern rituals. People would probably throw money at you to be healed of cancer.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Latest Reading

The Anti-Intellectual Manifesto by Dr. Peter S. Ruckman, Bible Believers Press, 1991. This is the second time I've read this great piece of homespun humor and Bible believing commentary from America's most hated Christian (by other Christians that is). It's a great read and funny if you can handle being offended. Most modern Christians are too limp wristed to handle Ruckman.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Exodus, chapter 29

This chapter, about Aaron and his sons, is a picture of your relationship with Christ. Aaron is a TYPE of Christ and his sons are a TYPE of us.

Go to Numbers 17 first.

1 ¶ And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and take of every one of them a rod according to the house of their fathers, of all their princes according to the house of their fathers twelve rods: write thou every man’s name upon his rod. 3 And thou shalt write Aaron’s name upon the rod of Levi: for one rod shall be for the head of the house of their fathers. 4 And thou shalt lay them up in the tabernacle of the congregation before the testimony, where I will meet with you. 5 And it shall come to pass, that the man’s rod, whom I shall choose, shall blossom: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, whereby they murmur against you. 6 And Moses spake unto the children of Israel, and every one of their princes gave him a rod apiece, for each prince one, according to their fathers’ houses, even twelve rods: and the rod of Aaron was among their rods.
7 And Moses laid up the rods before the LORD in the tabernacle of witness. 8 ¶ And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the tabernacle of witness; and, behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.
9 And Moses brought out all the rods from before the LORD unto all the children of Israel: and they looked, and took every man his rod. 10 And the LORD said unto Moses, Bring Aaron’s rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not. 11 And Moses did so: as the LORD commanded him, so did he.
12 And the children of Israel spake unto Moses, saying, Behold, we die, we perish, we all perish.
13 Whosoever cometh any thing near unto the tabernacle of the LORD shall die: shall we be consumed with dying?

The Lord gives life out of a dead rod, signifying the resurrection. We are priests and Jesus is the High Priest. This is mentioned in regard to Jesus, several times in Hebrews.

Hebrews 8:1 Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens;

1 ¶ And this is the thing that thou shalt do unto them to hallow them, to minister unto me in the priest’s office: Take one young bullock, and two rams without blemish,
2 And unleavened bread, and cakes unleavened tempered with oil, and wafers unleavened anointed with oil: of wheaten flour shalt thou make them.

There must be no leaven in your life.

Luke 12:1 In the mean time, when there were gathered together an innumerable multitude of people, insomuch that they trode one upon another, he began to say unto his disciples first of all, Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.

Virtually every legalistic church in America is Phariseeical without intending to be.

3 And thou shalt put them into one basket, and bring them in the basket, with the bullock and the two rams.
4 And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shalt wash them with water.

Water is a type of the Holy Spirit and a type of the word of God, the Bible. Your sacrifices are righteousness given by Christ and your prayers and, ultimately, your life.

Psalm 4:5 Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the LORD.

Psalm 141:2 Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

5 And thou shalt take the garments, and put upon Aaron the coat, and the robe of the ephod, and the ephod, and the breastplate, and gird him with the curious girdle of the ephod:
6 And thou shalt put the mitre upon his head, and put the holy crown upon the mitre.

You put on the clothing of Christ’s righteousness as I pointed out in the last chapter about the fine linen being the righteousness of saints which is the righteousness we get from Christ. Note, that Christ, here being typed by Aaron, is the High Priest.

7 Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him.

Oil is a type of the Holy Spirit.

Luke 3:22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.

Psalms 45:7 Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.
Hebrew1:9 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.

Aaron is likened to Christ as Aaron has the oil poured on him. Later, on Aaron’s sons, who are like us, have a dose of it, but not like Christ did. See verse 21. Some people have experienced an tremendous filling of the Holy Spirit but with different results such as D.L. Moody, George Mueller, and Richard Wurmbrand. God will give you the Holy Spirit to equip you for what you are to do. If you claim to be filled with the Holy Spirit let’s see what you do.

8 And thou shalt bring his sons, and put coats upon them.

In type, the Lord calls you and puts His righteousness upon you.

9 And thou shalt gird them with girdles, Aaron and his sons, and put the bonnets on them: and the priest’s office shall be theirs for a perpetual statute: and thou shalt consecrate Aaron and his sons.

Christ has made us priests and kings.

Revelation 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, 6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

10 And thou shalt cause a bullock to be brought before the tabernacle of the congregation: and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the bullock.

To put your hands on something is to transfer sin under the Law or to ordain someone to something through the church. People made Deacons or ordained as Pastors have this done by other men in the church. Apostolic succession is a chain of people believing in Christ and trusting in Him, not an organization.

11 And thou shalt kill the bullock before the LORD, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
12 And thou shalt take of the blood of the bullock, and put it upon the horns of the altar with thy finger, and pour all the blood beside the bottom of the altar.

The altar is a bloody mess. There is no mention of the altar under the church age letters from Paul for use when the church meets. Modern Pastors will even refer to the step leading up to the platform on which their pulpit stands as an altar and then go even further and say that you meet God or come before God there. Since we who are believers have the Spirit of Christ in each of us where we are sitting in the congregation and since we are the house of God, we are the church, not the building, and that the kingdom of God is within us, I don’t get it. Perhaps I’m just not spiritual enough to understand modern Christianity. For this, I apologize.

13 And thou shalt take all the fat that covereth the inwards, and the caul that is above the liver, and the two kidneys, and the fat that is upon them, and burn them upon the altar.
14 But the flesh of the bullock, and his skin, and his dung, shalt thou burn with fire without the camp: it is a sin offering.

God gets the best part and He should get the best part of us. The rest of the sacrifice, not suitable for God, was burned without the camp.

Hebrews 13:11 For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned without the camp.

Hebrews 13:13 Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.

15 Thou shalt also take one ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram.

We will partake in what Christ partakes of.

16 And thou shalt slay the ram, and thou shalt take his blood, and sprinkle it round about upon the altar.
17 And thou shalt cut the ram in pieces, and wash the inwards of him, and his legs, and put them unto his pieces, and unto his head.
18 And thou shalt burn the whole ram upon the altar: it is a burnt offering unto the LORD: it is a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD.

The whole ram is presenting your whole body as a living sacrifice. The typology is your body.

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

19 And thou shalt take the other ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram.
20 Then shalt thou kill the ram, and take of his blood, and put it upon the tip of the right ear of Aaron, and upon the tip of the right ear of his sons, and upon the thumb of their right hand, and upon the great toe of their right foot, and sprinkle the blood upon the altar round about.

There is something important about the ear.

Job 34:3 For the ear trieth words, as the mouth tasteth meat.

Psalm 115:6 They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not:
Psalm 135:17 They have ears, but they hear not; neither is there any breath in their mouths.

Jeremiah 5:21 Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:

Ezekiel 12:2 Son of man, thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house, which have eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not: for they are a rebellious house.

Matthew 13:13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.

Luke 16:31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

Revelation 2:7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

1Corinthians 14:8 For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?

And that thumb, that allows a human being to grasp something firmly, be careful what you touch.

Leviticus 7:19 And the flesh that toucheth any unclean thing shall not be eaten; it shall be burnt with fire: and as for the flesh, all that be clean shall eat thereof.

Proverbs 6:29 So he that goeth in to his neighbour’s wife; whosoever toucheth her shall not be innocent.

And the toe, be careful where you walk.

Job 18:8 For he is cast into a net by his own feet, and he walketh upon a snare.

Proverbs 10:9 He that walketh uprightly walketh surely: but he that perverteth his ways shall be known.

John 12:35 Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth.

21 And thou shalt take of the blood that is upon the altar, and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it upon Aaron, and upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon the garments of his sons with him: and he shall be hallowed, and his garments, and his sons, and his sons’ garments with him.

Notice that the garments, the outside is hallowed as well as the inside.

1Corinthians 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

22 Also thou shalt take of the ram the fat and the rump, and the fat that covereth the inwards, and the caul above the liver, and the two kidneys, and the fat that is upon them, and the right shoulder; for it is a ram of consecration:

Remember the ram that Abraham found after his prophesy to Isaac that God would provide himself a lamb?

Genesis 22:13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son.

23 And one loaf of bread, and one cake of oiled bread, and one wafer out of the basket of the unleavened bread that is before the LORD:
24 And thou shalt put all in the hands of Aaron, and in the hands of his sons; and shalt wave them for a wave offering before the LORD.
25 And thou shalt receive them of their hands, and burn them upon the altar for a burnt offering, for a sweet savour before the LORD: it is an offering made by fire unto the LORD.
26 And thou shalt take the breast of the ram of Aaron’s consecration, and wave it for a wave offering before the LORD: and it shall be thy part.

1 Samuel 2:12 Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the LORD. 13 And the priests’ custom with the people was, that, when any man offered sacrifice, the priest’s servant came, while the flesh was in seething, with a fleshhook of three teeth in his hand; 14 And he struck it into the pan, or kettle, or caldron, or pot; all that the fleshhook brought up the priest took for himself. So they did in Shiloh unto all the Israelites that came thither. 15 Also before they burnt the fat, the priest’s servant came, and said to the man that sacrificed, Give flesh to roast for the priest; for he will not have sodden flesh of thee, but raw. 16 And if any man said unto him, Let them not fail to burn the fat presently, and then take as much as thy soul desireth; then he would answer him, Nay; but thou shalt give it me now: and if not, I will take it by force. 17 Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred the offering of the LORD.

The Lord was supposed to get the fat.

27 And thou shalt sanctify the breast of the wave offering, and the shoulder of the heave offering, which is waved, and which is heaved up, of the ram of the consecration, even of that which is for Aaron, and of that which is for his sons:
28 And it shall be Aaron’s and his sons’ by a statute for ever from the children of Israel: for it is an heave offering: and it shall be an heave offering from the children of Israel of the sacrifice of their peace offerings, even their heave offering unto the LORD.

After the fat is shaken off Aaron and his sons eat.

29 And the holy garments of Aaron shall be his sons’ after him, to be anointed therein, and to be consecrated in them.
30 And that son that is priest in his stead shall put them on seven days, when he cometh into the tabernacle of the congregation to minister in the holy place.
31 And thou shalt take the ram of the consecration, and seethe his flesh in the holy place.
32 And Aaron and his sons shall eat the flesh of the ram, and the bread that is in the basket, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.

Some things you give to God that you don’t get any part of but there are things that God shares with you. This is often used as the reasoning why a Pastor is allowed to get a living from his ministry.

33 And they shall eat those things wherewith the atonement was made, to consecrate and to sanctify them: but a stranger shall not eat thereof, because they are holy.

Now, we have the word “atonement”, in connection with a burnt sacrifice putting the people at-one-ment, with God. Here is a principle where unsaved people should not partake of the things that Christians are supposed to take.

A “stranger” is a foreigner, what we would call an alien.

Genesis 15:13 And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;

Psalm 69:8 I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother’s children.

2Chronicles 6:32 Moreover concerning the stranger, which is not of thy people Israel, but is come from a far country for thy great name’s sake, and thy mighty hand, and thy stretched out arm; if they come and pray in this house;

Understanding this will help understand Matthew 25:35 and onward. Jesus was not from here, obviously, but from another country, that is, heaven.

34 And if ought of the flesh of the consecrations, or of the bread, remain unto the morning, then thou shalt burn the remainder with fire: it shall not be eaten, because it is holy.
35 And thus shalt thou do unto Aaron, and to his sons, according to all things which I have commanded thee: seven days shalt thou consecrate them.
36 And thou shalt offer every day a bullock for a sin offering for atonement: and thou shalt cleanse the altar, when thou hast made an atonement for it, and thou shalt anoint it, to sanctify it.

Aaron, his sons, and the altar are sanctified and set apart, made holy, which means set apart to God.

Leviticus 20:7 Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.

Psalm 4:3 But know that the LORD hath set apart him that is godly for himself: the LORD will hear when I call unto him.

One principle I think we need to understand is that everything to be used of God must be set apart for Him and by Him. The world, the people that dwell upon the earth*, all of their institutions, even their religious ones, and all of their works are ungodly and filthy before Him**. For anything to be of value to God the creator, they must be set apart for His purpose by some manner.

*Revelation 3:10 Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

** Isa 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

** Luke 16:15 And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God.

Why is that? Because this world is operated by Satan.

2Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

Think of this when your heart is swelled with pride at a passing military parade, a commencement exercise, a job promotion, the election of a political candidate to office, or a TV show applauding the word of some philanthropist.

1John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

Christians, for the most part, in America are far too much in love with the world to be of any use to God.

37 Seven days thou shalt make an atonement for the altar, and sanctify it; and it shall be an altar most holy: whatsoever toucheth the altar shall be holy.

This is why Joab fled to grab the horns of the altar;

1Kings 2:28 Then tidings came to Joab: for Joab had turned after Adonijah, though he turned not after Absalom. And Joab fled unto the tabernacle of the LORD, and caught hold on the horns of the altar.
Seven days is the length of this present world, six thousand years and then the thousand year millennium.

38 ¶ Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually.
39 The one lamb thou shalt offer in the morning; and the other lamb thou shalt offer at even:
40 And with the one lamb a tenth deal of flour mingled with the fourth part of an hin of beaten oil; and the fourth part of an hin of wine for a drink offering.
41 And the other lamb thou shalt offer at even, and shalt do thereto according to the meat offering of the morning, and according to the drink offering thereof, for a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD.
42 This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD: where I will meet you, to speak there unto thee.

God’s condition for meeting someone is the door of the tabernacle (Jesus) and shed blood (Jesus) of a lamb (Jesus).

43 And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory.

We are sanctified, set apart for God, by His glory.

44 And I will sanctify the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar: I will sanctify also both Aaron and his sons, to minister to me in the priest’s office.
45 And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God.
46 And they shall know that I am the LORD their God, that brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, that I may dwell among them: I am the LORD their God.

This is to keep them in mind of who saved them. We need to read this Book over and over again as a memorial of who saved us and as a reminder that He dwells in us. Without constant reading of or listening to this Book we, Christians, tend to become paganized rather quickly.